But agreeing to set sail on the open sea didn't come without a few tears.
"It was definitely an adjustment," Emily explained. "I know there were tears on the first night that we moved aboard. And the sadness of imagining all those days without friends that were going to be ahead and things like that. And one thing we had for our advantage is that the seven of us already shared a two-bedroom, one-bathroom New York City apartment, which was pretty good preparation for living on a boat."
Eventually, the Ortons found their bearings and quickly began making friends and exploring.
"So many things are beyond your control [when you're on the boat], and you just have to be OK with that," Erik said. "That said, being there would turn out to be one of the best things because we met people there and made friends with people that we are close with to this day."