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Old 25-05-2010, 09:56   #1
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Newborn Baby on Board

well looks like my plans may have to change have a baby due in september.
has anyone had a baby on board? if not what age would be suitable for a child to be travelling on board mainly around carribean

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Old 25-05-2010, 10:15   #2
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We had both of our children on board from newborn to adulthood. We did stay at the dock for a few months before and few months after each of their births. I assume we did all the things that people do with their babies in houses. I can't be sure, since we've never had a house, but the basics must be the same. I'm not aware of any specifics other than the safety and risk management decisions that would always be concerns with children. Take care and joy, Aythya crew

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Old 25-05-2010, 10:28   #3
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I haven't cruised long-term with a baby on board, but our daughter has spent time on boats literally since she was born. (Hubby insisted we stop at the marina on the way home to take pictures of her "first day on the boat".)
She has been out sailing, power-boating, kayaking, short (week-long) cruising, wading, swimming...she loves all of it, I think because we started her right away. One of you will have to hold on to the baby nearly all the time (until they are mobile, and then it gets even harder!), so do some research and get a good baby carrier (most people seem to end up with several) for each of you. We have a woven wrap-style one, that one is my favorite (can also be a nice "baby hammock"), and also a "Baby Bjorn" style backpack carrier that Daddy uses, and a sling. Check out all the options and get what feels best to the user (I practiced and tested it with a 10-lb bag of sugar to get a feel for it beforehand).
Also, very important: good hat and sun-protective clothing, aren't supposed to use sunscreen before 6 months.
We breastfeed, and co-slept for the first few months, and cloth diapers, which all work pretty well when we're going. Except, don't take them in the water in the cloth diapers! (Cloth Swimmies are good though.)
Personal Opinion based solely on my experience: The kid will be ready to go before Mama is. I would want a few months post-partum to recover & settle in without having to worry about passagemaking. Aboard would have been fine, but anchored up in some nice spot where I could just relax and get LOTS of sleep and get used to the new life.
Oh, and Congratulations!
Look up Tom Neale's book "All in The Same Boat" - they raised their daughters on board, from very young, and I know the girls - they turned out fine.
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Old 25-05-2010, 14:40   #4
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Hi there,
My son (who is now almost 6) was brought home from the hospital to the boat where we live full time. And I am due with our second in September as well. In my opnion, it's easier having a baby onboard -- less junk people will buy you that you don't need anyhow, always close to the baby, no worries. Where are you docked? We plan to take off cruising again when baby #2 is about 2 years old and just sail locally in the Chesapeake Bay while still living aboard (as we have for 12 years) for now.
Also, Red Charlotte and Rebel Eric here on CF are expecting this summer and are also aboard full time. You are not alone. Feel free to browse our blog (link below) for some ideas of life aboard with kids. And best to you in your pregnancy. Also feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
Cindy (schoonerdog's wife)
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Old 27-05-2010, 09:30   #5
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Having kids on board is terrible!!!

First, there is the child labor....

Then they have to stand watch...

Then their ferocious animal tendencies come out...

A littel perpermint for sea sickness when being terribly forced to stand watch with their old man...

The terrible sights and places they will see.... FRIGHTENING!!

Well, maybe not. Maybe the best years of their lives, and certainly ours. Now to be a bit more serious for a moment with some thoughts and opinions...

Chase was on board at about 5 days old. Glen a little later than that... but they have both always known boating. Honestly, a newborn is the easiest of all. Before really planning a long trip to the carrib or wherever, make sure you have thought out the medical aspect of having kids on board. We have spent some nights at hospitals and depending on where you go, a hospital can be many hours/days away. On land you can measure the time to emergency care via miles. On a boat, it has to be hours because you might only be 20 miles offshore but the time to medical assistance is not teh time to shore but the time to the next harbor with the proper facilities. make sense?

Find a doc that understands what you do with your lifestyle. Many Pedi's did not for us... so be warned. I am not going to get into a debate about perceptions, but many people do not understnad your lifestyle and will address it as being potentially dangerous to the child. We have been told that more than once.

With the proper doc and educating your self, you should be able to stock the boat with the proper meds and pracitices to make it pretty safe. For example, we keep antibiotics on board, steroids, nausea medicine, and a long list of other things. When our kids were young, we kept all of our antibiotics (liquid) unmixed. You can request that from the pharmacist. They last longer that way.

I could write a lot more about this subject, I am just trying to give you some examples of things we do and have learned. It may not be right for everyone.

Mainsheet Technical Editor, C400
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Old 27-05-2010, 10:26   #6
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We've had our current boat for five years, and have been living and sailing (primarily living over the last year as our rig was off) for the last three years. Our first child will be born in about two months, and we're not altering our boat-sailing-cruising plans at all. I'm sure we'll keep our blog (my wife has her own on our site) updated. We'll be a couple of months ahead of you guys, so feel free to learn from any and all of our mistakes.
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Old 03-06-2010, 17:53   #7
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Just wanted to echo what Cindy (schoonerdog) and Rebel Heart (my husband) said above. Only 8 more weeks until my due date and we're almost fully prepared for the little one's arrival. She'll be a boat baby and we're really looking forward to it. Cindy's blog is a GREAT resource and feel free to follow our (mis)adventures as they take place!
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Old 03-06-2010, 18:24   #8
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Congrats! I do not have one, but when I look around I can see plenty. There does not seem to be any age limit really. I do know one actually born on a cruising boat!


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