|My taped daughter and friends at Nordic States in Presque Isle, Maine February 16, 2015|
|My daughter racing on a warmer day|
Our first January in Maine there was an epic icestorm. We lost power for a week. Many of our neighbors lost power for longer. That "dangerous" woodstove kept our small house in the 60's and the pipes from freezing. An open fireplace is far less efficient at heating a house since most of the hot air goes up the chimney. A woostove radiates heat, and the top can be used to cook tins of soup and to boil water for tea or even a bath. My professor husband became very proficient at splitting logs.
A woodstove is greener than you might think. The trees we burn, some from our yard, are replanted every year. A growing tree sucks up more CO2 than is released by burning that tree. Maine is the most densely forested state in the continental USA, and one of the least populated, so burning wood works for us. As the saying goes, a woodstove warms you three times: stacking logs, splitting logs and burning them.
|Reading Black Dove, White Raven by Elizabeth Wein with Scout, photo by my husband. Book review coming in March.|
When we moved into our current house, the first thing we bought was a woodstove to supplement our natural gas furnace. Our Jotul keeps our library cozy on the coldest nights and has been useful during other power failures. We've never had it as bad as that first winter, but this year, with all the blizzards, record snowfall (another six to ten inches due tonight), and frigid temperatures (three degrees Fahrenheit), I feel prepared. If I need to go outside for logs, I can always tape my face!
Recommended reading: The Remedy for Love by Bill Roorbach (fiction)
For more novel uses for duct tape, woodstoves recipes, and other winter survival tips.