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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

THE YULE LOG

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The burning Yule log was a symbol of the light that would return after the dark days of early winter. It gave people an excuse to gather with family and friends before a roaring fire. The tradition is an old one, going back to the Druid custom of choosing a large log from an apple or oak tree, lighting it afire, and praying that it would burn forever. A good prayer considering that they did not have modern conveniences like fuel oil, electricity, and generators in case the power went out! In England, the log was selected months before Christmas Day because it was believed that all who brought it in from the woods would be protected against harm for the ensuing year, everyone lent a hand, making the event itself a festive time.

Today the Yule log is a large wooden log burned in the hearth as a part of traditional Yule or Christmas celebrations in several European cultures. It can be a part of the Winter Solstice festival or the Twelve Days of Christmas, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, or Twelfth Night.
 Did you know:
  • One large log lasts two to three times longer than the same volume of smaller logs.
  • That you should burn only seasoned wood?
  • Wood-burning stoves are three times more efficient than standard fireplaces.
  • For the prettiest flames, burn birch or maple.
  • Add a handful of pine or hemlock needles, rosemary sprigs, or sage branches to your next fire to add natural incense to the room.
  • Did you know that one cord of wood burned as firewood provides the heat equivalent to that produced by burning 200 to 250 gallons of heating oil, depending on the type of hardwood you are using?
  • That the best wood to burn is rock elm, shagbark hickory, white oak, butternut hickory, beech, red oak, yellow birch, red elm, white ash, and white elm?
We have a fireplace but don't use it anymore to burn wood.  It needs some repairs so I burn candles in it instead. That suits me just find because with hot flashes I don't need any additional heat sources! I do have an ambient DVD that  I can play on my TV that plays the sounds of a burning fire put without the heat! I play that in the winter when we have friends and family over! Its great - no heat, chopping wood, or ash to carry outside!
Hope you are all staying warm today. It's a brisk 7 degrees here is eastern Iowa! BRRRRRR! But my hotflahses love it! ;D

4 comments:

  1. I miss having toasty fires in the fireplace! Not too practical here in Arizona!!
    Happy Holidays,
    Karen

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  2. we love our woodstove..and it is going right now to take the chill off the house..and I just sent my little sister a dvd of a fire burning..as they don't have a woodstove and I thought she would get a kick out of it..and it and use it when they open presents.:)

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  3. Wow, what a post to read as I sit here and check a blog, stoke the fire, check a blog, stoke the fire, check a blog....feel the sore muscles from unloading firewood last night. You hit home though and made me realize why we are doing this..that and the $600 gas bill last February!

    Have a great day!

    Cathy

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  4. Thanks for the great tips regarding your wonderful post!!!

    Carolyn

    Also thank you for visiting my blog and leaving me your sweet comment!

    ReplyDelete

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