Gratitude, Mindfulness, and Travel Adventures

Geeky Blog Picks of 2014
Playground of Steel: Exploring the St. Louis City Museum


In honor of Outbound Adventurer’s first anniversary, we want to take a moment to reflect on the sheer awesomeness of our planet.

I know, it’s a tall order!

As general science and travel geeks Jessi and I find ourselves talking about this quite a lot.

Whether I’m sharing the fantastic array of life on Earth with my science students, whether Jessi and I are geeking out about some new travel destination, or we are planning our next adventure to a far away place, it never ceases to amaze us how truly awesome our planet is, and how much awe it inspires.

We have so much diversity–ecologically, culturally, geographically. I know it’s hard to compare to anything else, short of owning a spaceship and flying to some new planet (I’ll get back to you on that one, Virgin Galactic) but as we wax philosophical about the things we’re thankful for, the opportunity to see even a small fraction of our beautiful and inspiring world is near the top of our list.

Today, we’re celebrating all that our planet is, and our gratitude for being able to share our nerdy adventures with all of you.



We are grateful for our family. Our connections to our home bases and our loved ones remind us of the courage it takes to leave our comfort zones. They remind us of the joy we find in returning to familiar places after experiencing a new journey. We love to share our stories with the people with whom we are closest, and we consider every one of our readers to be a part of our extended family.

In short, here’s a shout out to our friends, family and loved ones who encourage and support us unconditionally, and to you guys–our readers, who keep the heart of Outbound Adventurer pumping strong!



We are grateful for our own cultural upbringings, and for the cultural experiences we soak in when we travel. It’s always a delight, comparing the nuances of one culture to another, and finding the commonalities that tie us all together in the end.



We are grateful, as learners and as educators, for the gift of education. It’s part of our mission: to report geeky treks from around the globe. But our passion for education extends beyond just travel geekery; we want to create a collaborative experience for our readers and for learners of all ages.

Interested in learning more? (Ha, learning; see what we did there?) Read on for the official reveal of our latest education initiative. We’re not going to post spoilers here!



As bloggers, we are constantly looking ahead. To the next trip, to the next blog post, to our first travel conference. The world is such a big and exciting place, and we want to geek out about all of it. We want to share experiences with our readers, and to help support learners of all ages in their personal quests to just never stop learning.

In the midst of all the deadlines, planning, and checklists, we want to make sure that we–and you, our readers–step aside and take the time to be mindful. To truly live in the moment.

To breathe deeply and appreciate the sense of grounding that travel and the writing process impart to us.

As we reflect back on a busy year, we want to make sure we’re reflecting on the little moments that made us feel really present. Travel brings with it a sense of awe and wonder, a sense of being thrown out of our comfort zone, but it also can lend us sweet moments of reflection and peace.



This past year has been a whirlwind, experiencing new wonders and revisiting old haunts. We’ve trekked the deserts of West Texas, waded in glacial waters in the Julian Alps of Slovenia, and sampled the delicious cuisine of the Balkans.

More important than a list of destinations, though, are the lessons that we’ve learned, the people we’ve met, and the new experience we’ve gained while traveling. We’ve learned that it is possible to find the wonder in everything, from the ashes of Pompeii to the quirky restaurant just up the street. We have learned that it is possible spend every day seeking out a new adventure, even if that adventure is just up the road.

Travel is a limitless educational opportunity, and we’re so glad to have been able to share our experiences with all of you.

Outbound Edventurer: Ringing in the New Year with an exciting new experiential education initiative

Plitvice Lakes National Park

Okay. So we’re all about reporting our geeky travels and global adventures with all of our readers. But we are passionate about bringing educational travel opportunities to students and life-long learners of all ages.

With one year of adventure travel blogging under our collective belts, Jessi and I are excited to announce our new sister site: Outbound Edventurer!

Outbound Ed is a one-stop shop for anyone who wants to experience an educational opportunity abroad. Our big focus is on student and educator resources, connecting people with the right opportunities around the world or close to home. We are also a sounding board for learners to communicate about their travel and learning experiences in the form of student blogging and guest posts.

We look forward expanding and building our connection between Outbound Adventurer, Outbound Edventurer, and our readers–ultimately, we want to put your learning experiences in your own hands, with expert suggestions and opinions to help you or your own loved ones find the right experiential education opportunity. From field work to travel tours and study abroad programs, we love it all, and we want to take you all along on our newest adventure.

Interested in learning more? Let us know what you’re grateful for, and be sure to take our experiential quiz at Outbound Edventurer!

Geeky Blog Picks of 2014
Playground of Steel: Exploring the St. Louis City Museum
  • Happy Anniversary! What an exciting new venture for you guys too! Keep up the awesome blogging 🙂

  • Elaine J Masters

    It’s no small feat traveling full time and keeping the site up and interesting. So congratulations on the anniversary. The new endeavor for 2015 sounds like a great addition.

  • Congrats on the anniversary! Happy travels onward!


  • Congrats on your one year anniversary! It looks like you had an amazing time traveling this year, and I look forward to keeping up with your adventures next year! I like the idea of offering education opportunities, after all, travel for me is always about learning!

    • Thank you! We’re really psyched to throw more education into the mix – we think it’s something all travelers can definitely relate to, one way or another!

  • Congrats on the site’s first year! It’s plain to see that you are passionate about what you do! I also find that travel lends itself towards making us grateful for the awesome natural wonders of the world we live in!

    • Thank you! It really does – we’re constantly amazed by everything this planet has to offer.