Figured it’s about time I jump in… 😉
We’re heading into week three of living aboard and I’ve got to be honest – it hasn’t been easy (but!)…
Let’s start with bringing home the bacon. We both work in Chatham, but Lady K is cozy in her slip out in Lighthouse Cove. For Tim, this is about a 20 minute drive (or less if you know him at all). For myself and my ’85 VW Cabriolet – it’s at least half an hour. I work a scheduled rotation, but for four weeks (on week three for this too), I clock in for 6:00 AM. Back at the house, I had to tip-toe around in the morning to be sure I didn’t wake up the kids or Grandma, or Tim. It wasn’t always easy, but I managed. I’d take my showers and pack my lunch the night before to lessen the racket before heading out the door. I have to admit – I was dreading this change. We moved from a big 4-bedroom, two storey house with a 2-car garage to a mono-hull with a cabin, quarter-berth, V-berth and a gravel driveway. It was easy to shuffle around in the morning quietly. Here – my alarm could not only wake up Tim, but both kids too. Once I actually roll out (actually kind of ninja-crawl my way out) of bed, I step into the head, closing what doubles as Matt’s “bedroom” door behind me. After I’m finished in there, I have to strategically maneuver my way over Tim’s sleeping body to the galley where I make my coffee, remember to turn off my snoozed alarm and throw ice packs into my lunch bag. From there, I remove the companion-way door, toss out my bathroom bag, purse and lunch pail – put back the companion-way door and step on to the dock. This is where my eyes try to focus in the dark to find where I left my flip-flops and once found, I head to the club bathroom. Takes me about the same time to get ready out here as it did back at the house, so not much change in that routine. Then I toss all of my junk in the car, find my morning playlist and off I go! To my surprise, I’m slowly falling into a routine with that and it’s making everything else much easier.
Moving along to the after-work routine. Depending on my schedule (which has become friggin’ great with some recent changes), I typically head home to tidy up and prep dinner. I’d like to say it’s always ready by the time Tim [and the kids] get home, but that would be a lie. I’m working on my time management skills – that’s a whole ‘nother story. For the weeks we have the kids, Tim and I will volley the responsibilities throughout the week. For example, today Cali has swimming lessons right after Tim is done work. He stays in town to do that, while I came out to the boat to shuffle the kids’ rooms around. Matt’s been at overnight camps throughout the summer, so when he isn’t here, Cali sleeps in the V-berth. Matt is coming back tonight, so I moved all of Cali’s toys and books and stuffies back to the quarter-berth. For dinner tonight, we’re keeping it simple with some sandwiches. After dinner, one of us will bring Cali for her shower, while the other whips up her bedtime snack. After that, I usually help her brush her hair and teeth and take her vitamin, then Tim will tuck his baby girl into bed for the night. All the while, Matt kind of just does his own thing.
When we’re in the moment and everything seems to be so non-stop, it can get really frustrating. For the first week out here, I was at my wits end trying to stick to routine and keep everything as normal as it was back home without having half of the things here [I thought were] needed to do that. We were dog-sitting Rosco who was shedding everywhere (which drove my mild-OCD absolutely bonkers), we had Cali who’s at the age of a million and one questions and stating the very obvious and after being up and at’em since 4:30 AM – I often had moments of weakness. I felt like I was going to break or snap or just jump off the dang boat and swim away. I didn’t want any of those feelings. But it all needed to happen. Lucky for me, I have Tim. “It has to be bad before it can get better.” He always knows when I need a quick little pep talk, a hug to help me just stop and collect myself, or when to just crack a beer and slide it in front of me. He just gets me and he does whatever he can to help keep me grounded. While anyone who knows me, knows that I don’t need this and I’ve always been a very independent woman – I want this from my partner in crime and there isn’t day that goes by where I don’t appreciate it. I’m sitting here now, relaxed, having a beer and just thinking about how truly great the past couple of weeks have been. No, it hasn’t been perfect and no, it’s been far from easy – but we’re doing it. Not just Tim and I together, but the kids too. We’re all adapting to this new-to-us “minimalistic” life and I really don’t think any of us would have it any other way.
This is our happy place. This is our home. Welcome aboard. 🙂