Thursday August 20th 2015
Read yesterday's post
Today is predicted to be warm, but tomorrow will be rainy.
I went out and began yard work, then got a call from my accountant. He was able to see me, so I drove to Three Hills and went to the bank, bought groceries and had a meeting with him. It was 1430 by the time I got home.
A right is one reason that putting hives up on pallets or blocks is a good idea. My new floors are sitting on the ground and grass is growing up, blocking the entrances. The bees don't mind, though.
After I got home, I started supper and after cooking and cleaning, I was barely ready when people arrived. We had a good supper. After, I cleaned up and was done at 2200, then I watched an episode of Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries. From start of preparation to finish of cleanup, supper took me seven hours. Hmmmm.
I went on Amazon afterwards and ordered a DVD set of the first season of Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries for my mother, sent anonymously. We'll see how she likes it. She'll either love it or hate it.
I also signed up for Canadian Amazon Prime -- the free 30-day trial anyhow. I already have Prime on US Amazon, but it does not carry over to Canada and they don't tell you when you sign up.
There's no point in being grown up
if you can't be childish sometimes.
Friday August 21st 2015
Read yesterday's post
Today is rainy and cool. At 1000, the gauge (which lies) says 1.7 inches.
Maddy is off to Spruce Grove and Acheson today to pick up bee supplies. The purpose of her trip is actually to deliver Custom Woolen Mill products lies, too and get mill supplies, but she is driving a truck and can get the bee supplies along the way.
It turns out that Beemaid does not have either Pierco or Acorn one-piece frames in stock. I had intended to obtain some to have on hand for Sunday. I am not impressed. They charge a high price, but do not stock the item. Beemaid's prices are high and that is justifiable if they keep ample stocks on hand, but it seems they do not.
That Lithium ion battery continues to expand (right).
Today was one of those wasted days. I did a few things, but nothing of consequence.
I should mention another Alberta beekeeping page, one that has been around about as long as my site has: Bad Beekeeping: The Beekeepers' Home Pages. Here is his own description:
Neither of us can remember exactly when we started, but it was sometime just after the Big Bang and our first involvement was on or through through CompuServe. We did not know one another at the time.
My site goes back many years before I began the diary which I begin on Friday March 3, 2000.
I began my site sometime in the nineties. It was first hosted on the Calgary Unix Users Group (CUUG) servers and accessed via dialup at very slow speeds on a party line. Then I moved to interode.net, a now defunct WPP, and finally bought my own domain, contracted servers and sold web services for a while. I still host a few clients.
It's a rainy day, the markets worldwide are crashing and I'm a bit depressed about other things anyhow. Exercise helps, so this afternoon, I got on the treadmill and walked a kilometer. That was enough and I then got onto the elliptical trainer for a few minutes.
I'm out of shape! Tired after one kilometer? I usually walk a mile without tiring. I'll go back and work out more in a while.
I've been meaning to be more active for a while now. I got out my bike the other day and started to blow up the tires, but got distracted and never did go for a ride. It is sitting out there in the rain right now, waiting.
I walked another km and then another half and lifted weights and rowed. The brake on the elliptical trainer broke, so that is out until I repair it. The electronics were already gone, though, so maybe it is time for a replacement. The ET is a good workout for walking and skiing.
I watched two episodes of Scrubs and one of Miss Fisher and I'm going to bed early.
The only way of discovering the
limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the
Saturday August 22nd 2015
Read yesterday's post
I slept well and found the power was off when I got up. I called the power company and there is some sort of unknown line problem. They are working on it. No problem. I need to work outdoors anyhow to get ready for the event tomorrow.
On going out the north door, I was distracted by new weed growth on the driveway after the rain, and the wet gravel. I had sprayed the weeds with Roundup two days ago but they are as green as ever, or greener. I've discovered it takes weeks for the full effect to show up. Anyhow, I dragged the rake around a while and then pulled the old motorhome out of the North Yard to be ready for the crowds. I'll mow, too.
I'll also need to locate and lay out some beekeeping items for show and tell and move lawn furniture around.
I mowed much of the north pasture for parking and began hauling over chairs and tables. I also cleaned up the yard a fair bit and burned some tree limbs and old pallets.
I worked a full eight hours today and feel great. The place is looking good, too.
This evening, I emailed all the people who said they want to come. That turned out to be a job that took over an hour -- possibly as long as the event itself
Politics is not the art of the
possible. It consists in choosing between the disastrous and the
Sunday August 23rd 2015
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I woke up early, at 0455, got up, and had breakfast. I am up for the day it seems. I could use more sleep, having been up until midnight, but today is Bee Day and I must be excited. I don't feel excited.
The weather promises to be nice, so that is not likely to give me issues. I have an idea what I will need to do. I've glanced at the hives and they vary from big hives that are plugged to small, possibly queenless hives. I'll talk about what I am doing and what I see as I go. No matter what I come across, I am sure it will be of interest.
I have no firm idea, however, how many people and how many vehicles will arrive. I am guessing twenty to forty people and that could be a problem. What if there are sixty?
Meijers are coming, so I have some moral support and proven expertise at hand. Maddy, Jean, Chris and Mckenzie will be here, too, to help finish setting up and to guide cars and people around. I'm sure the attendees will be helpful, too.
So, this whole thing is hard to visualize in advance. I have done the basic planning and setup with allowances for the more unpredictable aspects. From here, it will be whatever it will be. Worst case, everyone will have a nice drive in the country and I'll have a nervous breakdown.
* * * * *
After writing that, I went back to bed and slept another three quarters of an hour.
My weight today is 229.6 pounds, so, in spite of an active day yesterday and being reasonably careful what I eat, I am not losing. On August 15th, I weighed 228.1, so it seems I have gained a pound and a half. Time to get serious again.
I had a full tank of RoundUp in my hand sprayer, so I started the day spraying weeds. Next, I have to set out more items in readiness.
* * * * *
The Bee Day went off well, with an ideal turnout. There were about twenty of us.
Everyone had a great time. Thanks to all who
attended and Fern for bringing coffee and cake.
Here are the results of the two samples we did.
We did not need to do any more. The yard
will be treated ASAP. This small sample shows
conclusively that these two hives are over threshold by a lot.
Purists will complain we should have done 300 bees, but why waste nurse bees? Precision is not an issue when hives are so far over threshold.
Now, we could have just fluked onto the only two hives in the yard with high loads, but the odds are that there are hives with higher and lower infestations. I could waste time testing every hive or just treat the whole yard. There are good arguments for both, but my time is limited and I can treat all much faster than test one by one.
Also, Apivar is slow-acting. That is why it stays in for two worker brood cycles (21 days each) or three worker capping durations (14 days each). During that time, a lot can happen -- drifting, emergence of hidden varroa, etc., and and hives showing light loads could prove to have hidden infestations. There is no time for second chances, either. In 42 days, we are at October 5th and that is getting late for effective treatment.
Besides individual samples are not all that accurate, due to operator error, chance, uneven varroa distributions in hives...
Jean shot video during the afternoon. I had thought to edit it and upload to YouTube, but I am unsure of the ethics of posting a video showing people without their permission and I had not thought to ask.
The video is excellent and I judge my performance to have been excellent. I hadn't really thought about it, but watching made me judge. I noticed that I am very much at home with bees and read them confidently and naturally -- and I tend to be a bit droll. I'm also more agreeable than I was beginning to think.
It is an educational experience to watch yourself perform. I guess I knew all that, but watching myself as I would someone else, I was generally pleased and can see why I get a little respect now and then.
On the other hand, I knew I was fat, but I have been kidding myself how fat. I knew I need a better tailor, but had not realized how awful my shorts and tee shirt are... and that hat! As for my hair, I need a trim in the worst way. I think I need to clean up a bit.
* * * * *
I have not read BEE-L for quite a while now, having become tired of snipers and game-players, but decided for some reason to take a look tonight. I found the discussions I bothered to read to be quite level.
One thread that stood out is Thoughts on grafting. Here is one post from the thread.
Interestingly, various posts in the thread seem to confirm and reinforce points I have observed and reported in the past, but which have not been acknowledged generally and, in fact, were dismissed by self-proclaimed 'experts' on the list who insisted on claiming that emergency cells are inferior to grafted cells and are often from older larvae. It seems that over a few years the easier availability of information via the Internet has made a difference and the truth has emerged dominant.
The quote from the second reference does not indicate if the bees had any other choice, i.e. younger larvae. I would assume that if they had only three-day larvae, they would have to make do and take what they could.
Also of note:
Will I return to posting on BEE-L? No. Will I read BEE-L often? Don't know. Probably not.
All the world's a stage and most of
us are desperately unrehearsed.
Monday August 24th 2015
Read yesterday's post
I have my work cut out for me. I need to pull the honey from my hives (how many do I have? I forget) and insert Apivar ASAP. My plan is to go to the coast on Thursday, but those plans may have to change. I'm not sure how much I can do in three days, and these three days will be hot.
I weigh 228.4 today, so this demonstrates once again that daily fluctuations of a pound or two are not unusual and make spotting a trend difficult. What is clear though is that I am plateaued at around 228 and if I want to lose weight, I will have to cut back. That is more difficult with guests to cook for and leftovers in the fridge.
Out of curiosity, I entered yesterday's activity and meals in to Fatsecret and see I did have a 1,500 calorie deficit due to the activity, so maybe there is a closer hour-by-hour correspondence between food intake and weight than I thought. It is hard to believe that results are so immediate, though.
Success is not the key to happiness.
Happiness is the key to success.
Read yesterday's post
Greetings from the Red Deer Hospital Cardiac Unit.
At present we are waiting for word from Foothills for an opening and
then I get a ride there for tests and possible treatment.
Wednesday August 26, 2015
I'm still on hold in Red Deer. Supposed to be going to Calgary but
Foothills Hospital is full due to smoke.
In the meantime I wandered around and even went grocery shopping.
Thursday August 27, 2015
Nothing much to report
Friday August 28, 2015
I was awake at 0400 for blood tests and breakfast, then slept until
0630 for more tests.
Saturday & Sunday August 29 & 30, 2015
I chose to stay in the Red Deer Hospital until Monday so they can do
a stress test. That was my idea. Otherwise they would have released me
Monday August 31, 2015
At 1400, I went down for a stress test. It went well, with no issues, so I was released just after supper.
Jean drove down to pick me up and we drove to Birch Meadows for the night.
No man will make a great leader who
wants to do it all himself, or to get all the credit for doing it