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When PJ I got married in 1987, his dad performed the ceremony. But wait, a little back story is needed here. Rewind to 1962 when I entered this world. 'Pastor Grexa' baptized me into the Lutheran Church. 12 or 13 years later, he also confirmed me. Confirmation classes in our church had always been large, so when my class was just me and Ralph, the pressure was on. You see, our tradition was that the pastor would 'quiz' you in front of the congregation prior to confirming you. 100 questions among 8 or 10 confirmands means each kid answers maybe 10 or 12 questions. With just 2-well, you do the math.Now, truth be told, Ralph was not exactly excited about having to memorize all 100 questions, so he devised a plan to just memorize the 'even' questions, because he was sure I would go first, then we'd alternate. Risky plan, but it worked. That is, until question 12, which was to recite the Lord's Prayer, when Pastor Grexa had the whole congregation join in.

Quickly, Ralph realized the error of his ways, because MY question 13 would now be would the rest of the odd numbered 87 remaining questions. DURING the Lord's Prayer, with terror on his face, he mouths "Let me answer next".

Prayer ended. Amen. Pastor Grexa looks at me, asks question 13, and Ralph boldly answers! Oh the look on Pastor's face!! All ended well, and Ralph and I survived.

Which brings us back to the fact that Pastor Grexa's son asked me out when I was 16, and we got married when I was 24. It was a bit of a dilemma, though. What do I call his dad? Pastor Grexa seems a bit formal, Dad is reserved for my dad...Paul? not so much. Amusingly, for several years, I never had to directly address him or introduce him, so I just skirted by with no formal name.

Those who know him know he is a HUGE Steelers fan, and at the time Bubby Brister was the quarterback, and one dad I called him Bubs, and it kind of stuck.

"Bubs" is diabetic and has a sweet tooth like no other, and PIE is one of his favorite things. Sugar free berry pies are pretty readily available, but not so much with cream pies, which he frequently would lament. When I notice Sugar free banana pudding in the grocery a couple weeks ago, I decided a sugar free banana cream pie was going to be made. Sharing here because 1) it's really easy and 2) it's yummy.

Here's what you need:

2 bananas

2 1/2 cups 2% milk

1 pre-made pie crust (I used the shortbread, it has very little sugar)

2 packages Sugar Free Banana instant pudding (JELL-O brand is what I used)

1 Cool Whip Sugar free Whipped topping (thawed)

Slice the 2 bananas

Line the bottom of the pie crust with half the bananas

Combine the milk and pudding mix in a medium bowl

Wisk for at least 2 minutes, until thickened

Fold in the Whipped Topping

Put half of this filling on top of the bananas in the pie crust

Add another layer using the rest of the sliced bananas

Top with remaining filling.

Refrigerate about 4 hours until set, then use the remaining topping just before serving.

Make sure you refrigerate the leftovers, if there are any!

I'm going to try some other combinations:

>Vanilla with Fresh Strawberries

>Chocolate with Sugar Free crushed peppermint pattties

>Pistachio with nuts

What would YOU suggest?


Here's Bubs celebrating his 90th birthday earlier this year.

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