This Totally Made My Day
A handful of women, at church, are addressed by the kids with the title of “Mama.” Ever since I helped teach vacation bible school, this summer, the kids have honored me with that title as well.
As three young boys went through the buffet line, today, the first one asked, “Mama Chelle, did you make the mac ‘n’ cheese, today?”
"I sure did," I replied.
"Yay! I want a lot!"
"Me, too!" the other two boys said, in unison.
Asian Couple on “House Hunters: Where Are They Now?”
The husband is really, really funny!
He’s laid back while she’s mega-OCD and obsessed with Feng Shui.
She’s a DNA expert and he’s a criminalist with the Sheriff’s Dept.
"My job is basically the closest you can get to those people on TV, except without the Gucci suits and physical attractiveness."
(He’s actually a tall, nice looking man, though.)
On demolishing the old bathroom before renovation:
"Basically it was just me, a sledgehammer, a crow bar, and my deep-seated psychological issues."
On going way over their renovation budget:
"I only have one kidney, now. I had to sell it."
In response to contractor comments about working with his wife:
"Hey, at least you guys get to go home."
Durn— he had a couple of other funny quips but now I can’t remember them!
I love truly funny deadpan humor.
Pressure Cooker Cheesecake
This is the quickest, easiest way to make honest-to-goodness cheesecake. It’s the only way I’ll ever make it again.
The post is long but the process is short!
Use a mixer to blend 16 oz of cream cheese (2 packages), 3/4 to 1 cup of sour cream, two tablespoons of flour (optional), 1/2 to 1 cup of sugar (based on your preference), and then add four eggs, one at a time.
Mix thoroughly but don’t overdo it.
Mix in 1-2 teaspoons of vanilla and a 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and set aside.
Put graham crackers in a zip lock bag and turn into roughly one cup of crumbs using a rolling pin or jar. Melt three tablespoons of butter and mix thoroughly with crumbs.
Spray springform pan with cooking spray, spread crumbs evenly across the bottom and then lightly pack. (I did this with a coffee cup.)
Pour batter on top of crumbs.
Place trivet (the thing with all the holes that came with the pressure cooker) in the pot and add two cups of water. Place oven-safe bowl on top of trivet and place springform pan on top of bowl.
You are now ready to steam the cheesecake at high pressure without getting it wet.
Some people use aluminum foil and/or waterproof springform pans— and no bowl— to keep the bottom of the cheesecake from getting wet but I prefer to use a cheap (less than $5) pan with no foil and simply set it on top of a bowl. If you accused me of being cheap and lazy I probably wouldn’t argue with you.
Place cover on pressure cooker with 15 psi weight, bring up to full pressure with burner on high, and then reduce heat to medium. The goal is to conserve your water by not having excessive amounts of steam exit the cooker. You just want a light jiggle of the pressure cooker weight.
If you’re using an 8” pan then cook for 20 minutes once it starts jiggling— then remove from heat and let it depressurize naturally.
If you only have a 6 qt pressure cooker you can use a 7” springform pan and cook for 15 minutes instead of 20. Seven inch pans are a little harder to find but you can order them online. Use only two tablespoons of sour cream, 3 eggs, and skip the flour to decrease the amount of batter you make.
If you prefer to increase the recipe and use a 9” or 10” springform pan then you might want to try 25-30 minutes of cook time.
I use a 13 qt pressure canner with an 8” springform pan.
Once the cooker depressurizes carefully remove the lid and place the cheesecake on your counter to cool. If any water has pooled on top you can wick it off with the corner of a paper towel.
The middle should still be slightly jiggly. You’ll think you didn’t cook it long enough— but you did! If it looks fully cooked then you cooked it too long.
It will continue to cook as it cools and will set up perfectly after it’s thoroughly cooled and had a chance to sit in the refrigerator.
Four or more hours in the refrigerator is perfect but one hour is okay, too.
If you don’t refrigerate it, at all, it will still taste great but will be more custard-y.
After it’s thoroughly cooled run a thin knife around the inside of the springform pan and remove the ring.
You can top it or serve, as is.
P.S.— homemade cheesecakes make great gifts!
It’s Me, Actually
I’ve been having a lot of trouble with the Tumblr app on my phone.
Since I don’t feel that it’s right to post lots of stuff and receive warm fuzzies, from y’all, when I don’t have a good way to reciprocate, I’ve been spending my social media time on Facebook, which usually works fine on my phone.
I’m hoping for an app that works better. I’m missing this place!
Camping In Florida…
…and Bentley is loving it. He’s been swimming all day!
We came down for a wedding and decided to turn it into a camping trip.
He’s going to hate to leave this place.
Putting His Own Special Touch On The Sofa
Everyone in this house trusts Bentley except for me.
When I leave I prefer to crate him but Annie and her daughter prefer to expand the amount of freedom we give him.
This is why I don’t trust the dog.
He ran the second I entered the room, so he knew he was being bad.
Chelle: You're so liberal!
Patrick: I am.
Chelle: You're too handsome to be a liberal.
Patrick: And you're too pretty to be a conservative.
The Perfect Woman
I used to be pretty conscientious about shaving my legs. It was all part of being the “perfect woman” I always knew I would be if I ever got the chance.
Then I realized that having dark blonde leg hair meant that I could easily go a week without shaving.
In fact, I usually go two weeks— and Annie doesn’t even realize that I haven’t shaved in awhile unless we give each other foot massages.
If no one can see it then why worry about it?
I used to wear full makeup every day. It was all part of being the “perfect woman” I always knew I could be if I ever got the chance.
Then I realized that I still looked very nice with just mascara and eyeliner and now I go weeks and even months without wearing full makeup.
It’s an old lesson that should be more obvious than it ever seems to be, but being the perfect woman has absolutely nothing to do with any of the accoutrements of femininity. It has everything to do with being able to look at yourself in the mirror and realize that you’re content with who is looking back— even on those days when you look like a swamp woman. Even when you put on weight or haven’t tended to your eyebrows in awhile.
That’s the place I’ve gotten to in my life.
I’m the perfect woman.
If we bump into each other please try not to notice any red splotchiness on my face and please don’t rub your hand against my leg. Don’t look at my nails or eyebrows, either, because they won’t be perfect.
But I am.
I thought it was the man’s job to find the vagina?
Try the same survey, using a penis diagram, and I’ll bet the ladies get a perfect score.
Colgate Optic White Toothpaste
I’m pretty ticky about keeping my teeth nice and white and, until now, the only product I’d found that made a noticeable improvement was Crest White Strips. (The 30 minute ones work best for me.)
Crest White Strips make my teeth ridiculously white and I love them. Everything else I tried was a waste of money.
I started using Colgate Optic White toothpaste, though, and have gotten excellent results— and it’s much cheaper.
The toothpaste doesn’t make my teeth crazy-white, but after 3 or 4 days they’re noticeably very white.
The mouth-feel is really nice, too. There must be some kind of exothermic reaction, because it makes your mouth feel warm at the very beginning.
It has a very bright, minty flavor that I really like, too.
In short— I love this toothpaste!
Here’s some extra info, though:
In reading reviews, on Amazon, people either loved it or hated it. Apparently some people are sensitive to the ingredients and get sores on their tongue. It seems to happen in the first day or two so if you start to notice that then you should discontinue use.
Here’s the funny part, though:
I started looking for other reviews, on the web, to see if the same complaints popped up anywhere else. To my amazement people attributed a whole host of problems to this toothpaste, including-
1) eyelid blisters (I’m not making this up)
2) foot ailments
3) dizzy spells
4) burning hands
Thankfully, most people don’t seem to have any trouble with the product. If you suddenly start developing blisters on your eyelids, however, it might not be the right product for you.
If you’re looking for an inexpensive way to noticeably brighten and whiten your teeth I would suggest giving this a try.
I Couldn’t Get It To Rise…
…no matter how hard I tried— and now I’m feeling a bit insecure.
Is it me?
I suppose that it happens to every woman, eventually, but when it does it can sure make you feel inadequate.
I tried everything— I kneaded it some more, applied a little more moisture and gave it more time— but it just laid there.
I wondered if I was doing something wrong. Perhaps it was my technique.
In any case I’m pretty depressed about it.
I’ve covered this topic before but, judging from my mail, it needs revisiting.
Middle-aged transwomen, in their quest to live as their authentic selves, have a terrible habit of trying to reclaim their youth in the process.
They dress inappropriately young and often choose clothes that even genetic women with perfect bodies have trouble pulling off.
Even worse is the name selection.
If you’re 50 years old and your new name is Kayleigh or Jasmyne or Destyni or Sierrah then you’re only going to invite unwanted additional scrutiny.
Scrutiny is the something that transwomen don’t need.
If you’re 6 feet tall and are running around in 4” heels, a super short pencil skirt, a crop top, and have a very modern name that you’ve stripperized the spelling of, then you’re advertising to the world that you’re trans and you’re making the entire community look ridiculous.
My suggestion is that you look up popular baby names, from the year you were born, pick one from the top 40, and stay within your family heritage.
If you’re Irish it is unlikely that your parents would have given you a Russian name. If you’re German your parents probably would not have picked an Italian name for you.
Yes, I know it’s exciting to embark on your journey to wholeness and authenticity, but you need to do it sensibly.
And you simply must— MUST— wear clothes that are appropriate for your age. Your outfits can be stylish and thoughtfully put together but they SHOULDN’T come from the Juniors section.
This has been a public service announcement.
This feels a little naughty…”
— Annie, as we laid down for a late-morning nap after coffee and a camping breakfast of bacon/egg/cheese breakfast burritos. This has the makings of being a perfect day.
JudySchu Won’t Be Posting To Tumblr Anymore
It was all going so well.
Judy visited us at our campsite and we feasted on bacon, egg and cheese burritos. It was the perfect start to a wonderful day.
Then we went for a bike ride along the Kankakee River and it was beautiful.
Annie and I both have beach bikes, though. You know the ones I’m talking about— with big, wide, studded snow tires— and only one gear ratio.
Basically they’re Pee-Wee Herman bikes.
Judy is very serious about biking, however, and was riding “Lance”— her 21-speed bicycle that has tires so skinny that they look like record albums.
I finally got tired of trying to keep up with her and, when we got to this scenic overlook, a momentary impulse took over.
And it was done.
She looked oddly graceful as she flailed her way down to the river.
I suppose I’ll miss her…
…but I won’t miss Lance!
He’s mine, now, and together we ride like the wind.
Yes, it’s been a good day.