Age and Beauty (and Wisdom)

age-and-beauty1Tomorrow is my birthday. I’m turning 30, which sometimes feels like just another year, and sometimes feels like a very big deal. It’s one of those right of passage ages in our culture: the 20’s are over, time to stop fooling around and get serious about life.

Serious about life. Haha, that’s a good one. I realize this post might not be real applicable for a lot of you that are already of an age that you’ve figured out what I’m figuring out this year, but darn it I’m going to write about it anyway. For my own sake as much as anyone else’s.

For the past couple months, I have on and off been really concerned about turning 30. That this was the start of getting old, that my prime was past, that it was all downhill from here. And then I’d get frustrated with myself.

First of all, because turning a year older every year is something we have absolutely no control over. We can’t stop the clock, we can’t turn back time, so there’s absolutely no reason to worry about it – “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change”, and all that.

Secondly, the only reason the “0” years: 30, 40, 50, etc. have such an importance is because our society has placed an importance on it – it’s an obvious mile marker, not because anything intrinsically unique happens on the day you turn one of those years.


And thirdly, because how “old” or “young” you are and what age constitutes being in “the prime of your life” are really all a matter of perspective. They are subjective opinions, not objective facts like the number of years you’ve been alive. To people my parent’s age, I am young. In the eyes of a child, I am old. There is no correct answer, no set age at which you turn “old”, or actually, maybe there is.

Maybe you turn old when you decide you’re old. Going off an idea that I’ve put forth on this blog before, that we shouldn’t worry so much about what others think about us and it’s what we think of ourselves that should count most, here’s a theory of mine about aging.

A lot of what I have trouble with when it comes to aging is that today is always the oldest I’ve ever been. Every year feels like I’m getting “old” when I compare it to my past experiences of being younger. So every year, I call myself old. To get past this, I could look at the average lifespan for Americans and rationalize that if I live to that average age of 78 and ½, I’m still less than 50% of the way through my life. The problem is that is only a temporary solution. What do I do when I get closer to 40 and statistically suddenly my life is half over? That’s a pretty depressing thought.

I don’t want to go through life counting the years like that. That’s a surefire way to forget to enjoy them for what they are – a gift, not something we’re entitled to. Despite fading beauty, the aches and pains that come with getting older, I think if we learn to see each year as a gift, that we’re better off. Because again, physical aging isn’t a choice, and the alternative is death.

A quick segue though while I’m thinking about it. The second part of that earlier quote is important to think about too: “the courage to change the things I can”. We are going to get older, but if we make the effort to take care of our bodies by eating well and exercising, while that doesn’t guarantee a longer healthier life, it certainly increases the chances.


But back to my previous point. There are much smarter philosophers and theorists than I out there who say that we don’t actually see the world and life as it truly is, no one does. We all see it through the filtered lenses of our own experiences, values, and ideals, and that it looks differently for everyone. That we really do shape our own world, and not just in a “your actions shape the world around you” kind of way. When you think about aging like that, while our physical age is not open for debate, whether you’re “young” or “old” is something you can decide. When I tell myself that I’m getting old and I believe that, I start acting older. I don’t do silly things in public that I would like to do because it’s not appropriate for someone my age.

Have you ever met an older person who is still on the go, full of life and dresses and does what they want and doesn’t care what anyone else thinks about it? I’ve met a couple people like that before, and when I get older I want to be like them. They might tell you they’re so-and-so years young, instead of old, because they made the conscious decision to see themselves as young and not let their physical age and the people around them define what age they feel on the inside. And that’s what I’m talking about here. Bodies are wonderful things, and we should take care of and enjoy them. But you are so much more than just the physical housing that you ride around in. I’m making the effort now when I meet new people to try to see beyond their physical appearance and age to what lays beneath, which has always interested me more anyway.

This approach can be made to the topic of beauty too (and yes this is geared more towards women than men, if you’re a guy you can feel free to skip through this part). America’s beauty culture is funded by a vast industry that makes more money the more insecure women feel about their appearance. Maybe that explains why only something like 5% of American women actually have the extremely slender body type that pictured on billboards, in magazines, and on TV as being beautiful. Add to that the fact that most pictures of models and actresses are touched up to make them seem impossibly flawless, and it’s not surprising that many women experience hangups about their looks on occasion (and yes, I am included in that statement).


Genetics play the biggest part in a pers’s physical appearance and there is nothing that can be done to change that. Beauty fades with age, and there’s nothing that can be done about that either. Things like plastic surgery or botox can change a person’s appearance, but they’re ultimately temporary measures and usually make a person feel worse in the long run because when is it ever enough. So again, the best thing to do, and it’s hard sometimes believe me, is to ignore the current standard and decide for yourself what beautiful is. There are two parts to the way I look at beauty: that who a person is on the inside is more important than the outside, and that all bodies, no matter how young or old, tall or short, thin or curvy, are beautiful in their own right because of all the things they allow us to do. It all harkens back to that life is a gift outlook.

And finally, the last part of that old quote: “and the wisdom to know the difference”.

Huh, maybe turning 30 is a coming of age experience after all, because I doubt I would have put so much time into thinking about all of this on a more ordinary birthday. I feel wiser already.

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For the first time in my life, my birthday will be happening in spring instead of winter, thanks Florida! I guess a few days with highs in the 80’s this past week will do that. Enjoy some pictures of things greening up around the OSBS.

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67 Responses to Age and Beauty (and Wisdom)

  1. Ron February 21, 2014 at 11:24 pm #

    You certainly are not past your prime, It will likely be a lot more years before you get there. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, hope you have a great day. enjoy each & every day & there is no reason to act your age, I am 63 & seldom act my age. ENJOY LIFE!!!

  2. Old Fat Man February 21, 2014 at 11:26 pm #

    Old started for me about a year ago during age 66 when I noticed my mental and physical abilities not being as crisp. My skin got a lot thinner and things like that. Some folks it happens later , some earlier, it is just your gene set so have fun with it however it works out. Yep I slowed some but I just adjusted my goals to allow a bit longer to accomplish some things. Never stop but do accommodate aging.

  3. Misty February 21, 2014 at 11:28 pm #

    Beautiful. And certainly relevant to me! I turn 30 this November.

    Though I would argue that men have just as many impossible standards placed on them in the looks department as women do. They are just socially conditioned not to admit it, and the standards are different.
    Misty recently posted..Maybe the cell phones aren’t the problemMy Profile

  4. jonthebru February 22, 2014 at 1:05 am #

    I’m with you on everything you have presented here. I became aware that I was getting older a few years ago when I realized the Doctors I was seeing were all young kids. Symbolically they were all older figures to me up to that point. I want to add that I am convinced that time goes more quickly as you get older. Just seems like it at 62. I work and hangout with some younger people and appreciate youth very much.

    • Larry Jenkins February 22, 2014 at 4:37 am #

      Wonderful bit of writing, Becky. Enjoy that birthday and every day!

  5. Lynn February 22, 2014 at 2:51 am #

    I smiled when I read this post but I do remember thinking more about my age when I was younger. That is the beauty of getting older, age doesn’t matter anymore. I think I enjoy life more now then I ever have.

  6. David February 22, 2014 at 4:38 am #

    First and foremost, Happy Birthday.

    Good post. I am going to share part of it with one of my grand-daughters that is a teenager and having appearance problems.

    Age is a number. I am now 67 and being in a over 55 park see what appear to me to be a bunch of older people. How can they be old and I am not. Age is in the eye or attitude of the beholder.

    I am not older. I am just more beat up. I have a few more aches and pains. But why should I not? I have had numerous auto accidents, had a tree fall on me, fell on the ice, and various other things that kind of bang you up. These all add up, but I am not old. I still do almost anything I want to do. Just some of them take a little longer and I am a little stiffer.

    Life is good.
    David recently posted..2014–2-11 – One day of beautiful weatherMy Profile

  7. George February 22, 2014 at 5:55 am #

    First of all, Happy Birthday. Glad you made it to 30. Now the wonderful years begin. You are correct when you say society put emphasis on age. But really, what is age? A countdown to death? Nope! A count of life.

    I have read all your blogs and from reading them, looking at the pictures you post, you have a natural beauty seldom found in people, young or old. I never worry about what people think. I am me and if you don’t like me, tough. I spend most of my days with youth under 18 and I really think that keeps me young. Although I am nearing 60, I feel like I am 40 or younger. I don’t let my aches and pains stop me.

    According to what I read, the new “middle age” group now starts at 40 so you ARE still young. Not even middle age yet. As my very smart grandfather used to say, never worry about tomorrow, today is here to enjoy.

    Again Happy Birthday to a wonderful, intelligent, and beautiful lady.

  8. Marvin February 22, 2014 at 6:20 am #



    Happy Birthday !

    Disregard the values proposed by the marketing pros that talk about age – a number can be a simple method of keeping score , or a marker for a significant or memorable event .

    The people that tell us about age are the same types that tell us we need a house full of stuff and that we should never be satisfied with our current status .

    As teens we are told that we are not adults , and in our 20’s and 30’s we are told that we are inexperienced compared to the older generation . In the 40’s and 50’s , we are expected to worry about the younger generation , and in the 60’s and 70’s we are supposed to act old and be retired .

    I would rather think that life is more about experiences than age and stuff . Each of us choose a path and make decisions that we will all reflect on at some point – what is normal for some may be quite unusual for others , but never the same .

    On August 11, 2005 , my doctors advised my family that I would not see the sunrise . On August 18 , 2005 , I checked myself out of the hospital after being told I would not make it until the end of the month . Doctors and other professionals have a set of standards that they are told to apply , but these rules are like everything else , just a proposed guideline .

    Your decision to take a path that most do not understand , will stand the test of time .

    The people that set the standards for female and male appearance , choose not to find a new way , but instead choose to follow the same path as those of recent years . I fail to understand how someone with such a shallow mind and limited experiences can be considered important enough to change the lives of others .

    You recently made a choice to change a cold winter into a warm spring time . How many millions wish they could make the same decision , but do not have the courage ?

    Be safe and have a great day !



  9. Richard Myers February 22, 2014 at 6:25 am #

    Hi Becky,

    Happy birthday!

    I don’t believe in getting old. You are correct, I feel, that thinking one is old makes one age. Our bodies have amazing abilities to rebuild themselves. We take that away slowly over time by eating bad food and leading a sedentary lifestyle. If we take care of ourselves, we will remain in our prime a very long time.

    By breaking out of the normal American lifestyle, you are making your prime vibrant and healthy.

    Thank you for a wonderful post!


  10. Regis February 22, 2014 at 6:49 am #

    Happy B day. At 61 my best advise would be, keep moving. Stop moving, you rust, so stay active, flexible and work your balance and love yourself for who you are. Your inner beauty will radiate.

  11. Ken Howitt February 22, 2014 at 7:20 am #

    Happy Birthday Becky!!!!!!!
    Excellent post and at 49 I am aproaching one of those milestones this year however I consider age a state of mind.
    Staying active and healthy is the key, My mind still thinks im in my mid 20’s but my body sometimes reminds me of it’s true age.

  12. Jon Paulson February 22, 2014 at 7:44 am #

    Happy Birthday, Becky! You are just a youngster compared to me, but it is all relative. I will be 60 years old this year and feel no different than I did when I was in my 20’s. Age is just a number as far as I’m concerned.

    I love what you’re doing and enjoy reading about your life and adventures on the road. I don’t live too far from your hometown and I’m sure you know what kind of winter we’ve had here. You can be happy that you are celebrating your 30th in spring-like conditions.

    I hope you have a great birthday!

  13. Jerry February 22, 2014 at 8:01 am #

    Happy Birthday Becky. You are a very beautiful woman, both inside and out. Your wisdom is well beyond your years. Best of life to you and some day you will choose the lucky mate to share your experiences with. This world is a better place with YOU in it.

    Safe travels.


  14. Jr cline February 22, 2014 at 8:07 am #

    Well said. I enjoyed it.
    Makes me feel better about myself. I’m often told to act and dress my age. 🙂
    Happy Birthday!

  15. Furry Gnome February 22, 2014 at 8:11 am #

    Thoughtful post and comments. I found the book ‘Younger Next Year’ a really good influence, now that I’m retired from the necessity of going in to work every day. I feel busier and more active than ever, but in choose what I’m busy with. Happy Birthday!

  16. Gary February 22, 2014 at 8:19 am #

    Happy Birthday Becky, And enjoy those well deserved warm temps…

  17. Rob February 22, 2014 at 8:55 am #

    Happy Birthday!
    My life changed after 30, well it was my attitude that changed… I mellowed a bit.

    Enjoy your day.
    Rob recently posted..A sense of humor is goodMy Profile

  18. Barak February 22, 2014 at 8:57 am #

    Happy Birthday!
    Enjoy it in the sun and warmth.
    Barak recently posted..Don’t Wait Until It’s Too Late by Bill MyersMy Profile

  19. David Swanson February 22, 2014 at 9:20 am #

    Nicely written Becky., Thanks!
    Age brings us other ways to live,neither better or worse, just other ways.

  20. Charlene Swankie February 22, 2014 at 9:42 am #

    I can’t believe you are ONLY 30 years young. Wow!!! I will be 70 in May and will kayak my 50th state, Hawaii, on my birthday. Six years ago I was shopping for a wheelchair due to bad knees. Got new knees and a boat (I had never kayaked before)… and set out to Kayak America. My motto is “It doesn’t get any better than this until tomorrow.” Happy Birthday, child. Keep enjoying your life to the fullest. Wish I had gotten an earlier start, but think I’m making up for lost time now. Hooray.
    Charlene Swankie recently posted..Resources for VandwellersMy Profile

    • Dawn in MI February 25, 2014 at 7:27 am #

      Wow Charlene, that’s inspirational! I’m mid-50’s and I think your project, kayaking in all 50 states is so very wonderful! Perfect even! Congratulations, and almost happy 70th!

  21. Kim February 22, 2014 at 9:47 am #

    Happy Birthday! Thanks for the insightful post.
    Kim recently posted..Brunswick, GAMy Profile

  22. Paul LeBoutillier February 22, 2014 at 10:15 am #

    Happy birthday Becky! 🙂

  23. Curious by Nature February 22, 2014 at 10:29 am #

    First off, Happy Birthday!
    I identify with your thoughts as I am reaching a similar milestone, 59 going on 60. I feel I have a few worthwhile points to share, maybe some fodder for a future article?

    1. Life is about quality, not quantity.

    I see so many older people that have ruined their bodies by inactivity that they are not able to do much of anything anymore. The human body evolved to run, jump, climb, and walk long distances. It’s very easy with our northern winters to turn into a chair lump waiting for spring. I believe that if you want a decent life, you have to keep moving so that you retain your physical abilities for as long as possible.

    2. Life is about experiences, not stuff.

    Stuff is there as a tool to enable you to have great experiences. Great experiences are your only true property as you travel through life, stuff wears out and is discarded along the way. How much of the stuff that you have do you actually use? How much of it costing you money to keep and maintain? Anything you don’t use is, by definition, useless, why keep it? Minimalism has a lot going for it.

    3. Great experiences are planned.

    If you want to be a hippy Gramma with long white hair streaming in the wind while riding your scooter, you should get your motorcycle licence, and learn how to do it safely. (one of my wife’s ideas)
    If you love exploring what is under the ocean surface, proximity to ocean is necessary, along with some equipment so you can see what is there, and survive to talk about it. All this takes planning, financing, skill acquisition, and time to do it in.

    4. Record and share your experiences.

    About 15 years ago, Sue and I sold our house, took half the money, and went to Australia for 7 weeks. I have video of her first touching Ayers Rock, she told me it wasn’t real until she had touched it. We still watch it about once a year, and the memories and feelings come back.

    5. Don’t be afraid to take a leap of faith.

    In the above anecdote, we were both unemployed, homeless, and halfway around the planet from home. But as it was planned, we still had a financial cushion to fall back on. We returned, I had a decent job within 3 days, and purchased our current home 2 months later. We had a great adventure, explored much of eastern Australia, and saw and experienced many things we’ll probably never see again. Definitely worth it!

  24. Mark February 22, 2014 at 10:53 am #

    Birthday greetings from Mississippi!

    We’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading your blogs since joining a couple of months ago. I’m constantly impressed with your insight and perspective into life, things that it took me 20 more years than you to figure out (and still figuring them out!).

    Have a great day!

  25. Patti February 22, 2014 at 11:16 am #

    Happy Birthday you young pup. Enjoy every moment you have. You inspire alot of people to get out and experience the beauty of Mother Earth. I look forward to reading your blog.
    Thank You.

  26. William February 22, 2014 at 11:20 am #

    Happy Birthday! Always remember though we have no control over aging we do have a choice as to whether we will ever be “old”. The two are never connected so remember to stay young no matter what birthday you are celebrating

  27. Don February 22, 2014 at 1:30 pm #

    Happy Birthday
    I Wish that I would have had the maturity that you have shown in today’s post. Your picture shows you to be a very young, beautiful person while the thoughts in your posts show you to be a person with vast experience in this world. After my years in life past the three quarter century mark, I started thinking much younger. Although we get older, isn’t that much better than the alternative? Keep up with your thoughts in your posts. They are enjoyed.

  28. Dennis Smith February 22, 2014 at 2:17 pm #

    Becky, my mother at 89 had to move into assisted living, she said she didn’t want to move in there because it was full of OLD people. Now that’s living. Enjoy life, you never know what tomorrow will bring, health, love, or just a change in what you want.

  29. Roger February 22, 2014 at 2:21 pm #

    Happy Birthday Becky!

    I think everyone has pretty much said it all, but I will say one thing, you are as young as you feel.
    I have always been told most of my life to grow up…I refuse.
    My B-day is in 2 days and I usually don’t pay much attention to it.

    Have a great day!


  30. Hazel February 22, 2014 at 5:28 pm #

    A very insightful post, Becky. To most that have commented, you are still a baby with so much of life to discover! 😉

    Being 63 means nothing to me…I still feel 18 inside. Staying fit and flexible, eating as well as one can (organic, vegetarian or vegan for Mother Earth as well as the body), and having interesting adventures are the keys to feeling this way.

    Yes, collect experiences not stuff. Although we are not well off, we’re frugal. Last year we spent 5 months down south in our Casita, came home to Canada, and flew to Italy with friends. Amazing adventure! Next winter, besides Casita-ing, we’re going to live in Nicaragua for a couple of months. This year we’re braving a very tough snowy winter at home but that hasn’t stopped me from playing in the snow…cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and making snow angels.

    Just LIVE wherever you are and make the most of each day. Confucius said: “Wherever you go, go with all your heart.”

    I wish you the best of days…on your birthday and every day!


  31. Barrie February 22, 2014 at 5:48 pm #

    Hi Becky,
    Happy birthday! I used to think 30 was old… Now that I’m in my 60’s, I really don’t think 60 is old. I can’t physically do some of the things I could do at 30 but I also do things now I never wanted to do when I was 30.

    I enjoy your thoughtful writing. Thank you for sharing. You are wise beyond your years. 🙂


  32. Lacy February 22, 2014 at 5:59 pm #

    Happy Birthday! Getting older isn’t as bad as the alternative. Enjoy every moment, you’re doing in your 30’s what some people HOPE to do in their 70’s!

    Hope it’s been a memorable birthday,

  33. Phyllis February 22, 2014 at 7:11 pm #

    Happy Birthday!

    Phyllis in Oklahoma

  34. LenSatic February 22, 2014 at 7:28 pm #

    Happy Birthday, Becky!

    Heck, when I turned 30, I started my 3rd career (4th if you count joining the Army after High School, but that didn’t work out) and met my future wife, though she didn’t know it yet. As for aches and pains, I was actually more fit in my 50s than in my 20s. I learned in the Army that it was easier to stay in shape than to get in shape. Since retiring and moving to AZ, I let the workouts slip and am finding out how true that advice was. But, no aches or pains except sore muscles now that I’m trying to get back in shape.

    My own philosophy sprung from a wise-ass remark I made when my son once asked the eternal question, “When are we going to get there?” My answer was, “What’s it matter, we’re going there anyway.” 😉



  35. Reine February 22, 2014 at 7:32 pm #

    Becky, sometimes it’s all in your perspective. My mom is 93. She doesn’t mind being called “old” but heaven forbid anyone considers her “elderly”. We’re retired and we sit around probably more than we should but even when sitting we’re doing stuff that we really enjoy or planning another trip.

    One comment on the “Great Experiences are Planned item from Curious by Nature. It’s true that some great experiences are planned. Your lifestyle is a great example. However, don’t miss out on the spontaneous things that become great experiences. Sometimes opportunities come up and you just have to seize the moment and enjoy them.

  36. Gayle February 22, 2014 at 7:56 pm #

    Today is the oldest you’ve ever been … but not the wisest you’ll ever be!

    Happy Birthday!

  37. Charlie February 22, 2014 at 8:53 pm #

    Hi Becky, Happy Birthday, new to your Site, your doing what I have been wanting to do all my life, I am seriously still thinking of going on the Road, just got to make the move, I have lived on a 24 Ft. Boat for 20 years, I have also traveled over 250,000 miles on Motorcycles and sleeping in four man Tents along the way so I’m sure I could handle an RV. I did all these things after I was 40.
    Have a great day,
    Enjoy you Birthday,

  38. EmilyO in NM February 22, 2014 at 9:46 pm #

    A Big Chronological Happy 30th Birthday. Victor Hugo (you will probably need to look him up) once said: “40 is the old age of youth BUt, BUT 50 is the youth of old age.”

    Chronologically I’ll be 72 in a month. I don’t know what 72 feels like – yes I feel older than 20 years ago -, so I just keep going like I always have (albeit a tad slower); and as Reine said above about her mom, I also hate the word “elderly” (I’d like to get my hands on those reporters that refer to someone in their 60’s as elderly!). The main point is to keep your self active physically and mentally – or as Regis said “. . . stop moving, you rust. . . “. You are getting a good handle on the real life and this will carry you all the way through. Love reading your thoughts.

  39. Rob February 22, 2014 at 10:06 pm #

    Happy Birthday!
    Wow 30 to be 30 again lol
    I turn 55 this may wow when did that happen
    Dont buy into that your body will start to have aging eat clean.
    Avoid and processed canned packaged food. Avoid all food additives. Avoid all deli type meats.
    Drink water with lemon. Keep it simple. It’s easy once u make the shift. Join a gym . Or do drop ins when traveling. They have great showers. I do have to disagree with u And about plastic surgery. It can be used to reverse damage caused but excessive weight gain. Never do Bo tox! Cheers rob

  40. kathy February 22, 2014 at 10:13 pm #

    Happy Birthday Becky, May this be your best year yet!
    The truest words ever spoken are “Life begins at 40”, so you have 10 more years to get ready to start the best part of life.

  41. Robert Dawson February 22, 2014 at 11:05 pm #

    Enjoy your birthday each day is precious.Gods blessings in your travels.Your blog is great thanks for letting us to travel along.Bob in Md

  42. Heather February 22, 2014 at 11:19 pm #

    Happy Birthday, Becky! 30 was a big one for me, (although it was quite some time ago!) ~ have enjoyed your journey and wisdom ~ my daughter is a Pisces as well, you’re such special spirits 🙂 Be well and travel safely ~ Hikercrone from Oregon

  43. Sheryl February 23, 2014 at 2:09 am #

    Happy Birthday, to both of us Becky–I turned 68 on the 21st to your 30 on the 22nd. Good food for thought this post and I would add, as each of us deals with our passage of time on this journey in individual ways, perhaps a solo rv’er might have a birthday (or holiday) away from family and friends, thereby casting a more contemplative shadow than memory reminds us of past celebrations. I’ve had happy older and sad younger birthdays as well as the opposite, and determine I will use my milestones to create a meaningful event for the day (this year breakfast at Off The Waffle, Eugene OR with SUNSHINE!!) and see it as the start of MY new year (February is a great month coming out of winter) to get juiced up setting new goals and re-evaluating my value system and the path I find myself living.
    I don’t think it is “downhill from here” or even “old”–I think it is simply “change”. The times change and we change and we deal with different things at different times. Perhaps societal influences test us to know ourselves, then we make changes or know we are where we should be. It is all good.

  44. Florencio February 23, 2014 at 6:59 am #

    Happy Birthday ans many greetings from Germany !!! 😎

  45. MarciaGB February 23, 2014 at 12:11 pm #

    Happy Birthday, Becky! Believe me, you haven’t even reached the best years of your life yet 🙂
    I’m 67 and hardly ever think about my age. Despite having several health conditions, I don’t feel old and I don’t plan to! There’s just too much living left to do. I try to appreciate each day as it is and look forward to many years of new friends, new travels and new experiences. May this year be your best so far. Thank you for a beautiful and thoughtful post. Blessings!

  46. Becky February 23, 2014 at 9:45 pm #

    Dear Everyone,

    As this post has now garnered a record breaking 46 comments and I’m away until Tuesday celebrating my birthday, visiting and making friends, and enjoying pretending to be an actress in addition to singing (wait, you want me to be a street character for the festival? I have to make a CHARACTER and ACT as well as sing??), I sadly do not have the time to respond to every comment this time.

    To everyone who wished me a happy birthday, thank you! I spent it up in Columbia, SC hanging out with some LARPing (live action role play) friends at the Zoo and then got to pretend to be a proper girl and get a facial and played a card game afterward.

    To everyone who found this post helpful and inspiring or enjoyable, you are very welcome and I’m glad you liked it. Our kind of out of the box thinking makes us something of a minority group, and it can be jarring to have to live in dual worlds. One being the unique one we’ve created by making deliberate choices in the way we live and think, and yet still having to work and function in the world at large where people follow the status-quot. It can be challenging to hold on to yourself and what you believe in in that sea of conformity, and I know I like reading stuff like this on occasion to come back to myself.

    To everyone who shared their own stories about age and beauty, thank you too! Everyone has something worth sharing, a story to tell, and it’s an honor to be on the receiving end of that wisdom.

  47. Diane February 23, 2014 at 9:50 pm #

    Hope you had a wonderful birthday, Becky! I’m going to be moving into a Great Northern Railways caboose in northern New Hampshire this Friday, my first grand adventure of the New Year. I’d love to talk with you sometime about how you set up your blog.

    • Becky February 25, 2014 at 3:31 pm #

      Sounds like fun Diane! If you’d like to drop me an e-mail at becky @ interstellarorchard (dot) com (or just go to my Contact page) I can tell you a little about what I did, it did cost a good $270 for the theme and hosting for the first two years. If you want something free, you may want to talk to someone who hosts using blogger or something like that.

  48. AmyKate February 23, 2014 at 11:12 pm #

    Just wanted to say, Happy Birthday! Enjoy each one. The older you get the faster they come!

    • Becky February 25, 2014 at 3:31 pm #

      Thanks Amy!

  49. PamelaP February 24, 2014 at 12:09 pm #

    AH, Grasshopper……so much wisdom for your short 30 years! Age is all about perspective – while my body almost 64, my brain still thinks it’s 25 – and my Mom, who passed at 85, thought she was 21 her whole life – so nothing ever stopped her, slowed her down perhaps, but didn’t stop her. I hope I can continue to emulate her example.

    I hope you have a fabulous birthday and celebrate each day as it comes.

    All the best,

    • Becky February 25, 2014 at 3:33 pm #

      Thanks Pamela. It sounds like your mother was a very wise woman!

  50. Chuck February 24, 2014 at 8:47 pm #

    Embrace your 30th birthday! Your doing something that I’ve been planning to do over the last 37 years.

    • Becky February 25, 2014 at 3:34 pm #

      Thank you Chuck. I hope you’re making good progress toward getting on the road yourself, no time like the present!

  51. OpenSpaceMan February 24, 2014 at 9:51 pm #

    Happy Birthday! But more importantly Happy Life…because your living/using your time the way you want to.

    I wonder what life would be like if we didn’t count the years as closely and just every decade like wedding anniversaries…maybe we wouldn’t think about the passing of time the same way.

    I’ve met 30 yr old…60 yr olds and 60 yr old…30 yr olds. It’s all the way you allow yourself to feel. Peace.

    • Becky February 25, 2014 at 3:35 pm #

      Yeah I’ve thought about things like that too Space. I wonder what it’s like in cultures that don’t count and celebrate every year like we do. Maybe I’ll have to visit one myself some day to find out.

  52. Dawn in MI February 25, 2014 at 7:28 am #

    Well happy birthday!!!!!!! I remember 30. It was a very good year.. . Yours will be too, because you are in control! 🙂
    Dawn in MI recently posted..Weekly Photo Challenge: ThreesMy Profile

    • Becky February 25, 2014 at 3:37 pm #

      Every year since I decided to make my own rules for life instead of following everyone else’s has been better than the year before. I imagine that trend will continue as long as I keep following my heart and wisdom.

  53. travelfables March 2, 2014 at 8:20 pm #

    Happy B day,
    I recommend a post birthday viewing of the wonderful Terry Gilliam film The Adventures of Baron Munchausen.
    It is always a wonder when getting older, and as travelers , this help put things in their proper perspective.


    • Becky March 4, 2014 at 12:16 pm #

      Never heard of it Dale but I’ll take a peek. Thanks for the birthday wishes. 🙂

  54. Becky March 6, 2014 at 6:20 pm #

    *EDIT 03/25/14* The original comment by Jessica that this was in response to was deleted at her request. But it basically said that 30 isn’t old and that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

    Agreed Jessica. That’s the healthiest way to look at it, otherwise you give yourself a complex, haha. And I think the most important person who should see you as beautiful is yourself, because when you think you’re beautiful and worthy, others pick up on that.

    And I don’t mean in a vain always checking yourself out in a mirror make-up has to be perfect kind of way, I mean that you celebrate your strengths inside and out, and be gentle with yourself when it comes to your imperfections.

  55. Nancy March 19, 2014 at 7:50 pm #

    Hey there! Just discovered your awesome blog!

    I had a birthday within a couple days of yours. This year, my friend and I had a combined birthday party, and our combined age, which we put on our cakes, was 107. Holy Moly! So, I’m lots older than you are! Think how I feel!!

    Getting older does suck in some ways, but if you stay healthy and young at heart, those big birthdays are no big deal. Just another reason to have a party!

    • Becky March 19, 2014 at 9:20 pm #

      I like the way you think Nancy! Any reason to celebrate and enjoy life is a good one. 😉 Happy late birthday and welcome to IO.

  56. Micki August 28, 2014 at 12:05 pm #

    Happy Birthday.

    On my 30th birthday, my mother called me and asked how I was feeling? I said ‘Great!’ and she said, ‘ Oh good, on her 30th birthday your sister had a nervous breakdown.’
    Just thought I’d share that.

    I will be 80 in the spring and will be out in some wilderness in a van with my husband.
    We have been travelers for around 30 years mostly off the grid, so why not continue?

    Right now we are taking 3 day camping trips in our passenger van..into the National Forest, which we just happen ( 🙂 ) to live in, in a little apartment when we are at home. We keep that because without it we can’t get a driver’s license, PO box, meds or passports.
    We are saving for a camper van and surely we will get one soon.

    I believe that humans were always nomads, and the more recent belief that we must work till we are 65 then enjoy life, is foolish. We were born to live.

    Becky, I am finding your blog very interesting. Keep on truckin’

    • Becky August 29, 2014 at 6:14 pm #

      “We were born to live”

      Love that Micki! I’m always glad to hear from other nomads, I think it’s great that you’re still traveling and enjoying life at almost 80. Enjoy your time in the National Forests and maybe we’ll meet somewhere down the road.

      And welcome to IO, glad to have you here!

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