Wednesday, December 31, 2014
Tuesday, December 30, 2014
Think on this.....Choose to be Happy.
I was asked by a close friend if the blogs I will write will be flowery and positive all the time OR will they be real and sometimes gritty.
Wow, great question Sandy.
Hmmmm, answered her as such....(to the best of my recollection.)
"I hope to be real and gritty. I'll try to write the truth the best I can, but I do tend to be a glass half FULL type personality. So my writings will reflect this."
So, pondering her question further, My writings will show my truth with a spin on the silver lining. Sometimes flowery and sometimes gritty.
I think, sometimes, I understand situations differently, seemingly searching for the alternate reason for my reality, for the lesson to be learned in order that I may grow and even alter course if it presents itself the better choice. Maybe even have the ability to perceive things as they happen from a 3rd person perspective which may allow my perceptions to be clear quicker. Who really knows...but this question lead to much contemplation in the last few days.
Although the journey ahead may not be paved smoothly - I look forward to interpreting the events for you in the best 'Lana Rae way' I know how. Reality is Truth in how we perceive it. I will bring my truth to you for as long as you want to read it.
Choose to be Happy.
May be hard to do, but practice makes it easier.
Tuesday, December 23, 2014
Sunday, December 21, 2014
Between yesterday and today we updated, printed and hung up our excel spreadsheets listing boat chores and house chores. And since the weather tends toward indoor chores we chose to give each other an early Christmas gift....Checking off 2 things on that list!
Monday, December 15, 2014
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
Hmmm.....the bump in the road, the ouch that hurts my wallet, the moment you realize you bought a used Lemon. This past week the Check engine light went on in our 'new to Me' used 2005 VW Passat Wagon 1.8 turbo silver bullet with 143,000 miles on it.
I went a few days with the light on for I found out it could be the gas cap was not secured tightly enough. Good conclusion since I had just filled it up with gas the day before the 'check engine light' appeared. I mean, the car ran no different from the moment I drove it off the used car lot to when the light went off.....so gas cap is what I went with.
But after a few days - the light stayed on. Hmmm.....I brought it then to Auto Zone, for they can diagnose your car engine light for FREE. Yes a FREE service and they were so amazingly pleasant.
The code came up P0304. Sounds like an ok series of digits. This means Cylinder 4 is not firing correctly. Ok, what do I do with that bit of info. I know how to change spark plugs and wires (yep, I can do that ladies!!! My dad and a car guy I dated in college taught me a lot! Who wants to be a damsel in distress on the side of the road waiting for someone to save her........not me. My dad also taught me how to drive stick shift just so I could get out of any situation I needed to in an emergency! Thanks Dad)
Ok... I digress, back to the car. The next day I pulled the front end into the garage and open the hood. I see 1.8 Turbo staring me in the face....and I see a place for spark plugs but not really any wiring I would be familiar with. I know it's been awhile since college and being hands on with a car engine - but have things under the hood changed that much?? I turned away and tucked my pride back in, took a deep breath and called the local VW dealership asking if they could check out the car. We drove it up there first thing and they came back with the same diagnostic of the cylinder.
Then I ask how much..........one grand. Does not look so bad when you type it out in letters but when you type it out with digits....$1,000.00 .....OUCH. Especially when you are trying so hard to save for an amazing sailing experience with your family in Less than a years time! This money could go towards the homeschooling books for the boys, toward the monthly satellite connection bill, toward food, toward the water maker, toward anything that means connecting with my family and NOT A USED CAR!
Thursday, December 4, 2014
Thanksgiving Post - ODE to MOM and DAD
We had a special Thanksgiving Celebration this year. As my parents have moved to Florida and will be selling their NJ house on December 5th it was decided to have one more BIG HOORAH in this place we called home for my whole life (and my sisters too!).
46+ years my parents spent in this house on Spring Street and we wanted to celebrate! After clearing out all the contents back in September and only leaving a bed, a TV, couch and dining room table - we thought it might be fun to gather around that table one more time!
So it was planned to have a Paper Plate and Plastic fork Thanksgiving with a food platter ordered from Stop and Shop Market.
It was such a great way to leave this house - this house filled with memories, Laughter, blood, sweat and tears!
We are all thankful that God gave us such wonderful parents!
|A game of Left Right Center|
|Momma and her crazy fun loving girls!!|
|Barb and Pattylicious|
|Sisters bookending our cousin Kristen|
|The 46+ years house......that was built over 100 years ago.|
Sunday, November 30, 2014
Planning a trip like this is no small feat. Besides all the land responsibilities, house rental preparation and provisioning; there is also the plan for on the water.
The plan to get down the US coast.
The plan for the Passage from US to the Caribbean.
The Plan while down in the Caribbean.
The Plan for the Bahama island jumping when working our way back to the US.
The Plan for coming up the US coast.
The Plan when we return to the Rhode Island area.
Geez, all these could be chapters in and of themselves! And to say this is daunting is an understatement! Except that we have an amazing resource in the Conway family! These are our dear friends who just 2 years ago did this trip (and then some).
With unending support, stories and good advice Chris and Erica - this Thanksgiving holiday - opened their homes and hearts to host us and gave us detailed, first hand knowledge of the islands we are going to see.
With solid information, great stories and fare warnings we left them with an excitement that renewed our spirits and created a vision of what this trip beholds.
- Not just trying to see as many islands as we can, but to connect with the cultures, the people and nature.
- To follow the weather and decide how long we will stay someplace based on how we are feeling about being there.
- To expand our connections with people and their way of life.
- To slow down and take care of the minute at hand.
- And to give our children the opportunity to immerse their sensibilities to all these possibilities.
Monday, November 24, 2014
I read a post last night from another cruising family. And She wrote a very interesting blog about what she was feeling during the year prior to departing on her journey. She called it the 'Place in between". Read the excerpt...from Our Life with Ceol Mor
Any mom trying to be full on Super Mom knows that no matter how good a job you do, nobody gives you high fives. I know the girls are doing well so that is thanks enough but it does contribute to making this final countdown feel a bit tough at times.The kids are doing great and are engaged, busy and happy but I have this weird 'in flux ' feeling going on. I am not really connected with everything going on in suburbia because we are leaving. Its this really bizarre feeling of being here, but at the same time NOT being here. It is existing some place in between.
Its not a place of sadness. Nor is it a place of disappointment or anxiety. Its just this really strange place to be. In all of the writings I have read, I've never seen anyone discuss how weird it is to be neither here nor there in the last year. In one on one conversation, it seems that EVERYONE has this feeling. They just never talk about it. Not certain exactly why, but there it is.
So we are rolling into 2014. 2014, the year that we will no longer be living in the in between but will be actively cruising. I am looking forward to it more than I can say. Not just because we have been actively pursuing this for over 4 years now but because it will mean that I will be living a little more in the here and now. And that is the whole point of this adventure.It was a neat read for me, for I too am feeling a sense of this. This quasi presence to your current life realities and the ever growing list of things to do to prepare. Feeling distant but being present.
I have had discussions about it with friends and family and termed it in my mind as "Living a Two Track Life".
The track on my left is our present livable moments, the track on the right are my mental future en-devour thoughts and check lists.
At some point the track of thoughts and ideas on your right need to jump over to the left track so as to carry out the mental check lists created on the right. (In our case it is the implementation and planning of this trip.....OR it will never happen.)
At times, especially at night when I am trying to fall asleep, my mind has a very high pre-occupation rate....and I tend to stay up later than I intend. (Thank goodness I am a night owl. Hoot!) It is at this time where the mental track jumping happens. I am able to put aside the duties of the everyday and while the house is quiet....(except for some snoring) I am able to crossover some checklist tidbits to the left side 'action tracks' (or more fun - the "Get 'er Done" tracks.)
Living a Two Track Life varies from the life I have created for myself over the last few years....where I like feeling centered. It seems my centered-ness nowadays - I have to work on harder ....and at moments - it is a coat I am not wearing well. (My apologies to friends who have seen this coat!)
So I keep entering thoughts purposely rather than organically at the moment - just to keep my focus on the small tasks (the left track) - Kids, Family time, work, School, groceries, connections, house work, boat checklist etc...
I look forward to all this hard work paying off in the greatest adventure our family of four may ever have! And that day is fast approaching........I look forward to when the two track life becomes one again. One that is much simpler...just because we worked so hard now.
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
- Turn Off the Tube: TV invades your consciousness and fries your mind. Click it off. Instead, read an inspiring book, listen to soft music, or choose a creative endeavor that you’ve been longing to try.
- Turn on Nature: Get out in nature more often. Her rhythms are soothing and healing. Try to catch some sunrises and sunsets. Go to a beach, a bay, a park, or take a gentle hike in the mountains. This is how you feed your mind nourishing, natural food.
- Avoid Crowd and Loud: Take a break from noisy, crowded environments. They only clutter and cloud your mind.
- Release Dramas: Try letting go of all the opinions, judgments, and dramas that swirl around in your mind. They don’t change much of anything, but they do stress you out.
- Find Stillness and Silence: Teach yourself to “just be.” Sit for five minutes every day and follow your breath. Notice how it makes you feel.
- Affirm Yourself: Tell yourself you are calm and relaxed again and again. Believe in your capacity to take charge of your emotional life, feed your mind nourishing thoughts, and heal.
Monday, November 17, 2014
Sunday, November 16, 2014
Saturday, November 15, 2014
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Friday, November 14, 2014
Thursday, November 13, 2014
Here it begins.....
I didn’t talk to my husband for two days when his peculiar answers to my naïve nautical questions reached my bewildered ears. Back then, as a mere fledgling to sailing, my raw researching met brutal honesty. Seeking a sailboat and home, to travel the planet, I tried to grasp the financials and what, exactly, was I letting myself in for. .....
To read the rest click the caption below...
|Sail world article|
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Got a call while filming a commercial on the 28th of October from the Collision Center the van was brought to after our car accident. Hoping it was the results from the appraiser, so we know what direction to move in...I checked voice mail. Apparently the appraiser cannot do his duty without the keys.
So after our shoot was "A Wrap"...I drove from Braintree to Newport to hand over the keys. First I went to the van and grabbed the 3 bags of clothes and 4 pairs of shoes we were going to drop off at the Big Brothers, Big Sisters of RI, among other items strewn across the Mom mobile.
One item I found in a tiny space was a small shell I picked up in New Zealand two years ago Christmas from the beach in Tuaranga. It was not in an obvious spot. When I leaned over from the passenger seat to peer into the little opening near the steering wheel, I saw it and I felt a warmth in my chest and a smile slowly turning up the corner of my lips.
This little snail shell represents an amazing time in my life When connecting with the universe, connecting with others in a deeper way and self exploration was at it's height. I was exploring being a student of my life and not taking on the angst or emotions of others - which allowed me to explore and be at peace with who I was at that time.
While vacationing with David's family and taking daily strolls on that beach - I found these tiny shells to be prolific along the shoreline. I picked up as many as I could - I was like a hoarder of shells. Pockets filled and I would come back to the apartment and clean them for I wanted to bring them home.
Not to add clutter to our home in the states, but to remind me of the most peaceful moments that were evoked in those sandy meditative strolls. I wasn't collecting shells I was collecting Moments.
And it was those moments I wanted to bring home. Each shell representing a moment.
A moment of simplicity. A moment of peace. A moment of reflection. A moment of sea spray. A moment of feeling the earth below my feet. A moment alone. A moment with family. A moment to celebrate me. A moment to share. A moment to see the excellence within. A moment to dream. A moment to realize. A moment to meditate. A moment to realize potential. A moment to be present. A moment.......
As I walked that beach - the peace I felt and the connection I felt with nature - was paramount. And these shells represented each thought, each moment I pondered as I strolled with the sea mist on my face. You can add your own moment to that list...it just takes a moment of turning your attention inward. Thinking simply.
I cleaned and brought home a bunch of them - and handed them out to an amazing group of women who took a chance and ventured on a journey of Extreme Self Care with me. This gift from nature from a far away land was a reminder to them and to you - that we always have an opportunity to reflect on our own individual MOMENTS!
Saturday, November 8, 2014
Total Loss to some may seem like a negative outcome. Total meaning complete and Loss is something you will never regain.
In the light of the sky and the beauty of earth, 'Total Loss' does not mean that at all for me.
It brings a happy heart to say we have recently been told that we have a total loss.
Let me begin....October 25th driving back from our younger son's soccer game we got into a car accident. (We are all fine! Even with the air bags deployed, thank god we were all wearing seat belts!)
This even may seem unfortunate to most people and at least a major inconvenience. As it turns out it has been a blessing in disguise.
We just decided two days prior that we would Sell the minivan prior to departing on our sailing journey. We did not want to pay the loan, car insurance and taxes on it while we were away not using the vehicle. So the plan was to sell the car and pay off the loan next September. Just keeping Dave's Toyota Tundra (which is paid off) to do the grunt work this next year and when we return. (Paying for insurance and taxes for one car is plenty!!)
I am talking hours after the crash, I felt a real calm through my soul with this realization. Affirmed that this accident was a blessing. It opened my eyes up to another option:
1. Car gets repaired. We sell it. Pay the Loan off. Buy cheap used car to drive until we depart.
2. Car gets totaled. Get check. Pay the Loan off. Buy cheap used car to drive until we depart.
This accident led us to a decision we never even considered! Sell the Car NOW, pay off the loan and live the year prior to departure Car Loan free! Thousands saved.
As it turned out - this past week we got the official call from our insurance agent that the 2011 Toyota Sienna has been a TOTAL LOSS.
|This is how it looked after the assessor evaluated it.|
Great, Implement the NEW PLAN. Pay off the loan, buy a used car to get us through the year.
And BONUS, now we can even keep it while we are cruising, so we do not have to spend the first few weeks when we return looking for a car while unpacking the boat, moving back into the house, getting ready for school.....etc....etc...)
So here we are - the NEW PLAN in effect. Below is a picture of our wonderful 'new' to us, used car to carry us through this next year and when we return.
|2005 VW Passat Wagon|
I (we) could not be happier - the answer to the car question was answered early.
Thank you Universe for providing!!
Thursday, November 6, 2014
Sunday, November 2, 2014
Old Man Winter Blew in hard today. 37 degrees F, rain with Snow and we actually had accumulation...(we saw the roof tops as we drove David to the airport on his way to Orlando!!)
Thank goodness we already took the Dodger and Bimini off the boat AND the outboard and dinghy.
Trying to plan ahead, and think about order. Some type of order. As we removed cushions, sheets, towels from the boat....we then cleaned and boxed most items and are storing them in order. (Well trying)!
My mind is a rage of thoughts and it is hard to turn the cognitive machine off at night. Scraps of ideas written down so I do not forget simple ideas to help ease the transition. Especially the transition from house to boat a few months prior to departure (with two young boys aboard!)
I need to get as much order in my mind now - Before the 2-3 months of living aboard prior to doing the passage southward. Think about it - things will be needed, moved and eaten that I will have to replace, repack and put on checklists so that we do not forget anything for the longer trip (when a Food Store is not easy access.)
But, Maybe it will be easy?? Practice makes perfect. I will get 2 months worth of homeschooling practice before we depart US waters......that's a good thing! Right. I can practice putting food supplies in Tupperware without bringing any cardboard onto the boat.....and I will have washer and dryers available.
OK OK I am talking myself off the cliff............see what fatigue brings. Glad I have a rational mind if I talk things through. Thanks for listening!
Saturday, November 1, 2014