Monday, July 5, 2010

Small Town Celebrations

It's the kind of party where if you've been invited once, you're invited for life. And they're the kind of people you want to spend time with, because they aren't like everyone else.

My friends Ferd and Sharron live in a windmill. (Actually, it's their guest house.) You can't get more quintessentially Solvang than that. Ferd used to be an L.A. County fireman. Sharron taught. Both are talented artists who have been married forever. They have 16 grandchildren and great-grandchildren ranging in age from 24 years to six weeks.  They've lived amazing lives and love to entertain us with their stories.

Besides the windmill, their property has a main house, an elf house (at least I convinced my daughter!), an art studio about the size of my home and a hillside patio that overlooks the staging area for the Solvang Rotary's fireworks show. Every year we climb on the roof of a storage shed that sits down the hill below Ferd and Sharron's patio to watch fire explode in the sky.

And on the hillside.

Last year I think the kids had more fun watching firemen down the hill stamping out little fires from embers that hit the ground or fireworks that didn't quite make it to the sky. This year the wind blew the opposite way so the show stayed in the air. We watched the stars and the explosions above, listened to the ramblings of the pleasantly buzzed people around us, talked about our funny hometown parade, felt the chill of the fog creeping over the hills.

Memories are made of days like this, friends like this.

I hope your 4th of July was just as spectacular.

13 comments:

Kristan said...

Dude, windmill guest house is DA BOMB. I would love that.

Happy 4th! (Or 5th, really. Hehehe.)

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Windmill guest house! Elf house! Now that's a place to live (or visit). It sounds like you had a magical Fourth. Thanks for sharing such a lovely time.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Wow. How cool would it be to live there?!! Sounds like a magical night. :-)

Kari said...

Ah, that reminds me of my Fourth of July's growing up...I used to spend the Fourth with my grandparents, and they lived in a small town. We'd watch fireworks and the parade...

How cool is it that you got to stay in a windmill guest house, though??

Solvang Sherrie said...

Kristan: It is really cool.

Tricia: The elf house is awesome. J is pretty enchanted with it every time we visit.

Shannon: It was quite magical. I love spending the 4th with good friends.

Kari: I didn't get to stay in the windmill. Ferd & Sharron only live about a mile from my house. But I agree that it's hard to beat a small town 4th of July celebration!

Mother Hen said...

it all sounds very charming and I would love to have a night like that.
What a fun house and guest house!

ali said...

What a great place to live! Glad you had a good time!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Okay, I want to live in those house. They're adorable. :D

Robin Mellom said...

Sounds wonderful! Glad you had a great holiday. :-)

Susan R. Mills said...

That is so cool! Happy belated 4th!

T. Anne said...

That's sounds darn right magical! I'm having pangs of windmill envy, but I'll settle for an elf house. ;)

Suzanne Casamento said...

I want to go to Ferd and Sharron's! What a cool property and a great way to spend the holiday!

Shelli (srjohannes) said...

love the pic of your kids :)

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