Monday, May 17, 2010

Scientific Sunday

My parents in infrared
I didn't get my pages done yesterday. But I have a really good excuse!

Yesterday I took the kids down to La Cañada Flintridge to the Jet Propulsion Lab's annual Open House. Can I just say that JPL is one of the coolest places EVER? Where else can you take an infrared photo of yourself, get run over by a Mars Rover and stand next to the original camera from the Hubble? All while eating a bag of kettle corn and downing a shave ice?

J with Explorer I
A clone takes our photo on Mars
My seven-year-old daughter wants to be an astronaut (as well as a rock star, novelist, actress, etc.) so she had lots of questions for the scientists we met. We talked to people who worked in clean rooms building new Rovers, men who worked on satellites getting samples from comets, women exploring the moons of Jupiter. To be perfectly honest, I could have listened to any of those scientists talk all day. They had so much wonderful information to share about the solar system, human exploration, spacecraft they've seen launched. They all got so excited talking about it and yet they were able to explain everything in terms we could understand.

When we got in the car at the end of the day, my daughter said she had the BEST time and wanted to know when we could go back again.

I can see a dystopian sci-fi epic looming in my future...

17 comments:

Lydia Kang said...

Sounds like you spent your time well anyway! There's nothing like real life and real rockets to get the creative juices flowing...

Carolyn V. said...

How AWESOME!!! My son always loved space when he was little. Your daughter is so lucky she got to go. We don't have anything like that here where we live. (And your an awesome mom for taking her!) =)

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Your parents are so psychedelic. :D
That day sounds awesome and the kids look like they landed in heaven. And, oh yeah, I'd read a dystopian novel from you any day.

Kimberley Troutte said...

Yay! What fun. I wanna be an astronaut too, well, except for that whole air-sickness problem, and the hate dried food thing, and the fear of heights, and the "where are the toilets" thing...Yeah, maybe not. I'll have to experience it in your books.
Glad you all had a great time.

Lori W. said...

I'm so glad this trip exceeded your expectations. I'll bet your story brain was kicked into high gear. Hope you took notes. :)

Suzanne Casamento said...

SO cool! I wish I had known about that. I'd have loved to check it out. Glad you guys had so much fun!

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

Awesome! Such a good Mom for taking the kids to JPL! We are regulars the the Museum of Science and Industry (Chicago), and the kids eat it up like ice cream. Who says science isn't cool??

Shannon Whitney Messenger said...

Sounds like so much fun. I lived like, 10 minutes away from JPL for almost 5 years--I can't believe I never went and did that. Maybe I'll have to make the hour drive now, it looks so fun!

Hardygirl said...

Sounds like a blast. What a fun day!

sf

Solvang Sherrie said...

Lydia: It was such a fun day and yeah, the creativity is flowing over here!

Carolyn: Both my kids are still fascinated with outer space and so am I :D

Tricia: That's about as psychadelic as my parents will ever be! And thank you -- you're too kind :)

Kim: You will most certainly be experiencing it in my books. Once I finish the others...

Lori: High gear doesn't begin to explain it. I can't stop thinking about it!

Suzanne: They do it once every year, usually between Mother's Day and Memorial Day. You should absolutely go. It's soo cool!

Susan: I've heard good things about that museum. It's on my list for when we visit Chicago!

Shannon: We drove 2-1/2 hours to get there and it was well worth the trip.

SF: My daughter took all her posters, bookmarks and souvenirs with her to school today. She couldn't wait to share with her class :D I'm so glad it made such an impression on her.

Lisa K. said...

Now that sounds like a great place to spend a day! And what a wonderful way to fill up your creative well with ideas and images.

Dawn Simon said...

You do have a good excuse! What a fun day with the family! Your kids are really cute. I'm sure your parents are, too, but it's hard to tell in infrared. ;)

Rebecca said...

I LOVE dystopian sci fi epics!

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

It sounds like you all had a great day. :)

WindyA said...

Sometimes, it's just about walking away. And it's always a cherry on top when the kids have a great time too.

Rena said...

Wow, sounds like a great day!

Solvang Sherrie said...

Lisa: Oh, my creative well is FLOWING!

Dawn: It was a great family day :)

Rebecca: Sci-fi is so cool because anything is possible!

Sharon: It was fabulous :D

Windy: Time away always helps you to see things with fresh eyes.

Rena: It was GREAT!

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