Bees & Dads

An up-close look at my bees
Me, age 4
When I was a little girl -- 4, maybe 5 years old -- my father kept bees for a few seasons. I was his only child at the time, and I don't think it ever occurred to him to treat me differently than he would've treated a son, at least insofar as quality time was concerned. Which meant I spent a lot of Saturday afternoons fishing, perusing the local hardware store, or working the hives with my dad, who was always happy to have me at his side. As far as I can tell, this is the very best way to raise a girl.

As my father's beekeeping assistant, I witnessed the marvels of apiculture with wide-eyed wonder. At that age, every girl thinks her father is invincible, but as mine smoked angry bees into submission and braved  stingers with steely eyes and a smile, I had more proof up my sleeve than most other daughters.

Last month my parents came up for a visit, and my dad helped me start two beehives of my own. With my nucs (starter hives) in the back seat, we held our breath and drove sixty miles from the apiary where I bought them back to the farm in our bee suits, wondering how we'd explain ourselves should we happen to be pulled over.
My Dad & I

Since installing my bees five weeks ago, I have been completely enthralled with these little critters and I'll write more about the joys of beekeeping soon. But until then, in honor of father's day, I thought it was worth taking a moment to thank my dad for exposing me to beekeeping, and so many other interesting hobbies and activities, as a child. I wouldn't be the self-sufficient person (or beekeeper!) I am today if it weren't for his belief that daughters should have just as many opportunities to do,  see, and learn things as sons do.

Happy Fathers Day, to you and yours!

Meg Blocker (June 18, 2011 at 12:32 PM)  

A) LOVE the new header.

B) I had no idea you were into apiculture! How did I not know this? Craziness. BTW, have you seen the beekeeper episode of Pushing Daisies? It's on Netflix Streaming if not...

Nourishing Words (June 18, 2011 at 8:42 PM)  

How wonderful, and what a beautiful way to honor your father. If you haven't seen it yet, definitely check out the documentary "Queen of the Sun." I wish you well with this latest adventure!

Tasha Lehman (June 19, 2011 at 4:22 PM)  

Love the new look of the blog! And I love this post. The sweet words about your father made me tear up and miss mine oh so much!

Alison (June 20, 2011 at 10:53 AM)  

thanks, ladies...Meg & Eleanor: thanks for the recos...I will download both! Tasha: father's day must be a tough day for you. Your dad raised a great girl! ox

Courtney (June 23, 2011 at 6:42 PM)  

There's something so adorable about bee suits! I'm excited for your hive and can't wait to hear more about it.

Weekend Cowgirl (June 25, 2011 at 2:51 PM)  

That was a sweet blog post... We have never had bees, but one of our friends has them. I sure love the honey! Hope your bees prosper and provide you will lots of good honey.

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