Life Hacks 2017

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

Thanksgiving 2017 – 11 Thanksgiving Life Hacks to Make Your Holiday Easier

11 Thanksgiving Life Hacks to Make Your Holiday Easier

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

We all love Thanksgiving. It’s a great day to relax, eat, drink, watch football, and spend time with loved ones (and even not so loved ones). But if your the host of the holiday, it can be quite stressful. It’s a lot to worry about: Is the turkey cooked correctly? Are the mashed potatoes fluffy? Did the pies cook evenly? Where are those recipes?

It’s enough to make, even the most relaxed person, stress to the point of shaking

Well, we are here to help! Look no further than the Kerr team to make your Thanksgiving as Painless and flowing with ease as possible with these

11 Thanksgiving Life Hacks to Make Your Holiday Easier


Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


1.) Ambiance

This is step one. Before you cook anything, plan ahead and make your guests feel welcome. And just because you want things to look nice, doesn’t mean you have to break the bank.

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey Use pine cones from the yard, cook them on a cooking sheet in the oven for about 20 minutes on 400 degrees, to remove undesirables that have made the pine cones their home, and arrange them on a simple serving tray, or surround a glass covered candle, as a center piece for your Thanksgiving table.
Set the mood for your guests by setting up your own candle design. Use a simple glass, or buy one from a local warehouse store for extremely cheap, it doesn’t have to be amazing, you’re not opening a bar, just lighting a candle. Put un-popped popcorn kernels on the sides of the glass to give it a cool feel. Wrap a bow around it for added charm. Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey
Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey Use a pumpkin as a wine cooler. If you decide to make pumpkin pie from scratch, don’t discard the pumpkin itself. Line the interior with plastic wrap, fill it with ice, then place a few bottles of wine, depending on the size of the pumpkin, to give your guests a cute twist on their drinks!

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


2.) Recipes 

One of the hardest parts of thanksgiving that you can’t fix is space. Your counter can only hold so many items before it is full of stuff. Don’t clutter it with big, or even small, cookbooks. You don’t have room for THAT!

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

Plan ahead. Print out recipes before, or copy them, and tape them to your cabinet doors. This will not only save space, but keep the recipe eye level, so you can refer to it with ease.


Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

3.) Pre-Cut

Aside from space, another thing we can’t help is time. You can’t make more of it, but you can manage it to perfection. One of those things you can do is prep your meal by cutting your vegetables either the day before or the night before and put them in plastic sandwich bags. Do it to a precise level by splitting them up into separate bags and label them with the dish they are for. We are not all Gordon Ramsey in the kitchen, and able to cut veggies and such in one fail swoop. Take your time, don’t hurt yourself, and save it for later. Your fingers will thank you.

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

4.) Clean Your Potatoes with a Dishwasher

Mashed potatoes are a staple at Thanksgiving. If you have a large group of people coming, make washing potatoes an ease by washing them in the dishwasher (no soap). This will not only make it easy to clean them, but it makes peeling them a breeze. Another tip to skin them, is boil the potatoes for a little bit, then throw them in ice water. The drastic change in temperature will shock the skin and make peeling a breeze.

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


5.) More Potatoes 

As discussed earlier, potatoes are delicious, but so time consuming. Remove that task by cooking the potatoes in a slow cooker, or at the very least, keep them warm in a crock pot. You’ll have a whole other burner for gravy (or whatever). Also, use a little bit of baking powder, this will make the potatoes even fluffier.


Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


6.) Use Your Coolers

Again, space is key to an organized meal. Don’t use up valuable real estate in your fridge on cans of soda, wine, water, or whatever. Use your coolers. This will keep the drinks cold, while keeping the guests out of your way and hot items off their shirts. Also, if you plan on making corn, a cooler can be used quite well to cook it. Though it keeps things quite cold, it can also keep things hot. Put the ears of corn at the bottom and boil a kettle of water. Then just dump the boiling water on the corn and let physics work.


Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


7.) Use a Coffee Thermos to Keep Gravy Warm

Again, time is key! Make your gravy beforehand and use a typical coffee thermos to keep it warm. If it works for coffee, it’ll work for gravy. Plus everyone will be impressed, and you’ll look like a culinary MacGyver. (To be an extra wiz in the kitchen, add some soy sauce to the gravy. It really adds a great kick!)


Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


8.) Make Pies Easy

Listen, we all love pie. But it can be a hassle. Here’s a couple easy tricks to help you:

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey Make your pie shell early, then freeze it. It will save not only time, but the pie will maintain its shape better in the oven. This will free up time later on.
Weigh down your pie crust with rice, beans, or even loose change. Just wrap the crust in napkins, or plastic wrap, or even aluminum foil. Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey
Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey To give your pie the perfect riveting around the outside of the pie crust, use an old necklace to give that perfect indentation. I recommend an old necklace, so you don’t ruin your Sunday’s best.

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


9.) Perfect Stuffing

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

To avoid a mess, use a cupcake tray to cook your stuffing. This, not only portions out the stuffing equally among your guests, but this gives it the perfect amount of browning to the stuffing, while it cooks in the oven.


Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


10.) Use a Wine Glass to Cut Biscuits

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

Use an older wine glass to cut biscuits out of your dough. I’d say an older glass, just in case you put too much pressure and break the glass. But doing this will give your biscuits uniformity and make the cutting a breeze.


Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


11.) The Turkey

The Turkey is the centerpiece of this meal. There are several ways that you can spruce up the turkey, or save it if your like me.

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

Take a Look:

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

Ice Down Your Turkey before cooking it to keep it from drying out. Believe it or not, this works. Cook the breast at a slightly lower temperature, this will solve the problem of the white meat cooking faster than the dark.

Slow the cook the turkey overnight to save the oven space. Yes, you can. And yes, this will make your Thanksgiving feel infinitely easier. Pop the bird in the oven the evening before and wake up to a nearly completed Thanksgiving feast.

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey DIY Aluminum Foil Roasting Rack. The point of a rack is to hold your bird above the pan so heat can circulate evenly. Who says it has to be made of wire or cost a lot of money? If you don’t have the store-bought variety, crumple some sheets of foil into thick ropes and wrap them in coils on the bottom of your pan. Or go biodegradable and place the bird on a bed of halved onions, carrots and celery.
 Use Chicken Broth as a Revive Your Turkey.  Overcooked the bird? Before you spirit that platter of dried-out breast meat to the table, drizzle it with a little warm chicken broth. It’ll help moisten the meat and add flavor. This is also a good trick for perking up slices that have gone from room temp to cold. Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey
 Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey  Cook white meat and dark meat separately.  Never, never let dry breast meat happen to you. Check out this helpful video that shows exactly how to break down a turkey into parts, then cook separately with recipes like Butter-Roasted Turkey Breast and Braised Turkey Thighs.

Measuring Cup As a Fat Separator. The secret to great gravy is skimmed — not greasy — pan drippings. If you’re without a fat separator, pour your drippings into a large heatproof measuring cup and pop it in the freezer. As the drippings cool, the fat will rise to the top and solidify, making it easy to skim off with a spoon.

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


NOW!

All that’s left is time to feast.

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

For Clean Up, the best advice I can give, clean as you go. It’ll save up so much more time and leave you more space to cook.

And, as Always:

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey


Presented by:

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

Deborah Kerr

Keller Williams Elite, Realtors

Office: 732-549-1998

Cell: 732-910-1682

Email: debkerr@kw.com

Website: debkerr.com


Get PreApproved TODAY!

Thanksgiving 2017 in New Jersey

Fall Life Hacks

Autumn Life Hacks – 15 Tips to Make Your Fall the Best it Can Be!

Autumn Life Hacks

15 Tips to Make Fall the Best Season Yet!

Fall Life Hacks

Summer is behind us, and with the start of the fall season comes a ton of wonderful things, leaves changing, cooling weather, pumpkin picking, apple cider, Halloween, and so many other activities. But how can you optimize your fall experience for both your home and yourself?

Well, look no further! Let the Kerr Team share tips with you so you can enjoy the season, with:

15 Tips to Make the Fall Your Season Yet!

Fall Life Hacks


  1. Make Pumpkins Last! 

There’s nothing worse than watching your picked pumpkins decay on your front porch. As they rot, they attract a variety of animals and insects feasting upon them. Stop this natural process by taking a spray bottle and filling it with a mixture of bleach and water. Coat the pumpkin and watch them last until after Halloween.


2. Easy Leaf Cleaning

With the season comes a massive leaf cleanup, especially if you have a deck or a patio. It looks sloppy and can be a problem to maintain. If you don’t have a leaf blower, because we all don’t own a landscaping company, this could be a tall task. Well work smarter, not harder. Use a simple house fan to blow the leaves where you want them to go, or into a pile. Makes for easy cleanup and looks even better.


3. Dry Your Shoes/Boots with Ease

During the season, it can easy for your footwear to become wet, and there’s nothing worse than walking around in a wet shoe. Well you don’t have to buy a new pair, nor break the bank cleaning them. Just grab some old newspaper and put them in the shoe, the paper will absorb the wetness, and overnight, your shoes will be dry.


Fall Life Hacks


4. Save a Wet Phone

In fairness, this one doesn’t always work, but it’s worth a shot instead of spending hundreds of dollars on a new phone. With the season can come rain, which causes wet clothes. But that could be devastating to your electronics. If you get your phone wet, to save it, place it in a container with uncooked, white rice, overnight. The salts in the rice with pull the moisture out of the phone, and hopefully save the functionality of your phone.


5. Create a New Kind of Lunch Box

With the fall comes back to school. While at school, you want to save lunch to be as fresh as possible. Well re-purpose those old black CD cases into a lunch container. The air tight seal will conceal freshness and ensure a good meal. See picture belowFall Life Hacks


6. Heating Pinecones

Pinecones can be a very nice decorative piece for your Thanksgiving table or even on a coffee table. But Pinecones can be a hotbed for insects and other undesirables you wouldn’t like in your home. To prevent this, before displaying them, put them on a baking sheet and cook them at 250 degrees for a bout an hour. That will take care of any of those hitchhikers you wouldn’t want to display to guests.


Fall Life Hacks


7. Use Old Cinderblocks to Display Jack-o-lanterns

This one is fun, but it may not be worth it to go out an purchase. But if you have some cinderblocks lying around, you can adjust them into being displays for Jack-O-Lanterns and candles, that will not burn and will be aesthetically pleasing.

Fall Life Hacks


8. DIY Potpourri 

One of the best parts of the season are the smells. You can achieve this with a candle or a plug in spray. But these scents can be achieved in a cheap, simple way by making your own potpourri. Use a few cinnamon sticks, a couple sliced apples, some orange peels, cloves, and vanilla extract, and simmer them in a pot on a stove, and let simmer throughout the day (just keep adding water to prevent burning), and your home will smell amazing.


9. Unique Candles

This is an inexpensive way to display a unique style of candles for the season. Take a normal candle, the larger the better, and place them in a larger vase. With the space between the candle and the vase, pour popcorn kernels in the gaps and wrap a bow around the vase, and display it where appropriate.


Fall Life Hacks


10. Gutter Cleaning

Every year, several people get injured, or worse, while cleaning out their gutters, by falling off a ladder. Well avoid doing so, taking a shop vacuum and attach a PVC pipe that bends and simply do it from the ground. Your back will thank you, as will your friends and family be happy you did it in a safe and sound process.


11. Bathroom Pumpkins

This is a fun, yet practical thing for storage in your bathroom. With your extra rolls of toilet paper, wrap them in cheap tissue paper (you can even use the packaging paper from a gift bag you may have received), then cut an old toilet paper roll and roll the cardboard into a stem, and even take leaves from outside and glue them to the top. Your guests will think it’s cute, with paying barely anything.

Fall life hacks


12. While Landscaping, Use a Tarp

We’ve all had the struggle of raking leaves, then when putting them into leaf bags, half of the leaves fall out and become scattered all over again, causing you to have to do it all over again. Well work smarter, not harder. Rake the leaves onto a plastic tarp, then when full, just lift the tarp and dump into however you dispose of your leaves.


Fall Life Hacks


13. Make a Fall Themed Centerpiece

Putting flowers or a centerpiece in the center of your table, really makes the table look a lot better. But why not make it have a fall theme, without breaking the bank. Take a normal pumpkin, hallow it out, then place a glass or even an aluminum can in the center with some water, and fill with your choice of floral arrangement. This will sure to brighten up any meal.


14. Washing Potatoes Made Easy

Potatoes are a usual staple in any fall meal. The first part of creating the delicious side item is washing them. Some people washing them one by one in the sink, but why? Make it easy on yourself, especially if you’re making a lot of potatoes. Put them in the top shelf of your dishwasher and run them through a rinse cycle, without adding soap.


15. Cooking Potatoes Made Easy

After washing your potatoes, you of course need to cook them. Well it could take a long time and sometimes you don’t have a pot big enough to fit all of them. Boil water in a normal pot or kettle, put the potatoes in a regular cooler, then once it the kettle boils, pour the water over the potatoes, close the lid to the cooler, and let the potatoes cook in the cooler, add more boiled water as needed.


Fall Life Hacks


Use these tips to help have a prosperous season, while still having a fun time!


Fall Life Hacks


Presented By Deborah Kerr

Fall Life Hacks

Deborah Kerr

Keller Williams Elite, Realtors

Office: 732-549-1998

Cell: 732-910-1682

Email: debkerr@kw.com

Website: debkerr.com


Get PreApproved NOW!

2017 Edison Wine & Beer Festival