Want It, You Got It
You can have anything in this world that you want," says my husband, David.
And he is right, if you are him (white, middle-class, 30-something, and American male.) When you have nothing working against you (i.e. poverty, skin color, poor health, or lack of education), the things you own, the life you lead and even your personality become a matter of making choices and priorities. You can have a Rolex but you may not be able to afford health care. You can be thin but you can't eat Dove Bars and sit on your butt all day. You can rise to the top of your field but you may arrive there alone because you won't have time for a family or anything else.
The first step is to figure out what you really want. Say you want to make an extra $200,000 within the next year. You can. But you may have to work in a field you don't like, forgo time with your family and friends, live in a strange city, and/or kiss the asses of people you hate. Or you could become a drug dealer or prostitute. Sure you risk jail time but think of all the Prada shoes you could buy.
The point is you can have anything you want, you just have to make sure you want what comes with the package and know that you may have to make sacrifices and take fairly creative measures to get it.
For instance, who wouldn't want this? Historic Farm, 170 acres near Shakertown. Eight hundred fifty feet of Kentucky River frontage. Main house 1795 - with 2 log homes. Amenities include large in-ground pool, workshop, 3 barns. Secluded with wildlife. But you might not think you could handle the $750,000 price tag.
Fred and Theo Bee have found a way to reside here and, at least, mitigate some of the expense involved with owning this dream property. They live in a two-bedroom log cabin overlooking, what Fred says is, "the best spring in Mercer County," a steep meadow and woods while they run a bed and breakfast from the main house and another log cabin. Furthermore, they raise sheep and keep miniature burrows, a guard donkey, peafowl, goats and cows, and grow gourds for Theo's business, Angelgourds.
The larger log cabin, built in 1815, once stood on land owned by its builder, Philemon Waters, in Marion County. In the summer of 1993 the cabin was discovered in Lebanon, dismantled, the logs carefully numbered, and moved to their farm. Fred completely reconstructed the house using the original massive poplar logs, hand-split cedar shakes and keystones for the three fireplaces. The three-bedroom, three-bath house stands in a large yard enclosed by a four-plank fence, looking as though it belongs in the center of a diorama of a pioneer settlement.
Across the "road" sits the main house, listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the Benjamin Daniel House. Built in 1795, with additions in 1895 and 1979, the one-and-a-half story brick house contains five bedrooms, four-and-a-half baths and the kitchen where innkeeper Dianne Patterson cooks huge farm-style breakfasts. While walls and simple trim painted gray-green invoke the spirit of nearby Shakertown.
Fred says you have to "really like people" to run a bed and breakfast but admits that he has met some fantastic people through the years and "95 per cent of them are people I would want to visit my home anyway."
If you don't like new people so much, here's another idea: create a co-op. Three or four families buy the property together; each gets a house and five acres while they share the remaining 150 or so acres. Yes, it would be less private and it would take some cooperating and mutual respect but if it is what you really want, it would get you into that dream house in the country with your very own hiking trail along the Kentucky River.
Canaan Land Farm
700 Canaan Land Farm Road, Harrodsburg
Main House 3395 sq. ft.
Log House 1364 sq. ft.
Guest House 1292 sq. ft.
Contact: Fred Bee (859) 734-3984
If you have a unique or interesting house for sale contact Lissa Sims at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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