Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Adopt don't shop

Adopt don't shop - By: Jessica

I know it sounds great to have a purebred Corgi or Bengal cat but there is a dark side to breeding.There are many innocent animals in shelters being euthanized because people didn't adopt them fast enough. Here are some reasons why you should adopt a pet and not buy one from breeders or a pet shop.

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Shelter kittens that need your help
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Shelter puppies that also need your help

1) When you adopt a pet from a shelter you are saving it's life, there is a huge inflow of animals in shelters but usually they don't have enough room so their "solution" is to euthanize the pets that don't get adopted.

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Many cats like this one aren't picked because they
 aren't cute purebred kittens

2) You have a big choice of what dog or cat you get. You can still get a pet if you want, or you can get an old, well trained one, it's up to you! There are many types of mixed breeds in shelters which are just as pretty as any full Husky or Scottish Fold.

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This dog is a cute shelter mutt!

3) You are putting puppy mills to a stop. be real, puppy mills are absolutely awful. Puppy mills are factory-style breeding facilities that put profit above the welfare of dogs. Animals from puppy mills are put into extremely poor conditions and are often very sick and traumatized. The mothers are kept in cages to be bred for years upon end. And after the mothers can't have anymore puppies, they are thrown away, killed, deserted or sold at auction. 
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A Corgi with her babies

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A Husky puppy mill

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Plastic is not fantastic


Over the past few years of sailing aboard Terrapin, I have noticed something disturbing. I have witnessed plastic thrown on beaches, floating in the ocean, or laying on streets. Even while crossing the Pacific Ocean, I saw plastic floating in the middle of nowhere. Something must be done! We, all of us, need to reduce our plastic use.


93% of plastics are not recycled. Considering most of us use plastic every day...this stinks!

We consume plastic without even knowing it. 1/4 of the fish we eat contain plastic. 

You are drinking plastic. 83% of tap water tested has plastic microbeads.

More than 8 million tons of plastic are dumped into the oceans each year. 

 It is estimated that between 5000-15000 sea turtles are entangled each year in fishing gear in Northern Australia alone.

The life of plastic can be from 10 to 1,000 years.

You can easily reduce the amount of plastic you use.


Ways you can easily reduce your plastic use.

Take reusable bags to the stores with you! Easy.

Refuse straws! 

Ditch the plastic water bottle. It is easy to bring your own reusable bottle where ever you go.

When ordering coffee, have the barista fill up a reusable coffee cup.

Bring your own to go containers when eating out. Refuse the styrofoam "to go" container. 

Loose your plastic toothbrush. Order a bamboo toothbrush off Amazon. 

Send your kids to school (like when Emma and I went to school) with reusable sandwich bags. After use, your kids can bring them home in their lunch boxes.

Throw out anything that claims to have microbeads.

When grabbing a soda on the go...choose the can instead of the plastic bottle.

Use bar soap instead of plastic pump soap. 

Consider using stainless steal ice cube trays. 

Choose natural cat liter.

Buy your laundry detergent in boxes not plastic jugs.

Use wooden combs and hairbrushes.

Use tinfoil instead of plastic-wrap

Just by changing 2 or 3 of daily habits can have a huge effect.

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Become a friend of Animals Fiji

During our stay in Savusavu, Fiji, we have been able to volunteer with Animals Fiji. Recently, we went to an outter village during one of Animals Fiji outreach programs.


In addition to being able to work hands on with Animals Fiji, learn veterinary techniques, we also got to witness how important the services are that Animals Fiji provides.

We have started the "Friends of Animal Fiji" fund to help offset the costs associated with their outreach programs that serve remote village. Please consider making a donation to this amazing charity. Thank you! Jessica and Emma


Saturday, December 16, 2017

A day of volunteering in a veterinarians clinic.

Written by: Jessica (14) and Emma (12). Pictures by: Mom

We are currently in Savusavu, Fiji for cyclone season. A few months ago we took off some time from homeschool to play all day with our friends (we hadn't seen them in a long time.) Now, it's time to get back to the books. In addition to studying extra hours for homeschool, we're also learning in other ways. Some different ways we are learning outside the "classroom" is volunteering at the local animal clinic, taking art classes with a local artist and joining the junior sailing class. Friday we spent hours volunteering at the Animals Fiji clinic.

Getting ready to comfort a dog fresh from surgery

I (Jessica) loved my first day at Animal Fiji clinic because Alex (the vet) allowed us to interact and help. My favorite part of the day was when I learned how to take a pulse and when I learned how to test urine for blood. I look forward to learning more about the medical procedures the vet will preform. I had such a great experience at the clinic.   

I (Emma) loved the animal clinic because I got to help the dogs feel comfortable and I really like watching the vet, Alex do the surgery on the dogs. I got to learn how to make a sterile kit, helped the dogs wake up from their Isofluorane, I was also able to help prepare a dog for surgery. The day that we went to the clinic they were packed with dogs, by the end of the day they had 7 dogs that were fixed and a cat, they also had 2 dogs that came in to be vaccinated and one urine test. 

Reading a dogs pulse

 The clinic is trying to get 10,000 signatures to ban Paraquat, it's a poison used to kill the weeds that grow on plants for the farmers, the problem with is that it also kills animals and humans. When a dog or cat consumes the Paraquat it burns the dogs from in side eating away their lungs and other inside organisms and is a very painful death that is why Animals Fiji is trying to ban it. It's very sad. If you too would like to sign the petition to ban Paraquat, click here. 

Creating sterile kits

Preparing a dog for surgery

We're both happy that our parents organized a day for us to volunteer with Animals Fiji and can't wait to go back. We're especially happy that mom didn't get upset when we told her that we felt like we learned more in one day at the clinic than had we done homeschool! 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Catching up with Pigtails in Paradise.

Written by Jessica, age 14

Sorry for lacking on the postsL!

Since we last left off on the blog, lots of things have happened. After we decided to no longer sail south towards Panama, we stayed in Mexico, stopped in Barra Navidad for Christmas, La Cruz for New Years, then we went  back down to Zihuataejo for the guitar fest, which was awesome. It was a week of awesome music, dancing and food.

Our crew for guitar fest.

 After we went to the guitar fest we sailed back up into the Sea of Cortez, and when I mean up, I mean WAY up there. It was so great, I felt like I was in a book or magazine. My favorite spot was a place we called “butt cheek cove” on Isla Tiburon. 

After sailing the Sea of Cortez we hauled out in Guaymas and decided that we would go to Charleston, SC (where my dad is from) for hurricane season and to help refuel the cruising kitty. We bought a car, packed our things, grabbed the cat, stopped in San Diego to see family, before putzing along to South Carolina. We made a few stops along the way like in Austin, Texas. 

My San Diego family, included 2 great grandmothers.

We made it to South Carolina, where we lived for 7 months. I have a lot of family (including 10 cousins) in Charleston, so it made it a lot easier to be in one place for seven months. 

Me and most of my cousins having a blast.

With both our parents working, we were enrolled the local public school (where 3 of my cousins went) after a great summer filled with beaches, family time and parties. Before going back to school I was pretty nervous, and started wondering, “Will I be behind in school?” or “Will I want to go back to the boat after this?” It turned out that I was a year ahead in math and was able to move into “honors” classes. The best part? I got straight A’s for both terms I was in school! Because I want to be a vet when I am older, I made a deal with my parents that if I got straight A's I could go to work with my neighbor who is a vet on his surgery day. 
In the veterinarian operating room!

My parents had said that if after going back to the states, if Emma and I wouldn’t want to go back to the boat, we wouldn’t have to. I guess we would have sold the boat and just moved back into a house. After a few months at school, both Emma and I were begging to go back to Terrapin.  I wanted to go back to the boat  for a few reasons. My main reason for wanting to go back to the boat was that between before school tutoring and regular school hours, I was at school from 7:30 to 3:00, and still had 3-4 hours of homework a night! I felt like I had learned just as much if not more by doing 4 hours of home school on the boat  versus 10 hours (homework included) of public school per day. Obviously I would prefer 4 hours of home school and have the option to take part in daily activities like snorkeling, hiking, fishing, swimming or kayaking.  
   Another reason why I wanted to go back to the boat, was that I am so accustomed to sailing and discovering new places that staying in the same place was hard, for all of us. The final reason is I was ready to get back to the boat, was to cross the Pacific Ocean and start new adventures. Although I was ready to get back to the boat, it was hard to leave Charleston, and say goodbye to my family.

Our front porch view while living in Charleston

We came back to the boat last January and began to prepare for crossing the Pacific Ocean. In April we crossed the Pacific Ocean in 24 days.

We made it!

Since crossing the ocean we have visited French Polynesia, Cook Islands, American Samoa, Tonga, and Fiji. My two favorite places thus far would have to be Fakarava and Mopelia. Fakarava had so much wildlife. I loved the crystal clear water and there were sharks every where! Mopelia was just as great, but it was much different than Fakarava. We had a great feast in Mopelia held by the family that lives there. We are currently in Fiji for cyclone season, if you're around please come say Hello.  I am glad that we made the choice to head back to Terrapin and start a whole new chapter in our adventures.

Oh ya, while in Charleston, we finished our   "Life of a boatkid' should check it out!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Happy To Go North By: Jess

About a week ago, all of us as a crew had to make a hard decision. We needed to decide if we were going to still head South or go back North.  The reason we needed to make this decision was because we felt as if we weren't having fun. One reason was because the seas were never pleasant in fact they'd sometimes was absolutely terrifying. Another reason was that we'd always do passages and they were always longer than expected. The anchorages were always rolly and Murphy (the cat) got seasick when we were anchored. Season 2 was a wreck until we decided to go back North. We decided to go North for 1 more reason, we were going crazy because we didn't see one boat in any of the anchorages we were in. While we were  sailing South, the only other boats we saw were headed North.

Even though we really wanted to go South to Panama, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Bahamas etc. we are happy to say that we are going to the Sea of Cortez again. We had so much fun in the Sea of Cortez, I cant wait to see kid boats again!

If you'd like to get in touch please email me

At Los Gatos

Kid boat fun

Paddleboarding at Agua Verde

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

The gift of giving -- by jess

My 12th birthday was coming up and I really wanted something special. Living on a boat, there is not a lot of room for birthday presents, good thing I didn't want gifts.

 Since I was born, I've had a love for animals and for a very long time I have wanted to be a Vet. My family and I were volunteering at the local animal shelter (San Miguel De Allende's  S.P.A.) when I decided I want to help the local animals rather than receive gifts for my birthday.

After speaking with the Director of the shelter, she told us they could use a special fund to cover unrecovered medical costs. In addition to adoptions, the shelter also provides medical care to anyone that brings in a pet even though sometimes people can't pay the shelter. We decided to set up "Jessica's Fund" to help cover these medical costs.

I was happy to hear that we raised the funds and help many of the San Miguel de Allende animals. I was even happier to hear that we raised more than 100 percent of my goal!!!!!

Better than receiving gifts was being able to hand the S.P.A. a check to cover medical costs and help other families.