April 27, 2017 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

I have written frequently about growing up in small-town Iowa. My father farmed for 30 years, and his parents farmed. I have always felt the nostalgia of this lifestyle, and I knew a rural setting was exactly what I wanted to show my early spring project.

Driving the highway outside of Papillion, I often went past this beautiful farm, now up for sale, which has lots of rustic charm. Sadly, many of these old earthy buildings are falling into disrepair, but they always have their own story. This one was no exception.

I stepped out of the car and walked along the gravel driveway, past what resembled overgrown peonies and lilac bushes, toward a massive 100-year-old barn. Hints of white paint still remained in spots. The barn had the sort of time-worn character that is impossible to recreate.

Hal Timm, I came to learn, is the great-grandson of the original owners. His great-grandmother purchased this farm in 1912 with the intent to expand the family homestead and keep the adult children close by. With his blessing, we shot my May/June DIY project here.

As Mr. Timm was packing some of the final belongings from the house, we were finishing up the photos. He thanked me for coming and said that he imagined his grandfather and grandmother may have danced on the farm as newlyweds when it became theirs in the early 1900s. He also stated that seeing our photo shoot seemed like an appropriate bookend for the era—he said it made him smile watching us.

Speaking of legacies, this issue features Chiodo Palace near 25th and Leavenworth streets, built in 1922 by Vincenzo Pietro Chiodo. Current homeowners Barry Burt and Michael Heaton have worked diligently to preserve the legacy of this unique, storied home.

But if your taste happens to be the look and feel of sunny California, take a peek at Marian Holden’s Transformations. This local ASID interior designer used a palette of soft sand colors and soothing blues and greens in this stunning makeover. The McCreas wanted to bring a bit of Palm Springs to the Midwest.

I hope you enjoy the issue!

Sandy Matson is the contributing editor for Omaha Home.

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