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Tips needed to keep warm and a moan!(35 Posts)
I can't afford to put my heating on for more than a few hours a week,usually for an hour or two before kids baths and showers just to take the edge off.I have a gas cooker too which is on for a few hours in evening so it all adds up,i have quite a big house with tiled/wooden floors which seems to make it colder,carpets always seemed warmer.A few years ago I didn't have to think about turning on the heating in the morning so we were all warm and as soon as were home the heating was on till bedtime,how times change!I feel terrible when the kids say they are freezing and have to put extra clothes on all apart from my 3 year old dd who says she is hot bless her, she don't understand,I go round in my dressing gown all evening to feel warm.I do have an open fire in sitting room which I usually can't afford to buy wood/coal for but dh bought some yesterday but car will do without petrol now but at least we can have a warm sitting room for a few days until it runs out.I know the recession has affected us all but going cold just sucks..I feel like a nag moaning that we can't afford to put it on,turn the lights off etc ,etc....how do people cope with this cold weather when money is tight
Hats are great. I think you lose 20% of your body heat through your head.
Totally understand your situation, more than most..... try putting on heat for just 1 hr a day in the living room and kids bedrooms...be vigilant that the doors to these room as kept shut to retain heat. I am constantly reminding my kids of this...then tell them the opposite in summer! If you have a stove or open fire, then other posters suggestions of using free / foraged wood is great, get the kids involved at the weekend, it can be under the guise of a 'long walk in the woods'.
Otherwise, its hot water bottles all round and blankets...but don't scrimp on some heating at least as it really can make you miserable if you just can't warm up....if you are doing work yourself freelance, can you do that in a library with free wifi / internet access...the council are then technically paying for your heat.
Gosh this makes me so cross, lots of multinationals are based in Ireland paying virtually no tax and you have to pay to see a doctor!
Few different sites have good ideas:
The section on draught proofing www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/Insulation/Draught-proofing is particularly good. If you are going to heat one room make sure you have draft excluders around the doors they are really cheap to make and your kids might love decorating them. They can be made from any material so old towels, sheets etc and if you dont have anything to stuff them with newspaper works fine. Make sure windows which get the sun during the day have the curtains pulled right back to let it in to warm up and to make sure you get some sun or you will feel worse.
Have a flask next to the kettle so if you boil too much it isn't wasted and you can use it to wash up etc. Veg, fruit etc going out of date can be cooked and frozen for future use
Id highly recommend libraries and museums for the daytime, keeping warm and entertained. Libraries can also be good (if they haven't shut them all down) for entertainment ideas as well, reference books on activities etc.
Hope life gets easier for you and your family very soon x
The tip with keeping warm is to keep your core warm - when I was in the same situation as you and couldn't afford to heat the house, I'd wear a bodywarmer - I had a down one that was just great, and for the kids I'd get extra layers on them from the inside out iyswim.
Also, doing star jumps and press ups and other exercisey things helped in the evenings
Thankyou lovely ladies for your fantastic tips,will check out those websites later when I have more time..thanks Ibpamela.
Got some hot water bottles,wearing bodywarmers and dh had the bright idea of chopping up some old cabinets we had in the outhouse for the fire!! so got some wood to keep the fire going for a little while..was very mild here today so the house actually feels comfortable so can't complain.
There is nothing for free here if I wanted to use the computers at the library then you have to pay!! and you only get an hour..
Do you have freecycle over there? you could get old furniture for free for the fire.
A colleague of mine used to loiter at her local tip to get stuff people were throwing away, one day she got a nearly new dyson as the lady had bought another vacuum. How the other half live. Never had the nerve to do it myself but she lived in a naice area and money was no object to the locals.
Try thermal underwear / blanket or slanket (arms free) over you, when sitting down. It works and you can turn down/off the heating!
Try thermal underwear / blanket or slanket (arms free) over you, when sitting down. It works and you can turn down/off the heating! My thermals have lasted for years!
Do you have a river near you or live by the coast? Reason I say is my mum and dad pretty much only use their open fire in the winter. My dad goes and collects driftwood in the car and saws it up into logs suitable size to go on the fire. I dont think they have ever paid for wood. It means they can afford enough coal alongside the wood to run the fire. I think on average they have the fire running for around 12 hours a day. Sometimes ashes still warm in the morning.
Christmas/Birthdays - hot water bottles with fluffy covers, slippers, pjs, dressing gowns, blankets (ds got one with Goeorge Pig other year), socks, jumpers etc.
Put all kids in one bedroom.
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