Friday, July 14, 2017

Hay Barn

Yesterday I did a live video about our hay barn. My hope is that I can start talking about non-horse related items that directly affect the Sanctuary but aren't specifically horses. There's a lot to run a Sanctuary (or an acreage) and I want to start touching on those topics because they've been weight pretty heavy on my mind lately.

So back to the video, I'll recap a bit of what I was trying to say but didn't say so eloquently (and sorry for all the saggy face time).

When we first moved into our acreage, the previous owners had used what we call the dry lot as the cattle yard. Even our hay shed was part of where the cattle had roamed. But with having cattle, you have destroyed and mangled buildings. The bottom 3.5 feet of the hay barn and the regular barn have no siding but tin to keep the cattle from ruining the building.

So back to the hay barn. We used to use it a lot when we used the 3x3 big squares. My uncle could stack two and barely squeeze in through the double doors (see the picture of the doors). If he left too much air in the tractor tires, he'd scrape the rafters. As we continued to use the building and the building got older, everything started to sag and we've had a few near misses trying to get the hay in and out. I'm glad we've switched to rounds for everyone's safety.

We still use the hay barn to store small squares of hay, alfalfa, and straw. Unfortunately, the shingles are no good. They are cedar shingles that have lived through too many seasons and too many wind storms (and a tornado). The roof started leaking years ago but it's to the point where the shingles are gone and it pours in. We didn't have the means to fix the roof until this year with the money from our personal tax return. Yes, we are sinking our personal money into all of the outbuildings as there's no capital fund to have the Sanctuary pay for any building repairs.

Instead of ripping off the shingles, we are going to slap Ondura sheeting over it. It has the consistency of shingles (but stiffer and thicker) so hopefully the process will go more quickly. We reroofed the west side of the barn with the Ondura and have been impressed. We had to special order the Ondura sheets because we had to order 50 additional sheets (besides the 10 we already purchased). Each sheet is $15 on sale. We still have to buy the special nails that go with it but are hoping for a bag sale or an 11% rebate sale. We also need to pick up some additional lumber for roofing so there's a bit more that we need to do before we can get to work on it.

We are also waiting for it to not be so stinky hot before we roof. Luckily we have access to a boom truck so hopefully we can start fairly soon. Once fall harvest hits, we won't be able to have access to the boom truck and the process will go much slower. So it's a matter of buying supplies and coordinating schedules.

I'll be happy to get the roof done but I still need to figure out what to do with the siding. Above the roof (see in the picture) and all of the south side does not have siding. It simply has the boards to create the wall. It was fine for awhile but now the weather and the raccoons have made gigantic holes in the walls. Dad patched up a hole where the raccoons were getting in, only to have them chew a new hole into the side of the barn.

If it wasn't for the horses, I'd go with regular house siding but that wont' work for the sliding doors and where the horses are. So I'm on to trying to find something else. No matter what, it'll have to wait because I dont' have the funds to do anything.

I did paint the doors a few years ago because I was tired of seeing the missing paint (it looked like the rest of the building but I saw it every day during the winter and for some reason it irritated me).

I've tried to avoid posting many pictures with the hay barn in the background because it IS such an eye sore. But now that I'm doing live videos, you're all going to see it more often. And I don't want to hide anything. I'll happily answer any questions or show any pictures but it's more of a pride thing than anything else.

I want to be that Sanctuary where when you pull into the driveway you say "Wow, what a gorgeous and relaxing place" rather than "Whoa, what a dump".  And it's really hard to get to that point where people say "wow" rather than "whoa", when you're the person single handedly trying to maintain everything.

The hay barn needs help, the regular barn needs a paint job, and a few other outbuildings need some more TLC. But it all takes time and money, and unfortunately, I have neither.

If anyone would like to help with reroofing the hay barn, I'd gladly accept the offer. Or if you would rather, we always need funds to help cover the cost. There's a lot of expense to keep up and maintain a building. If you want to donate funds, you can paypal us at

When we do start working on the hay barn, I'll do live videos and pictures so you can follow the progress. Or stop on out!

We have more projects that need your help too!

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