We hadn't even been Texans for a year, yet we had explored so much of our beautiful new home. After starting out in North Texas, we found Central Texas to be a much better fit, but exactly where would we end up? That was the question Karen and I were determined to answer, 2020 would be the year of getting our farm!
Little did we know the non stop turmoil that the year would bring for our country and the world. Ironically, when everything is locked down it makes for great road trips!
Karen, myself and the girls took this time to drive all over Central Texas, there is no small town that we didn't visit. And as we would drive through we both would either add it to the maybe list, or the oh hell naw list. Some of the disqualifying attributes, when it smelled like an oil refinery- Sorry Lulling, we're going to have to pass. When the traffic made me stabby, Sorry Austin. When the tourist flocking to the river made me stabby, Sorry New Braunfels. When the hill country hills would leave you speechless at their beauty, and without any soil for a garden, sorry Boerne, Kerrville and Bandera. As fast as we would drive through little towns, we would tick them off, too scrubby, too ghetto, too many people, is this place deserted, are we on a driveway or a dirt road, did we accidentally drive into Mexico?
Eventually we had made a rough triangle-ish shape of where we thought would work, now we just needed someone to sell their farm in this area.
As with most things in 2020, the housing market was crazy. Thankfully we had made a great friend who was now our realtor, and she was just as determined as we were to get us our farm! Weekly she, the girls and I would drive out to properties and check them out. So many times I would fall in love, only to have it go under contract before Karen could get a chance to go and see it. I was getting panicky and distraught, but Karen and our friend would keep reminding me, when it's meant to be, it will be.
One evening in September, I was in the shower and Karen burst into the bathroom and said, "There's a house I want to go see tomorrow. It just came on the market 2 hours ago!" I had barely dried off, when I called and we set up the appointment to see it the next morning at 9.
As we drove down the road, I was trying to keep myself from falling in love. But who was I kidding, I was head over heels for this place and we had barely driven past the front gate.
Karen kept his cool as we looked around the house. It was older, and needed some TLC, but nothing that we couldn't work with.
There was a garage of sorts, for all of Karen's man toys, my squat rack and plenty of room for animal supplies.
Speaking of animals, there were cats. We weren't sure how many exactly, but the girls loved watching the kittens play fight and scamper around.
Our friend stayed with the girls as Karen and I took a hike to see the back of the property.
By the time we had returned from our hike I knew this was it, this had to be our farm.
Karen, normally not much for words, couldn't tell our friend fast enough, let's put in an offer!
And within 48 hours our offer had been accepted, terms negotiated and we just had to wait for closing. This was it, the final scene in our adventure, we had finally found our Texas farm.
After closing, we eagerly took our keys and went to check out our farm for the first time as owners. And I would be lying if I said I was shocked to find the cats greeting us as we drove in.
11 of them live here full time, and 1 (not pictured) likes to split his time between here and somewhere else. I guess technically these were our first animals on the farm. Whether we inherited them, or they us, our girls wasted no time in naming all of them.
We would spend the next month cleaning and working on the house. Ripping out nasty carpet, parts of walls and the ceiling. It had been a long time since this house had seen any love, and we were pouring every ounce of love we had into it. Karen worked on the house on the weekends, and I was driving over at least twice during the week to clean and make sure our new cats were being fed. This was all taking a toll, and one day Karen said, next week we are moving. You can imagine my surprise, we still had a month left on our lease, and there was no flooring other than the subfloor in the house. His determination is part of what I love about him, but in this case I was pretty sure it would also be what caused his untimely end.
The next week was spent driving back and forth, more times than I can count, moving into our farm. This would make for the 9th time Karen and I had moved together. You would think we would have it down to a science, and in some aspects we do. But without fail there will be fighting, lots of swearing and most of all laughter. Karen and I have this uncanny way of working through things loudly and with passion, then ending the day recounting our adventure and laughing till our sides hurt. This was no exception, I reminded him countless times that we should have rented a moving truck, he reminded me that he has a pickup, I plotted where I would bury him on our property and he just laughed. Eventually, we packed the very last of our things, locked up the rental and made our last journey to the farm. We were finally home.