Beekeeping, Gardening and Quilting in Eastern Wake County, North Carolina

Friday, December 31, 2010

My Grandson - Happy New Year

He's five months old now.
Such a joy!
Wishing everyone a healthy and happy new year!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas Snow 2010

These photos were taken early Sunday morning.

We got 8-1/2" of snow and cold, cold weather.
It was a beautiful snow.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Day Menu

Merry Christmas!
Christmas lunch at our house for many years has been grilled cheese sandwiches and fried bologna sandwiches.
But you can only use Bunny Bread and Bright Leaf Bologna! Really, really good!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Hi-yo Silver - the Lone Ranger

Fred Foy - the voice behind "Hi-yo, Silver - the Lone Ranger" died Wednesday of age-related causes - he was 89.
"A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust and a hearty "Hi-yo, Silver" - the Lone Ranger! With his faithful companion, Tonto, the daring and resourceful masked rider of the plains led the fight for law and order in the early Western United States. Nowhere in the pages of history can one find a greater champion of justice.
Return now with us to those thrilling days of yesteryear. From out of the past come the thundering hoof-beats of the great horse Silver. The Lone Ranger rides again!"
And all this accompanied by the stirring strains of Rossini's "William Tell Overture".
I watched The Lone Ranger when growing up - it was one of my favorite shows.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Finally . . . . .

It has been many months since I've gotten any eggs. The hot weather about did the hens in and then they molted and were pitiful looking messes. And then cold weather and shorter days.
Finally, yesterday I got two eggs. I am so happy! Store bought eggs are just terrible - they have no taste or flavor. I know they're okay but I've gotten spoiled having fresh eggs.
Henny Penny and either Lucy or Ethel laid these eggs - hard to tell about Lucy and Ethel - their eggs are the same color.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Miss Minnie

My chickens are doing fine during this burry cold weather we've been having. It's a little tough to get water sometimes but Miss Minnie looks fat and sassy standing in the frozen goldfish pond.
Dumpling joined her later.

Probably some good bugs and stuff hiding in the corners.
We're supposed to have some snow, maybe sleet, and rain today and then the possibility of more this weekend.
Yuk - I've had enough already!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christmas Quilt 2010

Christmas Trees
Completed in time for Christmas! A nice lap size quilt with Santas on the back.

I've been working on this quilt for some time and would go back and forth with how it should be quilted so it took a little longer to finish. I finally did stitching in the ditch on the rows and outlined around the trees.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Christmas Tree

Got the Christmas tree all decorated.
I love all my ornaments - some I've had for years and years.
Lily decided to try to eat three of them - she did a pretty good job.
So the dog proofing gets set up again this year.
Styrofoam seems to be her choice - thank goodness these were not some of my really special ornaments - I think I got two of them at a gas station years ago for filling up the tank and the other was a crochet ornament but I have several more of those.
Silly dog!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Snow in December

It's really unusual for us to have such an early snow.
It started mid-afternoon and whoosh - the ground was covered.
It sounds and feels like it's sleeting a little now.
And it's pretty doggone cold!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Oh Christmas Tree!

Does this tree look like somthing's missing? Well, last year in my smartness, I put the hangers somewhere special thinking I would definitely remember and it would make my life so much easier.
Well - guess what! I can't find the d___ things - so it's off to Wallyworld tomorrow to get some more and then of course I'll find the others in that special place I put them.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veterans Day Quilt 2010

My contribution this year to the Veteran's Hospital in Durham.
A simple four patch set on point.
Thank you to our veterans and to the men and women serving our country today.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Veterans Day Quilts

This is my quilt to be contributed to the Veteran's Hospital in Durham.
Our quilting bee does a great job each year - I think we had over 25 quilts.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween from
Baby Boy!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Another Quilt for Safechild

This is another quilt to be donated to Safechild. It's about 40 x 40 - a small quilt but big enough. Just a basic nine patch with fabric I've had for years - I'm trying to use up what I have on hand.
Our quilt guild has several charities but Safechild is my favorite.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Looking for Hive Beetles

I opened Nuc #1 today to check on the hive beetle situation. Didn't see many so I left everything alone. I also looked in Nuc #2 and Hive #5 just to make sure they had plenty of food and also the hive beetle situation in each of those hives. They were okay.
Did not check #4 and Swarm '09 - cannot pick up or even think about lifting either of these hives so I'm sure they have plenty of food for the winter. Actually, I couldn't pick up the other hives either.

In checking my hives before winter sets in, I try to lift the back of the hive - if you can lift the hive - check the hive and start feeding immediately, they will not last the winter. If you can't lift the hive body, you should be okay. But again, it's always a good idea to open the hive and then you can tell what's happening.

This is food for the winter. I have plenty of honey so I want the bees to have plenty too.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Colony Collapse Disorder - A Fungus

An article was in The New York Times this week about the colony collapse disorder. Scientists teamed up with the military and now believe the collapse is caused by a fungus tag-teaming with a virus that interacted to cause the problem.

They don't have a solution but they think they know what's causing the problem.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

A Cheeseburger

A Cheeseburger went into a bar and ordered a drink.

The bartender said "we don't serve food".

We all need a little humor now and then!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Storing Equipment

In the process of beekeeping, you really end up with a lot of stuff - things you will need next year but not right now.

With the wax moths being such a problem, this is how I store my extra supers that have been used - new ones are not a problem.

I stack the supers on a flat board on a pallet - then an empty baggie feeder box which is just a couple of inches in height - and then all the supers, mediums and deeps, whatever I have - another empty baggie feeder box - next a glass/plastic storm window - then another flat board and some type of brick or piece of granite on top.
The crystals go on a paper plate inside the empty feeder box.
I have to check and add moth crystals from time to time. So far this has worked okay. I buy my moth ice crystals 99.90% paradichlorobenzene at a big box store - bee supply places have the same thing.

The top board over the storm window is simply to keep the sun from melting the wax inside the supers - this is again speaking from experience. I had some wax to melt - it just got so hot with the sun hitting that glass.
There's all kinds of ways to store your equipment but so far this is working.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Nuc #3 - Gone

I messed around and didn't check on Nuc #3 even though I wasn't sure there was a queen and I had added some frames around the first of Sept. so I knew they would need more food soon.

And we have had some extremely hot weather all thru Sept - hotter than normal. I had noticed lots of activity right after I gave them the full supers but lately not much going on.

Today I opened the hive and the wax moths have just destroyed the hive. There were maybe 50 or so bees left in the hive and they were trying their best to get ahead of the wax moths but it just couldn't happen. I didn't see a queen and maybe that was part of the problem - maybe they didn't have a queen (pretty sure they didn't).
So I cleaned up the hive and put the frames that could be saved in the freezer. I know better and should have checked on this hive a week after putting the frames in - just didn't do it!

The other hives look fine but I'll be checking them this week - weather permitting. We are getting some rain now and it's much needed.
You can see a wax moth on the front of the hive. They're nasty little devils.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Wrightsville Beach Gardens

I was at Wrightsville Beach before Labor Day (this is the view from where I was staying) and there's some wonderful gardens there - little gems that you might not see riding in your car.

The weather was wonderful - Thurs was a little overcast due to EARL but that went away quickly.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Beeyard on Labor Day

Way past time to check on the bees.

I had only planned on opening Nuc #3 (very little activity in and out of the hive) and Hive #5 (with the new queen). But after I got started I opened all the hives.

My main concern was Nuc #3 - they were really low on food so after checking, I took 3 full frames from Hive #5 and put in the super. What I need to do is take the frames from the brood box in Hive #4 and put in the brood box on Nuc #3. Hive #4 is working on filling out the brood box frames but have a ways to go before filling them out and they have room in the super below so I'll move this around in a couple of days. That should give Nuc #3 enough food for the winter.

Hive #5 with the new queen - well, they're just doing great. Lots of bees and plenty of food.
Nuc #2 - took the top super off - it was empty - moved 2 frames which had a little honey to #5.

Nuc #1 - had some hive beetles but lots of bees and food.
Swarm '09 - a few hive beetles (less than 6) and lots of bees and food.
Hive #4 - all the frames in the top brood box will be moved to Nuc #3 - other than that they looked great. The inner cover on this hive was stuck tight to the top so when I took the top off, everything came off at one time. It was very difficult to get this pulled apart. I guess I forgot to put a stick between the inner cover and the top - I put 2 big ones in there today.
I usually open the hives in the same order every time but today I was so sure I wouldn't be doing all of them, I did 3, 5, 2, 1, Swarm '09 and 4. So I could have moved a lot more frames around and had a better idea of what needed to be changed if I done 3, 4, 5, 2, 1 and Swarm '09 (the regular order - left to right). I really like to do my beeyard the same every time I check them - probably makes no difference but it works for me.

Perfect weather today - a slight breeze but only in the 80's.

Looking inside Hive #4 top brood box.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Hanging Out with the Chickens

Missy loves the chickens but I think the chickens might have a love/hate relationship with her. I've seen them pecking at her and running at her in the yard - she can be really annoying. She likes to jump out and surprise them.
But doesn't she look mighty sweet and innocent.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Bee Sting !!!!

A Wake County sheriff's deputy found himself in the middle of a swarm of bees this morning when he went to check on a report of a disabled truck. The truck was pulling a trailer load of bees (60 hives) from Mount Airy to Rocky Mount and broke down before dawn. When the sun rose and the bees became active, they began to fly around. The deputy (being pretty smart) got in his car and called for backup.
Jennifer Keller (NCSU Apiculture Dept) and some local beekeepers came to the rescue. They spritzed the bees with sugar water and coaxed many of them back into boxes to head down the road again.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Another Visitor

Last week we had a raccoon in the tree outside the fence. We have all kinds of visitors but I can't remember having a raccoon in the yard or seeing one that close. Lily tried her best to jump up the tree but it just didn't work.

Saturday, August 7, 2010


I've been busy with Baby Boy.
It sure has been hot these past couple of weeks and my garden is just a mess but the zinnas continue with no help from me.
I've had lots more butterflys this year.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Blue Quilt for Baby Boy

This is the quilt I made for Baby Boy to give at the hospital. It was a surprise for Mom, Dad and Baby Boy. I wanted a "sweet baby quilt" and the other three I've made have not been baby quilts - they're more fun quilts.
This is it for awhile - a total of four quilts and he's not even a month old! I've been told whatever I make for #1 has to be made for #2, etc. and also my second daughter said her "yet to be born or even thinking about right now" get the same.
So I need to stop - just for a little while.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Baby Boy


Born 7/7/10 and weighing in at 7 lbs 13 ounces.

He's absolutely wonderful and Mom, Baby and Dad are doing great.

I've been busy helping - thank goodness all the animals can fend for themselves. He has changed so much since this photo at the hospital. I'm definitely the "proud Grandmother".