Showing posts from May, 2011

It's a Wrap!

WOW!  It’s my final day at work.  As I type this I am flying back to Denver from Los Angeles. As one of the Deloitte partners said today – this is my ‘final flight’ back home.  From a work perspective she is correct.

There are certainly people, places and clients I will miss. Turning the page is exciting.  It is bittersweet.

The Bitter:
      Missing: Working with some of the best and brightest people in the industryBuilding relationships with some outstanding clientsBuilding & driving the next market offeringThe rush of meeting new clients/people and building professional networksThe Sweet: Time with Sarah, Elizabeth and MichaelNot missing important events with kids as they develop and grow into young adults Sailing and exploring on our time, with no hard schedule or rushNo more 200+ emails a day (I know, insane!)Breathing deeply & relaxing vs. go, go, go Oh yeah…and no more TSA gropings at airport!So what is next in the immediate term? As we have outlined in this blog there is a…


One of the decisions that must be made is the type of outboard engine for a dinghy.  There are a lot of options to consider.  How much horsepower?  15, 20, 25?  Which manufacturer?  Yamaha, Mercury, Honda, Evinrude?  2-stroke or 4-stroke?
For marine use, Yamaha has a very strong reputation, and in short order I eliminated the other manufacturers.
Why does stroke matter?  Shouldn't this be easy?  The answer is 'It depends'.  For one it is almost impossible to purchase a 2-stroke outboard in the US.  Something to do with the EPA, pollution and Greenpeace (grin).  So based on this - I decided on the 2-stroke!

There were two key factors that moved our decision to a 2-stroke Yamaha engine: 
Serviceability.  2-Stroke engines require less service.  When you need service it is relatively easy to find parts and do it yourself.  Traveling to remote islands and needing computer chips and electronic diagnostics for the newer 4-stroke engines was not something that excited me.Weight to …

Chicken, Airplane, Soldier

Swimming... it's a life skill. Mark and I have been careful to set boundaries about gymnastics classes, sports, ballet lessons, gym classes, and all the other programs innocently offered in communities. These are all great for kids, but more is not always better. We decided to only allow our kids to be involved in one of these activities at a time. I don't want to be a cab driver, and we like our freedom to camp, hike, play games, and just BE together as a family. 
But swimming has always been part of our schedule. It's a life skill that we find in a whole other category. Since they were babies, the kids have been in swim classes of some sort. We have our times of "I don't like swim class" and those times when gulping water episodes have reversed a bit of the learning momentum, but all in all the kids LOVE it. They get excited to get their swim bags out and don their suits for a weekly trek to swim school.

Now, when I was a kid, swim lessons were miserabl…

Paradise Island

Ilha Grande. A location we had never heard of before. After hearing about this great place from Craig and Laurie (s/v Alberta Crewed) we made sure to put this on our list. In fact, we plan on spending at least 3 weeks cruising this area! We already have friends flying down to Rio to join us for a week.

"Ilha Grande is one of the most pristine remnants of Brazil's Atlantic rainforest, one of the richest ecosystems in the world, and a hotspot for biodiversity and conservation. It holds some of the largest remaining populations of many endangered species, including the red-ruffed fruitcrow (Pyroderus scutatus), the brown howler monkey (Alouatta fusca), the maned sloth (Bradypus torquatus) the red-browed Amazon parrot (Amazona rhodocorytha), and the broad-snouted caiman (Caiman latirostris). The seas around the island, which are also protected, feature a unique convergence of tropical, subtropical, and temperate-zone marine life, and may be the only waters in the world where it i…

Oh Captain! My Captain!

Finally! We have our captain for the big trip from Brazil to the Caribbean. Finding a captain for our boat wasn’t easy. We had a number of different options from some great captains. Two of them I knew from previous acquaintances.

In the end, the deciding factor was finding a captain that previous Antares owners had used and who is experienced on the Antares 44i.

We are very fortunate to have found Martin (more info here) available and willing to do our delivery.  Craig (s/v Alberta Crewed) just finished his trip with Martin from Brazil to the Caribbean.  By all accounts it went very well, and based on his recommendation I contacted Martin to be captain on our passage.

So ‘what’ is the plan? Here is our updated schedule…that will most likely change given boat commissioning, weather, etc. It will at least provide a general feel for our timing.

The Route

Kids Point of View

Sarah and I both have been discussing our thoughts on this blog.  We thought it was time to hand it over to the kiddos and let you hear directly from them!

We sat them both down this weekend, pulled out the camera and shot some video.

No need for more words from us, click on the video link below to hear Michael and Elizabeth talk about boats, fishing, dogs, poop and lots more!


Extraordinary describes the experiences, people and clients I have had in my career. With less than three weeks left before leaving Deloitte and going sailing, I have been reflecting on the past and looking forward to the future. It’s exciting. It’s complex. It’s challenging.

One memory kept coming back to me this week. A memory I will never forget. It is hard to measure the impact we have on other people’s lives. Most of the time we have no idea until a tragic event occurs.

Prior to the acquisition of Xcelicor, one of our employees (I’ll call him John) was extremely ill, and having difficulties at work. We encouraged John to take some time off and get medical assistance. We soon found out he was diagnosed with cancer. The doctors told his family it was terminal, and he had a short time to live.

This terrible news came soon after we announced to our employees that Deloitte was acquiring our firm. Our COO and some good friends went to spend time with John in the hospital. His situatio…

On a Leash

Kids aren't dogs!  There is nothing worse than going to a mall or public place and seeing kids tethered to their parents by a piece of nylon.  Call my crazy, but this is just downright stupid.  Heck, I rarely put a leash on Buster, and it's the law!  I can't imagine putting a leash on my kids.

Oh...wait a minute.  We will be on a boat.  They aren't the best swimmers.  It can be hard to find much less recover a kid overboard.  Hmmm...on second thought...

Safety of kids and crew is a huge concern.  My biggest nightmare is losing someone overboard.  Sarah and I have both been doing a lot of reading on this topic.  Making our boat safe for little ones is critical.  I just finished reading an excellent book on the topic - Kids in the Cockpit.  Highly recommended if you plan on sailing with kids. 

In short, I will provide everyone with our current plans for kid safety on the boat.  This is subject to modification, but is our starting point. 

Standing Rules Effective 100% of…


One of my hobbies has always been videography.  I am not a professional.  Just an avid hobbiest spending too much on professional equipment.  For the boat, I am not able to use my Canon XH A1.  This has been a GREAT camera.  I love this camera!  Unfortunately it is just too big and bulky to be convienent on a boat.  In addition the underwater housing weighs a lot and costs a fortune!

I am looking forward to telling our stories via video.  There will be a lot of beautiful and interesting things to see and tell our friends and family.  Finding the right camera is very important to me.  As with everything, I did a lot of research to determine the best overall balance between functionality, portability and price.

They key criteria for the new camera is:
Excellent HD video quality in variety of conditionsCompact housing, but not cheaply made Excellent low light capabilities (underwater use in particular)Native 24p (24 frames/s progressive)No HDD or DVC, flash memory only (less moving parts,…