Acquiring And Stacking And Burning Firewood
Learn how to negotiate the best firewood deals every year. Find benefit and pleasure in stacking wood. Burn clean with a wood stove.
Wood is my major source of heat. I relish every part of the experience. I feel prosperous hearing the wood being tossed from the delivery truck. I appreciate the way the mound of wood changes like a moving sculpture as new cords are heaved on top, and as I slowly drain the mountain when I stack the wood.
It's hard to find firewood in recent years. Beginning in March is the best time to start looking for green wood when it's least expensive. No one is thinking of green firewood except the wood cutters, so you can make a good deal.
Moving and stacking the wood can be mindlessly relaxing, like the kind of peace that comes with crocheting. Stacking wood is good exercise, excellent for maintaining strong bones in your upper body. Stacking wood also gives a feeling of accomplishment, although I'll forgo the pleasure if I can rope someone else into stacking. It's a good job for a teenager who's often away from home. If the wood's not finished by a certain time, the family doesn't suffer dire consequences.
You'll have to wear protective shoes until you've had even one small piece of wood fall on you. Then you have so much respect for the power of the wood, you can wear sandals if you like, and you'll fly out of the way when you hear the smallest rumble from the wood.
Chopping kindling from lumber scraps is fun. The heavy ax does most of the work. The kindling seems to expand when it's chopped up. You can sort the wood so the sizes you want are at your fingertips. You can salvage all usable scraps, scooping what's left on the delivery truck as well as saving twigs and branches from any trees on your property. You can collect kindling from lumber companies and construction sites and store boxes of kindling. Collect old wood shingles when you get a chance.
I enjoy the crackling sound of the fire and the bang of the wood stove heating. The radiant heat emitted from the metal stove is what actually warms the house. A ceiling fan in the living room near the stove will quickly spread the heat throughout the other rooms. Each room feels 5 degrees cooler than the next room closer to the stove. Eventually the temperature equalizes. The heat is pervasive, lasting and penetrating.
Even the smell of fire in the air outside is pleasing, and I like to see smoke curling from other people's chimneys. Once the fire is underway I try to burn so cleanly that neighbors can see no smoke rising, not black or even white coming from the chimney. Yes, I love wood. I don't even mind taking an occasional splinter out of my hand.