A warm welcome

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There are times, during a dark, bleak British winter, when you get so cold that only the copious application of cosiness will possibly warm you up. I am not just talking about an extra jumper, environmental though that would undoubtedly be. I am talking about super-duper cosy-central. Times in a cold February when I want my life to resemble a desirable photo-shoot from a modern, handmade lifestyle magazine: cashmere bedsocks, goose down duvet, grey merino hand-knitted hand warmers, large stoneware mug of tea, big purring cat.

This year has been weirdly warm (“when is it going to SNOW, Mummeeeeeeee?”) which has happily meant that most thoughts of trying to warm myself up have been banished from my mind. This is especially good, since opportunities for languidly lounging around wrapped in desirable warm items of homeware made from natural fibres are sadly limited round here. We tend to rely on the hot heat of tantrummy soft-play to warm us up these days.

So we’ve relied on our heating only a little bit this winter. This is something of a relief, since our heating system is what one might describe as touchingly basic. No thermostat. No particularly obvious way of altering the temperature on the radiators, other than the time-honoured, ‘turn the knobs as far as you can in one direction then see whether the radiator seems cool or roasting next time you remember’. Basically when it gets cold, although we can set the rudimentary timer on the boiler, we tend to just turn the heating on for a few hours, then turn it off again. Thankfully our house, whilst having many problems that we would like to fix, is actually a pretty warm house. It heats up pretty quickly, and retains the heat reasonably well. Which is a blessing, actually, now I think of it, that I should really appreciate more.

The boiler on the other hand, is hard to appreciate, sitting as it does right in the middle of the kitchen. Remember our kitchen window, which I posted about blimmin’ ages ago some time ago?

The kitchen windowWell, since then we’ve seen a few small improvements. I removed the hideous metal blind. I even undercoated and painted the window frame. And I bought a metal shelf from Ikea to hang our saucepans from, having admired the very same thing in a friend’s house.

Corner by corner - kitchen windowSo here you can see the white painted window frame, which made a lovely difference to the whole space, making it feel much cleaner and brighter. But what’s that, dominating the view from here? Ah yes. The boiler.

My ideal boiler would be hidden away somewhere. Preferably in a built-in cupboard, so we could put it completely out of sight, and I could live a nice warm life whilst pretending that there was no such thing as pipes, gas supply, or indeed heating bills. I just have this nagging feeling that if we ever tried to move this boiler, it would not only be massively expensive, it would also hasten its demise. So there it stays.

Since being sent some information about evohome, a smart central heating system has also joined my dream list for our heating. The basic premise is that instead of waiting to feel cold, then flipping open the boiler and switching it on, the whole thing works in a rather more seamless, technological and beautiful way.

honeywell1You get to control your heating remotely via an app, which is music to the ears of a technophile like me. There is something pretty pleasing about the idea of sitting on a cold train, getting out your phone, and arranging for the house to be nice and toasty when you get back. But you also get a control panel fitted like the one above, which has a pleasingly futuristic air about it.

Of course, a love of gadgets and a desire to change the temperature when on the London Overground are not the only reasons to find this all appealing. You can also create ‘zones’ in your home and heat them separately, which should mean you can use your heating more efficiently and save money.

If that’s piqued your interest, there are a couple of places to find out more, both the Evohome website, and the nifty system planning tool, where you can input a few details and get a price.

This is a sponsored post in association with Evohome. I received payment for this post, but all words and thoughts are my own.

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