Monday, December 31, 2012

New Years Poem- Naval tradition

Tradition has it on the sea and now on this blog
A poem is made of the daily log
Since new years day is tommrrow
2012 a year of some sailing sorrow
Hurricane Sandy took Wabridge and Christian to the swell
The HMS Bounty sunk as well
The Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race aboard Cuchulain
We lost a man.

On the note more cheerful
Some sailing news we had a year full
Sailrocket 2 really sailed some speed
59.23 knots put them in the fastest all time lead
Oracle's AC72 got really banged up
Capsized practicing for the Cup

Wednesdays sailing for me
Skipper bought us a new number 3
Best in region one CBYRA
Some good races on the bay
With DSC I did not race
Fun sailing with friends regardless of pace

Fathers day weekend had Sailibration
1812 celebrated in Baltimore and the Nation
Blue Angels and navy whites
Tall ships and parties most the nights
Ships from different countries and states
For the repeat in 2014 I can not wait

Well 2013 is soon to arrive
Enjoy tonight just do not drink and drive.

Boat fire fighting

This is all over the boating news and a great creative method of putting out a boat fire.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Sailing New years Resolutions -Get in better shape

Every sailor needs to make new years resolutions to get better at sailing.
Mine are:
1. Get in better shape. 
2. Get better at sail trim
3. Sail more big boats.

So the real hard part is how to accomplish this. 
1. Get in better sailing shape. 
Well sailing is three different types of strong
a)Strength in short bursts of energy.Often you will have one long tack and all at once need to get that sail in.
For this I plan on doing plyometric from P90X. I have done P90X in the past and love the concept but 90 min every day is a bit much but I intend to do two days a week of plyometrics from P90X. I am going to sub this in in place of my running.
b)Flexibility and balance.!It is also flexibility in weird positions for long periods of time being off kilter and off balance. Yoga and Pilates are great for this. I intend to do two days a week of these videos or classes.
c) Strong just darn strong to be able to get that sail in the last bit to be able to haul and heave and physically move stuff.  Weight, push ups , pull ups ect are the way to go for this. I intend to continue doing The New Rules of Lifting for Women twice a week to help me with this.

2. Get better at sail trim.
Yikes this is a hard one. On some level I think this is mainly just sailing more. But some of it is theory and I will admit I am weak on the theory. How I intend to deal with this is to read one book a month on sail trim until spring.
My reading list is
January : The Best of Sail Trim 
Febuary: Mainsail Trimming:An Illustrated Guide
March: I am not sure recomend a good trim book in the comments please.

 3.Sail more big boats. This summer I want to sail more big boats. I already have a regular Wednesday ride and many of the weekend races but I hope to get another weekday ride and a few days of open ocean time. Mainly hoping to do this by volunteering to do delivery for some boats to gain some open ocean time. 

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

St Nicholas

St Nicholas is the patron saint of sailors. (Well also children for which he is more famous) So on this Christmas hope good old Saint Nick treats you well.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Twas the night Before Christmas

 Stocking, Coastal Red Stripes
Boaters stocking
Twas the night before Christmas and all through the boat the stockings were hung by the mast with care in hopes that St Nick soon would be there
St Nick

I in my cap

had just settles down for a long winters nap

When out on the bay arose such a clatter.
A little old driver so lively and quick I knew in an instant it must be saint nick. 
He whistled he shouted he called them by name 
No trimmer, Now Fordeck now Grinder 
On Pit, on Spintrimmer on rail
Now Sail away, Sail away all

Merry Christmas from Single Sailing Savor

Waterski Santa 1pm today

Merry Christmas
If you are free today at 1pm. Consider going to see Water ski Santa at the National Harbor  Every year it is like The Griswalds went boating in a wonderful thing of Santa waterskiing, Reindeer wake board, elves flying, the Grinch of course is on a jet ski.
Here is a previous years video. A great activity for the whole family and it should be warm today.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Dear Sailing Santa

Dear Sailing Santa,
I've been very good this year. Sailing , helping out with Sailibration here in Baltimore, overall a really good girl. I have a Christmas list of items I would love for Christmas but are much too expensive to ask my family for. So below the Sailing Savor Single Santa list. Perhaps you want to spoil some sailor gal in your life.
1.Musto HPX Gor Tex Ocean Trousers in Red
Yup they are $635 but Santa you fly through all sorts of weather you understand that there is not such thing a bad weather just badly dressed for the weather.
HPX Gore-Tex Ocean by Musto

2. Camet Wahine Shorts
At $78 for a pair of shorts I want them but that is a lot for a pair of shorts. The old womens camet shorts XL sizing was way way off and fit someone who wore a size 6 normally so I am hesitant to buy the new design until I can try them on in the store.

3. Mustang Inflatable Harness PFD
This fall I sailed the Chesapeake bay great schooner race and a man on another boat died when he got knocked overboard and his shipmates could not get him back in for several minutes. This drove home the importance of a PFD and of tethering in to me. So $241.45 or not I am getting myself this in red before next season. Kinda hoping it goes on sail before then or Santa?!?

4. Sperry SeaRacer GripX3 Sailing Sneakers
New race sneakers would be excellent. I've tried these on and very grippy and friends who own them love them.
Women's SeaRacer + GripX3 Sneaker

I really like the chain design seabag. The pink with the industrial chain is such a nice contrast. My other sailbag is white  with a red stripe and I use it all the time. For $165 they are expensive but super durable bags.
Chain Design Tote Bag

6. J111
Santa if you are really nice this would be great!

Thanks Santa!!

Gingerbread sailboat

This year for my gingerbread creation I tried a gingerbread boat. Not perfection by any means but pretty and I enjoyed the details. 
This is the finished gingerbread sailboat.

This is the sailboat before I added the spinnaker 
Another view of the final product 
Close up of Santa. Hat is supposed to look like a Mt Gay Red Hat.
Things I learned along the way. 
1. Shellacking the whole gingerbread in a fiberglass of royal icing is great but brittle. It allowed me to get it so that the boat had the right shape.

2. This was my first time working with modeling chocolate. Santa, Dasher, and Rudolf even the main sail are all made of modeling chocolate. I'm clearly not a great sculptor but the limitation seemed to be my artistic ability not the medium itself.  Ideally I would have done a better proportions for Santa vs Reindeer but it worked well. Modeling chocolate is easy to work with once it warms up to room temp and you can mix in colors. I learned that if it was getting too warm to put the whole thing in the freezer for a few minutes and it would be easier. The creation stiffens up when you stop working with it and dries out well. 

3. Mast and boom. By taking one big candy cane and one little one and cutting off the hooks I made the mast and boom. I took the smaller candycane and held the end I was attaching to to boom in the flame of my gas stove for a second and it melted and became like a blob of liquid on the end. I immediatly pressed it into the other candycane firmly and held it there and then allowed it to completely cool. This worked very well for structure. 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Gear review :Sailing gloves

Now the best gloves for you will depend on three things 1. What position you are on the boat? 2. What shape hand do you have? 3. Temperature 4. Do you like your finger tips out?

Regarding these issues
1. Generally you will use your gloves the most when you are a trimmer. Line sliding in and out of gloves causes tons of wear and tear. Better wear and tear on your gloves then on your hands. Helmswomen often do not even need gloves unless it is for cold metal helms or if the helm is slick. Fordeck it depends on your own preference and grip. Generally, fordeck can get away with less rugged gloves. The most durable gloves are the Gil Pro racers. However they start very stiff and are a lot harder to move your hands in.

2. They sell women's gloves. Sometimes in pretty colors. For those with small and narrow hands this can be a great option. However for women who have large or wide hands this will not fit. Women generally have longer fingers compared to width of hands then men and this causes an issue with gloves. Since the women's size gloves are only a good fit for women with small hands if you wear a medium or large gloves in the men's sizes( large women's gloves in women's winter gloves really anything over glove size 7) women's sailing gloves will not fit. Men's full fingered gloves will also not fit as the ratio of width to height is perpetually off. The best solution is to wear the smaller size in 3/4th fingered gloves.
My favorite sailing gloves are Gil's Championship gloves. I've been wearing versions of these gloves for years. they seem to tweak them every year from blue to black to slightly other designed but they seem to always be the best fit on the market for me.

3. Temperature! Well it is probably obvious that on a 110 degree day in August and a January Frostbite race -10 degree day you want different gloves. The Gil Championship gloves I recommended in the previous section have been black for the last few years and make your hands sweat something fierce. I miss when they used to be blue and and not cause as much hand sweat.  During that time of the year I recommend Ronstan gloves as they are a lighter color and your hands will not sweat as much. During the mid summer I know a lot of people just cut the tips off of latex coated cotton gloves that you buy at the hardware store. They only last a race but they are very cheap and not nearly as hot and sweaty as other gloves due to being white. Mid January when it is snowing and cold you need warm warm warm gloves. If you are at the helm or in a position where you do not have as much wear on your gloves any waterproof winter gloves can work and good ski gloves are great.However, if you are a trimmer and near lots of wear the best option are the full fingered extreme sailing gloves by Gil. I wear silk glove liners inside my gloves when it gets really cold. This also helps with the fit of the full fingered winter gloves.

4.  Finger tips out. My general preference is for finger tips out and this results in better grip for me. However friends of mine have said the opposite. So at the marine store try on the gloves both with full finger and 3/4 and go over to the line and see which works best for you.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Lighted boat parades.

This year I went to both Baltimore and Annapolis lighted boat parades. Jus t a few pictures to get you in the holiday mood.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Dark and Stormy Caramels

I love caramels and I love Dark and Stormy Drinks. For those of you who do not know a Dark and Stormy is a delicious drink made with Goslings rum ( a delicious spicy rum made in Bermuda) , ginger beer( Ginger beer is like really strong ginger ale but does not contain any alcohol), and a twist of lime. This is one of the classic sailors drinks back at the regatta party.
Now to the caramel part! As delicious as caramels are on their own a kick of rum and ginger makes them even better. 
You need
1 large (3 or 4 quart) saucepan
1 small saucepan
2 wooden or silicone spoons ( not metal)
parchment paper
Dish for mold (I use a 7x5 le creuset baker
Measuring cups

For butter mix
1/2 stick butter
3/4 cup half and half
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger 
2 oz Goslings rum

For sugar mix
1 1/2 cups white sugar 
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup warm water

For topping 
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger 
1/2 teaspoon fine ground salt

How to:
1.Put all the butter mix ingredients into small saucepan and heat on medium until butter is fully melted. Make sure to stir frequently as you do not want the half and half to burn. Once butter is melted remove from heat. 
Butter mix melting

2. Place the sugar and corn syrup into the large saucepan and then put in the warm water using some of the warm water to make sure any sugar or syrup that you got on the sides of your pan is washed down. Gently mix things together until makes a paste making sure once again to not get sugar up on sides. Put on stove on medium. Do not stir again. It will look like this.
Sugar just as it starts cooking

3.Wait at least 5 more likely 10 min occasionally looking at the pan. While you are waiting cut a piece of parchment paper that completely covers the inside and flops over the edges in all directions on your mold pan. This is also a good time to pour yourself a dark and stormy or to clean a dish or something but do not go to far. 

4. When the sugar mix begins to turn color start paying close attention when it is light brown (about the color of a lager like Sam Adams but no where near a Guinness in color nor as light as a Miller light)turn off the heat and pour in the butter mix slowly and while stirring( use a wooden spoon or a silicone spoon) It will bubble up and look impressive. 
Bubbling up as the butter mix was added 
I had a hard time taking a picture as it was steaming up and bubbling up so much. Also please ignore the random ramekin of butter behind that was for an unrelated project. 

5. Place back on medium heat. Stirring frequently for several minutes. The caramel will start to thicken and you can see this thickening as you stir. Get your cup of ice water ready and occasionally drip a drop of caramel into the ice-water from your stirring spoon . You are looking for firm ball stage.  Basically when you drip a drop of caramel into the ice water you will get a ball of caramel that will keep its shape in the water but you can squish easy when you take it out. ( basically yummy caramel) When you reach firm ball stage ( about 10 minutes) remove the pan from the heat and pour the caramel into the parchment paper lined mold. 
At firm ball stage caramel looks thick and is steaming less like this.

6. Allow candy in mold to cool for 5-10 minutes and then sprinkle on the topping mixture combo of ginger and salt. Allow caramel to cool until completely cold ( several hours at room temp or go ahead and put in fridge if you feel impatient. 

7. Once completely cooled use your chefs knife to cut the caramel into individual pieces and wrap in squares of waxed paper. 

8. Eat, enjoy, and if feeling kind share with your sailing buddies and non sailing buddies alike.