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We Can’t All Be the Queen – Lessons from the Bees and The Book

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Psalms from the Hivemuskoka trip day3 369

by Jeannie Saum

Take a lesson from the bees

About how to be

A faithful friend.

It seems that they

Have read The Book

And found that love’s

the key.

 

Clover, Bee, and Revery

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how people treat each other – both adults and children.  It was prompted in part by my middle-school-aged granddaughter’s encounter with bullying and racial comments, from her “best friends”.  We all went through times in childhood when each of us was subjected to teasing or name-calling or harrassment.  But sometimes, this escalates to the stage of over-the-top bullying or predjudice or down-right meanness.  It’s what causes some grown men and women to carry around the scars of childhood deep inside, into adulthood.  It’s what causes young people to shoot up their classmates at school.  And it’s something that sadly, many adults feel is not their problem, believing that kids should be left alone to work it out themselves.  I’m all for kids problem solving and learning to navigate their social circles, but are times when we adults need to intervene, and set the example, be the guardrail, provide guidelines, say enough’s enough  and put a stop to this kind of behavior in our children.

My daughter tried and failed to engage the other parents to get involved and  put a stop to the hurtful behavior of their children – children who need guidance in learning what is acceptable and what is not, how to be a good friend and be kind to one another.  Kids won’t learn what we don’t teach them. Without cooperation from the other adults, my daughter chose to close ranks with her family to protect her daughter, and  she gave her daughter a wonderful lesson from The Bo0k, about what a true friend really is. The idea came from something she had seen on Facebook, and it was a powerful eye-opener for my granddaughter.  It made her think about what kind of friend she wanted to have and what kind of friend she needed to be.

The task was to read 1 Continthians 13:4-8 and substitute a “friend’s” name ( or your own name) in place of the words “love” and “it”.  For my granddaughter, the question her mom posited was: as we read through this passage, is this person treating you like these standards?   If not, are they truly a friend?

This all got me thinking about a similar situation in my life- the abandonment of a long-held friendship by some adult friends of ours over differences of minor theology and some.   Sometimes adult friends don’t act any better than children!   I’ve been thinking about the truths and  convictions Steve and I have learned from our faith and life experiences; tenets we’ve tried to live by and teach our children.  I long at times, for others to show us the kind of faithful friendship we try to practice.  And, it seems that I always end up relating my musings with what we see in our bees.  I think we all could learn something about how we do life with each other from the bees and The Book .

As I read these verses in 1 Corinthians,  I can see how all of us often fail to live up to the standards set down in these Bible verses, but it is something to strive for.  And if someone in  life is constantly behaving in the opposite way from these qualities, then one needs to question whether this is a healthy relationship and one where you can trust to let down your boundaries and open your heart, or not.  When compared to these standards,  my granddaughter realized that maybe these girls were not worthy of trusting with her heart and her friendship.  Not to say that she was to treat them badly, or refuse to forgive if amends were offered, but to just keep a distance and move on, seeking more trustworthy and faithful friendships.   And it also gave her guidelines for the kind of friend we want her to be, and the kind of friend we adults in her life strive to be.

The bees have it down. I think their little colonies could be a model of 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.  How’s this?

First of all, there is only one God – er, Queen – and the whole hive is all about her.  She is the top bee, the creator of life, all other bees bow before her.  The reason for their life is to serve the queen.  They can’t all be queen – there is only one queen.  She is in charge and sets the tone for the whole hive.  She works hard at what she does, serving the hive – giving life and sustainability -and the other bees, in turn, serve her.

Bees are patient and kind.  The nurse bees take care of the eggs, larvae and pupa for 20 days.  Worker bees don’t brag or try to act like a queen (usually).  They just do their jobs,  the first ones being to clean up the cells and take out the trash, and keeping the brood warm.  No big flashy job to brag about!

Bees don’t dishonor each other or just think of themselves, rather they live a life of service to the colony – tending to young, grooming each other, building comb, carrying food, and even caring for the dead.  They work together, cooperate, to do their tasks and they take care of each other.

When a bee finds a good source of pollen or nectar, she doesn’t keep it all to herself.  She comes back and does a joyful dance to communicate to the others, where the good stuff is, so that all may partake!

They take whatever  comes and don’t give up. When humans or animals come into their hive and take their honey or pollen, they just keep making more.  If comb gets damaged, they fix it.  They keep building comb, and foraging for nectar and pollen, and bringing it back to the hive.

muskoka trip day3 374They don’t go looking to do evil.  They really don’t want to sting you and they won’t bother you unless you bother them, or they get trapped.  They just want to go around doing their gathering and pollinating.

Bees protect and defend each other.  They stand their ground to defend their hive against unwanted guests by guarding the entrance and checking out the smell of any creature trying to get in.  If it’s not a friend, they bar the door!  And if one bee gets killed, or one has to sting to defend, they send out attack pheromones to call all the others  bees in to defend.  And the bees practice kind of a tough love – when the drones are not longer needed, they boot them out the door.Image result for bees fanning wings

Those little bees hope and persevere – They go out with hope every day, searching for food and water.  They spend months flying back and forth to the hive, bringing in loads of pollen and nectar.  They spend days and weeks fanning their little wings to evaporate the moisture out of the nectar to turn it into honey.

They are loyal no matter what the cost.  The attendant bees keep a protective circle around the queen, tending to her, feeding her, grooming her.  And in the winter, they all cluster around the queen and flap their tiny wings a million times a minute, creating heat to keep their queen warm.  And sometimes they do this until they die, sacrificing to try to keep their queen alive.  Their whole focus is to keep their colony alive and enduring, and they will do anything and everything it takes.

I think we (adults and children) could all take a lesson in application of 1 Corinthians 13 from the bees!  Can we be patient with our friends, understanding that sometimes they will have bad days, or weeks; that sometimes they will be difficult to deal with and might need an extra measure of grace (undeserved gifts) or mercy ( not getting the punishment they deserve)?

Can we be faithful friends that don’t envy what each other have, or become so proud about what we have, or how upright and “holy” we are that we can not longer be friends with someone who makes a mistake, or has a different philosophy or is going through a hard time?  Can we be the kind of friend that doesn’t always have to get our way? Can we compromise or take turns “being happy”?  Remember, we can’t all be the queen!

Can we be the kind of friend to others who doesn’t have to gossip about them  or put them down to make ourself feel more important.? Can we be even-tempered and tolerant of each others differences, choosing to overlook little idiosyncrasies and only choosing the most important “hills to die on”?   Can we forgive and forget when our human selves e hurt or offend each other?

Can we be the kind of friend that does not stir up drama and can  speak truth in love to kindly shut down ugliness and drama when it comes from another?  Can we be honest with each other,  and when absolutely necessary, practice tough love? Can we wish the best for each other and defend each other against bullies and gossip and hurt?

Can we be the faithful friend that will help and protect someone, even in the hard times, instead of cut and run at the first sign of difficulty?  Can we be the kind of person that someone else can trust to stand by them, keep confidences, be encouraging, and persevere even during the difficult times in the relationship?

Fair-weather friends are not what we need.  Not as children or as adults.  The bees get it – they don’t quit.  They’ll do whatever it takes for the good of the colony.  I believe we are called to succeed and not fail at this faithful servant love that both the bees and The  Book teach us.

Being a faithful friend is something that Steve and I have always strived to be.  To us that means being dedicated to the friendship through the good times and the bad times.  It means sometimes giving extra patience and mercy to that “extra-grace-required” friend.  It means over-looking differences of opinion – politics, theology, child rearing, schooling, etc, etc,  – and knowing you can still have a relationship, agreeing to disagree.  It means being willing to put time into people’s lives, being willing to “get dirty” or lend a helping hand or a shoulder to cry on during the tough times in people’s lives.  And yes, sometimes, being  a good friend also means that at crisis points, what might be necessary is a kick out the door, for a time. And it also means sticking around long enough through the hard times, to be able to get to the joy!  And now our children are trying to teach their children a few lessons from the Book and the BEEs!

 

1 Corinthians 13

from “The Message” Bible

3-7 If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.

Love never gives up.Love is...
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
Love doesn’t strut,
Doesn’t have a swelled head,
Doesn’t force itself on others,
Isn’t always “me first,”
Doesn’t fly off the handle,
Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.

8-10 Love never dies. Inspired speech will be over some day; praying in tongues will end; understanding will reach its limit. We know only a portion of the truth, and what we say about God is always incomplete. But when the Complete arrives, our incompletes will be canceled.

 

 

 

 

Help BEEpothecary Vie for a Business Grant

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Help us vie for a Chase Bank Mission Main Street Grant.

Go to the following website, search BEEpothecary and vote for us!

We need 250 votes to move on to the judging round!

 

 

https://www.missionmainstreetgrants.com/vote

Chase’s $2M Mission Main Street Grants program for Small Business is in full swing! Apply or vote today! Learn more here: www.missionmainstreetgrants.com
MISSIONMAINSTREETGRANTS.COM

Our Hives are Hoppin’!

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Psalms from the HiveIMG_5023

by Jeannie Saum

How many hives can the  honey bees make

If the bees make it through the winter?

Five hives?   Ten hives?  Fifteen? Twenty?

We’re up to twenty-one!

Swarms caught, splits made, nuc boxes full

And five boxes of honey to pull!

 

Clover, Bee, and Revery

It’s been IMG_3311quite a spring with our bees, and we feel like we are finally  getting the hang of things after 5 years of beginning beekeeping and many conferences and beekeeper meetings  where we get tons of helpful information.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

 

 

At the Dotson Apiary, they had four  hives make it through the winter an20150522_104446d these were thriving and multiplying in early spring.  In the Saum Apiary, we had three make it, but they started the spring out kind of small and weak.  We were happy with the survival rate, compared to last year.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

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At the Saum Apiary, we had  a small disaster in the last snow and wind storm in February.  Our tarp wind break broke loose at one end and whipped around in the wind, knocking off the covers of three hives.  We didn’t find this out for several hours, so those bees probably succumbed to the cold and lack of protection.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

swarm

 

We’ve been out in our hives every two weeks, installed four new nuc (5 frame starter hives from an experienced beekeeper with overwintered bees and queens), caught a swarm from one of our hives, captured a swarm after a call from a neighbor, and made five hive splits from the Dotson’s booming hives and started 3 nucs with queen cells we found.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

beeframes DR

 

beeframesbuilding

We’ve also been building massive amounts of  extra equipment – boxes and frames – so we have extra boxes to put on our hives as they grow and make honey during the summer and fall.  Our daughter said our dining room looks like a bee supply company threw up in it!

 

~  ~  ~  ~  ~

 

And next week, we will have five boxes of spring honey to harvest!  We’ll keep you posted as to when that is ready!

 

IMG_3905

 

And remember, BEEpothecary is back open for business, with a 15% off coupon code  reopen15.  Get to our online market with the tab at the top of the page “Our Products”

Jeremiah 31

10“Hear the word of the Lord, you nations; proclaim it in distant coastlands: ‘He who scattered Israel will gather them and will watch over his flock like a shepherd.’
11 For the Lord will deliver Jacob and redeem them from the hand of those stronger than they.
12 They will come and shout for joy on the heights of Zion; they will rejoice in the bounty of the Lord
the grain, the new wine and the olive oil, the young of the flocks and herds. They will be like a well-watered garden, and they will sorrow no more.
13 Then young women will dance and be glad, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.
14 I will satisfy the priests with abundance, and my people will be filled with my bounty,” declares the Lord.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Faithfulness – a Blessing to BEEpothecary

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Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

Faithfulness, a quality sought

In  family, customers, friends.

They stick around during the hard times

Encouragement, they send.Delawaremay14

They keep us going

When we want to give up

Standing by, holding us up.

 

Clover, Bee, and Revery

Faithful Customers, family and friends , you kept us going!  All during the few months we have received DAILY calls from you, our faithful customers, believers in all things BEE!  While we hated telling you that we did not have products for you at that time, we have to tell you that it is your phone calls that have kept us encouraged and pursuing getting up and running quickly!

Your calls and stories of health successes with bee propolis, continued to remind us of why we were doing this.  More than creating a small business that might provide us with a little extra income for retirement, our number-one desire is to passionately promote these incredible bee resources to help others discover and experience the many health benefits from hive products.

It is so exciting to hear your stories and build relationships with you all.  We thank you for support and encouragement over the last

Jeannie and Steve Saum, Peter and Laurie Dotson

Jeannie and Steve Saum, Peter and Laurie Dotson

few months!  We look forward to serving you with these incredible products, getting to know you better, and hearing your stories of

success – keep them coming!

Bless you,

Jeannie, Steve, Laurie, and Peter

 

P. S. My daughter turned me on to this suggestion that is going around on Facebook.  If you want to know what a true and faithful friend is, try putting a friend’s name in this verse, in the place of the word LOVE and its pronouns.  See if it rings true for that person in your life.

 When we consider you all, it does!

1 Corinthians 13

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.

It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.

Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.

7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails.

Grand Re-Opening – BEEpothecary is Back!

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ANNOUNCING THE GRAND RE-OPENING OF

BEEpothecarybeepothecary products

Health, Skin and HairCare Products

with the amazing BEE PROPOLIS

and other hive resources, are available at

     www.mkt.com/beepothecary – online – mail order

or at BEEppothecary’s home office

 3320 Toy Road, Groveport, Ohio

call ahead for appointment – 1-614-450-2339


Coming Soon!

BEEpothecary will be available at our partner Store Fronts within the next few weeks! Stay tuned for the announcement!

 

State and Third Boutiques – Shoppes at Capitol Square

Urban Emporium – Main St.,  Bexley

Simply Vague – Polaris & Tuttle Malls

River’s Edge Cutlery – Hilliard

Garden Herb Shop – Canal Winchester

Blystone Farm Market – Oregon Rd., Canal Winchester

The Well, Lancaster

Joshua 6

Then the Lord said to Joshua, “See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands, along with its king and its fighting men.

March around the city once with all the armed men. Do this for six days.

Have seven priests carry trumpets of rams’ horns in front of the ark. On the seventh day, march around the city seven times, with the priests blowing the trumpets.

When you hear them sound a long blast on the trumpets, have the whole army give a loud shout;then the wall of the city will collapse and the army will go up, everyone straight in.”

15 On the seventh day, they got up at daybreak and marched around the city seven times in the same manner, except that on that day they circled the city seven times.

16 The seventh time around, when the priests sounded the trumpet blast, Joshua commanded the army, “Shout! For the Lord has given you the city!

17 The city and all that is in it are to be devoted[a] to the Lord.

20 When the trumpets sounded, the army shouted, and at the sound of the trumpet, when the men gave a loud shout, the wall collapsed; so everyone charged straight in, and they took the city. 21 They devoted the city to the Lord.

Where, Oh where Has BEEpothecary Been? – Marching Around Jericho!

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Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

Sometimes when you get what you pray for, It isn’t exactly what you meant!

And you say to God, “Really?! I don’t like what you sent!

It’s not very helpful.  It’s not what I want. Unfair, unjust, just nonsense.

I really must protest!”

beepothecary productsAnd God replies, “Quiet my child.  Keep marching…

I send you what you need. I know what is best.

Rest… Relax…  Do what you’re told,  

And I’ll do the rest.

So keep marching around Jericho, Until I give the sign.

When everything falls into place,   You’ll know that it’s time.”

Clover, Bee, and Revery

 Reverie (revery) –(n.) state of dreamy meditation or fanciful musing; a fantastic, visionary, or impractical idea

Since the opening of our business in Sept. of 2013, our goal has been to bring you safe, high quality, natural products.  We sought out help from multiple organizations and governmental agencies, to give us guidance with correctly categorizing, labeling and producing  our products especially since they contain unique ingredients.  This was a painstaking process, since there are so many different agencies involved and scores of laws and regulations, both federal and state.

In February  2015, we received directives from agencies we had reached out to.  At that time, we chose to shut down our production, in order to work on  production and labeling compliance with Ohio and federal laws.

The wheels of governmuskoka trip day3 374ment turn slowly, and this shut-down turned into a four month long job of hurry up and wait, hurry up and wait, …  But, this four months has taught us a lot about our products, manufacturing,  patience, and our passion for what we want to do.  There were times that we wondered if we should just give up, but then another call would come in from a faithful customer, pleading for product, and that would encourage us to keep going and reinforced our conviction, that we believe is God-given, is a true and right direction for us. We feel like the Israelites, marching round and around Jericho, waiting for a answer from God.  Finally, we have answers and a direction to pursue!

We want to continue to bring these amazing bee resources to the public, to help people with their health when maybe no other substance has helped.   We are committed to be responsible manufacturers and to produce effective, safe products for our customers. We hope knowing this about our company will give you confidence in us and peace of mind.

 We appreciate your patience with us, and hope you come back to our customer “family” as we relaunch BEEpothecary.

BEEpothecary Logo headliner

 

Health, Skin and Hair Care

Powered by BEES!

Psalm 138

I will praise you, Lord, with all my heart; before the “gods” I will sing your praise.
I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name
    for your unfailing love and your faithfulness, for you have so exalted your solemn decree
    that it surpasses your fame.
When I called, you answered me; you greatly emboldened me.

May all the kings of the earth praise you, Lordwhen they hear what you have decreed.
May they sing of the ways of the Lordfor the glory of the Lord is great.

Though the Lord is exalted, he looks kindly on the lowly; though lofty, he sees them from afar.
Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you preserve my life.
You stretch out your hand against the anger of my foes; with your right hand you save me.
The Lord will vindicate me; your love, Lord, endures forever—
    do not abandon the works of your hands.

Tucking in our Bees for Winter

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Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

Should we or should we notmuskoka trip day3 374

Insulate the hive and top?

Feed them syrup?

Block the wind?

What’s the best way 

For us to tend?

Clover, Bee, and Revery

Reverie (revery) –(n.) state of dreamy meditation or fanciful musing; a fantastic, visionary, or impractical idea

Last year ago in the fall, we argued back and forth about what to do to our bees to prepare for winter.  Just as every beekeeper you talk to has different ideas about how to prepare hives for winter, so, too, Steve and I had differing opinions.  We had lost 2 out of 4 the previous winter, and I thought we should do something proactive to the hives.  Steve, on the other hand, felt that if bees can survive in nature, in a tree, through the winter, that the less done to them the better.  Round and round we went over this.  Our county bee inspector came in the fall, and he felt the hives looked good, and that even the small hive might make it, since they would need less honey stores.  He made a few recommendations about how many boxes to reduce down to and how many frames of honey they would need.  In the end, Steve’s way won out.  We did nothing except leave honey in the hives and feed them some sugar syrup in the fall.

Winter came with a vengeance last winter, as you all may remember.  We had long periods of time with temperatures well below freezing, many days of below zero weather, lots of wind and snow.  Then suddenly, for a day or two, it would warm up to the 50’s and then – Wham! – back to below zero.  This weather played havoc on trees, shrubs, perennials and the bees.  

Bees stay warm in the winter by forming a tightly packed cluster around the queen.  By quivering their flight muscles to generate heat, they keep their cluster and the queen in the middle at close to a toasty 90º!  The bees in the outer layer stay between 48º to 57º.  The bees on the outer layer eat honey from the frames for energy, then move toward the center to get warmer, while the bees in the core move toward the outside to get honey.  But if the body temperature grows colder than 48º, they can’t move their flight muscles, and fall off the cluster and die.

Last winter, with the wildly fluctuating temperatures and the periods of bitter cold, our bees did not fair well.  When the weather warms up to 50º, the bees break cluster and go out for a cleansing flight (they do not defecate in the hive).  Then when the temperature drops rapidly to below freezing, as it did last winter, the bees often can not get the cluster formed and warmed quickly enough.  We lost all but one hive at both the Saum’s  and the Dotson’s apiaries.  We were bummed!  At $95 for a package of bees, beekeeping is an expensive endeavor, especially when they die every winter.

So, this year, Jeannie will get her way.  Doing nothing last winter resulted in a 92% loss, so th20140615_135218is year, we’re doing it my way!!  I wanted to try several things we have heard about at beekeeping conference we’ve been to this past year.  Steve and I made hive blankets on day on my lovely dining room table!  These are shallow boxes with a screen bottom and filled with wood chips.  They go on the top of the hive to catch condensation dripping from the lid.  This condensation  forms in the winter when the heated air from the cluster rises and hits the cold lid of the hive.  If this moisture drips on the bees, they die.  So we are hoping this blanket of wood chips will absorb the moisture and keep the bees dry.

One day in early November, Laurie and I went out and wrapped hives in black roofing tar paper, while Steve cooked more  sugar syrup for the bees.  The black paper helps the hive stay warm through solar gain from the sun on the black paper.  We had intended to staple the tar paper on with our pneumatic stapler, but found it went right through the paper.  So we ended up tying it on with string around the hive.   We added buckets of more syrup to feed until the temperature dropped below freezing, and then moved on to Laurie and Pete’s apiary to do the same.

A few weeks later, we added Styrofoam sheets inside the lids, to further insulate, and drilled a top entrance hole in each hive to help with ventilation – to further control the moisture.  Steve and I also added a T-post and tarp wind break about 3 feet behind the hives, on the west side.

I’ve heard a beekeeper say that the bees are dying  a “death by a thousand cuts” – meaning that there are so many factors that hurt the bees from pollution to pesticides to weather, to lack of forage to viruses and mites, ,.   Hopefully, we have reduced the “cuts” a bit by preparing our hives with these winterizing tactics and are giving our bees a little better chance.

And now we wait…

 

 Deuteronomy 30

15 See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction.

16 For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess.

17 But if your heart turns away and you are not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow down to other gods and worship them,

18 I declare to you this day that you will certainly be destroyed. You will not live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess.

19 This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live

20 and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the Lord is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

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