Today is a bit of a turning point. The fire’s been out for almost 24 hours, and the kitchen and living room had settled down to about 50º. It’s 37º out, and windy, but the sun’s out too. I’ve been home this morning so I went around and opened the east- and south-facing blinds. Then about noon I noticed that the temperature out in the entryway off the kitchen was a degree warmer than in the house (the entryway’s totally uninsulated, so all winter it’s been about the same temp as outside — but it does have two south-facing glass doors, which are collecting more and more sun.)
Anyway, I threw open the kitchen/entryway door and invited in the free warm(er) air. It’s sort of a watershed moment– starting to open the house up rather than close it down. It won’t last more than an hour or two, as the sun moves past its zenith. But it feels like winter’s back has been broken.