Waiting For A Friend

Hello Friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Waiting For A Friend 81320” and is available for purchase by the instructions at the bottom of the article.

Sunshine pushes back the morning rain. A tiny flyer zipped through the bushes and looped the loop before coming to an abrupt stop on leaf. His little eyes monitor the forest edge for the slightest movement. But not just any movement. No, this little guy was looking for a specific movement. The Swallowtails passed, the blues pass and even a Regal monarch soared past and still the sturdy little skipper is not moved. A yellowjacket buzzed near and the little skipper darted out like a jet fighter to send him on his way but as soon as victory was secure he returned to hit spot on the leaf without hesitation. He kept his vigil for what seemed like an eternity but then from underneath a Spicebush a second little skipper appeared. The first little skipper sprung from his post and looped the loop all the way over to the second. His little heart was overjoyed as they flew away together. This was the friend that he’d been waiting for all along.

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The Graceful Visitor

Hello Friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Graceful Visitor 71020a” and is available for purchase by the instructions at the bottom of the article.

Delicate wings dance gracefully across the quiet country road on a warm breeze. She seems to hover for a moment over the hood of the big blue truck that’s stopped. I couldn’t help but think of her as a living smile happily seeking lives to touch. A messenger of God to bring good cheer at the end of the day. She sails down the sunbeams and comes to rest on the black-eyed Susan. She only hesitates there for a moment before finding the next soul to bless. A moment was all that was needed to be a source of peace and joy.

Hey Friends! Just a quick reminder that Lloyds Lens Photography is available for portraits!

To book me simply reach out using the Contact Page and we’ll set a date. If you’re within a 50 mile radius of Summersville West Virginia all travel fees are waived.

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

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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=238248269630914251

Lastly, 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.

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Forage Friday #48 Mint

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

There’s not many life experiences that I enjoy more than the smell of the wild peppermint on a humid July afternoon. I enjoy it so much that I combed through weeds along my creek and collected the peppermint to transplant to the edges of my garden. It wasn’t long before the peppermint just went crazy and took over the whole vegetable bed. Then it outpaced the grass in that section of the yard. And I loved every bit of it! I carefully kept the mint out of vegetables by removing the whole plant and keeping the stems and leaves to cure by hanging upside down in a cool dark place. We have a tendency to say that we “dry” the leaves and roots that we use for teas but when it’s done right it’s more of a curing process that preserves the oils in the plant. When you search the internet for ways to cure fresh mint leaves most of them involve heat. It’s suggested to put them in oven or even the microwave but I’ve never really trusted this. The mint oil is volatile and dissipates when heated. Drying the leaves with heat will make your house smell good but that smell is the very oils that you re trying to preserve escaping into the atmosphere. A slower, cooler process means that the leaves will retain more of the oils. How long to hang them really depends on the environment. In humid air it’s going to take a little longer than if the weather is dry. In general, a couple of days should be good. Just keep an eye on them and when they have the texture and feel of a good tea they’re ready. They should be dry enough to prevent mold. You can place the cured leaves in a clean mason jar but don’t screw the lid down too tight. The jar can still have moisture in it and set up conditions for mold to grow.

The reasons for foraging any wild mint should be pretty obvious. Mints are big part of tea blends and candies but it’s also a big part some high end Gourmet food. I like my meals pretty simple but I’ve seen different mints incorporated in salads, pastas, fish and of course mint and lamb is a classic combination.

Medical uses are also pretty well known. Mints were and still are one of the mainstays of herbalism. Menthol is known to have antiseptic properties and mint was used to wash wounds to prevent infections. In researching for this article I even came across a commercial product that uses peppermint oil as a base for sterilizing textiles.

As a digestive aid peppermint is said to relax the digestive muscles and provide relief from dyspepsia.

Mints are also used in balms which was the inspiration for the title of tonight’s feature image. I couldn’t help but think about the need for healing when I noticed the condition of the little butterfly’s wings. I had to wonder if he landed on the mints to sooth his tattered wings.

Peppermint and mints in general are said to be antiviral and specifically the milder herpes viruses that cause cold sores.

One of the things that I like to use the wild mints for is pest control. When outdoors in places where I’m likely to encounter mosquitoes and gnats I rub down with a few mint leaves to keep them at bay. A good trick that I picked up from Tom Brown Jr’s books is to stuff a few mint leaves into the trim on a hat and that reduces the number of gnats in my face. A simple spray of lemon scented herbs such as Spicebush leaves and mints can be misted around camps and picnic areas. Make a tincture of the herbs by soaking them in vodka or grain alcohol for several days. Then I’d mix it 50/50 with water and place it in misting bottle and refresh as needed.

I suppose that a whole series could be done on mints and we may revisit them at a later date.

My Forage Friday posts are really just to get people interested enough to look up what these plants can be used for and to share ideas so please remember to do further research and never rely on a single source for information. I’m not a medical professional so any of the medicinal uses stated here are just anecdotal.

Hey Friends! Just a quick reminder that graduation will be here before you know it. Lloyds Lens Photography is available for portraits!!

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To book me simply reach out using the Contact Page and we’ll set a date. If you’re within a 50 mile radius of Summersville West Virginia all travel fees are waived.

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

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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=238248269630914251

Lastly, 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!❤

Looking Forward To Longer Days.

Hello friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Pipevine Swallowtail on Blue Lobelia 9919” and is available for purchase by the instructions at the bottom of the article.

As the night shrinks away earlier and arrives later day by day I grow eager for life to return to my forest. We still have a lot of winter to endure but today I had actual, real life, daylight to enjoy as I walked out of the office of the day job! I was thrilled because that hasn’t happened since late October.

It’s a welcome sign on my natural calendar indeed. If it were within my power I would declare a national holiday on the first day that there’s real daylight at the end of the workday.

I suppose that’s what fueled my desire to post a butterfly picture tonight. The image of the pipevine Swallowtail visiting one of the wildflowers in my yard brings me back to the days that last until bedtime. I can look into the photo an mentally transport myself to that place where I can feel the sun.

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

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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!❤

Painted Ladies

Hello Friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Painted Lady On Dogbane 1” and is available for purchase by following the instructions at the bottom of the article.

As I stood on the edge of yard outside of the office building the butterflies continued to playfully feed on the bloom of the Indian Hemp. Across my my right shoulder one of more colorful ones fluttered by to land on the small white flowers. When it landed it folded it’s wings to show the silvery patterns on underside of the rear set. It was a painted lady.

These small colorful butterflies are found in both the old and new world. In the old world they migrate between Europe and Africa. The experts seem to debate on which populations actually cross the ocean but at least some do.

Back in North America the painted ladies stay mostly in the United States and Southern Canada with one population mapped in Mexico.

It’s been observed by some scientists that the population seems to boom during periods of heavy rain. I’m guessing that might have something to do with the rain and warm weather causing the plants to have growth spurts which means more flowers and thus more food for the butterflies.

Last night I mentioned that the Great Spangled Fritillary was host specific to violets and laid it’s eggs where there would be violets for the catipiller to feed on but Painted Ladies are not as choosey. They host on over one hundred species of plants.

The males, ( still called painted ladies) are territorial and will actually have aerial duels with rivals. They pick a roost and return to it after fight.

The last little bit of trivia for tonight’s post is that painted ladies see in the ultraviolet ranges but probably cannot tell the difference between red and green. Which incidentally is something that they have in common with honeybees.

Painted Lady On Dogbane 2

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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/

Click here to visithttps://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! Simply message me on Facebook oruse 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=238248269630914251

Lastly, 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!❤