Monday, May 27, 2013

First Beehive Inspection of the 2013 Season

Again, I find myself behind on blog posts. It happens. I'm busy. I finally downloaded photos from our first beehive inspection. The first inspection is always so exciting. We are mainly looking to see that the Queen has successfully been freed from her cage and started laying eggs. We open up the top cover and it's a good sign, we see very active bees.
We pulled out the first frame and we were happy with what we saw.
The Queen has been laying perfect frames of brood. Good sign of a healthy Queen and hive.
It's just beautiful.  In a few days, they will hatch and we'll have all new baby bees.
Here's a frame filled with busy bees! This year's bee's the Queen is unmarked, so it can be hard looking for her among so many bees like this!
Since we had only 7 frames inside the box, there was a lot of empty space inside the beehive. The bees built some wild burr comb to fill in the empty gaps.

I just love how pretty this looks! I kept these and think I will frame them in a shadow box. The season is in full swing now! I am one happy, happy beekeeper!!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

My New Name

There is a Starbucks in the lobby of my office and I go there to get a cup of java from time to time. Inevitably, everytime they ask for my name, they always get it wrong. Maybe I say "Mimi" not clearly, because everytime I get my cup of ice coffee it always says this.
Since I'm a beekeeper, I think this name is more appropriate for me. Hahahahha. From now on, just call me Beebee. :)

Saturday, May 18, 2013

A Foodie's Paradise

Last night, I stayed up until 1:00 am making a batch of strawberry jam. I'm not usually this "last minute" with things, but work has me ccccrazy! The reason for the lack of sleep was well worth it though. I had a coveted ticket. A ticket to BK Swappers! I've written about BK Swappers before, I can't believe it's been 2 years since I've been to one! It's this ah-MAZ-ing event in Brooklyn where you bring food you've made to swap with other foodies. Jams, chutneys, hot sauces, granola, extracts, liquers, chocolate sauces, baked items, you name it! I made 6 jars of my favorite strawberry jam.
I walked into the space, and my heart was already pounding. Ooohhhh look at all those goodies ready to be bartered for.
The swap works like this. There are little pieces of paper next to your swap item and people walk around the table and write their names and food item for what they would like to swap you for.
Going around from table to table is fun. You get to meet the people who created the yummy treats. I am so impressed with what people bring to this event!
Like this chocolate sauce with Chambord! She had a sample jar out for you to try, and WOW, holy cow, is it delicious.  I put my name down to trade with her.
At the event, I also ran into a fellow garden blogger. The Revel Gardener was there with her family. They brought some of their amazing Big Brown Sugar Vanilla ice cream for the pot luck table. I met the Revel Gardener 2 years ago at a plant swap she hosted. She gave us ice cream at that event, and I was so excited that they brought it again! Wow, is this stuff good! One of the other attendees, Kendra mentioned that the chocolate sauce above would go amazing drizzled over this! I have to agree! Outstanding! The Revel Gardener told me that they currently make small batches and sell the ice cream and oat bars online here on their website Brooklyn Bell.
For swapping, they brought an array of goodies! Among them their oat bars, chocolate covered pretzels and a Hawaiian salt caramel. I traded one of my strawberry jams for a jar of this sauce. It is incredible!! I can't wait to try it on some desserts!
Some swappers brought an assortment of canned goodies. Can you believe this is one person! Wow, their swap haul must have been incredible!
This was my haul. I ended up only trading 5 out of my 6 jars. There was apparently a boat load of people bringing jams, so there was lots of that going around.  Since I was pretty slow to swap with people, I missed out on getting rid of my last jar.  However, I did score a bunch of cool stuff. Like a box of dark chocolate truffles, a jar of the chocolate Chambord sauce, a jar a spiced pumpkin seeds, the Hawaiian salt caramel and a big jar of hard apple cider.
I have to show you a photo of these truffles! I was in awe of them! Like, wow Brooklyn peeps. Wow! I can't wait to eat every single one. I am so impressed with what everyone made! I have to soooo up my game at the next swap! I need to come up with something extra special to swap! Ohhhh, yeah.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Ha-bee Mother's Day

Today was a gorgeous day to do this!! 62F, sunny, perfection!
I saw my mom yesterday for Mother's day and I gave her this card. hahaha. I giggle everytime I see it. I had to photoshop myself into the pop up card. It's just hilarious! Happy Mother's Day to all you moms!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Last Bee Installation

Finally, the day has come. Our final bee installation of the season. Third and final beehive! Woot, woot! Here we are getting ready to install the newest addition to our Brooklyn "apiary". This is the hive we ordered this year, and painted a bright, bright green!
Here is James, one of our beehosts, taking out the Queen and getting ready to place her in her new home!
Here he is pouring the rest of the package into the hive. You can see Paul's hand on the left spray down the package with sugar water.  The purpose of the sugar water spray is to calm down the bees, and to distract them while we pour them in.  Pouring 10,000 bees into a hive can get a little overwhelming of the bees, they get agitated, so the sugar water helps a lot.
All the bees in, welcome to your new home ladies!  We'll check on them in 3 days to ensure that the Queen has left her cage.  Can't wait!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

New Beehive Location

Last year, we had one of our beehives atop a rooftop in Brooklyn. Unfortunately, the beehive did not do well in that location. Therefore we decided to move it to a garden location instead.  Luckily, we found another beehost with a backyard.  We picked up our package of bees early one morning here, and we put them in a shopping bag and taxied over to Brooklyn.
This location is just perfect. There is a large Magnolia tree right above the beehive. When we saw the tree in bloom, I was breathless! Spectacular! Just wow! Seriously, this photo does not do it justice. In person, it was amazing.
Package installed! The bees will like there new home for sure!
Here's Paul putting in the frames after we installed the package. How gorgeous is this location????
I can't think of a more perfect home for our beehive! Picture perfect!

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