The problem with fireworks is that they're usually set off when it's dark which has a disturbing tendency to come about late at night. I have this thing about our kids sleeping at night, so... it's true. Two of our three children had never seen fireworks. I'm not sorry. (A friend of mine unabashedly dislikes fireworks. "It's like watching money explode in the air!" This is hilarious to me.)
This year, however, despite the fact that Derek had to work, I decided to brave the throngs of patriotic people (another reason not to attend fireworks displays- no offense, my fellow Americans), solely because Derek's parents offered to come help wrangle the children. So off we went to Reiman Gardens to listen to a local municipal band and look at flowers and harass Derek while he tried to work. And watch fireworks.
They say grandchildren keep you young (although I have a sneaking suspicion "they" are people without grandchildren), probably through activities like this one:
Take this little child-flippy-thing times fifty and you have a substantial percentage of Derek's dad's evening.
As our children see any grandparent trying to rest on the ground as an open invitation for super-fun-human-trampoline-time, Dennis soon suggested we tour the gardens.
Why, yes, this is a statue of a rabbit in a giant garden, but I can't decide whether I should be crying "WHYYYYY?" to the heavens when seeing this or laughing because he looks like Psycho-Not-To-Be-Trusted Rabbit, which, in my possibly unbalanced opinion, is how all gardeners should view rabbits.
Gnomes are, of course, another popular garden feature:
Friends, meet Elwood, the World's Largest Concrete Gnome. Elwood was nice and everything, but he's no Viktor.
He meant nothing to us, Viktor. Nothing.
And what did we find in the children's area?
A whole string of Tardis's! (What's the consensus on the plural for "Tardis"? Tardis's? Tardii?) I'm not real sure what Doctor Who has to do with flowers, but when something this awesome happens, I'm not inclined to question it much.
Weeping Angels plus Children's Area equals... Fun? Education? Nightmares?
Never mind that, children- look at this Sonic Screwdriver Windchime!
You know, for being at a public garden and, you know, loving flowers the way I do, I took very few photos of flowers while we were there. And by "very few" I mean ZERO, because I'm a failure.
I did photograph some Wild Caedmon while I was there, though, so it wasn't a total loss. Is it just me, or does Cade look more like a forty-year-old man here than a three-year-old boy?
We also made sure to pester Derek a bit before the fireworks started:
Believe me, we are terrific pester-ers.
We finished the evening by introducing our children to the wonder of a fireworks show. They liked it. A bit.
I've spent the past four days recovering from all this frivolity, and reckon I'll be ready to do it all again in right about one year, which is an 95% attitude improvement from how I felt while waiting 45 minutes to get out of the blasted parking lot because no one was there to direct traffic.
Merry America, friends!