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Old 20-01-2011, 14:33   #1
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How Do You Do it ?

I have been sailing obsessively since I was 5. I seem to have run into a problem that I can't see my way around.

I am 40 years old married with two kids. I live a 2 hour round trip from the nearest practical waterway.

So the kids now have a million activities that they feel can't be compromised. My wife likes sailing but can take it or leave it. We live on a farm and can't leave the animals for more than 24 hours

I have a number of health issues that prevent me sailing single handed or in a "hard core" kind of way (Failed back surgery).

We brought a powerboat as we figured we could go places faster - NO - just didn't do it for me or them.

Having just sold the powerboat I am trying to work out a way to get sailing back into our agenda.

Long and the short of it is we don't seem to have any time!

So how do you balance it all.
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Old 20-01-2011, 14:48   #2
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Save time and money with a chartered vessel. When you want to go sailing make the arraingment well enough in advance so the kids can be part of it. You didn't say how old or responsible they are but if you can do it, have them draw straws to see who gets to mind the animals and property while your gone. Once established they can alternate according to their wishes. Too many irons in the fire to think about ownership.
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Old 20-01-2011, 14:49   #3
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try do a boat/house swap,ie you look after their boat for 3months,they look after the farm, friends do it with their houses and have been all over the world.
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Old 20-01-2011, 14:50   #4
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Like everyone else... prioritize, then subtly launch a sails campaign to get the family on side. watch Captain Ron with the kids and see if they thinbk it would be fun etc
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Old 20-01-2011, 15:07   #5
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All good ideas. Chartering is not an option as the nearest charter fleet is 3 hours each way. The children are 7 (her) and 10(him). They both play sport at a high level (equestrian & rugby union) so they must train and they love it.

Ownership is what I am aiming for in my dream world. I may be nuts but I love all the tinkering.
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Old 20-01-2011, 15:15   #6
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Problem solved.
Start building a boat and in five years when you have finished, the kids will have left home for the bright lights of the city. You can then sell the farm and go sailing.
See - that wasn't hard at all.
and for my next trick ...........
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Old 20-01-2011, 15:30   #7
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Don't laugh strider. I seriously considered it! I was desperate. The urge soon left.
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Old 20-01-2011, 15:36   #8
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I couldn't tell you what to do with your life. I don't have children or a farm and it wouldn't be my place to tell you what I think you should do. However, I can tell you what my father did when i was a kid:

"I don't give a %$#@# what you want to do, get in the *^$% car, we're going to the boat!!!!"

All of my extra-curricular activities were pushed aside. They paid the bills and we did what my parents wanted to do. They aranged their lives around the boat, not the other way around. Who's to say which is the right way? I understand now and thank them for it, but I don't recall being so enthusiastic at the time.
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Old 20-01-2011, 15:39   #9
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Wow, you and I are in the same situation! Kids, farm with animals, "take it or leave it" wife etc. I have one additional problem: kid in college and struggling to pay for it, so any money spent on boating is quite difficult. But I'm doing it! Here's how:

I'm in a partnership with two buddies. We shopped around and found a STEAL of a deal on a great 26 footer. Cheap enough to where I could swing my 1/3 the cost. We found cheap moorage that we also split 3 ways, so month-to-month I'm able to swing it. That's how I handle the costs.

Regarding the time it takes; I can and do sail single-handed often and very much enjoy that. I also negotiate with the wifeypoo. I block out days on the calendar for sailing (typically local races) and she blocks out days for her indulgences. So far so good. But ... here's the brilliant part: We named the boat "The Lab". My partners and I are all engineers, and when work or wife wonder where I am on those sunny, breezy workday afternoons, I can say with all honesty "I'm at the lab".
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Old 20-01-2011, 15:49   #10
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Hi Shrew. Yes that is how I was brought up. My parents divorced over it and my brothers don't talk to my father because they hate sailing! I tried it one weekend. It was just me and the dog!

If I am honest with myself. I dont share well, just me. I am lucky that money is ok for me. Just time and you can't buy time!
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Old 20-01-2011, 16:00   #11
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Maybe you can buy time . A farm manager ? Get another someone to look over his / her shoulder ,neighbour perhaps ? Might just get a two day trip initially, but if they work out maybe a week and so on. Might not be an immediate solution but ..
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Old 20-01-2011, 16:02   #12
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You can't buy time directly, but you can always buy time from someone to free up time for yourself..

Perhaps the key to get them interested is to do some sailing as a group in a place where everyone will enjoy the activities. You can either convince them it's worth giving up other things for or not - it's not for everyone.
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Old 20-01-2011, 16:17   #13
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If you sell the sailing to your children as cross training for their sport - balance, decision making, strength training etc you may bring them across. Get some one to house sit - their are many people out there - grey nomads who would love a base for a week or two and look after your property as if it was their own. A break from training a playing is excellent for the age your children are, if they don't have a break they may burn out before they hit college. It can be done but you need to knock down the barriers.
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Old 20-01-2011, 16:22   #14
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Every decision you make is an either or decision. I am able to do it because I never painted myself into a corner, as you have.
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Old 20-01-2011, 17:11   #15
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I don't farm for a living, but we have 5 "backyard" horses, a coop full of chickens, two cats, and a dog and some goldfish. Not to mention two kids and a wife. . . . Going away anywhere is very difficult. And we live at least 3 hours from any salt water.

But we have a 31' trailer-sailer. That really has been my salvation. No boatyard or marina fees. No long passages to get to where you want to start cruising -- just drive it there at 60 mph. We take it to the sea at least twice a year for a week at a time. (We also managed one trip to the Bahamas for 2 months -- an order of magnitude more complicated, but we did it.) We hire a good local person who knows horses to live in our house and maintain all the animals till we return. It costs money, but not as much as keeping a boat in a marina.

The boat has room enough to sleep the four of us . . . until the kids get into high school. Eventually, when they're off in college, my wife and I will take three or four months in the Bahamas each winter. And we're laying the groundwork for that now.

The boat has been an absolute joy, and a wonderful addition to our family life.

I also get away for a week each year with two of my guy friends for some fishing, sailing, and bourbon drinking (at anchor). Again, the boat facilitates extraordinary times. Worth all the complications of making it work.
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