happy fourth…

fourth of july flagHappy Birthday, America – 239 years old today! The Fourth of July. A celebration of our red, white and blue. Flags flying high and proud. Displays of patriotism around every corner. Amidst the BBQ and fireworks, the tri-color jello molds and the stars and stripes fingernail art – I think we sometimes get too busy, so wrapped up in all of the preparation and planning (myself included) that we forget.  We forget to stop…              and say “thank you”.

As they say, “there is no land of the free, without home of the brave“. To our men and women , past and present, who have served this great country of ours… we are forever in your debt.  Thank you,  thank you;  a million times…  thank you.

That being said, I also 100% LOVE all of the wonderful family and friends traditions that we celebrate this glorious day. So many memories, going all the way back to my grandparents’ boathouse on the river when I was a little girl. Spending the day on the little “beach” with a picnic lunch, catching tadpoles and shooting the rapids. Returning, exhausted,  to our tiny little river house to enjoy smokebombs, “snakes” and sparklers, before we crashed, 2-3 people per bed, underneath a bizillion stars, in the middle of nowhere – the chirping of the crickets almost deafening…   Flash forward – Another vivid Fourth of July memory – exactly 25 years ago today. Pregnant with twins and confined to bedrest, I was feeling overwhelmingly a little “stir crazy” and decided to “sneak out” and watch the fireworks that night. Ha!! Let me tell you, there is absolutely NO WAY to “sneak” ANYWHERE when you are 36 weeks pregnant with twins.  Never-the-less; we did it anyway. I went into labor exactly 10 days later…

fourth of july kyle & lauren

fourth of july bike parade








fourth of july ornduffs

fourth of july with dave ornduff & kids








I woke up this morning remembering the past 25 years with our kids… like a filmstrip of memories all jumbled up into a big ball of happy. Parades and popsicles, family and friends, petting zoos and jump houses, tattoos and water balloons, pony rides and decorating the bikes, neighborhood pool parties and family BBQ’s… I’m not gonna lie; I have felt a bit melancholy all day.               Sigh…


fourth of july lauren horse

fourth of july kyle







So I chose this beautiful pic and quote (at top) this morning as my inspiration for this year – July 4, 2015. Not a focus on our “rights”, as such… but, rather, our privileges. As Americans, we are so mightily blessed.  As a nation we must reject prejudice and embrace honesty. We are called to do the right thing.   Just because.  As (a very wise woman) Ellen says everyday at the end of her show… “Be kind to one another”.  


OK.  I’m done. Tri-color jello, anyone…?  Happy Fourth, friends xo



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