Why is the Water Foaming?…..Gotta Get Organized Here.

They were men once.

Great Kings of men.

Then Sauron the deceiver gave them rings of power.

Blinded by their greed they took them without question, falling into darkness.

Now they are slaves to Sauron’s will.

They are the Nazgul, Ringwraiths neither living nor dead.

At all times they feel the presence of the Ring, drawn to the power of the One.

They will never stop hunting you…..


Aragorn telling the Hobbits what it is that is following them.


So just keep in mind sometimes it’s the question that is at the heart of the matter.


They should have asked more questions. Don’t you think?

Let’s not go there Jim.


Welcome once again to the Hobbit Hollow Construction Blog!  Had to get a little Lord of the Rings stuff in there.  It’s just me. Every once in a while I sit down to do this and a line from the movie won’t leave my head. It’s just what happens when you’re a Lord of the Rings nerd.  What can I tell you.

So I had a minor panic attack the other day. That’s always fun. I wake up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom, finish up and go to wash my hands and there’s no water coming out of the faucet. So that woke me up really, really fast. The first thing that went through my mind was that I somehow left the water on out at the pool when we closed up the pool last weekend. Like, OH MY GOD I JUST RAN OUR WELL DRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So I was more than  a bit concerned as I put my shorts on at 3am in the morning. Moped accidents are one thing, running your well dry is quite another.

I have to give you the short version here cause it’s way too involved. The bottom line is when I had the well hooked up over at the Hobbit house the well guy said you shouldn’t use a water softener to treat the water. (You can contaminate the aquifer with salt over time! I never knew that.) So back at my home I have a water softener and I wanted to see how much water came out of the machine when it ran through it’s cycle. So I set up a 5 gallon pail to see how much salt water comes out of this thing. Well. It overflowed the 5 gallon pail and as it was doing so Ethan happened to walk into the garage after a night out on the town. He shut the water off as this was happening because the garage was flooding. After I went down there at 3am I saw that the valve was in the off position.

So I fixed it.

Then I went upstairs to wash my hands…..and the water is all kind of foamy. Great. And guess what it tastes like? Just imagine taking a large tablespoon of salt and swallowing it.  Do it. Imagine it. They wouldn’t even do that on that show “Survivor”.  I did it. That woke me up again. What a morning.

Hobbit house anyone?

Yeah. So  I finally bit the bullet and got myself organized over at the Hobbit. It was a long time coming to be honest. I made a bunch of shelves in the closet and did a decent cleanup. It looks really good in there now. I  took a picture of it but I’m having trouble getting it into my blogs photo library. If I get it to go I’ll put it in. It’s a worthy picture as far as I’m concerned. Even if it doesn’t sound like much. Shelves with a bunch of crap on them! Yeah can’t wait to see that one Jim!!

Closet organizer

I did start my initial foray into finishing the front of the house. A lot of little stuff has to get done so it doesn’t seem like much but it really is quite a bit. Let me show you.

Got the framing started for the trim and siding.

So really all it is is putting the filter fabric up and then attaching the horizontal 2×4 PT to the front of the house. I used 8 inch long timber lock screws to hold the first 2×4 in place screwed right into the studs. Remember we’re going through a 2×4 then 4 inches of styrofoam before we get to the plywood sheathing.

So I’m putting three pressure treated 2×4’s together here. The last one I put on I used 4 1/2 inch exterior grade screws to install it. So I made sure that first one I put on with the timber lock screws was on really good. Everything else is hanging off of the first one.

4 1/2 inch screws holding the last 2×4 on.

The last 2×4 has to be level. Pretty much on the money or things might look stupid and we don’t want that. I used a little stick and my 4 foot level to get it nice.

Leveling the last 2×4.

I’ve also been working on the electrical in the morning. I finished up the dining room wiring this weekend. Not much to see there but it was satisfying nonetheless.

So the plan for next weekend is to try and set up a template for the curved trim around the exterior windows. There’s a company out in Ohio that will custom bend Azek trim. They just need a template and they will take care of the rest. Very reasonably priced as far as I’m concerned. It’s a three week lead time so I really need to try and get that done. Part of the critical path if you will.

Enjoy your week!


PS: And make sure you don’t drink the foamy water coming out of your faucet!




5 thoughts on “Why is the Water Foaming?…..Gotta Get Organized Here.”

  1. Hi Jim, Yes, I am from the NY area, and I see that there was a second fatality yesterday, this one at Hudson Yards. Unclear to me at this time what cause was. Perhaps you know more? Also, I am considerably older than you, and am retired. Thanks to a lifetime of work (and a good union) between pension, Social Security and 401k, do not have financial worries. As a Lord of the Rings fan, I enjoy seeing various people put their love of the story into building their interpretations. I especially like to see quality construction that will “endure”. Any fool can slap together a children’s play shack that will fall apart in two years, but it takes dedication to build something that will last. That was what impressed me about Arthur Quarmby’s house, not just his impressive vision, but the fact that 42 years later, it is still “as good as new”, and most importantly, does not leak! Of course, he had more money than both of us put together, but I refuse to be seduced by the false god of envy, and instead say “well good for him”, same thought I have about your project. Anyway, keep up the good work, and as always, best wishes………….john

  2. Horrible tragedy today in Financial district, a reminder that short-cuts and complacency kill. Please be safe in everything you do.

    • That’s really nice of you to say John. Thanks for thinking of me. Yes. What you say is true. I’ve had my share of construction accidents. Numerous close calls as well.

      I don’t think there has ever been a day in my construction career that I haven’t thought about the danger of my surroundings or the danger of the environment that I’m in or about to enter.

      That being said I’m wondering how you came to know about this accident? Are you from the New York area? (Not really sure if you mentioned that in your first message way back when.)

      I also looked up your buddy over in Yorkshire. Some house he put together. Nice countryside as well. Went for a different look than I but he put a lot of thought into what he wanted to create. Pretty cool.


  3. for some reason, that link did not work. Try searching “Underhill by Quarmby”, and click on the link to the Examiner. In addition to the video, check out the photo gallery, 14 pictures, like I said, takes a bit of time to load…..john

  4. Well, your project continues to improve. I see what you meant about the door trim adding depth and definition to the house. What can I say except “Bravo”. I look forward to seeing what that company does with the Azek. Now here’s another “Hobbit House”, more of a Hobbit Mansion really, built 42 years ago, and still in tip-top shape. Recently sold for $980,000 – a bit rich for my blood, and probably for yours as well! And anyway, a bit far to travel, especially since we Hobbits don’t like to cross oceans – fear of drowning you know. That’s how poor Frodo’s parents died, drownded you know. But it sure is nice to look at. So here it is, complete with an interview with the architect/builder. http://www.examiner.co.uk/news/west-yorkshire-news/undergroundhouse-huddersfield-amazingviews-11641977. You have probably already seen it, but some of your many readers may have not. Takes a bit of time to load, the electrons have to bounce back and forth to England so be patient, it’s worth it. As always, best wishes……john


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