So. Like I said last time. The 4th of July happened. It was nice. Magical, even. And this year, Vivi was allowed to stay up until the fireworks were over! We started off the night quite tamely, with smoke bombs (my favorite) and snappers. Despite my awesome "gorillas in the mist" reprisal with the smoke bombs, Vivi wasn't that into them. She was, however, VERY into stomping on snappers.
What? You don't class it up for the 4th of July in YOUR derby hat?
Todd and Michelle are two of Vivi's most favorite people, and since Michelle arrived wearing a hat, Vivi wanted one as well. She then proceeded to attach herself to them like a very charming barnacle.
I'm not sure what she was "helping" Michelle with here, but she kept saying, "Yep! That's fair!"
She then moved on to helping Russ with the parachutes, which thrilled her and Noah to no end, and gave me heart failures as she has NO FEAR OF THINGS THAT EXPLODE.
As it got dark, she took some time out to chat with her godfather on the porch swing...
Probably discussing how the election will affect her daycare buddies and their families.
But, once it got dark, it was awesome to watch her amazement. For being slightly ghetto-fabulous, our neighborhood puts on one heck of a 4th of July show, and this year was no exception.
Vivi was pretty impressed, let me tell you.
She was also thrilled to be awake when it was "really, really nighttime out!"
We ended our evening with what is bound to never, ever become a tradition in our house. Vivi loves Rapunzel, and we love the floating lantern scene. It's really cool, and we saw many floating lanterns cruising through the sky last year, looking all serene and beautiful. The 4th is right before Vivi's birthday, and we were very adamant about setting lanterns loose for her, ala Rapunzel. Aren't we nice parents?
Michelle, in her lawerly wisdom, warned us against them as dangerous. We may or may not have teased her. A lot. Hadn't she seen Tangled? The scene where thousands of lanterns go to join the king and queen's lantern? It was beautiful. Serene. We were doing it. She was a worrier.
Yeah. What they DON'T show in Tangled is the swarms of panicked peasants UNDER the lanterns, shouting and praying to God and the Baby Jesus that the lanterns do not set fire to their thatched huts and barns. Also, they are bloody hard to light, and take forever to get ready. Aunt Kate and Russ struggled with this one for quite some time before we deemed it "ready to go."
It was not, in fact, ready to go. It teetered along maniacally while we all danced around the lawn yelling things like "GO HIGHER!" "CRAP!" and "FLOAT, DAMN YOU, FLOAT!" before it finally bobbled its way above the trees (and the roofline) and floated off. Once up, it did look really cool, and we (foolishly) decided that it had been a user error and we should try another one.
Here is the floating lantern of death, seconds after its release, threatening to set fire to our wooden retaining wall because instead of going up, it went down.
Yes, that's real fire. A lot of it. Which is why we didn't pick it up. Which is why it eventually filled with air and floated off before we could grab it, and almost lit my neighbor Andy's roof on fire (missed by 6 inches, max), while we all hollered in panic and Michelle murmured "You're welcome," sagely in the background. At which point we decided we were done with the lanterns. Forever.
Sorry, Vivi Jo. We will find a better, less flammable birthday tradition. Rapunzel does not prevent forest fires.