It takes Dara Zambrano just that one word to describe the Honest Abe log home she and husband Ben have owned for the past three years.
The Zambranos are longtime Florida residents who built their Honest Abe home three years ago. “Our home started out as a vacation home, but we became permanent residents just over a year ago,” Dara said. The couple were restaurateurs in the Key Biscayne area who found their way north to the Jamestown, Tennessee area, specifically the Rockcastle Farms development. Jamestown and Rockcastle are located in the Upper Cumberland
area of Tennessee, roughly equidistant from Nashville and Knoxville, a mountainous area just a short drive north of I-40.
The Zambranos were attracted to the rugged landscape, obviously quite different than the Key Biscayne area, a famous island area not too far from Miami. Not only
ful!” were they attracted to the landscape change, but to the architectural change of log construction. “We built in the very end of the
first stage of the Rockcastle development,” Dara said. “We were the first ones to build in that section. It’s very secluded, at the end of the development, in a densely-
wooded area. We took down some trees to build on our nine and a half acres, and we just love our land and our house. “My husband said he wanted to be able to walk the land we owned, and it not be on a hillside, and that’s exactly what we were able to find,” she said. “We just really love it here, and since we built, several more people from Florida have joined the community, too.” So what got the Zambranos interested in a log home? “We wanted something different,” Dara said. “Coming from Florida, we were so used to concrete and stucco construction,” she said, “and this gave us the opportunity to have
June 2011 something different. We had gone on a lot of snow-skiiing trips through the years, and had stayed in log homes on many of them. “Our log home is just beautiful,” Dara said. “There’s just no comparison between this and stucco and concrete.” The Zambranos’ journey from South Florida to the Upper Cumberland started with them searching for vacation property, not only in Tennessee, but North Carolina and a couple of other spots. “We started researching, and found out about Rockcastle and some other places,” Dara said. “We
came up and look at the area, and just loved it. The land here was just so much less expensive than some of the other places we were looking at.” The couple found out that not only was the purchase price very reasonable, but property taxes were a fraction of what they were used to paying. While the Zambranos were visiting the Upper Cumberland, they passed the Honest Abe Log Homes model in Cookeville (TN), which prompted the process of researching log home companies. “We looked at a lot of them, but the fact that Honest Abe was local (Cookeville is just a short drive from Jamestown) helped us make
the decision to go with them.” Cookeville salesperson Ed White guided the Zambranos through the sales process. “Everyone was very cooperative, and our building process went so well. Our experience with Honest Abe has been wonderful,” Dara said. The process from research to finished construction took only about a year and a half, she said. The Zambranos modified the Honest Abe Bellewood model, using the company’s 8x8 D-log profile. The spacious 5,300-square foot home has three floors, including a full basement, and some great views. “We can look out at the
June 2011 mountains from our great room,” Dara said. The great room is also home to a stone fireplace, which she says is her “favorite thing” about the home.
standard Bellewood model,” Dara said. For good measure, there is a pool in the back yard.
The home has an attached twocar garage, with a bedroom and bath on every floor. The master suite is in a loft area on the third floor. Another striking feature of the home is the generous kitchen, “which is much larger than the
The Zambranos seem to have settled in nicely and adjusted to the change of scenery. “Things are definitely more laid-back here,” Dara said, “but we lived on a small island in Florida and we were used to a small community. There are really a lot of nice people up here, and we’re in a quiet area, just like
we wanted. We’re only about 35 minutes from Crossville and 45 minutes from Cookeville (a larger, college town of roughly 30,000, home to Tennessee Tech).” Article By: Kevin Donaldson Editors Note: Ed White & Greg Watson, Salespersons for Honest Abe Log Homes contributed to the content of this story. Photography By: Honest Abe Log Homes
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Exclusive, online content awaits through Honest Abe Extra! Extra is a new area on our web site, dedicated to giving serious log home prospects more resources at their disposal.
benefit, each “Home of the Month” quently with new photography. featured in Honest Abe Monthly will start appearing in the list of In addition, an archive of Honest plans as well. Abe Monthly is available, as well as a listing of all our videos. We We also offer an extended photo even have our printed literature gallery, with over 1,700 pictures. available for online viewing. We have developed a series of This gallery includes both profes8 1/2” x 11” floor plan previews sional and amateur photography Go to our web site and look for which display all the elevations of of our homes. With such a diverse the Honest Abe Extra logo, or for a home, a full-color rendering, and group of photos, it is a great those reading this online, simply dimensioned floor plans. Each resource for planning the design click the button below to be forof these are easily printable from and decoration of a future home. warded to the sign-up page. a home computer. As an added This area is updated quite fre-
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Couple’s Second Honest Abe Log Home Featured in Log Cabin Home’s Magazine “Perfect Do-Over”, a fitting title to a Honest Abe log home currently featured in the July, 2011 issue of Log Cabin Homes magazine. Pete and Trish DeSocio built their second log home with Honest Abe after purchasing land they considered perfect for them. Their first Honest Abe home was featured in the April, 2008 issue of Log Home Design magazine and can be viewed on our web site. After making the land purchase, they were quickly able to sell the first home. While there are similarities between the two homes, the DeSocio’s built the second on a much grander scale. The article will be available for viewing on our web site once it leaves store shelves, until then, pick up a copy of Log Cabin Homes locally.
photography by: Roger Wade Studio
A North Carolina Construction Project These photos are of a Custom Bellewood sold by Bear’s Den Log Homes of Newton, NC, our 2010 Dealership of the Year. This home is being built in the Mountains of Western North Carolina, near Asheville. One of the main modifications to our Bellewood design is the Family Room was turned 90 degrees and is being used as a garage. The home is being constructed with our 8x8 D log as well as our Heavy Timber Porch system and Heavy Timber Ceiling Beam system. The overall general effect of this design is one of the most popular “looks” that Honest Abe produces. Each client modifies our design to meet their individual tastes and functionality needed. However, time after time, this general look is what appeals to our clients. We look forward to Bear’s Den Log Homes completing another exceptional Honest Abe Log Home project. Article By: David Everitt, Regional Dealer Manager, Honest Abe Log Homes
The LOGHOG revolution! In the early years of log home construction, building the log walls was accomplished by using large spikes or lag bolts to hold the log walls together. These spikes required pre-drilling and the use of a sledgehammer for driving them into the logs. Labor was intensive, tiring, and time consuming. About 15 years ago OMG – a company that specializes in roof fasteners - brought a unique fastener for log walls to some of the log home companies, with Honest Abe being one of the first companies to test it with our logs. After initial trials and a few trips back to the drawing board, so to speak, OMG introduced The LogHog – an extra heavy-duty log home fastener, engineered for stacking logs and other specific log home construction applications. The LogHog, with it’s oversized head, thicker diameter, and additional thread, offers increased draw down and holding power. With the use of the new fastener, the crews saw a savings of about one to two days in construction time and an ease in construction they had never known before.
Honest Abe and our crews found the LogHog had many benefits over the traditional spikes or lag bolts: 1. The oversized washer head and increased thread combine for dramatically increasing the pull down of log on log. It also countersinks into the log, making a smooth surface on the top of the log. 2. It requires no pre-existing holes, thus eliminating the need for tedious on-site pre drilling. 3. It is removable and reusable, so mistakes are corrected easily 4. It eliminates marring and damage cause by a sledgehammer. 5. It is made of heat treated steel, and it is engineered for increased strength and performance, as well as having an ultra coating for corrosion resistance. 6. It’s light weight makes it easier to pack and ship. The OMG LogHog, along with other similar OMG fasteners of various sizes used in different parts of the log home, is a 100% American-made product. It has revolutionized log home construction, and has helped Honest Abe produce even stronger, well-built homes over the years. Article By: Sharron Bilbrey, Salesperson for Honest Abe Log Homes
House of the Month: The Smith Residence The Smith Residence is a modification of Honest Abe Log Home’s Westport and Bellewood models. The large family needed more space than our standard plan called for, so with the help of Honest Abe’s Design Team, they enlarged the plan. The addition of two wings creates a spacious master bedroom and bath on the first floor, while it’s counterpart provides an attached two-car garage on the other end of the home. The plan now provides 2,296 square feet on the first floor. Within this area the home features an open living room, kitchen and dining area which is only slightly divided by the stairs. A full walk-in pantry and mud room are located near the kitchen, and an office with a half bath could double as another bedroom if needed. The other wing features the master bed, bath and walk-in closets, as well as another full bedroom and bathroom. The second floor consists of 671 square feet, holding two bedrooms, a full bathroom and an open loft area. This gives the home a total of 2,967 square feet, not including the attached garage.
6 Tbl butter 1 cup all-purpose flour 1/4 teastoon salt 2 teaspoons baking powder 3/4 cup sugar 1/2 cup chopped pecans 2 Tbl baking cocoa 1/2 cup of milk 1 tsp vanilla extract 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 cup brown sugar 1/4 cup of baking cocoa 1 1/2 cups of boiling water
1. Melt butter in 13â€? x 9â€? baking pan in a 350 degree oven. 2. Combine the flour, salt, baking powder, 3/4 cup of sugar, pecans, 1 1/2 Tbl baking cocoa, milk and vanilla in a small bowl; spoon mixture over the melted butter. Do not stir to mix! 3. Mix remaining sugars and 1/4 cup of cocoa together and sprinkle over batter. Do not stir to mix! 4. Next, pour the boiling water over the top. Do not stir! 5. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 - 40 minutes. Cool and serve with ice cream. ENJOY!
Recipe By: Rachel Meadows - Sales Manager for Honest Abe Log Homes
Honest Abe Monthly is a publication of Honest Abe Log Homes Inc., which designs, manufactures and builds energy-efficient, custom log homes,...