Ode to a Wood Stove

Starting a new lifestyle can be daunting any time of the year but jumping into it just as the harsh winter months approach is the kind of challenge that creates champs! We had to find ways to make life in a 400 square ft. tiny loft-style home on a secluded mountain less taxing on our nerves when there was too much snow on the ground to escape outdoors. As stereotypical as it sounds, I found some comfort in baking – this from a person who used to take her meals with the fridge door open grasping spoonfuls of peanut butter and hand shovels of leftover pasta noodles. I even baked my first cake from scratch for Tony’s birthday – carrot cake, his favorite. Even more homesteader-typical I went on a mad craft-scapade – making crochet octopi for two little darlings our pro-creating friends popped out last year and developing maddening puzzles to send to our loved ones. (It helps that I’m planning a wedding where all this crafting can make a debut!) This winter was also my first experience heating a house by wood stove alone. One becomes pretty dang aware of energy consumption when it entails collecting, chopping, stacking fuel and manually feeding a hungry cast iron maw to stay warm. Luckily our house is small and retains a lot of heat – plus the windows provide great solar gain on those splendid though few winter days when the sun is out. The day we installed the wood stove I took some footage of our first indoor burn (burned it outside once to get the chemical smell out of the paint) and I nearly forgot about it until spring sorting of my office unearthed the clips. Here is a short ode to our wood stove as we say our farewell to winter:

Music: Danza Filipina by Urbano A. Zarfa