January 13, 2010

I know it is still 58 days away but I'm so anxious for my beekeeping course to begin. I've been wanting to take this course for 3 years but each time I'd go to sign up it was already too late. This year I signed up just on time, way back in September 2009, registration closed the first of October (that is how quickly this course fills up). My first beekeeping course is March 13 and 14 for 16 hours total. Although beekeeping courses aren't required to become a beekeeper, there are plenty of books on the subject, I chose to do this hands-on under the instruction of those with experience because I want to do it right. 

Bees are absolutely fascinating creatures. I didn't realize how fascinating until my daughter Maya and I (when Maya was about 2 1/2) took a class on bees at our local nature center. Up until that point I had a phobia about bees. I would go berserk if one got within 5 feet of my site. Sadly, because of my fear my daughter was also beginning to show signs of anxiety when bees would approach. I was hoping this class at the nature center would educate me to the point of understanding these little stinging insects and help rid some of my fear. Well, it did much more than that, it taught me and my daughter about the differences between bees, wasps, hornets, bumble bees. How some sting when unprovoked and others don't. How some are meat eaters, others aren't. After that experience I've come to appreciate honey bees and bumble bees and look forward to finding them in my garden each year. Not that I like getting stung, because I certainly don't, but I have developed new feeling towards the stinging insects and those feelings don't include fear.

Come this spring I will have my very own hive and I will officially be a beekeeper. I'm excited and nervous at the same time. I've learned that bees do STING through that fancy white outfit beekeepers wear and that transferring a queen and her bees to their new hive isn't all that straight forward so those are two things that I need to focus on dealing with in class. I've decided to open a new blog about my beekeeping adventure to accompany this blog. I could post about it here but thought such an adventure deserves its own forum. Not that the two blogs won't overlap since I plan on using the honey from my future hive in my body products and my food but just wanted to have a little space to focus solely on how my quest to become a great beekeeper plays out. I hope those of you who follow will consider following the other blog as well.

My first post on my new blog is a ticker to count down the days til my beekeeping course. My beekeeping blog will most likely remain rather quiet for 58 more days but time goes quickly and in no time I'll be talking bees bees bees.

Unknown said...

How fun! Enjoy yourself!


cindy said...

Michelle your garden will also thrive with all of them lovely bees. We noticed with the decresae of the bees in the neighborhood back home our garden did not flourish like it used to. Have fun!

Michelle said...

Cyd, you'll have to come down for a visit to check out the hive once it is up and running otherwise I can go north for a visit and bring you honey :)

Anonymous said...

I think that is so, so cool to raise your own bees/hive! Dh wants to do it too, but he is way too busy.

It's great that you and Maya took that course on bees. One thing that irks me is when ppl call anything that buzzes and stings bees and treat them all the same (that is, try to kill them) when some of those insects are clearly beneficial and shouldn't be harmed.

Can't wait to read your bee blog!

Carrie Garvin said...

I admire you and your love for bees! We had a bee keeper in our past neighborhood and she made wonderful honey products, soaps, and lotions.

Just think of all that you can do with your bees.

Myself- Bees are at the top of my list of things I am very afraid of... perhaps I should take a course too---

Hugs to all!

Amy W said...

Wow! Not on my list of things I'd love to do, but I'm sure it will be great to have all the bee products!! I'm imagining honey, beeswax...isn't royal jelly something that comes from bees?

Michelle said...

T, I learned another valuable lesson from that nature course on bees... not to assume everything is just plain yuck and instead I should ask myself what they do for our planet. Everything has its purpose and bees play a significant role in our environment for sure.

Carrie, definitely take a course if one ever comes your way. When up close and personal with the honey bee and learning why they are here, how they communicate, what they offer, etc... you'll find that the fear dissipates quickly.

Yup Amy, royal jelly does come from bees. I think they feed their larvae or the queen royal jelly. I read about it but not 100% which used it and how it is extracted... something I'm sure I'll find out in March :) We definitely want too add beeswax candle making to our list of projects related to beekeeping.

Kevin Braun said...

Good luck with your course - look forward to reading your experiences and journey as a beekeeper.

Anne-Marie said...

A beekeeper class? Wow! I had no idea that you were interested in that all. What a fun and engaging hobby that is sure to benefit your garden and your neighbor's gardens too =)