Sailboat Living: the Tiny House of the Sea

There’s much learn from sailboats about the efficient use of space. In fact, you can clearly see the direct design inspiration in many modern tiny house designs, from the sleek carpentry, multifunctional features to the compact appliances. If you love the water, you may want to consider life aboard. 1984 Freedom 39′ Pilothouse Schooner Couple, Greg and Renee found exhilarating freedom aboard their 39′ schooner sailboat, the “Goodwind.” It’s their tiny house on the water. They live a “surf and turf lifestyle,” split between their …

Read more

Portland Massage Therapist Lives Full-Time on a Sailboat

Cheryl GreatHouse is a massage therapist living in Portland, Oregon. After meeting her through a mutual acquaintance, I knew I wouldn’t be surprised that this strong lady would end up living on a sailboat named after the Maori name for “Warrior Woman.” Cheryl lives on a 1980 Morgan 38 foot sailboat on the Columbia River. After living in a range of homes (including a backyard yurt), she decided to live her dream and move onto Wahine Toa and into a marina. She and the Morgan …

Read more

Sailboat Living on the Hudson River

Hey Jon

With Manhattan rents soaring, Jon and Tory moved out of their cozy apartment north of Little Italy, downsized, docked a sailboat in the Hudson River and moved in. During winter. This is how they make it work. Check out there website here:, and on Facebook: A Couple’s Guide to Living on a Boat in New York in Winter from MEL Films on Vimeo.

Tiny Floating Homes: Hullabaloo

Meet Ron and Jackie Skelton, a young Midwestern couple that had the typical American life; work, a house, cars, some travel, and even the dog. Take a few minutes to read their story, told by Jackie, and find out why they ‘left it all’ for a tiny floating home out on the big blue and beyond! “I was working as a Public Health Nurse and Ron was working around the Great Lakes as a commercial diver, jobs that we both enjoyed. We were living the …

Read more

Refrigeration in a Tiny Floating Home

Refrigeration in a tiny floating home is an essential part of our systems.  Most liveaboard boats are equipped with refrigeration, though some are not. Some people simply store food with a cooler packed with ice. Where I like to travel, ice doesn’t last long so it was an easy decision to place value in outfitting the boat with an efficient refrigerator and freezer. The refrigerator currently on board was installed on the boat before we bought her. It’s an Adler/Barbour Dometic air-cooled CU-100 ColdMachine consisting of a …

Read more

Tuning In

On land, I used to come home from work, walk inside my cozy house, and close the door behind me shutting out the entire outside world. It didn’t matter if it was raining cats and dogs or sizzling the pavement with that hot Californian sun. My climate-controlled cozy house was completely isolated. Living in a tiny floating home has since got me tuning in to my senses on a daily basis in a way I never even imagined. I rely on my five senses to …

Read more

Airing Our Dirty Laundry

Literally, of course! Well, after it’s been washed. You won’t find any juicy details here. Living in a tiny floating home has certain challenges, such as doing laundry. Once upon a time I lived in a 4,000 square foot house with a brand new front-load high efficiency washing machine and matching dryer. You know, those massive machines that are so silent you don’t even know they’re on. There were so many settings I had to read the manual to figure out how it all worked. …

Read more

Tiny Floating Homes: ASANTE

Back when Peter and I first started talking about buying a boat I would come home from work every evening and spend countless hours scouring the internet for all the advice I could get. I would look at boats for sale and I would indulge in the dreamy sailing photos on Pinterest. It wasn’t long before I stumbled on a series of pins bookmarking Sailing and Cruising Blogs. Blogs? I had no idea what a blog even was at that point. Boy was I in trouble.  The next few months …

Read more

High and Dry

Everyone knows that BOAT stands for bust out another thousand. While this is true to some degree, not everything on a boat costs that much. There are, however, some critical maintenance items that must be done on a regular basis to keep vessels in top working condition. Owning a boat is a labor of love. We pour blood sweat and tears into keeping our floating home safe and operational, sometimes leaving us literally ‘high and dry’. In return we get an incredible means to travel the world …

Read more

Tiny Floating Homes: RAG DOLL

Sometime last February Peter and I sailed into a popular destination in the Bahamas called Staniel Cay. We anchored next to a tiny little sailboat in the far corner of the bay and settled in for a strong blow that was forecasted to arrive later that afternoon. As the wind picked up and the waves grew large we kept an eye on the boats around us to ensure no one had begun to drag anchor. Only one or two other boats stuck it out and didn’t move to another anchorage when the winds clocked around from another direction. One of which was a 24′ sailboat named Rag Doll.

Read more

Tiny Floating Homes – Salty

Salty is a stout 1998 65′ steel expedition style cutter sailboat designed by Bruce Roberts and home to a family of five. A 65′ sailboat is not so tiny compared to most liveaboard boats out there (and actually quite massive compared to my 42′ sailboat) but this floating home has all the space you could ever dream of to raise three young children while traveling to far off places from the comfort of your own home. I first met this family in the cruising blogosphere …

Read more

Safety At Sea: Inside a Ditch Bag and Med Kit

Now that the ocean is our home, it’s even more critical that Peter and I have the supplies we need in the event of an emergency. This is similar to carrying emergency supplies in your car and stocking up in your home if you live where “The Big One” could tremble the earth so much it knocks out all roads, power and water at any minute; or if you live where a snow storm could leave you trapped inside a car or home; or if you live where a hurricane or tornado could demolish your town.

There are increasing numbers of Doomsday Preppers around the world today that fear a disaster of epic proportions could render them completely on their own. TV shows have depicted some of the extremes these preppers have gone to ensuring their safety and survival.

For others, it’s a less of an obsession but rather a desire for a ‘Plan B’ type of scenario that inspires them to always be prepared for anything to happen.

Peter’s uncle Dan and his wife Terry own a compound in the desert primarily for off-roading and weekend fun. They also know in the back of their minds that they have somewhere safe to go that is fully stocked up with supplies and survival gear in the event that the economy crashes beyond repair and chaos breaks out in the masses.

Two of our favorite TV shows before leaving our little home in San Diego were SurvivorMan and Dual Survival. Both of these shows are of course based on survival and they really get us thinking about whether or not we would have the know-how to truly survive in the wilderness. These guys demonstrate that it’s not as easy as it looks to survive in less-than-ideal conditions when it comes to extreme cold, heat, wind, shelter, food, hydration, finding help, medical issues, and know-how. We believe it is just as important to actually get out and tests your skills before you need to use them. Could you really make a fire with wet kindling or no kindling? Do you know how to use a magnesium stick? Could you catch fish without a fishing pole? Would you actually know how to use a water purifier if you were dying of thirst? Do you know what to do if you’re bitten by a snake or poisonous insect? Would you know how to signal for help without a radio?

It seems so basic to know how to survive, but when you really think about it, could you?? Going from life on land to living on a boat brings a whole new meaning to SIMPLE LIVING. It’s about sustaining life and getting by with the skills and tools available to us.

One of the first projects Peter and I tackled after moving aboard was to build a thorough Ditch Bag and Medical Kit with everything we could think of and get our hands on. It was near the top of our priority list as we began outfitting the boat, knowing it MUST be done before we left the protection of Charlotte Harbor.

Wonder what kind of survival tools we have on board?


We assembled our Ditch Bag with the idea that we need to be able to survive and find help if something ever happened to the boat, if we were swept out to sea in the dinghy or stranded on an island somewhere. Our Ditch Bag is essentially a dry-bag with all of the basic survival gear we might need in the event of an emergency. Although one time the Ditch Bag was accidentally left on the big boat instead of taken out in the dinghy during a diving expedition, we have made it a policy to always bring the Ditch Bag when we take the dinghy anywhere. Even if it’s just for a quick potty run to shore with the dogs, anything could happen. Two items we’d like to include but have not yet purchased are a handheld GPS and a handheld VHF radio.

Read more