Great trip and great read.
I kept thinking what my family would have done under similar circumstances. I'm sure they'd have risen to the occasion, but I'm also sure I'd be in the doghouse when we reached port safely. Because, of course, it would be all my fault that the weather went bad.
I hope your wife and kids aren't too upset or deterred. These things happen -- it's part of sailing. Can't have fair skies and following seas on every trip.
I knew you'd be fine in your Rival. The only thing I might have done differently was to try a scrap of headsail or get that reef in if I could -- but I wasn't there and I know how it goes when you're in the thick of it. You did well.