My favorite July 4th memories are going to Missouri by my aunts and camping – on the ground, in cars…wherever – we never had tents or campers – we were rednecks – HAHAHA It was our entire family – like 30 of us; grandma, aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings. We swam, ate the best food ever, roasted marshmallows and hotdogs, hiked and just enjoyed our time.

We would stop on our way and pick up fireworks, they were illegal in Illinois. Then the men of the family would get on either side of the creek and have bottle rocket wars. Once it was dark the pretty fireworks were set off. One year, my dad was hunkered over his fireworks stash and one of the bottle rockets hit his pile – fireworks were going everywhere. You talk about him moving fast – it was so funny, thankfully no one was hurt. Another year Grandma was sitting in her lawn chair enjoying the fireworks and one landed under her chair. She moved so fast and knocked the chair over it was hysterical – from then on the spinner fireworks were called “Grandma chasers”.  ?

Just good wholesome times and memories. Simpler, less stressful times when I grew up.