Mucking out and working out

You’ve been hearing about me spreading manure on the garden pretty much all fall. However, this post has been an even longer time coming. In fact, it’s been sitting in my drafts folder since June 2012. Way back then, Matt and I mucked out our first stall.

I was responsible for raking up the old straw.

Mucking out a stall

And Matt was responsible for getting the straw out of the stall and into the field behind the barn.

Raking straw

We just used rakes, rather than bothering to find the pitchforks, and then we piled the old straw behind the barn. This stall became Wiley’s garage.

The previous owners of our property had boarded horses. When they left, they didn’t bother to clean out the stalls.

And this fall, three years later, we still had 14 stalls full of straw and manure.

We also had a brand new vegetable garden that had been super productive. If I wanted to keep it productive, I needed to replenish the soil.

That meant it was finally time to tackle the barn.

It took me about 9 hours spread over three weekends. There were more than a dozen trailer loads of manure, and I don’t even know how many wheelbarrow loads. There were two assistants, Ms. Scratches and Mr. Sunbather, neither of whom gave very much assistance.

Ralph and Baxter in the barn

There was no way to get the tractor or the trailer into the barn, so I wheeled all of the straw through the barn, up a plank and into the trailer. When the trailer was full, I towed it out to the garden.

I got very proficient at backing up the trailer through this project. It just fit through the gate on the garden.

I usually laugh when people ask me what my workout routine is. I own a farm. That means I work. No need for a gym membership. Here’s my version of a workout video. Repeat that about a 100 more times.

So it only took me three years (or really three weekends once I got started), but finally the stalls are clean.

Now to find a new workout…

Have you ever had to muck out stalls? Any tips to make it easier? (Not that I’m planning on doing it again). What’s a project that you’ve had hanging around for awhile?


4 thoughts on “Mucking out and working out

  1. I love those kind of workouts, because they don’t feel like workouts (until the next day when I am super sore!).

    Projects that have been hanging around for a while?? Goodness yes, but I am getting a plan together and going to get some stuff done!

  2. Balance, flexibility, endurance…looks like you’re hitting them all! 🙂
    Exercise is a bit of a problem for me. I have a dog, so I definitely walk, but am very hit and miss with other things. The problem is you need to exercise to build the endurance, but it’s not pleasant before the endurance is built. Also I struggle mightily with boredom. First world problems, hey?

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