The Fourth is a huge holiday for my family. We go to the beach for the Fourth. That is our week at the beach. My kids have grown up with that tradition. As we have aged it has become a larger party as our friends drop in and share supper with us and then head onto the beach for stereo fireworks. My wife’s best friend has the house next door and it is their time to get caught up, a chance to compare notes on child rearing, parent care, and girl talk in general. Her husband and I are wonderful hosts and it has evolved into a gathering of the girl’s high school classmates and friends, and family with a few strays, you know a “friend of a friend” end up with us. It is a lovely time and something we look forward to hosting every year. Last year we made a seafood paella on a large paella pan on the grill. It was a show-stopper. You can see the picture. It was beautiful.
I won’t reveal this year’s menu but it will be great. But the really great thing is that my kids are all going to be there. I have bought plane tickets for the out of towners and the little guys have made room in their summer schedule to be with us this year. This is the first time in a while that Missy has had all four of her children with her on the Fourth. Of course that means T-shirts!! Anyway, the boys are excited about helping me cook. I have a customer who is in the wholesale produce business and we will have plenty of very fresh, straight out of the dirt, produce to cook and eat. And as the night wears on we all head down to the beach to see the Sawgrass fireworks, Jacksonville Beach Fireworks and Mayport fireworks. What makes this event so special, and memorable is that Missy and her classmates are very close, even after all these years. They really enjoy spending time with each other. And the husbands and kids have become friends as well. It is just a lovely event, and now if the weather committee will do their job this should be at least equal to some of the great ones from the past.