Friday, May 29, 2009


View of Burro Street in Cloudcroft.

Cloudcroft New Mexico is a quaint village located about 19 miles above Alamogordo in the Sacramento mountains. It began as a place to harvest timber for the expanding railroad from Alamogordo, and it's name means pasture in the clouds. It became a vacation getaway from the heat. Year around residents are less than 1,00o. Alamogordo is at 4,200 feet above sea level, as you climb into the mountains towards Cloudcroft you almost 5,000 feet! Cloudcroft advertises itself as "9,000 feet above stress level." It will take a few posts to get it all in, but it is 20-30 degrees cooler than Alamogordo year around. It gets snow every year, some years enough to ski. Slow paced, you feel very removed from the basin as you explore. It is a must-see for this part of the country and if you live in Alamogordo, it is a mini vacation to spend an afternoon or weekend here. These photos are of some of the businesses in Cloudcroft. Highway 82 is the main road through the town, and then Burro is the shopping street.

One of the Coolest shops around!!!

Sacred Heart Catholic Church on Hwy 82

The sign explains it all :)

Good BBQ!

Cloudcroft mercantile. They have AWESOME homemade cinnamon rolls and fresh loaves of bread, cheddar green chile, cinnamon raisin, wheat, white, etc. Notice the stuffed bear on the front porch. The school mascot is the Bear so you will see them ALL over.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Deutsche Schule

This is the German School in Alamogordo. We have German troops stationed here at Holloman to train their pilots. They built this very nice school for their dependants.

When they built this school, they put in the totem poles. It confuses me, I am not sure what the significance is.. Maybe they thought that the Southwest had totem poles. We don't. Only these and maybe a Boy Scout project here and there. I think they are interesting none the less.

Friday, May 22, 2009


I am sure that this photo looks similar to the one I posted awhile back about dirt and wind, but oh NO. You have to be here to SMELL the rain. Nothing in the world smells as wonderful as rain in the desert. You can smell it coming before it appears, the creosote and other plants put off an aroma that is unmistakable-rain! The grey skies look like winter, another seldom occuring event. 99.99% of the time skies are the trademark blue of the southwest. Wait a couple of days and I will update you on how green everything has become! This is a lovely day, knowing that triple digits lay just around the corner from today.

Spirit Gates two

I am adding a couple of more blue gates to the collection....

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Zia Symbology

This Zia symbol is correct with 4 rays off of each side. The Zia symbol is on our state flag. The Rays each mean something. The 4 directions-North South East West. The 4 seasons-Winter Summer Spring Fall. The 4 times of day-Morning Noon Evening Midnight. The 4 stages of life-Babyhood Teenage Adult Old Age. I love this symbol!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


I am going to do a few posts with our Zia symbol. Here is one incorporated into a gate. It is a beautiful gate, although not correct for the Zia symbol. Our Zia sun symbol should have four rays coming off of each side. I have a thing for parrots, and do not see too many of them in New Mexico!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Ft. Stanton Cemetery

Hi, We took a drive yesterday, and visited the merchant marine cemetery up at Ft. Stanton, up in the Sacramento Mountains between Ruidoso and Capitan. Ft. Stanton is an old fort that began in 1855 and has had many lives. It began as a fort to protect the settlers against attacks from the Mescalero Apaches. It later became a Union fort, and briefly for a few weeks, a Confederate fort. It housed many famous people. Lew Wallace, the territorial governor of NM wrote part of his famous book Ben Hur at the fort. He also was involved with the Lincoln county war and Billy the Kid. Kit Carson and the Buffalo Soldiers were stationed here as well as John J. "Blackjack" Pershing. It is a fascinating fort and worth the visit. The fort later became a hospital for TB and sanitorium. The Cemetery is what attracted my attention as it is a Merchant Marine Cemetery with headstones from WWI and WWII. They were brought here with TB for the dry climate. I wonder how these men felt so far from any home or ocean and the arduous journey that brought them here. The survivors from the German Luxury liner Columbus that Hitler ordered scuttled were brought here and held at Ft. Stanton which became the first internment camp on US soil. There are a few lonely graves off to themselves for those men. In recent years local veterans have been allowed to be buried here along with the merchant marines.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Spring Sprung!

Desert Willow

Spring in the desert blooms are such a treat! The early blooms are beginning and I snapped some photos in the back yard yesterday. I also am posting an update on the strange tree. We had a late freeze and it froze the baby leaves. It has put out new branches. This is it's first foray into branching out and it has already grown 18 inches. The Mexican Elder has taken off this year also and grown new shoots about 6 feet into the air! (pecan tree looming behind it) As you can tell from the names, I have planted native desert plants and trees that can survive the intense sunlight. I have grown them all from seedlings taken from a friends yard where the sprout unbidden. I am quite proud of that . Most of the trees are 5 years this year (strange tree is 3), I planted them about the same time. The only one I don't know a pedigree for is the aforementioned strange tree. I should really give it a name. Like Fred. I love the blooms on the desert willow. They look like orchids.

Mexican Elder

Spanish Broom

Strange Tree.....