Homemade Lemon Bars…….. Yes. They are DElicious.

One of my all time favorite desserts:)

You will need:

  • 1 cup room temperature butter
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (best from juicer, but not a must) – In juicer I used two large lemons to get this amount.
  • 2 tablespoons lemon pulp (from juicer- or if you do not have one grated lemon zest works)Preheat your oven for 350.  Prepare two pie pans with coconut oil (or butter spray for non-stick).  Blend two sticks of room temperature butter until it is creamy and whipped-like.
      Add your two cups of flour, one cup at a time and blend again.Add your 3/4 cup of powdered sugar and blend again.Scoop out of bowl with rubber spatula and spread into the bottom of both of your pans evenly. Then place in preheated oven for 18 minutes or until starting to brown.Put your 2 1/4 cups sugar in your mixing bowl.
    Add your four eggs to the sugar and blend. Add the remaining 1/4 cup flour and blend. Cut your two large lemons and remove seeds.
    Juice all lemon halves in your juicer {Or hand squeeze them if you do not have a juicer}.Measure out 6 tablespoons of your fresh lemon juice into your mixture and blend.If you used a juicer, use two heaping tablespoons of your pulp (make sure there are not seeds in the pulp you scoop out) Or if you are not using a juicer, you can just grate your lemon peel and add a tablespoon instead. Blend again.Your crust should be just about done if not done already:)
    Then pour your lemon filling into each crust and bake for 20 minutes. Top with powdered sugar when done!  (I like mine brown around the edges and solid in the center). 
lorena - 12/18/2012 - 1:06 pm

These look Ahhhmazing!!!!! yumm!

Chasing Fireflies…

“If you catch a firefly and keep it in a jar, You may find that you have lost a tiny star. If you let it go then, back into the night, you may see it once again star bright.” – Lilian Moore


Mary Lopez - 11/29/2012 - 3:17 pm

Love your dreamy photography, its like a story book

Lori Waddell {Kennesaw GA photographer} - 11/29/2012 - 11:35 pm

Oooh, I love this session….just beautiful!!!

Anne Long - 11/30/2012 - 7:49 am

Your photography gives me warm and fuzzy reminders of how i hold my own childhood memories in my head…and thats exactly what i want pictures to capture! Absolutely beautiful!!

Jennifer - 02/14/2013 - 6:23 am

Oh how I wish we had fireflies here in Colorado. They are such amazing little creatures!

sleepingwillow - 02/14/2013 - 8:44 am

You could Jennifer :) In the magical land of photoshop. 😀

Snow Globe Image Winners (& Happy Holidays from The Sleeping Willow)

I sat here and stared at this screen for awhile… Not exactly sure where to start this blog post. I am extremely grateful for all of the positive response, sweet words, supportive emails, understanding to my newness at this whole experience, and for taking the time to share all of your beautiful creations with me.  The last few days have been a blur of staring at the computer screen, replying to emails, dealing with technical support, and just trying to answer as many questions as possible through out the whole day and even through the night.  I can tell you right now I might need a new coffee pot as I  have basically used it non stop for a constant energy boost for 4 days straight. 😉

When I created our Christmas cards.. I had no idea this would turn out the way it has… and I can’t even describe what this has done for our family.  Just know that this whole template made some wonderful things possible that we have prayed over for a long time, and you all made that happen for us.  I have been an emotional roller coaster through it all, and am just a mushy, happy mess. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

When we sat down after out Thanksgiving dinner last night it was near impossible to choose 1o favorites out of all of the amazingness posted to my page… so we narrowed them down to categories and chose from there… and we still ended up with way more than 10!  And I wish I could have posted 50! Loved every single one from all of you, from beginning to advanced!  They were so fun!

These winners will all be receiving my newest template (that hasn’t been released yet) for free… and they will be the first owners of it!! I will be contacting these winners either tonight or tomorrow via email with my newest template. Again, thank you all!!! (And feel free to keep posting images to my facebook page, I love seeing them, and will continue to reshare favorites from there!)
Our favorite Black and White Conversion goes to Melissa Becerra Photography – we love the musical version of this!


Our favorite family version goes to Aimee Grenier Photography – Great edit with the parents in the background!

Most complicated edit goes to Lilly Belle Rose Photography – I love how she put each child in the globe representing their favorite things.

Most Dreamy Edit goes to the very famous Meg Bitton Photography

Most Humorous goes to Capture Me Pretty Photography. – Love their smooshed faces against there! So clever!
Best Fairytale Version goes to Special Memories PhotographyBest Toddler Version goes to Amanda Berube Photography – Happy Birthday little man! Best Thanksgiving Edition goes to Son Kissed Photograpy – Love love the background in hers! 

The Childrens Favorite goes to Mary Beth Flatau Photography – All of my kiddos and nieces loved this one!!

Most Touching goes to Shot from the Heart Photography – her own hero was home for Thanksgiving this year and she was extremely grateful for that, as am I.:) Most beautiful background change goes to Blue Earth Photography – I love what they did with theirs! So pretty! Excellent edit! Favorite Wedding Image goes to Cindy Scholtz Photography – Love the edit, the bride, and the balloons! Beautiful! Most beautiful Mother/Daughter Version goes to Oh So Posh Photography – Such a pretty Mama and little girl!! 

Most Beautiful Image all in all goes to Lori Waddell Photography – Gorgeous lady, outfit, edit, and background! 

Favorite Santa Image goes to Snips and Snails Photography – She did a great job at making this look SO real!! Best Newborn Image goes to Lauren Elizabeth Photography – {Bed from MY Mama at Woodsy Wonders Props!! }:)AH! I just realized this one never uploaded, sorry Sandra!! Favorite Child Image goes to Sandra Bianco Photography!! 

Mary Beth Flatau - 11/25/2012 - 11:43 am

Oh my gosh!!! I’m super excited, I never win anything! Yay for the kids vote! Thanks so much for this, I can’t imagine what your week has been like, but you deserve all the wonderful in the world for creating such fun.

Kristen - 11/25/2012 - 11:44 am

What an honor!! You’re so incredibly talented and you deserve all current and future success. Cannot wait to see so much more from you. Love and hugs. <3

Francine Mittenthal - 11/25/2012 - 11:53 am

How awesome!!! I didn’t even know you were running a contest when I posted the image. Just wanted to share in total gratitude and excitement. You created an amazing template!!!!! Can’t wait to see what you have coming up next!

Sandra LoCastro - 11/25/2012 - 11:56 am

All of the winners are absolutely beautiful. You are all so talented. Thanks for the snowglobe template. I had fun with it putting some of my seniors and mountain scene. It is so versatile and also fun. It makes you think of being a kid again.

Amanda - 11/25/2012 - 11:59 am

Every single globe was awesome! Congratulations to all the winners!

LAUREN TERRIS - 11/25/2012 - 12:00 pm

Wow!! First off… ALL of the images you selected are absolutely beautiful! And second…I am so flattered that one of those images was mine!!! What an honor!!! Thank you so so so very much!!! PS… I’m so happy for you… It’s AMAZING to have seen it all unfold… I’ve followed your work for quite some time now and saw every post of your photos that transpired into this snow globe phenomenon; Every single photographer now wanting to purchase this template from you!! I’m sure you have a lot to be thankful for this year… you’re going to be one busy bee now that everyone knows about you and your AMAZING talent and work!!! I’m so excited for you and I cannot wait to see what you come up with next and what the future holds for you!!! xoxo Lauren Elizabeth Photography

Meghan - 11/25/2012 - 12:03 pm

I just started following Sleeping Willow because of the recognition of this template through out facebook (my business and personal page, had it popping up everywhere!) And I was thinking just last night how generous and kind it was of you to offer this as a product to photographers & that with all the buzz you must have been very blessed! I can not wait to see what else you have in store, I am looking forward to the day when I will be purchasing your templates for my clients! Keep up the great work!!

Keren Chadwick - 11/25/2012 - 1:23 pm

Oh wow! Thank u so much! What an honour & thank you for your generosity. Be blessed!

Lori Waddell {Marietta GA senior photographer} - 11/25/2012 - 3:51 pm

Thank you so much for allowing us to purchase the template, it was so much fun creating the image. They are all gorgeous and congratulations to all the winners, can’t wait to see what’s next!

AP White-Watts - 11/06/2015 - 3:09 pm

I would so love to have this for 2015

A misty afternoon nature walk…

I recently read an article about finding traits you like and dislike about yourself, recognizing them, taking pride in the pro’s and finding a change in the con’s.  It doesn’t come naturally for everyone to just be able to define who they are…in fact, it is difficult for many to identify pieces of themselves, I am one of them.  So in my thought process I challenged myself to quickly say the first word that comes to mind when I think of myself… “mom”.  That is the single word that rang through my head. “Mom”.  It is all who I am, or ever want to be.  It is who God had known I would become before I did, even after going through such hardships. It is the best of who I am.  It is the most natural, unforced part of my whole being.  For me, it is easy.  There is so much of me that is flawed, so much that I am uncomfortable with, and can quickly find fault in… but I just hope that I make up for all of that in my “Momness” (<– yes, I made that word up).  I mean, don’t get me wrong… we have hard days… when one has a bad day, it seems all do.  So much of parenting seems to be in the “grey” area, even when you read every Parenting 101 book you can find. Where you just hold your breath and pray you make the right decision. You learn from it, you move on. I love my sweet girls, and am so beyond grateful to have my incredible “bonus” son in my life.  Each one of our children make up a piece of our puzzle, and I can’t imagine life any other way.