Last week, we started some much needed cleaning. The cow's pen has gotten beyond icky over the last month. Rob rented a Bobcat to muck the stall. The mucking part went well and T-bone enjoyed his lovely digs for the first part of the week. Then it started to rain. On Thursday morning T-bone informed me in no uncertain terms that he had absolutely no use for an indoor swimming pool and we needed to fix the problem right away.
A sunny day today found Rob up on the barn roof trying to determine if there was a clogged gutter or blocked down spout that might have caused the flood in the cow pen. Unfortunately, there was nothing that indicated a quick fix. I think we will be adding a drain behind the barn this summer.
Since Rob was doing his best to take care of the cow, I decided to sneak a peek at my bees. When I walked down to the hives I was distressed to see only three lazy bees buzzing around the outside of my first hive. I tapped the side of the hive hoping to hear a healthy buzz but heard nothing. That was disappointing and distressing. My other hive was busy and buzzing. There were at least 100 bees crawling around on the front of the hive with dozens of others flying in and out. I know that I bought two hives so I'd have one left in case something happened to the one of the hives but I really was hoping to bring both of them through the winter.
Since the day was sunny and only a little breezy, I decided to take a look at the first hive to see if all my bees were dead or gone. Cracking open the outer cover of the hive didn't give me much hope. The only thing there were two dead bees. Opening the inner cover showed a different story. There were bees! Not a ton of bees, but a respectable amount of bees concentrated on four or five frames in the center of the hive. They were doing exactly what they were suppose to be doing. They were caring for the brood and waiting for spring. I may get two hives through the winter after all.
After getting Rob off the roof, we spent some time putting things to rights inside the barn. I'm not sure how so many things wandered during the cooler months. We reorganized shelves and created new empty spaces. We tagged some things for sale. Anyone need three sets of sliding glass doors? For the first time we were able to open two of the large sliding doors on the back of the barn. It feels good to sweep things out and know that new projects will be starting soon.