When we bought the farm, here in Grayson county, Leland was 31 and I was 29 and we had more energy then than now..55 years later. That may explain why we thought we could do anything and everything.Wayne was 10...Sharon was almost 9 and Mike was 2 1/2 . They were so excited because we were going to have a farm but they didn't know what we were getting into.
The first day the kiddos saw where we were going to live they were a bit overwhelmed. Our house had detached garage and one of them 'ask who lived there' they thought it was a neighbor. When we showed them the land it just looked so big..well, that 102 acres looked a lot bigger to us then than it does now..We had moved out of a new house in Andrews to one that had a living room, kitchen, and two bedrooms..Notice what is missing??? We had a little building north of the house. Had to explain that to them and I guess it did take a little shine off things...Remember once Mike said " I want to go home and use the bathroom'..well, we did too.
First thing Leland did was start digging a hole for a septic tank and was that an experience!!! That is when we discovered that our black land farm was rock about 2 inches down. He hit solid rock and he was able to buy some dynamite.Bet we couldn't buy that now.He would blast some and dig some. Once it was really scary..he lite the dynamite and it didn't go off..whew..We were all scared for him to go back in the hole in case it was just delayed but finally after a period of time he did go back in and struck a match to it again and got the heck out of there and it blew..that may have been the one that rocks did a number on our roof. Finally the hole was big enough . He had bought a book before we moved here on building septic tanks and went by that exactly. We had moved here in August of 1959 and by November of that year he had built the room for the bathroom and we put in the comode, sink and bathtub. The walls didn't have up sheetrock and we hung a heavy quilt for a door until we could eventually get it finished..Winter was coming on and we were gratful to say goodbye to that little house.
We did have running water and was told that the well had NEVER gone dry and that people from all over use to come and get water from that well. We took them at their word and wasn't worried until one day no water came out when we turned on the faucet. Lots of people must have had trouble with their wells going dry because a man in Tom Bean had a truck that he hauled water to people for their wells..so we bought water for 'that well that had never gone dry' until 1966 when we got water from a well that was drilled..called Kentucky Water Supply..we still gladly pay a water bill to that company every month.
At first there wasn't near as much work to do because after using all our money for a down payment we didn't have the funds to buy anything..We had hoped that Leland could find a job that paid well enough while building up things here that he wouldn't need to go back to the oil field..That didn't happen, jobs weren't all that plentiful but he did go to work for the highway department. He had no experience in that so the job that was open for him only paid $200.00 a month...before anything came out..We knew from the start that there was no way we could possibly live on that so he only worked there about a month and did find a job on a drilling rig. After he went to work for Humble oil (now Exxon) he had two days a week off and two weeks paid vacation a year. Before that he worked on contract rigs and when they were running it was seven days a week and you worked whatever shift was available. If they had another location that was great but if they didn't you and everyone else on that rig was out looking for a job..When he went back on rigs now..we were back to that. Some of the time it was steady like the time he worked 19 months and one day without a day off!!!.He was making enough money that we started buying animals..That probably was about the time that the new wore off for the kids because they helped with chores. It was awhile before Mike was old enough but when Leland was at work and the other two in school I would take Mike to the barn with me and sit him down somewhere while I did chores..checking on him every once in awhile to make sure some snake hadn't eaten him up.....These were the first very few years out here.
I will try not to wait so long before I write another article.
Ephesians 2 13:8
For by grace you have been saved through faith,
and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,not
of works, least anyone should boast.