Jack Frost needs a blanket

Like a large portion of the country, we are suffering the deep freeze that burns skin, gets animals drunk, and causes men to go sterile (well, I made that part up, but you know what I mean!)  Our old house was built before cold was invented I guess as there is apparently no insulation in the place.  We have slowly been remedying that problem, but it is still freezing cold.  

 
Family room temps Kitchen temps
The new, high efficiency furnace has been running pretty much non-stop and has brought our family room temperature clear up to 54.6 deg F (46.2 on the floor).  Our kitchen is much warmer at a balmy 61.2 deg F.  I went down to the bottom floor basement and the pipes are frozen solid. We decided to just cut the water to the house so nothing floods if the pipes burst. Fortunately, nothing had popped yet and no other pipes are frozen. I dislike winter…I just want to hibernate!

14 thoughts on “Jack Frost needs a blanket

  1. Oh that is cold! We run the woodburner 24/7 and it usually keeps the house 75-79 – it barely kept it 70 degrees last night. We are sitting at -11 degrees right now. I’m thinking moving south would be an EXCELLENT idea…
    Kris

  2. I’m sorry you’re having to deal with such cold temps. Old houses, what were they thinking? Was there an old coal stove somewhere in the house at some point that put out some major heat?

    The house I grew up in in IL sounds like the one you’re in. Frozen pipes were common and I can’t tell you how many times my dad was in the basement sawing sections of pipe apart and thawing them in our bathtub.

    Try to stay warm and know that Spring is coming, slowly but surely. 🙂

  3. Oh no, Warren. That’s terrible. I hope there isn’t any big damage.

    There have been a lot of frozen/bursting pipes in our area, but our core temp yesterday morning was -28 below (-48 windchill). It’s warmed up to a nice balmy 0 right now and feels like a heat wave!

  4. Warren, same here man. If you open all the faucets and leave them open sometimes the warm air will make it’s way through and thaw your pipes. Had to do that a bunch at another house. Probably just too cold for anything right now, hope all goes well.

    Chris

  5. Cold here too. The wood stove keeps us warm, it gets to 78-80 degrees in the living room and kitchen but cool in the bedrooms, which is what we like.
    Stay warm!

  6. Ack…that kind of cold just ain’t right. If you cut turned off the water, are you having to carry water in to use in the house now? Sorry it’s so c-c-c-Cold…I’m sending you warm thoughts from Oregon. We’re up to 42 today.

  7. We turned the water back on…we just had it off during the day when we weren’t going to be here. If it burst, we didn’t want water spewing all day long. The cold water in the bathroom is still frozen, but fortunately, we have 3 bathrooms so we are still safe!

  8. -17 here last night and -13 tonight!!! We have an old drafty house and are having fun keeping warm too. We even put an electric heater in the chicken coop teayerday so we wouln’t have chickencicles this morning. I went camping in the winter in Boy Scouts and we put our canteens in our sleeping bags to keep them from freezing but it didn’t work because it went down to -20 that night, they call that a Polar Bear Campout. Another year I volenteered to do the Polar Bear Swimming where they cut a big hole in the ice and you have to stay in the water for 3 minutes. Once was enough for me but greasing up with Crisco before we went swimming sure helped as I found out years later when I accidently fell through the ice on the lake ice fishing.

  9. I have been winter camping a time or two in scouts…I think I was made to live in the south! I never really enjoyed it too much. I never had much luck with a canteen in the sleeping bag either…ended up wet. Anyhow, I don’t envy your cold! We’re supposed to be a little colder tonight but not much…-5 at worst I think. Time to move south Grey Wolf!

  10. frozen pipes…. check.
    husband sleeping in tent… check. your blog is great.

    are you worried about your bees dying from the cold? we moved ours onto the deck last winter and still had 2 hives die. this year we are keeping them in the greenhouse with a tunnel to the outdoors. how do yours do in the winter normally?

  11. Hey Christy – thanks for visiting…I don’t worry too much about the bees dying from cold. If there are enough bees (i.e. a strong hive in the fall) and if they have proper ventilation and food, they will not freeze to death. I have seen more bees starve to death than freeze to death. It is not uncommon at all unfortunately…especially around here where we have fairly warm early-winters. The bees slow down a lot in the super cold which causes them to go through food more slowly. When it’s warmer in Nov and Dec, however, they move around and eat a lot of food. Starved bees typically are found in the spring with their bodies “buried” in empty cells. I usually check them on Ground Hog day if I can and add food as necessary. See how your bees do in the greenhouse but it may work against you depending on how things go (though if you are in UP Michigan or Maine, etc, my advice may not be right. A lot of people farther north will wrap their hives to get some solar gain from the dark colored wrap and insulate from wind etc, but few keep them in warmer locations.

    So, I do usually lose a hive or three over the winter. Sometimes it’s because they were too weak starting out, sometimes they eat through the food too much or the queen dies, etc. The only diagnosis I can ever be sure of is starvation from the telltale sign. By checking in Feb, I have learned to minimize that issue. Aside from starvation, I just have to speculate what happens when I lose a hive. Watch your hives this winter and spring and make sure they have enough food…good luck!

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