Friday, January 25, 2008

Cold Weather , Wood Stoves & Families

I spent several days at my cabin in central Wisconsin this week. Every morning was below zero, one morning down to -15. I heat the place with a wood stove--something about wood stove heat that is relaxing as well as warming, even though on a cold morning my front side is toasty warm while my back end freezes as I stand in front of the wood burner.

I grew up in an uninsulated farm house heated with two wood stoves. We closed off most of the house in winter except for the kitchen and the dining room. I remember frigid cold mornings and cold evenings, too, when the wind came up and the house shuddered and we huddled close to the Round Oak heater in the dining room.

There was something special about the cold, beyond the inconvenience of a frozen watering tank, and an uncomfortable mile walk to our country school. Cold weather brought families together, literally.

The Old Timer says: "No matter what direction a north wind blows, it always blows cold."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My husband and I still farm what I call the old fashioned way. By that I mean we have a small 50 cow herd and have no hired help. The severe weather is a reminder of how important it is to work together. We have modern convieniences but extra effort is still required to keep the animals warm and feed. Silo unloaders freeze up, doors need to be tight, cracks need to be closed up, extra bedding is needed, tractors need to be plugged in, yards plowed, and still water pipes can freeze in 2008. However I am so grateful that I can just push a button and I can have a warm home. I can`t imagine also having to cut wood just to keep warm.