Winter in my rural patch. Which is the hill country in the Central Tablelands of NSW. Between the historic town of Bathurst. And lower down. The world famous Mudgee wine country.
Mornings can be as low as Minus 7C. Sometimes frosty. Sometimes covered in snow. With an average high of about 8C by midday.
This year the number of cloudy days have far surpassed sunny days.
Running my worldwide business, The Fitz Like A Glove™ Ironing Board Cover And Other Goodies, from our rural farmhouse, means we need heat 24/7.
We have inverter reverse cycle air conditioning powered by electricity in my office. And the master bedroom. Which is not on all the time.
But the main living area is warmed by the incomparable heat – and ambience – of a wood burning stove.
All day. Every day. During the coldest months in winter.
We start our first fire at the end of March. And have been known to have the stove warming the house on Christmas day.
But most years the stove is starting to be used less and less during November.
But is always at the ready for those unexpected cold days in summer.
This wood burning stove is akin to having a baby in the house.
It needs to be constantly fed.
Which means that cutting firewood during winter is a fortnightly affair.
The woodcutting chores are evenly divided.
My partner, Victor Pleshev, the architect who designed the Fitz Like A Glove™ Ironing Board Cover for his mother. To help her with her ironing when she was recovering from a stroke. Cuts the fallen and aged trees into logs. And then splits them into quarters.
I pick up the split logs. And load them into the trailer.
When the trailer’s full, we take it to the woodpile. I hand him the logs out of the trailer. And he stacks. He is a champion stacker. As an architect, our woodpile is a work of art.
We fill the trailer 4 times every second Sunday.
I’m also responsible for collecting the kindling. And for cleaning up the site. I move all unusable fallen timber that’s strewn everywhere by the wind. And stack them into neat piles. Which then becomes secure habitat for small wildlife.
And with a rake, I distribute across the site the big mound of sawdust created by the chainsaw. So the sawdust doesn’t suffocate potential new growth underneath it.
When we leave, the site looks far more beautiful than when we started.
This occupies all of Sunday afternoon. Every two weeks.
When we return to the farmhouse, Victor’s clothes are the colour of sawdust. And have to be shaken out. And immediately put into my Miele front loader washing machine. On a prewash. And then main wash. Setting.
When the cycles are finished, his work pants and shirt look like new. No kidding. You would never know they’d just spent several hours hugging a chainsaw.
Tired. We sit down in front of a blazing fire. Clink long stemmed glasses. And slowly sip while we let the dancing flames work their magic and hypnotise us. Into a state of total relaxation.
Ask anybody who cuts their own firewood. To use an Australian vernacular. It’s hard yakka. For both of us. But as Baby Boomers, when most of our friends are on some kind of medication, this extreme physical exertion keeps us out of doctors’ surgeries. And free of pharmaceuticals!
To us, the woodpile is a labour of love.
Your thoughts? Email me at the bottom of this post.
~Carol Jones, Ironing Diva❤
PS. This Ironing Diva loves leading an elegant life. And there is nothing more elegant than the flickering flames of a warming fire.
PPS. I am not only an Ironing Diva. But as one friend says, I am ‘The Queen’ when it comes to ironing.
I Am The Purveyor Of The Tantrum Free Fitz Like A Glove™ Ironing Board Cover And Other Goodies
Made with love and care in RURAL Australia by men and women who have a disability.
It’s not for everyone.
But it’s definitely for you if you’re fussy about the cover you iron on.
And if you love to support Australian made.
And want to put something back into the community when you make a purchase.
The Fitz Like A Glove™ Ironing Board Cover cover has more than 350,000 customers in 29 countries. Because it lives up to its name. It ‘Fitz Like A Glove™’ every time you iron.
And these are the ‘Other Goodies’
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Have a question? Email me at the bottom of this post.
Or phone me, Carol Jones, in rural Australia on 02 63 588 511.
Photos of my rural property are courtesy of me, Ironing Diva – who is also known as Paddock Paparazzi – and taken at sunrise every morning.
The Woodpile + The Kindling Pile + The Side Gate + Rotunda In The Background.
PS. And I have a fabulous newsletter ‘A Smidgen Of Gossip’. This is what a subscriber says about it. “Carol. Just had some time to read it and found that it is, as with everything you do, rather wonderful. A great read. W” You can subscribe to it by clicking this link. It’s FREE! This is not a lifetime commitment. You can Unsubscribe at any time. Don’t miss out. Click this link now!
The Kindling Pile.