i got out of bed at 9am this morning even though i could've easily slept more. my parents were going on a pre-thanksgiving foodpak supply run and i wanted to go too.

i bought an upgraded tribit maxsound plus portable bluetooth speaker for $43 this morning, after waking up and getting a notice from camelcamelcamel that the speaker was on sale. i was just researching portable speakers last night, trying to figure out if the tribit maxsound plus was better than the soundcore motion+. price wise, the soundcore is more expensive. let me check out the tribit when it arrives tomorrow, if it sounds good i'll keep it, otherwise i'll get the soundcore motion+ and do a sound comparison.

i took an inventory of my dishes. i had enough ramekins but not enough large trays for my thanksgiving flan. i normally use glass lasagna trays for the water bath, but a typical tray can only hold 6 ramekins. i do have a larger aluminum tray that can hold 8. i used to have a much larger tray that can easily hold 13 but i haven't seen that tray since 2017. then later i remembered i did find that larger tray while working at the cafe, and when i looked inside of my oven, not only was the larger tray there, but also a large 4qt lasagna dish.

i got to belmont around 11am. my father was in his jacket so i thought they were about to leave for the supply run, but my mother said they just came back from the cafe and it looks like they have enough supplies for the next 2 days before the cafe closes for the thanksgiving break and won't open back up until next tuesday.

instead i had lunch, my mother warmed up the leftover stinky tofu soup from last night and added some rice noodles. the big news story today was an SUV crashing into the hingham apple store, injuring a bunch of customers. later we learned one person died, with at least 19 more injured, many in hospitals undergoing surgery.

in the early afternoon my father and i went to home depot to return some unused laundry hookup equipment (240v plug, supply hoses). right when we arrived at home depot, he got a phone call, and stayed in the car to talk while i went inside to return the items. i also bought a new dryer plug, one with the correct prongs. my father was still talking in the car, so i told him i'd walk to the nearby autozone to get some dielectric grease for my sticky motorcycle turn signal switch.

it was a 5 minute walk in some blustery weather. i couldn't find the grease and had to ask one of the cashiers, who pulled out a package the size of a ketchup packet behind the counter for $2. after i left autozone, my father called me. i thought he was calling to ask where i was so he could come pick me up, but he told me the car battery had died from sitting idle for so long in the parking lot and wouldn't start. he tried calling my mother so she could drive the other car and bring the battery jumper, but her phone was in the living room and she couldn't hear it. the only other option was for me to walk 1.6 miles back to the house to get the car, which would take at least half an hour not including the time driving back. so this little trip that was supposed to take a few minutes ended up becoming quite the ordeal.

but i had an idea to reach my mother. our eufy indoor webcams have a feature where it can sound an alarm for 30 seconds. i logged into the living room camera and turned on the alarm. a few seconds later i saw my mother stumbling into the dining room, trying to find out where the sound was coming from. i quickly called her to let her what happened and asked her to bring the battery jumper.

i ended up walking back to the home depot parking lot where my father was waiting in the car. he tried the ignition one more time and this time the engine started. he quickly called my mother, who was just about to pull out of the driveway, telling her not to come.

back at the house, my father went to recharge the car battery while i took apart the motorcycle turn signal assembly to clean it up and hopefully fix the turn signal issue. i sprayed the inside with a bottle of CRC QD electronic cleaner. afterwards i applied dielectric grease to some contact points. i then put everything back together. it wouldn't be a big deal under normal circumstances, but the temperature was cold, and i had to go inside to put on my jacket and a few more times to blow my runny nose. the fix seemed to be working, although i still got it to stick on a few occasions. when the switch gets stuck, the signal light won't turn on.

we also replaced the screen on the storm door with the glass partition. my father took out the wok burner from the garage and set it up in the backyard so he could grill some salted fish for dinner. i moved all the remaining plants from the sun room (lemon verbana, christmas cactuses) down into the basement. because we're only keeping one dragon fruit cactus plant, we have enough space in the grow room to put in a folding table.

before dinner, my father and i expanded the dining room table by one leaf (originally we did 2 leaves but that was too long for 8 people). he made some fried rice for dinner, along with the salted fish he fried earlier outside.

i didn't stay long after dinner, i hurried home since i still had flan to make. that turn signal problem was still there, just not as bad as last night. i'm going to have to take it apart again and clean it out in more detail. good news is i still have plenty of dielectric grease left, and having done it once, the second time will be much easier. the weather tomorrow also looks to be slightly warmer. i need to go back to belmont anyway to do some cleaning, since i can't do it on wednesday (my traditional thanksgiving cleaning day) because i'll be at the cafe.

thanksgiving flan
(16x 6 oz. ramekins)

10 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
6 cups whole milk
3 tsp vanilla extract
1.5 cups sugar (caramelized)

preheat oven to 350°F. mix eggs with sugar and salt. mix in remaining liquid ingredients. set aside, let bubbles dissipate. boil a kettle of water and pour into lasagna dishes lined with ramekins. caramelize remaining sugar (melt in small batches, 3/4 cups each), coating ramekin bottoms. pour in flan mixture, using fine mesh strainer to catch any unmixed egg bits. bake for 120 minutes, switching trays after 1 hours to brown evenly.

i started making the flan around 7pm. there isn't that many ingredients, it's more technical than anything else. there's the mixing with a hand mixer, the melting of the sugar, the hot water baths, pouring of the sugar into the ramekins, straining the liquid flan mixture into the ramekins, then carefully putting everything into the oven without getting burned and then rotating the trays followed by taking them out. i was making 16 this year, which means each person can have 2 flans if they wanted. and i know every year i toy with the idea of doing something different with my flan (one year i used coconut milk, another year i used real vanilla beans), but usually i just stick with my normal recipe.

i baked the flan in total for 2 hours, with a rotation at the 1 hour mark. the flans in the top rack tray ended up browning, while the bottom rack flans only slightly browned on the ones closer to the sides of the tray. i left them to cool on a wire rack then later put them away in my fridge.

i watched the celtics-bulls game. boston was trying to continue their winning streak, but chicago had other ideas. the bulls were shooting lights out, and the celtics were missing their three pointers. boston made a valiant effort at the start of the 4th quarter to cut into the bulls lead by single digits, but chicago got hot away, and it was obvious the celtics weren't going to win tonight. there was also monday night football, a game between the 49ers and cardinals, in mexico city of all places. san francisco won 38-10.

i tried on my adidas sweat/running pants tonight. i haven't worn sweat pants in a long time, i associate them with laziness for some reason. maybe it's just my abnormal body proportions but they seem a little saggy in the crotch area. comfortable though, and warm too.