Getting ready for Turkey day and other odds and ends.

Time to start making those items you can make before Thanksgiving. Most of my items are deserts.  I have a couple of cakes to make and fudge is easy to make and have ready ahead of time. The turkey is getting soft to the touch and should be completely thawed by the 22nd, then I can put the bird in the brine for 48 hours before BBQing.  I like doing a slow thaw of the turkey in the fridge since you can pull the giblet packs out easily and if some of the bird is still a bit frozen it will finish thawing in the brine. I would say it takes about 3 days to thaw a 14 pound turkey. If you are starting late or have a bigger turkey you can use a bucket or ice chest to thaw the turkey in a day or two but you need to watch the temps. closely  to keep the turkey in the safe zone of food prep.  I use my Toaster oven for roasting my veggies, the BBQ for the turkey and the oven is used on Thanksgiving day for rolls and for keeping food warm rather than for cooking/baking.

While the kitchen is the gathering space and I do most of the cooking for Thanks giving I want to be able to enjoy talking and not just focus on the cooking of the meal. The more you can prepare ahead of time the less stressful the Thanksgiving meal becomes.

I started some deep cleaning around the house with cleaning the walls I want to paint in my bedroom. Gosh I forgot just how much work washing walls can be!  I’m using Lysol Multi-purpose cleaner and it is about the best cleaner I have found for cleaning. I bought several bottles on sale and use them to refill spray bottles for normal kitchen and bathroom cleaning but it works great for mopping floors and cleaning walls.

I filled up the 3rd kindling box and I have enough leftover wood to finish up the 4th and last box of kindling. If those boxes go on sale again I’d like to add 2 more boxes full of kindling but for now I can fill the section between the kindling boxes with loose kindling for myself or Mom and have kindling for several weeks if the weather is bad or I can’t cut kindling because I feel bad.  Filling up the kindling box seems very doable now rather than a goal that seemed very difficult in the past. If each small kindling box lasts about 2 weeks and I have 4 full I have kindling cut that should last into January. If I can fill another 2 boxes I should last through February.  That is if I have to start a new fire everyday via kindling and I don’t have coals from overnight that can start a fire without kindling.

The biggest change for my firewood is stacking wood that is between the normal size split wood but not as small as kindling. I add more to this wood pile as I cut kindling because of knotty wood that does not split easily and it is delivered to me by my wood supplier and I have taken noticed of it. Don’t try and cut kindling with knotty or twisted wood.  Sure you might have to split that type of wood for you stove.  Trying to split it for kindling is an exercise in frustration.  Don’t do it!  I use Doug fir that is a soft wood with mostly straight grain and I deal with a lot of twisty grains and knotty wood. Don’t fight it just grab another chunk of wood to split.


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