Friday, October 30, 2015

10 Days To Florida

Sunday, October 18

We woke up and went to the clubhouse for breakfast. Michael Kirkman made his famous pancakes. A little before 9 we headed back to the boat and got ready to head out.  We had  a nice crew to come down and see us off.

We passed the camera and had a family picture taken.

You can see from the sweats, jeans and jackets, it was a chilly send off.

The lines were cast off at 9:10 and away we went with our buddy boat, Last Boat, with Captain Nelson and crewman, Charlie.  We were so fortunate to be able to travel with these two great sailors, who are not only friends, but had traveled these waters several times before.

The first day we sailed down the Neuse, turned into Adam's Creek and had the anchor down by 2:45 pm near Morehead City and Beaufort.

Monday, October 19

Anchor up by 6:45 am. Our first time to really ocean sail. Great day of calm waters and good wind blowing in the right direction. We made it to the Masonboro Inlet near Wrightsville Beach, NC.  Anchor down at 5:55pm.  The boys put the dinghy in the water and went to pick up Nelson and Charlie to join us for dinner.

Tuesday/Wednesday, October 20-21

We had the anchor up by 7:20am. Last Boat had gone around the corner for fuel. We met them and followed them out to sea.
 Going along the inlet, we got a call from Charlie on the VHF radio to see if we could pick up a life jacket they had seen floating in the water. The boys quickly grabbed the boat hooks and rescued it.

 This was a lighthouse as we were headed out to sea.

  We were going along so well, we all decided to go for our first overnight motor/sail.

Sunset in the Atlantic

 Our family started about 8pm with each person taking a two hour watch, except Nathan. Brian slept in the cockpit to be available if any trouble arose and to wake the next person for their watch.

I had 8-10, Caleb took the 10-12, Luke took 1-2, got queasy and traded an hour with Brian so he could rest. Jacob had the 4-6am watch, then I came back on from 6-8, then made breakfast. 

We came into Charleston, SC at 7:20am. Our friends on two other boats, Tom and Ollie on Our Freedom, and Doug and George on Windfall, that had left three days prior to us, were just ahead of us, so they waited and we traveled with them that day.  We traveled down the ICW and anchored in the Coosaw River at 4:45pm.

Thursday, October 22

Anchor up at 7:30am. Short jont down the river to Lady's Island, SC. Anchor down at 9:30am. Time for a partial lay day. Once settled, Brian went with the other men to scope out the town. After the boys were done with school and we had lunch, we went to town with Brian. We walked to the hardware store and got one of our propane tanks refilled and bought two new water jugs to store on the rail of the boat.  Brian and the boys especially liked this store because they had free popcorn.  Another stop at Dollar Tree for a few things and then headed back to the marina.

Our family was invited to happy hour on Last Boat at 5pm.
From back to front: Tom, Doug, Brian, Ollie, Kerri, Charlie, Nelson, and George.

Afterward, the boys went back to our boat while Brian and I joined the others in town for dinner.

ALL of the locals raved about this place.  It is actually a small bar, but you walk through to the deck out back and you are sitting and enjoying your meal while looking over the water. 

Each weeknight, they have a special one plate dinner. No choices or substitutions, but for $5 that night, we got a huge plate of two giant pork chops, scalloped potatoes, corn, and green beans.Brian and I each just ate one pork chop and planned to take the extra two for the boys. Nelson and Charlie generously gave us their extra pork chops as well, so each boy could have their own.

Friday, October 23

Caleb's 12th Birthday!!!

We had biscuit sandwiches and pop tarts for breakfast. Calzones for lunch, and enchilada's for dinner. 

Our Freedom and Windfall decided to stay longer in Lady's Island, so we left with Last Boat at 8:25am.  I didn't think we would be going back into the ocean that day, but the weather was such, the captains decided to go for it. The decision was made just as I was too far in lunch making to go with something simpler.  The motion of the ocean even on a calm day is more pronounced down below more than up in the cock pit. By the time we were ready to eat I was a little green, but fresh air and saltines helped immensely.

Jacob and Caleb put the anchor down at 7:15pm. We were in St. Catherine's Sound in Georgia. Nelson and Charlie came over to join us for dinner again and celebrate Caleb's birthday.

Saturday, October 24

Anchor up 6:55am. Back out to the ocean. Anchor down 5:40pm in Fernandina Beach, FL.

Sunday, October 25

Anchor up 6:55am. Back to the ocean. Anchor down 4:15pm in St. Augustine, FL.  That evening Last Boat treated us to dinner in town at Pizza Time. Then we went for a short walk and saw some of the sights and the old Fort.

Monday, October 26

Our friends on the other two boats, were about two days behind us. We thought about hanging out in St. Augustine and waiting to travel with them, but in the end we all wanted to continue and get to our final destination of Melbourne.

So anchor was up at 7:30am. We stayed in the ICW and reached New Smyrna, FL about 5:15pm.  Along the way, Charlie radioed to point out a bald eagle perched on a tree.

At times like this, I wish I had a fancy camera with the ability to zoom way in. It was still neat to see.

We went through several bridges. some fixed and some we called ahead for an opening.

Tuesday, October 27

Anchor up at 7:05am ICW down to the Eau Gallie Bridge in Melbourne, FL. Anchor down 5:10pm.

That evening, Charlie and Nelson had Brian and I over to Last boat for a farewell dinner. They would be moving on the next morning. 

I can't say enough how thankful we are to Nelson and Charlie for being such great friends and leading us safely down south through the ICW and ocean voyages.

Wednesday, October 28

My parents live in Melbourne, so we have been looking forward to seeing them and having an extended visit.  They came to meet us for lunch at the park near where we are anchored.

We had had Caleb's birthday gift shipped to their house.  Caleb was thrilled to finally get his present.

I went home with them that afternoon to do laundry, visit and stay over night.  Brian and the boys stayed at the boat and managed to survive without me. :)

Thursday, October 29

Mom and Dad took me to breakfast at Eddie's Sunrise Diner, then back at their house, I worked on weeding the flower beds. After lunch, Mom took me to the  grocery store. That evening we took dinner back to the park for Brian and the boys.

 They not only survived without me, they seemed to have thrived. Brian got out my cookbook and made pancakes for them for breakfast!

Brian and Luke had been checking the local Craigslist for a new to us phone. Our old one has been such a pain, we just wanted to chuck it overbaord many, many times.  They found a Galaxy S5. The guy showed up to the park and it was a done deal.

Nathan and Jacob went home with mom and dad for a couple days with them.  Luke and Caleb will have a turn next.

We are in this location for a couple weeks. Mid-November there will be a Seven Seas Sailing Association Gam at Eau Gallie. After that, we will move down to the next bridge in Melbourne, closer to my parents house, and stay through Christmas.

Eau Gallie Bridge

                                       Eau Gallie Library and Park

                                  Public dock and pier at base of the bridge.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Back In NC For a Month

Saturday, September 19

We woke up to find that Brian's bicycle had been stolen from the Union Point Public docks. It had been locked up to an iron fence with a heavy metal lock. Whoever it was had a job of cutting through the chain, but left no sign of anything.  We reported it to the police, but it is gone.

We pulled anchor and returned to the club.  That evening was the monthly social.  Good to see familiar faces again.

Sunday, September 20

Brian and I took a bike ride over to NW Creek to walk the docks and ended up looking at a 57 ft boat. Not interested. That afternoon Brian went for a short sail with a buddy.

Monday, September 21

Went for an early morning bike ride, school with the boys, and dinner in the club house with friends, Tom, Doug, and George.

Tuesday, September 22

School in the morning with the boys. That afternoon, Brian, Jacob, and Caleb put a sail rig on the dinghy and messed around with it in the creek for a while. 

Wednesday, September 23

School with the boys. Brian helped friends take their boat to Duck Creek, to be pulled while they prepare to travel.  They picked up Hardee's for lunch and brought it back for all of us.

Thursday, September 24

School in the morning.  Excited for 4pm to arrive. Geri came to pick up the boys and I for a long weekend visit to their house in Grifton.

Brian stayed at the club with the boat.

Friday, September 25

The boys and I went to visit Nana. Right before we returned from the Chesapeake, she broke her ankle and has had two surgeries.

That night, back in Grifton, our friends surprised the boys  with an evening of Laser Tag in Greenville.  We got to the place about 8pm and they stayed until almost midnight. Partway through the evening, Geri and I went on a Krispy Kream doughnut and coffee run, then wandered around Kohl's.  Back to the Laser Tag place to wait for the boys to finish,  have a doughnut and then back to the house for showers and bed.

Saturday, September 26

Everyone enjoyed sleeping in, having a late breakfast, then waiting for some other friends for our former Home School group to come visit for the afternoon.

After our friends left, Geri, Luke, Jacob and I had to go back to another friends house, who was storing stuff for us. She was unable to continue to store them, so we loaded it up and brought it back to the house.

Meanwhile, back in New Bern, Blackbeard Sailing Club was starting to flood due to the windtide.  Windtide is when the wind simply blows water towards land for a long period of time.

Sunday, September 27

We attended church, back to the house for lunch and then a grocery run. That evening after Bible Study, Geri drove the boys and I back to New Bern. 

Monday, September 28

School in the morning. The weather was continuing to be rainy for the fourth straight day.

Tuesday, September 29

School, dinner in the clubhouse with friends.

Wednesday, September 30

School. Brian continued work on removing a holding tank from in the back of the aft stateroom. He and Jacob removed old hose by removing panelling to get access.

We hurried to finish our work, so we could meet our friends, Andy and Sally to go have lunch and run errands.

During this time there were reports of a hurricane, that could possibly come right for NC. People came down to the club and got their boats prepared in case it did.

Thursday, October 1

The hurricane moved out to sea, but the rains came. We moved our boat from being at anchor to tying up at the end of "C" dock.

Friday, October 2

School and rain.
Our friends, the Floyd's and Johnson's stopped by the club and we got to visit a while. Joni and Sally took me to the store for a couple of things and ended up getting several treats for the boys.  They also conspired to "kidnap" me the next day to go to the Seafood Festival in Morehead. 

Saturday, October 3

The boys stayed at the club with Brian. I enjoyed a beautiful, funfilled day.
It sprinkled just a little bit while we were driving down.

Sunday,Monday, October 4-5
The rain returned and things started flooding again. We kept a sharp eye on the rising levels. At it's worst, the water got within 20 feet of the front gate.

Tuesday, October 6

The rain receded over night. After breakfast, a group of men and the boys cleaned and swept under the clubhouse, picked up small stuff that had floated away.

Wednesday, October 7

School in the morning, then the Hardee's come down for a day visit. The kids played ball, card games, rode bikes and just hung out together.  Geri and I got to go for a long walk and visit.

Thursday, October 8

We moved the boat back to New Bern to anchor out. Brian enjoys anchoring there so he can ride a bike into town for errands. This time we loaded the bike into the dinghy and kept it on the boat every night.

Friday, October 9

School. Rainy day. Closer to evening we watched workers setting up for the Mum Fest.

Saturday, October 10

We walked around the Mum fest in the morning and then, the Kozel's came down to meet us and visit in the afternoon.  It was so great to be able to see more friends before we have to leave again.

Sunday, October 11

Another day at Mum Fest.

Monday, October 12

Drizzly day. When we got a small weather window in the afternoon, we pulled anchor and came back to BSC.

Tuesday, October 13

Geri came and picked the boys and I up for several days in Grifton. We brought school books to do school with her boys.  That evening we went to Daniel's baseball game.

Wednesday, October 14

Geri took me a a local restaurant, gift shop, farm store called Yoder's. Great morning. The boys at at home and got started with school. That afternoon, we babysat a cute little three year old. Busy busy guy. That evening, Geri and I walked to church and had nursery duty watching  a sweet 1 year old.

Thursday, October 15

The boys and I got to go on a field trip to a local creamery. Simply Natural is the name. They raise Jersey cows and make and sell milk, butter, ice cream, as well as many other products from other local farmers.

After the tour, we took the kids back to the house and went grocery shopping.
That evening Geri treated me to dinner at Rucker John's restaurant in Greenville along with several ladies from her Bible Study group. Then we went to Dollar Tree and got enough stuff to fill 24 boxes for the Samaritan's Purse Ministry.

Friday, October 16

After breakfast, we loaded up the van and came back to the club. Got all of the groceries, laundry, and school books put away.

Tomorrow is work day at the club, which is always a fun day.

We are planning to leave on Sunday morning to head south to Florida for a couple of months.  Our new boat cards arrived while we were in Grifton.

Our good friend, Captain Archer got the picture of our boat and rainbow.