Monday, June 30, 2008

Blog Challenge #23

Yikes I have skipped a bunch of these. Blogging is hard!

This week's Scrapshare Blog Challenge was issued by Midnight Scrapper in Cali.

She wrote:
Independence Day is this Friday. For this weeks Blog Challenge, I would love to see how you spend the 4th of July. Is this a time for you and your family to get together and celebrate? Do you bar-b-que, watch fireworks at the same place every year, participate in a parade or block party? Is it a day that makes you feel more patriotic? I realize that some of you may treat it like a any other day...but write something! Most have it off from work, but if you don't, you could write about what you usually do for the Fourth.

This could even be a two part thing. Blog about past Independence Days and then after Friday, get one more in there to tell us what you actually did this year.

I hope to hear about traditions, favorite recipes, stories from the past. Maybe you could share pictures from past celebrations and/or add some more after Friday.

For those that do not live in the U.S., please tell me how you celebrate in your country for your Independence Day. I would LOVE to see pictures and read about your traditions.

My 4th of July tradition is one I have been participating in since I was a child. Since getting married and having a family I have dragged them along with me.

Family friends of my parents have a pig roast/potluck every year. It is a great way to reconnect with neighbors and friends. Growing up we had friends who lived physically close but we were all so busy our paths crossed very infrequently. This gathering always brought us all together to visit and hang out for a day. I grew up in a farming community. There were (still are) many small farms as well as large grass seed farms in the area. Summertime is an extremely busy time. My parents used to make hay for themselves and on a custom basis. Haying season in Oregon runs from as early as mid May to as late as mid to late July. I can remember a couple of years that Dad was still making hay when my brother and I headed off to 4-H fair the last week of July. So the Independence Day gathering at the Marbles was a welcome day off.

It used to be that the hosts would cook a pig in a ground pit (ala Hawaiian style). They also provided the most delicious BBQ sauce I have ever tasted. Now as everyone gets older and their kids have taken over the tradition, the pig goes in a big BBQ and they still have the BBQ sauce. Everyone invited brings salads, fruit, breads and desserts. There is also a gentleman who BBQs corn on the cob. This is usually the first corn we get each summer season. The hosts also provide a keg for those interested in indulging a bit.

This is a great summer tradition. There is always too much food, lots of fun and laughter with old friends. The day ends with a friendly softball game with another group that gathers at another party a few miles away. The softball game is held at the local elementary school's diamond.

Usually, though, we skip the ball game and head home to rest for a while before going to visit some other friends. They hold their family reunion on the 4th every year. They have a super cool picnic area right down by the river. In fact, this is the spot where Matt and I had our wedding reception 14 years ago this coming 9th of July. They also usually have a big potluck but usually we get there after the food part is mostly done. Again, we just hang out and visit. The last few years they have gotten a big gob of fireworks and we all stay till dusk to shoot them off. It is fun and keeps us all out of the crowds and traffic jams at the professional displays in the area. Only about every 4 or 5 years do we take the kids to a big, professional display.

Independence day is a day to gather with friends and family, have fun, relax, visit and appreciate that we are able to do so because others long ago fought and died to let us be here in this country as it is today. It is a great time out from the hurry and hustle of summer. Each year summertime becomes busier and busier as the kids grow up and get involved in more stuff and as my volunteer obligations grow along with their activities. For those still living the true farming life, like my parents and many of their friends, it is a quick break from the hard core run, run, run to get everything done that needs to get done.


  1. That sounds like so much fun! YUMMY fun, I should say! I love it when I hear that someone has kept a tradition going in their family. Otherwise it wouldn't be a very good tradition would it? LOL Thanks for sharing. I hope you'll come back and add pictures for ME! =]

  2. That sounds like an awesome day. We have a July 5th pigroast in our family this year.. mmm.. we love pig!