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FlyingBelle 12-17-2010 02:22 PM

I'm 40, I'm pregnant, but I got my DH on a Disney Cruise! 12/2/10 *Photos Added 12/30
OK - my first attempt at a trip report!

Our Trip Plans: 2 nights at All Star Music, 3 nights on the Disney Wonder, 1 night in Cocoa Beach

Who we are:
Me - Well, the title of this trip report says it all, right? Never in a million years when I booked this trip a few months ago did I think I'd be pregnant, but surprise surprise! So much for tropical drinks on the beach! I'm a working mom at an airline, so we fly for free (don't be jealous, it's very stressful!) and with my sister living in CA this year, we purchased the Disney Premier Passport - which is the annual pass that gives entrance to both DisneyWorld and Disneyland. I record year for us - 2 trips to Disneyland, 2 trips to DisneyWorld, and 1 Disney cruise in 2010!

DH - Stay at home dad (by choice) who takes care of our DD (3). He's become a Disney fanatic because of me, but has been TERRIFIED of cruising! I've begged him since the day we met to go on a Disney cruise - but he has a million excuses - rouge waves, pirates, stomach flu, claustrophobia(sp?)... you name it... he found a reason not to cruise... until now! For my 40th birthday I said all I wanted was for us to go on a Disney cruise. He relented!

DD - My darling 3 year old who loves Snow White, Buzz Lightyear (Bit-year), and Mickey Mouse. Need I say more?

Also on our trip - my parents (who are Disney fans and avid cruisers) and my in-laws (who like Disney, but have never been on a cruise before).

Day 1:
Tuesday, November 30th - we all arrived at O'Hare Airport bright and early to stand-by for an early flight. With 7 of us flying stand-by, you never know if we'll get on or not... but given it was the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, I figured our chances were good. I was right! We all got on, and all got to sit together. The flight was a little more turbulence than we've had in awhile, but overall very smooth.

Once we arrived at MCO - my dad went to get the rental mini-van (we decided it was cheaper than paying for the cruise transfer for all 7 of us), while the rest of us went to the food court for our traditional lunch of Chik-fil-a (we're just starting to get these in the Chicagoland area - so it's still a novelty for us to get them at MCO!)

We had our GPS with us, so we figured we'd be able to get around ok. We had to make a stop at Walmart for bottled water and stuff and thanks to the Disboards I was able to locate the one near Downtown Disney.

However... it then took us over an hour to get to our resort!!! For some reason the GPS led us round and round Disney property until we reached our destination... a gas station across from Downtown Disney... what???? This doesn't look like the All Star Music??? A little bickering from all 5 of us back-seat drivers, and my mom popped into one of the shops at Downtown Disney to get a resort map. OK - now we know where to go. There was a round of cheers when we arrived at All Star Music!

My folks and I had checked in online, so we stood in the "short" line - while my inlaws went to the extremely long regular check-in line. My mom checked in first, and fortunately I looked at the map where her room was located - Broadway section - Yay! I :love: love :love: Beauty & the Beast! My turn to check-in... hmmmmm... I'm in the Jazz section - that doesn't seem right. The great cast member quickly got on the phone, called my inlaws over to the desk and got us all straightened out. Somehow I was located in a different building from the rest of our party. After quite a looooongg phone call, she got it fixed and we were all in the Broadway building 7.

We had originally planned to go visit the monorail resorts to look at the decorations, but it was already 3pm and the two Grandpa's were ready for a nap. Since it was pretty nice out and the weather forecast was to be chilly the next few days, DD & I decided to take a dip in the pool. First the piano pool, which was nice a quiet, but not so easy for a toddler to swim in since she kept wanting to jump off the steps to where it was over her head. So, we headed over to the main pool and where there's a kiddie pool and let her swim for an hour or so.

After much bribing to get out of the pool, we got dressed and headed in the van to Downtown Disney.

I had ADRs at Raglan Road Irish Pub. We've never eaten there before, but DH and his dad had a few beers there last year and liked it.

The food was good, and seemed not too pricey (about $18 for fish & chips), but each of us added a side ($5 each), and some added 2 sides (ahem, Dad!) and a few beers. DH kept saying he'd like to add this place to our list of places to eat again, but he didn't see the bill! Just for DH & I (and a milk for DD), it was over $70. I guess for Downtown Disney that's not too bad, but both my parents and inlaws bills were over $100. No one wanted to listen to me to wait to add on the extra food (apps & desserts) until we're on the cruise where it won't cost extra!

After dinner we walked over to the World of Disney store... nothing inspired me (a first!), so we walked over to the pavillion while everyone finished shopping. They were having a dance contest with kids - pairs of 2. They randomly picked a number, which determined what song they had to dance to. There was a set of siblings, a pre-teen boy and a young girl, that got All the Single Ladies - boy did he do his best! Got quite a few laughs. Unfortunately they were beat out by their brothers who did backflips and stunts. The little girl was so sad, but her older brother was sweet at trying to console her.

By now it's around 10pm. We're all tired from a long day of travel... so back to All Star Music (this time it only took us a few minutes to find it!) and off to bed for a fun day tomorrow!

justmestace 12-17-2010 02:29 PM

Great fun to read!:thumbsup2

FlyingBelle 12-17-2010 02:59 PM

Day 2: Magic Kingdom
Wednesday is our only day planned for a theme park. So, we're going to the Magic Kingdom!

Our day started out a little rocky, just due to miscommunication. We had agreed the night before that we would meet for breakfast at the food court by 9:30am, and then head out to the park.

Well, I woke up at 6:30am and since I'm pregnant, I need to EAT! I stumbled around the room for a while, then decided to go get breakfast and bring it back for DH and DD. I know my mom gets up early, so I texted her what I was doing. Sure enough, she was up, so we met up at the food court and had our morning meal together.

I should pause here for a moment because I made a decision that morning, that the value resorts aren't all that bad. You see, a few months back we stayed at Pop Century, and vowed we would never stay in a Value resort again (admittedly, we're Wilderness Lodge snobs). We had paid extra for a preferred room, which we found out was overlooking the main pool. Although it was close to the main building, we weren't able to get any sleep the entire stay - because there were people in the pool literally all hours of the night yelling and screaming. 2am, 3am, I finally called the front desk and asked them what time the pool closed - they told me midnight - I told them they might want to take a walk out by the pool because there are at least 2 dozen people swimming! It happened every night. We probably should have switched to a quieter section, but I hate switching once I'm unpacked. Also, we didn't like the food court because it was such a mad house. Now... compare that with the All Star Music, it was such a different experience! The resort was quiet, and the food court, while busy, wasn't a madhouse. We ended up at the Music because it was all that was available when we booked last minute that was under $300/night. We'll definitely stay there again!!!

Ok, so back to the misunderstanding.... my mom & I both brought breakfast back to our rooms for the sleeping beauties, but somehow my inlaws totally misunderstood what we did and sat in the food court from 9am until 10am WAITING for us before they even got their food. Whoops. A few phone calls straightened it out, and by 10:30am we were in the van headed to the Magic Kingdom.

We arrived at the Ticket & Transportation Center, it's the first time I've driven there from a resort, so it was the first time on the tram in the parking lot - very much like the one in Disneyland. While we waited for our folks to purchase their 1-day pass (my mom was able to use her Disney Give a Day), DD decided she wanted to take the monorail instead of the boat.

Didn't take us long to get in the park - and we noticed right away the entrance to main street was setting up for the Christmas Day parade. Whew... they're not filming today! We marched up main street and made a quick stop at the Baby Care Center (DD is still potty training, and I know they have the little potties there), then around the castle to head into Fantasyland.

There was a show going on in front of the castle, so I was trying to get us quickly to Fantasyland before the show ended so we could get on Peter Pan without a huge wait. DH didn't quite understand my strategy, and had to stop to watch musicians playing in front of the Hall of Presidents. Come on!!!

Finally, in line for Peter Pan, only a 20 minute wait - not bad! It's my mom's favorite ride. DD was mopey, because she could see Small World and wanted to go on it NOW! So, after Peter Pan, walked over to Small World for a 10 minute wait. They've reversed the line from when we were here in the summer, you go in the exit now. I kinda wish they'd do the holiday overlay like they do in Disneyland - it almost seems plain. But DD can't get enough of it - she sings the whole way along (sorry to those who share a boat with us) and then begs to go again!

It's lunchtime now, so we head over to Adventureland and our favorite lunch spot - Pecos Bills. I just love their chicken ceasar wraps! We get our food and head up to our "secret" seating area - past all the tables to the ramp on the left - to the upstairs seating where noone seems to know about! Everytime we go there, the downstairs area is jam-packed, and the upstairs is empty (and dark and cool on a hot day). Shhhh, don't tell anyone about it!

After lunch, we head over to Pirates of the Caribbean. Goofy is taking pictures and DD freaks out because he's "too big". I don't even try to get her in line for photos with the characters anymore. On to the pirates ride, DD is "scared", but she loves pirates. Once we get past the drop, she is loving it. when the ride ends she says "can we do it again?"

Sorry DD, we've got things to do! On to the Jungle Cruise. Just a 10 minute wait for this one too - not bad today! We actually have a really great cruise director who has a ton of "what do you call a guy with no arms, no legs, and..." jokes (which I know a ton from junior high school).

Then, even though it's on the chilly side, we do our manditory stop for Dole Whips!

More to come....

FlyingBelle 12-17-2010 04:13 PM

Day 2: Magic Kingdom, continued
So, after our Dole Whip break, we decide to head over to Tomorrowland. That is usually our first stop, but today I was concerned with the construction at Fantasyland that area might be more crowded later in the day.

First stop (after a photo of the Mickey/Minnie topiaries with the Castle in the background) is Monsters Inc Laugh Floor. My folks haven't done it before, and sure enough my Dad ends up on the big screen and gets lots of laughs.

Next stop, Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin. Now, I've mentioned before that DD LOVES Bit-year, but for some reason she's scared to death of that ride! I think because the queue line is a little dark and loud. So, my darling mother took DD out of line, and went to find her a sucker. A GIANT sucker. Whatever it takes to keep a kid who won't nap happy at DisneyWorld!

After my dad smokes us all at Buzz Lightyear, we decided to calm down and sit through the Carosel of Progress - it was one of my favorites as a kids (I was a strange kid).

Then, the two grandpa's wanted to go on Space Mountain, so the rest of us went on the Tomorrowland Transit Authority. Paging Mr. Morrow. Mr. Tom Morrow!

A coffee break (it's getting chilly now that the sun is starting to set) and we have discussion about what to do for dinner. DH wants to go to the Polynesian to get their awesome pork sandwiches. I'm afraid we won't have enough time to get back in time for fireworks.

In the meantime, DD sees the cars and wants to drive. DH lets her drive, I doubt he'll be so willing in about 13 years. :rotfl: She absolutely loved it!

Now we're headed to the train station in ToonTown Fair. I thought more of this was closed, but it looks like not until February. We take a ride around the park hoping DD will take a nap. Not successful, so we exit back at Toontown and decide where to eat dinner.

The inlaws are freezing (she has 2 coats on), so we went to Pinocchio's House because I remember they have soup there. Creamy tomato soup, chicken parm (which is actually pretty good), pizza. That warms us up. DD notices that we're right by Small World and talks us into another boat ride. Grandpa's decided to sit this one out and have another cup of coffee.

It's about 7pm, fireworks are in an hour, so we head over to the Haunted Mansion. I haven't been on it since they refurbished it. Love the new effects! DD did NOT like it at all. It was the first ride she didn't ask to go on again.

I wanted to pop into the Christmas shop in Liberty Square, but we get stopped by the nightime parade. DD has to sit on Grandpa's shoulders to see, but it ends and we cut across into the shop and purchase 4 Mickey/Minnie Christmas stockings (preparing for our unexpected new one!)

We inch our way past the castle, and find a spot outside Casey's Corner to watch the fireworks. So worth it! Wishes!

We make our way to the boat that will take us back to our car (the first time I've ever been on it), and soon we're back at the All Star Music.

DH does a small load of laundry, while I repack our stuff and try to get DD to sleep.

Good night Magic Kingdom, see you next year!

FlyingBelle 12-17-2010 04:36 PM

Day 3: Time for the CRUISE!!!!
Boy am I excited! I've been waiting for 6 years to go on this cruise!

We started our day by heading over to the Wilderness Lodge for breakfast. It's almost torture for us because we love that resort so much!

We had breakfast at Whispering Canyon - most of us had the all-you-can-eat skillet. A little pricey, but I can never make up my mind for breakfast. I don't see any of the usual servers here today. And super disappointed they didn't do the hobby horse races. I don't know if they stopped doing it or if we just weren't there at the right time.

After breakfast we admired the tree, and then stopped into the Mercantile. This is where I always spend money! We bought a sand paid and shovel for DD (I didn't know if they'd have them on Castaway Cay), some Mickey woodsy-themed ornaments, 2 sweatshirts (my dad found them - on sale for just $18 each!), and the blanket for $15 w/ purchase. How am I going to make room for this in my bag??

After taking some photos in the lobby, we're back in the van to pick up our stuff and head to the port!

We all kinda nap on the drive to the port (except my dad, the driver). Boy do I get excited when we come over the hill and I see the ship!!! :banana:

Dad drops us off at the curb while he parks the minivan, then we're in line to get our id's checked and go through security.

There is quite a bit of construction here - I guess they're getting ready for the new Dream ship to come into port.

Doesn't take us long to get through security, then we're in line to check-in. Well, a line of US! It's about 1pm, so there aren't too many people in the terminal. At check-in, I'm given a silver Castaway Club lanyard, since this is my 2nd Disney cruise. My first reaction is, "Hmmmm, I hope this isn't the stateroom gift I was told about when I booked". But on to the ship!

I love how they welcome us onboard! I'm so excited I can hardly contain myself! :yay: DH keeps telling me to calm down and take it easy :laughing:

Once onboard, we head up to Deck 9 to see what's for lunch, we're hungry!

Out of the elevator, I make a potty stop - and by the time I'm out everyone has their drinks! :mad: No fun alcohol drinks for me this trip. Oh well, it's chilly out, so I'm more interested in some decaf hot tea!

We can't even make it over to Beach Blanket Buffet, and DH has stopped at Pluto's to get a brat. Boy did this make his day! You see, we can't make a trip to EPCOT without stopping in Germany for a brat. And we just didn't have enough time this trip to go to EPCOT. I've been hearing about it for weeks now. And now... DH thinks the brats are exactly the same as EPCOT!:cloud9: I know what he's having for lunch, snacks, dessert everyday!

The rest of us get food from the buffet. DH loves that they make everyone wipe their hands (remember, he's paranoid of getting sick on the cruise!)

We relax on deck 9 for awhile, and then head down to our rooms to see our new home...

FlyingBelle 12-17-2010 04:58 PM

Day 3: Time for the CRUISE!!!! Continued
Our room...

Ah, room 2058 was very good to us. Mid-ship, right off the elevators. We were concerned it would be noisy being so close to the elevators, but it was quiet.

And, sitting on our bed, is the promised stateroom gift! A great black & red Castaway Club drawstring bag (heavy duty) with 2 aluminum waterbottles, 2 rice krispy treats shaped like sandals, and a nice ships wheel keychain. Now that's a welcome!
DD loves the room, immediately starts looking out the window and spots some dolphins! DH is inspecting every inch. He's actually impressed. I think we're going to be ok! :hug:
It's almost time for the safety drill, so we hang out a bit more until we hear the signal. We grab our lifejackets and head on up. The safety drill goes fine, and we're released to go have fun! Back to our room to put away our lifejackets, and then get ready for the party!

We head up to deck 9 and DD gets a red pompom.
It's chilly, we all have our sweatshirts on, and the entertainment crew tries really hard to get us moving and warm up. DD lights up when she sees Mickey & crew come down the steps a few feet from us! See, I told you Mickey would be on our boat!
After the party we hang out on deck 9 in at a wind protected table and watch as we pull away from the dock. For some reason (I suspect they needed some certification), we do a 360 spin. Then we're headed down the canal and out to sea! Sailing, sailing, over the bounding waves! Hmmmm, it's a little wavy. Let's hope DH doesn't get sea sick! :sick:

On to the show - the Golden Mickeys! We have 2nd seating for dinner, so the show is first. DD likes it a lot, but she's getting tired. I wonder how dinner is going to go?? We really feel the motion of the boat in the theater. I don't remember this from previous cruises.

After the show, we change our clothes and head to Triton's for dinner. DD is all dressed up, and I gave her a surprise - a Cinderella purse full of little goodies to keep her busy at dinner (stickers, toys, jewelry, etc).
We get to dinner and the 7 of us have a table to ourselves. DD has her own spot all ready for her with a booster chair and a water cup with her name on it. Our servers make her feel like a princess princess:

DD ordered fruit cup, which came in a silver compote. She sat like a little angel and ate it all up like a grown up. My dad kept laughing and wanted to know when she turned 10 all of a sudden!

I ordered the lobster pasta. Not a huge fan of lobster, but almost every other entree/app had mushrooms in it, and I can't stand mushrooms. I'm a bit of a picky eater, so I adjust.

The boat is really rocking now, and my mother in law can't take it anymore. Poor thing, I was worried about this! She went to lay down in her room. We had her food kept warm and brought it to her. fortunately it was just her head that was bothering her, once she laid down she was fine.

After dinner, DD started getting restless. She ate her icecream with sprinkles (every drop) and then I took her out for a walk while everyone else had their dessert (being pregnant, I don't have much of a sweet tooth, so the desserts didn't look good to me).

So here's the magic moment of the trip...

We walked out of Triton's and Snow White and Tiana were just outside taking photos. DD adores Snow White. We sat and watched and waved to her. DD finally got up the nerve to want to hug her - so we went to get in line. Oh no, they were just closing the line! I gave the sad eyes to the lovely young man who was working the line - and he whispered to me "go upstairs, when Snow White is done, she is going to go up those stairs. If you're at the top of the stairs, I'll make sure she stops and takes a photo with you!" :cloud9:

So, we did, we went to the top of the stairs and sat in a chair and waited. Suddenly, we saw Snow White ascend the stairs... and.... DD totally freaked out! She started crying and burried her head in my arms! Oh no! :confused3
Snow White stopped, as promised, and tried to coax her out. DD did turn and wave to her, and Snow White said "Good night princess, sweet dreams!" DD beamed with joy!

Just then, we saw DH and my folks running up the stairs behind Snow White yelling "Stop! Stop!" See, they didn't realize we knew she'd be coming up the stairs, and DH was trying to set up the meeting with Snow White. :laughing: Very sweet of him!

We're all tired, and feeling a little woosey from the motion, so we all call it a night and head to bed. I love how the ship rocks us to sleep!:cutie:

FlyingBelle 12-17-2010 05:37 PM

Day 4: 1st full day on the Wonder
We awake to find ourselves approaching Nassau. The water looks so beautiful!

We meet my inlaws for breakfast at Triton's. Very yummy! I had the french toast, waffle, and pancake. I told you I can never make up my mind for breakfast! After breakfast, we make plans for the day.

My folks were going to take a water taxi over to Atlantis. When my dad found out there is no gambling on Disney cruise ships, my mom promised him a trip to the Atlantis casinos. My inlaws wanted to walk around and shop Nassau. I've done it 3 times previously, and it just doesn't interest me (I'm more of a beach person), so we decide DH will go with the inlaws, while DD and I explore the ship.

Our first stop is the Oceanears club. I had registered her online, but because we're not totally potty trained, I wasn't sure if she could go in with a pull-up or not. The cast members were wonderful and welcomed her in! The first thing they do is give her a wristband for the entire trip, and a pager for me. Then they put liquid soap in her hands and send her to the bathroom to wash. They are so cute! All the little potties (I'm obsessed with little potties right now because it make potty training so much easier!). After the bathroom, then we explore the club. There are some kids building with giant blocks and DD wants to help and the other kids welcomed her right in. She looks to be doing fine, so I quietly make my exit (of course, I hang around and peek in to make sure she's ok - she's having fun, so off I go!)
I take this time to shower and relax. I'm so tired, probably from the pregnancy and all the excitement about the trip. I head up to deck 10 and just relax.....:cool2:

I don't know how much time goes by, but I think I fell asleep! It's warm today, and I haven't felt the warm sunshine in a long time! (It's snowing back in Chicago, so I need to soak it up!)

It's getting close to lunchtime, so I head down to pick up DD - she was making a craft and having a blast. We head up to Deck 9 to get some pizza for lunch. While we're sitting there - DH shows up. He's apparently seen enough of Nassau, and his folks wanted to keep shopping, so he ditched them to come find us. He hasn't eaten, so we head to Beach Blanket Buffet to get him something to go with his brat.
It's a Tuscan theme, and something at the end of the line caught my eye - gnocchi! My favorite!! I make DH get me a bowl of them and we dine together on the back deck behind the buffet. It's gorgeous out and we've got a great view of Atlantis behind us.

After lunch, we head to the theater for a showing of Tangled in 3D. Everyone back home has been telling me how good this movie is, and I love the story of Rapunzel, so we're super excited they're showing it on the ship! It was amazing!

After the movie, we decide to pass out our FE gifts. I found ornaments with initials on them that were red with green polka dots, I attempted to turn the polka dots into Mickey heads. I brought packages of glow bracelets for the kids. DH was so excited to pass out the gifts because he was overwhelmed with what people had gotten us! He had thought it was silly before our trip and couldn't understand why I was doing it, but when we started to see our pockets overflowing with great gifts every time we returned to our room, he really got into it. About 1/2 way through passing them out, DD was getting goofy, so we checked her back in to the Oceanears Club while we finished.

Then we headed up to deck 9 for pizza (I have to eat all the time with this baby!). As soon as we got our food, we were paged that DD had an "accident" and needed a new pull-up. DH had to go all the way back to our room and then up to deck 5 to change her, then back up to deck 9, where I had gotten him another brat.

We hung out there, and found my folks - who lost at the casino. Noone has seen my inlaws... hope they're getting back on the ship!

It's time for Toy Story the Musical. We've stopped by inlaws room, called them, and no one has seen them! We watch the show with my folks (DD loved it!) and then head back to our room. Still no sign of the inlaws! Then we get a call from my mom - inlaws have been spotted! They had gotten back on the ship and went to see the later viewing of Tangled!

Oh dinner... This didn't go well. We were at Animator's Palate that night. We planned to let DD eat, and then bring her back to the Oceanears Club before our meal came so we could eat and relax. Well, that didn't go well.

DD ate her fruit again, but she was cranky. So, I left with her to go to the Oceanears club to let her play. We check in, get the soap, head the the bathroom, and then disaster hits. On the way to the bathroom she sees Captain Hook talking to the kids. He's larger than life, and scares the daylights out of her. Or should I say, scares the food out of her. We get into the bathroom and she's crying so hysterically that she throws up. Now what?:headache: Obviously I need to get her out of there and back to our room. The cast members are very kind, but firmly tell me that we need to visit the nurse and get a signed permission that she's well enough to come back tomorrow. No problem, I tell them.

But my problem is, I haven't eaten yet - I'm starving! So I have to calm her down, and quickly go back to Animator's palate to tell DH to bring my food to my room. He doesn't understand what's happening (obviously), so he follows me out to our room. I tell him to just go back and get my food!

DD is totally fine now that she's in our room, of course. And wants to play. I give her some crackers that a kind dis-er put in our FE. DH brings down dinner and we all eat in our room.

That night is the Pirates In the Caribbean party, and I really want to see the fireworks! DD seems to be doing just fine, so we all go and meet up with our parents and watch Mickey soar across the sky and beat Captain Hook (which makes DD happy)! After fireworks, everyone heads down to their room for the night, and I stop to get coffee/tea for me & DH.
Hmmm.... there's a buffet set up on deck 9! And.... oh my goodness! They have TURKEY LEGS! Another one of our favorites from the parks! So somehow I balance two hot drinks, and two turkey legs (I didn't even stop to see what else was on the buffet) and head down to our room where DH is very surprised with our late night treat!

The boat doesn't seem to be rocking much at all tonight - calm waters in the Caribbean! Looking forward to a day at Castaway Cay!

Mom2CJ&Kitty 12-17-2010 08:18 PM

Great TR - I am loving it! Congrats on the pg. Can't wait to read more.

FlyingBelle 12-23-2010 12:43 PM

Day 5: Castaway Cay
Oh, this was my favorite day by far!

We started our day by heading to the Beach Blanket Buffet for breakfast. For some reason I can't find the room service breakfast ordering card things (I think my darling daughter has hid them), so I'm STARVING by the time we get there!

I loved the omelets - ham and cheese, can't go wrong. In fact, I had two (I'm eating for two, right?)

After breakfast, we take DD down to the nurse to get her checked out. It was quite a maze to find our way there. I kept tripping on the floor between the doors, I would have been in big trouble if our room was on deck 1! We find the nurse, a lovely woman from South Africa. She came around the corner, asked DD a few questions and took her temp from her ear. All looks good, she's been eating fine and full of energy. So the nurse gave us the signed release form to let her back into the Oceanears Club. Yeah!

We head back to our room to get our beach things and make our way out to the island. What a gorgeous day! The sun is shining, the air is warm, and the beach doesn't look too crowded. We took the tram over to the family beach, and I see the exact same bucket I bought at the Wilderness Lodge (guess I didn't need to lug it around afterall, and at the same price $5.95). We walked up the beach for a while before my mom found us. I don't remember there being two family beaches last time, I guess they are expanding for bigger Dream ship.
There were plenty of chairs and umbrellas, so we dumped our stuff and dragged a couple of low chairs to the water. It's a bit chilly, but so relaxing to sit with our feet in the water. DD spent a lot of time looking for pretty shells. There were 2 white fish about 8 inches long that kept swimming by us.
My only complaint, was a family that was next to us. There was a young boy (maybe 8 years old) that was obsessed with finding jellyfish. He actually found 2 of them and brought them up on the beach so they wouldn't sting us (very sweet). But the adults he was with were so obnoxious. The one guy kept dragging him into the water, making him cry. Can't we all just relax and have a nice time?

Around 11:30am we were smelling the bbq and getting hungry! I had pulled pork sandwiches on the brain (I seem to remember them from last time, but I could be wrong), so I was a little disappointed they didn't have them. I had the ribs instead, yum! Love that they have the ice cream machine there too! There were plenty of places to sit and eat.

After lunch, my inlaws went back on the boat, while my mom & I took DD back to our spot on the beach to continue looking for shells.

My dad and DH, had quite the adventure (I hesitate to write this, because I don't want anyone to get in trouble). My dad is an adrenaline junkie, so him and DH decided to take the jet skis out. They were very skeptical, because it was $95 for 45 minutes, including a "tour". Well, let's just say they got their money's worth. They were able to go out for well over an hour and a half with the guides, and definitely were not on the normal tour. The found a sand bar, and dolphins, and really had a lot of fun. (I'm keeping the details minimal so as not to get anyone in trouble, but trust me, they had an experience of a lifetime!)
Around 4-ish we took a walk back to the ship, with a mandatory photo stop at Mt. Rustmore.
Once on the ship, we just weren't ready for the fun to end, so DD and I took a dip in the Mickey pool (our first and only time in the pool on the ship). I forgot that Disney uses fresh water in their pools! We played for awhile, and then I was able to bribe DD out of the pool with pizza. I think she had 5 pieces!

We were just starting to pull out of the dock, so we went up to deck 10 to wave goodbye and take some photos. The sun was just starting to set, so it was really beautiful and peaceful.
Goodbye Castaway Cay - I wish we could spend a couple days here!
Back to our room to get showered and dressed, and on to the last show of the cruise. I dressed DD in her Snow White dress (her favorite princess!), and about 10 minutes into the show she was sound asleep in daddy's lap. Awwww.
We went back to our room after the show, and DD woke up immediately, very disappointed she missed seeing Belle and the Beast. We changed her into some comfy clothes, and gave her a snack, and then off to dinner.

This time, we did it right! We dropped DD off in the Oceanears club BEFORE dinner, so we were able to spend a little time in there with her to get her acclimated. Of course, she started crying when we started to leave, but one of the wonderful cast members picked her up and took her off to play, stopping to tell us to enjoy dinner and they would try not to paige us!

Dinner in Parrot Cay - oh so relaxing without the little one! We were able to enjoy the entire meal, including dessert! But after dessert, a surprise! DH had the waiters bring out a birthday cake for me - they had been trying to do it since night 1, but all the fiascos with late dining and a tired 3 year old kept delaying the plan. Two complaints though... the head maitre d' came over to sing, and she kept calling me Frances. My name is Christine. I thought that was really weird. And, they not only brought out a cake for me (which could have served all 6 of us), they also brought out 2 more cakes, another one the same size for me and DH (our anniversary was a couple weeks earlier, I guess DH told him that too), and then they brought out literally a half a sheet cake for my inlaws anniversary (they had just celebrated 50 years). So why am I complaining? We had already eaten dessert, and now we have 3 big cakes sitting in front of us that we can't possibly consider eating! It just seemed like such a waste!

After dinner we picked up DD, she was actually sad to see us. She had buddied up with a little guy, and two girls (around 10) were shepherding the two of them around the pirate ship. They were having so much fun! Oh how I wish we had done this each night, instead of trying to make her sit through dinner with us!

Back to our room to frantically pack - so we can get our luggage out by 10pm!

FlyingBelle 12-23-2010 12:54 PM

Day 6: Goodbye Disney :(
I finally found the room service breakfast order sheets the evening before as we were packing, right in the desk drawer, where they probably were the entire time. So I had coffee, juice, fruit, and bagels waiting for us in the am. Ahhhh.

DD did not want to wake up - she was so cozy in her own bed!

As we're getting everything together, I start filling out the customs forms, and I need DH's passport number. Oh no! Panic! He left them in his suitcase - which was taken away last night!!!! What do we do???

I no-so-calmly called guest services. Oh what a relief! We're not going on the airplane until tomorrow, so we'll be picking up our luggage at the port. We'll be able to get it out of the suitcase before we go through customs. Whew!

We're all packed, so we head back to Parrot Cay for breakfast with the folks. After breakfast we chat w/ our waiter for quite a bit of time. He did a great job, so DH gave him an extra cash tip before we left. The assistant server was not so great. He never asked me if I wanted something to drink at dinner the 2nd night (even though I left early, I was there for the appetizer). And last night I asked for a refill of my hot decaf tea, and all he brought me was more hot water (I don't like weak tea). I had to ask him 3 times for another tea bag. My father in law complained about him because he loves his coffee, keep it coming, and he had to beg for refills too.

We've got our luggage, we're headed off the ship and it's COLD in Florida again! DD insisted on dragging her suitcase all through customs and all the way through the parking lot to our minivan. Too cute - and a BIG help - because we have waaaay too much stuff!

We headed over to our hotel, Marriott Courtyard Cocoa Beach. Our rooms are ready (it's only 10am) - and we all have the same reaction when we get to the room - it's HUGE! At least it feels like it after being on the ship. We're all tired, so we take a nap, and then find a place for lunch.

Over to the beach for lunch, at a bar that will be showing the Bears game (very important to DH and my dad). While the guys watch the game, we take a walk on the beach - the sand it so hard you can ride your bike on it. It's chilly enough for sweatshirts, but it's not snow!

We really didn't do anything at all that evening. Just repacking everything so it fits into our suitcases for the flight home tomorrow.

I check the flights, and the 1pm looks like we might not all get on (standby), so I re-list us all for the 11am flight - looks like there are 30+ seats available.

FlyingBelle 12-23-2010 12:57 PM

Day 7: Hello Snow!
We're all up early and head back to MCO. Sure enough, we all got on the flight and were able to sit together. Completely and wonderfully uneventful!

As we land in Chicago, we see lots of white stuff... and it's not sandy beaches!

When we get to our car (parked outside for the week), DH has to find the ice scraper to dig us into our car. Brrrr! We don't have winter jackets, so I dig out a blanket to wrap DD in to keep warm.

We picked up Olive Garden on the way home, and just veg in front of the tv.

DD asked... Can we go on the big boat ride again? It was really cool!

belle'ssister 12-27-2010 03:48 AM

Enjoyed your report. Easy and fun to read. My hubby, 9 yr old grandson will be taking our first Disney cruise on the Wonder in March, to the Mexican Riviera. We're going to be in 2060, right by where you guys were. Glad to hear that it wasn't too noisy right by the elevators.

Melissa&Shawn 12-27-2010 08:26 AM

Wonderful report!!! So glad to hear you had a great trip. Sailing in 3 weeks and will be 20 weeks prego with an almost 3 year old in Pullups. I hope the Club will be OK with DD in PullUps as well.

mainstreetmagic 12-27-2010 10:53 AM

I loved your report! Great job! :)

akluss 12-27-2010 01:03 PM

Enjoyable report, thanks for taking the time to write it.

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