Warm Almost Winter

Feeding Bees-0524

I much prefer summer to winter.  I don’t like being cold, not a bit.  But I also like the predictability of the seasons.  I expect summer to be warm, and winter (or almost winter) to be cold.  And when the weather does wacky things, it makes me feel weird.  The other problem with warm late fall or early winter days is that it makes the honeybees active.  They start flying, and flying requires energy.  All that moving around means that they eat through their winter stores faster than they would if it was cold outside and they were just staying huddled in their winter cluster.  So we find ourselves feeding the bees, and will have to keep doing so as long as this warm weather continues.

The other effect of this weather is that my kids don’t want to do anything but play in the creek.  I don’t remember them playing in the water this much in the summer!  And I am just not in the mood for the muddy clothes and multiple baths everyday right now!  We should all be sitting cozy around the fire, quietly looking at books and doing simple crafts (actually that never happens here, but as long as I am engaging in wishful thinking).

On the positive side, I’m not shivering.  Soon enough I’m sure it will be cold again, and I will fondly remember the warm days of almost winter that we had.


  1. I very much feel the same way. We moved to Missouri after living in Phoenix for three years. We have been day dreaming about snow. My family in Nebraska has had snow several times. It just doesn’t feel like Christmas. But we are going on lots of family walks and trying to soak this weather in, because it will be cold and snowy soon enough.

  2. Here in Vermont we have daffodils sending up shoots of green. We pruned berries and currants yesterday and I was able to weed in a perennial bed. Our bees have been sending out scouts to find forage. The grass is green and we are in Central Vermont where we should be having snow and cold. I wish for snow.

  3. Your bee pics are so pretty!

  4. I always imagine other families sitting around reading books and doing simple crafts on cold days. Not our family of course. But *other* families. Sigh.

  5. Ruth Spears says:

    How do you feed your bees? Is that the blue and white thing? I don’t actually keep bees but have a swarm that located in a squirrel box up in a tree last May. It is warm here in Texas and I worry that they won’t have enough to eat. I would feed them if I had some kind of feeder.
    Ruth Spears

  6. all the pictures are beautiful!
    we too have a warm winter so far here in Romania, no snow where I live.
    My, is that Intruder? he’s a chubby tomcat, isn’t he?! but I guess all cats are like that in the cold season.
    the bees are just fascinating!

  7. I feel like we have had warm winters for the last three years or so. This winter has been finally like a somewhat real weather with colder temperatures and finally some rain that we desperately need. It is glorious! Perhaps because it is an El Nino year?

  8. Good thing you don’t live here! I live in the mountains of CA and we have what are called “open winters.” That means that one day it might be clear and warm and the next day there’s snow. People here joke that it’s that land of fours seasons, sometimes all in one day. Yesterday, families were standing around outside talking after mass wearing sweaters and by dinner time we had a snow storm and were stoking the woodburning stove. When it does snow heavily, we enjoy it for a few days and then it’s gone. The hardy daffodils usually bloom in February, but then we often have a white Easter (instead of a white Christmas). It’s always hard on the fruit trees like apricots and peaches; some years we get a good harvest, other years, a late frost kills all the blossoms. We are eagerly awaiting the mega “El Nino” although rain after a drought usually means severe mud slides. Sometimes I really envy New England’s “closed winters.”

  9. It’s just very wet and dank here in Oxfordshire, England, but it’s quite warm (14C). It’s rained for weeks and up in the North, they have suffered terrible floods. My dad up in Yorkshire had 3 inches of snow on Saturday, then it melted and the rain started. Again. I long for some crisp, cold December days!

  10. I love winter and being frigid down to my bones. So right now I’m hot and not very happy about the warm weather 🙂

  11. Argh! Muddy stuff. I don’t like it when the weather is crazy either. I like blue sky days but not warm then cold then warm. It lends itself to colds and flu which are absolutely dreadful during the holiday season. I hope the bees don’t get TOO confused.

  12. I celebrated my 60th Birthday on Saturday and it was 74*! Quite unseasonally warm for this time of December. I do not like the cold either unless it is snowing and then I like to get out and go for a walk and just listen to the snow fall through the trees. Afterward, time for a nice cup of hot chocolate and maybe popcorn to boot. I’m sure Winter and colder weather are soon to follow. Hope the bees hang in there.

  13. As a first year beekeeper, I wonder and worry over my bees. I am, in part, so grateful for warmth for them, as I heard of many hive losses attributed to last winter’s heavy snowfall (over 10 feet for us!), but I wondered if the weather would make them more active than they should be. While we’re not as warm here in Maine as in some parts of the country, it has been an unusual season. The goats are enjoying it, and the chickens too. But my children are a bit disappointed at the lack of snow. Soon, I am sure, it will come.

  14. I love winter and hope it returns soon; it is odd… but well one day at a time! glad you have extra food for the bees! Lord have mercy on the bees and on our land!

  15. Compliment for your photo’s ! I love them.
    Here in The Netherlands the weather seems more spring than winter.
    Even here the bees are upset.

  16. It is definitely unseasonably warm here in NY also, but I figure winter will arrive sooner or later. We just hope it won’t be like last year’s brutal cold and snow! So hard on our animals. They are all enjoying the current weather – horses, goats, dogs, cats, and chickens!

  17. Yea here in PA I am wearing flip flops and capris. Definitely sure we will probably pay for all this warm weather. I am loving it though. I hate the cold. My body doesn’t handle it so well. Taking advantage of the kids being outside. When you have alot of boys they sure need that outside time…. I am not a fan of bees. I am allergic but the photos are really neat.

  18. Definitely looks more like October there! Nice bee shots. Love that feeder.

  19. I’m praying it gets cold — to kill the bugs and some germs. I also hate this weather because it’s too hot to put tights on. Such a dilemma, I know. But I either have to get back out the cotton summer skirts and sandals or it needs to get cold. 70s here in Ohio.

  20. I loooove winter!! Call be crazy, but to me a proper winter is as my childhood was – lots of snow, cold but dry, full of sledding and cheer and coziness. It’s been warm here in Slovakia too, well, warm enough to be too warm for winter but not so warm that we can have bare feet outside! Kind of damp grey, which is the worst kind of winter. Actually no, freezing mist is the worst.

    I always have such romantic ideas that don’t materialize either with my kids – singing carols together, doing crafts while sipping hot apple cider, curled up reading books and learning to knit.

    Maybe for school holidays. I’m always hopeful.

    • mary louise says:

      hi there,

      the mention of slovakia brought me to think about my husband and his childhood. his parents were from slovakia and even though they have been gone for so many years, we try to keep the slovak traditions alive. where do you live in slovakia?

      • I live in a small town near Trnava, although I’m from Canada so the winter coziness I referred to is of the Rocky Mountain variety.
        It’s so great that you try to keep the traditions going. Where about were his parents from?
        If you click on my name, it will take you to my blog where I write about the culture, food, and life in Slovakia. Hope to see you there!

    • Hi Naomi! I should respond over at your site but here I am quickly sending via Ginny’s! Ha! It’s unseasonably warm these parts in Canada (and I’m sure where you are from originally in Canada too). We’ve had the cold blustery days packed with snow, snow, snow the last two winters and it lasted and lasted and lasted and lasted. So I can’t say I’m upset this year to have the mild temps last longer. In Canada we always know “it’s coming” so whether that happens before Christmas or after, “it’s coming” Ha!

      Ditto on the ideals we mothers have during this season wanting to carol, craft, and cuddle all cozy on couches. But one thing I will say, I’m actually learning to knit thanks to Ginny’s inspiration with her Yarn Along. I was feeling left out and thought, sheesh, I should be able to do this too! Thanks Ginny!

      ps. to Ginny here…when did Seth grow into a man?! Little people are leaving! You’re collecting men at your house!

      • Last year when I went to Canada the east was full under snow and the west had nothing, I was disappointed (and certainly didn’t need to pack such a heavy jacket). I was reminiscing with my mom about winter, and she reminded me that I didn’t have littles that need to be bundled up or complain about cold toes. And if I felt like going x-country skiing, I could just go. Which is true 🙂

        I guess my problem with knitting is keeping track of all the stitches. “Argh, is that number 875 or 877?” And then I get frustrated. But I loooove the final product. So maybe one day. I am rather a texture-phil and Ginny does have gorgeous tempting yarn…

  21. It is very strange but it is really the same here – in Central Europe and I feel so strange about it! When I was a kid, 30 years ago (OMG) there wase 1 meter of the snow all winter…something is happening to the nature and it is not good, I am afraid. but let´s not be afraid – shell we:-)? Have a nice Christmas time!

  22. It’s been the same ay here. The humidity has been so high that I actually had to turn on the air conditioning to get the dampness out of my rug! I’ve never had to do that in December! But yes, it’ll be much more “seasonal” later this week, but then back to the 50s. I think it’s going to be one of those Ohio years when Christmas is (much) warmer than Easter.

  23. I have the same feelings about the weather and our bees too. Some cooler weather couldnt come faster for me. Since it was nice we popped into the bees to see what they were up to. So far they havent eaten too much of the sugar blocks we added to each so thats good! Is it really mid December?!

  24. I am very worried about all this warm weather and what it is going to do to my fruit trees come spring. My fig tree is leafing and yesterday we discovered the blueberry bushes are in bloom. Now I hear we will be in the in the low 30’s Saturday night! I just pray I have fruit on the trees next summer.

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