Spend any time at the Madeira public library and you’ll no doubt recognize this 11-year-old cape cod-style home next door. When Vicki and Jack Sulfsted wanted to move closer to their Indian Hill-area grandkids 11 years ago, they had it built, but not by just any old builder. Their builder was also their son, Alex, who—stick with us, here—had previously played in the NFL for teams like the Washington Redskins and, yes, the Cincinnati Bengals.
After leaving pro football, Alex tried his hand at residential building; this home was based on a plan his parents had found and “fallen in love with a long time ago,” Vicki says. It was also plenty big enough to house their family, which at multiple times expanded and contracted substantially (the couple has four other kids and has fostered dozens more children, too).
“Before this, we lived in Lebanon on a farm,” Vicki says. “This was the first time I ever lived in a city.” Even so, she was thrilled to find herds of deer and foxes roaming through the backyard. Pair that with the walkability of Madeira—she says “a one-of-a-kind little town”—and it’s been an ideal place to call home.
Today, the Sulfsteds are downsizing and the home is looking for its next family—someone who will appreciate the apartment over the garage, the sit-a-spell front porch, the sunny eat-in kitchen with connected hearth room, and a great library just steps away.