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I began this blog to chronicle my beekeeping experiences. I have read lots of beekeeping books, but nothing takes the place of either hands-on experience with an experienced beekeeper or good pictures of the process. I want people to have a clearer picture of what to expect in their beekeeping so I post pictures and write about my beekeeping saga here. Along the way, I've passed a number of certification levels and am now a!
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Saturday, January 02, 2010

Making Tea Lights

At the Metro Beekeeper Holiday party, I asked my friend and fellow beekeeper, Jason, about making tea lights. Jason makes lots of them and provides them for the Metro Atlanta Beekeepers short course (coming up on January 23). Jason told me that if I tried making tea lights, I would wish for a mold that he has.

I tried with the 100 tea light forms that I had ordered from Brushy Mountain. Like Jason warned me, it was a messy and less than perfect process. I did end up with tea lights to attach to all the Christmas presents I gave this year and to use as stocking stuffers in the stockings I fill for my adult children.

I set all the molds in an aluminum foil lined cookie sheet. Waxed paper would have done as well as a liner. I didn't want to be scraping wax off of the cookie sheet when I wanted to use it later actually to bake cookies!

I set the mold forms up with a wick in the center of each. I melted the wax in the top of a double boiler that I purchased on EBay just for bee product production. Then I poured the melted wax into a plastic measuring cup with a pouring lip and poured wax into each of the molds. You can see on the photo where I over-poured the wax, resulting in wax on the aluminum foil liner as well as creating something that had to be removed from the exterior of the form before giving the present away. What a mess!



The wicks didn't want to stay in the center or to stand up straight.



It is a gratifying way to use wax, however. The little lights pour up quickly. The candles actually burn beautifully and well. Beeswax has a longer burning life than other types of wax so for tiny lights, they last for a long time.



Here they are as they come close to the end of the solidifying stage.



We used a collection of tealights in the center of our Christmas Eve dinner table. Our dinner started at around 8 and didn't end until after 11 and the tealights started going out in the middle of dessert. I was amazed that they lasted that long.


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8 comments:

  1. Linda, your centerpiece is lovely! Also, the tiny beehive ornament is precious ~ you're fortunate to have such a clever friend.
    Thanks for sharing the drink recipe. I'm going to try it. Would you share some of your dinner recipes also, please? I'm particularly interested in the Amazing Dinner Rolls and the Winter Jewel Upside Down Cake.
    Happy New Year.
    Susan L.

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  2. I love the tea lights! Awesome idea for gifts. They look very professional to me.

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  3. wow margaret looks like all grades of fun

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  4. Thanks for this lesson on tea lights. Now that the snow is on the ground and the bees tucked in their hives I hope to get into my winter projects of making lip balm and candles.

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  5. You use a glue gun or even a little wax to hold the wick to the center of container then let it dry before you pour the wax into the tealight. Also if you trim the wick to 1/4" it will look straighter and burn better.

    Great Blog!

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  6. Wonderful idea! I'm sure everyone loved your thoughtful gifts :o)

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  7. I have the same kit, the problem is that wicks I believe are parafin coated thus the hot wax causes them to wilt.

    I fill all of them, then as they cool put the wicks in.

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  8. I love your tea lights- thinking of the smell of burning beeswax candles brings back childhood memories. Guess what my grandmother used for coating cookie sheets? Beeswax! Stick the sheets in the oven until they are hot, and then rub them with a large chunk of wax (it shouldn't run, just lightly coat). It works great and smells nice (they also use beeswax as an industrial separator- so that the gummi bears don't stick together...).

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