Ever since my kids were little, Independence Day has been a favorite of mine because of the tradition the day holds. We used to always go back to the small town my parents lived in and it was a blast! We had lots of traditions that revolved around the city celebration and we all loved it.
Since my parents moved away from there, I’ll be honest, the last few years have been a bit of a bore because we let those traditions fall away and didn’t add new ones in their place. So, I've put together this post with simple ideas to put tradition into your 4th of July celebration and make some special memories with your family!
Here are 10 simple things that will help your family celebrate Independence Day with a BANG!
1- Dress for the occasion!
Ever since we had our first child, 4th of July attire was a tradition. It is just a simple way to make the day special and help your family feel connected. Of course, there are lots of ways to do this, but here are a couple ideas to get your going…
- Get Patriotic t-shirts! Many brands put out a patriotic shirt this time of year. Pick one up! You can go everyone in the family matching, or girls match & boys match, or just everyone pick their own.
- Put together a patriotic outfit of your own! If everyone wants to show their own style and not look alike, that doesn’t mean you’ve missed out on the fun. Help family members put together an outfit that shows their style but is festive. Bandanas, headbands, and even fun patriotic socks can go a long way!
- “Mini Me” style: I’m a sucker for this one! Especially when the kids are young, dress the boys like dad and the girls like mom, but in their patriotic colors of course. It is my favorite look!
- Sibling Style: Can’t find something that matches kids and parents? Even just letting all the sisters match each other and all the brothers match each other is lots of fun and will help them feel connected to each other.
2- Decorate Inside Your Home!
Decorating your home for the 4th of July will create even more holiday anticipation! You don’t have to get super fancy here.
- One super simple way to add a patriotic look to your home is picking up a few mini flags and sticking them in your plant pots and vases can quickly add to your home and if you stop there, it still dresses your home up for the holiday.
- You could also display some patriotic kitchen towels or dishes in your kitchen.
- Add a patriotic garland or bunting on your mantel or outdoors. We love this one in our Patriotic Collection in the Shoppe!
- Want to go all the way, add in larger patriotic pieces and pillows and a throw in red, white and blue. Your family will enjoy the feel of the summer patriotic season.
3- Decorate Your Porch and yard!
Your porch is your welcome to your neighbors and family. Adding a touch of the patriotic season will certainly help everyone get a little more excited.
- Again, add mini or medium sized flags to your flower pots.
- Switch out your layered rug or doormat for one with a little red, white and blue.
- Add an Americana wreath to your door, or just add some patriotic color (ribbon, fabric, berries or flowers) to the one you already have.
- If you really want to make a statement, cut a star stencil from poster board and spray paint stars on your grass!
4- Plan a traditional 4th of July BBQ!
A BBQ always says America! Think of ways to make this BBQ a tradition.
- Do you have a family recipe that could be part of the tradition? Maybe the tradition is that you always serve Grandpa’s famous BBQ recipe or Grandma's fried chicken.
- The tradition could be who you invite… maybe every 4th you invite one family that’s an “old” friend and one that’s a “new” friend. Let your family decide and keep whatever traditions you set going every year!
- Make it a picnic! Throw some blankets on the ground and enjoy!
- Add in some red, white and blue foods or cut foods into patriotic shapes!
Drink up! No, I’m not referring to alcohol, but adding a family friendly festive drink will again make the day feel special.
- Grab some soda and add in a few bottles of drink flavoring and create a soda bar.
- Want to keep it simpler? Mix up a fun drink like Sprite (or even water) over frozen blueberries and strawberries to keep the red, white and blue going!
- A batch of homemade Rootbeer sounds pretty American as well!
5- Set a Patriotic table!
- A celebratory tablescape always sets a happy tone for your celebration and it doesn’t need to be a lot of work! Focus on the runner, placemat or tablecloth, plate and napkin. Set the stage well with those and you really don’t even need a fancy centerpiece unless you want it. Check out the Lemon Drops & Lilies Shoppe for great options!
Pictured from Shoppe: Navy Stripe Runner, Wood Lantern Set, Liberty Bead Strand, 3 Star Set and Herb Sage Candle Ring.
- Patriotic cloth napkins make a great addition to your table. Using cloth napkins for the holidays make the occasion stand out as extra special and you can reuse them year after year, becoming part of your family's tradition. Check out the Americana Stars or red cloth napkins in the Shoppe!
- If you want a little more, you can pull decor from your house, use cut out stars down the table, or small mini flags poked into pots.
- Little touches like colored straws, fun cups or a festive napkin ring can also add to your table look.
- Hang a pennant bunting above your table.
6- Catch a parade!
This one small tradition has a way to get your holiday morning started! Going to an Independence Day parade is just fun! Take your family out to watch and maybe even catch a few candies that are thrown! The smaller the town, I've found the better the parade, so don't shy away from small town parades!
7- Add water!
July tends to be a hot month almost everywhere, so cool off with some water.
- Enjoy the swimming Pool together.
- Turn on the sprinklers and make your own water park!
- If you don’t have a pool, just add water activities. Fun like water balloons or a Slip N Slide can be used alone or added to a volleyball or a good ol’ American baseball game to really make it fun!
8- Go Camping!
You don’t have to even leave home to enjoy this!
- Throw up a tent in your backyard and enjoy a night out “under the stars.” Your kids will love this surprise getaway as part of your 4th of July celebration!
9- Add an All American Dessert!
There are lots of wonderful 4th of July desserts out there in red, white & blue. One of my favorites is a Patriotic berry trifle. If you want to keep it simple, try one of these all American treats that are perfect for July 4th! Do it every year and it becomes tradition!
- Enjoy some apple or cherry pie ala mode.
- Roast marshmallows over the firepit and make smores!
- Ice Cream Sandwiches rolled in sprinkles!
- Create a grazing board with patriotic colors of treats
It wouldn’t be Independence Day without fireworks!
- Watching your city’s firework celebration is a perfect finish to the night.
- Add in a few sparklers and/or fireworks at home and it truly is a once a year experience!
- Here’s an added idea kids will love, adjust your lens on your camera to stay open longer. Take a photo while the kids write their names with sparklers (backwards!). It will create a festive 4th of july photo they will treasure for years to come!
Hope you and your family have a wonderful 4th of July celebration! Choose a few of these ideas that you will use every year and you are creating family traditions that your family will remember and look forward to each year!
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