And in regards to the title... please, check your puns at the door.
Well, my lovely bloggers... another year, another July 4th with the fam. My relatives are currently engaged in the annual domino's match, Kate and I are watching a TV marathon of Law and Order, and I've had my yearly margarita. All is well. Of course, most of our little second-cousins have left, and the ones who are here are out back in the pool under careful first-cousin supervision... so I'm just happy to not be babysitting right now.
For those unfamiliar with the Milton family traditions, the Fourth of July means lunch with my Dad's side here at our house. And I'm not afraid to admit that the fun begins long before the actual event. Cleaning the house begins days before, especially now that my Dad's office is no longer in our house (this is first year since Dad started his appraisal business ten or twelve years ago) and Mom and Dad are not at home during the day to help prepare on the 3rd. I admit, the cleaning is not nearly as bad as the time we prepared the house for weeks before my cousin's post-wedding reception reception (yes, she had two receptions, and the second was "small" enough to host in our house), but memories of that experience still haunt me and have conditioned me to dislike house-cleaning. And all the cleaning has to be done at least an hour before everyone is supposed to show up, because there's always someone who comes early. This year, everyone was supposed to arrive around 11:30. My grandmother was walking in the door at 10:45.
Once all the family comes, the lunch itself is quite enjoyable. This year there were several more little second-cousins than I was prepared to handle; four, to be exact, when we were only expecting two. But we could've had five -- cousin Andrea, mother of two-year-old Noah, is expecting a little girl and is going to the hospital tomorrow to enduce labor. We didn't have to do much babysitting today, and for that I am glad. Matthew and Andrew still come over expecting to watch "Dinosaur" --The Land Before Time movies-- and nothing else, and even though we tried hard to push Disney to them this year, Beauty and the Beast is "full of girl stuff", in the words of six-year-old Andrew, and they're just not interested in Aladdin. Sigh. They just don't know what they're missing.
After lunch, if Matthew and Andrew aren't watching enough Dinosaur to make the typical adult brain explode, the adults break out the domino's and Kate and I break out the TV remotes. And after an hour or so of that, they break out the margaritas. Now, don't think any less of me, but I like margaritas. I have since I tried one a couple years ago (at July 4th... the only time my family mixes and drinks margaritas).
By the way, don't get tequilla in your hair. Dries it out somethin' awful.
Unfortunately at this point in my rambling, my dear blogger, I must leave you. There is clean-up duty yet in store for me, now that I've had a few hours of Law and Order and blogging on Rodney. Tonight I'll climb out on the roof with Dad and Kate, and watch the fireworks from the show down at the Prattville stadium downtown. It's the part of the day I most look forward to... other than this blog entry, of course.
Happy Fourth of July, everybody.
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