This Historic House Has Wood Beams, French Doors… and a Ship’s Bridge in the Backyard

We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image

Name: The Stefaniks, my wife, our foster son, and two dopey dogs
Location: Corbin City, New Jersey
Type of home: House
Size: 1440 square feet
Years lived in: 3 weeks, owned

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: Our home was built in 1860 and restored by a local woodworker in the early 2000s. After living in Philly for over a decade, we both decided it was time for a change of scenery. We found our dream home less than 10 miles from the beach in southern New Jersey. The house sits on about 1/3 of an acre by the Tuckahoe River. It has original wood shingles and a truly quaint exterior. Inside is more modern with white walls, wood beams, and French doors. One of the coolest parts of our new property is our ship! We have the bridge of a large ship right in the yard. It is currently being used for storage but we have grand plans for an Airbnb!

How do you identify? Our family is queer. We also are hopeful foster to adopt parents. I think creating intentional, safe, and inviting spaces is definitely part of our identity. At the end of each day, no matter what the world has been like, we are privileged to come home to a warm house that instantly feels like home.

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Modern by the beach.

What is your favorite room and why? Sentimentally my favorite room is our bedroom. There are the obvious reasons of beautiful bamboo floors, an exposed wood beam, and windows for days. The real reason is our son. He’s 3 months old and still sharing the space with us. We struggled for two years to start a family. We lost our daughter in April due to premature birth. When we put the offer in on this house, we had no intention of trying to grow our family.

It was “our time.” We’d take time off from trying to focus on us. Well surprise! Under very strange and wonderful circumstances we met and fell madly in love with our son. Now we’re on a beautiful journey to become his forever family. Sharing our bedroom with him has filled our hearts beyond measure.

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? Since we just moved, we’ve been making a lot of purchases. My most exciting score recently is a rug and wine rack from West Elm on mega clearance. I’m a bargain hunter by nature and especially now, we have formula and diapers to buy!

Any advice for creating a home you love? Don’t just follow trends because you think you should. Find pieces—art, blankets, furniture, candles, plants—that bring you joy. It doesn’t matter if anyone “gets it.” It’s your space, make it yours!

This submission’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.