Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Iberostar Grand...Here We Come...

Hi Ho...Hi Ho...It is off to Paraiso we go...
Excited to be staying on the Rivera Maya at an all-inclusive/adult only resort!
Can't wait!!!
 We will enjoy the beverages and sun (hopefully!!) by the pool and on the beach!
Rain expected for some of the trip....lots of togetherness!
 Enjoy some golf....tons of food....and nightly shows!
 Thank you Coach Joe...for taking care of our house and our dachshunds!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Goodbye and Thank You!

Goodbye, Beautiful Ruidoso (I will see you in July)! I am heading back to Texas tomorrow....to the heat! Today has been a perfect day in the mountains....it rained and was 67 degrees most of the day. We haven't heard the nightly fire report but I feel sure the rain helped in someway today....even if it was just to cool off the hard working firefighters. The fire was 51% contained this morning!

The village of Ruidoso is showing tremendous support for the firefighters and for the families who have lost their homes (224). It is amazing to drive down the main street and see signs of gratitude and cars with red ribbons on them. What a great village to live in....

Here are a few pictures of our brave & wonderful firefighters from all over the USA and the support the Ruidoso citizens have given them. I love each and every picture!

We are still praying for the fire to be 100% contained....AND we will continue to pray all summer for the people that live close to streams and the Rio Ruidoso. Because of the mountains being burned bare almost any rain will cause flooding in the area...even today people with homes withing 100 yard of the Rio Ruidoso and other streams were asked to evacuate and we only had .20" of rain in town. (the good news is no flooding was reported today!!) This will be a problem for several years....no doubt....

A sweet deer in the burned forest.....he had several playmates with him...and not to worry...there was green grass close by!
The wildlife is as BRAVE as the  firefighters...don't you know they are scared to death!

I will always remember Ruidoso as beautiful and calm as this...
...it is a great place to call my New Mexico home!
(This picture was from the 80's---my teenage, cruising years in Ruidoso!!)

I Love You, Smokey Bear!

The "Little Bear Fire" reminds me of  one of my favorites ~ Smokey the Bear.....in 1950 "Smokey Bear" was found in the exact same forest that this Ruidoso/Alto/Bonito Lake fire has burned.
I think I love you, Smokey Bear!!!
The living symbol of Smokey Bear was an American black cub who in the spring of 1950 was caught in the "Capitan Gap Fire", a wildfire that burned 17,000 acres in the Lincoln
National Forest, in the Capitan Mountains of New Mexico. Smokey had climbed a tree to escape the blaze, but his paws and hind legs had been burned. According to some stories, he was rescued by a game warden after the fire, but according to the New Mexico State Forestry Division, it was actually a group of soldiers from Fort Bliss, Texas, who had come to help fight the fire, that discovered the bear cub and brought him back to the camp. **At first he was called "Hotfoot Teddy," but he was later renamed Smokey, after the mascot.

We have owned our Ruidoso home since 1970 and have collected Smokey Bear "stuff" since then...we visit the US Forest Service office here in town and also go to The Smokey Bear Museum in Capitan, New Mexico sometimes, too!  We have many posters...stamps....bumperstickers, etc!
We have saved most of our Smokey Bear goodies...but wish we had it all!

One summer...my BFF, Kathy and I volunteered for the US Forest Service.
It was the most exhausting job I have ever done...we hiked, rode horses, hiked some more...we broke fire rings, picked up trash, cleared obstacles....basically maintained the trails! Whew!! It was a tough job....one day we hiked 6 miles up Angus Mountain (now burned!!)  there was a HUGE thunderstorm (lightning and all) when we got to the top -- we covered ourselves with branches and tried to keep ourselves safe and dry....after that...I remember running back down as fast as I could and I never went back! That was my last day working for the US Forest Service!!

But...I still love you Smokey Bear!!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

A Beautiful Ruidoso Butterfly

Wanting to take a picture of this butterfly I have watched for 4 days....
he loved the Red Hot Pokers...flew from one to another...

.....and finally landed on a Daylilly!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Go Away, Little Bear Fire!

As many of you know...we have a vacation home in Ruidoso, New Mexico. This agressive fire started 10 days ago and is finally only 35% contained ~ 58 square miles ~ over 38,000 acres. The Northwest part of the county is basically gone...more than 230 houses gone and there are areas they can not get into yet to contiue the count. We wait for each morning/evening community meeting at the Ruidoso High School to get the update. Thank God ~ The weather has been so cooperative over the last three days....the wind has calmed down! We have had no rain but some in the forecast for Saturday.....Prayers are said for all firefighters, pilots, citizens that are working in the mountains and wilderness to get this fire more and more contained!  Here are some pictures I have collected of this awful monster........to think this all started from a lightning strike and a 4 acre fire.....Facebook has been an awesome resource and has kept us up-to-date by the minute!
 This is the ski mountain...but so much of it was saved!
 The first 5-6 days were very, very windy!

 So many brave men and women are working on this fire...there are 2200 firefighters here now!

 A bad situation (SMOKE!!) but a beautiful red sunset!
 Earth, Wind, and Fire...this is an amazing picture!
Our beautiful Village of Ruidoso in the foreground....behind it is The Little Bear!
 It has been amazing at the outreach of support for all involved in the fire....help has come from all over...there is even a TIDE truck on the way to wash clothes for the evacuees and firefighters! The Village of Ruidoso is an awesome community.....I am so proud to call it my second home!
 This is taken from one of the downtown golf courses....
Nightime pictures are so much more intense...Sierra Blanca Ski Resort
A group of amazing Mescelaro Indians have kept their ski resort pretty much intact...only a few chair lifts and the gondola were damaged as well as some trees on a few lifts. They worked so hard 24 hours a day...with no way down the mountain to save the ski resort! They have assured the community they will open at their regular time this fall..there will be no delays.
Another amazing story of dedication!
A picture of the ski resort by day....
This DC 10 came yesterday to help fight the fire...it dropped one load last night..we hope to hear that it has dropped a few more today. It is called "DC10-911"...a huge jet..and we are happy to have it in the area!  We watch small slurry planes go over our house all day....and have watched helicopters pick up buckets of water to drop on the fire...but this is a HUGE JET and amazing!
A helicopter dipping a bucket to collect water to dump on the fire.
We are so lucky to be at our cabin and out of harms way....we smell smoke in the mornings and it is more noticable when it is windy outside.  Please help me pray for the firefighters, the national guard, the families that have lost their homes, and for weather to cooperate...wind could change the direction of the fire and make matters even worse!

On a side note.....we are usually a home for so much wildlife (bears, foxes, deer, elk, raccoons, cougars, and more)....with this fire in the near distance all the wildlife has stayed away. I sure do miss them......I know they are scared!