When Kathy and David Souza were looking for homes in Williamsburg in the late 1990s, they felt like everything they saw looked similar to their home in Newport News, only they cost $40,000 more. That is until they drove a little outside of town to see 10145 Squires Way in Toano.
“We found ourselves looking at homes further and further away from town until we finally saw this one, and we were sold,” says Kathy.
At the time, the couple had four children ages 7-14, so a spacious home that could accommodate their family was a must. The updated five-bedroom, three-and-a-half bath house with large bedrooms, a cozy living room, formal dining room and massive wooded backyard for playing and exploring checked all of the boxes.
“One of the things we liked the most about this house was the neighborhood,” says Kathy. “It’s not cookie cutter, and every house is unique. I never thought I would live out in the country but it really turned out to be a blessing as Williamsburg continued to grow and started to resemble what we escaped from when we moved from Newport News.”
The other thing that the Souza’s loved when they first saw the house was the yard and all of the trees. “We are often outside playing with the grandchildren, working on landscaping and gardening,” says Kathy.
While they knew this home would be perfect for their children, the Souza’s admit that they really bought this house for themselves. “Back then, we were at a mid-point in our lives and we knew it wouldn’t be long before our kids were all out of the house and grown. We wanted to buy a house that was perfect for them, but that we loved as well.”
Country living with modern conveniences
Situated in the quaint neighborhood of Kings Village, the Souza’s have always loved the location of their home. It’s far enough out of town that they feel the traffic and congestion slip away the closer they get to home, yet they are two miles from Interstate 64 and can access shops and entertainment in a matter of minutes.
“When we first moved here in 1998, there wasn’t anything out here,” says Kathy. “If you needed anything you drove to Richmond or Newport News. Williamsburg has changed so much since then and now we are just a short drive from grocery stores, the Premium Outlets, Target and whatever else we need.”
Through the years, the Souza’s and their kids have enjoyed neighborhood pool parties, happy hours and walks along the tree lined streets. “Everyone takes walks in the neighborhood with babies, grandchildren and dogs,” says Kathy. “You are always bound to get a friendly wave when driving through the neighborhood.”
While they love the friendliness of their neighbors, the Souza’s say they are homebodies who have always enjoyed spending time in the comforts of their home. Growing up, their kids enjoyed nearby amenities like the pools and playgrounds at Upper County Park and the Christian Retreat Center, the James City County Library in Croaker, and they also enjoyed having York River State Park close by.
Before retiring, David worked for Dominion Energy in Surry so his daily commute consisted of 20 minutes to the ferry, 20 minutes on the ferry and 20 minutes in Surry. “That’s how much we loved this house,” he says. “We knew it was further away but felt it in our hearts that this is where we wanted to be.”
Spacious yet cozy
At 3,303 square feet, the Souza’s had just enough room to live comfortably with their four children, but the home hasn’t always been that large. The classic colonial started off as a standard four-bedroom home when they moved in, but when Kathy’s father passed away her mother built an addition onto the home that would bring it to its current square footage.
With the addition of the in-law suite, the home now features two large master bedrooms. The one on the second floor in the main house features a giant walk in closet with built ins and an upgraded bathroom with a large tub, walk in shower and marble countertops.
The in-law suite is handicap accessible and features a first-floor master, access to the back deck, two large closets and an expansive bathroom with a handicap accessible shower. It also features its own separate sitting room on the first floor.
All of the upstairs bedrooms are large in size with ample closet space, and one is attached to a massive bonus room that would be perfect as a playroom, media room, man cave or home gym. Every room in the house has fresh, neutral paint colors as well as new carpet.
While the house feels quite large now that it is only Kathy and David living there, they say it is really the perfect home to raise a family.
In the 21 years they have spent on Squires Way, the Souza’s have made several upgrades to the house. In addition to the in-law suite they expanded the kitchen to make a larger eat-in kitchen area and added built-in pantries along the walls of the kitchenette.
The Souza’s also renovated other aspects of the kitchen, reconfiguring the layout of the gorgeous Corian countertops, cabinets and sink so that they could face the windows and backyard while doing their dishes. All of the appliances in the kitchen convey, and other features of the downstairs include a nice tile backsplash, recessed lighting, under the counter lighting and hardwood floors.
A gorgeous, new composite deck stretches across the back of the house and can be accessed from the family room and in-law suite. A fence encloses a portion of the 1.55-acre lot to create a safe space for their dogs to enjoy the outdoors, and beyond the fence is a huge yard that is great for gardening and also very private.
A great place to grow up
After living in Newport News for nearly 20 years, the Souza’s made the move to James City County for the stellar school system. All four of their children went to Williamsburg/JCC Public Schools, and because of new schools opening and districts changing, their youngest experienced several of the schools. “Our youngest started at Norge Elementary, but then Stonehouse Elementary opened right down the street from the house, so she finished there,” says Kathy. “Then she started high school at Lafayette, but then Warhill opened so that’s where she graduated. So, we are familiar with all of the schools.”
Stonehouse Elementary is just five minutes down the road, Toano Middle School is ten minutes away and Warhill High School is a 15-minute drive. “It is a great location in close proximity to all of the schools,” says Kathy.
The Souza children grew up with lots of other kids in the neighborhood, and enjoyed the simplicity of a childhood spent playing in the yard, kicking the soccer ball, exploring in the woods and just running free.
“Neighborhoods like Kings Village remind me of the way we grew up in the 1960s, with kids playing in the street and nothing having to be organized for them to get outside and play,” says David.
Though many of the children who grew up with the Souza’s kids have grown up and moved away, they say a wave of young families have started to move into the neighborhood and see a new generation of kids enjoying the simplicity of a childhood spent in Kings Village.
One can probably imagine the chaos that Kathy and David used to experience on a regular basis with a house full of four teenagers and two dogs, so they each had their favorites spots in the house to retreat and relax. For Kathy, she claimed the master bedroom as her special space to watch television, sew and just relax and enjoy the beautiful bathroom.
For David, the large two-and-a-half car garage was the perfect spot to do his woodworking and offers lots of space for storage.
The Souza’s have enjoyed the over two decades they have spent at 10145 Squires Way, but they feel it is time to move on. The couple is retired and currently filling many of their days helping to take care for their grandchildren in New Kent, so they will be moving one county over.
“It’s time for us to move to a house with fewer rooms since we are just at that transitional point in our lives,” says Kathy. “We have loved it here and can’t think of a better place to have raised our family, but it is just time. We hope another family will come in and love it as much as we have.”
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