Woof! Boy, this blog has been hibernating for quite awhile. I kept thinking I would take up blogging again at some appropriate milestone , but it never happened. I would get these great titles for a posr, but never found the time to get them down in print. They lived in my head, rattling around while I attended to the needs of family life and the demands of professional responsibilities. Since I felt like I wasn't keeping up with those things, the very thought of blogging inspired more guilt. Not that I've been all work and no play. We got a puppy, who has grown into an adult dog. I still knit regularly. Then there's the bees. After a third year of losing my bees, I was going to throw in the towel, admit defeat. Then I decided to stick with it for Axel's sake. You see, he loves the bees. All last summer, he loved running over to the hives, throwing off the outer cover and watching them through the screened inner cover. The only time he got stung was when he tried to take off the inner cover, which was glued down with propolis. He started rocking the hive trying to get it off. I shooed him away quickly, but not quickly enough. One of the guard bees stung him in the neck. Yet, that wasn't enough turn him off the bees.
So, since he's big enough to help out with them, I thought I would give it another go. I repainted my hives. I bought Axel a beekeeping suit. I'm networking with other beekeepers. That's also why I'm blogging again. One of my past mistakes in beekeeping was not keeping a bee journal. Enter the hibernating blog. I'm still short on time. However, I can blog on the bus to and from work. During fall and winter, I often nap during my commute because it's still dark in the morning and the light is already fading in the evening. Now that spring has come, the days are so bright I can't sleep even if I wanted to. This kind of light fills me with optimism for a productive day ahead, like a promise that I can accomplish all those ideas rattling around in my head. It feels like the right time to translate the beautiful visions from my mind's eye to reality.
Beautiful reality #2: Package installation day went off without a hitch. I left the house early enough to beat the traffic in both directions. The weather was perfect for it. I guess l gained enough experience from my previous installations to make this one quick and easy.
Beautiful reality #3: I added entrance feeders with medicated sugar syrup the next day when I removed the packages and added frames (I use the indirect release method ). Since I knew that Fumigilan -B breaks down quickly in sunlight, I covered the jars with light weight plastic plant pots.
Beekeeping with new packages always starts with optimism. This is the honeymoon, if you will. I hope this time next year I'll be telling you how these bees successfully overwintered, instead of presenting another cautionary tale.