Since mid November this giant Oregon Grape Holly, (mahonia aquifolium) has been blooming and it's likely to keep blooming into January the way the weather has been.  Most people can't believe it, but I'm happy to see so many of my bees getting nourishment from it.  How do I know they're mine?  I'm sure I recognized them. :)

Since mid November this giant Oregon Grape Holly, (mahonia aquifolium) has been blooming and it’s likely to keep blooming into January the way the weather has been. Most people can’t believe it, but I’m happy to see so many of my bees getting nourishment from it. How do I know they’re mine? I’m sure I recognized them. :)

 

Three Kids Log Hive

My next log hive to bee...When I was puzzling over what unique carving I should have on it, what indeed, could possibly be a step up from Bee Beard or Bee-atrice, my paper salesman suggested my grand kids.  It didn't take me long to realize they would be perfect...if I could get the wood carver to go for it.

My next log hive to bee…When I was puzzling over what unique carving I should have on it, what indeed, could possibly be a step up from Bee Beard or Bee-atrice, my paper salesman suggested a carving of my three grand kids. It didn’t take me long to realize they would be perfect.  I better check with Brian Vorwaller, the wood carver.

 

Measuring the log to determine how much surface area is needed for three faces.

Measuring the log to determine how much surface area is needed for three faces.

Brian Vorwaller draws the place he wants the bee cavity.  We've got to leave about a 4 inch thickness the  kids' faces.

Brian draws the place he wants the bee cavity. We’ve got to leave about a 4 inch thickness for the kids’ faces.

On a bleak December day, we set out to rake in the golden harvest of the Tulip tree.

On a bleak December day, we set out to rake in the golden harvest of the Tulip tree.

I have to show off my new hat, of course. :)

I have to show off my new hat, of course. :)

No noisy leaf blower for us, we'd rather do it the hard way.

No noisy leaf blower for us, we’d rather do it the hard way.

Who can pick up the most leaves?

Who can pick up the most leaves?

Me, of course...with the big hay fork!

Me, of course…with the big hay fork!

Half way done.

Half way done.

All done.

All done.

A golden treasure...to be parceled out to garden beds, compost, and, 'insect piles.'

A golden treasure…to be parceled out to garden beds, compost, and, ‘leaf litter.’

We made short work of it…

I thought you might like to see Steve Montana playing his banjo.

 

I Heart BEES!

I have to admit I got the idea for these hats from a "I Heart Bees" sticker that my daughter gave  me.  I knew it would be a conversation starter (not that I needed one) to talk about my favorite subject. If the subject turns to bee keeping, I carry pictures in a shirt pocket to brag up my log hives.

I have to admit I got the idea for these hats from a “I Heart Bees” sticker” that my daughter gave me. I knew it would be a conversation starter (not that I needed one) to talk about my favorite subject. When the subject turns to beekeeping, I carry pictures in a shirt pocket to brag up my log hives.

I've always wanted to see how the logo gets sewn onto a hat and this was my chance!

I’ve always wanted to see how the logo gets sewn onto a hat and this was my chance!

Adding the heart

Adding the heart

I've got to get my web site on it, of course.

I’ve got to get my web site on it, of course.

 

It was such an uncharacteristically warm day, we decided to bicycle down to the Port of Bandon to look at Old Town Marketplace.

It was such an uncharacteristically warm day, we decided to bicycle down to the Port of Bandon to peruse the Old Town Marketplace.

It was one of those perfect days when everyone was in a good mood with the weather being warm, artists selling their crafts, and Kirk Schumacher strumming his guitar.  I asked Kirk if he would sing one of my favorite summertime songs.  Without missing a beat, he he belted out "Summertime."

It was one of those perfect days when everyone was in a good mood with the weather being warm, farmers selling their veggies, and Kirk Schumacher strumming his guitar. I asked Kirk if he would sing one of my favorite summertime songs. Without missing a beat, he belted out “Summertime.”

Bandon Lighthouse

Bandon Lighthouse

7A Kids Don't Float, 11-14-14

Crabbing at the dock, Bandon lighthouse in background.

Crabbing at the dock, Bandon lighthouse in background.

I even got to watch a pelican swallow a fish.

I even got to watch a pelican swallow a fish, twice…possibly the same fish. :)

Seth’s Sourdough Breads

It took about six months for Seth to build his Alan Scott wood-fired bread oven and the shop that serves as his kitchen. My daily walks would take me by his place.  I watched as he built the roof.  It was meticulously built on the ground with beautiful jointing.  I wondered how he was going to lift it up to the top.  One day, as we walked past, there it was connected to the uprights.  I asked him how he got it up there.  His reply..."one piece at a time."  "I built it on the ground to make sure it was right."

It took about six months for Seth to build his Alan Scott wood-fired bread oven and the shop that serves as his kitchen.
My daily walks would take me by his place. I watched as he built the roof. It was meticulously built on the ground with beautiful jointing. I wondered how he was going to lift it up to the top. One day, as we walked past, there it was connected to the uprights. I asked him how he got it up there. His reply…”one piece at a time.” “I built it on the ground to make sure it was right.”

The small fire was lit on Sunday, the day before ‘bread day.’  Enough heat is stored in the dome to bake 125 to 130 loaves of bread the next day.

Seth scores the dough so moisture will be released and enable the bread to 'bloom.'

Seth scores the dough so moisture will be released and enable the bread to ‘bloom.’

When done, the bread goes onto the cooling rack.

When done, the bread goes onto the cooling rack.

I had breakfast and returned to see the bread all sorted for deliveries.

I had breakfast and returned to see the bread all sorted for deliveries.

At about 9 am, fresh bread gets delivered by bicycle to the natural foods store.

At about 9:30 am, fresh bread gets delivered by bicycle to the natural foods store.

Follow a Tree, November

November 11...The leaves are full of color.  In another month or less, I'll be happy to rake up piles of them.  Ulp, I better see if the owners are okay with that.

November 11…The leaves of the Tulip tree are full of color. In another month or less, I’ll be happy to rake up piles of them. Hmmm, maybe I better see if the owners are okay with that.

A different view of the Tulip tree.  The setting sun brings out the colors.

A different view of the Tulip tree. The setting sun brings out the colors.

Ah, there's a seed pod up there.

Ah, there’s a seed pod up there.

The seed pods are finally dried.  I pulled out my pocket knife to cut it off, but it just fell into my hand.

I pulled out my pocket knife but the pod just fell into my hand.

There were precious few pods hanging in the tree...then I looked down and found lots of them on the ground already.

There were precious few pods hanging in the tree…then I looked down and found lots of them on the ground already.

November 12...I picked up as many seed pods as my bag would hold wondering what people thought of me walking with a very full doggy bag.

November 12…I picked up as many seed pods as my bag would hold wondering what people thought of me walking with a very full doggy bag.

November 12...Hoping to get the seeds to pop out, I pulled the pod open...but where are the seeds?

Hoping to get the seeds to pop out, I pulled the pod open…but where are the seeds?

Are these the seeds?  I'll try planting these in the spring, but if they don't grow, I can always plant a Tulip tree twig.

Are these the seeds? I’ll try planting these in the spring, but if they don’t grow, I can always plant a Tulip tree twig.  (See gregmcswain1’s comment below)

 

I was struck by how similar the Tulip tree seed pods were to my backyard spruce tree 'pine cones.'

I was struck at how similar the Tulip tree seed pods were to my backyard spruce tree cones.    Deciduous on the left, conifer on the right.

I couldn't get enough of the colorful leaves, so I just pointed the camera upward for one more shot before leaving.

I couldn’t get enough of the colorful leaves, so I just pointed the camera upward for one more shot before leafing leaving.

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