"He counts the number of the stars; He calls them all by name. Great is our Lord, and mighty in power; His understanding is infinite." Psalm 147:4-5
If you happened to be awake around 4:30-5:30 a.m. this morning, and if you happened to look up at the sky, you would have seen a marvelous sight. I happened to be awake, because our neighbor's dogs were doing their usual routine of barking and running through our back yard, chasing the bears who also happened to be crossing through our yard on their nightly route from the woods behind us to the woods beside and in front of us. This routine changes from time to time...sometimes it is just after we drift off to sleep that the dogs start barking when the bears roam through our yard, and we jump up and look out into the dark to see if we can see them, which we can't because it is too dark, but we are now awake and looking anyway. But lately it has mostly been in the wee hours of the morning, just before dawn, and before we really need to wake up, you know, when we are getting in those last few precious minutes of soundest sleep just before the alarm goes off? Well, anyway, that is life in the woods. At least, that is my life in the woods lately...but I'm not complaining.
So back to my original story. This morning at 4:30 a.m., when the neighbor's dogs started barking and running through our back yard chasing the bears, I noticed that the sky seemed brighter than usual. We have a large window in our bathroom that looks into the back yard, where I usually run and try to see if I can see the bear passing by on his route that runs directly outside that window...(and I actually did see him last Sunday morning in exactly that spot at that exact time...but that's still another story). However, this morning I didn't see the bear or the dogs, but I saw something else that caught my eye. I looked up in the sky to see why it was so bright. I wasn't expecting it to be a full moon...that comes later this month (and actually we already had one earlier this month...this year we are having two full moons in August, and the second one later this month will be called a "blue moon". But that's another story too.)
What I saw was a brilliant "Crescent Moon" and many magnificent stars. The sky was a perfect shade of midnight blue and completely unclouded. I noticed two particular "stars" that seemed to be shining even more brightly than all the others...and one seemed especially close to us. I thought perhaps it was the International Space Station, as I have heard that it can actually be seen from earth as it passes by. But this light was stationary...it wasn't moving as the ISS does...and it was sparkling like a colossal diamond solitare. I finally convinced my husband to wake up and come look at it with me. He was so appreciative. (not). I told him it had to be the ISS because it seemed so close to us. He thought I was so intelligent and thanked me for the information, and went back to bed and started snoring immediately. I continued to gaze at the stars, and I wanted so badly to run outside and look up at the heavens...but the bears and dogs were still running around out there somewhere, so I thought I'd better just enjoy the heavens from inside rather than end up in heaven prematurely!
I was so enthralled with my amazing discovery that I was determined to take some pictures with my camera. I am certain you will appreciate them, so here they are:
|My Amazing Discovery|
|The Crescent Moon|
|Not sure what this is...it's supposed to be what I thought was the ISS, but I guess|
I blurred it...
So after telling my kids and my husband that I was certain that I saw the International Space Station this morning at 4:30 a.m., and impressing all of them with my knowledge of astronomy, I decided to look it up online to see if that could have been what I really saw. And instead, I found out that what I REALLY saw was VENUS and JUPITER! Which is in some ways even more impressive!
Click this link for more information about what I saw this morning in the sky.
This is a pretty good picture of exactly what I was looking at this morning. I don't know if you will be able to see it again tomorrow morning, but why don't you set your alarm and get up and try? Just think what you are missing when you sleep all night long!
I hope you have enjoyed this little lesson on stargazing. I look forward to hearing all about what YOU can see from your open window tomorrow morning! I know you will thank me for sharing this information with you!
Have a blessed day my friends!