Monday, October 29, 2007

The Heat is On

We finally turned the heat on tonight. Our goal was (as it is every year) to wait until November. We talk about how we come from hearty New England stock and how it's really perfectly warm if you just bundle up. We try to ignore the way THAT DOG seems to cling to us in the final days of October, always lying as close as possible to to keep her short-haired little body at a temperature that will sustain life.

But tonight, Steve walked in as I was dumping boiling water from the kettle into our bathtub. "What are you doing?" he asked, wondering (hopefully, perhaps) if I'd spent my day looking up new cleaning techniques on the internet. "I'm preheating the tub," I answered, as if this was the most normal thing in the world.

You see, when cold weather approaches, it hits our bathroom first. And whatever the material is that bathtubs are made out of (porcelain? ceramic?), it freezes like an ice-cube. So by the time the water from our not-so-large hot water heater makes it up here to the third floor (through cold copper pipes that inexplicably take it OVER our living room ceiling), it's not all that hot anymore. And once it hits the ice tub, forget about it.

I thought my answer to this problem was rather clever. I remembered how, in the Little House on the Prairie books, Ma would boil water on the stove to fill the bathtub to keep the family happy and warm. I thought I'd give it a try. And guess what? It worked! The pre-warmed tub filled with nice toasty water, and soothed my chilly bones.

(Unfortunately, the boiling water also peeled off some sort of casing on the drain, and may have compromised the long-term viability of the soap dish. I may need the number to one of those Bathfitter outfits that comes and refurbishes damaged tubs...)

But the good news is, the heat is on!

16 comments:

JenKneeBee said...

yikes! that gives me goosebumps just thinking about the coldness!

A Life Uncommon said...

Whatever bring on the warmth... even if it's from a pot of boiling water that warps the tub I'd say bring it ON! (Okay, so I'm all about not feeling cold). ;)

Roam2Rome said...

Uuuu! Poor tub! Smart idea! but too bad about the casing... We also just turned on our heater, thank goodness for heaters :)

Darlene said...

clever and efficient
you are!
Did your hubby think so?

xOx Darlene

Beck said...

Chilly! What you need to do is to let some warm water run into the tub BEFORE you pour in the hot water - that way, it doesn't hard the tub's surface.
Bit late to tell you that, eh?

ellesappelle said...

It made me laugh to hear your comments on how being of New England stock makes you tough - I've been gassing on about that for ages now, now that I'm living in Australia. When I first got here I was very superior - Australians are just soft, it's much colder in New Zealand, etc etc - but now I'm pulling on a jersey with the softest Aussie whenever it's a cloudy day!

Jane said...

When I woke up yesterday morning, it was freezing in the house. I looked at the thermostat and it read "replace batteries". I had to drive to the hardware store and buy new batteries and a tiny screwdriver. All of this for the privledge of receiving my monthly heating bill from the electric company :)))

Sarakastic said...

I'm from Utah, I've had many a "what do they do on little house on the prairie so we don't have to turn on the heat until September/October/November" moments. Nice to know I'm not the only one.

Patti said...

we haven't succumbed yet, but this is texas and when the temps dip to below 70 we curl up in a fetal position and beg for the heat...the heat!!!!

L Sass said...

We don't have control of our own heat, so I always spend a couple days in sweat pants, two t-shirts, a sweatshirt and fleece socks! Need to try this bathtub warming idea...

bonbon momma said...

Hey, it works for a thermos, right?

I guess that you could say you coined a new phrase, wwlhotpd? (what would little house on the praire do?)

Appletini said...

I love to turn on the heater when it gets cold, and snuggle with my man under the blankets :)

Stacy said...

That sounds like something I'd do to the tub.

Alyssa Goodnight said...

You are hearty stock! Down here in Texas, we've had the head on for a couple of weeks already!

Good for you, using your LHOTP!

Swishy said...

I haaaaate the cold! I have my "no heat til November rule" too ... and I've almost made it!

LEstes65 said...

When I lived in Everett (gah!), I had one of those huge porcelain tubs that had clawed feet. It was killer! But it was an ice tub in the winter, too. I always preheated it with boiling water. My current garden tub in my master bath here in "warm" Texas needs a preheating in the winter, too.

That sounds heavenly.