Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Next Solar Eclipse is April 8, 2024

Dear Mr. Superintendent, 

I just wanted to let you know that I will be taking a personal day on April 8, 2024. I think this will allow for plenty of time to get me a sub;-) I will be occupied with photographing the eclipse which will be at 97%. Yahhhhhoooooo!!! (Let's hope for a sunny day;-)😎



Monday, August 21, 2017

Aug. 21, 2017 Partial Solar Eclipse

We had perfect weather for the solar eclipse, with an outdoor temp. of 82F, a partly cloudy sky, and no wind. Admittedly, we didn't prep enough for this event. Okay...we didn't do any prep! At the beginning of the eclipse Drew used a pair of binoculars to focus the light onto the front deck.
Shortly afterward, he remembered that his father had given him a small spotting scope many years ago. This worked much better as it had it's own tripod. We used a sheet of copy paper as a backdrop. NOTE: DO NOT LOOK DIRECTLY AT THE SUN. Even though the Sun is 93 million miles away, it's radiation packs a strong punch that can blind you.
Here you see an abbreviated progression of the occulation (where the moon moves between the Earth and the Sun, and blocks light from getting to Earth.) The photo on the bottom right shows the eclipse at maximum, at 2:45 pm.
In this next set of photos, we moved the camera equipment down to the walkway as we were getting too much interference from the trees near the deck. Had we done a dry run yesterday, we would have set up on the walkway from the beginning; we would have tracked the movement of the Sun to see if there was any obstruction of light, from trees, throughout the entire timing of the eclipse. (This is why I keep a diary...all of these notes will help us the next time we photograph an eclipse.)
While Drew was setting up on the walkway, I wandered out to the street to photograph the eclipse through the trees onto the road! Neato....
Now, the moon was beginning to move so as to allow more sunlight to reach Earth. We had more interference from trees as the sun began moving downward behind them. Oooohhh... do you see how the "bite" out of the Sun is getting smaller, and smaller, and then it is just the barest of a nibble?
And, at last...the sun is whole again;-) FUN, FUN, FUN!!!

Lastly, I'd like to dedicate the eclipse presentation to my good friend, Olle, who recently passed away. His funeral was today, in Sweden, and the eclipse sort of reminds me of how I feel with just a bit less sunshine in my life without his presence. But, then again, his smile always gave me warmth, just like the sun coming out of the eclipse. I miss you, Olle...

August 21, 2017 Partial Eclipse of the Sun

Here are 10 second clips (real-time) showing sections of the eclipse from almost start to finish. We had partly cloudy weather and the clouds are moving rapidly across the sky in a few of the shots. Sooo pretty...

And here are all the clips, sped up, to show how much adjustment we had to make to keep the sun shining on the paper the entire time. We began the process at 1:50 pm, and completed it at 3:55 pm. We had 66% coverage of the Sun. (NOTE: The next time we photograph an eclipse, we need to put a shield around the scope, as a black-out curtain of sorts, to cut out the shadow of the scope.

Just an FYI: Earth revolves around the Sun at a speed of 18.5 miles per second. Meanwhile, the Moon revolves around Earth at a speed of 0.64 miles per second. 

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Getting ready for the partial solar eclipse

Here is a list of the solar and lunar eclipses visible in Bowdoin Center, Maine. First one is tomorrow! The next total solar eclipse is on April 8, 2024 and it will be visible from Houlton, Maine. Dear Superintendent, I want to put in for a personal day!

Gotta get prepared early! Today, we are going to hunt around the house for a surface that will show the sun's shadow at 2:45 pm. Then, tomorrow, if we are in luck, we'll shoot video of the partial eclipse through leaves, if possible. That would be cool!

How are you going to view the partial eclipse in Maine?

Cathance River Cardinal Flowers

We visited the Cathance River, over at Bowdoinham, and were pleasantly surprised to see cardinal flowers in full bloom at the water's edge.
No wonder I'm not successful in growing them in our parched yard. These flowers love getting their feet wet!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Popham Beach and a Moment of Zen

Sit back, relax, and enjoy. Even with all the turmoil in our country, natural beauty is a constant. In that, we can take solace...

Joke of the day 
Question: "What did the ocean say to the shore?"
Answer: "Nothing. It just waved!"

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Popham Beach in the Fog

Looking west toward the shoreline.
It was quite the foggy start to our day at Popham Beach. In fact, we couldn't even see Fox Island. The outdoor temp. was about 72F, and the water temp. was 62F.
Once we found Fox Island, the fog began to clear up a bit. It was still rolling across the beach, though, and was beautiful to watch.
People were enveloped in the fog along the water's edge.
I love this beach. The fog added an accent of mystery and beauty.

Herring Gulls at Popham Beach

There were lots of herring gulls at Popham Beach today. We saw adult gulls in breeding plumage with their brilliant white feathers and gorgeous eyes.
Who knew that you could see right through their nostrils to the other side!
And we saw lots of juvenile herring gulls with their dark brown plumage. They look so different from the adults.
This one was chasing after his parent, imploring her for food.
He was definitely saying, "Mom...why won't you feed me? Why?Why?Why?"
And, lastly, Junior showed us his mastery of flight.