Friday, September 30, 2011

~this moment~

A Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. - via soulemama.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

i hate apple pie

He has been begging us, and I mean BEGGING us to go apple picking again this year. Not next week, not when his friends can go along, I want to go... now. So we went.

And he didn't just want to pick a basket of apples, he wanted to pick them all. "Just a few more Dada, just a few more."  He skipped along the rows of trees chirping about all the things we would make with our apples.  Apple sauce, apple pie, apple pancakes.

And we got home with our pounds and pounds of apples, and Dada made crust from scratch (a big deal by the way for the cooking impaired). And Zach made whipped cream from scratch. And he picked all of the ingredients and chriped and skipped about the boat as the apple pie was baking. And then the moment of truth came... and he didn't eat his pie. He sheepishly picked at the whipped cream and moved it around his plate the way kids do to make it seem as though they have eaten something.

"Buddy, what's wrong?"

"I hate apple pie."

It wasn't that he did't like THIS apple pie, he doesn't like any apple pie. Or apple sauce. Or apple pancakes. You see where I'm going here? Flabbergasted I asked why on earth he asked, no INSISTED we pick all those apples if he wasn't going to eat any of the things we could make from them?

"I love being out in the trees picking stuff .And I love reading the apple pie book. I just love it all... except the eating part. But you love apple pie and I love baking with you, so it's all good. I just like that we do this every year together. And now Naia gets to do it too. I didn't want her to miss it."
And there it is. In a family where we've given up on daily rhythm, and struggle through with a loose weekly rhythm, I guess through the years we have managed to nail the seasonal rhythm thing. Apples are part of his September. And part of hers too... for now.

And now my heart is filled with his words. And my belly stuffed with apple pie.

Monday, September 26, 2011

right here

Today Zach and I were taking photos of things that are right outside our door (so to speak)... noticing the everyday bits of our world.

:: bits of summer resting by our dock box ::

:: Naia makes sure to point out every plane that passes over our mast ::

:: improperly tied off cleats all over the place ::

:: Zach's cabin from the outside if you were walking by on the dock ::

:: I always wonder whether this mildewing marina life ring would really float after all these years waiting on the dock. I hope never to find out ::

:: Phragmites. Invasive but darn beautiful especially at sunset ::

It was an interesting exercise noticing the little things that caught our eye within a few feet of our front door. It really made me appreciate the everyday beauty and quirkiness of this life we live.

Friday, September 23, 2011

~this moment~ perch

A Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special moment. A moment I want to pause, savor, and remember. - via soulemama.

Monday, September 19, 2011

on the cusp

This is by far my favorite time of year as far as weather goes. It's the time when we can spend one day at the beach in our bare feet and the next sipping hot coco in the cockpit in our woolens. Everything seems golden. The wind is beckoning. Critters are busy. The scenery is slowly changing.

Things may be a little slow here as we enjoy the season and repair the computer. My tech help desk (a..k.a. the husband) tells me we should be in full tilt functioning mode again by the end of the week. Here's hoping!

Friday, September 16, 2011

~this moment~ for you mama

A Friday ritual. A single photo capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. - via soulemama.

You have until tonight to enter the giveaway!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

boat lingerie

There is an inside joke among boating geeks about how couples who sail together end up spending their alone time pouring through marina catalogs and oogling anchors. Pillow talk turns to shackles and ropes - ahem - for the boat. Anniversary gifts become waterproof handheld VHF radios. We call it boat porn. So you can imagine the palpable excitement when we got our new lines from Dyneema earlier this month. Ooooo, ahhhhhh, yeah baby! Since it will take us quite a while to install and use these fancy pants ropes, I thought I would just do a fashion shoot with them in the mean time. Boat geeks, get ready to drool. The rest of you, just know these ropes are strong, long lasting, safe not to mention easy on the eye, just like a good mate ;)

(cue the mood music)

p.s. There is still time to enter the giveaway here!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

11 months

How is it that my wee, brand new, little baby daughter is going to be a one year old in just a month? Slow down universe!
 She is a strong, determined person who is still all cheeks. She is an avid explorer and climber and loves nothing more than getting flipped around upside down and spun around. She's a flirt and a people-person who waves and says "hi" to every person whose gaze she catches, as well as to the wind, reflections, dogs, and airplanes.
The "Queen's Gaze" is still with her, often looking out on us commoners with a regal stare that catches everyone off guard. She's still not quite eating, but has agreed to bird seed sized tastes of this and that once in a blue moon. She crawls at the speed of light, falls all the time in the name of adventure, and thankfully almost never puts the little odds and ends her brother leaves around in her mouth.
She loves her books, her brother's cars, his stuffed dog, and playing with bottle caps. Every time she nurses she strokes her own hair, but first carefully removes her wee hair clip and hands it to me first. Nothing makes her light up like daddy and big brother. And by the way burps are hilarious.

My sweet baby girl.

Monday, September 12, 2011

GIVEAWAY - Alford Designs

I am all kinds of excited to introduce you all to Kari Alford of Alford Designs. Her new shop on etsy caught my eye as I was looking for snack bags to replace using disposable plastic baggies. We have a few of the standard cotton ones on board but they get kind of funky with fruit inside. Kari's wet bags are lined making them fabulous for all kinds of things from fruit to PB & J.
The larger ones are handy for cloth diapering, wet swim suits, or soiled baby clothes. And I use mine for things like sunscreen and lotions that more often than not explode in my purse. The baggies keep these items neatly contained and if they open the liner keeps the mess away from the rest of my bag. They're green and clean, brilliant!

I asked Kari why she decided to start making these wet bags:

I used to use hard plastic containers, but would get frustrated when I needed to pack several items in a lunch container.  I saw a small wet bag at a store once and my first thought was, 'I can make that!'  I've found so many uses for them and I'm still creating different sizes that work for different things.
I hope that it gets people thinking that they can live their lives a little greener.  My personal goal is to live a greener life, and if I can help people accomplish that by providing the tools, then that's a great feeling.  
She also makes these cup cords which I am finding extremely useful at this particular stage in Naia's life. Just in case she throws accidentally knocks over a toy or sippy cup from the table this handy leash keeps it from hitting the floor and making a mess or turning it into a game of mama fetch.
(looks more like a game of baby keep away here, i think a certain big brother rigged this up)

Kari is generously offering this wet bag and cup cord set pictured below to one lucky person.
All you need to do is leave a comment here. For an extra entry please click on over to her Facebook page and give her a like. Come on back and tell us you did for another chance to win. And for anyone who buys something at Alford Designs from now until this Sunday September 18 use the code BOAT15 when you check out for 15% off your purchase. Comments will close Friday night and we'll pick a random number winner at that time. Thank you Kari!


Thursday, September 08, 2011

finding your tribe

Over the years I've gotten used to ignoring the strange looks and off comments about living aboard. I don't try to explain why I feel at home on a boat. I shrug off the stares about raising kids "in SUCH a small space". I don't try to make other people understand anymore why I have the need to wander, why we love being out and about rather than cooped up inside, why seeing new places is in my blood.
But there are others out there like me. I am so grateful for having a tribe as scattered as they may be. We connect, we chat, we plan, we laugh, we dream, we share. I have folks like Laureen from Excellent Adventure and her fabulous family all on a catamaran in California planning the same scheme we are. Why oh why is she on the other coast? And of course Cidnie the current 1st place Dyneema Challenge superstar (you can help her win by clicking here by the way) who is planning to cast off with a baby nearly the same age as Naia and come from Texas out our way next summer to head south when we do. And there's Tucker & Victoria and their adorable kiddos who will be leaving on a trip around the world next month! You can follow their adventures here.

And of course there's the Puzzled gang. Last year they were just another catamaran gawker who wanted to see the boat. We don't mind that, in fact we love it when folks get in touch around boat show and want to get together to talk kids and boats and cruising. But when Wendy and Matt and their three amazing kids (and I DO mean amazing) came aboard it was instant karma. These people "get it". From unschooling to wandering they were oh-so like us, no funny looks, no awkward explanations.

They are land cruising at the moment roaming the country in an RV. And each time we all get together it fuels my fire and reminds me why we're doing all of this.
Laureen and I like to joke that even though we're all in different ports and casting off at different times that we all need to find an island somewhere and live as a little tribe one day. Anchored out with the Puzzled folks I got a taste of why that would be such an awesome thing to realize one day. But not until after we see the world.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

the rest of that first day

Swinging through the treetops was all well and good, but there was more to our day. We ate lunch, ran some quick errands, dashed home, and cast off for a weekend of good friends and fair winds.
Yes, the beast was able to set sail. Unfottunately, we did not get a chace to out on that new rigging. Re-rigging a 44-foot sailboat is a monumental task. It's gonna take a while yet. But we got to shake out our new mainsail and fall in love all over again with how well our little home travels under sail.
(that dark thing you see on the bottom is our scary genoa. she is looking mighty tired next to our shiny new mainsail. we were joking all weekend that we could scrape the funk off the genny, ferment it in some tea, and sell it as the next new probiotic drink at Whole Foods.)

Thankfully this was the first time Naia wore her life jacket without any protests. She was all smiles, watching the waves and saying "Hi!" to every sea bird.

It was all part of a wonderful weekend anchored out and sailing around. A few days of the kind of schooling that requires kayak paddles and balls of yarn and sleeping bags and ice cream. And thankfully like minded friends to share it all with.

(finger knitting became the obsession aboard in between kayak exploration outings)

(drinking glug-glug by candlelight after the littles have gone to sleep)
Finding a tribe is such a powerful and warm fuzzy thing. Yes, another lesson of life learned this "first week of school." But alas, that's yet another story for another day.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

first day, why not

I decided to declare last Friday our first day of school. Being more of an unschooly type we don't follow a traditional school year calendar. There is no stop and start to our schooling, we just live and learn. But it seems like the thing to do around this time of year whether you are in school or not. So I spontaneously declared a first day of 2nd grade as the day was actually happening. Wouldn't you want this to be your first day?

It was a day of friends and fun and forests. It was a day of stretching comfort zones, creating confidence, and building bonds. And more than anything it was just plain awesome! To me that's what kids his age should be learning, how to trust and try and try again and explore and amaze yourself with that you can do when you are given the freedom to do it. I was so proud of my boy who really pushed past all kinds of things, like always needing mama next to him (hard to do this kind of thing with a baby), being wary of heights, trying things again and again that don't always work out the first time... he did it all with flying colors.

If you are local, you must make a day to check this place out.

(what is my big brother DOING up there?)
Our first day wasn't just spent in the tree tops. Oh no. That was just the morning. Tomorrow we'll share our rest of the day.
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