A little over four years ago my friend, Emily, suggested I join instagram, because she knew how much I loved taking pictures and on the other hand how much I love looking at others’ photographs. I quickly started following along, watching pictures of strangers lives, which somehow started to influence my own daily routine with my children. Actually, the first thought of homeschooling my own children was influenced by Kristen Rogers, I started following along with her homeschooling journey and learned about the Charlotte Mason method, and when I started seeing the booklists on Ambleside online that Kristin referred too, I was hooked on how exciting it would be to teach my children entirely though literature and living books. Over the years, I have picked up more people to follow that have become an important influence on my life, even though I’ve never met them. This is how I found Michelle, I enjoy watching her simple, beautiful life on Nantucket with her family. I knew that her fiancé is a beekeeper, and I wrote to her asking if there would be anyway he could teach the kids about bees and beekeeping. They were both happy to host us for a day of bee education!
We drove south and picked up the early morning ferry ride over to the island. Immediately, Liam fell in love with the quaintness of this cobbled street town and asked if we could move there. I think we all agreed, it’s hard not to fall head over heels for the steepled churches and the windowsills adorned with flowers. We wandered around a bit and then met up with Michelle for the kids to meet and play around the grounds of the Oldest House on Nantucket. It never takes long for little children to figure out how to enjoy each other, and Michelle being so sweet and serene made it feel like we’d met many times before. We were then able to head over to their home and apiary. Zak, her fiancé and beekeeper, talked to the boys and showed them all about the hive, even opening one up, shaking some bees off and letting all of us stick our fingers into the comb to try the fresh honey. Zak really just went over all the facts that we had read about in our books on bees at home, but again, this visual experience and being introduced to swarms of bees, meant the world to Liam. Liam still quotes Zak and his bountiful knowledge on bees, Liam took a class through the fall at the Franklin Park Zoo, here in Boston, and although his report was on wasps, he decided to stand up in front of his class and add to his memorized report with a full detailed lesson on the honey bee as well.
Our jar of Rambler’s Rest Apiary’s honey is still enjoyed at our home and so are our memories of our time there.
Our favorite books on bees | The Magic School Bus Inside a Beehive | The Honey Makers | Nature Anatomy: The Curious Parts and Pieces of the Natural World | REALBUG Lifecycle of a Honey Bee |