Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Independence Day

Well, let me cut to the chase and say that this Fourth of July weekend was probably my most memorable and best ever. Never in my wildest dreams would I think I'd be spending it at White House! But more on that later.

We started the festivities by visiting the Capitol Columns at the National Arboretum, which are an impressive sight, especially in such an open and beautiful setting. I introduced Henry to the wild fun that are water balloons and had ourselves a good fight.

On the eve of Independence Day, Henry and I made our way to the Capitol to watch the dress rehearsal for "A Capitol Fourth." While most visitors descend upon the mall on the fourth, it's much less crazy to go the night before to the full dress rehearsal without the 700,000 people. It was particularly significant to me because the Beach Boys were performing and they were the first concert I ever went to. To be able to now share that with Henry (on the grounds of the Capitol no less!) was really cool. We had a great time, were relatively close, and I even got to see John Stamos in the flesh. And he did not disappoint!

On the morning of the fourth, we headed to the Barrack's Row parade, which is a few blocks from our house. It was definitely a community parade, complete with little leagues, preschools, horticulture groups, and even a bootleg Mickey Mouse. 

Scott had acquired tickets for fireworks viewing at the White House and I was excited about the idea but had no idea what to expect-roll up with a blanket and plan to wait with our spot staked out? I at least knew it wouldn't be as crazy being a ticketed event. When we walked in, I was blown away by the preppy garden party it was. My first thought was that I was underdressed but thankfully there were some other casual people among the peplum dressed ladies in heels and men in seersucker shirts and slacks. We rolled in with frayed shorts and Darth Vader shirts...let's just say it brought some diversity to the crowd. Anyway, it was amazing. I wanted to pinch myself that this was how we were spending our holiday--tables with complimentary beer, wine, and sodas? Live military band? Ice cream for the kids? Corn hole? Face painting? Check, check, check, check, and check.

We were pretty close to hop over a very thin rope and run up and ding, dong, ditch the place ;)

Of course the cherry on top was sitting on the lawn to watch the fireworks spectacular with the Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument in the same frame. Henry and Josephine were both mesmerized, as was the crowd, which gave Scott and I a good chuckle. When you grow up with Disneyland fireworks in your front yard for your entire childhood, "fancy" fireworks like shapes and happy faces don't have quite the same impact as those who may only be treated to a show once a year.

This has definitely been a top three memory for me while we've been out here. It was an epic way to celebrate the nation's birthday!

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