Thursday, July 11, 2013

The 4th on Whidbey Island

Maxwelton Beach 4th of July Parade

Oh, the 4th of July. One of my favorite days of the year. It was so fun being able to spend it on Whidbey Island with my family this year. It's been our family tradition for ages and ages, so to take Daniel back to it was just a blessing.

My grandparents were the grand marshals of the Maxwelton Beach 4th of July Parade (read the news article about them here), so this year—instead of just attending the parade—the entire family joined my behind my grandparents and walked in it! After the parade, they had the annual raising of the flag ceremony, and my cousins (who are both in the Army) were chosen to perform it. It was amazing.

Immediately after the flag raising, the games began! Each year, Maxwelton holds races and games in their small baseball field that the entire community gets to participate in. They have a foot race, a 3-legged race, a sack race and an egg toss. Me—being the ultra-competitive girl I am—had to do each one. The races are broken out by gender and age category, starting with the 3 and under babies and going up in 2-year increments all the way to the 16 and older crowd. When they called for the 16 and older women for the foot race, you can bet I was out there. I ran in my tank top, shorts and bare feet. We made the 50-or-so-yard dash across the field and I won (though, to be fair, I was only competing against 10 or so other women)! Right after that, my sister and I lined up for the 3-legged race, and we won that as well. In the next race—the sack race—I convinced my sister to do it with me, and I took first place and she took second. One year—in the sack race—I wore a dress and ended up flashing everyone because I fell over the finish line... I never have made the mistake of wearing a dress to the games since! Anyway, we swept those darn games, if I do say so myself! Afterward, there was the egg toss and Daniel and I weren't so lucky to make it too far in that one—our egg cracked on my hand in the 3rd round and we were out. Bummer.

After the games & celebration, we went back to my uncle's cabin for a day of barbecue, stories, and relaxation. We finished the evening surrounding a campfire on the beach, roasting marshmallows, and watching the fireworks light up the sky above our heads. It was a perfect day.

I left my camera at home on the 4th—not wanting to tote it around with me—so we can thank my mom for taking all these fun (and possibly embarrassing) photos. Captions can be found below photos. Enjoy!

Maxwelton Beach 4th of July Parade
The article in the South Whidbey Record about my grandparents. Aren't Nanny and Papa adorable? I just love them.
Maxwelton Beach 4th of July Parade
My cousin's husband Tony (on the left) and my cousin Patrick with their two little girls. 
Maxwelton Beach 4th of July Parade
Nanny and Papa—decked out in red, white and blue—for their grand marshal entrance.
Maxwelton Beach 4th of July Parade
My cousins performing the raising of the flag. Source.
Maxwelton Beach 4th of July Parade
Sack race victory! I won the foot race & sack race, and Marn and I took home the blue ribbon in the 3-legged race! Also, after seeing this photo, we both decided that maybe sack racing just isn't for us. 
Maxwelton Beach 4th of July Parade
Stoked about the win! We were 3-legged race champs!
Maxwelton Beach
S'mores by the bonfire before the fireworks.
Maxwelton Beach
Enjoying the bonfire on Nanny and Papa's beach. The one-story home directly behind us was theirs for years and years. Now, my uncle owns it! 

I don't get to visit Whidbey as often as I'd like, but now do you see why I love it so much? I feel so at ease on Whidbey, surrounded by my loved ones, and just take every minute to soak it all in. I think it's safe to say that after this visit, Daniel will want to go back a lot more often. Not only did he love Whidbey, but Whidbey and my family sure loved him.

Washington Trip 2013 Posts:
Whidbey Island │ Maxwelton Beach │ The 4th │ Pike Place Market │ Seattle


Kateri Von Steal said...

I love this.

You have a beautiful family... You can see how much you all truly love each other.

And Nanny and Papa... Are.. A-DOR-A-BLE!

Kelly said...

That's awesome your family got to be part of the festivities. And that's super awesome that you won so many races!

I'm trying to get my pace up in running (and distance). I ran a six miler back in June that almost killed me so I am so impressed that your shooting for a marathon!

I'm glad you, Daniel, and all your family had such a lovely time!

Big Apple, Little Bites

Carly Anderson said...

Your grandparents are ADORABLE!


Vicki Garrett said...

What fun!! I'm jealous I didn't get to go!

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird said...

Oh how FUN!

My town is having its yearly celebration this weekend and I'm excited for the parade, the carnival, maybe having a few drinks and FIREWORKS.

Kelly Ann said...

That is so exciting about your grandparents and it looks like you had a really great day!

Sparkles and Shoes

Annelise Rowe said...

There is SO MUCH LOVE going around in the Stone Family. It's like a big pile of hugs and laughs all the time! And oh... Nanny and Papa. I just adore them. We have a very, very close relationship.

Annelise Rowe said...

Six miles is great! Was it a run by yourself or a 10k race? Good for you, either way! I did 6 yesterday morning... I think my favorite length is about 9-10. Just take it step by step and you'll get faster... or go longer! :)

Annelise Rowe said...

That makes me so happy to hear. They are a big inspiration to me :)

Annelise Rowe said...

Well don't be jealous! It's a big party & you should go there sometime!! :)

Annelise Rowe said...

Hey... my town is having that, too! Have a bunch of fun and snag some cotton candy for me!

Annelise Rowe said...

It was the BEST of days. Thanks Kelly Ann :) Hope you're having a great week!

Rebekah Sayer said...

Wow! That sounded like an amazing vacation. I love the small town "feel" you describe. I almost feel as if I was there!

Anna Sinclair said...

Fun! Great pictures!

Cody said...

That is an awesome way to spend the 4th. Your grandparents are cute! Tell you cousins thanks for serving for me. It means the world that they are doing that. Congrats to them too for doing the Flag Ceremony. The parade looks fun. My community used to do something like that but it just got to hot here in Fl to keep going so they quit. Oh and I am jealous of your uncle. I want a beach house. Period. haha.

Kelly said...

It was the Oakley Mini 10K in NYC. It's an all women's race so a little less intimidating for me. I'm signed up for a ten mile race with a friend who ran a marathon two years ago. So hopefully she can help me train. I also plan to use the website you recommended (Hal Higdon) for a 9/10 mile race.

And thanks! Yea, hopefully if I just keep pushing myself I will reach my goals. Thanks for the inspiration :)

Annelise Rowe said...

THAT'S THE BEST COMMENT EVER! I'm excited (hence the all-caps) because that's why I give so many details... I want you to experience it vicariously through me! Aunie 1 point, Not attending the actual vacay 0 :)

Annelise Rowe said...

I like them, too! It's so fun seeing life through a different end of the camera. I know if I had taken the photos, they would have turned out totally differently... so I love my mom's perspective!

Annelise Rowe said...

I will tell them you said thanks! My uncle (the one who owns the cabin, not the beach house) is a colonel in the Army, and his 4 kids and each of their spouses are ALL in the Army. It's a big, amazing serving family and I respect each of them so much. It was a big honor for them to do the flag ceremony. I love their Ranger hats :) I just wish I could visit FL. I'll take that heat any day!

Annelise Rowe said...

Good for you! 10k's are great because it's not over in 30 minutes, but it's not a 2-hour race either. I am so excited for you to do the 10 miler, and hope Hal's website helps! I just love his running plans. I always alter them just a tiny bit, but the structure is what keeps me going! You can do it!

Cody said...

That is awesome that they are all serving.
Come visit and you will see. It's hot and humid. It's like walking in heated up syrupy. Blah. I don't mind hot but this is a little much.

Annelise Rowe said...

It sounds just awesome! :)

Priya Pappu said...

Hey Aunie! So, I haven't been by in a while, I have some adventures to catch up on! This is seriously the most picturesque, perfect 4th I can imagine! You've incorporated seriously everything all-American here. It's so special that Daniel could join all your family traditions, and your grandparents are toooo cute! Way to go on all those races- I am seriously impressed (foremost by your participation, I love games but sometimes it's so much easier to watch than jump in!). Also- love the patriotic outfits all around! Have a fantastic weekend!

perfectly priya

Annelise Rowe said...

Priya, it's so great to hear from you! Thank you so much... that means a lot! It was a fantastic fourth, and now that you've come to pay me a visit, I'm heading to your blog to do the same! Talk to you soon, girl!

Cody said...

Then come on down. haha

Joelle Duff said...

I love this! I'm so glad you got to share a few photos, and it looks like you guys had a lot of fun. What a great tradition to keep going! xoxo

Annelise Rowe said...

Thanks, Joelle! It's always fun to keep those traditions going and to show Daniel my roots. Now he "gets it!"