The Fourth of July brings out the kid in everyone! The greatest thing about holidays is that they create family traditions. What is your favorite Independence Day memory? Here is mine:

Growing up in San Francisco, we had our annual Independence Day barbecue. My grandparents would walk from their house next door armed with the biggest box of fireworks you could buy from a portable stand and extra sparklers for us kids. After dinner and a patriotic dessert, my dad, the master of ceremonies would line the edge of the lawn with collapsible chairs and organize our arsenal of pretty explosives. It was a chaotic, yet choreographed affair, with my father sporadically freaking out when my grandfather who loved his cocktails, would get close enough to the flames to ignite himself.

As my sisters and I sat holding our sparklers at safe distances, my brother, the eager apprentice watched my dad ignite towers, screamers and spinners, not knowing the practice would become illegal before he got a chance to light a wick. One after the other, we'd watch colorful fire shower above our heads and basketball hoop, believing that the small show in our backyard, interrupted by, "Dad, get out of the way," "Ooh" and "Ah" and the whooshing of the hose spraying down the greenery between explosions rivaled the big displays around the rest of the country.