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Old 01-09-2012, 04:32 PM   #376
UmmGooD
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Thanks for another update. King Julian is one of my favorite characters. I don't have a clue why but I have a stuffed version of him on my monitor at work.

I wouldn't be able to sit through Chicago. I hated that movie with a passion. Well I don't like Renee Zellweger so maybe that is why I don't like the movie but if I were to watch the live show it would probably bring back bad memories of her so I would have passed

I am really tempted to try a RCCL cruise after our Disney cruise since we live in Texas and can easily get to the Galveston port. My main concern with RCCL is the clothing the entertainment people wear during the shows. Are they overly skimpy? I don't want my kids seeing that stuff.

When my wife was 21 we went to Vegas for her bday (I know I know Vegas defines skimpy) but we chose shows that allowed kids 5 and up. Well one show which was people impersonating famous singers like Michael Jackson, Christina Agularia, Tina Turner, etc... was for ages 5 and up and ALL of the dancers were wearing thongs and bra tops. We were up hauled. Good thing we didn't have kids there at the time. I would never take my kids to Vegas anyway but I always worry about that when I book vacations with entertainment and what impression the cast will have on my kids. Any thoughts?

Oh and my daughter loves Justice (she is 8) and she has some of the outfits your older daughter has I think. The funny thing is she'll only wear blue/boy colors. While my youngest girl who is 3 will only wear pink so it looks very similar to your kids. My boy is just now 2 months old so not exactly the same age demographic.
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Old 01-09-2012, 11:14 PM   #377
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I am really tempted to try a RCCL cruise after our Disney cruise since we live in Texas and can easily get to the Galveston port. My main concern with RCCL is the clothing the entertainment people wear during the shows. Are they overly skimpy? I don't want my kids seeing that stuff.

.
ive only been on a 3day RCCL and they wear nothing less than you would see on a beach, done a 8day on Carnival and they too show nothing more than what you would see whileon the beach for that matter either.
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Old 01-10-2012, 05:52 PM   #378
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Hello?? *echoes*
Anyone home?? *echoes*
Nope. I wasn't home! LOL!

We have been so very busy- dance competition season is heating up bigtime. We just spent a long weekend in Orlando at the Nuvo convention- it was awesome! Sav was one of the very last kids cut in the Breakout audition after 3 callbacks- considering the amazing competition from some really tight teams from Miami that were there- that was such an accomplishment! She also got a callback from her fave choreographer Travis Wall in contemporary. So, really exciting!

I had to do a change of schedule at work due to being out of vacation time, so it's a 6 day workweek for me. Sunday was brutal- straight from the convention to work. Ugh! I haven't had any legit vacation since September so I am really dragging.

I'm not going anywhere though and character breakfast is up next. If I have time to get it up tonight I will, otherwise tomorrow afternoon is looking pretty good!

I promise I will finish, no worries. Even though dance is heating up and baseball will be starting , I will have some time off again soon so the updates should become more regular again!
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Old 01-11-2012, 05:39 PM   #379
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Feed Me- If You Dare!

Tuesday September 20- Day 3- At Sea

Can you believe it? Itís already:



Todayís Forecast:



We had the first of three scheduled Character Breakfasts (CB) this morning.

Character Breakfast on Allure is a little different than they do it on DCL. On DCL everyone has one assigned breakfast time, based on their rotational dining assignments. On Allure, CB is optional. If you want to do it, you can sign up in advance of the cruise online. It is free, but listed with the Specialty Dining experiences. It is offered on all sea days- one seating- at 8 AM in the MDR. The good- and bad thing is different characters are featured at each breakfast. Good in that- since you can book more than one (or all three CBís if you so desire and if there is availability), bad in that they do not have a schedule or set pattern of what characters will be at what breakfasts. So if you want to see specific characters, like Shrek for instance, it is a crapshoot. Once you get onboard, they will put it in the Compass the evening before which characters will be featured at the CB the next morning, but by then usually the CBís are booked up. So basically my advice is pre-book them all and then go to the ones that interest you and fit your schedule once onboard. (you can cancel without penalty and then a standby will get your slot).
When the CBís first started on Allure, they would feature the Shrek characters at one breakfast per cruise, Madagascar at another, and either Kung Fu Panda or the Penguins from Madagascar at the third. By the time we actually sailed, they had changed it to Shrek characters for two of the breakfasts and Madagascar characters at the other. Since demand for the Shrek gang is so high, I assume that is why this was done.

Our CB this morning was scheduled at 8AM which was a little early for all of us to be up showered, ready and downstairs. But we made it. Like I had mentioned above, we had booked all three CB opportunities available because we did not want to miss Shrek and gang. You see, each of the Character Breakfasts could have any of the three set of characters: Madagascar (King Julien, Alex, and Gloria), The Penguins, or Shrek (Shrek, Fiona, Puss N Boots). They do not do specific characters on set days, so you never know what you are going to get, so we booked all three. You can (and should!) book this online prior to your cruise, (look under Specialty Restaurants in your Cruise planner once dining reservations open up) and best of all itís FREE!

As we headed downstairs to the Adagio Dining Room, we had gone to Deck 5 first, because thatís where we thought the CB was held. The doors there were shut, so we went down to Deck 4 and thatís where we found it. The line was quite long; it extended through the large Dining Room entrance and spilled out into the hallway. There was a staff member greeting at the end of the line, guiding guests with the character reservations over to the left and queuing up regular breakfast-goers to the right. We had arrived a tad late- about 8:05 or so, but with the huge line we would end up being later. It took about 10 minutes to work through the line to be seated.
One thing I had read was that the characters donít necessarily come out right away (I think I read here once that they come out about 8:30). Here is what we discovered: they arenít consistent. This breakfast was in FULL swing at 8:15 when we were seated- we almost missed Shrek!!! But their timing may be dictated by crowds- this breakfast was SUPER BUSY, and the characters were out early and moved FAST. The next CB we were at was not busy at all and the characters came out later and moved at a more leisurely pace. So the lesson learned is always be on time- strike that- early, and be prepared to go with the flow.

As we were led to our table, we could see the CB half of the dining room was packed full and that we had missed some things already. What we had missed was the introduction of Shrek . When the characters come out (which they do individually), they are introduced by an announcer and then they do a little dance. Like I said, we had already missed Shrekís intro, unfortunately. After their intro, each character starts ďworkingĒ the dining room, table by table, each from a different direction. They do travel methodically though so they wonít miss you, donít worry!

The very elegant Adagio dining room:





As soon as we reached our table, Shrek was basically there. We had hardly decided where to even sit. Luckily we are Disney veterans and have done this Character Breakfast a time or two so it didnít faze us a bit:





We were seated in a very nice area at the center of the left side of the Dining Room, on the ďBridgeĒ overlooking the lower level. To better describe, the outer parts of the dining room are one section, then there is a center section that you pass over a small glass bridge to get to. It is in this center section that the characters do their dance, but they face towards the outside of the dining room, so they had our backs to us.

We got settled in at our table, and out came Fiona! Like I mentioned they face out when they do the dance, and since our table was to the center, we got the backside of the dance but this is an example of the character introduction to which I was referring:

Video (click to play)




We were served our juice and coffee (they will try to sell you fresh squeezed OJ for $3.50 a glass but the regular stuff is free), and out came the chocolate pastries.



If you arenít familiar, on Allure the Character Breakfast meal is chocolate themed. There are chocolate breads, pastries, chocolate sauce on waffles, even a chocolate milkshake (free!).

Here is the menu:



Thatís a little hard to read, here is a close-up (photo from Theme Park Review)



Our pastries were two sliced of chocolate bread (a little dry); chocolate muffins (also dry); a chocolate puff pastry (delish!), and a chocolate glazed sweet roll (did not try).



Chocolate milkshakes!



Before we knew it Fiona had arrived:







If I can give any advice about Character Breakfasts, itís to try and be ready when the character approaches your table. They were great here, as the character assistant would stop by and give you a heads up that your table was next, so you had plenty of time to scoot out chairs, get little ones out of high chairs/booster seats, remove napkins from laps, etc.

What I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE? No autograph books! Whoopee! Things move along nicely with that option removed. Sorry. I'm a heartless hag, I know, but those autographs take a LOT of time!

Puss N Boots was introduced next, here you can see how we were right behind the dance!



The kids get a little activity sheet (but no crayons????) and as each character visits your table they stamp the sheet, showing they had been there:



Rounding out the character visits, Puss n Boots had finally arrived to greet us:



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Old 01-11-2012, 05:41 PM   #380
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Feed Me- If You Dare! (Part 2)

After we saw the characters, the food arrived!

Cheese omelet with bacon and the signature tomato half:



The omelet was very good!

Perfect Ganache Griddle:



It was pretty good. The same somewhat soggy waffles you find in the WJ, but with a chocolate/caramel banana sauce. It was good enough that I ate all of it anyway. I had asked for a side of bacon but I didnít get it. I also didn't get my tomato, but that was fine by me! LOL!

Fried Eggs over medium with hash browns, bacon, and guess whatÖ.



Even Sarah got a tomato!



Overall I think the Character Breakfast was wonderful. I wish it wasnít so early in the morning, but it was worth it, for the kids or kids at heart! don't miss it! (And yes, there were lots of adults-only parties partaking in the fun!)

After breakfast it was up to the pool deck for the girls, flowrider for the boys. I tried to take Sarah to the flowriders so we could watch the boys some, but she wanted no part of it:



Much better, mom!





The cute kid loungers by the H20 zone:


Here ya go, the Beach pool at 11:23 AM on a Sea Day!!! (Yes it was bit overcast still)





Sarah was tired, cranky, and a little overwhelmed so I took her back to the cabin for a little nap.



Up Next: Johnny Rocks In-My-Stomach!
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:23 PM   #381
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I am so glad I found this thread!!
You have done a great job with this thread telling us about this boat and your trip!
I can't wait to read and see the rest of your trip.
I hope to book a trip on this boat to see it for my self.
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:29 PM   #382
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Originally Posted by jenseib View Post
Looks like a very fun evening! I am really wanting to sail this ship!!!
Oh you sure should! You wont regret it! Such an awesome cruise!!!

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Originally Posted by iloverags2 View Post
The kids look like they are having a blast! How cool that you ran into Sarah's group on their field trip! (Oh, and I spotted Minnie on Sarah's "bed"!)
Oh my goodness, Minnie went through quite the ordeal. More on that coming up!

Yes Sarah had a lot of fun- this was her first time in a real kid's club and not the nursery. We didnt know they would be going on little "field trips" like that. It even looked fun to me- LOL!

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Originally Posted by MAGICFOR2 View Post
Hi! Welcome Back!

Looks like the kid's club was having a great space walk! What cuties!
Thanks girl! LOL, I am slowly coming around, I was in quite a post holiday work and clean and organize funk there. We aren't quite done, there are still some old baby toys to go through and donate. Maybe this weekend....

Quote:
It sounds like your kids had a great time at the Oceaneer's club? Fun character interaction. Not sure what to think about that towel bat!
They did! LOL about the bat, I thought the same thing.

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Originally Posted by JKSWonder View Post
Pic of Sara eating the fancy mousse out of the fancy glass is adorable!
Hee hee, I'm wishing I had some of the mousse right about now. Mmmmm!

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Originally Posted by knewton64 View Post
hhhhmmmmm......no "Mon-kee" kissin on my upcomin adventure
What? NONE? Now what fun is that? LOL!

Quote:
see below trip report ...in my signature .....and follow along if ya want -

(or will there be??)
That's more like it!
Quote:
But
b 4 I go, any suggestions on what

hmmmmm

how I say.......

what adult beverages I should try???

(I am relying on your expertise here since you have been on this adventure while yours truely havent yet)

meaning:
I tried my very first Miata (did I spell that right) while in Maui last month....

also I tried my very first Mango 'rita.....

and bananna /macadamia nut pancakes in Oahu.....

so any food recommendations as well??

I appreciate any suggestions -


Been real......


ok....we now return you to your regular scheduled programming.


THANK YOU .....and yes.....all of ye can chime in if ya want.

T.T.F.N.
LOL, let's see I'm always down for a good Bushwhacker or Painkiller! Those are more of an "Eastern" Caribbean drink to me than a Western though. To me, the Westerns are all bout the Te-KILL-ya! So Ritas of all kind, all around!

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Originally Posted by Disney Family Lee's View Post
Just found this thread and have been reading for the last 2 days. WOW!!
Thanks for stopping by! So glad you are enjoying it!

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What a ship!! We have just got off our first cruise on the Disney Dream in December for 4 nights and seen this boat at Nassau. We could not believe the size of the Allure!!
She is a monster, no doubt about it!


Quote:
We had a great time on the Disney Dream and could not see and do everything we wanted on this cruise. We would be lost on a boat that size and would not know what to do first.
Oh I agree- 4 days is not enough. That is why we decided to forego the Dream for now and wait for the Fantasy. We just cant go below 7 night cruises anymore! Haha! Actually the ship wasn't too bad- it was easy to get to know what was where- although I think having sailed on a RCCL Freedom class ship prior helped keep us oriented. I didn't find going up and down the ship bad but sometimes I dreaded going aft to forward and vice versa. It wasn't bad when walking through the Promenade or Central Park but those long boring stateroom hallway walks- I thought I was in a never ending tunnel!

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When I seen the Allure I was thinking a cruise on a boat that size would cost to much but it sounds like it may be cheaper than booking a cruise on the Fantasy?
for sure, it can be depending on when you book. Our cruise on Allure (2 rooms Cat D2 and L) cost a little over $4700. And our Fantasy cruise? Cost almost identical. Of course our Fantasy cruise was booked waaay back when - we got in the unannounced pre-TA booking period last Feb. and got a great deal. The prices are a lot higher now.

For the most part RCCL prices on the big ships are like DCL- they start at the lowest tier and continue to go up. So book as early as you can for the best deals!

Quote:
We have alot to think about now thanks for this thread.
I can't wait until you post more about your trip!!

We have friends going on the same Fantasy cruise your going on.
Awesome, we are starting to get excited for the Fantasy! it still seems so long off, and until she actually starts her voyages she doesn't seem quite real to me yet.

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Originally Posted by anewmac View Post
Holy Catch Up batman.. I dont mean the kind I put on a burger.. wow I have been so busy I have missed so much.. But iM back.. and as I was reading E kept looking over my shoulders going, we NEED to get on that boat.. ya think!
Ummm...yea you guys do! 9/22/13? Yes?

Quote:
I like you are so glad the holidays are over. I think when we do so much for the darn holidays its hard to enjoy them. Now I can get back to business. Work, gym and trip reports! Maybe not in that order LOL
Ha, I hear you, I am just totally wiped out. Next year I actually get the week before Christmas off- previously unheard of in postal land. I'm gonna need it, next year is my year to host!

Sav loved Elfis so much she begged me to do it next year. Not sure I'll be as creative as you. You don't mind if I reuse some of your awesome ideas do you? LOL! Elfis redux! Ah, but yeah for now- so glad its over!

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Originally Posted by SanDeeKath View Post
Thank you for this awesome thread! We booked a B2B on the Allure for Spring Break 2013! It's going to be soooooo awesome. 1 week without the kids (just DH and I) and then 1 week with the kids!!! We just cannot wait.

450 days to go!
Oh I am so envious- a B2B is for sure the way to go on Allure! And that sounds like the perfect way to do it- family experience one week and the adult/couple experience the other! Awesome!!!

It will be here before you know it!

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Originally Posted by twindaddy View Post
Loving the trip report! However, I am super confused about the drink situation. Where can you get free soda?
So glad you are enjoying the report! Unfortunately there is no free soda on RCCL- or any of the other lines. That is a perk exclusive to DCL as far as I am aware.

Quote:
Do you have to buy a card or something? I drink a ton of diet coke, like whenever I am eating. No drink stations like Disney, where do I go for my fix?
Yep, a soda card is available for purchase. The fountain soda package entitles you to unlimited refills at any the our bars or lounges, Windjammer Cafť, Main Dining Room and the private island destinations (Labadee/Coco Cay). A complimentary Coca-Cola souvenir cup is included as part of every fountain soda package. The cost of a fountain soda package is determined by the length of your stay, with an average daily cost of $6.50 for adults and $4.50 for children* plus gratuity. (*Child prices available for kids under 18.) The fountain soda package is sold for the entire length of the cruise vacation only.

Some places soda costs extra even when you have a soda card. Johnny Rockets, for example.

My husband, like you HAS to have his soda. And since he prefers Coke Zero- which they don't have onboard anyway, we chose to bring a case onboard with us. This is allowed, you just have to carry it by hand onto the ship. So he chose to just bring his own instead of doing the package. Cheaper too. LOL!

Quote:
And...if you look at your photos of Ritas and central park, are those stateroom right above there?
Yes, they sure are! There are Central Park and Boardwalk Balcony rooms and also Promenade View (window) rooms!

Quote:
So you could have a veranda that faces the inside of the ship? Are those way cheaper?
Not really. They should be if you ask me. But they aren;t much cheaper than an oceanview balcony. Oceanview balcony rooms do book fast on this ship, but often the Central Park and Boardwalk balconies are the last available room categories since their price is a little high (considering). You do have to be careful when in those rooms, since you can see right into the room across from yours (and they into your room- LOL). That is one complaint I;ve read about. But a great value would be the Boardwalk Balcony rooms towards the very back of the ship- they also provide a view of the Aquatheater and the ocean out behind the ship!

Quote:
Thanks! Keep the report coming!
You're very welcome! Hope it helps a bit!

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Originally Posted by DundasDad View Post
ok, I leave on my DIS Eastern Cruise in 60 days and can't wait for your updates! I bet you are doing this on purpose to drive me batty ...
LOL, not on purpose but you're right, I do still have a lot to get to. If I don't have it done by then....ay.....don;t say that! LOL!

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Originally Posted by UmmGooD View Post
Thanks for another update. King Julian is one of my favorite characters. I don't have a clue why but I have a stuffed version of him on my monitor at work.
Oh! You will love the Let You Entertain Me show from the last day! Its King Julien-centric and a lot of fun!

Quote:
I wouldn't be able to sit through Chicago. I hated that movie with a passion. Well I don't like Renee Zellweger so maybe that is why I don't like the movie but if I were to watch the live show it would probably bring back bad memories of her so I would have passed
haha! I tried to watch the movie several times and it never failed to put me to sleep! I knew that would happen again in the show if we went! LOL!

Quote:
I am really tempted to try a RCCL cruise after our Disney cruise since we live in Texas and can easily get to the Galveston port. My main concern with RCCL is the clothing the entertainment people wear during the shows. Are they overly skimpy? I don't want my kids seeing that stuff.
No, not really. I've seen worse at our local dance competitions. I know CHICAGO is the only RCCL production show to have a "R" rating (not really but they do discourage children) and the costuming I have seen in photos is exactly what I posted- so not too risque. There were some two piece and cutout- style showgilrl/type Rockette style bodysuit with feathers and sequins type costumes and obviously there were swimsuits in the Aquatheater productions but no G strings, thongs, or excessively plunging cleavage. Certainly no nudity at all. At the productions we have seen- all have been appropriate for all ages including costuming. i have lots of pics of the shows we did attend- well except one becuase I was right in front of the mixer and well- there is a camera story to go along with that- but I will scour the net for some pics of that show as well and post them here so you can see.

What IS inappropriate though is some of the swimwear up on deck. Thongs are allowed and what was really criminal is that they were always on the people you wouldn't want to see them on, KWIM? Allure had a very heavy foreign passenger makeup- lots of folke from Europe and South America where the motto for swimwear is less is more. LOL. Luckily though we did not see the thongs much away from the main, sports, and beach pools. The H20 zone was safe.

Quote:
When my wife was 21 we went to Vegas for her bday (I know I know Vegas defines skimpy) but we chose shows that allowed kids 5 and up. Well one show which was people impersonating famous singers like Michael Jackson, Christina Agularia, Tina Turner, etc... was for ages 5 and up and ALL of the dancers were wearing thongs and bra tops. We were up hauled. Good thing we didn't have kids there at the time. I would never take my kids to Vegas anyway but I always worry about that when I book vacations with entertainment and what impression the cast will have on my kids. Any thoughts?
Yikes, yeah that is over the top for sure. You wont see that! I think on this ship it is much more geared to families than a lot of the other RCCL ships too. There were some bra top with big flowing skirt combinations on Blue Planet but nothing really too tacky that I remember. In addition, I have no clue how they kept the bathingsuits on so taut in the dive shows, but they did. No Janet Jackson-esque wardrobe malfunctions! We found everything we saw family friendly. Hopefully my pics will have captured a lot of the costuming so you can get an idea!

Quote:
Oh and my daughter loves Justice (she is 8) and she has some of the outfits your older daughter has I think. The funny thing is she'll only wear blue/boy colors. While my youngest girl who is 3 will only wear pink so it looks very similar to your kids. My boy is just now 2 months old so not exactly the same age demographic.
Ha ha! We are starting to move out of the Justice phase a bit now and into (eek) the Abercrombie, Hollister, Aeropostale deal. Ugh! I love to match the girls clothes too but Sav will have no part of that anymore. LOL! And yep- like yours my little one is a pink lover too!

Thanks so much for reading! Glad you are enjoying it!

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Originally Posted by anewmac View Post
ive only been on a 3day RCCL and they wear nothing less than you would see on a beach, done a 8day on Carnival and they too show nothing more than what you would see whileon the beach for that matter either.
Yup, agree. Did they have as many g strings and banana hammocks up on the pool deck on Carny? There was quite a bit of it on Allure.
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Old 01-11-2012, 11:16 PM   #383
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Gotta love RCI's chocolate breakfast! Never advertised, which is nice...keeps those who are in the dark out and means less wait for me to be seated. I'm so bad! Very cool the chocolate breakfast was mixed in with the character breakfast on the Allure. Guess that makes sense since kids like chocolate and characters. And I hear you on those darn autographs! Although I don't think they do the autographs on DCL during the CB. It's just at WDW we have to put up with that!
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Old 01-11-2012, 11:46 PM   #384
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Originally Posted by nenner1 View Post
Yup, agree. Did they have as many g strings and banana hammocks up on the pool deck on Carny? There was quite a bit of it on Allure.
oh YA TONS of banana hammocks.. i dont remember any g's... lol or maybe my eyes were scared?

feel free to hijax Elfis away! Next yr im thinking of taking Kara's elf ideas... just a shelf so much easier.. what was i thinking?
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Old 01-12-2012, 01:30 AM   #385
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Hey great updates! So worth the wait.
Oh, I might actually get up early for a chocolate breakfast! Looks delish!
I love the way Fiona made her grand entrance! We haven't done autograph books at character meals - I guess we know it takes alot of time. Funny how those tomatoes keep poppin up!

Oh, and congrats to Savannah! She did great in her try-outs last weekend!
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:20 AM   #386
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I have completely caught up and I am signing on! We are considering our 1st cruise and love your comparisons btw DCL and RCCL
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Old 01-12-2012, 09:37 AM   #387
floydfamily4
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So glad you're back!
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Old 01-12-2012, 10:29 AM   #388
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Oh, Jen I have missed you so!!!!

I'm laughing out loud right now at the pic of Sarah with her tomato half! She was REALLY excited about that!!!
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Old 01-12-2012, 11:36 AM   #389
Jennifer48
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Chocolate breakfast?! Yes please!
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Old 01-12-2012, 12:03 PM   #390
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I having been following along with your TR and love it.

We sailed on the Dream last year and loved it but DH is tired of Disney and wants to try RCL next time. I am having a tough time deciding between the Freedom of the Seas and the Allure/Oasis.

The character breakfast looks fantasic. Nothing beats a chocolate themed breakfast.

I cannot the picture of the pools on the sea day. We only did a 3 night cruise on the Dream so we haven't experience sea days yet. I have heard horrible things about DCL pools on sea days though. I'm guessing that since the Oasis has so much to do it disperses people throughout the ship on sea days.

Looking forward to more
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