With Independence Day approaching, it's time for us to reflect on what makes our nation great, remember the heroes who have made her what she is, and get rip-roaring wild while fireworks light up the sky above us.

It's a wonderful time, as long as you can avoid the all too common summer hazards like sunburn, poison ivy, food poisoning, and losing fingers to firecrackers. But we're safeguarding your holiday with some survival tips that will keep everything awesome.

  • Avoid Sunburn

    Kristy Puchko

    To avoid sunburn, rely on your friends. More specifically, place a thoughtful note in case you pass out. Pro tip: line up some thank you drinks.

  • Don't Blow Off Your Fingers With Fireworks

    Kristy Puchko

    Protective gear is a must.

  • Hydrate!

    Kristy Puchko

    Think your friends will give you a hard time for guzzling water instead of beers? Just do it like a boss! No one will question it.

  • Avoid Poison Ivy

    Kristy Puchko

    Our research shows poison ivy is basically everywhere. And you don't even want to know what a "creeping eruption" is, but it's made us decide to never go barefoot again. Take the next step in protection from these horrifying skin conditions with a nice high pair of waders. You could totally rock this look.

  • Keep Mosquitoes Away

    Kristy Puchko

    You know what they say about being attacked by a wild animal: you don't need to outrun it; you just need to outrun your slowest friend. It's a similar principle here.

    Give one "friend" (maybe that jerk who said your swimsuit really showed off your love handles) a special bug bite concoction that is essentially sugar water, and they will become the focal point while you and your real friends enjoy the day.

  • Avoid Food Poisoning

    Kristy Puchko

    In this heat so many foods can spoil and cause a head-in-toilet bowl detour. Stick to alcohol or alcohol-based foods. Like gin-soaked watermelon or Jello-shots. What could possibly go wrong?

  • Keep the Kids From Drowning

    Kristy Puchko

    Show them 'Jaws,' and tell them some sharks have been known to sneak into pools. Then you can focus on partying, instead of playing lifeguard

  • Score Easy Compliments

    Kristy Puchko

    Not feeling quite ready to flaunt your stuff in a bikini? We're with you. But it is downright unpatriotic not to compliment someone wearing an American flag swimsuit on Independence Day! Take advantage of the one day a year where everyone loves 'Merica and flaunt your stars and stripes with pride.