today's Joy is looking, seeing, noticing

Hello, Monday. I hope your week is starting off beautifully. We're having wonderful weather here today. Cool, breezy, sunny. Fall is in the air, but so is summer. I love that mingling of the two seasons. We've been having storms and rain and the most amazing clouds. I can't stop taking Instagram photos of them.

Driving to work, walking the dogs, gazing out the window. I can't stop looking at the sky. Every minute it is different. Beautiful. Dramatic.

And then yesterday this quote showed up in my email:

If, then, I were asked for the most important advice I could give, that which I considered to be the most useful to the men of our century, I should simply say: in the name of God, stop a moment, cease your work, look around you. 

                    -- Leo Tolstoy

Yes, pay attention. This is something I need to remind myself often. I don't want to miss anything and there is so much to see. But also, looking and seeing, noticing, are things that I relish. Lately every time I go for a walk, I pick up acorns and put them in my pocket. This is something I do every fall. I pick up acorns, horse chestnuts, sweet gums just as in the spring I pick up whirly birds.

I'm amassing a collection so I can paint them. I love all the different colors and textures and shapes. They are all so different.

Thinking about noticing and about collecting things made me think of a passage from The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society:

In every nook I find little things that tell me about her. She was a noticer, Sidney, like me, for all the shelves are lined with shells, bird feathers, dried sea grasses, pebbles, eggshells, and the skeleton of something that might be a bat. They're just bits that were lying on the ground, that anyone else would step over, or on, but she saw they were beautiful and brought them home.

                    -- Mary Ann Schafer and Annie Barrows

Yes, I am a noticer, too. To be a writer you must be a noticer. To be a painter you must be a noticer. To be a photographer you must be a noticer. But even if you are none of those things, shouldn't you be a noticer, too? We live each day only once. Wouldn't you hate to have missed something? 

So... what are you noticing today?


  1. Beautiful shots! I love them! And I loved that book (The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society). I loved the style and I want to go and read it again!

  2. Lovely photos Anne! I'm also picking up acorns when I find them but the squirrels are really busy hoarding them away. My favorites are the little green acorns with thick caps - their proportions remind me of a kid's face 1/2 buried under a hat :) Have a lovely week!

  3. I have noticed lots of messages on slowing down recently. Even though my son and husband think I move at a snails pace my heart and mind are often racing. I am learning to do things more slowly and notice more as a result. You have a wonderful little acorn collection there Anne! I am sure you will gain great pleasure from painting them.


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