Posted by on May 2, 2009 in other things | 14 comments

I feel so extravagant this weekend. I have been dying to try macarons, and I finally found a French bakery that makes them. So I splurged yesterday and bought a ridiculously expensive box.

Mac4 Mac1
And then I ate some with a cup of my favorite tea (citrus mint).
Teancookies Pinkgreen
They were wonderful, slightly crispy on the outside, and chewy inside, it's just a wonderful texture. I haven't read any recipes, but the outside seemed like a meringue with ground up almonds and the insides were a variety of creamy and jelly deliciousness. Learning how to make them is still on my to-do list for the year.

I needed all that sugar to renew my strength after getting the beehive all set up this morning! Not really, the Very Nice Beekeeper (and I suspect that bee people are, in general, my kind of people-nice, calm, hard-working) did most of the work. We looked through all the frames, and I saw the queen and all the eggs she's been hard at work laying. Some were brand new eggs, some were looking decidedly grub-like, and there was even one tiny baby bee emerging from her cell! I worked the smoker, but they were really quite mellow, and not too concerned about us poking around in their home. I went back for a look after they'd been there for an hour or so, and bees were flying in and out, just like they'd always been there.


You may want to look at it a little larger to see all the bee activity. On the opposite side of the house we have a couple big rosemary bushes, which are blooming nicely. There are regularly bee visitors there, but today it's just a-buzz with bees. I ordered my fancy, cute hive, so eventually I'll move the frames into the new, much cuter hive. I can't have my girls living in a tenement now, can I?

The beekeeper also brought a chunk of comb he broke off yesterday. It had a little nectar in it for me to try, and it was quite tasty. I also happen to think it's really pretty.


I hope you won't mind learning a little more about beekeeping over the next few weeks, I've been doing a lot of reading on the subject lately, and it's so fascinating. This hive is well established, so I should be able to harvest a nice big jar of honey soon, if there's enough blooming. And what could be more extravagant than honey so local it's from your own backyard?


  1. So cool! I’m a little scared of the stings, but I bet it is really interesting and I’ll be excited to see your honey harvest!

  2. I heard local honey can help with allergies. Maybe I should get some bees. Keep us posted on how it goes!

  3. I’m looking forward to hearing more about your bee adventures. They really are interesting little critters.

  4. I don’t know if I could do it without being a scaredy cat, but I am impressed! ~Kelly
    unDeniably Domestic

  5. Inside a Black Apple has a great recipe (link) for macaroons- I have been wanting to try them and seeing your post and being in the baking mood today, I am going to give them a whirl! Those are beautiful cookies! My son wants cupcakes, so that’s what I have going on right now and before that I made chocolate chip oatmeal cookies (turned out good, but I let the butter get to warm and they are pretty flat). I also whipped up some pizza dough earlier- all of a sudden I got motivated to bake/cook. I think it’s way cool that you are sharing your bee info with us- I find it really interesting. I am just finishing Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and am about half way through Made From Scratch- she talks about bees, chickens and all sort of fun stuff. I just have to work on this stuffy HOA we have- they need to lighten up- everyone has at least an acre, it’s not like there’s no room for chickens! As of last year, we can have gardens- hate all the rules and regulations, not to mention the weed police! haha! I like the bee home you picked out. Are you going with the copper roofed one? How long is it before you can actually get any honey? I have to go surf through the bee chapter in my book. I read that the white outfit is just to subdue the bees and that it doesn’t do anything to prevent stings. Are you wearing the whole bee suit? πŸ™‚

  6. When we were looking for a house my very top criteria was no HOA, I have to
    know that, should the mood strike, I could paint my house purple if I
    wanted. The weed police would have arrested us and sent us to concrete
    prison for life by now :o)
    Answers to bee questions: I don’t have a bee suit, but I’m thinking of
    getting a jacket. The white does make you less threatening, although I was
    out there yesterday in khakis (a loose pair, which is helpful against
    stings) and a bright nylon jacket of my husband’s. The main thing you don’t
    want to do is wear black or other dark colors, because the bees will think
    you are a bear and tend to attack. The looseness and elastic cuffs of the
    bee suit also prevent them from crawling up inside, but yes, you can still
    be stung through the suit. I wore my wellies, and put rubber bands around my
    ankles, and I’ve ordered gloves, but they haven’t arrived yet so I wore my
    husband’s rose gloves. They are too stiff for actually working the bees,
    though, so I hope my gloves get here soon! I have a nifty hat and veil too,
    and wore them yesterday.
    I did get the hive with the copper top, and I’ll be painting it white when
    it arrives. It’s going to be quite an adventure moving them, but I’ll write
    a proper post about that soon.
    Because I just have the one hive, I probably won’t get a ton of honey this
    year, and I also will be harvesting a little at a time. I think I may be
    able to harvest a frame or two within the month, since the queen is already
    producing and they have a lot of comb already. The beekeeper told me and
    easy way to harvest it so I don’t need to worry about getting an
    extractor-I’ll talk more about that soon too!

  7. that bakery is really nice, they have really good food as well. i work fairly close to it and have to ‘restrict’ myself from going as often as i’d like. πŸ™‚
    hope you enjoyed them!

  8. Oooh, lucky you! Or maybe not so lucky to have temptation so nearby :o) I
    don’t work too far from there, just far enough that the trip for lunch could
    never be more than a once in a while thing. I was focused on getting
    macarons, so I just glanced at the pastries in the case and the menu, and it
    looked like they have lots of good stuff!

  9. This is such an exciting development. I had actually briefly toyed with the idea of keeping bees myself but felt that our neighbours are a bit too close. Having said that I’ve heard of people keeping the hives on the roof, then the bees just fly straight off into the sky and don’t bother anyone, I have a flat shed roof…
    Will be following your bee keeping adventures avidly.

  10. Your shed roof sounds perfect, as long as it’s sturdy enough. A full hive
    can weigh a couple hundred pounds, and of course you’d need to be able to
    get up there easily. They also say that if you point the hive entrance
    toward a solid wall, they bees will leave the hive and fly straight up, so
    no one would be the wiser.

  11. Congrats on the new hive. I hope to have a little taste of the goods some day. πŸ™‚

  12. They are so cute. I can see why you bought them! My youngest daughter is sitting her saying “Can we please get some of them.”
    The colors have her too. πŸ™‚

  13. Beeeeeeeeeeees! How exciting!!

  14. OOOOhhhhhh….the macaroons look so yummy!! And the bees!!! How very exciting! I want to see pictures of the hive!!

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