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Month: February 2017

Meet Willow: A Boat Tour

Meet Willow: A Boat Tour

When I was in college, I liked to look in the windows of people’s dorms. I know it sounds creepy, but it wasn’t about seeing the people themselves, it was about quelling my curiosity about how they decorated their space. Everyone got basically the same space, the same furniture, the same blank canvas to work with. It was how they made it their own that fascinated me.

As an adult, I try to keep my peeping eyes out of people’s windows, but I am still always curious about the spaces people live in. I love interior design blogs and magazines. And I will never turn down a tour of someone’s house…or, now that we live aboard…their boat. Boats are sort of like dorm rooms in the sense that they are similar at first glance. All boats have a hull of some sort and a deck and some sort of equipment that propels them through the water. Sailboats have masts and sails and usually some sort of railing.

But the part I am most fascinated with is the interior. What configuration is it laid out in? How much room is there? Is there an aft cabin or a large v-berth? How is it decorated? How much counter space is in the galley? My mind swims with the possibilities!

That being said, today I am going to share with you the interior of Willow. We haven’t done much decorating because everything was so freshly done when we moved aboard that it seemed silly to change any of it. The previous owner’s wife made the pillows on the couches and the curtains and we like it all well enough to keep it for the time being.

What do you think? Do you have any photos or videos of your space to share with me? 


Boat Chef: Simple Cherry Chocolate Bark

Boat Chef: Simple Cherry Chocolate Bark


Happy Valentine’s Day, friends! I have decided to start a little series called Boat Chef in which I prove, for all of you doubters, that anything I can cook on land, I can also cook on a boat!

This first one might be cheating a little bit because it’s so dang simple, but I’ve got to set the bar low to start, right? I’m not going to start with chicken cordon bleu (Let’s be honest. I’m not going to cook that anyway. I don’t even eat chicken!). It’ll only go downhill from there.

Today I made cherry chocolate bark in celebration of Valentine’s Day. I figure most of it will be shared with new friends we’ve made around the marina. And Jim will probably eat a fair amount himself. As I said, it’s the easiest thing to make and you don’t even really have to measure ingredients.


Valentine’s Day Cherry Chocolate Bark


1 package chocolate chips

1 package vanilla candy coating (almond bark)

vanilla extract

Maraschino cherries (chopped)

Maraschino cherry juice

boat recipes: cherry chocolate bark

Melt chocolate chips in a pan or microwave. We live on a boat, and propane is more plentiful than electricity, so I used a pan. Whatever you do, just make sure you stir a lot and don’t burn it. Don’t ever leave it alone. Once the chocolate is melted, spread it over a piece of parchment paper as evenly as possible.

boat recipes: cherry chocolate bark

This is the hard part. Now you wait. That layer of chocolate needs to be cool and firm before you add the next layer or else you’ll have a swirly marbly mess. Maybe that’s what you’re going for, and that might be just as delicious and pretty looking, but I’m sharing this thing my way. Feel free to take your own path (and let me know how it goes!).

Next we melt the candy coating (almond bark). I used the entire brick pictured. It seemed like the right amount for the amount of chocolate chips I had. Basically you want a 1:1 ratio of chocolate and candy coating. Again, don’t leave the pan while you’re melting because if you burn it, it is ruined. From here you will add about 1 tsp of vanilla extract and a few tbsp of Maraschino cherry juice as well as the chopped cherries. As far as I’m concerned, the more juice the merrier. It will make your cherry flavor more pronounced.

So from here, things didn’t go the way I had anticipated and the candy got a little clumpy. I was pretty sure I’d ruined the whole thing, but I slathered the white/cherry layer on top of the chocolate chip layer and spread it as evenly as I could (that’s the next step, by the way). Then I cut another sheet of parchment paper and set it on top so I could smooth out and flatten it a little bit. It was not pretty at this point. If yours looks like a mess, it’s okay. It will get better. I promise!

boat recipes: cherry chocolate bark

See? Kinda gross looking, right? But when it is done, it looks all pretty and more like something you’d want to eat and less like pink cottage cheese.

Make sure that it is all completely cooled. I’d even give it a few minutes in the fridge to be sure. Then break it up into pieces of your desired size and enjoy!

boat recipes: cherry chocolate bark

Fun, right? Let me know if you try it out and how it goes for you. Jim thought it was delicious and he’s hesitant to share it with the new friends I mentioned.


Sailing with New Friends

Sailing with New Friends

Our broker, Sue (who helped us buy Willow), introduced us to another client of hers who just purchased a Rhodes 41. He wanted to take it out for a little sail and she thought we might enjoy the chance to get out on another boat.

Sail On!

Snow Day!

Snow Day!

We woke up this morning to a winter wonderland in Poulsbo! This is the second time that it has snowed enough here to cover the town in white, and it is simply beautiful.

snow covered boats

docks covered in snow

snowy waterfront

snow covered dinghy

dog on snow covered dock

dog in snow

Days like this make us so grateful that we don’t have to drive anywhere to get to work. It’s so nice to just hunker in with a hot cup of coffee, the heaters blasting and everything we need right here in the boat.

small business on a boat

A Day at the Seattle Boat Show

A Day at the Seattle Boat Show

Yesterday we checked out the Seattle Boat Show compliments of the Seattle Boat Company, who generously provided us with two tickets. We started at CenturyLink Field Event Center and the indoor portion of the show. This is where Seattle Boat Co. had their booth and so many neat boats to check out. We loved this 40 foot Cobalt A40 Coupe with all the amenities of home, including a built in barbecue. We could totally live on something like this!

40 ft Cobalt Cruiser

We also looked at a cool 44 ft Nordic Tug that was absolutely gorgeous. My brother and his wife talk about retiring on a boat like this and I have to commend their taste!


From there we headed over to Chandler’s Cove on Lake Union for the outdoor portion of the show. This was the most exciting for us because this is where all the sailboats were. There were also quite a few trawlers and other neat large power boats that we enjoyed looking through. That’s the beauty of the boat show: you can look at these crazy, huge, fancy boats and dream of a completely different lifestyle. This 2012 Tayana 48, for instance. What a gorgeous boat! And so big and roomy and full of storage! We fell in love instantly!

sailboat salon

large sailboat aft cabin

While it was fun for us to dream, we concluded by the end of the day that we wouldn’t be happier on any of the boats we’d seen that we are on Willow. She’s our boat, our home and we love her. No amount of spiff and shine will replace her. At least for now.

If you’re still contemplating going to the show, it runs until February 4th, so get out there and check it out!

And if you just want our take on it, check out our video and don’t forget to subscribe to our youtube channel!