“It has worked out perfectly,” Porsha Sherman says.
That’s her assessment of the home she and her husband, Nate, had built in the Glen at Tartan Fields almost a decade ago. They created the house for their family of eight along with planners from Truberry Group, now Truberry Custom Homes.
Now that they’re nearly empty-nesters, Porsha says, the home “looks like it did when it was built,” with few signs of the wear and tear that five boys and a girl (and their friends) might have wrought.
The couple looked to the present and future when they and Truberry architects planned the four-bedroom, two-story house. It would be their home beginning in September 2004.
CityScene first profiled the Shermans and their Truberry custom home in the November/December 2007 edition of the magazine.
At the time, oldest son Nick was home only occasionally from The Ohio State University, where he was a walk-on player for Jim O’Brien’s basketball team. Five others were home, some nearing college age. Nick graduated with a degree in economics and left home pursuing an unrelated ambition.
As life often does, his changed, and now he’s a Baptist minister in Los Angeles seeking to move back to Ohio.
The Shermans envisioned similar journeys for all their children.
“We said they must get degrees so they could get a job and support themselves,” Porsha says firmly.
Out the window went the idea of second son Nathaniel IV to study theater, for example. He majored in behavioral science at OSU but has set off as a stand-up comedian on a Norwegian Cruise Lines ship sailing between New York City and the Bahamas.
Daughter Candace and third son Andre graduated from the University of Cincinnati; she aspires to go to medical school following the professional path of her father, an emergency room physician. Rashad, the fifth born, graduated from the University of Denver with a degree in business administration and marketing. Like all his older siblings, he lives and works out of town.
Youngest son Austin just graduated from Dublin Jerome High School, where he was co-captain of the basketball team, and is headed to Ohio University, planning to major in pre-med.
When the Shermans moved in almost nine years ago, Nick moved out. The other boys who lived at home, at least part-time after starting college, used two bedrooms and a Jack and Jill bath. Candace had the third bedroom and a bathroom, while the parents have a master suite nearby.
The home has a skillfully crafted lower level with a bathroom and a room that could have been a bedroom, adding up to a well-finished, apartment-like living space. As he transitioned from school to independence, Nick slept on a basement couch during visits.
“Someone could live there quite nicely,” Porsha says, but the parents didn’t want that. “We were afraid we were going to get stragglers to come and live,” she says light-heartedly about her offspring’s possible post-graduation ambitions and employment.
The potential bedroom now holds several pieces of fitness and Pilates equipment, which Porsha uses early in the mornings before she sets off to her work as a pharmaceutical representative covering three states.
Another room is for entertainment, hosting a 60-inch flat-screen TV and ample outlets for video games and other entertainment. It’s part of her husband’s “man cave,” which also includes a theater with couch seating. Porsha describes him as an “audiophile” who has installed a multitude of speakers and related electronic gear. Nick collects movies, and the setup allows “entertainment in one room while we’re watching a movie in another,” she says.
The first floor was designed as something of a showcase, beginning with a spectacular custom crafted curved bridal staircase that soars up on both sides of the foyer. And through the foyer is the huge family room with its two-story ceiling and window wall.
“People come in and with the staircase it was ‘wow!’” Porsha says. “Then they see the family room: ‘Wow!’”
It’s not an exaggeration. The staircase – with wooden rails on white spindles that join similar rails along the second floor walkway, slightly curved walls, an attractive chandelier and a nice blend of office off the foyer – is astounding. Rails match the hardwood floor that covers the first floor.
Ceiling-to-floor drapes on the window wall are in colors matching two Versace vases perched high along the wall beside the windows. A custom carpet also is color coordinated. Since the Shermans moved in, they have had a couch made.
Otherwise, Porsha says, not much has changed. The ample wood floors remain unscarred. “There are a few nicks in the woodwork” that are almost impossible to see, she says, and she has periodically touched up chips in wall paint.
With granite countertops and commercial grade appliances, the kitchen area shows no signs of wear. It helps that Porsha is the cook for the family and larger family gatherings, and thus oversees most of the activity there. Holidays are the largest: “We focus on Christmas,” she says.
For Austin’s graduation, the Shermans hosted a house full of friends and relatives, even using two couches and oversized chairs in the lower level for sleeping.
Because of the home’s quality, Porsha says, upgrades have been unnecessary and décor remains essentially unchanged.
“I look at magazines and think, ‘That’s what I’d like.’ (But then) I don’t think it would be better than what I have done,” she says. “All of it has stood the test of time.”
In time, they will sell and build a one-floor home, Porsha says, probably with Truberry again. When that happens, likely after Austin gets his degree, more long-range planning will be needed. They’re already grandparents of two, and that number won’t hold.
Like this home, she says, the key will be durability.
Duane St. Clair is a contributing editor. Feedback welcome at email@example.com.