While Christmas is pretty hard to compete with these days, we can plan celebrations that are full of fun, learning, and family togetherness, and create treasured memories that can last a lifetime.
Here are some ideas. Choose a few that your family will enjoy. Include your kids as you make your plans and preparations. Getting ready can be half the fun! Keeping it simple will let you focus on the things that matter most.
- Invite your family to dress in red, white, and blue.
- Play patriotic music as your family is waking up and during the day.
- Learn about the Declaration of Independence. You might want to choose from the following:
* Talk about the importance of the Declaration of Independence.
* Learn about Thomas Jefferson, the principal author of the Declaration.
* Learn how John Adams created support for the Declaration.
* Remember the price paid by the signers of the Declaration.
- Learn about George Washington. (Congress formed the Continental Army and appointed Washington commanding general, so he was unavailable to participate and sign the Declaration. But his role in our nation's history is so significant that he is known as the father of our country.)
- Attend a local parade. (Google "4th of July parade" with your zip code to find one near you.)
- Have a patriotic program. Some of our favorite memories are of fun patriotic programs and concerts with family and friends.
You could sing patriotic songs and invite family and friends to:
* Read or recite patriotic quotes.
* Tell patriotic stories or read this classic letter from Paul Harvey.
* Share a favorite patriotic memory.
* Tell what it means to them to be an American.
Or, you might want to follow Dennis Prager's 4th of July Declaration program.
- Make and enjoy delicious red, white, and blue food.
- Go camping or on a picnic together. If allowed, you could build a campfire, cook a campfire dinner, sing patriotic songs around the fire, then talk about the things that make America great.
(Thanks to Six Sister's Stuff for the fun recipes and craft ideas!)
- Watch fireworks displays together as a family. Light your own fireworks if permitted.
- Watch patriotic movies. Here are some old favorites. Or, make movies of your family telling why they love America.
- Take pictures of your family and record all the family fun!
"[Independence Day] ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.
"You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means." ~John Adams