Nothing changes the atmosphere of a room more than the warm glow of a fire. We were lucky when buying our house, we had a good old fashioned fire place, not used for 15 years by the previous owners. The chimney had a solid pull and we used it frequently from the first cold days onwards. As lovely as it is, it’s a huge mess and strong winds at night, after the fire has died down, send clouds of ash through the living room.
Then about ten years ago a number of European companies brushed up their ranges of wood stoves. My parents installed one and after one visit in winter we were sold!
Best investment ever ! We now have one iron stove in the den and an insert into the fireplace in the living room. The installation of both took one day and the result is amazing.
We can heat the house even during a winter power outage to a livable temperature. We use less than half of the wood we burned in the open fireplace. The den can now be used in winter – with the conventional heating it never gets comfortable enough.
The fire is going pretty much every day in winter. Everyone who comes first sits in front of the fire for a bit. It seems to fulfill a primeval need.
Waiting for spring, I put some of the ash in the compost bins and spread the rest around the garden.