With as few as six weeks until we move aboard Carina, it’s time to take stock of our possessions, appraising what we need, what we can live without, and what will be downright useless and cumbersome aboard a yacht. Having had two previous half-year stints living aboard certainly makes the choosing easier.
Life on the water is no place for my huge 42 year-old brown woollen blanket. It’s rarely used and impossible to find a dry damp-free storage space. I want my blanket to survive for many years to come, so into storage it will go. We have other throws as well as sleeping bags to keep us warm when we get cold.
Big heavy luxurious towels are cumbersome too. They take up space and are too difficult to dry. Pots and pans take up a lot of space, so we cull those by more than half (and of course, we have the trusty pressure cooker to rely on). We have blue stem-less wine glasses, that I refuse to leave ashore, but all other glass is culled. We cull our clothes and shoes, our coats and jackets. Anything that is excess to requirements, and that will take up precious space.
As the children grow older, our need for certain items diminishes. No more nappies (horray), or child friendly cups/cutlery/toothpaste, etc. I suspect even the step for getting up into their bed in the forecabin will be obsolete by the end of this summer. I wrote a few weeks ago about their boat-friendly toys and activities.
Items that serve multiple functions are great. Last year I was given a Joseph Joseph cook set – mixing bowl, colander, sieve, measuring jugs, measuring spoons, that all nest snugly inside each other. But the mixing bowl can be used for bread making and proving, as a salad bowl, as a washing basin. And the whole set is plastic, so it doubles up as a toy for the children.
So the cull begins. Slowly at first, but picking up speed over the next few weeks. A couple of bags of clothes, books, toys for my father-in-law to take home with him and put in storage in his loft. A few bags of clothes for the charity shop. Toys and children’s books for the charity shop. A small but growing pile of items for an early summer car boot sale.
We have choices to make too. Do we put the children’s beds in storage or sell them? In another year Lily will have outgrown hers. Do we keep our dining table and chairs, sell them, or give them to charity? If we did, for whatever reason, find ourselves having to move back to the UK in a year’s time, at least we would have those few items of furniture to get us started.
But with each choice made, with the fate of each piece of clothing or toy or kitchen utensil decided, we’re one step farther on in our transition onto Carina.