Updated: Aug 9
This month we took a lot of time to clean out the barn. We have 6 stalls. The chickens are using one stall, the tractor is in another, and four stalls are empty—the four stalls needed to be cleaned.
Cleaning the stalls has been a great concern of mine even before moving into the house. The kids and I have googled how to clean out a stall. We have searched YouTube. I have even asked my neighbor, Laura. I knew it had to be done, but I didn't know how. The previous owner allowed his goats in the barn.
Without exaggeration, he had 30+ goats. At night I would lay awake and think about the stalls. I would go to bed asking myself and God:
1. Why in the world would someone have 30+ goats?
2. Why does goat poop not break down? (I know this is gross, but it
was my concern)
3. What do I do with goat poop once I get it out of the stall (Another farm fact I have learned, goat poop is has a name. It is formally called marbles because it looks like marbles, it's just not colorful and shiny, and I don't want to put it in my pocket).
My original idea was to have Jamie go in the stall with a yard blower and blow it out. Both Jamie and my Dad scoffed at that idea. Yes, they seriously scoffed and rolled their eyes at me. I know they will give me a hard time about this, but they looked at me like I was an idiot even to entertain the idea.
Unfortunately, we were having a kid's Halloween party, and I had a deadline to clean out the stalls. So the week before the party, I came outside to the barn. I had a wheelbarrow, 2 shovels, and a rake. I figured the kids and I could clean a stall a day and it would be ready for the party. I instructed Josh to run inside and put on his shoes so he could help (This was the last I saw of him that morning). Danielle and I went into the stall and started shoveling out the "marbles" and loading up the wheelbarrow. We found out it was not a thin-top layer. The "marbles" were inches deep. We did less than a square foot and had filled the wheelbarrow.
Then what do I do with it??? So, I put it in my burn pile in the pasture. I thought it would burn like cow manure (it doesn't). We went back to the stall and changed tactics. We started raking. This was not working, and I was not amused. In fact, I was mad. I was really mad at everyone, especially Jamie (I was not being rational and I knew it). I threw down my shovel. I marched into the house to call Jamie. I found Josh inside WITHOUT his shoes and he was playing with 3 water bottles. I just looked at him, and he said he was going to bring water out for us. I took a shower and then called Jamie. He seemed concerned on the phone, but I don't think he was.
When Jamie got home, he tried to clean the stall with a shovel and had the same failures I had. So guess what… Seriously guess what worked to clean out the stall… (Cue the triumphant trumpets) the YARD BLOWER!!! Yes, it was gross, and it kicked up a lot of dirt, but it worked. Now the stalls are semi-clean! Way to go Mindy!