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There is a lake in the corner of Indiana that is more special than all the other lakes combined. Not only is it the clearest lake, but it also holds 2 decades’ worth of some of my favorite memories. Most recently, I had a chance to make memories with my family during the 4th of July last year.

Although my family didn’t buy an arsenal of explosives this year like they have in the past, there was a steady supply of sparklers to make up for it. (Probably for the best, as we’ve all spent enough time at Disney that there’d be no point trying to put on our own fireworks show that would be embarrassingly underwhelming in comparison!)

I wasn’t particularly interested in playing with the sparklers myself, but after the first one had been lit, I realized there was potential for some fun photos and ran to get my camera.

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It wasn’t long before the Harry Potter wand battles started. “EXPELLIARMUS!” my siblings shrieked at each other as they wildly brandished their sparklers.

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Very quickly, we also realized how much fun could be had with slightly longer exposures on my camera.

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As it got darker, the fun continued.

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Caroline had the heart-making down to a science, but my sister and her friend struggled to get it right. Out of dozens of takes, we got 2 pictures that turned out looking like actual hearts and had their faces motionless enough that they didn’t look like monsters!

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Eventually, our sparkler rations were fully depleted and we had to entertain ourselves by instead watching fireflies glide through the air and the occasional firework exploding on the far side of the lake.

It was yet another perfect trip to the Lake.

Love, Elizabeth

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