The weather has again brought us back inside and given me time to write an update. The last few weeks have been filled with busy work schedules, time in the barn when we can find a few daylight hours, and many great, yet still stressful planning conversations. We’ve been blessed with warm weather that has given us spring fever and has really lit a fire under our planning process.
It took three weekends of hard work, but we’ve finally completed the removal of the hayloft floor. Preston worked upstairs to remove the rotten wood as I hauled load after load of the rotten piles of wood and old hay to the burn pile. We celebrated this accomplishment with a bonfire and a day of relaxation to gather our thoughts on where to go next. Preston has started removal of some of the concrete floor to prep for new concrete as soon as the roof is completed.
After talking with several contractors, we finally found someone willing (crazy enough) to help us with the new roof. We decided to go with steel because of the ease of installation and 50 year warranty. We chose a ‘bronze’ color with white trim that I think will nicely complement the brick. We’re now just waiting for our materials to come in and for the weather to cooperate to begin work.
Next steps are to finalize our floorplan, start planning electrical and water systems, and find someone to help us with the concrete floor. Last weekend we had a chance to start marking out the floorplan in the barn – walls, furniture, restrooms, and storage. It’s becoming more and more real every day. I think as soon as roof and floor are in, we can begin looking more closely at a schedule and completion date, but a lot of our planning right now is riding on the weather. I have to keep reminding myself it’s only February.
Soon the real fun in planning (for me) can begin. We have already started shopping for light fixtures, bar and bar stool materials, paint colors, and décor. Yesterday I began my hunt for the three antique chandeliers for our hayloft space, and instead came home with coat hangers and a wall art piece. Necessary? No. But it’s the little things that help to feed the dream.
Preston and Amber both grew up on farms in Northwest Iowa. They share a passion for the outdoors and enjoy taking on new projects to see what adventures will be discovered. As high school sweethearts, they attended Iowa State University together, and now are continuing to pursue their dreams at Backcountry Winery.