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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Washington State
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Heath & Nick,
We have been there. Chase was on the boat 5 days after birth, we lived aboard soon thereafter, and I can tell you that it made many positive memories (and some not so positive ones... but that is life in general).
We had boats before kids, and after. We are moving back to FL soon in our newest boat and will very likely live aboard again (now with 2 kiddos). Go for it. Make it work. But let me warn you, it is very very different with the boys on board versus just a couple of furry children. Kids require space and things adults don't: Lying around the floor and playing cars, formula, baby food, diapers (OH LORD, THE DIAPERS>>> WHEW!!), etc.
I know there are going to be many people (and a lot of good advice) about how to avoid many of those things... but keep in mind that everyone is different. I think the hardest thing to get used to living on a boat with kids is the lack of private space. We set out certain boundaries for the boys(their own personal space) and for ourselves (Don't bother Daddy, he's in his chair).
This will be a very contentious subject, but I will throw out an opinion that many people on this forum may dissagree with (and you may too): Buy a big, fat, production cruiser that is basically a floating condo (yes, I am prepared for everyone to point out the fallacies of this, and I know them very well, but it is still my OPINION). There is nothing wrong with them, as long as your basic destination is not more than a few days from land. They are comfortable. They are less expensive than the typically same size Bwater thoroughbred that is better built (yes better built), but the dreams of distant shores and remote destinations with no access to a Pedi or any real medical care should not be taken lightly. For us at least, our kids made several visits to the hospital.
I have noticed there are many people out there with more kiddo-blue-water experience than what we have and may have many differing opinions; I happily open the forum to them. I am not the expert. But I will say, some of the best memories and pictures of our lives have been (and still are) surrounded by water. Cruisers with kids have to work harder at it, but you can do it and it is worth it.
If you have some specific questions, drop me a VM and I will throw it off to my wife. She had some motion sickness with our second, not our first. However, I think once your body gets used to the movement, the only motion sickness you will get is when you step on Terra Firma. That sounds like a joke, but I am not kidding. Once your body gets used to the movement, it has a problem when it stops.
PS I would wager that your kids will be healthier any month on the boat than ANY day in a daycare.