when Brian Bartal and Reinaldo Alves Barbosa planned to tour this 23-year-old Clough Pike home in 2017, they were skeptical. “It wasn’t the type of house we were looking for,” remembers Bartal. “But we drove up the driveway through the woods and saw this incredible house surrounded by nature.” They immediately thought of the parties they could host there and began to imagine a life in the plush Anderson Township house, “just the two of us and an old dog,” says Bartal. But a conversation with the then-owners would change their lives—and the lives of three local kids—forever. “[They] told us what a great home it was for a family,” Bartal explains. “We had never really thought about having kids before.”
Once they bought the home and settled in, that idea really took shape. “I think it was about a month after we [moved in],” Bartal says, “we started talking about it. We started looking on the Hamilton County website at the stories of children who needed families, and we were just so moved by that.” Bartal and Barbosa eventually fostered then-3-year-old Lorenzo, who had been separated from his siblings—teenage sisters Brooklynn and Nadia. “They were sent to another foster home,” Bartal says. The couple adopted all three in August 2020. “It was a big thing for us to go from no kids to a 3-year-old,” Bartal says. “And then of course we had never even dreamed of teenagers. We just knew it was the right thing to do to keep a family together.”
That family is now relocating for work, and leaving their 7,000-square-foot home set on six wooded acres. An office, formal dining room, laundry room, and three floors of living space make the grand setting exceedingly comfy, whether you’re a guest or resident of one of the six bedrooms. The family built the on-site pool house, a one-bedroom, one-bathroom setup with a built-in grill and outdoor fireplace, which allowed them to spread out even farther.
And that first party was a bit different from the one they had first imagined. Says Bartal: “It was our 5-year-old’s birthday party.”