Friday, December 26, 2008

ROLO 2.0.1

New & Improved
Now with Video!

Laura received a Flip video recorder for Christmas from her dad. That's it, on the right. It fits in the palm of your hand, has no tape or disc and is completely self contained. The best part, it shoots in HD, 60 minutes worth of video.

Laura was off work today, and I worked a half day. I headed out to the barn, where Laura was riding Little Horse indoors, to shoot some practice video.

So, here is our introductory video featuring Little Horse and Laura, enjoy!

-Rich & Laura -

Heated Grips and Fried Turkey!

Christmas day in Denver was 52 degrees and sunny. So, after a nice breakfast, Laura and I both went for a ride. Me on the motorcycle, Laura on Little Horse.

Here I am heading out for a ride around the city. It was great riding around downtown Denver on Christmas day, NO traffic at all! (Nice truck in the background, BTW ;) It was quite windy, so once I got over 50 mph, the heated handlebar grips really came in handy(they need to make those for mountain bikes, too).

In the evening, we hosted some friends' for Christmas dinner. The menu was fried turkey, green bean casserole and cheesy baked potatos, heart healthy to be sure!

This was the first time, since leaving Michigan in 2005, that we have not traveled back for the holiday. While, we missed being with family, we definitely made the best of the day.

- Rich -

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

What is Christmas? It is tenderness for the past, courage for the present, hope for the future. It is a fervent wish that every cup may overflow with blessings rich and eternal, and that every path may lead to peace. Agnes M. Pharo

- Laura & Rich-

Sunday, December 7, 2008

I'm a GS'r !

A what?

Before you get a chance to start putting your own word combinations together (which I'm sure would be evil, too! ), let me tell you what a GS'r is: GS refers to either Gelände/Straße (German: off-road/road) or Gelände Sport. In other words, there is a class of motorcycle called GS or dual sport, meant for both on road and off road travel.

There are untold miles of fire roads, old mining roads and unimproved dirt roads in the rocky mountains just waiting to be explored.

My friend David and I took the motorcycle safety course and got our "M" endorsements on our licenses back in October, with hopes of getting BMW GS bikes. David was looking at the F800GS and I was looking at the F650GS.

I was originally planning on waiting till spring, but besides being too impatient to wait, BMW announced a price increase on the wildly popular bikes at the first of the year. So, I decided to take the leap into motorcycle ownership!

I picked up the bike on Saturday. The weather was absolutely perfect this weekend, sunny and 60 degrees both days. So, between 1/2 day on Saturday and all day Sunday, I put 175 miles on the new bike. So, let's take a look:

This shot is with the optional panniers, for those overnight trips out to Moab, UT :)

This shot is without the panniers. There is NO storage on the bike, so I have the soft sided "day trip" bag on the back for small items.

Here I am posing in all my riding gear. Don't worry mom, I'm a huge proponent of all safety gear, all the time!

See Ya, I'm going riding!

-Rich -

BTW, Here is my friend David's bike, the 800GS. That's David in the background, preparing to take my bike for a little spin as we took a break from our 80 mile ride today

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving pizza...


We hope everyone has a great holiday weekend!

(It's amazing what Google Images comes up with)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Home Brew!

Our good friends' back in Michigan, George & Mary, make their own cranberry liqueur as soon as the fresh cranberries hit the stores. They always had it ready just in time for the holidays.

Since we won't be able to get home for the holiday's this year to enjoy their liqueur, we decided to make our own.

The recipe is pretty simple, the hardest part is the waiting ;)

Directions below if you want to try it yourself; or our batch will be ready December 19th!



4 1/2 cups (serving size: 1/4 cup)


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 (12-ounce) package fresh cranberries
  • 3 cups vodka


Combine sugar and water in a medium saucepan; cook over medium heat 5 minutes or until sugar dissolves, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, and cool completely.

Place cranberries in a food processor; process 2 minutes or until finely chopped. Combine sugar mixture and cranberries in a large bowl; stir in vodka.

Pour the vodka mixture into clean jars; secure with lids. Let stand 3 weeks in a cool, dark place, shaking every other day.

Strain the cranberry mixture through a cheesecloth-lined sieve into a bowl, and discard solids. Carefully pour liqueur into clean bottles or jars.

Note: Liqueur can be stored refrigerated or at room temperature for up to a year.

Nutritional Information

193 (0.0% from fat)
0.0g (sat 0.0g,mono 0.0g,poly 0.0g)
Cooking Light, DECEMBER 2003

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Having a great fall!

The new blog template doesn't add the date we make a post, so I've added it to the title. Rich tried to use a blog template outside of Blogger and now he can't change it. We may just wind up scrapping this blog and starting anew, or not.

Last weekend my dad and his girlfriend, Bobbi were here for 24 hours. It was a nice but quick visit. We had a great sushi lunch at Sushi Sasa. It's a pretty trendy place downtown. After lunch we went over to the barn so they could meet Little Horse and watch me ride. It was a quick ride since it was pretty warm in the sun (81 degrees) and everyone was getting hot, especially LH, who's sporting her winter coat. She was pretty miserable to be working in the heat. I can't say that I blame her. After a bit of relaxing at home, we went for an early dinner at The Flagstaff House in the foothills of Boulder. We got there at 5-ish, which turned out to be a perfect time. It was daylight when we got there, but turned dark during the time we had dinner. The scenery was spectacular! We had a fabulous dinner with some excellent wine that my dad picked out. The next morning we made breakfast, then took dad & Bobbi to the airport.

This weekend was a boys/girls weekend. On Saturday Rich scooted with David on his new big yellow motorcycle. It sounds like they went all over Denver, covering close to 50 miles. I trailered Little Horse over to my old barn where I went on a trail ride with my friend, Mary Jo and her 3 year old Saddlebred mare, Scarlett, or "Ms. Scarlett" as she's known. Since Ms. Scarlett is still new to being ridden, so we kept things at a walk. Little Horse was very accommodating, even doing a "courtesy spook" when Scarlett spooked so she wouldn't feel silly by spooking alone. We were out for close to 2 hours and had a great time. Afterwards, Mary Jo wanted to show me a Mexican restaurant she'd recently discovered, El Pelicano in Aurora.

On Sunday I went for a 3 hour trail ride with Aliza (David's wife). It started out cold and windy, with temps in the upper 40's. By the time we were 1/2 way through the sun came out, the wind died down, and it got up to 62. We rode over to Mary Jo's barn where they were having a horse costume contest. That was really cool to see! I should have taken pictures, but I didn't. On the long dirt road on our way home, we let our horses run. Little Horse was going so fast that it was scary fun!

While we were riding, the boys were mountain biking in the foothills at White Ranch. They called us when they got done, so we all met up for a Korean lunch/dinner (it was 3pm by now). It was a great weekend!


Sunday, October 5, 2008

Last Gymkhana of the Year!

On Saturday Rich (my official photographer), Little Horse and I loaded up the truck & horse trailer to head over to the Coal Creek arena (5 miles away) for the last gymkhana of the year, put on by the Aurora Horsemen's Association. This one wouldn't have happened, except it was a make-up date for a rain out 2 weeks ago. Normally I don't go to gymkhanas there because they don't start until 4pm and can go until 8pm, which means a loonnngg time in the hot sun. This time there was no hot sun, but the threat of rain, and the small number of people made thing go much quicker than before.

Because of the threat of rain, I only signed up to do barrels and in-line barrels. In-line barrels is a line of 3 barrels that you weave in & out of. Since the barrels were arranged in the "normal" pattern, Little Horse could get used to them during our 1/2 hour warm up. She's used to blue or black barrels, but there were 2 white ones. That can be scary! So we spent the majority of the warm up getting used to the scary white barrels.

Here's a pic of Little Horse and I before we got warmed up in her finest gymkhana bling:

Here we are doing our barrel practice:

Then they called the end of the warm up so they could start the gymkhana. We had to wait for the kids to go through before they called our class, Novice 19+. Little Horse was a little hesitant to go in the arena, but once she started, she shocked even me. She dug in and turned barrels far better than she ever had. Here's an example:

We wound up beating our previous best time by 4 seconds, turning in a time of 23 seconds, which was good enough for 2nd place. Here's how I looked after our barrel run:

Our next event was in-line barrels. But before our turn it started to rain. It wasn't a downpour, but the wind kicked up, so there was blowing rain & dust. Little Horse showed me what horses do and turned our butts to it. I have to say, rain and wind on the back was better than full-on in the face. After we waited our turn, it was time for in-line barrels. But they changed everything around, so the white barrels were totally scary again!!! The first two were white, so she shied away from them, then she carved the final (blue) barrel. When I turned her to run back to the gate, I could momentarily feel her coil like a spring, then she shot forward, at a full gallop! I could barely get her turned so we didn't run into the gate. Our time for that event was 22 seconds, good enough for 3rd place.

All in all, it was a good day!


Sunday, September 28, 2008

A Hard to Beat Weekend!

It was a great start to fall here in Denver this past weekend. Here's why:

Last week the Denver Athletic club had it's kick-off the season squash tournament. I signed up for two divisions; 40+ and beginner open. I got knocked out of the 40+ group in the first round. However, I made it to the finals in the beginner group! The finals were Friday evening and before a wild crowd of 5 or 6 , I won, 3-1! Scores were 9-1, 9-5, 7-9, 9-5, so it was pretty close the whole time!

Next, my friend David and I signed up to take the Motocycle saftey course to get our 'M' endorsement on our licences. The class was going to be all day Saturday out on the practice course as well as some class room work. Sunday was going to be some warm up exercises followed up by our timed and scored range evaluation and a multiple choice exam. We both passed with flying colors, so watch out Denver, we're both legal and saving our pennies for motorcycles :)

Since I was on the motorcycle range all day Saturday and Sunday, Laura took advantage of the fabulous fall weather to ride little horse.

On Saturday, she went to Longmont to practice chasing cows. Then, on Sunday, she and her friend Aliza loaded up their horses in the trailer and did a three hour ride at the Chatfield recreation area in the foothills south of Golden.

Finally, to cap it all off, I'll be starting a new job on Monday! But, I'll save that for another post.


Saturday, September 20, 2008

Scooters Take Over!

Today, scooters took over the streets of Denver, Sportique Scooters sponsored:

I didn't hear the actual rider count, but based on these pics I'm guessing somewhere between 60-75 scooters took part in the ride.

Laura and I were just about in the middle of the pack, the first pic is looking forward, the next looking back; As you can see, it was a long line of scooters.

The ride was about 3 hours (including stops) and covered about 50 miles all around Denver.

After the ride there was BBQ and a live band, a great way to finish up a fantastic day of riding!

I took lot's of pictures throughout the day, you can go to our Smug Mug Gallery to see them all.

Great Day!

-Rich & Laura-

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Snuggles Makes a New Friend!

Laura and I were Scoot'n around our neighborhood last week when we came across a lady walking a dog and a cockatoo; You don't see that very often, so we stopped to chat. After talking for a while we decided our 'toos should meet up.

Here is Snuggy meeting Monty for the fist time. Monty was inquisitive and Snuggy was stand-offish (as usual). Despite the fact that Monty is quite a bit bigger then Snuggles, they were on Snuggy's turf, so Snug was the dominate too.

I don't know if Snug is interested in seeing Monty again, but we're looking forward to hanging out with Kelly and her husband Jeremy sometime in the near future.


Friday, September 12, 2008

Playing catchup!

OK, I've been pretty 'lame'(scroll down to see why) about keeping the blog up since the DNC was in town! So, I got caught up and posted a few entries all at the same time, scroll down to catch up and we'll try a little harder to update on a regular basis (no promises though)


New Object of Desire!

Since acquiring my 'scoot', back in May, I've been bitten by the two wheel bug really, no, REALLY bad!

We love exploring downtown with the scoots without having to worry about parking(both spaces and cost), as we can park them anywhere you park a regular bicycle. 90+MPG helps too and has us both using our car/truck a lot less. In fact, I've gone from filling the Subaru up weekly to once every 2 or 3 weeks (that will change once the snow starts to fly). And, while Laura needs the f-250 to transport the horse around, it's just not practical around downtown.

But, I have a need, a need to go 2 wheeling up into the mountains, on those twisty roads and on the freeways! The scoots, even though they'll do 55-60, just are not meant for serious highway travel.

So, I've got my eye on one of these:

It's the 2009 f 650 GS; A 'dual sport' bike meant for urban commuting and 'light' off road use like dirt and fire roads that are so prevalent up in the mountains!

I don't have a lot of experience with 'real' motorcycles, so I'm taking a basic rider course the 3rd week of September to give me the basic info I need to get started and to get my motorcycle endorsement on my driver license.

So, I need to start saving my pennies. Hopefully, I can get this by next spring. Now the real question....How do I get a rack like the one below??


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

On top of the World.... least as close as I've ever been!

One day after getting the stitches out and being cleared by the doctor, we had scheduled to go up to Salida and bike the Continental Divide, also known as the Monarch Crest trail!

We really love Salida, in the banana belt of the mountains, the weather always seems to be fabulous there! We found these great little cabins along the Arkansas river to stay. The activities around the area are endless; superb biking, hiking, horse back riding, rafting, hot springs and unique little restaurants. We went up with our friends David and Aliza.

The girls dropped us off at the top of Monarch Pass where our adventure would begin. The girls had their own plans....

...they rented ATV's to ride some of the very same trail we were going to ride but we had nearly 30 miles to go before we would meet up with them!

We started at 11,300', but our goal was 12,600; So the trail started out with a 3.5 mile climb to get us to the summit! I've gotten a lot better at climbing at altitude in the past year, but still have a lot of trouble over 10,000'. This is only the second time I have ridden my bike at this elevation. The views all around us were amazing! Here is David making his way towards the summit.

Almost there! That peak just to my left at 12,600'. The landscape up that high isn't much more then granite. The sun was intensely hot but we had a very cold stiff wind I guess had to be over 20 mph! We spent the next 12 miles going in and out of the treeline between 10,000 and 12,000 feet. The terrain kept changing from the open, rocky area you see here to dense, twisty forest with pine needle lined trail. It for a fantastic bike ride with a little bit of everything thrown in to keep you on your toes!

Here is a poorly drawn graphic of our general path in and out of the treeline as we made our way back down from the summit.

We made our decent along, and sometimes in, the Silver creek. Near the end of the ride, a blazing fast 5 mile 4X4 road(I saw 32 mph on the computer) back into town, we ran into these 2 crazy girls on quads!

We knew they would riding some of the same trail, but we never figured we'd actually run into them out there!

The girls' had a blast on the quads and they were glad they chose the non guided tour so they go where they fast as they wanted :)

We finished the day with a fabulous dinner at the Laughing Ladies in downtown Salida, and a long hot tub. This was my first big epic ride, nearly 5 hours, since we moved here....and I can't wait to do another one!


Wednesday, September 3, 2008


There has not been a lot to post lately! A few days before the DNC started here, I took a pretty serious spill over the handlebars of my mountain bike, cutting open my left shin. The gash was big enough to lay your thumb into, and a little longer then the typical thumb(I'll spare you any pictures)!

Besides the 18 stitches in my shin, I had a huge egg sized knot on my calf, behind the cut,(from the bike crashing down on top of me I'm sure) that made it nearly impossible to walk for 5 days.

So, the labor day holiday was a pretty quite one around here. We did manage to 'scoot' downtown to the Taste of Colorado for some tasty treats and good music! We were treated to a free concert by John Waite (Babies in the 70's, solo artist 80's, Bad English 90's).

Now that the stitches are out, it's time to get back at it and do some things to blog about ;)


Friday, August 29, 2008

Is it Time for Change?

It was a long, crazy and amazing day! I got the pictures' uploaded, but have too much going on right now to do a full write up. In the meantime, you can go to our smugmug site and view the pictures.

Either Laura or I will get you the full write up soon! I'll say this; The energy in the stadium was amazing...

I think change is in the air!


Thursday, August 28, 2008

From DNC

Greetings from the security line at Invesco Field for Barack Obama's
acceptance speech!

We were not lucky enough to win the ticket lottery, but it's good to
have relatives in high places ;)

I'll bet the line is a mile long. More as we get in!

sent from Rich's iPhone

UPDATE- We got through the line in about an hour and half. The cell networks were pretty much overloaded and all the signals mixing around the stadium from the media made any updates impossible. The mood and energy in the stadium was unbelievable!

Look for an update once I sort through and post some pictures. Rich

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Long time, no update

Yes, we've been lame with our updates, so I'll have to put a few events into one blog.

About two weeks ago we had so much fun at Beaver Creek that we took our friends David & Aliza up there. Aliza & I went on an "advanced" horseback trail ride. The advanced part meant that we loped (went faster than usual) and did some steep terrain. The boys took their bikes for some chairlift mountain biking, but only got 2 runs in before a thunderstorm closed the lifts. Here's a picture of David's bike riding the chairlift:

Last weekend Rich went on a bike ride and I went to Lafayette to chase cows. Little Horse does pretty well at anything I toss at her, but she REALLY loves cows! I work on walking her around them so she doesn't always think she has to run after them. But if my heels just brush her sides (or I even think about going faster), she's off like a racehorse and I'm hanging on because she'll turn on a dime to keep with a cow.

Last week we finally got to do something I've been wanting to do since we moved here....go to Water World!!! We thought we'd wait until Labor Day last summer, to avoid the crowds, but they closed on Labor Day! So this time we went after most schools had started, but before the park closed. We read up on tips on my favorite review site, Yelp. We learned to bring water shoes to avoid our feet getting torn up on the cement. They got torn up anyway, but we had fun. It was a beautiful, 80 degree sunny day. There were all kinds of rides and hardly any lines. We spent about 4 hours there, including lunch, then came home and took naps. These things take a lot out of us!

We were going to do the Monster Scooter Ride, sponsored by a local scooter store today, but it's been in the low 50's and raining since Thursday night, so the ride was cancelled. We're loving the cool temps, but we're getting a little tired of all the rain. It hasn't rained this much since April of last year. The news said we've gotten more rain than we have for April-July....combined! Guess the dry spell is over.

Below I've posted some pics from our day at Water World:


Thursday, July 24, 2008

Impromptu Weekend Getaway -or-

Rich Can Ride a Horse too!

Last weekend it hit 101 both Saturday and Sunday in downtown Denver. Laura and I wanted to escape the heat, so we drove up to Beaver Creek ski area. Neither one of us had ever been to Beaver Creek in the summer. We'd only been there in the winter for skiing.

The place looks a lot different in the summer. The lifts were running hikers and bikers up to the top. Man, I wished I had brought my bike! We're talking about going back next weekend with some friends to do some downhill biking! This time, however, we came to ride horses. After hanging out in the village during the day, we decided to do an early evening dinner at Beano's Cabin.

During ski season, you take a horse drawn sleigh up the mountain to the cabin. Today we were taking a 45 minute horse ride up to the top where a fabulous dinner awaited us. Laura had been to Beano's, on a family ski trip, quite a few years ago. So, she knew we were in for a great meal!

The plan was to spend Saturday night in Eagle (WAY less expensive then staying in BC!) and get an early start, Sunday morning, to the 4 Eagle Ranch, where we were going to do a cattle drive.

Laura, myself and our "wrangler" Hannah had the job of finding the cattle herd (somewhere out on 500+ acres) and getting the group of 50 head back to the ranch where they would be checked out.

It took us about an hour to find the herd up on top of a mesa sunning themselves. Most were laying down and not too happy to see us! Our first priority was to get them all up and headed into the general direction of the ranch.

Hannah is supervising me grouping the herd together!

Below, is my view from the cockpit as I trot the stragglers to keep up with the rest of the herd.

Laura guides the herd towards a watering hole, before moving them towards the ranch.

Hannah got this shot of us as we waited for the herd to get their drinks in before making our final push to the holding pen.

The cattle drive was a great experience! With Laura's help(remember, she took a herding clinic back in June) I almost looked like I knew what I was doing. She used plates and salt and pepper shakers, back at Beano's, to demonstrate how to approach the herd and individual cattle to get them to move the way you want. The tips worked like a charm too!

Stay tuned for downhill mountain biking from Beaver Creek, next weekend.