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We had a wonderful time on Erik's boat in September and October, sometimes with guests (as on this trip) and sometimes just the four of us. We had lots of warm, sunny fall weekends this year, which were perfect for afternoon outings. The boat is stored at a marina along the Delaware River, about 20 minutes from our house.

This particular trip was our longest one, we went north all the way to the Walt Whitman Bridge (in south Philadephia).

Coming back got a little cold this particular trip.

Another sunny October afternoon, another trip on the boat.

Simon on the lookout. Sometimes there is debris in the river, especially after a heavy rain. The first time we took the boat out, as we were putting it in the water we saw someone come off the river at top speed in a panic because they hit a log and punctured their hull! That made a big impression on all of us, especially Simon, who appointed himself lookout (he gets backup from the captain and first mate, of course!). That was a very unusual day - generally there's not that much debris - but it is surprising (and sad) how much junk there is in the river.

Toby and Mommy. Pretty sure we were heading south this day, which means that's the Commodore Barry Bridge in the background.

The Delaware is a major shipping lane, so there's a lot of boat traffic. Here's a tugboat. Also on our first time out, we passed a tugboat that was going quite fast. Its wake made quite large waves that we bounced over pretty hard, which again made a big (not so positive) impression on Simon. He has kept a close eye out for tugboats ever since.

Nicole enjoying the sun - photo by Simon

Generally, Nicole spends the trip sitting in the front of the boat with one or both boys sleeping on her.

Also on this trip, we got off and played on an island beach for a short time. There are lots of small islands and beaches along the river edge which are fun to explore. The Delaware is close enough to the ocean to have tides, so you have to be really careful that the tide doesn't go out and ground your boat. So neither Nicole or Erik were completely relaxed because we were keeping a close eye on the water line, but the boys had a blast running aorund in the sand. Of course we left the camera in the boat, so no photos this time... but I'm sure Robinson Crusoe photos will make their appearance next spring.

You see lots of freighters like this, anchored and sometimes actually sailing (steaming? what's the right word?) up the river like this one.

A pleasure cruise

Back at the dock - both kids still fast asleep. Note the life jackets. Erik and Nicole are the only adult boaters on the river who wear life jackets, by the way. We probably look like boating dorks but our philosophy is safety first, especially with the kids on board - and if we don't wear them, the boys won't want to, either.

They boys are amazingly well-behaved on the boat - they always seem relaxed and calm, there's no horsing around or fighting, and most incredibly, no whining about being bored (or anything else for that matter). I'm probably jinxing us for next season, but I certainly hope not. Thus far, going out on the boat has been one of our most successful family activities - it's something all four of us enjoy!



October 2008

Afternoons on the boat

The big move!

Halloween prep and the first
school field trip


October wrap-up