Well, we’ve been living on our boat for 14 months now, so felt it was a good time to share with you all of the things we love about it!
#1 The Simple Life
One word- minimalism. It is something we have completely embraced and something that living on a boat completely nurtures (forces!). With a limited amount of storage space, you really have to think about each and every purchase you make. Is it functional? Do I need it? Where will it go? Everything has to have a ‘home’- a place where it lives on our boat permanently. This forces you to really start to prioritize what is important to you. Since we’ve moved onboard, lots of clothes have been donated to those in need, golf clubs have been sold (*gasp!*) and new items outweighed old ones and been replaced. Lots of items we own now have multi-functions, nest inside one another or are collapsible in order to maximize our space. There is also something extremely gratifying in washing your dishes by hand, hanging laundry out to dry on the lifelines and going barefoot- it is like going back to our roots a bit and it is fabulous 😉
#2 Family Togetherness
Living in close quarters means you spend more time with your family- period. For us, this has meant more exploring, more walking, more learning, more playing games together and more communication with one another. We have learned so much about one another and there is a silent and mutual respect among each of us living in this small space together. We ebb and flood just like the tides flowing around our boat and we live our days. It is glorious and we’re so happy to be a big part in our son Carson’s life as well. Children really do grow up SO very fast, so best to spend as much time with them while we can or we’ll regret it down the road for sure.
#3 The Freedom
We literally have the ability to take our home anywhere in the world. How cool is that!? Oh, and with the power of the wind… it is free! So far, we have lived in 3 different marinas and 2 different towns on s/v Bloom. It is so nice to be able to move around and explore new areas. Nothing gets stagnant and we love the different things that each town has to offer us!
#4 It Can Be Cheap!
Well, as cheap as you want it to be. If you are lucky enough to own your boat, your cost of living could be as little as food and other incidentals if you live at anchor all the time. Regardless, we do believe it is much cheaper than a mortgage (at least in Vancouver where we moved from!) and allows you to much more easily go ‘off grid’. Power is cheaper and/or free with sails to drive you forward and solar panels to keep your batteries going. Depending on your priorities, living on a boat can be much more affordable than living on land- and much more rewarding too!
#5 The Community
One of the things we noticed right away when we bought our first boat was the strong sense of community that occurs between boaters. A shared love for being on, in or near boats seems to really bring people together- I mean like, extension-of-your-family together. Everyone is more than willing to help each other out, whether it is docking, lending you tools or sharing their catch of crab with you. We have experienced an absolute outpouring of generosity and love from our fellow boaters that we have not experienced anywhere else. We have made so many new friends since our boating adventure began and we know that we have lots more still to meet!
#6 Being Close to Nature
Okay, I know we said 5 reasons, but this one is important too! Living on a boat brings you SO close to nature. Especially a sailboat, since you use the power of wind to move about! The second the weather changes, you are aware of it. If there is wind, you move. If their is rain, you hear it immediately. If there is sunshine, you are outside enjoying it! We move with the waves and love how they gently rock us to sleep. Some nights, we can’t sleep because the wind is gusting 50 knots outside and it sounds like a freight train and you are hoping to heck you stay attached to the dock or bottom (if you are anchored!) We love the fresh air we get living on a boat since you have to go outside for everything as well. The word BOAT has a LOT of acronyms. The one the Bloom Crew came up with that is our favourite is ‘Being Outside All the Time’.