Supplies Party

Supplies Party

“What’s better than a Surprise Party? A SUPPLIES PARTY!” – Krista, Blog Writer/ World’s Worst Pun Maker


I have been told many times that patience is a virtue. I have also been told several times that it is not always a virtue I have a very good grasp on, especially when I’m excitedly anticipating something. Mix this in with a strong dose of “I CAN’T BELIEVE IT KEEPS SNOWING,” and we have the recipe for my grumpy mood as of late.

I’m just antsy to put everything I’ve learned about beekeeping to use, to be able to get some hands-on experience with my own hives. Every time we have some progress towards the snow melting here in Minnesota, we get another healthy heaping of it; this fact just seems to be an extra raincloud in my sky. However, if I can’t survive a little of nature’s drama now, how will I stand up to any curve balls I’m thrown in regards to my bees? I’d be a complete fool to think everything will always be okie dokie. So here’s my self pep talk: Krista, you need to put on your big girl pants and deal with it.

Boxes full of sunshine…

Well, my pep talk helped, but I got an even bigger boost further down the way. Somewhere in the midst of my pity-party, the break in my clouds came. I was notified my bee supply order was ready to be picked up, and it sure did not disappoint!  Two cart loads were wheeled into the showroom, and I felt like a kid on Christmas morning!

Christmas in April?! I’ll allow it as long as I don’t have to wear the Ugly Sweater.

Who knew one could get excited about hive tools? I mean, to a non-beekeeper they just look like some hunks of metal, but to me it felt like I was getting my beekeeping lightsaber or a wand to work up some apiary magic. I had gotten the tools of the trade, my new bees’ homes, and of course, my armor. The adventure was really beginning to look like reality!

Clear Skies

All stacked up for a sleigh ride home.

After I thoroughly oogled my supplies in the showroom, it came down to some creative stacking in my vehicle.  Despite the snow that was falling while we loaded it all up, there was an underlying sense that spring hadn’t forgotten about us. It may be taking its sweet time to get here, but when it does, a new set of fun in frustrations will present itself. At this point, I’m still kind of floating, tickled by the fact that if getting the supplies was exciting, how will I react when I get my bee packages? 


If you’re curious about the contents on my carts, I’ve included the list below:

Krista’s Supplies Party List:


21 thoughts on “Supplies Party

  1. Dennis

    How exciting for you…this is my 2nd season of bee keeping, unfortunately I lost all four hives over winter(we’re in Michigan),but I did order two packages for this spring. Good luck with the girls in Minnesota, Dennis

    1. Krista

      Hi Dennis,

      Sorry about your winter loss, but it’s good to hear you’ll still be moving forward into your second season! Thank you for the well wishes and best of luck to you and your bees in Michigan!

  2. Bob

    I am enjoying the blog. I look forward to your future posts. I have been involved with bee keeping for 3 years. Last year was my first year to tend to my own bees. A roller coaster of excitement and challenges. Having a great local bee club and mentor made a huge difference.

    1. Krista

      Thank you, Bob!
      I’m very much looking forward to the roller coaster and definitely agree about clubs/mentors making a big difference. Good luck to you in all your beekeeping endeavors and if you get a chance I’d love to hear about your beekeeping adventures!

  3. Reinhard (Didi) Dietiker

    Well Krista, next week I will bring my bees to lake Inguadona. Not too far from Hackensack. You better get some pussy-willows going so they have something to feed their little sisters
    I understand your frustrations with the snow, waiting is the worst. I wish you good luck with your bees. It’s fun and very interesting, you will enjoy it guaranteed.
    All the best,

    1. Krista

      Hi Didi!
      Awesome to hear from a fellow area beek! May I ask how long you’ve been beekeeping around this neck of the woods? Any pluses or minuses you’ve found?

      P.S. I will certainly try my best to convince Mother Nature to move forward with Spring. No promises though, I don’t think she’s much one to debate 🙂 Thank you for the well wishes and best of luck to you in all your beekeeping endeavors. Should you ever find yourself in Hackensack be sure to stop by, we’d love to hear about your bees!

  4. James Mitchell

    Couldn’t express myself any better. Thanks for sharing your anxious desire regarding Mother Nature and getting your bees up and going. First time bee keeper.

    1. Krista

      Thank you! Good luck to you with your bees!

  5. Gary Engle

    Great story Krista…newbee like me living in California my nuc went in last week…made me feel bad about the snow(I’m a transplant from Michigan feel your pain). Good luck with your bees…Spring WILL come

    1. Krista

      Thank you, Gary!

      One would think that if you’ve lived long enough in the north country that you’d be used to Spring snows, either I’m just too optimistic for warm weather or a very hard learner 🙂 I’m pleased to report now that the snow is melting very quickly and is down mostly to the big snow banks. I’m looking forward to dandelions! Good luck to you with your nuc, and best of luck in all your beekeeping to come!

  6. Chip Kelly

    Only 1 hive tool? They have legs, you’ll need a dozen or so.

    1. Krista

      Good call, Chip!

      I’ll be purchasing some more before my bees get here. I have my eye on some pink hive tools, something tells me they’d be easy to spot when I drop them in the grass!

  7. Timm Ott

    Looks like a good start. I started following your blog through emails from Mann Lake. Best of luck on your new adventure. You’re doing right starting with 2 hives (for comparing). Would you consider YouTube-ing your set up and installationJust a thought. Cheers.
    Timm Ott
    (YouTube/ Neens honey bees)

    1. Krista

      Hi Timm!
      Awesome idea to do a YouTube video, we will be for sure trying it out! Thank you for the well wishes, best of luck to you in all your beekeeping adventures!

  8. Susie

    I was pretty excited to get my supply order too! As a first year bee keeper wanna be, I am thrilled that this road has finally opened up for me. Have fun putting everything together! I sure did. 🙂 The bees are coming in May in our location. Can’t wait!!

    1. Krista

      Hi Susie!
      Awesome to hear that you’ll be starting your own beekeeping adventure in May, too! I totally agree that the next best thing to getting my supply order was opening the packages! Best of luck to you in all your beekeeping endeavors!

  9. Jayne Barnes

    Hi Krista,
    Great blog! This comment is unrelated to the “supplies party” but its on my mind and I thought I’d like to see some of your input (maybe a future blog post idea?) I had a rude customer contact me today saying that he tested our honey using a YouTube video’s suggestion of dropping honey in water and finding out if it would dissolve. (This is ridiculous, it would depend on moisture content and temperature of the honey and water). I looked it up on Youtube and there are many bogus videos showing how to “test” honey to find out if it is raw, and they are all pretty bogus. No videos from beekeepers. I would love to see more articles and videos dispelling these ridiculous “tests” that are misleading consumers. What do you think? (If you haven’t seen these misleading videos, go check them out). Jayne

    1. Krista

      Hi Jayne,
      First off, thank you for bringing these bogus videos to my attention. I was not aware that these even existed. My understanding is that honey purity is hard to measure (definitely not going to get that info from just dropping it in some water) which is why actual scientific laboratories are involved for just that purpose. They also seemed to be confused with their ideas of moisture content in honey and seem to ignore videos of beekeepers testing their honey with refractometers (not lighting it on fire like another one of these odd vids.)
      It scares me to think to that videos like this may be leading people to jump to conclusions that EVERY beekeeper is out to dupe them, encouraging distrust and spreading/practicing misinformation. Plus with all that energy put into ‘testing’ their honey wouldn’t it just be easier just to ask the beekeeper? Should the consumer be putting their trust in the beekeeper or in some random stranger with an unknown agenda on the internet? I have more trust in the beekeeper who has a reputation to lose than a random YouTube account, but that’s just my opinion.

  10. Kathleen Nugent

    Hi ,I too am a new bee keeper . Started classes here on Long Island last fall, incredibly helpful but there is nothing like experience. I picked up my two packages , March 29 and we were in the mix of late winter . I painfully learned the importance of proper clothing and learning that bees do not care for wind or cold . I had some fatalities , and now almost one month later !the bees are doing what bees do , and spring has sprung . I did the oxaclic spray about 8 daysago , and decreased feeding so I am seeing more activity finding pollen . Somehow I believe the bees are more comfortable than I am but will try my best to keep them growing . Will give them another week and then check the hive for larva. Really grateful for the shared info .

    1. Krista

      Hi Kathleen,
      They say that experience is the best teacher and I am certainly anxious to get started with the experience part. I have to remind myself though that in this beekeeping adventure of mine I will make mistakes, but isn’t that still a huge chunk of the learning process? You really said it best when you said that you learned the importance of proper clothing and you’re learning what your bees care for. Keyword: learn. That’s the spirit!
      You’ve got this! Best of luck and I’d love to hear more about how your beekeeping adventure is going, keep me posted!

  11. Larry Gregory

    Hi Krista, I love shopping at Mann Lake, but as all shopping, you have to compare prices, even in store. Order HK-380 HK-190, and HK-210 for the same set up as HK-150. It saves you $1.10 per set up. Mann lake did some significant price changes from 2017 to 2018. In 2017, the price difference was $37.81 for this set up. Even with the price increase, the order I gave also gives you the varroa bottom board. As pricing goes, the solid board is $0.45 cents more in the catalogue, but I’d rather be able to vent my hives better during the hot months, and be able to have another method to check for mites. This is my second year as a bee keeper, and I am starting this year with 18 hives in different areas of Washington state. I hope to split most this year also. 36 hives means every penny saved counts. Remember, just because it’s a kit, doesn’t mean it’s the best price. Be a good shopper and compare.