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winter honey

December 23, 2013

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One of the hives, for sure, is dead.  No one is home there.  However… we weren’t robbed…. like last year.  No this year.. they died…or left… we don’t know… but their honey is there…safe and sound.  It is glorious.  We stood around the hive like treasure hunters… smiling and dipping our fingers in the comb.  The little yellow hive was weaker…so we aren’t completely surprised that they are dead.  We brought the foundations in and used the crush and strain method to gather the honey.  I am not a fan of crushing the comb… I am the type of person who wont let the kids kick over sandcastles because I want to honor the work that went into it…so crushing the bees precious work goes against my instinct… but there just isn’t another way on such short notice.  Last time we used the honey extractor which was great and I prefer that way as it leaves the foundations and precious comb intact.  On short notice (and a few days before Christmas) we spent our weekend crushing and straining a hive full of honey. It gummed up our weekend and left us scrambling to prepare our Sunday Dinner ,as I normally do most of the prep work on Saturday. Either way  it was a wonderful way to spend a weekend.  Who wants another thing to do this close to Christmas… but yet, there is just something about honey on the comb.  The crushed mash smells of summer and spring

and

it

is

just

wonderful.

The aromatherapy of it is so uplifting.  We ate and we jarred and the whole thing is sooo messy…. but yet, there is just something so forgiving about it all.  You can’t help but smile the whole time.  I imagine if vitamin D had a smell it would be that of honey.  If joy had a flavor it would be honey.  We just love it so much… although we have lost bees… we are still learning and we are not discouraged.  We still have a bunch of foundations to process… so the joy continues! So someday in the upcoming January we will gather the rest and process more of the honey…hopefully with an extractor.

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So Thankful…

For fresh honey.

for these lovely warm temperatures

for doors left open

for fresh air in this wintertime home

gifts from friends …sweet sweet homemade gifts from friends.

for these little voices practicing songs for Christmas all through the house.

for babies babies everywhere … I love these little visitors.

for fresh winter carrots just out of the garden.

for buttery toast drizzled with honey.

for hot toddys at bedtime… now with our honey!

for the promise of Christmastime french toast… just a couple of days away.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. solarbeez permalink
    December 24, 2013 1:13 am

    I had a similar experience. A hive that had swarmed never quite recovered. The new queen must have been a weak layer, but that hive just eventually got to the point that my strong hive took advantage. The weak hive couldn’t defend itself anymore so I took one box and let the robbers have the rest.
    I used the crush and strain method too. It worked really well, but I never expected to get any honey, so I haven’t invested in an extractor…probably won’t because being on the windy, (normally very wet) west coast is not the best place to get it. My reward for giving the bees a place to live is MANY photo opportunities, and, of course, pollination for the garden.

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