We live next to the park where the city of Torrance launches their huge fireworks display. Throughout the day they offer food booths and lots of stuff to buy. We walked over and had some BBQ sandwiches and sno-cones, then enjoyed a free ride on the trains that are run by volunteers. After a quick visit with Grandma and Grandpa (who were expecting a quiet day while Auntie Holly was off in the mountains- ha! Fooled them! There's never quiet when my boys are around!), we came home and I cooked up several enormous batches of my favorite Spanish rice recipe to feed 80 people. Every year a family on our street hosts a huge Independence Day party with food and bouncers and all sorts of fun. This year it became more of a block party as all the neighbors came out to enjoy the great company while the kids played. We never live anywhere long enough to get to know the neighbors, so this was a wonderful treat for us! We enjoyed delicious carne asada (no simple hot dogs for this block!) and a table laden with enough desserts to send anyone into a sugar coma. We all bundled up in our winter coats and blankets as a cold breeze came through and then we oohed and aahed over the amazing display of color in the sky. I don't know about you, but this was just about our best 4th of July ever! Great food, friends, fun, and fireworks! Happy birthday, America!