American Cutie Pies: Part 1

Last year for Independence Day, the girls were only four months old and were a lot easier to take places since they basically just ate and slept all day without needing to be entertained.  
Photographic evidence that at one point in their lives, we could place the girls somewhere and they wouldn’t move!
Samantha, 4th of July 2013
Amelia, 4th of July 2013
                   
Last year, we stayed in a hotel in San Diego and watched the fireworks from our balcony while the girls slept. The next day, we lounged by the pool and strolled with the girls around town. (Last year’s 4th of July here and here).
So little!

This year, the girls were 15 months old and were able to take part in some of the festivities this time around. 
(Due to the ridiculous amount of pictures from the 4th, I’m dividing the holiday into two posts). 
Decorating the girls’ patriotic wagon the night before. Can you tell the 4th of July is my all-time favorite holiday? 

An Independence Day breakfast of whole wheat pumpkin waffles with blueberries, strawberries and yogurt. 

After breakfast, we made our way down to the Ladera parade where we met up with the Wrights. Samantha put her feet up and enjoyed the ride. 

Next year, we will definitely register to actually be in the parade (anyone can walk in it). This year, we just watched. 

I want to be in the parade!

Staying cool. 

It took Samantha a long time to finally warm up to all the excitement. She very uncharacteristically sat by us the entire time while Amelia ran around exploring. 
Waiting for the parade to begin.  
We brought little spray bottles with water to help keep cool–the girls refused to let them out of their sights. 

The parade was small, short and sweet–just our style. 

Not impressed so far. 

Now we’re talkin’.

Once she figured out that some of the parade walkers were throwing treats to the audience, Amelia spent the rest of the parade front and center.

Samantha loved the necklace and bracelet someone threw her. 

Best view in the house. 
 Toward the end, the girls decided they didn’t care if they technically weren’t registered to march in the parade– they didn’t come dressed up for nothin’!

Mmmm…cheese stick…

Hi Maliyah!

All tatted up! Samantha sported the eagle and Amelia wore the flag.  

Maliyah and Amelia decided to have their own parade. 
A rare moment when the girls were not tripping in their 4th of July flip flops. 

Samantha scouts out any leftover candy. 

We spent most of the parade keeping the candy the girls picked up out of their mouths, but a tootsie roll or two slipped past our watch. HUGE mistake. Having never really eaten candy or anything with sugar (except for the smash cake on their birthday), the girls’ reaction to a few licks of candy was to go C-R-A-Z-Y when we got back for lunch.

Not only did they refuse to eat most of their lunch when we got home from the parade, we spent a good two hours trying to put them down for their naps to no avail. They’ve started skipping their morning nap every once in a while, but never in the history of their lives have they ever skipped their afternoon nap. We were afraid….very afraid.

 Sugar–NEVER again, girls!

Packing up for home. 

Our Yankee Doodle sweethearts!

They’re our Yankee Doodle joys. 

After lunch and NOT napping, we decided to forge ahead with our original plans and go swimming with the Wrights. The girls were a little cranky, but were not as horrible as I thought they would be considering they skipped their nap. 
The girls learned how to jump in to the pool at swim lessons and now they can’t get enough of it. And by jump, I mean leap into our arms without abandon. 
Pool pals. 
After swimming and showering off, we went home to eat dinner. This was the first day Jake and I were off of our Whole30 program and we celebrated by eating a little dairy, carbs and even dessert, thereby gaining back any weight we had lost during the past month. 
Jake and I had a “gourmet” hot dog cook-off wherein we each chose a hot dog and toppings to make and then taste-tested small chunks of each other’s creations to determine the winner. 
First place: “Apple and Brie Dog” by me
A Trader Joe’s Sweet Apple Chicken Sausage on a french roll with honey mustard, diced green apple and melted brie. YUM. It was so good, we had it again the next day for lunch.
Second Place: “Hawaiian Dog” by Jake
A regular beef hot dog on a wheat bun slathered in bbq sauce, with chunks of fresh grilled pineapple and coconut flakes on top. 
Third place: “Chicken Cordon Bleu Dog” by me
A chicken sausage on a wheat bun wrapped in ham and swiss cheese, then grilled and topped with panko bread crumbs. This one was alright, but was definitely lacking in something–maybe marinara?
 The girls tried regular hot dogs for the first time and decided they didn’t care for them. Maybe they were eyeing the Apple and Brie Dog and felt short-changed.
Hey! Where’d the dog go? 
NO LIKEY. 
Nope. Not going to eat it. 

Stay tuned for 4th of July Part Two!
Lots of love, 
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