In the beginning we wanted a day boat, just something with an electric engine where we could sit and just drift along the river.
Then my husband mentioned a yacht. At first I thought it was something he would get over, but soon enough we were looking around for a yacht.
Although, there was one problem. We couldn't sail. I saw this as a massive issue, and I worried about having small children and a day boat let alone small children and a yacht. My husband didn't see this as an issue, and instead saw the positive side. He saw how amazing it would be for our children to grow up on the water, for us to do something together as a family, for us all to share the same hobby, and for something that the boys would hopefully pass on to their children in the future.
I had to ignore my doubts and follow my husbands passion, if we didn't like it we would sell the boat. That was our plan.
In January this year we met "The One". Our 1936 Broads Yacht. A wooden beauty, built locally, and perfect for our family. In fact we all fell in love with her as soon as we saw her and within a week she was ours. And in no time at all we had found a sailing instructor and had booked a weeks course with him a few months later.
I didn't think I would be able to stand on the boat when she was in the water, I didn't think I would be able to steer her, sail her, walk to the bow and stand there enjoying the breeze and the beautiful scenery as we sailed along, I certainly didn't think I would ever be hanging over the side performing a man overboard drill feeling so determined to fish a fender out from the water using a heavy handle with a hook even if it meant me falling in (thankfully I didn't fall in and I managed to save our "victim").
But, I did it all. And I enjoyed it. I fell in love with sailing. Something I didn't think was ever possible. It even surprised my husband. I am a self-confessed wimp and if I can sail, then anyone can.
But not only that, our children fell in love with sailing too.
This year we had so much fun together, learning new things, just spending time experiencing the water, the wind, and working together as a team.
We've sailed in the hot UK sun, in strong winds, in light rain and in thunder storms, so in terms of our first year of sailing we've really experienced a lot.
One thing that kept coming up when we spoke to our new sailing friends was to experience sailing abroad and after our first season of sailing on the Norfolk Broads I feel sailing on an ocean or sea would be amazing.
The first new experience would be going on a plane. A first for us as a family of four and Harry's first time.
Waking up in the morning and having a fresh breakfast, looking out to sea and seeing various sail boats awaiting their sailors for the day. Knowing we would have the opportunity to relax by a pool, explore the island, resort or town we are in, or indulge in our hobby but knowing it would be completely different to what we are used to.
A new boat, a new breeze, new waters. New experiences.
Instead of looking around and not being able to see the bottom of the river but seeing clear waters, and various sea life and fish underneath as you sail through the breeze sounds like a dream. To step off the boat into clear warm water, walking onto a warm sandy beach rather than avoiding any part of your body touching the Broads because you have no idea what that thing floating by just was, and stepping onto a bank which is generally covered in goose or swan mess and definitely requires suitable footwear. (Don't get me wrong, I adore the Norfolk Broads but there are the odd downsides.)
The boys being able to experience sailing away from us, and of course us enjoying a sail whilst the boys are off sailing with other children or making friends in a holiday club.
Swimming in the sea or relaxing on the sand and watching boats just beyond us as the sun hits our skin.
Sitting down at dinner in the evening, looking forward to talking about our day, going over everything we had learnt, dancing at the disco, or playing games put on by an entertainment team. Or a late night walk along the pool, or down on the beach. Looking out to sea and wondering how just over a year ago we couldn't sail, how we hadn't even considered sailing, and how now here we are sailing on the sea. But not any sea, the Mediterranean Sea.
Going to bed and looking forward to another day of adventure and excitement. Either being tourists or being sailors. Or passing a new sailing course, how amazing would that be? Going on a beautiful hot holiday and coming home with an extra qualification?!
Owning a boat was our dream. Sailing became our dream. And now, we dream to be able to sail somewhere different, and to experience sailing something different too.
This post is my entry in the hope of becoming a #markwarnermum in 2015 as part of the Mark Warner ambassador programme.