Monday, December 22, 2008

Happy Solstice!

Capaz dressed in white
This year, the Capaz crew saw the Winter Solstice from a rather snowy perspective. It has been snowing on and off here in Seattle for the better part of a week with a pretty good dump on Saturday night. The bright side is that for the first time, here at home, our winter solstice has been . . . . well . . . . . wintry! It is much easier to take with a grain of salt after Skyping the crew of Totem in Mazatlan and hearing of the 80* water that we should be enjoying next Christmas. My new mantra/visualization consists of three things to do on Christmas Day 2009: drink margarita, wear bathing suit, sing Feliz Navidad while dancing on the beach!!!!
With the masts still out, we don't think that we have to worry so much about the weight of the snow on the boat. But, I was still worrying. I have been going down memory lane with some friends the last couple of weeks and I remember the boathouses collapsing and boats sinking the last time we had a big snow like this. Anyway, I went to the boat and kicked most of the snow off the deck and swept off the dodger as best as I could, just to be on the safe side. (There is more snow in the forecast for the next couple of days.) Austin made the coolest snowman on our dock. It's really the first snow we have seen that has been packable enough to make one - it has just been too cold and dry for good snowman making. And for those of you wondering, YES, we still plan to move onto the boat after the holidays!
Austin says "Look very closely for the eyes!"


The Crew of Capaz
Brad, PJ, Bryce and Austin

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Power Boat Owners

M/V Capaz

At this juncture, we basically own a powerboat. Both rigs were pulled today at the Seaview East yard in Ballard. Most of the day went pretty much as planned with only one injury. Our mast pulling operations foreman, Harris, got whacked in the forehead by a turnbuckle as the main mast was being lowered onto the cart. He promised me that he was OK and was able to deliver a boat through locks later on so, I will have to trust his diagnosis.
So, Capaz is now a funny looking mastless sailboat (some would call it a powerboat). With the help our friend, Andy Schwenk, owner of Northwest Rigging in Anacortes, Capaz will have all new standing rigging. Both masts were inspected (something that one should do every 3 or 4 years) twice (by Andy and then another friend, who happens to a surveyor, stopped by and put his eyes on them also). Brad, Andy and I spent a couple of hours undressing the masts. I learned a lot about masts today. Some of it very reassuring and some of it a little scary. Most of our rigging is pretty oversized (much stronger stuff than it needs to be) - that's the good news. On the other side of the coin, I learned that the rigging is attached at the spreaders to the mast with very thin wire - granted several wraps of said thin wire, but still, I expected much beefier attachment methods. I have been assured that it is all very standard and safe. I also learned how to pull out codder pins using something Andy calls, "Le Tool" and how to coil big cables.

How it happened:

We weren't sure if we could get the boat back through the locks and be home in time for Austin's return from school on the bus, so we altered our plans a little. I ran home, grabbed dinner makings, picked Austin up at school and met Brad at Shilshole to drop a car off there. Then we proceeded back to the boat yard and finished cleaning up our tools before heading for the locks. Austin is going to make a great boat kid as he did his math homework this afternoon as were waiting for the small lock's green light. Back at Shilshole, we had a quick dinner and covered the holes in the boat so that rain won't get inside. Even if some does, we started up our new dehumidifier - our live-abroad neighbors swear by them for winters in Seattle. (Did you know that the hurricanes in Texas caused a dehumidifier shortage here in the NW? The people at Home Depot were so excited to get a shipment because they haven't been able to since last summer!!! Who knew?) Brad hopes to be able to put the rigs back into the boat next week!
We will be back to being sailboat owners!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

No Booms

That's right! Capaz is boomless. We took off the main and mizzen sails yesterday and then off came both booms. We are preparing the boat for having both spars pulled for inspection and new standing rigging. Capaz may be capable, but having good reliable rigging is super important on the safety front. So, basically, we will be turning into powerboaters for awhile until the work is done. The rigs will pulled out later this week at the boatyard. I will try to get some pictures of the boat without masts. Today, in between rain showers, the boys helped Brad get the rigging marked for when it all gets re-attached after the work is completed.
We moved a bunch more stuff onto the boat and even set up a little Christmas tree.
We spent the night and did a little acclimatization with kitties. Tasha does not enjoy the 12 minute car trip down to the boat, but once there, she seems fine with her new environment. She did not like the wind storm that blew through last night, but she remembers how to snuggle in with mom and dad. The boys slept through the whole thing.
Now, Sammy, she is a whole other story. She despises her carrier, the car ride and spent the entire time on the boat (with the exception of visits to the litter box) curled up in a corner in the shower. Know anyone who would like to have a very cute, sort of ferral cat? We aren't holding our collective breathes for her to come around on the adjustment front and so we are starting to look for a new home for her.

Austin marking the turnbuckles

Brad shows Bryce how to take the pins out the turnbuckles

It's beginning to look alot like Christmas

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Live-Aboard Status

What is it?

Many people have asked what our plans are. Part of the answer to this question requires something that we have been referring to as "live-aboard" status. Most people get a questioning look on their face when this comes up. We planned to move aboard our boat at Shilshole after the holidays. As with many things in life, we did not have total control over this plan. The Port of Seattle had the control. They limit the number of moorage customers at Shilshole who are allowed to live on their boats: live-aboards. At Shilshole, the number of boats with this special status remains at the cap and so there is a waiting list for "live-aboard" status. We have been waiting since June (being totally mystified by the actual waiting list system as our position in the queue seemed jump around on a weekly basis) for the Port to offer us this status.


I guess not many people want to move onto their boats in the dead of winter. That is what we will be doing. We have promised the kids that we would celebrate Christmas at our house and after we get it all cleaned up, we will move onto the boat. We will be getting our house ready for rental and working through all those transitional issues. Please offer any advice on moving that you might have!!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Spa Treatments

Hopefully, Capaz has been been enjoying her treatments in the spa (yard). She has 2 coats of new paint on her bottom lovingly applied by Brad and I. Brad worked on installing new zincs. After his experience diving on the boat in Hawaii spending 3 hours scraping worms off the hull, Brad wanted to make extra sure that the coverage is complete. He went over all the crevices and through-hulls making sure they all had good coverage. Capaz also had her top sides buffed and waxed. We have worked on the same treatment to the decks and cabin tops but were unfortunately stopped by some drizzle. We should be able to finish that part of the job once Capaz is back in the slip on dry days that I have off from work. Yes, I realize that it is fast approaching winter in Seattle and the number of dry days that coincide with my days off may be a very small number, but like always, if the opportunity presents itself, I will jump on it.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

"Spa Week" for Capaz

Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Aunt Carrie and Uncle Rex approaching the locks

Years ago, I was talking to one of the "big boat" owner's wives at a Christmas party. She was explaining to me that the boat had just returned from a trip to the "Spa". Evidently, this couple had worked out some sort of rationalization for the cost of the race boat going into the yard for her yearly maintenance. Yard trips are an unavoidable part of every healthy boat's life. It was explained to me, that this particular owner treated the two important women in his life to spa time - each in their own particular way. The wife got to go to the spa. The boat got to go to the yard. I see this couple continuing their already enduring relationship far into the future. It always helps us boat wives when things are explained to us in terms that make sense in our world.
With that said, our girl, Capaz, is headed to the spa. Aunt Carrie and Uncle Rex got out to see the boat and help us move it through the locks to Canal Boat Yard before joining us for a great dinner. We had an uneventful and quick trip. Last boat into the locks. Carrie commented that it was just like driving onto the ferry just before it leaves the dock. It was nice to have them aboard as the power boat that we rafted to was single handing and I was able to jump on his boat and man his aft lock line. We made it under the Ballard Bridge long before the 4:00 cut-off. Carrie seemed a little disappointed that all had gone so smoothly and quickly - she would have liked to have spent a little more time on our boat!
Aunt Carrie mans the bow line leaving the locks
Our favorite fiberglass wizard, Paul, caught us at the Canal wall. We are hoping that we aren't too close to the shallow spot with the lake level down. First thing tommorrow, Capaz will be hauled and we will begin the work on her bottom among other projects. The boys are going to spend a few days at Deer Meadow-Brad and I will be putting long days at Canal, trying to not have the yard bill mount too quickly.

November 6, 2008
Capaz checks in at the "Spa"

Up and out of the water . . . . .
. . . . . . . and into your "treatment space"

Monday, November 3, 2008

F & G Dock Halloween

Baker Pirates ready to Trick-or-Treat on F & G Docks

We had this crazy idea to tag along with some live-aboard pros down at Shilshole for Halloween. The "Ghostsailors" were amenable to having some company on their rounds of F and G docks. (F & G docks are mentioned together alot because we share the same marina gate, so we all see each in the same parking area and at the top of the dock.) Because Angela has had kids for most of the years that she and her husband have lived on their boat, she knows that a little planning has to go into these kind of events. She posted a sign-up sheet at the gate for anyone interested in participating in the kids' trick-or-treating rounds. Most of our live-aboard neighbors were game so that gave about 20 boats to visit. It was a toss-up on who was more exciting the kids: two pirates, a skeleton and blue angels flying ace or the folks on their boats. Armed with Hot Apple Pies to keep us warm (it was a beautiful evening and we probably didn't really need them, but I think the drinks allowed the 3 adults to chill a little about the massive amounts of candy our children were collecting), we started off on the far end of F-dock. Quite a few of the boats were "decorated" and even the residents came to the hatch (don't know how you refer to entryway on a powerboat - help me out here) dressed in costumes. The first person to ask for a trick got all four kids standing on one leg (it was the first thing that came to my mind). After that, the kids came up with knocking on the hull, then crouching below the boat's and yelling "Trick or Treat" when someone came out - better "trick"! We wound our way around the head of the two docks and started down G-dock meeting more people that we don't see as often, but who still seem familiar. We met the parrot that I had been hearing all summer (thinking that I might just have been hearing things). S/V Ghost was the last stop where Angela and Scott prepared to host a Halloween Dock Party. I supervised the first look in light at the candy the kids had collected. O-M-G!!!!! When all four of the dumped out their haul, it covered the entire main saloon of Ghost (I know most boats don't have much floor space, but this was actually a fairly large area). There was an initial sort and then we decided that maybe we go check on Brad who was manning the door back at the house, but hadn't been feeling that well. When we arrived back the house, the boys combined all their candy and then weighed it - 17 pounds. Thank goodness that Austin's class celebrates the holiday by seeing how much candy they can bring in the next day and donate to Childhaven! Most of it has left the house, however, I must say that somehow I was talked into having a basket for the house and for the boat!
This dock community is very friendly and seem very close-knit. It makes us get very excited to become a part of it all (still hoping for moving aboard after the holidays). Our immediate neighbors are both live-aboards and we feel very lucky to have gotten the slip between them, but it is even nicer to know that their welcoming attitude premeates both of these docks.

Stayed tuned . . . . . . . Capaz goes to the "Spa"

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Halloween Afloat

Guy stood watch between Capaz and Tosca
He even sometimes danced and sang when his motion sensor was working

October 24-26, 2008

We kicked off our Halloween season with a family Halloween event (or “non-event” – as we prefer to think of it) at Port Madison on Bainbridge Island. There was pumpkin carving, a haunted house, trick-or-treating from boat to boat, a fantastic potluck and just general good company. We had two pirates again this year. The boys put in some time helping to set-up the haunted house and building stuff with legos (of course).

Our two "2-year" pumpkins all carved and decorating the boat

We had two huge “2-year” pumpkins. By the way, a “2-year” pumpkin is the biggest pumpkin that you can find on the farm that Grandma Ellie buys for you just in case you don’t celebrate Halloween wherever you will be this time next year. The plan is to be in San Diego or maybe even a little farther south (Mexico). The first of which is still in the US, so my guess is that they celebrate Halloween and the second, Mexico, has a very similar huge holiday celebrated on the first of November called “Dia de los Muertos” – or Day of the Dead! I think we will have it covered!!

Back to this weekend. We arrived Friday afternoon and in time for the cocktail hour pu pu’s. The new barbeque set-up works just great – tried it out with some chicken for dinner. The Tolands and their shipmates, Chris and Skip joined us for night caps after the kids went to bed. Laurian was very slow out of the starting gates Saturday morning. The new oven is performing well giving us fresh baked muffins for breakfast. Austin was so sure he did not like blueberry muffins until he was told to eat half of one, then he immediately ordered up MORE! I wonder if this is related to the number of times that he was read “Green Eggs and Ham” when he was smaller.

Family Pumpkin Carving

Many, many pumpkins were carved on the fishing dock. I think this is first time in memory that our fishing poles have not come out at Port Madison. We carved several pumpkins including the 2-year pumpkins and the ones that we had “tried” to grow in our garden. With the weird weather we had this year, our pumpkins didn’t pollinate or ripen very well so we had two out of the three orange ones rot on us and the other three that matured were green with just a little orange starting. We carved up all the pumpkins that were not mushy!

As it darkened, the anticipation heightened for both the run(s) through the haunted house and trick-or-treating. The potluck food was varied and all yummy, though the kids hoovered it down, so that they could get on with the next thing. I manned the boat while Brad accompanied the boys through the haunted house. Austin decided last year, that the haunted house was not his thing. This year, after helping put it together, he went through it twice. Afterwards, it was down to the dock with all the kids in the costumes which become mostly covered when they don their life jackets!

Thanks to Olinda for taking some pictures since we forgot our camera!!!!

It was a full day, so everyone was to bed pretty early. We all got a good night’s sleep because brunch wasn’t until 10am. Another fantastic spread appeared and was promptly devoured. All in all, the weekend was a smashing success. We had a full house, I mean, dock with many of the families who participate in Potlatch.

We lounged about most of Sunday, though the boys did take a break from the legos and take down the decorations that were left after I took a bunch down at 5am when the wind piped up. Around 3:00 we headed back to Shilshole on the engine as we have already taken the genoa off the furler in preparation for the boat going into the yard. What a shame too! Today was sunny (and cold) with a nice northerly, perfect for a nice sail on Capaz home. Oh well, I am sure there will be many more chances in our future.

Even though it was pretty windy, Brad wanted to try backing the boat into our slip. Thank Posiden that we reside on a wonderful dock with awesome neighbors. A big thanks to Douglas and Barry who made our first back-in of boat a success on this first try. (Brad and I were prepared for several attempts if need be.) The kids are looking forward to trick-or-treating down our dock on Halloween with a couple of other boat kids from a boat that is called "Ghost"! More on that next week (I will remember the camera!!!)

Monday, October 6, 2008

Australian Influence

October 3-5, 2008
"Scootering" is a verb

Wow, it has been quite a fall thus far! It was so great to get away (all the way to Bainbridge Island) on Capaz. The weekend was made even better by the company of our good friends visiting from Australia, the Harangs.

The Harangs returned from a short visit to Hood River and decided that the easiest route was to join us on the boat Friday night and then we would set off at some time on Saturday morning. I unfortunately, was not able to join the party on the boat til late because I was attending the SYC Annual Meeting. I do believe that Chef Brad prepared some sort of a meal. I can guess that the boys played legos, because, well that’s what they do!!!!

Kathryn drives Capaz

Saturday morning dawned with kinda gray skies and some showers. Kathryn got a run in and she and Mark made a quick trip to the store to supplement the provisions that I already had on the boat, making sure that we were well stocked in the fruit and milk departments (those things that are easily put in front of growing boys that are consumed without much fuss either in preparation or consumption). As we prepared to leave the dock, the boys got in some time with the legos, some breakfast, and even a little bit of scootering.

Our crew assembled and all back aboard, we left the dock and headed around the breakwater down towards Blake Island before coming back toward Port Madison where we hoped to rendez-vous with Garth Wilcox and Wendy Hinman. The logic was to go upwind a bit and then have a quick down-wind leg. Good logic considering that we saw some gusts of 30+ knots once we had reached about Blakely Harbor and turned to get to lunch at the dock in Port Madison.

It was even blowing pretty hard at the dock where thankfully Garth and Wendy were waiting to catch us. A big gust of wind right as we were about half way into the slip made for some serious excitement. It all ended well with Capaz secured to the dock. Since our friends had ridden their bikes up from Eagle Harbor, we decided to just have our meal mid afternoonand then we could have snacky food later in the day and they wouldn’t be pressured to stay late and ride back in the dark.

"Legoing" also a verb - results shown below

My pressure cooker does a most excellent job on ribs. We took our whole meal up to the clubhouse and finished the cooking on the grill. We enjoyed being out of the wind that kept howling til after dark. It seemed that the showers were missing Port Madison. The lights only flickered a couple of times. The kids played more legos and created some Spore creatures.

We eventually, migrated back to the boat where we enjoyed some dessert and good company. As the sun set Wendy and Garth decided that it would be a good idea to get their bikes headed in a homeward direction back to their boat. The boys decided that they wanted to watch “Atlantis” and the grown-ups played a rousing game of Hearts. Brad was the champion and PJ was about as far from that position as she could be. The glass of port followed by a fantastic coffee drink concocted by Brad took the sting out of the loss.

Look who is in the lead - it's all OK with Austin now

Beautiful calm and even some spots of sun welcomed our Sunday morning. There was more legoing in the aft cabin. The boys were finally coaxed out with some food. I tried out the single kayak and explored all the way to the end of Port Madison (Hidden Cove). Kathryn got the boys out into the fresh air with a kayak trip. Austin was not sure that he wanted to go in the double with her (rather than with another kid), until he realized just how much faster the two of the them could go than Bryce and Erik. It was all good. Kathryn tried out all the various forms of kayak that we had available (inflatable double with skeg, inflatable single without skeg, and hard single that we borrowed from the Club.) Mark also did a little comparing.

There must be something interesting they have discovered

Once back at the boat, the fishing poles came out and the carnage began. It was all catch and release, but the critters on the dock (being used as bait) didn’t fare quite as well as a the fish being caught and released. Hopefully, the population will rebound by the end of the month when we hope to return for the Halloween Non-Event. Mark kept trying to head up the dock for a shower, but every time I looked out to check on the boys, there he was again, helping bait a hook or looking over the edge of the dock at a particularly interesting find or trying to avoid the hooks from "the casting" poles. The dock is usually way too crowded to allow for safe casting, so this was a quite welcome opportunity!!!

Austin gives the thumbs up from the tip top

Erik reminded Brad of his promise to send those little pirates up the mast and so that's what Brad did. Erik led the charge, going right to the top! Bryce followed suit. Not be outdone, Austin made it way past his personal best of the the first spreader all the way to the top. He gave me a thumb's up for a picture and then promptly asked to be let down.

A little lunch and clean-up, then it was time to point Capaz back toward Shilshole. We sailed right across and it is amazing with a little help (from our sons also - who has stolen my children and replaced them with alien look-alikes??????) how quickly the boat can be cleaned up and put away. The Harangs headed off to their next destination in Blue Ridge. Luckily, the next time we see them, it will be because they have moved back to Seattle. It will be so nice to have them in the same hemisphere . . . . . . country . . . . . state. . . . . . . maybe even in the same county!!!!

After Saturday's blow, we decided that since there won't be really any sailing until after Capaz returns from her trip to the spa (that would be the boatyard), that we should take down the roller furling genoa. We have the greatest neighbors on F Dock. Erin and Brian were walking by and stopped to talk and even helped us fold up the sail. Thanks!!!! What a great weekend.

Sometimes they even let me drive


Walter Roger Baker 1933-2008

Note: While Bryce, Austin and I were having our little kayak adventure last weekend, Brad was down in Portland helping his step-mom, Sue, with his father, Walt’s, hospice care. Over the last couple of months Walt’s MS had quickly progressed to a point at which he had long ago decided that he would be done fighting. He submitted and passed away last Monday. The boys and I joined Brad and Sue’s family in Portland on Tuesday for a couple of days. To those of you who knew and sent condolences, thoughts and prayers, we are again reminded of the sincerity and love of our circle of family and friends – Thank you.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Little Beach at Shilshole

Little Beach is kinda little

Brad is out of town and I had a little project that I need to re-measure down on the boat. So I promised the boys that if we went down to the boat to do my measuring. we could blow up the kayaks and go on a little adventure. I figured that we could leave them inflated so that we would have to mess around with re-inflating them next weekend when we are off on a little weekend with the Harangs. It turns out, this was my first time, that getting the inflatable kayaks inflated is really no big deal. I have to figure out how to install the skegs so that we can go straighter. We didn't deflate them anyway, but back to the adventue.
On the west side of the breakwater at Shilshole, at very low tides, there is a small sand beach. The signs say "No Trespassing on the Breakwater", but I am pretty sure that the beach does not count. Once we got the kayaks launched. We headed down the fairway between E and F Docks towards the breakwater and out the south end of the marina. As we rounded the corner, out into Puget Sound, we could almost see our reflection it was so calm. A perfect day for our maiden voyage outside the protection of the breakwater.
The Mighty Kayaker

We got going a little later than I had planned and by the time we made it up-current to "Little Beach" it was very little (about 3 feet wide and 8 feet long). Austin was worried about touching the breakwater and in effect trespassing, so Bryce beached his kayak and we took some pictures. It was a nice trip to the north end of the marina. Bryce even paddled part way back to the dock before he tied on to Austin and I for a tow. We went nice and slow close to the rocks, both boys noticing the huge variety of critters that live in and amongst those rocks.
When we got back to the boat, I did my measuring and the boys went on one short little voyage to retrieve a piece of paper that they have been noticing for about a week on the bulkhead near our dock's ramp. It turned out to be a notice from the marina management that had been laminated which explained why it had not disintegrated submerged in that water. All in all, the kayaking was successful and Capaz now has a flap that we can use instead of hatchboards as the weather gets cooler.

Off to solve the mystery of the piece of submerged paper

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Boat Show Done!

Where have we been? Well, we have been Boat Showing: one of the greatest "perks" of the marine industry. At least twice per year, we "get" to participate in the boat shows. The Seattle Boats Afloat Show was last week. We spent the week before that prepping for the show and getting the kids off to their first week of school. Then, we have spent the last week decompressing and cleaning up from the boat show. If you are feeling like this post is laced with sarcasm, you would be correct. Boat Shows are not my favorite thing.
Anyway, we are making progress on Capaz. Brad has almost completed the first new head installation. Beyond that, I have been working on little projects on the boat and at the house trying to prepare for the transition to living on the boat hopefully, around the first of the year. We are not sure what is happening with our live-aboard status as we seem to be moving the wrong way on the waiting list. On August 22, we were #8, then last week we seemed to have moved back to #11 and now as of Friday, we are at #12. It just makes you wonder a little bit about exactly how the Port of Seattle's priority system is set up.
So we hope to make some more progress and spend a little more time on the boat now that the Boat Show is over.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Gig Harbor

Capaz at Anchor in Gig Harbor
August 30 - September 1
So, you have been out in the ocean on a sailboat for 7 days and you are about to fly home and see your family who you miss and your husband says, “Do you want to go out on the boat this weekend?” If you are me, you say, “Sure.” That’s how it is with us. I get off the plane from Oakland, get dinner, stop by the boat to see what we need and drop off my gear. We all got a good night’s sleep at the house and then, packed up and headed off to Gig Harbor. The weather is iffy – a little shower coming down Colvos Passage on the west side of Vashon Island. When we arrived, not only did we see s/v Mentor, but also that the SYC outstation has been full-up of powerboats for the last two days. What were we thinking? Oh, did I mention that Bryce drove most of the way from Seattle while Brad did whatever it was he was doing with a soldering iron and the windlass motor? Also, Austin and I pumped up all of our fenders!!! I am happy to report that after dropping the anchor with a non-functional windlass, we have repositioned ourselves using the now-working windlass. Nothing like the prospect of raising a big, heavy anchor and 120 feet of also big, heavy chain by hand to motivate one into fixing something. Not only that folks, but we also ate our dinner of hotdogs cooked on our now-functional barbecue!!! We are really making great strides here. The boys built “the color fleet” which are a series of lego ships where each one is built using a certain color of lego pieces. The evening was capped off with a glass (or 2) of wine with Cindy and Dick aboard their friends, Jim and Ann’s powerboat.

The color-coded lego fleet

Sunday was kind of a mixed weather day. Partly cloudy with a shower here and there, but when the sun was out it was nice and warm. There was even one lightening strike mid-afternoon as a particularly dark cloud went over. I went on a bike ride in search of the grocery store to find something to go with the coffee that Lydia was going to pick up at Starbucks and bring out to the boat. Plans changed though as Lydia had hurt her back and getting in and out of the dinghy didn’t sound like much fun. So, we had coffee on land and she unsuccessfully chauffeured me around on a domestic errand. We ended up back at her house where we enjoyed lunch. Back at the boat, Brad worked on lots of little jobs and the huge task of emptying the “garage” which is a cavernous storage locker in the stern of the boat. We needed to get to bottom of it, so that we could figure out what there was, if we wanted to keep that same stuff back and just generally organized it. The boys watched “Jimangi” and later went to the beach at the SYC outstation where they built a rock and seaweed island which they tried to keep above the level of the incoming tide. Bryce and I also played a game of Scrabble in which we used every last tile!!1 Back at the boat, we had dinner and I taught Bryce to play Solitaire and then we played Double-Solitaire.

Sunday morning comics

Austin partway up the mast

Monday’s weather capped off a truly mediocre summer. It wasn’t really warm or sunny but we did have wind most of the way home and sailed from Gig Harbor to West Point up Colvos Passage. With the option of the autopilot back on the table, it was a leisurely trip back to Seattle. We even flew the spinnaker for a couple of hours. Before we used the windlass (that part is very exciting) to raise the anchor, Bryce and Austin had their maiden voyages up the mast in the bosuns chair. Bryce made it all the way to the top on his second hoist and took some pictures. Austin wasn’t so sure about the whole thing, but smiled for a picture. We were also boarded by one of the Gig Harbor water officers. Luckily, he is an old friend of Brad’s and was just saying hi. On the way home, we spotted Ann and Jim who we shared drinks with on Saturday night by their bright green kayaks on the bow and were hailed by Wendy Hinman on Vallela. As we got stuff together on the boat to off-load and head back to the house, Austin asked what was going on. I told him that we were getting ready to go home to which he replied that the boat really felt like “home”!

Looking down at Mom and Dad
Looking South ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Views of Gig Harbor from the top of Capaz's mast ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Looking West