My 30th Birthday and our new wood stove!

Feb 25 2016
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So, it happened, my thirtieth birthday! The big THREE OH! Goodness, how in the heck did that happen? No I actually can’t feign surprise, we were really busy throughout my twenties and I can’t think of single other thing I could have jammed into that arduous decade! I’m glad to be thirty and really glad to put my twenties behind me. Literally all of the best things that have ever happened to me and all of the worst things that have ever happened to me, happened to me in my twenties and in only about the last five years of my twenties lol. But, I’m getting WAY ahead of myself, first I want to tell you about what happened a couple of weeks ago because it literally CHANGED OUR LIVES. We got a “NEW” wood stove in our kitchen!! *Squeals!*

UPDATE: December 15th, 2017. Joe and I are now divorced. I will not be deleting blog posts like this one as it is still a diary to some extent of my past and that still matters to me. I wish I had been more honest about how things were going to you guys here on the blog… I thought things would get better. There was always something: once this happens then he won’t be so angry… But, eventually, he ran out of excuses and I had to face my reality that I was wrong about Joe in every way possible. Grandma’s house is completely mine so now it can actually become what I dreamed it would be on all those late nights alone when I was renovating it. Happiness does not always come the way we expect it to (sometimes it even takes a broken heart to get us there) but I still believe in happy endings!

Birthdays and wood stoves, celebrating my thirtieth birthday party at Grandma's House DIY
Homemade dishwasher detergent and how to beat hard water and white stuff on your dishes!

Why is this such a big deal to me you ask? It is a big deal because our little wood stove that I had made the bad choice of purchasing was just not cutting it! I read all of the reviews, I did hours upon hours of research and truly believed it when it said it would heat up to 2000 square feet. Well, this is northern Minnesota and during our last big cold snap (-20 degrees with a -40 degree wind chill) we woke up to 49 degrees in our bedroom! Upon further looking at that exact type of stove on its manufacturer’s website it says clearly that it is not intended to heat a home in a climate that ever gets snow or ice. Holy crap. Not good. It was a constant stress in our lives. Every day at noon I would run home on my lunch break and fill the fire. We were setting our alarms for 1am to get up in the middle of the night to fill the fire. We tried every kind of wood that grows up here, dried for years, and it just never mattered. Really we did everything we could and it just would not, could not, cut it. And our constant feeding the fire meant our entire beautiful home was covered in a thick layer of black horrible, nasty, ash. I was losing my mind. The last straw was when we bought a wood stove thermometer and it NEVER heated up over 300 degrees (really cold for a stove) no matter what we burned! And this cold burning caused creosote to build up in our stove pipe (thank god our chimney stayed clear) and was causing a constant worry of creating a fire in the pipe (VERY scary!) so Joe was cleaning it out once every couple of weeks, something you should almost NEVER have to do.

By some kind of miracle Joe’s folks had this one out of one of their old cabins up north and gave it to us.


Now, its always warm in our home, we’re burning the same amount of wood and have no problem keeping up. The first night it was 85 degrees in our bedroom! Lol, our bodies didn’t know how to handle it! No more going home at noon to feed the fire, no more getting up in the middle of the night. Honestly I don’t know if I’ve ever been more grateful for anything in my life!! This summer we plan on painting it and fixing it all to look nice and better including the fire mat that its sitting on. I can’t believe how much this has improved our lives and just how much of a relief it has been! (Stay tuned – I will be writing a blog post soon about what its like to heat your entire home with wood – the good, the bad and the ugly!)

Anyway, lets talk about my birthday some more 🙂

Birthdays and wood stoves, celebrating my thirtieth birthday party at Grandma's House DIY

Everyone got a birthday tiara – no exceptions! Diesel wouldn’t let it sit on his head but he wore like that most of the night. I swear I could ask anything of Joe and he would do it for me with a grin on his face! There is nothing sexier then a man with the confidence to make his woman happy no matter what!

Birthdays and wood stoves, celebrating my thirtieth birthday party at Grandma's House DIY

My gosh is that my arm?! Goodness, I think its time for me to start eating more salads…

It was an absolutely wonderful birthday and I am really good with putting my twenties behind me. I actually feel like I earned my thirties. Its been a really amazing, whirl wind of the last few years. I got home in 2011 after breaking up from a long distance relationship with so much regret, I had missed so much! I should have come home SO much sooner! In the next five years my parents got a divorce, we sold my family’s business (lots of tears) and I went through several crazy month-long parties and also lost all three of my child hood dogs and both of my grandmas 🙁 But I also found my passion in furniture refinishing and met my incredible husband! Then we renovated my grandma’s house in 16 months doing almost all of the work ourselves and got engaged and then, two weeks after moving in, we got married in our back yard last September! Phew!

Birthdays and wood stoves, celebrating my thirtieth birthday party at Grandma's House DIY

Yup, its been a crazy crazy few years lol but, like everything always seems to happen, it worked out and it was all worth it in the end! Goodbye my insane twenties I’m looking forward to some quieter years 🙂

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2 Comments on "My 30th Birthday and our new wood stove!"

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Sheila F.

Happy Birthday! You have created And, that arm is not fat. It is muscle! 3rd, Blacking the stove will go a long way in making it pretty until you can fixer up!


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