Friday, April 21, 2017



Hello Friday, I've been waiting for you.

Dear Ripsime,
I knew it was going to be hard when you left the school...I just hadn't planned on it being this hard.  Fifteen years, 180 days a year is a long time to all of a sudden not hear your laughter, smell the burnt popcorn, see your smiling face greeting me as I sign in and spend 5 minutes enjoying your perfectly brewed coffee and a quick chat before class. You were the pulse of Castlebay my dear friend. Honestly, as hard as this is, I couldn't be happier and more proud of you moving up and on for yourself. You are such a selfless woman that you deserve this change more than anyone I know. I look forward to the girls nite out...Where ever we go-they're not gonna know what hit 'em! 
Till then my friend...

Dear Artful Blogging,
You are dream maker...Yes you are.

This was the longest 4 months waiting for the summer issue to arrive-but TOTALLY worth the wait!
I've already read it from cover to cover and to see my photos and my words gracing the pages still seems surreal. 

You see, I take full responsibility in my part for not buckling down in school and being an outstanding student. I chose a path that regrettably didn't include college but, and it's a BIG but, have learned so much as an instructional aide for the past 15+ years. I literally have learned basic writing skills that allowed me to compose my article with a certain confidence working side by side with the most creative and hardworking teachers I know. I couldn't be more proud to use what I've learned to accomplish something as big as this. Now my kids understand why I'm tough on them about creative writing. I wrote a note of gratitude to all the teachers yesterday. I thanked them for having their part in my drive to write the best story I could. I know I am not their intended audience, but I reminded them they never know who's listening and learning. 

I'm soaking in all the good fuzzy feelings this experience has brought me...
So thank you for helping a regular gal fulfill a dream. 

Dear Dad,
Remember when Mom was asked to do the advertising for a new banking concept and her photo was plastered in the local paper, on mailings and billboards, and strangers would stop her in random places that recognized her? Well, you told me that everyone in this life gets to enjoy 15 minutes of fame...
 ...I can stop waiting for mine!


Saturday, April 15, 2017

I'm either really, really late...

...or 11 months early!

It is no secret that I have a hard time planning holiday baking posts in advance. It's not that I don't think about it, I just can not get my act together in order to get it up in before the holiday. Now, technically, there's still 2 more days of Passover so there's still some time to make and enjoy these. Honestly, these Tangy Lemon Bars are so good you won't mind a few more days of matzot! 

It's also no secret that I grew up Christmas but am now Hanukkah and I've only heard stories from friends and loved ones about the never-ending Seders and worse...the desserts that one would either be too tired or too full to dare and eat. My how times have changed.

My sister-in-law hosts a family friendly Seder that's totally hands on from signing & dressing up for a part in the Exodus play to "THIS IS PASSOVER JEOPARDY" newly added this year. (announcer Johnny Gilbert in my head) 

I help by bringing a few desserts...I wouldn't be allowed to step foot in the door if I didn't bring the lemon bars. There's just something about baking for people who love the goods you make from your heart. It's like love is a secret ingredient! 

I made 7 batches this year and truth be told, I'm kinda lemon barred out! 
They NEVER last long...

I follow the recipe to a T except...I grate lemon zest for both the crust and the lemon filling-I just like knowing that extra little zing is there.


Tangy Lemon Bars
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup matzoh meal
1 stick margarine or butter, melted
Lemon Filling:
3 large eggs
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 Tbs. margarine or butter, melted
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
2 Tbs. potato starch
  1. Place oven rack in center of oven and preheat to 350. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with heavy foil, letting an inch extend over the sides. Oil or spray the foil.
  2. For the pastry: In a small bowl, stir together the sugar, matzoh meal and melted butter. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake 20-25 minutes or until pale golden. Reduce oven to 325.
  3. For the filling: Whisk eggs in a medium bowl. Whisk in melted butter, lemon juice and potato starch. Pour over pre-baked crust and bake at 325 for 20-25 minutes, or until top is set.
  4. Remove from oven and cool to room temperature.
  5. To cut, remove from pan by lifting out the foil. Place on cutting board. Cut into 1 inch squares.
  6. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Served chilled or at room temperature.
Happy (lemon bar) snapping!