Hi! I’m Susi of Soozeezbeez and my bee farm is located in the heart of the beautiful Missouri Ozarks. I’m blessed to love what I do and am so excited to take you along on my journey.My bee farm actually began because of my love of gardening and canning. I read an article about a small backyard gardener who had harvested double the produce by adding a hive of bees. The seed was planted.I’ve never had a fear of insects, in fact, I seem to be everyone’s protector when they start to panic at the sight of a bug, so that wasn’t a problem. I could be harvesting double the produce, and considered the honey would also bring in some extra income. It seemed like a win all around and I couldn’t stop thinking about it, but then insecurity set in, and I also couldn’t stop thinking about all the reasons I couldn’t possibly be a beekeeper.
A few weeks passed, and I happened across a local feature on PBS about a woman beekeeper and my excuses were gone. I mentioned it to my family and was met with a mixture of raised eyebrows, encouraging words through gritted teeth, but lots of support for my crazy dream. Even from my husband who was so petrified of bees that in a prior year had accidentaly ran his truck into a mailbox because he discovered one had decided to share the ride with him. Proving their belief in me, that Fall, they all surprised me with a bee suit, a book and funds to purchase a hive for my birthday. I spent all Winter reading everything I could to prepare and joined a beekeeping club, that to my surprise, had the woman beekeeper from the PBS show, teaching a beginner’s class.By the time Spring of 2013 had arrived, we had built a hive stand based on a combination of all the information that I read, purchased 2 hives and ordered the bees. Finally, the day came to pick up my bees, and as the beekeeper handed me my box of bees he said, “You are now a beekeeper”. My motherly instincts kicked right in and I have been their protector ever since.
It didn’t take long to find all the other gifts from the hive the bees supply, besides the honey, and that’s how Soozeezbeez began. We are now at 31 hives and I am even more in love with my bees. Our product line is continually growing as I research and learn more about the benefits of everything the bees provide. We sell at Farmers Markets, Craft shows and our website. In hindsight, I see how God was preparing my path years ahead. We had already planted trees and flowers that were favorites of the bees. I had jobs that taught me how to display and being creative has always brought me joy.
I’m so grateful to all who encouraged, supported, and believed in me. To honor them I paint a flower that reminds me of them on a hive and name that hive after them. I hope to pay it forward and encourage others to believe in themselves and their dreams. It’s never too late.