Thursday, April 5, 2012

Bee keepers.

Last week or the week before I made the decision to merge my two blogs for a while.

Once upon a time this used to be a craft blog and it didn't make sense to include our farmy bits here.
And once upon a time I felt very strongly that the farm needed it's own space for Daylesford Organics story telling. 

But lately it's been less and less clear which stories should go where, and who should be told and shown what. And lately I've felt like I want this blog to be about our whole picture and the farm part is such a big section of that. We live and work here, but we also love and believe so strongly in what we do here. Organic farming, looking after the land and animals, and working and eating with the seasons is who we are.

So for now I'm directing all the Daylesford Organics traffic over here. This will be my place to record the farm stuff, the family stuff, the crafty, food and life stuff. I hope it makes sense to you too. That you find what you are looking for here. That you still pop in and say hi.

Last week some of our gang got strapped and velcroed and zippered into their bee keeping suits. We left no gaps at all for sneaky bees to fly into and sting, even taping on gloves and boots.
 We lit a fire of pine needles in the smoker to placate the bees and went to inspect their workplaces.
If some of these pictures are not so clear it's because they were taken through the car window where those of us without suits sheltered.
We have about five bee hives scattered around the farm at Daylesford Organics. We mainly keep the bees to pollinate the fruit trees in blossom time, but of course we adore the sweet, sticky honey too. There is nothing better than a dollop on our porridge or toast. Some members of the family have even been known to eat it by the fist full.
And I guess an added and almost unexpected bonus of keeping bees is the lessons we are learning about them. Watching my girls dress in their suits and calmly go about their jobs while being slowly covered in the potentially dangerous insects. Their knowledge and understanding of where their food comes from. And their respect for these important members of our team and their understanding that at this time of the year, in autumn, we must leave most of the honey frames for the bees to feed on when the days are too cold to fly and there is no pollen around.
I hope your Easter and or Passover weekend is the sweeeeeeeeeetest.
Big love from our gang to yours.
xx

31 comments:

  1. I didn't realise you had a seperate blog about your farm, ill enjoy seing your farm posts as well:) Id love to have a bee hive and fresh honey

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  2. Fascinating photos Kate...bees are incredible. Happy Easter to you and your family x

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  3. I love the pic of your little in her suit. oh so cute :)

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  4. As always I love the daylesford organics bits as much as the foxslane bits, so I'm happy its all together.
    Love learning a bit about your beekeeping, and I also think it's a wonderful gift you are giving your girls as so many kids are afraid of bees which while potentially dangerous are wonderful and very helpful creatures.
    And I bet that honey just tastes amazing too.xo

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  5. Fabulous! I am heading up the hill to photograph Rachel and her family gathering honey this weekend. I might take your lead and drive my car nice and close in lieu of a spare suit (or could I adapt my pyjamas, I wonder?...)

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  6. Just wonderful! What a great way for your girls to learn keeping cool under pressure... One of the reasons why I reckon growing up on a farm is the best way to grow up in the world! Us farm girls can grow up to rule the world :-)

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  7. A pepper sized bee suit!! Where from? If i show Aila, she'll want in on the action for sure!

    We're robbing the hive this weekend too. I'll be the one in the car taking pictures!

    HAppy EAster Kate & co.

    xoxo

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  8. Your girls are growing up learning so many of lifes valuable lessons in very unique ways. Can't believe how relaxed they look with bees all over their suits.
    Love the photos and can't wait to see more farm pics.

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  9. I think it's fantastic that you merge the two..afterall they both encompass what your whole life is about and it's so inspiring reading about life at Foxs Lane.
    I remember my grandfather bring home the honey comb when we were children...so good.
    Happy easter to you and yours.
    x

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  10. Have really enjoyed the past few weeks - the apple season, cider making, jam making etc. Would love to see around your farm.

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  11. As a follower of both your blogs, I'm ever-so glad they are all here together. Just one big, yummy, sustainable, slow-livin', big-lovin' Kate the Great blog. x

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  12. Well, that is awesome! Don't know what else to say!

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  13. How wonderful to produce your own honey. I understand your problem with two blogs. I'm the same - with a craft/home blog and a farm blog - but everything links together doesn't it? I'm still persisting with two but I like your idea of merging. I'll watch with interest.

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  14. The Mr talks about bee lovin all the time, his uncles did it. I love honey so much and what an amazing thin for the smalls to learn. Xx

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  15. I love your farm posts Kate and have often popped into the Daylesford blog for a read so it will be marvellous to have everything in one place. You guys live the kind of life I dreamed of, but then I was mad enough to marry an engineer city boy instead of one of the farmer boys I grew up with and had to let that dream go. At least I can live a farming life vicariously through blogs like yours, so thank you :D

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  16. Wonderful. The Samuel loves bees. One day we'll get some.
    I love the girls in their suits.
    You should post whatever you like really. Your life is different to most and is ever inspiring. Even if you don't find it inspiring all the time, it still is.
    Happy long weekend to you and the gang. xxx

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  17. I LOVED the photos on this post. So romantic, quirky, surreal and futuristic all mixed together. The pic inside the car with 2 bees on the window and scene outside was my favourite. Gorgeous!!!

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  18. what an extraordinary experience for your kids to have! Brilliant! Loving the photos of the honeycomb and bees and finding out things I never knew about them! My grandad kept bees too but I never knew him so haven't really found out what he did!

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  19. So interesting, learning about bee keeping. I am so in awe of the humble little bee. What magical lessons your children are learning x

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  20. Ahhh... passover! I was just thinking today of some of the other celebrations and/or occasions at this time of year. It is also the time of the pagan festival of fertility... which I take a lot more seriously these days having conceived two children around the easter long weekend!!!
    Anyway - thanks for jogging my brain re: Jewish tradition at this time of year.

    We now know that E. is allergic to bees. We have to carry an EpiPen with us at all times. Very scary stuff. It's a pity because I like bees and making honey would be so ace.

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  21. how cool to be bee-keepers. love your photos too.. happy easter x x

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  22. That's facinating Kate. Thanks for sharing! I don't think I would be as brave as your girls, I'd probably choose to stay in the car! Love honey though. :-)

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  23. Hope you all enjoy the honey.

    Have a lovely Easter.
    Fleur xx

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  24. How wonderful for your family to get to know the bees! I so miss fresh honey comb! I would just love to come visit your farm and hang with the critters, creatures, fruit and veg...and of course the people too. I for one am glad that I get to see all the farm news over here, it is a good thing. xo

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  25. Oh Kate, a friend of mine has her own bees on her farm too, i completely love the idea. We just bought some local honey from a fundraiser (for my eldest daughter's boyfriend's water polo team - gulp). So excited you combined all your blog information, great idea for we want-to-be farmers.
    This sentance "We mainly keep the bees to pollinate the fruit trees in blossom time" is so dreamy, what a beautiful world you live in & appreciate too, love Posie

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  26. Amazing photos Kate, I can't believe how many bees are climbing all over Pepper!

    I don't think our bees have made enough honey for us to rob this year...hopefully next autumn!

    xx

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  27. This is just such a good post. The productivity, the respect and the love go hand in hand. Very sweet! (pun intended)

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  28. I love this post! Yum, all that honey! :)

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  29. Wow! love your brave little girls all donned up in their white suits. Must give them a tremendous can do attitude, I steal honey from bees, what can't I do! the world of bees is fascinating, it must be great to see it up close.

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