Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Our Medium Momma


Ginger!!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Gardening

Wicked day gardening.  This is my new Black Fly Poem:


It's a war zone out in my yard. 
The Black Flies have sent out the calvary
to charge whenever I open the door. 
Sometimes, under the cover of rain,
I can make it twenty feet from the door
before they notice me. 
The army soldiers have encamped
themselves around the garden fence,
with the largest reinforcements by the gate. 
And, I do believe, they have now
swarmed the picket fencing
and taken over the garden. 
I can sneak out,
plant a couple seeds
and run back in
for cover. 
This is pathetic!!! 


But despite the assault, I managed to get the trellis up for the squash.  I planted the zuccs and the summer squash.  I planted the beans.  And mulched the b-jeebers out of the asparagus.  I have what I am calling Eurasian Milfoil of the Asparagus patch (for those of you who don't know what Eurasian Milfoil is: it is a lake week that was brought to our lakes and has taken over to the extreme!!  It's so dense, it sucks all the oxygen out of the water and kills off all the other lake weeds and fish...and it's terrible to try to swim through!!).  In any case, I've been on the assault with this weed that has attacked my asparagus patch...I even tried (and it seems to be working) SALTING my asparagus.  Apparently, asparagus likes a little salt...and the weeds don't!  So, I took a huge gamble that the person who told me this wasn't playing some sick joke and I salted my garden.  Asparagus looks great.  Weeds...well, they're still alive, but I don't think so happy.  Add a lot of mulch, I'm hoping for a miracle!!  

And now, I am hiding inside and trying to recover from my Black Fly injuries...and cleaning.  Loads of fun on a day off!  But I'll be happy when things are back in order and not such a MESS.  

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Poetry Slam

Paul decided that I should post a poem in honor of May's Poetry Slam.  31 Days.  31 Poems.  We are on day 28 and getting closer and closer to the end.  Or in some cases closer and closer to the crunch to whip out 31 poems by Midnight on May 31st!!

Anyway, here is the poem of the day:


MayFlies MayFliesMayFlies 
bites and welts and not tasty 
Yuk YukYuk 
and but 
they provide food for 
baby birds 
and they don’t stay for long 

Monday, May 23, 2011

Sad Night


Little Cyclone died late last night.  We're very sad here at BumbleChick!  

It's funny, when Paul and I got married, we had so many cats.  Five between the two of us and it was a little much.  We lost Katrina.  But we gained Sweetie when we moved in with Grandma.  Then we lost Pluto.  Now, we've lot Cyclone.  You know, five seemed like a lot, but now three seems so...reasonable. 

We are glad that she was able to die at home, with us.  And she did not seem to suffer.  We thank the gods for small blessings.  

GoodBye, Cyclone.
You will be so missed!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Spring Rain


I keep hearing people complaining about the spring rain lasting so long.  I guess it's true: New England is for the Chronically Malcontent.  In another week, we'll all be complaining about how hot it is!  Maybe we have just lost our ability to have positive small talk in our society.  We talk about the news that is all filled with sadness (a media prop...because I just don't believe that life is that awful.  I was reminded of that the other day: when something bad happens, there is goodness and kindness and forgiveness that surrounds that act of crime...but we don't hear about that part of it because it doesn't make for exciting news) and we complain about the crappy weather, regardless of the weather.  Do we just no longer talk about the good things in our lives?  Are we afraid that people will think we are bragging that our life might be good in a world we've begun to perceive as a miserable existence?

I read somewhere that there is no harder task than to be happy in America.  Try it.  It seems all too true...but isn't our country based on the principles that we all have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness?  Hmmm.

Well, life around here is pretty good.  I have nothing to complain about.  The garden is lush and a beautiful green brought out by all this rain and in a few days, it will be hot and the entire world is going to bust out in beautiful things.  The garden is going to explode.  The flowers are going to burst forth with color.  And the honeybees are going to be everywhere, particularly on those blooming apple trees.  And I have lots more to plant.

I was also reminded yesterday by a beekeeping friend, that as soon as this rain lets up, we beekeepers need to keep our eyes out for swarms.  It's that time of year, already!!

We do have some sadness here.  One of the kitties is feeling blue these days.  She's lost a lot of weight and has been sleeping almost 24/7 cuddled in warm blankets or a warm lap (her preference).  She and I spent the whole evening last night together, reading and watching a movie.  She was so content, so it was nice for the rain, so I didn't feel like I had anything else to do, but love the kitty for an evening.

Happy Spring Everyone...enjoy the reprieve from watering the gardens!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Summer Weather

The honeybees are a buzzing away.  Avalon just got her second super put on the other day...and the girls are busy chirping away inside, cleaning things up!  I think in the not too distant future, honey supers will be going onto both the hives.

The farmer's market opened yesterday.  Yum.  We bought fresh asparagus, spinach, and lettuce.  We bought some plants for the garden.  Tomatoes.  Squashes.  Kale.  And I puttered around in the garden afterwards, planting and planning.  I think the plan this year, is to do less planning and more planting and more puttering.  More enjoying.

Just started reading a book called Twelve by Twelve and am really enjoying it so far.  A woman in SC owns and lives in a 12 by 12 house (for political reasons) in the midst of 32 acres of gardens and woods.  The descriptions of her gardens are awesome.  Her lifestyle is really interesting.  She is called a 'wisdomkeeper.'  In the Native American tradition, she is not a wise elder, imparting knowledge, but a keeper of the wisdom who encourages the seeker to find the wisdom within themselves.  In our over-consumptive society, it is interesting to read about someone who is shying away from over-consuming.

Well, I am off to Garden!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Ledges

Spirit Falls


The water in this area has a deep rusty color and creates that funky foam from all of the tannins in the pine trees of the forests!  

It's so beautiful here!  

Friday, May 6, 2011

Charlotte is SO Happy!!

We transitioned back to our shallow well with it's happy surface water!  YAY YAY YAY YAY  YAY YAY!!!

Charlotte is SO happy!!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Dionysus


Scary Beekeeping.  The bees were not happy about my visit today and it was a bit scary for all of us.  But they had already begun to build up into and above the inner cover, so it was definitely time to reverse the supers.  It was hard to pry the two supers apart, but I finally managed it through a swarm of angry bees.  The lower box was empty of brood, so I was able to reverse, putting that empty box on top with hopes that they move up into it.  Then I had to scrape off all of the excess burr comb on the tops of the frames and on the inner cover, sacrificing some new bee brood in the process, but it's done and they look great!  I can rest easy and officially say that Dionysus made it through the winter!!  Yay!

I had thought briefly about taking a frame of fresh eggs out and putting them in Chalice to create another hive, but the bees were so upset that I just did what had to be done and put them back together...with many apologies to the bees for upsetting them.


I made a quick peek into Avalon and did see some new brood, so all's well in there.  

We'll visit Avalon again in a couple weeks to see if they are ready for a second super.  And peek again in both at the end of May to see how happy everyone is...and maybe add some honey supers!  Yay!  

So those are the current plans.

(nice paint job, Charlotte)


Ahh, the humble Dandelion

I am a huge fan of the dandelion, as everyone knows.  The leaves are a bitter green, full of nutrients...it has more Vitamin A than a carrot.  The roots can be used as a coffee substitute.  It tonifies the blood and the liver and for all of us over-drinkers out there...well, 'nuf said.  The blossoms are beautiful and yellow and the harbinger of warmer days coming.  The blossoms are the first real food for the honeybee in spring.  And you can make a wine out of them.  What a beautiful and humble weed.  And for those of you concerned for the well being of the honeybee, the best thing you can do for them is to STOP trying to kill off your humble dandelions!

AND...as if that wasn't enough.  There is now evidence that the dandelion is a tumor reducing herb...especially helpful against breast cancer.

Now, really, what's not to love about the humble dandelion?

31 Days. 31 Poems.

It's May Day and the sun is shining.  Life is good.

We planted our peas yesterday...quite late.  The dandelions are blooming everywhere in town, except on the top of the hill where we live...maybe soon.  That will make the honeybees very happy.  And me too!  Over the next week, we will be in to recheck Avalon and make sure all is well with the Queen.  We will also need to get into Dionysus and see how everyone has fared over the winter.  We'll clean things up and reverse the boxes.  Honeybees move upward in the hive over the winter, emptying out the bottom of food and by the time spring comes around, they are mostly living in the top box and the bottom is often completely empty.  By reversing the boxes and putting that empty one on top, you work with their natural instinct to move up...sometimes they will not move down and you've got a wasted box.  NOTE: you do not reverse if there is any part of the brood in the bottom box...you don't want to break apart the brood nest!


And, May First: Poetry Slam begins today, for any of you poetry writers out there.  It is a bit of a take off of National Novel Writing Month where you must write a 50,000 word novel during the 30 days of November.  Yikes, that's quite a task.  In May, we only ask that you write one poem every day.  31 Days.  31 Poems.

Happy Spring.
Happy Bees.
Happy Flowers.
Happy Poems.