Monday, January 30, 2012

She's Electric...

...and by she I mean the boat. Progress is creeping forward, despite Mark's pal Tim's best efforts to distract him with beer. If there were a race to see who's boat will be finished first my money will be on our boat despite Tim having a year or so head start and a much shorter list. Actually, Tim providing a distraction from time to time is a good thing as sometimes Captain Perfecto needs to remember to have fun. You know what they say about all work and no play.

Mark has wired in the power control panel. Now we can select either the starting battery or the house bank, have a visual indicator to let us know if the bilge pumps are running and let us know when and what nav lights are on. This is so much better than the guessing game we had to play previously.

We now have one of the house battery banks wired in and ready to go. Previously we had one house battery. Not house battery BANK but ONE battery. Singular. For one lonely battery we sure did have a lot of wire spaghetti surrounding it. Not its nice and tidy and once the second bank is wired in we will have 630 amp hours. I certainly hope that is enough because there isn't anymore space to put batteries.

We are getting 2 starting batteries as well so hopefully we won't have to experience the "oh NO" moment we had on our last overnight when we realized the starting battery was nearly dead an d it was only by crossing everything and spitting that we got the engine to turn over. (and for all you saltier than Thou peeps who say you would have just sailed off the anchor I'd really like to see you do that with no wind and cargo ships, a cruise ship and tugs darting about a very narrow channel. You would have used your engine too though you might lie about it.)

Here's the power control panel in its lovely teak cabinet Mark made. It is now installed over the engine compartment behind the companion way steps.

And just to remind you where we started...

I know wiring isn't the most exciting of projects but as this draws to a conclusion it means we can actually start sailing again and I'm fairly certain that the reason we bought a boat was to go sailing not to give Mark a never ending opportunity to"...'rebuild her. We have the technology. We can make her better than she was. Better...stronger...faster.” 

Just a few more wires....

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

12 !

The big girl turned 12 and I think she finally understands that what we remember and treasure are not things, but experiences and people we love.

I managed to keep Maura's birthday surprise a secret. She had a choir solo and ensemble competition n her big day. I dropped her off at the competition and told her I would pick her up afterwards. Unbeknownst to her, her grandparents drove down from Indiana, picked up one of her favorite cousins whom she doesn't get to see nearly as much as she would like and surprised her in the cafeteria of the school as she waited to compete. She was overjoyed.

After she did an outstanding job in her solo (she got a II rating, need to teach her my trick of saying "watermelon" anytime you forget a lyric) and her 6 voice ensemble was the only ensemble from the 6th grade to get a I rating. Her grandparents and cousin then took her out to dinner to celebrate and they all had a marvelous time.

Maura's grandmother made her a beautiful quilt that is so perfectly Maura. It has boats and ships wheels,flowers, a sparkly pink heart and Tinkerbell. This quilt so perfectly matches  Maura's personality- girly and sporty, sweet and tough. I know she will treasure this forever because it was made with such love by a grandmother who loves her so very much.

We continued to celebrate the next day with cupcakes. Maura let Kitty sample her ginormous chocolate iced confection, then helped Kitty with her Kitty sized cupcake. No big parties, noX-box consoles or iPhones but Maura is adamant this was her best birthday ever and all because she got to spend some time with people she loves. I think she is finally getting it. Happy birthday Maura!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Updates will be posted as soon as I catch my breath.

And here we have the main reason for the scarcity of updates on the boat. Good gravy but Kitty is in full on, non-stop, go go go toddlerhood. Girlfriend here is not one to sit by and watch the world pass by. She is all about climbing, jumping, dancing, singing and running non-stop from dawn until well past dusk. At the end of the day, I can barely manage to keep my eyes open for an hour before I collapse. Did I mention she STILL does not reliably sleep through the night ?  Yeah. Good thing she is so darned cute- and by cute I mean really cute. As much as I long for 30 minutes to myself, I wouldn't trade her insistence on listening to her sing, watching her dance, hearing her count (one, two, three, seven...) or reading a Thomas the Tank Engine book for the 17th time in a row for anything. She's just figured out that she has opinions and can impact her world so she is hell bent on exercising these new discovieries as often as she can.

The big girl is keeping me running as well. Maura knows this is her last year here to experience all that a Texas public school has to offer so she is throwing herself whole heartedly into activites and events. Every once in a while I have to be the Kill Joy who tells her that I just can't be everywhere at once today but for the most part, I'm trying to let her enjoy this time as much as she can. This wouldb e a heck of a lot easier if she could drive herself.

Mark is plodding forward on the wiring and has installed the battery bank selector control panel and happily enough, it seems to be working a treat. I'll post some new photos soon on the install. Please be sure to leave a comment when I do about the exquisitely crafted teak mounting cabinet he made. It makes him giddy when you do.