Full Moon Merry Christmas

Tomorrow, just after six o’clock in the morning and just as the sun is rising, we’ll experience the first full moon to occur on Christmas Day since 1977.  I wasn’t even in high school yet in 1977 (although my husband was already in college by then).  If you miss opening this Christmas present, you won’t get another chance until 2034 (by which time I should be retired).

Other astronomical items of note this holiday week include:

  • On the 4th day of Christmas (Monday that is), Mercury reaches its peak distance from the sun 30 minutes after sunset in the southwest.
  • On the 5th day of Christmas (Tuesday), Saturn continues its return from behind the Sun.  Look to the southeast in the pre-dawn morning time.
  • On the 6th day of Christmas (Wednesday), look up and south to spy the Seven Sisters (aka as the Pleiades)
  • On the 8th day of Christmas (Happy New Year!), use binoculars to find Comet Catalina rising close to Arcturus (a very bright star) around midnight and continue to rise high in the southeast until dawn twilight.
  • On the 9th day of Christmas (Saturday, January 2, 2016) the Earth reaches its closest point to the Sun (at the start of Winter no less)
  • On the last day of Christmas (Twelfth Night) at 10 p.m. EST, Pluto hides behind the Sun.

Comet Catalina

For more interesting astronomical events and items, please visit Astronomy magazine’s The Sky This Week: December 25, 2015 – January 10, 2016 web page.

May the brightest star guide you in your search for Peace, Love and Joy.

Merry Christmas!




The Dark Side Slumbers or Stumbles

Like many other Star Wars fans, I was seduced into a dark movie theater this past weekend to watch Star Wars: The Force Awakens.  My husband and father accompanied me to the show.   But all was not unicorns and rainbows even from the start.

I recently learned that my favorite movie theater complex for the past ten years, the Legends 14, changed hands.  Almost mirroring the movie I was about to see, the Phoenix rising from the ashes of better distribution contracts fizzled before the dawn of AMC, which is anything but “amazing” (a snide reference to their marketing mantra).

Continue reading “The Dark Side Slumbers or Stumbles”

My Year in Books ~ 2015 Edition

GoodReads did something interesting today that I’m going to share here.  They created a nifty page that summarizes my ‘year in books’ for 2015.  Here’s the link to what they came up with:

My Year in Books ~ 2015 Edition

But since I stop actually rating books on GoodReads a couple of years ago, the results of somewhat skewed.

To see what I loved in 2015, try this link:

Books I Loved Reading in 2015

To see the books I liked, follow this link:

Books I Liked Reading in 2015

To see the meh and other underwhelming reads, follow these links:


Disliked or Abandoned

I had to halve my Reading Challenge this year.  Normally I read close to or over one hundred books in a year.  Due to work pressures and family health issues, I had to severely curtail my reading time.  And, these days, I hardly actually read a print edition or even an ebook.  The only time I have to ‘read’ is while commuting (about 90 minutes per weekday) so most of my reading has been audiobooks.  Consequently, I also have not written many book reviews this year.  I just never seem to find the time.  I may write up some mini-reviews, especially on those fiction titles that were released this year and are still making the rounds.

I may finish one or two more books yet before 2015 ends.  I do not plan to change drastically my reading habits for 2016.  Work projects should ease up by February so I may actually get more reading done.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and hope your stockings are stuffed with books.


Beyond PC « L.E. Modesitt, Jr. – The Official Website


AKA calling a spade a spade.

This is almost the complete opposite of what Scalzi posted earlier today on his blog Whatever.

I’m on the fence. I don’t like intentionally harming anyone, including their feelings.

But when a religion or political entity fails the basic human rights test, what is our duty as members of said hunan race to heal that wound? Is it more bandages? Or surgery?

These questions keep me up at night. And we seem to be returning to the Cold War (the Sequel) and the threat of M.A.D. I had hoped my unborn grandchildren would not have to grow up under that doomsday cloud.

And on that depressing note, I’ll bid you ado.

Posted from WordPress for Android via my Samsung smartphone. Please excuse any misspellings. Ciao, Jon