Tehachapi, you are one cold place.

I refilled the dogs water before my walk around 10am, some of which  spilled. I came back 45 minutes later and it was FROZEN. The sun was out! What?! Did I move to Alaska and no one told me? I grew up 40 minutes from the beach, please excuse my astonishment.

I took the warmth of where we used to live in Simi Valley for granted. It is SO cold in Tehachapi in the winter. Part of the problem is our house (it's not that old guys, it was built in 1975!) doesn't have a full heating system with vents in every room. We have two wall furnaces, one downstairs in the livingroom and one upstairs in the hallway. All the air of course goes upstairs so it took a few weeks to master the art of keeping upstairs from burning up because of the downstairs furnace. Then we have this electric heater in the converted garage turned family room. The family/great room is always freezing and that's where the dogs stay the majority of the time. That's where we hang out when we're downstairs. We used that heater frugally the first few weeks we were here to see how much electricity it used and had a small electric bill so we considered it safe to use regularly. WRONG. Our next electric bill was more than half our mortgage.

Now we get to play with different house warming techniques. There are two old windows in that room that hold in no heat and pretty much all the walls border the outside of the house. When it drops down into the twenties or teens at night, that room is maybe only ten or twenty degrees warmer. Call me crazy, but I don't want my poor dogs freezing to death inside the house. I also don't want to freeze in my own house when I go downstairs in the morning. So I borrowed a tiny, tiny space heater from my dad. At least I can point that at the dog crates at night, right?

We're planning to attempt to actually use the wood stove in that room. I mean, that's what it's made for, right? We tried one time, but Blaine couldn't keep the fire going. We're really going to try this weekend. Wouldn't it be nice to have a nice low electric bill and also lower the gas bill? Then we would just be paying for firewood. And we would be heating our house by wood stove. That just sounds cool (and cozy!) to me, honestly.