Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Photo Blog

Junkanoo Parade!

Marsh Harbor is FULL while we all wait out the weather!
In the words of the great Barefoot Man (the Jimmy Buffett of the Bahamas), we're just "Harbornating" here in Marsh Harbor. The weather will be perfect for sailing tomorrow so we plan on sailing somewhere....Stay tuned for more adventures! Enjoy the pics!

Ahoy Andy! Welcome to the Bahamas!!

Jib's pals Linus & Willie dinghied over to say hello
Junkanoo Parade
New friends at the Bahama Tourism party
Jib met his Bahama Vet today.  Good News: no bladder infection. Bad news: Jib has to have surgery to remove that stubborn testicle that just doesn't want to move down. Poor Jib.
Good news: If we decide to do it soon (the Vet said there's no rush) here in the Bahamas, it will cost about $700 less than in the States.

Love & Miss everybody sooooo much. XXXOOO
My new coconut shell hair clip

Sunday, February 26, 2012

"Mellow Seas" In Marsh Harbour

  Welcome to the Bahamas Andy! Our friend Andy on s/v "Mellow Seas", who we met in Connecticut 1 day after hurricane Irene, & then again at Hidden Harbor Marina in St. Augustine, Florida sailed into Marsh Harbour this weekend! It's been great catching up with him. One of my favorite things about cruising is running into friends in new locations. We've had a great time this weekend going to several of the many planned events. Thursday night was "People to People" sponsored by the Bahama Tourism Ministry. It was a great chance for locals & fellow cruisers to come together to celebrate the Bahamas. Free food & drinks, great music, mini junkanoo, fashion show. ..it was a blast. Most cruisers are on a budget so anytime there's free anything we're there!!  Friday night we went to a "Rake & Scrape" which is a band that uses homemade instruments like saws, cow bells, rakes, etc. to make music. More dancing & good times & a great introduction to the Bahamas for Andy! :) 
  Marsh Harbor totally filled up with boats the past few days due to incoming high winds. We'll have to stay hunkered down here for a couple more days but hopefully sailing again by Wednesday!  There are still plenty of new islands for Scott & I to visit.  Now that we're getting better at sailing, it's a lot more fun. These couple days will give us a chance to take Jib to the vet. Our little buddy has another bladder infection :(  This is the 2nd time in his short little life so we need to figure out why that's happening & we also have to look into getting him neutered. One of his little testicles never descended so it will require more than the easy snip job. He'll probably need surgery. Cha $$$ Ching. Good thing we love him so much. Meanwhile, Scott has nick-named him one-nut.
Missing everyone at home soooo much. Love you. XXXOOO
I have had many troubles getting this blog to post. I can't get the pics to download & after 8 hours I am frustrated beyond belief. Will try to post a photo blog tomorrow! :)

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Carnival Weekend

Sunset at Tahiti Beach
  We sailed back to Marsh Harbour today. Another great day of sailing for Malaika. We were heeling more than we ever have. Heeling is when the boat tips to one side away from the wind. It's a bit unnerving at first. It's not a natural feeling to walk on the side of the boat instead of the floor. We are used to it by now but today was pretty dramatic & I let out a couple little screams. It's not unsafe. It's what the boat is supposed to do. It won't tip over....I just have to keep reminding myself of that sometimes.
  We had a great time at Tahiti Beach but returned to Marsh Harbour because it's like "Carnival" or "Mardi Gras" this weekend. There are lots of events scheduled including 2 Junkanoo's. We went to one for New Years & had an awesome time. I can't wait to see all the costumes!!!
Tonight the Bahama's Tourism Association is hosting a party for all cruisers. Food & drinks supplied, live music from the best Bahama bands, arts & crafts from local artists. Good Times!
  Scott continues to do weaving with palm fronds. He's been working on his hat for about a month. So today, we get anchored in Marsh Harbour & a dinghy comes right over. Turns out, it's someone we met the other night at the dinghy drift. He came to tell Scott he really loved the hat he wore @ the dinghy drift. Thought it was "super cool".

 Scott is quite proud of himself now. He's always been proud of the hat. Island life. It's awesome.
Love & Miss Everyone. XXXXOOOO  Mom & Dad..we hope to get minutes for our cell phone this weekend so we'll call as soon as we do. Love you

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Tahiti Beach Bums

Hang On !!!
Malaika heeling (leaning) hard to starboard (right) sailing close to the wind
   Scott & I had a great sail to Tahiti Beach. Sails up, engine off...ahhh...our favorite thing.  This sail was cool because it was the most advanced sailing Scott & I have done by ourselves. When I say that, I know all the experienced sailors who read our blog will giggle because it's not like we did a passage or anything. Just a quick jaunt in the Sea of Abaco from Marsh Harbour to Tahiti Beach. (15ish miles)
The weather was great, no big waves. It's all about the wind. The wind was right on the bow (in our face), & Scott & I trimmed the sails really well....we tacked 6 times. (That's where the experienced giggle) ....but I dont care. For newbies like us, it was a perfect day of sailing. Good teamwork. It's taken us a long time to get to this level of sailing. Yay Us!!! The pay off...2 awesome days at Tahiti Beach.

Yesterday, all our cruising friends were here hanging out on the beach.

 For Happy Hour we all came together for a "Dinghy Drift." A 1st for Scott & I. It reminded us of tubing down the Salt River at home.  Everybody meets out in the middle of the bay, tie our dinghys together, & drift wherever the wind takes us while passing around snacks & drinks. We watch the sunset & then everybody unties, starts their motors & head back to their boats. So fun!!! Hope to have more dinghy drifts in the future.
Love & Miss everyone at home sooo much. XXXOOO
Bob & Chel from s/v Bella Sera hanging out at the Dinghy Drift

This is why Scott was telling me to hurry up the other day. Low tide at Tahiti Beach. This guy is in a bit of a pickle. Already aground & 2 more hours until low tide. His boat will be on it's side by then. Luckily, with the help of other cruisers he was pulled out.

Are we in Tahiti?

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

It's Mardi Gras Time!

 We've been stuck in Marsh Harbour for a few days due to weather but things are clearing up so we're going to spend Fat Tuesday sailing to Tahiti Beach. Many of our cruising friends are headed over there so should be a great day of sailing & hanging at the beach. I mentioned being "stuck" in Marsh Harbour but it doesn't really feel like that. We were able to grocery shop, fix a toilet problem, wait out the weather, do lots of reading. I wish I had more time to write to fill you in on some cool things we've done but we have to get going. It's important to get settled at Tahiti Beach before low tide so Scott is telling me to hurry.
Love & miss everyone. XXXOOO

Saturday, February 18, 2012

We'll Miss You Colorado Crew !!

Having some fun at "Nipper's"
    I haven't been very good about updating the blog this past week while our friends were visiting because we were too busy having fun!! They headed home today...Scott & I are feeling a bit lonely since they left. It was a fabulous week and we hope to have more visitors soon!! You all know you're welcome anytime! We island hopped everyday & got to see some of the most popular islands here in Abaco. (Abaco is the area of the Bahamas we are in) Yesterday we snorkled on a beautiful reef at Great Guana Cay. The guys saw an enormous moray eel & Chad spotted an octopus too.  Our guests adapted to boat life very well & nobody had issues with motion sickness. Good thing Kristi had her wristbands! :)  I was very surprised how comfortable we all were. I expected Malaika to feel pretty small with 6 adults & 1 dog but it never felt cramped at all. Chad & Danny were awesome 1st mates by the end of the week. Sailing is much easier with all that extra help. This was one of my most favorite weeks on Malaika.
Awesome memories created this week! Thanks for everything Colorado Crew! We miss ya already.
Beach Time
Joy catching some rays...and a little sand from Jib
Kristi doesn't have tights on...just the soft powdery sand of Treasure Cay
Much love to everybody at home. XXXOOO
Deck Candy

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Colorado Crew

Chad, Kristi, Danny, Joy, Scott, & Jib
  Our friends Danny & Joy and Chad & Kristi arrived from Colorado on Sunday morning. Of coarse, Mother Nature welcomed them with the coldest weather we've had since we've been in the Bahamas which made for a wet dinghy ride from the dock to Malaika.

 Luckily, the weather has improved everyday & we've been having a blast!! We've sailed to a newisland each day. 1st stop was Hopetown. We climed to the top of the world famous Hopetown Lighthouse. Yesterday, we sailed from there to Treasure Cay which has one of the top ten beaches in the world. We have decided to stay here for another day to enjoy the beach some more. The sand is so white & so soft. BEAUTIFUL!!!
  It's been so great having all the extra help sailing from 2 firefighters--they pull those sails up so fast! It's been so fun for me to have some girl time with Kristi & Joy! Good times happening on Malaika!
Hope all is well!! Love & miss you. XXXOOO
Hopetown Lighthouse

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Abaco Blows

   Scott & I have been very busy the past few days preparing Malaika for our guests from Colorado who arrive in the morning. We are SOOOO excited to have friends visit us here in the Bahamas!! Of coarse, Mother Nature is being a real *%*ch & bringing on a cold front. We are expecting 30mph winds in the morning at the precise moment of our friends arrival. ARRRGH!! So far, the forecast is good for the rest of their stay (besides tomorrow) , so we hope to visit several islands. Tomorrow Malaika becomes home to 6 adults & one dog....we will be a full boat! Stay tuned for all our adventures through the next week. AND....hopefully, some of you will be inspired to also come & visit!!  I expect a very restless night tonight as the wind starts blowing in. Scott & I get up MANY times during the night when it's really blowing to check our anchor, make sure nobody is dragging into us, etc. Luckily, one boat that drags whenever the wind blows even a little, moved into a marina tonight so we dont have to worry about them. We have watched them drag 5 seperate times in 2 different anchorages. We just cringe when we see them anchor anywhere around us. We were up at 4:30am today because the wind was howling, lightning blazing up the sky... It's VERY nerve racking when lightning comes to play. Our 52ft mast is just a giant lightning rod.

Everyone says how rare lightning strikes are however, in the short 8 months of our sailing life we have met 2 boats who have had that unfortunate disaster. Not only is it a fire hazard, it will destroy all the electronics on your boat. A VERY pricey mishap.
Anyway...no more lightning in the forecast so we're greatful for that. Love & Miss everybody!!!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Back On The Grid...Sorta

Malaika anchored off Tahiti Beach

   Yay!!! My hubby surprised me today & bought me a wifi antennae booster AND a month worth of internet so I can easily do the blog & stay in touch with family & friends. It's much easier to do the internet cafe thing when you live on land. We did it a lot when we traveled through Central America. It's one thing to throw your laptop in your backpack & walk to the internet cafe. It's an entirely different thing to pack up your computer in dry bags so it doesn't get wet from the mother ship to the dinghy, to the dinghy dock, then walk however far to a cafe only to find they closed at 2pm instead of 5pm as advertised. You get the picture. So...we're connected for the next month. Yay!!!
  We've had such a good time exploring the islands in & around the Sea of Abaco. It's so awesome to finally be doing what we dreamed about only a year ago. All that work on the boat, the trek down the ICW, learning to live on/drive/anchor/dock the boat...We did it!! I'm so proud of us.
  SUPER excited for our friends from Colorado to join us this Sunday!!! Chad & Kristi, Danny & Joy...we're going to have a blast!!! Woo Hoo!!!
  Also,  Matt & Lindsay...so happy to hear your headed this way!!! Malaika & Kindred Spirit will definetly be doing some sailing together!!!
Sunset in Marsh Harbour
  Love & Miss everyone !!  XXXOOO
Jib has become quite the sailor

  P.S.  When I say hip hip hooray, we're "connected"...it took over an hour to post this blog.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Sailing Dreams Come True

What a great few days!! We've been able to reprovision the boat, enjoy all the modern conveniences of "city life", do a little island hopping.
Thank you Hal for inviting us to your superbowl party! We had such a good time! The American commercials did not air here so we missed those.
Yesterday we left Marsh Harbour & went to Tahiti Beach then sailed back today. It was Awesome!!

Special shout out to Pam--Happy Birthday!!!! We love you Mom!! Hope you have a wonderful time at Postino's tonight!!
Love & miss you!!!

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Goodbye Green Turtle Cay

Today we leave our beloved Green Turtle Cay. It's been a wonderful stay & introduction to the Bahamas. The weather will be good tomorrow so we're headed to Marsh Harbor. We're leaving Green Turtle this afternoon at high tide & anchoring just outside the island tonight so we can make the passage early in the morning.

"The Whale" is out that way

We have to go through "The Whale", a short passage on the Atlantic, then back into the Sea of Abaco to get to Marsh Harbor. It's important to time your passage through The Whale when there are no north winds or else it could be very unpleasant. Tomorrow the winds are all from the east so we should have a nice crossing. Leaving the marina also means leaving Internet so it will be a few days before I can do another blog.
So excited for the next part of the adventure! Stay tuned everybody!!
Love & miss you

One last coconut from Green Turtle Cay. Was so yummy

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Hello Marsh Harbour!!

We had a wonderful passage to Marsh Harbour! It was great to be moving on the boat again. We're so excited to start really Island hopping. For now, we'll be in Marsh Harbour until our friends from Colorado arrive next weekend. We hope the weather plays nice & we can island hop to several places.
I have very limited access to Internet right now but that should get better as I find the wifi spots.
It's been great to be in a real city again! 6,000 people live here so there's everything we could need. The prices are much cheaper too!! :)
Have a great Super Bowl Sunday everybody!!
Love & miss you!!!

Scenes from Marsh Harbour

Yep, the pony tail has started!

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