Fondness for the flag appropriate for the Fourth

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By Pamela Brownstein

For a while now, our toddler, Wolfe, has been interested in flags. He especially admires the large ones that hang outside of houses (specifically our neighbor’s American flag, which he makes a point of visiting at least once a day).

Our All-American Baby with his favorite flag.
Our All-American Baby with his favorite flag.

But we didn’t realize the full extent of his obsession until this summer, when stores are full of flags and patriotic paraphernalia. Earlier this month, on a trip to Walgreens, Wolfe stopped, mesmerized before a display of flags. We took one home, and it surprised me how much he actually likes it. He carries it around everywhere, I think he even took it in the bath once, and he cries when we take it away before bed.

I indulged his obsession by buying him a shirt with a giant American flag on it, and he wore it to Beaufort’s Flag Day celebration downtown. He was amazed at the multitude of flags there, and didn’t understand why he couldn’t have them all.

Last Saturday, on a trip to Lowe’s, he became excited as we passed another flag display. (Honestly, it’s still a little funny to me because it’s probably the last thing I would notice.) His wonder is so genuine though, it’s hard not to find it completely endearing. So we took home another flag. A bigger one this time.

The next day, Sunday, on a trip to Walmart, Wolfe probably felt like he was walking into heaven, and my husband and I discovered too late that we were walking into a danger zone because there were literally flags everywhere. I placated his hysterics by hastily handing him a flag, only to find out at the checkout that that flag was only for display, and when we took it away, you would have thought the world was over.

I reminded myself to stay away from stores between now and July Fourth, and then I thought that it will be exciting to take him to his first Independence Day celebration, where he can wave his flag and see Old Glory in all her, well, glory.

I’m sure this will be the first of many passing phases in Wolfe’s life, but it’s one that I want to remember: Our All-American Boy who freaks out over flags.