THE CHANGING SEASONS, DECEMBER 2019 – Marilyn Armstrong

The Changing Seasons, December 2019

The weather has definitely become an issue around here. We got some snow at the end of November and then again at the beginning of December. That appears to have been winter.

Since then, we’ve had heavy rain, a week of bitterly cold days, a few light dustings of snow, a lot of days so warm we had to put flea and tick collars back on the dogs because the moment the temperature goes into the 50s and 60s, the fleas and ticks pop up as if summer never ended.

For those who are waiting for climate change to show up, I have a flash for them. It’s here.

Many of us already live in hotspots where the temperature has met or exceeded the 2 degree Celsius level. The seasons are changing. Autumn is vanishing … and apparently, so is winter. The bugs are going to have a real field day this year since they’ve never died off.

Most large American cities are hotspots. All of Australia and Tasmania are in trouble. I suspect most major cities on every continent are already at, over, or approaching the tipping point. Between the fires, mudslides, giant storms, floods, polar ice melting … it’s here. Now. We are in it. Some places more obviously than others. I do not think we have a decade or two to fix our climate problems and I don’t see any evidence that we are doing anything positive to deal with the changing climate or our planetary ecology.

I’m trying to find something about which to be optimistic, but I’m not having much success.

Nuthatch and incoming Bluebird

Frozen woods

Carolina Wren

A huge Tufted Titmice!

Ice everywhere

About The Changing Seasons

The Changing Seasons is a monthly challenge where bloggers around the world share what’s been happening in their month.

If you would like to join in, here are the guidelines:

The Changing Seasons Version One (photographic):

  • Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery that you feel represent your month
  • Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.
  • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them

The Changing Seasons Version Two (you choose the format):

  • Each month, post a photo, recipe, painting, drawing, video, whatever that you feel says something about your month
  • Don’t use archive stuff. Only new material!
  • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so others can find them.

If you do a ping-back to Su Leslie’s original post, I can update it with links to all of yours.

 

THE CHANGING SEASONS: MAY 2019 – Marilyn Armstrong

The Changing Seasons, May 2019

Photography: Garry and Marilyn Armstrong

It has been a weird month of May. A lot of rain, a lot of cold days with and without rain, then a couple of hot muggy days. Immediately followed by cooler dry days and then wet, quite cold days. It’s only in the low 50s right now and will be in the mid-40s tonight. That is cold for this time of year.

Flowers – Marilyn Armstrong

Weather forecasts these days are closer to guesses than they used to be. There’s so much very bad, dangerous weather rolling across the continent. Tornadoes, flooding, violent thunderstorms only a few miles south of here. As long as the winds don’t change, all we are going to get is drenching rain.

Mumford Dam and River – Garry and Marilyn Armstrong

The gardens look pretty sad. There are flowers, but everything, even the Hosta, is droopy and no really fully developed. Except for Solomon’s Seal — which is happy in gray rainy weather — everything else looks like it wishes it could have stayed in the ground.

The Village – Garry Armstrong

There were a few good days and we went out for one, and Garry for another. Otherwise, it was some of the flowers and of course, the birds.

Boys and the River – Garry and Marilyn Armstrong

The pictures make it look like we’ve had a lovely, sunny month. The truth is that all of the pictures were taken over a period of five sunny days. The rest of the months was gray, rainy, and mostly, cold.

The following pictures of the birds may tell more of the story because the birds get really hungry when the weather is cold and rainy. When it’s bright and sunny, they tend to ignore us. Also, they aren’t happy with us right now because we bought cheaper food. It’s not bad food, but it has less of the more expensive components because rain or not, there’s real, live food all over the woods. There are bugs and fruit and nuts to eat and they don’t need to depend on our buffet.

Birds – Marilyn Armstrong

Except for the squirrels. They have completely given up finding their own food. As far as they are concerned, they own us and expect a good, solid meal every single day. They ate ALL the food in two days this week. I mean down to the last few seeds at the very bottom of the hanging feeder. And they did it while we weren’t looking.

The Red Christmas Cactus – Marilyn Armstrong

Macro red cactus

Murderer’s Row – Marilyn Armstrong

They have figured out when we are around — and when we aren’t. They are smarter than people think!


About The Changing Seasons

The Changing Seasons is a monthly challenge where bloggers around the world share what’s been happening in their month.

If you would like to join in, here are the guidelines:

The Changing Seasons Version One (photographic):

      • Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery that you feel represent your month
      • Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.
      • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them

The Changing Seasons Version Two (you choose the format):

      • Each month, post a photo, recipe, painting, drawing, video, whatever that you feel says something about your month
      • Don’t use archive stuff. Only new material!
      • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so others can find them.

If you do a pingback to Su-Leslie’s post, she will update it with links to your post.

THE CHANGING SEASONS: APRIL 2019 – THE RAINIEST APRIL SINCE 1872 – Marilyn Armstrong

The Changing Seasons, April 2019
The Rainiest April in 140 Years

Photography: Garry and Marilyn Armstrong

It wasn’t just my imagination. Of the 29 days of this past, April 2019, twenty of them were rainy. And for the final day, tomorrow, it will also rain which will bring the total to 21 days of rain for the month of April.

Not surprisingly, we didn’t get out to take a lot of pictures this month. If it weren’t were the bird feeders on our deck, there might not be any pictures at all.

Most of the time, it has been chilly and wet. We got some daffodils and a few crocuses. We even got a few sad-looking Forsythias. Meanwhile, although we got a whole set of brand new young Rhododendrons while the mature bushes all died. I don’t know if the rain drowned them or maybe they were just ready to move on and that’s why they sent up the new shoots.

My son is going to cut them all down — the dead ones and the young ones and all of the rose bushes. They will grow back, or at least the living ones will. I guarantee that by August, the young Rhododendrons and the barbed-wire roses will be taller than me.

Owen says they cut down their bushes every year and by mid-summer, they stand more than seven feet high. Meantime, there are a lot of shoots for upcoming daylilies. Bless you, daylilies. When everything else fails, I can count on you!

Double trouble

Brown-headed Cowbirds

The rain killed most everything else. We got two tulips and a bunch of bright yellow daffodils. I’m hoping we will see some Columbine and Spiderwort, too.

When I look into the woods, I can see that there is green there. The maples are beginning to show fat buds. The young pine trees have new growth, too.

Despite having several large trees fall on it, the lilac has a full growth of new leaves. I am surprised. I was sure it was going to give up at long last, but somehow, it keeps coming back. It doesn’t bloom much anymore. There isn’t enough sunshine back at the edge of the woods. And this is not a bush anymore. It hasn’t been a bush in more than 18 years. It is old growth and almost as tall as a maple tree.

It’s baseball season again!

Whether or not it will flower? Your guess is as good as mine. It’s too early for blooming. It won’t flower until the middle of May if it flowers at all. Sunshine would help.


About The Changing Seasons

The Changing Seasons is a monthly challenge where bloggers around the world share what’s been happening in their month.

If you would like to join in, here are the guidelines:

The Changing Seasons Version One (photographic):

      • Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery that you feel represent your month
      • Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.
      • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them

The Changing Seasons Version Two (you choose the format):

      • Each month, post a photo, recipe, painting, drawing, video, whatever that you feel says something about your month
      • Don’t use archive stuff. Only new material!
      • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so others can find them.

If you do a ping-back to Su-Leslie’s post, she will update it with links to of yours.

THE CHANGING SEASONS, October 2018 – Marilyn Armstrong

The Changing Seasons: October 2018


Photographs: Marilyn & Garry Armstrong and The Blackstone Valley

Today I ordered “Milestones & Guideposts of Massachusetts and Southeastern New Hampshire.” I know I’m an eclectic reader, but sometimes I’m so eclectic I surprise even me. The worst part of my passion for odd yet historic books is they are expensive. There are no bargains on the only book ever written on this subject. The pictures are all black and white — and not very sharp. You can’t get it for Kindle, either. Not that it would make much sense as an e-book.

Photo: Garry Armstrong

No, this is one you need to hold in your hand as you walk through a strange alley in Boston or the edge of a woods in the Valley.

Still, I couldn’t help myself. New England was one of the first places on the continent infested with Europeans. Being of a practical turn of mind, instead of building new roads, they followed Native American trails and set up milestones and guideposts to point the way to the first couple of “cities” in the area: Boston and its harbor (aka “the Bay”) and Springfield.

Marilyn’s October


Once you passed through Springfield, you were in the wilds of Connecticut … or whatever it was called back then. After you got to Boston or the Bay, you stopped … or got on a sailing ship.

I’m hoping to track down some of these spots. There are quite a few milestones nearby. I know there is one in Uxbridge — I found it quite by accident one day while getting lost. I never found it again. There is another in Mendon and a bunch various parts of Worcester County and of course, Boston. Some of these are now alongside major roads.

The Native American paths originally marked eventually became roads and later, highways. Some are in an alley in Boston. Others are hidden in a woods or in someone’s yard. Not all are mapped. For all I know, there might be one buried in our woods.

Photo: Marilyn Armstrong

On days like this, I muse on what the history of this area would be had Europeans not invaded it in the 1500s. If, instead of conquest, societies had melded and produced a decent world for all of us.

It’s a forlorn hope, I know, but it didn’t have to be this way.

Garry’s October


October has been too warm and rain for the first couple of weeks, wet and windy since then. We had some pretty colors yesterday and today, but for the end of October, there’s a lot of green on the trees.

After the storm hits us tomorrow (and Sunday, Monday and maybe Tuesday), I’d be surprised if there are enough leaves left on the trees. Not every fall is a great one.

Photo: Marilyn Armstrong

It has been pretty, but we never really hit our stride. Nonetheless, we did take a lot of pictures of the Mumford in Uxbridge and the Blackstone everywhere.


About The Changing Seasons


The Changing Seasons is a monthly challenge where bloggers around the world share what’s been happening in their month.

If you would like to join in, here are the guidelines:

The Changing Seasons Version One (photographic):

  1 – Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery that you feel represent your month

2 – Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.

3 – Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them

The Changing Seasons Version Two (you choose the format):

   1 – Each month, post a photo, recipe, painting, drawing, video, whatever that you feel says something about your month

  2 – Don’t use archive stuff. Only new material!

  3 – Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so others can find them.

If you do a ping-back to Su-Leslie’s post, she will update it to include your links.

THE CHANGING SEASONS: AUGUST 2018 – AS SUMMER ENDS – Marilyn Armstrong

The Changing Seasons: August 2018


Photographs by:
Garry Armstrong
Ben Taylor
Marilyn Armstrong

Unlike in July, this month, we took some pictures. Of course, the two months look a lot alike, though July has more flowers. This month, I’m including pictures of mine, pictures from Garry and a few from a good friend who was visiting us and shooting his amazing (I want one!) Olympus Pen-F camera.

Please look for the shooter’s signature on photographs so you know who took it!

High point of the month: Garry gets his new hearing equipment.

And we got a new(er) car, a bright orange Jeep Renegade!

We saw goats.

Ben’s goats!

There were horses and chickens and cows — and one brown calf, as well as a barn full of cats and kittens.

Kitten anyone?

One beautiful cat! \

Up the ladder

Ben’s horses 

Garry’s horse

Marilyn’s horses

Photo: Ben Taylor

And let us not forget the landscapes and the produce!

And we had two lovely meals in Miss Mendon, a refurbished Worcester Dining car located at the car dealer (it’s a big dealership).

And  just one more …

Last of the daylilies

It has been a busy and exciting month and I’m exhausted! But happy, too.

About The Changing Seasons

The Changing Seasons is a monthly challenge where bloggers around the world share what’s been happening in their month.

If you would like to join in, here are the guidelines:

The Changing Seasons Version One (photographic):

  • Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery that you feel represent your month
  • Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.
  • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them

The Changing Seasons Version Two (you choose the format):

  • Each month, post a photo, recipe, painting, drawing, video, whatever that you feel says something about your month
  • Don’t use archive stuff. Only new material!
  • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so others can find them.

If you do a ping-back to Su Leslie’s post, she will update it with links to all of yours.

UPDATE

Please check out these bloggers and see how August played out for them

Ju-Lyn at All Things Bright and Beautiful

Tracy at Reflections of an Untidy Mind

Klara’s Brussels in August

THE CHANGING SEASONS: JUNE 2018 – Garry & Marilyn Armstrong

The Changing Seasons: June 2018


And now, it is summer. Spring came late, but it came. Even though winter seemed to have lasted forever. By the end of March, it felt eternal.

Right now, the weather is as perfect as the weather ever gets. It’s comfortable and warm.

Sunny, with a light breeze. All my flowers are blooming and there’s a light scent of freshly cut grass in the air.

Generations by the Blackstone in June

I didn’t have to cut the grass myself. It helps me appreciate it more.

We’ve been out on a boat, clearing the gardens. Cutting down trees that weren’t even a sapling in March.

Photo: Garry Armstrong

Photo: Garry Armstrong

Apparently, the long, cold winter gave the flowers inspiration. They are growing like crazy.

Vertical dock from the muddy edge of the river.

Downtown sheep

Sheep Shearing

Taking the wool to market


About the Changing Seasons:

The Changing Seasons is a monthly challenge where bloggers around the world share what’s been happening in their month.

If you would like to join in, here are the guidelines:

The Changing Seasons Version One (photographic):

  • Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery that you feel represent your month
  • Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.
  • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them

The Changing Seasons Version Two (you choose the format):

  • Each month, post a photo, recipe, painting, drawing, video, whatever that you feel says something about your month
  • Don’t use archive stuff. Only new material!
  • Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so others can find them.

If you do a ping-back to this SuLeslie’s “The Changing Seasons” post, she can update it with links to all of yours.

THE CHANGING SEASONS – AUTUMN, OCTOBER 2017

In this third year of watching the seasons change from month to month, Autumn showed up in the middle of October … but not like it has in other years. It is pretty. Colorful, but many areas are still green while others are quite bare. A strange autumn.

Photo: Marilyn Armstrong

The weather has finally cooled down. It’s still very mild during the day, though it gets pretty chilly at night. Not exactly winter, but it no longer feels like summer.

Garry and I too a lot of pictures this month. It’s not our  most glorious New England autumn, but it’s pretty. At its least, New England’s autumn is forever beautiful.

Please don’t forget to visit:

Max a.k.a. Cardinal Guzman – The Changing Seasons 

Version 2 (link to Max’s new YouTube channel):

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOn2NZfdFcJYCp4Y_fcbOyg

Here’s Max’s Flickr gallery with more photos:

https://flic.kr/s/aHsm59WCD4

THE CHANGING SEASONS – SEPTEMBER AGAIN (2017)

LAYERED – THE DAILY POST WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE


In this third year of watching the seasons change from month to month, this is the first time we have reached late September, yet fall has not come.

Just as summer arrived a month and a half late this year, it appears that autumn will be equally late. Almost as if this earth has been slightly knocked off its typical circuit and isn’t rolling around in the usual way.

Old brickwork along the Blackstone Canal and river

It is still late summer outside. Although you can see hints of red and yellow here and there, the normal colors of autumn are pastel and difficult to see. Patches of some of the trees, especially those along the river, have a bit of color, but not what I would normally expect.

Of course, this is by no means the latest autumn has arrived. Autumn — that burst of brilliant color — is keyed to the weather. Dry weather with cold night is what usually makes the sap stop running and turns the trees bright and clear. We’ve had warm days with cooler nights, but not cool enough. And right now, we are enjoying rain brought to us by the remnants of former hurricane Jose. No wind, or at least not in this neighborhood. Maybe it is windier along the coast and on the Island — Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard maybe.

When the rain ends, then we shall see. October is always “the” month for autumn in this region. Further north, in Canada and Maine, they might already be deep into autumn, but I’m hearing that it hasn’t happened there, either. It is still late summer, even in the north.

I have a lot of pictures this month, but  you will have to wait one more month to see our glorious New England autumn.

Please don’t forget to visit:

Max a.k.a. Cardinal Guzman – The Changing Seasons 

for more of this months wonderful seasons around the world.

A NEW DOOR AND AN OLD DAM – THE CHANGING SEASONS AUGUST 2017

Other people may have been outside enjoying their summer vacation, but this summer has been all about fixing stuff. Doors and water heaters. Cleaning. Getting rid of junk. The last seasonally lovely pictures I took were at the very beginning of the month at Roaring Dam.

Roaring Dam

Since then, we’ve been home fixing stuff, or Garry was in New York — fixing stuff in his parents old house. Other than Roaring Dam, there have been no landscapes. I may get a few before the month is out, but I’m not holding my breath.

The actual installation of the long-awaited door gives me a sense of completion. With a little bit of luck, we’ll be in good shape to get through the winter and hopefully survive the drenching rains from the hurricane on its way up the coast.

Not painted and before the doggy door was added, but it’s up.

It went well. In a rare moment of do-it-yourself home repairs, the project went pretty  much perfectly from start to finish. All the work Owen did when he installed the previous door — ten years ago — remained in good shape. Damp, but not rotted. The door had rotted, but the frame was solid and square. Which meant that they could put the door in without a crisis.

I really like the new door. There’s more glass and I can actually look outside through it and see something. It’s simple and suits the house.

It was still a lot of work. Big, heavy door to remove, even bigger, heavier door to install. Nails and screws and moving the lock and door handle. Shims. Flashing. Insulation. Some green stuff that is designed to kill every living thing that could invade a piece of wood.

The doggy door had to be installed too. I was worried it wouldn’t be big enough. This, despite the fact that every website that deals with dog doors assured me that this is the right size door. We’ve had a really huge dog door for years, so it looked puny in comparison.

It is fine, as it turns out. Once it was installed, Duke looked at it and immediately went out. Bonnie refused to try it and Gibbs sat in front of it, hitting it with his paw, but refused to use it. Finally, Owen pushed him through it, after which he went back out and came in for dinner. After dinner, both Scottish Terriers went out, then sat outside, in front of the door, whining. I believe this was a complaint indicating they would like their old dog door back. Please.

Obviously, this is not going to happen, but they are good at registering complaints. Garry thinks they are merely messing with our heads. Another thing they are very good at.

They really liked the hours when the door wasn’t there at all. The “no door” solution suited them. I think they would have been very happy had we left it that way. I could certainly understand their point of view. Unfortunately, the hornets, flies, and mosquitoes — and who knows what else — also liked the “no door” scenario. It’s going to take a while to clear out the strange flying things in the house.

Orange begonias on the deck

I took pictures. Garry was continuing the clean-up of the guest room while I was tending to the door-in-progress. While the guys were out getting other supplies, I joined Garry. Cleaned all the dolls, which was easier than I expected. I was reminded I had cleaned them more recently than I realized. I also remembered to use plain, white vinegar as a doll cleanser. Which is good because all the other cleaning supplies are somewhere. I’m not sure where. Maybe in the trunk in the bedroom, which last I knew contains wigs and cords for restringing aging hard plastic dolls from the 1940s through 1960s. More or less my entire collection.

Tired Duke, taking a breather.

Garry managed to get the rug in the room clean. It’s a miracle. I never expected it to look that good again. If only I could get the horrible dark pink paint off the walls, too.

One thing at a time. We’ve got other work to do in the meantime.

Please visit Max — Cardinal Guzman  — and take a look at all the other wonderful photographs of the season! 

The Changing Seasons is a Monthly Photo Challenge started by CardinalGuzman.wordpress.com.

THE CHANGING SEASONS – JULY 2017

The Changing Seasons: July 2017


It stopped raining for a few days this month and we took advantage of the time, brief as it was, to go take some pictures. Last month, everything was still sparse due to the cold, rainy weather we’ve been having since March.

Photo: Garry Armstrong

Photo: Garry Armstrong

As soon as it warmed up at the very end of June, everything that could grow went into hyper-overdrive, producing the must intense, lush flowers and leaves and ferns I’ve ever seen. To make up for the lost weeks of non-spring, we got spring and summer wrapped up on one crazy-ass ball!

The pictures were taken by both of us — Marilyn and Garry Armstrong. Except those taken around the house, they were taken in one of the Blackstone Valley Historic Corridor parks in Uxbridge.


Don’t miss Max “The Cardinal’s” wonderful pictures! Drop by his site and take a look.


The sun has been slipping in and out all morning … maybe there will be more pictures today.

 

THE CHANGING SEASON — IS SPRING AROUND THE CORNER?

The Changing Seasons: February 2017


Photographs by Garry and Marilyn Armstrong


We got a lot of snow this month, but not as much as we have had in earlier years. If this is as bad as it gets, I’m okay with it.

Yesterday, suddenly, the temperature went up. It didn’t go up a few degrees. It went from well below freezing to downright warm and cozy. But of course, we had a lot of snow on the ground, so the world went into the big drip. First, the long icicles hanging from the roof began to drip and about 24 hours later, they were gone.

Then, the roof began to drip. It was dripping so hard it looked like we were having our own personal rainstorm. This afternoon, with the temperature at 45 degrees Fahrenheit (about 7.25 Celsius), the dripping has stopped. Which probably means the roof is now clear and we didn’t even have to get someone to come and shovel it!

I’m hoping we are now heading towards spring. Not an early spring or even a late one. Just a normal, on time, regular kind of spring weather. Garry took most of the pictures this month, so all of these are from both of us.

Please go visit some of the other beautiful galleries for this month!

You will find them on THE CHANGING SEASON  – FEBRUARY 2017.

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THE CHANGING SEASONS – EARLY WINTER – DECEMBER 2016

THE CHANGING SEASONS: DECEMBER 2016

Evangelical church on the common after dark in December

Evangelical church on the common after dark in December

You never know about December. We’ve had some of our most memorable blizzards this month. I remember one storm, when we still lived in Boston. It hit in early December and dropped 22 inches on the city. Other years, different winters, we have had no measurable snow until late January or February. And, just to confuse the issue, every four or five years, we have a winter with no snow or nearly none. It all depends on the prevailing winds, the polar vortex, and the positioning of Santa’s sleigh in the arctic. Most important is whether or not we are ready for winter to arrive. If we aren’t, an early hard winter is guaranteed.

Our house. After I took this, I realized that we have lived here for almost 17 years and this is the first time I've shot a night photograph of our house.

After I shot this, I realized we’ve lived here almost 17 years — yet this is the first time I’ve photographed our house after dark

I have discovered a direct correlation between how much money you spend on snow removal equipment and how much snow will fall that season. If you spend big money and get a powerful snowblower or tractor that will easily tackle four-foot drifts on the bunny slope we optimistically call “our driveway,” your odds of getting no snow deeper than three inches increases exponentially.

If you spend more than $1500, you may get two back-to-back winters without any appreciable snow. You can bribe weather gods. I have no idea what they do with the money. Do they hang out on the sunny beaches of Jamaica or Waikiki? If I were a winter weather god, those would be my top two choices.

The rectory of the Evangelical church on Uxbridge common

The rectory of the Evangelical church on Uxbridge common

On the other hand, if you love winter sports, you can trick the gods and assure proper snow depths by not buying any snow-clearing equipment. All you need to do is go into the winter snow season completely unprepared. Extra points for failing to switch to snow tires. This will certainly guarantee a blizzard of (almost) epic proportions.

Is this real? True? I’m sure you can find it on Facebook. You can always find the Truth on social media.

Uxbridge Common at night ... just before Christmas with lights.

Uxbridge Common at night … just before Christmas with lights

Last year’s winter was very mild and so far, this season, we’ve had only one dusting plus a modest little snow that melted the following day. No great heaps of snow. It has been very cold and other places not far from here have gotten considerably more winter weather than us. I believe this is because last year, we finally gave in and bought a four-wheel-drive Jeep. For the amount of money it cost, we may get as many as three mild winters.

Snow in the woods in December

Snow in the woods in December

I was trying to find a single picture that screamed “December.” But this month, I bought (second-hand, but in perfect condition) a terrific Leica f1.4 lens for my Olympus OM-D. It’s the lens for night photography.

Last summer's chrysanthemums linger as the season's first snow falls

Last summer’s chrysanthemums linger as the season’s first snow falls

I also got the Topaz Simplify 4 filter set. This has skewed my photographic endeavors in the direction of artistic and experimental rather than my more typical realism. I hope you like the results. I’m having so much fun with combinations of filters, I felt compelled to show off at least of few of them to you. What I like best about this kind of photography is that it is like painting. It’s not just things as they are or were, but as I see them in my mind’s eye.

Bonnie watches the snow falling.

Bonnie watches snow falling

Finally, I could not choose only one photograph. Here is 2016 through all the changing seasons.

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See you all on the flip side of the calendar. Cardinal Guzman has kindly offered to host this challenge again in 2017, so I will look forward to viewing all your beautiful pictures next year.

Enjoy the holiday and the season!

TheChangingSeasons_6367

THE CHANGING SEASONS: AUGUST 2016 – DOG DAYS

The Changing Seasons: August 2016


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The dog days of August are here. Strange weather has persisted, though the last few days have been more like a “normal” summer than any of the preceding months.

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The Gypsy Moth caterpillars stripped the trees in early July. Now, in the second half of August, the leaves look full and the deep green that is normal for this time of year.

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