I’ll let you in on a little secret, new moms (and experienced mamas alike).  Every single holiday can be loaded with expectations, mostly from yourself.  I am here to give you some PRACTICAL tips for enjoying the Fourth of July (and any holiday) with your family.

You know that saying if mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.“? That couldn’t be more true right here.  I often dream of having fun, happy holiday traditions.  I think of so many good holiday traditions that I SOMETIMES I can’t fit all of those traditions into one single day.  Damn it.  But here’s the thing: Don’t sink your fun holiday because you’ve put too much pressure on yourself. (Ohhhh girrrrrl, have I done that… thinking back to a certain christmas eve that ended in tears.. on everyone’s part… ha!)

Let me tell you about my morning… well, actually, let me tell you about my evening first.  My kids were all up until past 10:00, and if you know me well you know that there are two things that stress me out more as a mother than maybe anything else, are my children properly dressed for the weather? (I know, I’m in therapy…) the other is: Have my children had enough sleep?  This one is more sensible, because my children are half of their father.   I love Mr. Miller, The Good Lord knows I do.. but if that man hasn’t had enough sleep.. He is like a grumpy old man.  Bless his heart, the man needs his sleep to be his normal patient, happy, calm self.  AT LEAST two of my children are exactly like this.

So anyway, back to the night and the kids are up NOW ALMOST TO ELEVEN, and Stella lost her tooth and we were all so excited, and we couldn’t even help it.  SO: we slept in.  We missed the fourth of july parade (holy mother 7:30am, why???)… yes, the FOURTH OF JULY parade that we grew up going to our whole entire lives… because now that I think of it: did I go EVERY SINGLE YEAR of my life?  Or did I go like 8-10 times overall, and time has faded my memory, and I have only believed I went EVERY SINGLE YEAR of my life?  Thus: put crazy pressure on myself to do the same thing with my children.  

Welp, I’m hoping the latter is true.  Because listen, over the years, our home has become part of a tradition of gathering our nearest and dearest friends, the way traditions naturally fall together, where everyone brings something to the table. And even if my house isn’t perfect, my friends will load up the dishwasher while others dish up the kids, and we all have a great time NO MATTER WHAT, and everyone looks forward to it.

That is my priority tradition (there really can be only one), so sometimes I have to sacrifice other really good traditions, for some really great traditions.  And that’s okay.  Because I think if I switch it up, and average them all out about 8-10 times over the course of the 30-ish years my kids are growing up, I think time will dull their minds into believing I did EVERY SINGLE THING, EVERY SINGLE YEAR, like we all believe our mothers did (mom, don’t even tell me the truth at this point!)

I love the fourth of July the most because it is a carefree holiday celebrating  freedom, and the life we enjoy because of all of the Americans who sacrificed for our beautiful country.

But for real, the recipe for creating a happy family tradition is actually BEING happy yourself.  So go ahead and extend the grace all over the place here.  Because (based on my theory) we’re on an 8-10 average here, y’all.  It’s gonna even out somewhere, I just know it.

HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY! (How long can i keep that flag up?  It’s made my life.)