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Posted by on Tuesday, October 23, 2018 in Florida, ICW Travel, YouTube Videos | 0 comments

When a No-see-um Swarm Attacks

Watch Episode 71 here!

In the Florida ICW swamp, a No See Um swarm descends upon our sailboat and her crew. A horrible night ensues.

2 of the absolute worst nights we’ve experienced has been caused by something roughly the size of a poppy seed. Of course, there are millions of them, they sneak into the boat through tiny cracks, and they feast on your flesh while you sleep…

I’m referring to the dreaded NO SEE UM!

Yes indeed, what a horrible little insect.

We do, in fact, have specially designed screens on our boat that are supposed to protect us from insects. The screens do an excellent job of keeping mosquitos away, but they’re simply no match for the minuscule size of the no see um… they slip right though the screens.

Since the screens are of no use, what we have to do is physically close up every single orifice in any way we possibly can. This practice is actually very effective at keeping no see ums out of the boat, however, it’s also equally effective at keeping oxygen out. DOH!

So in this post you’ll see us suffering through a no see um attack, and you’ll also get to see us traveling about through Daytona Beach and a few other spots as well.

Then, the cherry of the video… you’ll experience first hand one of Tambi’s hidden talents. She can actually tie a knot in a cherry stem using nothing more than her tongue. Ohhhhh mama!

-Ben

7.8.17 Today we stopped in New Smyrna. N 29*00.906 W 80*54.728

We watched part of the Incredibles movie with Molly. Then we had an ATTACK of no-see-ums! They were crazy and they were everywhere!! So annoying. Luckily, it rained today, so it wasn’t too hot. We had to completely close up the boat and tape it shut to keep the annoying little monsters out.

7.9.17 We made it to Daytona today. N 29*11.947 W 81*00.337

We went ashore to walk around and get lunch. Lunch was super good. Molly also hid a rock that had a sunshine on it. Apparently it’s a new fad to hide rocks around places for people to find. Molly likes it, so why not? Ben and I watched Harry Potter number 6 tonight.

7.10.17 Today we anchored by Fort Matanzas. N 29*42.986 W 81*14.463

There was some rain and thunderstorms today. We could not get our anchor to grab. We kept dragging anchor and it took us a few tries to get it really dug in.

7.11.17 We anchored in Shell Bluff Landing today. But first we stopped at the St. Augustine fuel dock and we got fuel and water. We met a great guy named Steve.

N 30*00.195 W 81*20.302

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Posted by on Thursday, October 18, 2018 in Florida, ICW Travel, YouTube Videos | 0 comments

Tam’s Fab FL Fam & 4th Of July Fireworks

Watch Episode 70 here!

Pine Island, Tambi’s Family, Fireworks, & Harry Potter. That would be a fitting title for this episode, because that’s essentially what you’ll see in this post.

Lot’s more ICW travel. Yes, the goodship Sandflea has been reduced to a motorboat now that we are traveling the confining waters of the ICW. It’s alright though – it’s all part of the adventure.

We stop at Pine Island for a night. Pretty secluded place, and a nice anchorage as long as you aren’t planning on getting of the boat.

From there, it’s onward to Melbourne, Florida. That’s the land where Tambi’s kin reside. Tambi’s kin are a little crazy, by the way. Also, you’ll get to see the person that Molly inherited her dancing genes from. I’ll keep that bit as a surprise.

There are fireworks and festivities. There are chick wings and hotdogs. Yes , a grand time was enjoyed while we were anchored in the Eau Gallie Yacht Basin in Melbourne, Fl.

After all that stuff, we weigh anchor and continue our trek North towards Green Cove Springs.

Then there’s a bit of lightning. I hate lightning…

-Ben

7.3.17 We are back at Pine Island, where we anchored for the night. N 27*43.220 W 80*23.886

7.4.17 Happy 4th of July! Today we moved to Eau Gallie Yacht basin. Right back in the same spot we were in on the way South. N 28*07.476 W 80*37.611

My Mom picked us up at the marina and took us to Aunt Kim’s house. We ate, and hung out. There was swimming and fireworks. It was a great time! Then they took us back to the boat.

7.5.17  Today my childhood friend Gary came to the park and we spent some time hanging out and talking. I haven’t seen him in 5 years. After that Aunt Kim picked us up and we went to lunch at Chic-Fil-A! It was so good! Then we went shopping at walmart. Aunt Kim dropped us off at the boat and took Molly to her house for a sleepover with Khora, my cousins daughter. Ben and I ordered Chinese food, they delivered it to the park and we watched Harry Potter number 5.

The kids watched a rocket take off today.

They also had a princess dinner. They are just the cutest.

7.6.17 Today we cleaned up on the boat. Then Aunt Kim picked us up. We went to Academy Sports. Then we went back to her house. We had lunch then the girls went swimming. Ben and I took showers and Molly got a shower. Then we went to dinner at Wagon Wheel Pizza. They dropped us off at the boat after dinner. We are heading out tomorrow.

7.7.17 We made it to Titusville today. N 28*38.951 W 80*48.704

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Posted by on Wednesday, October 17, 2018 in Florida, ICW Travel, YouTube Videos | 0 comments

Topless Tambi At Nautical Pickers In Manatee Pocket

Watch Episode 69 here!

While exploring Manatee Pocket in Stuart, FL we discovered a topless sculpture of Tambi on the wall of Nautical Pickers.

Even though it was very tastefully done, it was still surprising to happen upon it.

Let’s see – Manatee Pocket is a place we stayed for 2 nights. Nice little anchorage. I liked it there. Good place to fuel up, grab groceries, and even make a stop at the Nautical Pickers Marine Consignment Shop to replace 3 fenders that we lost in the Bahamas.

I will say that it was a bit alarming to see so many nude sculptures of Tambi scattered around Manatee Pocket. I mean, she’s a good lookin’ lady and all, but what’s with this town’s obsession with my brides curvy bod?

Regardless of that, it was a neat place to stop, and I can definitely see going back there sometime and hanging out a while longer. When we left Manatee Pocket, we started the long run North up the Indian River. We make it as far as Fort Pierce.

Have you been there before? The most recognizable feature of the anchorage is the sailboat that was humiliatingly turned into a floating billboard.

-Ben

6.30.17 Today we left Lake Worth for Manatee Pocket. N 27*09.178 W 80*11.732

7.1.17 Today we went ashore to do some errands. We stopped at Nautical Pickers and picked up 3 new-to-us fenders because we lost ours in the Bahamas. I got a pair of gloves and we got two 12 volt sockets. Then we went to a thrift store and got Molly two new pairs of shorts. Hers are getting a little small. Then we ate lunch at a yummy Mexican restaurant. After that we went shopping at the Green Apple Produce Market. It was a great produce spot.

7.2.17 Today we left at noon for Ft. Pierce. We anchored for the night. N 27*28.220 W 80*19.515

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Posted by on Tuesday, September 25, 2018 in Florida, ICW Travel, YouTube Videos | 0 comments

Checking In With USA Customs & Immigration

Watch Episode 68 Here!

In this post, we check into the United States by visiting the Customs And Immigrations Office in West Palm, FL.

Time to get checked in, grab a load of groceries, and start heading North a bit towards Green Cove Springs.

In this video we adjust back into the ICW life. We also enjoy the first REAL hamburger that we’v had in the last year. It’s. So. GOOD.

Also, we all nearly freeze to death while we’re in the grocery store. The AC is SO COLD! Plus we’re still used to an average temperature of 90 degrees… anything less than that and things start to get… perky.

-Ben

6.25.17 Today we got up and took an UBER to the airport where we “checked in” at the customs and immigration office. Then we took an UBER back to the marina. We got lunch there, it was really great.

When we got back to the boat we left for Lake Worth. The boats around Peanut Island is a crazy mad house! Lake Worth is much calmer. N 26*50.234 W 80*03.171

We took the dinghy to shore and got some groceries at Publix.

**Sadly, at the end of August our phone died, and we lost ALL of our photos from the end of June through most of August. I literally cried. To get most of the photos from here on out, I’ve taken screen shots from our videos, gathered what I’ve uploaded to Facebook and Instagram, and gotten photos from others we were with.**

6.26.17 Today we went to town again. We went to walk around the shopping center. We went through and amazing store called Tuesday Mornings! I love it! Then we had a yummy lunch at Duffy’s Sports Bar. Then we went back to Publix to get some more things because we couldn’t carry it all yesterday.

6.27.17 We went to town again today. Ben’s Teva’s finally bit the dust, he was so very sad. Ben needed to get some emergency flops at CVS. Then we walked to West Marine, there was a pizza place next door so we stopped and ate lunch. It was really yummy! Then we went into West Marine and found some new Teva’s on clearance. After that, we got an UBER to Walmart. We got some things we needed then we walked to Lowes. We got a switch because Ben’s fan is broken and he’s trying to fix it. We got another UBER back to Publix and from there we walked back to the dinghy.

6.28.17 Today we went to Duffy’s for lunch again. Kids eat free on Wednesday! Then we went back to Publix for one more shopping trip. We watched some Office tonight. It’s so great to have Netflix back!

6.29.17 Today we went to Publix where Aunt Marianna and Uncle Joe picked us up. We went back to West Marine where Ben got a new fan because he couldn’t fix his. After that we picked up pizza (Yumm!) and went back to their place. We ate pizza, did two loads of laundry and took showers. It was wonderful to spend time with them again! We came back to the boat and Ben put up his fan. I made the beds. Then we had left over pizza for dinner. Ben and I watched the Office again. We are headed out tomorrow.

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Posted by on Saturday, September 22, 2018 in Bahamas Anchorages, Florida, Frustrations, YouTube Videos | 0 comments

Sailing Westbound Across The Gulf Stream

Watch Episode 67 here!

In this post, we sail our Endeavour 32 westbound across the Gulf Stream towards West Palm, FL.

In this post, we make a big mistake…

…we go back to the States.

Well, that’s my (Ben’s) opinion anyways.

Yes, it’s sad but true. We cross the Gulf Stream from East to West and we wind up back in the land of brown water.

It’s actually a little more complicated than that because it really takes us 2 attempts to safely cross the Gulf Stream. The first time to try it, the swell was just ridiculous once we got 5 miles away from Bimini, so we turned around and spend 1 extra night in the Bahamas. It wasn’t as great as it sounds though because the anchorage was very rolly. Ah well.

The next day we get up and the seas had calmed down. Unfortunately the wind had also disappeared, so a motorboat ride it was as we made the 75 miles crossing from Bimini to West Palm.

Lastly, I hope you can still enjoy the video even though a massive booger is visible during a good portion of the footage.

That’s all.

-Ben

6.23.17 We got up at 5AM to leave for Florida. Between the wind direction, the waves, and the swell it was so uncomfortable. We just couldn’t continue. We turned around at 7AM.

We didn’t get anchored again until 11:45. We were roaming around Bimini trying to find a place to anchor that wasn’t rolly, or crowded, or right in the channel. It was so super stressful and by the end I was crying. We just had to pick a place to anchor. It wasn’t the best place, but it was all we had, and I was tired of circling.  N 25*43.849 W 79*17.884

I know we’re sitting anchored in this beautiful anchorage and we are so lucky to be here, but I just can’t be here anymore. I am missing my family and friends at home. It’s been such a long 9 months. It’s been such a wonderful 9 months! I can’t believe that this amazing trip is coming to an end, and in a way, I’m perfectly ok with it coming to an end.

We were so tired, and stressed, and wore out we watched two movies today. The first one was Big Hero 6 and the second was Moana.

We’re going to try to make it to Florida again tomorrow.

 

6.24.17 Today, we got up at 5AM again to try and cross to Florida. Last night I didn’t sleep very well between the swell and the party on the beach it was impossible to stay asleep.

We left for Florida at 5:30, it was a pretty uneventful motor sail back. We made it back to Florida at 3:30. It feels so good to be back in the states!

About an hour and a half before we made it to the inlet we were boarded by the coastguard. They wanted to see the engine compartment and the bilge. They wanted to make sure that our flairs and our fire extinguisher were up to date. They checked all of our storage spaces and wanted to make sure we had all of our paperwork. They also took a peek at our passports to be sure that we were legal.

When we came through the cut we anchored South of Peanut Island. N 26*45.887 W 80*02.831

I called the customs office and we were cleared. Tomorrow, we have to go to the airport and check in, in person. We watched Finding Nemo tonight.

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Posted by on Wednesday, August 9, 2017 in Florida, ICW Travel, YouTube Videos | 0 comments

Preparing For The Bahamas Crossing

Watch Video 32 here!

The time is nearly upon us to depart to the Bahamas!

Only a few last minute things to do now before we make the jump across the Gulf Stream towards Bimini.

Scary stuff. Yikes!

1.16.17 Moved to Dinner Key today and that means we finished the Atlantic ICW. 1089 Miles from Mile 0 in Norfolk. (See this at the end of  Video 31) Sarah and Andrew went to another anchorage until tomorrow, they’re going to meet us at Dinner Key.

We used the showers and laundry facility at the Dinner Key Marina, then we went to dinner with our new friends from Patron! They are such a great couple and we’ve really enjoyed getting to know them tonight! We got part of our Amazon shipment in today also, but my cable still hasn’t come in! URG! N 25*43.762 W 80*13.857

1.17.17 Today we went into town. We got the propane bottle filled, bought Ben a filet knife, and we went grocery shopping for the LAST time to provision for the Bahamas. We had quite a few UBER drivers today. One didn’t speak any english, one was such a crazy driver, she scared the crap out of us, and the third one was a very nice Cuban guy.

1.18.19 We just hung out on the boat for a little this morning and got things ready for the crossing. We spent the morning cleaning and organizing and got some last minute stuff done. Sarah and Andrew got here this morning and went into town for some last minute provisioning and will be moving over to No Name Harbor with us this afternoon.

We got moved over to No Name Harbor today. It was pretty packed in the harbor so we just anchored right outside of it. There were about 15-20 other boats hanging out there. Sarah and Andrew got here about an hour after us and we went over for a little bit to plan for the crossing tomorrow. I can’t believe it! We are leaving tomorrow for the Bahamas! Ben, Molly and I had a nice dinner at the restaurant in No Name, and we met with our new friends from Patron tonight to get the last of our packages from Amazon that finally came. I can’t believe that this is our LAST anchorage before we go to the Bahamas. It’s finally happening! N 25*40.538 W 80*09.917

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