Women Who Inspire, a Honey Bee, and Me…

She is a daughter, mother, sister, friend, grandmother, cook, writer, stylist, photographer, gardener, beer maker, wine producer, publisher, scientist, cancer survivor, educator, chocolatier, baker, and  bee keeper… She is someone you know,  she is you, she is me.  Lingering just beneath the surface of every one of us is the quiet desire to be inspired, we look for it everywhere like keys to the hidden treasure of our hearts. Hoping that once we find them we can unlock the passion we long for to fulfill our life’s purpose.  Why do you think Oprah is Oprah? – she inspires.   I guess I should speak for myself, I can’t count the times that I’ve said, ” I just need some inspiration”.  Life can often feel overwhelming and monotonous at the same time. The task list is too long, and the mirror reflects back someone you used to know.  I don’t know about you,  but in my world there are three kinds of inspiration, the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Let’s start with the ugly, this is someone whose life has completely fallen apart, taken a turn for the worst…it’s U G L Y- ugly, and they inadvertently dissuade you to NEVER let that happen to you.  The bad comes from the woman is who is so full of her success, that she can’t stop talking about it. She wears the perfume Arrogance, you can smell her coming and her bad taste lingers long after she has left the room.  Measuring up to her feels so far out of reach that you give up before you start, knowing that you’ll probably never make it- she triggers complacency.  The good inspiration comes from someone you can relate to, she is like you, her passion encourages effortlessly, and if she can do it then so can you… I met her at the WCR- Women Chef and Restaurateurs Conference. She was the kind woman in the elevator who pointed me in the right direction, the one who saved me a seat at lunch, shared the back seat of the taxi, and the stranger, now friend,  I dined  across from  at dinner.  She was the writer who gave life to words on a page, and the woman who brought me a plate of caviar that I just had to try.  Her name was Denise the Food Stylist & Author, Debbi the Master Gardener, Mary Sue the Restaurateur, and Laurey and Rebecca the Bee Keepers.  The WCR conference was more than the nationwide gathering of Culinarians and Gourmands, it was the powerful exchange of creative energy masquerading as  provoking conversations, infectious influence, inspirited instruction, comradery, and  best of all, sisterhood. Inexplicably, we were bonded by the devotion to the industry we are all married to… it was all for the love of food. 

By the end of the weekend I was more than inspired, I would say exhilarated.  I want to become a better writer, a better chef, to run a sustainable organic business, style seductive food, and capture it’s image to tempt all who peer into my blog.  I want to be a part of educating children and families to live healthier lives by cooking and eating at home. As you can see, I returned from the conference energized and excited, my mind swarming with motivation but more specifically, there has been this persistent buzzing in my head.   I can’t stop thinking about bees… I want to be a bee keeper.  The sweet taste of pure honey and the magnificent way of nature left me standing in awe of creation, wanting to learn more about these tiny creatures who work tirelessly, day and night to support our food system as we know it.  Simply put, no bee – no food.

Did you know?

Every third bite of food we eat would not be possible without the pollination of bees.
A single honeybee will only produce approximately 1/12 teaspoon of honey in her lifetime
Honey bees are the only insects that produce food consumed by humans.
Worker honey bees are female, live 6 to 8 weeks and do all the work.
The honey bee has been around for 30 million years.
Honey never spoils.
Honey is the ONLY food that includes all the substances necessary to sustain life, including water.

I made a trip to the farmer’ market this week to meet the local bee keeper selling honey.  He was just as enthused with my list of questions as I was with his shimmering, golden, wild flower honey. Ten dollars seemed like a fair price for a jar sweet sticky bee glory and an earful of firsthand bee keeping education.  Besides licking the honey from my finger, straight from the jar, I couldn’t think of a better way to serve it than drizzled over pollinated fruits- grapefruit, oranges and avocado with a sprinkle of sea salt – absolutely bee autiful …
Grapefruit and Orange Salad

Serves 4
2 Ruby red grapefruit – cut into supremes
3 Valencia oranges – cut into supremes
1 Cup of Arugula
1 Large Has avocado – peeled and cut into fourths
Wild Flower Honey
Grey Sea Salt
Fresh Cracked Pepper

Arrange a bed of arugula onto four plates
Arrange each plate with citrus segments and sliced avocado
Sprinkle with sea salt, fresh cracked black pepper, and drizzle with honey

10 comments… add one
  • diningdish November 16, 2010, 1:48 am

    You got it! The group is all that and more. A joy to meet you and read more about what you love. Next year, Boston…it will be great.

    Dara Bunjon

  • Karen from Globetrotter Diaries November 16, 2010, 2:48 am

    So beautifully written! And gorgeous photos. I absolutely LOVE citrus fruits with avocados– looks so yummy!

  • She's Cookin' November 16, 2010, 2:53 am

    I'm awestruck! Stunning photographs, succulent honey… what a beautifully written post! I'm dying for that fresh luscious salad, too.

  • Kim @ Quit Eating Out {Recipes to Make Dining Out a Choice, Not a Chore} November 16, 2010, 2:54 pm

    What an inspiring post and gorgeous photography. I'm bookmarking this salad recipe… I think it's going to make a great addition to our Christmastime menu. Have a wonderful day….

  • Renee Fontes November 16, 2010, 3:33 pm

    Bee-utiful post, you are inspiring to others yourself! Continue bee-ing fired up and keep the fever going!

  • Anonymous November 16, 2010, 5:41 pm

    Beautiful job, indeed. I am forwarding to my bee friends here. They WONDER what I do when I go off into the world. Thanks for telling them!

  • Mary November 16, 2010, 5:59 pm

    What a thoughtful, lovely and beautiful post. I hope you have a wonderful day. Blessings…Mary

  • life and kitchen November 17, 2010, 4:35 pm

    Oh man, I love honey. And those are such interesting facts. I heard that honey is the only food on Earth that doesn't spoil. Makes me love it even more!

  • What Happens After Five November 17, 2010, 9:14 pm

    Beautiful pictures! That salad looks amazing!!


  • Anonymous November 18, 2010, 7:13 pm

    Extraordinary content and beautiful photographs! Thanks so much for being part of WCR – we are honored to have you!

    Thank you for sharing your experience and information!

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