Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Passages of time

Let's just put it out there up front:  Today, is my 45th birthday.  This week I am at the summit of Mount Lemmon as we host students from Altar Valley middle school at our UA Sky School.  I posted awhile back about the development of the Sky School here and I can not emphasize enough how rewarding this aspect of my job is.  Last week I was honored to accompany Sky School co-founder Ben Blonder as we traveled to the White House where he was honored as a White House Champion of Change in Environmental Conservation Leadership for his vision and work at developing the Sky School.  Above left is an image of one of the students taking a tree ring sample this morning as part of her groups inquiry project to explore the possible relationship between tree growth rates and density.

So while I celebrate the passage of 45 years (gulp) of my life and marvel at how quickly time seems to pass as I grow older, I am fortunate to be spending this time at the Sky School, with incredible colleagues, public school students, friends, and even my dearest Beth and Ian who drove up to celebrate.  As is my custom, I like to mark significant events with astronomical observations, and I took a couple minutes early this morning to set up a solar telescope and take an image.  I was using a 90mm Coronado Hydrogen Alpha Telescope at the summit of Mount Lemmon, and despite steady breezes and an encroaching cold front managed a decent picture.

And with that, time for some cake!

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