Saturday, March 5, 2011

Daffodils and Hummingbirds

Legends say that the hummingbirds float free of time, carrying our hopes for love, joy and celebration.  The hummingbird's delicate grace reminds us that life is rich, beauty is everywhere, every personal connection has meaning and that laughter is life's sweetest creation
~Papyrus Card

Nothing says spring like the budding daffodils and the return of the hummingbirds.  Daffodils are my favorite flower, though many people don't know that.  I think it's because they aren't sold in a store so they are not over done like roses and tulips, they are seasonal and a gift from Mother Nature.  They come back ever year like the promise that spring is just around the corner.  I tend to pick the first one I see because I cannot resist the aroma.  It takes me back to Easter Sunday at St. Ann's Episcopal Church where I grew up.  Every year the children of the church would decorate the cross in flowers.  Without fail, on the Saturday before Easter my mom and I would dye Easter eggs and then go to the back of the property on Sunnybrook where there was what seemed like a secret garden full of daffodils.  We would walk down a short path through the woods and all of the sudden we would go around a tiny bend and there they were, proudly standing there like they were grown just for this purpose, to decorate the cross for Easter. 

When I moved into my grandmother's house to take care of it until she was ready to sell, she said Lauren and I could live there if we promised to do two things:  recycle and keep the hummingbird feeder full.  Well, anyone who knows Lauren knows she has the recycling thing under control...she even taught me a few things!  It was my responsibility to keep the hummingbirds fed.  As I began unpacking the kitchen just after we moved in I noticed on a post-it note by the kitchen window Gramma had left me her recipe for the nectar that goes in the hummingbird feeder.  Here is her tried and true recipe:

Hummingbird Nectar

Dissolve 1 cup of sugar in 2 cups hot water (the temperature of the water needs to be hot enough to dissolve the sugar).  Add 1 1/2 cups water and fill hummingbird feeder.
Recently my Aunt Jean told me that if you add a teaspoon of bourbon to the nectar it will attract more hummingbirds...why does that not surprise me???
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