Thanksgiving 2021 -When Baby Birds Fly!!!

Real Estate Agent with DFW FINE PROPERTIES 0506509




---Patricia Feager




The year was 1979. Location, Lake Villa, Illinois. I thought I was looking for a home to raise my kids, but as it turned out the front door of the white ranch with shutters in the distance seemed to beckon me to come forward. My first impression was the beautiful backdrop of forest trees behind the house. The TREES got my attention!

It was late spring. The branches were bare but I could already see in my mind’s eye buds on the branches and leaves on the big old trees. The longer I stared at the Forest Preserve butting up to the end of the property for sale, the easier I could imagine my future with an array of fall leaves in multiple colors, soon to be followed by frozen snow branches. Below the tree line was a ravine and a stream down below. Hidden from view were deer, pheasant, fox, owls, birds, and racoons. The landscape was hilly and perfect. I was in love! This is exactly where I wanted to raise my children. We made an offer and bought the property. All my life up until then, we were city slickers from Chicago where my children and I were born. Rural life was something new for all of us.  



When you find what you’re looking for, you just know it. It was magic! The VA loan process took time, but by the end of July, we moved into our first home. I made a promise to myself to never miss a payment with its 10 ½% interest rate which was a bargain compared to others who bought homes later when rates went up and paid 18 to 21 ½%!

We had four bedrooms and two baths, a large kitchen, a utility room, and a large enough living room for family and friends on nearly an acre lot. There was enough room for us to grow into our first home. Years later, we built the garage and a swimming pool and deck.



I made my home cozy and warm hanging country curtains in my Kitchen Window. The goal was to add loving touches to every room to make it comfortable for my family. Having a utility room with washer and dryer without having to go to the laundromat was a dream house and hard to believe! This was something my mother never had and neither did I while renting. I made the house tasteful with quality designs using my own creativity without asking a landlord for permission.



This was going to be an opportunity for my kids to go to school using a school bus. It was something I never had and the buses stopped in front of our house. In the backyard tall pine trees , old oak trees, and trees I couldn't identify reached skyward towards the heavens. This was the country and at night we saw a thousand stars without city lights. We could see our dreams come true.



This was the only home my children ever knew until they both finished attending the local schools before branching out to higher education and a job overseas. By then, I was transferred to Texas. Although, I expected my kids to come with me, both kids felt the same. It was time for me to leave our nest so that they could soar and grow on their own. They did! As I cried and drove away following the big moving trucks my kids reminded me, Mom, you're not like other mothers. The house they grew up in sold in less than a week and they continue to soar making me prouder every day!


Author & Biography Of Patricia Feager


Entry for Thanksgiving Challenge 2021 for Debe Maxwell, CRS 


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                                        3575 Lone Star Circle, Suite 315
                                        Fort Worth, TX 76117
                                        Office: 817-748-4800/FAX: 817--748-4900

                                         Patricia (Peace without Panic) Feager (Faith without Fear)
                                                        Cell: 469-951-4758



MBA (University of Dallas)
(Bachelors of Arts & Science)
SECI (Southeastern Career Institute)
Associates (3) (Collge of Lake County)
KU (University of Kansas)


CRS (Certified Residential Specialist)
SRES (Certified Senior Residential Specialist)
PSA (Certified Pricing Strategies; Mastering the CMA)
CRS (Certified Military Relocation Specialist)
RENE (Real Estte Negotitions Expert)

"With self-discipline most anything is possible." --- Theodore Roosevelt 





Comments (25)

Bill Salvatore - YVP Blog
Arizona Elite Properties - Chandler, AZ
Realtor - Valley of the Sun /


I so agree, when the house becomes the home, its THE one. Have a wonderful Sunday, watch a little Football, but most important relax.  New (short) week starts tomorrow. bill

Nov 21, 2021 05:18 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Wayne Martin - Between the two of us, we have a lot in common with Chicago & Chicagoland stories. For me, it was the landlords that kept moving us out when the lease was over until that last rental on Wrightwood and Cicero made us move to Ingleside, IL before we bought our first home in Lake Villa. I can still remember when relatives moved out to Schaumburg by Woodfield Mall and my husband made me follow him on his motorcycle with the car. It was the first time I drove behind the wheel and the longest drive driving alone! I was scared to death! 

Chicago is a neat place and I have fond memories of being a teenager. Downtown was the place to be! And of course, I worked on Wacker Drive at a Law Firm, East South Water Street for an Insurance Company, and finally the old Rookery Building, assistant to the Vice President before my son was born.

I'm glad you are close to your son and enjoying life now with family. I envy you being able to do that. 

Nov 21, 2021 05:23 AM
Wayne Martin

Grew up until 12 years old on Kilbourn between Belmont and Diversy. Went to Barry elementary school. My wife spent some years just off Cicero Avenue and attended Faulkner elementary. Small world!

Nov 21, 2021 06:19 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP

Wayne Martin - we were practically neighbors and probably shopped at the same stores! My house I rented on Wrightwood and Cicero was the second house around the corner. A lot of people knew which house it was because it was the only one with a built in 5 foot deep swimming pool inside the basement. The original builder built it for his only daughter who had cerebral palsy but she was afraid of water and never swam there. He ended up renting the house and moved to another house. Yes! it is a small world!

Nov 21, 2021 06:45 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Bill Salvatore - YVP Blog - I'm afraid I'm not a football fan - sounds like an American crime story, doesn't it? I hope you enjoy it and that you have a very relaxing Sunday!

Nov 21, 2021 05:25 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Patricia - the difference between a house and a home is quite significant though to some the words may seem to have the same meaning.  Motherhood(or parenthood of any kind) can have various interpretations as well.  This submission is thoughtful and, as usual, thought-provoking.  

Nov 21, 2021 05:56 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP

Michael Jacobs - thank you for your thoughtful comments. I appreciate them very much.

Nov 21, 2021 06:09 AM
Brian England
Vacasa - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

This is such a wonderful story, I love hearing about your family.  Home is where the heart is and I know that there was a lot of love in your home.

Nov 21, 2021 06:06 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Brian England - Thank you! When there is family, love should overflow. Seasons come and seasons grow and children grow up fast. It's amazing how much they learn by living with parents! I think my kids learned by example. I was not a preacher to my kids. 

Nov 21, 2021 06:11 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Hallelujiah for your take on buying a home...We agree, it attracts you.  That is how we felt about the homes we have lived in.  Happy Sunday.  A

Nov 21, 2021 06:25 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Ron and Alexandra Seigel - Thanks! 

I was a lot more focused on what I needed and it took a lot longer to get a VA home back in 1979. As a matter fact, because closings are at the Attorney's Office, in IL, my VA Lender showed up and made us sit down and read every single word for all those VA papers we signed the papers and the VA brochure about what home ownership means when you have a VA Loan. Then when I sold my home it was even more complicated. I already moved to Texas and flew back home to close at the buyer's Attorney's Office. I had to prove my spouse was dead with DD-214 and Death Certificate and Files recorded at the Court House because the original deed was in his name and even though I had the records changed after death, they needed proof he wasn't still alive. Lucky for me, I kept all the documentation in my safety deposit box and emptied it before closing. State rules for real estate transactions differ state by state and when it comes to VA loans, the government has rules and regulations. 

Buying a home on my own with a Conventional Loan in Texas was much easier and quicker too. 


Nov 21, 2021 06:38 AM
Raymond Henson, eXp Realty
eXp Realty of California, Inc. (lic. #01878277) - Elk Grove, CA

You do have a way with words.  Thank you for sharing another wonderful story.  Our first house was a rental for years, replete with chickens, before we bought it.  I hated it, but it was all we could afford and it was a very hot market so...we bought it.  Over the next 10 years, we transformed it into our home, new windows, doors, kitchen, bathrooms, roof, landscaping...We started raising our kids there.  It was a perfect, cozy home for entertaining and decorating at Christmas time.  It was our home!  Of course, that is when Mary Margaret said we needed a bigger home.  It was almost impossible to get me out.  Our life is full of surprises and changes.  I still miss my old home.

Nov 21, 2021 07:14 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Raymond Henson, eXp Realty - buying a home during a very hot Seller's Market can put a buyer at a disadvantage. I bought my house in TX during a Seller's Market and it was tough! I didn't know the area, I was under a deadline because of capital gains on my home I sold in IL, and I was going to school for my MBA while working full time + overtime! I went through many agents before I found the house and was determined to buy under pressure with a new agent who wasn't even there for me to hand over the keys after closing! I had to hunt her down while the movers were unloading furniture on my front lawn! 

Chickens? Well that took tolerating and a lot of clean up! I doubt you enjoyed your weekends at home relaxing. 

Updates are so rewarding but takes a lot of patience waiting for contractors or supplies to be available. You must wear your heart ton your sleeve. I always felt my home was best at Christmas times when my kids were young. It was a magical time of the year! I miss those days terribly. I don't even decorate for Christmas anymore. Nobody comes over! 

Perhaps there is an 11th Commandment? Thou shall obey thy spouse???

I know my spouse obeyed me when I learned how to stop asking and started telling him we were moving. I know I was happier! Yes! Life is always full of unexpected surprises! As long as you're together, that's all that really matters (minus the left over chicken mess). 

Nov 21, 2021 07:36 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP

Raymond Henson, eXp Realty - I'm glad you agree! 

Nov 21, 2021 08:12 AM
Raymond Henson, eXp Realty

Yes, there should be that 11th Commandment.  It sure makes life easier, if followed.  😉

Nov 21, 2021 07:55 AM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello my dear Patricia and thanks for sharing this fine blog with us and you are so special to so many of us.


Nov 21, 2021 08:35 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Will Hamm - the kindness of your reply is deeply felt and greatly appreciated.

Thank you for being the special person you are! AR is fortunate you have spent so many hours and so much time on ActiveRan supporting the membership. Please know that I appreciate you and many others do too!

Nov 21, 2021 08:57 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude


You are such a wonderful story teller and draw the reader in so well. What a touching post about that first home.


Nov 21, 2021 09:57 AM
Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
Probate Real Estate

Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP you are a wonderful person not like so many others. Of course, you are a wonderful mom – not like other mothers. You did your job well my friend, your little birds spread their wings and are flying on their own.


The first home I bought with my husband had a 21.5% interest rate. I do not know how we did it!

Nov 21, 2021 11:17 AM
Nina Hollander, Broker
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Greater Charlotte Realtor

So lovely, Patricia, your story of your first home... I'm literally speechless. It's been said that a house is made of walls and beans; a home is built with love and dreams. And that's exactly what you did... built a home for you and your children with love and dreams.

Nov 21, 2021 11:28 AM
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Patricia often when I am pre-qualifying a borrower, one of the things they will say is "I hope we can find the right home".  My response is always, "there is a perfect home out there for everyone, and when you see it you will no it immediately."

Nov 21, 2021 03:10 PM
Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400
The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803 - Plainview, NY
Long Island Condo and Home Specialists

What a sweet story Patricia, and I enjoyed how you describe how your baby birds did fly once you were out of the nest. There's nothing like "Home Sweet Home"...

Nov 22, 2021 04:34 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Jeff Dowler, CRS - your thoughtful comment made me feel good. Thank you!

Nov 22, 2021 04:57 AM
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Awe, thanks Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist - you read to listen and to understand. I always welcome your comments. 

Many times I wondered how on earth I managed to pay that high interest rate, mortgage payment, and insurance. Plus, all the other bills and raise a family! All I know is my determination came from never, ever wanting to go back to renting. Even after he died, I wondered, how on earth did I get through it with that insane interest rate? Well, for starters, I played a lot of make-up scenes of my own using Little House On The Prairie as a theme. I bought Kerosene Lanterns and used them for light instead of using electricity at night. I learned to budget fast and think quick on my feet while trying to have a balanced life and make my kids childhood fun and interesting. As you know, a mother does, what a mother thinks up in her head and has to do for the good of the family. 

Nov 22, 2021 05:02 AM
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

You are certainly NOT like other mothers, Patricia! I love your story and I can only imagine how you felt, going into a new and different place as the sole adult, responsible for the lives of 2 adorable children.

You left the nest but, that nest was empty because those two precious birdies had flown the coop, thanks to their amazing mother who taught them the way of the world. Your children were SO blessed to have YOU as their mother! 

Nov 22, 2021 05:56 PM