Born on the 4th of July πŸŽ‚πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ

Inspired/requested by @karlalucia's July Li.st Magazine list, with a shout out to my birthday twin @celestestelle. 😘 This is not meant to be an attention-getting list, it just seems weird to publish it any day except today.
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    Subtitle: The Reasons I Love Having a July 4th Birthday
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    Everyone is usually off from work/school.
    (I know there are plenty of people who work on this day, but generally speaking. My parents were always off when I was growing up, and there was no school, which was all that mattered to me.)
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    People generally remember that it's my birthday.
    When I was much younger, I got offended when someone forgot. Luckily I'm wiser now. It's really not a big deal.
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    It's a holiday, but without the obligations that accompany other holidays.
    No big meal to cook or clean up, no need to visit family members, and no gifts to buy or wrap.
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    People are generally happy and in good moods.
    Probably because it's a light and happy, no-strings-attached type of holiday. (I mean, sort of. It was when we were kids. Now I'm all too aware of our imperfections as a country, so it's a mix of gratitude and reflection.)
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    Barbecues and picnics!
    I love summer. I love being outside until the sun goes down, eating meals on a blanket in the grass, lazing around in lawn chairs, playing frisbee and badminton, and everything else that comes with summer barbecues and picnics. My family has typically spent the day in the park where the fireworks are held, just relaxing and hanging out until they start at dusk.
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    Fireworks!!
    NJ is not a state where just anyone can buy and set off fireworks, so they're a rare treat. My sisters and I used to guess which colors were coming next before they exploded and rate them after. Personal faves are the gold ones that look like Sideshow Bob's hair, and the fishy ones that swirl around as they fall.