Friday, August 7, 2020

Sherry Time!

I have loved every single minute of this day!
And it started EARLY!
My alarm went off at 6:00 but I was awake at 5:30.
Sherry was off today and we had a million things we wanted to do!
And we did most of them!!

Dean and Sherry's big garden is located between our 'place' and theirs. 
Closer to ours, though.
At 7:27 I walked out through the red screen door and over to help Sherry pick the garden. 
That's one chore, albeit a pleasant one.
She also watered.

She had already gathered up some melons and blackeyed peas.
Mama cat came down to help us.

I can tell it's a mama cat because her ear is clipped.
No more kitten litters here!

This is a male tabby and will be going to his new country home on Sunday with our friend, Rosey.

I love the way the sun is shining on him.

This cat is also going to live at Rosey's ranch.
That leaves just two mamas and two males here at Dean and Sherry's ranch.

I gathered the tomatoes!
We will eat them in a salad tonight.

After our garden work, we walked down to Sherry's to start our Day of Adventures!
First we went to the barn down by the meadow to check out an area where we can store all the bee stuff! Most of the time it ends up in Sherry's kitchen and that is not acceptable!
We found a room that would work but it had some counters and a sink that we don't need.
Sherry unscrewed lots of nails and we still could not budge the counter.
So we called Louis Dean for help.
It was like Demo Day on the Fixer Upper for him!

We left him to it while we went back to the house to get the brood boxes ready for tomorrow.

The first thing we had to do after cleaning the frames and scraping off wax moth debris was render our wax. Melt it.

And then we brushed it on some black plastic frames.
The bees don't really like these but if you brush them with wax - they accept them much better.
We worked to get two brood boxes that we already had ready for tomorrow.
We must pull off the supers on each hive and replace them with a brood box of clean frames.
The frames of honey in the supers we remove will be placed in the shade and the bees will stay busy returning it to the hives.

By this time it was 10:30 or so and we stopped to eat a good sandwich and some of the fresh melons!
They tasted sweet as sugar!!!

Gary, the president of our bee club called to say he had an extra brood box to sell us and we were off to Bellmead! Louis Dean stayed here doing the demo work.

We picked up the brood box, made a stop at Home Depot for a couple of things - you ALWAYS need something from Home Depot - and headed back to Mart.
We picked up lunch at Pizza Pro on Texas Avenue on our way home.

After lunch we bottled up the mead made with last year's bitterweed honey.
This was the blackberry......

and we each had a tasting sample.

Next to bottle was the blueberry.

We liked it some better.

Last to bottle was blueberry made with the good honey from last year - NOT the bitterweed.
MUCH better.

As pretty as the mead looks - it doesn't taste very good.
We are learning as we go.
Granted - we used the bitterweed honey that would otherwise have gone to waste.
Dean and Rosey are thinking a hot mead - spicy as in peppers might work.
It's all an adventure and we are having fun!

After that was done - Sherry and I went out to explore the 'Piece of a House' as they call it.

This wagon wheel section sits in front of the house and has for who knows how long.
It was here when they bought the place.
In exploring the house, Sherry found a set of metal shelves that we can use in the barn to store our bee boxes and such on.

Walking across from the house to the barn, a peacock strolls by.

Our last big chore of the day was preparing the new brood box.
It comes in parts and must be put together with glue and nails.
And painted. 
The boxes last longer if they are painted.
Sherry has a color coded system.
Purple - and the one below is purple even though it photographed blue - Pink and Green.
Since there ends up being three boxes - Sherry chose three shades of each color. The darkest is the brood box and each super on top is a lighter shade.

The wax inserts give the bees a foundation to build on.
It was a really good day and we ended it by sitting on the front porch together.
I am still whacking up denim but remembered a pair of electric scissors my friend, Dee, gave me recently. That made quick work of the lighter weight pieces.
It was a VERY good day!

August 7, 2010

Amber and Mike came home after spending a year in Aberdeen, Scotland!
I love Facebook memories.
Some I remember on my own but it's always nice to have reminders of 'this day back in.....'

I am writing tonight's journal entry early since I got UP early and I need to go to bed early!
I told Sherry I will be down at her house at 7:00 in the morning.
Now I know it's light by that time because I saw it this morning.
Somehow I thought it would be later than that.
We will be glad to work with the bees in the cool of the day and grateful that we got up early to do it.
Then we will be done with our bee chores - except for feeding them pollen patties and bucket feeds - until September 19th. That's when we will open up the hives and check that none have Varroa mites!


Ginny Hartzler said...

What a lovely day you had! I bet Louis Dean loved getting this extra chore, too. He will make quick work of it I bet.

Stacy said...

Thanks for sharing all about the bees! I sometimes think I'd like to have just one hive around to help the garden and flowers out, but Tim's leery of having one with the grands around so much. I'm not a fan of mead good, bad, or otherwise, but I'd be willing to try the blueberry! I've never seen flavored before. Have a wonderful weekend!

Bluebird49 said...

Goodness! What a day you had! And exploring "The piece of a house"? What!? 😃
My brain sorta froze with all that bed talk.
Hurricane Isaias brought tornadoes all around us and we lost power for more than 48 hours. It was so impressively hot that we got a motel room for one night. There was a lot of storm damage in our county, but except for the power outage, we had no bad effects. Right down the road, buildings were decimated! We're thankful we are well and unharmed.
Have fun "bee-ing" with Sherry again tomorrow! Hope you are resting well tonight!

Vee said...

Bee keeping sounds like a lot of work. Such a healthful occupation! Think of all the benefits of your excellent local honey. The mead...not sure that I could handle it. Can it be given back to the bees or would it harm them? Probably would have a bunch of inebriated bees trying to fly. Ha!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

There's so much to do in the country but it's the kind of work that leaves you feeling 'good tired'. How wonderful to have Sherry and her husband there to spend time with. Enjoy your weekend!

Changes in the wind said...

I wish I could see LD doing that ripping out job:) You had a full day and there is so much to do with having the bees. Love the little drawing.

Arlene @Nanaland said...

We tried some mead at the honey store in Savannah, Ga and neither of us cared for it. I do think it would be better hot with some cinnamon and other spices. Looks like the garden is doing well.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

You all were certainly busy bees today. Getting up early does make for an early bedtime. Especially when you have plans to be up early again. Nice you all are getting so much done during your unexpected layover there at the camper. I'm sure Sherry appreciates your help. Four hands are always better than two. Love raw colorful bee hives. The only ones I've see are plain. Enjoy your weekend there and I hope all goes well with the truck.

Sandra said...

I'm still smiling thinking about how excited lb must have been to get to go in there and tear down stuff. He's so easy to entertain and does so much good stuff too to help out. I wonder how many more decks he's going to build hahaha! I truly never knew just how much work and actual expense goes into getting honey from the bees to us I am truly impressed with all that you and Sherry do

photowannabe said...

Oh, that Good Night photo at the end is just darling. I hope you slept well.
So much interesting work to care for your bees. I'm glad you have a partner in crime to do it.
I'm actually glad you could stay at the ranch for a few more seem so happy and LD does too. He's the Master demo guy !!.

Susie said...

Mean while back at the ranch. LOL...good ole LD was ripping and tearing. Oh I loved reading this post. Those wonderful melons and garden goodies. I love that the bee boxes are working out nicely. Sounds like you all worked hard and I hope everyone slept well. Blessings, xoxo,love you guys, Susie

Deanna Rabe - Creekside Cottage Blog said...

You had a very productive day! Lots of variety of activity too!

You both have become excellent bee keepers!

Wanda said...

I really don't know how you get so much done. You have unlimited persistence and endurance. I love how your grab life by the horns and go with every roll and tumble. You accomplish so much and always with a smile and joy. Love yu Linda.

NanaDiana said...

WOW! You got a lot done, Linda. Don't you love bees? My uncle was a beekeeper and had several hives on our farm. I loved the sweet clover honey the best--still do--that and orange blossom honey are my favorite. Never cared for the 'sour' honeys.
You are so lucky to have Louis Dean to help with projects! xo Diana

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Now I realize just how much work goes into bee keeping, Linda, not that I didn’t think it didn’t but what a busy day for you both.

Carole said...

What a bizzy bee you have been. Cheers