Sunday, July 10, 2011

Slice of America

I love a parade! A selling point for me in buying this house was the family friendly neighborhood where neighbors actually know each other, look out for one another, and know how to throw a great party. For over 60 years they have hosted a 4th of July parade that travels right in front of our new home.

I'm a big fan of parties, especially parties with a theme. Throwing myself into party planning mode is a guilty pleasure and I am darn good at it. In the few weeks I had between the move and the 4th, I stocked up on bunting, patriotic stars (including star ice cube trays), and planned the menu. Lacking a punch bowl, I found a cheesy nostalgia fountain on-line. I just had to buy two as one was for 2 gallons (yes 2 gallons) of sangria and one was for punch. They flow from 3 tiers and light up and make me happy.

We were blessed to have a great turn out of friends and even family that travelled from Iowa. Expecting just a bunch of kids on decorated bicycles, we were pleasantly surprised with bagpipers, bands, antique cars and trucks, fire trucks, steppers, clowns, and floats. An honest to goodness parade!

Alexander's bestie from his last school attended, making for a very happy boy.

Despite the summer heat, the morning parade was grand and the sangria which soaked in fruit and brandy overnight was scrumptious.

Our good friends surprised us all with their new edition, Ms. Kimberly, 10 days old! I momentarily forgot my hosting duties as I snuggled her, breathed in her sweet baby scent, and admired her dark curly hair.

supplying sangria to the parade marchers

We were overflowing with gorgeous families.

Sister and Papa

A year ago we walked out on faith and moved across the country to a new city. For years I had been praying for a job that would fulfill my husband, in a place that would nourish our family, and enrich our lives. We've found so much more than that in our little corner of the world.

This place feels like a small town in the mid-west, yet is just down the road from the big city. After the parade, the park around the corner hosted music, free hot dogs, a dunk tank, bouncy houses, face painting, sack races, baseball, and train rides. Alexander and our buddy Sy rode the caboose.

Although our lives are busier than we might like, we are happy. We have finally found our Home and we are putting down roots. Join us next 4th of July for our 2nd annual parade watching party!

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