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Home of the Brave

In 2004, Marine Staff Sergeant Vincent Gizzarelli’s life changed. During his second tour of duty in Iraq, Vince’s anti-armament platoon was called out to assist a rifle squadron that had been engaged in combat. While in transit, an IED went off about 20 feet away from his HumVee. “I saw an orange flash; then everything went black,” Vince recalls of the night that would eventually end his military career. Diagnosed with severe brain injuries and post traumatic stress disorder, Vi…

A Serene Space

When Charles and Lana Sangmeister said goodbye to the hustle and bustle of central New Jersey seven years ago they had no idea that they’d be in for such a treat. After retiring from their jobs, the Sangmeisters returned to Lana’s Montana roots and purchased 277 acres of land in the small town of Nye. Nestled in the foothills of the Beartooth Mountains, the region proved to be the perfect backdrop for the couple’s new log cabin home. Before that dream came to fruition the Sangmeisters studied hundreds o…

Almost Heaven

Log home producers mill logs to uniform dimensions and then combine them with other structural components and building materials to make a log home package. The uniform look of a milled log home is often what is most appealing to log home buyers. When Sue and Mike McKenrick moved to Morgantown in the northeastern part of West Virginia, they wanted to settle down somewhere with space and privacy. With their four children grown, they didn’t need a huge home, but as avid motorcyclists they sought room for …

Share and Share Alike

When asked if I would like to write the Trend Watch column on the subject of shared log homes I replied to my editor, “Of course, this will be fun.” Within a minute or so I was thinking to myself, “Hmmmm … shared log homes? REALLY?” The term “shared home” conjured up images of college days, when I was one of many housemates (my experience was not as bad as Animal House), living pretty inexpensively in a large, somewhat dilapidated rental home. Even after univer…

Destined To Be Home

Some folks maintain that everything happens for a reason. When Kevin Nunn, owner of Bear Creek Log Homes, was hired to build a log home for a client in the mountains of North Carolina, an opportunity seemed to fall into his lap, one that he could not resist.  The project was located at Cave Rock Estates, a new development just south of Sparta, not far from the Virginia border. Kevin’s client, the owner of the development, had purchased 280 acres with the intention of dividing it into parcels for sa…

A Slice of Heaven

A ski trip to Deer Valley, Utah, more than a dozen years ago awakened a deep love for log homes in Donn and Candy Fuller. “We rented this beautiful handcrafted, full-log home with more than 10,000 square feet of space,” recalls Donn Fuller, an orthopedic surgeon in Fort Myers, Florida. “It was just gorgeous.” On another ski trip the Fullers discovered where they wanted to build their dream vacation home: Big Sky, Montana. “Another orthopedic doc friend invited us out and we just fell in love with Montan…

Lakeside Idyll

“There’s not much that tops the happiness we feel on the day we launch our boat at Swan Lake,” say Montana residents Mike and Linda Smith. “It’s usually in the month of May,” they continue, “when the lake is uniquely quiet and beautiful.” The event signals the beginning of summer fun at the cabin. Conversely, the day the boat comes out of the water at summer’s end is melancholic for the couple. The Smiths’ sentiments are understandable, considering their idyllic lakefront property and sleek contemporary…

Down in the Valley

Handcrafted log homes highlight the natural beauty and unique characteristics of the wood. Each home is one of a kind. “It wasn’t going to be quite this large, originally,” says Marvin Meyers, regarding his log home on the Yampa River, near Steamboat Springs, Colorado. “But the more time my wife, Tish, and I spent visiting our property the more we realized that our family and friends would also want to spend time here.” Initial cabin floorplan designs came in at around 2,500 square feet. The final plan …

Nature Galore

From the back porch of their log cabin home, Bill and Dedie Nutt have an up close and personal view of nature that few people ever get to experience. For example, nearly every night, right around sunset, a cinnamon bear (really a black bear in its “cinnamon” color phase) ambles down to their man-made pond, stoops over, and quenches its thirst with a long, slow drink of water. “It’s pretty amazing to see,” says Bill, “and right in our own backyard.” That cinnamon bear is just one of the many slices of na…

Inspired Living

Something about this home speaks to you. It reaches out and grabs your hand, whisking you back at least 100 years. The wide front porch beckons you to sit and stay a while, reminiscing about the past. The tin roof alludes to a simpler time and the reclaimed timbers encompass images of an old barn that could easily tell stories of a long ago generation. The door greets you as though you are a long lost friend, coming home after years of being away. Everything about the home …

Golden Years

For many people, retirement means escaping the 8-to-5 grind and living life the way they want to. As your life evolves, your needs change. That’s particularly true of your housing needs. If building a log home is part of your retirement dream, there are ways to make sure that your place will age as gracefully as you do throughout your golden years.  Size Matters Many homeowners consider trading down to a smaller home once they reach their 50s or 60s. D…

Double Vision

Many log home lovers dream of building a lakefront vacation home. When a Wisconsin couple found a property for sale with two lakes on it, they knew they’d found a treasure. “The property was absolutely beautiful,” says the homeowner. “We wanted to build a vacation cottage that would be large enough to accommodate a big group of family members. And we wanted to be able to view both of the lakes from inside the house.” Northern Wisconsin, a region rich with lakes and acres of forest land, seemed like an i…