I get asked A LOT “what are some of the things that make cruising (not just with children, but even sailing in general) easier”. People that are about to head out cruising for the first time are curious about some of the stuff they may have overlooked or missed, and turn to us, the old(er) salts for some help. Although there are tons of things that I could recommend, after thinking about it, and not wanting to create an extensive list right now, there are a handful of things that make MY life on a boat wonderful. I feel that a lot of how I feel about cruising is directly related to how I feel in my floating home. It is these comforts that bring me joy, ease, and help make the whole living on the water experience that much better. These things could also bring someone just as much happiness on land, I have a strong feeling they would for me.
To name a handful of things that I LOVE on our boat:
1.Our Magma nesting pots. We bought the 10 piece nesting set our first year of sailing and we have loved it ever since. To have all of your pots and pans nest inside each other to save space and provide every piece of cookware needed is perfect. We had the non-stick ones at first, and they lasted us several years. Only a few months ago did we get upgraded (via sponsorship) to their new and beautiful ceramic ones. Our last ones were amazing, and these ones are perfect. No matter where we end up in the world, marine or not, I know these pots will follow.
2. Cariloha bedding. I know I have mentioned it before, and maybe it is completely sappy, but I am truly in love with my bed. Eben and I searched out just the right foam to make our mattresses when we were refitting our boat in Miami all those years ago. We found what I think it perfect, ends up its slightly too soft for his back, but that’s off topic. My perfect mattress paired with the wonderfully cozy bamboo sheets and duvet that Cariloha make, makes me smile every single time I crawl into bed. Isn’t that what everyone wants in a bed?!
3.Our flooring. This may seem like a weird one, but after 4 years of walking on bare fiberglass flooring (because it took us that long to find “just the right flooring” and installing it) having the padded luxury woven vinyl under our feet feels like are complete change to our boat. All of a sudden we are not as embarrassed to show people around when they stop by our boat, we don’t mind seeing our girls sitting on the floor playing, and cleaning up messes is literally a breeze (with a handheld dyson!). This flooring has changed our lives and I cannot wait to get it on our deck too.
4.Sunscreen. We are in the sun EVERY day. So you can imagine we go through loads of sunscreen. Gallons of it! Finding just the right one that would keep us protected, withstand some of our water sports hobbies, and not affect my sensitive skin, was a little tricky at first, but we found them. For intense water sports we wear Swox. This stuff will not wash off! You are sure to stay protected, and even though it is zinc and it is thick, it doesn’t leave your face looking white and gooey. For our everyday use, and playful fun in the sun we use Sun Bum. They make their regular line, their signature line (which we haven’t tried), and our FAVOURITE, the BABY BUM line. (The baby one had been taken off the market for about a year while they reformulated, but it is finally back and we are so happy it is!)
5. Our electronics. Although I have heard of many people wanting to downsize when moving onto a boat, getting rid of stuff is a great idea, but our electronics are one thing I would not want to go without. Each has a purpose and each is valuable. Let me start by saying that we are an “Apple” family through and through, we just like how they work for us. We have a macbook that I use for all of my blog and picture work, an unlocked iphone that we use daily for calls and data, an ipod for all our music, and two ipads for kids games, movies, and an alternate access to internet if the other devices are in use. All of these may seem excessive to some, but we use all of them daily and so I find they completely serve their purpose and use of space.
Like I said I am sure that I could continue on with this list and make it go on forever, adding boat parts, tools, and actual things that keep us afloat. But I wanted to focus this list on “things that make my boat life happier”. All of the above, and my continuing love for beach clothing are some of the things that keep me smiling as much as I do everyday.