While today might not be representative of the challenges one will face in the 2012/2013 No Heat / Less Heat challenge, it is time to start keeping track and talking smack.
I grew up in a comfortable middle class home that sported 72 deg F rooms. If I visited a home that was anything less than 71 degs F, I was solid as iceberg floating toward the Titanic. I never would have allowed my parents to participate in a No Heat challenge much like I never allowed a fake Christmas tree. However, I was shocked last year when I read 64 deg F on my own thermostat because I felt like I was having a hot flash. (Note to self: check perimenopause symptoms)
Once the wood stove was fired up on October 19th, I encouraged the family to try the Less Heat challenge. We didn’t use the furnace unless absolutely necessary, like arriving home at bedtime on Sunday night to a 57 deg F house. We actually went for two weeks in February where my husband and I hid the fact that the furnace wasn’t working from each other. (How cleaver we are!)
Last weekend was our first freezing outdoor temp. If the peppers can make it through with No Heat. So can I.
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“We need No Heat!” The Red Bell Peppers
I stood entranced, listening to the hum of the thermostat light, asking myself, “what am I doing?”
I pushed the light light button again to see the thermostat read 63 degrees F.
It’s not like 63 degrees F is an unusual temperature in our house these days. It’s just that for one moment I questioned my own sanity.
63 degrees F. Voluntarily, we are living home with an average daytime temperature of 63 degrees F. A layer of dull ash sits in the bottom of the wood stove. The dust continues to settle without threat of combustion on the heater coils of the furnace.
It isn’t so much the 63 deg F temperature stuns me as the fact that I now consider it a comfortable temperature. I recall a time in my young twenties when I constantly complained to my then-boyfriend that his roommate, the home owner, was extremely rude to keep his house at a frigid 65 degrees F when guests (girlfriends) where there! I made a point of walking around his house wrapped inside of a blanket. Now, when my husband offers to build a fire, I rush in front of the stove wielding a roll of newspapers screeching for him to “Get Back! Wait just five minutes longer!”