So much to say, so little time

I’ll be posting lots of various updates this and two Taco Traveler installments. There is a lot to say. But for now, I just want to say that tomorrow, we’re starting this


My time of late has been spent rather glued to my computer. My wonderful husband bought me an EEE PC for an early birthday present and I promptly put it to good use. I have greatly increased my writing income in the past few weeks and been able to pick up some new gigs – even non-blogging stuff!

At home it’s been very much a process of just doing enough to keep the machine running, minimal laundry, quick cooking and not a whole lot of cleaning up. Not the best but as I am getting myself into a good daily work/writing routine things move more smoothly and I can work those other things back into the rotation. And, since we don’t have little ones running around our house doesn’t really get all that messy anyway.

So, I’ve written an essay that will hopefully be published in a book. More details on that when I know them for sure. I’ve written a post for a new blog which may be a bit more ongoing. We’ll see.

My Christmas shopping for everyone except for my husband is all but done already (woo!). There are still craft projects to be completed but nothing too strenuous or difficult to accomplish.

Today I have lost a vast amount of time doing research on one of our dreams for our home. Or current home and our future home.

drolet-savannah-stoveWe would like to have the option of heating our home with a wood stove when the temperature drops below freezing. Our home has a combination air conditioner/heat pump which, for the most part works well. Once the temperature drops below freezing it becomes extremely inefficient though and we’d like to have another option. We’ve been talking about it for awhile and finally got out and started some research yesterday and today.

I grew up in a home heated with wood (my Dad has a wood burning furnace) but like a lot of my knowledge, things in Texas are much different than things in Indiana so my ideas aren’t always useful here.

We went to the local fireplace store yesterday and got this hugely expensive estimate. Today, we had a chimney sweep out to clean the fireplace chimney and give us an estimate on some things. Much more affordable but, a totally different installation idea. Ok… so who is right? Well, who knows really. We chose to believe the guy who wasn’t going to cost us $1400 in parts and labor just for the chimney!

After all of that, when I was talking to my Dad today I asked about the differences between soapstone (which we would love but it’s almost prohibitively expensive), cast iron and plate steel stoves. Interesting…

We both dug into the internet and called back and forth to each other when we found good stuff. It looks like we can get TWO stoves, one plate and one cast iron, chimney building supplies, non-combustible wallboard materials and labor on some of the install for within a few hundred dollars of the price of one cast iron stove installed from the fireplace store.

The part we like – since these are not top of the line, last forever stoves, we can feel ok about leaving them in the house when we move (or one of them at least) and not have to worry about taking them out and patching things up and all that.

It looks like if we take out one closet in the hallway (we have two) we can put one stove in that space to heat the bedroom side of the house. We will put the other stove in the kitchen. Now we just have to choose which stoves we want and find them and get them here, then do the prep work and get the proper person to help us with some chimney stuff.

I am excited about the developments for a variety of reasons.

  • It’s downright cold in the house in the mornings and evenings lately but I don’t want to turn on the heat and raise the electric bill.
  • I like the idea of putting a pot of soup on the kitchen wood stove and letting it cook during the day – getting extra bang for my buck.
  • The plan we came up with for the stove in the hallway will be really cool I think.
  • My husband really wants this and he has not had the opportunity to spend money and do a lot of things he has wanted to lately so it is definitely his “turn.”
  • I think the projects required to do this – taking out the closet, putting in tile, putting in the chimney – will be enjoyable to do together.
  • It’s one more way we can be self-sufficient.

An now, I must get back to work. I want to write more here but this blog doesnt’ pay the bills (yet) so I have to spend the majority of my time on things that will pay the bills for now.