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Matthew Willey paints honeybees. Lots and lots of honeybees.

Big ones. Small ones. Queens. Workers. Flying and at rest. He paints all of them with skill, love, and care. He's been painting murals for nearly 25 years, but this is his biggest job yet. It's the one he was born to do. And he's got a few million tiny, buzzing fans rooting him on.

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission.


Willey didn't find bees. The bees found him. Literally.

Close to a decade ago, a slow-moving honeybee flew in through the window of Willey's apartment and landed softly in the middle of the room. Weak and tired, the pollinator posed no threat.

"I got down on the floor and hung out with this bee," he said. He studied her and got up close, the first time he'd ever done so. When the honeybee expired a few hours later, he placed it outside and set about learning why this happened.

A quick search lead him to information on colony collapse disorder, when workers bees from a colony suddenly disappear and die off for no clear reason. Some bee experts believe honeybees have a behavior known as altruistic suicide. A bee that's sick will fly off to die on its own rather than jeopardize the health of the nest. That may be why beekeepers weren't finding dead bees and why Willey had one in his apartment.

‌An Oregon State University bee researcher collects "nurse bees" to determine why large number of bees have been dying recently. Photo by Natalie Behring/Getty Images. ‌

But the experts don't know why this is happening. And while they get to the bottom of it, Willey did what any passionate person would do — he dropped everything to take on the project of his life.

Willey committed to painting 50,000 bees on murals around the world. He dubbed his initiative The Good of the Hive.

Why 50,000? That's the number of bees in just one thriving hive. Just over a year into the project, Willey is well past bee #892.

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission. ‌

Each mural is unique to its location. The bees are highly detailed and meticulously painted.

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission. ‌

Willey spends months painting each mural. And even more time working with communities, schools, and businesses to come up with the space, funding, and proper permissions.

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission.

He also stops frequently to talk and spread awareness about pollinators along the way.

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission. ‌

Willey's work is found on businesses, a school, a fire station and even a tractor trailer.

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission. ‌

Every surface has potential.

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission. ‌

His medium packs the message: We've got to come together to save these creatures.

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission. ‌

And while raising awareness about the plight of pollinators is Willey's chief aim, he has a secondary goal as well.

As he travels from town to town, he's meeting people of all stripes. Together they talk bees, occasionally break bread, and get to know one another. Already, the murals are bringing people together.

"The other thing I'm learning ... through this work is the incredible possibility of connection that [bees] facilitate," he said. "There's the design, there's the art, there's all that. But the basic, basic nature of it is 'Stand and paint bees. And talk to people about bees.'"

Between his detailed murals, great conversations, and lots of fundraising, Willey believes his project will take 10 to 11 years. But there's plenty you can do right now.

To support and encourage honeybees in your yard or community, talk to your local nursery about native bee-friendly plants. A few simple additions can make your yard a welcome place for pollinators of all stripes.

"I am trying to make a point that these bees are like treasure," Willey said. "They should be invited into your yard, honored in your yard with a section of it that has specific flowers [for] the local bee population."

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission. ‌

Planting flowers at your home, school, or neighborhood is also a great project for kids and communities.

"It's so great for teaching kids! They love playing in the dirt," Willey said. "And even planning it with your neighbors and saying, 'Our block is going to become bee-friendly.'"

Photo by Patrick Seeger/AFP/Getty Images.

On the surface, it's an art project about honeybees. But it's always been much more than that.

"We have to start seeing the world like a hive," Willey said in a video for the project. "Bees and people, we're all in it together."

‌Photo by The Good of the Hive, used with permission. ‌

Pop Culture

She bought the perfect wedding dress that went viral on TikTok. It was only $3.75.

Lynch is part of a growing crowd of newlyweds going against the regular wedding tradition of spending loads of money.

Making a priceless memory.

At first glance, one might think that Jillian Lynch wore a traditional (read: expensive) dress to her wedding. After all, it did look glamorous on her. But this 32-year-old bride has a secret superpower: thrifting.

Lynch posted her bargain hunt on TikTok, sharing that she had been perusing thrift shops in Ohio for four days in a row, with the actual ceremony being only a month away. Lynch then displays an elegant ivory-colored Camila Coelho dress. Fitting perfectly, still brand new and with the tags on it, no less.

You can find that exact same dress on Revolve for $220. Lynch bought it for only $3.75.
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Images provided by Pacifico

Making waves in the best way

True

At last, summer is here. And for many people, that means it's time for heading to the beach and maybe even catching some waves. Surfing is a quintessential summertime activity for those who live in coastal communities—it’s not only really fun and challenging, it’s also a great way to celebrate Mother Nature’s beauty. Even after a wipeout, the cool water mixed with warm sunshine offers a certain kind of euphoria. Or, you know, just hanging back on the sand is plenty fun too. Simply being outdoors near the ocean is its own reward.

pacifico quiksilver beach cleanupLet’s protect the places where outdoor adventure happensAll photos provided by Pacifico

However, it's well known that our beautiful beaches are suffering the consequences of overcrowding, pollution and littering. What was once a way of playing in nature is now slowly destroying it. And of course, this affects beachgoers everywhere. The sad truth is—without taking action to preserve all the natural joys the earth provides, we will eventually lose them.

But there is hope. Two popular brands that both have roots in surf culture have teamed up to help make trips to the beach a more sustainable pastime. The best part? You don’t have to know how to hang ten in order to participate.

Pacifico®, a pilsner-style lager originally brought to the U.S. by surfers, and Quiksilver, an iconic apparel company loved by both surfers and beach goers alike, have created a brand-new range of clothing and accessories with sustainability in mind.

Take a look below. These threads are great for all kinds of fun in the sun, without compromising the environment.

pacifico quicksilver beach cleanupsReady to make some waves

The collection launches on July 5 and includes tees and woven shirts, boardshorts, hats, flip-flops and a special beach towel and tote bag. The unique collaboration features the vibrant, colorful designs that are the hallmark of Quiksilver combined with Pacifico elements, created to make a positive impact.

Each item has been thoughtfully curated to minimize an environmental footprint and protect the outdoors. The hats, for example, are made from NetPlus® by Bureo®, a raw material created from South American recycled fishing nets. Additionally, the board shorts are made from recycled plastic bottles, and tees are made with 100% organic cotton. Pretty rad stuff, to put it in surfer lingo.

The prices on these pieces are equally rad, ranging from $28 flip-flops to $60 boardshorts.

In keeping with the sustainable ethos and protecting the places we play, Pacifico and Quiksilver will celebrate the products’ launch by hosting two beach cleanups. The first is on July 5 at Sunset Point in Malibu, California, from 4-5:30pm, and the second is on July 9th at Deerfield Beach in Florida from 8:30 – 10:30am.

pacifico quicksilver clothing lineCleaning up and looking good while doing it

Theses beach cleanups are open to anyone over the age of 21 who’s ready to have some fun while taking care of nature’s playground.

Those who can’t make it to the beach (bummer, dude) don’t have to miss out on all the fun. The new collection will be available on July 5th at www.quiksilver.com/mens-collab-pacifico. And even if you don’t surf, never plan to surf, have no desire to even be near a surfboard, rest assured, the apparel is still cool. Plus sustainable choices are always good fashion.

Our planet provides us with an endless supply of beauty and adventure. But without more mindful actions from humanity, its natural wonders will eventually diminish. Fortunately Pacifico and Quiksilver are making it easier than ever for people to enjoy the great outdoors without jeopardizing it. That’s a wave worth riding.

This article originally appeared on 09.06.17


Being married is like being half of a two-headed monster. It's impossible to avoid regular disagreements when you're bound to another person for the rest of your life. Even the perfect marriage (if there was such a thing) would have its daily frustrations. Funnily enough, most fights aren't caused by big decisions but the simple, day-to-day questions, such as "What do you want for dinner?"; "Are we free Friday night?"; and "What movie do you want to see?"

Here are some hilarious tweets that just about every married couple will understand.

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