When life hands you lemons....make Lemon Bars!!
I have somewhat of a long face as I sit here typing......as you all know, I was supposed to go to Rapid City today to read my poem at the Black Hills Stock Show Ranch Rodeo Finals tonight. Well, guess what.....Mother Nature (old bag that she is sometimes) changed my plans. It's storming out and it's 0 degrees....in the middle of the day....without the windchill. Our horses are less than thrilled:
Mind you.....it's not storming horribly out, but it's enough that my husband said this morning that he and Stone wouldn't be going with me. I was in denial about not going so I made up my mind that I would go....no matter what. Well, soon the wind really kicked up....and the forecast says -30 (below zero) tonight with blowing snow. GREAT.....not what I wanted to see. I had a foot doctor appointment today and I was beyond excited about reading my poem "The Storm Atlas" this evening.
I'm going to put a little excerpt in here about Mother Nature and where we live. Most people will say that the weather doesn't really limit their activities. Maybe that's because they live in town or on good roads....maybe they work indoors.....maybe they go through with their plans come hell or high water.....whatever it is....it's way different out here. I'd like those people to come live out here and see if they say the same thing. In the spring....we have snow storms, rain storms, and gumbo mud.....it makes it almost impossible to physically move and we are constantly watching over the baby calves being born (our lifeline). In the summer.....we are limited in going too far because of fire danger and water issues for our cattle/horses. In the fall, we have freezing rain, freak snow storms, mud, and possible illness in our calves to be wary of. In the winter.....it's snow storms, blizzards, icy roads, and freezing temperatures.....feeding and opening water for our critters is a must. Overall, Mother Nature runs our lives out here. She is at the helm and there is nothing we can do about it. Don't get me wrong....there are plenty of days that we enjoy.....it's just on her terms....and not ours. I'm very much reminded of that today.
I could get in my pickup and head out....without Shane and Stone. I could go up to the Stock Show.....see my doctor, go shopping, visit with friends, see the sights, read my poem.....and most likely everything would be fine. However, there is that tug at my conscience.....the "most likely everything would be fine". The bottom line is that my family comes first......above all else. Where would they be if a decision I made affected them in a bad way....that's the way I think now that I'm a mom. So, I'm sitting at home.....sad about not going, but happy in the fact that I have a good head on my shoulders. I'm at peace with it. As a friend of mine said earlier to me, "everything happens for a reason". I know she is right!
So, when life hands you lemons....make LEMON BARS!!! I'm thinking of my Gram today....she made the best Lemon Bars ever! I have her recipe, but I decided to try a new one....just to kick things up a bit. Here it is on Allrecipes: The Best Lemon Bars.
1 cup butter, softened
½ cup white sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ cups white sugar
¼ cups all-purpose flour
2 lemons, juice
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. In a medium bowl, blend together softened butter, 2 cups flour and 1/2 cup sugar. Press into the bottom of an ungreased 9x13 inch pan.
3. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until firm and golden. In another bowl, whisk together the remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar and 1/4 cup flour. Whisk in the eggs and lemon juice.
*I like to add the zest of the lemons (and limes in the next variation). I think it adds a little something extra. Pour over the baked crust.
4. Bake for an additional 20 minutes in the preheated oven. The bars will firm up as they cool. For a festive tray, make another pan using limes instead of lemons and adding a drop of green food coloring to give a very pale green. After both pans have cooled, cut into uniform 2 inch squares and arrange in a checker board fashion. After the pans have cooled a bit, I sprinkle powdered sugar over the bars before I cut them. *I won't be doing the checkerboard thing.....my guys have already eaten 1/4 of each pan!* Cut into squares and enjoy!!