It was one year ago today that our little Havanese dog, Jamaica entered into this world.  Still a puppy, she is a handful, but she is getting better each day.  Today she saw her first balloon and was not quite sure what to think about it.  In a day or two she will probably be running around the house with the string in her mouth. This was also one of her first times under the studio lights. The key to success here is to shoot fast because she isn’t staying in one place for very long.

Happy birthday, Jamaica.  You’re an awesome dog!


Dinghy Dog

A dog and its owner having a great time on their dinghy.

It’s time to head back to Bellingham and turn in the boat for the next charter guests.  We had a most wonderful vacation, probably the best one we have ever had. Will our next vacation be on a sailboat or on another tug?  Well, we are getting rather spoiled with tugs, but sailing is so much fun.  Guess we will all know when our next vacation shows up here.

Hope you enjoyed reading a bit about our adventures.

Jim & Kelli


Deception Pass

This day brought some adventure to us.  Our plan was to go through Deception Pass between Fidalgo and Whidbey Islands, but timing had to be very good because of the high current possibilities in this pass.  If you do not time it right, then you could get stuck in currents running 8-knots with eddy currents that could push you into the rocks.  But, if you plan it correctly, then currents are less than 1-knot and you can pass safely.  We planned correctly and didn’t have any issues getting through.

Channel Markers

Once through the pass, then we had to navigate a pretty narrow channel to keep from running aground in the mud of the shallow bay.  It is well marked, but you can go from 15 feet of water to 3 feet of water in a very short time.  When your boat takes nearly 5 feet of water to float…well, you can see what could happen.  These are 2 markers that you line up with each other.  When they are, you are centered in the channel.

Rainbow Bridge

Our goal of the day was to reach a town named La Conner.  It is on the Swinomish Channel which is the body of water that makes Fidalgo Island an island.  Here is Rainbow Bridge at the southern part of town.

La Conner

La Conner

La Conner is a fun waterfront town with many shops and restaurants to visit.

American Tug Factory

We called ahead and made arrangements to tour the American Tug factory in town.  This particular boat dwarfs Kelli.  It is the 49 foot version of the 34 foot one we chartered.  It’s amazing what an extra 15 feet of boat does to the other dimensions.


It was a little rainy this day, so we had to be careful where we stepped.  This little guys was enjoying the rain.


Maple Bay

Maple Bay is a charming little community that is far enough away from the big cities that the people are even more friendly.  We had one lady come up to us and offered to let us use her car for a few hours if we wanted to see more of the island.  You sure don’t see that kind of hospitality very often.

Float Plane

If you don’t want to take a boat to get to Maple Bay, you can always fly.  These came several times while were were there.

Kelli at the helm

Time to head back to the US and it looks like Kelli is in a hurry with her hand on the throttle like that!


On the way there, we saw some Harbor Seals…

Massive Scene

Turn Point Lighthouse

…and some amazing scenery.  The bottom one is Turn Point Lighthouse on Stuart Island.  This is about the same spot where we saw the pod of Orcas 3 years ago.  Nothing this time around.

Friday Harbor

Cleared US customs at Friday Harbor on San Juan Island.  The it was off to Lopez Island for the night, swinging on our anchor.


Our Dog Jamaica

A couple of weeks ago we adopted a new dog into our family.  This was a hard process emotionally since we lost Alle a couple of years ago, but the time was right.  Her name is Jamaica and she is a Havanese dog.  She is definitely a puppy with lots of energy and a small bladder.  She is currently about 15 weeks old and weighs in at 7 pounds.  There will be many photos to come, but we wanted to start the stream with this one of her playing in our back yard.

Say hi to Jamaica.



I’ll conclude this week with a portrait of the mother.  The detail of her feathers is amazing.

It is fun to watch the mother ducks as she protects her young as they grow.  She is quite often found at attention, on the lookout for anything that could cause her chicks harm.