Buzz buzz….The bees are here!

We picked up and installed our 2 packages of bees yesterday! How did it go? Pretty smoothly thank goodness. Here is our first experience as newbees.

I picked up the two 3 pound packages around noon. While I was at the Apiary I asked more questions and decided we needed a hive top feeder so I purchased 2. After a good painting they will go in the hives. In the meantime we are using entrance feeders. Anyhow they put the buzzing little bees in the back of my farm trailblazer and away we went. Surprisingly they were quiet on the way home. I had imagined driving home with a deafening buzz in the back. 😂

Hive top feeders. These will go in after a couple coats of paint.
10,000 bees in each box! 🐝🐝🐝

Once we got home I had to put them in my laundry room to keep them fairly cool until evening when it was installing time. Onyx was intrigued but a cautious.

What the heck did you bring home now?

And the wait for Farmer Cheese to get home began. Once he arrived and it was early evening we began getting ready.

We separated the two packages and tapped the first one and sprayed the bees with sugar water to lump them together in the bottom of the box. I was trying to video so Farmer Cheese did the first box. First lesson learned. We needed 2 sets hands. The board covering the queen and the syrup was hard to remove on this first box and because of that and my lack of help he dropped the queen in her little cage into the box with the bees. No biggie, we just did things a little backwards. We dumped the bees in and I reached in and retrieved the queen! Once the majority of the bees were in we set the box near the entrance and put the top on.

About to take the board off and get the syrup and queen out.

Next on to hive 2 where we did everything in the correct order and did not lose our Queen. After the queen was installed between a couple of frames we dumped the bees in. We removed one of the frames first but think the bees would have gone in easier if we had removed 2 or 3. Second lesson learned. After the top was closed on the second hive we filled up the jars of sugar water for the entrance feeders.

Queen for hive 2!

All in all things went very smoothly and we feel quite accomplished. Did I tell you it was so hot that I went out in my jacket and veil, shorts and flip flops?! Farmer Cheese questioned my sanity but I have been practicing being calm. I briefly wondered if there is a world naked beekeeping day but don’t worry, I’m not doing that! 😂🤣

Hello bee! I’m glad you are outside of my veil! (Ignore the flushed face, told you it was hot!)
The rest of the bees will inside soon.
All done!
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It’s time to catch up

We’ve been a little scarce here on the blog so let’s catch up! What has been going on since our last blog? For starters we got 3 LGD’s in December.( Livestock guardian dogs) And you know us….We did it our way. According to the “experts” you shouldn’t get sibling. What? We’ve almost always had sibling dogs. Even our vet said there’s not a problem with that. Lots of people said only get one pup..we got 3. 😆 We started with 2 Boone and Crockett. Unfortunately our Boone crushed a bone in his leg and required lots of veterinary care. So we were given his sister who we named Annie Oakley. I’m not going to go into all Boone’s care and treatment but if you are on Facebook or Instagram just type in #boonesaga and his story should pop up. We’ve been working with the dogs and so far they are great with the chickens, ducks and goats.This spring during chick days we hatched chicks at home. Some of our eggs were hatched at a local school again, and we bought some chicks and ducks. I guess we’ve had a chicksplosion! We had to fully enclose our biggest run to hold them all but they are doing great.Perhaps our biggest news is that the bees are coming! We bought 2 unassembled cedar hives and spent last weekend putting them together. We will paint them soon. We have been studying a lot so we hope we will know what we are doing by the time the bees are ready for pick up on May 17. This is a brand new endeavor for us and we are so excited!We still have quite a few Boer goats and had several babies born. Nigerians are in the plans but might be a little while.To sum it up we’ve been busy, busy, busy! Drop us a comment and let us know how you are and what you’ve been up to. We will keep you posted on the bees. 😉

Easy Peasy Breakfast Muffins

Farmer Cheese needs a healthy-ish grab and go breakfast on the weekdays. So I have prepared a sausage, bacon, spinach, egg and cheese combo for him.

First I sauteed the spinach and then added cooked sausage and bacon and some cheese. Next I added eggs to the bowl and mixed it together. I put a half piece of bread in the bottom of a sprayed muffin pan, 1/4 piece for small muffins. Then I put the mix it the pans and off to the oven to bake at 375° for about 20-25 minutes.

Voila….breakfast to go!

The small muffins that had silicone muffin liners turned out awesome. The bigger ones with the cooking spray stick a little. So I will be getting some larger muffin liners for sure!

Mixture ready to add eggs
Finished product!!

New Year’s Eve~Traditions to ring in the New year

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So what are you doing New Year’s Eve? Going out to a party somewhere or staying home like us? We will most likely be spending our night tending to chickens, goats, ducks, dogs and cats as usual. We have several does about to pop so we are hoping for New Year babies! Our Sammie just had sweet Noel a couple days ago.

I do love holidays and traditions though and New Years is full of fun activities and traditions.
Some of the traditions that we take for granted actually came from ancient times. So while you are celebrating this year you might want to take a look at where your traditions come from or add a new one or two. (Source: The Farmers Almanac)

Get loud and Noisy!
In ancient Thailand they fired guns to frighten off demons.
In China, people use firecrackers to ward off the forces of darkness.
In the American colonies gun shots were heard throughout the night.
Shooting shotguns is still done in many Southern rural areas today. We did this as kids at my Grandma’s. Please be mindful of your neighbors if you do this though.
In Italy church bells ring, people of Switzerland beat drums; sirens and party horns blast loudly to ring in the new year in North America.

Eat,and be merry!
In the United States, down South we eat black-eyed peas and pork for good luck.
Mustard, turnip or collard greens are also eaten for wealth, although it hasn’t helped me yet!
Another treat for good fortune is anything in the shape of a ring or circle, such as a doughnut. This symbolizes the year coming to coming full circle.
The Dutch serve fritters called olie bollen.
The Irish eat bannocks, or pastries.
In Spain 12 grapes are eaten at midnight.
In India and Pakistan eating rice is believed to bring a person prosperity.
Honey dipped apples are a Rosh Hashanah tradition among Jewish people.
In homes in Switzerland,spoonfuls of whipped cream are dropped on the floor and stay there symbolizing the richness of the coming year! This is not happening at my house, the dogs eat everything that hits the floor!

Pop the champagne cork!
A lot of countries celebrate midnight by popping the cork on the champagne, but a few do things just a little differently.
In England Wassail, which is Gaelic for “good health” is served.
The Scottish serve “hot pot” which is a spiced version of Wassail.
It’s the custom to drink a glass or two at home before you share with your neighbors!
I like that idea!
In Holland toasts are given with hot, spiced wine. Right now in South Georgia it’s hot again so maybe iced tea or cold wine… Hm, another idea is brewing!

Give Gifts.
More presents? I think I could live with that!
In Rome, it’s gifts of gilded nuts or coins.
The Persians exchanged eggs, the symbol of fertility. Hm, maybe those of us who still have hens laying in the cold weather can share farm fresh eggs!
In early Egypt flasks made of earthenware were exchanged.
In Scotland to bring a person good luck, coal, shortbread and silverware are given. A gift of poultry, puppies or goats would be nice. We got these two LGD’s for our Christmas presents. 😉

Reflect on your life and the New year ahead.
A new year on the rise is a prime opportunity to take a look at life.
Making a New Year’s resolution is a way to reflect on the past year and plan on the future. This practice may have begun as early as 2600 B.C.
During the observance of Rosh Hashanah Jews have a time for personal introspection and prayer, as well as visiting graves of loved ones. This sounds like a good practice for us all.
Since 1770 Christian churches have held a Watch-night service a custom that began in Philadelphia at Old St. Georges Methodist Church.

Other beliefs and customs.

Some beliefs and customs are just sayings or proverbs passed down from family to family, region to region, country to country.
Here is a couple of my favorites!
On New Year’s Eve, kiss the person you hope to keep kissing. – This one Mr.Cheese and I will practice every year at midnight, if we can stay awake that long!
If the old year goes out like a lion, the new year will come in like a lamb. Hm…If it goes out hot does it come in cold?
Begin the new year square with every man. (i.e., pay your debts!) –Robert B. Thomas, founder of The Old Farmer’s Almanac –
And finally my personal favorite: What ever you do New Year’s Day, you will be doing all year-long! With that said, you better make it a good day. No laundry or house cleaning. 😉

Whatever you do this New Year’s Eve we wish you a great and safe evening and a wonderful 2019!

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Kindness…..What if?

Yesterday I had an opportunity to be a blessing to someone. I had a gentle urging to do something nice for someone else and I listened to that urge. I was immensely blessed in return. I am not going to tell you what happened because it truly wasn’t that big of a deal but it made me and the other person feel good and that is all that matters. My Christian friends would call that urge Jesus or God speaking to me. My non religious friends would say it’s my conscience. Whatever you choose to call it wouldn’t it be nice if we all listened?

As I woke up to the news of yet another shooting this morning and more political name calling and I couldn’t help but think if everyone took just a minute or two out of their day to help someone else what a wonderful world this would truly be. Supposed someone had tried to help the marine with PTSD? What if instead of cursing and name calling those who have religious or political beliefs different from our own we all tried to just be kind? What if we all had just a little more understanding of others views rather than shoving ours down their throats? What if someone does or says something we don’t agree with we just agreed to disagree and moved on. What if someone hurts our feelings and we choose to forgive? What if…..What if…..Sigh. 😞 We could “what if” all day. Until we all stop and put ourselves in another’s shoes and choose kindness nothing changes. And I think we can all agree we need change.

Hamburger Tomato Soup in the pressure cooker

After hearing so much about the Instant Pot, I knew I had to get a pressure cooker. After some research and looking around I chose the Crock Pot Express. Let me just tell you I love it and almost every meal I’ve cooked in it has been perfect. From boiled eggs to pot roast, pressure cooking is fast and incredibly easy.

I love soup and it finally got cool enough (for a few days anyway) here in the South for soup so I decided to make a hamburger and vegetable soup for supper. This has been the quickest, easiest and most delicious soup I’ve ever made. This recipe made enough for leftovers and some to freeze. Here are my directions.

Ingredients:

2 lbs hamburger meat (I use lean meat)

1 can cream of celery soup

1 cup beef broth

2 cans diced tomatoes (I use the kind seasoned with basil and oregano)

3 cans of mixed vegetables

4-5 potatoes cut up into small pieces

Salt, pepper and seasonings to taste ( I just throw the seasoning in)

Directions:

Sauté hamburger meat in the trusty crockpot X, Instant Pot, or whichever you have.

After all the meat is browned add everything except the canned vegetables. Set the pot to meat/stew and cook for 15 minutes. Let the pot naturally release for 5 minutes and then do a quick release.

After the quick release add the canned vegetables and stir. ( If I had carrots on hand I would have just put those in with the potatoes and added a couple cans of green peas at the end)

Eat and enjoy!

Who we are

Who are we? What do we do around here? We are just a bunch of animal loving country folk. We have chickens, goats, ducks, dogs, cats, and lots of squirrels and rabbits running around. We plan to expand and add bees and dairy goats. Running a family farm is a lot of work but so rewarding. We just thought we’d share a little of us with you! We hope you enjoy this little clip. If you want to come see us send us a message. 😊

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