Tragic Sandwich

Food. Family. Fun.

Traditions: What We Did on the Fourth of July

I like to think my Independence Day tradition is watching 1776, but the fact is that I don’t always do that. In fact, I suspect I usually don’t. But I love that movie so much that it feels like it ought to be my tradition.

My second favorite Fourth came when I lived in Austin. It was incredibly hot, as Austin is wont to be, and my apartment air conditioning was working poorly, as my apartment air conditioning was wont to do. On the spur of the moment, I called my brother in San Antonio and said, “What are you doing for the Fourth?” He said, “[Best friend] is coming over, and we’re going to grill.” I said, “Can I join you?” and then did so. We grilled everything but the french fries–burgers, buns, corn, you name it. After dinner we all went up to the second floor and watched fireworks on the horizon. And because my brother was house-sitting for my parents, the air conditioning was much better.

My favorite Fourth doesn’t even feel like the Fourth, because the highlight of the day had nothing to do with American independence. Nine years ago today, Mr. Sandwich proposed in a way that was so perfectly us that I can’t imagine it happening any other way.

In more recent years, we’ve gone to a variety of parties–last year I think we hit four in the 3-day weekend. But none of those materialized for today, so we woke up this morning with no plans. We talked about whether to take Baguette out to see fireworks–would she love them? would she get scared? After deciding that it would probably keep her up (and us out) too late, we opted for a daytime visit to Travel Town.

When my brother and I were kids, he adored Travel Town–after all, you could climb all over the trains and even sit on top of them. On one visit he spotted a birthday party and announced that he wanted his next birthday to be at Travel Town, and it was.

But we moved away and grew up, and I hadn’t been back. Now, with Baguette, it seemed like it might make a nice outing. We decided to head over as soon as they opened, and I began to get ready. As I was packing the diaper bag, I looked up and discovered that Baguette had passed out on the couch. Apparently she was ready for her nap–two and a half hours early. In the interest of letting sleeping babies lie, we moved her to the bed and postponed our departure.

I’m glad that we did, because she loved it. We read about different kinds of train cars, peered into a car that had been used by USPS, examined a variety of engines and box cars and lounge cars, ran around an empty passenger car (now used for parties, but not being used for anything at the moment we were there)–and of course rode the miniature train that circles the grounds.

She fell asleep on the way home, resulting in an unusual second nap. So while we’re still set on grilling later on, the question remains: will we, or will we not, bundle her up in PJs and shoes to watch fireworks?

Regardless, may you all have a happy and safe Fourth of July. And if you don’t celebrate the Fourth of July, just be happy and safe.

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10 thoughts on “Traditions: What We Did on the Fourth of July

  1. What a spectacular day!! WA would LOVE something like Travel Town – will have to look around for something similar here! Thanks for the idea 🙂

    • What’s surprising is that right next to it is another railroad history place that appears to be privately operated. Good thing we weren’t planning on going there, because that one was closed today!

  2. It looks like a really fun day.

    We watch Independence Day every fourth of July. I haven’t seen 1776. Guess I’ll have to get that one.

    Stopping by from SITS.

  3. My husband took my toddler to Travel Town a few months ago and the little guy loved it. Glad you guys had a great holiday. Did you end up watching fireworks after all?

    • We did! Technically we were fireworks-adjacent, since we weren’t actually at the venue. But we had a good view, and Baguette loved it. Close enough for noise and light, not so close that it was scary. A win all around. And you?

      • Yes us too! We went up to our roof and saw fireworks from different cities all around. They weren’t as big as I hoped for but it was still neat to see the sky light up all around us. We were only there for 15 min though til he climbed back down for bedtime 🙂

      • In past years, Mr. Sandwich and I would just drive around on the freeways, looking for fireworks from afar.

  4. I found you again! Seriously. All your posts are getting lost. ARRGH!

    I can’t believe how much Baguette is growing up!

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