We first ran across the idea of a ‘raft up’ on Monkey’s Fist. This site is dedicated to helping cruisers by collecting and sharing cruisers’ perspectives. Raft ups are blog hops. As Monkey’s Fist explains, “(Blog-hops) help connect bloggers with readers and readers with topics of interest.” So…’raft ups’ are cruising bloggers sharing their unique perspectives on a given cruising topic, and their shared post links are curated on that topic’s page.

Unfortunately, Monkey’s Fist has gone dormant, assuming the facilitating cruisers moved on to other adventures, BUT what they were doing was creating an incredible resource for cruisers of all experience levels and we at CMB feel their concept should be rekindled & ignited!

Family Raft Ups on Cruising Mom Blog!

On CMB, raft ups are not about what CMB thinks about a topic…it’s about what you, cruising families, think about a topic! Raft ups are a great resource for families who are preparing to cruise, newbie family crews, even seasoned salty family crews…we value everyone’s unique perspectives!

Here’s the plan: 

Once a month, CMB will host a family raft-up. We’ll organize, recruit, collect, share, and promote as many cruising families’ perspectives post links as possible.

There are two ways you can participate:

  1. Writing a blog post about one of the monthly family cruising topics.
  2. Read, comment on, and share cruising families’ posts.

Writing a blog post about one of the monthly family cruising topics:

Participating in raft ups can help you: promote your blog, grow your readership, share your perspective, and also educate and inspire future, newbie, and seasoned family cruisers.

  1. Sign up to receive monthly raft up topics.
      • We’ll communicate topics in our weekly newsletter, so if you’re not already receiving CMB’s newsletter, sign-up here.

  2. On your blog, write a post about next month’s topic.
    • Please introduce your post by explaining what a raft up is and the month’s topic. Something like, “For this month’s raft up, where cruising bloggers write about the same topic, we’re talking about _____.”
    • Also share a link back to that month’s topic page. (CMB will share this link in our newsletter.) 
      • Know that, until the topic’s page is live on the 1st of the month, when your reader’s click on this link, they will see a message saying ‘Great content is coming soon! Check back on _____ 1st to read other cruising families’ perspectives about _____’).
    • Length: ~ 500 – 2000 words? Don’t want to hinder creative genius, but we also want to make sure readers read multiple posts about each topic so…less it more for the good of the many.
  3. Let CMB know you’re participating that month. 
    • After you publish your post, fill out this form. It’s quick. Less than 5 minutes. Here’s a completed example to see what you can cull in advance to make it even faster: 
    • Please do this, at least, by the 28th of the month. This gives us a few days to put everything together. Thanks! (We’ll do our best if we get it late.)
    • Want to contribute to a post after the fact? No problem! Still fill out the form and know that we’ll add your contribution to the topic soon.
  4. CMB will post the final curated monthly topic raft up on the 1st day of each month.
    • We’ll also send out the link via the weekly broadcast.
  5. Sharing is caring!
    • Please share the final topic raft up page on your social networks and be sure to highlight your content!
    • CMB will share the final topic raft up page on the following Kids4Sail SPF Friday.
    • We’ll also promote superior posts by highlighting your content on our social media platforms to help send new readers your way. 

Read, comment on, and share cruising families’ posts:

Pretty self-explanatory, right? You don’t have to be a blogger to participate.

  1. Read
    • Simply peruse the raft ups and read posts that interest you. 
  2. Comment on
    • Leaving comments helps crews know their content is valued! 
  3. Share
    • If you REALLY enjoyed a post, how about sharing it on your social network? Pin it on Pinterest? Help them build their audience.

Wrapping up…

Raft ups are not only a great resource, they’re also pretty darn entertaining. Multiple kid boats sharing varying perspectives about family cruising topics all easily organized in one place for readers…can it get any better? I think not!