How about that for alliteration? So yesterday was the 4th of July and we lived it up Provo-Style. There is a huge "Freedom Festival" parade that goes through two of the main streets in Provo every year and apparently it's a big deal. The last few years, the police department has even had to set time restrictions as to how early you can camp out to reserve seats because people were doing it DAYS in advance. So now the first main leg of the parade route (University Avenue) cannot be staked out until 3:00 am the day of the parade. And the second half of the parade can't be reserved until 5:00 am the day of. And the parade doesn't start until 9:00 am. I told you, it's crazy. So we knew this, but weren't about to go sit 4-6 hours waiting for a freaking parade to start. We ended up leaving the house at 8:50. We didn't get a close parking spot (we still had to walk a good 6 blocks), but that turned out to work in our favor because we didn't hit any traffic when we left. So the parade was fun...but I don't think it would be worth camping out for. Unless you're like 20 and single with no kids and don't care about sleeping. But Logan really liked it. He loved waving at all the princesses and people in cars and fire trucks and LOVED clapping for the vets, and was ECSTATIC about the marching bands. It was really cute.
Fireworks are also a big deal here (not only for the 4th, but for Utah's statehood day or "Pioneer Day" as it is fondly known). I posted about it last year. "The Stadium of Fire." Only this year instead of Miley Cirus it was the Jonas Brothers. And also this year, we don't live 2 blocks away so we knew we would have to drive and deal with traffic afterward. So on our way to the stadium (we were going to lie in the street like we did last year), I mentioned to Zac that maybe we could drive up the mountain. We'd be further away, but the traffic probably wouldn't be as bad and the noise wouldn't scare the crap out of Logan. He agreed so we turned east and headed up the mountain by all the rich, swanky houses. We eventually found a fairly clear spot near a really nice house with a gated driveway, pulled over, got out our blanket, and sat on the shoulder of the road overlooking Provo. There were a few other families there (4 maybe) and we were just sitting there waiting for the fireworks to start. Then a guy came down to the end of the driveway and opened the gate and said, "You don't have to sit on the road. Come on in and watch with us." These people had a HUGE yard with a drop-off that looked right out onto the city...and the stadium! It was the nice guy, his wife, his 3 sons and daughter and their families. It was awesome...we were just far enough away that you still got the "boom" effect from the fireworks (and heard it reverberating off the mountains behind us), but it wasn't so loud that it shook your organs. Logan was amazed and when the show was over, he was kind of upset that we couldn't get them to do more. So we did some sparklers with some neighbors when we got home and then sent the little boy off to bed. After all, it was a LONG day for him! But a fun one, I'm sure.
Speaking of fun days, we had another family fun day last Monday. We went up to the Oquirrh Mountain Temple open house. Before temples are dedicated by our church president, they are open to the general public so people of all faiths and ages can walk through and see the beautiful buildings and find out what exactly happens there. It was an amazing experience to be able to go to a house of the Lord with not only my husband, but with my son. He is too young (you can't get a recommend to go inside the temple until you're 12 years old) so we don't take him when Zac and I go. But it was a special reminder to me that because of the temple and because I was sealed to my wonderful husband for time and all eternity, I get to be with my family forever. So that was a fun day all around, too. And that time, I took pictures! So here are your Sunday snapshots of the Steele family :-)
And yes, I'm huge. But only 13 days till my due date! And 16 until my induction date!!! Or as Zac's friend Matt calls it, "the impending day of pain." Yay!