Thursday, January 19, 2012


by Andrea, it's cold outside!

Here on the Lakeshore in Western Michigan the current temp is 14, which has fallen from our morning high of 25. Add the wind chill and we are at a chilly -1 degree with temps to continue falling today.

So with temperatures so brutal, I decided it was the perfect day to have a fire in the family room as I cuddle up with my laptop and write some romantic scenes. Great idea, but two problems. First, we have no newspaper in the house. I mean, who actually gets a newspaper delivered anymore when everything is online? Second, my wood was still outside under the deck, covered in snow and ice. We never brought any in yet this year.

But this would not deter me as I set out to execute the image in my mind of sitting toasty and dry next to the fire with my tea at hand.

After several trips up from the basement with the wood (we reach out the basement window and grab it from under the deck) and the fireplace tools, I realized it was time for the annual clean out of the old ashes. (I did mention that we hadn't had a fire yet this year, right?) I scooped the old stuff out and looked up to check the chute. Uh, oh. It had been left open all year. I diverted my thoughts and refused to estimate what that had cost us in heating and cooling expenses.

So I had my wet and frozen logs, a bucket of wood scraps from hubby's workshop for kindling, newspaper. I looked in the recycling box under the kitchen sink and grabbed a couple of pieces of white paper. On the way back into the family room, I caught sight of the school's newspaper that my eldest had brought home the other night and left on the coffee table. Thank you, Andrew! Real newspaper.

At this point, I really wanted my hubby home. He's magic with kindling... Anyway, I get everything set up and light the paper.

I love the flame of paper. It gives me such hope that my logs will catch fire and all will be right in the world. But alas, no. Once the paper and the kindling burned out, I had no roaring fire. It took another twenty minutes of futzing with kindling to get something even close to resembling a true fire. I'm hoping as the logs dry the rest of the burning will go better today.

Firestarter, I am not.
I could really have used some Drew Barrymore help.

If you haven't seen this oldie, but goldie movie, circa 1984, first read the book by Stephen King.

1 comment:

Sarah M. Anderson said...

We're in much the same boat here--except we have lots of newspaper!