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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Our Woodstove

"We're seriously going to go bankrupt," I complained one month after realizing that our mortgage payment and oil bill were about the same!! That was 2 years ago, shortly after moving into our new home, this darling, albeit, drafty farmhouse. We immediately switched to electric heat, space heaters galore, 7 to be exact, plus 2 "fireplaces" and an "eden pure." We weren't doing a lot better w/ the heating costs, but we weren't going to go bankrupt after all, so there's a start. Well, while reading the Farmer's Almanac this past Fall and talking to the "weather pros" around town, we realized we were in for a cold, hard winter. What to do? What to do?? Without too much pause for thought, my handy husband announced plans to "break into the existing chimney"!!! Which was behind these lovely floating shelves.....um, okay!!I've learned early on in our marriage to just go along with my husband and his plans because 99% of the time they are awesome, amazing, efficient and beautiful. Here's a post about the remaining 1%. Quite literally the next day a man came out to make sure the chimney was clean. After the inspection, work began in full force. It looked like he was breaking into a vault, layer upon layer of plaster, wood, cement, and finally, the inside of the chimney! My husband never ceases to amaze me with his vision for this old house. He took some old "lick 'em, stick 'em" stone from his shop and with mortar, applied them to the wall for the rustic look. They also act as an insulator. man, he's a cutie!!!

He was finished in no time at all. He's a machine!
Our friends GAVE us their old wood stove, they were buying a larger one for their home.
Seriously, GAVE it to us!
It was pressure-washed, polished and installed:
IT

IS

AMAZING!!

When it's doing THIS outside, we are toasty warm! We are so grateful it was able to work out so nicely. The average temperature throughout the day is 78* although occasionally it will get up to the mid 80's, especially during the night. It is what I call our "perpetual newborn" because it needs constant care. But, it gives it return so we don't mind looking after it!

I have fond feelings when I remember my childhood and the warmth of a wood stove. I don't have fond memories of carrying wood inside each night from the "lean-to", but apart from that it is a pleasant thought! When I was extra cold my Dad would hold me above the stove, the warmth radiating all over my back, my legs, my head. It was heavenly. On cold mornings my Mom would lay my clothes around it, getting them really warm and then quickly dressing me. I can almost feel the warmth of it even as I type the words.

So, Winter, do your best....have at it!

"Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth,
for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire:
it is the time for home."
~Edith Sitwell~

7 comments:

Bess said...

Oh, Janelle! It looks beautiful!

Isn't the cost of oil just disgusting?! We just bought a used coal stove yesterday because I just about threw up 2 weeks ago when Curt told me we were almost out of oil...after having it filled in October!!! We're trying to avoid going bankrupt over heating this house! :)

Jess said...

How beautiful! He is such a handy man and I must say he has a great eye as well! Love it!

Mark and Heather said...

I had to smile at your comment about your stove being a "perpetual newborn". we have a coal stove and I am left to tend and stoke it on most days so i can appreciate the work it takes but at the same time the heat it brings! :)
Have a great New Year!
Heather

Vickie said...

Oh, what a special person/family it takes to "love" an old house, me being one...it is absolutely beautiful. The handiwork of your husbands hands! Great jobJake!. And, is that a pot on the stove?!!? Do you cook on it? Love the boots too. Cozy up Friends! Happy New Year!

xoxoxoxo

The lady of the house... said...

hi Vickie~pot on the stove is for water, to keep the air moist....before we had a stove i would often wonder why my parents had water on top of their stove! now i understand. seems like that's the pattern as i grow older...understanding why my parents did what they did! :-)
xoxo

AmyK said...

I grew up with a wood stove and always loved it. They are so cozy! I used to put my clothes out near it so they could get nice and warm before I put them on in the mornings!

Size5Jeanes said...

what a blessing! enjoy the warmth!
I loved seeing your creative house decorations!!!
keep up the good work!