“It just goes down and down” (in Swansboro, NC)

Morehead City was a weird place. A friend described it as like a carnival town when the carnival is closed, and that felt kind of right.

But we made friends with our Lyft driver, Alex. When he realized we lived on a boat (“with the baby!?”) and we realized he’d never been on a sailboat, we invited him in for a tour.

He came down the companionway stairs and exclaimed, “it just goes down and down!” Which is true and also not that obvious from the outside, I suppose 🙂

He was also impressed that we had a kitchen (“even with an oven!”) and he left muttering about how excited he was to tell his wife about “these hippies I met in the marina”.

We managed to escape the marina (maneuvering in reverse in a piling marina surrounded by multi-million dollar sportfish boats is NOT my idea of fun) at a leisurely 11:00am to continue our journey south.

We timed the current exactly wrong, so had a good 2 knots against us the whole way instead of a 1-2 knot boost, but we still made it into Swansboro in time for sunset and baby bedtime.

In general it’s been one of those funny weeks where everything just feels kind of normal… working, playing with the baby, doing laundry, getting groceries, moving south a little, enjoying the weather, and planning our next hops.

Couldn’t ask for more, really!

– The Brio Trio (<—- think I can make this a new thing?? 😉 )

Cruising through North Carolina (in the Neuse River)

Turns out North Carolina is a big state! I should probably remember that from last time but Jon and I have been discovering that we actually *don’t* remember all that much from 4 years ago…

I don’t know if having Zephyr along for the trip will make my memory any better, but it at least guarantees that there are 100x as many photos being taken! “Here’s Zephyr’s face in front of a marsh, here’s Zephyr’s face in front of a sunset, here’s Zephyr charming some fishermen…” you get the idea 😉

We hung out in Elizabeth City for a week, hunting WiFi for work (settling for too-loud coffee shops & super understanding coworkers), waiting on a weather window for the Albemarle Sound (a whopping 15-miles but we’ve got slight headwind-PTSD), and enjoying the crazy hospitality of Dan from MACU (who let us stay on his free dock, eat in the college cafeteria and even borrow his car to go to the laundromat!).

We haven’t travelled this slowly yet — we did Maine to North Carolina in two weeks!) so the change of pace has been amazing, if a little weird to adjust to.

The whole ICW operates on mile-markers, meaning we can plan out exact days & destinations ahead of time. We just spent a couple nights in the marsh, enjoying crazy sunsets and trying to spot a gator (no luck yet).

Otherwise it’s just been life as usual around here, coaching Z to crawl forwards (not happening yet), reading books and watching a couple Christmas movies that Jon downloaded ahead of time for us (the Grinch has officially been whooville’d)

We even turned the Dickinson off yesterday and haven’t turned it on again yet today! Crazy!

That’s all we have to report today!

– LMK

8.5 people, 2 chickens, 3 pies… and we even had cranberries! (Thanksgiving in the Great Dismal Swamp)

We’d had 6 people over for dinner on Brio before, but today we set a new record with 8.5 (Z is definitely a half).

Luckily they were all boaters so they didn’t mind cozying up and sharing our little home… actually there were a few comments about how nice it was to be warm (I already take our diesel heater for granted… so this was a good reminder to add HEAT to my list of things I am SO thankful for!)

Potluck-style Thanksgiving provided us with two delicious chickens (our intrepid neighbors cooked theirs in a Dutch oven on an alcohol stove, and Jon made ours in the cast iron skillet in the oven), I made two pumpkin pies and we had an apple crisp and stuffing and the whole deal!

We’d forgotten to buy cranberries, but Jon asked some random strangers if they had any cranberry sauce in their RV (they didn’t). They were walking by the boat and kept going, only to come back and offer to drive to a grocery store and buy us some… so we had cranberries! Thank you kind North Carolinians!!!

Z and his daddy with the miracle of cranberries!

Don’t tell him there’s a difference between pumpkin pie and plain pumpkin

Last Thanksgiving we’d just had our 20-week ultrasound and found out Z was going to be a “he”… this year we have a BABY and he’s awesome and we had an amazing day of friends, feasting and fun, and I am just so overwhelmed with gratitude for the miracle of this life and all the people in it that I don’t even have words to express it.

Sometimes life feels perfect, and I am just *incredibly* grateful for these moments.

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