Hello from Body Boat Blade!

We thought a quick Q & A would be a great way to greet spring and the upcoming 2016 paddling season!

How is Leon?

I am doing great and healing from the 5 surgeries that I had in just over a year! (2014-1015)

A lower back laminectomy, a total hip replacement, 2 carpel tunnel surgeries, and a new foot joint! I am biking to and form the shop every day, swimming & snorkeling in my new RipCurl wetsuit ( I feel like a super hero in it!), I am hiking around Mountain Lake on a regular basis and I am getting back in my boat for more and more paddles! It has been an interesting year complete with loads of doctor’s visits, hospital stays, helicopter rides, and wild ferry rides! I look forward to seeing everyone this coming paddling year on and off the water!

Where did you spend Christmas?

Christmas was on Sucia this year - the weather was cold, a light snow was falling on Mount Constitution as we left North beach. We had the campsite to ourselves, ate oysters and drank wine by the fire. We found a trail that we had not ever hiked on in the 20+ years we have been here! We can’t wait to share it with students this coming season! When we got back to Orcas the next day, we took advantage of the snow and climbed to the top of Mount Constitution - our own sea to sky adventure!

Where are the best hikes?

We think Moran State Park is the place to go! Mountain lake is a 4 mile loop, and hiking from Cascade Lake to the top of Mount Constitution only takes 4 hours round trip! Of course it takes longer when we have snow on the trails like we did this past winter.

How are Seth and Svetlana?

Seth and Svet are doing great! They are now living in Seattle in a beautiful apartment in Lower Queen Anne with a view of the water! Svetlana got a full time job in the city and Seth went along to expand his knowledge of throwing pots on a wheel and make sure that Svet gets 3 home cooked meals a day! We are hoping that Seth will bring back our ceramic BBB mugs soon! We are excited as Seth will be helping out on quite a few BBB classes this upcoming season! We are going to have to coax Svetlana to Orcas by telling her that her kayak misses her!

How is home life? (Shawna and Leon live with Shawna’s mom Evelyn and sister Tara)

Unfortunatley, Tara has taken a turn for the worse, as some of you will know that she has down syndrome and a few years back was diagnosed with Alzheimers. This January, she developed a seizure disorder on top of all of that! Leon and Shawna witnessed several grand mal (tonic/clonic) seizures and Leon even got to fly off island with her in the helicopter twice! She is at home now, stable and as content as we can make her. She now has a care team that comes into our home for 8 hours a day, 7 days a week. Whew - getting old is NOT for sissies!!

Is Shawna still doing art?

Yes I am! I still have a fascination for crows these days and have been spending time drawing and painting them. I even entered one of my paintings into a juried show down in San Diego and it got accepted! I am also still working on my on-going children’s book - I hope to finish that project up this year - stay tuned!!

How is the new shop?

We are loving the new space and can’t wait for our season to start and for everyone to come in and see it! We are ordering our window stickers this month. We have way more foot traffic finding us. Shawna’s art gallery looks great too!

How is 2016 shaping up?

Fantastically! We have a great start to our season! Deception Pass, Foundations, Performance Paddling, and Coastal Navigation and Tidal Planning were full of fun and learning!

Keep a close eye on our website or call us to find out what we have going on as we are always adding things to the schedule! We will have some guest coaches joining us this season along with the normal BBB crew (Shawna, Leon, and Seth) so have a look at our Coaches page for updates on who is joining us!


Posted 26 April 2016 at 21:05 by Surfer Dave

Sorry, met Justine. Always getting my ladies mixed up.

Posted 26 April 2016 at 21:02 by Surfer Dave

Happy Christine posted this site! Didn’t know any of the latest developments in your lives. Leon, add four more wetsuits to your collection and you’ll catch up to me.

Posted 26 April 2016 at 19:57 by chris duff

Lisa and I have been thinking a lot about both of you- as well as Tarra and your mom, Shawna. Both of you are really amazing people! Very happy to hear the surgeries have made you a superman Leon. Happy paddling.

Posted 25 April 2016 at 15:11 by Melinda (Buttles) Bowen

Thanks for the update! Glad to hear Leon is healing well and getting back to his adventurous self :-). Looking forward to seeing Shawna’s children’s book someday too, how exciting! I hadn’t heard about Seth and Svetlana’s big move, hope the big city is treating them well. Ben and I are doing great and just bought a house in Bellingham, so come visit anytime! Hope to run into you on the water sometime soon <3

Posted 25 April 2016 at 13:04 by Tracy McQueen

Hey, thanks for the great update, even the not as great news….you folks continue to be a total inspiration and I hope to see you out on the water this year! And thanks also for all the great photos.

Posted 25 April 2016 at 07:59 by Jeff bedford

Terri and I wish you guys all the best. I hope we get to run into you this summer. We are so glad you are past all of those surgeries and are getting back to feeling good. The West Coast kayak community misses you!

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