Thursday, August 25, 2011

Sizzlin' Hot Summer

Ok, so let's catch up! We endured a very busy June here at Reagan's Queen Anne. Thank you to all the guests who crossed our threshold and allowed us to host them here in this grand Queen. As most weather watchers know, the midwest has been scorching this summer. Following a very wet spring, we've been hot, hot, hot here in the nation's middle.

July was not as busy as we've become accustomed to in years past. We're sure that the economy is mostly to blame. A delight in spite of all this heat and the slower July and typically slower August, is the nearly 3 dozen hummingbirds we have battling for food at our numerous feeders. We purchased larger ones this year, so that we were not refilling 10 feeders daily. All of the 8 oz feeders we have are drained twice a day, and 20 ouncers are the way to go. I believe we've used 50 pounds of sugar this year already and they are nowhere near migration yet. I'm guess-timating that we'll use in the neighborhood of 60-65 pounds before they leave. I sure do love watching them and will miss the air show, and even the daily making of the nectar when they depart. We've never had this many birds all at once and they've been here since the 3rd week of July, so it's doubtful that we have any migratory hummers stopping by for a "To-Go" meal just yet. We also enjoyed a visit at the end of July from Gina, Haley and Karen. We've always had fun when Gina and Haley come and can't wait for them to return! We took a ride on the Mark Twain Riverboat and saw one of the resident Bald Eagles in a tree on the island on the east side of the river. What a cool sight!

Continuing with the heat, August has been brutal. Now I did (personally) get a bit of a break from the 1st-9th, as I was in Florida with Tim, Kathy and the kids. I really enjoyed my visit and wish it would have lasted longer. Norm was a real trooper while I was gone. He fed the fish daily, watered the plants daily, and fed those hungry hummingbirds daily as well. He learned how much work it is to care for those little jewels. He also hosted guests while I was gone for 6 of the 9 days I was away. He did all the cooking, cleaning and handled everything while I was enjoying myself. He came through with flying colors, and plates came back CLEAN! I owe him big time for sending me to Florida for our grandson's SECOND Birthday!
Kaden's 2nd Birthday!! Yummmmmmmm, CAKE!

Shortly after I returned from FL, we made a huge change in the Victorian Rose Chamber. Our talented woodworker, Don, made some new sideboards for our mid 1800's Walnut Eastlake bed in that room, and we converted it to a queen! A brand new Sealy mattress set and our "new" room is open for business. The first guests who stayed in the "new" Victorian Rose said that the bed was heavenly. Our next project is to put the shower in on the 3rd floor Captain's Quarters. That will be completed soon! We're also making changes to abide by safety and fire regulations. That is so important in any business where the public is served. We're happy to provide this enhanced security for our guests.

So, it's back to the kitchen to make more hummingbird nectar. They are absolutely
c- r- a- z- y  today! This is the time when hand feeding them is possible. It is fascinating to be so close to these little miracles of flight.

More next month! Until then...This is one of our male Rubythroats who has claimed the spiral staircase feeder as "HIS". He guards it sitting just above it it on a Hummingbird windchime. They will entertain, in more ways than one!

It's off to the mountain of laundry awaiting me, following a full house last night.