253. Top Tips Tuesday - Practical Prezzies For Mum

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If you're like me and impossible to buy presents for, just imagine how hard it must be for your kids to buy their sailing mums a really really useful Mothers Day present. Yes we know she has the tea towel, now well past its sell by date, of sail boats or that newer one of sea birds, the pinny (apron) with a nautical theme. Port and Starboard socks seemed like a good idea at the time as did the old fashioned Sou'wester but seeing the expression on her face....... I don't think so! Kids, this year just give her a really useful present that won't be tucked away in the port locker along with the out of date flares, a half a tin of Brasso a 'useful' ball of string which in an earlier life was the action part of a lead line and three tins of extra strong lager!

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Skippers, sometimes you just have to give your kids a gentle nudge in the right direction to give their mum that really useful gift. Ok it may break the bank but as parents all over the world will know, you can always 'lend on an interest free loan' safe in the knowledge that it will never be repaid!

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Bring a smile to mum's face with a Freebag. It's great for keeping her comfortable in the cockpit when motor sailing to windward in a force six with wind against the tide or, having endured that 'exhilarating  sail', it can be loaded into the dinghy and taken ashore for ones 'creature comfort'  on a rocky beach. However, if mum's sick of being cold and wet and has finally taken up an alternative hobby such as gardening, maybe some archaeology, the little sister of the Freebag, the Freebag Pro, will no doubt bring  another smile to her face!

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We skippers tolerate seasickness, most times it comes with the job description. However, when it's mum, who can be described as fair weather sailor at the best of times, a pair of our brilliant Boarding Ring Glasses may help prevent the mutiny on the Bounty or whatever your pride and joy may be called! They are also very useful if eldest son decides that his road racing or rallying skills are to be practised whilst giving his mum a lift to the supermarket.

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Mum may be like the skipper, both his and her eyesight failing (in my case rapidly) and as we all know, nowt is worse than a damp, tired slightly tetchy man hugging the helm cos he's feeling a little green and wanting to know in double quick time if the faint smudge off the port bow is a lobster pot or the start of the buoyed channel. It's times like this when mum wishes she was not chief bottle washer, galley slave and the lookout boy! However with a little bit of help from the skippers deep pocket, the brilliant Bynolyt binoculars may, in the future, help prevent a cross word or two from being spoken when searching the horizon! Used and recommended by the RNLI for the last 15 years, these binos are fully waterproof and they float. They feature a shockproof case, are nitrogen filled, 7 x50 magnification and of course the built in compass is back lit! Oh, by the way, they are guaranteed for 25 years!

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Kids are you feeling flush? Your latest Youtube offering has just gone viral, fancy being paid to post a video or two on house cleaning and earning squilions for endorsing a fancy toilet cleaner or a tip on using shaving foam  to remove red wine stains!  Guys are you one of these lucky teenagers that have hit that jackpot? (if so, please share your thoughts with me) Why not spend some of your hard earned dosh on an Ewincher. Mum will love you for it and, just as importantly, so will dad. This little beauty takes all the pain out of pitting muscle against that imovable object. Not only can she who must be obeyed at all times now hoist the main with no effort, she can also get the skipper to the top of the mast. Incidentally if he becomes too much of a pain why not leave him there or she could use it to hoist the dinghy aboard whilst leaving him ashore. It can also be used to raise the anchor if the the dedicated windlass battery or the motor has failed. As for sheeting in the genoa, easy peasy! Need convincing? Why not read the report?

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