Big Boats and Little Boats

Our news around here is all about boats. Tim and I with some help from our friend Alex got the Periwinkle done and looking better than ever. When I recruited my partner midwife to join me I didn’t know I was getting a super bonus in her husband Alex. He is a boat guy and has been exceedingly patient with our questions enumerable. Fresh paint and a new cedar plank was a project now checked off our to do list. She’ll go on an out-haul in the bay as soon as we can get it fixed up.

Tim and the boys preparing the Periwinkle for repair.

Tim and the boys preparing the Periwinkle for repair.

Alex and Tim put the new plank in

Alex and Tim put the new plank in

Done. Does't she look sharp!

Done. Does’t she look sharp! 

Today we started in on the bigger boat project. Tim, Tommy and Nathan brought Spar Hawk home on Wednesday and today we took tools and the shop-vac down to the farm of our terrific friends and boat partners, to start the work of readying her for summer.

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Meet Spar Hawk: 24 foot wooden Amphibi-ette Sloop, circa 1955. When we talked about buying a boat Tim said “we need the mini-van version” and I was delighted to find an article describing this boat as “The VW Camper Bus” of wooden Boats. There is a terrific article about her in Wooden Boat Magazine‘s Small Boats 2012.IMG_0143
IMG_0144For a guy who claims to have little interest in boats and suffers from seasickness, Tim has been surprisingly enthusiastic about our new toy. He really seems to like our “cabin on the water”. The canvas with the sides rolled up will provide the shade he craves on hot days. I feel like I’m venturing into a foreign country where we don’t speak the language. We are so not fluent in “boat”. There are so many parts that I don’t know the names of, not to mention skills and talents I can’t claim as mine. But, we are starting with what we do know: chipping paint and varnish. Our house has been great practice in that respect. Last night we chipped all the varnish off the what-some-a-call-its- the floor off the cockpit, two pieces of teak lattice type drain board, I don’t know how else to describe it. I’m sure it has a very specific name. Someone tell me, please. The varnish came off easily and we did the work in the basement after the kids were tucked in. This morning we sanded and oiled. As I write this I imagine some salty boat guy is going to read this and say “They did WHAT! You can’t oil that! You’ve ruined it!” I don’t know why people varnish when you could do this. Its so much easier, so much less sticky and stinky. I know we may need to re-apply mid summer but it goes on so easy. I worry there must be a reason… the learning curve is very steep. We shall see…

Before: de-varnished and sanded

Before: de-varnished and sanded

 

After: 50/50 Boiled linseed and turpentine

After: 50/50 Boiled linseed and turpentine

The kids love going down to the farm and play happily while we work. They hold the goslings while keeping the hissing geese at bay with a stick and feed bottled milk to the baby goat who’s mamma said “no way”.

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Tim is excited about the canvas top. He dislikes getting fried in the sun and it makes the cabin big or the cockpit roomy which ever the need may be. IMG_0214
Owen had a great birthday. His sleep-over was a huge hit.  He got a digital watch that he loves and said,  “Mom, I bet in the future there will be clocks like this watch, with numbers that you can just look at.” The future is here my son, the future is here.Tim made him a wooden bank with a mechanism that unlocks with a key card (he wanted an “ATM”) He loves it. He slides a card into the slot and the door opens.

IMG_0240I finished his new sweater and he’s hardly taken it off.

Owen's old sweater was falling apart, heavily mended, it was time for another.

Owen’s old sweater was falling apart, heavily mended, it was time for another.

This is the old Reynolds Yarn pattern I've knit a half dozen times, this was the first time I added a celtic knot in place of the "popcorn center."

This is the old Reynolds Yarn pattern I’ve knit a half dozen times, this was the first time I added a celtic knot in place of the “popcorn center.”

IMG_0175Well, thats our news. The weather has been funny, usually we take all the winter wear out of the blanket box in the mud room and put the swim stuff in. This year we are simultaneously needing both! Hats and mittens on Saturday, swimming in the lake on Sunday. We will continue to chip, chip, chip away on projects, large and small. Happy Spring where ever this finds you. Fingers crossed for a sunny summer.

 

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