Cupcakes and T-shirts and Fireworks, Oh My!

Is it wrong that some of the things I most look forward to when it comes to the Fourth of July are eating and wearing all things red, white and blue? I mean, fireworks are fun and cookouts are cool, but give me an artificially colored sugary treat and a patriotic T-shirt made halfway across the world and I’m happy. Seriously! I’m not being sarcastic here … well, maybe a little bit. But these incredibly yummy cupcakes were made with care and sold with joy at a small and local family bakery — the lemonade one especially is delicious with its tart and refreshing burst of lemony flavor. And the T-shirt, priced at $5.99, came from a discount store that has successfully brought style within reach of almost all budgets. So, in celebrating our national birthday, I’m also honoring our quintessential American values of capitalism, entrepreneurship and democratization. On the other hand, you could point out that I’m contributing to the growing problems of obesity and job loss. But here’s the thing: I’m free to do that. I’m free to shop for cupcakes anywhere I want to and eat as many as I feel I can. (Are all four too many? Please say “no.”)  I’m free to go anywhere I want on a T-shirt search and buy anything I can sneak into the house without my husband noticing that fits into my budget. Free to do pretty much what I want to do. Free. To. Do. What. I. Want. I don’t always make the best choices, but at least I’m free to make them. Thank you, Founding Fathers and Unheralded Founding Mothers. Happy Birthday!

And now I’m going to put on my T-shirt, eat a cupcake and drink more coffee because I’m not used to such deep thinking before lunch.

One-Stop Shopping …

... for your Fourth of July celebration, because what's more convenient than being able to buy your fireworks and your liquour at the same time and in the same place? (Special thanks to favorite nephew Sam for help with the secret journalism photography.)