Monday, April 25, 2016

Campering Map Journal

I've been playing around with ways to keep track of our campering. Trying it on out Google's "My Maps". I'm a big fan of custom maps, and I've found that My Maps works pretty well. Permissions are a little tricky, unless you have people logging in to their Google accounts. If you don't want log-ins required, it's just easier to make it a public map. But that does mean that anyone on the internet can see it.

It's now possible to view and share these "My Maps" on the Google Maps app for iOS and Android. I don't think it's possible yet to edit the maps, which is a bummer. However, it's been easy enough from the mapping app on my phone, sharing my location point in a text. That text message has the coordinates, which I can later add to the map when I'm at my laptop. Then I can add all the details and pics. A little clunky, but it works.

Click on the points below for more info. Just as a note, I had to set the permissions for this map to be public, so everyone on the internet can see it.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Introducing.... the SS Spice Jar

Rapid Sequence, an Ultimate 20, on Tampa Bay
Over the past few years, my father-in-law's sailboat has been a bit lonely. With all the fun activities that he has been involved with in his retirement, Lorne hasn't been able to sail as much as he used to. So Lorne and Joy, being the wonderful people that they are, decided to pass the sailboat on to Doug! Wahoo! In February, Doug and I, along with our best friends, Valerie and Darren, spent a week down in Tampa, learning how to sail the boat.

First of all, can I express my joy in the wonderful family-in-law that I lucked into? They rock. The whole clan is just amazing. But today, I'm singing the praises of Doug's parents. Joy and Lorne raised a wonderful set of kids (I may be biased, since I did marry one of them) and they are honestly just good folks to spend time with. Joy took great care of us for a whole week while we invaded their lovely home and monopolized Lorne out on the water.

Lorne did a fantastic job of teaching us to sail that week. We all got a chance to try all the different roles on the boat, learned our "points of sail", got to feel of how to sail in light winds and stronger winds (with lots of squealing on my part).

Valerie, Doug, and Lorne

Fiona (me!)


A successful week of sailing!

Then we learned to drop the mast and de-rig it to trailer it all the way home from Tampa to Indianapolis. It was a long drive. The boat is now settled in to her new home at Eagle Creek Sailing Club. We (mostly Doug!) have had a great time learning more about sailing and taking our friends out with us.

Doug & Chad

When we were down in Tampa learning our "points of sail", we spent a lot of time using various table items as boats and sails and wind. As we progressed in those sail and wind models, the ultimate silliness was with a paper cut out of a boat and sails taped to the top of two spice jars, so that we could position them as we "sailed" our paper boat.  

After weeks of (mostly Doug's) hard work, giving our boat much buffing, waxing, and repair, we had our de-naming and renaming ceremony--it just wouldn't be smart to annoy the gods of wind and sea. And so, with many friends, lots of libation, and a fair amount of silliness, we rechristened Rapid Sequence with a new name...Spice Jar.

(This is the mock-up from our decal design, the real pic soon to come)
Thanks to all our friends for joining us in our boat mania. And a big hug to Lorne and Joy for making all this possible for us!