Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Arthur

Instead of the morning rant I just typed and deleted, here's a couple pictures of Arthur.


These were taken back in September, but we saw him yesterday, which means he made it through another hunting season.  Yay. 

I think he's the buck I was calling Curly last year because of the hair between his antlers.  He's got a cool 'do.  

Anyway, he's the dominant buck in the neighborhood and he'll be spreading his genes around this year.  I'd be willing to bet that most of this year's and last year's fawns were his kids.  He da man.


Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Apropos of Nothing

As you all might know, I am a slave to a geriatric cat.  She's 17, which is like 86 for her.  We have to take her to the litterbox on a regular basis so we don't have accidents outside the litterbox.  As you also might know, I like to make up songs.  We have one for calling her to dinner (she doesn't actually come to it anymore, but we still sing it).  And now I made up one for when we want her to go poop.  It's sung to the tune of 'If You Want to Sing Out' by Cat Stevens.  "If you want to go poop, go poop.  If you don't wanna poop, jump out."  It amuses me and she seems to respond to it, so yay.  

My dad used to make up the words to songs, too.  With Christmas approaching, I'm reminded of his famous "Deck the Halls" wording.  'Deck the halls with Boston Charlie, fa la rah la rah de sis boom bah.'  So apparently, it's in the blood.  We won't talk about how my brother ruined the song Yesterday for me.  Suffice it to say, I can never listen to that song without hearing his words instead of Lennon's.  (Yes, I did pass on that to my daughter, but only the non-R rated verse.)  

The sky is just beginning to get light in the East and it's like 20-something degrees out.  Hubs braved the cold to feed the critters.  The birds will have to eat off the ground today because the feeder lid is frozen in place.  Blerg.

I still hate the new Blogger format.  And I'm still forcing Facebook to show me the original format.  Every 48 hours, which is a pain but less of one than trying to force myself to accept the new format.  Which, by the way, looks a lot like MeWe's format, so I should be able to learn the new FB.  I'm just being mulish.  

It's baking day.  I have enough ingredients to make another pumpkin cheesecake.  And we're out of both cookies and quick bread, so I need to make those.  Not sure how much will get done today, but something.

And I'm spent.  Got anything random to talk about today?

 


Sunday, November 29, 2020

Sunday Update - Week 48

Well, it was a week.  Holiday weeks always mess me up.

I didn't do much writing this week.  Only about 700 words on a story I had no plans on writing.  But it wouldn't leave me alone.  Unfortunately, this seems to be the song for the week - loads of ideas but no real impetus to keep writing on any of them. Hell, last night I had to get out of bed and write down another idea.  Gah.  Plus, my unpublished books are screaming at me, too.  Silly brain is doing its rendition of short attention span theater.

Starting today, Dying Embers is free for 5 days.  Plus, Fertile Ground and Early Grave are 99c/99p each.  (All of them always free if you have a Kindle Unlimited subscription.)  So you can get the whole series for less than $2.  Fingers crossed this'll help end the year end with less of a whimper than the rest of 2020 showed me.

Tuesday is December, so I've been thinking about 2021 and you know what that means... spreadsheets for the new year.  I have my own to do and the pay-job ones to do.  Umm... yay.

Reading was slow last week, but I did finish a cute romance set in Canada and populated with people of Chinese heritage.  I like to mix it up a bit every once in a while.  It was way spicier than I usually like my romances, but you know me, I flip past that stuff anyway.  If you like spicy, and I know at least one reader here who does, you'll probably enjoy it.

In baking news, I made my pumpkin cheesecake.  So much yum.  I also did granola bars.  Hubs made another awesome Thanksgiving turkey.  He's so good at that.  

After Thanksgiving dinner, I took the turkey and broke it down.  Six quart freezer bags of meat and two gallon bags of bones, etc. for soup.  Yaha.  Meals I already paid for?  Oh, yeah, baby.

Other than that, not much went on here.  How was your week?

Saturday, November 28, 2020

Saturday Reading Wrap-up - 11/28/20

Ack.  Is it Saturday?  Holiday weeks always screw me up.  Anyway...  

It's not much of a reading wrap-up this week, but it's better than nothing.

Two new ebooks acquired this week - a romantic comedy (which I already read) and a mystery.  I still have two romances, a mystery, and a thriller left from earlier in the month.

Books Read:

77) A Match Made for Thanksgiving by Jackie Lau (11/27/20) - Romantic Comedy* - 4 stars.  New to me but not underappreciated.  Free off the Book Doggy newsletter.
Review: "Cute romance. A little step into a different culture for me, which was fun. A bit too spicy for my tastes, but that's me."

DNF: 

11/27/20 - I gave up on Le Morte d'Arhur.  

Currently reading... a suspense I picked up at the thrift store by an author I've been meaning to try.  I didn't make much progress yesterday due to the Band of Brothers marathon.

How was your reading week?

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Wednesday This n That

Because Thursday this week is a holiday, here's a little Wednesday this n that...

I made the pumpkin cheesecake yesterday.  Of course, I licked the bowl and the filling was so good I could've poured it into a glass and drank it.  I think I might've accidentally used too much cream - 2/3rd cup instead of a half.  I wasn't wearing my glasses.  Anyway, it took way longer to cook, but, like I said, the filling tasted awesome.  We'll eat some today.

Tomorrow Hubs will do the turkey.  It's a behemoth for us, so he'll have to put it in the oven earlier than usual if we want to eat around noon like we always do.  :shrug:  We eat dinner around noon on TGD so we can lay around all day digesting the huge amounts we eat.  It'll be a simple meal - turkey, stuffing, corn, cranberry sauce, rolls - on which we will gorge ourselves.  Then days of turkey sandwiches.  Yay.

Cranberry sauce... It has to be canned.  It has to be jellied.  I ate homemade cranberry sauce with whole cranberries once.  Umm, no.  For me, it's a crime against Thanksgiving.  ;o)

Besides, canned cranberry sauce has lines for easy cutting.  And Hubs loves it on turkey sandwiches.  I don't need cranberry sauce on mine.  Is there anything better than leftover roast turkey on a buttered crusty roll?  I don't think so.

And now I'm hungry.

In non-food news, night before last, a scene for a book I wasn't planning on writing popped into my head and wouldn't go away.  So I got up and jotted a couple notes for it.  Last night, I wrote the scene out a little.  I'm not sure where it's going to go, but hey, it's words.

In the past week or so, I've written words on three different stories.  Which is weird for me.  I'm usually a 'pick a story and stick to it' kind of gal.  We'll see which if any of those three win and become whole books.

Okay, I'm done for today.  I hope you all have most awesome Thanksgiving Days tomorrow and that you get to spend time with family and friends, if that's your thing.  Hubs and I will be alone together again, which is just the way I like it.  (Even if I do kinda miss seeing everyone at Thanksgiving, it's like a crowd scene up there most years.)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Today, I'll be making pumpkin cheesecake.  Now, just so you know, my cheesecakes are not like most people's cheesecakes.  I don't have any special pans to make a cheesecake in, so they're made in pie pans.  And they're super creamy.  No dry cheesecakes in this house.  If you're into that, here's the recipe.

Pumpkin Cheesecake

 

Crust:

 

1 3/4 c. graham cracker crumbs

1/2 butter or margarine (melted)

1/4 c sugar

dash cinnamon (to taste)

dash ground cloves (to taste)

 

Filling:

 

1 8 oz pkg cream cheese (softened to room temperature)

3/4 c packed brown sugar

3 eggs, beaten

1 15 oz can pumpkin puree

1/2 c whipping cream

1/2 tsp brandy

1 tsp cinnamon

dash ground cloves

1/4 tsp salt

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter standard 9" diameter pie pan.  Mix together cracker crumbs, spices, extract and sugar.  Add in melted butter and stir until well combined.  Press crumb mixture into pan as evenly as you're able - along bottom and up the sides to the edge.  Bake 8-10 minutes.  (Some shrinkage will occur.)  Allow to cool completely before adding filling.

 

Re-preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Beat cream cheese with brown sugar until smooth.  Add in eggs, cream, brandy and pumpkin - beat until smooth.  Add in remaining ingredients and beat until smooth.  Pour into pie shell.  Bake 35-45 minutes or until center is set.  Chill overnight, slice and serve with whipped cream topping.

I didn't get any brandy this time, so that's out, but I left it in the recipe so you can add it or not.  And, of course, if you're into nutmeg (:shudder: I hate nutmeg) then feel free to add a dash or two.  

Enjoy!

What are you making for Thanksgiving dessert?



Monday, November 23, 2020

The Psychology of Baking

The other day a friend of mine said something about how I must be so motivated to bake as much as I do.  Which got me to thinking.  Baking for me is less about being motivated and more about finding something to do that provides me with the illusion I'm accomplishing something.  That and the end product is a yummy treat with makes me (and Hubs) happy.

Yeah, yeah, I know... there's the whole 'food is not happiness' thing.  =op

Anyway, I tend to think (and overthink) about stuff.  So when my friend said what she said, I started to delve into it.  Why am I baking like a fiend right now?

And that's what I came up with - I'm sublimating the urge to do things I cannot do into something I can do.  I have little control over what's happening in my life, but I can control what I bake.  'Rona madness?  Bake something.  Election chaos?  Bake something.  Can't shop?  Bake something.  Can't write?  Bake something.  

Mental, I know.

But hey, my neuroses aren't debilitating and we have a house full of treats, for which Hubs is eternally grateful.  

To that end, today I really have to do a batch of granola bars.  Hubs ate the last of those a couple days ago.  And I need to make a pumpkin cheesecake for Thanksgiving - which we will begin eating as soon as it cools, because cheesecake.  

Does any of this baking really help?  :shrug:  It can't hurt.  Except my waistline and that's been holding steady, so no worries there.

What about you?  Have you baked anything lately?  Does it help?