We had a spectacular 4th of July. Hands down, the best one yet. I babbled a little in yesterday’s newsbrief:

Yesterday was simply amazing. I don’t have words enough to describe it. We spent the afternoon & evening on Husky field, the sports field on our base here in Germany. It was a step into small town life from days gone by. The fields covered with blankets, sun shades and canopies, camping chairs and people dressed in patriotic hues. A band played on the small stage, grills were fired up along the track and blow-up slides & obstacles courses held laughing, happy kids.

In the middle of Germany.

It was so incredibly American. A taste of home. Really, a taste of home I’ve never had. Not because I’m not American, also true, but because the stereotypical small town 4th of July doesn’t really exist anymore. The rest of the engineers wives (Dave’s new job is part of the engineers team supporting “his guys”) commented on it as well. They were asking me if I’d ever been to a 4th that American. Because. They are all 20-somethings, and I’m the old lady at 50. Obviously, back in my day, this kind of Opie-esque celebration was the norm.

But it wasn’t. This? Our 4th of July on base? The most American day I’ve had. I felt as though I was inside a movie from the ’50s. A carefully orchestrated perfect day. I can close my eyes and still smell the fireworks, cut grass, grilled burgers & dogs and cheap beer.

I didn’t bring my camera, just my new trusty sidekick, my google Pixel 3a with its fantastic cameras. I spent most of the day sitting in a camping chair, rocking out to bands FASTBALL and LIT. Enjoying friends & family. Including my Christian! My Marine. My #3 son. Home for the summer. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again…

“Mijn dag kan niet stuk.” translation: my day can’t break. Really, my summer can’t break.

Tess, me, Dave, Dane & Christian

My view to the stage. I wish I’d turned around & gotten a picture of my view of the crowd, the entire field.

Last minutes of the band LIT

I just couldn’t help myself. I am so in love with my google pixel, that I had to scrap a couple of the fireworks photo’s. Between my new phone & Jen’s fantabulous new Independence, I couldn’t resist. Hold on, let me do a quick how-I did the OOB (out-of-bounds) fireworks.

The Independence {Bundle} comes with a free-through-tomorrow set of illuminate. These are a brilliant Jen original. Fabulous flares of light, bokeh, color that, well, illuminate layouts beautifully. In this case, for her Independence set, Jen created a special fireworks edition.

This was my layout before illuminate:

This was my layout after illuminate:

And this is my final layout, after I added a little pizzaz to illuminate to better match to my actual fireworks on the 4th:

Just a little tweak in my layers palette gave Jen’s illuminate a very cool OOB effect. I changed the settings on illuminate for stroke:

  • Size: 1 px
  • Postion: Outside
  • Blend Mode: Pin Light
  • Opacity: 64%
  • Color: #c4815e

Inner Glow:

  • Blend Mode: Normal
  • Opacity: 100%
  • Color: #cab997
  • Technique: Softer
  • Size: 7 px

Grab a set of Jen’s Illuminate and play! Adjust your settings & have fun!

Independence {Illuminuate}

Independence {Bundle}