Join Date: Apr 2011
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Help Us Set Sail!
After spending many months trolling here on sailnet with my wife, I have reached a point that I feel I could use the members here advice. ( I can always use advice but I need it especially now haha).
My wife lived on a Valiant 32 for about 4 yrs before we met. She had to sell her boat and hasn't been on the water since but misses it incredibly. Similarly, I was in the Navy for 6 yrs and then owned a 38 ft Catalina, which was sold to pay for flight training. My wife is now a stay at home Mom with our two children (3yr old boy and 6 yr old girl) who we home school. I am a civilian UAV pilot who has to travel overseas from time to time. (Currently in Israel).
My wife and I have longed to be back on the water and live aboard. We honestly are very simple people who believe in quality not quantity. We have considered waiting to move aboard until after the children are older or grown, but also would love to have them grow up on the water as long as we are able to provide them with a good quality of life and the ability to partake in some everyday activities such as sports and all ( my little girl is in her first season of softball and doesn't want to have to give up her jersey haha - it is pink). So my first question have my wife and I lost it and are we completely nuts for trying to do this with children? We understand that there will be a lack of material stuff and we look forward to that and expect it. We just moved do to my job sold our 4 br house and put everything in storage and right now we live in a small (825 sq ft apartment). We don't miss any of our stuff that is in storage. We wish we had sold it all but we will soon enough. The children have plenty of toys and are well provided for in the entertainment area. TV is not a big deal in our family so that would be a non issue as well. My little girl loves the idea as does my boy but to go on the opinion of my family (two of which don't have a thought about it past WOW THAT WOULD BE COOOOL!) my wife and I seek your advice.
Also if it is deemed that we are not insane, we need help with guidance toward a proper vessel. We are obviously going to be in a marina a good deal, but we want to take some cruises as well. We want to sail the Gulf, the Bahamas, the East Coast, and when the kids are much older go on longer voyages. We feel a good size for us would be no less that 36' - at the extreme 50'. Probably more towards 38-45'. It has been a few years since we owned a boat and the ones we had we loved. We have grown family size wise though and have been out of it for a while....so it can't hurt to ask. We have considered another Valiant but they would be cramped in our opinion and get very pricey. We looked at Southern Cross and Island Packet as well. In a different paradigm we really like the look of Beneteau with the available three cabins but are concerned with durability and seaworthiness in (I think they are called) "production" boats. We want function and form if possible. Nice space but seaworthy. The budget is up to 150k but would like to stay towards 100k unless already fitted out well. We could afford to hit the 250k mark but that would mean waiting to do it for about an extra two years.
So help me out please. Should I be admitted for having such a "strange" yearning or is it viable and wise to do this with my children, and what are your expert opinions on make, model, and size?
If there are grammatical errors and you begin to wonder as to the ability of our homeschooling the kids - Mom ( former dentist) teaches - I just bring home bacon - planes don't care how you write!