What better time of year to find a grassy hill top, and lay out under the stars? Warm summer nights are just perfect for getting to know the night sky.
If you read this blog with any regularity you probably know that I am a bit of a celestial geek. I love stars, and planets, and suns, and galaxies. I love to just sit out on a blanket in the grass and watch the Milky Way pass across the navy blue sky.
What I love even more are the constellations. Clusters of stars that in all reality are probably light years away from each other, but from our vantage point appear as if placed together on purpose. It really is incredible when you look into it. Clusters of stars identified all around the world as a constellation, yet one constellation can carry with it a number of stories, all different and all completely wonderful. Because with in each story lies the heart of a culture, a society, whether it be present day of thousands of years ago, the stories stick with the stars.
Which is why it is good to get to know them. To help in this effort I assembled a series of my own personal favorites, and drew each of them out on one piece of paper along with a number. On a separate piece of paper I wrote the number, but not the name, along with a few quick facts to jog my memory. To keep them all together I used a little bit of copper wire to make ring to string them all on. This way I can use the cards in a descriptive matching game, or simply as flash cards so that I can learn name the constellations by sight.
But that's only the beginning. This celestial card deck also works wonders as a story starter, and why not? Each constellation inherently carries with it the beautiful potential for a completely new set of stories. Great for camp outs and even long car rides, all you have to do is pick a constellation and go with it. String them along even, add in constellations as new characters as you pull them from the pile. Who knows where you might end up? Perhaps Orion rescues Cassiopeia from her upside down thrown, or Libra decides to take a swim in the Big Dipper?
Whatever the story, let the stars be your guide...
*Last time in Books and Stories: Day Dreaming