Entering Year Three at Footlights…

Three years ago we just started looking for a house on a few acres.

Or a few acres on which to build a barn home.

Estate agents weren’t much help…we all have our own points of reference and unless they were starting from the same place as us, their vision was not ours but theirs.

In the end I took some advice from friends who had moved to New Mexico,

“Just drive around until you find somewhere you like and go from there.”

This logic set us on the road, driving around, rain or shine, motoring further and further North along 75.

We found the land quite by accident, concealed along a private dirt road behind trees.  Covered with a thin sprinkling of snow and dotted with a couple of horses it looked enchanting.

By the time we had signed the papers and laid claim to the property the rains had been so persistent the  back forty and front lawns were under water


Under water outside our front door

and our six month apartment lease was up.

We moved into what was to become Footlights, our new home.  One month later we flew off to Florida to fulfill a commitment we had made to a couple of dogs.

Before leaving we snapped a photo with Daughts who had giddily agreed to hold down the fort for a couple of months until our return


“Sure I’ll watch things for you!”

“Sure I’ll watch things for you,” she said laughing merrily.

At Thanksgiving our oldest son the film-maker took a photo of us in front of the ranch to use as a new address announcement.


In front of Footlights’ second set of gates

After two full years we have made a few changes.

We cleared seven acres of heavy undergrowth, saplings that were in a tangle, brambles and ivy that gave the land a wild, unkemptness that was exciting to look at but impossible to walk through and enjoy.


wild and unkempt

We emptied the fire pit, dug flowerbeds, cleared out the barn for large tools and a wedding reception.  In the spring we watched as thistle grew abundantly and the Indian Paintbrush spread itself elegantly over  our front pastures.


Beautiful wildflowers spreading elegantly

We mowed and fertilized, dragged fallen boughs and branches to be burned and held several parties.

The most significant piece of remodeling we did was the addition of our front, screened in porch which has added 480 square feet to the house.


We painted the walls brilliant white,


the ceiling blue and the front door bright yellow.


We added furniture and made it a comfortable living space where we eat, relax, entertain and work.

Our photo this Christmas was of just the two of us, relaxed and happy, comfortable and contented on our 13 acres of pasture, woodlands and creeks.


Looking forward to year three at Footlights

Classical Empty Nesters who are looking forward to year three at Footlights, loving each other, always here for our children and basking in God’s glory.

I pray that you too will have a healthy and prosperous 2018.

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2018-02-12 17:01:06 Reply

Ahhhhh! Thank you!


2018-11-13 20:37:47 Reply

This is indeed the Footlights ranch in the urban legend of Olivia Mabel. I would be interested to know if the new owners have had any unexplained experiences. Though, I am quite sure they are bothered by this inquisition often.


2020-11-12 15:12:00 Reply

Based on 15min of research, the whole Olivia/Aiden Mabel story is an elaborate multi-media scheme to garner funding for a movie. One of the people involved in the scheme has a last name of McNeny who I believe is related to the current owners of the Footlight Ranch where the events supposedly took place. All the documents reference on oliviamabel.com (domain was registered in 2016) are all fakes as are the supposed characters involved. No one in Celina, TX (where I currently live) is aware of these supposed events (1990- Death of Aiden, 1994 – Death of Olivia) even taking place. If you were to call the Celina PD, you will be informed of the same. All this is very reminiscent of The Blair Witch Project which was a campy horror film from the 90’s that tried to pass itself off as reality. This is a hoax and I am sure the current occupants of the supposed crime scene would probably wish it would just go away.


2021-10-22 00:10:12 Reply

You gotta have really steel balls to buy a property with so wicked background. How many crazy visitors tried to trespass/harass them? I wonder if the new owners are doing okay now.

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