Did you have a good fourth? We sure did! Friends from church invited us to their annual potluck-dinner and fireworks-on-the-hill at their farm. Gunnar and I decided that cupcakes were essential. Specifically, red-white-and-blue cupcakes, so we mixed up some vanilla cake batter, divided it into thirds, and dyed two of them.
We used a lot of food coloring. A LOT.
The goal was to layer the batter (red, then white, then blue) in the little cups, which - let me tell you - sounds a bit easier than it actually is. But we got some cool effects, anyway ;D
I thought about leaving them plain, but what's a cupcake without icing???
Meanwhile, the boys were getting ready for their third annual burning of El Guapo's house. I thought for a moment about trying to convince my non-American readers that this was an important part of our culture that needs to be respected, (just like we told the Chinese exchange students that hanging spoons off your nose is a Thanksgiving tradition), but I wouldn't do anything like that.
If you haven't seen the movie The Three Amigos this probably won't make any sense to you. Then again, even if you have seen the movie, this doesn't make a whole lot of sense. But it's fun. So there.
The boys construct a cardboard house and then assault it with little fireworks tanks. So buckle up, because here we go...
The attack begins.
And it continues for some time, because El Guapo's cardboard house is strangely fire-resistant.
Finally, it succumbs to the flames.
But, really, Wyatt... why are you taking cover behind a rock? Do you know something we don't? Maybe, that Tate has disassembled several of the contraband fireworks he purchased and reassembled them into something he hopes is higher powered?
Yes. El Guapo's house was no match for Tate's home-made explosives.
But wait, El Guapo is trying to escape...
... in his rocket-powered car...
... hotly pursued by...
... the military. And thus, El Guapo meets his end.
With those formalities over, on to the BBQ :D Our hospitable friend, the Gibsons, have a beautiful farm situated on high ground in a big river valley - perfect for relaxing in the shade and taking in the view.
We could see all the way to mountains (very hazy in the picture, but clear to us) in Canada.
The boys found a great old maple...
... too good just to look at ;D
Later in the evening we all headed up the hill behind the farm, to wait for sunset. That's our wonderful hostess, Emily, on the right.
Can you guess what Gunnar is saying? Is it dark enough yet? No.
Plenty of time to hang out with our church friends, talk about anything and everything, and watch the sun sink lower.
... even though it's not really dark yet...
... yes, you can start with some roman candles :D
Dan and Emily provided an assortment of showery, rocket-y, sparkly fun!
And let me tell you, sitting in the middle of acres and acres of hay, we were all feeling very thankful for all the rain we've gotten in the last couple of weeks. While so many places are hot, or even burning, we couldn't have started a fire without a flame thrower.
The boys saved a few roman candles for the end :D
Gunnar looked like the Statue of Liberty ;D
And while we were lighting off ours, the neighbors were setting off some HUGE ones!
Looks like Gunnar has a giant light saber ;D
Tate, what are you DOING?!?!
Greatest accidental photo of the year! Caption???
Absolutely mind-blowing fireworks display!
Subsequently, Wyatt's head exploded.