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Today kicks off a brand new series on beekeeping, and you can think of this “quick start” guide as your overview to keeping bees, whether you have one or one hundred acres. If you’re looking for natural sweetener and beeswax, beekeeping is right for you. Keeping bees sounds intimidating, but it couldn’t be easier.

Education

We would never recommend beekeeping without doing your research first. Bees are rewarding, but you’ll need to do a lot of upfront information-gathering if you want to keep them happy and healthy.

Check out your local library or beekeeping organization for educational resources. Many beekeepers offer informational classes, but even a YouTube tutorial will take you far. Learn about bee anatomy, diseases, communication (yes, they communicate!), how honey and wax are made, and the bee life cycle.

This knowledge will take you far on your journey to keeping bees.

Materials

Once you’ve learned about bees, it’s time to get started! You’ll need a few startup materials.

Bees: We recommend finding bees locally. Connect with a local beekeeper, bee society, or even a bee removal company. Many people will happily relocate a mature hive to your property for free.
Hive: Your bees need a place to live. You can choose one of two types of hives: Langstroth or top-bar. Most beekeepers use the Langstroth hive, which is made of vertically stacked boxes. Top-bar hives, which are horizontal, are good in some situations, but most beekeepers swear by the Langstroth hive.
Proper clothing: Bees are infamous for their stingers. Protect yourself with a proper beekeeper suit. These are steep at a $150 price point, but that’s still cheaper than an ER bill!

Maintain the hive

Once your hive is set up, you’re ready to go. Check your hive daily to monitor its health. Make sure to act at the first sign of trouble; a sick hive is an unproductive hive. If you ever have questions about your bees, connect with a professional beekeeper to troubleshoot the problem.

As far as regular maintenance is concerned, you can harvest honey and beeswax in spring. Remember to prepare the hive for winter, as well!

Not for you?

If you want to reap the benefits of bees without the fuss, you can always connect with a local beekeeper. Many keepers will place their hives on your land to pollinate crops, and in exchange, you get free honey and higher crop yields. What’s not to love?

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Oh, we are all about…




Why Your Lifestyle Needs Proper Skin Care

Your skin is the first line of defense against disease and infection as it helps to protect your body from all the contaminants we come across each day, and gives protection against the ultraviolet rays. As useful as the skin is to us, it is also the first organ that shows signs of aging. While we might have lived without things like wrinkle creams or moisturizers when we were younger and more resilient, as we age some degree of skin care is inevitable. Keeping your skin healthy should be the most important part of your beauty routine.

Skincare Dos

Wear sunscreen

As much as everyone loves to feel the sun on their skin, it’s good to protect yourself from the direct rays of the sun. UV rays can cause wrinkles and skin cancer, so apply sunscreen whenever you are going to be in the sun, even if only for a little while. Skin around the face, chest, neck and hands, are the most sensitive to UV rays and yet these are always exposed, so make sure to always apply sunscreen to these areas.

Eat healthy foods

Vegetables and fruits are packed full of antioxidants which are chemical compounds that cam help in breaking down cancer-causing free radicals in the body. Free radicals also cause cell damage to the skin. Include colourful vegetables and fruits in every meal for healthy and glowing skin. Also take a lot of vitamins C, E, A and beta carotene.

Treat your skin gently

Contrary to some recent news, scrubbing the skin or exfoliating too often is not good for your skin. Be very gentle when massaging cleanser into your face. Do not rub but go in upward circular motions until whatever you are using is properly absorbed. The skin loses its elasticity as you grow older, so avoid rubbing or pulling it to prevent sagging.

Exfoliate only to remove dead skin cells

The skin renews itself by generating new cells and shedding the old one at the surface so exfoliation helps to remove the dead skin cells. But if you have dry skin, ensure that you do not over-exfoliate because it may become flaky and unattractive. Exfoliating once or twice a week is okay for people with dry skin. People with oily and normal skin however, can exfoliate more frequently; up to 3 or 4 times per week. Make sure to use a gentle exfoliator that is appropriate for your skin type and again, don’t over do it.

Drink plenty of water

Water flushes out toxins and improves circulation. Try to drink at least eight glasses of water to keep your skin looking soft and supple.

Get enough sleep

Apart from the fact that lack of sleep tells on your skin, it also affects your overall health. If you are always tired you are not at your most productive anyway, so why not call it a night and get the rest you need? Sleeping well will not only help to reduce your stress levels but it will also give your skin time to regenerate itself.

Apply eye cream

The skin around your eyes is some of the most sensitive, delicate skin on the entire body. Take care of it by applying a nightly eye cream.

Always moisturize

Moisturized skin is happy skin! Your skin will naturally plump up after applying moisturizer which helps to straighten out the wrinkles. Apply moisturizer when your skin is still damp from your shower or bath – this will lock in moisture and keep your skin looking plump and healthy all day long.

Skincare Don’ts

Don’t smoke

If you need motivation to quit, just take some time to examine the skin of long-term smokers. No offense to them, but even a smoker will admit that it will make your skin yellowish and unattractive with lots of wrinkles around the lips. So quit. Today. Your skin will thank you for years to come.

Never use body soap on the face

These types of soaps are meant for use below the neck. Only use cleansers that are made for the face because they are much gentler on delicate skin.

Don’t be sporadic about your skincare

Cleanse and moisturize every day to offset the pollution and other toxins your skin is exposed to on a daily basis. When you apply skincare products, use them properly. Five minutes in the morning and five minutes in the evening can make a huge difference for your skin over a lifetime.


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