One of the most important lessons parents try to teach their children is sharing.  From a very young age we teach (attempt to teach) our children to share their toys and possessions in the hopes that one day they will grow up to become generous people rather than stingy hoarders.

William still sometimes struggles to share his favorite toys with his friends (don’t we all).  And frankly Will would prefer not to share his parents with his big brother ever, but there is one thing that our boy has shared with his entire family – his passion for astronomy.  William has all of us looking through telescopes, learning about our solar system, and nerd-ing up on stuff like blackholes.

William loves – Loves – LOVES astronomy.  His favorite planet is Jupiter, but he knows tons about the other planets in our solar system.  He can’t read the word “cat” yet, but he can sight read Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto with absolutely no context.  William knows where the Kuiper belt is and can chat about dwarf planets, blackholes, and meteors.  He may not always get all of his facts perfectly straight, but the dude is only 5!

So – in between hikes this weekend (his parents’ passion) we took the littlest McFarland back to the Rauch Planetarium at the U of L (we have a family pass) so that he could delight in one of his passions for a while.  And delight he did!

Touching actual – honest to goodness – been in outer space meteorites!

Look at that grin!

Checking out the cool space stuff!

Enough with the camera and the pictures – Mommy.  Please come read all of these “big words to me.  I just started kindergarten on Wednesday!”

Using a special “telescope” to view the sun.

We just finished watching “Perfect Little Planet,” and we are waiting for the show about blackholes to begin.

The last time I really thought much about the other planets in our solar system or blackholes was during my freshman year of college when I took astronomy.  Back then Pluto was still a planet and Eris, MakeMake, and Haumea hadn’t even been discovered yet!

I have had so much fun learning about the universe with William this year. 

Even though we live in a big city with lots of light pollution, you can still see the moon and the stars.  So the next time we have a clear night take a few minutes and just look.   Marvel at the beauty of the world our God created.  Take a moment or two to take it all in.  It is truly an amazing place we have the privilege and honor of living.  We are all blessed indeed.

Praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord from the heavens;

    praise him in the heights above.

Praise him, all his angels;

    praise him, all his heavenly hosts.

Praise him, sun and moon;

    praise him, all you shining stars.

Praise him, you highest heavens

    and you waters above the skies.

Let them praise the name of the Lord,

    for at his command they were created,

and he established them for ever and ever—

    he issued a decree that will never pass away.

– Psalm 148:1-6

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