In the story of our life, the story I write in my head for the days stretching far out into the expanse of our future, the hubby and I move our children to a neighborhood deep in the south. We live in a freshly painted home the color of a melon with perwinkle gingerbread accents and pure white trim. There is a white fence out front and a porch with a cushioned swing which hums itself back and forth on steamy summer nights.
Fireflies flit themselves through treelined streets as the children run barefoot, shouting “Olly Olly Oxen Free” to hidden neighbor friends. Parents are perched on porches, leaning on picket fences, fanning themselves with folded sheets of newspaper with one hand while the other hand curls around a cool glass of lemonade. The husbands are in khaki pants and blue, collared shirts. The wives wear ringlet curls and polka-dot dresses.
We sigh at the summer heat. We sip our glasses filled with sweet, lemony nectar. We wave at the sunkissed children playing in the twinkling twilight. We tip our heads toward each other, eyes shining with the light of fireflies and the heat of passion.
Ahhh, life in the South. Won’t that be the loveliest?
And, if you live in the South, don’t you dare tell me this isn’t exactly what your summer’s are like. I’d have a really hard time considering my future without fireflies and lemonade and polka-dot dresses.
Though, I might be willing to settle for a cold glass of lemonade on a sunny Colorado afternoon while John tends to the lawn and the kids chase the chihuahua. Yep, I could definitely go for that instead.
Gourmet Lemonade Syrup Concentrate
As simple as gourmet comes, yeilding enough concentrate to make glass after glorious glass of this sweet, fresh lemonade with just a titch of added flavor for interest. How lovely is that?!
In a large saucepan, combine 1 1/2 cups of the lemon juice and all of the sugar. Add the whole nutmeg, dash of nutmeg, vanilla bean and almond flavoring. Stir together over medium-high heat, just until the sugar dissolves. Remove and stir in remaining lemon juice. Store in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Pure Fruit Icecubes
2 c. prepared Gourmet Lemonade
In a blender, add a single type of fresh fruit (use several tablespoons of prepared lemonade if needed to thin out for complete pureeing). Blend well, pureeing entirely or leaving just a touch of chunkiness if desired. Pour pureed fruit into ice cube trays. Freeze. Drop into glasses of fresh Gourmet Lemonade. Enjoy!
Where do your dreams see you spending summertime?
Whereever Melanie, from The Crafty Cupboard is, she’ll be enjoying it with her adorable Land of Nod picnic basket! Congrats Melanie! And, thanks to everyone who commented on their S’mores Pie mixins. Nutella and Hazelnuts? Caramel and Snickers and Reese’s Peanut Pie? Why, yes. I think I will, thank you.
And speaking of dreams, one of mine came true this weekend, when I received word from the editors of Scholastic’s Parent & Child magazine that, after being nominated by some you incredible readers, I’ve been selected as a finalist in the 2010 Parent Blogger Awards. However can I thank you for the honor? I’d be delighted if you’d help me bring home victory by taking a few minutes to VOTE for Cheeky Kitchen by clicking HERE. Thank you!