Monday, December 13, 2010


Today in the News:  Axes are cooler than Justin Bieber. Ask any 12-year-old girl.
Link of the Day: .  She hasn't posted on her blog in awhile, but I think it is cool.  Check it out.


My house here on the happy-half-acre has a magnificent rock fireplace.  It was one of the features that really sold me on the house.  Little did I know that fireplaces are pretty inefficient and it just so happens that whoever built this one was a knuckle head.  The first time I lit a fire in it in 2005, it blew smoke out into the living room and darn near choked us out.

Flash forward to March 2006.  We had a new baby, not even a month old and sure enough, we got a three-foot snowstorm and lost power.  I remember leaving for work down the mountain the next day, leaving my wife and newborn in a house that was 50 degrees and dropping.  Not good.  Not prepared.  Not smart.

Mrs. Hotel and I agreed that we needed to get the fireplace fixed and in turn, we invested in a fireplace insert.  Wood heat is different than natural gas, K-1 or whatever.  You cannot beat the warmth of wood heat.

Something I like to do during the Christmas Season is eat cuties.  They go by "cuties", but they're really just mini oranges.  After I peel the orange, I like to put the peel on top of the stove.  It gives off a great smell that reminds me of being a little kid with my parents at camp.

Anyhow, after the peel sits a bit, it dries out.  One day, I threw the peel in the stove.  This is what happened:

Yeah!  Now, I know what some of you are thinking - paper would do the same thing, but if you actually FELT the flame, your mind would change.  So I decided to try something:
 Eat  a few oranges....

 Dry the peelings.....

Mortar and pestal...

Crush 'em.....

Down to bits.......

Now stay tuned, I'll be trying it as tinder soon!

Pax Domini Sit Semper Vobiscum,

Mike, Oscar, Hotel.....out.


  1. Interesting. Never would have thought of that. Looking forward to your experiment results!


  2. We have a large open rock fireplace up in the old cottage, I love open fires.
    We dry our orange peel in the open oven to use as kindling. I have never tried to use it as tinder. Let me know if it catches a spark, interesting.

  3. Thanks Le Loup. Glad to know someone else has noticed. I'll post a follow up next week - btw - LOVE your blog!

  4. Now that's thinking crushing them up. There is a lot of oil in orange peels and it is very flammable. I like the wood stove.