Did you all have a glorious 4th! Did you watch parades, walk in parades, have a cookout, shoot off fireworks, watch fireworks, and celebrate America's birthday with lots of noise and fun? I watched fireworks. I also ate watermelon and ice cream (two July 4th foods). It was HOT here on the 4th. 104 degrees with a heat index of I don't know what! When we headed out to watch fireworks from a bridge only a few blocks away, it was still 94 degrees. Did I mention it was hot?
I have to tell you about last Friday. It was even busier and more exciting than I had thought it would be when I posted. First, a friend came over bringing things for a sewing project for S & I for the Republican HQ. Then, one of my best friends called to tell me they weren't out of town and if I wanted to, I could go out to lunch with them. Then some customers of S came to pick up some dresses. And did I mention that during that time we were trying to get the house cleaned? Once I finished cleaning I was scrambling to get my BFs (best friends) birthday present together and wrapped. Headed down the alley to their house. We left in the car and took younger sister with us. Drove to an art gallery to see pictures of the tornado. On the way to the restaurant, the AC in the car quit and it was making strange noises. So, we stopped at their house and switched to the van. Out to eat which was fun. Then went to a book store, then to pick up younger brothers at the farmers market.
I got dropped off at home and the others went home. I heard from younger sister who came to get something that Special Friend was at their house. Hmm, does that mean a ring? Yep!!!! BF2 (My best friends are twins thus the number.) called to say she had said yes!!! So excited for her! After supper we headed down to their house for the surprise birthday get together. :) They were surprised. :) It was a fun, crazy, day. (By the way, BF1 is the one who did the Alphabet book.)
After that busy Friday, Saturday was slow and relaxing.
On Sunday after church I went out to the park with BFs, Special Friend, younger sister and other friend for a photo shoot of the engaged couple. Oh, it was so hot!
Monday evening S and I babysat the kiddos. :) They are fun. It had cooled off enough to let them play outside after supper for 30 minutes.
Tuesday was busy working on the project for HQ.
Independence Day was pretty quiet. No parades, no get togethers, no cookouts, only fireworks at night.
As for yesterday I did normal things.
I have gotten some writing done. Got this story written. :) The idea for it came from a "pretend letter" I had written to a friend several years before. We picked a time in history, created our "families" and wrote letters to each other. Well, I had been wanting to write a 4th of July story, but was having a hard time thinking of what to write, so when I read that letter, I knew I could change it into 3rd person and add a bit here and there to make it more interesting. And I did. I hope you enjoy it.
The Medford's Independence Day
“Walt,” he whispered, “come on.”
Sleepily Walter sat up and blinked. Why was Dad waking him so early? Then he remembered. Today was the 4th of July! Suddenly every bit of tiredness fled and he was wide awake. He nodded with a wide grin to his father and slipped out of bed. Pulling his clothes on quietly so as not to wake the two little boys, he stifled a laugh and hurried softly from the room and down to the kitchen.
“Does Mom know?” he asked in low tones as his father handed him a pot and a large spoon.
“She will in a few minutes,” Mr. Medford chuckled, looking, Walter thought, like a school boy up to some prank. “We’ll wait until the top of the hour,” Mr. Medford instructed with a whisper.
All was silent. There was no noise from the bedrooms upstairs, and from the open windows the only sounds were a few birds singing and a cicada or two. All the neighboring houses were dark and still. Only the sound of the seconds ticking away on the clock was to be heard indoors and the two conspirators stood with eyes fastened on the second hand.
Tick. Tick. Tick.
Forty-five seconds until the hour.
Tick. Tick. Tick.
Thirty seconds. Walter took a good grip on his spoon.
Tick. Tick. Tick.
Twenty seconds. Mr. Medford lifted his pot and pan.
Tick. Tick. Tick.
Ten seconds left. Walter held his breath.
Dong! Crash! Bang, crash, clatter, bang, crash!
The noise was almost deafening as father and son beat upon the metal pans with great vigor.
From upstairs came the thud of pounding feet, the excited sound of voices and soon the entire family came pouring down the stairs to see what all the racket was about.
“It’s Independence Day!” Mr. Medford exclaimed, stopping his pounding and grinning. “We can’t have you all sleeping late today of all days. This is a gala day. Hurry up everyone! Get dressed and let’s eat breakfast!”
“You two,” Mrs. Medford laughed, shaking her head at them as she picked up Henry and turned towards the stairs.
Hardly had the family disappeared back to the upper regions of the house than a knocking was heard on the front door.
“Lawrence,” someone called, “is everything all right?”
Mr. Medford flung open the door to see four or five neighbors in bathrobes standing on his porch. “Happy Independence Day! Glorious morning for the 4th, isn’t it? All right? Of course it is. Walt and I were just waking up the family. No use sleeping late on the birthday of our country!”
With some laughs and good natured grumbling, the startled neighbors returned to their own homes, but it is doubtful if any returned to bed, for their awakening had roused them well.
After the Medford family finished eating breakfast and had had their family Bible time, Mr. Medford looked about the table. “Mary Rose and Walter, Mr. Glover will be here to pick you up at 10:00 so make sure you are both ready and in costume. Lillian and Alice, you two help your mother get the lunch ready. Helen, can you find the picnic basket and bring down the large blanket?”
“Sure Daddy,” seven-year-old Helen replied, delighted to be doing something important.
“Then let’s fall to it,” Mr. Medford stood up.
Mary Rose, nearly fifteen, hurried to clear off the table so the dishes could be washed quickly. All was flurry and bustle, laughter, and several frantic dashes after Henry who was almost twelve-months old and who kept getting into things. Finally Mr. Medford took him and two-year-old James outside to play with Eve, who was five.
“Now maybe we can get something done,” Mrs. Medford sighed, pushing back her hair from her face.
“Mom,” Walter called from the stairs, “I can’t figure out how this thing goes,” and Mrs. Medford hurried out to help.
When Mr. Glover arrived, both Mary Rose and Walter were ready and they soon departed.
“I wish I could be in the parade,” Lillian sighed.
“Next year you will be, most likely,” eleven-year-old Alice assured. “Since Walt is thirteen and next year you’ll be thirteen, I think they’ll want you.”
Lillian sighed again. “I hope so. But,” she added briskly, “we had better get these things finished so Mama can pack them in the basket.”
It was nearly 11:00 when the Medford family, with the exception of the two oldest children, found a place to watch the parade. There were the two high school bands, the boy scout troop in the area, veterans from the Great War and even some from the Spanish-American War, the city’s fire engines went by, as did the Mayor in his car. But for most of the Medford children, the floats were the best part. Walter was in the float of George Washington crossing the Delaware while Mary Rose made a lovely Betsy Ross, sewing diligently on a flag for her country. The nearby college had come up with a very creative idea. They represented the history of the United States. Each president was portrayed by a college fellow while other fellows and girls were dressed for events in the nation’s past.
There was so much excitement and cheering, as at last the end of the parade passed by, that scarcely anyone heard the city bells ringing noon.
Lunch was eaten by the Medfords under a tree near where they had watched the parade, and there Mary Rose and Walter joined them, still in costume.
Back at home, Mrs. Medford insisted that everyone take a nap if they wanted to stay up late that night. To this Mr. Medford heartily agreed for, though he had initiated the early rising, all the excitement had made even him tired.
The quiet of the early afternoon didn’t last more than an hour and a half for the children couldn’t remain quiet any longer. Their backyard, the only one in the neighborhood with a real playground, swings and forts, was the gathering place for every child around and soon the yard was teeming with shouts, laughter and children.
Come back next week to read what happens in the afternoon!
What did you think of this first part?
Would you have liked to watch that parade? I would!