Two Sisters and a Hive Tool

I can proudly say, that GiGi and I made it through our month of Beekeeping 101 (and without stings, if you can believe it). It’s been a wonderful month and I am still reeling from what we have learned from this class. I think we are more than ready to put our bees in this coming Spring.

I feel so accomplished!

this is what our hive will look like
see the guard bees protecting the entrance?

Our final class was great! We got to play in the beeyard and open up several hives. We even assisted in the switching of one weaker hive to a better location. Class ended with a great chat over a honey tasting. We were able to try Nina’s Wildflower honey from the Franklin Park Conservatory, as well as Buckwheat, Orange Blossom, Blueberry, Basswood and Clover Honeys.

It was a sweet and unexpected treat!

bees on a frame

GiGi holds a Queen cage
A new Queen and her attendants

all types of honey

We have a lot to plan for before next spring!

Beekeeping can be a wonderful hobby, and I’m certain the “backyard beekeepers” are helping the bee population thrive. However, it can be quite an expense to get started. In the next 6 months we will have to save up for the hives, (we would like to start with 2 and hope to eventually make splits from those) and of course, we will have to purchase bees and a queen for each hive. Thankfully, we have made contacts with Nina and the Central Ohio Beekeepers Association (COBA, find the group on Facebook) to make that happen! We are lucky that we have already purchased our gear, the very attractive pith hats and gloves… and I can’t forget to highlight GiGi’s beautiful white jeans (also, you owe me money).

And we have a hive tool!

GiGi holds a frame of bees

In the meantime, we will volunteer at the Franklin Park Conservatory, and learn to help those hives get through the Winter.  We hope to gather as much information before our own hives go in next year!

A BIG HUGE thank you to Nina for hosting the class ad being such an amazing instructor! We really enjoyed it, and look forward to working with you again!

One more note that I forgot to add… If you are willing to help, please sign this petition to help  Save the Bees!!

Bee Happy!

xoxo Madame W

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Beekeeping 101

Our first class went well, amazing, in fact. It was so much more than either of us could have expected from a first lesson. The class was intimate, (about 10 people from all walks of life and ages) and our instructor, Nina, is a peach. Not only is she wealth of knowledge on the subject, she also breeds queens… not to mention, she’s funny as hell. Remember when I asked if we would go into the apiary today? Well, I don’t think Nina had intended to on our first lesson, but we were all eager to jump right in! I have to admit that I was a little shaky when we first approached the fenced in apiary, but I managed to cool off and get some great pictures while we learned.

Nina has offered to help us with whatever we need, including getting us started with a nuc (a half box with frames, bees and a queen). We hope she will be interested in being a kind of mentor on our journey, like our spirit  guide.

Check out what we did today, and sting-free so far!

opening the first hive, this was the more “docile” of the group

this is a 10-frame hive
there are six hives in the Franklin Park Conservatory Apiary

removing the frames to spot the queen

the best way to learn is to get right in there!

This is going to be a great month!

Love, Madame W

From Dream to Reality

So, here we are… the very first post of the Beelievers. We are two sisters seeking a summer adventure and are here to document what we hope will be a exciting new hobby.

We’re talking Beekeeping here folks!

This idea just came to life a few short weeks ago. It became a spark, which has quickly set fire, and now we are just rolling along with it. We hope that as very novice beekeepers we can take you along the steps we have set- to conquer our goal of starting a hive and eventually harvesting local, organic honey. It’s a lofty endeavor, (and we are a little intimidated, mostly of getting stung) but so excited to learn!

Why?
In just a couple of weeks we have learned so much about these amazing little creatures. Not only can they make honey, (delicious) but they are important to a thriving ecosystem. Also, bees are just plain awesome!

So, we have ordered some books and signed up for a class…. and away we fly!

Wish us luck
-Madame W.