Check out my new book, The Non-Toxic Avenger: What You Don't Know Can Hurt You, available from Amazon.

2012 Silver winner in the Health/Medicine/Nutrition Category of the Independent Publishers Book Awards

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Freezin' yer knockers

It's not polite to pointMy mom has been complaining vociferously about how cold our house is. This, coming from a woman who routinely kept our house at Arctic temperatures when I was young.

It was so cold in my house growing up, we kept upwards of 9 blankets on the bed, could see our own breath in the morning and could hang meat in my (exposed on three sides) bedroom. It was more due to expenses than environmentalism, but I nevertheless have to point out the irony.

She now lives in a condo with "free" heat in that she runs her gas fireplace as her only source of heating. Since the gas is "free" she has no problem keeping her place at a balmy 78.625 degrees (she also has no qualms about stating the digital temperature readouts to at least 3 significant digits).

So, when she comes to visit our 62 degree house, we get the complaints. Maybe I need to buy this t-shirt for her - if only it came in long sleeves. And wool. With a hood. And matching slippers.

For all you participants of the Freeze Yer Buns Challenge, are you getting complaints from visitors or residents?

Also, what do you turn the heat down to when you leave your house for more than an hour or so?

33 comments:

Crunchy Chicken said...

Once again, for those curious readers, those are not my knockers.

Erika said...

I was just having this conversation with my visiting family earlier this afternoon! My father kept his coat on the ENTIRE time he was in our house - and we even turned the heat up to 64 (instead of our normal 58) once he arrived. They complain out of jest, but had some honest questions about why, exactly, we kept our heat "so low."

stripes said...

We started out keeping our thermostat down at 56 day and night. then the way below zero hit. So now it's been adjustedever so slightly...to 59 for both day and night. We do get some complaining-okay ALOT of complaining. I think as a family we have adjusted. We don't get much company since we turned the heat down but thats fine too. For us it's both financial and enviromental.

Riana Lagarde said...

lol!!! those are my knockers, hahaha or would be if i had that shrt; its DAMN cold in here! my feet are ice inside my wigwams.

my mother in law thinks we are harming our baby, but the baby has not been sick once this winter which is amazing for kids!

we dont have electric heat so if we are not home for an hour we stoke the woodstove, if not, it goes out and we get home to a meatlocker.

we live in a house that was built for summertime use only so the cold winds just blow through it. the first year, we didnt have the woodstove, we woke up to our breath too and 40 degrees in the house! brrrrr

Jenn said...

The gals who were over last Saturday didn't even notice.

I'd been baking and I think the oven warmed things up enough and then cramming 10 bodies in my tiny house is like setting the thermostat up 10 degrees.

The cats on the other hand complain a lot! Gus sits in front of the heater vent anytime it blows. Wimp...

Christine said...

We have not had many overnight guests, but have bumped up the heat when we have a few times.

We tell the babysitters to dress warm. When the neighborhood kids come over to play, they sometimes leave their coats on! ha!

I'm currently at my in-laws in the MAJOR humidity (it's in the 70's). Yesterday I was running around in shorts and t-shirts, and everyone kept commenting (as they wore their hoodies, etc.). I was like, "What? Are you kidding me? It's over 50 degrees - that's like a SAUNA!!"

DramaMama said...

Ditto! I've heard it all, harming the kids, keeping my coat on, it wasn't this cold in our house when you were a kid (yes it was!!), tell the babysitter to dress warm...we're over it, too. I will admit to switching it off of the 'program' some nights so it would be 2* warmer and then not crank up so hard in the morning. Overall we're happy we did this!

Susan said...

We haven't had an visitors other than the babysitter, but the only ones complaining here are the cats and my 3yo. And we just tell her (and them) to get under a blanket already. It's been such a warm winter that we don't even have too use th woodstove every day - if it's sunny outside, we don't need it, since all our windows are south facing. We have SOOOOO much wood left, it's kind of funny. Since we don't really have a thermostat, I've been keeping an eye on the indoor thermometer, and it's been about 65 on average in here. It was funny - I went over to a friend's house to knit the other day, and iwas COLD the whole time I was there. I wonder what she keeps her themostat at. I didn't complain, though.

But next week, I'm wearing a sweater over there.

Green Bean said...

Sure, Crunchy! Sure. Nice rack!

Anyway, we're live on the temperate San Francisco Peninsula so I could (and often do) turn the heat off and the house wouldn't drop below 50. Pretty nice luxury.

Deb G said...

The Chihuahua that lives with me complains constantly when the house gets cold :) She's doing "heat salutations" right now.

I've had a few comments (but not complaints) from my family. I do turn the heat up a bit when my grandmother comes.

It's funny, I was sitting in the sun yesterday wearing a turtle neck type t-shirt and jeans and was thinking that it was a perfectly comfortable temperature- it was 50 degrees.

Mme.Meow said...

I think the visitors to my house are far too polite to complain. But I have noticed sweaters stay in place.

Lissa said...

The only ones to comment anymore are my Dad (our relationship consists of constant needling) and my best friends, who have a near-three year old prone to colds and high fevers, so are used to 70-degrees at all times.

I still have my heat set to 68 when I'm home, but for the few days when the actual temperature has dropped to 10-below -- at those times I've kicked it up to 72 to ensure constant air circulation. For sleeping and when I'm not at home, I'm at 55. I'd pop it lower, but my lease stipulates that as a lowest temperature to "maintain structural integrity." A bunch of hooey in my opinion, but I'm not about to incur an extra fine for it.

just ducky said...

Crunch--you should win an award for most knockers/privates displayed on a non-porn website within a one month time span!

As far as the temp goes...my kids are the only ones who complain about the cold. I just look at them and say "Go put on a sweatshirt" or "With bare feet, what do you expect? Go put on socks and then we'll talk."

We've had major troubles with our heater this year. It's gone out 4 times thus far and our outdoor temp has dipped down to -10+ Fahrenheit for most of the last 2 months. We discovered that if we keep the heat set at 64 degrees when we are gone and/or sleeping and 66-67 when we are awake--it hasn't broken down.

ruralaspirations said...

We keep our house at 19 C during the day when we're home. That is 66 F. At night it goes down to 16 (60) and then 12 (53.5). If we leave the house for more than 2 hours I simply turn the heat off. I confess, however, that I live on the temperate south West Coast of Canada, so temps here don't dip too far below freezing, and not very often. I knit me some kickass woolen slippers that make it all bearable. For mum, we turn on the gas fireplace and sit her next to it.

Theresa said...

With pets in the house I don't go down to less than 62.5 (17C) anymore, but if we're out of town or something and the guinea pigs are at my parents' place, then we go down to 59 (15C).

We don't get a lot of company since moving to 'the country' but we do encourage the occasional visitors we have to bring their slippers! Nobody complains, but often we will turn the heat up a degree or two when company comes anyway, or turn on the gas fireplace for the duration of their stay.

Greenpa said...

I can't understand why you didn't go with a nice photo of the effects of cold on the male apparatus...

Jason C said...

I've really loved reading your blog lately - as someone else mentioned the provacative pictures. Maybe you should have a "post yer knockers" contest! I'd come back for that! well - it sounds great in theory.

Anyway - I'm bringing back the scarf indoors. I always see it in the UK - wearing a scarf just randomly. Keeping that carotid artery warm really keeps you toasty.

Be well!

-Jason
http://www.screamtobegreen.com

Crunchy Chicken said...

Greenpa - I'm pretty sure no one, and I mean no one, wants to see that.

Jason - keep dreaming...

Wendy said...

We didn't sign up for "Freeze Yer Buns Off", but we have been keeping the thermostat down around 60° if it's just me and the kids and when my husband gets home, he turns it up to 65°. Heating oil is just too expensive to be wasting it by having the house too warm. The only ones complaining are my husband and my children. My husband and I are playing the "thermostat" game. Since I'm home more than he is ... I win! When my kids complain, I tell them to put on some clothes. I mean, seriously, it's winter, and we live in Maine. The kids should be wearing more than a sleeveless dance leotard - even in the house!

LisaZ said...

Crunch, where do you get those photos???!

My herbalist/teacher taught me that keeping the heat lower is better for the immune system. Not sure why exactly, but it gets things moving. I don't think being constantly cold is good, but finding ways to keep warm in a colder environment is good for you.

Burbanmom said...

No complaints here. Ok, well, a few.

My Mom came to visit this weekend. She is "mid-change" and thinks our 55 at night is TOO WARM.

Well, that, and I've notice my babysitter keeps her coat on while she's here. The girl weighs like 80 pounds though. I think she needs to eat a sandwich.

Sally said...

I had been lowering the temp down to 60 or 62 for the few hours when we were all out of the house during the day, but this semester my husband's been working at home-- and noticed. So, though I advocated a space heater for his workspace or office, we compromised on 64. Our default during the days we're at home is 65, and so far no one has complained, somewhat to my surprise. Not even my son or his friends complain-- but then, they're usually out sledding or snowball fighting, so even 65 feels warm when they come back in! I've gotta say that when I walk into a 72 degree house these days I feel uncomfortably warm. And I've been nudging the nighttime temp down too- it's at 58 now, too no ill effect.

Rosa said...

My mom kept our house at 55 for large chunks of my growing up. I have clear memories of babysitters who sat down on the couch, mummified themselves in afghans, and did not move until it was time to put us to bed.

Yet, when my folks came to visit they complained mightily about the temperature - even after I cranked it to 64!

We don't raise the heat for short-term visitors, but for overnight guests we turn it up to 60 or 64 depending on the hardiness of the guests.

We do get complaints from some friends. Mostly smokers, actually - first we make them go outside (it was a balmy 30 degrees today but tomorrow it will be 7) to smoke and then they sit inside and shiver and complain...I keep extra blankets by the couch for them.

katissavedbygrace said...

I'm right there with you mama. We're trying to reduce our energy consumption so we went from a house that usually was around 75 degrees, to never above 68, and usually around 60. It's cold, but that's what clothes and blankets are for, right? As much as I want to turn that heat up, it feels good to be using less. And as time goes on, the easier it gets. :)

Anonymous said...

Our heat is set mostly at 62F here in the Northeast, up to 65F in the evening (for some reason everybody is cold, including me), and back down to 60F at night. I did set the heat at 68 when we had an overnight guest sleeping on the floor on an air mattress (brrrr). Most of the time if the the kids are cold I just blame it on the you and your "Freeze Yer Buns Off Challenge!" Gets me off the hook every time. Thanks Crunchy!

jewishfarmer said...

We get a lot of complaints - but we warn everyone first - our house is *cold* - or sit near the woodstove. So they get fair warning, and if they love us enough to still want to come (and most do), we just grin and tell them "you were warned."

I find it hard to go to other people's houses because they feel crazy-warm to me.

Sharon

Vanessa said...

Hahaha, that's an AWESOME shirt... I think I'm gonna make a shirt that says "How low can you go?" with a picture of a thermostat at 60 degrees! It will also be available in hoodie form. I've had a few complaints from guests -- and by complaints I mean the passive-aggressive Canadian style of complaining, which is to ask me if I have a thicker blanket and rub your arms a lot.

Ailsa said...

I keep it at 60 during the day here and 50 at night, and sometimes turn it down to 50 while my son's at school as well. My mother and daughter complain quite a lot about it whenever they're here. Whenever we're going out for a few hours, I turn the thermostat down to 45-50.

The funny thing is, DH works, I keep the house, and he's started apologizing to me every time he wanders off and leaves the lights on.

Anonymous said...

I get no complaints. My neighbor spends some evenings here and brings her slippers, but that's mainly because my landlord does not have any insulation between me and the basement. We drink a lot of tea together...

I ALWAYS turn the heat down to my nighttime temp (58f) when I leave the house. But, for 15 minutes before my shower, I blast a space-heater in the closed bathroom. If I don't heat the bathroom extra, then I wind up taking an extra-long, very hot shower to make up for it, which makes no sense at all.

Anonymous said...

At the start of the heating season, DH would increase programmable thermostat to 64F when we were home. I kept reprogramming it to 62F (when we go to bed/gone for day it's set to 58F). That lasted a couple weeks. Either DH acclimated...or he just decided it wasn't that bad. I usually wear a knit cap in the house at night..now he does too! When it gets particularly cold outside (-15F)..the house at 62F feels chilly..so I add a scarf. Fingerless gloves,tea and a blanket make knitting a tad more comfortable when it's that cold outside.

Beany said...

Actually, I am somewhat embarrassed by the challenge to admit it to guests. My place is always hell no matter what season since we don't have central cooling so the summers are horrible and now with this freezin' challenge its hell in the winter. When guests come over, we turn on the heat to 70 and then lower it to 60. Between that and the cooking, the living room is usually warm. And since alcohol is always involved in get togethers at my place, I am sure people feel artificially warm.

I've pledged no heat. And on really cold days the heat has been turned off, except for about 2 hours in the evening before bed. I admitted on arduous' blog that I do have longer, hotter showers.

Beany said...

Also...first time I am admitting this online, but I got worried when I read that story about some woman freezing to death because she didn't turn on the heat to save on heating bills. I was really gung-ho all through Dec up until I read the story. I became a bit worried about hypothermia.

Rosa said...

space heaters - I have a 2 year old who weighs 24 pounds. We run the space heater in the bathroom for his weekly bath. We used to use it when he sat on the potty, too, but now that it's colder out the radiator is usually warm, so we just moved his potty close by the bathroom radiator.

Poor chilly little guy. I was worried to take my 1 year old, 20 pound goddessdaughter to the pool because at that age my little guy turned blue in the swimming pool. But she was fine. It's the mass/surface ratio, not the age.

I do have a fear that some neighbor is going to report us to CPS for keeping the house so cold our kid wears longjohns under his clothes and a stocking cap most of the time. But it hasn't happened yet.

LinkWithin