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Zentangle Diva Challenge #233 – Happy Birthday USA Edition

by Suzanne Fluhr on July 5, 2017 · 16 comments

Fourth of July Fireworks

Not sure what this Zentangle® thing is? You can read more about it here.

This week the Zentangle Diva challenged us to share a composition that reflects our home. The tile she shared featured the Canadian Maple Leaf.

John Adams quote about how Independence Day would be celebrated

I’m obviously still practicing Aquafleur from last week’s challenge. I’ve added Printemps and hope the general effect is to remind you of fireworks.

The fact that we celebrated July 4th had me thinking of my national home. The Fourth of July is the day we celebrate the declaration of our (the USA) independence from Great Britain in 1776. Of course it took a few years for the British to get with the program. We fought a war with them for our independence which did not end until October 19, 1781 when the British general Charles Cornwallis surrendered after the Battle of Yorktown.

July 4th holds special significance for me because the Declaration of Independence was debated and signed in my home city, Philadelphia. Philadelphia is one of the oldest cities in the United States, having been founded by the English Quaker, William Penn, on October 27, 1682. Philadelphia boasts the most historic square mile in the country, the area around Independence Hall.

Notwithstanding Philadelphia’s somewhat gritty modern reputation for cheesesteaks and poorly behaved sports fans, Philadelphia was conceived of as The City of Brotherly Love. We’ve added, “and Sisterly Affection”.

The future second president of the United States, John Adams, was one of the men who helped write the Declaration of Independence. He was elated when there was a vote to declare independence on July 2nd. On July 3, 1776, he wrote to his wife, Abigail:

The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America.

He was only off by 2 days, but his description of how the day is still marked was prescient:

I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.

My composition this week is inspired by the “illuminations” (fireworks) with which we still celebrate the Declaration of Independence.

Fourth of July Fireworks

Some of the “Illuminations” in Atlantic City, New Jersey as we could see them from our deck.

Do celebrations of momentous historical dates feature fireworks where you come from?

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Maggibee July 5, 2017 at 4:58 pm

Lovely piece of work and a timely reminder from Mr Adams. You colonials do get some things right, I suppose. You will see I’ve corrected mu earlier error with the Diva Challenge tiles – it’s yet another sign of ageing, I suppose.

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Suzanne Fluhr Suzanne Fluhr July 5, 2017 at 6:04 pm

You don’t have to explain aging to me—-what’s your real name again. 😉

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avatar Jean Chaney July 5, 2017 at 5:14 pm

Love the patriotic theme here, Suzanne. The fierce independence of the early Americans took us a long way. I find myself humming the National Anthem whenever I am watching fireworks, as I did last night.

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Suzanne Fluhr Suzanne Fluhr July 5, 2017 at 6:05 pm

Fireworks do remind one of the “rockets red glare, the bombs bursting in air” thing. However, I wish America the Beautiful was our national anthem.

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avatar Leslie in Oregon July 6, 2017 at 7:44 pm

I do too, Suzanne!!

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avatar Trudi July 5, 2017 at 9:08 pm

Looks great Suzanne! Can almost hear the fireworks 🙂

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avatar Wendy July 5, 2017 at 9:14 pm

Very apt for the theme! I do enjoy words incorporated into images–nicely done, Suzanne!

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avatar Annemarie July 6, 2017 at 2:03 am

I do like the story and also your colorful tile!

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avatar Rainbows and raindrops July 6, 2017 at 3:26 am

Lovely red white and blue aquafleurs – they do look like fireworks! We have fireworks during National Day (like your Independence Day) too!

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avatar Susie Ng July 6, 2017 at 4:01 am

Oh, I thought I was caught by the time machine and swished back about 100 challenges.
Oh, no, it is the aging thingy. Mind is playing tricks and numbers seem alike.
I don’t know why your sparkles sparkle more than my sparkle do. Like the week before, too. Hate it. Stop that. Unless you tell me your secret, of course. Your Printemps look like they have a trail of smoky Printemps in their wake and there is still nothing wrong with your Aquafleur!!!!!

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avatar Ilse July 6, 2017 at 5:57 am

Lovely fireworks! They go so well in this challenge, especially in the way you did them!

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avatar Duane CZT28 July 6, 2017 at 6:50 pm

Suzanne, you did a very beautiful Zentangle drawing showing your national pride in our great country. Your printemps are great; your aquafleur is awesome; I really love your faint, shadowy printemps in the background as fireworks as they die out while the new ones just going off are showing bright in the foreground. I think your Zentangle drawing is wonderful and expresses your pride in the USA.

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avatar Leslie in Oregon July 6, 2017 at 7:48 pm

Fireworks are quite strictly regulated in Portland and, as of this year, in Vancouver, Washington just across the river. For that reason, the main time there are big fireworks displays here is July 4. I am very glad that they usually are limited to that evening, as they can be viscerally terrifying to dogs and other animals, as well as combat veterans coping with PTSD.

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Suzanne Fluhr Suzanne Fluhr July 7, 2017 at 2:42 am

Dino, our dog, is now 12 and apparently quite deaf. The silver lining is that the fireworks didn’t bother him this year and neither has thunder. He used to be a quivering, inconsolable mess with both of those.

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avatar Donald Wilka July 6, 2017 at 11:35 pm

You presented your thoughts quite well and the accompanying tile reflects the quote you used. Had to squint a little to see it as I could not enlarge the picture. Lots of history in the city where you live.

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avatar Mary Helen Fein,CZT July 8, 2017 at 10:24 am

I lived in Philly for 30 years, and sitting here on this sunny California morning I still miss it. Love the John Adams quote! You captured the fireworks essence nicely!

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