Wednesday, January 2, 2008


Our house is a wind tunnel because of the cat door, which faces directly into our prevailing wind direction and funnels the cold air from the Blue Ridge Mountains straight up the long central hallway that runs through the middle of the house.

Normally on windy days, I close the cat door to keep the wind out. But apparently last time we cleaned up the stack of junk mail piled on the kitchen counter, we didn't notice that the cat door was tucked into the stack, and we threw it out with the trash. Whoops!

So now we have nothing to close the hole with, and all day today the wind was blowing straight in, chilling the whole house as if we'd left a window open. I blocked it as best I could, but tomorrow my project is to cut a piece of something (maybe the sturdy plastic lid from a cat litter bucket?) to make a new cat door. We can't be wasting heating fuel like this---the hole needs to be plugged!

I keep thinking that we'd have a lot less wind chill in the house if we closed in the back porch. But every part of the year but winter, I love the openness of the porch. It's not very deep, so closing it in might make it feel cramped. Besides, we'd miss those Blue Ridge breezes during the warmer months of the year.

I have chilly "air conditioning" problems of my own. Every pair of jeans I own, except for one, has a large hole in the right thigh where I wore through the denim stacking hay bales. I always use my right knee to help me boost the bales to the top of the stack, and the abrasive hay wears right through my pants. So now I'm stuck doing chores outside in the cold, windy weather, with holes in my jeans the size of my palm. Brrrr!

I need to shop for new jeans sometime---and also new sneakers, since I've worn mine right through until the soles are falling off---but I just hate jeans-and-sneaker shopping. It's so boring and annoying trying on pair after pair that all look pretty much the same on the shelf but fit completely differently when you try them on.

When I do go shopping, I think I'll look for some nice thermal long johns too. That will make going out to do chores a lot less uncomfortable.

Meanwhile, maybe I'll dig out some of my stash of old jeans that don't fit me anymore. I bet I can pirate some large enough pieces off the jeans that don't fit to patch the jeans that do.


Anonymous said...

Don't buy new jeans!!! ESpecially if it just for chores, sew or iron a patch on those babies and they will be good as new!!!

Anonymous said...

Two words: thrift store. I buy all my jeans there now. All less than $10, most fit better than if I bought them off the rack and tried them on, I end up with better brands than I would have bought new -- and if I get a hole or stain, I don't get too fussed. I agree that an iron-on patch will save many, as well. You can even make your own patches using special adhesive from a fabric store. -- Kris

Anonymous said...

Best thing to do Nancy is to sew a "leather patch" over that area. Anything cloth is going to disappear too quickly.

Anonymous said...

A leather patch should do the trick even though it's not the most stylish of options. :) I have a pair of Carharts that I wear around my mother's farm and they are pretty tough, well-made and warm. A lot of the fishermen back home in Alaska swear by them.