I See The Earth Move (Almost) Under My Feet

Do you see the horned toad?  I almost didn't, but it caught my eye when it scurried to this bigger rock.
Do you see the horned toad? I almost didn’t, but it caught my eye when it scurried across my path, to rest near this bigger rock.
I heard leaves rustle by the plant I was watering after dark.  I was relieved when I found the noise belong to this guy and not a rattlesnake!
I heard leaves rustle by the tree I was watering after dark. I was relieved when I found the noise belong to this toad and not a rattlesnake!

Twice, within a week of each other, I’ve been surprised by something I didn’t see while outdoors.  I think I’m aware of my surroundings, however, these encounters make me realize that my eyes are open, but I’m looking only for what I expect to see.

Over-thinking this, as I tend to do, my thoughts progressed to how I see what I expect in other areas of my life.  I also thought about how I find comfort blending into my surroundings.  Being naturally shy (but much more social than in my younger years), I find myself more often an observer than participant.

Today, I want to set my expectations aside and really see.   I want to see someone differently than I expect based on superficial observations.  I want to join a conversation I would normally be content to watch from afar.

Most of all, I want to be surprised by what I’ve been missing.

Do you ever find yourself looking but not seeing?

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P.S.  I’m still on vacation in Washington D.C.  I’ll have to catch up on visiting blogs when I get back.  I can read posts just fine on my phone but commenting is a big pain in the neck!   My next post will be June 21st, with the weekend Trifecta challenge.  Have a wonderful week 🙂

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37 thoughts on “I See The Earth Move (Almost) Under My Feet

  1. yarnspinnerr June 14, 2013 / 7:15 AM

    That is what most of us do most of the times – Look but not see.

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 11:48 AM

      I’m glad I’m not alone in this, Yarnspinnerr. Awareness is the first step in changing, though 🙂

  2. philosophermouseofthehedge June 14, 2013 / 7:20 AM

    OH! A horn toad! There used to be tons of them around when I was a kid – but mostly vanished (fire ants, sales as pets, and who knows) So happy to see one!

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 11:49 AM

      I used to catch horned toads as a kid, too, Phil. I hope their absence is due to their camouflage more than diminishing population. They really are pretty creatures!

  3. suzicate June 14, 2013 / 7:23 AM

    I often look without really seeing. When we’re out and about it usually the hubby who spots unique things in nature…however, my eyes are usually on the lookout for snakes!

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 11:55 AM

      Funny you should mention snakes, Suzicate- my younger son learned that lesson the hard way on the hike where I saw the horned toad. He stepped on one and it wrapped around his shoe. They were both freaked out, but the snake ended up untangling itself and slithered into a nearby bush.

  4. vishalbheeroo June 14, 2013 / 8:03 AM

    i love being an observant..awesome pics..enjoying chocolates? Btw, im having mint choco:)

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 11:56 AM

      Observing is good, when we free our minds to do it, Vishal! Mint chocolate is good…no chocolate for me right now 😦

  5. coyotero2112 June 14, 2013 / 11:27 AM

    This is why my wife and I take pictures of patterns of sand on the beach. She was taking a picture of a white orchid in the Caribbean, and later when looking at it we saw the head of a feur de lance, one of the most poisonous snakes in the world. Weird world. Stopping and just staying still often allows us to see the animals that are so well comouflaged they go unnoticed, much to their benefit. And, you didn’t step on it !
    Later…

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 12:03 PM

      Yikes! That snake encounter would have been scary, especially since it wasn’t recognized until later. I found a few more animals this last week that blend in pretty well – including a squirrel on a tree trunk. It’s fascinating, really 🙂 Thanks for dropping by, Coyotero!

  6. Sean June 14, 2013 / 12:57 PM

    The first thing that popped into my head when I read this and being surprised at seeing something because I missed the not part was that you saw a congressman working. There is always an aspect of being cautious I guess in certain surroundings. As we get older, we are able to understand why things are how they are and the concept that we can’t change everything even if we would like to. I think there are times when we do have to “hide” so we can take care of ourselves. Enjoy your time in DC and the sites. Next week will come soon enough 😛 Just be like Buddy the Elf. Take care

    • Sean June 14, 2013 / 3:26 PM

      At least I think I’m right about next week. With my mind, no tellin. lol

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 12:49 PM

      Sorry, didn’t see any working (or non-working) congress members, Sean 🙂 Sometimes it is nice to blend into the crowd for both physical safety and sanity! DC was fun, but I’m ready to be away from the crowds. Of everything we saw, the kids enjoyed the beach the most. I guess less really is more 🙂

  7. Debbie June 14, 2013 / 1:15 PM

    Hope you’re having a wonderful vacation, Janna! Yes, I think it’s pretty common for people to look but fail to see. Seeing require cognizance, and too often, our minds are elsewhere.

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 12:50 PM

      I know what you mean about minds being elsewhere, Debbie. There is always so much we have to do (or tell ourselves we have to do) so we rarely slow down enough to think of what we’ve missed.

  8. diannegray June 14, 2013 / 3:23 PM

    This post reminds me of an incident a few years back when I saw a rope hanging out from the beam of our veranda into a little birds nest. I’d never noticed the rope before and asked the kids who’d hung it there. When one of them took a close look we saw it was a snake eating the birds eggs! Whenever I see ropes hanging around now I never assume it’s actually a rope! 😀

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 12:52 PM

      Eeps! I wouldn’t look at ropes the same way either, Dianne! Your country’s critters are definitely fascinating (and deadly too – we saw a show about Australia’s deadliest creatures that was pretty scary :))

  9. Connor Rickett June 14, 2013 / 4:44 PM

    When it’s something really big that it’s really impressive to me. I’ve seen moose and bear just sort of ooze out of trees the trees and brush in a way that made me feel like they must know how to teleport. One time I saw a wolf fighting a bear over a caribou carcass and the moment the bear chased after the first wolf another popped up and started chowing down, until the bear turned and chased him. Then the first wolf popped back up for his turn at dinner. They kept it up until the bear wised up and just belly-flopped on the caribou.

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 12:54 PM

      Fascinating interaction between the wolves and bear, Connor. I would’ve thought that the wolves would have steered clear, but I guess there’s safety (and boldness) in numbers. Love the image of the wildlife ‘oozing’ out of the trees!

  10. Eric Alagan June 14, 2013 / 7:27 PM

    Very true – all look, some see and even fewer comprehend

    Enjoy your vacation 🙂

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 12:56 PM

      Yep – comprehending requires more thought (and effort) than we sometimes allow ourselves to put forth. Thanks for visiting, Eric! It’s good to be back so I’m able to whittle away at the 200+ unread emails 🙂

  11. nrhatch June 14, 2013 / 7:28 PM

    I see plenty . . . but probably miss plenty too. Hope you’re enjoying DC.

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 12:56 PM

      We’ll never know everything we miss, Nancy…but as long as I realize I’m seeing something, I think it’s a good start 🙂

  12. Lance June 15, 2013 / 5:45 PM

    cool picture

    We were on vacation in DC last week. Hope you guys are having fun. My girls liked all the museums and memorials.

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 12:59 PM

      Thanks, Lance! My kids are strange – they were more impressed with the beaches and hiking than the museums! They didn’t complain about the historical aspects, but when asked at the end of the trip what they liked best, beaches and hiking won.

  13. GodGirl June 18, 2013 / 1:02 AM

    “I want to be surprised by what I’ve been missing” – I love that thought! I think as I grow older and work through ‘issues’, life seems more and more colourful. It’s like I’m discovering things for the first time 🙂 May God keep opening our eyes to what we’ve previously missed, with life becoming more exciting and magical – not less. Hope you’re having a great holiday.

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 1:01 PM

      I’ve noticed changes in how I see life too, GodGirl. I hope God continues to open our eyes, too! Vacation was nice, but coming home is even nicer 🙂

  14. agjorgenson June 18, 2013 / 8:59 PM

    Yes, and i also find myself listening without hearing. But events arrest me so that I both hear and see differently, and that is the gift of life for me.

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 1:03 PM

      I find myself listening without hearing, too. Something else to be cognizant of, Allen!

  15. pattisj June 18, 2013 / 11:21 PM

    Hope you enjoyed your visit to the east coast. I like the little buddies you found, and that neither of them was a snake!

    • jannatwrites June 20, 2013 / 1:04 PM

      I’m glad they weren’t snakes either, Patti! (My younger son found the snake and it scared him half to death. No pics of that, though :))

      • pattisj June 20, 2013 / 6:37 PM

        Too bad about not getting a pic of that!

        • jannatwrites June 21, 2013 / 10:28 PM

          Yeah, really! Totally unprepared 🙂

  16. Imelda June 23, 2013 / 7:58 PM

    Your photos are cool. What camouflage!

  17. Sandra June 28, 2013 / 5:55 PM

    Well, Janna, we’ve already determined that we’re very similar in that we’d rather be bystanders observing than participating in certain crowded conversations. I’m glad that you want to try and do something out of the ordinary for you. I think it’s great to be able to experience something you normally wouldn’t, just to see. And now that I’m older, I feel like I look and not see ALL THE TIME. It’s kind of sad… But I will have to keep my eyes open more. 🙂

    • jannatwrites June 30, 2013 / 7:06 AM

      It’s strange, but I join in more as I get older. I still so a fair amount of observing though, because that’s my comfort zone. I hope you see something new, Sandra!

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