In the morning there was a small parade right outside our back door. The kids were still in their pajamas. We thoroughly enjoyed it. There was a lot of candy and Raef and Zach were not interested in picking it up off the street. I thought aliens had invaded their bodies or something. They must have still been asleep, I guess. But Eli was awake. As soon as a fresh batch was strewn across the pavement he was out there picking up as many pieces as his little hands could hold. Good for him.
After the parade, there were games and booths and such at the park. I coaxed the kids into playing some fiddle music there in some non-descript, shady corner of the park. Once we got going, we played about 10 different fiddling songs several times. Raef just improvised his viola harmony and it was really cool. In the end, the kids made $13.50 in the guitar case we left conspicuously open in front of us. They were wowed at how much money they raked in. My fingers were killing me, because I haven't played my guitar in so long and don't have good callouses. But it was worth it, because when we were done, they divvied up the money and used it for the rides and treats at the fair. It was great! Now I know how I can start paying for their violin lessons in the future.
In the afternoon we went to Rinar's grandmother's care facility and played our stuff again. The residents loved it. Rinar and his mom played their piano duet and while they were playing Grandma got up and started dancing all over the place with her walker. She really is the life of the party at that place. Rinar's mom then announced that I would be singing a song. Huh? I wondered what song I would be singing. Then she showed me the music and I didn't have a clue what the song was. I had never seen it. But luckily, it was simple and it sounded great. It was a song from the 1930's and you could tell that everyone there knew it. They all kind of sang along and their eyes sparkled. When I am old and someone is singing to me at a care facility, will my eyes sparkle when some kid sings a rousing rendition of, "Who Let the Dogs Out?" Hmmm....
The director asked us if we would go play some songs for the Alzheimer's patients in the back who don't get visitors. We thought it was a great idea and so the kids got to play their songs some more. My fingers were really killing me by then. Ouch. But some how, I managed to make it happen. I sang again and the reaction was the same. It was really cool.
We had some friends from our ward in Henderson come up to see the fireworks. It was fun to share the evening with Sean, Cyntha, and their two little boys. Rinar's brother Lyf and his family also came over. So the six of us played Eight and Back (I really should write a blog about that game...) for a few hours while we waited for the fireworks. The kids ran around and played and it was really quite perfect. Babies fell asleep before the fireworks, so Sean and Cyntha stayed at the condo because their kids were asleep as well. They watched from the balcony and we walked over to my Grandma N.'s grassy viewing location. It was a lot of fun and Eli cheered on each BOOM!
Our Independence Day celebration was a big success. I love America! Happy Birthday!