If I could pick one thing that has been my biggest downfall, it is not having a good mentor. @Chikn has been more help to me than he will ever know- much more than my local, so-called, mentor. He is a great person with a good heart, but its obvious that he doesn't know much more than I do in the end. He only has 6 hives so he is certainly not a professional, so I probably just expected too much from him. But 9 of 10 times its been Phil and other good folks here who have answered my questions. Let me also offer a hardy "AMEN!" to what Mick said:
Phil sent me an incredibly good book and I love it. But you really, really do have to have hands on and someone good who can occasionally come and look at your set-up. As great as everyone on this thread has been, the biggest problem I have in many cases is trying to explain my problem or what I'm seeing or so on. Part of the problem is I don't yet know "bee talk"; ie definitions and names for things and so on. But also, some things are just hard to describe of differentiate. How do you explain things like the color of the comb, or that you have a "lot of bees", or that "many of my bees are carrying pollen today" or "my bees are acting strange". There are just so many things that someone really has to see and/or show you in order for you to understand and learn.
All this being said, I still haven't gotten involved in the local BK association as me and now you have both been advised to you. I want to say I've been too busy but we all know we have time for what we WANT to so I need to do it! Anyway, I am far from knowing enough to even begin to offer any advice, but from one NEW BK to another I just wanted to say 1) the folks here are incredible and will be one of your best resources and 2) Get a local mentor. Good luck..