The girls seem to still be bringing in pollen! That kind of surprised me, as I would have thought they'd have slowed or even stopped rearing brood, but even just three weeks ago there were some brilliantly warm days, so maybe the Queen laid and they're just getting them through these last few weeks.
They seem to be doing well. I also added two popsicle sticks as shims between the inner cover and the top edge of the top box, just to let humidity out of the hive. Here in Colorado, a bunch of keepers have said that it's not the cold that kills them so long as they have stores, it's the wet and whenever there's condensation inside, it's bad.
On my side of things, after my ankle swelled up so thoroughly, I talked with my allergist about the possibility of me developing a bad bee allergy, and he got me to give a blood sample. It turns out that my blood has the large number of antibodies against bee venom that's an indicator that I may well be developing systemic reactions. So I now have an Epi-pen. I know how to use it and how to call 911 after. I'm also going in for a skin test in a week, and will do the long-term shots for bee venom along with any other insects I happen to react to. *laughs quietly*
Normally, from everything I hear on the local mailing lists, the keepers who form a bee allergy just give up their hives. But with a whole winter for me to get immune to them, I think I'm going to just keep them. I'm getting allergy shots for the ten thousand other things I'm allergic to anyway, so it's not much more of an expense for me, but I could see if it were someone without that overhead anyway how they'd probably prefer to give up the bees to going through a several thousand dollar therapy to keep them.