People always want to see what and why we are doing what we are doing. I think our story is funny and interesting to people. I am purposely making this page long so that people can really get a feel for whom we are and why we are doing what we are doing.

 

This is a compilation of various friend/family comments about our impending journey:

  • What are you thinking?
  • You want to move your family aboard a boat and travel throughout the Caribbean?
  • How will you get there?
  • You are afraid of the water!
  • You live in a nice house in a nice neighborhood and you have two cars. You have everything you need! Why would you take that risk?
  • You want to pull your child out of one of the best schools in Texas and homeschool her on a boat?
  • Your boy is only 3 but he will need to learn something eventually- what could you ever teach him?
  • Your boat will sink even if it did, you wouldn’t know it because you have no boating experience! You were in the Army, not the Navy. Pirates will kill you! You are so stupid!

 

Everything is bigger in Texas and that wasn’t untrue for us. Our story is rare but not unique. We had two gas-sucking trucks, a house that would accommodate six large families in some Eastern countries, with all of the fixings of your typical suburban life. Looking back, it seems absurd that we had two full-sized refrigerators; a deep freezer and one of those little dorm boxes in case we couldn’t hold all of our Lonestar Beer and BBQ sauce under one roof.

Miss Lone Star was purchased in 2014 on Lake Travis Texas. She was fist named Joint Resolution, after a big attorney-like decision to buy a boat that would sit in a covered spot on the lake for an eternity. He saw her and fell in love with the vessel, which was in good order and sea worthy, still on a lake; a Cruisers Yachts 37’ twin engine- class A rated vessel. His childhood dream was to cruise the Caribbean and retire there.

Captain Robb met who would become his First Mate in 2014. He fell in love with Aubrey, after they met on Match.com (seriously). He fell in love with the Chief Stew, Bianca and Un-Able seaman, Blake. Aubrey wouldn’t stay aboard the boat because she was afraid of the water. It was a phobia. Blake caught his first fish aboard the boat but Bianca was somewhat oblivious to the whole idea of being on a boat because nothing fun happened on it.

We got married on New Year’s Eve in 2014 and took our honeymoon in St. Croix, USVI. We loved the clear blue water of the Caribbean and we felt it beckoning. We went home to our land-locked house in Austin and definitely felt like something was missing. Austin wasn’t close to a beach but the Caribbean was so far away. We remembered we had a boat so we decided to go back to the Caribbean, permanently.

Packing was a monumental task. We were your average American hoarders, so what to do with all of this stuff? We kept an 18x8x8 storage pod filled with all of things we couldn’t part with and everything else was up for grabs on Ebay, Craigslist, consignment and pawn. Four garage sales later, we were ready to go, but not before we bought all of the crap we needed to be full-time liveaboard cruisers!

We bought all of the supplies suggested by anyone who claimed to live the salt life, since everything you need to know about boating can be found on the Internet! Aubrey diligently unpacked thirteen 50-gallon tubs into our boat as our adventure began. Most of this stuff now resides on the ocean floor (some items have new bullet holes). We imagined sipping chamepign on the bow at sunset but what we really got was confusion, high seas, vomit, shoaling, the sweet smell of sewage, a tide of acute disrepair and old men laughing from the docks as we struggled to figure it out.

Despite the fact that our head (toilet) is only two feet from the galley (kitchen) food always tastes better on the hook (anchor). Our family is closer than we’ve ever been, literally. We reside in 128 sf. of interior space, which counts the tops of our beds. Our living space, with or without kids, is smaller than any “tiny house nation” home ever built. We have never been happier!

Challenges aside, this lifestyle has far exceeded our expectations. We never miss a sunset. Blake fishes from dawn to dusk proudly supplying us with a sustainable food source. Bianca expertly combs beaches turning her finds into crafts that she sells. Aubrey easily meets her catch a day quota of native species. Robb no longer has to travel to dive in clear water. Diving is just one giant stride away from the boat. Onyx fiercely guarded us against raccoons, iguanas, storks and dolphins; just to name a few.

We found a family we never knew we had in sailors. There is a genuine sense of community and friendship within the boating community. Society’s hard shell of distrust doesn’t exist on the water and deep, lasting friendships are made during a weekend. Our life is like an unending summer camp.

Homeschooling our kids is easy and the kids are blossoming under our direction. There is always time to read or to learn a lesson in science. At their early ages, our kids know more about nature and natural science than their former classmates. They are becoming fluent in Spanish and they read at an above average level that is unbound by any school’s guidelines. We watch the kids transform socially and they are able to easily create relationships with adults and other children.

Aubrey always said that we could make an adjustment if we didn’t like the lifestyle but we never discussed what that adjustment would look like if we wished to make it permanent. Our new address is somewhere in the Big Blue.

Five souls are aboard Miss Lone Star. Thank you for reading our journal and joining us in our best adventure yet!

New Tag RobbRobb commissioned Miss Lone Star from a poor sucker who didn’t know what she was worth. After hauling her from the bottom of the lake, he completed minimal repairs to make her more than sea worthy. He served in the US Army as a Paratrooper and that gave him ample experience to captain our vessel and the souls aboard in the Caribbean Sea. He has the face only a mother could love and never met ice cream he didn’t devour. He is the proud papa of five beautiful children that all have his nose and flat feet. He spends his spare time sharpening knives, watching the symphony and talking in his sleep to Lenny (imaginary friend). He successfully courted our First Mate for eight months. She agreed to marriage after he proposed to her in a phone booth. They met through a classy online dating service.

First Mate Miss Lone Star

First Mate Miss Lone Star

Mrs. Aubrey is our beautiful First Mate and was reluctant to join the crew at first. That is, until she was promised 2 1/2 shares of Miss Lone Star’s plunder. Her skills as a brave hunter will keep us fed if we get marooned (seriously). She has helpful knowledge of stitching that she gained from torturing small animals throughout her childhood. She might repair the engine, paint a portrait or jump into a flying kung-fu kick at any moment. We firmly believe that she is Roger’s (from American Dad) sister and taught sailors how to speak properly from a young age. Aubrey harnesses a wide array of tactical shooting skills and knife fighting capabilities. Her favorite color is purple.

Un-able Seaman Miss Lone Star

Un-able Seaman Miss Lone Star

Blake has wanted to live on a boat since he watched his first episode of Jake and the Neverland Pirates. He is our Unable Seaman and longs for the day when he finds his first gold piece. He is also very anxious to “boom” his first shark, although he thinks all of the seafood he consumes is chicken. He has lost more fishing poles in his short life than fishermen twice his age. He has a wicked bad attitude, which is tempered only by his lack of good behavior. We have high hopes for the lad and pray be gets his sea legs to leave the diapers behind. On a serious note, he is a cute little boy who has much to learn. We love his lively imagination and love of the ocean. We think that he will take to the sea faring life because he has to do what we say. He will likely be found swabbing decks or hunting for lizards on a deserted island naked.

Cheif Stew Miss Lone Star

Cheif Stew Miss Lone Star

Bianca is probably the most anxious of the crew to begin our voyage. She holds the honorary title Chief Stew until she can learn how to serve herself or pick up her own dishes, for that matter. At that point, she will likely call a mutiny or call a vote to take over as Captain. Bianca’s real talent is art. She has a sparkling natural wonder for the world and its creatures. We think that her Kindergarten teacher’s biggest wish is for her to graduate or get kidnapped, whichever happens first. She doesn’t currently enjoy chores or work of any kind so the transition to cruising life should be interesting. We have no doubt that she will amass enough stories (real or imagined) of life on the high seas to embarrass us and cause most strangers concern. She was voted first kid to get her own reality show in by her fellow classmates in Sunday School. She speaks English and disagrees that “timeout” is in the dictionary.

Security Miss Lone Star

Security Miss Lone Star

Onyx might be the most educated and obedient member of the entire crew. She is most content when snuggling the Captain on the couch or terrorizing small dogs and babies. She originally hails from California where she gained her experience as a dope dog for the Sheriff’s Department before she was fired for failing a piss test. She is a good swimmer but prefers the boat to the dinghy. Her biggest regret is not settling the score with the Fed-Ex man before joining our crew. She enjoys type B poodles, gunfire and a good poo in the morning. Her sign is Virgo.

Miss Lone Star Circa 2014

Miss Lone Star Circa 2014

Our Big Plan Before We Departed Austin, TX (Things Change!)

We are a small family who currently lives in Austin, Texas with big plans to move aboard our boat and cruise the Caribbean for a year or more. We named our vessel Miss Lone Star and we are moving permanently to St. Croix, US Virgin Islands at the conclusion of our voyage. Our departure date is July 2015 and we will provide videos and information on all aspects of our preparation for the journey.

Our other videos will feature different aspects of life on our boat, fishing and catching what we eat, cooking, boat renovations and repairs, storage ideas, navigating, seamanship, anchoring at sea, clearing customs, charting courses, anchorages and ports, provisioning, travel destinations and more.

Aubrey is a professional photographer and she has amassed every expensive piece of gear that she needs to capture amazing images along the way. She will also be adding photography/ video tips and techniques to our YouTubeChannel and Blog. She has become a organizing queen during our months of preparation and she will teach you what she has learned.

Robb is a US Army Veteran and former professional tactical gun trainer. He is a dive master and loves to scuba on a regular basis. He plans to spend his time fishing for dinner or finding buried treasure with his metal detector.

We are homeschooling our three and six year old kids along the way. Stay tuned to see how we tackle this monumental opportunity! We will detail learning experiences, projects for kids and explore cultural issues along the way. In researching our planned cruise, we found that there was little information out there on the “how to” of raising and educating children on a boat.

Blake is our pesky boy who gets into more trouble than a pack of puppies. He loves pirates, sharks and dinosaurs. Bianca is our little princess who attempts to rule the boat like a dictator. She loves shells, art and making messes. Onyx is our huge black German Shepard. Her hobby is protecting us and herding kids.

We will be catching all manner of fish, lobster and critters as we go. We will provide a “cruiser’s guide” on how to catch, clean and cook what we eat. We will share our favorite recipes.

Our cursing bounds include: Florida Inter-coastal Waterway (ICW), the Bahamas, Grand Bahama, Abacos, Nassau, Eleuthera Island, Cat Island, Long Island, San Salvador, Rum Cay, Crooked Island, Mayaguana, Inagua Island, Turks and Caicos Islands, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Spanish Virgin Islands, US Virgin Islands, St. Thomas, St. John and St. Croix. We will likely continue on to explore the rest of the Caribbean Islands/ Central America before we settle down.Silent Night

68 Comments

  • sylovelyrita says:

    Hi Miss Lone Star crew,
    Thanks for following my blog. I will follow yours as well. We share a love for cruising. We have been living aboard our sailing boat Rita for 7 years now and thoroughly enjoy it. Aubrey is an amazing photographer. I am looking forward to reading about your cruising experiences.

    Greetings from Karin and Louis (we’re Dutch by the way).

    • misslonestar says:

      Thank you for your comment. Where are you cruising? I don’t know if I would love a much colder climate but I guess anything beats living on hard land. Cheers and fair winds to you!

      • sylovelyrita says:

        Thanks for your reply. We’re cruising in the Atlantic coast of Portugal and Spain. The climate is great! Not too cold in winter and not too hot in summer. Better than Holland, that’s for sure. Fair winds to you too.

  • misslonestar says:

    I’m sure it is wonderful. Have you been to the Caribbean? We are very anxious to set off!

  • Very Cool! I wish I could do that!

  • mufidsukkar says:

    Thank you guys for following me. I wish you and Miss Lone Star good luck for 2015 and beyond. Mufid Sukkar

  • Anabell says:

    This is such a fantastic “about” page. I thoroughly enjoyed the description of the crew. I was further blown away by your plans! I commend you for taking your children and setting on an unforgettable voyage! I will follow closely because I hope to one day take my (future) children on expeditions! Best of lucks and I am anxiously staying tuned!!

    • Thanks Anabell! We got a laugh doing the About the Crew page and I am happy that I have a wife who can do art work. We are really happy and we think our travels will bring us all more happiness. You only live life once!

  • petchary says:

    Thanks for following my blog and warm greetings from Jamaica (an island I see you are avoiding, at least this time around!)

    • Greetings to you! We will be getting to Jamaica as soon as we can. I love Jamaica. Do you enjoy living on the island? I am so glad that everyday people can now come to Cuba. It will make doing a loop around the Caribbean more possible for Americans. You have a wonderful blog.

  • petchary says:

    Oh yes! Of course, with Cuba coming into the picture – our closest neighbor, only 60 miles away – that would be lovely. Have a wonderful time meanwhile – I envy you!

  • 56packardman says:

    Thank you for stopping by ’56 Packard Man! All the best to you in your venture!

  • Phyll says:

    quite the crew! 😉 thanks for stopping by – looking forward to following your adventures!

  • Thank you for following my blog. Have you found the facebook group Sailing4Kids? There is another group for kids also, but I can’t remember the name. There aren’t as many kids in the Caribbean as there are in the Bahamas, especially Georgetown in the Exumas. What will you be doong in St. Croix after you’re done cruising. Good luck with everything.

    Lorraine

    • Thanks for the information. We will be spending a fair amount of time in the Bahamas as we make our way down. We are professional photographers and writers. We are thinking about opening a gallery in Christensted, St. Croix, once we get settled. We have also considered becoming school teachers. Where are y’all headed?

  • Kendra S says:

    Hello! Thanks so much for the blog follow! I look forward to checking out yours – so far your About page was highly entertaining!

    Kendra

  • Thanks for the follow! What a fun adventure you are on…..look forward to reading more.

  • This is the BEST About page I’ve come across. It cracked me up. Such a fun family, and I adore Onyx. Ho-ho, love that Silent Night pic. Priceless! I award this page (and your blog) five-out-of-five stars and two thumbs up.

    Safe, Happy Travels!

  • Suze says:

    Ahoi Aubrey! A wonderful blog you guys have. I can’t wait to catch up on your travel stories. Happy traveling and dafe journeys! 🙂

  • Herman says:

    Hi there. Thank you for visiting and following HoB. Much appreciated!

  • Wow! What an introduction! First off, thanks for the follow and I’m glad you did. I have yet to read any blog posts but I am already hooked. My husband (a U.S. Navy veteran)’s dream is to have a boat and live on the boat. Ever since his US Navy years, the ocean is where he feels the most at home. I, too would love that adventure. We actually bought a boat last year, but quickly our dreams failed and we sold it.
    We wanted to sail down the East Coast of the US, to the caribbean, cross the Panama canal and sail back to the US Northwest where we live. We currently didn’t have the financial resources to take on repairing a boat and then living in it. Anyway, your journey sounds really exciting and I’m really looking forward to reading about it, learning from it and vicariously living through it.
    Cheers!
    Mani

  • trablogger says:

    Most interesting and well written travel related intro page so far! All the best and good luck for this journey. I am keeping a watch on the boat from the shore 😉

  • Caramel says:

    I’m very interested in following your bog, especially since I am originally from the Caribbean.

  • Howdy crew!
    We’re a fulltime RV family out of Michigan. We run http://ditchingsuburbia.com and do a weekly blog roundup where we mention any new suburbia-ditching families we meet. We’ll give you a shout-out there, add you to our boating family blogroll, and include you as a source blog for http://topfamilytravelblogs.com.

    We just mentioned these guys: http://theworldisourschool.com/ – who also launched from Austin and have a photographer parent. They are road-tripping it instead of being on the water but I thought the similarities were interesting!

    Cheers!

  • boyink says:

    Oh that’s SO hard to say..;)

    The US is an incredibly beautiful and diverse country – then throw in the people that you meet and that influence your experience in a certain place and it’s like picking a favorite child.

    We spent the most time in Arizona of anywhere – mainly because it was so different than our native Michigan it just fascinated us.

    The empty states on our map area all in the East – but we plan to head West again in the fall. The mountains and big-sky states out there are beckoning harder than the close/busy east.

    • That makes sense. I did a lot of Rv’ing in New Mexico and lived there for 15 years. A little known and fun route from the Northern part towards Abq. that is worth looking into- Bandalier Natl. Rec. Area behind Los Alamos then south through the Jemez mountains. You can car camp off of state rd. 476 (by Ponderosa) and you will be alone in the most beautiful country.

      How long have you been at it? I really admire your sense of adventure. Everybody thinks we are crazy. I bet you get that a lot.

  • boyink says:

    We’ve been close to that, it looks like. We’ve friends in Los Alamos and camped with them at Lake Abiquiu a bit NE of Ponderosa. I’ve joked that we could spend all of our days in NM/AZ/CO/UT just going north and south with the weather.

    We left our house in September of 2010, set on doing a year on the road. We did the year and went back home in November 2011. We spent the next few months prepping the house for sale and were back on the road in April 2012.

    We’ve heard a bit of “crazy”, a number of “I could never do thats”, a lot of “I wish my wife would do that”, and a lot of “that’s awesome”.

    • I think your kids are much better because of it. We counted the amount of chairs we had inside and outside our house and it astounded me that I only sat in 2 of them. Such excess. I wanted to model better for our kids. As adults, we realize that experiences matter and not things. I want my kids to see that first-hand through our modeling. It won’t suck to be in the Caribbean, traveling the world in our boat. I really think the kids will pick up language easily and we hope to get to know a lot of normal people in other countries. We can’t wait to go to Cuba and see it while it is still locked in time.

  • Like your writing, funny 🙂 Sounds interesting – good luck!!!

  • Thank you Miss Lone star for stopping by my blog. All the best in the Caribbean, you will love it.

  • lamputts says:

    Thanks for following our blog. Hope you have a great time. How long are you planning on living aboard?

  • JoAnne says:

    I love the pics and how you’ve described your crew, especially that you’ve included Onyx, rightfully, as a full member. Thanks for finding and following “Anything is Possible.” I’m looking forward to following your journey via computer. Safe travels to all of you!

  • Michael R says:

    Hi – We’re getting ready to do a 6-8 month trip from Fort Lauderdale, through the Bahamas, Turks & Caicos, DR, PR and end up in BVI. Unfortunately I cant completely disengage as I need to come back every few weeks to maintain work and will need internet access while traveling. Any suggestions as far as communications? We have a wifi amp and sat phone but am curious if you have found a better / cheaper way? Also, we have 2 dogs that will be traveling with us and are getting the necessary permits / documentation but any suggestions as far as traveling with dogs? Thank you!

    Regards,
    Michael

  • Frank says:

    First Robb I want to thank you for your service. Second I think the first thing you have going for you is a supportive mate to achieve your present dream. I envy your situation. She seems like a great person for an adventure. And she is smokin hot. Just saying! I would suggest watching the S/V Delos for some advice on sailing. They seem to have it down. I have watched them evolve into what I believe would be a great reality show. Just be yourselves and you guys will do great. Just prepare, prepare, prepare before you venture into the Carribbean. It ain’t Texas. God Speed. And gentle seas.

    A fellow serviceman.

    • Crew, Miss Lone Star says:

      Thanks for reading Frank! I am so lucky to have such a wonderful and beautiful first mate, I can tell you that! I’ve been watching Delos of about a year and I also like La Vagabonde. We definitely know that we have very little experience so we will take it slow, thanks for the nice words and your service!

  • Dale Fritz says:

    Love everything you are doing…. My wife and I have been talking about this for years…. How do you pay for your gas food… day to day items…? I work for the USPS… plan on retiring in a few years…. I am 50… and dont want to do this forever… I also love photography….. I am also an artist… Lived in Michigan for 46 years.. moved to NC for 2 years … now in Charleston SC… getting closer to our goal…. You guys are great…..

    • Crew, Miss Lone Star says:

      I replied on your YouTube comment too but I wanted to let you know that I am retired from the Army. We budget our money really tightly to allow us to live this life. We are spending much less money now than we did living in a neighborhood. It is possible to live your dream and even save a few bucks each day! SC is way better than MI, in my opinion! You are getting closer to the water each year! Thanks for reading and watching!

      • Dale Fritz says:

        You plan on settling down in St. Croix??? are you going to live on the boat or on land? If on the boat… in a marina or anchored? Is security an issue with alot a crime every where… Thanks for taking the time with me…. might see you down there someday…. Dale

        • Crew, Miss Lone Star says:

          We DO NOT plan on settling in STX. We thought about it and considered it for awhile but it is too rough! It is a bad area, too violent and the government is too corrupt. It took us a long time to figure it out but there is no way that we live there.

        • Dale Fritz says:

          Ya.. I was reading about the crime there… pretty much in a lot of places in the caribbean…Had a job opportunity in Key West… thought about living aboard there… How did you like it there? Thanks for the time…

          • Crew, Miss Lone Star says:

            Key West is awesome. It is like the US in the 1960’s. the keys remind me of going down route 66 in the 1980’s. Cool, laid back, locals are awesome and tourists not so much. High season messes up traffic, but we don’t drive hardly at all so it doesn’t effect us. We stay away from touristy places. The water is gorgeous. It is a close sail to Havana, Bahamas or the Dry Tortugas. I think living aboard a boat is great and we will come back, likely next year after being in the Bahamas. Do you have specific questions? The keys are a bit weird. No Wal marts, only K marts. 2 home depots in 110 miles of driving. Key West is known for chickens and roosters running the streets like St. Croix. There are a ton of tidbits like that.

  • Brian says:

    Great web pages, I have the bug watching , S/V Delos, Katie & Jessie on a boat, But more watching windtraveler, and you! Been also reading voyaging on a small budget, and deep blue voyaging, and facebook living on the hook! I planning on starting my live aboard live style soon. but must be great having a family with ya!

    • Crew, Miss Lone Star says:

      We love watching all of those channels too! We also enjoy FB Cruising and Sailing forum. I love the Hull Truth forum on the Internet. Congrats on making the decision to live on the hook and get out here as fast as you can! Thanks for reading!

  • SV SAD Day. says:

    Did you just wake up one day and decide, ‘we are doing this’. Or was this something that you planned. How long did it take to sell everything and officially live on the boat?
    My husband and I have the dream of selling everything, buying a boat in the USVI and living the rest of our lives on the water. We just haven’t made the decision of when….
    Was it hard quit your jobs and walk away?

  • Brian wrigh says:

    really enjoy the video’s!! it is a dream of my wifes and mine to cash out and head out on our boat!.. we have a crusier yachts 375 on lake champlain… you guys should head north! get the salt off that boat! we have four kids and actually mounted car seats in the boat for safe places for them to ride and while docking… we will keep watching!

  • Guy says:

    Hi Guy’s n Gals, was wondering if you were planning on any travels further that the Caribbean?
    say 3000 Nautical miles, give or take to England, ocean sailing is great fun (best on a sailing yacht for cost reasons)
    I am from plymouth, in the English channel, an avid sailor, a boat builder/marine engineer etc… I have just completed a 3 year build building a yacht for travelling and am near completion….. oooh at last 🙂
    anyways, if you ever wish to make the dash accross the pond to old blighty, feel free to consider me a local guide.
    I have subscribed to your news letter.
    Kindest
    Guy

  • Adam Biegler says:

    So im planing a similar idea. Question is. What do you need to do with fire arms wile traveling from country to country? And thank you for the inspiration. Keep it up.

  • Kevin says:

    Hi to crew of Miss Lonestar…love your blog. Sail a bit myself here in Canada, more often deliveries in the carrib. Last year Montego Bay to D.R. to P.R. to B.V.I. to St Martin. Just saying in the carrib it’s all about baby steps. Hats off to you…..fair winds & calm seas

  • Nate says:

    Hey kudos to your family for following your dreams. You’re a great inspiration and have me thinking hard about a similar escape to a paradise I fell for my first visit to the keys. Just started watching your adventures a couple days ago on YouTube. Question, What is the great music you commonly play in your early episodes? Love it

    Nate

1 Trackback

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *