Home Tour: Not so big, but better | TheUnion.com

Home Tour: Not so big, but better

Peggy Laird
Submitted to The Union

When they decided to build their dream home several years ago, the owners were inspired by acclaimed architect and writer Susan Susanka's book "The Not So Big House," a blue print for the way we really want to live and surround ourselves, with things of beauty, things of simplicity, things of nature. This home blends all three.

Things of beauty

From the arched portico entry formed of blighted elm this soft and inviting curved theme is carried throughout the home. But all is not curves and softness. Architect David Wright blends the arch with a triangled roofline; this arch/triangle motif is carried throughout the home.

Subtlety says it all. Take a look at the arched master bedroom fireplace on a vaulted stone wall and windows. The door-less entry to the master bath opens to an expansive view of the woods. The huge sweeping great room with arched windows frames the forest beyond.

Things of simplicity

And "Not So Big." This almost 3,000 square foot home has one master bedroom and just one guest bedroom, albeit it is a suite unto itself. Totally detached, with fireplace, lounging room and wet bar, it is separated from the main home by a wide, open deck that is perfect for outdoor entertaining.

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Things of nature

As you walk through the arched portico into the entry, the great room opens up to you, blurring the lines between indoors and outdoors. The 23 foot beamed ceiling melts away into the tree lined vista through arched windows, probably 22 feet tall.

The massive stone fireplace wall — which IS a wall of fireplace — set in stone, custom-crafted by Three Rivers Stone from the Sawtooth Mountains of Idaho; an earthy blend of golds, browns and plums with no two rocks alike.

We haven't even mentioned the incredibly small carbon footprint it makes in our forest. Basic building blocks of Structural Insulated Panels (SIP), 6 kw solar roof panels, fire retardant exterior siding made of cement, but textured like wood (who would ever guess?). Touch it! It looks like wood, but is actually concrete.

And while you are touching the concrete/wood siding, take a look at the beautiful shale drainage ditch around the house. This is the most beautiful drainage ditch I've ever seen or envisioned. Not that I often envision drainage ditches.

The large skylights not only have open/close remote controls, but rain sensors. Yes, leave them open. If it rains, they will know to close themselves. Isn't that a thing of beauty?

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