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Old 11-19-2012, 09:23 PM   #31
Sereina
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Great TR so far! Animator's Palate look so neat. Oh, and your pictures are fantastic. I can't wait to hear more!
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Old 11-20-2012, 05:32 AM   #32
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great review so far! Did you have main or late dining?
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Old 11-20-2012, 06:18 AM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjiillee
great review so far! Did you have main or late dining?
I had the main dining. So we started at 5:45.
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Old 11-20-2012, 02:14 PM   #34
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Loving your report and your pictures. We are leavin in a week so looking forward to it. So glad you got good table mates we are hoping that works out for us as well.
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Old 11-20-2012, 04:46 PM   #35
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These are some of the best pics of the kids' area I've seen. You're also a great writer! Can't wait to read more. So do you recommend the particular dining rotation you had?

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Old 11-21-2012, 09:59 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karaintn
These are some of the best pics of the kids' area I've seen. You're also a great writer! Can't wait to read more. So do you recommend the particular dining rotation you had?

Kara
I really enjoyed our particular rotation. The main reason being that we were at Animator's Palate on Pirate Night. There was a lot of art being displayed on the screens that had to do with Pirates of the Caribbean. So it was the perfect place to be, to really help set the tone for everything.

And for anyone that enjoys looking at all of the conceptual art, you'll totally be glued to the screens. It was truly amazing,
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Old 11-21-2012, 04:30 PM   #37
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Loving your TR so far! We sail in 10 days, so this is VERY exciting for me!
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Old 11-21-2012, 09:07 PM   #38
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Day 1: A Royal Pain

IMG_0653 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr


Because our DD wasn't behaving, we decided to skip that night's show. We were hoping we could catch it on the TV, seeing as there was a channel for Walt Disney theater shows; but nothing ever aired (I eventually realized that they dont air the shows Live). This is always a great show to attend. Not only is there a true Disney piece in there; but you also get introduced to some of the other performers thatll be on the cruise (i.e. comedians, ventriloquists, etc&). And of course, you get to meet your Cruise Director. I had no idea who ours was until a couple of days later. Even after we did find that out; I remembered seeing him a couple of times the days previous.



She was reading the Birnbaums book quite a bit this trip&
IMG_0659 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr



So my wife and DD went to bed, while I went out to explore. One of the improvements this ship has over the Magic is the expanded outdoor adult area. On the Magic, people with kids could easily (and with reason) walk through to get to the other side. But on this ship, there's an additional section that isn't a pass-through&. Satellite Falls. Located on Deck 13 Fwd, this is your spot if you don't want to see kids at all. I might not have even have found it if I wasn't on a search to find a vantage point to where I could look off the front of this ship (I love taking pictures of that view). And Satellite Falls is the only area where you can get that view.


IMG_0669 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr



On my journeys, I also stopped to admire some of the Enchanted Art that can be found on various walls throughout the ship. What looks like a normal picture/poster, surprisingly has an element of it that comes to life. One of my favorites involved a picture of Walt Disney. Initially, the picture shows Walt looking at a blank canvas. But when you stand at a certain spot in front of this display, animations start to appear; either showing Pluto in action, or a scene from Steamboat Willie. I was absolutely blown away at how cool that was. Kind of reminds me of the talking portraits in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I still give the edge to those talking portraits though. (and yes, Im a Harry Potter geek)


IMG_0721 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr


(clickable&)
Disney Fantasy Enchanted Art: Walt Disney does Steamboat Willie by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr


I eventually made my way over to the where the nightlife is; Europa. Whatever your late night interest, you should be able to find something back there to help end the night right. Theres La Piazza, which has a laid back Jazzy feel (but is also the only real pass-through). Theres Ooh La La, that I have no idea what its supposed to be. Theres OGills Pub (didnt go in there, but it seems self-explanatory). Theres The Tube; which is definitely the hip dance spot. And the Skyline Lounge is back there; which is a dimly lit swanky kinda spot. It also has a VERY cool back wall that makes it look like youre looking out of a window, seeing the nighttime of a bustling city.


IMG_0674 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr



The last place I tried to visit, before heading to bed, was the Outlook. Located on Deck 14 Midship, theres only 1 elevator to this lounge. I had a feeling that this would be a very classy adult area. But as chance would have it, I never found out. When I went up there, there was a sign on the door saying a private event was being held. And there were no windows on the door, or anything in the corridor that would let you know the vibe to that place. It actually felt kind of weird while standing and waiting for the elevator to come. That area I was in was small and dark; and there wasnt any life at all. It was almost like I got lost in some deserted part of the ship. Im sure it was nice on the other side of that door though.



IMG_0707 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr

Last edited by SrisonS; 11-24-2012 at 10:10 PM.
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Old 11-21-2012, 09:34 PM   #39
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Really enjoying your TR. Your pictures are amazing!
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Old 11-23-2012, 03:55 AM   #40
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Love the pic of your daughter in her jammies, laying on the pillows... maxing and relaxing and reading. So cute!
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Old 11-24-2012, 05:11 PM   #41
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Really enjoying this so far! We sail on the Fantasy in one week and your TR is adding to the excitement!
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Old 11-24-2012, 06:51 PM   #42
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More, more, more, please And fabulous pics cant wait to see more
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Old 11-25-2012, 03:22 PM   #43
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Enjoying your report! I remember reading your Beach Club TR when I was researching photography at WDW - looking forward to seeing the Fantasy through your lens.
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Old 11-25-2012, 09:21 PM   #44
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Day 2: Starting Early & Ending Late

Day 2: Starting Early & Ending Late


(clickable)




I can’t go on a cruise and NOT get out at least once for a sunrise. It’s such a beautiful sight to see the sun come up, out in the open sea. Photography-wise, this ending up being a perfect morning to try and capture that moment. But as chance would have it, I probably almost missed it. Under normal circumstances, we would’ve set our clocks back 1 hour, for Daylight Savings Time. But an announcement was made the day before for us to not do this (probably because we were approaching another time-zone). Because I didn’t think to fix the settings in my iPhone, it automatically adjusted the time. Luckily for me, I kept waking up anyway. So when I saw that the room clock didn’t jive with what my phone was displaying, I immediately remembered the announcement from the previous day. So I was able to head out at a decent time.


(clickable)




To shoot a sunrise, I usually get out there about 30 minutes beforehand; because of camera issues in the past. Going from a very cold room to the very humid air would cause my lens to fog up inside. So it wasn't something I could wipe away. I just had to give it time to clear up. But there wasn't any humidity this particular morning. It was actually nice and cool out; at least up there with the wind whipping on me. Also, I happened to see the ship lights turn off (the exterior nice ones) at 7:00 AM. I guess I should also mention that the “up there” is Satellite Falls, on Deck 13. I believe that this is the only non-Concierge area where you can look off the front of the ship.



Satellite Falls
IMG_0779 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr



After heading back to the room, it was just about time to get ready for “Wake Up With Disney Junior”, in the D Lounge. This is basically a little dance party featuring Disney Junior music. A CM directs the little ones in various dances; and a special guest comes out near the end. Today, Pluto was there to make a showing. He comes out, and of course, the kids get all excited. Then Pluto dances with them for a song or two, before exiting. Throughout most of this “party”, our DD wasn’t all that active. She did enjoy Pluto making an appearance. But other than that, she didn’t do much dancing; until the last song, when they played her jam….. the theme from Little Einsteins. As soon as she heard the ‘pat pats’, it was game on!!!! She immediately got in on all of the little motions. And when they lined up to act they were Rocket, she fell right in place. She even kept “flying” when everyone else had stopped!!!! It was quite a delight to see.



IMG_0785 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr



My Disney Pics on Flickr!!!

Last edited by SrisonS; 11-26-2012 at 08:06 PM.
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Old 11-26-2012, 08:21 PM   #45
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Day 2: Starting Early & Ending Late

So after waking up with Disney Junior, we head back to the room to take a nap. A little while later, we head to Cabanas for lunch (a stuffed chicken thing was very good). And then, we decide to finally give Nemo’s Reef a try. Nemo’s Reef is the water play area for toddlers. This is a HUGE improvement over the little splash pad that is on the Magic. And as you can tell from the name, it’s very nicely themed around Finding Nemo. The water itself appeared to be very cool at first; but that was mainly from the splashes I was getting. When the water was coming out of the various fun faucets, it was actually quite warm. All of Nemo’s Reef is also covered. This is good to keep the little ones from getting burnt. But it also doesn’t seem as refreshing to be in the water. So some good and bad there.



IMG_0832 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr



I also said ‘try’ this area, because we didn’t know how our daughter would react. Over the summer, we took trips to both of Disney’s water parks. Neither one went over well. We don’t know what it was, but she was completely impossible both times. And when it came to trying to put her on the sand…. Forget about it!!!! It could’ve been hot lava for all she cared. She wanted NO part of it. And doing Nemo’s Reef pretty much had the same effect as the water parks. She stood and cried for a bit; then only played for a couple of minutes. Maybe she doesn’t like the weird soft surfaces of all of these kiddie areas?!?!?! I have no idea.



IMG_0787 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr



So 3:00 is almost upon us, and it’s time to take our DD to her 1st stay at the ‘It’s A Small World Nursery’. One “nice” feature to the nursery is a 2-way mirror that parents can use to see how their child is getting along. I put ‘nice’ in quotes because it’s kind of hard to see through it, and you don’t get the best view into the main play areas. It’s also right near the door that leads to the heart of the nursery. So you’re probably better off just peeking around the doorway.

We kept her in IASW for a little over an hour, and sort of made the most of our time. We didn’t do anything that we couldn’t have done with her though; like any Adults Only activities, or hang out in the Adult areas. But we did do most of our shopping. My father-in-law is a CM at Hollywood Studios. So luckily for us, we were able to take advantage of his limited time 40% off discount. We didn’t go super overboard with our spending. But we still managed to get quite a few souvenirs.



IMG_0858 by Scott Smith (SRisonS), on Flickr



Later on, we went over to check out the in-laws’ room. They were staying on the same floor as us; but their room had a balcony. Overall, there didn’t seem to be any major difference between their room and ours. Where we had a chair and a space for the pack-n-play, they had that balcony. And I’m not sure if their bathrooms were any different. Space-wise, I think our room was the better bet. Sure, we needed an area for our daughter to sleep. But we also ended up sticking our dirty clothes, bags of goodies, and other stuff all around that chair.
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