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Take a moment to think before leaping to conclusions.
Take a moment to think before leaping to conclusions.


457 words


What Can We Learn From Carrots?
by Dianne Roth


Recently, on a cold, wintry day, I left home to meet a friend for a walk. I was hurrying to our meeting place when I noticed a carrot lying in the grass. It was a smallish, baby carrot. I noticed it because in all my walking, I have never seen a carrot lying in a front yard.

That might have been the end of that story, or maybe there never would have been a story, but as we walked along, there, in another yard, was another carrot...a very large carrot. I pointed it out.

We continued on our walk. Then, in another yard, another carrot! I was dumbfounded. This just could not be! Never in my life, and then, in one day, three carrots lying in the grass. We stood there and stared like a couple of fools. Before I tell you what I now know about carrots in front yards, I have to let you know that when I took my class out to play in the soccer field, there, just lying in the field... was another huge, orange carrot!

What was going on!? I was tempted to look over my shoulder. Was I in a strange “B” movie? “The carrots are coming!”

Ha! Those of you with just a bit more sense than I have know that all those carrots were in front yards because of the recent snow. Need more clues? Think “Frosty”. By the fourth carrot, I knew it was a snowman nose.

In my writing, I like to ask, “What exactly is the point?” The point is, how often we do not understand what is right under our (...uh...) noses. All I saw were carrots lying in front yards. That makes no sense. And, if it had not been for the melting snowman lying beside the third carrot, I might still be wondering. We have a saying that you cannot see the forest for the trees. In my case, I could not see the noses for the carrots.

In relation to parenting, what does this mean?

Often we get a piece of information and have no idea what it means or how it fits with all the other information we have. I think this is particularly true when we are raising children. They do things that we do not understand and we leap to conclusions about what is or is not going on. I am not sure how to completely avoid this. But, I do know that being open to explanations, listening for new information, and looking for hidden meanings requires us to pay a bit more attention, to attend a bit more carefully, and to be a bit more thoughtful. Then, to look a bit more cautiously before we leap.


Dianne Roth is a teacher, mother, grandmother, and freelance writer. She lives in Oregon.




Last updated on October 8, 2012