Cruising Kyrie

Our family has chosen to live an abnormal life of living on a sailboat and exploring the world. Come along with us on our journey and let it inspire you to follow your own chosen road--not “only wish what [you] could be!”

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

What's your reason?

     I get a lot of e-mails. That's my own fault because I keep signing up for e-mail lists, usually having to do with homeschooling. One in particular stood out to me tonight. It was from Jennifer Dukes Lee--her "Top Ten with Jen" e-mail. In it was a link to a subscribers' freebie page, full of quotes and stickers. This one shouted to me and I decided to share.

     There really are. Sometimes I have to remind myself of those reasons and other times they leap out at me. My family makes me happy. My boat makes me happy. Most of the time, my life makes me happy.

 It isn't, of course, always a bed of roses. I get upset, frustrated, sad, anxious, you name it, just like everyone else at times. But you know what? Thankfully, those times are not the norm. I hope I can keep my reasons to be happy foremost in my thoughts, especially as we have entered the holiday season. What about you? What beautiful reasons do you have to be happy?

Saturday, November 3, 2018

"Slow down and enjoy life"

     I'm way overdue for a new post on here, so I had to share a quote I found. Quick background: I've been reading a Stephen King book, which I don't think I have ever done before, not being a huge horror fan. However, a "mamas' writing club" I'm part of is reading his book On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft. I have to admit that I am thoroughly enjoying it. His insights into writing make me nod vigorously, sigh with envy, and then snort with laughter while my kids stare at me, wondering what in the world I'm reading.
      While I have underlined a large amount of passages in the book, one quote stood out to me because it applied to more than just writing. I've been searching through the book to find the context for the quote without any luck, so I'll just say it spoke to me enough to write it down in my little journal of "interesting quotes and passages."
       Eddie Cantor said, "Slow down and enjoy life. It's not only the scenery you miss by going too fast--you also miss the sense of where you are going and why."
       I wish I could find the background behind this quote. Was it a conversation he had with someone? Was it an interview with a newspaper? I have no idea, but I very much appreciate this sentiment. It reminds me of one of the best and most frustrating aspects of sailing. Let's face it. Sailing is a slow way to get anywhere. The fastest we have traveled on Kyrie was 12 knots, and that was slightly scary (we were surfing waves and had too much sail up for the amount of wind). For any other form of travel, 12 knots would sound very slow, but from Kyrie's back deck, the world seemed to scream by as I struggled to furl the genoa.
      6-8 knots, however, is a very comfortable speed for Kyrie. That rate allows her crew to take in the world around as we travel. I can see the exact route we are following and have time to take in and process the sights I see before they are out of sight. I retain that "sense of where [I am] going and why."
      I still don't know who all reads this blog. I know some of my family and friends do, and I certainly realize not everyone who does is a sailor, or even a person who enjoys time out on the water. However, I hope this speaks to you as it did to me.
      Take some time this week to slow down. Make a point to look at and appreciate the world around you. Whatever goal you are reaching for today, be sure you know where you are in life. At the risk of sounding trite, you can't be sure of achieving your goal if you're going so fast that you don't know where you are right now. Take some time to enjoy the scenery.

Friday, August 31, 2018

Celebrating a birthday girl!

Today we celebrate our big girl's birthday. Rachael is 8 years old today! How did that happen? Rachael, you have been such a sweet, curious girl since the day you were born and discovered your fingers! 
You love nature and the world around you. The wind in your hair always makes you smile.                                                                                      

Even though I know they drive you crazy sometimes, you are a wonderful big sister to little miss Megan and little sister to Levi.

My princess Rachael, you get more beautiful, inside and out, as time goes by. I cannot wait to see what life has in store for you. Mama and Daddy love you to bits!

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Dodging icebergs. spying on mountain goats and the end of the trip

     The Russell Island anchorage was a lovely night. When the tide dropped, we were able to see just how protected we were. Land blocked nearly the whole passage between Russell Island and the little island we were next to, so it was nice and calm, if a bit creepy being within 50 feet of land on three sides at low tide! It was calm and quiet, allowing for another night of good sleep.
     Next morning, Joe and I studied the chart. Our permit was more than halfway done and we needed to start planning on an exit strategy. We still hadn't taken Kyrie to a tidewater glacier and that was high on the list. A decision had to be made. We could follow the cruise ships and go into Tarr Inlet to see the Margerie and Grand Pacific Glaciers. We could head up toward Johns Hopkins Inlet to see Lamplugh Glacier and then hope the inlet wasn't so ice-choked that we couldn't at least get part way in to see some of the other glaciers. Looking at the distances and knowing there weren't any good anchorages up either inlet, the closer inlet won out. Tarr Inlet it would be.
     I made apricot-date muffins while Joe motored us up through the Russell Island Passage and into Tarr Inlet. The Ruby Princess was already in, approaching the Margerie, and the Nieuw Amsterdam was approaching the inlet. Binoculars came out and it was time to play "Dodge the bergs." It wasn't too bad, although it looked like it could be! There were mostly a lot of little bergs, but by staying on the east side of the inlet, near the beach, we were able to avoid the majority of the obstacles, including cruise ships! There was a lot of idling the engine and coasting through some of the thicker fields. There was a bit of a contest with the kids to see what shapes we could make out in the ice, such as a moose, a sombrero, a helicopter, and a penguin! At last, we settled on turning off the engine about a mile away from the Margerie Glacier. It would have been lovely to get even closer, but peering through the binoculars showed a pretty thick field of big-looking bergs--not a good idea to take a fiberglass boat through that. So, we contented ourselves with where we were.
     Margerie Glacier is touted as a postcard glacier and, even at that distance and on a cloudy day, I could see why. It has the jagged face that comes right down to the water, about half a mile wide. As we sat bundled up on the bow, we heard a crack and a rumble. Unfortunately, if the glacier did calve then, we weren't able to see the splash. It was still a beautiful sight to see. The Grand Pacific Glacier is a different story. Two miles wide at its face, it is difficult to tell you're looking at a glacier because of how much rock it has gathered up over the years. Some ice still shows through the "grime," though, reminding viewers that this was the main glacier to have carved out Glacier Bay nearly three hundred years ago. At 35 miles long, it has its start in Canada, and looking at it, it's hard to believe you're viewing the remains of a river of ice that used to extend all the way out into Icy Strait.
     With the tides in mind, we only stopped in Tarr Inlet for about an hour before turning around and negotiating our way out. We briefly considered going to check out Lamplugh, but through the binoculars, it looked pretty berg-y. Deciding we would have had our fill of dodging bergs after getting out of Tarr, Joe and I agreed to thread our way back into the Russell Island Passage through considerably more bitty bergs than we dealt with on our way in, and make our way back to Geikie Inlet. The description in Exploring Southeast Alaska sounded lovely.
     We at last motored into Shag Cove around 4:30. Right away, we could tell it would be a nice place to anchor. Marble Mountain rises straight up between the cove and the outside waters of the bay. An island blocks most of the entrance, making Shag Cove a nearly-landlocked anchorage. It took us about half an hour to get to the head of the cove and finally anchor in about 75 feet of water. We were there at high tide and it looked to be a steep beach. It also looked like a good place for bears to come out of the woods, so we decided not to go to the beach. Joe did, however, spot mountain goats on the cliff of Marble Mountain. The kids all got the chance to marvel through the binoculars at the sure-footed creatures.
     This morning, a wolf appeared on the beach, much to our delight. While Levi, Rachael and I watched, the wolf ran through the creek and came up with a fish in its mouth--not something I've thought about wolves doing. It soon disappeared back into the woods and it was time to get going again.
     Our destination wasn't far--the South Arm of Fingers Bay is only about an hour and a half away as Kyrie cruises. Now, at 2:00, we've been anchored in the Southeast Bight for close to an hour. The wind, which was supposed to be only about 10 knots, is kicking up again to 15-20. We're tucked up pretty close to the beach this time, but hopefully we won't see winds like a few days ago! We need to leave the park tomorrow and I don't want to get stuck again!