December 05, 2004 9:13 PM- Esse is in the house

Who said there is no drama in the country? You think high drama is reserved for Gotham and Gotham alone? You would be, yet again, operating under erroneous beliefs with regard to la vie de la campagne.

After searching and searching for the perfect woodstove, and by perfect I mean a unit that would function as the very heart of our new home, and by searching and searching I mean that for weeks (and weeks) T would show me these utter monstrosities of a wood cookstove that looked like something Aunt Bea would use to whip up some ham and eggs for Opie so that he'd be on top of his game at Mayberry Elementary. They were, in a word, not setting up shop in my house. Not. Ever.

And then one day while I was making paper airplanes at work and wishing someone would IM me, I got an e-mail from T with a link to Esse. And there she was. The ironheart who would greet me every morning as I stumbled sleepily into the kitchen for the rest of my days.

I gave T the green light and Esse was on her way to us. Simple. Love the internet. With just a couple of taps to the keyboard a 700lb stove is on its way to you. You. Person without a forklift.

Funny how you don't think about things like that when you order on line.

So, we go down to FedEx Freight on Friday morning. It turns out my only purpose there is to absolve T of responsibility in case he takes receipt of the woodstove and it turns out to be damaged. This way, if it turns out to be damaged I have no one to blame. See how it works? Of course as soon as I realized I would not be expected to load the machine and when we were told it would be 45 minutes or so before theFedEx guy would be able to help us, I went back to work. I mean really, if I'm going to stand around wasting time I might as well be at the office where someone might mistakenly think I am actually doing something productive.

T gets Esse loaded onto his truck because FedEx Freight has FORKLIFTS--plural-- lots and lots of forklifts which make moving boxes filled with 700lbs of iron and steel a cakewalk.

I get a call at work late Friday afternoon. There happened to be three men at the house with T which means FOUR MEN to move the stove into the garage except T tells me there was no way. They tried. He was going to wait for me to help him tomorrow.


I am so not making this up.

Okay. You've got the picture now. Bright sunny Saturday morning. T walks me out to the garage to show me the loading dock he has built out of STRAW, I mean wood . . . and he now wants me to help him winch the stove off of the truck onto this pile of kindling.

Maybe this is not shocking to you. Maybe your husband asks you for assistance like this all the time. Perhaps you cannot understand my complete panic as I realized our beautiful, beautiful stove was going to die a horrible death by crashing to the unforgiving cement floor of the garage. The panic was due in part to the fact that I know my husband and his mind was made up and he truly believed that this was going to work.

I wish I had photos showing how we got it off the truck onto his homemade loading dock, but I was too terrified to take pictures because I was sure they could be used against me by the insurance company in a court of law once we had killed the stove.

But, it worked. It really did. And the two of us moved a stove weighing ONE-THIRD OF A TON off from a truck bed and onto a giant Jenga! tower.

Mission accomplished you think. Only if you're George W. Bush.

Do you see how the stove is perched FIVE FEET ABOVE THE EARTH? Hmmm, yes. Not good. Not her final destination. T tells me now he will build a ramp and we will ease her down. EASE HER DOWN. Let's look at this one more time, shall we? (Oh and I swear to God above that while we were EASING her down T actually said to me, "hold on a sec, I need to jiggle it this way." Jiggle it like we were moving a coffee table through a door way . . )

But I'm here to tell you that we did. We got that thing onto the floor and then T moved her into the corner and covered her up and that's where she'll stay until next May when the house is built and I get a call from the basement that'll go something like, "Honey? Can you come give me a hand . .?" And I'll take a valium and dial 1-800-FORK-LIFT.

POSTSCRIPT: No, this is not our kitchen stove though it will be located in the kitchen. We will have a normal (like regular city folk) gas stove. This is primarily for warming up the house but once it is hot, we can also use it for cooking or baking should we feel our game of "Let's Be Pioneers!" needs to get upped a notch.

got 2 cents?

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bellabelly says:
AAAAHHH I love it! However, I resisted the urge to call my husband in here and show it to him, because we close on our new house next week, and he would SO be ordering one. And I would SO be ripping a new hernia trying to get in in the house. You, woman-- are more of one than me.
posted on: December 05

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river selkie says:
what in tarnation is that thing? whatever happened to electric heating? us central zonies require nun such monsters. though it's very cute. i especially like the nearby gun casually resting near the woodstove in the top photo.
posted on: December 05

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Erica says:
Oh, it is wonderful! What fun you will have. That is a stove that just begs to have s'mores made on it.
posted on: December 05

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lizardek says:
I fully expect to see photos of you in a bonnet next. :P 1-800-FORK-LIFT! AHAHAHA! You are A GENIUS.
posted on: December 06

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Marilyn says:
I love this post...beause it made me realize I don't live with the only insane man out there. Let me get this straight: he sent the other THREE MEN home? Was that before or after he built the fancy contraption? Because my man would have sent them home...and then spent the afternoon building the fancy contraption...so that the two of us could ease her off the next day. The bonus, of course, being the satisfaction he'd get from building the fancy contraption instead of just lifting the sucker off with the help of three other men.... Seriously, though...gorgeous woodstove (if such a gal can be gorgeous, and I believe she can). Hope she'll warm the cockles of your heart as well as your kitchen.
posted on: December 06

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gatsby says:
i like you people. you people are cool. regular objective morality, salt of the earth, that rabbit will feed both of us types... and part of me, the part that wants to be more honest- that part is absolutely enamored. plus, as a guy, lets give your husband props for never underestimating you. nice stove.
posted on: December 06

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pioneer woman says:
Selkie--- there's a gun! Oh my god-- I didn't see that before-- but that's not in my house-- that's just the brochure photo-- no guns-- no no. And Marilyn, yes--- he sent the men home and then built the loading dock. There was no lifting this thing. Not four men, not ten men.
posted on: December 06

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frecklegirl says:
That stove is lovely... I feel warm just looking at it. :) We had a woodstove in my house growing up and I know I will definitely have one in my house when I get a house.
posted on: December 06

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amber says:
Beautiful stove! I think they add so much cozy factor to a house...especially one with a back forty! As for the moving part, I think the stove would have done more damage to your garage floor than the other way around!
posted on: December 06

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Sheryl says:
Wowie, can I come over for cocoa? She is magnifique!
posted on: December 06

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wee says:
O my. Esse is sumpin special alright. wow. I could sit and stare at her all day. All my mice are clawing and clamouring at my monitor screen and via a quick game of pictionary, Artice Kneebottom the Third has mananged to convey to me that this is the very sort of stove that Christmas Mice should be dancing upon, yessirree. They should be hanging from their tails from the teakettle and peeking round a leg, gripping holly boughs. Oh yes.
posted on: December 06

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stephanie says:
do I hear banjos playing?
posted on: December 06

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Kat says:
oh - it is a gorgeous woodstove! is it soapstone? I used a woodstove exclusively to heat the cabin over last winter when I was in Va and it was so great - really toasty - and I kept a dish of water on top of to hydrate the air and would put aromatherapy oils in the water and scent up the house . . . yum!!!
posted on: December 06

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Zoot says:
Ahhh...but she's BEAUTIFUL! And worth all the trouble, right?
posted on: December 06

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Dawnie says:
She's beautiful! But, and I say this with love, this is why they have delivery when you buy things from stores. So big burly men with forklifts and other such equipment will do all of that for you. However, you apparently do not need such assistance. I am impressed.
posted on: December 06

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river selkie says:
no worries, bp. i knew it was the ad thingy. i didn't really peg ya as a gun-owner-person anyway.
posted on: December 06

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pastamasta says:
I AM that build-your-own-contraption person. I sympathise with, and indeed loudly applaud, T's sterling efforts and resounding success in the bespoke loading apparatus department. The Pharaohs would be proud. ("Just jiggle that pyramid a few feet to the south-east, will you, mate?") Now all you need is a gingham dress and some pigtails, and it's Little House on the Prairie! Whee!!
posted on: December 07

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Paul * Lisa says:
You did very well to move the Ironheart. We recently had the same stove delivered to our remote county cottage in France - it sat in the garden for a week until I was able to get the local farmers (4 of them) and a hand-trolley to move it in. It's in place now and is great so I'm sure it was worth it.
posted on: December 23

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sallyr says:
we have had an ironheart for four weeks and it is fantastic - heats ready for cooking in one hour as it states. We have been doing all our cooking, bread and cake baking, heating the middle of the house, boiling kettles for washing up and sitting in front of the wood burning window admiring the flames. You will LOVE it, we do! 20.11.06
posted on: November 20

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Heather McMullan says:
We have just had an iron heart for our christmas , we love it and the delivery apparently was easy. However not so the cleaning of the hob/hot plate any tips.
posted on: January 07

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david Marchant says:
Love the stove look. Were thinking of getting one. How does the oven work? Can you get it to 450 or 500 deg. F. Do you have to clean the oven passageway often? We've cooked on an old wood kitchen range, and it takes lots of cleaning to get reasonable temps. I'm hoping the Esse is much better. Would love to hear your experience.
posted on: October 30

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