Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Furnace Chicken

Every year we hold out as long as we can before we turn the furnace on. It's usually a damp, cold day during the 3rd week of September when we cave the first time and turn it on for a day or two. This fall has been unusually warm, hot even, and sunny. If the house is 50 degrees in the morning, it will warm up to 56 when I open the curtains on the south side and cook a little bit. If I work outside for a while in 50 degree weather, then 56 seems quite warm when I come back in.

We finally caved and turned the heat on November 4th this year. I did it because we were going to visit Liz in Chicago for a few days, and I was too grateful to my brother for agreeing to live here and care for our menagerie to make him play our furnace game. As it turned out, that weekend ushered in the other kind of late fall weather: dark, damp, windy and cold. No more warming the rooms up with sunshine; we have been lucky these past few weeks if we can see to read a recipe at noon without turning on a light.

Still, the thermostat is rarely above 60, or 55 if there is only one person home. At night we turn it down to 50. I'm annoyed by the sound of the furnace kicking in all night long, and we have plenty of blankets. We close the doors to upstairs and heat up there only minimally. Anna must be turning into a teenager, because she rarely begs to turn the heat up anymore and she hangs out alone in her room regardless of the temperature.

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