Sorry, I just couldn’t resist the cheesy post title. It was too easy.
This Spring Gabe completed his six week apprentice beekeeping course through the county, and in April, we purchased two hives. Fun fact: when you purchase bees, you have to pick them up from the bee society and drive them home yourself. Each cage contained 10,oo0 bees and one queen. Gabe drove home with 20,000 live bees buzzing next to him in the front seat of his car. Can you even imagine what that must of sounded like? It gives me the shivers just thinking about it.
I wanted to paint the hives bright colors in various hues, but Gabe likes everything to match, and since he is the one risking his life (dramatic, I know) caring for the bees, I left the final decision up to him. He chose to paint them with leftover yellow paint from when we had the house painted last fall, and I have to admit, it was a good choice. They look great.
Gabe was stung twice while putting the bees into their new home (he wasn’t wearing the hood of his bee suit) but other than that, the transition from the cages to the hives went well and the bees seem to be thriving in their new home.
I absolutely love the photo of Gabe standing next to the hives scratching his head. You can practically see the thought bubble floating above his head: I hope this works. Okay…let’s do this.
We don’t yet have any honey from the bees, and most likely will not have any till Fall. Still, I couldn’t resist making a honey and goat’s milk soap a few days ago. My parents also keep bees and my Mom found this recipe on Pinterest. She purchased the same mold used in the original post, and we used store-bought honey and a goat’s milk melt-and-pour soap base that I had leftover from another project. The directions were incredibly easy to follow and the mold is so clever and adorable; I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out. You can find the recipe here.
This is my first post in five months. Five months. I’d like to say that time has flown by, but the truth is I have thought about blogging almost every day since my site went down. During it’s makeover, the site was only supposed to be down for a few days. A few days turned into a few weeks, and then a few weeks turned into, well, you know. Five months.
So much has happened on the farm between now and then. I thought about writing it all down in a single post, but I think there is too much to talk about, so I am going to try to catch everyone up through multiple posts over the next few weeks. I think it will be easier and I’m less likely to forget something.
This summer has been overwhelming to say the least. With The Man deployed, it’s just been me running things around here. This was my first time as a “single mom,” and it has been more difficult than I ever imagined. I’m so ready for Gabe to come home. How do wives do this time after time, with multiple children, for nine or even 15-month deployments. It’s been four very long months. I’m going to weep with relief the second I lay eyes on Gabe.
I can’t WAIT to sleep in past 8:00 am.
Besides handling my daily Mom duties, I’ve also been dealing with the many disasters that have occurred during this deployment. Our sprinkler system flooded our lawn and crawl space; the same day that an AC unit flooded our rental condo. These two floodings (seriously, two floodings in one day. What are the odds?) happened two days after our caretaker left the farm unexpectedly. Four weeks later, Sam fell off the couch and broke his arm. Two weeks after that, our apple orchard matured four weeks ahead of schedule, leaving me, myself and I to gather well over a thousand pounds of apples.
Anyway, this disaster of the summer is the reason why I haven’t posted since Gabe left. I started taking photos again a few weeks ago because I wanted to make sure I captured at least some of the summer on camera before I forgot all about the good and only remembered the bad. There’s nothing like Summer in Western Washington. The farm looked beautiful after our neighbor hayed the field. (A very interesting process, haying. Much more complicated than you would think). We spent lots of weekends at my parents’ farm. Sam enjoyed the chickens. And who wouldn’t? They’re gorgeous.