Heating Oil, Open Windows And the Spirit of My Mother

I just got the heating bill for the latest oil delivery. Yikes! From now on I keep the temp at 45 degrees! Let the pipes freeze! I’ll wear mittens. Actually, I promise not to do that. (I rent you see, and the landlord would not be happen if there was a flood in the cellar from broken pipes… but the temptation is there all the same.)

Anyway… thinking of heating oil, and the latest bill, caused me to go into the back room and turn down the thermostat a few more degrees. (No pipes in that part of the house.) I’ve hung curtains at all the windows, and closed them against the drafts so the room is dark and cold right now. But just as I was about to leave the room I heard the strangest rattling as if something were beating on the windows. I looked to my right, to the one window near the dining room table, and I could just see between the folds of the curtain, that the window was wide open! The top section had slipped down, exposing the entire room to the cold air coming in from the porch. I have no idea how long it had been like that. I could have been heating the outdoors for weeks!!!

So… how strange is that, that I would be in the room, turning down the heat, just as the window rattled, drawing my attention to the open sash. I believe it was the spirit of my frugal mother letting me know the window was open. That’s what I think. She’s hovering around most of the time anyway, and this seems like something right up her alley. Thanks Mom.

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Cousin K.
Cousin K.
14 years ago

Dearest Chapman: No doubt you dear Mother was hovering!

I was thinking about your heating challenges and have a suggestion: years ago when my heat pump failed, a friend loaned me an oscillating ceramic heater (it’s very small, maybe 12×12″)… ANYWAY, with two of them, I was able to heat my entire downstairs (which was bigger than the first floor of your house) quite effectively AND at a very minimal (VERY) to my electric bill… they are sold at Lowe’s/Home Depot for maybe $50 and I think would solve the problem of your freezing your cute buns off!


PS: snowing like a BLIZZARD here!!! YOU CAN HAVE IT!

14 years ago

It sounds like cousin K may have a very reasonable solution. I also have an oil heater in the garage you can have. We used to heat the basement with it. It’s good for small spaces. I certainly hope Mom has better things to do with her time that rattle windows. The afterlife doesn’t seem very enticing if you wander around looking for problems to solve. I like to picture Mom somewhere warm, with a spicey drink, playing cards with her mother and sister Rita. No dishes to do, no dusting or ironing, and no open windows to worry about.