The trains that roar through Castle Rock are beautiful (and noisy) things.  Some Castle Rock residents want to move the tracks to the west side of I-25 (for obvious safety reasons).  I am against this as I believe that the Train is a necessary component to our small town lifestyle and I personally love it!  Without the Train we wouldn’t have small town traffic jams, moving buildings, rattling windows, loss of sleep and necessary pauses in conversation to ponder the little pleasures in life.  The Train is so interwoven into our lives in Historic Castle Rock, that we sometimes take it for granted.  Not me.

I used to live right next to the train tracks…and I mean within 50 feet of the tracks.  The house was built in the early 1900’s and the foundation was actually made out of old railroad ties.  While the tracks on the west side of town are for the trains traveling south with cars full of coal, the tracks that run through downtown Castle Rock (right behind my old home) are for northbound trains that are usually empty.  Well, it stands to reason that empty trains go faster than full trains.

There was this conductor that I had aptly named the ‘Blowhard’.  Never met the guy (could have been a girl for all I know).  Anyway, most nights this conductor worked the very early morning shift…about 1:00 am.  This Train woke me up even before reaching town.  Blowhard would start laying on his horn at about the Plum Creek area south of Castle Rock and would continue laying on it as he (or she) roared through Town doing at least 55 miles an hour.  The ground would literally move when this train came through.

Eventually, my boys and I started sleeping through this commotion.

One night, I woke up to the sound of things falling and breaking downstairs in the house.  My children were with me so I immediately was transported into ‘mother bear’ mode.  I grabbed the baseball bat that I had under my bed and came barreling downstairs screaming some nonsense like ‘I’m going to get you whoever you are!’  My boys came out of their rooms and stared at their wide-eyed disheveled Mother as I cruised through the room with my baseball bat trying to figure out what happened.

I finally noticed that some shelves in my entertainment center had fallen causing a few glass collectables to break.  We all stood there for a while and listened to the fading train whistle and realized that the Blowhard had come through town and we had slept through it (well, most of it).  I could just picture Blowhard laughing maniacally as he blew by our house.

The bad thing is that I lost a few possessions…the good thing is that my young boys couldn’t sleep in that house anymore without sleeping in my bed with me.  Sometimes the good stuff in life comes from unexpected sources.  Like I said, I love that train.



12 Responses

  1. What a nice story Catherine. As I was ready the story I was picturing you with a bat, the two boys… the conductor laughing…just like a movie…I love it!

  2. Catherine, your words create indelible images….This is my new favorite blog site!

  3. I hate that train. When I was living downtown they were still at it. One person would sound at every intersection, but this one, he just laid on it all through town, like you said. I definitely thought they did it on purpose to mess with people.

    I’m sure some people can get used to it, but I never did. If I had to have the windows open because it was too hot, the train kept waking me up. If I kept the windows closed, it was the heat. LOL It was the most sleepless year of my life!!! And you know how far away from the train I was living!!

    I didn’t know people were asking to move the train. As much as I hated the overnight noise, I wouldn’t want it moved. It’s part of downtown. I just won’t live there. LOL Although, it would probably be a great bike path! lol

  4. What a beautiful, descriptive writer you are! Great story! I am with you on loving the train, though agree with Chrissy and am not sure I could live right next to it with Blowhard pressing unrelentingly on the horn at 1 am every morning!

    1. My sister worked for the railroad for over 20 years and rose through the ranks, no mean feat for a woman in that industry in the 1070s. I’ve always loved the sound of trains but never lived that close to the tracks. We did live next door to a volunteer fire station and that whistle had to wake men miles away. If you were in the yard when it went off, you didn’t recover for hours. but I always slept through it after the 1st night.

  5. I also lived in a home that had trains running behind it. We lived there for over 30 years and were not bothered by the train. You do get used to it and the sound of it was rather soothing. (not the whistles) My boys used to put pennies on the tracks so the train would flatten them out.

  6. Very nice story Catherine, actually Connor told us that story once, and he laughed and laughed about how you came running down the stairs with a bat! Very funny!!

  7. Awwww….. what a sweet story Catherine! I used to love it when my kids crawled in bed with me, whatever the reason. Now I get the joy of having my grandson do the same. Great idea for the blog.

  8. What a wonderful story Catherine! I also grew up in a small town with a train about a quarter of a mile from our home. Needless to say, I LOVE the sound of the Castle Rock train whistling through town. It warms my heart and makes me feel very nostalgic. 🙂

  9. I enjoyed your story Catherine!!! An old train track was turned into “The Rabbit Trail” for walkers, joggers, and bicycles going from downtown Travelers Rest, SC to downtown Greenville, SC….providing a place for exercise as well as seeing friendly faces!!! More foot traffic in downtown areas is not really a bad thing….just sayn!!!! 🙂

Soluxe Decor

We have traveled to the far corners in search of fun, affordable gift ware, artwork, home accents, and one-of-a-kinds – then added a splash of furniture, seasonal items and jewelry. We love the simple things in life mixed with the excitement of exploration, an organic blend of Colorado’s freshness and the exotic world beyond. Please join us as we share our treasures

Paw Paws

The white buffalo

Welcome to The White Buffalo.  Thanks for taking the time to check it out.  It is a store unlike any other, specializing in refurbishing furniture, antique finds, and handmade gifts for you and those you love.

I love the antique look with a splash of color.  We are proud to bring you shabby chic with a twist of unique.

The Gate

Welcome to The Gate! Come on in! Look around and soak it in!  If you have any questions or need help finding what you are looking for, just let me know!

You will find unique and interesting products to suit your cabin and lodge home. Perhaps you are interested in western decor, with a cowboy theme, or farming, even. You can find old tools and implements to compliment a primitive decor. 

Enjoy a pleasant afternoon in your garden, amoungst vintage or new furniture and decor. 

CeCe & Rose

Cece & Rose is as darling and sweet as it sounds! Located in historic downtown Castle Rock inside The Barn, it is truly one of a kind!  You will find some of the latest baby trends in clothing, hair accessories, nursery decor, as well as soft plush, swaddlers, baby booties, children’s jewelry and fun growth development toys.  Our boutique clothing is quality brands and some are locally handmade.  Owner, Kristin Pawlak, is an Interior Designer formally from Chicago.  Her knack for display and merchandising makes it easy to see how items can be paired together, whether it is for baby nursery decor, lighting or clothing accessories.You might run into her twin daughters at The Barn, Cecily & Chloe Rose, in which her shop is named for. 

Bohemian Rags-N-Bags

Bohemian Rags-n-Bags offers:
Unique Bohemian Style Clothing & Accessories, Artisan jewelry, Bags, Hippie clothing, Day dresses, Boho blouses, Tunic tops, Kimono style tops, Gypsy skirts, Yoga wear, Gently used designer jeans & other Boho chic clothing fashions.

Looking for the perfect gift? We also offer a variety of Incense, Scented oils and Candles. 

Take a moment to preview our unique selection…

Shop Bohemian Rags-N-Bags for curious and unique items and gifts for the home!
(Many items handcrafted in India)

The Bee's Knees Antiques & Interiors

The Bee’s Knees Antiques & Interiors specializes in beautiful, hand-picked items that will help turn your house into a haven.  We offer a fresh mix of charming antiques and repurposed furniture, along with vintage accents and home accessories in many styles – from rustic, to French Country, to modern cottage.

Our one-of-a-kind, hand-painted furniture pieces are a labor of love, and will add warmth and personality to your home.

Our inventory is always changing, so stop by often to experience our fun and affordable selection of furniture and home décor!

Coming Home

Coming Home A French and Nature Inspired Mélange. “It’s the way you feel the moment you step in the door, you know…that warm fuzzy feeling…it’s like coming home!”

The Nut Tree

Shirley’s Treasures provides sterling silver, 10K and 14K gold jewelry with genuine stones. This business started 20 years ago and has always been known for providing high quality jewelry at low prices.

French Farm

At French Farm you’ll find beautiful, unusual and very healthy house plants, some big, some small.

We also have a great selection of accessories and tiny plants for your fairy garden or terrarium.

French Farm offers a variety of garden goods. On our front porch you’ll find some great spinners, yard stakes, even some pottery and cement statuaries and garden tools.

Please stop by for a breath of fresh air!

The Nut Tree

All the Comforts of Home – The Feel, The Smell, The Look…

Home Decor & Antiques

Unique Gift Items

The Book Nook

The Book Nook is a unique and fun shopping experience We offer a variety of items to engage both young and not-so-young minds.  Our products include standard bookstore items:  books, journals, stationery, notepads, pens, etc. as well as new and novel products that are constantly being added. 

We carry the largest selection of Jellycat plush toys and books in Castle Rock.  The Book Nook has items to tickle your imagination and challenge your brain.  We think we have a lot to offer so stop by and check us out.  Customers frequently comment that The Book Nook is one of their favorite shops to visit.

I bought The Book Nook to bring new ideas and imagination to The Barn.

The Antique Buffalo

The Antique Buffalo scours the best markets to bring unique and special items to our wonderful town of Castle Rock. We are the go to shop for a one of a kind antique bench, or a high end solid wood dining table. We have stunning artwork ranging from wild horses on framed canvas to framed antique American Flags. We love to travel the country looking for one of a kind dining tables and European accessories. Our shop also carries beautiful botanical candles made locally as well as Joanna Gaines’ very exclusive line of candles and home fragrances. Looking to redecorate your home?  We offer furniture, artwork, lighting, home decor, pillows and accessories in addition to clothing and specialty jewelry. We are known as a luxury, specialty shop with one of a kind finds.

We love our loyal and amazing clients. We have had clients come in for a table and end up furnishing an entire room from our shop. Some of our clients have become great friends of ours and nothing makes us happier than seeing them pop in just to say hello. We are beyond grateful for the loyalty of our wonderful supporters.

Sassy Chic Mamas Boutique

Sassy Chic Mamas brings boutique items made for the Colorado lifestyle directly to you! Our products are handcrafted, locally sourced, and created with love by two Colorado Moms. We offer one-of-a-kind Colorado finds with exclusive designs, including custom, hand-painted elevation signs and boutique items.

Created with locally-sourced reclaimed wood, our signs can be tailored specifically to your needs by a local artist, or you can choose a piece of unique Colorado décor from our collection. We also offer a wide selection of gifts, jewelry, and sassy fashion!

Much Ado Boutique

Much Ado Boutique is for the romantic dreamer in all of us. Our feminine, well curated pieces are created to make our customers feel beautiful each and every day. We hand pick pieces with touches of lace, ruffles and intricate details with the highest quality. Our whimsical clothing can take you from day to evening, or from brunch with the girls to date night on the town.

We carry women’s clothing and accessories; including shoes, jewelry, belts, and bags. We are always adding beautiful new items, so stop in and see us often.

love harper

Here at Love Harper we believe you should embrace your alter ego without feeling the need to alter her. We encourage this through our products with purpose, clothing + accessories that highlight your beauty and uplifting messaging strung throughout. Including supporting fellow small businesses and makers as we are makers ourselves! You will find our own handmade jewelry collection sprinkled throughout the shop! We also offer an extensive do-it-yourself charm bar encouraging you to make your own personalized necklace or bracelet with our handcrafted stamped charms.

We hope to see you soon!

Love Harper 

Our mission is simple- to enable you to feel good. Whether it is a comfy sweater, purchasing that perfect present for a loved one, uplifting messaging with our signs or jewelry, items that make you LOL, beautifully unique home decor or finding something special that speaks to you from other small businesses and makers! 


Welcome to Whitewash home & lifestyle boutique! Where we believe you should surround yourself with beautiful things that make you happy. We are inspired by a diverse mix old and new finds in a rustic and romantic setting of neutral colors and soft textures. Here you will find a unique array of hand painted furniture, lighting, home décor, gifts, fashion, and jewelry. Be sure to reach out and ask about our custom painting services, design services and flat rate furniture delivery.