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Pioneer Papa decided a few years ago to buy an indoor wood burning stove to heat our home. We purchased a Lopi stove from a local supplier, they installed it, and it was time to start heating.

Our pioneer Papa is no slacker, he is a man who prepares preparing. So, he already had our wood sourced from a local sawmill, ideas on where to store it, and organized the time to do it. We stacked the wood and were ready for our first winter. We’ve since tried many variations of where to store our wood, front porch, in crates, in our garage, out back, but none of that matters. We all stack and re-stack, shuffle and load, and do you know what? We like it! The kids have been loading wood since they could walk, lifting and stacking tiny pieces that were more kindling than log. Even Grandpa happily chips in when he’s around.

The thing about wood heat is that it is warm heat, maybe because we’re invested in it. I’m not sure how this works, but when our thermostat reads 68 degrees and it’s heated with wood, it just feels warmer than that. When we tend the fire we have a real connection to our heat. Our children like to sit by the warm orange glow, sort and stack the wood, pull pieces for Mama or Papa to load, notify us when the fire is low, and make fire starters.

Our bodies have become our thermostats. We load it anywhere from 2-6 times a day, depending on the outdoor temperature, and it’s never a burden. Whenever we pass the stove and the fire is low, or when we feel the temperature lowering, we check the stove and reload.

It’s been a great decision to heat with wood, its visual warmth has also become a family warmth.

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