Monday, March 18

Fun Days and General Goodness

View of Portsmouth Harbor

Bob's birthday party aboard s/v Virginia Dare

Happy Birthday Bob

Like the t-shirt?  That was our birthday present to Bob.  Allow me to tell the tale:  The afternoon before Bob's birthday bash, we realized we hadn't purchased a gift.  Oh no, what should we do?   We didn't have time to go shopping for heavens sake and there wasn't a mall down the street.  The girls immediately got busy making cards while Craig quite literally Googles "birthday gifts for Bob".  HA, low and behold, the very first search result was a t-shirt that read "Bob Rules".  How perfect is that?  Bob does rule....he is the coolest guy we know.  But how are we going to order a shirt in the middle of the Caribbean and have it delivered the next day???  Sooooo, being resourceful, Craig got one of his (used) t-shirts and the girls wrote "Bob Rules" in sharpie.  The End.

The moon sets on Portsmouth Harbor

This is where the boats are built, one at a time, by hand, by this one guy, for the PAYS boat boys.  We took the kids to see Seabirds new boat being built.  

The finished product

Enjoying homemade passion fruit, strawberry and mango popsicles from the market (25 cents each)

Playing at the beach

Chris' speared lion fish!  Ooohh baby

We were all inspired by the local fruits and vegetables that we held a Caribbean potluck feast aboard Anything Goes

Erica steeped the Sorrel flowers to make a sweetened sorrel beverage served with spices over ice

We had green bananas boiled with cinnamon leaves, ginger and bay leaves (all from the local land), mashed local sweet potatoes with ginger and garlic, jerk chicken, grilled plantains, salad and mini clams the kids collected from the beach!!  Mmmmm good!

The boys hanging out on the paddle board after a swim

The entrance to Fort Shirley

Beautiful mango tree inside Fort Shirley

Canons with a view of the harbor

Our boat boy, Martin, takes us to Secret Beach with his family on a lazy Sunday afternoon

What does this rock look like to you?  A horse drinking water perhaps?  Yep.  There was a cave located where the horses front leg would be.  We all followed Martin to the cave across the rocks in our bare feet.  Martin pointed to a small hole down close to the water and said 'there it is'.  What?  We go through there?  It didn't look like anyone could fit.  Right away, Chris, Bryson, Maggie, Porter and Olivia were out!  No way.  Kate and Reese tried it but the waves were big and scary, so they turned around.  I wasn't sure either, so I decided to wait and see.  The only brave souls were Craig and Erica.  I went back to the beach and waited for them to swim around to the other side.  Once they returned safely, Craig took me through the cave.  I felt a little more than nervous to crouch down into a small space literally big enough for my body to lie down.  There was equal space above and below the water line.  I floated and used my hands to pull me through, all the while with a flashlight and my mask on so I could see any lurking creatures that might lay ahead of me.  We saw 2 lobsters and then all of a sudden the space became cavernous and opened up where we could stand up.  Above our head the ceiling was rolling and crawling with hundreds of bats squeaking.  I took a very quick glance and then told Craig I was ready to leave.  On the other side was an opening to the bay.  We did a slight belly flop and swam as fast as we could over the coral and rocks being careful not to scrape bottom.  And that was that.  I can now say that I did it!  Would I do it again, probably not.

Kids busy building a sand castle

All About Chocolate....the name of the lesson I prepared for all the kids.  From tree to chocolate bar.  We had a cacao (Kah-Cow) pod picked right from the cocoa (Koh-Koh) tree.  Reese and Kate are drawing what it looks like before we slice it open.

Working hard at finding the places on the map where cocoa trees are grown around the world

The inside of the cacao pod.  There are roughly 30 beans inside surrounded by a pulp that has a slightly sweet tart lemony flavor.

We ended the lesson with a chocolate tasting - unsweetened all the way to milk chocolate.  

Cocktail party on Patronus!

I 'heart' you

Da Boys - Eddison, Bob, Craig and Ken G.

And then, these sweet (PAYS) boys made us breakfast and delivered it!  Salt fish, roasted breadfruit, salad, fresh squeezed guava juice and chocolate tea.  Now that's a breakfast for champions.

Starving kids, ready to dig in

Olivia learning to sail on her own

Rainbow in the clouds as the sun rises on Portsmouth Harbor

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