Aren’t the holidays such a warm and joyful time of year? I mean, not really. They’re generally just plagued by heavy falling snow, vicious wind chills, and ridiculous icy roads in my recollection. Perhaps my memory is a bit skewed because I grew up in the midwest, and winter was more like surviving than celebrating each year. We were constantly wrapped up in so many layers of clothing, huddled around the nearest air vent and rubbing our chilly hands together. There is very little time or energy for holiday spirit when you’re busy drowning in the spirits to keep warm. That’s why we thought it would be a great idea to supplement our living room with a nice and toasty space heater last year, just to boost the holiday cheer around the christmas tree. We had neglected the central heating for a while, so the old furnace really didn’t work at top notch. Adding in this little space heater to the mix seemed like it would provide just enough extra warmth and comfort for everyone. I was so stoked to sit around the tree first thing in the morning and plug in our little heater for the first time. It warmed right up, and soon so did our front room where we all gathered to gawk at presents. We got up and walked away to get more Christmas cookies – just for a minute or two, I think – and by the time we got back to the living room things had heated up far more. In a dangerous way. The entire Christmas tree had gone up in flames, and we rushed to grab a fire extinguisher. That year we learned why it’s important to maintain your central heating system, rather than counting on a space heater for holiday cheer.