21 Ways to Use Lemons

8484163604_067ebcc195_z

We’ve talked about all the many things you can do when life gives you lemons. But I noticed as I clicked around the internet that lemons are useful for a lot more than just food. As it turns out, there are lots of practical uses for lemons, too. You can Google or search Pinterest and find details and instructions for all of these, but I thought I’d get you started with a list.

I still say lemonade is a good go-to use of lemons (not to mention the Lemon Chicken dinners), but here are 21 more things you can with the fruit:

  • Freshen the fridge
  • Refresh cutting boards
  • Keep ants out of the kitchen
  • Keep guacamole green
  • Keep fruit from turning brown
  • Make soggy lettuce crisp
  • Freshen your breath
  • Clear up dandruff
  • Remove berry stains (on skin)
  • Soothe poison ivy rashes
  • Whiten delicate fabrics
  • Clean tarnished brass
  • Rid clothes of mildew
  • Whiten your nails
  • Freshen your garbage disposal
  • Highlight your hair
  • Shine your sink
  • Exfoliate your feet
  • Disinfect wounds
  • Keep rice from sticking
  • Soothe a sore throat

How do you use lemons in your home?

Photo source

31 Days Lemonade Footer

This post is part of a 31 Days series. Make sure you don’t miss a single post by subscribing to this blog. Once you confirm your email subscription, you’ll be entered into an exclusive weekly drawing [during the month of October] for a Daily Grace pitcher from DaySpring.

What if Life Gives You…Chocolate…

DSC_0005

I’m looking for a way to work chocolate into this series. It just seems right. So far I’ve only found one and a half recipes involving chocolate and lemon that look good to me. So I’m asking you…

  • What can I make that has both lemon and chocolate?
  • What other flavors and foods do you like combining with lemon?

31 Days Lemonade Footer

This post is part of a 31 Days series. Make sure you don’t miss a single post by subscribing to this blog. Once you confirm your email subscription, you’ll be entered into an exclusive weekly drawing [during the month of October] for a Daily Grace pitcher from DaySpring.

Nothing Like It In This World

DSC_0006

You know full well as I do the value of sisters’ affections:
There is nothing like it in this world.
- Charlotte Bronte

We didn’t plan to have children six years apart. Someone recently told me that when kids are six years apart, their birth order personalities are the same as only children.

I don’t know if that’s true, but we definitely didn’t plan on having two only children. (Only two, sure. Two onlies, not so much.)

But after Annalyn’s birth was so traumatic, having another baby was far from our minds for a long time. Well, that’s putting it mildly. To put it bluntly, I was scared.

By the time I decided I was probably ready to have another baby, years had passed. And then, as many of you likely know, pregnancy doesn’t always happen the minute you want it to. As more time passed and we didn’t get pregnant, I began wondering if maybe we weren’t going to have another baby at all.

I got older. We needed counseling. (We got counseling). We questioned our desire for another child, wondering if we truly wanted a baby or if we simply didn’t want Annalyn to be an only child. Then we questioned whether that was motive enough.

More time passed. We got comfortable as a family of three.

I gave away a bin of baby clothes. I cried. I made peace.

We traded in our family-size car for a small sedan.

And then? We found out we were finally having another baby.

When I told Mark, he was surprised and more subdued than I expected. Then again, he’d just woken up so he was sleepy, too. When we told Annalyn, she was giddy. Out of her mind, over the moon excited. Giggling and screaming and dancing around the dinner table.

(Mark said, “That’s how I meant to react…” Heh.)

As the months went by, Annalyn remained excited. Crazy excited. Even when I was too tired to play…or cook dinner. Even when we rearranged her room, when we pulled out her old toys and books and clothes and said, “No, these are for the baby now!” and when the baby got as many Christmas presents as she did.

Even then, she Could! Not! Wait! to be a big sister.

Her face when she saw her baby sister for the first time? Priceless. Beautiful. (And, you can’t see it here, but mostly a Smile That Wouldn’t Stop.)

0113141343a

Of course, in the spirit of not letting people just be happy, that’s when the comments started.

“Oh, just wait…”
“Sure, she loves her NOW…”
“They’ll be fighting before you know it!”

Um, thanks, people.

I’m aware that they may certainly have days, seasons, even years of squabbling and tattling and she stole my flat iron-ing. But for now? Right now? Nine months in?

MY TWO GIRLS ADORE EACH OTHER.

It’s to the point of ridiculous, really.

Adrienne can spend 25 minutes fussy and crying between the babysitter’s house and the elementary school, making my wait in the pickup line less than delightful. But the second Annalyn opens up that back door, that cranky baby stops crying and grins so big I swear her cheeks must hurt. Then they spend the three-minute drive home giggling and cooing at each other. Ridiculous. And ADORABLE.

Fall Family Fun Festival

I mean, really.

They crack each other up all day long. And they’ve already started causing trouble together. Annalyn refuses to go to bed without One More Hug from her sister, and Adrienne often takes twice as long as necessary to eat her dinner because she’s too busy tracking her sister’s every move around the room.

A scary first birth, a slow second birth and all the hard things in between? Big lemons. But the bond already growing between my two amazing girls?

Beautiful lemonade I wouldn’t trade for anything.

How have you found lemonade with your family?

 

31 Days Lemonade Footer

This post is part of a 31 Days series. Make sure you don’t miss a single post by subscribing to this blog. Once you confirm your email subscription, you’ll be entered into an exclusive weekly drawing [during the month of October] for a Daily Grace pitcher from DaySpring.

31 Days…ish

5214549513_6b9833520e_z

After months of sporadic (to put it generously) blogging, I thought just typing the words, “31 Days” would magically flip the switch on my motivation, productivity and general follow-through-ness.

That was silly.

I was out of town on Friday and Saturday, and Sunday was jam-packed with church, a pumpkin carving party with my middle school students, and small group. And somewhere in there I managed to talk to my husband about a thousand different things that we just haven’t had time to unpack in the past few weeks.

Monday was, well, recovery. And quality time with a cranky baby. And a cancelled haircut, which is most certainly a big lemon. My hair is out of control!

It wasn’t a day with only lemons, thankfully. I also had lunch with a great friend who I haven’t seen nearly enough of lately. Oh! AND…before I walked into the restaurant to meet her, I realized that the SIZE STICKER was still on the back of my new jeans.

Whew.

The crazy-busy weekend was good, too. Some definite lemons and not-lemons-but-still-hard things. But lemonade enough to fill several glasses, for sure.

Alas, I am too tired to even put all those things into a bulleted list. (Lemon = getting to use the word “alas.”) So I’m going to bed. I’m hopeful for tomorrow – for meeting deadlines, resuming this blog series and working ahead a bit.

How was your weekend?

{photo source}

Lemon + Chicken = Dinner Dinner

15 Lemon Recipes

A couple weeks ago it was my turn to take snacks to small group, and Mark requested Jalapeno Popper Dip. He asked so nicely I couldn’t very well tell him no – but I did ask him to go to the store to get the ingredients. He brought everything home (including the sour cream that I always think I need but, in fact, do not), and while the bacon cooked, I mixed up the rest of the dip.

I was just about ready to pop the popper dip in the oven when I pulled out the panko crumbs he’d bought me. Luckily for everyone I noticed the box before sprinkling the crumbs on the dip: Lemon Pepper.

Bummer.

My dip definitely did not need the flavors of lemon or pepper, but I figured it was still a win because I can always dredge some chicken in it and voila! Easy dinner.

I was going to actually make that chicken for dinner last night to make this 31 Days post complete, but the evening didn’t go according to plan. Said evening included great big grins from an otherwise cranky baby, a seven-year-old very excited to go on a little road trip with me this weekend, and a few stolen minutes catching up with my husband.

But it also included some definite lemons – including a dinner that did not happen. Oh well. I baked and froze the bag of chicken I’d thawed out and then looked up a whole bunch o’ lemon chicken recipes for you.

Winner winner…well, you know.

So, just in case you find yourself with extra lemons and/or chicken – or just get a hankering for lemon chicken after this post! – here are 15 lemon chicken recipes!

15 Delicious Lemon Chicken Recipes

I think I’m most likely to make the Chicken in Lemon Butter Caper Sauce:

chicken in Lemon butter caper sauce

But if someone else was cooking? I’d pick either Ina Garten’s Mustard Roasted Chicken:

ina garten's chicken

…or the Lemon Chicken Romano:

lemon-chicken-romano4-426x640

Although, really, it’s impossible to choose. They all look delicious. Yum!

What’s your favorite Lemon Chicken recipe?

 

31 Days Lemonade Footer

This post is part of a 31 Days series. Make sure you don’t miss a single post by subscribing to this blog. Once you confirm your email subscription, you’ll be entered into an exclusive weekly drawing [during the month of October] for a Daily Grace pitcher from DaySpring.