Boatschool Program

In the spirit of back-to-school I thought I would add a blog post about our on board curriculum. Hands down the number one question that we get when people hear that we quit our jobs and are now sailing vagabonds is, "What about your kids education?". There are many many approaches to educating kids both on land and while sailing including un-schooling, packaged curriculum, and independent studies. Then there is the decision to have either online or hard copy/book study. We have chosen to put together an independent curriculum consisting of books and hard copies. Luckily for us we have lots of storage space available on the boat and the perfect set of drawers to house our school and art supplies. Since we travel to remote areas where internet is not available, online programs are not be a good choice for us. I also have a personal interest for the girls to have less screen time. Overall our boat school program resembles the CA state standards while using subjects that are re…

Highlight Video - Yasawa Fiji

It took four whopping months for us to sit still long enough to put together a movie highlighting our time in the Mamanuca and Yasawa Islands of Fiji.  Click the link

Coming in hot and having a plan

Well we just had our first real near miss! We came within inches (well maybe feet) of going aground on a reef. How did this happen? What did we learn? Well here is the story from he day before Easter.

We had just spent a couple of nights at our favorite anchorage free diving and spearfishing. The anchorage was rolly as a western swell had been building and winds, though light, were coming out of the north. This means that the winds aligned us broadside to the waves which results in the boat rocking. The wind prediction software that we use forecast that the wind was going to pick up to 25-30 knots and change direction which would not be favorable for this anchorage. So we decided to leave, right after one more dive! We like to get our ceviche in the fridge while on passage so we have it to eat when we arrive at our destination. We got our fish, cleaned up the boat, and got underway.

We had almost no wind when we started our passage, so we motored. Without wind it was absolutely swelteri…

Row, Row, Row your boat

For a sailing family, we row...a lot! Most sailboats have a dingy that serves as their car to take them from their floating home to their destination on shore. We do not have a dingy, This is partly by circumstance and partly by choice.

We knew when we bought Renegade, the dingy "was at the end of its useful life". We used it a couple of times when we first got here and then quickly decided that it was more trouble than it is worth. The inflatable dingy would not hold air and the engine was a total POS. (this could be a post on its own, so trust me when I say the dingy and outboard together were worthless). So we towed the dingy around for the first month or so, all the while talking about what to do with it.

One day on our way back to the marina, we finally decided to dump it in the dumpster when we arrived. The day that we made that decision we were having a beautiful day of sailing, 15-20 knots on the beam and booking down the rhumb line back to port. Off in the distance …

Saying Goodbye...Again and Again

Something that I was not prepared for on this trip was how quickly we would meet and then have to say goodbye to new friends. Leaving our amazing tribe of friends behind in Santa Cruz, we are all longing for the connections that ground us and make us whole. This can be a hard thing to do while cruising. As our paths cross with other families and like minded sailors, we find that we are all on different time lines, heading to various destinations, with many goals in mind. What this means for us, is that as we meet amazing people and great families, we only get to brush the surface of getting to know them. We start with the basics of where are you from? and where are you going? Then as we delve deeper into the intricacies of lives well lived, raising kids, family connections, etc, we learn that we really, really like some of these families. They are the kind of people that we want to spend months and years getting to know, however with this lifestyle we have days and rarely weeks to spe…

Sinking Ships and the Generosity of a Stranger

On our second mornings in Fiji I awoke and looked out the cabin porthole, happy to be on our boat at long last, to see the boat next to us sinking! (see photo) By the time I got on deck the Marina staff was in full action, assessing the damage, getting pumps set up, putting a diver in the water, and preparing the boat for emergency haul out. Thankfully they were on it.

My heart sunk for the owners of the boat and my mind swirled about how this could have just as easily been us. A thru-hull on the boat had failed and an insufficient repair left this boat with several feet of water inside. That day we checked all of our thru-hulls on the boat. Several had completely rusted hose clamps that broke when we checked them. So, we got busy replacing all of the clamps, making sure that there were at least two at each thru-hull, and double checking them all to ensure that they were solid.

Unfortunately, this was not the last sinking boat that we encountered in the Marina. Fast forward a few weeks.…

Welcome Aboard !?!

After saying farewell to our friends and family we embarked on a grueling two week full-court press of packing our house, packing for our trip, and deep cleaning our house for our new renters (the sweetest family). It was all hands on deck at the very end when we were deciding what to keep and what put it into storage and finishing all of the cleaning. By the time we left for the airport, my fingers and hands were sore from scrubbing and my finger tips were almost bare of finger prints. We cleaned and cleaned and cleaned until literally the very last moment before we left. The girls were super helpful with the cleaning and together I think we did a pretty good job.

Our good friend, Stuart, took us to the airport in his giant contractors truck which was perfect to fit our two oversized surfboard bags, 10 other large checked bags, along with our 8 smaller carry on bags. We were feeling anxious about whether or not we would even be allowed to bring all of the bags on the flight and had a …