Prepping for 2021

We entered 2020 planning to take things easy.

I had just started a new job, and we had a baby on the way. Focusing on the baby and staycation was the plan. We just had no idea the extent we wouldn’t even leave the house for months at a time.

It worked out great for the dogs. They’ve never gotten so much attention.

I think they actually appreciated getting a little less attention once Michael Finley arrived on the scene as the cameras are now pointed at him.

Although it’s hard to tell if they enjoy the attention they get from him.

I don’t know that you could say we really had an active social life before the pandemic, but we did at least occasionally have friends over for dinner or guitar jams or take people sailing, etc. Trying to be extra careful with an infant, that dwindled down to people visiting from afar.

Our friend Tammy was in town for the first time in two years, but instead of catching up over lunch, she stood in the rain and chatted with us from the dock while we sat on the boat. Thanks for coming by, Tammy, and thank you for the family photo.

So with 2020 being such a letdown, I’ve been focused on getting ready for life in 2021.

The boat projects have been intense. In the past year we’ve replaced the mainsail, replaced the engine’s freshwater pump, added a new isolated start battery, replaced the 4D AGM house batteries, and started replacing the autopilot system.

Turning the boom and mainsheet into a crane to lift the 150-pound batteries onto the boat and lower them into the bilge worked much better than expected.

There’s still many, many things to do, but we have her in shape to run the Icicle Series Regatta in January. I’m very excited. While I don’t expect to be competitive, racing is the best way to get to know your boat and identify problems that still need to be addressed.

In addition to getting the boat ready to sail, we also finally got a slip back on the peninsula of fun. Our O’day had been in one of the 38′ slips for several years, which gave us great access to the pool and the fire pits, but the Kadey Krogen was too long, so we were exiled to Pier 19 for the past two years. One of the 50′ slips finally opened up, so last weekend we moved back. The real perk is that our baby monitors reach from the boat to the pool, so once Finn goes to bed at 7 p.m., we can sit out with adults for a while, which will be refreshing. I’m sure Finn will also appreciate the swingset that is only about 15 yards away.

Then there’s the car.

We sold the old Z3, which Mary had been driving to work because the car seat didn’t fit, and it hadn’t left the garage in several months. That means the Cougar is now my daily driver. So far it has gotten me to all of my appointments, but I took a nice 100-mile cruise with the Southeast Texas Cats Mercury Cougar Club, and it ended with a screeching alternator.

The alternator was still under warranty, so there’s a new one on the way. However, I’ve got to decide if I’m going to pour some more money into the car to make it suitable enough to carry Finn’s car seat in the back or if I need to buy another new car with no exhaust leaks, etc.

But the car repairs have been nothing compared to body repairs.

Around August, I started falling apart. I had an ingrown toenail that just got worse and worse. Then my belly button started to bulge and my abdomen was super uncomfortable. When you compound that with lack of sleep, staying in shape was next to impossible. I finally sucked it up and went in for both toe surgery and hernia surgery in the past week. Fingers crossed that we kick off 2021 totally healthy and ready to lose the sympathetic pregnancy weight, baby weight, and covid weight.

I know that Jan 1, 2021 won’t magically solve all the problems created by covid in 2020, but I’m very optimistic that it’s going to be a better year.