What do babies and bees have in common? They don’t read the same books as me.
Our queen bee arrived on 20 July. We named her Constance Amelia Maund. She is about three months old here and staring at the sunlight through the trees for the first time.
As you may have guessed, I have been on ‘bee maternity leave’ since then.
You see, I read lots of baby books before she arrived but threw them out not long after. Constance clearly hadn’t read about ‘the routine’. Instead, I stuck to Dr Spock’s reassuring words and let baby lead the way. Dr Spock is like the Ted Hooper of the baby book world.
Like bees, babies also help you to see the world through new eyes. Constance loves her pram walks. On mild, autumn days we stayed out for hours looking at the sunlight through the trees and the colours of the autumn leaves. For me too, it was like seeing these things for the first time and realising how wonderful they are.
Sometimes I would get her out of the pram and we would walk beneath the weeping willows so that she could feel the gentle branches sweep across her face and to take a closer look at the ducks. She wasn’t sure about the ducks.
After the clocks went back, our walks became shorter and our trips to the library more frequent – a good opportunity for Constance to see all those books she was supposed to have read.
She mostly likes the touch-and-feel books, particularly That’s not my unicorn!.
Winter is here now. I tell Constance lots of stories to keep her entertained on dark December days, particularly about the bees and how they are looking forward to spring as much as we are.
I have no idea what our ‘routine’ will look like next year. I hope to have a couple of Saturday afternoons here and there to visit the apiary and bring back home more stories from the other beekeepers to tell Constance.
Until then, I’d like to wish humans and hymenopterans everywhere a very merry festive season.
Lovely post, in every way. Thanks.
Thanks Ron! I seem remember your tweets kept me entertained with bee stories while I was in labour so thank you also for those! 😁🐝
What a little sweetie. Many congrats, both, on your lovely little queen bee.
Thank you Tish! We can still hardly believe she is here!
She’s beautiful. Take care of yourself.
Thanks Erik! She is so much fun to be with too – I hope she will like the bees when she’s older. Take care of yourself and your bees over winter too.
Sounds to me as though you have got it right, if you are a new Mum with the insight to let your baby experience branches gently brushing her cheek you’ve got to be on the right track in my books anyway. Good for you and your partner, Well Done xxx
Thank you Lindy. It’s so worrying being a new mum – like being a new beekeeper and wondering if you’re doing everything right and everyone else has so many opinions! My worst is staying awake most nights checking she is not to warm or cold as there is so much guidance on that! Hopefully spring will come soon and we’ll be out and about more again xxx
Congratulations! Enjoy your first Christmas together.
You will be an amazing mum to Constance, teaching her all about the beauty of nature and folklore. So many adventures to come. It gets even more fun (and easier I think!) once they can move about themselves and start talking to you. Even if the talking is less a conversation and more a series of commands!
Congratulations to the Maunds, I asked Emily in the summer if you have had your baby,but she didn’t know, so I am pleased it all went well. Happy Christmas to you all
Congratulations and best wishes for this special Christmas. Amelia
What a delghtful post – I’m so glad to hear that Constance is already enjoying her time in nature and the library. She looks a real darling! It won’t be long until she will be able to have her first taste of honey…