The sky was just too clear last night to pass up and opportunity to observe. However, I just got done helping my mother-in-law move and was tired. So I decided to do some "simple astronomy" observing last night. With 11x70 binoculars, Binocular Highlights book, and little red flashlight hanging around my neck, I proceeded out into the night. The sky was pretty darn transparent and seeing was not too bad. Since I was going wide field, seeing would not have mattered much.
Going through the book, I started with Kemble's Cascade and NGC1502. My good friend Jim Schoultz taught me a nice way to find it in the star lacking region of Camelopardalis by using Cassiopeia as a measuring stick and placing that stick up into the void to direct me to where I was going. And there it was: a nice stream of stars that reminds me of a bright meteor breaking up as it enters our atmosphere, frozen in space like someone took a celestial photograph of such an event. Next I was off to the double cluster and the strong man. What a nice pair in the binoculars! I continued on for about 20 minutes seeing such objects like M34, M35, M36, M37, M38, M41, M46 and M47. I always enjoy looking at the belt of Orion as there are just so many stars in that region. I stopped when I got to M42 and just sat and enjoyed the view for a little while. By that time, the dogs wanted in and my neighbor turned on their floodlights in the backyard (why do they need that much light? why?!?!?).