Rural Missouri - November 2012 - (Page 29)

Sleep like the grain Farm couple converts family grain bin into bed-and-breakfast n a cold afternoon this past February, Lin Thieme and his father, Jack, emptied out the last remnants of grain from the bin on the family’s property northeast of Chillicothe. After a hole was cut into the steel for the front door, the family began converting the 4,000-bushel bin into a two-story home. As construction continued, neighbors started to whisper. Just as in the film, “Field of Dreams,” rumors spread about how the Thiemes had lost their minds. But Jack’s wife, Donna, ignored what others were saying and kept pushing her family to complete her dream. Five months later, “The Round House” was finished. The 18-foot-wide metal bin that once housed nearly $20,000 worth of corn now is a place for guests to spend the night in the country at Granny’s Country Cottage, which is served by Grundy Electric Cooperative. The Thieme’s first bed-and-breakfast adventure began 13 years ago when Jack and Donna opened The Cottage. The white, two-bedroom farmhouse was Donna’s childhood home and is still available for guests. Over the years, the couple has lived on their nearby farm raising chickens and cows, with the bed-and-breakfast as Donna’s hobby. They have met a variety of people and served countless home-cooked meals to guests who range from city travelers looking for a peaceful weekend to hunters, young couples and church groups. But Donna knew they could do something extra special. “One day, she got a wild hair after seeing some pictures in a magazine and Above: Married for 50 years, Jack and Donna Thieme have made a life on the farm decided she wanted a grain bin house and managed a bed-and-breakfast. In July, they finished converting their grain bin of her own,” says Jack. into a second place for guests to stay. Below: Inside the 4,000-bushel bin is a fully In 1966, Jack helped Donna’s dad furnished, two-story home. Upstairs is a queen-sized bed and full bathroom. pour the concrete for the grain bin. Nearly six decades later, he was at work in the bin again. Jack had worked in construction for 40 years, but he had never seen a project like this. “We really didn’t know where to start,” adds Lin. “There were no designs to go from, so we just winged it.” After setting the door frame, the interior was framed and foam insulation was sprayed inside the 16-foot-tall bin. Since nothing was square, Lin had a tough time installing the drywall. “It took three of us to gently shove a piece of drywall, glue it, screw it down and hope that it stayed with the curve without cracking,” says Lin, laughing. “It was quite the scene.” On the first floor, Lin installed cabinets and finished off the kitchen Granny’s Country Cottage is located at area with a sink, oven, microwave and 12473 Atom Drive near Humphreys. refrigerator. The circular room allowed Nightly rates are $80 per couple, includenough space for a dining room table, ing dinner or breakfast; add a second meal pullout couch and a storage closet. oramic view of the surrounding farmland and picfor $10. Each additional guest is $15 per night. A curved willow branch handrail leads the way turesque fields from the queen-sized bed. For more information, call Donna at 660-286-3981 up the winding staircase to the second floor bedLin even intertwined curvy willow branches for or visit room. The floor-to-ceiling windows provide a panthe bed’s headboard. O by Kyle Spradley Sticking with • the round Humphreys theme, the full bathroom is complete with a quarter-round shower. In the end, the Round House was a true family project. Lin’s brother, Rich, handled the electrical work and painting. Grandson-in-law, Will Jarboe, and son-in-law, James Shiflett, did the plumbing. Lin’s son, Kale, was his helper with the drywall. The home is decorated in a country style with items from the farm, such as an aluminum washtub that is now a serving table for Donna’s home-cooked meals, and an old cream separator — now a decorative wastebasket. “It turned out very good,” says Jack. “But at first, all I said was, ‘You’re going to screw up a nice grain bin.’” Lin and his wife, Ashley, were the first to stay in the grain bin. “Reality sank in when we stayed that first night about how awesome this really is,” Lin says. “It’s almost like you could live here. You could really make it your home,” adds Ashley. The Round House and the adjacent Cottage sit on a 2-acre yard with a nearby stocked pond for fishing. Whichever home guests choose, a home-cooked meal from Jack and Donna is included. Guests can make requests for a meal, but country-style cooking featuring home-grown ingredients is always served. Fried chicken, roast beef or chicken fried steak often make it onto the menu. “The dinner was such a feast of homemade rolls, fried chicken, mashed potatoes and even a fresh apple pie,” says Becky Frey of Milan, who celebrated her wedding anniversary with husband, Darin, at The Round House. The couple were the first outside of the Thiemes to spend a night here. “But what really made the experience was Jack and Donna. They provided such a welcoming atmosphere and were very hospitable.” “It is out in the middle of nowhere, but that is exactly what makes it,” adds Darin. “But you are just a short drive from Trenton or Milan if you want to head to town.” Whatever time of year you stay, Jack and Donna make sure you have a pleasant, relaxing time and make you feel right at home. “People will call and ask, ‘Well what is there to do?’” says Donna. “I tell them absolutely nothing, and they say, ‘That’s just what we’re looking for.’” NOVEMBER 2012 29

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - November 2012

Rural Missouri - November 2012
Doing away with the ‘old scrub bull’
Cooperation among co-ops
Addicted to duck calls
Out of the Way Eats
Redefining rustic
Best of rural Missouri
Hearth and Home
Sleep like the grain
Around Missouri

Rural Missouri - November 2012