A wall of windows showcases the view from the kitchen and living-dining room.
The couples set up a limited liability corporation (LLC) to protect themselves when renting the home. Henriette suggests using the Internet ― sites such as www.nolo.com, a publisher of law books for the layman ― to learn about partnerships and LLCs before approaching a lawyer. "You can save a lot of money in lawyers' fees by brushing up on the lingo and minimizing the number of questions you ask," she says.
Henriette equipped the house to be a home away from home ― with everything from beach towels to cookbooks. This not only makes the home a desirable rental, it's ideal for the owners as well. "When we decide to go, we just get in the car and go," says Henriette. Both couples agree in advance on when they'll use it, then turn over the renting to a property manager
"Sybil and I love the lot because we are able to walk right into Moran State Park," explains Craig. The Kelleys often wake up, go for a hike with their dog, Bailey, and then ― if it's warm enough ― go for a swim in nearby Cascade Lake. For dinner? "We buy a couple dozen oysters and, with a recipe from a local restaurant, we make grilled oysters ― we do that three of the seven days we're there," laughs Craig.
As for the Blanchards, Henriette says that she and Paul have a love/hate relationship with their vacation home. "We love being there, but we hate leaving."