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Scottish anchorages

Toddlers

A nightmare. One option is just don't do it. But if you do, indeed do it you must, grit your teeth, lower your expectations, move everything sharp or breakable out of their way as you would at home (some would go as far as exchanging their wine glasses for plastic but I believe standards here have to be maintained), including winch handles which are such fun to toss into the sea - and make very sure to take their mother (or father) with you, hoping she (or he) doesn't get seasick when calming them down below during a rocky passage. An older sibling can be incredibly helpful too. Of course keep them in a buoyancy aid all the time they are out of the cockpit (or even in it some would advise) and use a tether and harness when at sea (around which they will undoubtedly become entangled, usually a foot). A folding seat which clamps to the cabin table into which you can lash them is also a must, and setting up a lee cloth behind which they can sleep and play is another useful tip (but they will probably soon learn to climb over it). Sticking-in books are a good way to pass the time, and gluing. The little rotters have to be watched all the time.  

 

The cockpit makes a fine playpen at anchor with plenty of things to play with, like the engine controls and cockpit locker locks (not recommended in those silly boats where the back of the cockpit provides direct entry into the sea). At sea, tossing small bits of paper over the side and seeing them flutter away seems to amuse. Enjoy! And to cheer yourself up, read 'One Summer's Grace' by Libby Purves and realise that your problems are shared.

William in Cockpit

"I can't speak yet, but you might like to know that the winch handle doesn't float"

Todler with seat

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A handy seat which clamps to the saloon table