This time of year it’s always a more difficult decision to go to Rowe for an overnight and come home. It’s not that I don’t relish the quiet and solitude, I just have to relish it in a dark, freezing cold house. That’s always part of the thinking process – do I really want to freeze for an hour when I get there?
Yesterday I decided to go. I wanted to see how long it would take to heat the kitchen when starting with a cold wood stove and then see how long I could keep the temperature up in the house using the stove through the night. You know they tell you all kinds of things in advertising, I just wanted to see if it was true.
Chester and I arrived at about 4:30, the sun was down and it was getting dark fast. Have I ever mentioned how much I dislike this time of year – for that reason – the days are too short. I grabbed an armload of wood on my way through the shed and proceeded to build a little fire in the stove. It wasn’t as easy a task as I had anticipated but finally kicked in. Within an hour it was cranking and three hours from arrival the kitchen was over 70 degrees. I had bought a kinetic fan that is placed on top of the stove and that was blowing the heat towards the other rooms (and it’s fun to watch – who needs electricity?).
When I had walked into the kitchen with my load of wood it was below 50 in the kitchen and the furnace was running. It was just below freezing outdoors. Without the stove I would have been listening to the furnace kick on and off all night and the temperature in the room would never have been above 62 or so, no matter how high you turn up the thermostat. I had all of the other thermostats turned to 64. The furnace didn’t come on until around 4:00 this morning. I got up to make my coffee around 6:30 and the little fan was still moving, a testament to the heat still in the stove. I threw a piece of wood on the remaining coals and poof!, roaring fire. It’s a good feeling when you know that a major investment of time and sweat is going to pay off.
I spent the evening twisting fringe on a throw that will be a Christmas present and thinking about how many other things I can make and have ready for the holidays. Chester spent his evening on the floor in front of the stove.
With the payoff in the stove experiment fresh in my mind I took Chester out for the morning walk about and was soo glad I had come up. It may have been cold (19 degrees) but it certainly was beautiful.