What does the 4th of July mean to you?

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The 4th of July is more than fireworks!
It’s a great time to know and study American History.

This post is part of the Homeschool Days Hop. Be sure to check out the other fab posts added by the other amazing bloggers.

Homeschool U.S. History

Americans generally have a cook out, spend time with family and friends and possibly shoot off some fireworks when the sun goes down. {unless you live in my neighborhood and you shoot them off a week ahead of time on a Sunday night at 10 or 11 o’clock at night….urgh! what’s with that? I just don’t get it!}

Others enjoy their day off of work and might attend a firework show in their town. This is the way we enjoy and celebrate the 4th of July. Good Times!

No matter what you do or how you enjoy this day it’s often viewed as a day of fun, eat some watermelon, hang with friends and family and watch some of the most beautiful colors in the night sky. There are ooohs…and…aahhs to be heard following every loud boom that shakes your chest. It’s such an awesome feeling isn’t it? Always wondering if this year’s show is going to top last year’s show.

And if you live in the south… is it going to rain?

We are gearing up for a bit of a change in our 4th of July plans this year. We are headed to a new place. A family member bought a new house with a pool and has invited everyone to come over for sort of a mini family reunion. This ought to be a good time had by all.

Our kids are so excited that they even packed for this day a week in advance. I noticed that one of them came down the hallway with a backpack on their back. Now, this isn’t always an unfamiliar sight in our household. Yes we homeschool, so backpacks aren’t needed, but they often “play school.” {which cracks me up by the way}  To see someone walking around with a backpack isn’t that odd.

Then another one came walking with a backpack and finally the third one. It dawned on me, at that moment, that those backpacks might just be filled with items for our mini-family-reunion-4th-of-July outing. So I asked the question “what’s in your backpack?” The answer “what we’re bringing with us for the 4th of July.”


Moms are so smart!

Homeschool U.S. History

You see their excitement? They are stoked to be able to spend fun times with family and to go swimming. They are excited to see a fireworks show that evening, all while being able to sit with different family members. For them this will be good times and good memories.

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But what are we forgetting here? So often we get caught up in what holidays have become that we forget what the true original meaning or purpose of the holiday is.

Even though our kids have the general knowledge of what July 4th is about, that is the furthest thing from their mind. The meaning and purpose of this American Holiday is nowhere to be found in their little minds. We all know what the purpose of the holiday is but it’s easy to forget when we are focused on the all the fun to be had.

Not to long ago my husband and I watched the movie American Sniper together. This movie about yanked my heart out. Watching it caused me tears. So much so that I had a very hard time sleeping that night because so many horrifying scenes from the movie kept playing in my head. I couldn’t help but to think “what if that was my family?”

{I’m sorry if you haven’t seen the movie and you are lost by my words. If you ever do get to see the movie you will know exactly what I’m talking about.} 

Seeing this movie made me realize the freedoms we have in the U.S. If you were born in the United States you were born with these freedoms. It’s hard to imagine not having these freedoms, since for most of you reading this, it has always been this way. We learn about other countries and their freedoms and/or lack there of.

I need to appreciate these freedoms more.

We have the freedom to like or dislike our President, follow our religion, be for or against same sex marriages, even whether or not we want to send our children to public school or homeschool them ourselves. Amen for freedoms! Whether you are for or against any of these, you have the freedom to choose what you stand for.

Our country is not perfect by any means and I don’t want to distort the truth to our kids that it is. Our country has it’s own separation issues. Even though our country isn’t perfect, it’s a great place to live. I feel fortunate and blessed to live here!

I want to be sure that even though we get caught up in the “funning up” of the holiday that our kids truly understand and remember the solid foundation in which this country was built on and the purpose for Independence Day.

After hearing a very important and inspiring speaker over Memorial Day {read about it here-you won’t want to miss it} and seeing this movie, I feel compelled to take this upcoming school year and study American History throughout the entire year. It is important to my husband and I that our kids truly understand how our country originated, what it stands for and the Biblical foundation it was built on. Additionally, to appreciate this great Nation we live in.

So, even though we will be baking some red, white, & blue goodies this week, creating some 4th of July crafts, and being ready to go a whole week ahead of time :), (gotta love the excitement and innocence of children) the thought of Independence will be present.

After all, we are celebrating America’s Birthday and America deserves to be celebrated in a BIG way.

A quote from our son –

 “If it wasn’t for the Declaration of Independence we wouldn’t have this country today.”

What are your plans for this 4th of July?
What fun things will you be doing?
Will there be watermelon eating, a cook out, some fireworks?
Will you and your family be discussing the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776?

:::Drop me a comment below. I’d love to hear from you:::

Have a safe and happy 4th of July!

Happy Birthday America




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  1. We have the opportunity to go to a family vacation home with some very dear friends. The girls just spent the evening splashing in the Atlantic and collecting shells. Guess they have a parade and a fireworks show over the ocean. It’s relaxing and fun to be away from home.

  2. You bet, Amanda!
    Some time away from the daily grind is always therapeutic.

    That sounds like a great time. Those times are what family memories are made of. Love it!

    I hope you guys have a happy and safe 4th of July!

  3. I completely agree with you, Brandy! Thank you for putting your wisdom into such beautiful words!
    Amy recently posted…4th of July PrintablesMy Profile

  4. I completely agree, Brandy! So many have sacrificed for our freedom and it is important that our children know and respect that. It is because of our freedom that we have the right to choose so many things in our daily lives. I thank God for that so often.

    Thank you for sharing such a beautiful post!
    Amy recently posted…4th of July PrintablesMy Profile

  5. This year our son will be leaving for camp on the 4th. I love to have a good cookout as well. I love to explain why we celebrate the 4th to my children and answer all the questions they have. Being a military brat I always get a wee bit emotional on the 4th.

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