Friday, January 30, 2009

Hobbit-hole in Winter

Buried in Snow

It has been so snowy this winter (22 year record) that I haven't gotten any work done on the hobbit-hole. I couldn't even get any pictures taken of the completed retaining walls before everything was buried. You can see the ones on the far side here, their tops sticking up above the snow. I hope I have at least built all this to withstand the first winter. Next spring, I will finish the exterior with some brick and stucco, so that it isn't just OSB with generous amounts of caulking and wood sealant.

Sledding on the Hobbit-hole!

The kids couldn't wait for a proper snowfall; a couple of inches was enough for them. The first skiff of snow, and they were all over the hobbit-hole on their sleds. This was back in mid-December. Earlier in the day, it had been warm enough for me to work outside without a coat. I was frantically working on some last minute winterization measures, knowing this storm was coming. As the snow began to fall; I hurriedly tossed a thin layer of dirt up onto the pipe so that the snow would stick and the kids would have a halfway-decent slope to sled down. The kids all watched with excitement as I froze my buns off shoveling dirt, and as the snow began to accumulate. No sooner did we have enough snow to hide all the dirt, then they were all out there lining up to sled down; and they didn't come in for 3 hours! It doesn't take a very big hill to make it a ton of fun for the kids. And they didn't care that the dirt was loose and got mixed with the snow. As long as they had a fairly smooth track to go down, they were willing to put up with the difficult slog back up. More recently, we have had a ton more snow, and the kids have been out there sledding time and again. I can't wait until we have it properly covered with more dirt, and with sod!

A hobbit-hole in my backyard? It may sound crazy, but I can tell you that my kids love it. It is the coolest playhouse ever. Plus, they can enjoy the grassy hill for sledding in winter and water sliding in summer. This was all my wife's idea. She dreamt it, and I got to be the one to bring it to reality. I'm not a construction expert; this was a total do-it-yourself job by a complete amateur. It has turned out rather nicely, I think. Here is the story of how it came to be.

Since this is in blog format, the posts are in order from newest to oldest. To read this in chronological order, start with How it all Began and use the "Newer Post" links. Or click on the links under Blog Archive, in order.
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