It's Memorial Day Weekend. The officially unofficial kick-off to the summer. As for my kids, two are already out of preschool, one has a mere three days of not-too-much at school. Our neighborhood pool is open.
And we've got great neighbors.
A text at 2:30 on Sunday announced a pulled pork BBQ sandwich feast at one house. Another already had plans for doing s'mores over an open fire pit. One had found a creative (if challenging) packet of magic powder to make glow-in-the-dark sidewalk chalk. My wife and I provided the yard, our normal cul de sac gathering spot. Friends from two streets down got jealous and came down to crash the impromptu summer kick-off party! And those are their words, not mine.
Wrapping up last night at way past dark and mosquito:30, I was grateful for such a cool set of neighbors. And that expanded my gratitude that I live in a place where those kinds of things can and do happen. And that expanded my gratitude that there's a system of government in place, albeit imperfect, that doesn't squash random block parties. And that made me think of friends overseas in various places who can't just throw a shindig without collecting some scrutiny (although a fire pit after 98 days of no rain maybe should have drawn some attention).
And, finally, that made me thankful for all the people who have served and are serving now to protect our freedom and defend our country. May God bless them. May God bless you, dear reader. And may God bless the United States of America.