Stories from Propolis Users


Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

Healing from the bees,

It warms our hearts

To share with others

What God has brought.

Clover, Bee, and Revery

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

We love it when we talk to people who have had improved health results by using propolis – our products or any others.  It affirms our amazement at the remedies God has given us in nature.  On the second day of the Lithopolis HoneyFest, we had two-day one customers come visit us again, to tell us how well the propolis product they had bought the day before had worked!  One gentleman said the propolis throat spray had gotten rid of his almost year-long irritated throat, overnight!  Another man named Jim came back Saturday to tell us he had used our Propolis Saline Nose Drops the evening before and for the first time in months, his sinuses were clear.  He came back to buy more!  We are thrilled when customers have the same successes we have had with honeybee propolis.

Last weekend, we had a booth at the Columbus Oktoberfest, where people come to pay $16 for a mug of beer and $8 for a brat!  Amazingly, despite the focus on beer and brats, we were able to turn people on to the wonders of propolis.  One family spent a long time learning about it from Laurie and Peter, but weren’t ready to buy.  IMG_1880Their preschool-age son with them wasn’t feeling well due to an ear ache.  Laurie offered to put prpolis oil in his ear and told them to go enjoy the festival for a while and see what happened.  An hour or so later, they were back, with a pain-free, happy child and bought their own supply of propolis products!  Another vendor purchased our rejuvenating skin balm (containing propolis) , used it on her sore, tired feet after day one of the festival and shared it with her business partner.  The next day, her business partner came by to get her own jar of rejuvenating cream, saying it really soothed their tired, worn-out feet!  (Now, we had originally designed this product for aging facial skin –  but whatever!  If it works, it works!)  One of the event organizers bought some Propolis Nose Drops, tried it and came bPropolisTtinctureack for more the next day.

Our friend, Donny burned his tongue on piping hot food last week, and suffered with a blistered tongue for several days, before he remembered propolis!  He treated his still-sore tongue with propolis tincture, put up with the burn for a few seconds and then was pain free.  He treated the blister for 2 more days, was pain-free, and it cleared up.

We also listen to our customers and users and make changes to our products to improve them.  Our men customers of our beard and ‘stache wax have told us that it has hardened too much, so we will be reformulating our recipe to soften it up, and will replace their too-hard wax with a new, softer formula.  We also have had questions about why we are not putting  propolis in our skin balm and soap.  After thinking about it, and realizing that propolis is what we really are promoting, we have decided to rework our recipes and add it to our skin balms and soaps.  In this way, almost all of our products will carry the health benefits of propolis

We love these stories and suggestions, so keep them coming.  And we love that we get to harvest and share these natural health products with others.

1 Timothy 6

17 Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.

18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share.

19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.


Sharing Bee Stories at the Columbus Oktoberfest

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Psalms from the Hive,

by Jeannie Saum


Frantically cooking in two weeks time

Making more product and redoing signs

Gettin’ ready to go on the road, again.

Columbus Oktoberfest, here we come!


Clover, Bee, and Revery

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


We just finished  a great, but exhausting three days at the Columbus Oktoberfest, talking with people about the amazing honeybees.  It was exciting to share our knowledge of the benefits of hive resources – especially propolis – with visitors who stopped by our booth.  It’s fun to turn  people on to the benefits of natural resources put on this earth by our Creator.

We enjoyed meeting lots of new people and appreciated the support of friends and family members who stopped by to say hi or to help.  We met many other vendors – nice people who gave us lots of tips and suggestions for other shows.  We were even able to help a few other vendors out by sharing our wi-fi set up, thanks to our tech guru, Pete.   To top off our efforts, we WON the Best Decorated Booth Award from the Oktoberfest Committee!

This business adventure is fun, but can wear us out!  We are looking forward to a few weeks of rest and time to work on our houses, laundry and yards!  And maybe get away for a relaxing weekend camping trip!


Psalm 128

Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in obedience to him.
You will eat the fruit of your labor;  blessings and prosperity will be yours.
Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table.
Yes, this will be the blessing for the man who fears the Lord.

May the Lord bless you from Zion; may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life.
May you live to see your children’s children— peace be on Israel.

Propolis and Endometriosis

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Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

Always a wonder 220px-Propolis_in_beehives

God’s little bees

Designed to be a blessing

To those who will believe!

Clover, Bee, and Revery

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


Thanks to our young friend, Amber W., , who did some searching about this topic, I decided to look for some research on propolis and endometriosis.  I am amazed daily at what God’s little creatures, the honeybees, have been designed to do.  Turns out that propolis and its anti-inflammatory properties help with the pain of endometriosis,  but also produce an unexplained increase in conception among women with enodmetriosis, who take propolis!

In a study from way back in 2003, as reported in Fertility and Sterility it was found that:

  • Women with endometriosis who have been unable to get pregnant may have a more successful outcome by taking bee propolis, according to a preliminary study in Fertility and Sterility (2003;80:S32). This is encouraging for the millions of women with endometriosis who are suffering from infertility.
  • In the new preliminary study, 40 women with mild endometriosis and primary infertility (i.e., they had never been pregnant) who had unsuccessfully tried to get pregnant for at least two years were assigned to receive 500 mg twice a day of bee propolis or placebo for nine months. The number of pregnancies was recorded during the treatment period.
  • Women taking bee propolis had a significantly higher pregnancy rate than those taking the placebo. The number of women who became pregnant in the treatment and placebo groups was 60 and 20%, respectively. No adverse effects were reported by the women taking bee propolis.

This article can be found at: http://bastyrcenter.org/content/view/623/&page=

I always wonder why this kind of research doesn’t get more press, and why further studies have not been done.  Could it be that since propolis is a natural substance, no one will make millions on it??  People in other countries all over the world us it and much research is being done on propolis in Europe and Asia.  We need to get the word out about this amazing natural healer!


For Propolis Products go to :    mkt.com/beepothecary

Isaiah 43

8 Lead out those who have eyes but are blind, who have ears but are deaf.
All the nations gather together and the peoples assemble. which of their gods foretold this and proclaimed to us the former things?  Let them bring in their witnesses to prove they were right, so that others may hear and say, “It is true.”
10 “You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord,  “and my servant whom I have chosen, so that you may know and believe me  and understand that I am he. Before me no god was formed,  nor will there be one after me.
11 I, even I, am the Lord, and apart from me there is no savior.

12 I have revealed and saved and proclaimed— I, and not some foreign god among you. You are my witnesses,”  declares the Lord, “that I am God.

Exciting Times – Our Debut!


Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

Months of planning  and we’re in the last week

painting display materials

painting display materials

Wrapping up a few loose ends.

The cooking is over, the labels are fastened

Last minute wrapping is done.

Proofing’s been completed a dozen times

And the printer’s whirling on.

Lists are made, now Items crossed out

Have we forgotten anything?

The tubs are packed, the trucks are loaded

Doughnuts and coffee in the sack.

No more time for stressing, just hope to have some fun.

The HoneyFest is ON!

Clover, Bee, and Revery

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


Info sheets printed and ready to cut

Info sheets printed and ready to cut

The Dotsons and the Saums of Hive & Honey BEEpothecary, LLC, have  been working for months to create health and skin care products from our bee hive resources.  These are officially labelled “value added hive products”  by the agriculture community.  Our goal has been to share our excitement about the health benefits of  honeybee hive resources with others, with a target date of early  September for the local Honey Festival. In addition, we wanted to find a way to sell our products  online, that we could afford.

It’s now September and we are ready!  We’ve researched and planned and created and changed.  We’ve written and rewritten. We’ve filled out forms and applications. We’ve cooked and stirred and poured and capped.  We’ve designed and edited and labeled and wrapped.  We’ve ordered and reordered and boxed and planned.  We’ve made lists, lists, and more lists.  We’ve  built and sanded and painted and stained.  We’ve silk screened and tried, smelled and tasted.  We consulted and bartered for expertise and advice.

Supplies, packed and ready to load

Supplies, packed and ready to load

We found that using Square for credit card billing was cost-effective for us and then discovered that they have  a great added benefit.  Square has an online store featured called SquareUp, where you can list and show your products and set up an online store.  The only cost is the percentage Square charges for transactions, which we would be paying anyway, even selling locally, to anyone who uses a credit card.  In addition, SquareUp does the emailing and the bookkeeping and the debiting and the crediting!  This service has all the features we needed for a start-up company.

Tubs and tubs of product!

Tubs and tubs of product!

We are excited to announce that our ONLINE STORE – HIVE &  HONEY BEEPOTHECARY  IS NOW OPEN FOR BUSINESS.  You can access it on the “Our Products” on this blog site.  It will take you to SquareUp’s secure website where you can order our honeybee and hive enhanced health and skin care products.

In addition, for all our local, Columbus, Ohio area friends, we will be debuting our  products at the Lithopolis Honey Fest, Friday, September 6, 2013, from 1-7 pm and Saturday, September 7, 2013, from 9 am-7 pm.  Come on out to this wonderful, informative and inspiring festival whose goal is to

“Save the Planet, One Bee at a Time!”

First orders, ready for pick-up by USPS

First orders, ready for pick-up by USPS



Luke 12

“I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more.

But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him.

Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God.

Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

Our Products

Our Products

Peeling Fresh Eggs – It CAN be Done!

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Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

Eggs, eggs and more eggs!

Laying here and there.

For sale sign went up today

And a potful boiling on the stove.

Clover, Bee, and Revery

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


Fresh from the hen house!

Fresh from the hen house!

I am here to testify, that my Hive and Honey partner, Laurie Dotson, has discovered a successful way to prepare and peel fresh hard boiled eggs!  All over the Internet, there are suggestions for how to do.  But all the responses say, “Unsuccessful!”  “Can’t be done!”

Well, I can’t take credit for this method, but I will verify that it really works!  Did it yesterday with a dozen fresh eggs right out of our backyard coop!  Got all the shells off and the eggs left in one piece – pretty enough to make deviled eggs out of, though that was not my intent.  Just wanted some yummy egg salad for a sandwich for lunch!

Here’s Laurie’s fool-proof method of preparing fresh hard boiled eggs so they will peel.

  1. Double boiler to steam eggs

    Double boiler to steam eggs

    Put a half pot of hot water on the stove to boil.

  2. Put your eggs in a steaming basket or add-on double boiler, ABOVE the water.
  3. Bring water to boil, and STEAM the eggs for 20 minutes.
  4. Take eggs off the stove, pour out boiling water and run pan under cold water to cool off.
  5. Fill cooled pot about 1/4 full of water, add lots of ice, and put the eggs in the ICE WATER to cool.
  6. When cool, crack the eggs, and start peeling, being sure to get under the membrane as you peel.  The shells should come right off, leaving the whites in one piece!
Ice bath to cool

Ice bath to cool

Try it for yourself and see.  I’m a believer!  And it’s a good thing it works, because with 21 chickens, we have more eggs than we know what to do with!  Quiche two nights ago, egg salad yesterday, and I sense some deviled eggs coming on tonight!

John 3

12 I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things?

13 No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man.

14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up

15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”

16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.

18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.

Bummer Summer with the Bees

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Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

This summer, what a bummer

Cold spring, summer rain

Not to the bees liking.

Busy multiplying, but eating the honey they’re supplying.

Not leaving us any!  What a pain!

Clover, Bee, and Revery

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


We headed out to our hives today, hoping to harvest some honey to bottle and sell at the upcoming HoneyFest next weekend.  A month ago, one of our thriving hives had at least 6 frames of uncapped honey, so we were hoping to have a super of honey.  Our HIve and Honey BEEpothecary partners, the Dotsons, headed out to their hives at the same time and we planned to get together this afternoon to process our honey together.

But, it was not to be – or BEE? – not for the Saums or the Dotsons.  In our 2 thriving older hives, we found boxes full of drawn comb, much of it empty.  We also found tons of bees and brood, some pollen and a little bit of capped honey on a few frames around the brood.  But NO full frames of honey.  They evidently have eaten it as fast as they are making it!

In our 4 smaller new hives, one was completely empty – not even bees.  The other three had lots of bees and bIMG_1456rood, and a little pollen, but NO HONEY!  We were shocked and disappointed.   We called the Dotsons, and learned that they had found the same thing.   By this time last year, we had pulled a full super of honey or more off of hives twice, and got a third batch in the fall.

Later today, a first year beekeeper from down the street,next door to our son, called.  He asked if he could come down with some pictures from his new hive, to see if we thought he had a problem.  The pictures on his tablet computer, looked just like our hives!  Lots of bees and brood, some pollen, and that’s it!  He felt reassured that he had company in his misery, and that  we did not think he had a big problem.

I posted our results on the local beekeepers’ association Facebook page, and found that many others in our area are experiencing the same.  Guess it’s just the whimsy of the weather and the bees and we have no control!  The spring was cold and damp.  The spring bloom happened late, all at once.  Then we had four weeks of daily rain in June and July, followed by unseasonable cool weather in August.  Guess this all was not to the bees liking or need!

As of tomorrow, we will start feeding our bees sugar syrup and hope that this and a good bloom of goldenrod this September will help the bees make enough honey to get them through the winter!  And we are glad that we have other things to sell at the HoneyFest than honey!  I hope other beekeepers have honey to sell.   Might be kind of a weird HoneyFest if there is no honey available this year!


Jeremiah 17

“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,   whose confidence is in him.
They will be like a tree planted by the water  that sends out its roots by the stream.
It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green.
It has no worries in a year of drought  and never fails to bear fruit.”

How We Make Propolis Oil and Tincture


Psalms from the Hive

by Jeannie Saum

Turning propolis, sticky goo

Into something good for you

Is ever so rewarding.

Hard work and messy

But in the end a blessing.

Clover, Bee, and Revery

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

Today, Laurie and I made new batches of propolis oil and tincture, from the propolis we had collected from the hives last fall.  First, we had to do the last cleaning step, (see our recent blog – How to Clean Propolis) which was to crumble apart the frozen propolis patties and pick out the remaining debris – wood shavings, beeswax, etc.  A messy job, but much easier to work with than when the propolis is room temperature.  It is  stiff and sticky then!

We did this in the garage, as propolis crumbs dropped on the floor, will need to be SCRAPED up – not fun!  After this messy job, we headed into the kitchen to mix up our “potions.”

crumbling up frozen propolis, picking out debris

crumbling up frozen propolis, picking out debris

We make propolis mixtures two ways – as an oil, and as an alcohol based tincture.  Propolis is not as easily dissolved in oil as it is in alcohol, and the percentage of the mixture isn’t as exact, but we like it better for some applications.  For instance, when using propolis on a cut, the oil is much more soothing than the alcohol tincture!

We have made Propolis Oil two ways in the past, but find that it seems more potent if we use the heated method, than just letting it sit.

Propolis Infused Oil

Here’s the recipe we use for Propolis Oil:

  • .3 oz.   or 10 grams propolis (about 1 TBS)
  • 6.7 fl oz.  or 200 ml olive oil (any healthy vegetable oil is okay to use)
  • (We made a big batch, so we used   2.25 oz.  (7 1/2 TBS) raw propolis and 50 fl. oz. olive oil)

Heated Method

Mix the propolis and olive oil together in the top of a double boiler.  ( small sauce pot in a larger pot partly filled with water)    This helps control the temperature of the oil, which you do not want to get too hot.  This would destroy the beneficial properties of the propolis.  Use a candy thermometer to monitor the temperature and heat the oil to no higher than 122 degrees F.  Stir and heat for about 10 minutes.  (or longer if you wish).  The propolis will not all dissolve.

Strain this  mixture through cheesecloth (coarser, so faster, but might require a second straining) or a paper coffee filter (finer, so slower, but you end up with a cleaner oil).  The propolis that remains in the filter can be used again to make more oil! (freeze it for another time) Store it in a sealed jar in a dark place.

2 Week Unheated Method

Mix the same quantities/ratio of oil and propolis as above in a container with a sealing lid.  We use canning jars.  Shake up and store in a dark place.  Shake 2-3 times a day, for 2 weeks.  Then proceed as above, to strain.

Propolis Tincture

With Propolis Tincture you can get a more exact percentage, as the propolis dissolves more completely in alcohol.  It is important to use weight measurements rather than volume for this mixture.  It is recommended that you not try to make anything stronger than a 30% solution, as it is harder to get that much propolis to dissolve.  We usually make a 10% solution. Then, after it is done infusing, if we want it stronger, we evaporate the alcohol down by half to make it 20%.

For a 10% tincture,

  • mix 1 part propolis by weight to
  • 9 parts grain alcohol, by weight  (we use 75 proof or higher vodka, or Everclear)  Do not use isopropyl alcohol(rubbing alcohol) – it is poisonous!

Mix together in a lidded container (again, we use canning jars).  Shake.  Store in a dark place. Shake 2-3 times a day for 1-2 weeks.  Then strain the same way as described above for the oil.  Store in a dark place or in a dark jar.  Propolis left in filter material may be reused for another tincture or oil. Use again or freeze for later.

We put our propolis oil and tincture in amber dropper bottles and store in our medicine and kitchen cabinets!

Tune in next time for how we are using propolis oils and tinctures for health and healing!

Psalm 128

1 Blessed are all who fear the LORD, who walk in his ways.

2 You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours.

3 Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your sons will be like olive shoots around your table.

4 Thus is the man blessed who fears the LORD.

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