Monday, July 4, 2016


It is a day for celebration

for most of us.

We wave our flags 

and grill our burgers

and wolf down our hot dogs.

We stand in line for dripping

ice cream cones

and we stare at the sky

in awe as fireworks

feed us a feast for our eyes.

We are free.

What a blessing to be free.

But that freedom comes at a cost.

A big cost.

I see it every day I work at the VA.

I see the sacrifices made

 by men and women

to ensure our freedom.

So, take just a moment today

and whisper a


to all those that fought for us

on this, and foreign, land.

Wing a prayer up 

for those families left behind

when their sons and daughters,

husbands and wives,

gave their lives for all of us.

Say a prayer, too,

for all those who served

and whose lives are forever altered.

Prayers, too, for those in


I am so in debt to all of you!

I will leave you with one of my

very favorite photos

of SweetCheeks.

This was taken on our dock

about 4 years ago when the

fireworks were

bursting in the air over the bay.

THAT is 


I hope I never lose that


and I hope I never lose

my appreciation for this



At 1pm today our

granddaughter, Lulu,

(Alana in real life)

will start the city festivities by singing




We are so proud and so blessed!

Have a wonderful, safe

 4th of July!

your photo name


Pam Kessler said...

Congratulations LuLu!!! That is amazing!

Jettie said...

Yes it is, that girl has a special God given talent.

Kathy said...

Happy Fourth of July! Thank you for all you do for our veterans. I'm at the VA Hospital a lot with Joe and I know what a wonderful job the volunteers do and how important they are. Congrats to Lulu! That is a wonderful honor.

20 North Ora said...

Happy Fourth to you! I know you are so proud (and have a right to be) of your beautiful granddaughters. Thanks for the volunteer work you do with the veterans. We owe them so much.


Wild Oak Designs said...

Happy 4th to you and your family!!
We are all so blessed......

Mountain Mama said...

Wow, what an honor for Lulu - she must be quite the talented singer! And gorgeous, to boot!!

Susie said...

Diana, I will say a thank you for all those service and all those gave so we are free. So excited for Lulu. Wish all of you a great day of family time and love. Blessings, xoxo, Susie

LV said...

Well said my friend. Lulu is to definitely to be commended as that song is very difficult to sing. Love seeing Sweet Cheeks any time.Enjoy the day and be safe. So glad things are improving for you and entire family.

Julie's Lifestyle said...

You too Diana have a happy 4th of July!!! :)

Red Rose Alley said...

Good Luck, Lulu, in singing The Star Spangled Banner today in your city! What an honor this is. Diana, I love that picture of SweetCheeks in awe of the fireworks. I hope I never lose that wonder and awe either.

Wishing you a Happy Fourth of July, dear friend.

love, ~Sheri

Ron said...

Good Luck, LuLu!
Wishing you a Happy 4th, Diana! xo

a writing place said...

Oh how wonderful for Lulu! I can almost feel you all, swelling with pride, when this happens. Justifiable pride!

Yes, our Freedom was never free. Not at the beginning, nor many times, down through the years. Take some time, to remember this. Especially on the 4th of July.

And especially when our Beloved Country is being torn asunder, by "forces of change."

I love my Country!!!!

I love my Flag!!!!!

I thank all, who preserved this Freedom, for me!!!

Hugs and love to you... Tessa

Lori M. said...

Such a touching post Diana! Thank you for all you do for our Vets. Even with all the crazy things going on politically, this is still the best Country in the world because of our men and women, past and present, in uniform. God Bless them, and God Bless America!

cards4ubylouise and other treasures said...

Happy 4th to you and yours....keep looking up, better days are coming.

Chatty Crone said...

I know she will do a great job! Happy birthday America. Hope you have a great 4th of July too!

Michele @ The Nest at Finch Rest said...

Oh my gosh! That is soooo neat about LuLu!!! You all must be so stinkin' proud of her! Hope you get sound vid of it to share with us!

Your post is perfect today - well said, my dear friend, well said, indeed. Hugs.



Kim said...

What a wonderful way to celebrate! Enjoy that concert! We have a lot of recent grads who have decided to serve instead of going to college (or have decided to go ROTC). I have made sure to thank them all. I am so grateful for each and every one of them. My dad was a WWII veteran. I get it. Thank you, Diana, for your volunteering, that is service, as well. I am sure you make those veterans laugh! :) xoxo

Kay G. said...

My son's girlfriend is from Armenia and she became an American citizen this year. This is what I wrote to her in a note...
"Being married to someone from another country has made me examine how I feel about my own country. I have come to realize how much I love the USA. And so I say, God bless it and God bless you!"
I say the same to you, my friend! xx

Katie Clooney said...

Congrats to Alana!! Wow, what an honor. Hopefully you take a video so we can have a listen to her beautiful voice. Enjoy your week, dear Diana.

Karen said...

I appreciated your thoughts on the 4th! Many thanks to our men and women in the service. Congratulations to your granddaughter.

Pom Pom said...

Beautiful, Diana! Happy 4th!

Sarah said...

I wish I could have heard Lulu sing. Can you share a video of it? Happy 4th to you and your family.

Tammy Chrzan said...

Diana!!! How have you been?? I've been through heck and back, but I'm hanging in there!!! Much love and happy independence day!! Tammy xx

Tammy Chrzan said...

Diana!!! How have you been?? I've been through heck and back, but I'm hanging in there!!! Much love and happy independence day!! Tammy xx

Row homes and Cobblestones said...

Hello stranger, sending love to you today and happy 4th of July. We won a trophy at a car show today... Up on my Instagram, check it out. BTW I love your post, enjoy the rest of your day.

Liz@ Infuse With Liz said...

Oh how special to have Alana sing for the opening of the festivities! Indeed- God Bless America!!
I hope your 4th has been wonderful all day.

Debbie-Dabble Blog and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

What an honor for your grand daughter! Amen to what you said in this post, Dianna!!
Happy 4th to you!!
My former blog, Debbie-Dabble was hacked through my Face Book Debbie-Dabble Page. I created a new blog, Debbie-Dabble Blog and I invite you to please follow me on my new blog.


Connie said...

I enjoyed reading every single word. In times like these where you see so many people not appreciating our country, our freedom and our heroes, it's great to hear from folks that do. God Bless the lives of each and very man and women that wear a uniform of pride and respect, that put them self on the line by defending our nation.

Rose L said...


Katie Isabella said...

That's an honor indeed for your granddaughter and I know the entire family is happy for her and proud of her.

I always remember our Veterans..and I am always grateful for their service and sacrifice.

Celestina Marie said...

Hi Diana, so well said!! Loved seeing the awe in SC's eyes. God Bless Lulu as she sings her heart out!! Blessings to you and yours this wonderful 4Th of July. xo

Missy George said...

Beautiful, well said. I hope you had a happy fourth!

Launna said...

Happy 4th of July Diana... I hope you and your family had and amazing day and enjoyed all the fireworks xox... I totally agree we always need to remember how blessed we are and how grateful we are to all the people who protect our country and our way of life... they are amazing xox

Blondie's Journal said...

Beautiful words, Diana! They really make me feel how proud I am of our country. Northing will break us. I have that faith.

Wonderful pic of Sweet Cheeks. It made me smile. And how cool that Lulu sang!! YAY!

Fireworks still going off. That makes 4 straight day. More like Independence Weekend!

Sending love,


Janet said...

Happy fourth of July to you and your family.
Have fun. Be safe.Fireworks only started about an hour ago here. Still have a few hours of it to go.
I hope they all stay away from our building and surrounding woods. :)
Take care, Janet W

Mary@mydogsmygardenandmary said...

Beautiful post Diana. thank you so much. Lulu is so beautiful and I know that you are so proud of her.

Have a terrific week and slow down.


Consider It All Joy said...

I was so happy that Lulu singing was posted to FB! What a wonderful gift she has been given! Congrats to her!!

Merlesworld said...

Happy 4th July to you and all your countrymen.

Laurie said...

Amen! And, sure wish we could have heard LuLu sing. She certainly is a beautiful girl.

Down On The Farm said...

I wish you would post a video of her singing :0!!! Blessings my friend!

Petie said...

Beautiful granddaughter's...Happy 4th of July.

Terri Steffes said...

Happy 4th! We have been so busy! I always love it when you stop in! Thanks for hanging in there for me. I love visiting your page, I just don't always get to comment!

Art and Sand said...

Beautifully written words.

Kelly said...

It sounds like you all have a lot to be thankful for this holiday! I think it's wonderful that your granddaughter got to sing for everyone too. She must not be shy like my son!

Junkchiccottage said...

Hi Diana,
Hope your 4th was a good one. I saw your facebook post on Alana singing. It made me tear up. Her voice is gorgeous. What a special day for all of you to hear her sing on such a great day.

Jane@Bluebird1959 said...

OH Diana, you have such a wonderful way with words. Hope your day was filled with all kinds of goodness and what an honor for Lulu. Jane

Vee said...

oh I would love to hear her sing! What joy for parents and grandparents. You are so right...freedom often comes at a high price indeed. Thank God for those who have served to keep us free.

AnnMarie aka Vintage Junkie aka NaNa said...

This post is what it is all about!! Hope you had a wonderful 4th!!

At Rivercrest Cottage said...

So happy you and your family are all together and all doing well. Have a good week and give thanks.

Stephanie said...

Such a wonderful post, dear Diana. You do indeed have a way with words.

I am sure sweet Lulu sounded lovely! How I wish I could have heard her sing :) Hugs to you!

Anonymous said...

beautiful, every word and every photo,,

Carla from The River said...

I bet Lulu sounded amazing. She is so beautiful. xx oo
Enjoy the rest of the week!

SpicingUpIdaho said...

The picture of Sweet Cheeks just touched my heart, and your heartfelt sharing of what it means to live in this amazing country just a wonderful tribute as well! How wonderful for you to hear your sweet Lulu sing at such a special event! Sorry that I have been missing in "blogland"... June feels like a blur to me with two big trips, and our son's graduation too. Hope you are doing well! :)

Shirley@Housepitality Designs said...

Hope you had a wonderful 4th...and how great that your sweet granddaughter sang at the festivities! I am sure you are all so proud!

Cathy @ My 1929 Charmer said...

Happy belated 4th and how EXCITING for Lulu and the whole family she sang the star spangled banner! Wow what an honor. Hub is doing good...take care.

Sweet Tea said...

I would love to have heard LuLu sing.
And, I would love to have watched you watching her sing.
I'm continuing to pray for John and hope he is getting stronger with each passing day.
Wish I knew you in real time so I could give you a hug. I'm sure we would be great friends!

Katie Mansfield said...

I hope you had a great day. LuLu is a doll and I hope she did a great job.

Cranberry Morning said...

Go Alana!!! That's a wonderful opportunity for her. xo

Thistle Cove Farm said...

YAY for your wonderful! Raise 'em up to love God, country, family and they'll be blessed and be a blessing. I love my country; I despise my government.

Annesphamily said...

This post touched my heart. So instead of going into my political tirade over recent events in the NFL let me say this. You know I have never been a Green Bay fan, probably because I live in Colorado and love my Broncos.But I admire the organization as well the NE Patriots, and boy oh boy, that is a tough one for me, because I am never going to be their fan! But both organizations were first class in the midst of all this political going on. I like football, oh heck, I L O V E football and I want to watch it. I do not want to watch political activism at the games. My personal opinion only but I am upset by so many things I see going down the wrong lane in our society and especially our country. I love my country and those who served whether my Tata Rose's husband John in WWI or my uncles and FIL in WWII. My sister's ex and so many I knew personally during Vietnam and all the wars everywhere. My heart breaks for all who lost their loved ones as a result of war. MY faith, my pohamily, my country have been the most important things in my life. xo