Freeze, Froze, Frozen, Freezing

It's cold here...in so many ways. For one thing, our temperatures have dropped substantially, and there's a good chance we'll wake up to snow here at the Three Cats Ranch tomorrow. Here's one of our outdoor thermometers. It's hard to read, I know. It says 34.9°F, and it's getting colder by the minute.

With the possibility of snow and/or ice, it seemed a good time to get out and fill the birdfeeders this morning. I feel sorry for the birdies when the ground is covered with snow and ice, and I didn't want to risk life and limb traipsing out there tomorrow. As I went, the weeds in the field were crunchy with frost under my feet.

Smitty has been hanging out inside the house in this cold weather, generally making a pest of himself in his boredom. Fortunately, he went outside with me and has stayed out for a while. He'll come in shivering with cold, and then sleep the rest of the day next to the fireplace. It will be a blessed relief for all concerned.

There's been no more progress quilting the Doors of Ireland. I had big ideas about spending the day on it yesterday, but then Mike came into my office and told me he'd found a freezer. I've been lusting after one for years, but recently became downright insistent about getting one. If we're going to continue with the CSA shares (and we are), then I need one if I'm going to have the capacity to put all of the veggies to use. That meant driving down to McMinnville to pick it up at the Sears store down there.  

We brought it home and used the forks on the front of the tractor to unload it. That caused me to bite my fingernails down to the quick, but we got 'er done. It's 17.5 cubic feet, which should be big enough to hide several bodies, don't you think?

Once we had it set up and turned on, I wasted no time emptying the smaller freezers of their contents. We have three refrigerators (long story), and we've limped along on their small freezers just fine up until the CSA came into our life. With me making vats of veggie stock, purchasing meats on the bargain meat counters, and keeping lots of different specialty flours, germs, and brans for baking, there wasn't much room left for the day-to-day stuff. (Yes, I am showing you pictures of the inside of my new freezer. It'll never look this neat and clean again.) 

We got the chest style so that it would fit under the window in our garage, and I like the bins. It came with four that can be moved around or slid back and forth. I loaded it with 18 quarts of vegetable stock. There would have been more, but I ran out of room. Also, you can see all those specialty flours, brans, meals, and germs that I use in baking. Those took up almost the entire freezer in one of the refrigerators. The packages of meats purchased when the butcher shop marks them down took up all of the space in another one of the freezers.

As much as I loved the CSA this year, we got burned out on some of the greens. There was a bundle of greens in every share, and our appetite just wasn't big enough. I'm looking forward to blanching and freezing them, or else making soups up for freezing next year. I'll be able to give some of that stuff to the kids too. Grateful as I am to be finished with this year's CSA season, I'm excited to get started on the next one now. My head is full of ideas with more room to store more food. We'll be ready for the Big One, if nothing else.

This morning I finished off the little Blankets of Love stitchery.

And I got quite a bit done on the little sewing machine too.

Today I really am going to do some quilting. Thanksgiving is at our house again this year. I got a free turkey with my groceries last week, but Erik is bringing his fryer up and he's going to deep fry it. He claims it's the best turkey ever. Matthew is going to make the sweet potatoes. I'll be doing the rest, but most of it can be done ahead. I think I have cranberries on the agenda for today, and a little housework.

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. With a little planning and help, the stress can be kept to a minimum. And with that in mind, I'd better get going on it.

10 comments from clever and witty friends:

gpc said...

I have been wanting a freezer for years but keep putting it off for one reason or other -- not on sale, out of stock, models changed and I need to start over -- I need to get it together! It was 23 degrees when I left for work this snowy morning and this is only the beginning here so too early for me to complain, but I hear ya.

Quilting Babcia said...

Life only gets better with a big freezer! And all those CSA greens can be made into a wonderful vegetable stock for soups and stews. Yummy! Not to mention lots of frozen raspberries, strawberries, blueberries and even those Himalayan blackberries. Oh how I miss all the fresh berries we had, and the jams, when we lived there. We were shocked to wake up to 12 degrees this morning, thankfully only a dusting of snow. It is supposed to warm to the 50s for Thanksgiving, thankfully since we'll be on the road.

Teresa in Music City said...

Oh my! Several bodies indeed!! I've been wanting an extra freezer for ages, but we don't have anywhere to put it. Someday..... My mom and I will do Thanksgiving for our family like always, and we work hard to do as much as we can in advance and eliminate as much stress as possible. It's one of the few times she and I have together all year so we like to make room for fun time together during the week too :) I'll bet Thanksgiving at your house is amazingly delicious!!!!!

Cheryl's Teapots2Quilting said...

We have 2 refrigerators and a upright freezer, and all are FULL. Enjoy your new freezer.

Lyndsey said...

Oh my I couldn't have survived all these years without my freezer. When the children were small especially it was worth it's weight in gold. Not that we needed a freezer this morning as it was -2 here and we did have a light cover of snow yesterday morning.

Kate said...

I need to talk My Guy into a freezer like that. He has a lot of those specialty flours too and there's not much room in the second freezer for anything else. I like all those trays in your freezer.

Barb H said...

Barbara, I couldn't help noticing that your hard-to-read thermometer is branded "Sharper Image." :) I know you'll enjoy your new freezer--I don't know what I'd do if I didn't have mine.

Dana Gaffney said...

I think I'm jealous, I'd love a giant freezer or even a second fridge but my house is tiny. I know you'll have it full in no time and probably be lusting for another. I really like those bins, they'll make it so much easier to keep some kind of organization.

SJSM said...

Freezing indeed! Currently it is 48*. T-Day is supposed to get 34*! Unusual for us. Having 14 here for dinner. First time in years hubby's side have gathered in more than a decade for Thanksgiving. One SIL coming today to help get everything prepared. DD is making pumpkin pies, bread and vegetarian main dish. Neighbor mom and daughter also coming. She is originally from India and enjoys being with us when we celebrate the day. Her hubby is on a trip. Looking forward to having the food prepared so can enjoy the time together.

We have a small upright in the garage. Small footprint was essential for us. It is packed most of the time. Love the convenience of shopping my freezer for dinner.

Vroomans' Quilts said...

we have been in a big chill - only a little snow that doesn't last the day. I would love a small freezer - the fridge ones are too small.