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Our 4th of July

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4th of July is probably one of my favorite Holidays. I mean, I love Christmas and Thanksgiving, don’t get me wrong. But there is just SOMETHING about the summer weather that puts me in my happy place. The beginning of July in Rhode Island is usually perfect weather. Plenty of sunshine, but not too hot and humid yet; perfect for enjoying the holiday on the beach or in our backyard!

The holiday is also a bit tricky when you have kids because fireworks happen so late. What usually happens in situations like this is my husband warns me that it’s a bad idea; I assure him it will be fine, probably chaotic, but 100% worth it for the memories we make. He tries to convince me otherwise but I refuse to budge. Then during the event, things are such a disaster that I can’t even make eye contact him because I don’t want to admit that I was wrong. Marriage, folks, know what I mean?

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This year we actually experienced a ridiculous heat wave during the 4th of July. The only place we wanted to be was on the water! My Uncle had invited us to head over to the beach on his boat with a few other family members and we were so excited to go.

Before we headed down to the beach for the day, we had a mini photo shoot with the kids and me on our front porch. I mean, we were all in coordinating outfits, HOW COULD WE NOT?!

Boat/Beach Morning

We spent the day during the 4th at the beach with some of my family. My uncle took us to a beach in Charlestown called Elbow Beach. Theo, Josie, and Margo hadn’t been on a boat in a long time- they couldn’t remember it at all. This a good thing because the girls were really nervous and clung to us instead of bouncing all over the boat.

You can only access Elbow Beach by boat or an offroad vehicle and it’s one of my favorite places to take the kids! The water is shallow so I don’t have to worry (as much!) and it’s perfect for looking for crabs and periwinkles.

Theo, Josie, and Margo spent pretty much the entire time filling their buckets with sand and rocks. They are so happy and content at the beach (most of the time!) and love to just sit and play in the sand and the water. Theo couldn’t find any live crabs but he was very proud to catch a dead one!

Read –> Products to Help You Have a Successful Beach Day With Toddlers.

We had lunch on the beach, walked over to the ocean, collected a lot of beach creatures, and then boated back to the marina. The marina that my Uncle docks his boat at is only a few minutes from my parents’ house, so we headed back there to put the kids down for a nap. My plan was to give them a late nap so that they could stay awake for the fireworks.

While the kids were napping, Ben and I headed over to Dave’s Coffee which is a really cute little coffee shop in my hometown. It’s always really nice when we can sit and have coffee together and not have to worry about the kids at all.

After we got back to my parents’ house, we had a quick pizza dinner (it was too hot to cook anything!!!) and headed out for fireworks with my mom. My dad hates fireworks and crowds and was already in bed lol. Ben kept warning me that it was a bad idea to take the kids to the fireworks and tried to talk me out of it, but the kids were all so excited to go so I didn’t back down!

Fireworks in the Evening

My plan was to park far enough away so that it wouldn’t be too loud for the kids, AND so we could get out quickly. We were already 45 minutes away from our house and the fireworks started at dark which is already past our kids’ bedtime.

We ended up much closer than I wanted to be and in a parking lot. Haha. Not the best surroundings but it worked! I tried to get a family picture and mentioned that I was disappointed it didn’t come out better… Ben was like “Did you really think a picture of us in a parking lot in the back of our van was going to be amazing?” Good point lol.

By the time the fireworks started, we walked up the hill that was behind our van and sat on the ground. The girls both climbed into my mom’s lap and were adorable with their little stuffed animals (meow-meow and Ellie). They called out the color of each firework and it was precious!

Theo, on the other hand, was totally scared. He’s sensitive to loud sounds and they were way too loud for him. I know he’s like this, which is why I tried to get us far away, but the first place we went had no parking left and we were out of time to drive around and look for other places.

He sat on my lap the entire time with my hands covering his ears and it helped a little bit. Note to self: order noise canceling head-phones for next year! I would have done it this year if I had known we would be that close. Lesson learned!

We left the fireworks after only about 10-15 minutes because Theo was too upset to stay much longer. Ben and I didn’t mind leaving then because we beat all of the traffic home! It was still past 10:30 when we got home which is SO LATE for our kids. As in, probably the latest they’ve stayed up in their lives!

I am a stickler for sticking to a schedule but throwing that schedule out the window for holidays and special events. Life’s too short to not make the most memories!

Read –> Our Summer Schedule for Toddlers and Preschoolers

It took the kids a few days to recover from such a busy day with lack of sleep. Pro tip: plan a few chill days to follow busy days like this. On July 5th, we stayed home and watched movies and the kids took a really long nap. Regardless of how much of a mess my kids were the next couple of days, I would do it again in a heartbeat! I love making memories with my family.

Thanks for reading! Do you love the 4th of July as much as I do?

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