Celebrate Freedom

With all the traveling and excitement of the week before, we took a break and had a fairly low key 4th of July.  Our neighbors that we usually do the parade and party with were out of town for a family event so we skipped out on participating in the parade this year for the first time in 4 years.  We did go watch it though and I must say the boys had way more fun watching than they have had in the parade. 

At least one of us was in the holiday spirit

They asked to take a picture with me and the flag - sweet boys

So excited when it started!  "yook mom! here comes the parade!"

Eli's favorite car 

candy?  What candy? 

checking out their stash 
It was Texas hot for sure so we headed to our pool at the YMCA.  Packed a lunch and stayed until the boys were about to pass out.  Here is my sneaky picture.  For privacy reasons, the YMCA does not allow photographs.  I was trying to avoid the lifeguards!

After great long afternoon naps, we played until time to go the "party" at our church.  We have never been before because we always did the neighborhood party plus the kiddos in the past weren't use to being out so late.  The event is huge!  We were expecting about 8,000 based on last years numbers. The largest community even out church does and everything was free.  Free!  Huge trailway buses run from school parking lots to the church which was so exciting for the boys.  Train rides, inflatables, live band, hot dogs, ice cream, sno cones, popcorn, face painting, all included.  I was so impressed by the 400 volunteers and the organization.  Truly a blessed event! Oh, and they ran out of hot dogs. How many did they prepare?? 17,500.  No kidding. 

Then a huge rain storm cloud moved in.  Dark, scary, lightening off in the distant.  There was a little sprinkle 45 minutes before firework time.  We got nervous being out with no cover with the boys so we headed back to the bus.  I hate that we left but we really were getting scared from all the thunderstorm reports. Here is what is crazy that I learned in the prayer team meeting last Sunday.  Before the event, the staff and prayer volunteers got into golf carts and drove the perimeter of the church property, praying.  Praying for safety, health, no rain, the people that would come.  They used anointing oil on the entire perimeter.  Guess what?  It stormed cats and dogs on us at the school bus line.  It poured at the restaurant by the church and all around but Faithbridge was spared.  The little sprinkles that we felt was all the happened.  They say you could see rain all around in every direction but passed over the church.  Amazing when God shows up like that!

We left and met some friends at Sonic.  Then we got in our cars and tried to get as close as we could.  We ended up parking at a strip mall and literally running down to the street to the open field in front of the church.  The fireworks were awesome and the kids had a blast.  We were all exhausted but happy to celebrate the freedoms America has to offer. 

God Bless America!

The Riley's