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Discussion Starter #1
Me: Honey,what do you want for Christmas this year?
She: Well how about we combine our gifts and buy one thing special for the boat?
Me: What???? :)

As we finish up our freshman sailing season I want to nominate my Admiral for some sort of award. As of last March neither of us knew anything about sailing. I have some boating in my background but she had never even been on a boat. Purchasing a 28' sailboat was a huge step-up for both of us but especially her. Not the kind of thing many 60somethings do. But she hung in there through it all. Especially challenging were a couple of "oh [email protected]" moments as we learned how to handle the boat. Most of that is in the past now and we both love sailing days even this time of year in Charleston.

But a shared Christmas gift for the boat? Wow I did not see that coming...

In addition, a huge thanks to folks here and new friends in our Charleston marina who have answered so many of our noob questions.

So... Hmmm what should we get? You can be sure I will give her a few options that focus on what she would like and let her pick. Any suggestions from other Admirals here?
 

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Asleep at the wheel
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What's your budget and what does the boat need?

One idea is clothing to keep at the boat, like foul weather gear. The good stuff isn't cheap, but it can really be handy. A nice pice of rain gear as the outer shell, and a fleece for under it on the cool days (or by itself on the days when it isn't raining) can be very nice.

Another option would be a "proper" dodger (no offense) or a different bimini so you can get out of the sun when you want.
 

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She is a keeper!

Your idea of focusing on a few things, then letting her pick is good one. That is a great way to get your significant other to not only get involved, but also feel more invested in the boat.

Still, I would buy her a small gift or get her some flowers. Rack up those brownie points to cash in when you really screw up. :D
 

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Still, I would buy her a small gift or get her some flowers. Rack up those brownie points to cash in when you really screw up. :D
+1

The rest of it is just a test anyway...
 

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Sailing lessons would promote her from Admiral to co-captain. Oldest lady I taught to sail was 66 and she was much better than her younger husband.

If I ever referred to my sailing partner as "The Admiral' I would be singing soprano!


Phil
 

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Does the gift have to be given at Christmas? I'm not familiar with your area but how about setting aside the money and planning a weekend trip to a big boat show? Hotel room, two days to linger over boat stuff to touch and see, soak up the atmosphere that surrounds boat shows, attend seminars. Sometimes if you go on the last day you can get bargains for the stuff the vendors might not want to schlep back home.

I like the sailing lesson idea, too.

Oh, does she have her own knife? Something she's comfortable using in an emergency and is a good grip for her hands? I've heard good things about and am trying to decide on a Kershaw knife for myself.

Kershaw Knives Gallery | Kershaw Knives
 

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Kynntana (Freedom 38)
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Sailing lessons would promote her from Admiral to co-captain.

Phil
Yeah, please start calling her captain whenever she's sailing the boat. That's a gift that will last forever.

It's great you two are enjoying the learning process together. That speaks volumes.
 

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While I am not a fan of "admiral" I discovered that there are a lot of women who are perfectly OK with it. The Women and Cruising website seems to embrace it. If the OP's wife doesn't feel it is a problem, that's her choice.
 
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Deja Vu,

We're in the same place (freshman season and all) and my Admiril said the exact same thing, no kiddin.

Now of course no self respecting Captain wouldn't get the Admiril a little something on the side anyway, right? ;) So I did.

We're saving the "christmas present money" to haul the boat in the spring for it's tri-annual bottom paint, unstep the mast for a refurb and get $1k's worth of new sailing boat instruments.
 

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Let's see -

For her:
one Christmas it was top of the line binos for her.
one year it was a Mustang Auto inflate PDF in PINK
last year was a Henderson front zip shorty

For the boat:
Last year it was refrigeration :)

And the list goes on.
 

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Does the gift have to be given at Christmas? I'm not familiar with your area but how about setting aside the money and planning a weekend trip to a big boat show? Hotel room, two days to linger over boat stuff to touch and see, soak up the atmosphere that surrounds boat shows, attend seminars. Sometimes if you go on the last day you can get bargains for the stuff the vendors might not want to schlep back home.
While expensive; my wife LOVED it. Took her to the annapolis boat show this year in style. Stayed within walking distance and fine dined. (Those that know; you know it's expensive staying downtown) Treated it like a vacation getaway.
 

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...Stayed within walking distance and fine dined. (Those that know; you know it's expensive staying downtown) Treated it like a vacation getaway.
We did that for two years, too. Loved being able to park the car for the weekend and walk from the hotel.

Then we bought the boat and stayed at a local marina and it was MUCH less expensive. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks folks. Good ideas and thoughts here. I suppose a dodger/proper bimini would be on top of our list but that would exceed the roughly $400 budget. She would also love to swim from the boat which would require a nice swim ladder. Just not sure what to get and where to mount on boat. Foulies is a good idea as is refrigerator or A/C. Both of which could mean battery bank and inverter. Pressurized water and engine driven hot water might be on the list too. We plan to begin overnighting in our sophomore year.

I guess I have plenty for her to choose from and several might work with that budget... Again thanks. And BTW she is fine with the Admiral designation so long as everyone understands she is a working Admiral. Takes the helm and hauls on sheets regularly... What a gal!
 
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I would go with a really good swim ladder. That is very practical and a good safety feature, especially for 'mature' boaters. Make sure it is long (2 steps under water) and comfortable. Check salvage shops, they often have great bargains. And install it very securely.
Great woman, deserves a lot of respect.
 

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Nice!!
I have to agree with the swim ladder for ease of use and basic safety.
My second choice would be an auto inflate pfd. Again keep your loved one safe.
We drive to Charleston every so often, and are new sailors also. Maybe we can share a dinner sometime and talk shop.
Enjoy!!
Rich
 

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RE: the swim ladder.

I don't know how you could do this in advance of buying it and maybe it isn't possible, but make sure whoever you buy it for can actually use it to get back onto the boat. Last summer I heard a call to the Coast Guard requesting help when a woman aboard a boat went swimming and was unable to get back on board even though they had the ladder. She was just unable to get herself back up even though she got down OK. The CG asked for the assistance of the local marine police who responded.
 

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RE: the swim ladder.

I don't know how you could do this in advance of buying it and maybe it isn't possible, but make sure whoever you buy it for can actually use it to get back onto the boat. Last summer I heard a call to the Coast Guard requesting help when a woman aboard a boat went swimming and was unable to get back on board even though they had the ladder. She was just unable to get herself back up even though she got down OK. The CG asked for the assistance of the local marine police who responded.
The issue with the ladder is going to be how deep does it go? In order for EVERYONE to be likely to be able to haul themselves out of the water on a ladder it seems to need 3 submerged rungs. Anyone with limited upper body strength will have lots of trouble if only one submerged rung, and the side forces applied during the attempt can break a cheap aluminum ladder (Seen that happen)

So a deep ladder.... and stainless steel is what you need to be sure of success and longevity..
 
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