Deciding What to Bring On Board

Moving from a nice sized house to a 43 foot long sailboat means you must leave stuff behind.  Sadly, It just won’t all fit on the boat.  So, you have to be disciplined and pick and choose what you absolutely cannot live without.  That is where my problem begins.

Freebag- my latest purchase
Freebag- my latest purchase

You see, I may have gone a little overboard (pun not intended) in buying lots of cruising gear over the last year or so.  My spare bedroom looks like a marine warehouse.  I hear about a cool new product and next thing you know, Fed Ex or UPS is showing up at the door with my package.  Only problem?  Now that we have picked our boat, I realize that it won’t all fit.  Big oops!

So what to do?  How do I decide what stays and what comes on board?  To resolve this, I am now sorting everything into the following 3 categories:

Ethan's Legos are a High Priority
Ethan’s Legos are a Highest Priority to him.

1.  Highest Priority- These are the items you cannot live without.  Limited amount of clothes, foul weather gear, sailing and safety supplies, basic galley supplies, food, boat spares and tools, Sailrite sewing machine, computer, Kindle, iPad, cameras, fishing supplies, snorkeling gear, reference books, ditch bag, medical kit and prescriptions.  With Ethan on board, this means a limited amount of education supplies, toys and games.

Solarvore Solar Oven
Solarvore Solar Oven

2. Medium Priority- Items that would be nice to have if we have the space. This would be additional galley supplies, extra tools, more books, puzzles, extra clothes and shoes, inflatable kayak, paddleboard, solar cooking still, more toys and sand gear for Ethan, beading supplies, and more art supplies.

3. Lowest Priority- no, I don’t need to bring to bring 20 pairs of shorts or shoes.  10 bathing suits, our book library where you actually turn the page.  Which reminds me- having converted to e-reading, now when I read an actual book, I find myself tapping the  page to turn- and it doesn’t.  So frustrating!

Remember that guest bedroom full of stuff?  Once I decide what stays and what is left behind, we have to haul it from California to Florida.  Yep!  U-Haul time.  These are the details you overlook when you dream of sandy white beaches, turquoise waters and swaying palm trees. The practical part of cruising.



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