The Quest for the Mast Base

The Quest for the Mast Base

We bought Little Minx from a salvage yard. It was in good shape. The keel needed some TLC, but the interior was beautiful and we knew we could do the work it needed. And over the course of the last year, we’ve done a lot of work to the boat (and there’s still more to do). But the time came to raise the mast.

We moved the boat over to the marina porch, which is built out over the water, tied up, and waited on the tide to go down. I rode down with the boat while Geoff unpacked the mast (which up to this point was tied down on top of the boat) and make sure we had all the connections we’d need. At low time, a few helpers climbed down a rope onto the boat to help me (because Skye didn’t seem to think that napping was necessary) and Geoff and his team up top lowered the mast down. I connected the radio and electric and we lined it up.

It didn’t fit. The mast didn’t fit on the mast base. It wasn’t even close. It was the right shape and it looked like it should bit, but it was about a quarter inch too wide. Just enough too wide that we couldn’t grind it down to the right shape. Really!!?!

So off comes the mast, the boat goes back into our slip. Did we somehow get the wrong mast? It was strapped to the boat and had the same connectors, so it clearly came off the boat. Was it stretched somehow?

We get online and find a mast base that has the correct shape and measurements. Order it and a week later it comes in. We test it against the mast and it’s not even close. We’re not mis-measuring, it just doesn’t quite fit. We return the mast base and start asking around about welders. We’ll just get one made.

Of course, then Geoff heads off for his race (he completed the Everglades Challenge this year via kayak) and Skye and I go to visit friends, so it’s another three weeks before we’re back on the boat. We’d made a pattern and gotten it to the local welder before we left (and he’d dropped by to take some pictures and make sure what he was doing would fit the mast while we were gone).

The day after we were back, the welder showed up with a mast base that fit like a glove and cost $100 less than what we’d ordered earlier. I rode off to the hardware store for yet more 4200 (the bottle I’d saved in the fridge didn’t have quite enough) and the mast base was attached. So, attempt #2 at raising the mast will commence this weekend…




I had given myself permission to sleep in. With the time change, I was hoping to sleep in really late and the last thing I wanted was to get out of bed. We are at my parents and Skye and mom are good at entertaining each other.

But no, she found me. She still has pajamas on, but she’s wearing her new wellies (bought yesterday on a whim because they were cute) and her backpack. She climbs in bed with me, but doesn’t want to cuddle. She wants me to get up!

Mom follows her in a few minutes later and opens the window. It’s white outside. What?

All winter, we’ve been in Beaufort and whenever anyone asked, it was 70-degrees and sunny. Other than a day or two of cold, it’s been a beautiful winter. Earlier this week, we were in Brevard and during the day, it was sunny and warm. Then we headed to Atlanta where we did have to wear sweaters to play in the park. My friend were talking about the coming snow, but it was hard to listen.

Skye and I went to the American Girl doll store for lunch and to pick up the new ballerina outfit for her doll. Having lunch there was awesome, they really took the time to spoil the girls and let them have a fancy meal with their dolls. Skye fed her doll (who she still calls “baby doll”) several sips of water and a few grapes.

While I love American Girl dolls (I had two growing up), I’m not in love with their new line of smaller dolls, Wellie Wishers. The dolls are cute enough, but they’re nothing special. I absolutely love how they did the girl’s wellies, though. They’re clear and then you put on tall socks underneath to show through. So many options!

So this morning, Skye with her new wellies and I with my old ones walked outside in the snow. It doesn’t snow often here, and it’s even more rare for it to stick. Yet it’s almost 11am and it’s still coming down strong and our tracks from this morning’s romp are covered with a new layer of white. I was not expecting a snow day, but it is a beautiful way to end the week.

A Side Trip to Disney

A Side Trip to Disney

I am a huge Disney fan and have been looking forward to taking Skye to Disney since she was born. Sure, she’s only 2, but that’s a great age to start! So we tagged together a quick trip to do Animal Kingdom with some other work-related events in Florida. Skye didn’t know what to expect, but she was happy to say that she was looking forward to Disney and she certainly knows who Mickey Mouse is.

“So let me get this straight,” I’m on the phone with my mom, who is being regaled by Skye on the various things she saw and did while in the park. “You were there on a Tuesday, in February, at the least popular theme park, and the shortest line was 30 minutes?” To be fair, when I was growing up and going to Disney, a weekday in the winter wouldn’t be crowded at all. “I’m buying more stock in Disney.”

We saw the street performers (huge hit), the animals (about as exciting as the zoo), rode the rides (the Triceratops ride was the favorite), ate the food (I liked it better than Geoff). We met Doc McStuffins (Skye was shy), Baloo (Skye gave him a hug), and Mickey Mouse (Minnie Mouse got the biggest hug). I suspect Skye is totally unsure what to think of these characters – the Disney magic is just starting to come online.

One day at Disney exhausted all three of us. I don’t know how people do a whole week of theme parks. We’ll go back for Magic Kingdom next year.