When I last left you we were heading into December with two new babies on the ranch and one in Denver. Shortly after that we bought another girl (Barbara) who had a baby the beginning of December. Mid-December found us taking the two born here and their Mama's to Denver to be bred, and picking up Kobria and her baby (Quemado) to come home. On our way home we picked up my girls (the human kind) and brought them home for the holidays.
We had a nice relaxing holiday, although Mike was gone to Salt Lake for most of it finishing the job at his sisters house. He did make it home for Christmas day + 3 days, and his being in Salt Lake afforded him the chance to see his boys (Josh and Dan, and Jed who already lives there, and Rachel, Josh's girlfriend) who were in town visiting their mother. The girls and I were in Wyoming taking care of the alpacas, playing with the puppies, and watching lots of movies.
Anyhow our alpaca count is now 13, and luckily the most we have had here at one time is 6. But pressure to get out and find the new ranch was mounting, so we scheduled a trip to Spokane/Coeur D'Alene for mid-January as well as I had taken two separate trips ot the Durango area in Colorado and had pretty well ruled that area out. We were down to Spokane almost exclusively.
On New Years Eve I took Kelsey & Sara to the airport in Salt Lake and decided to stick around and visit Mike for a week. On New Years Day someone posted an add on the Yahoo Group, Alpaca Classifieds, listing their ranch for sale outside of Canon (pronounced Canyon) City, Colorado. It sounded pretty nice and the price seemed right. We asked a few questions and liked the answers. Since we were in Salt Lake, near an airport, and Southwest now has Salt Lake/Denver flights... AND I could get a ding fare for less that $170 round trip for the two of us, we decided to go have a look. So Friday we flew to Denver drove through the storm of the century to Canon City. They met us at the end of their drive in their Hummer, cause our little rental car could go no further... Hmmm. Although they assured us it NEVER snows more than 6 inches there. This 18 inches was very odd! They described the mountain just outside their back door (since the snow prevented us from seeing 10 feet in front of our faces). They promoted the virtues of Canon City, the Wal-mart (how exciting to us, with the nearest Supermarket 1 hour away), the home depot (1.5 hours from us here), and the state prisons, which everyone in the country whose heard of Canon City knows about except us... But Oh, the unibomber is right there in Canon City.. but don't worry, He is 12 miles away, so we are really safe!
So we spent the afternoon with them, and the best part is that they are alpaca breeders so they have 2 wonderful barns, a heated double garage, and another storage building (where he keeps his helicopter). And all the fencing that we need is done! The house needs work but when I pointed out to Mike that ANY house we would buy would need work because we are who we are.. I think that sealed the deal for him. We called them two days later with a full price offer.
Besides the out structures, the property includes 35 acres and a separate 35 acre lot with a well and septic on it. The house is 2600 sf/3 bed/2 bath and well sited on the property. We were a bit hesitant because it is a little drier than we'd like to be, in the Pinons and Junipers, but at 10 miles West of Canon City it is in the foothills, and 10 miles further to the forest the big mountains. Oh and did I mention there is a Super Wal-mart 12 miles from the house! It is a 6 hour drive from Albuquerque, so I'd drive back to see the girls, but could fly if I wanted to. Right now it takes me 6 hours and that is if there are no airport delays etc, and if I want to go down for the weekend (or they ome up) we can. I think we'll like that. It is 1 hour South of Colorado Springs, and 2 hours to Downtown Denver, so again, I think we'll enjoy the location. Being central in the country we will have more access to alpaca shows either way from us.. In Spokane we might have felt bound to the West Coast Shows.
So I wanted to write right away, but have been holding my breathe, waiting for a contract. The sellers were "feeling out the market". They had no idea that their house would be sold within a week of their first thoughts about selling. They are a bit overwhelmed. They want to move to Oklahoma.. I think they really do.. But before they set closing and moving dates with us, they want to make sure they have a place to move to. They will soon be taking a trip to Oklahoma to look at a few places. Soon as the weather clears up! They keep delaying, but I understand why. And I think they really do want to do this, we just need to give them time. So.. we wait. I'm sure patience will show their earnestness, so we need to just wait.
In the meantime, I'm drawing house plans, Mike is picking floortile, we are coordinating our animal births with a plan that will move us into the new place in May, between the show in Denver May 6 and Nationals in Louisville on May 17! Ha! (Of course I have a week in Albuquerque in the middle there!) Life is never dull for too long!