June 21, 2008

It's a big backyard

a solstice paddle
Originally uploaded by behang

One aspect about our choice to live on a boat which people often comment on is the very small space we pack our lives into...and with three young children, the lack of a big yard or area for them to run and play in.

It's a pretty big misconception.

Our backyard is immense! There's so much space to roam. No, they're not going to be playing soccer out there anytime soon- but much territory exists to explore. To be sure, it's not the typical turf lawn where you can play flag football after Thanksgiving dinner or croquet on a warm summer evening. And I'll readily admit to missing having my patch of fresh herbs easily accessible to the kitchen. But I'm happy with our trade, and love the freedom and independence I see being fostered as the children reach out to explore it.

This scene of kids in the kayak has pretty typical "after school play"... heading out for a paddle (in this case, complete with jammies on, since bedtime was to follow). They come back with hermit crabs, big crabs, stories of the osprey they saw dive for a fish, the liveaboards they shared waves with out in the anchorage, the Canada geese who came by to see if they had snacks. It's marvelous.

Meanwhile, I give myself about a month before there are herb pots bungeed somewhere on the deck.

June 14, 2008

Finally living aboard

Jamie bringing Totem into Eagle Harbor
Originally uploaded by

What does it take to get moved onto the boat? By a few of the numbers:

4 dumpster runs
3 vanloads to the Children's Hospital thrift shop
2 vanloads to Goodwill
1 vanload to the Grace rummage sale
a massive garage sale
at least 200 cups of coffee

As of May 31, we were finally moved OUT of our house and onto Totem. We met this major milestone with a logical follow up: collapsing in exhaustion! At least- that's what Jamie and I did. The children, on the other hand, were running around like crazy things- popping from one cabin to the next, finding arranging and rearranging stuffed animals, laughing and animated. Jamie and I sat near-numbly in the main salon, marveling that it had finally happened. All I could say was "I'm so happy. I'm just so happy!"

Getting out of the house took far, FAR more work than either of us imagined. You would think, having been around several friends going through very similar downsize / move aboard transitions in the last year, that we'd know exactly what to expect- somehow, you just have to live it!

Updates here hopefully will be a little more regular soon...meanwhile, gratuitious shot of the boat coming into Eagle Harbor a few weeks back, with all her shiny new rigging.