Lionfish…poisonous …but….who knew they were delicious??

While we were in Tavernier we were fortunate enough  to make some great new friends.  Among these were Jeff and Patti.  They are hilarious and generous to a fault.  They not only let us, but insisted, we use their fishing boat multiple times  while we were there to take our visitors on tours of the local area.  Thanks  guys !!!

We also had a fun weekend excursion with Jeff and Patti.  We drove down to the Sunset Grill at the west end of Marathon for lunch and a dip in their salt water pool.  They had the best hogfish sandwich I’ve had so far!!

When we were headed back we saw some goings on at the docks near Postcard Inn so we stopped in.  A bunch of our other new friends were there for the results of the “Lionfish Derby”.  Here’s a quick explanation of that…..



It seems Lionfish are very invasive and they can be harvested at any time in any number.

After the derby they bring in volunteers to prepare the Lionfish and teach the attendees how to do so safely.  They also made an awesome Lionfish ceviche and flash fried Lionfish….I may have had seconds …..(and tenths)

Here’s Steve cleaning a Lionfish and explaining the process….I don’t recall if the PBR was crucial…
The finished process……
Patti, Sue, Fran, Molly-gan (inside joke) and Kim at the Lionfish Derby Party (L-R)

Lobster – Palooza……or this guy caught a huge lobster and then THIS happened…

I’m not sure what the lobster season has been like offshore near the reefs but if it’s been anything like it has been on our little part of the bay it must have been great so far. I was hesitant to spend the $25 for the five year license initially but at $12 or $13 per pound (even at the places that buy them straight off of the boats) it paid for itself in about the first day.   The season runs from August to the end of March and there are two “mini-seasons” that are two days each in the summer time.

Does that size 11 shoe make my lobster look big ??? Haha



That’s a heavy lobster ….


and what happened next ??? He ate it….

New fender covers……(I know many of you are asking yourselves ‘what’s that?’)

Here on Kitty Hawk we have 8 boat fenders that we use to protect our topsides (the part of the boat between the waterline and the deck) when docked or tied up (rafting up) with any other vessel.  We have four shiny, new, white fenders that are 10″x26″ and four old cruddy looking fenders that need to be covered. Kim found a brilliant idea for how to make them all match….which is key to safety at sea….if all your gear isn’t color coordinated you’re in big trouble….

Kim ordered four pairs of XXXXL sweatpants and cut the legs off. She then inserted the fenders into the legs and sewed a gather into the open end.  They turned out amazingly.

New fender covers with marine vinyl abrasion guards
New fender covers with marine vinyl abrasion guards

She then used grey marine grade vinyl to make a protective sleeve for each fender to prevent the material from being snagged on concrete or wooden docks. Those attach with Velcro so they can be adjusted up or down as needed. I’m trying to talk her into selling them for $25 a piece. The commercial ones sell for $40 and don’t have the abrasion guard…..!!

Fun with Visitors …..and what’s a “Toilet Seat Pass” ???

Over the last month, or so, we’ve had quite a few visitors….some for a short stay and some for longer…..some weren’t staying close enough to get more than a quick meal together before they had to depart…but we have enjoyed seeing them all…here’s a few shots of what’s been going on……

Beauties on the bow
Through the mangroves !!
Through the mangroves !!
Double trouble ....
Double trouble ….
Sue, the manatee whisperer
Sue, the manatee whisperer
Colonel Paul....
Colonel Paul….


Rick and Ellen with our Lobster !
Rick and Ellen with our Lobster !
Toilet seat pass in the background
Johnny and Shari with Toilet seat pass in the background
Sunset at Lorelei's
Sunset at Lorelei’s


One life ring speaks 1000 words....
One life ring speaks a 1000 words….

So, toilet seat pass is an area that was originally marked by locals and fishermen to show an area where boats could pass through the shallow area near the end of Tavernier and Islamorada.  Somewhere along the way, decorated toilet seats began adorning the PVC poles that were driven into the bottom to mark the small channel.

Toilet seat passimage




Just so Jan doesn’t feel bad about her first Conch horn attempt….(VIDEO)



A still shot from the video… is below


IMG_0270     <—–click this link to watch the video ! There may have been a few beverages consumed prior to the making of this video…..

Since we had an extra Conch horn lying around, I was convinced to give it a shot with the veterans here at our marina. Not my best work…..we can’t wait to see your video Jan !!

Some Conch related facts…..

The tradition of blowing a conch shell in the Florida Keys began hundreds of years ago. In the 1800s, when the local economy was largely based on salvaging cargoes from ships wrecked on the nearby reef, sailors attracted attention by blowing piercing blasts on the shell.

There is a yearly conch horn blowing contest every March in Key West.

Conch horns are used in religious ceremonies around the world.

Conch horns are also listed by the US Coast Guard as an approved sound making device under the requirements of Rule 33.b and Annex III (C).


Accessing the whole blog….and prior posts…using most tablets

I was asked by someone who was reading our blog on an iPad about the link to access the posts.  Since I use an iPad I realized that link is not overly obvious and that a photo highlighting the button might help folks out….I’m not sure where it appears on other devices so if anyone uses a Samsung or other tablet and has a different display please let me know.  Thanks !!



And we have a winner ……that person is…..



As promised, we downloaded a random number generator (1 to 105, we added a few since I announced the contest) this morning and the big winner …….

DRUMROLL PLEASE……🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾🍾




……… Jan (aka subscriber #88)

The prize is a Conch Republic Conch Horn… can hear them being blown all over the Keys every evening at sunset….it’s the unofficial happy hour call…..


You have to have a shell that hasn’t been “hammered” to get the conch out first.  Then the tip is ground down to make the mouth piece….and viola….conch horn…..!

Congratulations Jan !!!!