What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow. ~ Martin Luther

Thursday, July 26, 2012

The Middle Barn

Tonight we had to make an emergency chicken feed run, despite a looming storm in the forecast.  The sun was shining when we left and it was supposed to be a very quick trip.  Quick there, quick back.

Not quick enough, unfortunately. 

The children and I got caught in tornado storm warnings and had to drive for 25 minutes with tree branches falling all around us, half-an-inch hail pelting us, lightening cracking on all sides of the car, thunder booming in our ears, 55 mile an hour winds blowing us all over the road and dark, ominous terrible skies.  It was very, very scary.  I have never been so scared driving.  I was all nerves and even stopped to seek shelter at a home (not our own) only to find no one was there (this, my friends, is HUGE!).  The radio man said "get into hallways", "get into basements", "get away from windows" and that would have been swell if we were near a hallway and not completely surrounded by windows.  He said "Do NOT go OUTSIDE!"  Hmph.  Instead, we were smack dab in the eye of the storm and I was praying...praying we would make it home in one piece.

We did (praise God!) but when we did, where once was found this: 


Instead I found this:


The Middle Barn, which was in a very sad state of disrepair, had finally succumbed to its fate.  I knew that it was bound to happen~ the years of saving it had long past~ and I know if ever it were to have fallen-there was no better time than when no one was nearby to get hurt. And I am incredibly grateful that though it fell, it did not damage any other outbuildings (or equipment) on the way down.

But even with all of that, it felt very much like a death had occurred.  That a  piece of the Place had died.  And in a very real way, it did. 


All those muscled and sweaty men and horses working together to build this barn, hoist all those immense hand-hewn beams, all those homemade wooden pins, all that stone hauled in....all the wood prepared...all those Newmans working for a purpose and now it is gone.  Rubble.


I was recently shown a picture from when my father-in-law was just a baby of a large picnic gathering where everyone was standing in front of the barns.  We are having one such gathering on Saturday...  I told my father-in-law I would like to plan to take a picture just like that, standing in that very spot with all the family around us.  "Before the barn falls down."  Two days shy of the party, I guess that idea wasn't meant to be.


Now it is just the  little Granary with a very broken down cow barn across the road.  It is sad and lonely across the road now. 

I never thought I would be the kind of person to mourn a barn...but I guess it turns out...I am.


Tracy said...

I understand your sadness, but THANK the LORD you are all okay!

Mr. G's Mrs. G said...

I can completely understand the mourning of the family barn. You are one who appreciates the historical element of the generations of hard work gone in to such a place. It means something to you and you pass that wonderful heritage down to your children. What a wonderful legacy! :)

Rosemary said...

I am so glad you all made it home safely! How scary for you all.

So sad to see the old barn down like that. Maybe you could use some of the wood to build something useful, like a mantle or shelf. It would be a nice way to honor the barn and all the history it shared with the family

Mari said...

I think you were in the derecho so I am very happy you survived and were not harmed. Mourn today and then tomorrow go back to your "What If" post from earlier this week. Reuse the wood that you can, either in new buildings or for shelving, as Rosemary mentioned.

Bonnie said...

Oh I can totally understand mourning a barn. (I always mourn houses and barns falling into disrepair.)
BUT. I am so thankful you all are SAFE (I've thought of stopping at someone's house before too. My scariest driving moment: 2004, driving home from the fair and looking up through the sunroof of our vehicle and seeing the swirling funnel cloud right.over.top. It touched down about 20 miles away), and that no one was hurt when the barn fell in. A blessing in disguise most likely, though a hard one to take. I'm all for using the wood for what you can (did you see Amanda's post on very much the same thing over at Homegrownandbeeyoutiful?), and maybe some sort of shadowbox collage, with the pictures you took, a copy of your FIL's picture, and some wood, pegs, nails, hinges , etc., from the barn.

A barn-mourning hug for you~

Matt said...

Part of me believed that the barn would never fall down. Kinda stay in a static state and not change. More like a memorial than a building. Part of me also feels that I've disappointed our ancestors.

I've probably spent too much time thinking about old barns, how they fit together, the type of wood they used, how long it might of taken etc.
But the fact of the matter is that that is a modern romantic dreaming about barns.
In the old days if a barn fell in, they'd clean up build another!!

ulli said...

Ohh, Rebecca, so sad...

ulli said...

Matt, don't beat yourself up. I was also just going to say in days gone by, if something fell apart they replaced it. Your ancestors would want you to have a new barn!

Quinn said...

How frightening! We were looking at the radar yesterday afternoon and I saw that storm heading across the map and was real glad it missed us! Our rain was heavy enough as it was, but our worst loss was several dozen plants of corn. As someone who so appreciates the labor & fruit of my elders hands too, I completely understand why you'd mourn a building. Praising God you're all well!!

Anonymous said...

So thankful you and the youngins' made it home safe and sound. I feel the same way about old houses/barns, even big old trees...so sad when they fall. I used to pass a couple old long abandoned farm houses on my way to work...and I loved driving by them in the spring as one had a bunch of red and yellow tulips that would bloom and the other had the most beautiful lilacs. It made me happy and sad at the same time.

God bless you now and always,

Full of Grace said...

So sorry the big barn came down but thankful you guys were ok! It wasn't in the greatest shape to begin with, also glad that even though it fell down, you were spared other outbuildings!

Leah T. said...

I'm so glad that you and your family are safe! And I completely understand the sadness you feel at the loss of the barn. I hope you are able to re-use some of those beautiful beams in another project. And as Matt said our/your ancestors would have picked up the pieces and re-built the barn! A huge project to tackle but maybe someday you'll have another middle barn to gaze upon and to keep the other barns and outbuildings company.

...they call me mommy... said...

WOW! Glad you were ok!