Friday, August 1, 2008

Barn Raising

This month we will celebrate 2 years here at Cotton-Top Hills. We didn't actually move in until December of 06, but the work began on fixing things up the minute we closed on the house. So I've decided to devote a series of posts to the remodeling, revamping... whatever you want to call it of the old homestead.

One of the first projects we deemed necessary was a storage building to store all the boxes we would soon be moving. We also needed a place for WB's tools and such, because in our old house we had sacrificed part of the garage for this and we (I) didn't want to do that again.
The storage building we picked out was shaped like a barn, which is why we refer to it as the "Red Barn". Whenever I refer to it as the red barn to acquaintances, dear WB always feels the need to explain, "Well, it's actually our storage shed." I guess he doesn't want to offend the people out there who have actual barns:

Anyway, we started this project when the fall weather was beginning to get unpredictable. So for one weekend it was so cold and the guys were so bundled all I could see was their eyes peeking out from under their caps. And the weekend we estimated it would take to raise this barn, stretched into a month of weekends.During my marriage to WB I have become very familiar with chalk lines and the "staking of future projects". Here one of WB's coworkers and friends helps to lay out just where the concrete will be poured for the foundation. We decided on a sort of pier and beam approach, I believe.
That red thing is called an auger and it drills down into the soil. In this case it took two men to handle it, which was entertaining to watch. This was used to make holes to pour our concrete into for beams. See, I've learned so much...

Then the floor was laid. I believe this was done in one weekend. Two of Scott's coworkers came this weekend to help us out. Thank Goodness!! Did I mention I was pregnant during this time, so I was on kitchen duty.

Then we got real and realized if we were going to get this thing built we needed more help! So one weekend a team of young engineers that WB works with came to help. They were lively and questioned every board that went up. Made sure things were level, boards were straight etc. There was a lot of talk on just how things should progress, you know the usual engineer behavior.

There's WB in his tool belt, wears it well doesn't he...Okay, working a whole day, a team of six engineers managed to get the frame up. Now, I might have been setting my sights a little high, but I expected some walls to be up at least after all that work.

That evening our next door neighbor came over to give some help. It was just him and WB and they worked maybe an hour or two. I'm sorry to say this to all those engineers, but in two hours they accomplished more than the engineers did. Don't worry I still love you guys. You worked hard, you ate my food enthusiastically, and were very sweet! And no our neighbor is not in construction, he's a CSI Detective, go figure!And finally a couple more weekends and waa laa it was finished! It made me feel all warm and fuzzy knowing so many people helped to raise the walls on our little red barn. And remember I was pregnant so I might have even shed a tear or two.


CanadianGrandma said...

I love your red barn! What an excellent idea for a place of storage! Now you have to build a playhouse for your little sweeties!

Pat's Place said...

The barn is just great. And now you need a picture of it with the real weather vane!

Karen said...

I love it! Boy, look at all that open sky you have! I love being out in the country, don't you?

Kara said...

The open sky is wonderful and I found myself feeling a little closed in when I go to Austin or Houston, where the trees keep you from seeing the sky for miles. Thanks, Canadiangrandma...and we are still knocking around ideas for the kids playhouse:)
If my camera hadn't been way on the other side of the house I would have taken a new picture with the weather vane...I'll do that soon.