Quick and Simple Motor Stand

Our 8HP needed some work. A quick Google search yielded plenty of options.

Continue reading Quick and Simple Motor Stand

I had to call the Coast Guard

Titusville is an interesting place.

Continue reading I had to call the Coast Guard

Goodbye Woobie, we will miss you.

Should we sell the Jeep? We have been asking this since we moved aboard. We have many friends that don’t have cars, we have given them rides or loaned them the car.

Continue reading Goodbye Woobie, we will miss you.

S/V Perfect Partner at Sunset

S/V Perfect Partner at sunset

S/V Perfect Partner at sunset

Windy Day

It is a very windy day here in St Augustine, 23mph gusts to 40mph over night. When the wind comes up all sorts of things can happen, most are not good at all. Continue reading Windy Day

DIY Wet Vac

A common problem with cold plate refrigeration is frost buildup. There are few options for removing the frost. One is to shutdown the system until it melts, not practical for a live aboard. Another is to scrape it into the bottom of the freezer, this just changes the problem. To solve this new one you need a way to get the frost(snow) out of the bottom so it does not form a glacier. One could use a shop-vac but those are big and do not store well.

Our solution was US$2.40 of bilge hose attached to a gallon water jug and our rechargeable vacuum the Dyson DC35. It work perfectly removing about a 1/2 gallon of frost.

DIY Wet-Vac

DIY Wet-Vac

Engine Trouble

For those of you following along at home.

We have left Marathon and are heading back to St Augustine. On our second day we noticed an odd sound. Looking into the engine room I noticed a fair amount of exhaust smoke. As the engine was running fine I figured there was an exhaust leak somewhere and we motored on to No Name Harbor, Key Biscayne.

We arrived safe and sound with enough day time to make some calls. First up was Jim “Bo” Bohanan of First Mate Yacht Services, he agreed with the exhaust leak and advised us not to run the boat. His concern was not the engine, he was concerned about the exhaust heat setting the boat on fire.
Following Bo’s directions for locating the leak we found a small hole in part of the exhaust manifold. This was probably left over from when the exhaust injection elbow dumped sea water into the fourth cylinder. After a few conferring calls with my brother David and our friend Rudolph of Tulum III all that is left is the doing. Using David’s recommendation I will attempt to clean the hole, drill it out and tap it for a pipe plug. If this works we will be back on track tomorrow morning, otherwise it could be a few days.

As the saying goes. living on a boat is just boat repair in exotic places. Off to the engine room I go, here’s hoping.


Well that is not going to work. The hole is the size of my finger at the first knuckle and there isn’t much thickness to it, 1/8″ or less so drilling and tapping won’t work.

We have located two suppliers that have the unit in stock. It will take 2 days to get here, I’ll spend the today pulling the old manifold and making sure I don’t break anything.

Time to put the canvas up…..


All the new parts are in, thank you Kathy, and the old parts are removed. It all goes back together tomorrow.

Bird Aboard

While we were sailing from Miami, FL to Marathon, FL, the cutest little bird stopped by for a visit. He said hello, and proceeded to jump/fly into the pilot house. I guess he wanted a closer look at the inside of our boat.

Bird on a wire

small 2812

All the port holes and hatches were closed, so he couldn’t get out. I followed him down into the pilot house, each time I approached him to try and get him out, he flew further into the boat. We moved into the midships cabin and then to the forward cabin.  He saw the brightness of the large hatch above him and tried to fly out, realizing he couldn’t, he landed on one of the fishing rods.

Last time I had seen sketchy, our youngest kitty, she had hunkered down for the sail in the forpeak of the forward cabin. I was hoping that she was still in hiding and wouldn’t try to assist.

The bird and I looked at each other and I told him “it’s okay” and opened the hatch. As I held it open I quietly said “it’s okay, it’s okay, go on…”,  he took his chance and flew out the open hatch.  As I thought about this cute wonderful experience, I went back to the cockpit, and Syd said, “he made it out”, and I said, “I know, I helped him escape through the forward hatch”.  At that moment, the little birdie came back to say (I assume), “thank you for helping me, I like your boat” ;).

Then he was gone and I cried. It was such a beautiful communication with this little bird who had stopped by for a quick view of our boat. I was touched and so grateful that none of my cats were feeling sporty :).

Here are a few of the final photo’s of his adventure aboard our sailing vessel.


Sailing offshore from Stuart, FL to Miami, FL to No Name Harbor.

We were going to head down the ICW today, and instead, decided to go offshore and put our sails up. The weather was in our favor and it had been a while since we had been offshore. If you remember, our last experience was a bit nerve racking, we were hoping for a different experience.

We got up at 6:30AM, dinghy’d to the dock for a doggie walk and hung the dinghy on the davits when we got back. We let the mooring ball go and motored to the fuel dock, got some fuel, filled our water, loaded our bicycles, took the dog for 1 last walk before we caught the 9:30 bridge out of Stuart. We wanted to be at the crossroads by 11AM, so we would still be on the high tide and hopefully not running aground.

The St Lucie Inlet has been known to be a bit treacherous, but after speaking with a few of the locals, as we were planning our departure, they said it had been dredged just last year and was not bad, suggesting we go at high tide, which is exactly what we did.

St Lucie Inlet

St Lucie Inlet

St Lucie Inlet

We made it out safe and sound, we started by putting up the Main sail, then the headsail, then the staysail. This was our first offshore “sail”. We sailed all the way to Miami, it took us about 20 hours, it was beautiful. We did turn our motor on for about 20 minutes to help us get out of the Gulf Stream. We had gotten out a bit too far and it was slowing us down. Remember, if your speed over ground is less than your speed over water, you are probably in the Gulf Stream and need to head inland. We hugged the coast all the way down, and when the sun came up, we were looking at South Beach, Miami.

South Beach, Miami

South Beach, Miami

Once we got inland, we met up with some friends on Tulum III, who showed us the best anchoring space in South Beach, Miami, right off Star Island. It’s about a mile from any dock or grocery, but we loved it, very private and beautiful. We spent a week there. My daughter, Felicia came down to visit for 2 days and we had fun snorkeling and swimming around the boat.

45 Million dollar house on Star Island

Snorkeling in Miami

Love that face

Love that face

About a week later, we said goodbye to Star Island and sailed Biscayne Bay to No Name Harbor.

Miami from Biscayne Bay

It was a beautiful day with winds blowing 8-14 knots. Have you ever seen Stiltsville? I’d love to get a closer look, but interesting story http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stiltsville.

Anyway, we spent some extra time enjoying the sail. Even Dusty was relaxing!

No Name Harbor

We anchored our boat. Beautiful little place, so busy on the weekend, but very mellow during the week. We recommend buying the State pass for $60 bucks to cover your stay.

No Name Harbor

Our new view