Monday, April 29, 2013

Vacation Denied

He kept bouncing around and chirping about how nothing could stop us from getting on that plane. NOTHING. No more flying standby like we always did for Hawaii. We purchased these tickets, we had seat assignments... "Nothing can stop us mom! NOTHING!"

Nothing except the U.S. State Department. It's a loooonnnnngggg story, but in a nutshell we had a passport snag and our grand adventure was thwarted at the airport. We were supposed to spend 2 weeks romping around Ecuador. The Andes, the Amazon, the markets and volcanoes... it was all ours for the vacationing. And now it's all gone. Oh, and did I mention that in the last 24-48 hours we all managed to get sick too, so in a weird way worked out for the better because there is vomiting and fevers and coughing and all that taking over the family too.

So while we cry moan and feel sorry for ourselves and attempt to see whether or not we can recoup any of our losses and re-book the trip... here are some totally random photos of the kids the past week or so enjoying spring time around the marina.

Monday, April 22, 2013

just dandy

We're still here. Still prepping for our big vacation. How did it become so difficult to pack? When did it become so insanely impossible to pack lite? And why won't my brain remember anything anymore?
I have lists, and then other lists, and then little emails to myself, and I still feel like I am not near ready.  The upside is, I have the sort of personality where I am totally ok with not being ready. I love flying by the seat of  my pants. It doesn't bother me in the end game. But I know I will end up with at least one face-palm for something obvious I forgot to pack.

I am having a hard time concentrating on lists and laundry when spring is springing so sweetly all around us. Of course it's still COLD here, but the sun is shining and the flowers are blooming. We skipped out on seeing the cherry blossoms in town this year. Well, we skip out most years. I am a little jaded about those things. Crowds and parking headaches and well, the Tidal Basin is not the only place around to see them. And there are so many more other flowers around to delight in, ones that kids are allowed to touch (no touchies on those cherry blossoms, the park police will be on you in a nanosecond!) My girl who loves all things yellow and who loves flowers is in heaven right now with all of the weeds, ahem, I mean dandelions out around here.

We collected so many and made crowns and had all kinds of intentions of frying some up or making cookies or doing something fabulous I saw on Pinterest, but it never happened. The joy was strictly in the picking and that was enough to make everyone happy.

I will try to check in one more time before we take off. And I have no idea what our wifi or computer access will be out yonder. But I will try to post a photo or blurb here or there if possible. If not, please excuse the quiet and know we are having a wonderful adventure and will update all the details once we're back home again.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

project season

It's that time of year when we wake up and say, hey it's warm enough to work on the boat so let's whip out our to-do list with 647 items and see which project we can tick off the list. The list is dizzying in truth. When your husband has the 9-to-5 grind and you are caring for a little one and schooling the older one the list tends to do nothing but collect dust. But Naia is getting a wee bit more independent and so the bigger items are starting to get crossed off.

Look! An empty room. Where did it all go? Sigh, well that's the thing with boat projects, you are living in a construction zone until the bitter end. So the stuff from the salon gets shuffled into the guest room and the school/ craft room (which Zach calls "Knowledge Meadow").
(Salon cushions and other stuff on guest room bed.)

(Baskets-o-stuff in the guest room.)

("Knowledge Meadow" with piles-o-stuff that normally goes up in the salon.)

Our salon windows started leaking in the fall, but we never got the weather we needed to remove them and re-bed. So we put it off knowing we'd be covered in plastic all winter. Now that the plastic is off it's time. The first 3 sunny days in a row we jumped on the chance. This is a simple but very labor intensive project.
(Chemical goo applied. )

Use chemical goo to un-glue window... then carefully... CAREFULLY (it's heavy glass) remove window without breaking, cracking, or chipping it in ANY way. Set is aside. Then clean residue from everything, and put a new, superior chemical goo in and set the window carefully... CAREFULLY into place. Allow to set and dry, and then hold your breath until the next rain.

The goo that is supposed to help remove the windows didn't work as well as we hoped, so rather than getting all 6 re-bedded this weekend, we did one. There are 7 all together, but we did one a couple of years ago. We're hoping that next weekend will be dry and we can knock out a couple of more.

Then it's on to the next thing. And the next.  And so on.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Just like that...

It's like someone flipped a switch. Less than a week ago we were at a friend's birthday gathering freezing our keesters off. And today it was tank tops and bare feet. Zach keeps telling me how he feels like he's really alive now. I get what you mean my sweet boy.

Our bubble that has kept the wind from chilling us and the rain from soaking our cockpit all winter and spring is just a big, hot greenhouse once the weather is nice. So, it was time.

We planted some seeds in hopes of another attempt, and I stress attempt, at a dockside container garden this year. Naia is an enthusiastic gardener like her brother, but sometimes she tends to love the plants to death joyously plucking off every leaf, sprout, or bud and tossing dirt into the air like confetti. Hooray for gardening!

We got a little bad news this week as we found out we can not hatch chicks this month. It's a long story, but the short of it is that the timing was just off because of our upcoming trip. We may have a chance again in May, but we're not sure. Despite that news, we had loads of fun on the farm this week learning all about the importance of poop.  As you can see from the look on Zach's face, he just loved getting to clean up poop all over the farm (cough cough).

But a hayride in the sunshine made up for everything.

Monday, April 01, 2013

April minus the fools please

We sort of stumbled out of March battered and worn. Cold and windy, yeah that's still happening but then about a week ago we were in a car accident too. We are all ok. The car... not so much. An SUV was so excited to give my wee Honda Civic a bear hug that it blew a stop sign to do so. So it's all police reports and insurance and car repair places and all that and we march forward. Easter and Passover and waiting, hoping for a sign of spring.

Our friend raises these beautiful rabbits for meat. The nice thing is that before they become dinner, they are lovely to cuddle with and pose for cheesy springtime photos. I joked with her that all we needed was some baby chicks and a sign out front and we could have an Easter photo shoot business!

And speaking of chicks... well... of all the crazy things one might expect to see on our sailboat like Monarch caterpillars sailing around with us and brief period of my life where I lost my mind and agreed to a guinea pig (have I mentioned how HAPPY I was that Zach agreed to find that stinky rodent a new home?)... we are now in the process of setting up a corner of the boat to hatch baby chicks. No I haven't completely lost my marbles again. This is a school project from Zach's farm school... the one where he got to slaughter a chicken for dinnner last fall, yeah that one. Well now we get to bring forth new chicken life. No, we are not keeping the chicks. I told the boy once they hatch (if they hatch...) we get about 3-5 days of baby chick love and then they need to go back to the farm. Or to a friend's house. Long enough to get some cute photos and love on them a little and then that's it. Chickens and boats just do not mix.

And finally we are a little busy around here with our upcoming trip. Planning, packing, arranging for the required vaccinations, passports in hand, and unearthing our luggage from the fore peaks of the boat so they can air out and get stuffed to the brim. We still have a few weeks, but that can slip by quickly so I am trying to stay on target and make sure we have everything lined up to try and avoid any last minute craziness.

Hoping for some sunshine and sanity this month.

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