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Just a few miles down the road from us, is a lavender farm. It is down right breath-taking as your eyes swim across the ocean of lavender flowers. As you rest your eyes on the horizon, they are still met with the sea of purple, there was no end. About 3 weeks ago, I decided to visit the farm since seeing how things grow is a major fascination to me. They make and sell amazing lavender products but they also give you the opportunity to cut your own flowers so without any hesitancy, I grabbed a pair of shears, a twisty tie (used to create bundles) and made my way out into the endless acres of lavender. What I didn’t realize until I got up close and personal is that, nestled down in the plants, swarmed tens of thousands of bees! (smacks forehead) DUH! Flowers = bees. But you don’t see them from a distance, and whats not in sight, is not in mind. Now, I am not afraid of bees necessarily but then I am not one to invite them over for a cup of tea and honey either. (honey, get it…oy-vey lol) It took me only 30 seconds to decide that going home with some of these gorgeous flowers was far more important than fleeing away at a high-speed wobble from the bees!
So, I squatted down beside the plants, yep, I got down to eye level and had myself a little heart to heart talk with the bees. ”Now bees, I know that this is just a job to you…somebody has to bring home the bacon, I mean honey BUT there are millions of lavender buds all over this here land and there is room for you and room for me to explore! SO, if you won’t sting me, I won’t sting you! Fair enough?” After my chat, I felt confident enough that they would leave me alone. I stood back up, stretched my back, cracked my knuckles, cocked my head left then right, put on a face of determination, armed my hand with the shears, took a deep breath, and bent back over the plants to strategically map out where I could make my cuts to where I wouldn’t disturb the bees. I soon found that it was next to impossible. There were everywhere!!!! So, without thought, without fear, without hesitation, I blindly jabbed my hand into the plants, grabbed a handful of stems down at the base and cut away. I repeated this over and over until I felt satisfied with my collection. I bowed and gave my thanks to the bees for honoring my presence and in not stinging me. No one wants to see a grown woman cry and I don’t think they did either. haha What a beautiful experience.
Once home, I admired the flowers on the counter throughout the afternoon, then decided to dry them. I hung them upside down from some twine and about a week later they were completely dried. I then “chucked” the stems, removing the buds and placed them into a quart jar. That provided a lot of lavender buds! That jar alone has brought me tons of inspiration on what to do with them…. soon you will be seeing them pop up in more and more recipes.