“Loot, Plunder, Pillage, and Play”


“Now and then we had the hope that if we lived and were good, God would permit us to be pirates.” –Mark Twain

IMG_2775September 19th is “International Talk like a Pirate Day”

No, we didn’t plan our houseboat vacation around this much-loved holiday, it was simply sweet serendipity.

On our last houseboat vacation with the Hudak family the kids were in 8th, 7th, 6th, and 5th grades. At the time one of the assigned reading novels was Treasure Island. We decided to bring the book on vacation and read it aloud to all the kids as we boated along. It was a perfect fit and made the experience all the more fun. At the end of the week we decided to surprise the kids with a pirate treasure hunt to wrap up our week of reading Treasure Island.

While the kids were swimming we slipped a bottle into the water containing a map that led to a buried treasure found on shore.


The kids LOVED it and talk about it being one of their favorite memories of that vacation,

So we knew we wanted to plan something like that again…

And then we realized that our vacation just happened to fall on

“International Talk like a Pirate Day”


We had all sorts of fun things up our sleeves for this band of scallywags.

But first everyone needed their pirate names.

Using a site online that takes the first initial of your first, middle and last name to determine your new pirate name

everyone was renamed for the day:

Tyler: Redhead Holystone

Ozzie: Jolly Eddie

Tatum: Red Cackle

Rusty: Stinky Spike

Lucas: Bucko Head Bart

Molly: Deadman Creeper

Olivia: Jolly Bones

Grace: Sharkbait George

Lucas then entertained us with some pirate jokes that he had saved up for the day.

DSCF2724Jokes like:

“What has eight legs, eight hands, and eight eyes?”

Answer: “Eight pirates”

“What’s a pirate’s favorite letter?”

Answer: “You think it’d be ‘R’ but it’s really high ‘C’”

“What’s a pirates favorite pace to eat?”

Answer: “I-hop”

What do you call a pirate with two arms, two legs, and two eyes?”

Answer: “A beginner”

Our day was full of high seas fun, beginning with a breakfast of pirate pancakes.

IMG_2692After breakfast Lana and I began preparations for our treasure hunt while some of the kids swam outside and others decorated our spyglasses.


IMG_2693We both brought “treasure” for the chest. In other words: candy!

We sorted the treasure into individual baggies for the eight kids and placed them in our treasure chests.

IMG_2699The big sisters contributed their artistic talents to the surprise by drawing our treasure maps. We burnt the edges for authenticity.

IMG_2701The first map (the map to the island) was placed in a bottle and dropped into the water. Ozzie was the first to spot it but Tyler was the one to climb out to retrieve it with the fishing net.

IMG_2712The bottle was brought inside, opened, and the crew discovered that the floating bottle held a treasure map…

IMG_2719That map led us back to the island where the kids played on the first day.

Now that we knew our destination

we could set sail.

While the captains steered us to the treasure the kids began gearing up for the hunt in their pirate garb.

IMG_2750Then the island came into view.

IMG_2759After dropping anchor the hunt began.



IMG_2787When our little buccaneers stepped onto land they discovered another map. This one was a map of the island. With map in hand they began exploring.

IMG_2753It was fun to see such excitement and enthusiasm.

IMG_2791They hunted and explored until the treasure was found.

IMG_2822The treasure boxes were carried back to the ship where the booty was divvied up among the mates and lasses.

IMG_2825ARRRGGG…Happy International Talk Like a Pirate Day

From our scurvy crew to yers!


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