How sweet the…Pecan crusted lemon cheese squares!

  If I had to choose my favorite part about being a published author, it would be my visits to book clubs. Just the fact that these clubs pick my books to read is beyond kind!

A couple weeks ago I met with a book club from a local church. Like the other clubs I’ve visited, they spoiled me with amazing snacks and treats. 

Take these freakishly to-die-for, four-layered, pecan crusted lemon cheese squares Geri brought, for instance. 

I ate a whole entire plate of them.

I wish I was kidding.

Actually, I don’t wish I was kidding.

I loved every bite of it. 

My eyes watered as I stuffed my face with them, they were so. darn. good.

Geri was kind enough to share her 40+ year old recipe with us, and to allow me to share the recipe with you. Did I mention these things have four layers–FOUR LAYERS–of yumminess??! 

And do you know what she did?

She added pecans to the crust. Because the club had read How Sweet the Sound. And if you’ve read How Sweet the Sound, you know how integral pecans are to the story. 
If you haven’t read How Sweet the Sound, may I suggest you whip up a batch of these and some sweet tea and read it? 

(You guys, the recipe calls for cream cheeseCream cheese!)

Thank you, Geri, for this recipe. And thank you to the kind ladies at ZUMC for having me out to your club. I’m so grateful you read the book!


Pecan Crusted Lemon Cheese Squares
By Geri Rogers


Bottom layer:  

1½ cups flour

1½ sticks butter

1T granulated sugar

½ cup chopped and toasted pecans


❑ Mix as for pie dough, cut small pieces of butter into flour with a pastry blender or a knife until it resembles small peas.
❑ Pat into a 9 x 13 pan. 
❑ Bake at 350° for 20 minutes.  
❑ Cool completely before adding next layer.  

Note:  You can make and bake the bottom crust the night before.


Second layer:  

12 ounces of light or regular cream cheese

1 ½ cups powdered sugar

½ – 1 cup Cool Whip


❑ Whip cream cheese until creamy then add powdered sugar.  
❑ Cream together until smooth.  
❑ Fold in ½-1 cup Cool Whip.
❑ Spread on top of cooled crust.


Third layer:  

1 (15.75 oz.) can of Duncan Hines ComstockOriginal Lemon Pie Filling

❑ Spread evenly over cream cheese layer.


Top and final layer: 

large container of Cool Whip (minus the ½ cup used above.)


❑ Spread Cool Whip lightly over lemon pie filling using little wavelike strokes.

Cover and refrigerate before serving.  

Note: Great for “parties and showers.”  Cut the squares small enough to fit into muffin papers!  Enjoy!


Show me your nightstand and I’ll show you mine.

Since I just submitted the manuscript for my third novel, yet another season of binge reading has begun. Books on writing, books out of my genre, books in my genre, books resembling the ideas bumping around in my head for my fourth novel. Books my kids want me to read. Books recommended by others. Books long beside my bed collecting dust.

I’m really enjoying Ann Patchett’s book, This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage. The title is deceiving–it’s really a collection of her essays, many of which involve her thoughts on the craft of writing. Here’s a section that resonated with me:

“Novel writing, I soon discovered, is like channel swimming: a slow and steady stroke over a long distance in a cold, dark sea. It I thought too much about how far I’d come or the distance I still had to cover, I’d sink. As it turns out, I have had this same crisis with every novel I have written since. I am sure my idea is horrible, and that a new idea is my only hope. But what I’ve realized over the years is that every new idea eventually becomes the old idea. I made a pledge with myself that I wouldn’t start the sexy new novel I imagined until I had finished the tired old warhorse I was dragging myself through at present. Keeping that pledge has always served me well. The part of my brain that makes art and the part that judges that art had to be separated…”

Here’s a picture of my stack of reading. Throw in a box of Keebler Coconut Dreams, and it’s quite a binge-fest.


And here’s my audio book line-up (for whenever I can tear myself away from Maroon 5): 



I don’t know where he came from.


What about you? 

What are you reading these days? 

Have you read any of the ones in my stack?

and you bloom. a poem for artists.

i am not unlike you, little

dandelion, your honest glow 

a weed, a nuisance 

to be rid of. and so, I get why

the sunshine of your tender face 


pale and the whole of your being


into fragile white, pieces falling, 

hoping to be caught

by the wind, an invisible 

river rolling pain away to 


a place far away where the soil understands 


better than the place where you first took root 

and there, you blossom.  

the field, wild, 

with flowers once weeds like you, bending,  


to the wind for carrying them 

to a place where at last they rest, 

their roots pushing in deep, understanding.

and you bloom.