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Things I did this winter while waiting for the bees. Part 1

I have been much more busy this winter with work and other obligations than in winters previous.  I am constantly checking on the hives but not opening them up for fear of chilling and killing them.  I can't wait until spring when I can actually go into the hive and see what is happening. One of the things that kept me occupied for a short moment was to make some Lip Balm.  I used the wax from the cappings that we scraped off to extract the honey.  After heating the wax it was strained through a kitchen grade flour sifter. and then through a few layers of cheese cloth into a 1 litre milk container. Make sure the wax doesn't cool too much as it is much easier to filter when hot. Left to cool overnight you can see in the picture  below, what remains on the bottom of the was once the container is peeled open. [caption id="attachment_566" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Cappings wax first strain"]Cappings wax first strain[/caption] The 2nd and final straining was done through some nylons and seemed to work great. Below is the clean and amazing smelling lemony colored wax. [caption id="attachment_568" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Cappings wax second strain"]Cappings wax second strain[/caption] Lip balm has to be the easiest cosmetic to make. I haven't made many but it would seem nothing could be simpler than this.  Check the recipe out: 1 cup (225g) of shredded beeswax 14 oz (425ml) of organic coconut oil (get it at your local supermarket) 5 tablespoons (100g) of Honey 5 tablespoons (70ml) of pure vanilla extract Melt the wax and coconut oil separately, combine and blend. Add honey and extract and blend. Pour into container. Let cool and use. After making it I would adjust it and add a little more coconut oil to make it softer as well as go with an essential oil instead of the vanilla extract. The extract does not mix well with the wax and I ended up with a lot of extract in the last tubs compared with the first ones poured.  It makes a massive amount of lip balm! The recipe states around 100 4 gram tubes or 65 9 gram tubs. The containers will more than likely cost more than the ingredients. The lip balm was well received and works perfectly, dry lips are a thing of the past around here. [caption id="attachment_567" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Lip Balm"]Lip Balm[/caption]
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