Four Things for the 4th of July!

As you all know, the 4th of July is upon us. Next week, families all over America will be celebrating the holiday. Some will be throwing elaborate parties with large fireworks, drinks, and beautiful decorations. Others, like myself, will be sticking to the minimalist sparklers and spend our evening roasting smores with friends.

This year is different however, I wanted to do a little extra. So after gathering some resources and rounding up a few friends, we got started with what I like to call Four Things for the 4th of July.

The first thing I started on I was arguably the most excited about. I had seen this really cool idea for holiday themed food and honestly I was hooked as soon as I read the word cupcake. The specific idea I came across called for cupcakes in the design of the American flag. Pretty simple idea and not overly expensive either. The supplies include cake mix (and the supplies required to bake it: eggs/pan/etc), icing (red, white, and blue), and the head pieces for the icings to decorate the cupcakes. Bake as instructed and then continue to decorate as you please. I chose to stick with the flag idea, as shown below.img_20160627_144403.jpgimg_20160627_135040.jpgimg_20160627_152053.jpg


The next items, table decorations, were equally as simple. Gather 3 vases, flowers, and food coloring. Color the 1st vase with red dye, insert flowers. Color the 2nd vase with blue dye, insert flowers. Leave the 3rd vase clear, and insert the flowers. Another idea, if you have multiple vases you want to put in use, is just color the vases red or blue, and have white flowers.

img_20160627_122821.jpg


For the last two items, I gathered what I call “The Group” (my group of friends from highschool) to help me. This specifically included my friends Jordan Maynard, Brooke Russo, and Dylan Turner. After buying the materials (simple 4th of July cordage and sparklers) we got started! Using the decorative cordage I made tiaras for each of them to wear. Very simple to make, measure your head and then loop the wire around three times before taping the ends down securely. img_20160626_230555.jpg

*I took this opportunity to mess around with my Dad’s fancy camera that I know nearly next to nothing about. You can take a look at the rest of the pictures at the end of this post.*


 

Finally, as the sun set we busted out the sparklers. This part of the experience was the most difficult. However, after multiple attempts we managed to capture the perfect patriotic 4th of July pictures!img_20160626_230123.jpg

To achieve this, set your camera to (what I assume is called) the night light setting. The setting with the building and little crescent moon. As I understand it, the shutter speed is slower in order to capture as much lighting as possible. To make things easier, have your friends/family light off their sparklers standing together and once the sparklers are lit they can spread out accordingly. On the count of three have them start waving out their letters and simultaneously press your finger down to take the picture. On the camera I was using, holding the button without letting go allowed me to take picture after picture until one of the sparklers had went out. I apologize for my lack of camera knowledge.

I would also recommend these extra large sized sparklers rather than the standard sized ones. We were unable to successfully get a legible USA with the smaller ones, but when we broke out the larger ones we had a considerable larger ammount of successful pictures. This was lucky because we only had about 5 larger ones. The smaller ones were great practice however.


I would recommend doing any of these 4 things this coming holiday. They were all fairly simple and cheap, as well as fun! I also would like to mention how much I love this holiday. It is important to me, as an American, so show how much I love my country and to celebrate it. I know that we as a country have our issues, but it is our country and it is up to us to make it what we want it to be. That is the American dream. And if you don’t believe in the American Dream, I’m not sure what you’re doing in life.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Below you will find the rest of our pictures! See you next week when I try to “conquer” the camera.

-Alexis


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