bee

Honey and Other Prizes

John's brother, Walt, and his wife, Cathie, stayed with us for the weekend, and we were really busy Friday night running around Longmont and finding all the breweries and ending up at the Pumphouse for dinner.  It was fun, and they invited some friends from Fort Collins, who had fun talking with us.


Saturday was the farmer's market, introducing them to Farmer John's peaches and whole wheat flour, and finding some breakfast at the Izzo's bakery.  Then we went into Denver and the Taste of Denver to see our neighbor, Greg, play in Paradise Theater, a Styx tribute band as part of the nostalgia trip for the whole fair.  There were hundreds of booths there, food and vendors of all kinds.  One guy was selling bamboo bedding, and it was fun asking him more questions...

Most people selling things only know enough to sell them, no more, and for someone like me, who really has to know a thing, it gets interesting talking to someone who only knows enough to sell that thing, and isn't really all that interested in the thing itself.

One really cool find was a pair of yellow socks with a honeycomb pattern on it and a big bumble bee logo.  Fun and thick and warm. 

When we got home, we started tackling the whole job of emptying out all the frames I'd taken from the hive on Wednesday.  It ended up being a four hour job even with the four of us.  One of us would open up caps, and then the others would spin them out when we had two, and then John would bottle it when it was too full for the spinner to go anymore.

We ended up with five and a half gallons from the one hive, and it's a darker honey than the honey we'd gotten at the beginning of the summer.  All the bottles in the photo, other than that one in the front left, were still cloudy from the air bubbles from spinning the honey out of the frames.  That one was from rendering all the caps, and was the honey that was underneath the wax.  It's a lot of honey.

And our friends and neighbors are cheerfully buying it again from us.  I'm grateful.  The girls seem to be doing really well, and the mite drops have slowed significantly since I started powder sugaring them.  The treatment seems to be helping them out so much that I don't need to use the formic acid treatment on them.  I'm grateful for that.



The house seemed quieter after they left. 

So I sat down and tried playing with paints and some papers my mother had given me the last time we were in San Diego.  One of the things I'd been wanting to paint was this... and octopus... the coloring of the creatures lends itself well to the way colors flow from the brush into the paper... starting darker on the tips and shading toward the center on the lighter wash that's in the body of the brush.

A lady at church dreamed that I was painting octopi before I'd even attempted this one, so I thought I'd fulfil the dream. *laughs*  I think it worked out well.

The CSA gave us purple daikon radishes, what I hadn't expected was that they were actually purple all the way through!!  I was impressed, and even more impressed that they actually cooked up purple and violet in the turnip cakes I'd made with them.  That is something I would never have found out if we hadn't participated in the CSA this year. 

Luckily, they'd run out of zucchini and cucumbers, finally, and were offering things like onions and potatoes and these.  There were also some winter squash, finally, and we're now inundated with vegetables.  I processed the last of the cucumbers into dill pickles for John, and now all the radishes and turnips we had are turnip cake, and there's still zucchini.  The potatoes and onions will last, as will the garlic.  But we're also getting ready to go out of town soon. I'm going to be on a plane next week with the other Empty Nest moms and going out to LA and on a train up to the Bay Area and then north from there to probably visit John's Mom and do a lot in Seattle.

So we're frantically finishing things off from the fridge.  It was really funny, because Jet asked, explicitly, for a picture of our refrigerator, because his host family couldn't believe how huge our fridge was, according to his description.  So we have a picture of John posed by our refrigerator for reference size, and with the door open to show how deep the thing is.  *laughs*

Culture shock comes in different ways.  So staying busy and getting ready to be even busier.