Thank you for pointing out what should have been obvious to me. I will endeavor to keep her social life in mind, as she seems to always remember mine.
You are correct in your assumption that our friends and family have tried to talk us out of becoming full-time cruisers. They have used arguments of the dangers of hurricanes, lightning storms ("you know that Florida has the highest incidents of lightning deaths..."), losing the kids to the sea, putting a strain on the marriage, etc., ad-nauseum.
You have all heard those arguments before so I won't go into my responses to them. They mean well, but they are all saying, essentially, the same thing-- "it's just 'not normal.'" And for them, "not normal" is the same as "crazy." I do have this to say, however: I challenge my nay-saying friends to go to the biography section of any library and look for the books written about great men and women who led ordinary lives.
It is my belief that extroardinary people are born of extra-ordinary childhoods. I wish for my children, much more than a mundane, trivial existence, so, it is with a mix of trepidation and anticipation that my wife and I are making such a radical lifestyle change. We are hoping that this new life-aboard will give our family something that most never get-- substance.
To be sure, we will make our boat as safe for the children as possible-- netting inside the life-lines, PDF rules, radios, EPIRB, and even a Sat-phone if we venture too far from civilization. Good sailors minimize risks, and I expect to show my kids how to be good sailors... by example. That, I expect, will entail a lot of hard work and some self-discipline, too. I'm 'good with that.' Beth, my wife and soon-to-be First Officer, is okay with it, too.
Perhaps I will start a blog, like so many others have done, but this is enough for one post.
Thanks for the encouragement. I will let her know that she has an on-line sailing friend.