Greetings! Thank you for joining us on The Happy Hive. This website is a work in progress, but then again isn't everything? We figure there's no harm in showing you the working version while we explore where it might be headed. The journey is part of the story.
About six months ago, we bought our dream home - a small house on a 3 acre plot in Vermont that will allow us to begin our journey toward homesteading. Along with our two young kids and our truck full of belongings from our old house only 2 miles away, we also brought our honeybees (and you can have fun imaging Eric driving them here fully decked out in his beekeeping gear behind the wheel!).
As we think about why we moved to this house, and what we hope for our future, we always come back to small, simple, and family-focused ideas. We aren't planning to quit our jobs and become 100% homesteaders; we like our jobs in the nonprofit field and feel passionate about contributing to the betterment of the world around us. We don't have ambitions to grow the homestead to a point where we would need to quit our jobs (or work 24-7), so you likely won't see plans for animal husbandry beyond our bees, at least in the near future.
So if our goal is not 100% self-sufficiency, what is it? In truth, we're not sure; there is no definitive goal except to enjoy the journey and see where it brings us. The interim goals, then, are to spend time on our property as a family, to provide as many of our own fruits and vegetables as we can, to preserve and cook amazing food, and to raise bees and perhaps even tap some maple trees so that we can provide our own alternatives to processed sugar in recipes. These goals will help us to feel healthy and happy as a family - our own little hive.
But there's more to the story than what we're doing for ourselves. We're also hoping that our lifestyle is less harmful to the environment. That by growing our own fruits and vegetables with organic processes we can eliminate the demand for highly processed and toxically-treated foods that travel from afar to be consumed.
Likewise, we won't be turning into hermits or keeping all of the bounty of our homestead for ourselves. For years we have been giving homemade preserves as a substantial component of our holiday gifting, and we hope to add health and beauty products derived from the amazing creations of our bees. We also enjoy welcoming friends to our property to cook pizza and bread in the outdoor oven, press apple cider, or play in the fields.
In short, while our homesteading journey is about meeting the goals that we have for our own family, its also about making a positive impact on our extended family, our local community, and the broader world. And so when I was thinking about what to name this website I was not only thinking about our honey-based products, I was also thinking about the amazing honey bee. The honey bees work so hard to create and protect their own hive, but in doing so the act of pollinating improves the world around them invaluably.
And so I welcome you to our happy hive, where we not only care about taking care of our own family, but we also care about making a positive impact on you. I hope you'll enjoy our stories and share your own. Keep in touch to see where this journey takes us!