I am going to include another Hoosier Girl story from my past, but before I do I would like to show a few pictures of the goings on at our house.
I still commune with my chooks although they haven’t been getting as much attention lately as I have had many things to do. See Penninah and Jemima at my feet? They stand there and chatter to me looking to see if I have brought any treats. All I had in my pocket this day was a dog biscuit so I gave it to them.
Of course when one hen gets something, they all gather to get their own treats.
I am Queen over all I survey and these are my subjects! Ha. You should be here to hear the clucking and talking they do when I am around. I don’t know if they are happy to see me or wish I would get out of there so they can go about their business.
This is Ada, the Australorp. Isn’t she beautiful? You can’t see in the picture, but she has the most beautiful teal feathers among the black ones. She has started to squat, as chickens who are getting ready to lay will do. I think she may have already begun to lay as I am finding some very small eggs in the nests.
Beautiful Abigail, the Silver Laced Wyndotte. She is gorgeous and I think she knows it. She is the biggest hen now. David says she looks like a nice roaster and I just say, “Not going to happen.” I don’t think she is laying yet.
Here is a normal size egg next to a new layer egg. In time the hen will lay bigger eggs, but she’s just a beginner. Their eggs still taste good. I have noticed the yolks are almost orange now. I have fed them the last of the marigolds and I think that is why.
Molly Marshmallow continues to grow. She is a very active little puppy. She drags up all kinds of things onto our back deck. She brought a huge board with a nail in it the other day and I was afraid she was deconstructing one of our buildings, but David said it was just a piece of wood she had found behind the shed. Nothing would surprise me with this dog.
She is so sweet and wants attention all the time. Still working on that nipping. See those teeth? They are like little razors and have drawn blood. Belle, in the background, has felt those teeth a few times and Molly gets a good nip back sending her whining.
When the weather starts to get cooler, I have the urge to bake. This is pineapple upside down biscuit. It is delicious. If you were here, I would give you a piece.
I cannot keep these in the house and it is not because I eat them. David is hooked on these and eats them all. I don’t really like them because I think they taste like paraffin. He has gone through three bags, but I’m not saying anything.
Now for my story. Remember, these are stories from my childhood and it is how I remember them. My brothers and sister may remember things differently, but this is my story and I’m sticking to it.
Bees and Honey
By Kate Pentecost Craig
Katie woke up to a long, warm Summer day ahead of her. She stretched in bed and lay quietly for a few minutes listening to the noises of the awakening house. Mommy had been up for hours. She always got up at 5 o’clock to read her Bible and drink her morning cup of coffee in peace before all the children came running down the stairs. Katie always wanted to be able to get up that early too, but Mommy discouraged her from doing so.
Now Katie got out of bed and pulled on a pair of shorts and a tee shirt. She took the stair steps two at a time and jumped off the last two steps. “Good morning,” Mommy said to her, “What do you want for breakfast?” Katie had been fixing her own breakfast since she started school. It was almost always the same, tea and toast spread with peanut butter or tea and cinnamon toast. Sometimes she would have a glass of chocolate milk. While she was eating, Daddy came in from the barn. After washing his hands and sitting down at his place at the head of the table, Mommy poured him a cup of coffee and placed half a grapefruit in front of him and two slices of toast. Daddy almost always had the same breakfast too!
“What are you going to do today, Snicklefritz?”(Daddy’s pet name for Katie) Daddy asked.
“Play!” said Katie as she jumped off her chair and ran out the kitchen door. Once outside the whole big world waited to be explored. Katie began to run out to the the side yard when she saw a strange sight on the clothesline. A big black mass of moving objects hung suspended on Mommy’s clothesline. Bees were flying around this mass. Katie ran laughing right into the swarming bees. Back and forth she ran flailing her arms and hitting the flying insects. Not one stung her. She then ran into the house yelling, “Come look and see what is on the clothesline.”
Mommy and Daddy came out the back door while Katie made a dash toward the roiling mass again, but Daddy called her to get back to him. “Those are swarming bees,” said Daddy. “There must be a queen bee in there. They were too busy swarming to bother stinging you, but you are a very lucky little girl.” Katie wanted so much to run among the bees again, but she was not allowed. Her brothers came out to look at the swarm. It was a very strange sight to see so many bees piled on top of each other. In the center of the mass somewhere was the queen bee.
Daddy went back inside to call a man he knew who kept beehives and sold honey. soon the man arrived to collect the bees. He put on a big hat with a mesh face protector. He wore long sleeves and gloves. He had one of his wooden hives with him. Carefully he put the mass of been into the hive and closed the lid. “Your little girl was very lucky the bees were swarming,” said the man. “She could have been very badly stung.” Katie hung her head, but inside her mind she was thinking about how much fun it had been to run through all those bees!
Several weeks later the man came back to their house bringing a gift. He had jars of fresh honey, some of them with the comb in them. Katie stuck her fingers into one of the jars and pulled out a piece of the honeycomb. The sweet golden honey dripped from it. She stuck it in her mouth and chewed the delicious sweet comb. When she had sucked all the honey from it, she threw the comb away. She was glad the bees had chosen their yard in which to swarm and she was glad to have some of their sweet honey to eat all summer long on her toast and ice cream.
Hope you have a wonderful day. And don’t get stung by any bees! Bye.