Sunday, June 28, 2009

A Different Kind Of Sleep Over

Five is a funny age. They want so bad to be big and do big kid things, but they want mom within shouting distance while they do it. The buzz around here is all about having "sleep overs". Basically, Zach's friends want to crash on the boat. But they don't want to necessarily be away from mom or dad. We even had the classic middle of the night bail out recently with one sweet little girlfriend. So we took a different tack when Z's best friend Miss T asked for a sleep over this weekend. We brought our house to her house.

It's the best of both worlds. The kiddos got to spend the whole evening together, but her home sweet home was right outside our hatch.

She got to be away from baby brother, but mom and dad where just up the hill. Just in case.

I am happy to report, the kids played, giggled, talked non-stop, crashed, and woke up happy as can be. Then mom, dad, and baby brother strolled down from the house for breakfast aboard.

It's a good thing Z has more friends who live on the water. I have the feeling this won't be the last sail-up slumber party.

p.s. Z and I are hitting the road for some family visits. So posts here will be a little more sporadic for a week or so. ROAD TRIP!

Moving Day

Landlubbers plan for weeks, maybe even months, when they move. We got notice that afternoon. "Your new slip is (FINALLY) ready!" We unplugged, untied, and zipped on over to our new spot.

It's only down to the end of the dock, but OH what a difference. Rather than opening out on to a cluttered dock, we open out in to the water. It feels a lot more like being at anchor. We can see everyone coming and going in the creek. We rock back and forth a lot more. It's a lot more private (in other words, I can keep the curtains open when I am walking around partially dressed). Even though it's only a difference of about 10 slips down, it's like getting a fresh start. It's funny how a littlest change in perspective can give you a whole new outlook. This is the beauty of living on a boat. You can change your scenery while still snug in the comforts of home.

Zach was as giddy as if we'd moved to a new state. He sat like this for an HOUR, just staring.
"Mama, it's much beautifuller here than our old spot. I like having a water yard."

Me too baby.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Signs Of Summer

~surprise attack~

~watermelon to spare, watermelon to share~

~summer nature table~

~park splash~

~baby beggars~


Surf on over to The Green Mamas where I guest posted some eco-friendly cleaning ideas that boat people and dirt dwellers alike can try this summer!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Only A Mother Could Love

Look what we found? Seriously, do they come any cuter than this? He's a newborn diamond back terrapin. He was our pet for one full day before I sobered up and realized what I was getting in to. Besides, it violates one of our key pet prerequisite rules: Must Not Draw Too Many Amps. Considering we run either on a 30amp shore power plug-in for the dock or on solar power when anchored out, heat lamp requiring cold blooded creatures are not suitable to boat life.

So we loved on him for a day, then brought him to SERC and let him be free.

But oh that face.

p.s. Edited to add that we have suddenly become The Home for Wayward Turtles. Today we found a box sitting on our finger pier. One peek inside revealed this guy. A box turtle.

It was like a baby bundled and left on somebody's doorstep. I looked around for the guilty party and saw a row of smiling faces in greasy shirts peeping at me from the reeds. The construction guys who are (STILL) working on our docks have become Zach's buddy. They've nicknamed him "nature boy" and have taken to bringing him any critter that gets in the way of their progress. The sweet thing about this is they made a little habitat in the box improvised with grass, half of an electrical junction box, and a cut up soda bottle. Zach named him Fire Blaze for his red eyes, but he didn't even get the 24 hour royal treatment. The poor little guys was clearly desperate to roam free, so after a few hours of fondling, he's back in the great green yonder.
Fare thee well Fire Blaze. And Guys, no more critters, ok?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Big Camping Trip

Our Big Birthday-Solstice-Father's Day-Back Country Camping Trip to Assateague Island turned out to be SO much more of an adventure than we anticipated that I can't even relay it all in a single blog post. So I will keep it simple.

~packing priorities: new trusty birthday sword (a.k.a. Sting) and Jiffy Pop~

~paddled past wild horses~
~mommies get lost and paddle an extra mile in a zigzag while fumbling with a 10 year old GPS~

~braving horror-movie-like swarms of mosquitoes to get to the beach - but oh what a beautiful, isolated stretch of Atlantic Ocean bliss it was~

~island is pummeled by thunderstorms, tornado watches, and insanely high winds~
~tents from the 1970's leak... bad~

~keeping a campfire going during a downpour and constant black fly invasion is like meditating~
~i invented a new camping cuisine: Pancake Hash~
~the kids found their Inner Pyromaniac~

~when the tents are wet and you see yet another squall line move in, it's time to huddle in the outhouse~

~the kids were bitten and bruised and filthy, but happy as, well, as kids on a camping trip~

~the wind was so bad the day we were to paddle home that the kayaks went backwards. Plan B (actually plan V, but I won't bore you with plans A through U) -- abandon kayaks with select gear and hike the dunes 2.5 miles back to the ranger station~

~our kayaks lay in wait at approximately 38° 10.308'N 75° 10.631'W ~

~storms, leaks, tics, wind, mosquitoes, high winds, and questionable cuisine can all be made better with a dark chocolate s'more~

Monday, June 22, 2009

Rookie Mistake

Honey, you know that new flooring we keep talking about getting? The Plynyl? How about we go ahead and install it. Today.

This was this scene this afternoon in the port side guest room. That's ankle deep water glistening over the carpet. Yes, I overfilled the fresh water tanks.

You see normally filling the water tanks looks something like this. (I happened to have some photos from this spring from an article I was working on about living aboard).

But today rather than standing nearby, waiting for the water to reach the top and then turning off the hose, I walked away. It seemed to be filling slowly, Zach walked out in to the yard to watch our neighbors fly a kite, I went to check on him, one chat led to another, and the next thing you know water is everywhere.

This is SUCH a rookie mistake. So much so that the last time this happened to us was 11 years ago on the day we took possession of our very first boat. We popped the hose in, started filling, and walked away. That fresh water tanks on our old boat was positioned in a high point rather than a low point, resulting in cascading waterfalls throughout the boat. We left Ft. Lauderdale that day headed to the Chesapeake Bay looking like a circus boat with every towel, rag, and rug hanging to dry on the lifelines and boom as we headed for the Gulf Stream.

The best was while I was frantically bailing out water with a salad bowl and trying to simultaneously drain out the tank by turning on all of the faucets, Zach picks up my cell phone and giggling hysterically calls my husband to say...

"Hi Daddy, you know what? The next time you and I go fishing, we can put the fish right in the guest room where mommy put all the water, isn't that great?!"

Birthday Fairy Tea Party

A magical birthday party at the fairy forest and gardens of Willow Oak.

(I got the beautiful, reusable birthday banner on etsy at Rosie O's Boutique)

Zach, his best friend in the whole world Miss T, Baby Brother T, AuntyJlo, Mama, Daddy, tea, mini sandwiches, and loads of sweets.

This little gem of a place belongs to a local lady who keeps it as a nature preserve/ herb garden/ plant nursery/ and farm. The grounds are inspired by Cicily Mary Barker's classic Flower Fairies series. I remember being completely absorbed in these books as a child myself, and now Z loves them too.

Signs of fairies were everywhere... even in the pouring rain. The kids built fairy houses everywhere.

If you have a fairy loving child in your life, definitely check out the Cicily Mary Barker's Flower Fairy books, they are the most enchanting illustrations and poems that have charmed children for generations. Who can resist an opening line like, "The World is very old".

Having a birthday gathering with one best friend and a forest full of faeries was the perfect way to celebrate this special day.

(Fabulous wooden "fairy" tokens from etsy by the fabulous MamaRoots. This one had a fairy bite in it courtesy of a cheeky dog in our life)

Other Fairy Resources...
Fairy Recipes
Kristin's Fairy House DVD (it's not often you'll find me suggesting a DVD. This one is a gem!)
Fairy Houses book
And more...
Fairy Boat (of course!)
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