Home is where the hearth is

Arkansas weather is being, well, Arkansas weather.  A friend described it as “winter weather whiplash.”  The temps have been on a yo-yo and my sinuses are NOT enjoying the ride.

We’ve been dreaming of a wood stove since we moved to the hill. I guess you could say since we moved back to Arkansas since our first house didn’t have one either. In San Antonio we longed for days cool enough to build a fire in the fireplace. But when we move further north where the winters actually feel like winter we were fireplace-less.  We also worried about not having an alternate heating source since our house in all electric. 

I was determined to have a wood stove that was pretty.  One that complemented the decor of the living room and wasn’t a big black box (I was willing to paint it if need be.)

After searching Pinterest, I found some absolutely adorable models only to realize “These aren’t sold in the US only Europe” or “Good Lordy! That’s the price of a small car!”  My style taste was not in our price range.

But this year Craiglist brought a Christmas Miracle.  A man had bought a new house with a wood stove in it but his wife wanted it out.  (In my opinion she must have not been right in the head.) 

So he posted it for a song!  $350 + the gas to Memphis + a meal at the Rendevous for Ben & his friends that helped move it.

We spent most of our Christmas vacation building the hearth and bricking the wall.

(I plan to continue under the chair rail eventually.)

Our goal was to have it operational by the end of January.  And after much waiting on stovepipe and cutting holes in the ceiling and buying elbows for the piping (Good Lord we spent  more on those than the stove.  They aren’t cheap.)  theeeeeen, cutting a hole in the roof (that was not without a lot of nervousness on my part)……….

We were able to enjoy our first fire in our wood stove this weekend! 

Just in time for 67° F weather.  Our second fire sent us running to open windows last night when the thermostat reached 79°.  But rest assured its 31° today.

And I’m looking forward to curling up on the couch tonight and enjoy the show.


I said I wanted to paint more…

But this is not what I had in mind. 
Our rent house became SUDDENLY vacant. So all of our home improvement plans for our current house are on hold while we quickly repaint, patch and clean the old house. 
I wonder how our family of five squeezed into it all those years ago. Truthfully I know the answer being the kids were half the size they are now. Hard to believe it was almost 7 years ago that we moved here to Conway. 
Seems forever ago and like it was yesterday all at once.