Pulling The Boat Out

Bad news this week.  We had it confirmed that not only does the impeller on our main engine have to be replaced, but that it cannot be safely replaced with the engine so close to the water.  Two choices, have someone come over, take the engine off, ferry to the boat yard, and be worked on ..... or have the boat hauled out to work on it.  We've picked the latter. A date has been scheduled and we've asked the boat yard to also put on another coat or two of bottom paint plus install our transducer/fish finder.


Navionics Gold Central and South America Maps for Radar System

Today our electronic maps for Central and South America came in!  We bought the Navionics Gold Central and South America on CF chip to complete our set of electronic maps for the areas we expect to sail in year 1 or so.

Our electronic maps integrate right into our radar system and provide a super supplement to our paper maps.  Once we get down below Miami, we will change out the map chips in our C70 Raymarine radar system.

As is typical with models, Dy wanted to hold the product her way, with her pajamas on and holding her water cup. :)

Region Covered


Our 1 BIG Gallon of Bulk Sunscreen came in today


KJ could barely hold the bottle up for the photo shoot. The plan is to use this bulk sunscreen to fill the smaller sunscreen bottles we have.

Oh, if you want a gallon of sunscreen, buy it using our link and Amazon will toss the SailboatFamily a few coins :)


Cannon Powershot D10 Underwater Camera

Today I got my very first underwater digital camera! Wahoo!!  We had been discussing buying an underwater case for our video camera, when our friends over at ZeroToCruising.com mentioned that they are using a Canon PowerShot D10 12.1 MP Waterproof Digital Camera with 3x Optical Image Stabilized Zoom and 2.5-inch LCD.  After doing some research, I decided that was a perfect camera for the trip.  We ordered one and it came in today.  Lots of cool features like the ability to set the camera up in auto mode and say, "Don't snap until you recognize 4 faces in the view."  This will allow me to set up the camera, join the girls in the scene, and then this little camera will snap away.  Pretty cool.  The camera is rated to a depth of 33ft (1 atmosphere), which will be plenty for the kinds of diving we will be doing.  It does have a movie mode, and uses an SD card for storage.  I dropped in a 32GB one and now I can deposit thousands of images on it.  The camera is a 12 Megapixel one, so the fidelity of the pictures is impressive.  Many more cool features. I can't wait to use it on the trip!

Snow, NFL Playoffs, and Headway on To-Do Lists

Last week was really interesting. To start the week, Mother Nature dumped 5 inches of snow and 1 inch of ice on Atlanta, which meant that the city was almost completely shut down for the entire week.

This down time allowed us to tackle some of the apartment related tasks, such as painting and the continuous task of sorting (storage, sell, donate). Almost everything going with us is on the boat. I also was able to make headway on the boat related tasks. We ordered the parts needed to fix the small 5 hp engine (recoil starter and carburetor gaskets), contacted an outboard motor mechanic in Savannah to replace the impeller on the Honda 40, ordered Navionic Gold 3XG chip for our chart plotter, ordered bulk sunscreen, and won ebay auction on webbing.

The end of the week, we spent time with the Aunts watching our Atlanta Falcons take on the Green Bay Packers. First quarter of the game was great, but it was all down hill from there. What a downer!

Everything is moving along. Won't be long until we step onto the boat, push off the dock, and sail south.

Bye Bye Book Friends

I love books.  I love old fashioned, non electronic, yellowed, feel the texture of the cover and pages, audible page turns with a sound that matches the mood of the read, meaty, weighty, unique musty scent, pen markable, dog earable books.  Unfortunately, I have so many that I cannot take them all.

Each book represents an equal amount of beans, or rice, or water in terms of weight.  To protect my intimate friends, I've suggested to the crew that I give up some portions of my beans. Each pound of food stuffs I forgo would result in another soul to take along.  Hell, I could afford to lose 20-30 lbs and that is 15 or more books! Alas, my allocation of personal items is the same as the rest of the crew.

4 rounds of a whipping post (picking which of these comrades won't make the journey with me), and I'm finally done.  Last night was it.  I had to rank order my friends.  13 books.  That's it.  9 of which I know intimately, 4 that I will get to know.

Yes, I'm familiar with the Kindle, the Nook, and other such devices.  In fact, Val has a Kindle.  Hard books, real books, books that you can touch, feel, hear, and smell have a soul.  They have a life.  They have a journey unto themselves.  They make their own passage in life.  They go from one person to another. They show their wear as they journey.

It is time for all of my book friends that can't make the trip to go on their way, to new people, to continue their life in new ways.

Bye bye book friends.  Thank you for all that you've given me, and all that you will continue to give me even when gone.  I will miss each and every one of you.


Certainty of Taking the Trip

Everyday the certainty of taking this trip grows.  Not only is the number of reasons to do the adventure increasing, but the frequency of doubts and concerns rearing their heads is shrinking along with my perceived magnitude of them.  This means that I'm shifting, as the reasons have always been there along with the doubts and concerns; I'm just not viewing them from the same place anymore.

I'm 40, have a super career trajectory, hold a fantastic job that easily allows me to support my family, enjoy amazing friends and family here in Atlanta, and yet I know my path in life lies elsewhere.  No matter how great the current current, something just isn't right.  Where ever I look, I see signs that point towards getting on the boat. The mind always sees what it is looking for.

One of the violent internal dialogs that I am no longer battered by relates to the finality of this trip.  Early on in thinking through the adventure, it seemed like this was some sort of final decision.  That is, I step aboard the boat and I'm forever leaving everything behind: family, friends, being an IT Executive, owning a house, and so on.  Then it hit me- this isn't any more final than my current career.  In 1 day, if I don't like the new lifestyle, I can change.  In 100 days, I could change.  In 1000 days, I could change.  I could change back into being an IT Executive, or I could buy a house, or I could move back to Atlanta.  I could simply change to whatever I want, just as I'm electing to change to live aboard a boat.  There is nothing final about anything.

I am seething with desire to start this next phase of my life.  I want to have each day with my family, I want each day to think my thoughts, I want to have each day to read my books, I want to have each day to write my words, I want to have each day to stay put, I want to have each day to move on, I want to have each day to be with the ocean, I want to have each day to maintain my place, I want to have each day to be the full me.


Safety Tethers

This afternoon I made two safety tethers. Each tether is constructed from 6 feet of 1 inch tubular webbing and 2 brass snap hooks. The total cost of each tether was $6.46.

The tubular webbing has a multitude of uses. I can see purchasing more of the tubular webbing to make a lift harness for the dinghy engine, lift straps for the dinghy, jack lines, harness for each of the girls, and just to have on-hand for emergencies. This is a great boat item!

As a side note: Yeah!! I accomplished something today that was on my to-do list!!!

Unproductive 1st Week of the New Year

This past week has been very unproductive for me. I have a two page to-do list and can't seem to get motivated. I'm a person who excels under pressure. There is plenty to do and the clock is ticking, but I just can't seem to get myself in gear. This is not to say that I've accomplished nothing this past week, but I just feel like I should have accomplished more.

Beside feeling not particularly productive, the main engine (Honda Outboard) on our boat is not peeing. This is not terrible, we have the parts to rebuild the impeller and to break up any salt deposits that might be clogging up the cooling tubes. My concern is that to change the impeller, we have to remove the lower unit of the outboard engine. Now the engine weights about 250lbs and is bolted onto the back of our catamaran. Our catamaran is in the water and the bottom of the engine,when fully raised, is approximately 8 inches off the water. So we have to somehow remove the lower unit, which is currently 8 inches above the water, while being behind the boat without dropping it into the water. After that we can rebuild the impeller, remove the salt deposits, and reinstall the lower unit without dropping it or anything else into the water. We are all set to attempt this, but the weather is not corporating (really cold/windy on the weekends). So this weekend we decided to punt and ask our boatyard to handle it. This made me feel very confident that the engine would be up and peeing the next time we're in Savannah. However, our boat yard does not work on outboard engines or any engines for that matter. They were able to give me the names and numbers of two people that they would recommend. This is great, but I'm not feeling warm and fuzzy like I was before when I thought that the boatyard could take care of it. My concern is back.

This past weekend we purchased 12 feet of 1 inch webbing and 4 brass snap hooks to make safety tethers. I think that I will go make the tethers now. It shouldn't take very long and will feel good to accomplish something.