A Few Pictures of Austin

Austin is a much-loved member of our family, therefore he deserves a dedicated post! He has an enviable life.

Death Valley

Death Valley


Death Valley


Confluence of the American River


Handsome Boy


Paige Meadows Tahoe


Twenty Lakes Basin Tioga Pass

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Austin B.

Just a picture of my two critters.

Austin in Ashland

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Don’t Sneer at a Green Bean

Ridiculous reasons for an argument #1. Sneering at Green Beans. My husband accused me of sneering at the suggestion of green beans for dinner the other night. According to him I looked at the green beans in his hand, I paused, and then my eyes delivered a full on sneer. This sneer upset him. There must have been some eyebrow involvement to upset him so. He threatened not to cook the beans. This took me aback; I’ve never been accused of sneering at anything – certainly not a green bean. I wonder, have I sneered at any other unsuspecting vegetables? I didn’t even know I had sneer in my arsenal of facial expressions. I like the way it sounds though: sneer. I should try drawing it out some time: ssssneeeeeeeeerr.  Hmm. My husband won’t be cooking me green beans any time soon if I try that. I think I’ll grow green beans in my garden this summer….

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Yes, in fact, I am married…

I wasn’t going to do this – write about married life – but I just can’t help myself.  This isn’t a diary where I self-indulgently blather on about every triviality in my married life – yawn! (Can you put an exclamation point after a sleepy word like yawn?) I promise to keep these entries short and to the point – like, WTF, I woke up this morning and remembered I’m married… ever have one of those days?

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Mead you say?

I am thinking about making mead this year from what I hope will be a bountiful beekeeping year. I found the following interesting:

Mead was a part of the rituals of the Celts, AngloSaxons and Vikings. It was believed to have magical, healing powers even capable of increasing fertility. The word honeymoon is derived from the practice of the newlyweds drinking mead (honey water) for one month (a moon) after the wedding.

We’ll see…

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Back to the Bees

The calendar lies… while it says February, it is anything BUT winter here in Sacramento. Yesterday was a lovely 70°F, the humming birds nearly drained the feeder like so many drunken sailors on shore leave, Daffodils are bursting forth in unexpected places, and the Santa Rosa plum is about to explode in white profusion. Which gets me thinking about this year’s beekeeping.

I ordered a 3 lb. package of bees from Honey Bee Genetics and will pick them up in Vacaville http://www.honeybeegenetics.com/ on Saturday, April 7th. I have purchased packaged bees from them before and they were good bees. Last year was doomed from the start because the place I ordered the bees from didn’t deliver until the end of May – two months behind schedule. Everything went downhill from there. What a mess.

So between now and April 7th I need to settle on where to locate the hive. I thought I had the perfect place but now my husband wants to build a shed there. So now I’m thinking of putting it on the other side of the backyard next to a Meyer Lemon. But there’s a huge Juniper “thing” growing right next to the lemon. I call it a Juniper “thing” because it’s massive and has no discernible  form – just a ten foot high clump of prickly mess. My childhood home had juniper shrubs in the front yard. When a ball, Frisbee, or shoe ended up in the shrubs, we knew it was never coming out. So maybe this weekend I’ll get more use out of the chain saw.

Speaking of chain saws and large shrubs. If I play it right, I can probably get my husband to do the entire job of removing the Juniper. He can’t stand it when I start flailing away with any kind of tool that has a motor attached; he’s okay letting me have my way with a hammer or screwdriver, but slap a battery onto the screwdriver, call it a drill, and voila, my husband appears – offering tips and suggestions on how to do it “correctly” – at which time I say something like “would you please show me how?” – and about an hour later, a bit of cursing, lots of praise, and a cold beer, the job is done! Maybe I need to get a motor for the mop…

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Bye Bye Bees

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After limping through summer, my second queen has left the hive. That day did not come without warning, in fact I was anticipating the day I would open the hive and find the queen gone. When that day arrived, I honestly felt … Continue reading

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