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Have you ever sung all the verses of America the Beautiful?

It’s starts off with spacious skies and amber waves of grain and purple mountain majesties and fruited plain.


And poetic.

And majestic.

Lyrics that paint a descriptive picture of this beautiful country that we live in.

But what about the rest of the story?

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When you sing America the Beautiful…..don’t stop at brotherhood and from sea to shining sea.

Sing on.

The heart of the song and the reason why we are celebrating our independence today are found in the words of the third verse:

“O beautiful for heroes proved

In liberating st

Who more than self their country loved

And mercy more than life.

America! America!

May God thy gold refine

Till all success be nobleness

And every gain divine.”

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Who more than self their country loved.


Those long ago patriots and founding forefathers didn’t know what the future held.

They were farmers and shopkeepers and merchants.

And they risked everything they had…..everything.…..

… create a country where all men are created equal.

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And so today….as our country turns 238….I’m thankful.

I’m thankful for fireworks and sparklers and cookouts and the Star Spangled Banner.

I’m thankful for old glory.

I’m thankful for the red, white and blue.

But most of all…..I count my blessings every day that I live…..

….in the home of the free and the land of the brave.

Happy Fourth of July. 🙂

PS  I’ll leave you with a few more pictures from one of the original 13 colonies. 🙂

photo 1 (3)

photo 2

photo 2 (2)

photo 1 (1)

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  1. Image for Marisa Franca @ All Our Way Marisa Franca @ All Our Way

    Happy Independence Day to You and Your Family. We came to this country because our part of Italy was no longer ours. My parents loved this country and so appreciated it opening its arms to us and giving us the opportunities that we wouldn't have had there. I wish I could remember more about going through Ellis Island -- I just remember it being very cold -- it was December 13th. I thank all the heroes that have sacrificed their time and even their lives to make this the best country in the world. May God protect us and all of our military wherever they are.

  2. Image for Kerry Kerry

    You have a beautiful way of reminding your readers to notice and enjoy the many wonderful blessings in this thing called life. I'm so glad that I stumbled across your blog.

  3. Image for Maureen Maureen

    Happy Independence Day to you and your family from a truly grateful Canadian. We are so thankful you are our neighbors. . . .

  4. Image for Sharon H Sharon H

    Miz karianne, I love your heart! And one of the things that our forefathers, as well as all those who have served our glorious country since then, including your amazing husband, my Grandfather, my Father, and my Uncle, was the FREEDOM OF SPEECH! The freedom to say what is in our hearts, regardless of the message.....or the tense of the verb we use to describe something that is dear and meaningful to us. Thank you for sharing this message today. I personally needed to be reminded of the other verses and the powerful message they deliver. I hope you have a wonderful holiday with your family.

  5. Image for Suzie Suzie

    Dear KariAnne, I love your beautiful reminder of how blessed we are to live in this great nation. I am very grateful for all those who have served this country and for all those who continue to serve. I am thankful for our founding fathers, their amazing wisdom and their determination in creating this wonderful nation that we call home. I hope you and your family enjoy this special day. I am sorry that some readers choose to curse instead of bless your post. I cannot abide their malevolent behavior.

  6. Image for Linda Marsh Linda Marsh

    Beautiful post today! Praise God we also live in a country that we still have the freedom to bow our heads in prayer and thanksgiving to thank our precious Lord for his magnificent beauty. God Bless us all!!!!!!

  7. Image for Gwen Gwen

    I really liked the second verse. Where every gain be divine. By God's hand, not by my greed nor selfishness. That I be refined through fiery trials perhaps ( yes) but to be God who is refining my gold! My Mom's Norwegian and my Dad's Swede grandparents came in the 1800's. And none returned to their homeland. My great grandfather's homestead house? It is still in the family and remodeled and always was a beautiful house. My other great grandfather saved and bought his homes straight out. He built such a beautiful house on his farm. My cousin lives there. We all are glad to be Americans. I'm so thankful you showed photos of the colonies. I've never traveled there. It kind of catches me...and all that went on to make us The United States of America. Oh how I love our country.

  8. Image for Jill @ Still Keeping On The Narrow Way Jill @ Still Keeping On The Narrow Way

    I traveled with my son's class to Washington, D.C. back in May. We visited all the monuments and memorials and also Arlington National Cemetary, which was a first for me. I always try to take time each year to think about the real meaning of the day, but after seeing those rows and rows of white tombstones, I'm feeling it a bit deeper this year. May we never forget that freedom isn't free. Happy Independence Day KariAnne!

    1. Image for Thistle Wood Thistle Wood

      I just visited Arlington, too. It is overwhelming and such a poignant reminder of those who have sacrificed so much so that we can enjoy a freedom unlike any other. Happy Fourth. :)

  9. Image for Peggy Zortman Peggy Zortman

    You are a rock star! Love this post on what this day means -- all in the verses of a song I love. Thank you for reminding me!

  10. Image for jo may jo may

    I saw this on FUNDAY MONDAY, I looking at the beautiful stars and stripes banners the wonderful landscaping and just had to come over for visit and I am so happy that I did. I enjoyed this so much, and you are a true patriot, I love this country, and get choked up ever time I hear this song....GOD BLESS AMERICA-LAND THAT I LOVE....thank you for sharing, it done my heart good.

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