Friday, December 31, 2010

Keeping Warm

Before moving to California, I had believed it was a sunny and warm state. Little did I know, that wasn't totally true. My family and I live in North Eastern California which gets pretty cold. Last night my husband informed me it was six degrees at 11 p.m. and dropped to Zero during the early morning hours.

We have different methods to keep ourselves and our animals warm. Some ways are frugal and go along with our simple living, but others are not so frugal related to necessity.

On the frugal side for human warmth we have: long johns, sweatshirts, flannel shirts, warm drinks, (like hot chocolate and green tea), hot soup, and extra blankets. On the not so frugal side, we have an electric mattress cover we use occasionally.

For our animals, the dogs live inside (Max and Princess) and when outside, if above 35 degrees, they have a hay filled dog house and pen. The cat (Prince), lives on the back porch (he doesn't like being inside and has a full shaggy coat of fur). Knuckles, our rabbit, lives in a hutch full of hay and has a 2'x5'x3' dirt bin to tunnel in. The chickens and ducks have an insulated coop with hay and two red heat lamps.

The house is kept warm by a wood stove and three small electric heaters, which we turn on at night to keep pipes from freezing. We decided it was cheaper to pay a higher electric bill than to replace frozen damaged pipes.

January and February are the coldest months here. But, with all our various methods we stay snuggly warm. How do you keep warm in the winter?
Entrance to Dog house
Knuckle' Home. She is peeking out in the left bottom square 

#1 and Goldie getting warm under the red lights

Spot on the left and Maxine on the Right getting ready to snuggle in the hay

"What is that woman doing in here?"

Maxine going to bed down under nest boxes
Our wood stove. Small but heats well

We use 3.5 cords of wood a year. We bought 5 cords this year because it was cheaper

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