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While I’m trying to get my head together and think of something funny or profound or, hell, I don’t know, anything to write about, here are my favorite pictures from our 4th of July.

Catie & Elizabeth pose for me
Catie and her cousin Elizabeth. Those girls know how to work the camera.

Elizabeth & Catie, ready to see the fireworks on the 4th of July
The look on Catie’s face here cracks me up. She’s smiling, but there’s also a “what the heck is she doing back there? Is she touching me? Make her stop touching me!” kind of vibe.

the one halfway-cool looking picture of fireworks that I took
Pretty much the only cool fireworks picture that I was able to get. I need to figure out the manual settings on my awesome camera someday, because most of them were, uh, awful.

Hope everyone is having a great week. I’ll be back soon with something more.

Happy Fourth

We had a nice fourth of July here. It’s odd because it isn’t really a date that we typically celebrate that much in our house, since 1/3 of our household comes from the country that sort of made that whole Revolutionary War thing necessary. But Dave’s a good sport about American holidays, and he wasn’t even offended when the neighborhood association stuck an American flag in our yard next to our mailbox. (Why, I don’t know. But it was awfully tempting to buy a Union Jack flag to hang up, just to balance things out.)

Anyway, yesterday morning, Catie and I went to meet up with my cousin Cat and her family (plus a couple of friends) at the Eno River Festival in Durham. That was a lot of fun – we ate giant turkey legs, corn dogs and other festival foods, wandered around, heard these guys, who were un-freaking-believable, and let the girls play in the river. The river, btw, was a hilarious example of how different Catie and Elizabeth are. Elizabeth sees the river, and immediately strips off her dress so she can swim in the river in just her underpants. Meanwhile, it took me 20 minutes just to get Catie to take her shoes off and stick one toe in the water.

Catie in the Eno River

This was the deepest I could ever coerce her to go, and she whined and cried about it the whole time. I wish I had a picture of Elizabeth for contrast, because it was a great visual example of Daredevil Child versus Cautious Kid.

After the festival, we came home and got cleaned up just in time for my brother to arrive from Charlotte. He didn’t have anything to do for the holiday weekend and wanted to know if it was ok if he came to visit. I said of course, so he drove over & spent the night with us last night. As soon as he arrived, we headed over to Cat and Tony’s for dinner.

I must say, I love hanging out at Cat & Tony’s house. It’s always relaxed and fun and easy. Plus, you know, I get to smoosh on this little guy.

Austin loves his thumb
Mmm, thumbs, nom nom!

Cat’s parents (my aunt & uncle) are in town, and a couple of their friends plus Tony’s sister Diana were also there, so it was a nice big group of us. We had grilled chicken, hot dogs, and I think I ate my weight in chips & hummus. Oh, and there were at least four desserts. Awesome.

As we were leaving to go see the fireworks (the viewpoint is about a half-mile or so from Cat & Tony’s house), Cat told Elizabeth to go get her shoes. Her shoes were upstairs, so she said, “Come with me, Catie.” Catie said ok and followed her. And they held hands as they walked up the stairs together. My heart almost exploded from the cuteness.

Catie & Elizabeth

I cannot tell you how much I love watching our two girls grow up together. Even when they fight (and there are occasional disagreements about whose turn it is to use a certain toy), it’s still great to see them interact.

Then of course, there were the fireworks, but I need a new camera, so most of my pictures were crap. This was the first fireworks experience for both Catie & Elizabeth, and they absolutely loved it. Our viewpoint was from a field a couple of miles away from the action, so we could see all the explosions and colors without too much noise. It made the whole thing much less scary for the girls.

Chris & Catie at breakfast

This morning, we went out for breakfast, and drove my brother past our new house so he could see it. He left to go back to Charlotte soon afterward, and Catie went down for a nap.

This evening, we’re getting a visit from the lovely and delightful Brittany. She has a few days off work, so she’s going to come stay with us to look for a job and an apartment before she moves here next month. Yay! I can’t wait!

Edited to add: I just realized that I wrote a post with this exact title, five years ago today. That was the first fourth of July that Dave and I celebrated, watching the fireworks from the roof of my apartment in downtown Seattle. We’d only been dating for about six weeks at that point. Aw, nostalgia.