build-a-barn ~ around the corner

The porch floor project mentioned on my last build-a-barn post, has been poured. We decided to go with the wood planked look (vs boardwalk). We used a wider 8" board stamp. The Saloon floor is a 6" board stamp. We still have to stain/seal both barn floors. It seems nothing is ever really completely done...

half way done
porch crew working hard

wet stamped concrete

taking self portraits to new heights
I am 60 feet tall!
Brad has been working super hard again, on both barn & house stuff. I really worry about him. He is burning the candle at both ends. As we move deeper into Fall, the pressure of our complicated homestead build increases. At least after a long two and a half month ordeal, the truck hauling our ceiling material for the house FINALLY arrived! For real. "It's been shipped" is kinda like "check is in the mail". You don't believe it until you see it! I am happy to report we no longer look like Smurfs standing underneath a gigantic blue tarp! Having a roof on our house means it's go time. Make up for lost time. Crunch time. For most everything. They said things will move fast after the roof goes on. They weren't kidding!!  

Even with an unseasonable warm Fall, it's hard to forget that winter is around the corner. All under/ground/outdoor related things have to be completed. Soon. It will get cold, and the ground will freeze. Eventually. On top of everything else, field work had to be done. Brad sold three crops of alfalfa earlier this year, before planting Winter Wheat last week. Thanks to our daughter, the wheat is already sold. The horse pasture also had to be replanted. 

We are still planning on having the house & barn done by the end of this year. Not an ideal time to move in WI. I moved in the middle of a freezing cold January snow storm once, and don't care to ever do that again. With that said, if this winter is anything like last year it will be a non-issue. On the other hand, we may just wait until early Spring. I might even be ready by then??

Remember how I said construction requires multiple stages of digging, then filling, then re-digging, then re-filling? Well, we dug the barn area up. Again. I think this is the last time?! This year.

digging the water line for the auto waterer
(iphone pic)
We made the decision on shelter placement for the horses. With the house up, we could actually look out of it and see where shelter placement would block our view of the horses. We decided to clear the brush strip between the barn & house, and tuck the shelter-to-be partially among a few remaining larger trees. It will be closer to the barn, semi-protected from elements, with a partially unobstructed view. We would love to be able to see our horses inside the shelter, but both house & shelter face similar directions. 

The shelter will have a Ritchie waterer inside it. We won't be digging it out of snow storms, and unfreezing it, like the last place we had our horses. Someday we plan to add another open sided type shade shelter, further down the pasture. Mostly for Nemo, who's allergies continue to be problematic. We can't wait to bring him home...

future shelter will be on the left
a wide connecting path will be on the right
Work on the barn interior has slowed down. It's all about catching up on the house these days. However, we did finish deciding on stalls. Now it's time to order them. Gulp! We also looked at interior barn doors (again) and are in the process of having the plumbing & electric hooked up in the barn. It won't be too much longer & we will have a toilet on the land. One that doesn't consist of sand & hiding behind buildings. A real flushing toilet! Yipeee!!


View other Build-a-Barn posts to date.


We started building our 60'x80' barn December 2016. Building a barn from scratch is a very long process. I've documented and photographed our barn build step-by-step. For memories that last forever. This page contains all the related build-a-barn posts, and will continue to evolve until our barn is completed.

April 2017

Build-a-barn links: 

let the building begin ~ the barn (excavating, footings, support walls)

build-a-barn ~ phase two (poles, stick puzzle, winter building)

build-a-barn ~ raising the roof (setting trusses, crane, sky views)

build-a-barn ~ the fun continues (structure, trusses, dividing wall)

build-a-barn ~ making progress (interior, roof, cupolas)

build-a-barn ~ rapid change (walls, trusses, barn & land video)

build-a-barn ~ taking it all in (stall walls, ice, reflection)

build-a-barn ~ now what (horse side, builders last day, 

build-a-barn ~ dig it (trenches, well, services)

build-a-barn ~ productive weekend (layout, wall support, multi tasking)

build-a-barn ~ months progress (services, storage walls, digging & filling)

build-a-barn ~ one section at a time (room flooring, heat tubes, drains)

build-a-barn ~ summer update (center aisle, saloon floor, interior framing)

build-a-barn ~ getting more done 
(porch ceiling, interior framing, storage entry)

build-a-barn ~ around the corner (porch floor, water lines, shelter placement)


road to recovery

July 30th seems like such a long time ago, and yet it feels like yesterday. I am reminded of our accident daily. I don't dwell on it, and yet with most every movement it's impossible to not be reminded of how quickly life changes. With one wrong step.

Fall always finds me pensive, more so then any other seasonal change. This year is no different, and perhaps magnified. Everything is chaotic and everything is unfinished, in every area of my life. At least it feels that way. SO what's a person to do? You do whatever you can, and then a little more. The rest lays dormant, much like the plants and trees will soon be.

You can't change the past. I for one, don't want to. It makes me who I am. What I can do is devote myself to what matters, today. The most important thing I can do is spend time healing our injuries, the best way I can. It's the path to being able to do all the other things that matter, tomorrow.

Koda remains on full day turnout, with no leg wrap. Late afternoon his wound is rinsed, wiped and a light wrap with antibiotic ointment is applied. We are starting week four of his rehab riding, we are up to 12 minutes of walking a couple times a week. Ideally it would be 3X. I figure between a couple rides, turn out, galloping to the gate, hand walking to/from, he is getting enough movement. I hope. Koda's wound is very close to being healed. Once it is, they suggest one last recheck. Glad to be nearing the end, it's been a pricey ordeal. 

As for me, my doctor sent me for Xrays, and MRI's. Two Orthopedic doctors later, resulted in polar opposite opinions. I am also on the road to recovery. I think. Strangest outcome I've ever experienced. Is some of my Rotator Cuff completely separated? or torn? Jury is still out. Because of the varied opinions, I have a third Orthopedic doc appointment at the end of the month. What everyone does agree on is unlocking my (almost) frozen shoulder. I had my first steroid shot, which I am happy to report allowed me to sleep, lying down! The root of the pain remains, and when moved in the wrong direction finds me either fighting swear words or tears. But the constant evening dull ache/throbbing is gone. Yay! I started seeing an Athletic Trainer (similar to PT) and came home with 14 less then fun exercises from my first appointment (not counting variations).

my phone screen saver
(October 2014)
This year we will go on another horseless trail riding vacation. Sigh. It's never the same without our horses, but we are going regardless. We haven't taken any vacations since last Fall, and really need a break! The road to recovery can be a long, and painful path. But it's one well worth taking. 


build-a-barn ~ getting more done

With every week that passes, more things get done on the barn. The house, not so much. It has been at a stand still for weeks. The wood ceiling material our builder ordered from his supplier has yet to arrive. Without it, we can't put on a real roof. The giant blue smurf tarp doesn't count. At this rate we may be living in the barn saloon after all!

We didn't want to waste manpower or time, so the two guys building our house worked on the barn overhang ceiling instead. It's a work in progress.

the overhang, looking up
The entrance to the storage side of the barn got poured. Eventually we would like to have everything but the area with the six (potential stalls) windows done in concrete, or maybe just a center strip. For now, we will probably finish up with fill & top with gravel.

level flooring helps doors seal tighter 
looking out of storage side
Brad had the great idea of adding an interior window to the saloon! It faces the barn aisle, and will let in more natural light. You can see if someone comes into the barn, or if they are hiding taking a break in the saloon. 

all framed up
Board by board, the barn rooms are shaping up nicely. It's actually starting to look and feel like a barn. It doesn't smell like a horse barn, yet.

my guy working hard on the tack room
view from the other side

I walked over to look at the house site, came back - and just like that we have a saloon window!

adding this window was genius!

two saloon windows are better then one

inside saloon
There has been so much progress on the barn, yet much left to do. Most related decisions have been made, but not all. How to finish off the inside of the saloon, is a big topic these days. Just for the record, we are not putting in a bar. Sorry to disappoint everyone! We have zero plans of bartending and hosting big ol' barn parties. It's just not us. We will however enjoy the cherished space with friends & neighbors. Whatever we end up doing, needs to be low maintenance and useful. A refrigerator, comfy seating, and some type of cupboard/counter space comes to mind. Still in the dreaming stages.

Next on the agenda, pouring the porch...

ready, set, go


View other Build-a-Barn posts to date.