Aiming for progress, not perfection.

"...being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you
will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."
Philippians 1:6

Friday, July 03, 2009

the 4th of july.

the 4th of july has always been a big deal to me. i feel sad when it is allowed to pass like any other day. so, i don't let it. we don't have big plans, but do anticipate a bit of celebratory activity. in the late morning, we will play in the sprinklers and eat popsicles in the yard. then we'll nap and relax a bit before preparing the following menu:
  • grilled kabobs with chicken, squash, potatoes, red pepper, onion and tomato over rice.
  • grilled corn on the cob
  • sugared fresh texas peaches over vanilla ice cream topped with toasted pecans
  • sparkling pineapple-orange drink or sweet tea
i started thinking about what to cook tomorrow, and decided to be inspired by what was in my kitchen currently. i'm stoked that i have nearly everything i need to make such a yummy meal already on hand from recent heb and farmer's market trips.

we'll top off the celebration with fireworks over lake nasworthy tomorrow evening, the very best part of the day.

just a few minutes ago, i was swaying with my youngest in my arms, watching my oldest who was twirling around the living room as we sang along with praise baby. feeling gray's calm heaviness resting on my hip and listening to ellie's sweet voice lifted to Jesus brought a huge lump to my throat and prickling tears to my eyes. i glanced up and out the glass storm door to see our flag flying proudly from the side of the house. i contemplated how wonderful a life we live in america. things are not perfect. but we are covered by blessing and strength, and we have leaders and service people who need and deserve our prayers and encouragement.

i've read commentaries about how america doesn't have any food traditions of her own worth celebrating. after all, what's special about fattening red meat and packages of preservative-ridden chips and soda? i don't want to argue food culture or its value between any particular country's borders; i don't think that's the point. because be it foie gras or hot dogs, the idea is the same. traditions -- food or otherwise -- like we observe during the 4th of july, are ultimately about togetherness. people come together to celebrate all those things they have worthy of celebrating. they gather in spacious suburban backyards and on tiny urban apartment patios to toast each other and the country that, when we stop arguing long enough to boil things down to our most common motive, we all love and are fiercely proud of.

though my family will likely laugh at me, i plan to read at least part of the declaration of independence aloud tomorrow before we eat. my intent is not to oversimplify or downplay the serious problems we face as a nation. but it seems to me we'd be a lot better off if, once in awhile, we could all join in a friendly watermelon-seed-spittin' contest and remind ourselves of the words of our forefathers:
"we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness..."
happy 4th of july. God bless america.


JAC said...

Wonderful words from the heart of a sweet girl. Love you all! Baca

marme said...

well said, child, well said.

Ballentine said...

Yay for your post, and for our independence!