The Vanilla Experiment - Half Way There

So it's been a few weeks since I last posted an update on how the vanilla is coming.  I'd say it's doing really good.  I did a little research on this process and discovered that most people say to split the beans down the center.  So I dug them out and used a pair of kitchen shears to do so and my vanilla instantly got a lot browner.  Really it makes sense to do this.  The seeds inside are where all of the flavor is at.  Here are my pictures from week two and week four.  Sorry, no week three picture due to travel.

Week Two & Week Four 

I am really excited that I am half way to the point that I can begin using my vanilla.  In my research I also discovered that eight weeks is a minimum time frame in which to extract the vanilla.  Many people say that six months is a better amount of time to wait.  I just can't do it though.  I am going to reserve a small amount for baking and then let the rest go for the six months.