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Monthly Archives: June 2012

Busy Busy Bees

 

Here’s something I bet you didn’t know: I have 10,000 honeybees living in my backyard.  They are pretty amazing.

I’ve wanted to have a hive for a couple of years, and this past spring I finally got it all set up.  Now I have a whole colony of bees making honey as we speak.  I’m definitely no expert on beekeeping, I’m really learning as I go, but bees are fascinating creatures!  They’re hard workers, that’s for sure.

So, how do you acquire a colony of bees, you ask?  Well, they come in a box, which looks like this…

And, then you dump all 10,000 of them into the hive, which looks like this…

That’s an exciting moment.  10,000 buzzing bees are kind of loud.  But it all goes okay, and then you put the lid on, feed them some sugar water every now and then, and you open the hive and check every couple of weeks or so to make sure everyone is doing their job.  Then, hopefully by then end of the summer you have lots of honey to harvest!

I guess it’s not that simple, there are a few other important things in there, but basically that’s what happens.  My hive seems to be doing well, there’s definitely a lot of activity going on, and honey is being made.  The other day I took off the lid to see what was happening inside and I found that the bees had built up some honeycomb on top of some of the frames, and there was a little pool of honey just sitting there.  So I tasted it, of course.  It was good.  My bees know what they’re doing.

Did you know that all of the worker bees are female?  The male bees have one job – to fertilize the eggs that the queen lays.  The females are the ones who go out foraging for pollen and nectar and bring it back to the hive.  They are the ones who build the honey comb, and keep the hive clean and guard the hive entrance from other insects and creatures who want to steal the honey.  They do it all, and it’s kind of exhausting to think about.

It’s fun to watch the entrance of the hive and see all the bees coming and going.  Do you want to see?  I bet you do!  Watch really close and you’ll see some of the bees that come into the hive are carrying pollen in little pouches on their sides – it’s bright yellow.  See if you can spot it…

Beehive Arrivials & Departures from 1canoe2 on Vimeo.

:: Carrie ::

Sweet Taste of Summer Raspberries

Raspberries and the raspberry patch

One of my favorite things is Sweet Tea.  That might sound odd coming from a Midwestern girl, but you only need to know that my parents grew up in small towns in North Carolina and it explains everything about being raised as a daughter who loves vinegar-based BBQ, fried okra, sweet tea, grits, collard greens, country ham, and homemade biscuits among many Southern delicacies.

We’re getting ready to head to the South for a visit to see my parents and my grandmother, and of course, that leads to salivating over the delicious food ahead.  It also means satisfying the craving before we leave!

Two years ago, my family (my husband and our girls) moved into our new house and, with the help of my mother-in-law (Carrie’s mom) and Mike’s great-uncle, we planted our raspberry patch.  Last year’s harvest wasn’t much, but this year we have a true bounty.  We’ve picked the patch several times and each time the raspberries seem to be sweeter!

Recipe for Mom's Fruit Cobbler

Mike’s and Carrie’s grandmother sent over some peaches and I couldn’t help but think about how good a peach raspberry cobbler would be. So, I pulled out my Mom’s Southern-style cobbler recipe (see above – doesn’t it look lovely on our recipe card!) and got to work peeling peaches and washing raspberries.

Mom’s fruit cobbler is the best, especially peach or blueberry. Cobbler takes on all kinds of shapes, sizes, and textures, but I really prefer the kind my Mom always makes where the fruit is cooked into the flour-based breading instead of crumble or pastry-topped cobblers (though they’re yummy, too).

Ultimately, what makes cobbler so good is the fruit and the butter (I said I was a true Southerner!).

Peach and Raspberry Cobbler

An hour later…the cobbler was perfectly golden brown on top and the peaches and raspberries invited me to dish out the first generous scoop full.

Peach Raspberry Cobbler A La ModeAnd then we really enjoyed the first-fruits of summer!  It tasted as good as it looked – the sweetness of peaches and the tartness of raspberries in perfect harmony (just as delightful as a glass of sweet tea).  Enjoy the season – get out in your garden or enjoy the fruits of someone else’s at your local farmer’s market!

Karen

War Heroes

Hope everyone had a great weekend!  I got to see something awesome this weekend, and lucky for you I took a bunch of photos!

I mentioned a couple weeks ago that both of my grandfathers served in WWII.  My grandpa on my mom’s side was part of a B-17 bomber crew who flew many missions during the war.  There are only thirteen B-17 Flying Fortresses that are still airworthy, and it just so happened that this past weekend one of them made a visit to the Jefferson City airport, which is only about a half hour away.  So, my mom and I hopped in the car and headed down to see the plane, and hopefully get a little bit better of a taste of what my grandpa did and what his experiences were like during the war.

Wow!  It was really awesome to see this plane up close and personal!  I’ve heard lots of stories of what it was like to fly on a B-17 crew, but to be able to actually get inside and crawl around, and see the tight spaces that the crewmen worked in was really amazing.  See that sphere shaped thing on the underside of the plane?  That’s the ball turret, and one of the gunners sat inside.  There is a trap door in the floor of the plane, and the guy would shimmy down in there and operate the gun on the bottom of the aircraft.  The sphere rotates so that he could aim the gun in all directions.  I’m guessing they chose the smallest, least claustrophobic guy for that job.  Can you imagine?!  We were told that sometimes it would get stuck and the guy would have to stay inside until the plane landed.  There’s sure not a lot of clearance there…

The rear interior section.

One of my grandpa’s jobs to operate the radio, so I’m sure he spent some time in this chair.

Here’s a view inside the cockpit.  Now, I’m no aircraft expert but I can imagine that the planes in today’s military fleet are quite a bit more technologically advanced.

Here’s where the bombardier sat – in the nose of the plane, which is actually a big window.  The bombardier is the guy who lined up the bomb sight, pulled the trigger and yelled “Bombs Away!”  The B-17s were equipped with the famous Norden Bombsight, which was extremely accurate at bombing from high altitudes, and it was one of the most closely guarded secretes of the US military during WWII.

From what I’ve heard, my grandpa’s crew flew a bunch of successful missions, but also had some really close calls.  There were times that their plane got hit and they basically limped back to the base.  They were never really sure they were going to make it until their tires touched down on firm ground.  Scary.

I’m kind of fascinated with all the stories of bravery that I’ve heard about from this time in our country’s history.  There’s a pretty good movie, called Memphis Belle, that tells the story of one B-17 crew and their final mission.  It’s Hollywood’s interpretation of the story, but it gives a pretty good depiction of how thing were.

But, if you want to hear a REALLY good story read Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand.  It tells the story of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runner turned WWII soldier.  Zamperini was a crewman on a B-24 crew during the war, and I won’t spoil any of it, but I can tell you that his story is full of bravery, the will to survive, and HUGE amounts of forgiveness.  What a man!  Unbelievable.  Read it, you won’t be disappointed.  In fact, I’m officially putting it on the 1canoe2 required reading list.  Karen and Beth…go get your hands on a copy and start reading.

:: Carrie ::

Go Outside & Play: Second Edition

Our “Go Outside and Play” print has been a hit!  We completely sold out of our first edition, so it was time for a re-print.  This print is in four colors, which means that we load up the press with ink and clean it up four separate times.  And, each print goes through the press four times, once for each color.  Ever wonder what that looks like?  Here’s how this print looked throughout the process…

It’s a time consuming process, but we love it!

:: Carrie ::

 

New State Prints!

Hot off the press!  Four more states to add to our State Prints collection.  We are getting SO CLOSE to having all fifty completed.  If you live in Nevada, West Virgina, Maine, or Nebraska, first of all, thanks for being patient!  Second of all, thanks for consistently asking “Hey, where’s my state?!”  Sometimes it helps to have a little fire lit underneath us to keep us going!

You’ll be able to find these in our shop REAL soon.

Have a Great Weekend!

Happy Friday everyone!  Hope you have a great weeknd.  Make sure to take some time to relax and enjoy the first official weekend of summer!  Here’s some things that caught our attention this week…

We have a world class vet school in Columbia, but oops, a steer escaped and ran around town for a while.

LOVE this illustrated poster of the Beatles by Max Dalton

A musical adaptation of “Coal Miner’s Daughter”, the life story of Loretta Lynn, is coming to Broadway…and Zooey Deschanel will be playing the title role!  We’re gonna have to go see that!

Ooo.  That’s pretty.  We’d like to shop there.

Well, LeBron, you did it.  Congrats.

 

Growing

Today was a good day for growing things.  Lots of sun, with a few puffy clouds. It was hot, but if you watched closely you could actually see the corn getting taller. Just kidding, but sometimes it seems like that might be possible.

We have a vegetable garden right outside the barn where we work.  My mom has always planted a garden, for as long as I can remember.  I grew up loving those ripe red tomatoes, and they are still, hands down my favorite summer vegetable (or fruit?). If you have never tasted a homegrown tomato, picked right off the vine, sliced up on a plate with just a little salt – well you are missing out. There is nothing better.

This year we planted tomatoes, of course, and green beans, okra, sweet potatoes, zucchini, broccoli, red cabbage, lettuce, beets, and probably some other things that I’m forgetting. Let’s hope for a bountiful harvest starting here in a couple of weeks.

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I have dreams of someday having a garden that looks something like this.

And, I might need a little shed like this one.

Have you ever wondered what Martha Stewart’s garden looks like?  Take a peek, it’s right here. Wow.

:: Carrie ::

 

Welcome to our NEW blog!

Well hello there!

You might notice that things look a little different around here. Welcome to our new blog! We’re glad you found it!

Our new website has been in progress for the last couple of months, and we’re pretty excited that it’s finally done and we can share it with you!  A big huge thank you and a double high five goes out to our friends at Aeolidia who worked their tails off to help us with the new site. When I say they helped us, really what I mean is we kind of had a vision in mind, we told them about it, and they made it happen.  Well done guys, we are thrilled!

We love sharing what is going on at 1canoe2 and in our little lives here on the blog, but we want to get to know our readers as well.  So, if you’re out there reading, first of all, thanks!  Second of all, if you see something that you like or if you have anything to add please leave us a comment!  We look forward to meeting you!

Carrie, Beth and Karen

Hatfields & McCoys

It’s true that we’ve kind of got a thing for historical figures. We’ve paid honor to the 44 presidents of our great country, and we are fascinated by those characters known as outlaws of the wild west.

Well, add some more to the list. The Hatfields and the McCoys. The famous feuding families separated by the border of Kentucky and West Virginia. What a story.

If you haven’t heard, the History Channel is airing a three part series right now, called Hatfields & McCoys. Kevin Costner plays Devil Anse Hatfield – head of the Hatfield clan, and Bill Paxton is Ol’ Ranl’ McCoy, patriarch of the McCoy family. Probably not suitable for children, they sure were a violent bunch, but definitely worth watching.

So, set your DVRs, and catch it while you can.