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COVER STORY | Trendy Home: Sugar Grove Family Builds their Dream Home



PAT AND LISA BILSKEY ON BUILDING THEIR DREAM HOME

SUGAR GROVE–Home is where the heart is could not be truer for Pat and Lisa Bilskey who graduated in 1982 from Glenbard East High School and went their separate ways to create independent families in different cities.


In 2012, the pair got reacquainted via Facebook and later attended a 30th high school reunion which led to a relationship in July 2015. They traveled 53 miles each way from Wilmette to Sugar Grove over the next five years to not disrupt their children’s lives.



In 2019, they got engaged and set their eyes on building a new home for their soon to be combined families that included space for everyone; Lisa's children, Drew (25) and Katie Maatman (21) and Pat's children Grayson (22) and Morgan Bilskey (21).


“Our hope is that our children will always feel that this is THEIR home - where they can come for peace, comfort, support, and love because we realized that combining families can be incredibly challenging,” Lisa shares. “We know how blessed we are that our children accept us as a couple and accept each other as siblings and friends. Since we started dating seven years ago, our priority was keeping our kids' feelings and needs uppermost in our minds. We hope this house is the epitome of that process.”



“Our hope is that our children will always feel that this is THEIR home - where they can come for peace, comfort, support, and love because we realized that combining families can be incredibly challenging,” Lisa shares. “We know how blessed we are that our children accept us as a couple and accept each other as siblings and friends. Since we started dating seven years ago, our priority was keeping our kids' feelings and needs uppermost in our minds. We hope this house is the epitome of that process.”



The couple built their dream home between September 2019 and August 2020 with architect and builder Ed Saloga, who also lives in Sugar Grove and own Ed Saloga Design Build. He is a custom home builder and one of the original developers of the Hannaford Farm subdivision, where their new home is located. They chose a half-acre, corner lot which includes views of the Hannaford Farm prairie and west pond with unimpeded sunsets.




They envisioned a welcoming, classic front porch with bluestone tile floor and stained beadboard ceiling; gorgeous stonework along the front elevation to create a grand entrance; floor to ceiling windows; coffered ceilings in the great room; a grand, open staircase with windows at each landing; custom trim work and cabinetry; 10-foot ceilings with transom windows over the doorways; impressive stone fireplaces, a custom-made knotty alder bar in the basement; heated floors in the master bathroom and finished basement; as well as separate bedrooms and bathrooms for each of the four children.



“We love that we have an open floor plan so that our kitchen and great room are one and a large space for gathering and entertaining. We also love our large kitchen island, which measures 4 feet wide by 10 feet long and is the hub of our home,” Lisa says. “Our covered dining deck on the back of our home is the perfect spot for morning coffee or outdoor summer dinner or sipping on a glass of wine with views of the sunset all year long.”


Their beautiful home sweet home was the perfect backdrop for their September 12th, 2020, wedding and as the story goes…….they are living happily ever after!