GIF: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI/Hampton UniversitySATURN STYLE: This time of year there's lots of talk here on Earth about the North Pole. Of course, our chatter centers on elves, toys, reindeer and such. On Saturn, say 'North Pole' and talk turns to the remarkable hexagon found there.
The GIF above is the first of its kind. Using color filters and on views captured by the Cassini spacecraft over a 10-hour period, it shows a complete view of the top of Saturn down to about 70 degrees latitude. The view spans some 20,000 miles (30,000 kilometers) across.
The predominately blue and pink hexagon pictured is actually a wavy jet stream with 200-mph winds. At its center is an enormous, rotating storm,
Speaking of Cassini and Saturn, turn in tomorrow morning for a special one-hour program with Cassini scientists. Catch the Webcast here: http://www.ustream.tv/nasajpl2, starting at 10 a.m. Pacific time . We're hoping that they have time to answer one of the questions CJ & Annabelle submitted by the Dec. 3 deadline.
For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission, visit http://www.nasa.gov/cassini and http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov.
There's even a kids' page all things Cassini - http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/kids/index.cfm
TIS THE SEASON: All year long he sees you when you're sleeping, he knows when you're awake, and so on. This is the one month you can turn the tables on the all-knowing Jolly Old Elf, and stalk him for a change, thanks to NORAD's Santa Tracker.
Annabelle went right for the arcade. "I love this game. I love ALL these games," she declared. There were only four games unveiled so far this month. A new one is introduced every day.
GOOD THING: One of our holiday projects involves pom poms. Lotsa pom poms, of various colors. I recalled that one could make such things out of yarn, rather simply. Where to turn for tutelage? None other than Martha Stewart, of course. ... http://www.marthastewart.com/913926/good-thing-how-make-mini-yarn-pom-poms
Her tutorial was short and simple (way moreso than others I checked out online). While the kids were in math class today, I tried my hand at a few poms. You can rather readily tell which are my first, second and third, I think.
DEPOSIT: We swung by Sky Nursery today and dropped off the kids' nature-related haikus. Hopefully they'll appear in an upcoming Junior Gardener newsletter.
STABLE GROWS: On Black Friday, a 'new' friend was added to the My Little Pony line at Build-A-Bear Workshop: Fluttershy!
Naturally, since I deplore malls, we weren't going anywhere near a mall on Black Friday, or any day that weekend, to be sure. We decided to make today the day, since Alderwood Mall is just a bit farther north than the kids' Wednesday school.
We were the store's first customers at a couple minutes after 10, and the kids set about acquiring their new pony right away. The store's recently undergone a major overhaul, and one of the new features was a computer that allows kids to add their own sound to the sound chips. CJ and Annabelle picked a snippet of Fluttershy speak for their chip.
Of course, the pony has to have a heart, so that was another add on (or stuff in, as the case may be),
After Fluttershy was stuffed, the whole stable of ponies got a spa day.
Fluttershy is now safely home, happy to be with her friends, furry and otherwise.