Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Keeping the Home Fires Burning

Yesterday I said something about my son possibly dressing up as Satan and burning down the house. That might be the most economical way to keep warm this winter.

I've already decided to keep the thermostat down to 65 degrees. The storm windows are all shut. I am also keeping the hot water heater turned down about 20 degrees lower than usual. My showers are almost cold, but at least I'm using less gas. We are also planning to do what we've been talking about for ten years but have never gotten around to before: covering the windows with plastic sheets for added insulation.

Many others are in the same boat

Christy David, of Dormont, pays her heating bills through Dominion's budget plan, which adjusts payments to keep them level throughout the year. When her budget amount was adjusted this fall from $170 to $386, she thought it was a misprint.
My gas company (which is not Dominion) has done the same thing. I have been on the budget payment plan for years, and my monthly bill just shot up to nearly that amount.

I am not going to complain. Much. Not when there is something that I can do to help myself:

Lowering the temperature certainly has its downside in cold fingers and whining teenagers. But there are some who can see virtue through their chattering teeth and shivering toes: energy conservation.
Conservation? Saving money and resources instead of spending them? There's a novel concept. This looks like as good a time as any to teach my children a lesson that's been coming a good long time. And they will understand why Daddy has a fit when the thermostat mysteriously has been set to 54 degrees in Winter and 90 degrees in Summer.

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