Buckle Up. I’m going to be sharing a lot about our barn. It’s been there just shy of 200 years so I think it deserves a little attention in sharing the last few days of it’s life.
In all honesty, the decision to tear down the barn was not one we took lightly. My mom has lots of memories in the barn her dad used for the farm. We first spent last summer getting estimates to fix it up. And by fix it up, I mean go all in and bring it back to it’s former glory. We found it was just too expensive to do so. I did play the lottery a few times hoping that I would win and could afford to restore the barn, but alas I did not win and therefore the money was just not there.
Why didn’t you just patch it?
We had thought about simply patching it, but our barn has been patched for decades. Also, for the age it was, it was a huge barn. At some point they had doubled the size of the barn making it overwhelming to fix up. There comes a critical point where a decision has to be made. Do you let it continue to deteriorate or do you find a company to tear it down that would take the wood for repurposing? We decided on the latter.
You will drive around in our area in Ohio and see that lots of people have made the decision to watch an old barn fall down over time. Personally, I just couldn’t do that. So, I listed our barn online. (Yes, that’s a thing.) . We had quite a few interested parties. Some companies wanted only the beams and would leave the rest. I wasn’t okay with that. I wanted someone to enjoy all of the barn and not just pick a few pieces and tear the rest down.
We settled on a man out of Oklahoma who agreed to take our barn down sight unseen outside of text messages. Five months later, he arrived with his crew who were from Missouri. They were the right people for the job. They cared and appreciated the barn. They took their time and knew what they were doing.
The entire process took about one week. It started with snow and ended with beautiful weather. Such is spring in Ohio.
As I was editing photos, I found myself getting a little emotional again. It’s hard to be the one to tear the barn down and have that on your shoulders. My mom and dad were supportive. My mom has many memories in the barn having grown up at our home. But the decision had to be made to allow the beautiful beams and architecture details to live on.
Did you keep anything from the barn?
Um, yes! The barn was full of treasures. We found little keepsakes like an old horseshoe and we kept some of the barn wood. I am hoping to build something. Stay tuned for that.
We also found a primitive farm “thing”. Anyone know what it is?
Now, we sit with a big pile of metal (from the roof) and straw as well as other miscellaneous pieces of wood for cleanup. Hopefully we’ll see that process start this week.
Speaking of clean up. We took down some trees in the back fence line this month to open up the space. We also took out the fence posts.
We hope to make it a more open backyard so we can enjoy the view.
We put the boys to work to make sure they helped! Somehow my youngest got the heaviest load.
We also had our tree stumps grounded down. The trees were taken down last fall because they were unhealthy and hanging over the house. In addition to the ones we took down a few weeks ago, the yard is starting to look cleaned up. My mom found some pictures from 30 years ago of the property and it’s amazing how quickly things out grew the space.
This month was a lot of the tear out and tear down which is not my favorite. When you have a heart of restoration and preservation, these things are the most daunting. However, I continue to be grateful for the fact we get to live in our home and carry on the ability for the next generation to enjoy it as well.
Speaking of the next generation, my brother started spraying the fields and today will start planting. It’s an exciting time where we all pitch in to help in some way.
I sat at the water tank for 30 minutes and watched the water fill up the tank. We all can do something. 😉
I snapped this picture of my dad this month as he watched my brother put in the supports that allowed us to the keep the lean to on the barn. I love this picture as it totally describes my dad. He’s always there looking out for us and helping us. He’s beside my brother in the fields and spent days at our home helping us cut down the trees and clean up the yard. My mom pitches in helping to watch the kids, bakes cookies, feeds us and provides moral support.
Living out in the country on a property like ours is truly a family affair. There was evidence of that one night when we all had dinner together after a long day of working. We can’t do it without each other, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.
Next Month We Hope to Accomplish:
- Barn Clean Up
- Plant Grass where the barn was
- Clean up the fence line area & plant grass there too
- Re-surface our back patio
- Get a dog. (Yes! Eeeeeeek! Will keep you posted on that one.)