Monday, July 6, 2009

Fourth of July Celebration

I must admit that I do not like to buy fireworks. I love to watch them.....just hate to buy them. All I can think about is that my money is going up in smoke....literally! My kids haven't figured out yet that you can actually buy them and do them yourself....however, my days are numbered and they will soon call my bluff.

We did go to my hometown this past weekend and went to watch the fireworks display the local Jaycee chapter sponsored.

Luckily, we found rock star parking, grabbed our chairs and started our search for the perfect spot to watch the show. The boys were so excited! It was just the four of us. We chose to leave the girls at home with Oma and Brupa as it would be a late night, and we thought that the loud pops would scare the bejeebers out of them.

It has been quite some time since I have roamed around my old stomping grounds, (Believe me, there was a lot of stomping goin' on back in the day. I knew every street and back alley.....escaped many of cop in those alleys....but we'll save that for another post.) and I kinda forgot about this bridge. Well, ok, the bridge wasn't even there "back in the day". I just don't like to think about how much time has passed since I stomped on those grounds!

I love how it is patriotic, yet so simple. Dew actually took this picture....not too shabby!

I also forgot about this. This came from the old bridge that took you across the Missouri River to Iowa. Lord, how I HATED that bridge. It was an old green monster of a bridge, only had two lanes and was extremely narrow. I would hold my breath as I drove across, and pray the entire time, "God, please don't let me meet a semi! PLEEEAAASE don't let me meet a semi! And if I should meet a semi, please don't let me plunge into the river below!" The bridge was so narrow that semi trucks would actually cross over into the other lane to keep from hitting the side of the bridge. I know the drivers tried desperately to stay in their lane, however, they risked losing their side mirrors by doing that as they would hit the sides of the bridge. I am sure if one was brave enough to dive to the murky bottom of the Mighty Mo....they would hit the jackpot of all jackpots of side mirrors that were once securely attached to the passenger side of a semi truck!

After the new bridge was built...the old one was, of course, torn down. But this was saved and the city chose to put it atop the gateway that leads into Steinhart Park which is where the fireworks display is every year.

With chairs and sweatshirts in hand searching for that perfect spot to sit, we walked past the pool. As a child, I spent many of a summer day here just living the life. Brought back a lot of memories. The boys were absolutely astounded that, once upon a time, I actually went near and in a pool! Something I would never do now! And you wouldn't want me to......having 4 babies has taken quite the toll......a sight I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy!

While we waited for the show to begin....we took pictures to commemorate the evening.

We finally found our perfect spot. At the base of these terraces. See that building at the top of the terraces? This is my most favorite spot in all of the world. I have so many wonderful memories of Steinhart Lodge. About 30 years ago, it used to be a wonderful restaurant. In high school our Holiday Dance was held here. My brother and cousin, Heidi, graduated the same year and had their graduation receptions there. And most recently, this is where Ro and I had our wedding reception and dance. It was and still is absolutely beautiful.

Now this was a miracle! Getting Ro in a picture. (Dew took this one, too.)

Finally, the show began. Only after Dew and Chi-Chi asked, about every 2 minutes, "What time is it now?" "When does it start?" "How much longer?" "Why haven't they started yet?" "I have to go to the bathroom! Noooowwww!"

Dew was completely captivated by the show and didn't take his eyes off the fireworks.

Not for one second. He didn't want to miss a thing!

Chi-Chi was another story......

After a day of playing non stop with his cousins.....he was tired, it was late and it just got the best of him.

I tried to capture the fireworks with my camera. A normal person would have given up after the first 20 or so missed shots and realize......this ain't workin'! Me, on the other hand, tried to capture every single one!!!!

I was either too early, or........

too late! ARGH!

Truth be told my competitive side took over. The guy sitting next to me was doing the same thing.....and all of his pictures, of course, were perfect! (I was peeking over his shoulder. He was probably doing the same and laughing at my feeble attempts! I think I heard him chuckling a couple of times.) So, with each picture I was trying to out do him, and cursing him in my mind each time I failed. Not really, but I felt like it!

There were a couple good ones.....but just a COUPLE!

The simple plain, white star bursts were my favorite! That's me...just plain and simple!

Hope you all had a wonderful and safe Fourth of July and that you were able to spend it with those you care about most!


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