So here it is.
I put the patty on a week ago Saturday. As mentioned, the bees were NOT happy about me opening the hive when it was 35 degrees outside.
Incidentally, I used this opportunity to clear out the entrance of dead bees. The girls have been busy cleaning house and I wanted to clear the front of all their hard work.
I took the opportunity to cut a few smaller slices on the side that was exposed. Why? Because I wanted to make sure they had access and was worried that the bottom openings (slices about 3" long) were not clogged or frozen.
From this point on, I'm going to use this method. I will likely put some protein powder in the mix or just put a protein patty on with the Jan/Feb patty. I don't know how long it will take the girls to go through this patty, but will be watching closely, especially if this winter is anything like last winter!