February 01, 2009

Don't Mess With the Air Boss

When my husband and I got engaged, and being that he was Catholic, we had to go through all sorts of pre-marital counseling.

I guess this is what churches do to try and curb divorce rates.

And on a side note, my kids go to a very small Parish Catholic school (K-8) and I do believe that in this current 8th grade class, we've had more children who have lost a parent (lost as in, died, not as in can't be found), than have parents who are divorced. Very odd...

Anyway, during this pre marital class, they said the three things that couples fight about most are children, sex, and finances.

I'm not going to divulge any nitty gritty marital details here, because that's not my style, but I will say that we've never fought about those things.

During our pre-marital counseling, as we were to write each other letters and what not, everyone else was battling it out about finances and children (from what I overheard... I don't remember hearing anything about sex... but who knows) we were battling it out over a big screen TV he bought while I was on a business trip.

Did it bug me how much it cost? No. I don't watch TV and the noise makes me half insane.

And so that was our BIG issue... pretty benign if you ask me.

Seventeen years later and we still don't fight about the big three. We were just always on the same page.

We fight about... things like... whether we're going to turn the heat on in the house.

That's our latest thorn.

Oh there have been so many times I've nearly blogged on it here in the last two weeks as I think its rather funny.


Not so much.

I'm what TGOO refers to as the 'Air Boss'. I control the a/c and heat in the house.

Why me? I pay the bills. I'm still in the 'how low can I go' mode for power. Last month, we hit a record low of... $145.

That is a BIG deal as there are five of us and I live in a big house that is fully electric. We have no gas in this home... 100% electric. When I tell people about last month's bill, and they know my home, there is always a *gasp!*.

My goal is to keep it under $300 all through the summer. We'll see...

I really think that solar hot water made a HUGE difference.

And that brings me to the big issue that is between my husband and me... the heat. We've had a number of cold snaps come through and I absolutely REFUSE to turn on the heat.

Oh he has tried. I've come in from our Carnival, his sleeping, to find the heat on and I've quickly snapped it off.

Then there was the time it was time for bed and he declared, 'I work too hard to have to live in a house this cold!' and with that, he turned on the heat.

I quietly smiled and said OK, until I heard him sleeping, and crept out and turned it off. He who sleeps the lightest is in control of the heat.

That would be moi.

For the record, the house has never gotten below 68 degrees. Its not like there are ice sickles hanging from inside our windows. It's just 10 degrees cooler than we keep our a/c set.

My response has been a 'suck it up, Bucko! You'll live!"

Heh. I've been teasing my friends that the only reason he's not kicked me to the curb on this heat issue is the fact I keep saying, "Our power bill was $145 last month! ONE HUNDRED AND FORTY FIVE!"

And logic kicks in and he throws on another sweater.

As for my solar hot water... if you live in TX or FL or some place that gets big sun a lot, let me tell you, so far I'm in love. I'm heating water for free. It can be 35 degrees out, the sun is shining, and my water is hot as hell.

For free.

I love that...

And honestly, if I had it my way, it would be 70 deg at night every night when we slept... cranking the a/c down. But truly, he hates sleeping in the cold.

I frickin' LOVE to hibernate. Maybe subconsiously I realize this is the only way I get to hibernate, declaring heating is too much money...

I think we're pretty lucky. Most argue about serious stuff... ours is about temperature and even then, when we argue, we're laughing.

Not bad at all...

Posted by Boudicca at February 1, 2009 03:29 PM

Funny- I like it hot, Hubby likes it cold....and I run the ac/heater dial.
Guess that means I win.
(ps- He pays the bills, but I win anyway.)

Posted by: Rave at February 1, 2009 11:01 PM

Ah haha. I love the Winter here in Michigan. I haven't even worn a coat yet, and it's gotten down to 20 degrees F. I myself am a burning inferno of heat. I'm never cold, and the only time I kick the heat above the minimum setting (I don't want the pipes in my place to freeze) is when I have guests over. Send your Husband up to Michigan or better, Alaska, for a few months. Suddenly 68 won't seem so cold. . .

Posted by: Andrew Ravencroft at February 1, 2009 11:53 PM

I just put my cold feet on him.

Posted by: PeggyU at February 2, 2009 12:20 AM

I prefer it a little on the cooler side. But not so cold I get the chills, or anything not under a blanket (head, feet) freezes. Sleeping in a stuffy room is intolerable. Ceiling fans and floor fans (not blowing directly on me) help, too.

And I too have to fight with the wife over the house temp. Luckily she works nights, which means five or six days a week I have the thermostat to myself. Nyah nyah nyah.

Posted by: diamond dave at February 2, 2009 01:48 AM

.... two words..... flannel sheets...... trust me, they are amazing....

Posted by: Eric at February 2, 2009 07:16 AM

hee hee, air boss. i like that. hubby learned nearly ten years ago NOT to touch the thermostat. it's mine, all mine. so even when it's 54 degrees in here, he'll put on some sweats and wrap himself in blankets before even suggesting i put on the heat. we laugh about what it will be like in twenty years when i'm having "real" hot flashes and he's on blood thinners. i'm expecting that it will turn into a battle then.

Posted by: arcanai at February 2, 2009 09:07 AM

68 degrees is not cold. . . . it is perfect. It is the temp I usually keep my house all year long - somewhere between 68-70 degrees and we are happy as clams. :)

Posted by: oddybobo at February 2, 2009 09:16 AM

Our heat & electric bill last month was $400! Then again, it was 20 below zero half the month. Our heater ran constantly to keep our house at 67. :)

Posted by: Jody at February 2, 2009 09:33 AM

Funny how this is a common marital issue!

Jody, that's what my bill will creep to in August to keep the house at 78. We run in the 100s and its just expensive to keep it cool. I'm hoping this summer will be different with the new thermostat and my solar hot water. I'm doing a perpetual yearly comparison.

Posted by: Bou at February 2, 2009 09:51 AM

I mean this in a nice way, but your hubby is a pussy.

He is cold at 68 degrees?

Geez, I keep the house at 65 degrees during the winter. Extra clothes and blankets are the norm here. Plus we have a down blanket and 2 dogs at night, and we sleep with the fan on because the dogs give off so much heat.

Posted by: Quality Weenie at February 2, 2009 10:06 AM

In his defense, I will say our bedroom is about 3 degrees cooler than the rest of the house, putting us at 65, but I love to tease him. "You're from Jersey! Suck it up!" and I usually get a "I moved from Jersey for a reason!"

I blame it on his southern Italian blood. Genetically he is just made for hot weather.

Posted by: Bou at February 2, 2009 10:10 AM

I control the thermostat in my relationship...my husband just doesn't care either way. He can sleep whether it's 85 and stuffy (a rarity in WI) or 60. In our apartment, where heat is included in the rent, we keep it at 68 and consider it a luxury. When I was in college, my roommate and I kept her house at 62 at night. That was cold...and, despite the solar heat panels on the back of the house, we were still shelling out $200 a month for gas and electric.

Posted by: MonicaC at February 2, 2009 01:12 PM

*sigh* Thermostat wars. I hate them. It's the one thing we will "fight" about too. I am always cold. I keep the temp at 70 during the day and it goes down to 66 at night. These are temps I can live with and remain functional. (really it's not pleasant at all to try and type with frozen fingers...)

We have a programmable thermostat so I have it set up to turn itself up to the daytime temps when I get up. This way I don't freeze in the shower. My husband will, however, get up on the weekend, set the temp down and put it on hold. Makes me nuts! I HATE taking a shower when the bathroom is cold - hate it.

I threatened to buy him a manual thermostat for his birthday this year. For that matter I've also threatened to move to a hotel until the weather warms up unless he leaves it alone. We aren't broke, there are only 2 of us. If there was a compelling reason, I could understand - but since there isn't (and we certainly aren't keeping the normal temps at Hawaii levels) it really ticks me off. However, he is SURE we will prematurely wear out the heater... ARG!!!

Fight Fight Fight. heh.

Posted by: Teresa at February 2, 2009 02:47 PM

Wait a minute Bou. I know you. You're the one who is always freezing at Eric's. You turn the heat off?

Posted by: Denny at February 2, 2009 02:50 PM

Denny- YUP! Funny isn't it? Its a couple things really. I hate the way central heat feels... it is so dry. I hate the way it smells as well. So in my home, I'm more apt to let it get a bit colder and wear more clothes.

But at Eric's? Holy crap. Everyone is OUTSIDE and its below 60. That is just INSANE. I nearly freeze...

Posted by: Bou at February 2, 2009 04:45 PM

.... yeah, but we DO build a fire in the back yard!......

Posted by: Eric at February 2, 2009 07:13 PM

we are happy as clams

Well, that's because clams like it kind of cold. Isn't that what they mean by clammy? Cold and damp?

We keep ours set at 68 during the day, lower at night. We must be mollusks too.

Posted by: PeggyU at February 3, 2009 01:20 PM