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Forever boat: bigger upkeep on an older sailboat

      Totem turned 36 this year. We treat her like our forever boat, and prioritize maintenance to ensure our sailboat / home remains a sound vessel with a long future ahead. Lately that means turning attention to a projects that accumulated into something more than “routine maintenance.” While organizing plans for the new bottom […]

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Cooking aboard: Totem’s galley essentials

   Returning to Totem recently provided fresh perspective on land kitchens vs boat galleys. Last night, as our dinner cooked in the oven, Jamie and I wondered to each other that it seemed to be taking a long time. Then we remembered we were trying to compare a little boat oven with the beast of […]

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Silver linings to an extended haul out

Early morning shadows stretch across the gravel lot of Cabrales Boatyards hardstand where Perro Negro (black dog) holds court. Mairen and Siobhan get the first of today’s Spanish vocabulary from the night guard as we’ve affectionately come to call maestro (teacher) for his enthusiastic lessons before he heads off duty for the day. Boats in […]

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10 signs it’s time to go back to the boat

On Tuesday we begin the two-day journey back to Totem. It’s time. It’s past time. Here’s how we’re sure: The socks are on, and we’re not talking about Boston Nobody needs this many potato chip options 60 is the new 80 (temperature at which teens put on pants/hoodies) No longer accidentally calling bathroom “the head” […]

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Limited offer: personalized copy of Voyaging with Kids!

Engaging pictures are a great way to get kids excited.Thanks hamsterescape for this awesome photo! Do you have a partner to convince to go cruising? Do relatives or friends think your plans are kind of nuts? Need a positive way to introduce cruising plans to people who may not embrace them? Or just want to […]

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Connecting with the tribe in Annapolis

“Drink this. Now.” The Annapolis Boat Show was in full swing, but my friend Nica wasn’t handing me one of Pusser’s famous Painkillers with her demand. She had a higher agenda! Mother nature pulled out the stops during the show, putting on an October demo of peak summer weather in the Chesapeake. Nica and I […]

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Cascading events: preventing crisis at sea

Fears of disaster at sea can loom large; even for adrenaline junkies, misadventure is not the desired companion to adventure. Jamie shares one facet of thinking around avoiding crises at sea here; for more, join Cruisers U and attend seminar at the Annapolis Boat Show next month. Some boaters will experience a crisis situation. All […]

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Cruising gear: what about the phone?

Ah, the freedom of cruising! No commute, no schedule, no phone ringing… WAIT A MINUTE THERE. Phones? We gave our cell phones up when we took off in 2008 for a blue horizon. But the world changed and they crept back in a few years later, and are now indispensable travelers tools. Used as a […]

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Lessons in flexibility, nurtured by cruising

Last week we crossed into our eleventh year of cruising aboard Totem. Except we aren’t aboard Totem right now, and this summer has taken a different trajectory than planned. (Pictured today in Portland, Oregon; moving-in day for Niall at Lewis & Clark college.) Shifting plans isn’t unusual for our family, for our voyaging life. We’re […]

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Cooking aboard: migrating kitchen to galley

We love to cook. Moving from a spacious, well-equipped kitchen on land to a compact galley on a sailboat did nothing to impact our enthusiasm for creating and enjoying delicious meals. Until you live this truth, it may feel elusive; it’s easy to presume that cooking aboard approximates camping cuisine. I want to kick that […]

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