Beeswax Candles: The Natural Alternative
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24 hours in Paris

24 hours in Paris

For those of you in need of some last minute Christmas inspiration, how about the gift of time? Specifically 24 hours in my absolute favorite city, Paris. All you need to do is arrange your transportation, print out my itinerary and surprise someone. 24 hours isn't much time so let's not waste it standing in lines. Come with me and discover the not so discovered Paris.     If arriving by plane at CDG airport, the easiest (and quickest; just 40 minutes) way to get into the city is to take the RER B city train directly from the airport....

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My Beekeeper Class Part 8 - Winter

Beekeeping Class

My Beekeeper Class Part 8 - Winter

The bees work so hard for us. Without the bees, we wouldn't have 1/3 of the food that we eat. And on top of all their hard work, they give us the gift of honey. So if we take their honey, it is the beekeeper's job to make sure the bees have enough to eat through the winter. If the beekeeper takes too much honey, this must be replaced with sugar water.   Let's quickly review the make up of a typical beehive. The bottom boxes are the brood boxes. In the center of these boxes, the bees grow their...

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My Beekeeper Class Part 7 - A Healthy Hive

Beekeeping Class

My Beekeeper Class Part 7 - A Healthy Hive

Bees get sick too, everything from diarrhea to constipation. Just as every parent must eventually deal with a sick child, every beekeeper must know what to do when his or her bees aren't feeling so well. So during my last class, we talked about the most common bee ailments.   Knowing what healthy brood looks like makes it easier to identify anything that doesn't seem quite right in the hive. Healthy cell caps are slightly raised and show the same color depending on the age of the cell. The bees do their best to maintain a healthy hive. If they...

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My Beekeeper Class Part 6 - Honey

Beekeeping Class

My Beekeeper Class Part 6 - Honey

"Life is a flower of which love is the honey" - Victor Hugo.   Honey is truly a remarkable gift from the bees. We already learned about harvesting the honey. Today we talked about the different varieties of honey and what to do if you want to sell your honey.   Nectar contains about 80% water. The bees get that percentage down to 18% and almost like magic, we have honey. Actually, that process consists of a lot of work on the part of the bees. A worker bee heads out of the hive in search for nectar-rich flowers and uses its...

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My Beekeeper Class Part 5 - Wax

Beekeeping Class

My Beekeeper Class Part 5 - Wax

My teacher called me before class started and asked me to bring some candles. Our topic was going to be wax. Yay! In former times, bees were considered more valuable for their wax than their honey. Candlelight was a privilege and a luxury. With the introduction of chemically produced waxes such as paraffin (the sludge from the bottom of an oil barrel), beeswax lost its importance. Beeswax is a luxury product to be cherished. Read about the advantages of beeswax here .   In my first bee class, we learned about the worker bee and the different stages of her very...

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