Hi there, we’re Nate and Natalie and this is our story. We met in 2004 after Nate joined the Navy and was going to school at Villa Julie College near Baltimore, MD. Natalie was attending the University of Pittsburgh, majoring in psychology. We tried a long distance relationship and made it work! After dating for a year, Nate went off to boot camp and Navy schools near Chicago and the long distance relationship continued. Then Nate got transferred to another Navy school in Virginia Beach. A few months later, Natalie graduated college and moved in to her Uncle Tim and Aunt Martha’s attic in Norfolk, VA and we got engaged. We took a dinghy sailing class that threatened to end our relationship. Natalie said she needed a much bigger boat! Not long after that Nate got orders to his first ship in Japan so we hurried up and tied the knot one morning at the courthouse in Virginia Beach.
In 2006 we made our first home together in a small apartment in Sasebo, Japan. Natalie taught conversational English to Japanese Kindergartners and adults and Nate was stationed on USS Juneau and USS Denver. To keep herself from getting lonely while Nate was out to sea, Natalie adopted a cute little Japanese puppy. She named him Kokusai which we later found out means “international” in Japanese. Living in Japan, we loved being in a new different place and travelled all over the country with side trips to Thailand, South Korea, Australia and Okinawa. When we were visiting Okinawa we rented a 25′ sail boat and it was a blast – smooth, easy sailing. We decided that it would be cool to use a boat as a home base for travel and new experiences.
In the summer of 2009 Nate was transferred to USS Momsen and that meant packing up everything we owned and moving to Everett, WA. There we bought our first boat, Airborne, a 1973 Catalina 27. We sailed her all around Puget Sound and made great friends with the folks in Milltown Sailing Association. The best part was a two week sailing adventure that took us all the way to Victoria, Canada. We decided to buy a new boat and live aboard and use it as a way to get out of the ordinary.
Nate spent 3 years on shore duty stationed in sunny San Diego, CA where we lived aboard and prepared Astraea for cruising. We’re just trying to have fun and live life to the fullest. In June 2012 we welcomed Sullivan aboard.
2006: Weekend Dinghy Sailing Class in Norfolk, VA
2009: Sailing Catalina 25 in Okinawa, Japan
Fall 2009: Purchased Airborne and began racing and cruising with Milltown Sailing Association in Everett, WA
Summer 2011: 2 weeks cruising the San Juan Islands. Motoring and sailing. Worst weather encountered was 4-6 ft wind waves close together in the straits of Juan de Fuca
Summer 2011: Race around the Coronado Islands in San Diego, CA aboard Hakuna Matata, a Catalina 30. 29 continuous miles under sail power alone, our longest continuous sail to date
February 2012: Purchased S/V Astraea, a 1981 Cheoy Lee 41 Ketch
May 2012: First sail aboard Astraea
September 2012: Week sailing trip to Catalina Island. 250 miles round trip. Two overnight passages under sail and power.
December 2012: Astraea has 450 miles under her keel under our ownership
September 2014: Astraea has 1000 miles under her keel
November 2014: Cut the dock lines and went cruising
December 2014: Astraea has 2000 miles under her keel