2015 Year in Review

January 1, 2016

Ben and Alix (824)

I can hardly believe 2015 is already gone! 2015 has been an amazing year, and it seemed to go by in the blink of an eye. As I relive events in my minds eye, 2015 seems to have been the best year of my life. I said the same thing in my 2014 Year in Review post. This excites me for the possibilities that 2016 holds.

2015 Highlights

Here are the highlights of 2015, in no particular order.

  • Got married!!! Ms. Alixandra McCuen became Mrs. Alixandra Lobaugh on August 21. I am excited and enthusiastic about the future we envision together.
  • Joined Footloose Disabled Sailing. Sometime after chatting with a friend about Matt Rutherford’s sailing trip that benefited Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating (CRAB) I was pondering my own life an realized I was not participating in anything charitable at the time. Inspired by Matt I researched disabled sailing in my area and found Footloose. I quickly came to love the organization and the participants. Helping people otherwise unable to get out on the water at Footloose events became the event I most looked forward to.
  • Joined Joe Bozick as racing crew on his sailboat Breeze. I met Joe during a Footloose event and we quickly connected. Joe races his beautiful Sweden 36 sailboat and was needing crew. Joe is an amazing sailor and teacher. He has been racing for ~30 years. Sailing is in my blood, now racing is in my blood as well. My knowledge of boat handling has increased exponentially under Joe and I look forward to winning more races!
  • Became a member of the Shilsole Bay Yacht Club (SBYC). Joe is a past commodore at SBYC and invited me to the July 3rd raft up with SBYC. The people at SBYC are great! They actually do own and use their boats, unlike some other stuffy, overpriced yacht clubs in the area. I am going to be working with the Racing Chair as Fleet Captain. I am happy to be with this great group of people and look forward to the events in 2016.

2016 Goals

I have a lot of hobbies and things that I would like to become hobbies. Problem is that historically has led to many projects/goals/ideas/dreams sitting around in various states of completion. I recently read The One Thing, which I highly recommend if you want to learn to get extraordinary results from your life. It confirmed many patterns I saw in myself and how I can change things up to do extraordinary things. This year my overall personal goal is to identify the projects/goals/ideas/dreams that I really want to focus on and prioritize. My desire is that my 2016 Year in Review post will confirm I have reached all the following goals of 2015!

  • Purchase real estate. This was a goal in 2015, however with the wedding craze it was bumped to 2016 to relieve some stress. This is my number one goal for 2016. To that end I am already networking and working on finding a deal that will provide a solid foundation for Alix and I going into the future.
  • Lose 20 pounds. I already had extra and since the wedding I have gained 16 more pounds! Exercising and being more fit has always done wonders for my mental capacity and general state of mind. I want to get back into that rhythm.
  • Perform major maintenance on Zippey. Oh Zippey, my beloved sailboat. Zippey had a maintenance goal in 2015, however as I looked deeper into her I realized it was going to be more time and expense than originally thought. Nothing is structurally wrong with Zippey, nor is she unsafe. Instead of filling Zippey’s maint. coffers that money was diverted into the wedding fund. This maint. has to be done in 2016 or Zippey really will resemble the classic saying, “A boat is a hole in the water you throw money into.”
  • Reach an intermediary stage as a fabric welder. Alix got me a sewing machine for Christmas (yes, another new hobby). I plan on using it as a tool to save significant amounts of $$$. I will be posting projects on this site.
  • Become a better sailboat racer! I have learned a lot and leveled up significantly in skill, however there is always more to learn. In 2016 I want to get to a point where I am anticipating all the moves of the captain. I also want to make my name more well known in the general racing community here.
  • Increase the reach of Footloose. Bob runs Footloose. Bob’s passion for sailing and providing a space for disabled sailors is inspiring. Bob is disabled himself. Bob’s goal is to provide the best possible experience for as many people as possible. Right now Footloose has a small reach into the disabled community and he would like to see that grow. Using the talents I have as a web developer and general technologist I want to help grow Footloose into the premier disabled organization in the region.