Friday, December 16, 2016

Star Struck {a BookLook Blogger review}

One of my favorite (partial) verses from the Bible is "and the stars" from Genesis 1:16.  Day four of creation talks about the sun and the moon, which is a big deal.  But it is that last little bit, in the Debra paraphrase, where the writer throws in, "Oh, by the way, while he was at it, God made stars as well."

We've been outdoors at dusk/dark here a lot lately, and while we are working at various things, we have the opportunity to look up as the stars appear.  We live in a rural area, without much light pollution, so once it gets truly dark, we can see an amazing number of stars.

The stars are fascinating.  My eldest just did a presentation about stars for one of his college classes, and he has plans for us to be out doing some star gazing while he is home for Christmas.

Star Struck: Seeing the Creator in the Wonders of our Cosmos, by Dr. David Bradstreet and Steve Rabey seemed like such a natural for our current fascination with the heavens.

From the publisher:
The heavens are beckoning us, telling us that this wonderful, mind-boggling cosmic display is indeed the work of the creator. And now, using rovers and satellites, we're venturing further out into the vastness of space than ever before.

In Star Struck, Christian astronomer David Bradstreet and writer Steve Rabey take readers on a guided tour of the biggest story ever, offering both intriguing science lessons and powerful spiritual insights:

As we discover more about cosmos, we understand more about the character of our Creator; The more we see the vastness and complexity of the universe, the more we experience awe, wonder, praise, gratitude and humility; Hundreds of Christian astronomers blaze the way into deep exploration of the universe today, discovering and proving God’s work in the heavens.

Combining a respect and admiration for mainstream astronomy with a zeal for uncovering new details about God’s celestial handiwork at its core, this book about stars, planets, asteroids, nebula, comets, dark matter, and the other fingerprints of God will tell you that all of the worlds around you are God’s and this world is his home for you.
This book is engaging, and some of the words from the publisher's description above really do ring true -- zeal, in particular.  I love reading about a subject from the perspective of someone who is so passionate about it, and David Bradstreet delivers there.

The book isn't about stars only, but about astronomy as a whole.  It is fascinating to read about all of this from a worldview that does include God as the Creator.  One thing I do want to point out, though, is that the millions of years timescale is used.  I don't have a problem with that, as I like to look at things from many different perspectives. 

Overall, I really enjoyed this book.  He talks about all kinds of complicated astronomy facts and theories, but in a very accessible and easy-to-grasp manner.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Sunday, December 4, 2016

We finally have eggs!

Ever since we first started looking at moving out where we had some wide open spaces, we have talked about things like getting chickens.  Our own eggs, where we know the animals are well-treated, and we know the eggs are healthier.  Sounded like a grand plan.

It only took us eighteen years to follow through, and we did get chickens last spring.

These two photos are from shortly after we finally got them moved into the chicken coop.  The coop certainly wasn't finished yet, by any stretch, but they needed to move in now.  And they got to watch the renovations occur around them.

That has to be fun, right?

Aren't they pretty?  I ought to go get a picture of them now.  There certainly is less grass in the chicken run these days (as in, NONE) as they certainly ate all of that up.

We worried a bit about the cats that adopted us, but both cat and chicken seem to hold their own against the other.

When we let the chickens roam the property, they always go check out the area where we feed the cats, and eat up whatever the silly kitties left behind.

We're not sure what we did wrong, but our hens were quite slow to start laying eggs.  I was starting to feel like a total homesteading failure.  Seriously, what kind of person can't even manage to get chickens to act like chickens?

Then the kids came in, excited as can be:

Seven eggs.  We suspect that we had missed looking at least one day, probably two, as we haven't had seven in a single day since that momentous event.

But we are starting to get 4-5 a day, pretty consistently.

It is fascinating to see the smaller eggs layed by the hens who are just getting started.  And to see the nice, big ones we are already getting from  the ones who got started first.  But one day was just wild.  I have a fairly "normal" egg, the eggs we usually see when a hen just gets started.  And the egg Trina found this week:

How cute is that little guy?

We have not cracked into it yet, but probably will do so today.

And we are loving this having fresh eggs thing.  It took us long enough, but it is still rewarding.