Monday, October 26, 2009

Cooper the escape artist

For any parent whose twenty-something child has relocated to a faraway state, I would highly recommend buying 13 acres of land and building a new house. It's a wonderful diversion!
When Josh and Susan came home for a visit in September we couldn't wait to show them the land. There were lots of ticks and we did not legally own the land yet so the visit was limited to hiking around and dreaming about the future.

Their next visit was in October and the land was now ours so we built a big campfire and enjoyed the Fall evening. It was fun to discover that you can faintly hear the Lawrence High football games from the land. Campfires and high school football, a great combination.

Later as we enjoyed the fire, a white van pulled into the property and came towards the fire. No one recognized the van and once it parked two adult males got out of the van and started walking towards us. Yikes! As they got closer Sara realized it was Evan and his dad! She thought Evan was still in Manhattan so it was a nice surprise, scary at first but a nice surprise.

The next day we decided to have a daytime fire and some lunch. Sara and Josh picked up a pizza and drove on out to the land. Then Bobby and I loaded up Cooper and headed out there to meet them. It was a beautiful day and we had the windows down, listening to music and talking. As we pulled into the property we noticed that Josh stood up and was walking towards us and calling out something.
Ooops, Cooper at some point had jumped out the open window and was running behind the truck and we hadn't noticed! Gosh, I hope Josh will trust us to babysit any real grandchildren they have in the future.
P.S. This picture of Cooper is very old, honest, he was not that little when he jumped out of the truck.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Fastest Land Sale in the West

We called the realtor within minutes of seeing the land for the first time and the next day we made an offer.

The seller had placed the land on the market on a Sunday, we found it on Thursday and by Saturday we were on our way to becoming the proud owners of a 13 acre slice of Kansas heaven! I really, really, hope our current house sells that fast!

On a rainy morning in September we closed on the land and then things began to get serious. House plans were drawn up, a trustworthy builder was selected, a construction loan secured, a site plan developed and a contract signed. And now we wait.....

Thursday, October 15, 2009

And so it begins....

For years we have had a dream to live in the country. One of Bobby's favorite pastimes throughout the years has been to drive around the countryside surrounding Lawrence always on the lookout for that perfect spot to build his dream. Seriously, this man has put thousands of miles on several trucks, never tiring of driving, driving some more, drinking Diet Mountain Dews and enjoying the seasons and the views.

Then in July '09 we decided to get serious about making the dream become reality. We made lots of lists of tasks large and small that needed be completed to make this thing really happen.

And of course one of the first tasks was finding land. One evening in August we drove out to look at 20 acres that were advertised in the real estate section of the newspaper. It was mostly bare pasture land with hardly a tree upon the whole tract so we drove on past it disappointed. At the next intersection where the pavement turned to gravel we saw a real estate sign pointing on further down the road with the same realtor name as the 20 acres. Bobby wondered if they had the sign turned around backwards pointing the wrong way. We decided to drive further down the road to check it out.

Another 1/2 mile or so down the gravel road we found the realtor's sign next to a dirt road leading through the trees. We turned onto the road which gently rose into a clearing surrounded by trees, we sat at the crest of that small rise overlooking the clearing and saw that the road continued on to a culvert over a small creek and into a second clearing which was planted with corn. We turned to each other and I think we both knew this was it, 'the' land at last. All those miles had finally paid off.