Sunday, May 18, 2014

Look At That View!

Lately, Jake and I have been working opposite schedules. It has been difficult to coordinate a day off to spend together.    This last week we made it a point to schedule the day for just that. It was a relaxing day. The morning was spent running errands mailing things off to family and getting shopping done. That afternoon we met up with our friends Amy and Skeeter from Salt Whistle a boat that is a few slips down from us.  We took our dinghy out to happy island and enjoyed hiking and swimming.  We are still loving that little island so much.  Hiking up gave us a great opportunity to get some beautiful photos! Check them out!


Sunday, May 11, 2014

Carnival Time!

A couple weeks ago St. Thomas held their annual Carnival Celebration.  The week was full of concerts, dancing, food fair, parades and a variety of activities.  Jake and I didn't attend anything except for the Adult Parade on Saturday.  Jake went last year and got some good shots, so I was excited to be off work, pull out our camera gear and go have a nice afternoon shooting the big cultural event.  It was a hot day and the parade was very slow, but we saw some friends and some great costumes.  I am glad that I went to see what the excitement was about.   It was a colorful afternoon and it looks like everyone  had a great time!

My friend and Coworker Tamri looking so fun in her costume.

My boss enjoying the fun and taking part in the parade.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Happy Island

Jake and I have found a place to spend time off that makes us so happy.  There is an island the locals call "Happy Island", I believe the proper name for it is Cas Cay.  It is about a 5 minute dinghy ride from where we are docked.  The island has hiking trails, beautiful mangroves young and old, with water as still as a swimming pool.  It is beautiful.

Jake took the dogs out there a couple weeks ago for the first time while I was working.  They loved running round and playing with other dogs on the beach.  The island has gotten Crew more comfortable with water and he absolutely loves it now.  So lately Happy Island is our "Happy Place".  We go a few times a week to explore and enjoy the quiet.  Last weekend we took our friends Jessi and Kade out there and had a blast.  I got some fun shots the last few times we went out. Enjoy!

Love to see the new mangroves growing!

Tons of Hermit Crabs.

Our dinghy driver.

Our boat from the bow.

Jessi and Kade

The boys playing on the beach.

Shame faced crab.

Jake being serious.

Crew loving the water!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Not Lost At Sea, Still Here!

"You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream..." 
-C.S. Lewis

Well folks, we are still here!  When I say "here", I am referring to St. Thomas.  This has been our current location for the last 2 1/2 years.  My last blog post which is not so recent, spoke of our great adventure to set sail and the emergency equipment that we have just in case.  So, to all the people that think like me… always assuming the worst scenario, we are safe!  The fact that I haven't blogged since February isn't because we were lost in the middle of the ocean without internet access.

Through our preparations we came across a few large hiccups. First it was the transmission needing a part replaced, then it turned into the head gasket of our engine being blown.  It has been been quite the mess.  With dishonest mechanics and parts being ordered from Japan, we are still here putting everything back together.  We are learning everyday that B.O.A.T stands for "Break Out Another Thousand".  We are on the back end of the repairs and we are no longer in complete construction zone which occupied our kitchen and salon area. We can cook and are almost back to normal with our daily routine. 

The nomad life that we had begun at the beginning of the year, hasn't faded completely.  With the repairs we had to put out a lot of money, so we found jobs to keep us afloat.  Our new jobs are not as full of responsibility and stress as our former ones, so it still gives us a sense of freedom.  We are enjoying the work, perks of a paycheck and the relationships we are building with our co-workers and bosses.  Jake is working at a jewelry/souvenir store 4 days a week and free lance diving for a few companies on other days.  I am working as the assistant manager of a surf shop.  It has been a good experience for me to learn the retail business, it was not an industry that I had prior experience in.  Jake is able to say yes or no to dive jobs at his discretion, which gives him a sense of freedom.  We are both learning new things and are striving to save to reach our adventure.  

So, I will try to keep this more updated.  I apologize for the silence.  It has been a few months full of ups and downs.  I am starting to put it all together in words again and look forward to sharing more with all of you along the journey.  

Monday, February 3, 2014

"What if?" Safety First!

As we are nearing our departure date my anxiety is getting worse.  I have the nervous feeling of "what if?"Due to these feelings, this last week I chose to focus my projects on our safety equipment.  A lot of you have been asking if we have this equipment or have shared your concern of us traveling outside of immediate assistance.  These different tools are helping to keep us safe if these situations occur.   There are three items that are helping me feel a little more at ease; our life raft, EPIRB and SPOT satellite tracker.  

First off, our life raft.  We have a Revere 4-man Offshore Commander life raft.  The raft is sealed in 
a vacuum bag that deploys as a life raft when triggered. It is equipped with essentials that may be needed in an emergency. It has a required service once every 3 years.  Servicing the raft can be a little costly but it is very important to keep it up to date and useful if it is needed.  We dropped off our raft and it has been serviced so it is ready to go. Even though it was a big chunk of change, it puts me at ease that we are prepared for the situations I do not even want to think about! 
Photo Found

Second, our EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon).  An EPIRB is used to alert search and rescue services if their is an emergency.  It transmits a message via satellite to the closest rescue center. It is activated automatically following an incident or it can also be manually activated.    I renewed the registration for our designated beacon with NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration).  To register our EPIRB we provided contact information, as well as information about our vessel it is being used on.  Our emergency contact information, boat description etc. is all up to date and ready for use if needed.  

Photo Found

Third, and most exciting thing is our "SPOT Satellite Tracker".  I find this to be a wonderful tool.  It is great to have in case of an emergency, and also just for fun!  Jake bought our SPOT a while back but we had delayed registering it due to an annual fee.  This week I registered our device and it is working great.  With the SPOT tracker we can send satellite messages updating you on our exact location, so you can follow us along the way! It also has a help feature that allows us to send an "in need of help" signal to those who are tracking us, which would be used in situations where immediate assistance isn't needed.  Also it is equipped with a 911 feature, which when activated sends a satellite message to the nearest rescue center requesting immediate assistance.  This tracker does seem to do the same thing as an EPIRB, however we are able to carry this one on our person, when the EPIRB will stay with the boat in case of emergency.  Our spot will travel from land to sea.  I just recently added the link to the "Where Are We?" tab on our blog where you are able to follow us as we travel and find out in real time where we are.  Once we leave I will be updating this hopefully once a day, the site only shows the messages from the last 7 days.   

Photo Found

So to those of you who have been worried about our safety, these are just a few tools that will keep us in touch and on the map.  Researching, registering and becoming more educated in these items has given me a sense comfort for our journey.  I am excited to use the tracker and excited for all of you to follow us through out our travels!  
What other things do you think will come in handy in an emergency?

Friday, January 17, 2014

Some Firsts

Today was a big day for our new puppy Crew.  He got to bask in the sun at the beach, experience the ocean waves, and play in the sand all for the first time.   When Crew first walked on the sand he looked at it wondering,"what in the world is this?".  He followed Dozer around and started to dig, roll and run around the beach.  We had a hard time getting him to go in the water.  Jake placed him in the water and he ran right back out.  Hopefully he will adjust to it, and learn that it isn't as scary as he thinks.  We had a great time at the beach.

We brought bones home for the dogs today.  They were excited for the treat and were chomping away, then I found a tooth.  I was a little shocked at first, but Jake explained that Crew would loose them like kids do.  So our little Crew went to the beach for the first time today AND he lost his first tooth! I apologize in advance for how I will react when these events happen with our future children. I immediately got out my camera and documented the milestones.  Here are a few shots.