Frugal heating system

Our house is older, not well insulated, and has big windows. We haven’t turned on the heat yet, so it’s quite cold in the mornings and evenings. As I work, I usually have a big mug of hot tea to help warm me up. But hot tea only stays hot for a limited time, and I can only drink so much of it!

We do have a space heater, and although I haven’t worked out the numbers, I think that running it all morning, every day, would defeat the frugalness of having the house heater off in the first place.

Yesterday, I filled a gallon-sized ziplock bag half-full of white rice (I get rice in large quantities so it’s pretty cheap) and microwaved it for two minutes. Then I sat with it in my lap. Ahhhhh.

The rice was so hot, I had to move it around. It became a nice soothing back pillow for a little while.

I was warm for the rest of the morning.


  1. lisa
    Posted November 21, 2007 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    What a great idea! I’d have never thought of the rice. I hate being cold. Thanks for the tip!

    We also have large windows that tend to be drafty – I cover them with plastic every winter (the kind that you shrink with a hair dryer) and it’s amazing what a difference it makes. We have a gas fireplace that is the primary heat source for our home and I sit by it a lot – with the dogs.🙂

    Stay warm!

  2. Posted November 21, 2007 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    Lisa — you too!🙂 I’ve loved the mornings when we’ve made a fire and I work out in the family room… but I’m usually too lazy to build myself a fire.

  3. ddrdancer
    Posted November 21, 2007 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    i’m a cheapy and never run the heater until the thermostat reads 44. have found that taking a super hot shower and then sitting in bed with my down comforter works for me! or if i am watching a dvd, my sac kings blanket works well. (at least the kings are good for something!)🙂

  4. Posted November 23, 2007 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    That’s a great idea!

  5. Posted November 26, 2007 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

    love the rice idea. why didnt i think of that?

  6. Posted November 26, 2007 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

    ddrdancer – I combined a blanket AND rice when I was working this morning. It worked well.

    Angela and Robert – Thanks for commenting!

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