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Why I Woke My Kids for the Lunar Eclipse

I have three kids, ages five, seven, and nine, who are going crazy this week over Christmas. Rightly so. But when I told them yesterday that there was going to be a lunar eclipse that hadn’t happened since the time of the Salem Witch Trials, and wouldn’t happen again until their great, great grandkids were born, they were even more thrilled. 

After hearing the requisite explanations as to why this is such a rare event (shadow of earth, solstice, blah blah blah) they convinced me to wake them up at 2:43 a.m. in Maplewood, New Jersey, to go out to our front yard and look up. 

I set the alarm, and found myself waking up every half hour until it was time to see the big lunar show in the sky. I thought I might be the only one to rise at that unholy hour, but all it took was a gentle tap (mom took a little more prodding) and the kids were jumping out of their beds, getting their coats on, and bolting out into the 15-degree night. 

There it was. A sliver of the moon remained. And then it was red – like looking at Mars close up. Mom took a picture with her iPhone, and the kids ran back upstairs and crashed. 

This morning as I took the train in to New York City I was thinking about our early morning adventure, and I realized how special it was experiencing the special times, the one-offs, with your kids, and how it teaches them how important it is to put that extra bit of effort. Because times like these will never happen again. And you don’t want to sleep through them.

Chris Kensler is senior editor/producer, Entertainment & Style for FoxNews.com.