A long time ago, there was a movie called, "Dude, Where's my Car?" It was a dumb story about two guys who pretty much operated in a constant state of inebriation and employed lot of ridiculous slapstick and situational immature humor. I loved it though, and honestly, I still do. One of the dumbest (read:best) lines was when they partied a little too hard and forgot they had gotten tattoos the night before. And they had each gotten one across their shoulders so they couldn't see their own tattoos. So the first one turns his back and says, "What's mine say?" And the second guy looks and the tattoo says, "DUDE" in all caps across his shoulders. So the second guy responds, "DUDE....what's mine say".
The first guy looks at his back and his tattoo says "SWEET". So the first guy says "SWEET...what's mine say though, you didn't tell me" Second guy says, "DUDE! I did tell you but what's mine say?" First guy says, "SWEET....now what does mine say? They go on like this for awhile and end up in a shouting natch screaming "DUDE, what's mine say and SWEET, what's mine say!?" Told you it was a pretty dumb story. But I'd like to think it's Gen X's "who's on first" line. Why bring it up? The whole scene played out in my head these weekend when I opened the beehive.
We keep one small bee hive and we usually get a bunch of honey in early September. Bees will fill up what's called a "super" or a box of frames full of honey. They have "brood" boxes on the bottom for raising baby bees and we add another on top in the spring. All spring, they are working to fill the top box with honey for their winter food. When it is full, we add another for ourselves which we harvest in early fall. They eat the lower box over the winter, we eat the honey in the top box. It's a good system that keeps us in honey all year with plenty to gift to friends and family too.
Well this weekend I went to do some hive maintenance like trim the grass in the bee yard and check in on that top box (our box). Now keep in mind, if bees have nowhere left to store honey, they will often swarm or leave the hive completely. You never want a hive full of honey and baby bees, there always has to be room to expand. So I open the hive and guess what? FULL. Like stuffed full of honeycomb. I was simply astounded that they were able to fill that entire top box so early in the season. So I pulled three frames out and replaced them with empty frames I carried the unexpected 3 full honey frames back to the house and spent an unexpected 4 hours filtering honey into canning jars. Crazy.
Removing the first frame loaded with 15 lbs of honey out of the beehive on August 1 and watching honey pool down the inside of the bucket I thought, "Dude.....sweet". And sweet it is, an extra 20 lbs of honey we weren't expecting.