I spent most of the day at the Washington State Beekeepers Convention in Tukwila. The day didn't go exactly as planned. I was supposed to drop off Linda at SeaTac airport on my way to the convention. En route she became ill and decided she was in no shape to get on an airplane. She patiently slept in the car in the parking lot while I attended the morning session. By late morning she had determined that an airplane flight was not in the cards for this day and I drove her home and put her to bed. I felt very badly for Linda, whose day did not go anything like she had planned. However, I still had to drive back down to the bee convention. I'm on the Master Beekeeper Committee and I was supposed to attend a committee meeting and distribute books to some of the instructors.
I learned some interesting things today. There were several presentations by WSU grad students on topics such as genetic diversity, cryogenic preservation of honeybee genetic material, and overwintering honeybee colonies in controlled environment storage facilities. It was some serious bee geek stuff. I enjoyed looking at the vender tables. I buy bee supplies from some of them, while others might represent competition if they were located closer to Snohomish.
I really liked some of the T-shirts and greeting cards being sold by Ruhl Bee Supplies, located near Portland. I met the current owners who were manning their table. As it turns he retired and they bought that business about six or seven years ago, just about the same time Linda and I bought the Beez Neez Apiary Supply. The wife has some sort of graphic arts background and had designed the cards and T-shirts. One shirt had a bee smoker and read "I Smoke Burlap". Another shirt depicted a bear walking away with a full honey super, no caption necessary. Another shirt simply depicted some beehives with the caption "I've Got Hives". My favorite shirt had the caption "I Work For The Queen".
I bought a lip balm kit to use at a bee club presentation coming up this next week. The meeting program topic is lip balms and candles. I'm pretty comfortable with the candle part of the presentation but I've not done much with lip balms and hand creams. That was more my daughter Rachel's thing. A fair warning to relatives, you may end up as lip balm guinea pigs.
My biggest score of the convention was the 15 cents I spent on a copy of a knitted hat pattern. Its a hat for a baby in the form of a bee skep. The picture shows the hat on a baby, but the pattern has 4 different sizes so it can probably be sized to fit some of my younger grandchildren. However, if any of my children do decide make any additions to our current number of 21 grand children, they can expect a baby sized bee skep hat to arrive with the baby blanket from Linda.