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A Peek At Spring

Hello friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Forsythia 1112020” and is available for purchase by the instructions at the bottom of the article.

The months of January and February are the most challenging for me when I’m trying to find fresh images. The landscape is dull and the wildlife is scarce. A few different types of Woodpeckers cruise the forests along with the Blue Jays but they simply refuse to be photographed. The big Pileated Woodpeckers even gave a laughing call as they deftly maneuver through the thin canopy. The squirrels are asleep in their hollow trees and it seems very lonely among the boles.

As I crossed my yard hoping to find a small songbird visiting my feeders something out of place caught my eye. A tiny speck of bright yellow on a drab day. My Forsythia bush has offered one single bloom. It’s actually about four months early. I have been observing the buds on the trees surrounding my home. Some of them are swelling but not really more than normal for my latitude. It’s actually common for some plants to waken slightly in winter and then go back to sleep. But the Forsythia has actually opened up a flower. Just a single bloom but it’s there as if the bush was giving me a word of encouragement to hold on just a little while longer.

It wasn’t really in the news but January 6th was perihelion day. The day that the Earth is closest to the Sun and we often get a snap of warmer weather around that time. But in the weeks that follow is when it’s the coldest. A lot of the plants in North America will open a few buds only to have them frozen afterward. However, if you look closely you’ll see that not all of the buds open. They actually keep a few in reserve to open again in Spring.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

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If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Did you know that I also do portraits by appointment? If you’re interested in a portrait session either message me on Facebook or Use the Contact form. The YouTube link below takes you one of my slideshows.

https://youtu.be/FDcrY6w8oY8

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer.

Thank you again for your support of my page!❤

Some Random Thoughts On Curiosity

Hello friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Curious Onlooker 2” and is available for purchase by the instructions at the bottom of the article.

The forest was soft and green as I stepped inside the tree line to gain a little quiet time. As I admire the colors and textures of my surroundings the little gray squirrel digs through the leaves and works his way closer to my position. I’m sure that he’s a little bit concerned about the human in his territory but squirrels are also naturally curious. Curiosity is how he learns about the world around him and it’s how we learn too.

I have found that some of the most fulfilling experiences begin with a question. It’s one thing for something to catch the eye but it’s something more to catch the mind and engage the sense of wonder. It doesn’t really have to be somewhere exotic or a rare item. It can be something as mundane as a colorful piece of sandstone in a parking lot. You begin to think about how the patterns formed or you might see shapes in the grain that fire the imagination.

On the other hand, you might find something that seems to be mundane on the surface but turns out to be something very special. Such as the 34.48 carat Jones Diamond that was thought to be a large piece of quartz until someone got curious enough to take it to an expert.

The most powerful question ever is “what if?” It opens the door to possibilities and leads us to new things. It’s one of driving forces behind having a real life and not just a mere existence.

For the little squirrel curiosity leads him to food, shelter and fun and of course random encounters with photographers. But it’s the driving force that keeps him moving. And us too.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Did you know that I also do portraits by appointment? If you’re interested in a portrait session either message me on Facebook or Use the Contact form. The YouTube link below takes you one of my slideshows.

https://youtu.be/FDcrY6w8oY8

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer.

Thank you again for your support of my page!❤

Forage Friday #41 Smartweed

Hello friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Smartweed On Panther Mountain” and is available for purchase by the instructions at the bottom of the article.

Smartweed is one of those plants that has negative effects on some people. It’s said that eating large quantities of Smartweed can cause a sensitivity to the sun and some people can get a rash from skin contact with the plant. However, I have enjoyed Pennsylvania Smartweed fresh off the plant without any negative impact.

One of the first forage plants that I decided to try many years ago was Smartweed. It’s a pretty common plant that’s found throughout North America and it’s in almost every state except Utah and Nevada. Polygonum is a large genus of plants in the Buckwheat family and the different types of Smartweed can vary in spiciness. Think of different types of peppers ranging from a very mild bell pepper to the dreaded Carolina Reaper and you’ll get the idea. So with that in mind I should be clear that I’m speaking of Lady’s Thumb and Pennsylvania Smartweed. Both plants have a characteristic dark spot on the leaves ( I’ll try to do a follow-up this spring when they’re nice and fresh and get a good shot of the leaves) but the spot on Lady’s Thumb is more like a smudge where Pennsylvania Smartweed’s spot tends to be a chevron. The plant I have the most of is the Pennsylvania Smartweed. The peppery flavor tends to be stronger in Pennsylvania Smartweed but my experience with it is that the leaf is relatively mild when compared to other spices. If you’ve never tried Smartweed before then I do recommend starting with a very small piece ( about the size of the tip of your pinky finger) until you’re sure that the plant agrees with your palette. The stronger tasting Pennsylvania Smartweed leaves are mostly used as a spice.

Lady’s Thumb leaves are so mild that they can be used as a substitute for spinach in salads. Or, even cooked and served as a pot herb. The pink flowers of both plants are used as an edible garnishment.

At some point those pretty pink flowers turn white. When they do the seeds are ripe and can be collected in a paper bag and dried to be ground as a substitute for black pepper. From what I’ve read that’s the traditional European use for Smartweed. Again, remember that some varieties are more potent than others and the seeds of both Lady’s Thumb and Pennsylvania Smartweed are more spicy than the leaves. To use the seed they’ll need to be freed from the papery husk and rubbing them in your hands works just fine. Allow the seeds and husks to fall on a plate and then gently blow the paper away. Carefully tossing them up while blowing will also help.

The plant is Native to Europe but was brought here by the colonists and quickly became a Native American favorite. It was used medically to treat a variety of issues including arthritis and poison oak rash. ( Again, some people get rash from it so I would test myself before treating poison oak with Smartweed. )

As I mentioned above my plan is do a follow-up this spring when I can get some more images that includes the leaves. Tonight’s feature image was actually a calibration shot from an earlier project and since foraging can be a little bit of a challenge this time of year I decided to use it.

Before I close I’m going to toss out a reminder that if you forage please remember to either forage your own land or gain permission from the landowner and always respect private property.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Did you know that I also do portraits by appointment? If you’re interested in a portrait session either message me on Facebook or Use the Contact form. The YouTube link below takes you one of my slideshows.

https://youtu.be/FDcrY6w8oY8

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer.

Thank you again for your support of my page!❤

Building Civilization… A few random thoughts.

Hello friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Muddelty Creek Barn 111619BW” and is available for purchase by the instructions at the bottom of the article.

The echoes of many storms are embedded in the wooden beams. A tin roof shows the crimson marks of a river’s worth of rainfall. It’s said that time erodes the works of man and everything returns to the dust. Civilizations rise and fall and the people rebuild on the dust of the previous age. I’ve never really been the kind of person who had all of dates and names that history upholds as great but in truth the story doesn’t really change much. Those who work the land give birth to nations and those who don’t lose them. As mighty as the Roman Legions were their largest military asset wasn’t really the sword or the shield. It was the farm. In later years the Norse mastered the sea but but as soon as they reached the shore they began to work the land. In the New World Cahokia rose up and fed it’s 20k people with crops that were brought in from the surrounding land. We don’t really know for sure why Cahokia vanished but it was completely gone just prior to the the maunder minimum ( little ace age ).

I consider these things as I look at the old barn in its state of decay. I have to wonder what will rise in its place some day. Perhaps it will another barn but one that stores a wealth that we can’t imagine. Only time will tell.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Did you know that I also do portraits by appointment? If you’re interested in a portrait session either message me on Facebook or Use the Contact form. The YouTube link below takes you one of my slideshows.

https://youtu.be/FDcrY6w8oY8

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer.

Thank you again for your support of my page!❤

Letting Summer Out For A While

Hello friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Honeybee And Ironweed 83019” and is available for purchase by the instructions at the bottom of the article.

Outside my window is cold and wet. The recent snow only lasted long enough to delay travel and make everything muddy. So I turned to the window in my hand. The one that shows the past and allows me to chose the season that wish to view. I scrolled through the days, weeks and months that were stored in the little black time machine in my hand until I found the one that made me feel warm. As I gaze into the image I can hear the buzz of tiny wings grooming each purple blossom and filling the air with a sweet aroma. Waves of heat emanate from the nearby parking lot as large soaring birds catch the thermals rising from the city. As I mentally step through the window the world around me becomes green and alive and for a few moments it’s Sumner again. The howling winds of winter are replaced with music coming from the open windows of the passing cars. I can feel the soft grass tickle my sandaled feet as approach the purple bloom in an attempt to observe the honeybee at work. She pays no attention to the giant hovering over her as she works. I carefully move the lens into place and “bottle up” the time so that on a cold winter day like today I can let Summer out to play for just a little while.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Did you know that I also do portraits by appointment? If you’re interested in a portrait session either message me on Facebook or Use the Contact form. The YouTube link below takes you one of my slideshows.

https://youtu.be/FDcrY6w8oY8

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer.

Thank you again for your support of my page!❤

Seeking Solitude On A Winter Day

Hello friends! Tonight’s feature image “The Seeker 2”. Unlike most of the photos on my blog this one is not for sale but plenty of the other photos on my blog are. If you see something that you like just follow the instructions at the bottom of the article.

Cool air fills the forest as a light mist settles across the land. Small streams form pushing the fallen leaves out of way. The rain settles out and the sun breaks through the clouds for a little while. It’s a great opportunity to get out on a pathway and leave the artificial life of T.V., internet and radio behind. The fragrance of the moss gently wafts from the wet ground and the birds fill the forest with happy chirps. On this trip they’re the only companions. In 9 weeks give or take the forest will slowly begin to open sleepy eyes. I’ve already seen a few green leaves peeking through the leaf litter like a small child opening one eye and then playing possum. They’ll pop up for a little while and then go back to sleep in the deep cold of February. One of them looks like Solomon’s Seal but I haven’t really checked it close yet. Last year’s fern fronds are still green and sprawled across their domain. Some of them are perched on top of rotten stumps and others cling to the top of large stones along with the moss. The rain begins to drizzle again but the mountain offers plenty of cover in the form of rocky ledges with shallow caves at the base. You can sit under them and just listen to rain. The tranquility of the solitude brings peace and the peace is fulfilling.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Did you know that I also do portraits by appointment? If you’re interested in a portrait session either message me on Facebook or Use the Contact form. The YouTube link below takes you one of my slideshows.

https://youtu.be/FDcrY6w8oY8

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer.

Thank you again for your support of my page!❤

A Trip To The Lake At Winter Pool

Hello friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Summersville Lake 12819” and is available for purchase by the instructions at the bottom of the article.

The empty lake waits longingly for days of warm sun and noisy laughter echoing from its canyon walls. Today, only a few dedicated kayaks tread it’s waters. Some are taking advantage of the the better fishing opportunity that comes with winter pool and others just seek the peaceful solitude of the open water and rocky shores.

Somewhere beyond the bridge a whitetail deer leaves hoofprints in a place where a catfish once laid on the bottom waiting for nightfall.

Image Titled “Lake Sirens 1”

Tree stumps gather on the rocks and fire the imagination with thoughts of sirens calling out for Odysseus to come just a little closer.

Image Titled “Lake Dragon With Long Tail “

Just below the sirens a dragon with a long tail sleeps on a rock shelf guarding a treasure that washed away in ages past.

I sat there in my big blue truck for several minutes wondering how many more stories could be found on the empty lake bottom but the road calls for me to move beyond the murky world of the lake bottom and finish my errands. Perhaps on the next trip I’ll find the answer.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Did you know that I also do portraits by appointment? If you’re interested in a portrait session either message me on Facebook or Use the Contact form. The YouTube link below takes you one of my slideshows.

https://youtu.be/FDcrY6w8oY8

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer.

Thank you again for your support of my page!❤