Jordan never ceases to amaze me. Every time I turn around, I'm learning about some brand new thing that he's apparently done for years, that I know nothing about. I'm completely serious, and not being sarcastic a bit! I've love learning new things. He is the most talented, skilled person, and I'm so blessed that I get to be his helper! He keeps telling me that 'he's not handsome, but he's handy', and I keep telling him that he is most definitely both! :)
Okay. So, while Jordan has been staying down here, welding on the doll beds in the work shop, a problem began. A hive of bees has been dwelling in the outside shop building wall for many years, so far they haven't bothered us too much, so we did't bother them. Until they started coming through the inside wall, so much that Jordan could no longer work out there!
So, after some discussion, it was decided to order the items we needed to start a domestic bee hive, and see if we could transfer the wild bees into it while Jordan was here, because he's had bees for many years and knows all about it!
Little brother Stockton was very excited, as he's decided if it's successful, and once he learns the ropes, he will take over the 'bee business' and hopefully eventually produce enough honey to sell.
Stockton, me, and Jordan
So, after Jordan and Stock had constructed the hive boxes over several days, we chose one particularly warm day to try and move the bees and break into the wild hive. Under Jordan's direction we put on over jeans and a thick shirt our winter coveralls and leather gloves. Then we had to duct tape our ankles and wrists....then put on our straw cowboy hats and a homemade fabric 'veil', which was then also duct taped down.
Good thing I'm not claustrophobic.
Oh wait. I am....
Yeah. So it was stuffy...and four or five hours was a long time to be in that crazy get-up, but we survived. I hesitated about posting the above picture...as I sincerely hope it is the worst possible outfit I will ever be seen in...hope I don't ever show up in anything worse! lol. But- the good thing is neither Stockton or I got one single bee sting. (Jordan did get two :(
First Jordan had to rip the wood siding off the shop wall to expose the hive. It was huge! The honeycomb went down vertically, and was covered with busy workers.
The bees were not happy to have their home invaded, but they actually didn't attack us very much. It was so very interesting to see the inside of such a complex and wonderful 'factory'. The design was amazing! I'm afraid during the whole process Stockton and I distracted Jordan with endless questions about the hive and the bees! I feel like we learned a lot.
Jordan began cutting out sections of comb and rubber-banding or wiring it into the frames for the boxes that he and Stockton had made. We put about half the comb in the new hive, and half we kept.
The dark, rich honey was literally dripping out of the comb when we got inside the wall.
When we finally got done with the bee move, and brought all the leftover honeycomb inside, we had every single big bowl and pot in the house full up!
Jordan showed us how to squeeze the honey out of the comb.
It was such very sticky work - but everyone wanted to get in on the fun!
And it smelled so heavenly and rich!
After all the comb had been squeezed, we strained the honey to remove any trash.
We ended up with (almost) two beautiful gallons of raw wild honey! The flavor was delicious, actually much deeper and stronger than any I've tasted before.
And, Jordan also showed us how to melt down and strain all the leftover comb and we ended up with a lovely sweet-smelling cake of pretty yellow beeswax. Mom and I have been coming up with all sorts of plans to use it....
So, it was a very very long day, but so worth it! We of course had biscuits for supper that night so everyone could have their fill of the delicious honey!