Built with Love

Eric Roth

Like Russian nesting dolls, each figure tucked into the next, almost everything in the Osterville home of custom-builder E.J. Jaxtimer is a story within a story. Beyond every inch of the polished wood floors and airy rooms is an ambience that reflects touching stories of E.J., his wife, Terry, their three sons, and the extended family. Even the furnishings—from pieces the couple restored when they were young newlyweds to mementos, art, and handmade crafts—represent pages of family history.

Eric Roth Jaxtimer has owned his Hyannis construction and mill work business for 32 years, building and remodeling houses and landscaping many of them, including this home, where he and his family have lived for 12 years. The 7,500-square-foot home, located near downtown Osterville, is centered around family, including the Jaxtimers’ sons, Jonathan, 20, Jamie, 19, and Sam, 14.

Set on a knoll under beautiful spreading trees—including three birches for each of the three Jaxtimer boys—the elegant gray-shingled five-bedroom home is warm with a casual air. Clearly this house holds a lot of laughter, adventure, and play.

“It’s very much a home. It’s where we brought up the three boys,” Jaxtimer says. Terry’s feelings, built around her own history, reflect her husband’s. “I come from a very close family,” Terry says. “That’s what I try to instill in our boys.”

The casual, playful spirit starts in the kitchen, where an artful image of a nine-foot hammerhead shark hangs above the center island. It seems to be a soft sculpture, soft and airy, but is actually a carving by woodworker Paul White of Sandwich. Jaxtimer and his sons love to fish; even the guesthouse, near the pool in back, is called Hammerhead. The fact that the shark in the kitchen is nine feet long is meaningful. “Nine is my favorite number,” Jaxtimer says. He pauses and adds, “Gordie Howe.” Enough said. Jaxtimer is an enormous fan of the iconic hockey player, and those he loves and admires get spoken of—warmly, openly, and often.

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Mary Grauerholz

Mary Grauerholz is the communications manager of the Cape Cod Foundation and a freelance writer.

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