Thanksgiving Countdown Corner Nov. 21:
Ok, so far we have had fun cooking, decorating and getting crafty for Thanksgiving…now we gotta go to work, sigh…
So, here goes, might as well dig in and get ‘er done, friends and neighbors!
This is my own list, so don’t think I’m just sitting here thinking of stuff for you to do, oh, no. I gotta do all of this myself, which is what prompted me to remind you!
After cooking more make-aheads (which will be featured here this week), the oven looked pretty grody. I do have a self-cleaning oven, but this time it had a lot of build-up around the outer edges, which never get in the self-clean zone, so I decided to use a commercial oven cleaner. Please be careful to follow the directions on this product, use it in a well-ventilated area and wear gloves.
First, though, I took the racks outside, laid them across two garbage cans and sprayed them. Just leave them there, for now, if you want, and go back inside to the hard part. It’ll be worth it, a clean oven is like a clean car, it just cooks better!
Spray your cold oven carefully, holding the can at arm’s length, as advised on the can. Then shut the door and leave for two hours. When you open it after the allotted time it will look the same but when you run over burned- on spots with a paper towel, everything wipes away like magic!
Be sure to clean every trace of the chemical oven cleaner from your oven, using several wet paper towels, then dry ones. You want to get everything that might cause fumes.
To make sure, run your empty oven for thirty minutes after cleaning it, letting all of the oven cleaner that you couldn’t get out of the cracks burn away.
If stubborn spots remain, try rubbing over them gently with the cupped end of a spoon. Surprised? Works like a charm!
Now tackle the racks, and after wiping with paper towels, run over them with a water hose, just to make sure is no residue is left.
Clean pantry and refrigerator while oven is cleaning. Throw away things that are just taking up space because there are always leftovers that need to be refrigerated.
Vacuum, dust and prepare guest room if you are having overnight company. Put out extra towels, guest soaps and fresh flowers for your guests.
If your carpets need refreshing try one of the many products on the market for cleaning them. If they are in bad shape, try calling a pro, but at this late date, you might have to rent a machine…
Dig out family photos to place on the coffee table, and gather games and movies for keeping kids occupied while the grown-ups work in the kitchen.
Now is a great time to clean your dishwasher. There are several dishwasher cleaners on the market, but you can also use Kool- Aid Lemonade, lol. Just make sure your dishwasher is empty, then add two packets of lemonade to the dispenser and let it run through a whole cycle. It will sparkle and smell wonderful!
Clean your microwave oven with paper towels and a little soapy water, then place a lemon wedge in a cup of water and let it run for about 20 seconds. Leave cup, water and lemon inside to steam for a few minutes. When cool, remove the cup and wipe down the top, bottom and sides of the microwave.
Clean sinks with vinegar and baking soda. Pour baking soda into drain and carefully pour vinegar over the soda. It will bubble fiercely. Use enough of both to make a good size puddle in your sink, then leave it alone for half an hour. Do not run any water in sink until the time is up. Do this with every drain in your house.
A good tip for making your rooms smell fresh and clean is to take your throw pillows and if they are washable, run them on the gentle cycle, and if not, put them straight into the dryer with a couple of dryer sheets.
Make sure you have plenty of ice on hand, or ask a guest to bring some.
You might be tired tonight, but your house is finished and you are ready to tackle some new, soon to be favorite recipes in the next few days!
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