Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Chapter 14: Winter Chills and Kerosene Blues

Currently, Jo and I are slowly falling into a foggy kerosene fumey coma. 2 weeks ago we ripped out our oil heater, patched the holes in the wall and bought a fire combustion heater on ebay, which is yet to be installed. Consequently, we have borrowed Gramp's Kerosene heater, which, while slowly heating the house, also slowly overwhelms us with kero - smello fumes. It is a delicate balance of deciding whether to let the cold but fresh air in, or suffocate slowly, but warmly. 

buying a fire place

Apart from the dreamy notions of snuggling by a cosy fire place with a glass of mulberry wine and toasty bed socks, our reasons for buying a fire place (slow combustion heater) was primarily to save on energy bills. Our old oil heater cost over $470.00 to refill each year and we realised we could save this money by installing a wood fired heater instead.

We enthusiastically jumped onto ebay a few weeks ago and bid on a heater (along with 22 other bidders) that was being sold 2nd hand. Despite the lack of information about the fire place and that the seller's name was 'Wayne' or something equally as alarming, Joe and I were thrilled to win the bid. However,  when joe arrived the next evening at the pick up address in the pitch dark, the transaction that was to follow seemed more clandestine than conspicuous.  'Wayne' was illuminated only by the head lights of Joe's car. Joe was slightly suspicious. "Nahh  yeahhh mate, yeeeah sorry but me powers out aye." Joe's suspicion grew. Being the trusting soul that Joe is he paid the money and drove home leaving Wayne to be swallowed by the darkness, most likely never to be seen again...we wonder now wether Wayne actually even lived at that address.

Anyhow, in the light the fireplace wasn't in too bad a condition although it needed a new seal for the door and a few less dings. Regardless, with stoic optimisim, the fireplace will be installed by Joe this weekend or we will all succumb to consumption from the cold dank air, that is if we haven't been suffocated by the ever present kerosene vapours.

Although nobody bothered to take part in our last poll, we have decided to include yet another fascinating moon planting chart for the coming month. Why? because we care!

In the Graden
This month, we planted many, many broad beans, and harvested carrots and parsnips that we had planted last spring. They were lovely with our pork roast. We have pruned the mulberry tree, mulched the fruit trees, and heaped more soil into our potato bags (which have bounced back since being netted from the possums).

Henrietta, Charlie and Billy Holiday still defy the onset of winter and are continuing to lay 3 eggs a day. Perhaps it is the warm porridge that we have been feeding them each morning, or Georgie serenading them with "Up jumps the scarecrow". Whatever the case, we are very proud of them.

Its official, only 202 days left to prepare for our Funky Front yard challenge, when we attempt to live off only what we can produce in our suburban front yard! This means its time to get busy. Next week, Joe plans to expand and rebuild the vege garden, and 4 weeks to go before I get out the old bassinette for bumbina numero tres. All shall be blogged in the up coming weeks.

Stay warm or perish. :)

1 comment:

  1. Dearest fave bloggers.. Nice stove! Looks lovely in the house too! Look forward to pics of glowing red faces pressed in tight about the burner.. Well done for keeping up the hard work in the wintery months..Your eggies and vege look yum, making me very hungry... FOUR WEEKS!! Blimey! Best of luck with all the baby biz, can't wait to hear, Manu xxxx