I'm another newbee...
I'm in north-central Kentucky, I have one new hive with happily (I hope) singing bees; just installed them yesterday, and had a blast. I was ready to do two more hives when I got done, LOL.
I've kept bees once before (for a short time), but this is the first time I've started from a package, and I figure the last batch didn't count, because I never got stung. ;)
I read the Beemaster's site back then, but there were no videos or forum. Wow, what great resources! I have sat and watched various install videos on Youtube, too, just to get my nerve up. The kids watched them with me, and were shouting directions from a distance (6yo and 4yo: "Did you get that piece of plywood off?" "Is the queen in there?") :) My 11yo took pictures, which was great afterwards, because I was so nervous/focussed, I didn't remember a thing I'd done.
Anyway, hello! And thank you for the wonderful information/community here. For every question I've had so far, I've been able to find multiple answers here. I hope I can participate and share with others; seems like the more experiences I read about, the better prepared I'll be for things I wouldn't have expected.
Can I say a special thank you to Michael Bush? I actually came across your site when researching CCD and small cell size, and ended up learning SO much there. Helped me relax, too, and remember that there's more than one way to do things. My idea of doing things "naturally" has always meant mainly using what I guess you'd call common sense, and I loved reading about your methods. So even though I've started this hive "by the book", I know I'll be more confident to try new things - no, to let things work. :)
Okay, I'm done! Gotta go see if the bees are up...