by, 06-30-2009 at 08:45 AM (1489 Views)
In February, my husband and I signed up for a beekeeping class with our local bee keeping club (Essex County Beekeepers Association). We thought we would just learn about good bee habitats, but we because very interested in the whole process of the hives and making honey, so we spent a whole lot of money investing in two beehives. The full kit start to finish for two hives was almost $700, no small investment but we hope it will pay off in the coming years.
In April, we received our bee packets, essentially a shoebox with mesh sides containing approximately 14,000 bees along with their queen.
DH and I decided we wanted to name the queens, so we named his hive B.B., which was the name my DH used for his grandmother, Barbara. I named my hive Lauretta's Honey-Do after my grandmother, the task master who used to run the farm we now own (she always had a honey do list!).
The hives are doing well and we get to peek into them every three weeks or so. I always get very anxious when it's time to check the bees, like I can't get to them fast enough and I'm frustrated waiting to put on my bee suit and veil, get the smoker started, double checking our supplies, etc. But once the hive opens and I hear my bees, I feel such a strong sense of peace. I want to pet them, to watch them endlessly as they work to create those perfect hexagon beeswax forms and fill them with honey and brood. Bees are wonderful, they have such an ordered, clean world and everyone has their tasks in the hive, the undertaker bees take away the dead bees, we've never seen even one! Bees also look different based on their job - We can see and touch and sometimes even taste bits of honey now, such sweetness that came from flowers and things on our farm. The hive is it's own little world, it has a simplicity to purity to it we wish for in our own lives.
We can also see the bees move from place to place as the pollen drives them. They loved the crabapple tree last month, you could stand under the tree and here them buzzing so much it almost made the tree vibrate, then they loved the poppies, and raspberry bushes, the white clover in the overgrown pasture. I would always greet them, welcome them and thank them whenever I saw them at work. (This embarasses my husband, who finds it endearing, yet goofy).
I know it will happen eventually, but I've never been stung, over 60,000 bees now in our hives and not one sting. Perhaps I am jinxing myself, but at the moment I can't imagine my bees not being happy with me.
I'll post some pictures as soon as I learn how.