High in the picturesque mountains of southwest Virginia is where Randy and Debbie Vest built their forever home. The charming single story is perfect for the couple celebrating 43 years of marriage.
Never too hot or cold, the mild climate and sweeping views of mountain peaks are among the reasons the Vests’ have chosen to call their small Virginia town home for nearly four decades. It’s where they raised their two sons, now in their 40s, who are raising children of their own close by.
Family is everything to the Vest — especially spending time with their four grandchildren who range in age from 1-12 years old.
After 35 years in the automotive industry, holding various car dealership positions, Randy recently retired from his full-time job, choosing to work part-time at a local hospital. In the same local hospital, his wife Debbie works as a surgical nurse. Both are looking forward to fully retiring in the near future.
In preparation for their hard-earned retirement, the Vests’ constructed their ranch-style home seven years ago with downsizing in mind. No stranger to the building process — the Vests’ have built three homes in the area during their marriage — this house was truly made to be their forever home.
“When we built this house, we built it all one level because we want to grow old in this house,” Randy says. “When our boys were younger, we had a lot of space. When you downsize, you have to be careful what stuff you bring into your house.”
Randy knew that downsizing meant being more discerning of their furnishings. In their larger homes, Randy said it was easy for the extra space in the attic or basement to become filled with things collected along the way.
“When you have a smaller house, you only have room for so much stuff,” Randy says. “Usually, if you buy one thing, something else has to go. You have to be more careful about what you bring into your home.”
The Vests wanted their smaller home to be a welcoming place for the kids to have their own space to play. While they had room for visitors and grandkids, the Vests realized that the layout didn’t quite work as their grandchildren got older.
“We spent almost a year trying to decide what type of bed to put in our guest bedroom because the little kids still like to get on the floor and play with their toys,” Randy says. “If we put a regular bed in there, it would have taken up the whole room. We also wanted a queen-size bed that my brothers and sisters or my wife’s siblings could sleep on when they come to visit.”
Randy began looking into Murphy beds as a solution. He had no previous experience with wall beds but was intrigued by the fold-out beds’ ability to allow one room to serve multiple purposes.
Randy discovered Lori Bed’s step-by-step wall bed assembly instructional video on YouTube and was intrigued by its unique lifting mechanism. Unlike the traditional Murphy bed, the Lori Bed has no mechanical aids for lifting and lowering the platform because springs aren’t needed. Instead of using the force of springs or pistons, the Lori Bed can be lifted and lowered by hand using your and your lifting partner's strength.
“We went back and forth on whether we should get a traditional spring-loaded Murphy bed,” Randy says. “Those were very expensive, and honestly, they didn’t seem very appealing. We just kept going back to Lori Beds. It exceeded expectations.”
Randy returned to the Lori Bed assembly video when the boxes arrived a few days after ordering his queen-sized wall bed online.
“I sat for a couple of hours with the guest bedroom watching the Lori Bed assembly video,” Randy says. “I’d play one section and complete that and another selection and then complete that section. Before I knew it, I had a Lori bed built! The assembly was pretty straightforward, and the quality is great.”
The spare bedroom can now easily accommodate playtime for the kids and serve as a respite for overnight guests. Randy said the bed’s low profile and solid hardwood allows it to fit seamlessly into the design.
It’s not just about the form; it’s all about the function. The Lori Bed’s springless lifting and lowering system makes it easy to transform the space.
“That is why the Lori Bed is so nice. It lets us use that room for multiple purposes. It’s a playroom, and yet it’s a great bedroom for kids and adults, too,“ Randy says. “It is a lot easier to lift and lower than I thought. We are not spring chickens anymore; we’re in our 60s. I was a little concerned that it might be too heavy for us to lift, but it’s not at all.”
The Lori Bed has become quite a topic of conversation in the Vest household. Guests, many of whom haven’t seen a Murphy bed in action before, are instantly fascinated with the design.
“Everyone who sees it is so impressed. Lori Beds is quite the topic of conversation when we have company,” Randy says. “The kids love it. They just think it’s the greatest thing in the world. If it’s up and they’re playing on the floor, they want it lowered so they can play on it.”
The Lori Bed was an instant hit for the entire Vest family — even hard to impress tweens. The Vests 12-year-old granddaughter loves to sleep on the Murphy bed when she visits — and now wants one of her very own!
“She loves it,” Randy adds with a smile. “She said it is better than her bed and that she wants one in her room at home. I said, that’s up to your mom and dad.”