Brianna Randall sailing with a baby in San Diego

Do you know where marrying a local is forbidden?

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Parenting, Sailing

Spring roundup of stories and adventures

Three months since I wrote a blog post? Yikes. But here’s my excuse: I’m writing a book. It’s about the year we spent sailing the South Pacific in blissed-out freedom, and the year we spent transitioning back into responsible adults and new parents. Stay tuned.

Between book writing, child-chasing, and working our real jobs, Rob and I occasionally keep up with a few hobbies. These mostly include playing in the water and the dirt, but we also try to squeeze in time for taking photos and telling stories. Here are highlights of recent articles:

1. This tale combines my writing and Rob’s photos on BBC Travel: : “Where Marrying A Local Is Forbidden” (Hint: it ain’t in Montana)

2. Rob’s photography website is live, including pics of our February trip scuba diving in Bonaire:

3. My recent piece on Mamalode might make you chuckle: “To The Guy Sitting In Front Of Me On The Plane

As for playing, spring is in full swing, full of wildflowers and sun that beckon us outside. Last month, we reconnected with my family at a memorial service for my grandmother in Capistrano Beach. Highlights included building a fire pit in the sand, taking Talon out for his first ocean sail, and watching him turn into a monster over Easter chocolate.

Back in Montana, we loaded him in a canoe for a float down the Swan River. Sadly, boats are still second to buses in our son’s list of favorites, but he’s quickly learning the ropes on all sorts of watercraft. And Talon’s already got the whole throwing rocks in the water routine down pat.

Scroll down for a photo montage of our recent adventures. Happy Spring, friends!

Cali and Swan_020 Cali and Swan_025 Cali and Swan_015 Cali and Swan_026Cali and Swan_031 Cali and Swan_033 Cali and Swan_034 Brianna Randall sailing with a baby in San DiegoCali and Swan_044Cali and Swan_045Cali and Swan_040Cali and Swan_012 Cali and Swan_007

Me + 2 Hot Mamas in San Fran = 3 Barbies in a Boat

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Family and Friends, Food and Drink, Traveling

Two things I’ll miss when we sail into the sunset — girlfriends and walking.

Two things I won’t miss a bit — grey winters and biting-cold Montana wind.

This weekend I was lucky enough to soak in the good stuff and get outta the bad.  On Friday afternoon, I hopped on a cheap Allegiant Air flight to San Francisco with two of my favorite ladies.  We said goodbye to husbands, dogs, and children, escaping the frigid cloudy skies with giddy excitement.  Last time I headed out of town time for quality girlfriend time with Joellen and Gillian was over 5 years ago, and I was psyched to hang with these two hot mamas for 4 days of city time fun.

First stop: our friend Melissa’s SUV outside of Oakland airport.  Second stop: a giant (authentic!) margarita in the Mission district.  Third stop: Sengalese food at Baobao, followed by a rockin’ dance party as dinner tables were cleared out from under us.  “You dance crazy,” we heard, multiple times, from different patrons.  True that.  Not bad for the first few hours in the big city.

Thanks to our friends Andrew and Julie, we got to stay in a sweet apartment one block from the Presidio.  While the mamas headed to yoga the next morning, I followed the siren call of salt water and ran to the beach.  Now, if you know me at all, you know I only run when large predators are chasing me or I REALLY REALLY REALLY want to get somewhere fast.

As a landlocked beach girl, seeing the ocean after almost 6 months brings out my rusty running instincts.  I spent the day tooling around beaches and marinas, watching fisherman, sailboats, and kiteboarders.  Dreaming of the soon-to-come days when I’ll be staring at land from the water, instead of vice versa.  Dreaming of the day when I will feel as urgent about getting to the shore as I now feel about getting to the water.

We drank champagne when we reunited, and hit the streets in search of Thai food.  As the weekend wore on, we added Greek, Mexican, and Chinese to our cuisine, satiating those cultural cravings that itch like hell when you live in a town that specializes in burgers and beer (even if it IS exceptional meat and mircrobrews).

Speaking of cravings, we also filled our urban hiking cup to the brim.  The best part about cities is that you can walk and walk and walk, and still see something new, vibrant, unique, or bizarre around every corner.  I love that my girlfriends love walking as much as I do, and that we had the same chill exploratory agenda for the weekend.

On Sunday, we trekked over 8 miles, stopping to sample premium green tea, Vietnamese coffee, falafel, artwork, thrift stores, a brewery, a roller skate park, and — of course —  beaches.  The 3 of us all love the ocean, and you could tell: we cartwheeled near the water line, did headstands in the sand, and tried to absorb as much salt-water-laden goodness as our eyes, skin, and hearts could hold.  These memories will feed us through the long Montana winter.

The highlight of our urban hike was walking the length of Golden Gate Park, where we had the pleasure of meeting these Barbies in a Boat.  I’ll end here because — in a lot of ways — these 3 Barbies happily jetting around sunny San Francisco symbolize how I felt with Gillie and Jo this past weekend: carefree, fun, free, and easy.


A Few Photos From San Fran:

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