Friday, October 2, 2009

Let's Get Fired Up ... or Not

I verified (from my archived blog posts) that last year we waited until the end of October (October 22, to be exact) before we fired up the woodstove.

But last year we had a very good reason (other than stubbornness) to wait. Last year, we didn't have the woodstove. The "new" woodstove was installed around the eighteenth of October, and we had a to wait a couple of days for everything to dry before we built the first fire.

I think we can wait a little longer. It's not really that cold, yet. We haven't even had our first frost at my house. I smelled wood smoke this morning, which means one of my neighbors has fired up his woodstove, and I know many people more inland (where they have had a frost already) who've already put the heat on.

The thermostat in the hall says it's 60° in my house right now, which isn't cold - at least by Maine standards. In fact, 60° on a clear, bright day, like today, would be a nice, late spring beach day ... and a 60° ocean temperature would feel like a bathtub - compared to the water temperature at other times of the year :).

Deus Ex Machina (ironically, the "native" Mainer) is the one who seems more affected by the cold and heat, and he'll start the first fire ... but he is out of town this weekend at a conference in northern Maine. So, for the next three days, at least, the woodstove will remain cold ... because I'm going to see how long I can hold out.

Of course, I think Little Fire Faery would probably prefer it if I were more like her dad ;).


  1. My aunt (by marriage, of course) is a native Mainer, and as is typical of the breed, proud of it (though she won't let you know it *too* obviously, since it shouldn't need to be said). She insists my uncle, the newcomer (only lived in Maine for 35 years), keep the house at 70 degrees. I say she's soft, but she doesn't care.

    We haven't had any frost yet, and none in the forecast so far. Until the house fails to warm up to 64 during the day, I won't even be thinking about touching the thermostat. After that...we'll see.

  2. The temps in my house are currently hovering at 67. We don't have any plans to start up the wood stove yet, but I will be doing more baking so the oven can warm us up a little bit!

    I save all my baking for this time of the year! :o)

    And that photo of fire faery is so funny!

  3. We made it until December 7 or 8 last year before we turned the heat on. I'm going to see if we can at least get that far this time. I'm excited Moochie's getting old enough to bundle up easily...hee hee!

  4. My poor "Beanie Girl" is cold!!! She can come stay with me in my 70 degres palace, till her Daddy comes home:)

  5. Tammy, she'd probably really enjoy that ... but you can't take one without taking the other two. They're a set :).

    Of course, Daddy coming home doesn't mean that she'll be any warmer. Even if he starts a fire, he's not home all day, and it's really up to me to keep it going ... if I want to :).

  6. I dropped in to see if I can find the post about making vanilla. I finally bought some vanilla beans, HOLY COW, just 2 of them in the bottle and I forget how much it cost but it wasn't cheap. Then I went vodka shopping. I picked the one with the pretty bottle. Rain Organic vodka. Will that work? How much vanilla bean? and how much vodka?

  7. Bayberry - Re: Vanilla extract. I use two beans, halved length-wise to open them up so that the most flavor can be extracted. I put them into a pint-sized canning jar (one of the ones with a glass lid and a wire closure), and I cover them with vodka. So, I guess I use about one cup of vodka per bean. When I've used a quarter of the liquid, I refill the bottle with vodka. When it gets down to about half, I add another bean and refill the bottle. It makes a really nice vanilla extract, and I haven't bought the artificial stuff in a very long time ;).

  8. Hehe! That is the view around Barefoot Manor, as well.... I am holding out on turning on the furnace as long as I can, and Mr. Barefoot is whining just a bit. I think the temp is hovering between 55 and 60 in the house. Cold, but like you said: that's shorts weather in the spring....