September 16, 2016
I really hope last weeks emotional breakdown didn’t scare to many of you off. I received messages from friends and family worried about our well being, but I promise we are doing great and even though things were not easy, we are better and stronger because of it. The trial of the week; Field had to deal with a lot of crap and I mean that quite literally. We experienced our first “living in the country” scenario when our septic backed up. Shit got real y’all. One thing you realize very quickly living on acreage with children, communication and being on the same page is very important. Poor Payton did not get the memo that daddy was fixing the septic…enough said. That is when I realized we really have to talk to our kids about everything we do on the farm, how we do it and why it matter, so everything runs smoothly.
Hope you’re still with me, because I am really looking forward to telling you all more about this little town that stole my heart and inspired us to pick up and move from Arizona to Texas. Corsicana is a descent sized town of population: 23,000. Where our little farmhouse sits right outside city limits, in Powell, is population: 138. So, the Denny family, increased the population by 3.6%. We would have never had the chance to buy our little farmhouse(still to be named) without being drawn to Corsicana first. If you find yourself considering a move to a small town Texas, I have some towns that we strongly considered before finding our perfect spot here!
We have been all over the Northeastern and Central parts of Texas looking at small towns and a few really made a lasting impression. From Sherman to Crawford and everything in between, these were the things we were looking for in a town: Good schools. Solid athletic programs. Good-kind people(every town had this). Charming town center. Good eats. Based on these things and experiences we had in many of these towns, I am going to give you a brief ranking of our favorites.
5. Collinsville, Texas- This very little Texas town will really speak to you if you are a farmer at heart. It is quaint and quiet. There is not a lot going on there, but the rolling pastures, tree lined dirt roads and animals grazing everywhere is like a peaceful dream. Their town center was small, but charming. Schools were fine, but they did not appear to have much of an athletics program. It was a lot of agriculture and farming…which could be a perfect fit for some!
4. Gunter, Texas- Honestly, some of the prettiest country side roads I have ever seen. Longhorns & horses graze up to the white fence along the winding roadside. There is a masterplanned equestrian community there and the schools and athletics are stellar. Old real estate is nearly impossible to come by, but the new builds and custom homes are in a beautiful location and reasonably priced. Gunter does not have a downtown, but it connects to another small town on our list, that has quite the charming town center.
3. Van Alstyne, Texas- This very charming town is the neighbor to Gunter I was talking about! It has some beautiful countryside and its downtown is bustling with new business and cute shops. Because of its larger population, there are some less desirable parts of town but they have great schools and athletics. If you are looking for a fixer upper, this is the town. There were several really large historic homes available in the downtown area that I loved, but we were looking for land too. There is quite a bit of real estate available and they have a great mix of both in town and acreage properties.
2. Crawford, Texas- Not only is this town the home of HGTV stars of Fixer Upper, Chip and Joanna Gaines, but it was honestly my first choice before we found Corsicana. First of all, Chip and Joanna’s farmhouse is a dream from the road…truly an inspiration. Crawford is just 10 minutes outside of Waco which makes it a highly sought after town. The downtown is quaint and cute, but it did not seem to have much growth happening there, which could go either way. They are known for their academics and athletics. Side note, they have little league, which was a huge plus for these small towns. If you are a Fixer Upper freak like me, just living that close to Chip and Joanna makes a woman’s heart happy! Can I get a witness!?
AND Finally, Of Course, our Number 1…the town we couldn’t live without, Corsicana. When we first strolled through Corsicana, I honestly wasn’t very impressed. Just passing through, I couldn’t picture our family living here. We stepped into the streets of Downtown and everything changed. The moment I got out of the car, I could feel the energy of the town. It was a feeling of resurrection, positivity and change. I realize that may sound ridiculous that I could “feel” it, but I am telling you, it was in the air! This town loves their creatives…so I felt right at home. It has good schools and great baseball for the boys. The people are so wonderful and when things were really hard the first couple weeks, it was the people of Corsicana that confirmed the choice we made. The people in this town are excited about it’s future and so are we. We will do an entire blog post on the town, shops and the people soon.
Update on the kids: The kids LOVE their school and for the first time, we have a system for homework that I can really get behind. The kids do not have homework on Wednesdays, the school recommends a family night! SO genius, right? All the kids have received their 4 week report card and all have straight A’s. The boys are both signed up for Fall football (which I am quite terrified to watch) and Grace is signed up to cheer at her brother’s games. Friday night lights is VERY real in Texas. We attended our first Corsicana High School football game with the kids last week and had a blast. You would have thought we were going to a Cowboys game with the traffic and ushered parking. We love that these small towns rally behind their teams!