Black Mountain

Just a reminder, I’ve moved! Take a look at my latest post, Black Mountain, at



Over the next month, I’ll be moving all my content (and eventually adding a few more bells and whistles) over to Home Kitchen Studio.

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Thanks for reading!!

Lemon shake-ups for adults

It’s fair time. I’m kind of a huge fan. Greasy food, animals, rides, and more greasy food.

What are your favorite fair foods? I have so many they fit into a bulleted list:

  • Candy apples (caramel is ok in a pinch – no nuts, thanks)
  • Elephant Ears
  • Funnel Cakes
  • Fresh Cut Fries
  • Corn dogs (foot long and slathered with mustard, preferably)
  • Cotton Candy
  • Grilled sausage and pepper sandwiches
  • Lemon shakeups

We are headed to the Hartford Fair on Thursday, where I will be trying to consume as many items on the above list as possible. It was with this fair food fixation that I viewed the inspiration recipe for this month’s recipe swap.

All I could think about were those lemon shake ups, and how I always wanted to make them at home, and what a great mixer I always thought they’d be. And now I have found out that I was right.

I think it would mix well with vodka too, but gin is my summer thing. And of course, don’t mix it with anything if you want Lemon shake-ups for kids.

Lemon Shake-ups

  • Juice of three lemons
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 1 C water
  • Gin (for the adult version)

Mix all, and shake in a cocktail shaker. Try 2 or 3 parts lemonade to 1 part gin, depending on how long of a day you’ve had.

If you want, you can make fun straws that say the thing you wish you could say to your kids after a day of making them 6000 meals and snacks of which they eat only 2 bites and then declare they are not hungry.

About the Recipe Swap: The recipe swap is organized by Christianna at the Burwell General Store. Each month, a collection of bloggers reinterprets a classic recipe selected by Christianna. Click below to see what other recipe swappers did with this one.

Some nice things about losing power for 8 days

Just for balance, let’s start with one of the not-so-nice things: when you have well water, like us, no electricity means no water, because it’s pumped out of the ground via electric pump.

You can imagine how that goes. No bathing, no washing, no cooking, no flushing toilets. No water means your house is basically just a giant tent. A deluxe one, but still.

So when our electric went out during the nutso midwest windstorms, we found ourselves camping.

It wasn’t all bad, though. For one thing, my in-laws were gracious enough to let us move in with them when we tired of our wilderness experience. They were happy to have us (or at least acted that way quite convincingly). They watched our kids and our dog, and fed us. My mother-in-law even gave us clean towels every day,¬† just like a luxury hotel.

Seeing our community come together was a pretty amazing thing also. A giant tree fell across our street just past our house, blocking  the residents at the end from coming or going. The storm had barely even stopped before everyone in the neighborhood (hubs included) was out with his chainsaw, cutting the trunk into manageable chunks.

Our neighbor has a generator, and so kept our freezer items in his freezer, keeping them from spoiling. In turn, hubs cleared that same neighbor’s lawn of fallen branches and leaves. People and businesses all over town put up signs thanking AEP for restoring power.

We had a fairly tall tree fall down in our back yard, but out of that, we got some firewood (for when our electric goes out this winter of course) and some cute new stepping stones.

All in all, when you have a nice family and a nice community, losing power for 8 days isn’t so bad. (9 might have pushed me over the edge.)

New digs

We’ve been in our house almost a month now, and I kind of love it.

I love the quiet street and the wooded lot. It makes eating (or just sitting) outside lovely.

One thing that I am still getting used to is the bugs. They are big and they are everywhere.

They keep getting in the house. I do not want them there.

Apparently, as my son said last night in reference to this issue, “living in nature has its price.”

We’ll happily pay it. At least until we can figure out how to keep the bugs out.