I’ve written about them before, but since I live just under three miles north of Disneyland and got home just as they were going off, I thought I’d write about them again.

When you’re in the park, they’re set to music and each explosion has a role in the overall Disney story. But when you live mere minutes from the Happiest Place on Earth, they take on a different role when they’re not set to magical music laden with characters’ voices.

They remind me of my childhood when Fourth of July fireworks were still legal, and they remind me of birthday cakes (even though nobody in my family was born in the summertime).

They remind me of more recent times, such as when I went to visit my friend Nicole in Washington D.C. for the July 4th holiday a few years back.

They remind me of barbecues, of backyard gatherings, of perfect weather and, for some reason, of beach bonfires.

The very nature of fireworks is a celebratory one, and there’s much to be thankful for in this little corner of the world:

Perfect weather on a near-daily basis.

The mountains, the beach, the desert and downtown locales all nearby.

Miles of oceanfront that welcomed me minutes after leaving work as I went to meet friends for dinner at an equally beautiful waterfront location. Bliss.

The occasional clear day that lets you see everything from the mountains above Malibu down to the hills and range in south Orange County. Gorgeous.

Warm nights with friendly June Bugs and low humidity.

And family just a stone’s throw away.

Tonight I am thankful for the fireworks’ reminder about how truly great we have it. All of us. No matter where we live.

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