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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Cottage 24 Construction Commences Outside of Narrowsburg

More burning in above picture.

And below is the picture of the piece of land where we are building Cottage 24, our newest cottage design. Sits in a little valley 1400 ft above sea level, looking out into the mountains.

And here is the little house, coming in at 1260 sq ft and selling for $335,000. It sits on a 7+ acre piece of land 5 miles outside Narrowsburg, high above what used to be Luxton Lake.

The house is positioned to take advantage of the big views, with the living room and porches pointed appropriately.

Fall Colors in G-Minor

Flower on Rock, Moss, and Various Colored Leaves composition.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

HR 1

Cottage 14

Cottage 14 was a house we started last year about this time and finished it up and got it sold in the middle of the Great Recession last January - the mortgage market was so screwed up that the lenders were actually calling the employers of these two woman the day of closing in order to verify - for the 3rd time - that they still had jobs.

It was a crazy time last winter - that's for sure, when the whole world froze up. I got to hand it to the Catskill Farms team, to the homeowners Albert, Dean, Gayle, Nick, Jeanne and Deb - I mean, we got it done when it couldn't be done.

So I was driving around with John and Wendy who are friends of Stan and Leslie from Farmhouse 3 - and I was showing off the houses and we stopped by Albert's where Gus and his wife Malin were raking shit and burning shit and then we cruised past Jeanne and Deb's and they were raking shit and burning shit too.

Seems like the city slickers love to come up to their house and rake shit and burn shit.

Cottage 14 is a real unique cottage, - very kitchen-centric with a double high ceiling and big fans swirling.

So I like to go over and check things out on Friday's or Saturday's just about at about happy hour time - because turns out Jeanne and Deb are master martini makers and I love martinis. I brought Lucas along to this shindig this past weekend.

The guy can't keep his socks on to save his life.

Jeanne and Deb mixing up the cocktails, showing Lucas how it's done.

And a living room baby shot. GI Joe Lucas doing his special forces crawl.

And a series of funky moon shots with my fancy camera that is a lot smarter than me.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Lake Ridge - New Lots

New Lucky Lake lots high up on the hill outside Narrowsburg.

We just bought some new building lots over closer to Narrowsburg NY. 5 new lots ranging from 5 to 8 acres. High up on the hill lots, looking across the mountains to what will shortly be the annual spectacular changing of the leaves.

This view going up the hill has always reminded me of Tuolumne Meadows, in the northern part of Yosemite National Park, where I used to go on an annual trek with some mates from college (University of Pittsburgh).

Luxton Lake (or Lucky Lake for short) has an interesting history, with the final conclusion that there is no lake no more for the past 30 years, since the dam broke. Now its just a nice stream, with nice property around it.

We have five new houses planned - 2 mini-cottages under $265k, 2 cottages under $335k, and a farmhouse somewhere around $425k.

Will post sketches shortly.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

In the News -

NY city rags like to spread the news about Catskill Farms. Scroll back a few posts on this blog thread and see who were hangin' with the likes of now.

Cottage 19 - Finished and Sale Closed

When Justin and Jason visited us in late June and signed up for a partially complete Cottage 19, they had a few demands. 1st, they wanted a nice house, and 2nd they wanted to own the house and have time to move in and get set up before a lengthy trip to Europe starting October 3. Since it is September 22, and they sat at the famous closing table and consumated the deal today, I guess you can say once again we brought a house in without a penny of unexpected upcharges and ahead of schedule.

It's not easy to do - especially, when it rained all summer.

The yellow crime scene tape is not an indicator of something untoward or illegal or murderous, it's actually an attempt to signal "Don't Go On the F(*&%$cking Yard" since fresh top soil and grass has just been planted. But, everytime, everyone thought that the reason they needed to go on the yard was a reasonable exception. So, getting tired of all the footprints in my new lawns, I offered a bounty to everyone - every painter, every electrician, every carpenter, every plumber - anyone who rats out the person who steps on the yard gets $100 - no questions asked. Since then, the yards are great - but a few tradesmen have started mastering photoshop and artificially pasting photos of other people on the team on the yard. Pretty funny.
This little house - all 960 sq ft - is a real beaut - one James and I had been excited to build since it was coming off the design presses. Cedar shake, great Irish country-side like front yardage, 5+ acres, 2 bedrooms, a big great bath, a large basement, front and back porch, and an open first floor plan.

This pic captures one of our porch design motifs - skinny square spindles, beadboard ceiling, big bleacher like front steps.

Coming up the driveway - with the shake, the stone fireplace chase, the formal front country porch and more rustic screened in back porch built from local timbers.

The kitchen under the recessed lighting, nice appliances, industrial range hood, white shaker cabinets, farm sink and open shelves.

Where the magic happens...
View from staircase through the first floor, with the floor stained English Chestnut and matte polyurethane finish. Dining room on the right, kitchen on the left, 2 large rads to keep everyone warm.

Cable rail contrasted with handhewn timbers.

Fireplace, fan, cable rail and wide plank floors.

Great grayish bathroom with clean pedestal sinks and 5 panel door. Marble floors.

White subway block tile and marble flats.

I like this photo for some reason - the composition is very centered and old-fashioned. Maybe it's the lighting that works for me.

And then for the details, and elements that are easy to praise but hard to emulate -

The open kitchen shelves -

The 1x8 wood wall coverings with 3.5" crown.

Industrial hood, subway tile backsplash, open shelves, big-time range, farm sink undermounted.

This is one of our custom barn doors with big strap hinges, cross buck and some fun hardware.

5 panel old school solid core door with black hinges and hardware - complimented with a fresh yet delicate seasoning of a sliding tracked barn door - handmade as well.

And in this corner - below - we have 12 light 1 panel insulated exterior door.

Dutch door, partially open, showing off the green grass of Autumn. You can almost see the chill in the air.

Here's the hardware for the dutch doors - sans fingerprints.

Beam and stone.

Square hearth with local bluestone.

Cable rail and steps.

Lantern shadow.

Sexy radiator.

3 1/2 inch simple crown molding.

The security headquarters which monitors fire, smoke, heat, low-heat situations and carbon monoxide. Pretty complicated code on this one - you have to get up pretty early....

And a good sophisticated heat thermastat that saves time, money and energy (and the instruction manual always comes in handy for those damned things.

And the team - wrapping this one up - another dreamed up, built and sold.

5 new ones planned to start in October. 2 more houses to sell in the next two weeks. Selling a peice of land to Nick in a few weeks. Cottage 23 selling by Thanksgiving. Just bought 7 new pieces of real nice land, if you know what i mean.