Last night, after the sun went to bed, we surprised the kids and drove to a state park out in the country. We found a dark, empty parking lot. Scott set up chairs that reclined way back. Then, with the sound of the crickets chirping, and faint jazz music from a wedding reception, we all laid back and looked at the millions and millions of stars in the sky.
“There’s the big dipper,” I said.
“What’s the big dipper?” my son inquired.
I taught him the two constellations that I can find. (Honestly, I cannot find constellations, except for the dippers. I get what they are, but I just can’t see them.)
While we laid there, shivering from the fall chill, we talked about the stars and the moon. We looked for planes.
“I want to go to space someday,” Ana sighed.
“You can die in space, you know,” my son informed her.
“Presidents die too,” Ana pointed out. (Seriously, do they sound like 5 and 7 year olds?!?)
Once, I was absolutely cold, and couldn’t lay there a moment longer, I tried to take some free hand photos of the moon with my 50mm lens. I didn’t care about the quality, I just wanted a memory.
Finally, we were all super cold. Before the camera was put away, and before the chairs were picked up, we took time to dance to the beautiful jazz music that was christening the air. We danced, laughed, and loved.
There was magic in the air, the simplicity was amazing. After a summer of driving around the country and seeing amazing things, it also felt good to find a piece of Heaven forty miles from home. Simple fun is good for the soul, and brings the best memories for the family.
I can’t wait to do it again.