By Lisa

Ella is much more a child of Silicon Valley than either Kory or I.

As soon as the weather turns warm, she begs for a lemonade stand.

She’d be outside three days a week if someone would sit with her, and while she’s constantly got a plan to buy a Barbie Peek-a-boo or some such Pony-&-Rainbow-pink-bespangled-toy, mostly she saves her money.  She has, however, also had Lemonade Stands For The Greater Good and raised Lemonade Money for Sea Turtles. This has resulted in all sorts of good things like literature and calendars and personal letters addressed to her about the turtles and what She Can Do To Help Turtles and thus the earth. This has meant an ongoing campaign in our house for fewer plastic bags, etc.  It really has helped her global awareness in a local sort of way.  She can go in our back yard, pick lemons, make lemonade, sell lemonade to her neighbors, send the money to the Nature Conservancy, get a really nice letter back, and feel like she’s really made a difference to a turtle or two. It does help that she’s seen one or two in Hawaii. The lesson here is that as far as activism goes, here at least, I am sure that Maria Montessori was right.

So, it was quite natural, I tell you, for Ella to want to sell Lemonade for Obama.

We bought red and blue cups, napkins, and a tablecloth, a blue star balloon.  We had lemonade and cookies for the kids and my homemade limoncello for “major donors” (which was everone).  Ella and Finn spent Thursday night making signs. I sent out word through Facebook and email, we set up shop in our carport. You can read about the recipe below, over which Ella has always had complete control, and the full cost of the even on my personal site.

I had suggested, in the expediency of time, that we use frozen lemonade, but Ella demurred, “That WON’T be as special,” she said.  That point certainly was not up for debate.

Ella’s Lemonade

1. Fresh squeezed lemons :

We juice a lot at once, and freeze the extra in ice cube trays, so we can make the lemonade quickly from the cubes whenever we like.

2. Simple Syrup

Boil 2 parts sugar & 1 part water until the sugar dissolves, we make a lot and store it in the refrigerator so we always have some on hand.  You can use it to make all manner of cocktails as well as lemonade.

3. Distilled Water

This can be from your refrigerator, your tap, bottles..whatever you like.


In a large pitcher mix approximately 1 part lemon juice, 2 parts water, 1 part syrup to taste.  If I make it, Ella will always correct me to make it perfect.  The trick is to have the cool simple syrup on hand. You can add some bubbly water for fizz if you like.