Archive for June, 2012



We extracted honey on Father’s Day weekend and so I thought I’d give an informative update on our bees. We did not get any honey last year due to the drought, and during the winter all of our hives died. Granddad has given us 9 units this year and 3 of those are strong hives, making honey for us. The rest are either brood boxes or nucs (a small box with 4-5 brood frames in it).

Strong hive           Brood box              Nuc

Hives at the house

Hive at the houseThis is one of our strong hives. From the top down, the first three boxes are honey supers. (Each honey super holds app. 2 1/2 gallons of honey) Next is the queen excluder (the brown piece of wood) which keeps the queen out of the honey supers, then there’s the illinois super, where they put mostly honey (that we generally leave for winter) and some brood. The bottom box is called a brood box, this is where the queen lays eggs, which turn into larva, then the bees cap the cell off (that’s what we call brood.) The larva becomes a bee and chews out of the cell. This process is around 21 days for a worker bee.


Carinna, Grandpa, and DadGrandpa, Dad, and I fixin’ to check bees.


QueenThe larger bee in this picture is the queen, she mates once in her life time, but with multiple drones. The bees around her are worker bees, they are also females but do not lay eggs. There are also drone bees (not in the picture) which look like big worker bees, they’re the males. They don’t have a stinger and the only thing they do is eat honey and mate with queens. The worker bees kick them out in winter. Below the queen is capped brood, above her is some capped honey.


Capped honeyHere’s a frame of capped honey out of the honey super. The bees cap the honey once the moisture has declined to 20% or so. If it has to much moisture in it, it’ll sour. When you pull one of these frames out, your mouth starts watering. : )


Maggie and Dad Dad and Maggie are stealing the honey. We brushed the bees off the frames this time. Usually we put a trap on it. The bees find their way out of the trap but aren’t smart enough to get back in.


Dad Carinna
We took the honey supers up to Tulsa to extract it in Granddad’s big extractor.
(We have a small one at home)
Now to the extracting process. Dad uses an electric hot knife and takes the caps off. I scratch the cells that he couldn’t get. Then it is loaded into the extractor, it’s slung out then put in the bottling tank where it sits for a day or so to get the bubbles out. Then it’s bottled.


Carinna, Granddad, and Dad

The bottling tank is in front, behind it is the extractor, then to the right is the uncapping station. Granddad made them all. : )


Charity and Carinna Carinna and Charity
Charity and I helping. If you could see all the pictures taken before these you’d get why we were laughing. : )

BeautifulSince God has given rain this year we have gotten around 7 gallons of honey so far, and we have approximately 5 honey supers that are full of honey but not all the way capped! 

We are so thankful that Granddad has invested in us by giving us advice, bees, equipment, and much more.


“A side note”

Maggie, Benjamin, and I stayed an extra four days at Granny and Granddad’s, and had lots of fun fishing, riding in the boat, vaccinating calves, riding motorcycles, playing games, riding horses, cleaning house, pregnancy checking a cow, and a few other things.

Spider web
The last morning we were there, I woke up and it was foggy with a whole bunch of dew, so I got my camera and boy did I have fun. A few favorites that I couldn’t keep from adding. : )

 Horse in the fogCowboy in the fogHorse in the fog

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Nashville, TN


A couple weeks ago, Hannah, Abbie, and I traveled out to TN with some friends to help at the ATI conference. We had a great time teaching and also getting to fellowship with friends that live far away.  
Photo courtesy: Carissa Koehn
Traveling in a RV was…an experience! 

Taking a supper break while Mr. B tried to figure out what was wrong with the RV.

After several stops (one to leave the broken down RV with a mechanic and then a stop at Braums for ice-cream!) we made it safely there!

Mr. Mechanic had a very nice truck! ;)

Hannah was in charge of COMMIT, but unfortunately we don’t have any pictures of her!

Abbie and Laura having fun doing CI registration – Abbie was on the Children’s Institute staff and played the piano for large group. The kids really love her!

And I helped teach CI, and had a group of 12 kids.

Photo courtesy: Carissa Koehn
Me and my little shadow :)

Abbie really enjoyed seeing some of the children she got to teach last year, and also made some new little friends. =)

water gameswater games

Photo courtesy: Carissa Koehn
I’m so thankful that the Lord made a way for me go! We all had a wonderful time together!

“And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.”    Col 3:23-24

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"Five years from now you’ll be the same person you are today except for…


…the books you read and the people you meet."  Charles E. Jones

This past week I had the wonderful opportunity to have my friend, Brianna, who I just met last December, come down and visit me for 4 1/2 days! She is someone who continually points me toward Jesus Christ. God has used her in my life to draw me closer to Him. We had so much fun together! We talked a ton, laughed A LOT, and even cried a little. Here’s a peek into our week…

Brianna’s mom (and baby brother) came down to Oklahoma as well to visit one of Mrs. Q’s close friends, while Brianna visited with me. We enjoyed having them all for one night, before Mrs. and baby left to go her friend’s house.

During the week, we enjoyed watching a few movies and also a couple of powerful messages from the ATI home-school conferences our family recently attended.

On Monday, we four girls went down to our classic, small-town Cafe and enjoyed some great food and fellowship. (BTW, they have some of the BEST onion rings! Just sayin’) :)

Feeding on smoothies and the Word. :)

I know we already did a post about these cards, but they were just SO cool! Below is one that I gave to Brianna before she left, with the hymn “God be with You Till we Meet Again” on the front. Not only is it fun to receive special words of encouragement from a friend, but with these cards, there is also a very meaningful hymn, as well! I definitely plan on buying a hymn book so I can make more of these kind of cards soon!

This was supposed to be Brownie Ice-cream Sandwiches, but OBVIOUSLY it didn’t turn out that way! …looks more like an Oklahoma snow hill! :)


Ahem. Can anyone guess what we are playing?

I’ll spare you the trouble of reading all about our hilarious joke of the week, it had to do with a cockroach that looked similar to a “walking date”! LOL!

It is very rare to have a friend who, instead of wanting you to depend on them, points you to the ONE who truly is the Best Friend. She inspires me to be that kind of a friend to others. I miss you, Bri!

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At the farm


Hey, everyone! This past week, us three youngest got to spend a week at our grandparents’ farm. We got to bale and stack hay, go fishin’, ride horses, romp in a creek bed… -just to mention a few things we did- … doesn’t get much better than that! And I should warn you, a farm is photography paradise for me!


fixin' things 
Carinna fixing the motorcycle with Granddad…

riding the 90   Benj, riding the honda express 
…so we can all ride them. =)

Granny sweeping the sidewalk.

pretty! Rusty and Cowboy
My Granddad’s new renter has two horses that are staying on the farm, and we are enjoying them immensely!

me with the horses me with the horsesme with the horses
Me with Rusty and Cowboy. =)

G-dad making malts! 
Granddad makes the best malts- I’ve never tasted one that beat his!

 Carinna in the barn 
Carinna in the barn- It’s one of the best places to hang out and think! 

_dsc0440-1 _dsc0462 
Riding Rusty (sounds like a book doesn’t it? =)

Pretty horse, huh?!

Rusty was so much fun to ride, you kinda had to work him, because if you gave him to much rein, he’d try to run, so you had to hold him back, and sometimes he didn’t like it! =)

the three youngn's 
Us three youngin’s! We sure had fun!

BTW= you can always count on a horse to laugh at your dumb jokes! :P

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cReAtIvE Cards


Hannah's mini cards - 2 3/4" square 

Decorative paper, cut-outs, paper punches, glue, scissors, ribbon, paper scraps = a fun card-making party!!

Abbie’s friend, Brianna, is here visiting us this week and brought along with her a ton of card-making supplies! We thought we’d share with you some of our creations from yesterday. (Click on the pictures if you want to see who made what.)

Carinna's cards




Charity's bookmarks - front & back 

Did you know old hymnbooks make great card-making material? Brianna had picked up an old one from Goodwill, and we had so much fun picking out our favorite hymns to use in our cards. Just think how special it will be to pass along those special songs in the form of a card to encourage a friend!


Brianna's Abbie's



Abbie's - birthday & Christmas

The creative juices were flowing!


Today, all of us girls and Brianna drew each others names, each shared a specific prayer request, got alone for a while to pray for the person whose name we drew, and then wrote that person an encouraging note using one of our new, homemade cards. We are looking forward to finding our cards under our pillows tonight. Great idea for an edifying girls’ get-together!


So, now you know what to do with that old hymnbook that’s been hanging out in your closet. ;)

Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another.
Romans 14:19

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