Tag Archive: Birthday

The “pale blue dot” of Earth as seen from Cassini on July 19, 2013.

Living without regrets for 12,045 days…

… or 289,080 hours

… or 1,040,688,000 seconds

… and counting!

Another year, another chance to increase the awesome. And what a year it has been! Once again, time for some retrospective on year 32 living on this wonderful planet Earth, and this past year has truly been inspirational.

Let’s just get it out of the way immediately. Yes, in my 31st year alive, I jumped out of a plane. And in my 32nd year, I went “over the edge” and rappelled off of a fifteen-story building! Not quite as high as the plane but it was just as exhilarating and who knows what I’ll do in this 33rd year to top it. Moreover, thanks to many of you reading this, I was able to raise over $1,500 for Special Olympics Virginia and met some truly inspiring individuals that have had more challenges in life than I ever will, yet consistently have an upbeat spirit, a smile on their face, and a way to make you realize just how amazing everyone is. If you haven’t seen the video of me going “over the edge”, check it out here.

Something that I never expected occurred in my 32nd year – I completed my Master’s of Aeronautical Science degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. After finishing my Bachelors degree, I never expected to go back to school but with my passion for space reignited over the past several years, well, there you go. No, I have no plans to become Dr. Joseph Gruber but who knows. Never say never and always live without regrets.

And who could go through life without great friends. From the “best vacation ever”, to include spring training baseball (woot!), with the most awesome and amazing friends money can’t buy, to never-ending adventures through DC DrinkUp and the “most interesting people in DC”, I can’t begin to express how grateful I am to go through life with these great friends! Heck, I got to meet not only Bobak Ferdowsi (a.k.a. NASA / JPL Mohawk Dude) but also the one, and only, Neil deGrasse Tyson (squee!). One can only imagine what kind of shenanigans we’ll get into in the 33rd year!

Speaking of friends, sadly, a lesson learned this year is to never lose contact with friends. Only a few months ago I found out that a friend had suddenly and unexpectedly passed away over a year ago. Over the course of the past few years we had begun to exchange only an occasional message on Facebook and I hadn’t noticed he had stopped posting messages. He was a great friend and I only wish I had been more of a friend than I was these past few years. Take it from me. Even if you’re no longer in the same town, at the same job, or even if you no longer hold the same interests, make the effort to maintain friendships. Good friends are hard to come by so don’t let them go stale and don’t wait until they’re gone to realize how good of a friend they were.

Well enough of year 32, let’s move onward to year 33! A year older, a year wiser, so I’d like to think, this past year has once again been truly memorable and AWESOME, and I can only hope this coming year is just as amazing! One word … Galahad.


Image Credit: NASA/SDO/Goddard Space Flight Center

Living without regrets for 11,687 days…

… or 280,506 hours

… or 1,009,821,630 seconds

… and counting!

No matter the unit of measurement, it has been 32 years since I have opened my eyes on this wonderful world. And what a journey it has been! Looking back over my 31st year alive on this planet Earth, it has been quite a ride. Life is unfortunately short, sometimes too short, and we can only live minute by minute. I can’t say I have embraced life as much as I should have up to this point but over this past year, thanks in part to Tim Bailey and his passion for all things awesome, I have strived to live without regrets and not take any moment for granted.

This past year has been full of awesome and memories I will cherish forever. Leading into the year with the brilliant Romeo Durscher, and his compatriot (!), helping to reignite my enthusiasm for space, I was able to take part in experiences, including watching the NASA Juno launch and flying to NASA Wallops Flight Facility, that I likely would not have before and was embraced by an amazing community that also shared my enthusiasm and passions. Taking the living without regrets mantra even further, I stopped pushing things off to tomorrow and began living in the here and now. One of the culminations of this was actually jumping out of a (perfectly working) airplane and skydiving thanks to the ever enthusiastic Erin Bonilla. And what better way to live without regrets except to get others to come along for the ride? Bringing the awesome to DC DrinkUp with the uber-amazing Elissa Frankle, and the grand adventures that have been had, has made this past year… well … AWESOME! It is hard to mention everyone who has made this past year a memorable one but know that I cherish your friendship and the experiences we have shared! Do not just take my word for it though. Start living without regrets and see how much more amazing life becomes!

While I look forward to what this next year of life will bring, the awesome adventures that will take place, and the amazing stories and memories I will be able to look back on, I can only count on the moment that is now. I plan to make each moment as awesome as possible and live without regrets!

This Is Your Life. Do What You Love And Do It Often. ~ Holstee Manifesto