Last year on this very day, friends and family gathered at our rental house in Sunriver, OR for a 4th of July BBQ. Adam and I broke out our custom Cubs wedding weekend t-shirts, Naomi broke out the 4th of July American themed cupcakes, Kevin manned the grill, babies wore fedoras, high school friends were reunited, beers were drank, flip cup tournaments raged, American fanny-packs were rocked, karaoke was sang, kids rode bikes, and I couldn't stop smiling. People had come from all over the country to kick off the Jones wedding weekend, and this was the first day Adam and I gathered a collection of our favorite people in one place. The next day we'd have our rehearsal dinner, and on the 6th we'd get married in the Bend woods, in Adam's parent's backyard.
This year our plans are much more modest. Yard work, maybe some kiddie pool time, and the local fireworks show. It will be fine, but it will be bitter sweet as I think back to last year, one of the best 4th of July's I've ever spent.
Happy birthday 'Merica.
Miss you friends and family.