Log Home Living - July 2009
They say hindsight is 20/20, but for Sal and Denise Campagna, it's more like 4,100 - square feet, that is. That's the size of their current two-bedroom, three-bath log beauty, and a space that suits them much better than their previous log home, which sits just a few miles down the road.
They loved their original cabin, but grew out of it over time as their family expanded. "People would ask us, 'Well, if you had it to do all over again, what would you do differently"" says Denise.
After racking up a long wish list (which included grandchildren-friendly spaces for four kids who weren't yet born when their first log home was built), she and Sal finally just said, "Let's do it!"
And so they did.
Taking the lessons learned from their initial log-home-building experience, the Campagnas designed what they consider to be the perfect space, one that offers an airy floor plan, expansive stretches of gorgeous white pine log walls and sweeping views of their 10-acre Lawrence, Michigan, property. And much of the credit, they say, goes to their log provider, Expedition Log Homes.
Themselves dealers for Expedition, Sal and Denise selected the Wisconsin-based company's Maplecreek floor plan both for its good looks and its flexibility.
"We eliminated one bedroom on the main level and made our guest bedroom into a suite," says Sal, describing some of the modifications he and Denise made to the original plan. "The model also didn't have an attached garage, so we added one."
What the model did have, though, was an extremely energy-efficient half-log-system, a hallmark of Expedition homes and a boon in Michigan, which can be brutally cold or hot depending on the season.
"It truly is a half-log home," not a veneer, says Jan Koepsell, a company owner. "And because the logs are all handcrafted with a drawknife, it gives it an authentic finish." Not to mention limitless décor options (thanks to the use of drywall in various rooms) and a spectacular look overall.
With the open floor plan that was missing from the Campagnas' original log home, an octagonal sunroom, a soaring, 21-foot-tall great room and a fully finished, grandkid-proof basement, Sal and Denise finally have the stunner they'd always wanted.
"When we built our first house, we were novices, so we were coming at the process very idealistically," says Denise. "But now we know more, so we took that knowledge and used it to get what we wanted."
And knowledge, after all, is power.
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