We have been telling many friends and colleagues in the last few weeks about our upcoming plans. We are officially 'out'! It feels a bit like announcing a pregnancy, where after giving people the news, we give them more details and specifics... if they want to know. And most do! Every time I speak to someone who is excited for us, it reignites my excitement and I'm completely fired up for the rest of the day.
It's been busy these past few weeks. But it feels really good to have ticked a lot of items off our to-do list:
Canadian Power and Sail Squadron . We will be finishing the course on the very last week before our departure!
- Attended a 2-day Sea Survival course where we got to climb into a life-raft, flip it over and swim with our foul-weather gear and boots on. It's not easy to swim even 10 metres while dragging your 'unconscious' partner!
We even got to fire a flare, a very neat experience but definitely one I hope I will never have to do. We were inundated with so much knowledge and information about keeping the crew and vessel safe, it was definitely worth it and I feel even more prepared.
We will leave some of our stuff in a room in the basement and some of it at my dad's place, but knowing that our home will be rented furnished gives us more direction in terms of what we have to do to prepare. Tenants move in June 1st, 2019, so this also gives us a concrete date to work around.
- I'll be taking the VHF Radio License course in early April, so looking forward to that.
- Wrote our will FINALLY! I am going around telling everyone to do it, it only takes a few hours. We went with Legal Wills online and it was super simple.
- Matt was sworn in on January 18th and now he can officially call himself a Canuck, eh!
- Applying for new passports (Matt's 1st Canadian passport too!), health cards, licenses, bank cards, etc. so they don't expire while we're away.
- Organizing, scanning and filing all our IDs and documents onto a cloud-based format.
- Filed our taxes for 2018. And preparing what we can in advance for the 2019 tax season.
- Compiling workbooks, online resources and just a general hodge-podge of material for home-schooling. If anyone has good french books, I'll gladly take them off your hands!
- Gave our notice at work - eeek! May 22nd will be our last day of employment for Matt and I. Bittersweet indeed. WAHOOO!
- Solidified more dates:
May 29/30: Matt and I will drive out to Gold River Marina in Chester, Nova Scotia and be reunited with our boat!
She will be on the hard (out of the water), and still under wrap. We have a growing list of things we will need to do before she goes in the water, but I'll save those details for another post.
Gong Gong will stay behind and look after the kids while they attend their last week of school.
June 8: Gong Gong will fly out with the kids to Halifax where we will pick them up and introduce them to their new floating home!!!!!
June 9 (or thereabouts): Splash! Or in sailing terms, that means to put the boat in the water.
Due to kid-pressure, we have promised them their birthday parties before we leave (their real birthdays are in June). So we have back to back parties in mid-May to plan for. One has asked for Laser Tag (easy to outsource). The other one has asked for a slime/scavenger hunt/origami party at home (do-able because my artistic, creative and multi-tasker sister will be visiting at the time from Vancouver and will help out! Phew)
We're at the point where I'm not buying any more perishable items. We are slowly eating our way through our deep freezer and canned goods.
Same goes for using up our toilet paper, tissue boxes and just general cleaning supplies and household items. Anything that is left we'll just take with us.
Hmmm... which reminds me, we should get a few boxes of long-life milk to try since that will be the new norm. Fresh milk will take up too much valuable fridge space on the boat.
We are going through our all our drawers and closets and shelves and purging and re-purging clothes, toys, footwear, paper (so much paper!! Why did we ever keep so much art from when the kids were just toddlers??!! ).
The countdown is on and departure day is coming up soon! Everyday we cross out one more day on our wall calendar. In the meantime, trying to balance 'normal' life of full time work and school and extra curriculars and childcare is certainly a good exercise in time management. Some days I feel like I'm on top of it and can handle whatever comes my way. Other (most) days, I'm completely swamped and feeling overwhelmed. Even the littlest task feels daunting.
I realize that this entire process of preparing for cruising life has forced us into getting our ENTIRE life organized. As hard as it is, it also feels wonderful.