Well, the weather has changed again in this ‘can’t make it’s mind up’ month we are having. We go from grey and damp, to sunny and crisp. It is up,down, shake it all around. Anyway, Spring isn’t far off now, the signs are all there as the snowdrops bashfully bow their heads and the daffodils begin to creep above the ground.
Yet winter isn’t quite finished with us as temperatures are due to fall to around freezing in rural areas over the next few nights. It’s already blooming cold out there and very wet. However, fear not, as we have coal, logs, kindling and matches, as well as the very popular olive briquettes readily available to help keep you toasty warm.
Which led to a conversation with a regular customer, who was picking up his coal and logs, about how we use our log stoves. Judging by his reaction (think eyebrows disappearing into hairline surprise) I obviously maximize the use of ours to the extreme.
We all know that a log stove with a roaring fire not only warms the home, but the soul as well. There is something hypnotically beautiful and cheering about a real flame. The light it gives off on a dark evening is most definitely conducive to a little romance and relaxation, sharing a bottle of your favorite tipple, with a few candles burning from Black Acres Soap Pantry easily makes for a little bit of #hygge. Even the fat cat Silly Lillie gets belly up in front of the fire purring like a little motor boat. (P.S. The fireguard is not there to protect the child but the cat! If she gets any closer to the fire we will end up with roast cat one day!! She’s singed her whiskers already – love that daft cat).
On a more practical level, once our stove is lit I use it to do more than just warm the home. To start with the kettle is filled and placed in position to keep hubby in brews, make hot toddy’s in the “man flu” & cold season, and top up hot water bottles when the child is poorly too. The clothes are set out to dry around it, saving money not using the tumble dryer, and muddy wet boots and gloves are set nearby to dry again for the following day.
I also cook on our stove. Bread is left to prove and rise on the fire guard, tagines gently slow cook throughout the day filling the house with delicious spicy aromas, anything that needs to be boiled (pasta, veg,rice) goes in a pan on the top, stews and soups are left to simmer to perfection, and milk warmed for hot chocolate ready for when we come in from the cold.
Then we burn as much practical waste (veg peelings, tea bags, paper, cardboard etc), which helps to heats us and reduces how much we put out in the bins. Finally, did you know that the ashes from your fire has uses too? We tip ours onto the dormant veg patch to enrich the soil (let the worms dig it in) and save some to go around the new sprung veg to help deter slugs and snails. You can even save your fire ash and use it to create dust baths for you chickens during the summer months.
Therefore, the obvious conclusion is that the log stove must be a female! Quite simply because of the ability to seriously multitask! Hahahahahahaha.