Last year, we did a trial Christmas away from home. The children wondered if Santa could still find us. We thought it would be fun to enjoy what was likely our last white Christmas for a while, and rented a cabin in the snowy Methow Valley. Good news: Santa not only knows when you are sleeping and awake, he can find you when your location unexpectedly shifts! We reveled in the winter wonderland, and dreamed about our white sand Christmas coming in 2008.
This year, of course, he had a few more latitudes to change to find us. And there's no chimney on the boat: does he come down the mast? Stockings were hung from the grab-rails with care. Our worries were for naught: not only were filled in the morning, but apparently Santa is handy with zip-ties—we found three more hung from the lifelines outside.
It is a much pared-down holiday in many ways, and it was lovely. Our only regret was that good friends coming to visit us were stuck in Oregon, victims of one canceled flight after another as the Northwest was buffeted by unheard of snowfall. We missed them terribly! They were also ferrying gifts from our family, but that's not a problem. We'll just have a Round Two holiday whenever they reach us.
The cruisers in Mazatlan, like cruisers everywhere, have fast become friends. Christmas Eve, we caroled our way around the marina, from dock to dock and of course visiting the fantastic staff at the resort lobby for a rousing rendition of "Feliz Navidad."
Lynn & Debbie, on Dolphin Tales, have a car here and generously took us all on a tour of homes in the nearby country club- the children were SO excited (Jamie and I included!). The decorations were UNREAL, not sure I've ever (ever) seen a neighborhood so totally lit up with lights for the holidays! The power consumption is a little appalling and you have to wonder about the neighborhood pressure, but truth be told, as a show- and boost for holiday spirit- it was wonderful. Any worries we had about our children feeling like they'd be missing out were unfounded.
Still, there were times the last week I was close to tears. Worrying that it would all turn out OK- for the children, for our friends in Portland... and besides, there is something about being with dear friends and family for the holidays! Our kids would have LOVED to be making snowmen and sledding in the old neighborhood. They had fun skyping from afar with their buddies, and that did help.
We’ll be headed south as soon as the weather accommodates, hopefully within the next couple of days. There’s a norther now that’s making things a little lumpy, and as much as the winds look good for sailing- we really like to keep it comfortable with the children. Our next destinations are Isla Isabella- a wildlife refuge of blue-footed boobies and frigate birds; San Blas, a small town with great wildlife diversity to explore; the surfing hangout of Sayulita, to hopefully find Bridget & Mathew before they depart; then around the corner of Punta de Mita to Banderas Bay and Puerto Vallarta. We’re unlikely to have Internet access for a while once we take off, but follow us on SPOT!