Lauren and Mikaela--identical twins living on opposite coasts--blog about the story of life and their adventures in faith.


How Washingtonians Celebrate Independence Day

The Fourth of July dawned hot and dry--two characteristics which are never guaranteed in the Northwest! We headed to Lake Sacagawea to join in our city's Go Fourth! festivities; as you can see by the picture above (only a small sample of the two mile long park centered around a large lake), there were lots of people! The highlight of the morning was the Great Cardboard Boat Regatta, in which 51 boats made entirely of cardboard, paint, tape, and glue were entered. Boats competed in heats for over three hours and provided plenty of entertainment for us, the audience! We ate lunch while we watched the S.S. Minnow, The Floating Outhouse (both in the picture below), rubber duckies, airplanes, cereal boxes, fruit stands, semi-trucks, and many other ingenious creations test their mettle in the waters of Lake Sacajawea. There were tip-overs, slow glug-glugs, and dramatic crashes, all serving to keep us thoroughly entertained!

Jonah enjoying his lunch.

As soon as the races finished, the Southwest Washington Symphony (that includes Lauren and I!) gathered by the dock to give a traditional Fourth of July concert. Although the ninety degree weather kept everyone pretty uncomfortable (we're not used to such heat), we couldn't be anything but energetic as we plowed through Fanfare for the Common Man, Stars and Stripes Forever, The Battle Hymn of the Republic, The Star-Spangled Banner, Armed Forces Salute, When Johnny Comes Marching Home, and many, many others. That was definitely a blast, and got all of us in the patriotic mood!

After many hours in the hot sun, we gratefully headed home to our air-conditioned house and welcomed our good friends for a delightful barbecue, completed with fresh strawberry and apple pie. How much more American can one get? We headed back to the park at 8 o'clock, though, braving the thousands of people in order to enjoy the traditionally spectacular fireworks display. There we are above, waiting for the event to begin.

Still waiting (l-r: Melanie, Mikaela, and Lauren)!

Left: Micah and Mrs. M.
Below: Jonah, ready for
the explosions with his
cool glasses!

I can't quite identify whose limbs are whose, but I can tell you that Susanna, Jonah, and Mr. M are all present in that picture (below) somewhere.

When it grew dark enough, the launching pads began to spark, and an instant hush came over the mass of people. Sitting there, next to dear loved ones, strangers with weird hair, and Hispanics speaking hushed Spanish and wearing American flag shirts; sitting there, watching glorious flashes of light electrify the night sky, calm water reflect that light, and hundreds of trees catch the remains of that light; sitting there, listening to triumphant strains of God Bless America, America the Beautiful, and The Star-Spangled Banner, I must confess I cried...just a little bit. Earlier in the day, we had "watched" the Declaration of Independence via YouTube, and the meaning of the day came rushing at me full force in that moment.
When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bonds which have connected them with another...O, thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand between their loved home and the war's desolation!...We, therefore, the representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the name, and by the authority of the good people of these colonies, solemnly publish and declare, that these united colonies are, and of right ought to be free and independent states...Blest with vict'ry and peace, may the heav'n rescued land praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation...And for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor...Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just, and this be our motto - "In God is our trust." And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave, O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!


  1. Fun holiday! Looks like you enjoyed your day just as much if not more than we did. :)

  2. Sounds like a great day! 90 degrees? I don't believe it. :)


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