Seems that you all have wifes that are into sailing. I'm hopping mine will get there and that it will become a "family activity" (note that we also have a 2 year old). Until then, I may have to singlehand and/or go with friends.
Would you singlehand with a 4 yo?
I think this is OK since he would be tethered to the boat and we would be cruising...not racing. Thoughts?
We bought our first boat a 31ft Allmand 3yrs ago when my daughter was 4 & my son was 6months. We bought the boat in NJ and brought it the 1000+ miles back to Lake Erie with my 4yr old and wife on board (The little one stayed with grandma). My 4yr old did well with it & still talks about that trip. I think 4 is a great age to start as they listen pretty well, can get their own drinks, and can help a bit.
I won't lie day sailing for the first two years with my son at 6 months and 1.5 was not very much fun. He would not sleep on the boat and if he did his sister woke him up and it really ment only one of us got to sail while the other got screamed at. Last year at 3 he did pretty good and finally learned to sleep. I'm looking forward to an even better season now that he will be 4 this year! One just has to remember that there is not much to do for kids while sailing so we bring the DVD player, a few toys, & play a lot of the games we used to play on long road trips when I was a kid. The kids both really like the longer trips we take better then day sailing. I suspect it has more to do with the fact we play in the water more, search out play grounds, and of course ice cream!
I have single handed with each of the kids on board. I worried less when my daughter was about 5 but they both really like the time alone with me they get while we are on the water and my daughter loves to invite friends to go out with us for day trips.
Currently Sailing a Allmand 31