Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.

What’s there to smile about?


I think we’re in week 5 of our stay-at-home executive order. Maybe it’s week 6. All the days run together into an endless week highlighted by a trip to the grocery store dolled up in mask and gloves. The order was set to expire at the end of April, but Friday the governor extended it until May 15th. I think that will make it 8 weeks total.

Isn’t this a beautiful barn?

But as she extended it she also loosened it a bit, allowing golf and boating, and letting people go to their up north cabins. Still no nonessential retail stores, though curbside delivery is OK, no sit down restaurants, no movie theaters, no dog groomers, no hair salons. But we can move around more as long as we continue to practice safe distancing.

This one is beautiful too, and there were a bunch of horses in the pasture next to it, but it was on a busy road and I took this through the windshield, no time to compose something better.

So I felt legit driving around in the country, by myself, looking for my favorite things – barns. Getting out and looking for interesting things to photograph isn’t exactly essential to most people. But it’s starting to feel that way to me.

All business on the front, derelict in the back.

I didn’t go far, just barely north and west, far enough to get out of town and into flat farmland, but not so far that I felt like I was taking advantage of any leniency in our guidelines. And not so far that I’d have to fill up at a gas station.

This one was cute.

The sky wasn’t very interesting, there was a storm headed our way and I had hoped for more, but at least it wasn’t raining. And since it was our first day of “freedom” the roads were busier than I’d hoped.

Old wagon compliments old barn.

It’s hard to get pictures of barns if there’s traffic. Finding a great barn that also has parking is nearly impossible. If I’m on empty dirt country roads I can just stop in the middle of the road and grab a shot. Not so easy to do on a paved busy road.

Almost interchangeable with the last one.

Still I got several interesting barns to add to my collection. And yea, I caught you smiling while you looked at these. Barns are almost guaranteed to produce smiles, unless you’re the one that has to muck out the stalls.

So I’ve been told.

I turned around to get this one, loved the patina on it.

Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

43 thoughts on “What’s there to smile about?

  1. That looks like a great way to spend a day. I love those old barns, great finds.


    • It was only a couple hours…but it’s definitely something I’ve done all day other times. I didn’t want to spend the gas this time, and even a couple of hours made me feel better!


  2. You are so right, I was smiling. I love barns and these are so beautiful. What’s not to love about an old barn, except if you are the mucker. I don’t think that’s a word.


  3. Fabulous barns! It must have been a real treat to go out and about photographing barns. There are some real beauties in your area.


  4. Thanks for taking me along with you, Dawn — I loved our excursion to photograph barns! Our Illinois governor must have talked with your governor because we’ve got the same schedule. I was kind of hoping he’d relax things a bit downstate, where there are fewer people and less densely packed, but not yet. Still, I really need to get my hair cut, ha!!


    • I think today she’s going to tell us her plan for getting everyone moving again. I imagine she will release the UP and maybe northern Michigan sooner than those of us near the city. The numbers up there are so much less (partly because we can’t go up and contaminate them) and until recently they were buried with snow, so not going anywhere anyway. But I think it will be awhile before our county (one county away from Detroit) will be free to roam. Katie REALLY needs to see a groomer. I took her to her park yesterday and it was windy. A windy day and a dog with really long fur….was fun to try to capture! You’ll see it in the next post I’m sure.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dallas’s breeder taught me how to groom him and, while I was nowhere near as good as a professional, it did help somewhat. Of course, bathing him and making him sweet-smelling was all on her!!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Love the barns and I have ALWAYS loved looking at them on road trips. Keep in mind…May 15th isn’t etched in stone (sorry)……..and different parts of the state will open at different times. (Knock on wood)……….I personally think it’s going to be extended and now I am running away from here before I get hit.


    • Oh I know…it’s just another day…but hoping at least people in the UP are allowed more freedom then. It will be a long time before those of us closer to the city will be able to move around much.


  6. Good for you!


  7. I enjoyed this little ride out into the world. Nice to know the barns are still there. If you do have to gas up, just carry gloves with you and disinfectant wipes, as well, of course, as your mask. I don’t understand Georgia opening up salons and gyms – like either of them are “essential” if you get right down to the crux of the matter. As states open, I shall keep myself to myself and view with caution.


  8. Thank you for the peaceful scenes, Dawn. Your happiness is ours, too.

    We are taking drives every few days, also, and the Artist (my husband and Quarantine Companion, though we are not officially quarantined) is getting a feel for mountains, which makes me happy. But I also smile — and so does he — to watch birds at the feeder.

    Stay calm and carry on, right?


    • Right. Between a few small road trips and my birds here at home I can be content for a good long bit. I think. Looks like next week we will have higher low temperatures and Katie and I might break out the tent in the back yard! Adventure!


  9. Looking at those last two barns you would think they had a 2 for 1 sale.


  10. Hi, Dawn,

    Thank you for taking us along for your ride and sharing your photos. Yes, barns always make me smile, too. 😊

    In Virginia, our stay at home order is in effect until June 10. We can go out for groceries, doctor appointments, and to pick up prescriptions. We should daisy chain errands. Go to a doctor appointment, pick up Rx and groceries, get gas…maybe pick up dinner, too. We have been encouraged to order meals for pickup or delivery to help support our local restaurants. Some restaurants have been creative in making family meals to go with 8-10 menu items to choose from. They are a good value for a family of four. One of our steak houses offers family meals to go and also fresh steaks and burgers to be cooked at home.

    Stores are strictly enforcing our governor’s order which limits the number of patrons allowed to shop at one time. The majority of non-essential retailers are closed, but surprisingly, others are open. I ran a couple errands late yesterday, picked up dinner and decided to see if my favorite small family owned ice cream shop was open. They were taking online and phoned in orders only and had curbside pick up. It was a nice surprise. I brought home a pint of delicious comfort food and was happy to support them.

    Thankfully, I am able to work from home. The anxiety and worry that covid19 has caused is no joke. I am grateful that so far, my family and friends are well. I am also grateful to have my pup to keep me company and provide stress relief. Like Katie, sometimes she will pester me until we go outside. Earlier this afternoon, I saw what I think may have been a female or juvenile flicker or woodpecker hunting for bugs in our yard. I have been trying to ID it using the Cornell bird site. If we had not gone outside, I would have missed seeing that bird. Sometimes our dogs know what is best for us.

    Have a good evening, Dawn. Thank you for the smile. Please stay safe and well. 😷


    • You stay safe as well. Sounds like Virginia is doing a good job of trying to manage this. I haven’t used any meal pickup places yet…so far I’m preparing all the meals (which aren’t that much, only 1 or two a day, we are only 2 and we’re sort of relaxed in the meal department). But I can see if this goes on all summer I’m going to want to let someone else prepare something once in awhile! I’m glad your friends and family are safe so far! Mine are too!


  11. I am the one who mucks a couple hundred pounds a day out of stalls, every day. But the barn is still my favorite place.
    I giggled at the All business in the front barn. Reminds me of 1980’s mullets: business in the front and party in the back.


  12. Absolutely love this post. I’m always searching for barns, and these are special.


  13. Pingback: The Weekly Smile Recap 4/20 – 4/26/2020 #weeklysmile | Trent's World (the Blog)

  14. There just something about a barn! I want to photograph a red one in a winter wonderland. Hard to do when I live in the desert. I bet you have done so. And yes your barns made me smile!
    Here in AZ our numbers are low in Covid causes. Yesterday I heard a news person, who was comparing U.S. counties, that Maricopa County (that’s the Phoenix, Scottsdale area) has a low number of cases he thinks because there is more space to social distance. I also wanted to remind him…we are still a big city. But! Our public transportation is small and we don’t have light rail. Therefore it’s why we had lots of traffic before Stay at Home Orders. Interesting thoughts to ponder. Governors really will have to think about how they are going to get their people back to work using their public transportation… there may be less on a train? A bus? Interesting thoughts.
    Thanks for your barns and stay well!


    • I can’t remember if I’ve done a barn in snow. I bet I have. I’ll have to go look at my barn file and see. It’s also possible I have not, as those country roads don’t get plowed so often and I’d be afraid of getting stuck. But now that you mention it, I”ll have to see what I can find next winter!

      We were just in Phoenix (well, Sun City West) at the end of February. I’d think a place like that, with all that congestion would be a hot bed, but you’re right, everyone is in their own cars. And I hear, from my friend out there, that it was over 100 yesterday! That right there should have killed any virus!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Your photos are wonderful. I admire barns as I drive by them but never seem to be on a road where I can stop to snap a pic.


  16. Your barn photos are beautiful. I’m glad you could go for a short drive and take photos. Thanks for sharing them. They made me smile.


  17. We are taking a couple of long rides a week as a family. They are a good distraction and we have seen some wonderful sights we ordinarily don’t have time to see.


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