Thankful to be cruising

Celebrating Thanksgiving on Totem this week, we sat around the table to talk about all the things we’re grateful for. Earlier in the day, the children had each made a list to share- going around the table, there were many overlaps. We’re all so thankful for our floating home. Totem might be cozy living, but […]

Halloween on a cruising kid boat

How do you keep holiday traditions alive while cruising? I worried about this before we took off as a family. I was afraid that our kids would someday feel cheated, like they’d missed out on the cultural rituals of an American childhood. We’ve now celebrated the last six Halloweens in six different countries (I have […]

Happy Thanksgiving!

From our anchorage in the lagoon of the Hermit Islands, a Happy Thanksgiving from the Totem crew! We didn’t have a turkey or play touch football in a leaf blown backyard, but it was a sweet Thanksgiving on board. The gray skies and misty rain were reminiscent enough of our Pacific Northwest holidays, although the […]

Solstice! Winter Solstice…in June.

Just like it seems strange to have Christmas in summertime, it doesn’t feel right to have winter solstice in June. When I start to write a “J” for the month, I have to stop myself from finishing it with “…anuary.” But we know it’s winter. It’s often under starlight that I head off the boat […]

Keeping holidays: and island style Easter

A future cruiser had asked recently about celebrating holidays after you’ve left behind the familiar traditions at home. Was it good to plan ahead and bring packages with those unique specialties that are in tune with memories of how you usually celebrate? Mairen hunting for Easter eggs – Moreton Island, Australia We’ve had the chance […]

Australia Day!

Somewhere a little past midsummer is a good time for national holidays, right? And there’s often a good historical date cooperating to line up with good weather. Niall on the M/V Furthur, waving a flag to celebrate Australia Day in Sydney Harbour, 2011 For Australia, that’s the 26th of January, and the commemorative event is the 1788 […]

Celebrating near the leading edge of the New Year

New Year’s Eve was probably our last night aboard Totem in Sydney Harbour. We’re heading north to Brisbane now, but couldn’t miss out on what must be one of the world’s most stunning fireworks displays. Experience told us to arrive a day early, so we staked out our prime spot in a rapidly filling anchorage […]

Merry Christmas from the Totem crew!

What a week full of ChristmaHanuSolstiZaa! Perhaps feels more sensible now that Aussies call this “The Silly Season”? I think I’m a fan of Festivus. We’re keeping it low key on Totem, but there’s no getting around how the decorations put us in a holiday mood. I think this tinsel dates back to Mazatlan 2008- hopefully we […]

Halloween in Sydney

2008 – Malibu, California2009 – Santa Rosalia , Mexico2010 – Noumea, New Caledonia …and now, 2011: Sydney, Australia.It feels a little odd to be in warm and sunny weather for Halloween Four years, four different countries for our family on Halloween. Every place we’ve been does it a little differently. Here in Australia, the holiday is […]

Settling in to a place, but not a routine…yet.

We found a sweet little marina in Sydney’s Middle Harbour. OK, so we didn’t exactly find it on our own- our friends on Quartermoon had recommended it back in French Polynesia. Long time Sydney residents, they said it was the best place to be for cruisers, and one of the few (only?) marinas in the […]