Here at the Little Stone House, we don't make a huge, big deal of holidays. Any holidays. We observe, and we get together with our families sometimes, but generally speaking, those days are just like weekend days to us. They are for sleeping in, for getting things done that have had to wait, maybe for venturing out to do something fun we've put off.
If I feel inclined, I might spend a little time praying or meditating or journaling about something relevant to the holiday in question, but for the most part, the day is ours.
When I was younger, the thrill of deciding where the best Fourth of July show would be and fighting the crowds to find just the right spot with my friends was something I looked forward to each year. This year, however, not so much. Over time, my home town--a really great spot for fireworks! They put on a wonderful show!--has become more and more crowded in general, and now on the Fourth or around the time of the County Fair, you can barely move or breathe in town. It's horrible and has sucked the fun right out of these events. When I lived in my previous home, we were close enough to walk, so it was still pretty fun. Now, we're just a bit out of reach for that.
This Fourth of July, my boyfriend and I spent the weekend working on our house and on various projects. On Monday the Fourth, we went hiking and stream wading in a nearby state park. It was wonderful, and it was for a good cause. The friend with whom we went out is preparing to do a nature walk and presentation on aquatic life for some local homeschool children. We were helping him test out his equipment and scope out the best and most accessible spots for capturing water critters. It was a hot day, but not too unpleasant. The water felt amazing. I got home exhausted but very relaxed and happy and spent a wonderful evening chilling with my boyfriend, the cats, and a favorite TV show.
We didn't have to fight any crowds, endure excessive, loud noises, or navigate around any obnoxious drunks. Now to me, that is freedom!
Did I miss the fireworks? Sure I did, but this was not my last opportunity to see them. :)