Hairy MacLairy Babysits while Miss C Harvests Honey!

Hairy MacLairy, the long suffering ram, was left to watch the Shush Sisters yesterday. 

He is benevolent Uncle personified.. or ramified as the case may be. 

So he took them over to visit with Queenie Wineti under the tree where they could play in the muck.  

While I stole a couple of jars of honey. 

It appears that we are going to have a good harvest. 

I have at least twenty frames full and capped. 

Ready to go. The bees will mind them for me and next week I shall harvest them. Yesterday I took only one frame and got three little jars of honey. 

Good morning. I am late posting this morning due to the increasingly frustrating internet issues. Maybe Mercury really is playing with my gear.

Those are air bubbles that you can see in the jars of honey! These will have settled by this morning.  The first jars are always given away. This is a custom from my family and my country. (New Zealand) So one of these is off to the Old Codger this morning.  One will be held for my favourite Fed ex delivery man and one to The Matriarch.  And there is a little still in the bowl, from the overnight drain, left for me. I am tempted to just pop my finger in there and lick it like pooh bear. The taste is much more delicate than last year.  And the colour is light. I think it is all the yellow blossom clover that I sowed in the fields.  This is going to be spectacular.

Have a lovely day.


On this day a year ago.. We are looking at flowers you can plant for your bees in your garden. How well timed.

86 Comments on “Hairy MacLairy Babysits while Miss C Harvests Honey!

    • My Mother did a basket weaving course with the maori women one year when I was a child and this is what they were taught, we so loved the idea that it was adopted by the family and has become a tradition for many things and most especially the first of the season.. c

  1. Gorgeous photos – is it the tall teenager still doing your shoots for you C – he really is doing a stellar job and would you look at that honey! Awesome! Lovely custom to have too.
    Have a super weekend.
    🙂 Mandy

    • yes TT took the shots of me, but he had bread sticks in the oven (homemade) so he literally went click click click, dumped the camera on a fence post and ran back to his oven… funny! c

  2. I get my honey from a neighboring farm and had been resisting the urge to invest resources into yet another duty like beekeeping….until now.

  3. Fantastic looking honey – wonderful. I did a shoot with a nearby apiculteur ( honey production is very popular here) but lost all the pictures when a hard drive crashed and corrupted 5 years worth of pictures. An object lesson in carefully storing and backing up digital files. I’m good at teaching but bad at practising what I teach. Hairy is one very tolerant ram.

    • oops, that must have been awful. i never back up..i do try to print.. oh dear, best i get onto that.. really.. but it is so Time Consuming trying to get it right all the time!! c

  4. Amazing pics of Hairy and the Shush sisters and yummy honey …. nice white bees wax too! Mercury will be kinder from the 9th – hang in there 🙂 Laura

  5. What a good fellow, that Hairy is! Does he hire out? I could use a sitter for the afternoon…
    That honey is spectacular…we’ll get to adding the bees around here someday, when Angel’s a little older. You’re really a star, to get into the neccessary gear in this awful heat!

    • One day i am going to invest in a proper suit, but until then it is my green jeans and some kind of long sleeved pale thing, it is hot though, but I am very excited about the honey! c

  6. Good morning Celi, I was wondering how the bees were after the crop spraying incident the other week and had been meaning to ask how they were and kept forgetting or being distracted by naughty piggies and their ramifications!! (just love the use of that word – thanks to you) Well I know now that the honey is good!

  7. Just buzzing by to see how you be.
    (Be the Pooh! Nothing’s better!) I always love those glass jars with the grapes and fruit logo on them – what a nice tradition to share with those around – forgot how much of that was done around the farms.
    Funny how much like children those shush sisters are!
    Enjoy the days as they fold along – we wistfully follow

  8. Good morning, c! That honey is just the most beautiful color! I can smell it from here 😉 Hairy really does his role as sitter quite well doesn’t he?

    Hope the internet gets straightened out soon. I know how frustrating that can be.

    • I bake bread three times a week sweetened with honey. We are going to try icecream with honey this year too. It is my main sweetener in the kitchen. Have you ever drizzled a little over roasted potatoes in their last few minutes?. . My goal of course is to sell a wee bit too. But we will see how much I get in first. morning terry!! c

      • i can see u use it for lots of things!!!i never would have thought of this, if i do have it here it is on toast

  9. Miraculous! I am so happy your bees are doing well. I wonder–in complete ignorance–what do you do with your beeswax?

  10. Hey, good news! I hope you have a wonderful harvest. Clover and alfalfa honey are the “Organic” honeys we can buy in Vancouver and they are fantastic. Actually, we can now keep a bee hive in the city, (providing ft away from next door and blah…blah…blah) but it’s a good sign. 🙂

    • that is pretty awesome veronica, you can get a good years worth of honey from one hive.. are you thinking of getting one?.. c

      • Oh yes! As soon as I get back from England in mid Sept there is a course I can take to learn the basics. I’d love, LOVE one. And think of the effect on my little veggie plot too. 🙂

  11. No pun intended, but what a rich post! I am super busy this morning and thought I’d read later…until I saw the word “honey” in your title. I must have a little Pooh in me, too! I’ve wondered about your bees with the crazy weather, so I’m glad Mercury hasn’t upset their productivity. It’s really a gorgeous color, Celi, and what a lovely tradition of passing on the first of the harvest! I can’t wait to read last year’s post…I’m currently considering what I need to plant to “up” my own bee attraction! I hope the weekend is good to you and some of your internet/camera concerns take a step forward! 🙂 Debra

  12. Bees are the best….just look at the fruit of their labor !!!
    That Hairy….what a great animal in your care, he is a star !!
    The Shush sisters have a sense of humor all their own !!
    Good Morning C….I get to have the company of a special
    Short person this day….Little Boy Blue…..a treat.

  13. Great color on the honey! Our honey has a similar color in the early Spring and it is so delightful tasting of tropical fruit notes from all the fruit tree blossoms. We love your blog, keep at it.

  14. I laughed out loud at poor long-suffering Hairy McLairy and his piggy brood climbing all over him. I suppose they enjoy his great wooly feel every bit as much as we would. Give him a great big old hug for me, please, Cecilia.

  15. Hairy is so sweet to keep an eye on the girls. I’ve never seen honey harvested. Pretty interesting stuff!

  16. I know there’s a lot of hard work involved, but you’ve got them all friendly and talking together like my farm set, when I was about 4 or 5!
    What sweet animals you have – and bees 😉

  17. I wish you’d come down to Texas and give us some advice on a hive of bees we acquired from a friend. They must be pretty africanized, because they sure are quick to pop us when they think we’re being offensively loud. We’re debating on whether or not to keep them. I love the photos of your pretty jars; that light yellow honey is gorgeous.

    • That sounds pretty anti social Andrea, My first thought is that the hive always takes its cue (attitude) from the queen. If you can, buy yourself an Italian Queen, find and euthanise your bad queen and introduce the new queen to your hive.. I know that sounds nasty but it will make a huge difference, make sure she is slowly introduced to your hive though. This is not an uncommon practice. So there is plenty of info on how to do it.. Finding your mean queen will be the hardest bit.. let me know how it goes! c

  18. If anyone has allergies, local honey is good to use to desensitize yourself.
    That honey, as beautiful a it is, also has healing properties. so now you can add
    “herbal healer” to the list of everything else you do…

  19. This post made me smile, both from Mr. McLairy babysitting and the honey gathering and it’s customs…and I needed a smile today! We got your hail storm last night, knocked over trees and plants, flooded our basement and came through the ceiling fan in the living room all over my rug! Fortunately no serious damage for us, but neighbors lost both cars to a tree. At least we don’t have to worry about our cars…or hay! 🙂

  20. How interesting….so there is nothing more to do than put the honey in the jars? I’m fascinated how it would taste and your comment that its sweeter than last year due to the yellow blossom clover. My father loved to drive out to Amish country and purchase various types of honey, but I never really questioned or thought of the process. You always open my eyes and wonder to the world, Miss C!

  21. Great pics of Hairy & the Shush Sisters. Benevolent Uncle is right!
    Considering the problems your hives experienced early this year, seeing that golden honey is certainly a welcome sight. You must be thrilled! When I return home next month, it will be Honey Weekend. Although not nearly as light in color as yours, that honey is very popular around here. I bring back a dozen jars for my neighbor, alone.
    Hope you’re having a great day, Celi.

    • they must love getting their honey deliveries in the big city!! I can just see you driving back with the back seat covered in jars of gold! c

  22. Timely post as I have been researching getting bees myself – more inspired after seeing your beautiful harvest!

  23. Does clover blossom honey crystallise quickly?
    My brother-in-law keeps bees and they have a lot of oil seed rape nearby and that means honey which chrysalises quickly.

    • just warm it, it goes runny again, i never worry about it going crystallised, last year I had a problem with one batch but the year before it was beautiful for the whole twelve months, It definitely has something to do with the flowers.. c

  24. Ho! Cecilia, you should write a storybook! Wait. Didn’t you say a while back that you were writing a book or two or is this all in my imagination? Rachel is right… honey of a post. There is no telling what will happen next in the lives of Miss C, Queenie and the rest of the merry barnyard bunch. How was the honey?

  25. The honey looks fabulous C! I can just taste it. And Miss A would have certainly licked it right out of the bowl. She just loves honey. Gotta love Hairy MaClairy too. He looks like a good uncle. 🙂

  26. Don’t recall ever seeing such clear and light nectar of the Gods – now, dear C, have you tried to see whether it has the same medicinal qualities as your world famous Manuka [by which I swear!] ?

  27. The honey is amazingly light-coloured. Mmmm! I can almost taste it from here. I laughed at Hairy McLairy babysitting and your newly-coined word ‘ramified’!!

  28. Good morning 🙂
    I love the custom of giving away the first product. I wish I lived near by.
    The color of your honey is amazing and I am sure the taste is a perfect match for it

  29. Pingback: Weekend Highlights – Noteworthy Articles by Fellow Bloggers – August 04, 2012 | Canning Jars Blog

  30. Lovely honey! Don’t get me started on Mercury – 3 appliance malfunctions/breakdowns this week. Things come in 3’s, so hopefully that’s enough for now.

  31. That ram is very tolerant. I love seeing how the different species play together. That’s lovely looking honey and how generous to give away the first of the harvest. I’m sure the recipients will treasure it! xx

  32. Yellow Blossom Clover Honey.. I’m dying to see some pretty wee labels on these jars, c! How lovely that would look with the farmy’s signature on the back! xx Ship some to me soon, eh??

  33. I’ve been away, and missed the farmy! Amazing how many times thoughts of it popped into my head. We took a “scenic route” drive into town & saw a small pig farm with a dozen cute piglets, and I thought immediately of the Shush Sisters… love the photos of HM Shush Sister sitting 🙂

  34. Well there you are – harvesting your honey. I see you have the honey production taking place in a deep super. It’s all we can do to lift a full medium super – 80-100#’s…how do you do it? Your light honey looks beautiful – wish we could trade jars of honey. I love trying other fresh, pure honey…but somehow I always think mine is most delicious. I love my bees and think I’m about to begin feeding due to the hot weather we’re having. Luckily we did get an inch of rain Tuesday evening – much needed!

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