Gearing Up For Winter

Last year we arrived at the ‘ol farmhouse in February.  It was cold.  The house had been vacant for some time therefore it was ice cold as there had been no heat during that time to help warm the walls and stones of the fireplace.

It was going to take a lot to get the house to a comfortable temperature but our only heat sources at the time were one large propane gas heater that was situated in front of one of the fireplaces and two small propane heaters; one mounted on the wall in the bathroom and laundry area and the other free-standing in front of the other fireplace.  Problem was, we did not have a sufficient propane bottle that could withstand the weather when the temps dropped so drastically.  We had two 50 gallon bottles sitting in front of the 300 gallon bottle because the gas company did not want to drive their heavy truck across our old and decrepit bridge.  When the temps dropped in the teens and below they froze up leaving us with no heat.

snowy-propane-bottles

Long story short, we survived.  We had only our bed and two rocking chairs so we huddled in the living room and thankfully, a neighbor brought over a kerosene heater which helped tremendously.

This year, we have worked on getting a wood burning insert for one of the fireplaces…

wood-insert

and a ventless propane heater for the other which will be used as a backup since propane is so expensive.

ventless-gas-heater

We kept the wall-mounted propane heater in bathroom/laundry nook/pantry area and once the bathroom is closed off we will move it into the bathroom.  (Gotta have a toasty bathroom when getting out of the shower!)

We also fixed the bridge…

bridge-done10

bought a 500 gallon propane bottle, moved the location of the bottle to make it easier for the gas company to refill and ran new gas lines from the bottle to the house.

propane-tank

Now it was up to us to get some fire wood.

Being new to the area, we have been blessed by new friends that have helped us find sources to stock our wood shed.  CountryBoy helps a neighbor cut and split wood and he comes home with a truckload.  Then, a fellow from church offered some wood he had cut down a while ago since he was going to be gone most of the winter.  We just needed a way of splitting it.

So, CountryBoy got his Anniversary and Christmas present early… a log splitter!  I tell you what, it sure is a time-saving and back-breaking lifesaver!

cutting-wood-2

Today we took the splitter to his house and we worked as a team to make quicker work of it.  I would cut up the smaller branches using the chain saw…

cutting-wood-1

and when I was finished I helped him with the splitter and throwing the split logs into the truck.

cutting-wood-3

We still need more wood since you never know what winter will bring but not a bad day’s haul for a couple of hours of work!

As for this homesteading wife… I’ll do whatever it takes to be WARM this winter!

We’ve had some pretty cold days and nights already and the house has been comfy with the fire going and occasionally lighting up the propane heater.  So, hopefully, we have the heating source situation under control and we can get and keep the bones of the house warm thereby making it easier to keep the interior warm.  We’ll know soon enough if we’re ready for THIS…

snowy-farm-3

Brrrr!  But so pretty!

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