We are a family of four with two active and young little boys (aged 7 and 3). We hail from Northern California, although Ryan is a Canadian-Australian by birth who grew up sailing the eastern coast of Canada and the U.S. with a passion for all things involving water. Although Ryan has been sailing for over 20 years, competitively and for fun, we incorporated sailing into our family life about 6 years ago buying our first boat, a 1982 Catalina 30.
We pondered an adventure like this for several years, and like many people who take the plunge, we had a YOLO moment almost four years ago when we had a medical emergency in our family. After resettling into a new “normal” with Christina returning to the practice of law and Ryan taking on a new role at his company, we turned again to our “why.” We began talking more about why we were doing what we were doing – living the so-called “American dream”…. the house in the suburbs, two kids, two working parents, busy lives and schedules and neverending hustle and bustle to keep everything going. Our constant discussions about the life we wanted, as well as the life we missed from our pre-kid years (which included a lot of worldwide travel) inspired us to begin searching for the path that felt true for us.
In 2016, we sold our Catalina (with heavy hearts and a few tears) and purchased our 1996 Hunter Passage 42. Like most cruisers, we searched and searched for the right boat for our family and after spending a few months with her, sailing, spending weekends on it, doing some outfitting, we feel that she will take us safely and (hopefully) happily through our voyage for the foreseeable future.
So… here we are, a few years later, ready to throw off the bowlines (or getting ready!) and very much looking forward to experiencing all that life afloat has to offer. We hope (really hope!!) that the experience we are seeking – cultural diversity, travel amongst like-minded folks, boatschooling our kids, spending tons of quality (and maybe some not-so-quality) time together –comes to fruition and provides us and our boys with experiences that are deep, fulfilling and rich in ways we could never attain back home. We hope to instill a love for travel, including the bumps and bruises that are inherent in experiencing different cultures, food, music and lifestyles, and give our boys memories they will carry for a lifetime.
Thank you for your interest in Dakota as we embark on this journey together!