Sally Gracie TwispBy Sally Gracie

I hung the feeder on the porch yesterday in anticipation of my returning hummingbirds, still beating their wings north to Twisp — “Are we there yet? Are we there yet?” They’ll probably be as relieved to arrive as I will be happy to see them.

In other bird news, various woodpeckers — including my favorite northern flicker, downy, and what might have been a female Williamson’s sapsucker — have been plunking away as they do each spring at the telephone pole at the corner of the yard.

I cut back the hops vine to thwart any Brewer’s blackbirds’ nesting there. A few weeks ago, Reed removed about 10 old robins’ nests from inside the eaves of the carport. Over the years I never saw a fledgling bird fly from any of those nests and I found too many eggs smashed on the concrete. I’m pleased to watch my robins rebuild in a tall Douglas fir past the ledge at the end of my yard.

Betty Wagoner reports that the deer have come down from the hills and are enjoying their annual get-together in the farmers’ fields towards the Carlton end of Twisp-Carlton Road. Can’t you just imagine their conversations:

“We were sad to lose Aunt Flo after she broke her hip in December.”

“Sorry for your loss, but you must be looking forward to Wanda’s twins in June.”

And on and on.

The Senior Center welcomes the season with its annual Spring Sale this Saturday (April 12) from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Volunteers at the Rummage Room save the nicer spring and summer items that come in during the winter for this annual event, which coincides with opening day of the Farmers Market.

After the market on Saturday, head on down to Hank’s Harvest Foods, where Breanna and Aspen Smith will be selling Girl Scout Cookies from 10:30 a.m. until they’ve sold out. Maybe you’ll want to go there before the market! Those who want to support the Girl Scouts but not eat the cookies (a box of Samoas is kind of like a bag of chips … ) may donate their purchases to The Cove.

Breanna and Aspen’s grandparents — Grace Smith and Tom and Donna Leuschen — live here in the valley, where the girls spend “a good chunk of time … especially in the summer,” according to their mom Jennifer Leuschen Smith (Liberty Bell High School, class of ’94). Their dad is Jake Smith (LBHS, ’93).

Breanna and Aspen belong to Girl Scout Troop No. 4234 in Ellensburg. The funds they raise from cookie sales support camping, horseback riding, and maybe a trip to Seattle this year. The Methow Valley has no troop of its own at this time.

Janet Shannon received the State Backbone Award at the March 15 Back Country Horsemen State Rendezvous in Ellensburg. This special commendation is awarded to “the person you always call when you need to have something done,” according to Betty Wagoner, who has herself been a backbone of the Methow Valley chapter of BCH for 30 years. Betty received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the event.

The Methow Valley BCH will hold its annual Spring Ride from the camp at Beaver Creek from April 25 – 27 this year. Betty was there at the first ride in 1984 at Pateros on her Appaloosa, Tiki. Subsequent rides were held at Elbow Coulee and finally at Beaver Creek. Betty will be on her quarter horse Koda for the 2014 ride. “I love being able to ride in public lands,” Betty says. BCH continues to make that possible.

Other MVBCH members who attended the rendezvous were: Gisele Massingill; Donna and Pete Stoothoff; Cathy Upper (MVBCH president); Kay MacCready; Anna and Dick Heathman; Ken Shannon; and Barbara and Gary Sterner (MVBCH director and state representative).