Many of the doors inside the lodge are antiques from India. Indian accents are found throughout the house, evoking memories of a mission trip the Hill family took.
The doors from the kitchen to the hallway are Peruvian and were crafted around the year 700 A.D.
The front and back doors of the lodge were made from a blackjack tree that once stood at the entrance to the farm.
The cedar used throughout the lodge was recovered from the property. A carpenter set up shop in the loft for more than six months to mill and distress the woodwork throughout, then crafted it into the custom cabinetry and trim.
An eight-step distressing process helped blend the freshly milled lumber with the antique doors and features throughout the home. The carpenters didn’t hold back, using a chisel, torch, awl and other tools to create the weathered look, then hand-rubbing the planks with stain and liquid wax. Brian estimates they finished about 100 linear feet each day this way.
The chandeliers hanging inside and outside the lodge are made of real antlers and were custom made at a shop in White Oak, Texas. A strong storm took down one of the massive chandeliers outside and it had to be replaced – this time with additional chains to keep it in place!
The handprints hanging in the entryway hold a special place in the Hills’ heart.
Several years ago, the government planned to shut down a school in an African village because its building had been condemned. The Hills donated the funds to rebuild the Good Shepherd School. The children put their handprints on some of the boards from the torn-down school, and friends helped sneak the boards through customs as a thank-you gift to the Hills.
Another precious piece is the Redento Raffinato glass vase created for the Hill family by Bella Forte Studio in Edmond. “Redento” means “redeemed” and “raffinato” means “elegance” in Italian. Each of the Hill children selected a color to represent his or her life, and broken pieces of glass were transformed into a priceless piece of art.
The vase is a metaphor for how God makes something beautiful and elegant out of broken pieces in our lives. Nothing is wasted. In his book “Broken Pieces,” Brian’s friend Ross Hill (no relation) explores how this metaphor has manifested itself in his life and others’.
The saddle was Brian’s when he was a child. The hat rack was a housewarming gift from the carpenter who worked for months on the lodge. The unique mirror was made from a cottonwood burl.
The dining table and coffee table were custom made and fit together to form an even longer long conference table. Behind the sofa is a jeweler’s bench from England.
The flowers hanging from the ceiling are held in a cottonwood burl and suspended from a rope swing Brian used as a child. The canvas photo of Brian walking across a field is called “I See the Day” and was taken by his niece.
The mysterious artifact on the piano is a saguaro cactus.
The antique bathtub was given to the Hill family by a friend they met through Leadership Oklahoma.
The downstairs bedroom features an antique bed, a custom antler chandelier, and different animal skins, including the skin of an axis deer, a spotted deer found in Africa. The closet features a garden gate door from India.
The knife set was a gift from friends. The knives were hand-made from antlers. The copper countertop was hammered by hand, and the bowls are from Africa.
The Pocahontas Room features a headboard and footboard that were made out of antique closet doors from India.
The bed in the Wild West Room was made with the Hills’ sons in mind.
The natural wood bed in the Great Frontier Room comes from Crested Butte, Colorado, where the family vacations each Fourth of July.
The tracks embossed in the patio represent the different wildlife native to property, including beaver, quail and cougar.
The dinner bell was originally at Brian’s parents’ house.
Brian’s grandfather’s farm equipment is displayed throughout the property. The iconic blue truck is similar to the one his grandfather drove. And the massive stone slabs that sculpt the landscape were mined and moved by Brian over several years.