We have this beautiful old house, built in 1944, with a large Sycamore tree in the front yard. The tree keeps the house fairly cool during the summer months and fairly cool in the fall months; cool enough for our first fire of the year! We do have a furnace, but it's old...I believe it was put in when the house was built, but I couldn't swear to that. Anyway, we find that fires actually heat the house better than the furnace does, so fires it is :)
I've posted a picture of our first fire of the season...isn't it great? I love fall.