The illusion of social media?

I heard the below quote this past weekend on NPR. It made me reflect on some of the feelings I've had lately with being so connected.

Social media is the "...Illusion of companionship without the demands of intimacy, we confuse postings and online sharing with authentic communication".

What do you think of this quote by Sherry Turkle? When on Facebook, Twitter, etc., are we trading in authentic communication and connection for superficial companionship? I look forward to reading your thoughts.

Dress Refashion

Living aboard doesn't allow for me to have many dresses, and the ones that I do have need to have the ability to be worn multiple times, at many places, and not be bothered by the washing and drying in our marina's industrial laundry machines. I've had many pieces of clothing fail because they weren't up to the challenge of liveaboard life; so, the idea of refashioning clothing from the thrift shop has attracted my attention.

I've always loved shopping at thrift stores and have had success finding great deals on brand new or barely worn clothing. Yet, refashioning means that I can take pieces (in whatever size, shape, or style) and make them work for me. Also, I can't bring myself to buy clothing at the prices that most pieces are marked, especially when I'm not sure if they'll hold up in the wash, or collect wrinkles when put away on a shelf in my clothing storage locker.

So, refashion. With the help of Ruffles and Stuff, I've completed the first refashion of a dress, just in time for the dinner dance I am attending next weekend. With a nice cardigan and some (plastic) jewels, I think this dress will work.

For this dress, I did the sewing with the dress turned inside-out. I sewed along the side seams just about an inch to bring in the sides. Then, I did sewing along the tops of each shoulder down about an inch, as well. I cut off the excess, tried on the dress, and then decided where I wanted to place the elastic around my waist. I traced a straight line (on the inside-out side of the dress) with fabric pencil to show where I needed the elastic, then did the sewing. Pulling the elastic slightly while sewing along the traced line allowed the fabric to gather. I cut off the excess elastic, left the length of the dress alone, and tried it on (which you see above).

Not too bad for a first try, I think. And the cost of this dress was about $10 ($4 for the dress, $3 for the thread, and $3 for a pack of elastic (of which a lot is left)). Much better than a department store purchase and with some accessorizin' hopefully this will be fun to wear.

Dog Knows Best

Sleeping in? Doesn't exist for me. I have a dog who likes to take me for walks on the weekends; today
our paws were on the ground at 6:45 am. We start in the boat yard, sniffing around, and then head out to the main road. It's funny because every morning the sights are the same, but watching how my dog sniffs and behaves, it's like he's seeing new things each time. Such is why he's so excited to get up and outside each morning.  And, as tough as it is some mornings to hop out of bed and start the day, taking our one-mile neighborhood walk is something that I never regret; as the dog does, I get a lot out of being outside before everyone else. I am lucky to live in such a beautiful and peaceful place.

Our neighbors have daffodils that bloom on schedule each spring. I think the dog would just lay right down in the middle of them, if he could.

On the corner, there's the remnants of the old neighborhood post office. Our area used to be bustling with business and activity all centered on what the water provided - crabs, oysters, fish. Although we still have a few restaurants (and the marina where we live), the big business has left and local waterman and their charter boats remain.

We walk on and enjoy the quietness of the morning, the crispness of spring air, and the little bit of warmth the sun gives. I understand how some discuss the power of walking meditation because on this stretch, I do a lot of thinking and relaxings. It's a great place to be at the start, or end, of a day.

Sadly, there's a lot of litter that collects on the main road. I'll be putting on some gloves soon and taking a walk with a garbage bag; blaming others doens't effect change, so I'll help clean up and maybe post some "Please don't  litter" signs. Can't hurt.

On our way back in the marina, it's cool to notice the spring presence of the ospreys. They have placed their nests in highest spots, and we've been able to see them flying with large sticks and branches in their clutch, collecting pieces for the home they make for spring babies. One nest, each year, is in the center of the marina crane (which cannot move because of the nest), and all over in the trees we'll see the watchers - day and night.

Fuzzy picture, but shows our osprey night watch.
I settle in to the boat and make breakfast and some coffee then cover up with my quilt and hop online to catch up and complete some online class work. Eddie, our dog, stays outside in the cockpit and remains part of the morning crowd - the bird screeches and chirps are constant until late morning and our neighbors begin to move about on and off their boats. Spring means leaving the hatch doors open so I can be part of it too, and at this point I'm thankful that my dog knows how much I need the early morning walks - they truly do soothe my soul and help me to be incredibly thankful for this type of life I've been given. I wish you all the same this weekend.

Dock Locked

"Don't make any plans for any weekend this spring - we're taking the boat out EVERY weekend." We both agreed on this plan a few weeks ago. Where we live, the end of June through early August, has been incredibly humid, hot, and buggy. It's not optimal sailing / anchoring out weather, so we have really been looking forward to spring weather so we can really enjoy this life we've come back to. Our measly income tax return would buy a new sail (the original that came with the boat was beyond repair) and we'd be shoving off.

But, we discovered that our fuel tank was leaking. This problem stinks - literally and figuratively. See the line of fluid running out of the tank - that's the trail diesel fuel was taking inside our boat.

In the pic, that's water coming out of the tank. We siphoned out five jugs of fuel out before removing the tank.

So, while we wait for a new fuel tank to be made, we've been living at the dock - grilling out, spending time in the cockpit with friends, and enjoying the sunsets we can see from shore. Although we'd like to be out and about, we've decided that being on a broken boat is better than no boat at all. Below are some of the shots from our two weeks dock-locked.

Been grilling out a lot....

You'll see our "marina dog" waiting on our neighbor's finger pier for a sight of what they're cooking in their grill....

Our pooch will relax (and sleep) on anything....

You know you're comfy on your boat when you wear these outside....

And, honestly, getting to see this view from our regular spot isn't too bad....

Recipe: Easy Pancakes

My husband loves breakfast, and he loves pancakes. I found a great and easy recipe for pancakes that were super easy to make aboard, and with a couple tweaks, the Captain gave breakfast a thumbs-up.

Easy Pancakes – makes 4servings

Adapted from All Recipes

1 cup flour
2 tbsp white sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 egg, beaten
1 cup milk (I use almond milk)
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp cinnamon

1. Whisk together all dry ingredients. Make a well in the center of the mix, and pour in the wet ingredients.

2. Whisk all together very well, until smooth.

3. Heat griddle or cooking pan over medium heat with a little bit of butter (or cooking spray) and use 1/4 cup to scoop out pancake mix. Place on griddle or pan and let cook until tops are bubbly.

4. Flip and continue to cook until done. Serve with butter, syrup, and maybe some fresh spring fruit.

5. Enjoy!

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No coffee?

I like to live my life as if things are secondary. One of my favorite reminders is one from Suze Orman - "People first, money second, and things last". As much as I pride myself on being a somewhat advanced (per my own designation) spiritual person, when I open up the cupboard on a Saturday morning when the dog wanted a walk at 0630, not having coffee in the cabinet really puts my spiritual ego in check.

So on goes the bra, the jeans, I wash my face and brush my teeth. It's up into town I go. Do I really need coffee? No, I don't need it, but this morning my wanting was so bad that it became as close to a need as possible. It is interesting how we notice how much we enjoy things when we don't have them, and we realize how dependent we actually are (subsitute the "we's" in the sentence with "I's").

And, now, being here with you (computer) sipping my sweet Starbucks via coffee, I'm back to my simple, nature-inspired self. I'm happy that I did make the trip, though, as our local farmer's market is now open on Saturdays. I was able to pick up some local meats (I chose the goat burger and some beef sweet sausages) that I can use in dinners this week, and I found some homemade soap that I will enjoy during my morning showers. In one of my last Green Grab Bags, I was given some natural vanilla soap and I really loved it. In the past, I've always showered with liquid soap and a "poof", but trying the bar soap was lovely, and I'm excited to have something new to use.

Ah, so that's my morning.  Hope you can relax and enjoy your weekend and haven't also run out of anything that is more important than you realize. Wishing you a wonderful Saturday.


One of the most common questions for a liveaboard is, "What do you do when storms come?" Just as one would do when living on land, we secure anything that might blow away, make sure that the dwelling is closed up, and we get inside just before the storm hits (as we've been outside watching it's approach for a while).

Last night was the second time since we've been back aboard that a big storm traveled over us. Just as I did when I was a little girl, I watched for a while the sky darken, the lightning in the distance, and stood up outside in the big gusts of cool wind that raced through our part of the marina. For me, there's something so incredible about the power and size of a big storm; maybe I realize my small presence and consequently, the small-ness of my issues, problems, and worries? I may subconciously recognize that there are forces larger than life?

Whatever it is, I'm in awe of storms and being aboard during one is an experience. One of my favorite aspects of life aboard is how we always know and can feel the presence of the weather outside. We really are right in the middle of whatever is happening, and that's pretty cool. This makes me feel so connected to nature, and with that comes a responsibility to pay more attention to the weather, and prepare accordingly.

When we answer the question, "What do you do when...", we're able to give a simple answer because it really is similar to having a house. We put away what can blow away, my husband secures our dwelling (that includes tightening up or doubling the lines that hold us to the pier), and then we stand outside until the last possible moment. Inside, we cuddle up, watch a movie, and get rocked to sleep. It's great.

Recipe: Avocado Feta Salsa

Good friend's birthday + warm and breezy evening = sundown hangout on the boat.

While the chicken, green beans, and risotto was cooking in the galley, we snacked on a first-time recipe: Avocado Feta Salsa. I never would have thought to try feta cheese along with salsa, but it was great. The below recipe is my adaptation (I love avocado and lime, so I added those), and the only picture I was able to take was one that proves how much it was enjoyed. This will be a spring and summer boat snack many times in the future. Give it a try : )

Avocado Feta Salsa adapted from All Recipes


1 pint of grape tomatoes, all cut in half
2 ripe avocados, cut into chunks
1 lime, juiced
¼ cup chopped red onion
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 tbsp. parsley
1 ½ tbsp. cilantro
1 ½  tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tbsp. olive oil
4 oz crumbled feta cheese

1.       Juice one lime and place into bowl. Add chopped red onion and let sit while you prepare other ingredients.
2.       In a bowl, place tomatoes, garlic, parsley, cilantro, vinegar, and vinegar. Gently mix.
3.       Add red onion and lime juice. Gently mix.
4.       Add avocado and feta cheese. Gently mix.
5.       Serve with tortilla or pita chips. Add more cilantro or vinegar for more zip.