Abby Sunderland and Jordan Romero’s Dreams and Goals…

I personally know that goals and dreams are BIG! I’m also in the Education Technology Community. We all set our goals EXTREMELY high. We have NO idea what the outcomes are! We do know that we want the best for our kids. This is one of those things NOT to skimp out on. You are kids. You are teenagers. YOU ARE THE FUTURE! Parents need to be more lenient on the restrictions they set for their kids. Your kids have REALLY amazing ideas, but you need to LET THEM express it to you AND THEN say “OK” to them. Otherwise, your just putting their dreams and goals in a big hole, where your kids can’t get access to them until later.


Abby Sunderland

I’m feeling sad for Abby Sunderland. She is one amazing girl! She wanted to sail solo and circumnavigate the oceans! She failed though just west of Australia. I hope she will try AGAIN in a few months. I mean you can NEVER really leave your dreams and life goals just “half-way” completed, now can you? I  know MANY people thought this was crazy, but she knows her stuff. She has been on the water since she was a kid. I think Abby woke up the youth community to try to “sail” to their life’s dreams and goals. I REALLY hope she will try AGAIN, VERY soon! As with wildeyes, I don’t think she will ever forget her friend that she poured her blood, tears, and sweat into is gone. Team Abby has started a site asking for donations. PLEASE consider donating. Think about how much hard work, sweat, tears, and man power she poured into Wild Eyes.

UPDATE 6-16 @9pm: A reporter for the LA Times talked with Abby, and got more in-depth information then the media has covered. You can read his story here. I’m EXTREMELY proud that this reporter wrote this story. It comes from a 3rd party, and it is more believable then the family, and it backs the family up! Below are some quotes I found from it that I think are VERY inspiring.

UPDATE 6-16 @2am: I read an article on Abby from the AP Here. (I know, its a bit late but I was busy and didn’t notice this one!)

“I think my biggest regret is having to give up my dream, but I didn’t really have a choice,” she said. “I was definitely up for it and I definitely could have done it.”

“I still love sailing just as much as the day that I left and I’m definitely going to keep sailing and I hope to sail around the world someday,” she told the AP. “It’s been a dream or a goal of mine for years. I don’t know when or how I will, but I’m pretty sure I will one day sail around the world.”

UPDATE 6-15 @9pm: ABBY IS ON LAND! According to this caption and photo from the AP. She is on Kerguelen currently.

UPDATE 6-15 @2pm: It is REALLY SAD that they needed to release this post! 🙁 Oh well… (Sorry about being late, but I was busy!!)

UPDATE 6-15 @ 8:40am: Abby is nearing the Kerguelen Islands, where she will transfer to another vessel that will take her to Reunion Island, a French possession east of Madagascar. From there, in about a week, she will make her way back to California. 🙂

UPDATE 6-15 @ 12:15am: I have been talking to a Team Abby member on FB… “I’ve been meaning to write you. THANK YOU for your support for Abby’s journey. I’ve seen many of your posts. Trust me, Abby and her family appreciate supporters like you!!” They also told me “You’re pretty amazing too! I’ll consider you part of Team Abby!!” There really aren’t many words to describe Abby! (She needs to invent some new ones! – – “Amazing” just won’t cut it!! I’m now thinking too that Abby and Jordan are leading a REVOLUTION for youth to get off the couch and to do their goals and do their dreams! Keep up the good work girl! 🙂

UPDATE 6-14@11:30pm: Abby just accepted my friend request on FB! Gosh… This just made me think of something… She will NEVER have her regular life back for awhile (or ever again for that matter!)… I think this was her goal and dream still, otherwise I think she would have never gone. (Because of the privacy issue).

UPDATE 6-14@8:30pm: According to this post, they have cut ties to the production! The production company is SICK. They thought Abby would die at sea!!! 🙁 VERY SAD AND SICK! (and see… I guessed right! The mother was against it!)

UPDATE 6-14 @4pm: This is SICK! – – I can’t believe that something like this would come out RIGHT NOW! I KNOW NPR is a trusted source. I can’t believe that the parents would do something like this… PR NIGHTMARE! Here is a link to the information on the shows! This is another SAD article! 🙁 I think though that this had nothing to do with Abby’s voyage. Just LOOK how far Abby made it!! She would have NOT made it that far if she was part of a scam!!!!! I think this is mostly her father. If you NOTICED at the press conference, he seemed OK with letting her try again, while her mother wasn’t so sure…

UPDATE 6-14 @3pm: They have abandoned the thought of saving wildeyes. 🙁 I hope they will take my thoughts into consideration (Talking to Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Google Foundation, and other Silicon Valley Companies…) HOPEFULLY someone will be willing to chip in BIG $.


A post from someone on Abby and their thoughts.

I have been following Abby Sunderland as she travels alone around the world in a sailboat. In the beginning I was concerned that her parents were not stopping her in this journey but actually encouraging her. I soon changed my mind. Abby is 16 years old and has been on the water since infancy. Her brother at age 17 went around the world last year successfully. I hear people talking about the cerebral cortex not even fully formed in Abby’s brain and thereby making it impossible for her to know risks or make thorough decisions. Not sure it applies to her. I started to wonder how much I would encourage my children, now grandchildren to explore uncharted waters and follow a passion at any age. What age is okay and what age is dangerous?

As I have followed Abby by her blog I realized that she is so well prepared and such a level headed teenager. She is different from the teenagers I have known. She has a gypsy in her that allows her to have the hubris to believe she can do something this difficult and survive. I know teenager think they are invincible but this is different. She has been challenged throughout the voyage, thus far ending with her a drift in the Indian Ocean with no sail and no communication satellite waiting to be rescued. As I look back over my life I realize that I never really tested myself to the limit. Sure I took risk but nothing of the magnitude of Abby. I encouraged my sons to be more adventurous and they traveled more than I had by the time they were 20. They married much later than I did. They explored life in a different way than I did. They quit jobs and started new careers in their 30’s. They followed passions which were harder than most. One jumped off a bridge with a bungy on his back. One was on TV for 7 years as a sports broadcaster (his dream from age 5) and then quit when he married and had a family and started a job that was commission only. I often thought I could sell shit to someone who had diarrhea but I never tried it.

With Abby facing daily challenges she has shown her might and her ability to remain calm in a storm (literally ) and continued to make choices by herself and with her team. Some decisions were made spur of the moment and in the middle of the night with waves knocking her sailboat to the side with sails in the water. She had her lucky charms but her real charm is in her desire to show real courage. She is not afraid and makes wise choices (like giving up the record and going a shore in Africa) because there were real harmful issues with her boat. She was eloquent in efforts to explain how and why she made those choices.

I am more than impressed with her and wish I could be more adventurous. I know my friends think I am more daring as I travel to third world countries by myself (but on a tour) and I paint and write but somehow, those passions don’t resonate with Abby’s. I tried as a mother to give my sons latitude in their choices and supported them when I felt able and dissuaded when I was anxious. But anxiety can’t rule your life. It ruled my 20’s thru 40’s but now in my early 60’s I am more out there than ever before and you know I like myself better than anytime in my life.

As I was waiting to hear if they would locate Abby last night I realized that if she didn’t survive she would have died doing what she loved and would rest in the ocean with the beauty and dignity that the journey commanded. How many of us can say that? She knew the risks, she prepared herself for them and as a rescue is now imminent she has done an amazing job.

I thought of her parents unconditional love, support and their faith that their daughter knew enough and was responsible and would survive yet another challenge.They were extremely worried, I know, but continued to believe in Abby. I think of her as wonderful example of courage and exploring this world in a unique and privileged way knowing all along it could end badly but having the love and passion from her family, team and the thousands who have traveled along with her on her blog. I think we will hear from Abby again whether she continues this journey or starts another one. She named her boat “Wild Eyes” and I truly believe it represents who she is and what stamina, courage, faith and the love of the ocean she has in her eyes and heart.

VIA Madge Stein Woods -


And yet, ANOTHER neat post from someone on Abby and their thoughts.

“I believe every human being has a finite number of heartbeats. I don’t intend to waste any of mine.” –Neil Armstrong, Omni Interview, 1988–

If you, like me, occasionally yearn for proof that there are still people who seek values, achievement and accomplishment, then you need look no further than Abby Sunderland, a 16-year-old girl who’s got more guts and glory in her pinkie finger than most people have in their entire bodies or lives.

Abby is the young lady who set sail last January in her 40-foot boat “Wild Eyes,” determined to circumnavigate the globe. Nonstop. Solo.

She ran into major problems in the middle of the Indian Ocean on Thursday (June 10th), however, and had her mast snapped by high storm waves and winds. Today, as of this writing, she was picked up safe and sound by a French fishing vessel.

In the wake of her failure, unfortunately, many are questioning Abby’s competence, her goals and her parents. As a fairly representative sample, consider this:

“If, at the age of 16, my daughter wanted to sail around the world by herself…I’d compliment her bravery and then lock her in her room, chain her to a tree or slip sleeping pills into her oatmeal.” (“Abby Sunderland: Brave girl, questionable choice,” Steve Lopez, Los Angeles Times, June 11th.)

Not satisfied with domineering his child, however, Mr. Lopez believes Abby’s parents should do the same: “Where will mom and dad draw the line on around-the-world trips? Let’s hope they don’t have a 10-year-old who gets the bug next.”

But Abby’s father, who knows better, swept such criticisms aside: “Laurence Sunderland says he’d not only let her try again to sail around the world solo–he’d ‘absolutely endorse that wholeheartedly.’” (“Abby Sunderland’s dad: I’d let her do it again,”, June 12th.)

Mr. Sunderland knows what Mr. Lopez does not: that the response to your child’s dreams is to foster them and enable them to acquire the necessary knowledge and training to bring them about–not to “lock her in her room.” Way to go, Mr. Lopez! How long were you planning on leaving her chained to that tree? Forever? Or just until she’s 18, and hates your guts?

Nor is Abby herself daunted by her experiences: “I’m definitely going to sail around the world again, or at least give it another try,” she said, according to Australian broadcaster ABC.

Mr. Lopez, though, deadened as he is to the sheer magnitude of Abby’s aspirations, can only worry about who’s going to pay for her rescue: “I hope Qantas Airlines and anyone else involved in the search sends the bills to mom and dad in Thousand Oaks,” he said.

Have we become so alienated from honest attainment, so scornful of legitimate success, so derisive of striving for our visions, that the grandeur of this young lady’s greatness escapes us?

Yes, it can be dangerous to walk down an unwalked road. Since our rational faculties are not infallible, since our knowledge is not acquired automatically but through an act of mental effort, we can–and often do–make mistakes. Just because we can err in our thinking, however, is no reason to refuse to think; and just because we sometimes find ourselves temporarily at the mercy of forces beyond our control, is no reason to stop taking action.

Human existence, by its very nature, necessitates that we continue to grow, think and progress–to continue walking the unwalked road–even in the face of failure. Where would we be today if the people of the past had decided to “leave well enough alone”? Where would we be if Peter Cooper had never built the first steam locomotive; if the Wright brothers had never flown at Kitty Hawk; if Nikolaus Otto had never constructed the internal combustion engine? We would still be huddling for warmth in our caves.

It is a very small fraction of mankind who have the courage to challenge the unknown, and the culture around them, head-on; yet is this very small fraction that makes life for the rest of us possible. When such individuals seek their values they deserve rewards, not ridicule. Acclaim, not abuse. Encouragement, not enslavement.

To see the spirit that drives us all in the person of Abby Sunderland, 16-year-old girl, is a gift none of us have the right to expect. So, speaking for myself, I’d like to say: thank you, Abby, for proving once again that heroes and heroines still exist; and I salute you.

VIA Brad Harrington –


Jordan Romero

Jordan is ANOTHER teenager that is going BIG with their dreams. He made his goal with his father. He climbed to his dream! I’m VERY familiar with his goal. I have listened to many of Charlie Wittmack‘s talks. Charlie was the FIRST Iowan to summit Mount Everest! This was an AMAZINGLY hard goal. Jordan is only 13 YEARS OLD! He is planning on climbing again, but this time in Antarctica! I found out about Jordan, because he worked with ESRI to keep a webmap of where he was at on his journey.



BOTH of these teenagers are an inspiration to ALL youth (teenagers and kids). I KNOW some adults AND the media say “NO, that was VERY IRRESPONSIBLE! Their [Jordan and Abby] parent’s shouldn’t have let them do these unsafe goals.” but we NEED to change their thinking, so they then say “We need MORE of our youth to do stuff like this, do their life’s goals, do their life dreams.”!!!!! Parents who say “NO” RUIN their children’s life. It is an instant put down. I think  KNOW that both of these teenagers have inspired thousands, if not millions of youth (both teenagers AND kids) to reach their goals. Here is a news article on Jordan about people doubting him and his parents.

Update: Here is ANOTHER reason. Youth have NEVER done these “daring” dreams/ goals ever before, so this is another reason I think that adults say, “what BAD parenting.” But, I think that once more kids do these types of tasks, parents will be more ok with saying “yes” to their children. This is almost like Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier, but these kids are breaking the dream and goal barrier, showing ANYTHING CAN BE DONE!


“She dared and she who dares wins whether she made it or not.” – Bruce Clarke (FB)


**This is a post still in the works!**

5 responses on “Abby Sunderland and Jordan Romero’s Dreams and Goals…

  1. madgew

    Thanks David for the plug for my blog. I am enjoying reading your blog. Keep it up.

  2. Ray B.

    I’m in total agreement with you. It may be an odd request from a child (Abby’s desire), but we must believe that she and her family did not go into this blind. Although my children are not gifted athletes, they have made educational requests. Why does the press not come to me about the advancement of my child? Yes, it may not affect his safety, but it will affect his life. (Although next year he will be going to high school for a class at 12 years of age. Is his safety in question? Maybe. Do I think he can do it? Yes.) It has been quite an adventure! And yes, he has had to prove himself each step of the way. And he did!

    I remember when he was about 3 or 4 and he was walking on an icy wall of rocks at the mall (it was only a few feet high). I had to turn around; I couldn’t watch. Another mom came up to me and said that I was braver than her. Well, he can’t live in a bubble. He has to learn what his limits are, what he can and can’t do. The worst that could happen was that he would fall. And how many adults do I know who broke a limb this year falling in their driveway? As a parent, I knew the risks, and I calculated damage control (and I was right there). He’d be okay. And he did it. And he was happy! And he learned something about himself: that he could do what he set his mind to do! That experience taught him that he COULD do it!

    I haven’t pushed my children. It’s something within them. These are gifts that they have. I have absolutely no desire to sail the ocean, and yes, I can swim. That’s not my gift. Let’s encourage these children and guide them to their full potential so that they can become who they are meant to be. Although we can just put them somewhere safe like in front of the TV or video games and watch their BMI rise….

    On a final note, what makes an 18-year old responsible? There are plenty of adults that I know that I would not trust with my shopping list!

    I applaud the parents for raising intelligent children who are capable of taking care of themselves in extreme conditions. These kids are brave enough to brave the elements alone and do it well. Bravo!

  3. admin Post author

    @Ray B. – I have a friend who is homeschooled (6th grade) and he is taking college level classes (computer engineering 100 level class, and his instructor wrote him a note to take a grad level class 500 level). I don’t think his safety ever went into his mothers consideration. I also have a friend who just graduated from high school. He went full-time, at a college during his senior year, because he got his credits built up.
    My friend who is in 6th grade knows is friends with this one person who graduated college, the same week he graduated high school! (
    To your son, I say “good job! keep up the good work!” I’m a freshman in high school, and I have taken 1 college class, and plan on taking 5 more by the time I get done with high school.

  4. Paddy

    I applaud teenagers and their lofty goals. I think we need to encourage them to go for it. Part of the problem is that sometimes we don’t understand these goals.
    We surely, as adults, understand the risks…but not necessarily the goal.
    Jordan’s goal was to climb mountains. Abby’s goal was to sail around the world.
    The difference was that Abby would be alone, FAR from help. Jordan would be part of a team and help would be close by.
    There is the problem for me. Yes, they are mature and responsible for their ages and they should pursue their goals.
    To my way of thinking, we, as adults must weigh the significance of the goal to the teen against the risk. In Jordans case the risk is certainly there but it is mitigated by the fact he is part of an experienced team who will be there if anything happens. It’s no less of an achievement, but he is being watched over and guided. It’s a learning experience as well as a goal.
    In Abby’s case, as we have seen, if something goes wrong she is alone and could have no way of letting anyone know and could have no way of letting anyone know where she is.
    If she does do those things, it could still be days or weeks before rescue is possible.
    So, from my personal perspective, the risk far outweighs the significance of the achievement at 16.
    Based on those risks, I would not allow my 16 yr old to embark on such a trip alone. I would say yes if she were in a group on a larger vessel though. It’s the alone part that would make me say no.
    Having said all that, I am very very happy for both these kids. Mostly that they survived the trip. They both learned an enormous amount about themselves and about life.

    I noticed the pictures of Jordan after his summit. So much different than the before pictures. I don’t know what happened on that climb but I do know that, unlike his other climbs, a child went up but a wise man came down. You can plainly see the difference in his eyes in the after pictures.
    Many of us never pass that milestone into being wise.

    Congrats to all for having the goals