When so many of us are concentrating on the rat race that is going on, we tend to forget to look at the stars above. One night, before my wife and I, along with her sister, were getting ready to leave for Kansas City in the morning, we spent the night out on the trampoline. It was a night that I will never forget because the Milky Way was shining brightly as we could see billions of stars glimmering in the darkness of space. I laid there in wonder and amazement, looking at the beauty and the grandeur of space.
Stargazing has always been a favorite hobby of mine ever since I got my first telescope. I remember one Christmas night, I took my brand new telescope outside and I got to look at a full moon. I saw many craters and all sorts of mountains and valley's on the moon's surface, but it wasn't powerful enough to look into deep space to view the other planets. It was at that moment that I was immediately hooked on astronomy. My wife bought me a bigger telescope a couple of years ago where I was able to test it out at her parent's house out in the field. So, that night, I pointed the telescope at Saturn and I remembered the excitement that I felt as I looked at a celestial body further than the moon.
To get the most out of stargazing, pick a night when the most celestial objects will be in full view. Also make a note of when the next celestial event is going to take place, such as a meteor shower, solar and lunar eclipses, asteroid passing, the International Space Station flyby, etc. This will be a great way to entertain your family and most importantly, it is a great way to spend time with your children, grandchildren, nephews and nieces. Your little ones will always remember this for the rest of their lives. It is also a great way to spend time with your spouse. I still remember that night as my wife and I talked about the Milky Way and the glory of the stars.
If it's just basic stargazing you are going to do during some free time, I recommend buying a smaller telescope to start out with. For the space enthusiast, getting a small telescope may not be enough. I recommend buying a higher power telescope that comes with the accessories that will allow you to take pictures of space objects. Just think of the kind of pictures that you will have in your possession and to be able to share them with your posterity.
Remember, do not let the rat race get in your way of exploring the heavens and spending time with your family.