Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Jarring is a job!

It took the better part of the day and it didn't make a dent in the honey supply. When I was finally done I think I had 70 jars of honey. I love packaging and while my labels are not ideal they work and I like them. It was important for me to have the name of the apiary on the jars and a little explanation about the Turquoise Bee on each jar. Mission accomplished.

Colleen's Royal Ruckus
I also wanted to highlight the hard work of my dear friend Colleen who has come down to the bee yard on countless occasions to help us out, especially covering for Paula when she was on vacation this summer. Beekeeping is physical labor, the boxes are heavy and it really takes two of us to lift boxes and work the hives. Colleen and another friend Katrina both won the hive naming contest so each of them are getting jars that have special tags with the names of their hives on the jar. Hopefully they will enjoy gifting honey from "their hives" to friends and family.

Katrina's Drone Den
It was a sticky mess. The 5 gallon bucket with a honey gate dispensed the honey to fast and in too thick a stream to go from bucket to jar. So, I had to dispense honey into measuring cups and the pour the honey into each jar. Of course dribbles and spills ensued and it was particularly hard to get the jars cleaned afterwords. I am mailing a fair amount of honey off to friends around the US and in France so then there was the job of packing the honey for mailing.

Each jar was wrapped in tissue paper and then went into a cellophane bag before going in the box which then got put in another box for mailing. I am still working on getting everything in the mail but I got a good start and all of my Rosh Hashanah honey should be delivered in time for the New Year's tradition of dipping apples in honey for Rosh Hashanah!

Finally I am going political!  Anyone in Minnesota getting a jar of honey is also going to get a plea from the beekeepers to VOTE NO on the homophobic marriage amendment going on the ballet this fall. This amendment is very personal for me. Not only am I opposed to the amendment but I oppose using the constitution as a vehicle to create policy and law. For crying out loud we couldn't even pass the Equal Rights Act for women in this country through a constitutional amendment. 

Paula and I are headed back to the bee yard tomorrow to pull the frames and boxes the bees have hopefully cleaned up and hatch our plan for wintering. I am hoping to get some good tips tonight at the Minnesota Hobby Beekeepers meeting for wintering and "not wintering" colonies as we only want to winter two of our hives.

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