October 31st, 2006 § § permalink
Since I was a very young girl, I’ve dreamed of owning and operating a Vermont Castings woodstove. To me, they symbolize warmth, comfort and home, three things I had little of as a child. Even now, my quest for a home drives me daily. So it was with incredible joy and a bit of disbelief that I installed my green-enameled Aspen on the weekend.
Before this could be done, my husband and I had to dismantle the prospector tent that we’ve been occupying for the last 8 months. We thought that we would be nostalgic for the tent once it was gone but we fell instantly in love with the space and the possibilities of the cabin and immediately left the tent behind.
And so to the stove. Nha and Linh graciously delivered the stove as a house warming gift. We couldn’t have been happier! The stove may be tiny, but it took both Brian and Nha to lift it into Nha’s car. But what a beauty she is! A perfect fit to heat the small space of our cabin.
I bought the woodstove five years ago during a sale in Fergus. Like the Ark of the Covenant from Indiana Jones, the woodstove has been sitting hidden from view in its crate in the shed for all these years. I never opened the crate for fear of chipping the enamel (the man at the store warned me of that). It was like a dream come true to wake in the morning and see my woodstove standing faithfully beside me in the room.
She isn’t anything like the Four Dog. We kicked the Dog in the guts the minute the pipe was affixed. The Aspen, being of a higher pedigree, requires a more gentle touch. You have to condition the stove with three small, bright fires before you can really get her roaring. And you could never allow her to jump and glow red like the Dog. We will never forget how the Dog kept us warm and delivered piping hot water even in the darkest hours of our northern January. But the Aspen… we love her for her beauty as well as her functionality.
For now, the Dog will be refurbished and consigned to the shed until a later date. And Brian will be chopping petite, Aspen-sized logs for our fires this winter.
October 27th, 2006 § § permalink
We’re so close. We put the door on last week. I didn’t have time to strip it completely but we put it up anyway. It’s getting cold out there!
Which brings me to the woodstove. We have to install it this weekend. She’s a beauty: a green enamel Vermont Castings Aspen. Just the right size to keep our little cabin toasty. But she weighs a ton! Okay, not a ton, but 250 pounds! Brian’s friend, Nha, has kindly offered to deliver it up to the land for us in his Toyota Highlander. I was ready to fire up the old Volvo should Nha back out. And I wouldn’t blame him if he did. It’s not going to be easy.
Once the woodstove is installed and the cabin is sealed for the winter we hope it will keep the mouse activity to a minimum. Brian is fed up with their nightly assaults on our tent. Here’s to solid walls!
October 25th, 2006 § § permalink
I had a great blog ready to go and then I hit “reset” by accident. So I’m posting a picture of the Banff Springs Hotel, because I thought it was the hotel made famous in the movie, The Shining. Actually, the hotel used in the movie (the exterior shots) was the Timberline Lodge on Mt. Hood in Oregon.
This is only one of the many photos I took during my 8 day stay in Alberta for WordFest. It was an adventure! Especially Banff, where elk roam freely, and humans are warned that they may strike at any time. The mountains are majestic, complete with caps of snow. It was hard to breathe at such a high altitude.
October 6th, 2006 § § permalink
The book launch was better than I could have imagined. It’s always a little humbling to see friends and family gathered to help me celebrate the birth of another baby. Eleanor LeFave from Mable’s Fables was on hand to sell books, while her husband, Peter, manned the ship at Hal Burgers, our party location for the evening. The food was great, the venue perfect and the atmosphere totally fun. Of special note was the table of young students from a local school who came out to help christen the new book. They really liked the mini-fries. The veggie burgers were also a huge hit. Thanks to everyone for helping to make the evening enjoyable and very satisfying, especially my husband Brian and my daughter, Wes.
October 3rd, 2006 § § permalink
…don’t eat it.
My friend, Naomi, gave me this little dollar-store cycling skeleton today for no particular reason except that she thought it was funny. And so do I. In fact, it’s so…weird… that I just can’t help loving it. I won’t eat the candy, not just because it’s skeleton candy, but because I think it helps to make him go.