Don’t Let Your Dreams Expire

The Lemon Bar Lesson

Sometimes life gives us lemons, and sometimes it gives us lemon bar mix. Recently, I decided to bake lemon bars with my granddaughter, a sweet treat we’d both been looking forward to making together. As I reached for the box of mix that had been sitting on my pantry shelf for over a year, my excitement turned to disappointment when I discovered it was no longer good. That box of lemon bar mix, bought with the intention of creating a joyful memory, had silently expired in the shadow of procrastination.

This seemingly small event struck a deeper chord with me. It served as a poignant reminder of the fragility and temporality of opportunity—not just in baking, but in life. How often do we set aside our dreams, telling ourselves we’ll get to them later, only to find out that “later” comes too late?

As women, many of us juggle countless responsibilities, and it can be all too easy to put our own aspirations on the back burner. We convince ourselves that there will be a better time to start that business, write that book, or pursue that degree. But the truth is, just like my box of lemon bar mix, dreams have a shelf life too—not because they stop mattering, but because our circumstances and the world around us change.

Consider how rapidly technology and societal norms evolve. Skills that are in demand today might be obsolete tomorrow. Opportunities that exist now, might not be there in a few years. More personally, our own passions and situations can shift—what excites and drives us today might not hold the same appeal down the line.

So, what can we do? First, we must recognize the power and urgency of the present moment. There is profound truth in the saying, “There’s no time like the present.” Whether it’s a project you’ve been planning, a skill you’ve been meaning to learn, or an experience you’ve been wanting to have, the time to act is now.

Second, we need to reassess our priorities. It’s essential to make room for our dreams, to carve out time in our busy lives for pursuits that feed our souls and help us grow. This might mean saying no to certain demands or reorganizing our schedules, but the investment in ourselves is worth it.

Finally, let’s cultivate a mindset of action over perfect moments. The perfect time, the perfect circumstances—they rarely exist. What we have is today, imperfect but ripe with potential. Just like baking, life requires us to mix in our efforts with what we have at the moment and see what delightful things can come from it.

I encourage you, to take my lesson from a box of expired lemon bar mix. Don’t wait for the perfect moment to chase your dreams. Start where you are, use what you have, and do what you can. Life is too short to let our dreams expire on the shelves of hesitation. Let’s bake our lemon bars today, with all the zest and zeal we possess, and savor the sweet taste of living our dreams, right now.