By Emma Bowen Meyer
For The Herald Bulletin
---- — ANDERSON – When costs to build on their Pendleton plot skyrocketed due to Hurricane Katrina blowing through, Mickey and Amanda Foley changed their plans and sought out an already-existing home. Since they chose one that had been built on spec for another family, they still retained the joy of being the first owners of the house.
“We pretty much got to start from scratch with white walls,” said Mickey, a history teacher at Alexandria High School. “The house we lived in before was old and we had to do a lot of renovating.”
“It was ideal to find a home that didn’t need anything major,” said Amanda, dental hygienist in Castleton. “I didn’t want to get into another older home like that.”
Originally the couple had chosen Pendleton as their new location because it was about halfway between their workplaces. While their choice is no longer in the middle, the Deer Creek addition is still closer to the interstate than their previous spot just south of Alexandria.
“We love the neighborhood here,” said Mickey, also the director of discipleship and education at Madison Park Church of God. “We ride our bikes and run with no worries about traffic.”
“It’s nice and quiet,” said Amanda, whose mini-marathon medallions hang over the stairs. “Between here and Cedar Bend you can go on a lot of different routes and be safe. You don’t have to get on any major roads.”
Just because they chose a new home doesn’t mean they been avoiding improvements. They have added their own touch both inside and outside the home – only in the enjoyable expenses that result in beautiful finishes rather than in structural work that is difficult for visitors to appreciate.
Since they love the great outdoors, they built a pergola next to the back deck and added a great deal to the minimal landscaping. The result is a lovely seating area with beautiful flowers and bushes to enjoy.
“Since there is no house next door, it seems like a huge yard,” said Amanda. “We have about one acre, but it seems like so much more. Sitting on the deck is one of my favorite things to do.”
“In the winter we understand the name ‘Deer Creek’,” added Mickey. “One night we spotted 13 or 14 of them in the back yard. I think this is the crossing pass from the White River into the woods over there.”
Not wishing to ignore the interior, the couple has chosen pleasant color schemes for the rooms of the home. Well-appointed furniture and accents grace each space.
But the real change occurred in the basement – Mickey’s man cave. A sports fan (named after Mickey Mantle) whose favorite teams are the New York Yankees and the Colts, he has decked out the perfect area for taking in a game.
To set the manly vibe, Mickey and his friend, Paul Browning, built a bar made from bricks – and even encased a nearby pillar in bricks to complete the feel. Along the right side of the room is the home of the Yankees memorabilia while Colts gear dominates the left side. Since both teams don blue and white, the color scheme is unified.
“Paul built his whole house so when he suggested the brick, I had a lot of confidence in his ability to pull it off,” said Mickey. “We’ve hosted several Super Bowl parties here, not to mention watching the college football games. The guys like to come over.”
But Mickey is not one to simply watch sports from the couch. Through the doorway is a well-equipped home gym, complete with lockers. He played basketball at Frankton High School, Anderson University and used to coach high school basketball and junior high track at Alexandria.
Whether they entertain in their open-concept kitchen and living room, outside under the pergola or down in the man cave, the Foleys enjoy sharing their home.
“We have a lot of small groups from church,” said Mickey. “This place is great for entertaining.”
Each week, Emma Bowen Meyer features a Madison County home. If you know of a home that should be showcased, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.