Monthly Archives: December 2015

This Has Never Happened Before

Christmas is over and I still have some 2016 calendars in stock!  It’s probably just because I didn’t try as hard this year to sell them all – too many other things going on.  But whatever the reason, I need to get them off my inventory as quickly as possible, so I’m offering them now for just $10 (plus shipping, if applicable). To order, go to my website and click on the “contact” tab to send me an e-mail with your address.  I’ll calculate the shipping (usually via USPS) and send you an invoice.

Illuminating Achievements

At the last meeting of the Rose City Astronomers for 2015, this plaque was presented to outgoing club president, David Nemo, in recognition of his service and achievements for the club.  The plaque was constructed using one of my backlit (film) prints, but the cover glass was engraved with a message of thanks. The frame is deeper than I usually use, which allowed us to put a spacer between the film print and the glass.  It’s only half an inch, but that’s enough to really separate the text from the image.  The lettering is filled with gold, as you can […]

White Christmas

It has become a tradition here at Wa-chur-ed Observatory to share our perennial favorite holiday song, the Drifters’ rendition of “White Christmas” with animated reindeer and Santa: Enjoy!  

Reminder: Shower

Not “take a shower”, but that there will be a meteor shower tonight, Dec. 13.  The Geminids are usually one of the best meteor showers of the year, so you don’t want to miss it, if possible.  Of course, it will be very cloudy here in the Pacific Northwest, but if it’s clear where you are, get outside tonight and look toward the east.  The meteors will appear to come from the constellation Gemini, just to the left of Orion (in North America).  

Last Chance

My last holiday bazaar for this year is, very appropriately, the “Last Chance” Holiday Bazaar at Wy’east Middle School, 1112 SE 136th Ave, Vancouver, WA, 9 to 4 on Saturday, Dec. 12.  For more information, click here. Thanks to everyone who came out to the previous events.  I’ve had a great time meeting new people and talking about astronomy, cosmology, and photography.  Sales have also been great this year, and I’m very grateful for that. On the other hand, I haven’t been able write here about astronomy as much as I would like.  I’m looking forward to getting back to […]

Geminids Meteor Shower: Best or Bust

The Geminids Meteor Shower is often one of the best each year.  The rate of meteors is high and they are relatively slow moving, thus giving you more time to see them.  Furthermore, since they happen in early December, the sky gets dark much earlier, so you don’t have to stay up very late to see them (especially good for young children).  And this year the peak of the shower (Dec. 13-14) falls near the New Moon, so the sky will be very dark. On the other hand, meteors are fun to watch in a relaxed, comfortable manner, while the […]

A Great Day

Thanks to the Hockinson High School Boosters, parents, and students for a very successful holiday bazaar yesterday. I’ve talked to many crafters and other vendors about what makes an event work in terms of sales.  The more experienced vendors say there is no way to predict it – that sometimes you sell a lot and sometimes you don’t.  But on analyzing my experience this year I notice a pretty strong (and unexpected) correlation:  The smaller my booth space is, the better the sales.  The width of my booth this time was 6 feet, which I’ve done before, but it was […]

Two To Go

This Saturday, Dec. 5, I’ll be at the Hockinson High School Holiday Bazaar in Brush Prairie from 9 to 5 (click here).  I haven’t been to this one before, but based on the size and location, it should be a good one. I will be showing astro-photos in all the formats I have; calendars, standard prints, backlit film prints, “Space Windows”, and digital images (“Astro-Flash” USB flash drive). There will be only one more bazaar for me this year, so come join the fun!  

Are You Thinking About Buying a Telescope?

I’ve been so busy with the holiday bazaars and filling orders that I haven’t posted anything directly about astronomy for a while.  But a couple of people have asked me recently about buying a telescope, especially for a child, so I thought I’d offer some general advice. The first thing that any amateur astronomer will tell you is to never buy a telescope from a department store or any place that doesn’t actually know anything about telescopes.  The low cost scopes they carry are not only usually of poor quality, they are also too expensive for what you get. But […]