Lynette says, “This is my front porch. It’s not likely to be nominated for any trendy or stylish award, but it’s functional and that’s what matters.”
Testimonial by Lynette at Cleverly Simple
“What a difference a year makes”, I thought to myself as I hauled in another load of wood with slippers on my feet and a 19-month-old screaming for breakfast. Living in Virginia Beach twelve months earlier I had visions of our first winter in Central Ohio all snuggled by the fire with a good book and a cup of tea.
The reality of saving money in negative degree weather set in quite quickly as the first load of wood was dropped off onto our cute 1940’s porch. Visions of cute winter accessories were quickly replaced by a woodland piled high and covered in a bright green tarp.
My family had decided late fall that our budget for heating oil was going to be quickly broken as the first oil company bill came in at $600. That lasted us six weeks with the thermostat set at 62 during the day and 55 at night. I was frustrated at the thought of continuing to spend hundreds of dollars and still feel that the house was not a warm place to hang out.
Knowing that the coldest months were ahead, the solution was to spend hours cutting wood from fallen trees at my grandmother’s forest to supplement our heat. We would still need to fill the oil tank, but by using wood as our main source of heat in our living area we would be able to drastically cut our expenses.
I’ve learned so much… one log at a time:
I’ve Found Joy in the Company of Others
As the days turned into months of using wood, I found joy in helping our family save money with each load of wood. I quickly realized that we were not alone. I drove along our curvy small town road and soon took notice of the number of houses with smoke crawling out of their chimneys. They, too, had a woodland on their porch and were providing warmth for their families.
I’ve Learned to Let Go of the Look
I had to let go of the cute accessories we had planned for Christmas in return for green tarp. At least it was a festive color! If letting go of accessories meant saving hundreds of dollars then it had to be okay.
I’ve Realized and Basked in My Blessings
What a blessing to have a husband, brother and father who would spend hours chopping and splitting fallen trees. The cost was free. They were willing to spend their time and resources to help us save money.
I’ve Developed More Creativity
We’ve enjoy our fireplace not only for the heat, but for the s’mores we’ve made together. Yum! And yes, I still enjoy an occasional good book and cup of tea by the glow of the fire. For that, I choose to have a grateful and joyous heart to save money with our small woodland porch and its green tarp.
Lynette blogs about money-saving ideas, creative adventures and family recipes at CleverlySimple.com. She lives with her hubby and son in small town Central Ohio.