As I was leaving for school recently, an adult praying mantis stopped me in my tracks. This remarkable insect was resting on a hydrangea leaf in front of my house. This was fascinating to me for 2 reasons: I have never seen a praying mantis on our property and, more importantly, I have never been able to study a praying mantis at such close range. It’s markings were striking and I quickly took this picture. Afterwords, I stood motionless hoping to have an up-close look as it found some breakfast using its large forelegs to grip its prey. Unfortunately, it was not to be. The mantis moved only slightly from its original position on the leaf and didn’t indulge in breakfast. I recommend looking closely for these well-camouflaged creatures and add them to your nature journals.