Thinking of all those affected by Hurricane Sandy

My thoughts and prayers are with all of those affected by Hurricane Sandy. I know there is a long road ahead of clean up - mourning - rebuilding - and getting back to "normal". I feel distant from it all being in Colorado Springs... but I'm thinking of you all!

Fall in Colorado and Hash Running

Turn up your sound (I'm having difficulties getting the sound when I video to be the appropriate level) - and enjoy this 30 second clip about lovely fall weather in Colorado Springs and my first hash run!

An Easy Appliance Fix

Garbage Disposal Stops

Garbage Disposals are designed to shut off when they are jammed to the point of stalling the motor. This is to prevent motor burn out. They also are designed so you can dislodge whatever is inhibiting operation. Underneath the unit you will see a hex-head slot. All units should come with a wrench to match the slot, but if you have misplaced it, don't fret; an Allen key will work just as well.
1. First, and most importantly, unplug the unit. Locate the slot in the center of the underside of the unit.
2. Next, fit the wrench into the slot and work it back and forth so the blades move. Continue doing this until the unit is spinning without resistance.
3. With the unit spinning freely, plug it back in and press the reset button. Now test the unit while running a lot of water.

History & Heritage of Colorado

Whether you live in Colorado, want to move here or are thinking about visiting here, I love learning about the history and heritage of our state. I'm sure if you live in or near Colorado Springs, most of us have all driven the Pikes Peak Highway or ridden the Cog Railway, visited Cave of the Winds and Manitou Cliff Dwellings... but there is so much more to our state that I haven't explored!  Again, whether you live here or not, there is PLENTY to do in our state - many things that I didn't even know we offered. Enjoy checking out the links below and I hope you'll come back to my site to read more.

Do you enjoy learning about dinosaurs? At Dinosaur National Monument, Dinosaur Ridge and Picketwire Canyonlands, you can walk the same paths Colorado’s prehistoric dinosaurs. At the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, the Dinosaur Journey Museum and the Rocky Mountain Dinosaur Resource Center, explore interactive exhibits about Colorado dinosaurs and learn about other creatures from Colorado’s history.

At the Ancestral Puebloans, Mesa Verde National Park, Hovenweep National Monument and the Anasazi Heritage Center you can experience Colorado's earliest human residents. Colorado’s history is full of rich American Indian heritage that can be experienced at galleries and festivals across the state, in addition to history museums and sites such as the Ute Indian Museum, Koshare Indian Museum and along the Trail of the Ancients Scenic and Historic Byway.

The exploration of the West and life on the frontier can be seen at numerous historic Colorado forts, including Bent’s Old Fort, Fort Garland and Fort Uncompahgre. Along the Frontier Pathways Scenic and Historic Byway, travelers can experience living on the new frontier and the views that rewarded the settlers as they arrived at the base of the mountains.

The 19th-century mining boom drew many people to Colorado with a hope of striking it rich. Today, travelers can experience a mining train trip 3,000 feet into the Bachelor Syracuse Mine in southwest Colorado and see the prosperous, historic main streets of mining towns such as Breckenridge, Leadville and Central City.

For more information, visit Colorado History & Heritage.

Mortgage Settlement Money Available to some Colorado Borrowers

Colorado borrowers who lost their homes to foreclosures between Jan. 2, 2008 and Dec. 31, 2011 might be eligible for payment under the $25 billion national mortgage foreclosure settlement.

Attorney General John Suthers sent a letter this week for eligible borrowers to file claims, which must be returned no later than Jan. 18.

Eligible borrowers had mortgages serviced by Ally/GMAC, Bank of America, Citibank, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo, the nation’s five largest mortgage servicers that agreed to the settlement with the federal government and attorneys general for 49 states and the District of Columbia.

Read more at The Colorado Springs Business Journal

Mortgage Rates Remain at All Time Low - But Getting Approved is Becoming Harder

Demand for mortgages from homebuyers and homeowners refinancing continues to rise, as rates continue to find new record lows in the wake of the Federal Reserve's latest round of mortgage bond purchases.

But mortgage underwriting standards -- largely dictated by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Housing Administration -- remain tight, and mortgages are difficult to obtain for those with less than sterling credit.

Rates for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.36 % for the week ending Oct. 4, down from 3.40% last week and 3.94% a year ago, Freddie Mac said in releasing the results of its latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey. That's a new low in Freddie Mac records dating to 1971.

Homeowners who refinance are frequently interested in a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage. Those rates averaged 2.69%, down from 2.73% last week and 3.26% a year ago. That's a new low in records dating to 1991.

Rates on five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) loans averaged 2.72%, up from 2.71% last week but down from 2.96% a year ago. Rates on five-year ARM loans hit a low in records dating to 2005 of 2.69% during the week ending July 19.

Full story from Inman News

Skateboarder Gets Tangled Up With Deer On Lookout Mountain « CBS Denver

Skateboarder Gets Tangled Up With Deer On Lookout Mountain « CBS Denver

Home Prices Continue to Grow

In August, we saw the biggest annual increase in national home prices since 2006. Nationally, home prices are up 4.6 percent from August of 2011 according to CoreLogic's home price index.  Most U.S. states showed home price gains in August.  The states that saw depreciation in home sales were Rhode Island, Illinois, New Jersey, Alabama, & Connecticut. The 5 states with the highest annual price appreciation were Arizona (18.2%), Idaho (10.4%), Nevada (9%), Utah (8.9%) and Hawaii (8%).

Another CoreLogic index that is based on Multiple Listing Service Data across the country predicts that September will prove to have a home price gain of approximately 6.3% over September of 2011.

Crock Pot Recipe for Fall

If you live in or around Colorado Springs, you know that fall is a wonderful time of year. The mornings are cool, the days are pleasant to warm and the evenings are once again cool (or even downright cold!). Fall makes me think of soups and chilis and other crock pot recipes and I wanted to share a Chicken, Pasta & Bacon recipe with you that is delicious.



  • vegetable oil, about 2 tablespoons
  • 4 to 6 chicken breast halves, or use 3 pounds chicken parts
  • 6 slices of bacon
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 8 ounces elbow macaroni or small shells, cooked
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes, crumbled


Brown chicken, a few pieces at a time in oil and drain Fry bacon lightly in the same pan, remove, set aside and pour off all fat. Place chicken and bacon in slow cooker; add onion, salt, pepper and broth. Cover and cook on low 7 to 8 hours, high 3 to 4 hours, or until chicken is tender. Turn to high, add hot cooked macaroni and parsley flakes. Cook 15 minutes longer; taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.
Serves 4 to 6.
Here are a few great Slow Cooker Recipe web sites that I enjoy:
Williams-Sonoma                            My Recipes
Taste of Home                                All Recipes
Martha Stewart                              Food Network
The above recipe was taken from Southern Food.