Stories that Inspire! Connecting with other Small Businesses
This year to include in our Terra Klay Holiday gift box we decided to support small businesses of our community who are making a difference and have passionate stories to share of their own.
Here is the Beeography of Noel Ilkow from Crystal Lake, IL
"My life as a beekeeper
It always cracks me up when someone asks me how many times have I been bit by a bee. My response is “well, I’ve never been bitten – but I have been stung a lot.” Hi There! I’m Noel and welcome to Nonie’s Bees! I’m a beekeeper and I love, love, love bees! The most incredible insect in the world! They are so efficient, giving and selfless. From honey (which has no expiration date) to pollen, propolis (considered an antibiotic in third world countries), royal jelly, wax (which was so valuable in the middle ages it became of form of currency) and most importantly the pollination of flowers and food crops. There is no ego in the beehive – no unemployment nor bias. I often wonder what the world would be like if we acted like honey bees.
I have been a beekeeper for about 15 years and have just kept adding hives to my apiary (bee yard). I started to read all sorts of stuff on bees, went to some classes and watched a lot of YouTube but where I learned the most essential part of raising bees was from my mentor. It was through my mentor that I discovered the life of bees. You must work slow around bees, you must learn how to read your bees by their activity. Not just in the morning or afternoon but all throughout the day. Not just in the spring and fall - but all throughout the year. Bees have taught me and given me so much. In return – I try to educate as many people as I can about the importance of taking care of honey bees. Ya just never know where you might find your next future beekeeper.
A few years ago, a friend of mine suggested I make beekeeping a full-time business – so I did – and here I am. And once again – welcome to Nonie’s Bees!"