Blog Category - Blog

Corner Patch Garden Party…Neighborhoods in Bloom!

Categories: Blog | Posted: October 10, 2017

In case you missed the grand unveiling of Cornerstone’s first Corner Patch Garden, please read on!

Our Corner Patch Garden Grand Opening event on September 23rd was buzzing with activity. Not only did our visitors enjoy tours of the model homes, and ice cream on the Lake Pavilion, but the highlight was the cooking demonstrations from harvests right from the Corner Patch Gardens. Under the garden pergola, Sean Sheppard, the Corner Patch’s farmer/garden coach demonstrated cooking techniques with produce grown in the community gardens. Everyone enjoyed learning new recipes and tasting healthy cooking such as eggplant sautéed with tomatoes, cucumber and cauliflower salad, and watermelon and feta salad.

Corner Patch GardensCorner Patch Gardens

These “harvest events” will occur on a regular basis with the homeowners at each  Cornerstone community. Fun, educational and a chance to mingle with the neighbors is what it is all about.  It’s also a great way to learn a healthier way of cooking and eating! The Gardens will be a great amenity for all our communities.

Corner Patch GardensCorner Patch Gardens

“Our clubhouses will always be the social hubs of our communities,” said Roger Glover, owner of Cornerstone Homes. “But we’re also thinking beyond the clubhouse and creating unique health, wellness, and education amenities. Our homeowners want more than just leisure and low-maintenance living. They’re hungry to learn and grow and continually improve themselves. And, of course, have a lot of fun in the process. That’s the whole idea behind The Corner Patch Gardens which will be in all our comunities moving forward.”

Ice Cream Cornerstone HomesLake Pavilion Cornerstone Homes

Ice Cream was served by Brusters on the Lake Pavilion. This beautiful amenity at the Villas at Magnolia Lakes is the perfectplace for fishing, canoeing, and any other water related activity you can think of! The Lake Pavilion and boardwalk promotes walking, relaxing, all those things you deserve at this time in your life.

Our boardwalk and trails also lead to our newest community – The Cove! Make sure to sign up for VIP updates with more information coming very soon! Sign-Up Here.

Sean will be sure to return on a regular basis at The Corner Patch Gardens, bringing along some delicious Fall treats and demonstrations! He will teach our homeowners how to turn their own private courtyard into an ever-blooming source of enjoyment. Have a feeling you can’t wait until the next event? Then make one of Farmer Sean’s recipes for yourself!


Watermelon Salad RecipeCorner Patch Garden Watermelon Salad

  • 1 lb cubed chunks of watermelon (about half a small watermelon)
  • 1/2 lb shredded jicama root (approx. half of a jicama root, peeled, cut into chunks and passed through the ricer attachment on a food processor)
  • 1 to 2 cups crushed walnuts (per preference)
  • 3 oz feta cheese (chunks or crumbles)
  • 4 tbsp balsamic vinaigrette (balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic pepper)
  • Serve immediately!

Introducing The Corner Patch Gardens!

Categories: Blog | Posted: September 18, 2017

Join Cornerstone Homes as we introduce the Corner Patch Gardens, our one-of-a-kind health and wellness amenity, on Saturday, September 23rd, from noon to 4 pm at the Villas of Magnolia Lakes. Enjoy “Fresh from the Garden” cooking & tasting demonstrations at 1, 2 and 3 pm, and ice cream on the boardwalk and in the lake pavilion. This gathering promises to be sow much fun!

At Cornerstone Homes, we believe in growing happier, healthier 55+ communities.

So our lifestyle team planted the seeds for the Corner Patch Gardens, combining our two favorite mantras: Never stop learning. And never stop having fun.

We’re proud to say this special gathering place definitely fits the bill. Great fun and friendship are always in season at the Corner Patch Gardens, which will be offered at all of our communities and are exclusive to Cornerstone Homes!


During hands-on demonstrations, residents will learn about different varieties of vegetables, fruits, flowers, and vines that can flourish in their community. They’ll enjoy seasonal food tastings, wine & cheese mixers, and garden inspired gatherings all year long. They can satisfy their curiosity about the benefits of their favorite herbs, or they can start a Gardening Club. There’s so much to do and discover at the Corner Patch Gardens.

An expert farmer and garden coach will professionally manage The Corner Patch Gardens, planting, maintaining, growing and harvesting the gardens each season. Of course, part of the fun is getting your hands dirty, so residents will always be invited to workshops, planting seminars, and harvest events.

At Cornerstone Homes, we’re always thinking of ways to help our homeowners enjoy their new homes to the fullest. Through the Corner Patch Gardens, our professional garden coach will also teach community residents how to turn their private courtyards into an ever-blooming source of enjoyment. With pots, grow bags and wooden containers, they’ll be able to enjoy beautiful flowers, plants and homegrown herbs and veggies all year long.

The Corner Patch Garden party will take place on Saturday, September 23rd, from noon to 4 pm at the Villas of Magnolia Lakes, 5800 Magnolia Shore Lane, Chester, VA 23831. For more information, please contact Dotti Houlihan at 804-726-4310 or at

What should you do at Magnolia Lake? We suggest heading for the water!

Categories: Blog | Posted: September 15, 2017

Our vibrant community, Villas at Magnolia Lake, is surrounded by an abundance of natural beauty, including mature trees and a stunning lake. Stocked with fish and featuring a canoe launch, the lake also has a covered pavilion and a boardwalk! This is just the spot for a relaxing day of fishing, canoeing or even a picnic and a stroll along the walking paths that line the shore. Nothing says relaxation like a lazy afternoon by the lake.



Whether you’re dipping your toes, casting your line, paddling in your canoe, or walking along the boardwalk, there are plenty of ways to relax by our lovely lake!


But if the water isn’t your thing, you can always walk over to the Corner Patch Garden. There’s always something fun, educational and edible going on at the garden! This one-of-a-kind health and wellness lifestyle amenity includes a professional gardening coach who plants, maintains and harvests the garden.

You can enjoy gardening workshops, seminars and classes to keep your mind healthy – along with your body!


Plus, our Clubhouse has resort-style amenities like the fitness center, community pool, outdoor lanai, great room with stone fireplace, and a chef’s entertaining kitchen.

No matter what you want to do with your free time, Villas at Magnolia Lakes has plenty of options!





Benefits to Eating, Cooking, and Entertaining Outdoors

Categories: Blog | Posted: August 22, 2017

An outdoor living space is the ultimate bonus room. Not only do you have a ton of flexibility to make it as unique as you want without the confines of a floor plan, but it’s also unlike any other room in the house. Enjoying a cozy, yet functional outdoor space goes without saying, but did you know there are a lot of benefits to cooking and entertaining outside too? With the prime grilling and cookout season upon us, it’s time you found out!


Host without Cleaning Up

The worst part about hosting friends and family: cleaning the house just to have it get dirty again. But outside, a fresh table cloth and some disposable plates and utensils are all you need! Your backyard and our outdoor spaces at a Cornerstone community create the perfect backdrop any work from you, while no pots and pans make post-clean up a breeze!


Host a Larger Crowd
Even with a spacious open concept, entertaining indoors can be limiting as to how many people can fit comfortably or the space you need for food. People are less likely to be sitting when they’re outside anyway, as they gather around the grill snacking on finger foods. So, you won’t need as many seats!


Grilling is Quick and Healthy
Customizing meals for picky eaters is so much easier on the grill. You can even ask people to bring their own favorite meat or grilled veggie to throw on! If you’re limited for time during the week, burgers, veggies and other meats are quickly prepared on the grill top.

Did we mention the health benefits of grilled meals? You consume less fat because the excess drips off the grates, while grilled vegetables and meats retain more vitamins and minerals. Win, win! At our community clubhouses, outdoor grilling areas are THE summertime hub!


Regular Meals Feel More Special
Eating outside is more stimulating than the usual indoor routine. Preparing dinner outside becomes a social activity! Instead of being holed up in the kitchen, you can chat with friends and loved ones while they help with side dishes and place settings.

Keep Your House Cool

Turning on the oven during the hottest days of summer is probably the last thing you want to do, and the enduring heat that fills your kitchen afterward is equally as uncomfortable. You’ll spend less on utility bills 1. By not turning on energy zapping kitchen appliances and 2. By not running the AC to combat the kitchen heat. One more added bonus: no lingering odors!


There are Health Benefits!

Studies suggest that eating outside actually makes food taste better! The fresh air lowers your stress hormones and blood pressure, so you’re more relaxed, and even focused. When you’re stressed, you’re not paying attention to your meal and don’t enjoy it as much.

Being outside is a natural mood booster. You can also get your necessary dose of Vitamin D with just 10-15 min in the sun a couple of days a week. It’s the perfect excuse to grill out!


When you live in a Cornerstone Homes community, there are plenty of opportunities to eat, cook, and entertain outside. Take advantage of our outdoor amenities and these amazing benefits when you move into your new home at one of our communities!


No Summer Yard Work!

Categories: Blog | Posted: August 14, 2017


Don’t sweat it! There’s no summer yard work at Cornerstone Homes!

One of the joys of moving to a Cornerstone Homes community is the freedom you’ll have! We specialize in carefree living – no summer yard work, no annoying chores, just fun and relaxation.

Cornerstone Communities are totally maintenance-free – we take care of the exterior upkeep, the lawns, and the common areas. Which means you can ditch your lawn mower, rakes, and other yard work paraphernalia.



Your days of lawn mowing, weeding, mulching and edging are over! Now you’ll have plenty of time for everything on your summertime fun list, like:

– Enjoy the amenities just steps from your door

– Travel to your dream foreign destination

– Bike along a scenic route

– Visit friends and family

– Stroll through the walking trails

– Join a book club

– Host a BBQ

– Join your neighborhood clubs

– Enjoy the community gardens

– Take a fitness class

– Reconnect with your inner child at community pool parties

– Spend time with grandchildren

– Socialize with your neighbors



At Cornerstone Homes, we firmly believe that summer days should be spent in a hammock napping, or by the pool sipping lemonade. So stop sweating and start relaxing. Come enjoy the carefree life at a Cornerstone Community!

Tons of Fun at the Villas at Magnolia Lakes!

Categories: Blog, Events, Uncategorized | Posted: August 7, 2017

At the Villas at Magnolia Lakes, we are just as dedicated to building a sense of community as we are in building the community itself. Our residents are amazing – fun, funny, and generous people who love to get together for events of all kinds!


Here are a couple of the community clubs that our residents participate in. Stop by and check out what they’ve got going on!


The DIY Club

If hands-on creativity is your thing, the DIY Club is the place. The club initially met in September to make autumn centerpieces. They turned out so well, that in November, they worked on a project using silk flowers and acrylic water. For another project, they completed beautiful sand terrariums using succulents and colored sand. In March, they made spring wreaths for doors or mantels. Even if you think you aren’t “creative”, the DIY-ers will help you create a one-of-a-kind project!



Kitchen Club

Anyone who is interested in cooking, baking or preserving food is welcomed to The Kitchen Club. People with all levels of experience are encouraged to come and join in on the fun – especially newcomers! Club members make all kinds of food – from soups to cookies to piecrusts. The Kitchen Club meets every other month. Check out the VML Calendar for the next meeting.




When residents aren’t whipping up delicious dishes at the Kitchen Club, they’re having cookouts by the community pool. With feet in the water and hot dog in hand, residents know how to stay cool while having a good time. Just remember to wait 30 minutes after eating to go for a swim!



There’s no better way to end a fun-filled week than at our community Happy Hour. Every Friday at 5pm, neighbors love to gather at the Clubhouse for drinks and good company. We’ll drink to that!


Today’s on-the-go active adults love Cornerstone’s maintenance-free communities and settings, featuring tree-lined streets, green spaces, walking paths and friendly neighbors. When residents move into our neighborhoods, they quickly discover that they didn’t just buy a home. They’ve chosen a whole new lifestyle, where life is balanced intellectually, socially and physically.

Cool ways to “summer-ize” your bedroom

Categories: Blog | Posted: July 13, 2017

The heat has arrived! And even though your new Cornerstone home is built to stay cool, you might still want to lighten things up for the summer. When you switch out your wardrobe, try switching up your bedroom décor a bit, too!

Here are some tips for creating the perfect summer sanctuary:


Ditch your duvet.

That goose down duvet may be just the thing when it’s nippy outside, but it’s hardly needed once the temperature goes up. If you like burrowing in a duvet or quilt, invest in a summer-weight model. They’re thinner and lighter, but still snuggly. Look for a cotton shell with down or poly fill.


Change your sheets.

Even if you love them, your flannel or micro-fleece sheets are not remotely attractive when it’s hot outside. Find yourself linen sheets, and you’ll be in heaven. Linen is known for its exceptional coolness. As a natural fiber, its loose weave makes it more breathable and capable of absorbing moisture, which allows air to flow through the sheet easily and prevent it from clinging to your skin while you sleep.


Cotton is king.

From PJs to sheets and blankets, 100% cotton is a classic summer-time fabric for a reason. It comes in a variety of weights and weaves, and is light and breezy no matter how sticky it is outside. Bonus: Cotton blankets are perfect if you’re chilled by the AC. Keep one at the foot of the bed.

Let the sunshine in!

Don’t forget to lighten up your windows. Give your heavy winter window treatments a summer vacation. Switch to gauzy sheers or light-colored valances. Or maybe go with some bamboo or wood blinds.


Go lighter & brighter.

Drop the dark colors and heavy textures. Make the move to brighter hues or soft pastels. Accent pillows in summery floral prints or cabana stripes. Or a throw blanket in pastel cotton will complete your bedroom’s summer-scape.


Bring the outdoors in.

Treat yourself to vases of fresh flowers on your bedside table or a vignette of beach treasures on the dresser. You can also up your artwork by displaying garden scenes or summer sunsets.


Try out these tips for a perfectly cool space in the warm weather months. To learn more about living at one of our Cornerstone communities, visit our website or contact us here.

At Ashlake, there’s always something new under the sun!

Categories: Blog | Posted: May 23, 2017

Not only do you get a maintenance-free home and an amazing, friendly community when you move to the Villas at Ashlake, but you also get nuggets of wisdom. Keep reading to learn!

Alexandre-Edmond Becquerel, an important French physicist, explained how we can generate electricity from sunlight in 1839.  He’s the father of modern solar energy, discovering the photovoltaic effect, the operating principle of the solar cell. And finally, 175 years and decades of experimentation later, we have technology that can efficiently harness the power of the sun!


Why does this matter?

Because everything we do uses tons of electricity – and it costs a lot of money. Solar energy is the cleanest and most abundant renewable energy source available, and the U.S. has some of the richest solar resources in the world! Modern technology can harness solar energy for a variety of uses, including generating electricity, providing light, and heating water.


By using solar power, you can reduce your energy costs and your carbon footprint. And at the Villas of Ashlake, we’re helping you do just that – by installing a solar energy system!


What does solar power mean to you?

  • You’ll start saving the very first day of your system’s operation. How high is your current electric bill? You can expect to save around $90 a month from your solar energy system at Ashlake!


  • You can claim a one-time tax credit equal to 30% of your system’s cost. For example, on a $15,000 solar energy system, you’d be entitled to $4,500 in tax credits. Cha-ching!


  • When you purchase your home, it’s easy to finance your solar energy system through your mortgage.


  • Homes with a solar energy system provide more reliable power and have a better resale value in the Richmond market.


  • Your solar energy system will reduce your carbon footprint by lowering demand for electricity from coal or gas-fueled energy plants.



If want to learn more about how the solar energy system at Ashlake will work, please call Tom Gancsos at 804.347.4253.

Getting to know your team… Site Construction Superintendent, Mike Matchette

Categories: Blog | Posted: May 17, 2017

Cornerstone Homes is excited to introduce Mike Matchette, our Site Construction Superintendent at Barley Woods. Mike comes to us with over 30 years of experience in the home construction industry!


As our Site Construction Superintendent, Mike plays a vital role in the complete building process, including overseeing the daily construction activities for each home, maintaining building and safety standards, and working closely with our trade partners to maintain our high-quality building practices.


Mike will also be meeting and getting to know each and every Barley Woods homeowner at multiple scheduled construction meetings during the building process of your home.  He will make sure you are  familiar with and in love with every aspect of your new home!


“I’m excited to meet with our homeowners at the first pre-construction meeting,” Mike says. “I love to listen to their life experiences, and give them peace of mind, from start to finish, and beyond! This is an exciting phase of their lives and moving into a new home is exciting! ”


In his spare time, Mike enjoys trail riding on his ATV, metal detecting for artifacts, and visiting the many historical places in Fredericksburg and the rest of Virginia. 

5 Reasons History Buffs LOVE Living in Fredericksburg!

Categories: Blog | Posted: April 11, 2017

If there’s a history lover in your midst, they’ll be in heaven living in a Cornerstone home near Fredericksburg. This region of Virginia is overflowing with history, from the Native American tribes through the early American Colonists to the Civil War era.


  1. Colonial Times. Colonial-era history comes alive as you wander through Fredericksburg. From walking tours of historic Old Town, to the James Monroe Museum and Library, and Hugh Mercer’s Apothecary Shop, you’ll find an endless array of restored historical sites to transport you back in time, where you can party like it’s 1775.


  1. Civil War Sites. Button up your shell jacket and don’t forget your musket when you visit these sites! In Fredericksburg, you’re never too far from a Civil War battlefield or historical site. Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania County National Military Park encompasses four major battlefields of the Civil War – Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, The Wilderness, and Spotsylvania Courthouse. Other sites include the Trail to Freedom, Christ Episcopal Church, and the Confederate Cemetery.


  1. Historic Homes. If you find boxy, modern homes to be an eyesore, Fredericksburg has just the thing for you! To see one of the most beautiful historic homes in the country, you have to stop by Chatham. This home was built in the 18th century, served as a headquarters and hospital for the Union army during the Battle of Fredericksburg, and was a private residence until 1975! Most historic homes feature beautiful gardens, along with exhibits that tell the story of the time.  Visit George Washington’s Boyhood Home at Ferry Farm, where you can observe an active archeological lab! Or forget farmers and fossils, and visit the Historic Kenmore Plantation. George Washington’s sister and her husband built this beautiful, Georgian-style brick mansion.


  1. Native American History. Several Native American tribes occupied the area surrounding Fredericksburg. The Eagle Nest Trading Post in Spotsylvania offers a variety of services for those interested in Native American culture. Teaching and reaching across cultural boundaries is the main purpose of Eagles Nest Trading Post, including educational programs, community fairs and events, special presentations and handmade Native American arts, crafts, and clothing.


  1. The Grapes & Grain Trail. Enjoy Virginia’s “spirited” history! The trail wanders through many of the most beautiful and historic areas of Fredericksburg, Stafford, and Spotsylvania, and includes 5 wineries, 5 breweries, and a distillery. Experience farmhouse ales in a historic farm brewery, sip hand-crafted bourbon at a family-owned distillery, and slip away to a Tuscan winery only 45 minutes from DC.