Outdoor Living Made Beautiful in Atherton, CA, by Pedersen Associates

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When is a residential lot more than just a residential lot? When its mature oaks and character are preserved by skilled means of integrating home and landscape — as done on this 1.25-acre space in Atherton, CA, by Pedersen Associates. Detailing for joining the new construction to the site was based on San Francisco cobblestone, used on terraced walls that “nestled” the house into the land. The cobblestone continues around the entire entryway of the home; this enables numerous outdoor “rooms” to emerge in one expansive area from indoors to outdoors. Off the family room is a gorgeous stone fireplace; its wide hearth and three levels of “mantel” can hold everything from potted greenery to sculpture accents, and that’s just for starters.

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A complete kitchen is ready for any item on the al fresco menu; note the deep outdoor sink, plenty of stone work space, and the lavish wood and gas grill. Beneath a slatted wood pergola is a full-scale dining room, its rich wood furniture a match for the lounging area in front of the fire and within steps of either indoors or the cooking area outside. On the other side of the yard, a gleaming pool completes the entertaining ensemble; its cabana forms a nice backdrop for cushioned loungers and a waterfall shower. Finally, there are flowers: both perennial and annual color beds with offerings from petite white alyssum to sunny yellow rhododendron. Everything’s included in this neatly planned yard — a “nest” for both the home and the family that enjoys it.

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Written by Janet Butler

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Janet W. Butler is a freelance writer, editor, and editorial consultant by day and a “small soprano” by night. An RWA Golden Heart Winner, she is the author of the inspirational romance From the Ashes (“the best little book no one’s ever heard of”), published by SANDS Publishing in 2001; and a romantic suspense, Voice of Innocence, from Desert Breeze Publishing. She is a Chicago native transplanted to northeast Indiana, where she lives with her husband, daughter, and Cassandra “Trouble” Butler, S.R.C. (Spoiled Rotten Cat).