On the tenth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me:
Ten Mangrove Snappers

Nine egrets nesting, eight Key Deer grazing, seven turtles hatching, six dolphins playing, five coral heads,
four parrotfish, three Key West hens, two manatees
...and a pelican in a palm tree.

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, And Wishing You A Healthy 2020!

Christmas, and the New Year is upon us once again. Or, as we like to say, the work season begins. Happy 2020! Christmas time in the Keys is when the charters start to get consistent. The fish migrate in large numbers around this time of year, and tourists come to catch them, and see them.

We only hope for the same amount of business this year as last. But, 2019 was a big year for other reasons too. Allison turned 50. Yoo-hoo! No matter, she is forever young. Her family made a surprise visit. Unfortunately, Brian was sick as it gets during the entire visit – and a long stretch after too. He has recovered, thankfully.

Our business, Keys Boat Tours is going strong. More big news! Allison is now Captain Allison. Yippie! So, we can accommodate more than six passengers now, as long as they are willing to pay for two boats. We finally completed work on our home, 2+ years after hurricane Irma. One motivating factor was the family visit, and another was visitors from Ireland.

We fixed the back yard travel trailer leak, ridding windows and installing new siding and interior sheetrock. There were switches to fix and doors to hang, lots of little things that had yet been addressed – but finally were. Yay! It seems about right, as 2020 brings our time as Keys homeowners – to the decade mark. We came with a food truck and now we are captains. 2020 also marks 20 fun filled, adventurous and loving years that Allison and Brian are celebrating together. Also this year, Keys Boat Tours got Bahia Honda Key as their Adopt-A-Highway stretch.

We had a nice visit to New York in July, and Brian’s Mom’s birthday. It was our first summer in forever when we didn’t have a major project like home rebuild or shop build out, but it was busy business wise; fishing, snorkeling, lobstering and the like.

The constant project other than home repair and boat maintenance was our new book, Boat Fish Live. That 2 year effort finally crossed the finish line early this month of December. It hopes to be available online via Amazon early January. Makes a great gift! Boat Fish Live, www.boatfishlive.net

The next book, our fourth, is titled Navigating the Florida Keys and Finding Yourself. It is a 5 day sailing journey from Bahia Honda Key to Key West. Brian hopes to make this journey sooner than later. But, the book is already well underway. It is a sailing adventure with reflection and perspective check, as well as an actual expedition.

Brian made another NY visit to see his Mom / Betty in October. They had a great few days together, a drive, and family visits too. Thanksgiving is always a small but lovely celebration for us. Allison always makes a lovely dinner and did again this year.

We think of Allison’s Grandma Lee during this time and her 98th birthday celebrated November. Happy happy!!

The annual Christmas tree trimming at Brian’s Mom’s continued this December. Brrr! Actually not so bad - more refreshing than freezing. Allison visited her Mom in PA, who just had a successful knee replacement surgery, and then joined Brian in NY before heading back to the Keys. The NY visit was too short, but very sweet; tree trimming, dinners out, and some time in the city.

We have a shop as part of our boat tour business, Keys Boat Tour Store, complete with what must be 20+ hand painted signs on the exterior. Here’s a photo. And, here’s another photo of our shop cat, Barney. All and all, life is good. Of course this is the year to drop a few or more lbs and get into a regular exercise routine. 2020, it’s like a double reminder, lose 20, lose 20. At least 10, anyway.

That in mind, we hope 2020 treats you well and finds you happy and healthy. Please feel welcome to visit us for a few days most anytime. We have two private guest rooms with bathrooms – thanks to all of you who so generously helped us recover from Irma 2+ years ago. Time flies, don’t it?

Have a great Christmas and a better year!

Brian and Allison

Happy Holidays 2019 •  Art by Allison • Words by Brian • IslandDesign.us