*This post was sponsored by Heinz*

Independence Day is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the Declaration of Independence of the United States on July 4th 1776. It was declared that the 13 states were no longer subject to the British Monarch and were now free!! They were officially Independent!! July 4th brings families together in the form of parades, picnics, baseball games, concerts, barbecues and of course fireworks!! 13 years ago I got off the boat (in the form of Qantas, haha) with two suitcases, no friends or family and a dream – to set up a life, career and have my own family in Los Angeles. I met my husband 6 months after I landed, was hired for film an TV shortly after and a decade later just birthed our second beautiful daughter.

Being so far away from my own family, it was so important to create my own traditions and to hand down the ones that were given to me as a child.

Barbecues and picnics were a main staple for us. To bring people and community together, creating memories and laughter on holidays that were important to celebrate.

We always have loved to eat! Haha! I remember my dad Barbecuing in OZ – hamburgers, fries, grilled veggies, shrimp! We all used to assemble our burgers together and I remember my obsession with @heinz ketchup. My brother always used to make fun of the amount I put on and would say ” Do you want a burger with your ketchup!” Haha.

Now that our family is vegetarian, I make veggie burgers and a healthy picnic and we sit at our favorite park in Coldwater Canyon and it feels just like home. It’s important to me to use simple and real ingredients, so that’s why I’m happy with my daughter’s obsession with Heinz Simply Ketchup! It has definitely come from me and it warms my heart that I’m providing her with memories that I had as a child.

I feel blessed to be an Aussie living in America. And I feel blessed that my daughters are growing up the same way I did. With food, fun and family!

Happy JULY 4th!!