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post #1 of Old 05-14-2010 Thread Starter
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What Interior Arrangement Really Works for Living Aboard with Kids?

My husband and I are beginning the process of saving up for a boat. We don't have the funds or the skill set yet for extended cruising, but my eventual goal is to reach the point where we can take long trips: coastal cruising would be wonderful, and blue water better still. We have discussed the possibility of living aboard.

I am about 90 percent sure I could handle extended liveaboard as a lifestyle: I could throw out everything I own right now, and I would be alright with it. I only own one pair of shoes. The only thing I would miss is my 1000+ books, but I also know how to acquire -- or create -- digital copies of all of them. They can go.

There are only two things I won't give up: my pet parrot, and possibly having children along for the ride.

We don't have children yet, but I hope to have them and of course want to be able to bring them with us without driving them nuts. This is very, very important to me: I had an offbeat childhood (home schooled, etc) and would like to involve future children in some experiences that build confidence and give them a different set of perspectives from the peers. Sailing & living aboard seems like a wonderful path to that parenting goal.

I am wondering what those who have cruised with children found really works in terms of boat size and interior layout. A lot of the boats that seem to be the perfect size for a couple of handlers also have two cabins or a cabin + quarter berth. For example: I am especially in smitten with the Tayana 37. When I picture living aboard as a couple, it is always the image the springs to mind.

It is easy to see how this arrangement could work with one child on board. But I keep wondering: what do you do with two? Would we need another cabin? Have you sailed with a couple of children and made a layout like the T37 work? What did you do?

I'd love to hear people thoughts on what works and what does not ....
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