Exploring Life After NASA

In anticipation of saying goodbye to NASA at the end of my career in federal service, I packed up my life and moved across country to Texas. Though I was born and raised in Texas, I’ve spent nearly 30 years working in Washington, DC. working for the federal government. The transition was not easy.

Beth's NASA equipment on her final day before retirement.

My final day at NASA. I powered down my devices and left them in my office.

Why the big move, you may ask. Why not stay in luscious, green, heavily-treed Virginia? The answer: family commitments.

We packed everything into PODS, which went into storage four months while I lived and teleworked from a room in my sister’s house. My sister Aimee is a small business owner in McKinney. Her studio, Aimee Louise Photography, is located in the historic Cotton Mill. She graciously opened her home to me during the house hunt — which took so much longer than I anticipated. After putting down offers on two houses, I ended up with my dream home in McKinney’s historic district — only 15 minutes from Aimee’s house. It’s a 103-year-old Craftsman with 55 windows with original glass. We’re only two blocks from Town Square, so we can walk for eating, shopping, and town festivities. It’s truly a wonderful life in small town, USA.

Truckload of Beth's Treasures: the Big Move to McKinney.

Truckload of my Treasures: the Big Move to McKinney.

Most people ask what my plans are, now that I’m no longer at NASA. Right now, I’m thoroughly enjoying this “extended vacation.” I’m reading books, working in the yard, unpacking bins, and spending time with family.  I’ve enjoyed meeting interesting people and learning how McKinney operates. I’m looking forward to opportunities to contribute to the community, as the stars align.

My sister and I are collaborating on a “TEXploration” project. We’re taking one day a month (or more as Aimee’s schedule permits) to go back-roads cowboy-culture hunting in surrounding communities — historical sights, interesting people, good food, and great deals (yes, it’s really all about the shopping). Aimee will document our journey with her fabulous photography, and I’ll blog about what we find. We’ll begin sharing soon. Feel free to suggest interesting places for us to go.


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