Bud's knee is bothering him again, after thinking the surgery had fixed the problem. He's not able to do any strenuous hiking, so we take short walks instead.
Our first harvest of pears has been enjoyable and we shared with neighbors and friends. The apples are apparently granny smiths, as they are firm and tart. We've juiced a few pomegranates, but have more than we will use, so we share them too with neighbors, both human and wildlife. There is fruit on the persimmon tree, but it appears they will be eaten by critters before they ripen. Since it's been a very rainy year, there was plenty of food in the mountains for the bears and they haven't been a problem this year like they were last year.
Our neighborhood skunks are visiting the yard every evening and the raccoon is a common capture on our yard camera, but we don't see it otherwise. Grey foxes come to the water feature regularly as do the coues white tail deer. Just last night we heard a heck of a ruckus outside our kitchen window and looked out to see two skunks in an apparent disagreement. One of them worked itself into a tizzy and released a fragrant response that the other did not appreciate. :) We have to take Mr. Brown out on a leash most evenings, to prevent him from chasing the skunks, because they don't leave the yard when I ask them to.
We remembered the flooding from Hurricane Odile last September and were a bit apprehensive when we got 3 days of rain again from a tropical depression. We got nearly 3 inches of rain in our gauge over two days, but the creek didn't rise above the berms except for a short stretch in Cave Creek Canyon just beyond the Information Center. We've had some amazing lightning storms and I was able to capture some good images from video I took during one storm.
Melody brought Wes & Greg to Portal for Heritage Days and the boys enjoyed building stomp rockets and sending them soaring into the air. We took a walk up the creek and Wesley played in the "raging whitewater" before Bud spotted a rattlesnake swimming across the creek about 50 feet downstream, so that put a crimp in the joy of playing in the water. As we were watching the snake warm itself on the rocks after crossing the creek, four handsome Coues Whitetail bucks came walking down the creek from upstream. One had a massive rack and as the younger ones looked around, the obvious leader took a dump in the creek, just to show us........that's why we don't drink the water out of the creek. :) While Mel and the boys were here, Bud taught them to split firewood much to Mel's apprehension seeing her little guys swinging a maul that weighed as much as they did!
Our banjo band, the Az. Banjo Blasters will be playing a benefit concert here on March 12th to raise money for the scholarship fund of the Sew What organization. We're looking forward to that. It's getting to the busy time of year here for community activities and we have to pace ourselves and not participate in every event, but sometimes the choices are difficult to make.
I'm working part time in the Clinic two days a week too, so on top of community activities, I have a job! This is a great place though and we love it here.
Over Labor Day weekend we put together a Rubbermaid shed for our lawn equipment and bikes and in spite of my dislike of plastic, it looks pretty good and after over 3 inches of rain this weekend, we're happy to see that it doesn't leak.