Damn girl you did it!

I’m getting bored – there I said it! Lately I find myself more interested in whose feather I found on a property than selling the actual property!

This one belonged to a turkey in Timberon, New Mexico! The turkey is a symbol of abundance and connection to the land and Mother Earth. May all our lives be full!

I felt this another time in my life after working in the banking career for about 15 years and I’ve been doing this since 2001, so 16 years! I lose track of what year I started my business but since it was a week after 9-11 I’m reminded every year. I’ll never forget waking up to the quiet of the morning and feeling my heart breaking for America seeing it unfold on TV. Watching that plane crash into the second tower and the towers crumble, seeming to go on forever, feeling helpless and crying. It was so different 16 years ago. I didn’t watch it on the internet or comment about it on Facebook. And I didn’t know a whole lot about the land game.

But I was off to research the desert as there was a lot of vacant land there dirt cheap. On my first trip I purchased land at a foreclosure sale in Luna County, New Mexico and Navajo County, Arizona. Those were back in my days selling land on eBay. I didn’t have many choices back then as there weren’t any other websites to advertise/sell on. The first piece of land I purchased was in Deming, New Mexico, where I am headed this weekend to check out some land and hopefully stop and smell the roses at the City of Rocks State Park and go for a night walk at the Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument. My first feedback was for a piece of land in Navajo County, Arizona where I live today, how fitting! Having lived in the Great Pacific Rain Forest we call western Washington, I was drawn to the desert and my dream of living here has came true. Note to self…DAMN GIRL YOU DID IT!

So here I sit looking across the beautiful property that I take care of to the mesas that pop out of the valley floor. The first photo I took  in this county was from the top of the mesa behind the county courthouse because I wanted to see what it looked like across the valley and that was the highest point around. Little did I know then that I was looking across the Painted Desert and Petrified Wood Forest where some of the oldest Native ruins have been identified! Some of the same pottery and petrified wood that are found on this property ! I say the property I take care of because I’ve felt since I purchased her that I was given her to take care of, to make sure she gets preserved. So no quads or motorcycles allowed, but feel free to walk to the rock outcropping and meditate or poke your nose around the sandy ruins and see what you find!

Painted and stamped pottery found on the property I call home!

When I visited Monument Valley this spring I was pleased to hear our Navajo tour guide refer to his property in the same manner. He never called it his, just the place where he keeps his animals or the place his home is. For a brief moment in time all of the pieces of land that pass thru my hands I feel responsible for. And that’s been thousands of pieces of land in those 16 years!

I’m responsible for making sure that the right person gets to take care of the land next. That they will be good stewards of Mother Earth as well. No I’m not a tree hugger….well there was that one guy last year who wanted to buy the 140+ acres in the Bear Springs Hills in Colorado where the elk bed so he could clear the trees and graze cattle on it – wth??? – it’s surrounded by the Comanche Grasslands which is thousands of acres of range land for cattle, the start of the Great Prairie and you want to destroy the trees the elk live in? Sorry I’m not going to sell it to you – I’d rather find someone who wants to shoot an elk once a year than destroy their home. And that makes me a good sales person!

So what’s got me so bored if I love traveling around Mother Earth? I love going out and seeing the wild herds of horses, elk, antelope, big horn sheep, eating at my favorite restaurants I find along the way, stopping by to say hello to friends I’ve met along the way and walking into a foreclosure sale and hearing “omg she’s here!” in hushed tones! There’s no friends at an auction and may the best woman win! I love the game! So what then has me bored? I guess it’s having to plant myself in front of my computer as much as I do! I spend hours on the photos and research information about each property. A property that is 1 acre gets just much effort put into is as an 80 acre piece of land. That’s made this business successful.

So what am I going to do? It seems like I’m not the only one around my age (52 next week) looking at my inner self and asking that question. It’s no longer about being able to financially take care of myself, but rather a deeper fulfillment of what I do with my time left hear on Earth.  The answer is change. If I don’t I won’t be happy. Change is hard. I’m not sure yet what the change will be. I love to travel to the middle of nowhere and enjoy teaching business and real estate. To change though I have to have someone else be responsible for Smile4u.

A big butterfly or moth was in my house night before last – flew off my bed and onto the wall. It was dark and so big that at first I thought it was a bat. But nope it fluttered about my dark house and finally flew out an open door! Tis the season for butterflies but I’ve never seen one that big and dark and definitely not in my house! Yesterday I got up and was still thinking about it and opened up a book I study called The Animal-Wise Tarot and flipped to the page about moths. It sure looked familiar and was the card I had pulled out of  the animal card deck the last time I worked with my cards. I read about the animal again and really thought about how they reflect transformation, a new birth, a new beginning. I wore my butterfly necklace yesterday as a reminder of those animals strengths. Right on I thought – keep moving forward and I’ll figure it out!

Which bring me to this morning. Last week my favorite nerd, Amber, told me she was going to a foreclosure sale – did I want to go. Nope she could do this one on her own for her first time. I’m not holding her hand this morning sitting beside her at the foreclosure sale telling her to bid higher or stop bidding like I did last year. Until I let her do it by herself she will never celebrate the joy of knowing she’s got this game figured out! And she does, she’s listened to it since she was in 3rd grade and appointed Head Pencil Sharpener! She sent me a few photos last night of the lakes that were by the properties going up for sale this morning.


In the current age of technology where you can now do a live stream on Facebook so the world can see what you’re doing, we still are doing things the old fashioned way! She’s texting me this morning from the auction telling me how she’s doing while Im sitting on my front porch in the sunshine. She told me there wasn’t enough spaces on her bidder card! And I think she’s got this!

So what’s next for me? For now I’m just going to worry about not falling off the side of the cliff during the night walk to the ruins this weekend! I’ll still be working on listings next week as I imagine a new beginning won’t come quite that fast!

As I was editing what I wrote above I received one more text that I thought I would add:

Holy cow Amber – 92 properties ! Dang girl you did it! I think I still have a few grey hairs to grow before that change I look forward to happens!


Char : )

Head Pencil Sharpener Wannabe!

A few links to things I mentioned above:

City of Rocks State Park

Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument (Free with your National Park pass!)

Ted Andrews, Author, Animal Speak

Be Sociable, Share!

5 Responses to “Damn girl you did it!”

  1. Jeffrey Sopczak

    Damn girl you did it!! My story is very similar to yours and 9-11 only 16 years later I’m still freezing my ass off in Chicago!!!

    • Char the Explorer

      Oh I’m sorry to hear you’re freezing! As fall starts to set in on the desert I am reminded of how thankful I am to see and feel the warmth of the sunshine almost every day! Blowing some sunshine to the windy city! Char : )

  2. Marilyn

    Char, I am moved by your story and current feelings of unrest and change. I too am working at making a change. We are the same age yet my dream is to leave my current corporate position for the type of freedom of travel and self fulfilment of doing my own thing. The idea of going to auctions and seeing the country one auction at a time. How cool is that! Kudos to you and your success. My journey is just beginning and have much to learn. Its refreshing to see you pass on your tribal knowledge. Best to you and your journey. – Marilyn S.

    • Char the Explorer

      Hi Marilyn, I appreciate you taking the time to write a note. Good luck to you on your new journey. Still wondering where mine will take me! Sincerely, Char : )

  3. Richard

    Hi, Char. I’ve been browsing your properties for a couple years now. A few times when I felt ready to follow through on buying a property from you, by the time I got around to making a move, it was already pending sale to someone else. Timing, they say, is everything. Apparently those previous times weren’t ‘my time’ 🙂

    Anyway, this is the first time I’ve read your blog (no particular decision to avoid it, it just never stood out to me as something to do; go figure, right? lol).

    I’m at that place again where I feel I want to buy. And, seeing that Amber just racked up another 92 properties, this may be my cue to give you a call to discuss whether there’s anything in inventory that seems a good fit for me.

    I was particularly moved by your story about the potential buyer who wanted to clear the vast elk bed in Colorado, and your decision not to sell on behalf of the elk that would’ve been displaced. I respect your sense of care-taking over the lands in which you deal, and that makes me want to buy from you all the more.

    I look forward to talking with you sometime in the coming week. Until then, best wishes to you and yours!