We had a price range in mind when we looked at the houses for sale we thought we were interested in. Something was always wrong, and I mean bad wrong with the property when we got there.
One had a stagnant swamp out back...a perfect rectangular one. Someone had tried to make a pond. When it rained, you guessed it, it flooded the back area. The house was nice, but who wants to live with 10 billion mosquitos and their babies squirming in that water?
Another one USED to have a pond in the front yard. It was five acres, but there was one area that was always muddy. All the houses on higher ground had a run off, and it all came to a halt in this yard. Not to mention there were railroad tracks wrapping around the back half of the property within spitting distance. Can you imagine the noise? We get a LOT of trains through this area. About one every thirty minutes at night.
We had picked out all these houses to look at online, but always found disappointment when we got there. These two stuck out in my mind just now. Finally we decided we were just going to have to bite the bullet and up the price we were going to pay. When we did, all things came together almost instantly, almost. We had to go through a couple of overpriced houses that werent worth the money, or one I found that I absolutely loved that had already been sold. I still think about that house...have a picture of it, let me see if I can find it.
Oh Linda, you know what, I am glad you reminded me, I have a terrible memory..but I will go out there today and get you all the seeds I can get into an envelope. Email me your address again, I think you had once, but you know I dont know where I put it.
Paula, you know what, your admission would have been a great idea for kids, BUT, I had to keep my flock as secret as I could. It was not legal to have any chickens in the city limits of Forest Park. I knew the Animal Control lady well, and she did turn a blind eye, but she told me if anyone ever complained, well, I would have to do something about it. Luckily no one ever complained. We had a lot of latinos in the area, and not to stereotype, but they do love fresh chicken, and I didnt want any of my girls missing and ending up going to dinner permanently. Some of the kids around there were not too trustworthy and very well could have stolen one just for the fun of it had they known about them. So, I kept it quiet and did a pretty good job up until just before we moved. I had a huge yard sale and well, lots of those folks ended up seeing one or two girls that wandered up to see what the excitement was.
Donna, you know my story well. Donna is the one that got me into journaling. You see, when I first got internet way back when I frequented a Country Living Forum. I had country living in my heart years before we were able to move, so I was a wannabe I guess you could say for a long time. People come and go on a forum. Things and people change. Long story short, believe it or not, once I was actually moved to the country it seemed I was not as accepted in the forum. I was inexperienced at this new life, but I thought I would fit in better. I didnt, so Donna helped me to move on. Fern was also very encouraging and I have them both to thank for putting me in Jland. I really do love it here more than I ever did at that forum. So thank you Donna, and thank you Fern. :)
There had been a house listed for a while...I had seen it on the listings several times...and so had Ian. Ian said he dismissed it because it had a paved driveway. Even though it was five and a half acres...he thought with a paved driveway it MUST be right up by the road. I really like the house. It had everything we wanted and more. I big front porch, a screened in back porch, lots of open land, a garage. I wanted to see it. So I called our agent. She went out to look at it and called me back right away. She said we better get out to that house RIGHT NOW and look at it. She said it was not right by the road and it was perfect, but it was hot, and a lot of people were looking at it, so we hopped in the truck and came out right away.
This was it. We were home. It even had a pool. A dream home. Shelby could have the whole upstairs to herself. It had two bedrooms, one for a playroom, one for a bedroom. Had a complete bathroom upstairs. Wonderful. Her own little retreat. Downstairs all the rooms were huge compared to what we were used to. We didnt necessarily want more rooms, just bigger spacious rooms. It had that, and so much more. Oh it was just perfect.
I had been packing anything and everything we could do without for months, so moving was not a problem. With a few friends and a big UHaul truck we had everything moved in two days. I had prepared for this day and here it was. I had even made that chicken house to where I could disassemble it easily from the corners of the walls and easily transport it to our new home, now thats thinking ahead.
As of April 1st, 2005 we were the proud new owners of our dream home that we will be in til Ian retires, in the country. We had arrived.
When we arrived we had in tow, twenty five chickens, Tip our border collie, two old cats, a cockateil, our iguana, and Tyler, Shelbys Flemish Giant Rabbit.
Today, we have over a hundred chickens of a vast variety of breeds, two pot belly pigs, a miniature horse, two more rabbits, and all mentioned above except we lost one cat to old age back in the Spring.
I want more, I always want more, but we are looking into having a real barn put up by next summer before we get anything else...like a llama. ;)
Here in this picture above is the only house that I really loved before we found our house now. The only reason I like this one better was because it had fencing, but we have fencing now, so it doesnt matter. This one was sold and when I pulled up they were moving in already.
Here is our house...we still love it and feel so fortunate to live out here where it is so beautiful. I remember being that person that drove by places like that...thinking I never would be living in a place like that.