A Whole Lotta Love: At HOME with George Davis
Cape Cod Home / Annual Home 2019 / Home, Garden & Design, People & Businesses
Writer: Julie Craven Wagner / Photographer: Dan Cutrona
The Davis home is one that reflects strong family ties
George and Beth Davis both grew up in Yarmouth, so it only makes sense that they would raise their family in their hometown, right? But, like most of life, the path we find ourselves on can rarely be predicted by just simple circumstance. Sometimes things are just meant to be and we are not even aware of the forces that bring us together. Such was the case for this unique couple. Despite having grown up in the same town, the two did not meet until after college. A friend of Beth’s was invited to a party in New Hampshire by a mutual friend of George’s, Beth tagged along, and the rest, they say, is history. When recounting this story almost 30 years later, Beth and Skip (a moniker given to George at birth and used by those who truly know him) actually speak in unison as they describe the events and circumstances leading up to their fateful yet unexpected meeting. These two have a strong and close bond that can only occur after years of sharing a life together. Even their website describes them as spouses, partners and best friends. Team Davis also includes five bright, unique and dynamic children, who Beth describes as “incredible human beings, each and every one of them.”
George Davis, Inc. is a full-service design, building and renovation firm located in a charming residential-style building in South Yarmouth. A visit to their offices often renders visitors slightly shocked and surprised to see the professional kitchen displays and examples of their fine craftsmanship throughout the impeccably kept building. But the Davis’ home is where this couple can truly stand amidst all of their professional acumen, seasoned with a good dose of family warmth.
Skip’s father was the local wood shop teacher at Mattacheese Middle School, and Skip assisted him with his part-time carpentry business throughout his childhood. Clearly his father was an effective teacher, since Skip has successfully been providing Cape Cod homeowners with quality and ingenuity for over 30 years. The Davis’ home was built by Skip 17 years ago, but they freely admit that they were never happy with the original kitchen. Skip says their frustrations started with the limestone tile that was perhaps part of a defective batch. The kitchen remodel finally happened when Skip returned home from work one day and found Beth painting cabinets herself. “I couldn’t take it anymore,” she recalls. “I decided I would just repaint the cabinets. I mean, I’m a builder’s wife, you know how the saying goes.” Skip laughs as he agrees with Beth’s observation but also adds a cautionary disclaimer: “Beth is a very thorough painter. She paints everything, and I mean everything—the knobs, the glass, the counters, the dog…” Beth finishes his sentence by admitting, “Yeah, that’s probably right, but I just couldn’t take it anymore.”
The new kitchen has emerged unscathed by any do-it-yourself fiascos and now benefits from exquisite Plain & Fancy Custom Cabinetry, painted in one of their signature colors—a butter-yellow hue—complete with seeded glass cabinet doors that twinkle from the back-lights that confirm one more element of quality from the renown cabinet maker. The large center island, capped by a massive mahogany top that Skip fabricated in his workshop, is the one exception to the do-it-yourself moratorium. “Each of the kids contributed to the crafting of that island,” Beth says. “It probably took about a month to complete,” Skip continues, “and each of the kids weighed in to help throughout the entire time.” Beth adds, “They will forever be a part of this kitchen.”
When talking about the enduring qualities of the kitchen, Beth says, “We just wanted the kitchen to be here forever and look like it has been here forever—a little nicked, a little scuffed, but well-loved.”
This busy family extends beyond the close couple and their five dynamic progeny—both Beth and Skip have cared for and hosted their parents, most recently Beth’s mother, Ann Johnson, who passed away just before the holidays. As is often the case, families evolve and next generations take over the roles of hosting and welcoming a growing and expanding crowd; Beth and Skip serve that role within their large extended family. The goal for their home was to offer a place of comfort and communion for the people in their life. “You can’t wreck anything in our house, because we have five kids, two dogs, two cats and extended family too large to count,” says Beth. “It’s not unusual for us to cook for 25 people just on a Sunday.”
The Davis family lives in a home that Skip built, but it is full of love from a family that spans generations with shared dreams and swapped stories of times before and times to come again. A home is a place for retreat and respite, but most of all it is a place that should provide a foundation for memories that can grow and spawn for years to come. Beth and George Davis have indeed built a home that fulfills that promise.