Yes, clothes matter. | the girl inside

Source: Yes, clothes matter. | the girl inside

This is a well written article and I recommend it


A Plea To You


A while back I posted a page called “Help Charissa Transition”.  I have not pushed it whatsoever, but wanted to have it there.  I have been blessed by a couple of contributions, and they mean so much to me that someone believes in me that much.

But I wanted to bring it up…as I have recently passed 500 followers, and the issue of being a trans-ally is a hot one right now, what with Qs about what can be done that demonstrates being an ally.

Well…here is sumfin to think about:  if each of you contributed $100.00 (which is about 10 hours of work at minimum wage), the fund would swell to $50,000.00…and just like that all the othering and obstacle of gate-keeping insurance companies is overcome and I would be able to get my Gender Confirmation surgery.

If each of you contributed 10.00…well, I could begin some of the FFS surgeries that I would greatly benefit from.

And if you gave more, the balance that I did not need for my own surgeries would be donated to a few trans-women that I am connected to.

I think things like this will be the future, ways to do and to be what is needed in spite of the way that the system seeks to other us.

Just think about it…perhaps it is foregoing Starbies for a month…or skipping dinner out 2x, or…fill in the blank.

And thanks for even thinking about it, btw…it is exciting to contemplate and dream about.

Much Love,

For Some Reason I am Compelled to Post this: Are you Sick? Then Read…

Traditional Foods 101: Bone Broth, Broth & Stocks

Bone broths are given special emphasis among traditional foods circles.  Preindustrial societies across the globe have always placed particular and special emphasis on the preparation of the whole animal – and that includes emphasis on using bones for making broth.  African tribes placed emphasis on bone broths for babies and small children.  In Asia, emphasis is placed on stocks and broths made from fish and fish bones.  In Europe, stocks and broths have become the foundation of cooking and are used in not only making soups and stews, but also for preparing reductions, sauces and for braising vegetables and meats.

bone brothwhat’s the difference between broth, stock and bone broth?

In traditional foods circles you’ll hear a lot about broth, stock and bone broth – and they’re typically used interchangeably.  Bone broth, broth and stock are built on the same basic foundation: water, meat or bones (or both), vegetables and seasonings.  As it cooks, the liquid is typically skimmed (although this is not necessary since the scum that rises to the top of the stock pot – off-putting as it is – is a rich source of amino acids) and eventually the solids are removed by straining the stock with a fine-mesh sieve or reusable coffee filter.

  • Broth is typically made with meat and can contain a small amount of bones (think of the bones in a fresh whole chicken).  Broth is typically simmered for a short period of time (45 minutes to 2 hours). It is very light in flavor, thin in texture and rich in protein.
  • Stock is typically made with bones and can contain a small amount of meat (think of the meat that adheres to a beef neck bone).  Often the bones are roasted before simmering them as this simple technique greatly improves the flavor.  Beef stocks, for example, can present a faint acrid flavor if the bones aren’t first roasted.  Stock is typically simmered for a moderate amount of time (3 to 4 hours).  Stock is rich in minerals and gelatin.
  • Bone Broth is typically made with bones and can contain a small amount of meat adhering to the bones. As with stock, bones are typically roasted first to improve the flavor of the bone broth. Bone broths are typically simmered for a very long period of time (often in excess of 24 hours).  This long cooking time helps to remove as many minerals and nutrients as possible from the bones.  At the end of cooking, so many minerals have leached from the bones and into the broth that the bones crumble when pressed lightly between your thumb and forefinger.

why bone broths are good for you

Bone broths are extraordinarily rich in nutrients – particularly minerals and amino acids.  Bone broths are a good source of amino acids – particularly arginine, glycine and proline.  Glycine supports the bodies detoxification process and is used in the synthesis of hemoglobin, bile salts and other naturally-occurring chemicals within the body.  Glycine also supports digestion and the secretion of gastric acids.  Proline, especially when paired with vitamin C, supports good skin health.  Bone broths are also rich in gelatin which improves collagen status, thus supporting skin health.  Gelatin also support digestive health which is why it plays a critical role in the GAPS diet.  And, lastly, if you’ve ever wondering why chicken soup is good for a cold, there’s science behind that, too.  Chicken stock inhibits neutrophil migration; that is, it helps mitigate the side effects of colds, flus and upper respiratory infections.  Pretty cool, huh?

Colorful Squash SoupBone Broths are Also Inexpensive and Very Convenient

Bone broths are easy to prepare at home, very inexpensive (the cost of bones is usually under $2/lb), and are very convenient and simple to make.


ready? start making bone broth today

Ready to start making bone broth?  Start with the recipes below, they all involve the long and slow cooking process that allows for the full release of nutrients – amino acids, gelatin and minerals – from the bones.

how to use bone broth

My husband and I aim to consume about one quart of bone broth per day, per person.  While we start every morning with a mug of broth seasoned with salt, pepper and crushed garlic, we also use bone broth to braise meats and vegetables as well as in soups, sauces and stews.

How to Store Bone Broth

Bone broth can be stored in the refrigerator for no more than a week.  You can also freeze it in ice cube trays, and transfer the frozen cubes of broth to a resealable freezer bag where they will keep for 6 months.  Alternatively, consider making Homemade Bouillon.

get started on bone broth with these resources

Typically, all you need to prepare bone broth in your kitchen is a good stock pot or a 6-quart slow cooker and something for straining the broth.  To prepare a very clear broth, I recommend straining with a very fine-mesh sieve or a reusable coffee filter (using both in conjunction yields the finest results).

Days and Nights and Nesting Dolls

We walked in that old thrift shop musty,
dingy light seeping around stacked shag carpets
and formica tables piled high with bakelight plates.
It smelled of dried rain and wet mildew.

It beckoned us luridly, promising hidden treasures
squirreled away in dank depths and skinny aisles
piled high and tippling.

Your eyes glinted with purpose and glee
like Sherlock Holmes on the case,
so I resigned myself, Watson-like,
to the chase and followed
your dashing red boiled wool coat
and white fuzzy stocking cap deeper in
to the belly of this lazing laughing thrift whore—err—store.

And sure enough your squeak of discovery
morphed into a squeal of delight
and you held up your find like Aphrodite
holding up her heart to Adonis’ ruby thirsty gorgeous lips,
and you possessed, moved demi detourné
and grinned gleeful in the tight aisle
when changement you spun to hand me
your thrifty trove plunder…wait…

Russian nesting doll?

“Oh Charissa!!”  You spoke softly
but your sotto voce rang in my heart booming
cus you know that place big and special
that only you live in and call my Lady’s Chamber…
“It’s soo you!” You cooed and fussed in total committed certainty
that this odd intricacy was me.

It was wood, golden glossy with painted folksy face

…and it was male??  Wait.  Whaaaat is…?


You saw me, my confusion in this
the only time in my living memory
you had paid this shell more than
the passing glance and haughty sniff

we all share at how uncooperative
our bodies can be, and your smile
more tender than all the leaves of every Beech and Birch under the moon.

“Oh Sweetie, let me tell you…these dolls…you…well,
there is a history here, right?
Tradition carves these, dolls within the dolls within the dolls
until the core and look!  Just open it up, ‘kay?”

My eyes were blurry and my nose felt raw
rubbed in rough coarse handkerchief flesh
oversized and clumsy and inside my lil toes
throbbed hard in hurt stomped ache
from what you had not done ever
and yet had brandished that day
in triumphant tinkling delight…

but behind your insistent excitement
I saw awareness, I saw your pleading strong
ask of my trusting heart open to you
there and waiting…

So I took it, I felt
its smooth warm grain
inviting and fairly singing
of mystery and glad discovery
and with a last foreboding look
at your face illumined I twisted it open
to find the waiting center was another doll like the first
and painted gaily and it was female…il_340x270.514347819_kdil

and when I looked inquiring
if I should open it too,
your fierce nod was
in time to the trembling
of my hands as meaning
washed me and when
I twisted it open
the skritch of the wood turning
sang together with your
smothered cry of joy in me…

..and I saw the small girl I am
but never was and inside
the baby whole and of one piece…
“See?? I told you, Charissa! It’s SOO you!”
And with that, you pushed past me
like winds pushing past the windmills
and me turning in your wake
to follow you to the place
of purchase and presentation.

I sit and stare at those dolls…
I remember that day when you were here
and our short time was forever and our poor spouses weary
from our fevered pursuits so fueled by that find
and so eager for our next parable-mystery tracked out…
and all the days since, and

who knew that so many dolls
could fit in so many days?
So many you’s in me and me’s in you
as we walked us the streets of life together
and laughed our way deeper inside
from me to you and back to me,
and us, nested there within.


An Armful of Loneliness

As you wandered,
boppin and beboppin
to the buzzy sounds
that breathed into your ears
the codes, the messages and melodies
of the age,
your earbuds
wrapped around you,
wrapped you in snaky coils.

You were royalty,
rich in plumage and
arms full of
your booty plundered
from the aisles and
displays of the latest…
cool, collected and sure.
I smiled and nodded
with sparkle eyes and hope,
and you saw,
flared your nostrils
as you caught
my prole-parole
scent and manner.

You graciously tipped
your china-delicate chin,
white and chisled
and went on your way,
arms full, head full, ears full…

of what?  Trinkets?  Treasure?

But I followed at a distance,
careful and sideways
so you wouldn’t see,
and when you trembled,
when you sighed,
when your heart
rose unbidden and cried out
“Is this all, is this all”,
I heard your subsonic scream,
and dogs howled.

And then I knew that
what looked like
an armful of wonder
was only

an armful of loneliness.



Grand Mall Seizure (from my “punk rock phase, 1982)

I was rambling thru the mall on the move to avoid them storefront snares.
Watchin people cruisin by me wearin those “as advertised” hypnotic stares.
Some of them looked like machines, and some of them were worn out by their Calvin Klein jeans
But me I just kept runnin from that sugar coated FM radio blair.

I fought thru hordes of folk who’d tear the shirt off your back over in Sears.
A bunch of bargain basement bounty hunters gibbering like a flock of auctioneers.
I saw a girl who looked like she was panicking, then I discovered that she was just a manikin!
A plastic Venus Fly Trap catchin human flies to feed her profiteers!

They were the victims of a Grand Mall Seizure!
Epileptic captives of a false scheme of leisure!
If you worship them golden gods of pleasure,
you gotta swallow your tongue and start doin’
The Grand Mall Seizure!

See that red faced man a-hustlin by moppin his forehead with his handkerchief?
He don’t know where he’s goin he’s just like a lemming leapin offa cliff!
That woman eatin chocolate Lady Fingers?  She has forgotten she has value, not a memory lingers,
Of a time when humankind was more than micro-chip computer hieroglyph!

Can’t you see that you been mauled by them big boys up on Madison Avenue!!??
They pulled them alligator t-shirts over your eyes with their magical television voodoo.
You swallowed their bait hook line and sinker, and you been duped cus you refuse to BE A THINKER!
And you ain’t really in a mall at all, you’re in Consumer City Zoo!!  And you’re the victim of a



On the Shore

On the Shore

Brrr…I am a lil skert, starting this blog.  It is the very first baby step towards being out as who I really am, the me that I was born to…I am frightened, and yet so excited all at once.  I love this picture, because it shows how I have always been…gazing out, yearning, standing off to the side, there but not there…and I like that there are 3 women down in the shelter.  They represent my core support…bless you ladies who love me with your hearts!

And I love that we are all surfers in this pic…waves are toys and funland rides to surfers, skimming along on stormy waters and dancing.

I have no idea where I will be in 3 months, in a year.  I have no idea who will be in my life besides the ones who are with me, and who will be out of my life.

May God give me grace to welcome all in, and never shut any out, and then I can have peace, knowing that I have lived in integrity and shalom, and that I am literally not responsible for the choices of others.