It’s an interesting dilemma for parents today. Kids love watching fireworks, but the public displays can’t start until it gets dark, and that means we have to wait 9:30 or 10:00 to catch a glimpse of the fireworks, and by the time we get the kids home to bed it’s 11:00 or later. That’s LATE if you have kids under five years old. And then Thursday is a big ole mess with those little biological clocks thrown off and grouchiness galore. What to do, what to do.

Wanna enact our plan? We’re having a wild and crazy 4th of July party at home today. It keeps the kids excited and entertained, it involves legal fireworks, and you can have the young ‘uns asleep by 9:00 or 9:30. See how elaborate it gets.

We’ve designated a Red White and Blue theme around the house today. The kids (all girls, ages 4, 2, and 8 months) are all wearing red, white, and blue clothes and we’re eating all red, white, and blue food. ALL DAY. You’re hungry for broccoli? Sorry, that’s green. Not today. They had blueberry and cherry Pop Tarts for breakfast. For lunch we’re having pepperoni pizza and a blue drink. (I know the pizza isn’t perfectly white, but the red is there and the off-white cheese will have to do.) And for dinner it’s hot dogs with only ketchup because mustard would ruin the carefully crafted theme, along with blue corn chips, and blueberries and strawberries with Cool Whip.

After a long day of constant crafts inspired by Family Fun and involving pipe cleaners, popsicle sticks, and various assortment of red and blue construction paper, we’ll hang homemade fireworks from the celing and watch the 4th of July TV specials. Those fireworks will happen around 7 or 8 I’m thinking, and if they don’t happen that early we’ll dial them up on youtube. The whole world is on demand, even fireworks.

Think I’m nuts with this elaborate scheme to rob my kids of the enjoyment of public fireworks displays? Perhaps a little nuts, yes. But the girls are beyond excited about Red White and Blue Day at the Austin house, and tomorrow when they wake up they won’t be tired and sunburned.

However you celebrate, happy Independence Day!

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