Tag Archives: kid boat

Finally, we can let the cat out of the bag…

I know the suspense is high in finding out exactly what we’re planning to do next, but to be honest, we weren’t quite certain therefore we decided to wait to tell all.

Are you ready for it?!?!?!?!

We bought a new boat!!!! Her name is Malihini and she’s a Shuttleworth 35 catamaran. Yep, you ready that right, we bought a CATAMARAN and its official as of the 9th of October, she’s all ours!!!

During the latest lockdown here in New Zealand, it became clear to us that our nomad desires to set sail to new oceans and new lands would be very difficult and different with COVID lurking about. Sure, there are some places we could go, but we would likely to get “stuck” there like we are here in New Zealand. When I say stuck, I’m not really complaining about being here at all, it’s more that we can’t go visit family and then come back. So long story short, after many years of not seeing family and friends and no signs of that being a possibility anytime soon, we decided we will go back to the States for a while! That lead us to looking for boats to buy there. S/V Malihini was there waiting for us to find her in Portland Oregon.

Christian boarded his flight on the 10th of October out of New Zealand to fly to LAX on the 10th of October (time travel) , to drive up California to pick a few items for Malihini up along the way, see his dad and friend Jonah. He stocked up at Costco (picture a kid in a candy store after being in New Zealand for 3 years. Actually, Christian hasn’t been back to the US in 4 years!) Today, he drove drove up to our new boat … our new home! She’s been floating in Oregon, at St. Helens Marina, along the Columbia River, which is closure to the ocean than Portland is. He will get her all prepped and set sail to arrive in San Francisco with the earliest weather window.

More pictures of Malihini!!!

I can’t really describe the feelings we are having. It’s overall really exciting and we’re are looking forward to seeing our friends and family again. With the uncertainty of where New Zealand was heading (All things Covid related) it feels good to have made this choice. There will be many things about New Zealand that we will miss, to name a few: the Māori culture, the slower life, the clean and crisp air with its bright and vibrant colours, the accents, the not so crowded surf breaks, the bird songs, the happy cows grazing along with a billion sheep and many red deer. The list goes on, which is great, I’ll just have to finish my post about our time in New Zealand to show more about that. We made a few life long friends here too and parting with them (for now) has been hard, but it truly feels like we will return at some point to the lovely Aotearoa (New Zealand).

One step at time…. Or one ocean at a time. But first, Oregon to San Francisco!

Shawnigan is FOR SALE!!! $140,000 NZD (~100k USD)

Yep you read that right, S/V Shawnigan , our lovely solid, world cruising ready, Sparkman and Stephens, Stevens 40 is up for sale! $140,000 NZD

Before I post all of her details I will reassure you that this DOESN’T mean we, Afamilyafloat , are done with sailing / boat life… we’re just switching things up and looking at a different boat. Exciting changes to come!

I know most people love video tours: so here’s a link to our “old” one (or see below). There are few improvements , additions and removals, since the video so we will list these below. Please feel free to message us here or call (NZ +64 2041790882) directly if you have any questions. Note : we are currently in New Zealand, so listing in NZD for the NZ and Australian market.

Vessel Name: “SHAWNIGAN” Model: 40’ STEVENS 40 center cockpit cutter Builder: STEVENS Yachts, Queen Long Yard, Taiwan, R.O.C. Designer: Sparkman & Stephens Year Built: 1982 LOA: 40’ 7” LWL: 31’ 4” Beam: 12’ 6” Draft: 6.75’ Displacement: 24,000 # Ballast: 8,000#, internal in fiberglass fin Power: VolvoPenta 40 Equipment: – Wheel steering, autopilot, Hydrovane with spare wind paddle- Complete set of sails including mainsail, harken roller furler with 120% and 150% , hank-on staysail – ICOM IC-M802 SSB and VHF radio, RAYTHEON RL70 radar, B & G depth sounder, GARMIN 176 GPS/plotter, Lawrence fish finder /depth sounder. Vesper Marine AIS receiver and transponder – Safety equipment: ground tackle electric windlass with 350′ hi-tensile G4 American made chain, 45# ROCNA . Standing rigging , turnbuckles and running rigging done in 2012 – custom hard dodger – 3x 150W solar panels, mounted on arch. Installed fridge/freezer in 2021 as a drop in model – Dickinson Diesel Heater . 2 Levac heads and a shower. Master bed in aft cabin. Two berths in v-berth with leecloths. Pull out settee with leecloth on starboard side of main cabin, and another leecloth for settee on port side. New awlgrip paint 2017.

This STEVENS 40 is a production fiberglass sailboat designed by the famed Sparkman & Stephens and built in Taiwan in the early eighties. Only 10 boats were built under this brand between 1982 and 1984 until the boatyard Queen Long Marine Shipbuilding became in 1984 the exclusive builder of the well-known HYLAS Yachts. The STEVENS 40 and 47 are very similar to the high end HYLAS on many levels: solidly built, sea-kindly hull designed for blue water cruising, center cockpit layout and high-quality teak interior.

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New Awlgrip Paint job
Dodger with the sides rolled up, providing shade in hot sunny locations.
Dodger providing comfort in wet conditions.
New Swim step and hydrovane set-up
Starboard side of main cabin looking aft.
looking toward port side and forward of main cabin

Double compression post bound with spectra (structural and cosmetic).

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Main cabin view from Port looking aft and towards the chart table.

curtains for the bookshelves
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right side of stove has been customized as a drop in fridge/freezer (see photo above of port side).

Galley: 2 ice boxes (we use for dry food, and pots and pans) and Force10 stove/oven) and a large double sink with fresh and saltwater pumps and new faucet for electric powered flow.

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Aft cabin
Aft head with Levac. Shower to the left of head (currently used for storage).
Forward head with Levac as well.
Sorry, blurry picture of v-berth
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6 weeks in Tonga: Part 2 – The Ha’apai group and Tongatapu September-October 2018

Okay okay I’m officially way over a year behind on my posts. Since leaving Tonga to do a travel nursing assignment and then moving to New Zealand to work full time and have the kids in school, I have to be honest, blogging hasn’t been at the top of my to do list.  And to be honest, the ease of using Instagram for posting current photos has taken over my usual blogging effort. That being said, I do understand that not everyone is on Instagram and I usually don’t write as much there either. My apologies.  But I persist none the less, so here it is, over a year later, the second part of our Tonga sailing adventures.  This one isn’t going to be too juicy, as I feel like we really didn’t do that much after leaving the Vava’u Group of Tonga. 

Tonga: Part 2.

Nothing like a little last minute, fly by the seat of your pants plan making… Nursing job in NZ offered, travel assignment in California accepted, confirmation from our friend Nic to fly out and help Christian sail… all to leading us to plan our sailing in Tonga to arrive in Tongatapu by Oct 10th in order for me (Josie) to fly out and Nic to fly in.

#teenytinyoptics

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From the Vava’u group, we headed south to the next group of islands called the Ha’apai Group. This group of islands are less inhabited and more pristine.  Supposedly there are more whales here as well, but while we were there the wind was steadily 20+kts , making the whale watching not so happening. We found ourselves anchored in front of a a cruiser friendly “resort” called “Sea Change Eco Retreat” off of the Uoleva Island.  They have a great beach bar with nice cold drinks, local Tongan beer and good french press coffee.  What more could you ask for on a remote island in Tonga.  Apparently, this was the area where the mutiny on the Bounty started.  We didn’t get any bad vibes from this place, even with that history.  And honestly, I think this Uoleva was one of the highlights of Tonga despite the constant wind and probably the one place we would want to go back to if we sail back there. I think we would have to learn to kite surf to really have a blast there.

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Time was closing in and groups of cruisers started to part ways as each one’s timeline for heading to New Zealand started to differ. We had a few “last” dinners with the last of the cruisers around us ( SV Caramor, Counting Stars, Blue Zulu, Dol Selene), taking turns having each boat over for dinner on our boat or us on theirs.  This starting feeling like the end of an era and the beginning of a new one.

img_1830Taj, you have a friend on your shoulder.img_1827Took a sail to town aboard S/V Blue Zulu. Always nice to sail on another boat once in a while. img_1822Kid crew from SV Counting Stars, Blue Zulu and Shawnigan on our visit to town.

IMG_52111864ed0e-3c41-467d-85cd-405e766f9898IMG_3285IMG_3289S/V Counting Stars heading out just after us… also catching the whale sighting.

On our way out of Uoleva to the southern end of the Ha’apai group, we spotted some whales! What a lovely departure gift.  That day we sailed down to Lolofutu where we anchored for a night and met the caretaker aboard the catamaran Wildlife,  a whale watching charter adventure boat .  Not only were they cool, like minded people, but they happen to have kids eager to meet our kids. Always love a new “kid boat”.  They were planning to head to Tongatapu soon as well, so our parting farewell was easy knowing we would meet again soon.

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After a great passage down to Tongatapu, we found anchor room in front of Big Mama’s Yacht Club, a well known facility among the cruisers. It use to be a hopping spot, but after a hurricane a few years back that wiped it out, it hasn’t quite recovered, but its getting there.

We spent a few days wondering around the main part of the city.  A large part of one morning was spent trying to find the immigration/port captain to check out of the country.  We walked and walked which felt great. There were many churches, local schools,  clinics, restaurants. There was little to be desired as far as finding good food in Tongatapu though. We found it safest to stick with our own meals on the boat.  However, there was one pizza place though that was pretty good, thanks to S/V Wildlife crew’s recommendation.  The most important thing though…, we found coffee and wifi. A cruisers dream.

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img_1941Tonga probably has as many churches as they have house… well, not really, but there are an aweful lot.  Here’s an old one that was just abandoned and fenced off. So beautiful. Its too bad they dont renovate it and keep it in use or make it into a museum of sorts. img_1942img_1944img_1943img_1893Another church…img_1872img_1886Tongans really hold high value on the deceased… especially the Royal Family. img_1887img_1878Nina getting her hair cut before heading down to New Zealand. img_1904October 9th, 2018: The Family taking me to the airport… a dinghy ride to shore, a taxi to the Nukualofa Airport.  I’ll be away for 3 months, working as a Travel Nurse in California, without seeing them again until I fly to New Zealand with Ellamae in tow. img_1903

img_1819An example of Taj’s homeschooling alphabet art. He attached the dinosaur to the flower.