Monday, July 09, 2012

Land that I love

Our independence as a nation is a gift, and not necessarily a permanent one. When I hear the words to the song "God Bless America," I find myself praying its prayer. When I looked up the exact lyrics to make sure I had them right, I found that there is an original first portion that is often left out. I've never heard it before:

While the storm clouds gather far across the sea,
Let us swear allegiance to a land that's free,
Let us all be grateful for a land so fair,
As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer.

God bless America, land that I love
Stand beside her, and guide her
Through the night with the light from above.
From the mountains, to the prairies, 
to the oceans white with foam,
God bless America,
My home sweet home. 

Here's how we celebrated freedom this 4th of July.

Of course, with food. I made blackberry pies in jars and my daughter made red velvet flag cupcakes from scratch. Then I found that even my lemon was patriotic. And the mini-skewers were from - you guessed it - Pinterest. Strawberries, blueberries and mini marshmallows on toothpicks.

Also from Pinterest, my friend CC made marshmallow shooters for the kids out of plastic cups and halved balloons. Clever and so fun. However, there was a lot of, "Don't eat them off the ground!" Naturally.

The moms and big girls all painted our nails with royal blue and then with big chunky glitter polish. They looked like fireworks themselves. Here are a few more marshmallow shooters, my berry mix for the pies, and a sparkler in motion. 

Real freedom is living in a city where fireworks are legal. Which we do NOT. So we left. Happy times. I love fireworks. And sparklers. And seeing my kids glow with delight.

The song "God Bless America" is sort of corny. But sometimes corny is good. And as the first part of the song suggests, it seems to me that the storm clouds are gathering around our country. Political and economic instability are no longer unthinkable. We are not immune to disaster here. So let's not neglect to pray for this land that we love, and thank God for our freedom.

Because it's pretty great.



  1. I WANT THOSE PIES. For breakfast. I've been thinking about them since you insta'd them.

    Glad you had a nice 4th, Leslie!! Super cute recap.

  2. Those pies look great! And the marshmallow shooters a blast! Stopping by from the link up, looks like you had a great 4th!

  3. there is one thing i really missed this 4th (and almost every 4th, since fireworks are illegal here), it's sparklers.
    so jealous of your patriotic fun.
    and i'm loving the MINI skewers. i may need to replicate for a party i have coming up. :)
    BRILLIANT! adorable!

    and patriotic lemons are my fav! :)

    thanks for linking up leslie!! <3

  4. Okay, this post had so many fun things that I want to use for my 4th of July party next year...the skewers & the pies are just so cute! And, how fun are your nails? Fireworks are illegal in our town also, but my neighbor had a bunch & set them off anyways!

  5. can you come teach me how to make those pies. i love them. fire works are legal here...
    marshmallow shooters yes please!

  6. your pies look great. so much patriotism in this post!

  7. Winner for best dessert spread! yum!

  8. hahah i laughed at your comment about leaving the city where firworks are legal! Looks like yall had an amazing time!!! :) PS hows your hubby doing with training for the climb?? been thinking about yall!! love you Les!!!

  9. Those cupcakes look awesome Leslie!!!!! All the food does actually. Haha. :) thanks for linking up girlfriend!

  10. Blackberry pie in a jar?! I must try it! Looks like you had a wonderful day!

  11. I love the cupcakes! And I noticed you are wearing your new skirt. Work it lady! ;)

  12. you definitely know how to plan a party, girl!
    even if i know you think patriotism is boring...
    seriously! did you invent those pies????