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KNOT KNOWN
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"Thor didn't have two young children with him. "
Actually, there are plenty of replacement children available on the world market but Thor was takingworking crew and kids are notoriously under-experienced for that job.

Not to mention, Kon-Tiki did wreck and the expedition was concluded with a wreck and rescue. I wouldn't use it as a reference for a really successful sailing trip unless you're into the "any landing you can walk away from is a good landing" school.
True. the Ra expedition's first attempt failed as well, then he built the stern like it was in Egytpian drawings instead of the the way the lake Chad builders suggested. The Tigris is where he finaly got the reed boat figured out. He did want to bring children on some of his experimental ancient craft voyages but no ones Mother was stupid enough to let that crazy bastard take their kid to sea on those contraptions. He did however show the world that these "Milk Run" routes where being used by the ancients and I think Paradise Parrot's point was that with a seaworthy vessel, the route the OP is considering is a much used and traveld one, and if it could be done on a Balsa Raft, then she stands a chance on a modern boat and with some training. I seriously doubt he was suggesting she do it on a log raft with her kid's.
 

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Reading Comprehension error or a desire to just write something contrary for the sake of it.

The Transpac trip the OP was discussing it not at all like a trip to the Chilean Channels and can be done by anyone that's what to put there mind to it. A group of men dieing from AIDS formed a crew and Raced the Transpac. Interesting Documentary and they finished without major sailing incident despite the need for a doctor on board.
 

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Welcome to the thread! You'll be amazed at how much information you can find on here about so many things. I'll give you my input on your idea.

First of all, like everyone said, be sure you do a lot of research on what will be the right boat for you and your family. My beau and I did a ton of research on the perfect boat for us when we decided to move onto a sailboat. We wanted something in the 33-36' range, and some of the 36' boats felt a lot more cramped than some 30' boats we looked at. So find something that is going to suit your needs and allow you and your family some breathing room.

However, don't just get a boat that feels big without doing the research on safety factors. Capsize ratios, motion comfort, etc. need to be taken into consideration. ESPECIALLY if you plan to cross an ocean. While people have done it with little experience, I would not recommend taking a course to just get the basics, "enough for a 30 day voyage", as you mention. A 30 day voyage is a long time, and so many things can come into play, that unless you are an experienced sailor, I would recommend finding a captain or someone to assist you with the journey. I absolutely love going offshore, but it isn't as glamorous as people sometimes think. Try going 7 days with no shower! :) I'm in no way trying to discourage you from doing this - just be sure that you know what you're getting into before you embark on a journey that big.

As far as staying on a mooring in Hawaii, it's doable, but like several have mentioned, just be aware of the realities. 4 people on the boat using the head - you'll need to be near a pumpout station where you can pump out regularly. Then there's showering, electricity, etc. A marina sounds like the better option for you, but they can be expensive. I'm not sure about the rates in HI, but I would imagine they are not cheap. Our marina fees that we are paying now in the Chesapeake are almost as much as the mortgage on our little house we sold to get here. Of course, we don't mind because we have some of the most awesome scenery, so it's a tradeoff! Much better than seeing our neighbor's unkempt yard every day!

Maybe you could start out by finding a boat and keeping her there in CA for a couple of years first. Try it out, get it ready for a longer voyage, learn to sail, etc. That way, if you absolutely love it, you'll be ready for it, and if you don't love it, then you can change your mind and move back ashore while you're still in familiar waters.

I wouldn't take back our decision to move aboard for anything. I wasn't sure how I would like it, and now I wonder why it took us so long to do it. So if you have the right frame of mind, and you aren't tied to a lot of material things, you can be very happy, free, and satisfied!

You can read about my personal experience with the decision to move aboard here:
Does Size Matter? | Vacilando

Best of luck to you and your family! Can't wait to hear how your search comes along!

~Melody

Vacilando | This is the story of two people, a dog and a journey. We'll choose some article almost certain not to exist and diligently try to find it.
good post Melody.

Brian
 

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Well, with all due respect to anyone who has not raised their kids on their boat as I have: when you put your kiddos onboard, your stress level goes up exponentially. I tend to agree with DrFerron, and not because she is a mod, but because of experience. My kids were aboard at 5 days old. Got the pics to prove it.

Now, Famoffour, if you want my advice as a dad who has been ther (and my wife Christie can also chime in), foget HI for now. Buy a boat that you guys are comfortable on. Learn to live on her. Make sure you can get life to work as a family aboard. I will tell you that things have gotten hairy for us when we were no more than 150 miles from shorline. Put a zero behind that and I cannot imagine. You are beyond help. There is no 911. Crap, VHF doesn't work and SSB is spotty at best. Even if you reach someone on your SAT phone doesn't mean you will be saved. America can spoil you. I too spent my adolescent life in camping trailors and traveling via backpacking. No comparrison. SOrry.

Kids add stress you cannot believe, and I don't just mean what they are going to do that day. I mean thoughts cross your mind when things are really getting bad like, "God, what have I done?" That may not be in the books. If it is not, then they are lying, they omitted it, or they suck as parents. First good squall offshore has a way to reconcile thoughts. I am not trying to scare you, but to say that sailing more than anything I have done is serious business. THose that have grown up by the sea take for granted what they know. SHe is unforgiving and beyond help on those kinds of runs offshore.

Now, that being said, here I am as a FT cruiser with two kids aboard. I grew up camping and now do this. I would not trade it. I would also urge, and am a big fan of, getting parents and kids onboard. Camping cannot compare to this life. It is beautiful and my kids are much better than the camping kids you often meet. THe people and places are not limited by highways. You choose your sunsets. Life is awesome. THe people here are much like you meet camping (though often of more money and retired... get ready for that). However, it is a community more than I found camping. We say in touch with many other families and everyone, family or not, watches out for each other. We just had another dock party a week or two ago. Kids, adults, doctors, lawyers, laymen, families, you name it. ALl walks of life but we were all the equals.

I want to encourage you to this life, but encourage you to do it right. If you have done the camping, this is better. However, it is more expensive too but also more free and can be less expensive depending on your flexibility. THe latter I am not an expert at. I will pay and do whatever I can to keep this life for me and my family.

If you want lots of specifics, have at it with questions from homeschooling to where to go. I will give you all you want for what I know. May also move this thread to Kids forum where our discussions may benefit other parents.

Take care,

Brian and fam.
 

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KNOT KNOWN
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I was raised on board, so coming from the veiw point of the kid, I can say because of my Grandfathers compitancy, I was never scared. I never thought he ever was either, but he was prolly just been stoic and not wanting to show me how he was actually sh!tting his pants. Crusing Dad is no doubt giving his children a wonderful child hood and I congradulate him. The boat I was raised on was little, and had very few comforts. We mixed vinegar in buckets of salt water to bath and ate spam. I was given a Walkman and books for entertainment and taught celestial for math class. I was assigned books to read and then engaged in conversation to prove I had read it. I was sent to a summer camp for my "other Kid" social interaction. It was a dictatorship, and If I did'nt like something, tough.
I doubt the way I was raised would even be legal today. But the key to my Grandfathers ability to raise me onboard was his exceptional seamanship. I can't immagine doing it with out that skill in my pocket. I run a family oriented chater boat, snorkel, fish, Kayak and some scuba. I Take kid's of all ages to sea on a regular basis, so I know the anxiety associated worrying about their safety. It's different when it's not my kid, and at the end of the day I send them home. I think my point is I strongly suggest the OP and her husband get the basics, maybe STCW training, and some sea time before they leave the dock with the kid's on board, but a lot can be learned just living on a boat at the dock, and even more living on the hook. I'm a huge advocate of family's taking to the sea, and hope all works out well with the OP and her dream. Just take it one logical step at a time.
As for the stories of what other people have been able to do, like Thor, one should know about these people and their accomplishments, they are inspiring and encouraging.
 

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As long as there is boats there will be questions, as long as there are sailors there will be opinions and as long as we have opinions there will be yarns.
A kid once asked me "Why is everyone yelling at me?"
I told him it's nothing personal. Most times when people bark orders they are not conversing or cursing -they are simply expressing an important need in the most efficient way they know how.

So sad are some people they only get along with a dog. Poor animal... On even a short voyage they return yelling at it profusely.
Nothing looks so tacky as to demean or rant at a dog you named after a Nazi General while is squats there peeing out of total fear.
My point isn't the mistreatment of dogs but children. It can be hard on them to always be the dumb kid on board. I suppose in a perfect world you bring on another child for him to abuse.
Playing games at sea is as great a fun as it is on land. I suggest there be days where you let the kid be captain and take his orders. Then make mouse like suggestions when he has over looked something.
Often the things we get most upset about are not all that important anyway. Remember that when you are trying to save face by demeaning a kid even further.
Kids need to say goofy things and push the limits. You can't simply bypass that because you are uncomfortable knowing every boat in the harbor hears him singing out the Disney song.
Kids are people and people are kids, better to respect them than always push. And if you push you get push back.
If you are pushing too hard perhaps back off on the coffee.
When I was very young we built a big raft in the woods behind our house.
My three brothers and I played on that darn thing till we wore it out. It never got anywhere near water, our mother was happy about that.
Remember kids need fun.
When my dad tossed us in the water to show us we might drown if we didn't know how to dog paddle. My fear screamed a lesson to my brain. Water is not our environment. Later that lesson matured into a health respect for the ocean. We may have ideas about what's a good lesson but capsizing is the one you don't forget. Crossing big water is dangerous, true. Most children die at the dock. If you think a big boat is danger try rowing a dink in a chop or through the surf back to the big one.
Any view of sailing gets a good vantage while in the water up to your neck.
Find out just how hard it is to get from there to regaining the deck and you get the idea about snapping in. If done right, it should be so exhausting that you can't get up once on the deck and lie there huffing and puffing to let that lesson sink in drive home.

I was so crazy as a young commercial fisherman my older skipper tried warning me but I saw it as exciting. Kids push the limits...
Teach the kid to steer the boat back to you once you are over board. If you can't trust him or her they are no use as crew. They should know fire control, first aid and radio talking as well. Keeping a calm demeanor under fire without the yelling will teach them a cool head but YELL IF YOU NEED TO. It has no effect if you do so all the time.
Kids love adventure, it's what being a kid is about so taking the danger out isn't natural.
The best thing is to teach themselves on a dinghy while you pretend not to watch. Small boats take quick decisions and racing is even better.
Better to ding that boat than the expensive one.
When you're old you won't want to circumnavigate anymore. You'll be cynical and see all the issues before they can happen. You'll say to your self "why bother?"
A boat must sail to be a boat, Let 'em be a kid so they can say: "Why not?"
 

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i have watched many sets of kids grow on boats-- works well.
as to older folks new to sailing "doing the baja bash"--not accurate. the folks who sail sounth with haha do not necessarily bash back north. bash is the sailing north and bashing into the south bounhd curent and winds.
hlf the folks doing haha sail with puddle jump to so pac. about half of the remaine=der hire delivery skippers to bash the boat home--and the rest-- half of those are idiots ik eme who are into cruising--no i didnt do haha--i dont cruise in groups....some actually leave their boats in a mexican port to rot. they think they will return, but the boats usually find neglect as their owners fail to remain attentive. no, hiring a group of mexicans to do boat work is not routine maintenance.
coupes with children do well onthe water-- but the kids often suffer--i have seen kids without exercise programs run the motorized dink for fun and adventure around the other boats in an anchorage--i have also seen and met some very very polite and intelligent children cruising--i all in the way the parents teach and train. kids love boats--living on them is an adventure their friends do not get to have. education of these kids is usually home schooling, so the result is totally dependent on the parents and their input.
cruising with a family is an adventure-- consult bumfuzzles blogs----they are currently in puerto vallarta with 2 under 5 yr old kids.....on a boat.....
 

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[The sad promise of what this brings is people solving a housing problem with a boating problem. Bums w/ a boat...
Brings a whole new meaning to leaving for the house knowing they have full access.
At the same time I need lots of time aboard to address the issues. It's not unheard of me spending a few weeks weeks aboard, eating, sleeping and sweating boat.
 

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I saw the title of one of your replies. I agree that a power boat would probably suit better in terms of light and space. An inexpensive trawler-type might be a good starting place. My wife and I lived aboard in Charlestown(Constitution Marina) for eleven years. We had a 32 foot Ketch. You need to work out storage for seasonal stuff on land. Since you have two houses a shed in one of the yards would probably do nicely. Storage units can get pricey. Your fifth wheel experience should be very helpful You already know about life with minimal storage and tight quarters. Good Luck. Dan
 

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Hi there....We raised our son in a 5th wheel and we would have gone the boat route if we could have afforded it back then...when the boat market fell it was a perfect opportunity for us to just go for it...it was a dream my husband has always had in the back of his mind...I just didn't know it could become a reality...anyway our son is 22 years old...travesl with us in a 26 foot Westerly along with a dog and a pet squirrel...we have only been doing this for 8 weeks...it was EXTREMELY tough for me to adjust at first because I felt nauseous but ginger cured that...I am still adjusting but I can see it is going to be a really awesome way to live...much more so than the RV lifestyle...ask me anything I will tell you the TRUTH...ha ha.....
 

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i Say go for it , you said yourself you were happiest when living in the 5th wheel and you are correct that your husbands skills will be an asset. The one thing that might be difficult is living aboard in Maui. I lived abourd there for 8 years but as you mentioned I had been on a 20 year waiting liost for a slip in Maalaea Harbor. I only got one because I bought a boat from someone who alreday had a slip and it came with the boat. I looked into moorings myself in Lahaina Roadsted and off Kihei but the problem is A. the swell is awful and very uncomfortable to live on a boat , most people just see it as one of the only places to keep a boat there but not to live on. B. Too frequently the moorings drag regardless of how well they are set up andC. Forget about insurance if moored ! Better bet is Oahu at the Ala Wai boat Basin, many liveaboards there. I spent sevral months tied up there and it was very pleasent. Getting a slip though is still difficult although there are far more slips there than on Maui. Im back on the East Coast now and love it here where living aboard is easier to manage. I wish you the best of Luck !
 
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