Busy, Busy Weekend

I was hoping that things would slow down with the end of summer break and Izzy back at school. It didn’t feel like it today. Susanna is quarantined until early next week, so I get to run the show for the weekend. I’m trying to finish off a not so major, but really needs to be done, house project; I’m replacing the roof over the sun porch. I’m also watching Izzy and trying to keep the house somewhat clean. I recognize that it is too easy to get wrapped up in doing chores and projects and forget to enjoy life. I don’t think I did a good job balancing chores with fun over the past year, and I’m trying to do better.

Isabella and Hoagie in a rare moment of calm onboard the large paddle board.

This morning I focused on chores . I changed the oil in my car, did a bit of cleaning around the house, assisted Izzy in cleaning her room, and ran to Home Depot to get more roofing supplies. But the afternoon was set aside for some family fun. Of course with Susanna being sick, and Will out for the day, family fun was just for Izzy, Hoagie and me.

Izzy waiting to jump in the lake while Hoagie just tries to figure out what is going on.

I loaded up Will’s tandem paddle board and life jackets and we headed to Amos Lake here in Preston. We inflated the board and pointed the bow out into the lake and I paddled. It was only my second time on a paddle board, but the tandem is so wide, that stability wasn’t a problem, even with Hoagie wandering around. The board is just very slow, but we didn’t really have a destination. Isabella eventually found the courage to jump in the lake, but Hoagie never really relaxed.

Isabella swimming next to an adequately stressed Hoagie.

The weather was nice; sunny and nearly 70 and the lake was pretty warm. We got home by early afternoon. Izzy was able to head across the street to play, and I was able to get an hour working on the roof.

Tomorrow, Will is taking Izzy to The Connecticut Renaissance Faire and I’ll try to get some more time to work on the roof.

Saturday morning on the water.

Today we spent a family day on the water. Will and I had launched his boat earlier this year for a trial run and didn’t hurt anyone, sink the boat or run into anything. The boat had been out of the water for a while getting some painting and maintenance done, and not sinking at the dock was an improvement over the first time we launched the boat, so it was a successful relaunch. The sail earlier this summer wasn’t without issues, and we learned a lot of lessons; mainly about rigging the boat on the trailer. Today’s launch was much smoother. But we forgot some things, so the plan will be to make a checklist before the next outing.

Underway under a light breeze in the Thames River, New London, CT. Picture by Susanna Curtis

Susanna and Will had tried paddle boarding after she had returned home from Sweden and both had enjoyed it. Will picked up a used board and we got Susanna a new board this week. We brought Susanna’s board with us to the launch and we all headed out into the Thames as a group. We launched from the New London boat ramp (the Groton ramp is closed this season). There was almost no wind, so we all drifted towards Long Island Sound with the ebb tide. Susanna paddled circles around us, Isabella swapped between the boat and the paddle board, and I even took a try on the paddle board.

Susanna and Isabella leading the slow drift downriver with the tide.

The wind picked up around lunch time and we slowly sailed back up to the launch, towing Susanna (and Izzy) behind on the paddle board. Once we got upriver of the launch we let Susanna go and she paddled back to the dock, apparently falling in once (which we all missed). We recovered the boat, stepped the mast and returned home by mid-afternoon after a successful day on the water.

Isabella digging ice cubes from the cooler.

We drifted as far south as Electric Boat before the breeze started and we were able to head back upriver towards the Interstate 95 bridge and the boat launch. We sailed past the Connecticut Maritime Heritage Festival in New London and saw a few sailboats out in the light breeze and a few more powerboats and ferries and three US Navy security boats returning to the base. Overall it was a quiet day on the water without much traffic.

Towing Susanna upriver against the outgoing tide. Electric Boat in the background.