I don’t know what it is about visions of farm life dancing through my head, but I have dreams of living out in the middle of nowhere just like Laura Ingalls Wilder. I know I over romanticize the whole thing. I think it’s just when it gets crazy around our house, the thought of a simpler life is appealing.
Notice I said simpler, not easier.
I know our ancestors had it hard. Really hard.
Take this farm.
It’s been in Rob’s family since right after the Oklahoma Land Run.
His great-grandfather, who immigrated from Sweeden by himself when he was just 16yrs old (let that sink in for a minute — I can’t imagine letting a 16yr old on a boat, by themselves to start a life in another country), bought it from the guy who staked the claim during the Land Run.
Right now I’m picturing Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman in Far and Away — the music may or may not be playing in this crazy head of mine.
I mean the ink wasn’t even on the deed yet when his great-grandfather bought it – as a matter of fact, the original deed Rob’s family has to this piece of property was actually signed by Teddy Roosevelt himself (and yes, they still have it!) How cool is that?!
These folks were HARD workers.
They lived here through the dust bowl, the depression, you name it.
They made it work.
His great-grandfather quarried the rock off the property to build the house (you can see the original stone building — the mudroom, kitchen and bedrooms were added on later.)
They painted everything in later years to make it look like one building. Since Rob’s grandparent’s passed away, no one has lived out there (a cousin who lives down the road still runs cows on the property.) This is how that same house looked about 8 years ago.
Sadly the disrepair continues and it looks much worse now. The property actually belongs to Rob’s parents right now, so it’s kind of a touchy situation for us to come in and start doing things to the property (although we would LOVE to!)
Rob’s great-grandfather also built the chicken house and other out buildings out of stone and by hand.
I love this picture so much. I actually have it blown up here at our house. I keep trying to tell our girls, that this is part of their story.
This last time we were out there, the inside of this barn revealed another little tidbit of history.
Apparently they did the plaster work May 10, 1932 (at least that’s how we made this out — it’s a little harder to read in the picture.) Cool.
We are purposefully trying to bring the girls out here so they develop a connection with this land.
We went out there this year while it was still cold. We wanted to walk the property and it’s easier to do when all the girls aren’t thinking everything is a snake.
The farm is now just a quarter section or 160 acres.
The picture below is from the south end of the property with the old farm house and buildings (they’re white) in the top left corner. When you’re out walking, the property feels huge!
Rob was pointing out to the girls where he use to go with his grandparents to build a fire along the creek and cook out hot dogs. I love memories like that.
Caroline found a big cow bone and couldn’t wait to take it to class for show and share.
Rob said she should tell them it was a big chicken bone. Of course the girls got a kick out of that.
It’s going to take a ton of work, but one of these days we’ll fix this place up so we can spend more time up here.
I just love this place.