14 Patriotic Quotes: Celebrating the 4th

Happy 4th of July. In honor of our most patriotic of holidays, here are some patriotic quotes:

The United States is the only country with a known birthday. ~James G. Blaine


He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from opposition; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach himself. ~Thomas Paine


You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism. ~Erma Bombeck


America is much more than a geographical fact. It is a political and moral fact – the first community in which men set out in principle to institutionalize freedom, responsible government, and human equality. ~Adlai Stevenson


My God! How little do my countrymen know what precious blessings they are in possession of, and which no other people on earth enjoy! ~Thomas Jefferson


Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves. ~Abraham Lincoln


There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America. ~William J. Clinton


We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. ~Thomas Jefferson


Our country is not the only thing to which we owe our allegiance. It is also owed to justice and humanity. Patriotism consists not in waving the flag, but in striving that our country be righteous as well as strong. ~James Bryce


Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country. ~John F. Kennedy


This country will not be a good place for any of us to live in unless we make it a good place for all of us to live in. ~Theodore Roosevelt


Patriotism is like charity — it begins at home. ~Henry James


I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal’. ~Martin Luther King, Jr.


True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else. ~Charles Darrow

8 Down; 5 To Go

fireworksWe checked off another of the events on the 13 in 13 list last week. Again, the event occurred despite being weather challenged. We planned to invite a few friends and family members to join us on the 4th of July to enjoy the fireworks displays of our neighbors.

For the last seven or eight years John and I have watched fireworks from the comfort of home since several residents on the lake set off fireworks that rival those of many local communities so we decided we should really share the generosity of our neighbors.

A simple plan…hot dogs, beans, potato salad, pie, cobbler, homemade ice cream…entertainment provided by neighbors. Nature provided some fireworks in addition to those we expected, but that didn’t stop us.

I think we’ve proven weather will not prevent us from having a good time, but I have begun to plan ahead for more weather challenges as we complete the final events on our list.

Barbara, my roommate at WCU, joined us for the 4th!
Barbara, my roommate at WCU, joined us for the 4th!

Potato Salad for the 4th

What’s the 4th of July without potato salad? I know hot dogs or hamburgers or ribs traditionally reign as the main course on Independence Day, but for me, I prefer the side dishes and potato salad ranks number one so it only seems fitting to post the family recipe.

Potato Salad

  • Ingredients:
  • 6 white potatoes
  • 3 eggs – hard boiled
  • 3 Tablespoons of mayonnaise
  • 3 teaspoons of spicy brown mustard
  • 3 teaspoons of sweet pickle relish
  • 1/2 cup celery, chopped
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Peel and dice potatoes. Let cool (cooking the day ahead works great). Dice the eggs and add to the potatoes. Stir in the mayonnaise, mustard, relish, celery, and onion. Salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate. Potato salad tastes better if made at least two hours before serving.

What I love about this recipe is the ease with which you can adjust for different size groups. My rule of thumb is as follows:

Peel one potato per person. Hard boil half as many eggs as potatoes. (I always cook an even number of potatoes since it makes measurements easier.) The number of teaspoons or Tablespoons of the next three ingredients always equal the number of eggs. (For example: 8 potatoes, 4 eggs, 4T mayo, 4t mustard, 4t relish) Adjust the amount of celery and onion according to personal preference. This makes it easy to prepare for four or forty, although I’m not sure I want to peel 40 potatoes!

Hope you had a happy 4th and ate some potato salad!IMG_0273


Best Place to Spend the 4th of July

Yesterday I saw a friend’s picture from her hotel room in Hoboken, NJ where she’ll be watching the fireworks over New York City for this year’s 4th of July celebration. Watching the fireworks with the Manhattan skyline in the background’s one of the best places in the country to spend the 4th.

New Orleans “Dueling Barges” fireworks display

New York City, Boston, and Washington, DC rank at the top of most of the “best places to spend the 4th of July” lists. Last year we spent the 4th in another of the “best of” cities: New Orleans. Here we watched the fireworks display launched from the “Dueling Barges” on the Mississippi River. From our hotel room we observed the floating barges trying to outdo one another. Best of all, without the noise or crowds.

This year we’ll be spending the day at the lake, our traditional spot to enjoy the holiday fireworks. I can’t say there’s a better place to spend the 4th – no traveling or hotel rooms or crowds or traffic…just sit back, relax, and enjoy the hard work of others! I’m glad this spot isn’t on any “best of” list…better to keep it a secret.