February 28, 2018

Three-Handed Progress on the Barn

Before Dan's accident we were purchasing a few sheets of plywood at a time to continue working on the goat barn siding. Between his injury and the rain, progress on the barn has been on hold indefinitely. When we got some blue sky and warm temps last week, Dan did the little bit of painting there was to do, and then suggested that if I would help position and hold the plywood, he could nail it in place. I knew he was pretty tired of just sitting around and hurting, so I said okay as long as he would take it easy, not push it, and quit if his hand started to hurt too much or feel worse. Here's what we got accomplished.

First two sheets went up easily and quickly.

Sometimes home-milled lumber ends up twisted.
The grinder smoothed out any resulting projections.

A header for the future Dutch door.

Just between you and me, I don't think Dan thinks much of my skills as a helper. Not because I'm not willing, but because he claims that I'm not very good at just standing by and doing nothing until I'm needed. He did think my doing the painting was a good idea, however, and I was still ready to carry and hold things in place as he needed me.

Rain was forecast for the next day so we were glad to get it painted.

Snoopervisor Meowy was pretty bored with the whole thing.

Plywood up and first coat of barn paint on! Still needs
a second coat, windows, and doors, but that will be awhile.;

With two walls up now we got a glimpse of how much the milking room skylight will help.

One of Dan's painting project was the wall below the skylight.

He used his circular saw to cut the plywood but said the sound of it pulled up all those memories of his injury, which are still pretty fresh in his mind. But he pressed on. By the end of the day his hand was hurting pretty badly and he had to take half of a prescription pain pill on top of the naproxyn. Yes, I fussed at him the whole time, but I'm not a bossy wife. Mostly because I believe a partnership works best when the partners work as a team, and also because it wouldn't do any good, LOL. The next day, though, his hand felt good and so did he, so maybe between the exercise, feeling of accomplishment and progress it was worth it.


Anonymous said...

Looking good! I bet Dan was very glad to be working on something.

Fiona said...

Wow, three handed you two got a lot done. It looks awesome. Work is always cathartic....well I think so anyway. God bless you both.

Ed said...

I have often felt that sitting around doing nothing slows the healing process. Perhaps because your heart isn't pumping blood very hard. I would have been like Dan or at least been up puttering around somewhere.

Paula said...

So glad you guys figured out a way to keep Dan from going nuts, and the barn looks great!!!

Susan said...

I guess I wouldn't be a good helper, either, as I cannot stand idly by. Most of the time, I just get in the way - but I mean well! LOL. I love the color of your barn - what a difference paint makes. Also, the skylight in the milking parlor is pure genius! You two are a great team.

Charlotte Boord said...

You can't keep a good man down!
Blessing to you both.

Michelle said...

First of all, STOREbought lumber often twists! Secondly, I don't stand idly by well, either; sometimes I think men want an audience as much or more than they want a helper! But WOW, your three hands got a lot done and it looks GREAT!

Mama Pea said...

I'm kinda amazed at all you two got accomplished! Reading I kept thinking of Dan accidentally hitting his hand though. Oooie, owie that would have hurt.

I'm just like you in that I'm always willing to help, but HATE standing around waiting to be needed. (Comes from knowing how many gazillion things you could be doing instead of just standing "wasting" time, right? Not the best attitude to have. :o()

I wondered how Dan would feel the first time he used that darn saw again. Guess it's just something to be worked through.

Anyway, Dan has proved you can't keep a good man down. At least not with a good woman's help!

Kris said...

Yep, ya can't keep a good man down. Bravo to both of you. Teamwork - can't say enough good things about it. Amazing how a few sheets of plywood and some paint (and the feeling of accomplishment) can do wonders for barn AND spirit. Hang in there, guys. We're rooting for ya!

Gorges Smythe said...

Sometimes, ya just gotta DO sumthin'!

jewlz said...

Yup, action is often the best therapy for fellas. Maybe it's in their dna or something. Hope to see more 'bout that dutch door, I'm "designing" one myself now, and am just making it up as I go along LOL.

Barn looks fabulous, CONGRATS!! again!

tpals said...

I'm amazed how much you got done together. It's looking very good.

Renee Nefe said...

It looks great! I'm glad you were able to get so much done. And I'm like you, I don't like just standing around waiting to help either. I'm also glad that Dan was feeling better the next day..great news! Still praying for you two. hugs!

Sharon in Surrey said...

SITTING around being sick or wounded is the most depressing thing besides GETTING sick or wounded!! Doing something speeds up healing so I understand completely!! Sometimes partners just haveta stand there, grit our teeth & let them be independent. It's therapy. And it's finishing something important to the farm. He's sore but he'll be sore until it heals & he gets good motion again. And he won't get good motion unless he uses it! Keep up the good work, both of you.

Chris said...

Looking good. I was not expecting ANY progress, so SOME is a blessing.

My husband has a bench press, which he lifts weights on. Either my older daughter, or I, are the "spotters". Basically, someone who stands close by, to catch the weights, if he's overextended his muscles and cannot lift them back into the holder, alone.

He said to me the other day, I was a better spotter than our eldest. I asked why. His reply was that I don't take the weight off him, as he's lifting it back into the holder. I wait until he asks for help. Which I think is the key for guys. They want to see how far they can push themselves, until they need help. Maybe it's part ego, but I think it's mostly biological. Getting on your feet and pushing your limits, is how you improve your stamina and overall performance.

Of course, my husband is lifting weights, uninjured, so it's not an equal comparison. But I thought I'd share, if you were wondering why on earth Dan would have an issue with you needing to stand back. As a wife, I also appreciate your need to protect him from going too far though, before realising he needs help. ;)

I'm sure you will both work it out, together. You make a great team!

Sandy Livesay said...


What a good helper you are!!! Great paint job, the barn is coming along nicely, maybe not as fast as you wanted. Dan needs to do the work to help get his mind off of the situation. Plus any movement will help (as part of mental and physical therapy).

Sending hugs, and love to you both.

Leigh said...

theblogoftoys, thanks! Yes, he was really happy to be working on something, especially this. :)

Fiona, I agree work is cathartic! The hardest part is feeling like time is being "wasted" during healing. At least we had the plywood and a nice day.

Ed, I agree! Movement and improved circulation help a lot! (Not to mention the feeling of being productive.)

Paula, LOL. Yes, the day's worked helped a lot!

Susan, yes, isn't amazing what paint can do? It will really look good once we get the 2nd coat on. I have to confess that the skylight was totally unplanned. We had enough roofing panels from another project to cover that roof width-wise, but not length-wise. The translucent panel idea came from some wild brainstorming. A nice providential touch!

Charlotte, I agree! :)

Michelle, thanks! That is so true about lumber. Lately the commercial stuff has been looking pretty bad, so we figure we can't do worse making our own. :)

Mama Pea, I'm kinda amazed too. I didn't think we would get that far, but once we got going he didn't want to quit until it was done. Of the saw he just forced himself. His real concern is having to use the table saw again, which so far he hasn't. He says that's coming up when he starts on the Dutch doors, although I'm not exactly sure when that will be.

Kris, yes, we're both pleased with the barn. The wall and paint made a huge difference. And there are lots of other things to do until we're able to buy more plywood, so progress will continue.

Gorges, very true! Some of us just weren't made for lying around. :)

Jewlz, I'll take lots of photos when he does the Dutch door. He did one for the Little Barn, but hasn't been entirely satisfied with it. So he's got ideas for improvements which should make the new ones even better.

tpals, thanks!

Renee, I think getting so much done was part of why he felt better. :) There are a lot of smaller projects to do too, so I'm not sure what's next. But he's motivated and that's a good sign.

Sharon, I agree! He was really fretting about being incapacitated, so this was a huge moral boost for both of us.

Chris, thanks! I too, was thinking it would be a long time until we got back to it. It was especially nice that the amount of plywood we had just worked out! If it had been up to me we would have quit sooner, but considering how much better he felt the next day I know the extra push was satisfying in the end.

Sandy, thanks! I don't reckon anything moves along as quickly as we'd like. But at least there's progress! :)

Rhonda from Baddeck said...

My husband and I are the same way - I don't like standing around until he needs me. I'll go start pulling weeds or put something away just to keep moving. It looks like you got a LOT accomplished in spite of him being hampered by his injury. Getting out and working was certainly good therapy for him, and now he knows how much is "too much."

Cozy Thyme Cottage said...

Your barn is looking so nice. Sometimes a sense of accomplishment helps heal too! Nancy

Leigh said...

Rhonda, good point about "too much." The "helper" problem seems to be universal with women! LOL. I get it, though. If he's up on a ladder and needs more nails or another tool the idea is to simply say so and have the helper hand up what's needed. If you have to call for them and wait, might as well do it yourself!

Nancy, thanks! We've waited so many years for this barn that you'd think a few more months wouldn't matter. But now that we see so much of it done, we're anxious to get to the finish line. :)

Debbie - Mountain Mama said...

I'm sure you are both glad to make some progress on the goat shed after all this time - looks great!! Glad Dan is healing well, tell him not to overdo it!!

Mark said...

I'm impressed!! A little accomplishment can be a very healthy and healing thing. Bravo!

M.K. said...

It's true, husbands don't like being at the mercy of their injuries :) And Adam really stayed away from his table saw for months after his injury - just scary associations, especially when he didn't really know what caused it in the first place, so how could he avoid it again?
The barn looks great! You two did good work, and the paint makes it look so nice. Good team :)

Leigh said...

Debbie, me too! I think one day of overdoing has helped him set a better balance. Fortunately it started raining again so no further temptation for some big outdoor project. :)

Mark, thanks! Just having something constructive to do is satisfying. Seeing the actual progress is even better!

M.K., that must have really been tough for Adam, not knowing exactly why it happened. Dan knows he made a "wrong" move and miscalculated. Either way, it's always tough to have to return to doing something that caused such a serious injury.

The Wykeham Observer said...

It all looks good. Healing is mental too, and I'm sure getting back and accomplishing something will make the progress faster.

Leigh said...

Thanks Phil! Yes, so much of healing is in attitude. And sometimes distraction from pain is just the thing to push it into the background.

Mrs Shoes said...

Definitely worthwhile; as the saying goes "You can't keep a good man down"... at least, not for long. I'm glad to hear that Dan actually let you be of use and didn't go crazy overdoing it all himself.
Good idea to paint the white under the skylight! I'm going to steal that idea - there are 4 big skylights in our barn, but the boxes aren't painted at all. Now I see that painting the boxes would really help to reflect (refract?) light even better.

Mr Shoes is a terrible boss - the word 'delegate' is just not in his vocabulary. 'Helping' him consists entirely of standing around waiting to hand something to him... literally, no one enjoys it. Our son (28 now) can not stand to be idle and would stomp off the job, loudly proclaiming "I am not a ^&^&* TOOLBELT! Either give me a task and let me do it or don't ask me for help!"
Hmmmm... the father is a little hard-headed & the boy is a little hot-headed... You just know they blame ME for all that. ;-)

Leigh said...

Mrs. Shoes, Dan had that job when he was a kid, so he understands! I think that's why he isn't too hard on me. ;)

And yes, the white paint helps a lot. Eventually I'll paint all the walls in the milking room white. It really helps when it's not real bright out.

Debby Riddle said...

Leigh, Oh my goodness, so sorry to hear about Dan's injury! Thankfully bodies and memories both heal, and we'll sure be praying that along. The babies and the barn look amazing! Blessings, Debby

Leigh said...

Debby, thanks! So good to hear from you. Definitely looking forward to putting the bad behind and pressing on to our constructive projects instead!