A LOT happened in the months between when we decided to go sailing in the Bahamas for Nana's birthday and the actual trip, such that by the time mid-February actually arrived we were all a little overwhelmed and beaten down. My brother's family was no longer going with us (though we are joyfully awaiting a family addition in June) and the nice, reasonable flights I had booked in August had been re-booked and changed and canceled and made entirely unreasonable.

But we were very much in need of a celebration and some rest, so we stuck with the plan.

The hiccups and changes and surprises persisted until the day of the trip. On Thursday morning, Nana, Kyle, Hamish and the Manimal missed their flight to meet me in Miami, delaying the whole trip by a day. Meanwhile, Captain Ray and Chef  Renee were waiting on us!

I was reading Psalm 103 that morning:
"Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name... Who satisfies your years with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle."

We prayed that we were all on the right track, that the Lord would indeed satisfy Nana's years with good things, and that this trip was one of those good things.

Thankfully, on Friday things went smoothly. The five of us reunited in Miami and took a barely 30-minute flight to Marsh Harbor, Bahamas, where both kids got mini-naps.

Our cab driver stopped for us to pick up a bottle of wine, and then deposited us at Boat Harbor Marina.

And it was perfect. Glorious weather, beautiful boat, the kindest most enthusiastic people you could hope for.

We spent Friday afternoon getting used to First Wave: a 41' sailing catamaran: two berths (bedrooms) and one head (bathroom) in each hull of the catamaran.

We explored the boat, hung out on the "hammock" between the hulls, and talked with Captain Ray and Chef Renee about our plans for the trip.

Nana had brought photos of her sailing trip through the Abacos 37 years earlier, and together Nana, Ray and Renee planned our route based on retracing her steps.

The kids loved the boat right away and were immediately comfortable in their own little bedrooms and running around.

Ray and Renee left us that evening, and we had dinner at a nearby, local diner, walking back to our boat home with ice cream treats.

The next morning we were off!