Our south facing second floor is our master bedroom haven, very spacious comfortable living space. The inviting king bed, sitting area, sun deck, yoga space, laundry and master bath provide ongoing nurturance and ample inspiration to rest and relax.
Our arts and crafts home house was built in 1915 and will soon turn 100! The master bedroom is the entire second floor of the house, 1000 square feet including a 12x 12 bathroom, full laundry, and a sleeping loft (8x10). The king bed is deluxe with all the extras, featherbed, down comforters and lots of down pillows. There is not a fridge but if there was, you may never want to leave. In warm months the air flow is wonderful and with all the windows open and warm air streaming through it feels like a tree house. In the winter months, the light pours through the skylights and the sun streams through barren trees in the room. Its a great place to get quiet, study relax, and come together. There is a yoga space and lot of cushions and pillows for meditation, plus east and west facing windows and two skylights. The south facing deck off the bedroom (12x 12) that expands that opens you up to the lush backyards and welcomes in the warm sun.
The attached bathroom has a jacuzzi tub, two sinks, a six foot mirror, separate shower and a bank of north facing windows. Adjacent is a walk in closet and stacking full size washer and dryer. The floors are all maple with a natural stain.
Guest have access to all the common spaces.On the first floor along with three full size bedrooms are the common living spaces which are also available to you. The large spacious fully equipped kitchen has a sunny south facing eating nook where you can spend a good portion of the day if your not careful. If you want to cook up a storm, or just boil water, the kitchen is at your disposal. Our dining room has a table that expands to fit 14 if you want to plan a fun dinner party. I'm happy to cook and host for an extra fee if arranged in advance. Our living room has a nice fireplace and a lot of cushy textiles for you to sink into. The front three season porch is a sweet place to finish out the day (in the warm months) lounging on the cushioned old wicker set or in the hammock. In the winter we stack wood in the porch to stoke the fireplace.
During the day you can make yourself at home in the garden . We built two decks and a brick patio, a round table that sits eight tables and comfortable patio furniture you could sit in all day accompanies. There are also plenty of inviting places in the garden to sit and sink into conversation, a book, a nap, tea, wine...
If you run, we are eight blocks from Lake Mendota and Picnic Point and Whole Foods. Going West one mile you will find Sundance Theaters, and shopping. Madison is home to Willy Street Food Coop which is a drive of ten minutes but Regent Street Coop is just a five block walk.
Madison is a great town especially if you are in walking distance to the lakes and all the great neighborhoods. We are, 5-10 blocks form Regent/Monroe St, where you will find many locally owned and operated small businesses, great restaurants and coffee shops.
We are located in the oldest residential neighborhood on the near west side of Madison, 6 blocks to UW Hospital, 12 blocks to UW, 18 blocks to downtown, 10 blocks to Lake Wingra where I have a boat membership and you can be my guest in the summer months. Vilas Park, the zoo and the Arboretum are a mile away and a nice walk through safe and friendly residential neighborhoods.
UW Hospital is a four block walk, campus is 12 blocks. Buses to city two blocks.
Tidy up kitchen after use, including cleaning dishes, wiping down countertops and stove after use and sweeping floor if needed. Also, bathroom tidiness is your responsibility.
Recycle Bins provided
Turn all lights and other electrics off when not using them
If smoker, need to smoke outside
Keep white noise to a minimum
Make sure doors are locked and turn off lights if you are the last one in for the night!
Be courtesy and respectful of others at all times.
I was welcomed very warmly by Kathleen's daughter Ava and the two other guests in the house. They invited me to join in on activities they had planned (which was super nice and fun), but they had no problems keeping to themselves when they (or I) felt like doing so. While I was there, there were 4 dogs and a cat in the house, who loved to give you all the attention you could ever need. Unfortunately, I did not get the chance to meet Kathleen, as I was a guest in her whole second floor realm, but she was very warm and giving in all our communications, and Ava was very helpful at any time, too.
A minor downside of the room is that there is no door separating it from the rest of the house. And even though everybody (except some of the dogs and the cat) was respectful not to come upstairs when I was there, there's also nothing to stop sounds (movies) and other noises (dogs..). Since I wake up easily, I slept with earplugs most of the time. Another thing that would wake me up in summer, is the fact that not every windows has curtains (the essential ones do), and the sun really lights up the room beautifully in the morning...
Then more practically: the house is located within a good range of several bus stops and has free parking in the street, if you manage to remember the alternate parking. Even in winter, there were a lot of cyclists, so I bet it's wonderful biking there in summer. If you like walking a lot, you can reach the center of town in about 40 minutes, and the mall in the other direction, too.
Given that dogs have been living in this house for a long time, it's not particularly clean, and if you're not used to living with dogs, you have to get used to their begging manners.
Kathleen was wonderful especially considering I was stuck at the DAL airport for an entire day on a Friday and did not make it in until the following morning. Despite that Kathleen had a very busy Friday evening with her art show-she called me to check to see how I was doing. She kept in contact with me as I tried to figure out what time I would be coming in on Saturday. She offered to pick me up-how thoughtful. Kathleen had a busy day on Saturday but still got on the phone with a friend so she could give me directions, let me use her private tub/shower so I could relax a bit after my hectic Saturday as a bridesmaid. She made me a little healthy, tasty snack while I got ready-what an incredibly sweet gesture. I felt at ease and at home at Kathleen's. Her home had a a very calming, positive energy. Thanks for everything Kathleen.
My partner John stayed with Kathleen, and here is what he said:
Shortly after arriving it was already clear that I made the right choice. Kathleen was relaxed and inviting, her dogs and cat were warm and friendly, and her home in general had a very healthy, peaceful atmosphere. The room itself was nearly perfect for me: simple and quiet, with nice light and a private entrance off the back deck and garden, which Kathleen encouraged me to use and enjoy. The room adjoins another, as described, and the shared bathroom is spacious and convenient. It goes without saying that I will certainly stay again if the opportunity arises.
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We became the second owners of this nearly 100 year old house in 1991, caring for this house has been an experience of on going culture building for us over the years..... After being relatively light on our feet for nearly a decade after college, we returned to our home town married with two babies needing a nest. We knew we wanted to live near the grandparents and began our search!
The Chamberlain house was listed for just one day in the newspaper and somehow I managed to persuade the owner over the phone to let me walk through. He had pulled the ad because he realized the house was not ready to show. It had become a rental property over the years with little to no maintenance, suffice it to say the house had lost its sparkle. I specifically remember my mother in law at the time saying after her tour, “I would not touch it with a ten foot pole.”
From the street, the aging dark brown paint job, the falling off gutters and gapping whole under the front porch stood out like a sore thumb in this tidy historic residential neighborhood. I was drawn in by the rustic street appeal, sitting there weathered on this sweet little raise in the land, this 80 years old house charmed me and called out for care.
Right off the bat, upon entering the screened porch, childhood memories of cloud watching for hours and day dreaming on the couch of my Gram's front porch in the UP were revived...... when we pushed open the solid oak front door we were met with waves of cat pee emanating from the gold shag carpet which shook me right out of my daydream. i imagined with ease that beneath the old soiled covering (which I immediately wanted to begin tearing out) was a protected hardwood floor. The smell was strong and begged to distract us from the rich patinated wood and leaded glass built-ins. The fact that there was no light shining through the windows didn’t help. I took the liberty of moving aside the sagging Mexican blanket covering the morning sun from streaming through the prominent east facing picture window. The sunshine lit the room up and as we walked through each room I was able to imagine it in its original splendor. The quality of the craftsmanship inspired me, some focused skilled crew built it back in 1915 for $4000.00. I began envisioning our family living under this roof.........twenty three years later, several dozen home repair projects completed (including even before we moved in a complete rewiring of the entire electric system of the house) it became a home base to our three amazing daughters, a fervent partnership, three beloved border collies, many regal cats, ancient friendships, countless family gatherings, and thousands of shared delicious meals. Today we continue the tradition of deepening our home base and culture by welcoming in folks from all walks of life and from all parts of the world.
Kathleen is writing a book about growing a family in the Chamberlain house, called Home. She hopes to have it complete when it turn 100 year old in 2015.