“This is mission control Houston…”

“We are now at T – 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, Booster Ignition, 2, 1, and Liftoff of the Space Shuttle Endeavour on it’s way to the International Space Station to deliver a bay window view to our celestial backyard.”

Nasa photo

Photo credit: NASA

Tyler is wrapped in his favorite fuzzy blanket. I’m in my pajamas, robe and fleece coat. It is 4:14 am and we are sitting on the dock facing due north as we witness the launch of the space shuttle Endeavor.  A “fire ball in the sky” is the best way that I can describe it. It’s fiery tail was visible until the Solid Rocket Booster burned out and separated. We could clearly see the separation, just a few minutes into the flight. We watched for almost ten minutes, until it disappeared from our sight. My video did not turn out all that well, because at 75 miles away, my camera could not figure out how to focus. I’m sharing my best picture…Shuttle

…and a much better video can be viewed at the NASA web-site. The mission is STS 130.

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Just 12 hours before the launch we were on a tour of the Kennedy Space Center. We drove by the building where the astronaut’s were taking their afternoon naps, in preparation for the early morning launch.  There was so much to see, so much to take in, so much to learn, that one day is not nearly enough to understand all the history, current events and future plans of what NASA has in store.

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We also have NASA and space science technology to thank for many of the things that our children take for granted. Cell phones, laptops (and the batteries that power them), and artificial limbs are just a few…

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Here Tyler is standing in a node, much like the one that the space shuttle is delivering to the Space Station right now. These giant “coffee can-like” structures are where the cosmonauts eat, sleep, and work in the space station everyday.

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The Saturn V rocket is the largest and most powerful vehicle ever launched in the history of space exploration, and was used during the Apollo and Skylab missions…It is also, one of the most massive things I have ever seen! I wish photos could show the enormity of it!

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DSC03540Apollo missions that have landed on the moon…

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There were a total of 6 moon landings, two men each.

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My own little “Rocket Man”…I guess there is a chance that he could see this place again in his lifetime… “but I think it’s gonna be a long, long time!”

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