Looking for a Catamaran Cruising Blog?

If you found this blog via a link from a cruising site ~ we did cruise Mexico on our Ocean 49 cat for a season. See the first text box on the right for links to our preparations, trip down Baja, life in Mexico, cruising and trip back up to SoCal. Unfortunately we are back to the grind in the USA...

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Feliz Ano Nuevo!

Or, Happy New Year for all you gringos!
All the New Year's Eves in SoCal blend together.
Usually we would have a few people over for dinner and sometimes make it to midnight.
In Mexico we usually get woken up at midnight.
Fireworks and firecrackers.
Loads of them.
Gunfire too.
That one I just don't get.
Remember the bullet is going to fall back to Earth eventually...

In looking back at our New Year's Eves while cruising...
December 31, 1998 was spent at the Southern anchorage of Bahia Santiago.
According to the "stick figure book" we spent New Year's Eve doing the following:
Motored in to Manzanillo for diesel - smooth fueling.
John Francis was our boat bouy!
Back to Santiago - pillow blocks causing us problems.
Bus into "Commercihell" - 8 million people in the grocery store...
Taxi back (this I believe was when the back seat of the taxi was wet and we asked the driver if some kid peed back there, but he said no, it was some people in wet bathingsuits)...
Meridian wine and BLT's were great!
100's of fireworks and firecrackers at midnight! YIKES!

"Libre", "Thistle" and "Pepina Rae" at anchor in Santiago.

Sunset in Santiago...

December 31, 1999 ~ oooohhhhh the big 2000!
We were anchored at La Ropa in Zihuatanejo Bay.
According to the "stick figure book":
Got the boat ready for the millenium!
Jim washed, I vacuumed.
Made party hats and decorations.
Swam and read.
Baked a cake that didn't really rise...
Made pa-nang (thai dish).
"Sea Fury" over for dinner and Uno (to stay awake).
"Askari", "Unicorn", "Swagman" & "Windsaloft" over to watch the fireworks from all over the bay.

Tangent - "Windsaloft" ended up years later on G Dock in Ventura! So we got to see Peggy again, but unfortunately her husband had passed away...

Kathy, Chuck, Scott, Jim & me
Trying to stay awake by playing cards...

The fireworks surrounded the bay!
Probably the best fireworks show we had ever seen.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Time Between Christmas and New Year's Eve

Is being spent getting the boat ready, provisioning, visiting and being lazy.
All pretty much at the same time...
Hard to believe, I am sure.
Anyone who has cruised can relate.

Watching the mega yachts come in and go.
Now we have a sailboat mega yacht to watch.

What else?
Jim did another night with Tom C. until 1:30 am...
I wisely stayed home.

Dinner last night with Chuck and Moira of "Angelina" at La Boheme.
Thank you Chuck!

Filled the freezer with meats from Sam's Club.
Washed the rugs and rags.
Baking bread.

Starting the countdown until Alan and Susan arrive ~ 4 days and 2 hours.
We still need to do a last run to CCC for the fresh provisions.
Get Alan's favorite bacon from Bravo Market.
Buy Alan's favorite beans from the bean store.
Put the jacklines out.
Wash the yoga mats.
Vacuum and scrub the floor.
Change our sheets.
Move Jim's truck.
All things to do at the last minute, so today:
Be lazy!
It is Sunday after all!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Merry Christmas! One Day Late...

We wished you all a Merry Christmas yesterday, you just didn't know it...
It was a pretty quiet holiday for us here.
Except for the millions of firecrackers being set off all night Christmas Eve.
I'm not quite sure I get that tradition...

We had one gift to open.
Yep one.
And it wasn't even from one of us.
Alex and Sue snuck it under next to our tree.

We had a lazy morning and afternoon.
Listened to Christmas music all day.
I enjoyed my favorite Christmas decoration ~ it has my sister's handwriting on it...

And we enjoyed a glass of dessert wine.

Then Tom and Tanya came for a visit!
All the way from Seattle.
We hadn't seen Tom in over 16 years!
And we had never seen Tanya before...

A walk down The Malecon to look at the beautiful lights and decorations.

Then on a hunt for an open place to have a margarita.
Ended up at this little place, which is basically an open air bar in a 7-11 parking lot...Jim and Tanya hammed it up a bit for the camera...
Tom must have been camera shy.

No part of this day felt like Christmas.
The one present thing.
The 80 degree weather.
The sunshine.
The margaritas.
Now the tree and plate are all packed away until next year.
No more Christmas music.
And the best part?
No lights to take down!

Happy Day After Christmas!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas Eve Eve!

We had a lovely (that's my new favorite word) dinner last night in the cockpit of "Meerkat", along with Alex & Sue of "Maitairoa", Erin & Paul of "Romany Star" and Bob & Janie of "Amiga".

But first the preparations.
Triple Sec injections in both the turkey and ham...
Yes, you read that right.
Triple Sec basting on the turkey too!
So the turkey was squeezed into our Smev.
It's a tiny little Swedish oven!
The ham went in the BBQ and the stuffing went into the oven on "Romany Star".
Basically food spread out all over the dock.

But we didn't care, because we had Paul's mulled wine!

Erin got mashed potato lessons...
She did a fine job of mashing!

We remembered where we had hidden all the food.
The timing was perfect on it all!

Jim enjoyed a leg-o-turkey!
In front of the fireplace even!

My plate.
Ham, turkey, potatoes, Jim's stuffing, Paul's green bean salad, cranberry sauce...
It was excellent!

Along with the friends, conversation and fun!
Dessert, provided by Bob & Janie was over the top.
Brownies with vanilla ice cream and spiced nuts!
A perfect ending to a lovely evening there's that word again.
A close second to being away from our family on Christmas Eve...

Merry Christmas Eve Day!

Our Christmas Eve Day consisted of yoga (me), cooking and getting the boat ready for our Christmas Eve dinner.

And of a gift to ourselves!
Our coffee bean grinder died, so...
I had remembered seeing some in CCC so went there on the most crowded day of the year, fought the crowded parking lot, fought the crowds inside and then fought the crowded parking lot again.
But success!
And a Krups at that!

Then a quick 20 minutes at the appetizer and dessert get-together in the marina.
I did my best at coming up with something Christmassy...
Red pepper spread on homemade sourdough bread with unhomemade garlic stuffed olives.
They were gone in about 4 minutes...

We laughed at Paul's hat...

Then back to the boat for food prep and watching the crew off of a big yacht jump off the top deck and play Tarzan.


Uh, the water isn't so clean in the marina...

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Tag! You Are It! Part 2 of Comment Tag

And now for my answers to the questions about each of the last ten commenters (am still wondering if that is a word...)!

1. What's your favorite post from #3's blog?
Hmmmmm... on 1st Mate I will pick a favorite recent post on home security. This works for me! But I wonder if I had Jim's shoes and the big guy's work boots out there if it would confuse the potential burglar. I also enjoyed her posts about her Mom and the dealing with a parent who is not the same parent you remember as a child. I could relate... It was so very hard to watch my Dad go downhill and not be able to do the things he could always do before. The man was a helicoptor pilot and then he was unable to walk or go to the restroom. Hell getting old...

2. Has #10 taken any pictures that moved you?
Oh yes! MxSailor’s shot of his head (toilet) restoration “moved” me… NOT! Interior boat restoration photos pretty much torture me ~ been there done that. On boat #3, so really I find them painful reminders. But his paintings do though! Love the Birdman, Budgie and Green Parrot ones. Love his colors and soft lines. Check them out.

3. Does #6 reply to comments on his or her blog?
Absolutely. All the time. Jolea has some pretty funny responses too. I can’t wait when I read her soon to be published response, “Yes thanks for asking, I love my new job on this really cool mega yacht! Everyone is nice and wonderful, including the owners, Sting and Trudie. And the pay! Oh it‘s lovely. In fact I‘m sending oodles of money on over to “Meerkat“ in La Paz, just because”.

4. Which part of blogland is #2 from?
Mars. Alaskan Dave Down Under used to be from Sarah Palin land, oops I mean the fine State of Alaska. Now he lives in Australia where he floats around in his pool, takes pictures of birdies and torments Wifey Poo with his puns. Oh and cooks. And bakes. I sure wish we were there for his Holiday Feast!

5. If you could give one piece of advice to #7, what would it be?
Ha ha ha! Me give Roz Savage advice? Okay, how about “Don’t do it! Don’t do it!”. Okay out of everyone out there, this is a person (remember world known ocean single handed rower, rowed across the Atlantic by herself, then just finished rowing from California to Hawaii) that I really don’t want to give advice to. I think she is just fine how she is, but here I go anyway:
“Eat your Wheaties”? Uh no, that’s not it… Oh yeah! As Alan from “Toshal” would say:

6. Have you ever tried something from #9's blog?
Actually yes! Overboard has great wine suggestions! Oh that’s not right, she tried the wine I suggested. If I could find the food she cooks and have her recipes I would definitely try that! But her winner was the alternative to disposable womens’ monthly feminine products. There, see how lovely I said that? I never mentioned the words tampon or pads at all. See, all you men didn’t even flinch! Amazing. Seriously everyone should check this out.

7. Has #1 blogged something that inspired you?
Actually quite often! Jomamma had to dress as her hero for a “hero day” at school (where she works) and dressed as her husband. He is her hero. That was wonderful. That one will stay with me for a long, long time. I also enjoy her relationship with her kids. If I had kids, that would be inspirational to me. She treats them like humans and pretty much lets them live (well, they are adults after all!). But it’s her relationships that inspire me. Well done Jomamma!

8. How often do you comment on #4's blog?
Pretty much every time Ray & Lucy post! They are long-term friends and I really look forward to reading what they are up to and hearing about their lives. I love how we have re-connected through this! So much more fun than email… And I can say anything to them or be really sarcastic and they will still love me no matter what. So all the time.

9. Do you wait for #8 to post excitedly?
Uh not really… Markitos doesn’t post all that often, but I do take a look at his new posts I liked the photo he included with his daughter… Sorry I’m not anxiously awaiting your new posts M…

10. How did #5's blog change your life?
Her starting of her blog changed my life! I had to give Capricorn Cat blog lessons and show her how to post instead of adding more page elements! So it was afternoon lessons on “Meerkat”, questions via email and then enjoyment of seeing her blog transform.

Okee dokee, so all you mentionees up above can either do what I did in these two posts or not. The first part you list the last 10 people who have commented on their blog and say a little about them.
The second part you answer the above questions.
Takes time!
And Alaskan Dave you obviously aren't an "official mentionee" as you have already done this. Or we can go back and forth and tag each other endlessly for the rest of our blogging lives.
And Roz Savage you obviously aren't in this group either ~ go educate! Go row!

Happy Christmas Eve everyone!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Damn Alaskan Dave Down Under Tagged Me

Hokee dokee ~ it's a commenters tag thing.
Click on my post title to be taken to the devil's post source of this little game.
Deal is, I take the last 10 commenters (is that even a word?) on my blog and tell a little bit about each of them and/or their blogs.
Then I answer a question about each of their blogs.
I'm going to follow in Dave's wake and do it in two parts, lemming that I am.
Part 1 being the little bit and part 2 answering the question.

So my last 10 comments have been from Jomamma, Dave, Jomamma, Jomamma, Jomamma...
Oh wait that's not going to work...
Start over.

#1 ~ Jomamma ~ Someone I have never met, but it seems we have a lot in common (except the kids part... I have none of those) and would be friends if (when) we do meet! She lives in Texas, works at a school, has a husband who has been going thru chemo and now radiation, has raised two kids (Jolea ~ see below) and has a lovely, FUN family who all get along and care about each other. Her goal is to find humor in everything. I think she does. P.S. She is a awesome knitter!

#2 ~ Alaskan Dave Down Under ~ Aaaahhh Dave. Funny, funny guy who used to live in Alaska and made the smart move to Australia. He takes excellent photos of birds and wildlife. He cooks awesome meals (also has a food blog) and apparently has a very tolerant wife. Puns galore. I think he spends a lot of money on bird food and a lot of time floating in his pool.

#3 ~ 1st Mate ~ Owns not one, but two sailboats! One that is being restored. Lives in San Carlos, Mexico with the MxSailor guy (see below). She sings, volunteers, is interested in her Mexican neighborhood and the Mexican culture. And I think she makes really good cookies and hopefully she will send some our way when MxSailor sails down the Sea...

#4 ~ Ray & Lucy ~ Two of our best pals for the last 14 or 15 years. They used to live on a boat 3' away from our boat waaay back in 1994 (when their dog thought our boat was his other boat). We cruised Mexico with them the last time down. Fun, fun people who now reside in Texas... they are awesome cooks, can sew excellent boat canvas and are just wonderful and loving all around. P.S. Ask them about the time they found a ransom note for their dog...

#5 ~ Carol on "Capricorn Cat" ~ Oh yes, my little blogging protege! Yep, I turned her on to the blogging thing. Wayne & Carol bought "Capricorn Cat" from our friends, Blair and Joanie. "Cap Cat" was our whole inspiration in buying our catamaran, so of course when we saw them pull in here, just had to meet them. Since I had posted a photo of their boat being moved by the marina crew (when Carol and Wayne were gone) I had to show this to her and the blogging took ahold... Blogging lessons followed!

#6 ~ Jolea ~ Daughter of Jomamma! And young enough to be my daughter... been working on mega yachts, catamarans, boats in the Caribbean and in Australia and is now pounding the docks in Fort Liquordale Lauderdale in hopes of finding a new boat. This girl can cook and clean like no one else! If you know any mega yachts looking for a stewardess, get ahold of her NOW!

#7 ~ Roz Savage ~ Ok, I am still trying to figure out how this well-known world ocean rower left a comment on my blog. Absolutely amazing! She has rowed single handed across the Atlantic and from California to Hawaii. She is doing this to educate the rest of us about the sad situation our oceans are in. Trash, plastic, debris and more. This is one incredible lady!

#8 ~ Markitos ~ Funny sailor surfer guy in San Diego. I think he is living at anchor on his boat. His brother had a boat here in La Paz and sounds like Markitos has sailed the Sea of Cortez. I don't know much else...

#9 ~ Overboard ~ Another funny one! Found her blog quite awhile ago by doing a search on sailing or sailboats. She bought a ferro cement boat in San Carlos ~ turns out bought it from Butch (passed away) and Linda, some friends from way back! She is teaching English in Japan and will be returning to her boat in a few months. She has been an inspiration to me in her travels and desire to live and explore the world, and to not do the 9 to 5 grind (sound familiar?) forever.

#10 ~ MxSailor ~ 1st Mate's Captain. The other half of the "owns not one, but two sailboats"! And is heading South in the Sea (oh I hope he brings us cookies!) about now. He paints lovely pictures, plays a few musical instruments and is doing a full restoration on one of the sailboats.

So now to all of my family... gee, not one of you are included in this?
Aaaggghhh ~ are you all still out there?
And Suzie and Kirby, sorry but you were #11 and you know how I always follow the rules...

Oh okay... I will cheat this one time!
#11 ~ Suzie and Kirby ~ Kirby was our neighbor back in Ventura in the old days too. We were so happy when he met the lovely Suzie. Ah, finally a nice lady for our friend! Sailing, cruising, food and a wedding later. Then they
cruised the East Coast without us and now live in South Carolina. She started the "Best Friends for a Day" saying! There, I typed it really, really small so no one will know I cheated.

Watch What They Type Too...

Oh boy!
A new Latitude 38 Magazine!
Such excitement when you are cruising!
Even more fun when you know the cover models ~ the family of "Don Quixote"!

But then you read the letters and get a laugh...Ha ha ha.
Sort of.
Not really.
Well, yes I did get a laugh ~ honestly how the hell would we be able to get Domino's Pizza during a hurricane?
Uh, nothing was open.
Who would even send a delivery person out during a hurricane?

And I forgot the latest edition of "Jim and Heather's Small World"!
And we all know how much you love these stories!
At the dock party on Friday night we were talking to Eric and Nikki ~ asked what kind of boat Eric had, blah, blah, blah, a Morgan Out-Island blah, blah, blah.
And you bought it in San Carlos?
Jim and I look at each other...
What is the boat named?
Hey, did you buy it from Ivan, Ariel's brother?
We met Ivan at Ariel's retirement party and Jim, Stan and Alan all crewed for Ariel between Ventura and Costa Rica.
Too bad Ariel doesn't talk to us anymore...
But at least we still have Stan and Alan in our lives!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Watch What I Type...

Well I have never been known to be a quiet one.
More like the one to put my foot in my mouth.
So I need to read my post title and remember that people I write about can find this blog...

Two instances this week!
First by the big, giant, behemoth, beautiful blue boat, that used to go by the name "Slojo", which I have re-named (un-known to the owners), "Slojolea"...
I was standing in my cockpit staring off into whatever and noticed one of the crew waving to me.
I looked around and saw that there was no one behind me, so waved back.
Then came the yelling conversation:
Crew: Hello, I found your blog!
Me: (under my breath) Oh shit. (then yelling back) Great! (not really meaning this ~ more like when you are caught with your hand in the candy jar) I'm sorry I made fun of your boat!
Crew: It's not my boat!
(uh yeah, well I pretty much knew that already)
Me: Ok, well there is no sarcasm inside me!
Crew: No, I liked it!
Me: Ok, thanks. Gotta go...

So then I went back and read what I had typed and the comments.
Uh oh.
Glad he had a sense of humor.
Hopefully the gum makers do too.

Instance #2.
A comment by Roz Savage.
Google her.
Or check out her blogs (linked on this blog) and website.
Click on my post title above to be taken to her new blog, which includes a comment I left for her.
And my comment will go on her next row with her!
So... the story goes, I had her blog linked under the "These people may very well be insane" blog list.
She found that.
Uh oh.
I don't think she is insane.
I love what she stands for and what she is doing.
It's just not for me.
So she found that and now thinks that I think she is insane.
Check out her comment she left for me under my third post below this one, "Lighting, Bread and Boat Preparations".
So now I have put her new blog under my "Best Friends for a Day" blog list.
Because she totally, 100%, absolutely made my day yesterday when I saw that she left ME a comment!

Annual Christmas Dock Party Caused Created By Alex and Sue of "Maitairoa"

The social calendar has been pretty full this week...
On Friday afternoon we joined in on the dock party over on Alex and Sue's dock in the next marina.
Loads of people ~ loads of great appetizers ~ loads of fun!

Mike from "Amazing Grace" made an incredible rum cake.

That Alex obviously enjoyed!

Gigi the cat lorded over us all and watched for any mis-behavers.Then we tried getting a good photo of the four of us.

It started with two of us...

Sue and Jim

Apparently Jim didn't hear the words "good photo"...

On the walk over to the party, Jim said he only wanted to stay a little while.

Hey ~ we have lots to do!

Anyone want to guess who were the last to leave??

Friday, December 19, 2008

Hora Feliz on "Victory Cat"

To welcome Tim "home" to "Victory Cat" after doing the work thing in the US, Ruth had us over for happy feliz last night, along with Erin and Paul of "Romany Star".

We LOVED Ruth's Christmas tree!

Paul, Erin, Ruth, Tim, me and Jim.

I talked them all into doing my family tradition of making faces.

Except Paul.

He didn't quite get it.

Or maybe he did.

Maybe this is Paul being scary.

Lighting, Bread and Boat Preparations

We have had lots of clouds this week, which makes for cool lighting in the late afternoons.We call it "Zihuatanejo lighting", as when we were anchored in Zihua we would get beautiful afternoon lighting.

And another successful attempt at sourdough bread!
This time I used a bread pan in the oven.

Our lists are getting shorter!
Parts, provisioning and projects.
We should be 100% ready by the time Alan and Susan fly in.
Hopefully they will climb on the boat and we will pull out of the slip.

Music School Orchestra ~ A Night on the Town

Tuesday night we went with Alex and Sue to the La Paz Music School's Orchestra performance at the old theatre in town.

Tickets were a whopping $20 pesos each ($1.54 US).

We stopped for a drink and appetizer on the way at Tequila's.

Then the walk through town.

And then a wonderful concert!
Jim and I really didn't expect much, but they were great!
The first violin player was a 15 year old and was amazing!And, are you ready for another installment of "Heather and Jim's Small World"?
Jim ran into Lulu (Ricardo's sister, we went to her law school graduation party, her son fished off our boat with Ricardo's boys) in the lobby and her son, Daniel played percussion in the orchestra!
So we got to see the whole family after the performance.
Again, how cool to go to something like that and it ends up we have a friend who is in the orchestra?

Then off to the parrot bar for a cocktail, where we had Sue pose like a dork tourist.

Then a few pics of the exterior of Tequila's just because.

Just because it is cool.

And it looked like someone who had math homework used their wall for scratch paper.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Two Things We Don't Normally See

The sunrise.When we are at anchor we see the sunrise, but for some reason in the marina we sleep in.

I can't wait to see this every almost every morning!

Except the "red skies in the morning, sailors take warning"...
I want "red skies at night, sailors delight".

And Dockwise Transport unloading / loading boats!

We also saw the small seaplane that is doing daily flights here take off through the anchorage.
But the picture wasn't so great.
I took it out the dirty car window as we were driving along...

So actually it was three things we don't normally see.

Pre-Cruising Plumbing Projects

This is what the boat looks like when the smart, handy, talented one is re-plumbing two toilets and the watermaker.

A mess!

All the stuff from the starboard v-berth is shoved into the starboard aft stateroom.

All the plumbing parts are spread out in the cockpit.

We can actually get to the watermaker.

But the project list is getting shorter!

And we will have water to drink and two places to leave the used water.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sourdough Bread

I am experimenting with two different sourdough starters, kindly given to me by my friends Toast on "Don Quixote" and Sue on "Yarnspinner".
Thanks ladies!

If it wasn't so much work, I would make a loaf of bread from each starter at the same time.
It's kind of "start the night before, then all day process the next day" kind of thing.
Kirby understands this ~ right?
But when I have the time to make it and I follow the directions exactly, it is SO worth it!
Especially with Mexico's lousy Bimbo bread...

This is the start of the "next day mess I make process".

And my best result so far!

Cruising Plans!


And all the rest of the words that show excitement.
We are actually going to GO CRUISING this season!

Our plans etched in wet sand during low tide are:
Alan and Susan of "Toshal" fly to La Paz on January 1.
First weather window we head out towards Muertos and cross the Sea of Cortez to Mazatlan.
Then Isla Isabella, San Blas, Mantanchen Bay, Chacala, Jaltembra, Punta de Mita and La Cruz de Huanacaxtle in Banderas Bay.
Alan and Susan will fly back to Alta California on February 3rd from Puerto Vallarta.
To work on their boat and get it ready for next summer ~ right Alan?

Then South to Ipala, Chamela, Tenacatita, Melaque, Barra de Navidad and possibly to Bahia Santiago.

Then back North again to La Paz.

Then in to the Sea of Cortez for a few months.

Then we have a few other ideas tucked away for future publishing...