With each day, we find ourselves slowly edging into the sunshine of normalcy. In many cities we can now tuck our masks in our pockets and happily patronize our favorite restaurants. Baseball parks beckon while shoppers come out from behind their computers — to actually try clothes on before buying them!
It seems appropriate that one of our country’s most revered holidays – the one that celebrates independence – is upon us. Taking into account the local restrictions on community gatherings, perhaps it’s time to host friends and family for an all-out, American-style BBQ! Are you ready?
We think simple is best. You can really do a lot with balloons, streamers, and, of course, those twinkling lights that will take your festivities from day into evening.
- These copper wire LED lights are waterproof and remote controlled. Because they look like bursts of fireworks, they set the patriotic mood without the responsibility of actual pyrotechnics.
- The Party City people are happy to give your shindig some panache with patriotic photo booth props to help bring out your guests’ personalities while elevating your picture-taking efforts.
- What’s a backyard party without a little DIY effort? This kite garland from Brit & Co is easy to make. Strands can be strung between two trees to “flag” the food table or the bar. Perhaps you’ll attach one in your front yard to signify that it’s the party house!
- This lollipop topiary courtesy of GlueSticks makes for a colorful and tasty centerpiece. It just takes some small, galvanized buckets (which you can use over and over as a décor element for virtually any occasion), a foam ball, and 40 lollipops. You’ll probably have empty buckets when all is said and done, but there’s nothing NOT to love about an edible arrangement!
- If you have a portico or fencing in need of adornment, traditional bunting makes a bold statement. Flagand Banner.com offers an impressive selection of everything from flags to fabrics. They also feature decorating kits to make a splendid July 4th fashion statement.
- Along with any of the above, some easy-care tablecloths featuring the colors of the day and stacks of red, white, and blue napkins will set the stage. Just add friends!
- (Lyon Financial receives no compensation for any shopping references; these are simply for illustrative purposes.)
Best July 4th Recipes
This is of course, the scrumptious part! Most of us have been staycationing in our yards, and now we’re ready to open our doors and fire up those grills for guests.
There’s nothing “wrong” to serve at a July 4th cookout – you could even have a “cook-in” if you’d prefer to entertain indoors. The only caveat is to do your best to be a guest at your own party. You deserve to have fun and not stress about recipes and everything else. So, hiring guest chefs is not out of the question! But if you love to prepare and serve food, then this is your holiday to shine.
This home-style treat is not necessarily the most calorically conscious, but just a scoop makes a delectable sidecar to accompany grilled delights! Ina Garten of Barefoot Contessa fame recommends a mélange of mayo, mustard, and fresh dill to get these potatoes up on their feet. Fans give this dish, that goes from prep to finish in 30 minutes, 5-stars. With 3 pounds of small, white spuds as the base, the buttermilk adds even more flavor and cream to the mix while the one-two punch of chopped celery and red onion combine for a satisfying crunch!
Mediterranean Orzo Salad
Besides being a bowlful of robust flavors, this dish even looks delicious. Orzo, chickpeas, red and yellow grape (or cherry) tomatoes, kalamata olives, crumbled feta, parsley, and red onion are dressed in olive oil, lemon juice, and the ever-versatile garlic. You’ll then just need to boil the orzo and let it cool. All that’s left is to mix the veggies and the pasta in a large bowl, coat them in the zesty liquid, and refrigerate for at least an hour. Which means you can make it the night before, which is even better. One less thing off your party day prep list!
Kale and Carrot Slaw
Kale, carrots, and radishes are at the heart of this healthier-than-potato-salad option. (You can buy the carrots already julienned, so they are a consistent size and thickness. Unless you’ve got serious slicing skills or fancy kitchen equipment! A splash of fresh lime juice, some grapeseed oil, orange juice, coriander, and salt/pepper make these vegetables sing. You can serve it in as few as 10 minutes or let it chill in your frig for up to six hours.
Crab Cake Sliders
Besides being a great hand-held food, these sliders are cooked under the broiler, so you can produce 15 at a time. Fold one pound of crabmeat into a mixture of shredded mini potato buns, mayo, melted butter, egg, some Old Bay seasoning, Worcestershire sauce, and mustard. From the mixture, form 15 small patties, lay them on a cooking sheet, and stick the sheet into the frig for at least an hour or overnight. They’ll only need six minutes in the broiler. Just slip these beauties onto buns coated with fresh lemon mayo then layer diced red onion, tomato, lettuce, and bacon. This delectable treat serves up a serious culinary vibe!
This fun alternative could be one no one else you know has made, so it may become your signature dish! To serve twenty-four, you’ll blend cream cheese, mayo, and blue cheese in a small saucepan. Once you add heat and stir until smooth, set it to cool and then add celery. The cocktail franks get added to heated butter in a large skillet that features a nice dash of hot pepper sauce. Slider potato rolls are then sliced vertically – halfway through. Insert two dogs and top with the luscious blue cheese sauce, finely chopped red onion, and crushed blue potato chips.
With a hearty toast to Food Network, here’s a refreshing beverage with a little kick. Add 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of gin to a glass. Along with some ice and a few lemon slices, fill the glass halfway with white wine, then top with seltzer. Stir gently.
All of us at Lyon Financial wish you a safe and happy holiday. With everything the world has been through in this last year and a half, it’s a good time to reflect with gratitude on our blessings. And to spend time in the company of those we hold dear.
Providing pool and home improvement loan solutions since 1979, Lyon Financial loves celebrations. We also love the difference we can make for your family by providing something that puts years of memories within reach. Call 877-754-5966 for more information about creating your ideal backyard oasis.