Bees, honey, and maple syrup were an important part of growing up in “small town” Ontario, Canada. In the Spring, the front yard of almost every home had a maple tree, sporting a spigot with hanging sap pail. Collected sap was boiled, in a pot on the kitchen wood stove, until it hardened into maple sugar! This treat, along with Mother’s rhubarb stew, sometime later, heralded Spring.
Then came Summer, and with the warmer weather and flowers came the bees. We lived close to a residential home apiary. Children in the “hood” were familiar with, and oblivious to foraging bees. It was easy to step on one, (concealed in the grass and clover) with your bare feet. If stung, the drill was to extract the stinger, rub on some spit, and continue playing “run sheep run, baseball, or the game du jour.” We liked to visit the bee home where bees buzzed, drowsy from smoke in the air. We ignored them after Mr. Martin warned, “Don’t bother the bees, and they won’t bother you!” as he handed each child a sample of chewy, delicious, honey-in-the-comb.
I grew up around bees during my childhood and have a love for them to this day. I am now sharing that passion with my kids and the youth of tomorrow through the stories of Haley the Honey Bee. I have combined my passion for bees and my love of poetry to create these entertaining and educational stories about honey bees.