Friday, December 27, 2013

Concept Absorption


I have been messaged by many of you…I am truly sorry it has taken me so long to reply…First let me state the Paddle of Pasco will happen in April of 2014...

As your Captain…it is my job to keep the paddle safe…due to many health issues that stem from past beatings things have been staggered…they have been a great deal to cope with…not just in a physical sense, but in a mental sense too…it would be a lie to say that it did not- this too is part of the healing…allowing yourself to feel the anger and to let it go…to hold onto that anger will allow the abuser to continue hurting us even when they are no longer there- take that away from them and be special...

I can no longer paddle alone…my family would feel better to be safe…I am trying to work on finding a Sit On Top as my hip has been freezing in the Horizon…it makes getting out really difficult and painful…as a matter fact, yes, I have been sticking to the menu-even with the holidays’…so, I have had a bit to deal with...

I continue to paddle…a few friends have been helping me, paddling with me or sitting on shore and I am so thankful…it is a time of peace and I miss my time alone but, I would rather be safe than sorry:)

I would like to take a moment and thank you all for the love and support to get through this…We here at the Sunshine Paddle wish everyone a healthy New Year and hope to see many dreams coming true…

That Is All...
Your Girly Pirate,

Captain D

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Good News

Ahoy Mate,

News be abound…I now have full release from the doctor and will once again be allowed on the water…it has felt like forever…as I continue to heal, it will feel good to be on the water again

It will soon be time to take 2Notch and her family north to Crystal River for the winter…this will be my third year escorting her…I feel so very privileged that she lets me paddle beside her…I ran to the coast to see her a few days ago…she did not understand why I was not in the boat…I will paddle with her next weekend
The second Sun Ray Paddle will be on April the 20th of 2014…this will be a per mile paddled event…if you would like to sign the pledge sheet, please inbox me…if you want to paddle with me please let me know…all proceeds from this paddle will be split between Sunrise of Pasco Domestic Violence Shelter and the Helping Hands Food Pantry of Wesley Chapel…plans are underway:)

We have been going through the equipment…updating or cleaning out…we could always use any donations…I have my fingers crossed for a sit on top for Yule…I spoke to Pastor Scott and our meetings will start again in November…with so much to do, extra hands are always helpful

The second and final Sunshine Paddle will take place April of 2015…Planning has begun…this too will be per mile paddled…we are looking for day sponsors…anyone with time to help out is very appreciated

Carry On,

Captain D



Sunday, September 22, 2013

Listen – I can hear the Ocean

All Hands On Deck,

Episodes brought on by Battered Women’s Syndrome from beatings that happened over 20 years ago have me landlocked at the moment…it is very frustrating as I really want to be on the water…it has also changed our plans a little…

In April of 2014, the plan has changed to paddling the coast of Pasco…we will raise money by using a signup sheet and going per mile paddled…I will have time to prepare for this and it will hopefully give me time to heal enough to make the big trip

The plan now to go up the east coast has now been changed to April of no means have we given up…it is just my feeling if something is worth doing it is worth taking the time to do it correctly

In the mean time, equipment maintenance needs done…the Horizon needs cleaned and waxed…we need to find volunteers…meeting times need to be set with the church…we also need to get the okay from parks and rec…so never fear there is plenty to do

Carry On,

Your Girly Pirate Captain

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Choices and Decisions

Avast Me Hardies,

I bring news forth…as you know, I have been battling battered women’s syndrome for over 20 years…last week it became very serious…my heart went into hypertrophy…this was very painful…I went to Florida Hospital of Wesley Chapel and was admitted…this is an amazing hospital…they ran many tests, the staff was polite and respectful…though I could not eat much- the food was to die for…I felt safe in Their care…these events are brought forth from damage to my brainstem…I have been for my recheck- I am healthy and have doctor okay to return to m kayak

To make my family happy…I need to find a teammate…they are worried if I am on the water and an event happens, I may not make it back to shore…I am physically fit to perform the task ahead, but I have a brain stem that likes to have fun with me…though they have begged for this- I now have to agree…safety must be a priority at all times…a second paddler could only be a good thing…help would be a great thing...looking for 3 different people

What do they need to do???

I need someone who will paddle with me 2-3 days a week…on the off days be willing to work out until we launch…we will launch on the Atlantic Coast Paddle on April 20, 2015…it will take minimum of 40 days…I am willing to do tandem or two singles…this person needs to live in Florida

I have to have someone manage the Paddle…up until now I have done it all, but really need some help…it has gotten to be too much for just one person…this person must be organized and not mind dealing with different states…this person can live anywhere as most of this would be phone or internet work

A person to handle media along the even route would be a Godsend too…as this is a phone and internet job- this person too could be most anywhere too


I am back on the water…like any good pirate the salt calls to the blood in me veins…it is where I feel whole and recharged- the peace, the animals, the fresh air…It is my wish for others to see how special it is…I am requesting help if you know of anyone, please let me know…

Your Girly Pirate,




Saturday, August 10, 2013

Bos’n Call Forth Me Scurvy Dogs

Rough Sea Me Hearties,

This summer has seen the boat fighting many storms and at least fairing well in the beam seas…I have not been able to take many pictures when I have to fight the paddle- sorry…when the storms were too hard, I worked the bike…it is now I should admit I feel better than I have in ages…

We approach the 8 month point with gusto…weather I paddle or not from here out the welso must become an everyday thing…it is now I will work harder on endurance…it is now I want to hash out any issues...I do not want to find them find on the paddle this time…

I am in a new job that allows me to paddle (for now) as a requirement to the job…how very cool is that…I am so excited…I measure things like current and flow…it will be neat to have all of this information for this area…

Sadly I must speak of a crew member we lost…she was a woman who it took almost 10 years to get away from her abuser…it had been aprox. 25 years since her last beating…she died due to complications caused by the old injuries…coming to terms with that was not easy on many levels...she is now free…may she swim the waters of Valhalla as she always talked about

At the moment I am trying to scout a Sit On Top Vessel…I would like 2 yaks to be safe on our journey…though, I am aware when I round the bend in NC, I will mostly us the Horizon…I would like a Sit On for the southern states…I hope for a donation of either a SOT or cash to get one…fingers crossed...If you have a picture of a ‘Girly Pirate’ please send it to us…every one is important and should be loved…who got in a kayak this summer??? Did you try other water sports??? Did you volunteer at your local shelter??? Did you donate??? So many charities have had their budgets cut, please remember a good Pirate takes care of their community…

Carry On,

Captain D

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Ceiling Can’t Hold Us

Avast Me Hearties,

The summer has come in bringing rain almost every day…which here in Florida means rip currents are abound…please keep this in mind and make sure you speak to your children about it too- it may save their life…it is my feeling that every child should be taught to swim as one never knows when it will be important or just handy…I took my children to the ocean by 3 weeks old because it then becomes a transition from in utro to the water vs. being a chore one must learn…

Weeki Wachee River is a great place to practice my paddle work…the water has been clear and the river busy…it was fun…due to a warm winter I got to see flowers that had not been around in a few years…a baby manatee seemed to enjoy splashing me…it was so hot, I was thankful for so many overhanging trees…the fish were lining up and looked like a piece of silver ribbon in the wind:)

Hudson calls to me and I must go…I needed to get water readings…due to the high water level the current runs around this area…lift my paddle and go for the joy ride…I need to invest in an anchor and a rope with depth knots…yes, this is one of my favorite beaches…2 notch and I bummed around and had fun
At the shelter there was a changing of the guard so to speak…Penny and Jacquie are off to start the next phase of their lives…I was blessed to have both as a part of my life…you gave so many women the chance to be whole again…may whatever lies ahead hold the magic you deserve…

Swim practice is important…this is about endurance…if something happens, I may need to swim for shore…I can go for 2 hours straight so far without my feet touching bottom…when I started I could barely make 5 minutes- my how far I’ve come…not easy, but so worth it

Carry On,

Captain D

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Blast! Blast! Blast!



I have been paddling around St. Joseph Sound…Fred has been out to see me and we have had fun…he likes to tap the boat…2 Notch has been staying on the gulf side of the islands for some reason…she has been having fun with the boat too…her fin slap is always when I least expect it…it has been good practice around other boats, islands and bridges…I enjoy stopping on some of the outer keys…getting in and out on my own- I am good at this, just do not expect me to be graceful- at all…lol…I can almost hear the dolphins’ laugh…

In the last week, I have been launching from Hudson Beach…the wind has been high which makes it a really- feel your muscles burn- kind of paddle…The Blue Horizon has brought me safely to shore each time and I am thankful for her…she has been an awesome ride…due to northern weather being far harsher than ours I feel it proper to paddle in all weather, one can never be too prepared…it is not the paddling I enjoy the most though- it is blasted painful

So badly do I want to run and get a quart of fudgy chubby hubby ice cream, that would be yummy…I know people think I am a little crazy as I talk to myself in the store while I shop…as I look at many treats, I must say No…I find that it is best to avoid the cookie and candy isle…lol
Speaking of pain…I am now up to 20 minute, 5 mile reps on the Welso…I never look at a scale, but I have now gone from a 2X to a LG…also a far cry from the 2 minutes I started at…lol…my legs can bloody well feel it
I need help in each state…if you have time please volunteer…if you know of someone who has time, please ask them for me…I am working on bumper stickers, T-shirts and flyers…if all you can do is post a flyer at your local public bulletin board I would be ever so thankful…if you are interested in the bumper stickers or T-shirt let me know…I have to start pre-paying for what I can and getting ready to bank for what we need…Taylor has been ill, so I am looking for someone who would not mind video editing until he returns…anyone???

Well, next week my plan is Crystal River…as always, I will keep you posted


Your Captain,


Friday, May 17, 2013

Working for a Good Cause

Ahoy Mate,

Today, I will start by telling you what a nice job Taylor Ashley did with the video for the Sun Ray Paddle…he used the voice from a speaking engagement I had at a church (Atonement Lutheran Church)…it was a happy surprise when he called to tell me it was done…

It is sit here at the 11 month mark I am feeling confident…a woman looked at me this week and asked why I would feel insecure…I started this being quite fat and smoking like a chimney…my goal was to raise money and awareness for Domestic Violence…I had to push myself…giving up cigarettes was far from easy, but needed to be done if I was to reach my goal…at times I would like to have just one more- though I am not willing to do it and give up what I have worked for…the menu is a killer and must be done…the better shape I am in the easier it will be…it has been a blessing to have such wonderful friends and a husband who has worked with me…support and discipline is how I have come so far…now I am proud of the body I work on daily- I could not even picture smoking again…lol

Just recently I went to the volunteer lunch for the shelter…it was a wonderful event…I was happy that Debby (the woman who drives me) won a basket…she was so happy she glowed…I also attended the East Pasco Networking Group and got to listen to Dr. Mitchell speak…really had a nice time…We have also teamed up with Go Fund Me in hopes of raising donations...

We could really use some volunteers…we will be meeting publically at Atonement Lutheran Church on SR54 in Wesley Chapel…the first and third Thursday at 7pm and the fourth Thursday at 1pm…every month from now until the launch…if you live in another state- you can still help…we are a 501 (c)(3) and a State of Florida approved charity, so I can sign off on volunteer hours…Because we are dealing  with 13 States and over 8 countries, a volunteer can learn- logistics, communication, budgeting, computer editing of letters, photo editing, how to be a videographer, work on a website - all while helping the community...Some may even join me during work out in the water and they would learn- about boating
safety, water tribitity, animals, currents, weather- again all while helping the community…

New on the website is our mailing list…please take time to sign up…be the first one to get the latest paddle news…we love our fans and like to keep you in the loop:)

That Will Be All,

Captain D

Saturday, April 20, 2013

One Year and Counting

All Hands on Deck,


I would like to start with the Sun Ray Paddle…we left Hudson at 6 a.m. and it was still quite dark…it was misty and the water was choppy…Samantha Ashley joined me…as we made our way down the coast we watched black clouds pass us to dump water onshore…as the sun broke the horizon and it gave the clouds a halo and the water was crystal clear…we had 2 different pods of dolphins come out to play with us…Sam was excited to see the horseshoe crabs…I saw a HUGE sea turtle…many different birds and fish were out and about…the houses so far off shore were so cool…we pulled up on Durney Key- this was funny…as we checked out shells, the birds checked us out…poor Sam had never been on a big paddle and her arms were VERY hurt, so I got her to the boat ramp next to the original ‘Hooters’…we totaled 8 miles…I am very proud of her- she showed up and did her best, I could not ask for more…We raised $10 for Sunrise of Pasco and $10 for Parks and Rec- Something is always better than nothing…Photos are posted and we both carried a mounted camera, so we will soon have video- Taylor is working on it now…I will let you know when it is posted…


Today is one year until the Sunshine Paddle…on April 1 the menu went back into effect- no soda or chocolate or baked goods:(…I have also started using the welso bike…it actually helps stretch me when I cannot get to the water…I also have the SOT (Sit On Top) trainer at home- one of my friends built this for me…the excitement is building...
Insight that I need to share…this sport is awesome…Sam had not paddled much before this trip…watching her took me back to a 5 lake paddle with Marty from (the group set up be Greg Pflug)…OMG…how cool Marty was with me…lol…he and the other paddlers took time to show me what to do and how to do…as Sam learned, I thought about how far I had come and how much I had learned- How great so many people have been… it was then I thought about how many nights I had gone to bed with burning arms and the fact that now, I had paddled 8 miles in open water for the Sun Ray Paddle and was not even winded or hurting…how far my body has come…confidence is high:)

Carry On,

Your Captain and Girly Pirate


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Happy and Nervous

Good Day Mate,

Grab a Lifewater and follow me…I really do not have time to stop…my time in Boca was so awesome…I graduated!!!!! Rachel at Spanish River was ready for me, but the weather was not good at first (great place, I will go back to see her again)…when it calmed down a friend let me use their yak…I love the ocean…Embassy Suites was awesome- clean and great service…

I have to be ready for The Sun Ray Paddle on Saturday… I had many people request me to make a paddle this year…well Saturday is the Launch day and so far NO ONE has entered…I hold out hope, but am prepared to do it alone…I made the commitment…I will be taking video and posting it and pictures… if you know anyone who will be here, please let them know I would love the company and all information can be found at “Sun Ray Paddle 2013”…or maybe they would like to meet me at Anclote…we would love to see you there if you have time…

I now have a clean bill of health and have started the one year countdown…this time next year I will paddle the Atlantic coast…the work out and menu have begun…both are very strict…I have also added a power bike to my time in the water…the dogs are happy as they are getting more exercise…
Many asked why I do this…I believe that even at a person’s lowest moment, you can reach inside and take out strength you forgot you had…you can overcome obstacles…sometimes it is painful or not so pretty, but it can be done…a dream is only a dream until you take action- then it becomes real…you may fail…it’s okay to fail…get up…dust yourself up…reevaluate your plan and try again…that is the only way to cut a path to success…I was once battered- left for dead…at times I was lonely, depressed and people had to tell me things I did not always want to hear- this usually happened in the most public way possible…in the  last 20 years- I raised 2 beautiful daughters (1 has given me an amazing grandchild) and married a man who loves me (and even at his worst would NEVER harm me), have my parents near me again, obtained my Massage License, wrote and published 2 books (with more on the way), Graduated Suma Cum Laude with a Bachelors of Science in Natural Medicine, Thanks to Facebook I have my friends that had to be left behind back in my life…I have worked VERY hard for all I have and I am VERY THANKFUL…my life is not perfect, but it is good…you can do it too…every day is new and even if you messed up yesterday, you get to try again today…when you get stressed, be thankful you never had to be the castle urine collector…lol

I recently went for a paddle on the Dunedin Causeway and had such a good time...I got to see my buddy Fred...he seemed happy to see me...I had forgot to put sunblock on before I left and got quite was such a spectacular day that I did not is a beautiful place to paddle and there were many sailboats out that day...I hope you are blessed with such a beautiful day:)


Carry On,

Your Girly Pirate

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Good Vibrations

Hail and Good Day to You,
So much to talk about…next Monday will complete a year of medical repair and I hope be the last doctor’s appointment…I have been tested and worked on from the ground up and am ready for this to be over…most of these medical issues were brought about by the beatings I endured- over 20 years since the last one and I still pay the price…it has taken everything I have to rebuild and repair my body in a natural format…yes, it is quite painful at times-I am worth it…I have been blessed to have the most awesome support system and my paddle:)
Next week I will be making appearances in Boca Raton…Rachel at Spanish River has been so cool as to hook me up with a yak so I can keep in practice…I will also be stopping at Gumbo Limbo Nature Center…say it with me “SWEEEET”…

I will start a full workout schedule in April as we ready for the 2014 trip…The SunshinePaddle will tear up the coast on April 1, 2014…I am so ready for it and Debby is getting her car ready for the trip…so very excited…anyone who wants to work out or paddle with me please let me know…

The Sun RayPaddle is in the process of tying up a few loose ends for the final push…we are planning menus…we will park at Anclote and be driven to Hudson…the 14 mile paddle has many goodies in the entrance package…at the end of this Paddle will be an after party and BBQ…so cool…this will be so much fun, I can hardly wait…

Carry On,

Captain D