It's the 4th of July, which means parades, picnics and fireworks. However, this morning I woke up (early with the kids as usual) and as I sat with my two boys I wondered how I could convey to a 4 yr old why we have a parade today. He's a very smart boy and picks up on a lot of things, but Independence Day is still a hard one to describe to him. So as I tried searching on the internet for stories, etc for young children on the topic, I realized that probably not too many adults actually take the time to understand this day either...for most, it is just a day off of work. So today, I invite you to take a look at the Declaration of Independence: http://www.ushistory.org/Declaration/document/index.htm
Now, I freely admit to my students (I'm a math teacher) that I HATED history in high school...and my husband, the history buff, knows I'm not big on it...but maybe that's because it never was "real" to me. Now as an adult in the situation where everyone on the street thinks they can tell me their view on the war (which by the way, I don't want to hear...I have a hard enough time keeping my house running while my husband is gone) I think back to those days when our country was being established. Now I can read the words of the Declaration of Independence and understand the feelings behind the words...these were real people, living real lives and they needed freedom.
So while you're out sporting your red, white and blue at a parade or barbeque, just take a minute to really appreciate your independence...despite what you think of the current war...you can always move to another country if you don't like this one :)