Yesterday there was a real fall nip in the air, but Emil and I were hard at work while the big boys were at school. On Sunday, Andrew happened upon a huge pile of wood on the side of the road a few blocks away from our house. We drove by later and I stuck my head out the window, asking the men cutting down several trees if they were going to take the wood away, and if not, could we take some of it off their hands. They assured us that it would be there if we wanted it. So the next morning, there I was!
Loading firewood into the back of the van, driving it home, and using the wheelbarrow to take several loads into our garage to season over the next year (it is heavy and green, so storing it in a dry place for a year is important- otherwise it won’t burn as well) was good fun. Emil enjoyed riding in the empty wheelbarrow out to the van, helping me load up the smaller pieces of wood, and then stacking them neatly in the garage for seasoning. These tasks are some of my favorite chores. I prefer mowing the lawn to vacuuming; raking leaves to dusting; hauling firewood to cleaning toilets; pulling weeds to loading the dishwasher. The outdoor work that gets my heart pumping and lungs full of fresh air- that is the work for me!
(About a third of the wood we hauled in one day- after seasoning, the bigger logs will be ready to split, then burn in our fireplace next winter)
We have only paid for firewood once- and that was the first year we were living here. We called the number on a business card someone had dropped into our mailbox, and a guy came and unloaded it into our garage, already seasoned and split, easy peasy. But it was a bit pricey, and once I realized we could get free firewood from a local park where the city drops it off in enormous, house-high piles, I started dropping by and picking up smaller logs whenever I went there for free mulch. I would check in the spring and summer, when no one was thinking about firewood, and slowly our stores grew and grew. I brought it back, and Andrew split and stacked it. Last winter, we had a fire in our fireplace several times a week (some weeks, every day!) and went through all the wood. I figure we saved about $150- $200, and it was work I enjoyed doing.
Feeling resourceful, feeling grateful.