Combine 1/2 c. warm water and yeast in a small bowl. Cover and let proof for 5-10 minutes or until yeast is bubbly.
In a large bowl combine the rest of the water, honey, shortening and salt. Add yeast mixture and stir.
Stir in whole wheat flour. Mix for 2 minutes.
Stir in all purpose flour 1 cup at a time until a soft dough forms.
Knead on a lightly floured surface 5 minutes, until the dough is elastic.
Lightly oil the mixing bowl (2 tsp.) and place dough into bowl. Turn dough over so that oiled side is facing up. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled (60-80 minutes).
Punch dough down and divide dough into two sections and form into loaves. To form into a loaf roll dough out to a 9"x18" rectangle. Roll up the 9" side. Pinch edges to seal.
Place into greased bread pans. Cover and let rise for an additional 40 minutes.
Heat oven to 375 degrees and remove all racks except for the bottom rack so that the tops of the bread are in the center of the oven. Bake bread on bottom rack for 40 minutes or until tops are a deep brown and the loaves sound hollow when lightly tapped.
Remove from pans while hot and brush with butter. Cool 30 minutes before slicing.