Monday, November 28, 2011

Yurting: Rugs, Tapestries, and Straw-bales

I have trouble believing that the end of November is here. Last Sunday felt like September, but this week the weather reminds us that winter really isn’t far off. I’ve put our rugs down again. We have four, all of them large and thick and cheerfully colored. We have two small ones as well for right in front of the door and beneath the counter. With all the rugs down and spread out, most of the floor is covered and the warmth is noticeable. Keeping them spread out is a battle. I have to be continually following behind Luba, who loathes order, straightening the rugs she ruins and removing bit of bone or crunched up sticks. On the walls, I’ve hung all our tapestries - washed clean and bright. Most aren’t very thick, but they do all a layer of warmth and insulation, as well as just being attractive, which is especially important to me in winter, when the majority of my day is spent inside. I try to cover the seams in the interior wall, where cold air might sneak in, but I also try to contrast colors, match themes, and in general keep a consistent “feel” to the yurt with my fabrics.

This summer, we came up with the idea of insulating our outer wall with straw-bales around the base. Straw is actually a fantastic insulator, and the base of the yurt is where most of the cold air creeps in. Last winter the snow didn’t start piling up around the yurt until after new year’s, but this year, we’re coming out of autumn with two big storms already, each dumping about a foot. The October storm melted away quickly, but this one could possibly stick with us for the season. If it does, I’ve no way to really set in straw-bales, and a lessened need of them, with snow already doing the job.

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