The Transition Begins

As the website subtitle suggests, this blog is supposed to document the steps we’re taking in preparation for our move onboard. Thus far, we didn’t have much to write about on that subject, but with less than two weeks to go before the move happens, there is a lot going on!

By the end of this month we must:

  1. Scan all of our paper files and certain recipes. (All of our thousands of photos and hundreds of CDs have already been uploaded.)
  2. Sort ALL of our belongings into six piles:
    -Take with us on the boat
    -Sell in the estate sale
    -Donate to charity
    -Give to friends/family
    -Throw into a suitcase to be stored in my dad’s attic in case we come back  in winter (Thanks Daddy & Bonus Mom!)
  3. Check everything we’re selling for cleanliness and functionality, and clean/fix what can be.
  4. Find space on the boat for everything we’re keeping, and add each item to our “where is it?” spreadsheet.

Because our house is on the market, we have put off #2 a bit longer so the house can remain properly “staged”. Well, maybe also because I’m afraid to confront this monster.

Making the sale a lot easier is our estate sales coordinator. For a percentage, they will sort, price, advertise and sell everything. Doing this would take me time, which I have, and patience, which I do not. Doing it ourselves also would require us to remove sentimental value from our belongings and price them to sell. I’m not sure we can do that. I know it’s just “stuff” but I really like our stuff! Because we are banned from our home for the sale, and for the four days leading up to it, we won’t have any idea how little money (or how much??) our possessions are generating. But when it’s over we’ll be taking a giant step forward, with only what we truly need to start our journey.

Deciding what we really need to take is challenging in itself. If we choose to leave something behind, we may not easily be able to replace it if we realize later that it’s needed. What will I do when I’m craving melted cheese but I chose to sell our fondue pot??? Just kidding, that one’s easy; but my martini shaker? Can I learn to enjoy them stirred, not shaken? Pretty much everything we own needs to be scrutinized.

Once we decide what’s coming with us, the next challenge is finding the right space to store it. Our boat has a surprising amount of storage space. Unfortunately, most of it is below or behind other storage spaces.

At first glance, these appear to be simple chair backs…
but when removed, there’s access to loads of storage space!
Underneath that storage area is even deeper storage.
In fact, underneath almost everything, there’s more storage space!
Same goes in the galley. Under this locker is another large locker.

A lot of these lockers require a bit of “boat yoga”, as John-Michael calls it, to access. We don’t want to pain ourselves looking for something deep in the recesses of the boat only to find it’s not there. So, John-Michael created an ingenious Excel spreadsheet to organize everything. The names and locations of all the storage spaces were first added, then each item is input and can be organized as to its location, quantity, model number, expiration date, etc.
When we’re looking for something elusive, all we have to do is search for it in the spreadsheet to find its location! We can also search by category; for instance, what safety equipment is expiring soonest? This database can be used by anyone, whether for a boat, a garage, an attic – you name it! If you’d like to try it yourself here it is:


If you know Excel you’ll find it pretty easy, but if you need help please let me know.

By the first of May we will be full time live-aboards! The next big step will be to get our house sold. Then we’ll be able to focus solely and completely on getting our new home ready for its true purpose. We’ll keep you updated!


  1. We are sooo happy for yall but will miss you dearly and think of you often. Sounds like you have everything organized very well so that will make your lifestyle easier. Enjoy your new life on the water and keep safe at all times. You’ll enjoy seeing a lot of the world and meeting new friends. Best to the both of you with the Scuba Diving Lessons you’ll be performing as well. God’s blessing’s to you daily. Sending the sign. Hope you can feel our BIG BEAR HUGS. We love yall. Uncle Danny & Aunt Dawn

    1. We’ll miss y’all too, very much. You may remember, the reason I returned to NOLA years ago was because I missed my family terribly. Seems strange to be taking off again. We’ll see you before we leave this summer! Love you!!!

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