The sag  (2011) by Mary and Larry

Mary: We had a gathering in the barn, and stood amongst the manure for a discussion on the renovation that we hope to finish this fall. If the barn is to be saved, it has to be done this year. First we needed to shut those sheep out, way out, because they were determined to be a part of the conversation. Sheep can be so annoying with their continual "baa baa here, baa baa there, here a baa, there a baa, everywhere a baa baa!" That done, we quite easily came to an agreement about the arrangement of the inside with Larry making certain that the old-fashioned stanchions remain in place, and Josh giving a great suggestion on where to move the entrance to the loft. Also important, Erin will have a tack area and place for feed storage. Then we set out to clean and tear down. Our barn just makes me smile to think about it. I guess because it is not huge, but useful. Can a barn be considered "homey"? And wasn't it the picture of the barn on my computer that first called to me?!

Larry: You have probably seen a lot of old barns with sagging roofs as you travel, and ours had the same problem. Todd figured out how to take out the sag with temporary supports. We used a leverage system of 2X6 boards and strong backs. Two of us applied the muscle and one slipped small pieces of wood under the base of the posts - one post and one wood piece at a time. Magically, it seemed, the roof went up. Next project will be the permanent support posts. Should be fun.

Mary: We all stood back every now and then to watch the changing roof line, and eventually called it "straight!"

Todd, Nancy, Allison, and Erin would leave us after the first week, for a vacation in Colorado, so the work on the barn will need to wait until later. It is good to have our plans in place, though, and see the barn without the sag!

 Rather drafty, huh?!

Picture: You've probably seen my favorite picture of the barn many times. The one that called me. Soon, it will look even better, with no holes in the sides and a shiny, new, metal roof!

Things learned: The sag can be taken out of a barn without using machinery, and very little money.                                                                                                                                    



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