Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Ways We Feed

WARNING!!!! 
 Long post...be brave.

Yes, I know it has been awhile.  No reason other than living life and a nice quiet spell.
But, now let me get you caught up with some of my living...

The little husband and I always take an anniversary honeymoon.  This year we went to Cincinnati, OH for an international quilt show.  Yes, I know.  He's a keeper!  Here are a few of the quilts that spoke to me...but, I am not a quilter (yet?) so I was drawn to color and visual impact mostly.  It was fun to watch the real quilters getting their eyes as close as possible without touching to check out, oh, whatever it is real quilters check out on each other's work.  Me?  I was just enjoying walking around with my sweetie.














Then, we moved to the other side of the convention center...vendors!  It was interesting to me that I didn't see one wool appliqué quilt in the bunch, but there were plenty of wool vendors.  You may have noticed that most of the quilts I loved could pretty easily be done in wool/felt...at least I think they could.

Behold the oh so colorful and delicious fruits of my shopping venture.







(sorry for the blurries)


Can you tell what colors I like best right now?  Well, except for the blue - I don't like blue.  But, sometimes I have a commission that needs some blue, so I bought some.  Anyway, the rest of the colors are yummy, right?  And the little felt balls?

We also went to the Krohn Conservatory for my little husband's part of the trip.

Ah, this trip fed my creative spirit.
Oh, and it fed my "be nice even though you are not happy and a bit frustrated" spirit.  I booked a Marriott and it did not have micro wave or fridge (good thing we took the cooler), no free breakfast, no free internet, no free parking, no free newspaper!  And it wasn't cheap...but it was beautiful and conveniently located!  :-)

On Friday (last), my little husband had a little medical procedure or two.  Good news:  nothing showed up on either end.  Other news:  still don't know what is up with the liver.  Just keep ruling things out.  Waiting to know if/when we need a biopsy.

Ah, feeding my prayer life and trust in our God.

The following weekend (just past) I zoomed to Columbus for a Christian concert featuring Mandissa, Laura Story and Anita Renfroe who is so stinking funny you cry and maybe pee your pants just a little.
Ah, this trip fed me spiritually.  Good friends, good time.





This week it has been all about bees.  We have two top bar hives with two separate herds of bees with their own queens.  Set them up and the weather turned cold...insulated the hives with newspapers as best we could.  Most survived the first night.  The second cold night a bear came to tip over the hives....both of them!  Many bees died in the cold.  There was no brood or no honey for the bear to get so he didn't destroy much after he realized that.







So the next 2 days my little husband and I did rehabilitation of the hives and tackled another new skill...electric fencing!  That's kind of scary, huh?
Day one we set the hives back up, scooped up as many living bees as we could, covered some with newspaper for the night and started the fencing, but ran out of daytime, so we duct taped the bees in the hives and carried them into our new house...very sore arms, because you don't put the heavy and awkwardly big bee hives right next to the house, of course...they over nighted inside.


Day two we finished the fence after 6+ hours of working diligently pounding stakes, pulling wire (Have you noticed how wire has a mind of its own?), adding insulators, hanging the solar powered battery - the bees now have electric and we don't! -and carrying the heavy and awkwardly big hives back to their space.  I spent a lot of time rescuing the random bees and putting them back in the hive...more resuscitated in the sunshine yesterday afternoon.
I'm not sure that I am cut out to be a bee rancher....very high mortality rate...like handfuls!  I don't like it.
Day three...today...no bear got in last night, bees are flying in and out and even though the fence looks pretty ugly, I have decided that it isn't too bad for a couple of amateurs and it worked!









Ah, this experience fed my heart as I watched and helped my husband take care of these tiniest of creatures.  A good husband with a good heart...and quite a few handy skills!

Tonight we have a freeze warning so the hives are covered in blankets.  These poor bees have had a really rough start!

And what's one more picture in a blog this long?  Here's our sweet Mercy girl....staying clear of the bees and worrying about us.
This feeds my 'mother' heart!  Look at that face.


So much of our living is about feeding us, isn't it?  So many of life's events nurture and sustain us.

Thanks for sticking with me this long.  Maybe I should blog shorter more often, huh?  I will try.



12 comments:

Rachel said...

I liked this long blog post. You have been busy. Busy as a bee who laughs and then pees! :D There's your first grade poetry for ya!

Those quilts are beautiful! Being a quilter I would be one of those with my nose inches away admiring the handiwork.

Your colors of felt are like candy. How you can not like blue though is beyond me. Blue and red. My two favorite colors! I'll forgive you not liking blue since you have so many other wonderful qualities.

I'm glad your little husband's tests came back negative but oh how I hate the unknown and unanswered questions!!! I just want to know and then I can deal with what ever!

Well done on the electrical fencing! That is a big job. The fencing is nothing to play at. One time I was out feeding Kristen's horses. I was climbing over her metal gate at the beginning of the drive and without thinking, reached my hand over to another metal gate to steady myself as I lugged myself over not realizing that other metal gate was resting on the electrical wire. Boy did it send me launching over the gate and on my way.

Our bees arrive on Sat. We don't have bears to worry about but we do have skunks and raccoons.... I think between a skunk and a bear I might take the bear! Laws skunks stink!

Your Mercy is so sweet. Her head cocked to the side. Sweet sweet sweet!

Rachel said...

Whoa! A long reply to your long blog! ;) We should write a book together...........

MonchyB said...

Donna,

who has liver problems in your house? Try to get this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silybum_marianum. Grind the seeds and 3 weeks every evening take 1/2 tea spoon of it with milk or youghurt. It really helps. Even with no liver problems it is ok to make a 3 weeks cure every so and then to swimm off all the toxins from your liver and body.

About bees I can completely understand your sadness. LAst summer bear destroyed us 3 hives of 6. But luckily 2 queen bees were still in the honeycomb so later 2 weakend swarms came back. But the honey was gone... The second morning we also put the eltric fence around and the bear moved on:) Bears are not that common in Slo like in the States, but I see thay easily find out where tasty things are found:)

Love,
M.

Donna said...

Yes. I wish I could bring Mercy with me so you could meet her. I will just have to be happy meeting your fur babies.

One of my dogs got skunked once, while we were a ride in the car away from home. He actually caught the poor thing, killed it and brought it to me to share his joy....heavenly days. I only had to wash one critter in tomato juice....can't imagine having to slather the little bee bodies in red! teehee

I am so with you about knowing. I can deal with anything when I know....but not knowing drains me.

Blue....I think it happened when I first knew that blue was just about every other person's favorite color and I wanted mine to be different, so, I went with green and now I would add purple and yellow....for now.

Did you get to sleep last night? In your own bed? Hope so. That means the wee ones are well.

Donna said...

Hey, Monika, it is so fun to me that you can keep up with my little life clear over there in Slovenia! Don has the liver issues. Some sort of lesions/cysts with unknown causes. I will show him this and we will look into it. Thanks!
I hope our bear moves on now.

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

You have been a busy little bee yourself, Donna! W.O.W! Those quilts are beautiful pieces of art. Loved seeing them. I can see how that trip would feed your soul. You Do have a keeper of a husband and I will keep his health in my prayers... on that subject, thank you so much for yours. And, you DID bring me wonderful gifts of your kind words, your thoughtfulness and your prayers... I appreciate you more than I can say. I have been very blessed. Thank you.

Those are some lucky bees to have such diligent care takers! Good luck with them!! blessings and hugs and love ~ tanna

Donna said...

Tanna, you are never far from my mind and always in my heart. I will keep you posted about my little husband.

K said...

Well, dang. What Rachel said. Everything. Holy cats, she speaks my thoughts. Not a surprise, but gratifying, considering how much I admire her. And what Monchy and Tanna said, too - except for the meds advice and bear stories, which I cannot claim. G would love to have bees, as I think I might have said before. It's the only thing I ever say about bees. Except, of course, after reading things like Girl of the Limberlost and the Beekeeper, I have a suspicion that bees, like seedlings, are part of the true essential magic. And I DO know about electric fence, which means that I will not be messing with your hives in the middle of the night, ever again. Oh - wait - that was a bear. I thought I had been one this whole week past, and the family will -- um bear that out. About the quilt show. Somehow, I had missed it for being the reason you went to OH. ENVY. But such relief - I have spent my birthday the last three years shooting that Long Arm show in Salt lake (they seem to have fired me this year, but it's really a relief - a full twelve hours of constant shooting - and then the job kept getting more and more ticky and demanding in the after part - naming files names that were fifty characters long, having to make all these sets to order - a full week's work easy). But I only just started throwing away pictures of quilts I'd shot - they were beautiful, but I had not made them, and had no real emotional attachment to the experience. And I wasn't GOING to make them, either.

Honestly, the work people do is just astounding and creative (umm- some of it. I DID shoot the whole show and not everyone was so amazing). I love these shots you took. And every year, I blew a bunch of money on those venders. Holy cats.

So you had great fun. And you've got a great man. For whom prayers are easily rendered up.

Donna said...

I think that bees are part of the basic structure that makes up life, too. It was so sad to see so many of them dead. We lost bluebird eggs in the cold, too...6 of them. But the parent birds are back and busy. Another lesson...do what God has for you to do and don't be crushed by set backs...get up and start doing what God has for you to do all over again...there must be a time for mourning, right? But, joy comes with the morning!
Now, if I just knew what God has for me to do, I would get busy! Oh, wait - live like he lived and love like he loved! I told you I was totally taking that....love it!
Are you better now? Not quite as bearish? I hope so.
Thanks for the prayers.

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

Likewise and thank you!! xoxo ~ t

W-S Wanderings said...

Well, it didn't seem like a long post at all, beeing chock full of interesting things. Our two hives survived this winter, which is a relief. We have lost hives in some winters. So sad. We've never had bear issues (did I really just type that out loud?), but skunks have made for hives full of VERY angry bees in years past.

Those quilts are astounding. I admire quilters. Such creativity and PATIENCE. That tree house quilt you showed is my favourite of the bunch. And don't you just love the felt balls? I have a cheery necklace made of them.

Keeping you and your little husband in my thoughts...

Donna said...

WSW, it think it is the patience thing that keeps me from taking on a BIG quilt project, but I might one day try something with little pieces that you put together later...like the houses one or the tree one....maybe.
Skunks? We haven't seen them yet....