Back in June, I posted this:
We’ve Been Keeping a Secret… Can You Guess What It Is?
Several of you wrote in, and solved the puzzle somewhat correctly, though most guessed we’d bought a houseboat. It’s actually a 52′ Irwin Center Cockpit Sailboat.
And, most guessed that we just bought a boat. They didn’t realized we’d moved onto a boat, and were now living full-time in a marina on Tampa Bay. Or course, if you read last week’s column about the hurricane, you know that by now. 😉
When we decided to sell our house and rent an apartment while we shopped for a boat, friends and family called us crazy. (And, some still do!) However, they weren’t surprised. We’ve always walked to the beat of a different drummer. For several years, we RV’d all over, running the business and homeschooling our children on the road. Since our business is Internet-based, we can run it from anywhere. And, the business continued to grow, year after year. All of our employees and contractors also work out of their homes. That’s very important to us because we believe people should be with their children whenever possible. Our three oldest children were in daycare early on and I still feel guilty about that. I missed so many firsts in their lives! 🙁
There were other reasons we did this as well, including the fact that we’re nomads (our friends use the word “hippies”). We can’t sit still in one place for very long before our feet begin to itch. We started homeschooling after our daughter was bullied relentlessly in middle-school, and then discovered that homeschooling offers a far better, more diverse education than most public school settings. Homeschooled children don’t pick up bad habits from naughty kids, aren’t at risk of bullying or school shootings, don’t waste a ridiculous amount of time waiting for class changes, or for the teacher to discipline other children, or for the teacher to get off her cell phone, and aren’t molded into what society thinks they should be rather than what their true destiny is.
While living on a boat may seem like a lot of maintenance, I contend that living in a house requires far more. We spent FAR more money when buying our house than we did buying this boat (more than three times the amount). We spent FAR more money on repairs/maintenance on our house during the first three months than we have on the boat. We spent FAR more money on mortgage payments, insurance, and taxes with the house than we will on the boat. Our electricity is less now as well (half!) and our water is included in our slip fees, which cost FAR less than what we’d pay to be living in a rented house on the water. We are literally ON the water in a marina that overlooks Tampa Bay and the St. Petersburg skyline. These are the best back and front yard views we’ve ever had in our lives! (These photos were not Photoshopped or altered in any way.)
One of the best parts about moving onto a boat was that it forced us to become minimalists. I can’t tell you how physically and spiritually cleansing it was to get rid of all the “junk” we’d accumulated over the years – all that stuff in the closets, drawers, cabinets, and garage that was rarely, or never, used. Better yet, since there isn’t room to store “junk” on a boat, we don’t buy stuff we really don’t need anymore. So, we’re not only saving money on repairs/maintenance, a mortgage, taxes, insurance, rent, utilities, etc., but we’re also saving money because we literally can’t buy and store extra material goods anymore.
The absolute BEST part about becoming liveaboards is the community! People who live on boats always jump to help their neighbors – no matter what. Our new friends are awesome and this is, by far, the most welcoming and wonderful “neighborhood” we have ever lived in. You can read more about our helpful neighbors, who even put their lives at risk during the hurricane last week to help each other out, in my post from last week HERE.
To read more about my spiritual connection with the sea (which began at beach retreats during my childhood), why we deviated from the social norm (and who gave us the idea – it’s someone you might know!), and how we did it (it even includes information on money required to do this), please check out my boat blog, GotNoTanLines.com.
There are lots of pictures there, too! 🙂
THIS WEEK’S MASONISM
An example of how homeschooling can result in a child’s advanced vocabulary:
Mason was tested a year ago when we hired a local tutor and his vocabulary was at a college level. As you can imagine, sometimes we’re astounded by what comes out of his mouth. Please understand that this wasn’t meant to be political. We do not criticize feminists so we’re not sure where Mason’s statement came from. What we do know is that he spends a lot of time reading and researching online and he always keeps up with the news, too.
We were sitting in the cockpit with our laptops recently when Richard said, “They’re coming out with a female Dr. Who!”
Mason didn’t even look up from his computer when he responded, “They’re just bringing it to the feminist demographic.”
Hugs to all!
GotNoTanLines.com – Jump on board with the Hoy Family as they move their children, pets, and business onto a 52-foot sailboat!
Angela Hoy lives in St. Petersburg, Florida. She is the publisher of WritersWeekly.com, the President and CEO of BookLocker.com and AbuzzPress, and the author of 24 books.
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