America the beautiful..........
O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!
This weekend, Americans will be preparing for and enjoying our Nation's holiday, aptly titled "Independence Day". Independence Day or the Fourth of July is a celebration of the anniversary of the publication of the United State's Declaration of Independence from Great Britain in 1776. It is a celebration of the birth of our country.
As a child growing up, I remember my teachers opening our class time each day at school with the Pledge of Allegiance. I am thankful for the value each of my teachers placed on understanding the meaning of our flag, for teaching us about the birth of our country, our forefathers, and every sacrifice and every battle it took to build and make our country great.
This week my celebration will come with intentional remembrance of the cost paid for our freedoms.
"A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both."
President Dwight D. Eisenhower
Will you be joining family and friends this weekend for 4th of July picnics, hot dogs, and maybe some apple pie? I thought it would be fun to share some Fourth of July favorites.
I was completely inspired by this outdoor picnic table setting. It reminds me my growing up in the country.......a simpler time with family and friends. I look forward to family time this weekend!
|Flag Table Runner|
Of course, you must have flowers at the table! I love the cobalt blue vases made simply by adding blue food coloring to the water in a clear jar or vase, add the fresh flowers and little flags and you are all set.
You all know by now that I'm a "cheese head", fair-weather Green Bay Packer's Fan, and 100% country girl. Every summer, we spent hours and days at the local county fair, usually held right after the 4th of July. Being from a dairy family, we had show cattle, sewing projects, baking projects, canning projects, garden boxes, etc. For generations, my family has been involved in 4-H, beginning when my father was in his teens, showing cattle with his 4-H club in Iowa.
One of the special summertime treats we only had during the county fair were deep fried cheese curds. It's probably a good thing we only had them one time each year but what a treat they were, seriously heavenly!
|Sartori Red, White and "Blue" Burgers|
Having said that, you might have guessed that I love cheese! Parmesan and Asiago, aged with mild, wonderful flavors. I also love Blue cheese and on a grilled hamburger, seems like the perfect Fourth of July main course. Click on the photo to get to the recipe and there, at the Sartori Cheese website, you will other fantastic recipes and interesting facts about the company..........like they have a cheese-making plant in my little hometown in Wisconsin! :) This company is knocking it out of the park with their award winning cheeses. I'm so proud of them........although I have nothing to do with their successes except silently cheering from the sidelines! Oh, and eat their cheese, of course!
How about this adorable version of the Firecracker hot dog for the little ones at your celebration? *Tip - be sure to use Wisconsin cheese for the stars! :)
|4th of July Firecracker Dogs|
This Fruit Flag Pizza looks yummy!
|Flag Fruit Pizza|
Or this patriotic Red, White, and Blueberry Triffle - It's supposed to be "skinny".....even better!
|Red, White, and Blueberry Triffle|
Might I suggest a little Red, White + Blue Sangria. *Note - probably not "skinny"!
Perhaps you will be sailing this weekend in order to celebrate the holiday. If you do, I hope it's on a ship as beautiful as the "Dress Blue".
Whatever you are doing this weekend, on this Independence Day, I believe it is our responsibility as privileged citizens of the United States to pass along the history and great heritage of our country to younger generations. It all starts with me and you - in your home and with your family, friends, your church, your community and your state.
My country 'tis of thee,
Sweet land of liberty,
Of thee I sing;
Land where my father's died,
Land of the pilgrim's pride,
From every mountain side,
Let freedom ring!