Cold Snap

Overnight the temperature dipped low. The wind chill this morning is -30C. The weather people tell us that this cold spell will be over in a matter of days, time will tell. I am leaving the curtains closed until the sun shines, they help keep the cold at bay.

Attila has built stud walls and insulated the south wall of the basement, and now the east wall as well. Last year he insulated half of the north wall. So just half the north wall, and the west wall, to go.

As a result we are already noticing changes in the house.

I found information on our hydro web site that revealed that the average temperature in November 2018 was -1C, while the average temperature in November 2019 was colder, -4C.

Our hydro usage went down for November 2019 by 60 kWh, clearly a result of the new insulation in the basement. This is pretty good considering the insulation project started mid-November, and went slowly at first. I think we are seeing real results from this basement insulation project!

A reduced electric heating bill is not the only change though. Since the rim joists below the living room were sealed and insulated, the floors are not icy cold this morning! I was not chilled when I walked to the living room in stocking feet, a first for this house, when it is this cold. Also, the draft is gone, just below the new front door in the living room. I remember the fellow who installed the attic insulation told me that sealing and insulating the rim joists in the house would make an amazing difference; how right he was.

Another benefit we have noticed is that the dehumidifier in the basement does not cycle on as often. Cement blocks can wick moisture into the house, so I think the vapour barrier on new stud walls is making a positive difference.

With such noticeable improvements in comfort, Attila is beginning to allude to improving the insulation in the exterior walls of the main floor. Since that will be a very intrusive and complicated project, his enthusiasm is a crucial element in tackling it. However, it isn’t at the top of our list, the next item is the back porch. I am hoping to sneak in a new back door when the porch is improved!

This morning I have been enjoying Gingerbread Cookies for breakfast. What, you say! Cookies for breakfast! They aren’t exactly health food I know, but they are so full of great ingredients, like spices, whole wheat flour, egg, vinegar, and molasses. Each cookie has but one teaspoon of sugar in it (the molasses), because instead of adding the white cane sugar called for in the recipe, I added stevia. Gingerbread Cookies are our thing this Christmas, we can’t get enough of them!

I love the Panettone I’ve been making, but Attila is not a bread lover like I am, cookies though, that is whole other story.



Date: 6:00 AM EST Thursday 19 December 2019
Condition: Clear
Pressure: 102.9 kPa
Tendency: Rising
Temperature: -20.3°C
Dew point: -24.2°C
Humidity: 72%
Wind: WNW 16 km/h
Wind Chill: -30
Visibility: 24 km


“To love what you do and feel that it matters – how could anything be more fun?”
Katharine Graham
1917 – 2001

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Wow, that sounds like a great improvement in comfort, and cost!

Diane Dahli

It’s wonderful to make improvements, and to feel an immediate change! Take care of yourselves, as you weather this cold spell…


When they called a home a “money pit” they weren’t kidding. There’s always some extra thing that needs fixing, doing, adding-to, painting, stuffing…. it just never seems to end. But I applaud you both for getting on with the jobs and getting results. Merry Christmas!