The wood stove has gotten a workout this winter. Walt makes a fire every afternoon, usually before five o'clock, and it burns until about ten in the evening. When winter started, we had a good supply of wood — a lot of oak and some softer wood too — that we had delivered, oh, at least two years ago, and it is holding out. We'll need to buy more this coming summer, though.
Rooftops at La Renaudière
What we started running out of was little twigs and branches to use as kindling. Walt went around our yard and gathered up all he could — we've had a few windy days that blew some dead wood out of the trees.
A few days ago, our neighbors from Blois were here. They were cleaning up some things in their yard across the street from us, and Callie went over to see them so I did too. We were talking about things in general when I remembered I needed to ask them about kindling wood.
They have a quince tree that blew over last fall and is just lying there for now. All those twigs and little branches were tempting me, but I didn't want to go and just take some without asking. When I asked, the neighbors said we could help ourselves. They said any little sticks and limbs we picked up out of their yard would be that much less work they would have to do before the mowing season begins.
The neighbors have 2½ acres of property. Part of it is meadow that they mow, and part is woods. Even in the meadow, there are quite a few trees that drop branches in wintertime. Since the neighbors spend very little time here in winter, they don't build very many fires in their fireplace. That means more kindling for us. We gathered some yesterday afternoon.