July 4th

July 4th Reflections

Becky and I are spending a quiet 4th watching some tennis, baseball and reading.  Likely, watch the concert and fireworks from Washington DC this evening.

My first July 4 memories came when we took a break from haying, Dad pulled a trailer load of picnic makings down into the pasture where Apple River meandered through now long-gone Elms and the remains of an old logging camp.  Aunt Elsie and August came over from their farm and we had a picnic, a welcome break from the hayfield.

In later years there was a family reunion at cousin Chuck Hansen’s place on a small lake near McKinley.  After dinner, we climbed over a fence into a neighbor’s pasture and played softball alert to cow pies and thistles.

We spent July 4, 1972 in DeSoto. Mo. visiting Becky’s family.  In the evening we went to a reenactment of a civil war battle.  We left uncertain as to who had won the Civil War, but then this was Missouri.

1976, the Bicentennial, we were in Albert Lea, MN.  Following the morning service at Zion Lutheran I went to the Freeborn Co. Fairgrounds, only a stone’s throw away, and took part in a community service.  Yeah, I know us LCMS people aren’t supposed to do those sorts of things, but I did.  That evening while Becky and the boys went with Chuck and Cecile Zenk to the fireworks show over Fountain Lake, I stayed with just over 4- month- old Sarah.

We still miss our time at Camp Luther in Three Lakes, Wi. where we spent several July 4th’s in the 1980s.  During that time Nathan and then Sarah were working as camp counselors. It was a relaxing week in a cabin by the lake, with camp fires and singing in the evening and plenty of activities during the day.  The Wimbledon tennis tournament seemed more special than trying to watch it at home today.


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