We decided it was high time to focus on getting some sort of shelving in the barn as things were starting to pile up and we are hoping to begin construction on our farm prep area soon. Our permit was filed a few weeks ago, but before the county will issue the permit we need to get our septic design and an application for a well site inspection filed.
We’ve been discussing shelving for the past year but never settled on any details. Pallet rack shelving comes in so many sizes, it always seemed overwhelming to me to get a handle on it so it kept getting putting off. With the pending construction project and wanting to get our house in order to go on the market, I finally made it a priority.
Some of the shelving is to be used for boxes of stuff from the house – our basement is so full we can barely get through it. With storage space in the barn I can start to go through the basement and sort out what we will use later at the farm from what we need to get rid of. It will be a whole lot easier to sell the house without the basement looking like hoarders live there.
The plan for the weekend was to pick up shelving, file permits, clear out the stuff in the barn – moving things like leftover metal siding over to the “Area of Accumulation” (a place we set up to store miscellaneous building materials, water totes, fencing, etc… that can be stored outdoors), assemble the shelving and then I could start mowing the fields while M finished up plumbing the livestock watering lines. Time permitting we could also finish backfilling the trenches we dug out last fall for the well.
I pointed out to M that our “To Do” list seemed a little ambitious. “Oh, well the clearing of the barn and the shelving will ‘only take an hour’…” Famous last words. And, as it turned out, the theme for the weekend.
I left the house early Friday morning to pick up the used pallet rack shelving I found on craigslist and then head down to the Building Department. M rode his motorcycle into work and would join me later that evening at the farm.
It took me an hour and a half to drive to the place to pick up the shelving. I spent two hours with the very nice gentleman selling the shelving – he wanted to make sure I knew how it all went together, and of course once you see it all up close and personal – well, we did a little reconfiguring and then of course it took a bit of time to load it all and strap it down.
From there I had to drive another hour and a half to the building department in the county where the farm is located, but it was 1230 pm and I was starving. I made a quick stop to walk the dog and grab a bite so it was almost 230 before I got to the building department. A bit of a kerfuffle over no record of our septic perc test holes having been dug and approved last fall. Thank goodness there was an inspector there that knew our designer and said it was ok for me to file because we were also told at the time we could go ahead and fill the test holes back in. Two hours later…
Another quick stop to drop eggs off to my good friend S, meet her new puppy – ok so it wasn’t exactly a quick stop because who can resist playing with a PUPPY???
Well, by the time I got out to the farm it was after 530 and I was fried – it had been a long day and a bit stressful. I originally thought I’d get there by 200 pm at the latest and could get at least 4-5 hours of mowing in. Hah!
So I set up “camp”, popped a hard cider and Magpie and I went on a walkabout. OK – I did drag a bunch of 5′ bamboo stakes and a can of orange marker paint with me so I could mark where we planted Pacific willows because the grass was getting pretty high and the orange flags were no longer visible and the plan was to start mowing this weekend.
Before it “takes an hour” to read the rest of this post – it took all day Saturday and part of Sunday to clear out the barn and get the shelving up.
The picture above just shows the east end of the barn. The interior of the barn is 36′ wide and 60′ long. This is where the shelving will go temporarily. It will move further in after our farm prep area is built out which is located on the west end of the barn. This area will eventually become M’s woodworking shop.
Then there was the hummingbird rescue operation. Note the ridge cap in the picture above and the long extension ladder – a hummingbird flew in through the door and was trying to get out through the clear ridge cap. M put up the extension ladder and very carefully climbed up. After a bit of flitting back and forth out of his reach, he was finally able to catch it and very carefully, with one hand, descended down the ladder.
The barn was finally cleared of pipes, piles of cardboard (for mulching), metal siding, scrap wood, rebar and boxes of bits and bobs. Tools were sent back to the tool shed (aka the shipping container), tarps were folded and stored, tractor chains were hung, wires were rolled up, floors were swept and the workbench was assembled.
M also set up the solar shower v2. V1 used a metal barrel which ended up rusting out, so v2 is a dark grey plastic rain barrel. The barrel sits on top of the shipping container and gets the southern sun all day. We use a garden watering wand for our shower head. A section of a wood pallet and some doug fir rounds on top of some pea gravel make up the floor. A debarked tree limb makes a handy towel rack and helps to keep the shower curtain rod upright.
No mowing or plumbing or backfilling – but the barn looks great and it will be nice to have use of the solar shower again, especially since the hot water heater in the camp trailer is on the fritz.