All long term cruisers need somebody back home to help out. Some people use a commercial service, but frankly I'm not too keen on trusting all my financial affairs to a stranger. Most of us use a trusted friend or family member. Last time we cruised it was my mom and dad. But they're a bit older and they did it once already. Nobody should have to do it twice!
Carolyne, my sister-in-law, has been quietly and efficiently helping us manage our affairs for the past several years. She does it for love, not the minimal amount she charges for what I suspect is more time than she tells us. She reminds us of when we haven't paid our credit card bills, receives our mail, sends out cheques to obscure mail order vendors, get parts in the mail for future trans-shipment to some exotic port, deposits Diane's writing earnings, argues with our bank when we need new ATM cards, pays our property taxes, our medical bills, Maia's RESP contributions, and untold other tasks that escape my tired brain this evening. She also stores half a dozen cardboard boxes in her garage that our remaining ties to a land bound life.
So let's all give a cheer to Carolyne, the unsung hero back home who keeps this cruising family going, and never receives much more than a thanks from us. Those of you out cruising know how important this person is, and if you're planning to go sailing one day, I only hope there's somebody out there that has your back the way she does for us.