Tour welcoming Bend home

Slideshow: Check out teen lair, large kitchen, sunroom

By Penny Nakamura / For The Bulletin

Editor’s note: The At Home section features a profile of a local home each month. To suggest a home, email athome@bendbulletin.com.

With four children in the house, the Morgans knew exactly what they wanted in a home — a welcoming place, where their kids’ friends could kick off their shoes, hang out, eat and feel comfortable.

“We were trying for a nice home, where everyone could have their own space, but we wanted it a little toned down, understated,” said Scott Morgan. “We didn’t want anything too flashy on the outside. We wanted to build for functionality, and we wanted it to be warm and inviting.”

The exterior of the home incorporates many gables and is more traditional New England Cape Cod than mountain lodge. It has a large traditional front porch, with wicker furniture.

The Morgans say they got precisely what they set out to build when they, along with four children and a dog, moved into their home on Bend’s west side in 2012. The Morgans lived in Bend in 2000 but had moved to Montana before realizing they wanted to be back in the High Desert.

Their new home has five bedrooms, three and a half baths and sits on three-quarters of an acre and opens up to 5 acres of open space.

“I just collected a lot of photos. In fact, I set up my own website when we were building, so I could see what others had done and what I liked,” said Kathy Morgan.

Kitchen

The stunning kitchen takes a leading role in this 4,600-square-foot home. With its white cupboards and marble countertops, the expansive kitchen is light and bright.

Taking center stage is the 6-by-9-foot marble island, with a cutout for a bar sink at the far end. The large marble slab, according to Kathy, makes it easy to entertain friends and family. “I really just put out a bunch of food on the island, and people can help themselves.”

Above the stunning island are two oversized hanging black iron and glass lamps that have an old-fashioned heirloom quality.

Overall, the kitchen has more formality than a French provincial style, but it hints at a country feel, with its white cabinetry and acacia wood floors.

The gorgeous kitchen is a space that doesn’t take itself too seriously, as evidenced by the black chalkboard-paneled pantry door, where Kathy posts the artwork of her 10-year-old daughter.

Wanting to keep the house as welcoming as possible, the Morgans opted for an open kitchen design, with no walls separating the space from the family room.

Fireplace

The family room features basic neutral colors, which gives the room a soft, comfortable feel.

One thing Scott Morgan insisted on was a real wood-burning fireplace, not an electric or gas fireplace.

“Yes, that was my requirement. I had to have a real wood-burning fireplace; there’s something about real wood burning,” said Scott with a laugh.

On the wall perpendicular to the fireplace, Kathy has decoratively filled the wall with black-and-white photos of her children, all in black frames, giving it a designer look.

Opposite this photo wall in the living room are two large French doors that lead out to the outdoor living space, which Kathy says is used quite frequently in the warmer months.

But if there’s a summer evening chill, Scott will be at the ready to build a fire in an outdoor stone fireplace.

Mom space

Sometimes a mom who is raising three teenagers and a 10-year-old needs to be able to shut the door and have her own space.

Kathy got her special space, in what she calls her “sunroom,” just off the kitchen. As the name implies, the room faces west and is sun-filled and bright.

Kathy also has her own little fireplace in this room, which keeps the space warm and cozy in the winter.

Because the room is off the kitchen, which is the heart of the house, Kathy has a sliding glass pocket door that she can close, but it enables her to still see what’s going on.

The sunroom also has another glass door that leads out to the back courtyard, just a few steps from the outdoor living room.

Finish work

Scott credits his wife for knowing what finishes would work in this house, saying she has a keen eye for design.

“Really, I’d have to say the key to this house is the finishing work, everything from all the light fixtures, to the surfaces, Kathy picked out,” said Scott.

The areas where Kathy wanted a little more bling are the formal dining room, where she splurged and bought a beautiful crystal chandelier. She also decided her three daughters could use some bling in their lives, too, so she bought chandeliers for each of their stylized rooms.

Beyond the bling, Kathy also took an appreciation for fine millwork in her home.

From the powder room’s white wainscoting on the walls, to the crown and floor molding throughout the house, the detail work gives the house a warm character.

Functionality

With four kids, you must have functionality, stresses Scott. Without that functionality for an active family, the house won’t work.

Which is why the Morgans spent a lot of design time designing the perfect mudroom for their active kids.

The long mudroom leads in from the garage. As the kids enter the house from the garage, they step up and to the left is a large laundry room, which allows them to toss any dirty jackets or socks right into the washer. The laundry room is large enough to have counters and a sink. The Morgans also built space for an extra refrigerator, so they wouldn’t run out of food for hungry teenagers and their friends.

Coming out of the laundry room, on the right side of this long hallway are large, tall built-in spaces for every person in the household. The walls are cherry-wood paneling with brass hooks. Top shelves allow for more storage cubby spaces, and below is a long, built-in, matching cherry-wood bench along the wall. Underneath the bench are more slots to store shoes and ski and/or bike helmets.

Kids’ space

The family wanted to create an area aside from the kids’ bedrooms where they could all hang out. All of the kids’ bedrooms are upstairs, and in the center is a teen lair.

It is complete with a comfortable, fluffy sectional couch, which faces a large flat-screen TV. Also in this room is a foosball table from their grandparents.

Planning

Scott and Kathy decided to build their master bedroom and bathroom downstairs, away from their children’s bedrooms and the teenage hangout room.

Their master bedroom is down the hall from the living room, and across from Scott’s home office. The master bedroom also has French doors that lead out to a small outdoor patio that has a seating area.

If you’re wondering why the Morgans built so many French doors leading out to their backyard spaces, it’s because Scott is something of a master gardener, having built five garden beds and planted more than 800 perennials. Though they battle the deer, the Morgans love having time to spend outside in their outdoor living space. Whether it’s out of their master bedroom, their living room, the sunroom, or out on the front porch, when it’s spring and summer they know some flowers will be in bloom.

Durability

The Morgans are certainly putting their new house through its paces. Almost every Friday evening during winter, they’re hosting their son Abe’s high school nordic ski team for ski-waxing parties. The entire four-car garage area is used for waxing, while the ski team members run in and out of the house to eat pasta at the marble island in the kitchen.

The experience makes Kathy shrug her shoulders and smile. “We really do love having the ski team here,” she said. “Next week we’re having some of my daughter’s friends here for dinner, before the high school dance.”

It would appear the Morgans’ west-side home has become the welcoming place they had envisioned it would be for their children, and all their friends.

— Reporter: pnakamura@bendbulletin.com