Monday, July 10, 2017

4th of July

Saturday morning, of the 4th of July weekend, we headed to Chattanooga. Since the 4th was on a Tuesday, both Robbie's company and mine were also closed on the 3rd. Since we had a 4 day weekend, we headed up to Chattanooga to hang out with our old friends from when we lived there.

Saturday night, we headed to the square for dinner

After dinner, we let the kids run around the grass area. Hollon was the "bad guy" chasing the older 3.

She looks very scary and intimidating, doesn't she?

And we enjoyed ice cream cones afterwards

Then Zach brought out the laser tags guns.
The kids were all on the upstairs balcony and the parents (well, Zach, Kimberly & Robbie, I was taking pictures) had home base downstairs.  
Hollon used a wand, instead of a gun

Jake was running around so much, he was pouring sweat

You can't really see anything in this video, but you can get an idea of how loud it was. (All of the lights were off in the house. It looks bright in the pictures above, because of my camera flash [which I kept getting yelled out by everyone].) What surprised me though, is that Hollon didn't freak out. (I think she just liked that she could scream and not get in trouble.) You can hear her laughing in the video.

On Sunday, Kimberly & I went shopping and left the dads in charge of the kids. And then we get sent this picture.
That is green paint. All over Hollon's hands & arms.
The kids were upstairs playing in the bonus room. The older 3 were playing video games and everyone thought Hollon was playing with Addie's huge tote of Barbie dolls. Evidently she slipped away and found the finger paint at the art easel. (Which, a little in her defense, it is the same easel that they have at school, so I guess she just felt comfortable.) She somehow got the top off and was happily painting when the big kids noticed and alerted the dads. Remarkably, she didn't get any on the carpet. She got a smudge on her face and a few dots on her shirt. But for the most part, she kept it on the easel and her hands.

That afternoon, she and Addie decorated cupcakes for the get-together that night.

A bunch of our old friends came over that night and we grilled out and hung out. There were tons of laser tag fights.

The 2 smallest girls (Isabella & Hollon) wanted nothing to do with the guns

Isabella is exactly 1 year older than Hollon. But she kept wanting to pick her up, like Hollon was the baby. It was hilarious. 

Then the dads brought out the smoke bombs

They played with some sparklers

I'm hoping there is some parenting manual out there that says hovering over the smoke from a smoke bomb is completely safe and highly recommended for kids. And if you let your kids do that, you are doing some great parenting.

The dads started shooting off some of the smaller fireworks and the boys all hugged up on each other acting (?) like they were scared

Hollon's face! 
Then the boys went further out and shot off some of the bigger fireworks

After a while, Hollon found it boring and wanted to go inside and put on her pajamas. Isabella followed and they spent the rest of the evening watching princess videos.

Monday, the boys went for a bike ride and it was mine & Kimberly's turn to watch the kids. (Thankfully no finger paint was gotten into) But there was some Princess/Star Wars cross dressing. 
Bahahaha - Hollon's face!

We headed to the square to get ice cream after lunch (but their machines were brokenšŸ˜©)

We went back home, rested a little and then packed up for the symphony and fireworks in the park that evening. We tried the ice cream again and thankfully this time, the machines had been fixed.

We played a little in the grassy area

Our original plan was to have dinner from the food trucks at the park and hang out until the concert and fireworks. But a rain shower was forecast to come through, so we decided to waste some time and then just eat dinner at a restaurant in the square.

Walking to dinner

Thankfully, it was the right choice. There was a quick downpour and then it was out.

 After dinner, the kids did more racing

Then we headed to the park. It was still drizzling a little off and on, and the field was a muddy mess. But we made the best of it.

Tons of strawberries were consumed

The boys were throwing the football and playing chase and each of them at different times fell in the mud.

Listening to the symphony

And then we watched the fireworks
At first, Hollon was unsure. But by the end, she was enjoying it.

And she fell asleep on the way to the car

It was such an awesome weekend. We got to see and hang out with so many of our old friends. This group will always have a special place in our hearts. We were all pregnant with our first child within a year of each other (5 boys/1 girl born in a 1 year time span!) So many of my favorite Chattanooga memories, include people from this group. And I'm so glad that 6 years later, even though we are no longer in Chattanooga, we are still making memories with them. Here is our last group picture together before we left Chattanooga in January 2011.
These kids are all 7 & 8 now!
Tuesday morning, we headed back to Birmingham. Our neighbors had made BBQ, so we ate with them and let the kids play with sparklers.

They shot off a few small fireworks, and Hollon wanted to watch from inside

Silly girls! (They had been playing in the water table and were soaked)

It was a fabulous 4th of July!

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