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Old 01-27-2012, 10:30 AM   #781
Mndisneygirl
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I have to tell you - we are now studying the 2013 itineraries closely for an Alaskan cruise!! I sure hope we can do it! Your TR has made me really excited for it!

Thanks!
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Old 01-27-2012, 10:37 AM   #782
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Budget Question

I am trying to figure out what to expect for costs - I understand any excursions, gratuities, and "extras" are not included in the cost for the cruise. Can you give me a ballpark idea of what I may be looking at for the final costs assuming my family (of four) particiapted in similar excursions? Or if you used a website to help estimate costs (or know of one) could you give that to me Thanks for your help! I am guessing I am looking at an additional 2k or so in addition to the cost of the cruise.
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Old 01-27-2012, 12:07 PM   #783
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Originally Posted by Mndisneygirl View Post
I have to tell you - we are now studying the 2013 itineraries closely for an Alaskan cruise!! I sure hope we can do it! Your TR has made me really excited for it!

Thanks!
I hope you can too Are you looking at DCL? I know you were considering other lines as well. I'd book DCL asap to lock in a price, you can always cancel. They will go up.

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Originally Posted by cadams View Post
I am trying to figure out what to expect for costs - I understand any excursions, gratuities, and "extras" are not included in the cost for the cruise. Can you give me a ballpark idea of what I may be looking at for the final costs assuming my family (of four) particiapted in similar excursions? Or if you used a website to help estimate costs (or know of one) could you give that to me Thanks for your help! I am guessing I am looking at an additional 2k or so in addition to the cost of the cruise.
I am a total dork. I actually made a spreadsheet with all the excursions we were considering booking to calculate various scenarios and then had my family stack rank what they wanted to do and booked based on that, factoring in our total budget for them. You can get the costs for all the excursions right off of the DCL website, I think there is also a thread somewhere that lists them all within the cruise forum somewhere. This was my budget going in.

$1,652.00 Excursions via DCL (zip line and taku lodge)
$81.00 Tram (were going to do it on our own)
$336.00 Tips (head server, server, assistant server and stateroom host)
$80.00 Palo brunch and dinner
$50.00 excursion tips
$130.00 Spa
$200.00 Souvenirs
$278.00 Drinks, meals off the ship, etc.
$20.00 Arcade Cards

I came in fairly close. I spent a little more at the spa as I bought some product. We didn't do the tram based on weather. I don't think I tipped quite that much on the excursions but don't really recall. We spent about $100 more at Palo, adding in tips for both and wine with dinner and added a little more gratuity for our server, assistant server and stateroom host. The "big" thing I didn't budget for and should have was the Shutters package at $149. I did budget for rebooking on board. Taku was really pricey, you can do it for less if you do one of the Ketchikan flight excursions and skip the whole lunch thing. Shorter excursion but was definitely an option we considered. Given that my husband is building a seaplane in the garage...Taku was a must do for us but was a huge splurge for sure!

We had close to $300 in OBC so that really covered the spa and the souvies

The tips were based on the standard recommended amount, per person for the number of days so yours would be exactly the same base amount.
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Old 01-27-2012, 01:22 PM   #784
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Thanks for the information! Now if I can find a discount on the cruise I am going to book I am hoping for a total cost around 9k with veranda room.
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Old 01-27-2012, 03:43 PM   #785
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I am still catching up, and loving every bit ofyour TR Cynthia! I won't do tons of quotes, but a few so you remember what you wrote!
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We were heading into the trees.





Shockingly, when it was time to go, Eric wanted to go first. For the WHOLE group. Now Eric is a thrill junkie when someone else is in control but on his own? Let’s put it this way. He’s 11. He doesn’t know how to ride a bike. Needless to say Jeff and I looked at each other, wondering silently how this would go down. Would he hold up the whole group (of 12) or have a melt down, freaking out that he couldn’t do one or more of the courses?

WOW what a huge adventurer! this looks like so much fun, though my DH would never ever enjoy it. he is a "man on the ground" and likes it that way.
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SO MUCH FUN!



The scariest part is the takeoff, you just walk off a platform



WOW!!!
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At the end you hang up your gear and can buy a tee shirt, tip the guides, whatever. We were amused by one of our guides, who had lost a bet.



!

Where do you think we were going?

great hair cut.

and really, who did not know that you all wanted a beer after that adventure

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So where did we go to celebrate our successful zipline?
Well…..

Mary Ellen called it.

The Skagway Brewing Company!

It has been updated a bit

Then



Now




the old timers would think they've "gone girlie" but great shots. I love the bits of history you've included throughout your TR.
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Originally Posted by eandesmom View Post


Evan asked, “why can’t we just go get on the ship and you guys have your beer?”

Well…

“Pretty sure you can’t just get on without us dude”

“Can we try?”


“Pretty sure you can’t just get on without us dude”

“Can we try?”


“Pretty sure you can’t just get on without us dude”

“Can we try?”


OH how well do I know THAT conversation. its a daily occurrence in my house. multiple times. and I have only one 8 year old.

Good for you for letting them be the responsible boys & trying for themselves. Was it just a little sad to know that your boys are that "big" already. Funny you know they are growing up so fast but to me its just these little moments set in time that remind you so poignantly

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As for us, we were here



Thanks random website that I stole this photo from…actually the website is called top beer bars! Pretty funny as it’s the only reason we stopped by there.



Built in 1897, The Red Onion was the classiest dance hall and saloon in the bustling gold rush town of Skagway. Our upstairs bordello consisted of 10 cribs (or rooms). Each crib was very small in size, but elaborately decorated. The cribs all had 2 or 3 doors for escape purposes and temperature control. A weary miner could wander into the Red Onion for a taste of “liquid courage” and a dance or two with a beautiful lady. When the time came to cure his thirst for some love and affection, the anxious gentleman would choose his girl in a very unique way. Behind the bar were 10 dolls that represented the 10 girls upstairs. As each customer would choose a doll of his choice, the bartender would then lay the doll on her back, indicating that that girl was “busy”. Once the gentleman came back down the stairs, the doll was sat upright so every customer in the bar knew that she was once again available.

Oh my!

They have a Brothel Museum.

“One of our lovely Madams will take you on a tour of the upstairs and tell you stories of the famous women who endured the Klondike Gold Rush while helping the miners quench more than their thirst. You may even catch a glimpse of Lydia, our resident ghost.”

The madams were walking around and a tour starting but we just had our one beer, as planned. I have to say…the Harmon IPA was amazing, it ranks up there with one of our favorite IPA’s ever.

With that, it was time to head back to the ship and check on some boys. We ALL had dates to get ready for!
This place looks awesome! I love the bordello facts about it as well. I'm so sure that neither of you made any madam/call girl jokes while you were there.

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Originally Posted by eandesmom View Post

Panna Cotta
Sweet, White Cream Custard with fresh Berries
.
Now THAT is a nice way to end the day!

I can totally understand how your Juneau outing was the one that never was reconsidered. It looks amazing! That lodge looks like a destination on its own, is it? I would love to spend some time there, it looks beautiful!
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Old 01-27-2012, 03:46 PM   #786
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Thanks for the information! Now if I can find a discount on the cruise I am going to book I am hoping for a total cost around 9k with veranda room.
DCL doesn't discount, at all. Ever. The only discount ever available is if you book while onboard, for a future cruise and then it's 10% off. The occasionally have kids cruise free but that's usually off season and for itineraries that aren't selling well (MR the past 2 years for a couple of dates I think).

However, you can get on board credits a variety of ways.

$25 if you book online
$50 if you pay for the entire cruise with a Disney Visa

And various credits from travel agencies. Those vary (typically based on length and price of cruise) and I'd shop around. You can always book it direct and then transfer it to a TA and should be able to combine your on board credits. For our Alaska cruise we had the 2 above + some from our TA. For the next one, we will have $100 from DCL for booking it onboard + some from our TA. We won't qualify for the other 2 as it would be double dipping.
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Old 01-27-2012, 03:54 PM   #787
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I am still catching up, and loving every bit ofyour TR Cynthia! I won't do tons of quotes, but a few so you remember what you wrote!
WOW what a huge adventurer! this looks like so much fun, though my DH would never ever enjoy it. he is a "man on the ground" and likes it that way.

great hair cut.

and really, who did not know that you all wanted a beer after that adventure
I'm so glad we did the ziplining, it was a blast. on the beer. Only if it was a GOOD beer.

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Originally Posted by Moira222 View Post
the old timers would think they've "gone girlie" but great shots. I love the bits of history you've included throughout your TR.
Thanks! I try to put things in context, when I can as I know I love it when others do that in their TR's.

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Originally Posted by Moira222 View Post
OH how well do I know THAT conversation. its a daily occurrence in my house. multiple times. and I have only one 8 year old.

Good for you for letting them be the responsible boys & trying for themselves. Was it just a little sad to know that your boys are that "big" already. Funny you know they are growing up so fast but to me its just these little moments set in time that remind you so poignantly
A little bit sad, a little bit exciting, a lot freeing and a lot scary!

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Originally Posted by Moira222 View Post
This place looks awesome! I love the bordello facts about it as well. I'm so sure that neither of you made any madam/call girl jokes while you were there.
Who us? Never


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Originally Posted by Moira222 View Post
I can totally understand how your Juneau outing was the one that never was reconsidered. It looks amazing! That lodge looks like a destination on its own, is it? I would love to spend some time there, it looks beautiful!
It isn't in terms of overnight stays, at least during peak season. It may be in the off season. The staff lives on site and it's a pretty considerable staff to run the whole operation between the planes, lodge, gift shop, meal, etc. It was beautiful! My parents did the same excursion probably 10 years before we did (minus the Disney storyteller) and it sounds like it was just as magical then!
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Old 01-27-2012, 04:49 PM   #788
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Till we meet again

Relaxing. Magical. Romantic. Restorative. Sigh.
In that mind set, we finished getting ready. I changed my camera setting to try to get the kids for one last verandah picture.

First though, they had to show me their latest trading acquisitions







I had a horrible time trying to get them in this light. And maybe it was because he was so relaxed or that he has pool hair head but Evan still looks younger in these pics. It’s fun to see these 6 months later and still see a hint of little boy, not the full out tween he is today.









Our last night on the verandah properly documented, we headed off to dinner. Dinner was in Animators, the kids favorite. The last night attire is fun, everyone in their “world” vests. Our servers seemed happy to see us. I forgot to mention, we’d ran into our main server in town, on his way to wire money home. It was fun to see him off the ship!





I wonder what the kids were doing to get this reaction?



Honestly, I don’t remember what anyone had! It was a fun meal, full of lots of chatter and email/address exchanging with our table mates. Just in case we somehow missed each other in the morning, we wanted to get info exchanged tonight.

I did document dessert.







The infamous baked Alaska



Big people like Mickey bars too!



Although I think Jeff made it look a little creepy!





After dinner we headed out to the atrium, it was time to say “till we meet again”. NOT goodbye!

As many of you know, everyone slowly says farewell and till we meet again. As you can see, we were on the upper balcony looking down, the photos are not the greatest. I had a very hard time, all cruise, getting those atrium shots right.







Bye bye Princesses







Bye bye ducks!



Continued in next post

Last edited by eandesmom; 01-27-2012 at 04:58 PM.
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Old 01-27-2012, 04:53 PM   #789
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Bye bye Goofy







Bye Bye Stitch!



He didn’t want to go





Nighty night Minnie!





And till we meet again



At this point we again divided into kids and adults. The four kids headed off to pin trade and then watch some late night TV in the room (boys in their room, girls in theirs lol…not together!) and the adults went to..be adults! I forgot to mention that prior to the boys seeing Disney Dreams and our hot tub adventure, I had taken the kids to the Treasure Ketch for all of their last purchases, everyone spending each last little bit of money that they had. I’ll try to get pictures of everything for the recap  Still, they wanted to maybe do one last bit of trading and…why not!

We were off to be entertained by the CM’s. “If I were not upon the Sea” is apparently the traditional last night show. We swung by our stateroom for one last glass of wine (refill), put our luggage in the hall (we hadn’t done it yet) and then met our tablemates in Wavebands. I admit, Jeff and I are more of a sit in the back or middle of the room kind of couple. Easy exit if we don’t like something lol. Our tablemates? Not so much. Right up front! They got there first so…we sat up front. If you don’t know the premise of the show, some of the major CM’s do a skit that “shows” what they should be doing if they were not upon the sea.

They would do…some interesting things! Crummy photo’s but I had a blast taking them.





A slight set back mid show…falling keyboard!









And the show must go on













Continued in next post
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Old 01-27-2012, 04:58 PM   #790
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It gets a little more risqué as the show goes on



















The hairstylist was our muster station CM and did a ton of the shows and ran a lot of the younger kids activities. She was adorable. And adorably crazy in this!

















For repeat cruisers in particular, who “knew” a lot of the players, it was a huge hit. Even for us newbies, it was a ton of fun. The four of us were cracking up the entire show! Post cruise some of my FB group (our cruise had a FB group set up) complained that it was too tame but honestly, I didn't want or need anything raunchy (er), it was just right for my frame of mind that night!

It had been a fun filled, relaxing, magical and productive last day. A long one too and it was time…for bed. The kids were out cold when we got to the stateroom and within moments, we were too!
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Old 01-27-2012, 05:55 PM   #791
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You're right...Jeff DID make his Mickey bar look a little creepy! And isn't amazing how much kids can change in six months... sigh.

The show looks like it was a lot of fun, albeit slightly hard to understand if you've never cruised before.

Its really cool how you get so much adult time on the ship. I could see that being a big plus with cruising once the kids (or in my case, kid) are older.
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Old 01-27-2012, 06:13 PM   #792
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You're right...Jeff DID make his Mickey bar look a little creepy! And isn't amazing how much kids can change in six months... sigh.
Well it looked better before his "face" slid off and Jeff tried to fix it

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The show looks like it was a lot of fun, albeit slightly hard to understand if you've never cruised before.

Its really cool how you get so much adult time on the ship. I could see that being a big plus with cruising once the kids (or in my case, kid) are older.
In some ways you could have more adult time when they are little if the kids really like the club! The kids clubs are really open all the time so it's a very nice option no matter how old your kids are.

I'm not sure cruising before would make a difference in the show other than knowing the personalities of the various CM's in it. The story is just what they'd do if they weren't working on the wonder...and of course none of it is anything that they really would do.
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Old 01-27-2012, 10:23 PM   #794
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Nice way to wind down a wonderful time upon the sea.
That CM show looked like it was a good time.
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Old 01-28-2012, 12:39 AM   #795
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That show with the cast members looks like a lot of fun.

I'm not a pin collector, but I like the pins the boys got.
It was a lot of fun, in a cute cabaret kind of way!

Those were traders and I think both were Evan's in that pic, not their new pins. I need to get a shot of the new ones. They really got into it on the cruise, more so than ever before and the girls (our tablemates) definitely influenced it.

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Nice way to wind down a wonderful time upon the sea.
That CM show looked like it was a good time.
It was a good time! We didn't know the tutu dude but oh, our tablemates were dying over him! A very fun end.
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