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

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Harry Potter - 20 Years Ago


It's been 20 years since the first Harry Potter book was published!  It seems like yesterday really.  Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone was published in Britain on June 26, 1997.  Since then, it has sold more than 450 million copies worldwide and has been translated into 79 languages. 
My favorite characters - Harry, Ron and Hermoine.
Although I have all the books, I have never finished reading the whole series.  Probably considered a sin by some but just haven't gotten back into it - 20 years - well, other things have happened since then.  But maybe I'll give it a go.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

The Big House

So today I checked the bees.  I know - it has been awhile - lots and lots of bees.  Checked the top two supers and they're full of honey.  I can't take the honey right now so I added a deep to the top of the hive.  This is a temporary fix but will give them some room and give me some time.  I have braced each side in case we have windy days and/or storms.  So now there's a deep, four supers and another deep on top. 
June 2017
So for those folks that have waited patiently for honey, it's coming!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Memorial Day

Memorial Day began as Decoration Day, recognizing the family tradition of placing flowers on graves to honor the soldiers, sailors and Marines of the Civil War.  John A. Logan, commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of Union soldiers, made these celebrations official in 1868, establishing May 30 as the day for veterans to honor their dead comrades.
Even before the war ended, women’s groups across much of the South were gathering informally to decorate the graves of Confederate dead.  Many in the South regarded the holiday as a Northern commemoration and chose dates other than May 30 to remember their Civil War dead. 
Confederate Memorial Day is celebrated in North Carolina on May 10.  May 10 marks the anniversaries of the death of Thomas Jonathan 'Stonewall' Jackson (a general in the Confederate army) in 1863 and the capture of Jefferson Davis in 1865.
After World War I, there was further debate over whether the country should honor its war dead with a single holiday or whether World War I dead would have their own holiday on Armistice Day in November. The debate continued until after World War II, when the current purpose of the holidays became established:  Memorial Day for honoring the dead, and Armistice Day, renamed Veterans Day, for honoring and thanking the living.
In 1971, Congress declared Memorial Day a national holiday to be celebrated the last Monday in May.
The American flag should be hung at half-staff until noon on Memorial Day, then raised to the top of the staff. And since 2000, when the U.S. Congress passed legislation, all Americans are encouraged to pause for a National Moment of Remembrance at 3 p.m. local time.

Fatalities from U.S. Wars and Conflicts
American Revolution (1775-1783)4,435
War of 1812 (1812-1815)2,260
Mexican War (1846-1848)13,283
Civil War (1861-1865)620,000
Spanish-American War (1898-1902) 385
World War I (1917-1918)116,516
World War II (1941-1945)405,399
Korean War (1950-1953)36,574
Vietnam War (1964-1975)58,220
Gulf War (1990-1991)383
Afghanistan War (2001-present)2,381
Iraq War (2003-2012)

Let us never forget the lives that have been lost and the sacrifices made by so many.



Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The Andy Griffith Show

TV is just horrible these days and I cancelled Netflix (computer/tv/instructions not good - I'm a little slow) so maybe later I'll try it again.  In the meantime, I'm watching PBS and other stuff like The Andy Griffith Show. 
So I have some questions and I know I can Google for answers but think about this - Andy is probably the most likeable guy and never hardly ever gets upset.  He's just a happy fella.  What makes him so happy - certainly not his love life or lack thereof.  Does he have any family other than Aunt Bea - where are his parents and any siblings?  What happened to Opie's mother and why is she never, ever mentioned.  I know it's a TV program but did you know they have Bible Study lessons based on this show.  Yep, it's true.
Mayberry Bible Study Guide: vol 2
Well I just read this post to check for spelling, etc and started laughing.  Obviously I need to get a life!

Sunday, April 9, 2017

You know . . . .

Well occasionally I have been known to rant and rave about stuff so today I'm on my soapbox about YOU KNOWYou know you must say it at least a thousand times a day - my grandchildren will grow up thinking you know is an established part of our language - not so, my little kiddies!
I listen to talk radio and the guy on one of my favorite programs (no longer the case) must say you know every fifth or sixth word out of his mouth.  Not only is he on the radio and should try a little more to sound like he has some sense but honestly does he never listen to his broadcasts.  Trump and his family (just an observation) never say you know.  Their speaking abilities are excellent so if the President and his family can do it so should everyone else. 
You know can be included in the so-called discourse particles, that is those linguistic units of spoken language which have no real meaning, their function being merely a pragmatic one. You know is also sometimes used to allow us time to think when we are speaking.  As people develop a speech pattern over time -- and unless they make a concentrated effort to avoid them -- the filler words become normal, to the point that they do not even know they are using them. 
I'll admit I repeat myself (I know I do and I'll blame it on old age) but I'm really trying to stop saying the dreaded term.  Now go forth my friends and listen to yourself and stop saying YOU KNOW!

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Double Duty

March 2017
Mr. Ellis came Friday and we checked the bees.  We did see the Queen in the bottom brood box and lots and lots of bees.  No drones yet but they should be coming soon. 
There was not much honey in the hive so Mr. Ellis and I agreed I needed to start feeding before they starved which can happen so quickly.  Since there were so many bees in the hive I have put two jars of sugar syrup on the front of the hive. It looks crazy but works. 
I'm planning to get a Queen in about three weeks and then do a split unless I have a swarm before then. 

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Rusty Patched Bumblebee - Endangered Species

The Rusty Patched Bumblebee on Tuesday became the first officially endangered bee species in the continental U.S. overcoming objections from some business interests and a last-minute delay ordered by the Trump administration. The bees have an enormous range of 13 states including Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois, Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee.  Rusty patched bumblebees nest in underground colonies, sometimes in fields, causing worry for farmers.   
Over the past two decades, the bee has declined in nearly 90 percent of its range.  The list of suspected causes for the disappearance, according to the agency, reads like an environmental most-wanted list: farm pesticides, household herbicides, human development over bee habitat, disease and climate change.
So now the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will devise a plan for returning the Rusty Patched Bumblebee to a "healthy and secure condition". 
A couple of years ago, I happened upon a nest in the ground in my garden - I didn't know what type of bumblebee it was but probably the Rusty Patched Bumblebee. 

Monday, March 20, 2017

Spring - Hallelujah!

Hopefully we're past the freezing weather we've been having - whatever you do, don't cut your shrubs back - they will be okay.  Well, that's my tip for the day.

Planted onions today and moved some Bachelor Buttons to a little bed in the garden.  They are such sweet flowers.  The Triplets were a big help in the garden as usual - thank goodness they are laying eggs now.  And I checked the bees too.  My one and only hive is doing well.
Sunday I went to Isabelle Bowen Henderson's House and Gardens on Oberlin Road in Raleigh. It's always interesting to see other gardens and inside the house too.  Then I went to a couple of Open Houses - one on St. Mary's St ($899,000) and the other in Cameron Park (only $800,000).  This is just for fun - definitely not in my price range - maybe in my next life!  

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Blustery Day and Bee Check

I think I started this post Wednesday or a couple of days ago (of course I can't remember).  Anyhow read on and I added an update for today.
I hope I spelled that right - what I might say is WINDY as in Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day.  The weather has been a roller coaster ride lately. The last time I checked the bees (or I should say my one and only hive) was in December.  I really try not to disturb them - just makes more work when they have to put their house back together.  But with this warm and crazy weather we're having I will check them in the next day or so.   
Daffodils are blooming, daylilies are coming up, hydrangeas are budding - it's early times but you can't do much about the weather.  Yesterday I started cleaning my flower beds  - not only are they full of weeds already but they're over full of plants.  I need to do a little thinning and pass along some plants. 
I have a mouse in the house!  Yes, you would think with a dog and a cat in and out it wouldn't happen but that little mouse is smarter than me.  I have sticky strips and I'll catch that little fella soon.  Lily did take care of a possum night before last - I know that possum wasn't dead when I threw it over the fence but I couldn't kill it - yikes.  She was gone the next morning - just lucky I went out and saved her life.
I have been quilting and trying to "tidy up" around the house and yard.  It's a lot of work getting rid of stuff you have accumulated for years and years.
Take care my friends and enjoy every day. 
So it's Saturday - the weather is wonderful.  Tomorrow is supposed to be in the 70's.  I did check the bees today.  They're doing fine, have plenty of food and working hard, lots of bees in the hive.  I didn't change anything. 

Saturday, January 7, 2017

It takes a while

Since it's gonna be below freezing temps for the next couple of days and nights, I finally decided taking hot water to the chickens twice a day would be stupid not be the best idea in the world.  So I went back to Tractor Supply on Friday (the day before the blizzard) to get some kind of heated water
bowl for those girls.  They had a chicken heater apparatus which cost almost $50 (yowee) or a heated dog bowl for $19.99.  Well, you know which one came home with me - yep, the dog bowl. 
Farm Innovators Round Heated Pet Bowl, 6 qt.
It works great - does not heat the water but keeps it from freezing.  I checked on the girls this morning and they were in their house and said "no thanks, we're not coming out right now" but their water was not frozen!  Yippee! And I went out late afternoon (they were still in their house) and one of the little girls had laid an egg.  Yep, even in this cold and their water was fine. 

They have plenty of food and water that's not frozen - what more can a chicken ask for?
Yes, the ultimate in gift giving - a chicken swing and it's only $29.99.

The Chicken Swing

No, this is not a joke!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Have you heard . . . .

"As we are getting closer to our event Friday night and into Saturday we are getting a better idea of what we will see. It is looking more likely(not 100%) that we will see some snow during the period mentioned above. There are many model solutions suggesting a decent amount of snow for us and it's looking like this event should be primarily snow."  WRAL Weather Forecast 1/4/2017

Yikes !!!!!!!!!!
If you haven't heard then you must be out of the country- there's a chance we will get snow late Friday night and Saturday morning. 
So since I'm trying to be ahead of the game this year, I stopped by the grocery store late this afternoon - are you kidding!  Everybody in town was there - well, I didn't need milk or bread but I did need a couple of other things to make some soup and eggs since those chickens of mine are on vacation. 
Whew, glad I don't need anything else because by tomorrow evening the shelves will be empty.  You better get going now if you want anything.