About Mike & Laura Lee

The world is full of rules, be the exception!

At age 60, my husband Mike and I left suburbia in Fort Collins to build a custom passive solar home looking at the spectacular Sangre de Cristo mountains in southern Colorado…   


Go share this adventure with us…

 A Memoir of Retirement: From Suburbia to Solar in Southern Colorado

 laura-and-mike-wedding-day-2005Mike and I met online at age 50 in 2005, and even then we shared a dream. We both wanted to move to some wonderful rural place and build a passive solar home with an incredible view. Unfortunately, life got   in the way for a decade or so…

Then in mid-2014 our time came. We sold our nice suburban home, and headed south to build on a great forested lot at the top of the foothills west of Walsenburg.

Sunset over the Spanish Peaks

The view from our new home!

In June 2014 we packed up or got rid of most of our worldly goods, sold our house in Fort Collins, and took one big leap of faith, building our wings on the way down. We both turn 60 this year, so we decided to call ourselves the NEW Old Farts. Here we share this major lifestyle change from both of our perspectives, including the thrills and spills of building solar from the footers up!

laura-rasta-xmas-2012Being a writer and psychotherapist, I enjoy sharing the emotional side of starting over in a whole new environment in rural Colorado. Most of the photos here are also mine… Rasta, our pint-size pup, acted as our general contractor, doing everything possible to make this thing happen faster!


Mike is about to turn cartwheels because we FINALLY have a slab!!!


Construction in mid-winter in Colorado!


We applied for a building permit in mid-2014, and moved in August 1st, 2015. Then we discovered another great benefit from the passive solar construction of our new home. It keeps us cool in the summer as well as warm in the winter. I have slowly fallen in love with living in tune with the sun, the seasons, and nature. I wake every day, amazed to find myself in such a beautiful, quiet, natural place…

Do you want to learn more? My memoir of this challenge is available now!

To learn more about this BEAUTIFUL part of the USA go here!

Please feel free to contact me: MidlifeCrisisQueen@gmail.com

Please follow us on TWITTER!

8 thoughts on “About Mike & Laura Lee

  1. Pingback: Looking for love in all the wrong place? | author Laura Lee Carter

  2. When we lived in an apt. in Denver all the homes near us were Solar and we thought how wonderful..I inquired about the cost and upkeep this was in 1976 before we purchased our home in Aurora it was fantastic..We also adored Fort Collins many I worked with came from Fort Collins to work at the VA medical center pharmacy and at Colorado health science center..You have lived in the areas we really liked, my husband traveled and he did get to Walsenburg for his job, it is lovely————–enjoy your peaceful and lovely home!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  3. From time to time i do a search on google for…..”libre commune colorado” or something close to those words…this time my search brought up your site…..refreshing…..i first became aware of the area back in 1968…..when i was 21…..we came for a brief week stay at a cabin on a small piece of land just south and next to the property that was later to become “libre”…..i was on the “dry creek side (east)and the people who bought the land were on the “turkey creek” side (west)…..i don’t recall how or where but i eventually met the owners……dean/linda fleming…..peter rabbit…and many others…..long story short…..i stayed the summer there and helped build the various structures…..it’s a place like no other….remote….the views toward the mountains across the valley look almost prehistoric….magic…..it’s a place to really live…..it’s a place to become alive in and with….i have never forgotten the power of that space….even at 68….it’s like i have never left!!!!…..i am very happy you have found your place…..or is it that the “place” found you…..michael/tucson


  4. Thanks for reading and commenting Michael! Yes Libre and its remaining inhabitants are amazing to me. Love going over to visit them. The power of this place is not lost on us. I feel like I live in heaven most days. I’m not sure who found who, but I’m staying here until I breathe my last breath.


  5. I love discovering blogs written by people who “Go For It!” And I love your desire for passive solar design. Living with an architect who truly values sustainability, I’m so glad I found your blog, and will love following YOUR Encore Voyage!



  6. What a great story, Laura! Your home looks beautiful, and your adventure inspires me. We put solar on the home about 4 years ago. We still have propane, but our bills are very low. Our little house sits on an acre in the capital of agricultural/oranges & cattle country overlooking the Sierra Nevadas. However, my first husband and I lived in Colorado Springs, CO for three years while he went to college, then we moved to CA. After he passed away, I stayed, remarried, and enjoy the mountain view here – without snow! 🙂 You live in a beautiful area, Royal Gorge, not too far from you. Enjoy your dreams, and keep sharing them! 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s