It’s been two weeks since we opened the hive last. This past week has been quite warm. The hive is in a yard that faces south west, so this time of year it starts getting sun in the late morning. Rob opened the hive around 3:30, when the hive was in full sun. Did I mention it’s quite warm? We were sweating out there.
Rob opened the hive and as soon as he lifted off the inner cover honey started dripping onto the ground. The bees were also building comb on top of the bars. The husband scraped the excess comb off the top, then took a look at the outer most frames. The bees have built comb out on all the frames and there’s capped honey in there as well.
Here’s the thing: we’re moving in a week. We really, really wanted to avoid putting another box on the hive before the move. But, with the level of build out, we decided that we had to put another box on or risk a swarm. So we put a medium on. If we weren’t moving, we’d have put a deep on.
I continue to be amazed at how chill the bees are. Even with hive open, frame in Rob’s hands, we can stand a couple feet from the hive and chat and the bees just don’t care about us.
I think the maple flowers have all fallen off, but the bees still fly off in the direction of those trees and the community college campus. In the immediate vicinity, rhododendrons are in bloom everywhere. I see the bees landing on the leaves, there are so many bushes you can’t avoid them, but I don’t think I’ve seen the bees foraging from the flowers. I will pay closer attention this coming week. I’m really weak in my flower knowledge and in my knowledge of Oregon’s flowers. Something to address in the coming year.
I’m a little worried about moving the hive. The hive is located at the bottom of a hill and there isn’t really a good route up to the street. We have straps. We have a dolly that’s up to the task. But there will be bumps. We have the hive boxes stapled together to ensure they don’t slide apart in transit. Due to the path to the street, I think we’ll move the bees right around dawn so that we can see what we’re doing.
The bees have been in for a week, so the husband opened the hive up to see how they were doing and the status of their food. The bees were (a) still in residence and (b) building comb, so I’d say that was a success. Unfortunately, they are more inclined to build comb around the food than in their frames. So the husband cleaned up the rogue comb, took out the food and closed up the hive.
The bees have been flying out in the direction of a bunch of maple trees that are still flowering, as well as a community college campus. I’m not sure what’s blooming over there. The weather has been great in the area lately. Sunshine, temperate days, cool but not cold nights.
Today Rob transferred the bee frames from the nuc to the forever (knock on wood) hive.The weather was kind of icky. Overcast, temperatures in the 50s, sporadic light drizzles. Since the hive is sheltered by a tall deck, I don’t think they felt the drizzle.
I watched from a safe distance. We don’t yet have two sets of protective covering — the jacket fits both of us under normal circumstances. We bought it when I wasn’t quite so pregnant, so it may no longer fit around the belly. I want to make sure this colony is fairly non-aggressive before handling them. They seemed pretty chill. They did not swarm around Rob, nor did they fly at him aggressively. A couple curious bees landed on his back and head and rode around there for a while.
The most difficult part of transferring the frames appeared to be getting the frames out of the box without squishing bees. I believe there were several bee casualties.
We gave the bees some food and put the entrance reducer at the hive entrance. We will check them next weekend to see how they’re doing. All in all, bee installation was a success.
Bees are here! This morning the husband and I dragged ourselves out of the house and over to Portland’s east side to pick up a nuc from Tim and Glen of Bridgetown Bees. Transporting the nuc back was fairly uneventful. No bees escaped. The car did not crash, and 10,000 bees did not go nuts inside the car.
Rob took the colony to its temporary home under the deck, they get nice afternoon light and a bit of protection from the wind, set it on a level surface, and let the bees go out and about. Rob made a perimeter out of chicken wire to prevent the in-laws’ dog from inspecting the the hive.
Tomorrow or Monday Rob will transfer the nuc frames to their forever-hive-box. That should be exciting.
One month from tomorrow we will be closing on our very first house (knock on wood). This is exciting and daunting. Exciting because we will have our own space again, I can get to work amassing baby supplies, the husband and I won’t have to walk the dogs three or more times a day. The dogs will have a yard to hang out in — Lizzie especially loves existing in the outdoors.
The daunting part is the actual moving. I did some purging before packing up the pod. Unfortunately, when we were really in pack-mode, I was ill, so I didn’t have the energy or will to go through my stuff like I would have wanted. So, I’m trying to pump myself up for a bit of purging as we move things in. My biggest problem areas weren’t put into boxes, nope, they were left in the drawers that they live in. Out of site, out of mind. They’re craft supplies and linens, and those are fine, but what are not fine is a bunch of papers and business cards and such that I really don’t need or that should be filed. My quilting supplies easily get out of hand.
And then there’s random things. Souvenirs from foreign countries; coin collections; tchotchkes.
I’ve been watching Hoarders: Buried Alive lately. It’s pretty desperate viewing; there are better things I could be doing. But it’s mindless, and it’s helping me contemplate my own collection of stuff. I also came across a book (a collection of blog posts put together and sold as a book) that is a collection of thoughts on minimalism on amazon that is part of their free lending to prime library … it is free, so I checked it out.
I have no desire to live a minimalist life. I firmly believe there is a happy-medium between stuff and lack of stuff, and that happy-medium is not in the minimal-zone. Not at all. I’ve known this for a while. Other minimalists whose thoughts I’ve read struck me as, well, nicely put, not for me.
The result of all this contemplation of stuff is:
- The collections must go. I do not need a coin collection. I do not need a stamp collection. I’m actually not sure what other collections I have.
- Great-grandmother’s dish set must go. It’s going on eighty-five years old. It is not approved for eating on. It has no function. Yes, it’s pretty, but 6-place settings is a lot of excess pretty. Not only is this a non-functional dish set, I have four other dish sets that are completely functional. One set is every day, one set is Christmas, and two sets are pretty. I don’t know how I’m going to properly get rid of this set, but I will. “Unfortunately”, the dish set has value, so I need to take time to figure out how to best sell it. Easy would be giving it to charity. Easy would be selling it locally as a set. Maximum profit will probably involve a couple years and ebay.
- I need to make some sort of arrangement with myself about craft supplies and hobbies. I have quite a few unfinished projects. I either need to finish them or get rid of the supplies.
- I maybe should get rid of another dish set…
One of the dogs is crying. I should probably see what that is about.