Our Story


Buying the Land

In 1996, after an unsuccessful year long search for a home, we decided to build our own and purchased a five acre undeveloped property with a great view of Calamigos Ranch, Saddlerock Ranch and the surrounding Santa Monica Mountains in Malibu.  Although the site had potential, there was nothing but brush and a small area cleared on the highest point. We were young and full of romance, dreams and energy and knew with hard work and persistence, we could build a special place we would call home for our life together.


Building The Home

Once we had our property, the first task was to clear some of the native brush in order to get a sense of the topography of the lot. Both of us had full time jobs, so weekends were spent cutting brush with a chainsaw, followed by using a heavy machine called a “chipper” to grind it all up. After 3 months of work, the shape of the property allowed us to determine where the home would sit after some grading and earth movement. We both wanted something different, with wood and windows to capture the beauty of the mountains around us. We decided on a log home and after touring companies selected Model Log Homes in Galatin Gateway, Montana.

Woodley Fire 1


The Woolsey Fire

The Woolsey Fire, which started on November 8, 2018, near Simi Valley, California, rapidly spread to Malibu, burning 96,949 acres and leading to the mandatory evacuation of the entire city. The fire destroyed over 1,600 structures and resulted in at least three fatalities before being fully contained on November 21, 2018

Woodley Fire 1


The Rising

After the destruction caused by the 2018 Woolsey Fire, the next four and a half years we threw ourselves into rebuilding a better, more fire resistance home, with lower maintenance, yet with the same goals of using our site and taking advantage of the incredible views. We worked with a talented and generous local architect, Bruce Bolander, and designed an industrial rustic home on the same footprint. With a tight budget, COVID restrictions, supply chain challenges and inflation, we again invested a huge amount of our own sweat equity, literally building much of this new home with our own two hands. All framing is heavy and light gauge steel, weather proofing and sheer panels are nonflammable as is all insulation. The only flammable material used in building the house are the wood floors, a few interior walls and interior ceilings but those materials are all backed by concrete, steel, fiber board, spray foam insulation and other nonflammables. What we have tried to create is a fire-resistant home that still has some warmth and character.  

Woodley Fire 1

Please enjoy browsing through this website and its content to see how this story unfolded and how perseverance was needed to build hopefully a lasting legacy.