okay, so the why i keep bees question has a different answer every time i get asked... i admit to a certain affinity for messing with people's minds, especially when i think they ought to know (me) better...
so, answer a) i've hated bees since i stepped on a yellow jackets nest when i was 7, and i thought this would get me over it (now i really like honey bees, and i hate yellow jackets even more. so i don't know if you can say that worked or not. Hmf.)
answer b) i like to collect, but i hate clutter, therefore knickknacks are OUT instead i collect skills, knowledge, experiences that might come in helpful if the grid ever goes down PERMANENTLY (indulging my paranoia in as harmless a fashion as possible) Really, you never know what you may need to know...
c) I wanted something to do that would get me out of the house that my husband would NOT be happy about my taking the kids with me to do (age 1 and 2), so that he would watch them, and i could actually get a couple hours a week TO MYSELF in order to re-charge to face the next week in a semi-stable state (i love my kids, but i do not love whining... they hear that a lot). This hasn't worked because i am married to a workaholic , so i have to take the kids with me most trips, which means less time at the hives than i'd like. At least my two year old thanks God for the bees when she says grace, and she reminds me to thank God for the bees anytime i forget. The husband is happy about it though, because he uses LOTS of honey in his eternal quest to make the perfect barbeque sauce, and since i won't let him make beer in the basement or gin in the bathtub, he's pushing for mead...after all, "we'll have the honey, Honey"
d) i wasn't going to start doing this till next year, i was just going to learn from a man we know from church, but he broke his leg, and is going to be rehabbing for awhile, so i sort of volunteered to take care of his bees, and he very kindly let me, and since i had to order a package of bees to replace one of his hives that didn't make it through the winter, and he is letting me use his equipment (boxes, frames, smoker, etc)
and he gave me the brood boxes and covers i needed to start my own hive, i thought, might as well order myself a package this year, too.
e) my husband and i thought it would be hilarious to give all my multitudinous relatives honey for the holidays... labeled as "FREE-RANGE HONEY (produced by free-range, uncaged honeybees)" with various and assorted other amusing pokes (that my husband will think up, he is very good at such things) at the various and assorted, occasionally hypocritical and usually hypercritical, eco-political points of view held by said relatives, just to see how seriously they would take it. Hence my name... BEEFREE
f) i really enjoy watching the bees fly into the hive with their knees full of pollen... watching the bees and trying to get them to fly through my A-OK thumb and finger circle is quite...SOOTHING.