About Us

Welcome to our blog.  We are the Henderson family and we decided to do something interesting for a few years.  Our family is made up of Stewart and Louise, both ex- UK Army, and the girls, Eleanor and Hannah.


In 2004 when we were living in Married Quarter number five of eleven in Warminster, Stewart came home with a book called ‘Living and Working in New Zealand’ from the Warminster library.  I think he might have had a bad day!

We had never really discussed doing anything like that but it was certainly food for thought.  Moving to New Zealand just seemed a little permanent and a little too far away so I was none too keen.  I love living in Great Britain, on the doorstep of Europe and in the same hemisphere as family, but we do love travelling so we started to think of a way to get a little adventure in our lives.  As we had met whilst sailing in the Canary Islands on a military adventure training expedition, our shared interest seemed to combine both a way of seeing the world and pacifying Stewart’s determination to leave the country. The only downside at this point was that we were both some way off our pension point which would go a long way to finance the trip.

Two children, several tours and a few years later, the plan started to really take shape as I planned to get out of the Army in May 2014.  Our timing seemed good. The kids were at an age to really enjoy it, to be able to help and an age that we would be able to cope with the home schooling requirements.

After a great trip to Croatia with our friends the Thomas’s on a Lagoon 400, I set the yacht requirement – a catamaran it was to be. All of our sailing to that point had been on monohulls and the extra space and stability was wonderful. We also realised that the shallow draft of a catamaran would perfectly suit the type of sailing we wanted to do, particularly in the Caribbean.

We quickly realised that to find a yacht up to what we wanted, we need to look beyond UK and Europe where there are so few catamarans outside the hard charter life circuit.

After several false starts, we found SKYLARK in Fort Lauderdale in Florida and finished purchasing her April 2014.


She is a FP Lavezzi 40 and she was our home for three and a half glorious years.

We returned to the UK in Dec 17 to allow the girls a “proper” secondary school education. and have settled in the S of England.

Planning is ongoing for our next escape in a few years time. The Pacific beckons…………

Afternote – we found the ‘Living and Working in New Zealand’ (still on loan from Warminster library!) while packing.  We left it in storage as a memento to the birth of this adventure.

21 thoughts on “About Us”

    1. May your amazing adventure be everything you dreamed of and much more!

      PS, Louise, you are so right about the NZ decision. We emigrated in the 70s and returned to Britain after nearly 4 years as my parents (well Mum!) felt it was too far away from the family and the opportunities of the UK.

      Good luck! You all look like you’ve had the time of your lives already!

      Fiona x


  1. The Blog is looking great, well done!

    Hope you’re all having fun in Florida! The photos look great by the way. Not jealous at all! 😉

    Guess the real adventure starts soon? May you have Fair Winds and Following Seas all the way… Love to you all, Steve & Fiona xx


  2. Hi to you all from the Banfields, love the blog, Keep em coming, we are looking forward to hearing about your amazing adventures. Emily talks about the girls ALL the time and sends big hugs. Happy sailing!!! Xxxx


  3. Can’t wait to hear all about the trip to the Bahamas!! Been showing your pics to the girls!! Tash is ‘well jell’ lots of love and safe travelling!


  4. Well done on your first leg – it was impressive to see your trip down the Gulf Stream in real time. Enjoy the beaches!
    Xx from Granny and Papa


  5. Hey guys hope all is well. Love all the up dates and we both miss you tons. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas. See you soon. Love Em and Emily xx


  6. My sister Joey says we should keep an eye out for you…we were on rose island Xmas day on a lagoon 450 called tagwild. I think we saw you. ..yellow sail bag. ..we are on twin sisters beach now..very settled..very clear…come say hello..;)

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Stewart and ladies 🙂
    Hope you had a good sailing to Jamaica. We are a little bit ashamed that we missed your departure from Santiago de Cuba 😦
    Again, it was great meeting you! We will follow your adventures on the Pacific
    Cheers and happy sailing,
    Joris & Nicole
    S/Y Cedo Nulli


  8. Hello again Skylarker gang! This is Marie, the person you helped in Fakarava the night I landed on the cement deck on my head!! You guys played paramedics and made my day a little less ouch-y! A million thanks for the quality of your presence and for your kindness. I wanted to let you know that I am all better and back home in California. Hope that this note finds all four of you well and wearing your best smile. Enjoy your adventure. With gratitude. Marie

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Marie, Really glad to hear that you are ok and no worse for the thump you got. We have moved on and are waiting to pull Skylark out at Apataki. We will be heading to NZ at the end of the week, returning in Feb. I managed to get 21 dives in at the S end and loved every one of them. Once we get to better internet, watch for the blog post on that activity. You will just need to head back there some time to complete the interrupted holiday!

      Best wishes

      Stewart et al


  9. Hello lovely people! Hope you are having a good sail across to Vanuatu, sure it will be fast! We still have 20knots plus here in Musket. Just reading over your blog and looking at your photos of all the good times we have shared together, in Tonga and F.Polynesia and Fiji. Missing you all already!! Good luck with everything and look forward to the day we all meet again, Sylvia xxx


  10. Greeting from MN, America!
    You have a wonderful blog. It will keep me entertained as Winter sets in. Someday I hope to retire and sail. If you ever get this way the Apostle Island off of WI are amazing.


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