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Old 12-03-2013, 10:49 PM   #16
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Subscribing! I love Galveston trip reports. Great start and glad that you enjoyed your stay in Galveston.
Yay! I poured over your reports and ooh'd and aah'd over the photos Galveston reports were few and far between so was soooo happy to read yours Thank you so much for posting them!!
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Old 12-04-2013, 12:10 AM   #17
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And just like that, after 783 days, we were back on board!


I wasn’t going to video. But then I remembered what a long, grey winter still lies before us and decided I needed to have this video to play over and over. And over again.

Time for one quick shot of the atrium ...

...and then like true Caribbean pirates, we stuck to the code. The girls and I grabbed the elevator to Deck 9 while DH ran up to Studio Sea. (It wasn’t until later that I registered ‘hey, we walked right past the Christmas tree!)

What an awesome feeling to get back on the ship and not have to ask ‘where am I going and how do I get there?’…

We staked out a table by the pool. First the Goofy Pool then we moved down to the Mickey Pool, looking out at the harbour. There wasn’t a soul around yet so we it wasn’t like we had to fight for a spot!

Look at all the free loungers! Makes me want to put a sandal on each one! <wink>



Someone was happy to be first in the pool.


DH found our table and snagged us our first DRINKS of the Day (Margaritas!) while K was in the pool. We took turns going into BBB for trays of goodies. Woohoo! Shrimp! And salmon! I couldn’t get over how good the salmon was considering it was buffet food.

Then the kids took me over to educate me in the ways of cruising…

Oh so that’s where that is! The kids have never let me forget that I spent an entire 5 night cruise without knowing there was a self-serve ice cream machine available! They have taunted and teased me relentlessly over the past two years. I was not making that mistake twice.

Happiness is an ice cream cone AND a drink of the day!



This became the surprise of the trip. Although we didn’t eat there this day, it became a favourite for grabbing a sandwich or salad. Man, those paninis were good! My fave was the bacon, brie and tomato. I mean, bacon and brie? What more can you say?

By this time it was 1:30ish and DH was antsy to see our cabin (and dump our carry-ons!)
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Old 12-04-2013, 02:08 AM   #18
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The bacon and brie panini alone is enough reason to cruise with Disney.

I was debating doing a trip report for my family's experience on this cruise but I never finished my first trip report so I think I'm just going to read yours and enjoy. Back to searching your pics for my group.
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Old 12-04-2013, 01:15 PM   #19
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Yay! I poured over your reports and ooh'd and aah'd over the photos Galveston reports were few and far between so was soooo happy to read yours Thank you so much for posting them!!
I've found that doing a trip report is actually a pretty good way of getting a head start on a scrap book or an online photo album Glad that you found the soft serve this time, and that you got your priorities in good order and got your DOTD first!
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Old 12-04-2013, 02:42 PM   #20
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The bacon and brie panini alone is enough reason to cruise with Disney.

I was debating doing a trip report for my family's experience on this cruise but I never finished my first trip report so I think I'm just going to read yours and enjoy. Back to searching your pics for my group.
Yes, I wanted to talk to you about that! You had a great trip report going - I loved the WDW photos....and then ... and then.... nothing <sob>...

But I understand now. These are hard work! It's tough trying to find time to write it up before I forget everything. Thank heavens for digital photos. ... I can generally piece together what we did during the day by looking at when the photos were taken.
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Old 12-04-2013, 05:20 PM   #21
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Joining in for the rest of your report!
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Old 12-05-2013, 12:21 AM   #22
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Nov 16 - Day 1 Navigators!

Oops...I titled this one wrong. That probably won't be the last time LOL

We gathered up our stuff and trooped down to deck 7 to find our stateroom. It didn't take long as it was just around the corner from the stairs! Well, that's handy!

And welcome to our home away from home...while it was still tidy(ish). The top of the desk quickly disappears under stuff as the week goes on.

I know that table can be raised or lowered, but either it was stuck or I wasn't doing it right so it stayed like that for the entire week.

Not much of a view yet


Yay, we got a pirate pic!


Our "Welcome Back" card!



Prezzies!


How'd they know Chip 'n Dale are my favourite?

There was a keychain as well in the backpack, but I think it disappeared into one of the kids treasure trove. I'll find it some day when I shovel out their room!

And this most definitely is NOT a prezzie!

The infamous red pillow! Everyone was cautioned DO NOT TAKE THIS PILLOW. And every damn time DH saw a room steward with an open stateroom, he wanted me to create a distraction so he could pilfer one from another room. I did not go along with this plan so if anyone got charged for a missing pillow, IT WASN'T US! Unless it's that squishy package that DH put under the tree for me. Hmmmm...

Our luggage hadn't arrived yet so we emptied out our carry ons and organized as best we could. Our FE came out to mark our door as home. Our poor FE - made for our first cruise out of tea towels & liquid stitch. I may need to use more liquid stitch.

Oh, and bathroom supplies! Our stateroom host did bring extra shampoo and conditioner, but we never got any more of the lotion. The girls were fighting over it so mommy made it 'disappear'.
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Old 12-05-2013, 01:45 AM   #23
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The kids were antsy to visit the clubs so we started out at the Oceaneer Lab and Club open house. The kids showed us around as we hadn’t seen much other than the pirate ship on the last cruise.





This is where they put the bad kids, I guess.

Then we had to go down to deck 2 to check out the Edge. V looked around while we talked to a YAC from Canada! She let us know that V should come back at midnight because they were going to be doing an arcade night. Yeah, midnight. “Can I go, mom? Can I?” Sure…<snicker>…if you can stay awake, you can go. (Remember that - it will come up again later!)





Anyway, now it was mom & dad’s turn to check out the Spa. And..um…yeah...and…I may or may not have taken my kids through the quiet cove area. Yikes! We got turned around on Deck 9 and I suddenly realized we were in the adult area, and in my panic (yes, panic! That’s what being on the disboards does to you!) I couldn’t think fast enough to figure out how to get back and up to Deck 10 and the Spa. DH didn’t realize this was A BIG DEAL so I took my cue from him and tried to look like a newbie and just kept the kids walking. So if you were in the quiet cove area and were scandalized by the appearance of my kids, then I apologize. It was all my fault. I plead first day excitement/ignorance. And I swear, they never set foot in there again!

Whew, glad to get that off my chest!

It was very crowded up in the Spa area and I think they were trying to encourage people to flow through in a clockwise direction. So of course we went through counter-clockwise. Yep, that's us making friends all over the place….! It was too crowded to get a good feel for the spa and we just wanted to get out of there. And really, let’s face it…we were just there to get our name in for the raffle….

Back before we had things like vet bills and stuff, we had grand ideas of booking the romantic villa and spending some alone time. Instead, our dog got a tummy tuck. We did poke our head in to see one of the villas…and got cornered into a sale pitch for a martian mud facial or some such thing...damn. We smiled politely and extricated ourselves as quickly as we could.

We had very good intentions and spent some time wandering through the fitness centre.



Unfortunately K had managed to deconstruct her lanyard so DH spent most of this part of the tour trying to put it back together
(there may or may not have been some shockingly un-Disneylike language involved)

That was the last we saw of the fitness centre for the week. Too bad, as the view from the treadmills/bikes is spectacular! Maybe next time.

By now we’d had enough of the crowd and took off before the raffle, so hopefully they didn’t draw our name. I guess we’ll never know. It was almost drill time so checked back at the stateroom to find our suitcases had found us!

We threw some magnets on our door and headed up for the muster drill.
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Old 12-05-2013, 03:12 PM   #24
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Anyway, now it was mom & dad’s turn to check out the Spa. And..um…yeah...and…I may or may not have taken my kids through the quiet cove area. Yikes! We got turned around on Deck 9 and I suddenly realized we were in the adult area, and in my panic (yes, panic! That’s what being on the disboards does to you!) I couldn’t think fast enough to figure out how to get back and up to Deck 10 and the Spa. DH didn’t realize this was A BIG DEAL so I took my cue from him and tried to look like a newbie and just kept the kids walking. So if you were in the quiet cove area and were scandalized by the appearance of my kids, then I apologize. It was all my fault. I plead first day excitement/ignorance. And I swear, they never set foot in there again!

Whew, glad to get that off my chest!
I think you are safe. We are kid-free and we always give a free pass in the Cove area on Day 1. It's a given that people with children are wandering around checking out all the areas. Now, day 4, when allowed to come and sit in Quiet Cove for 30 minutes while adult beverages are being finished....not so much! We always crack up at the "twitchy" adults when a child walks through the Cove area - reminds us of Monsters, Inc, and we expect a decontamination unit to come through.
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Magic Your Way to the Magic Kingdom...another Galveston trip report
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Old 12-06-2013, 12:16 AM   #25
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I think you are safe. We are kid-free and we always give a free pass in the Cove area on Day 1. It's a given that people with children are wandering around checking out all the areas. Now, day 4, when allowed to come and sit in Quiet Cove for 30 minutes while adult beverages are being finished....not so much! We always crack up at the "twitchy" adults when a child walks through the Cove area - reminds us of Monsters, Inc, and we expect a decontamination unit to come through.
Thank you for that! I think I did glance up at Deck 10 to make sure the swat team wasn't flying down LOL

On the other hand, the kids were all 'that's it?' I don't know what their imaginations had painted the adult areas as but apparently it was a bit of a letdown.
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Old 12-06-2013, 01:16 AM   #26
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Muster drill was uneventful. They seemed to spend a lot of time looking for missing cabins, which always intrigues me. Are they people who didn’t come aboard? Did they fall asleep? Do they just not care? and what are the repercussions for people who don't attend? I always want to know but it seems rude to ask LOL…But on the other hand, they were delaying our prep for SailAway!

Oh, there. DH is ready for SailAway

He grabbed a table but I didn’t want to sit…I wanted to be up and dancing but everyone else beat me to it. The kids disappeared into the crowd and next time I saw K she was up dancing on the stage. DH and I stayed on the fringe and I tried dancing a bit but V came back and asked me to stop. Geez, they never let me embarrass them anymore.

Now it's a party!





Cruise Director Peter



The sky had clouded over and the wind picked up. It was sort of threatening to rain but couldn’t quite make the commitment. V and I went up to Deck 10 at the stern while we cruised out of the harbour.

Hey, there goes our hotel...!




Vacation!


Vacation!!


Uh oh...did we forget someone?

Finally we had to go in as we were getting cold…and it was time for our Facebook group meet and greet in the Promenade lounge. How fantastic to finally put faces to the names!

As the group split up for early dinner, we went back to the cabin to do some unpacking. DH and I decided to skip the show – shocking for us! I remember it as being a bit lame from the first cruise and we didn’t feel like rushing down to get seats in the theatre. K was a bit upset, but even V supported the no show side. Sometimes it’s just cozy to turn on Mickey cartoons and chillax in your stateroom.

I went out to the verandah to see if I could see any oil rigs ... Okay, I'm not a sailor but even I realized something was...weird. I called DH out and asked 'shouldn't we be moving faster?'...Seriously, we were barely moving. DH noticed that we also seemed to be ...turning? Definitely not going straight ahead anyway..So began a string of possibly poor taste Carnival references ...Eventually DH noticed a boat coming up behind us. We wondered if we really had left someone important behind and the Captain was moving slowly to give them time to catch up. It was great entertainment to watch it maneuver up to the ship - not my idea of a joy ride!

(Click to see video)

Anyway, the boat finally peeled away and the Wonder picked up speed so we stopped worrying that our holiday was over the same day it started. I think it was the next night that Cruise Director Peter explained that they were recalibrating some equipment on the bridge so hence, the turning and the extended Pilot stay. I think that's what he said...something like it anyway.

By now, it was time to run out to catch the Tree Lighting Ceremony at 7:30. We were late getting to the Atrium so we peeked over the banister from Deck 5. We couldn’t actually see the tree from our vantage point but we could see the handsome young man chosen to light the tree.



Finally, time to get ready for DINNER. Before we got on the ship, we’d been going back and forth wondering where we’d eat first night. Our first dining room on our last cruise had been Tritons so we had all tried to guess what would be up first this time. Guess what? Tritons!

Our tablemates were already there when we arrived at the table. Tablemates! We didn’t have those before so this was something new. They were a couple from Houston with two daughters, age 9 and 13 to our 8 and 12 year old. We made polite conversation through the dinner. K wanted to go to the Lab so she went off with the YAC as they did the tour of the dining room. Conversation got deeper over coffee and dessert and was a start to a wonderful week with an awesome family!

After dinner, we picked up K from the lab and went back to the cabin. DH fell asleep reading, and V decided to nap before going to the Edge for arcade night. She made me promise to wake her up in time.

- Sure honey, no problem (damn, now I had to stay awake). I gave her till 11:30 and then gave her a gentle shake and asked her if she still wanted to go to the arcade. With a confused look she opened her eyes and looked at me…”why would I want to go to the airport?” Laughing, I said…no, the ARCADE, do you still want to go to the Arcade? Yep, she still wanted to go so I went back and sat on our bed…but no kid. I went back and she’d fallen asleep again. So once more to brave the dangers of waking a sleeping V…another gentle shake…no, mommy …I just want to sleep. Good choice so with that I decided it was safe for me to crawl into bed as well…(Oh, those heavenly pillows!)
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Old 12-06-2013, 01:45 AM   #27
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Best trip report ever! Mind if I snag the pics of my little guy to throw up on Facebook? It was the whole time the entire trip I didn't have my camera with me.
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Old 12-06-2013, 09:20 AM   #28
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Best trip report ever! Mind if I snag the pics of my little guy to throw up on Facebook? It was the whole time the entire trip I didn't have my camera with me.
Please, go ahead Glad I had a couple for you! But tell me, did your DH get picked for any dancing this time ?
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Old 12-06-2013, 04:09 PM   #29
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Old 12-07-2013, 09:28 PM   #30
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First Sea Day!

So, what's the first thing I hear in the morning from V? A very aggrieved "why didn't you wake me for the arcade?!?!?!"

I tried to explain - she didn't believe me at first because she didn't remember any of it! And I had no one to back me up because K & DH had been sleeping. She eventually gave me the benefit of the doubt, the detail about going to the airport seemed to ring a faint memory with her...

Monsters U was playing at 9am so that seemed to be a good way to ease into the day. It was okay, but glad we hadn't paid to see it.

After movies, we were getting hungry so up to Beach Blanket Buffet for a fresh air breakfast.

Humid much?

Note to self: Carry lens cloth with you EVERYWHERE!

Some random ship photos:





After our late breakfast, K wanted to go to the Lab so DH & I took V to Diversions to find a game to play. We ended up with Yahtzee but there were no paper or instructions in it. Thankfully DH has a good memory and remembered the rules, mostly. We scored with pencil & paper from the bar. What a great way to spend some time. There never seems to be enough of it at home to sit and relax and actually enjoy your kids. Sadly, we got our butts whipped by DH (at the game, that is) but that's pretty normal. It's also why we never play for money.

At noon we pried K out of the lab and went up to poolside for some lunch: chicken strips and a tray of nibblies from BBB.

The Edge was having a scavenger hunt at 1pm so V ditched us for that and K went back to the Lab.

And DH and I went to our first nominal!

Martini Tasting in the Cadillac Lounge!



The tasting was led by Ivan, who is fantastically entertaining.
Turns out he's leaving ship in January so if you're cruising soon, stop by to say hi.

I'm not generally a martini fan, but I love the martini tasting. Bottom row, left to right: the first one is the traditional martini. I drink down as far as the olive, then I have to hand it over to DH (I can't stand olives). The others are more to my liking. I wonder what they were? LOL

The second one from the left (the clear one) was mighty powerful! I remember that much. [DH chimed in to let me know it was a vodka martini!] Then there was a chocolate martini! (very popular), I think a green apple martini? and the last one was passionfruit or pomegranate. Sigh...so much for a detailed report.


Random photos from


Afterwards, we walked (staggered?) back to the cabin to meet up with V. DH was feeling badly for her about missing the arcade night so he bought an arcade card for her, and she entertained herself there as we popped into the Quiet Cove (kidless! Please note, we were kidless - this time!) for today's drink of the day: a Cool Breeze. Dh is actually having a beer, but that's my drink of the day on the table.


You see, I had a To Do list that I made up before we left. One of my must do's was to have the drink of the day, every day. Spoiler alert: I succeeded! I need more to-do lists like that at home.

By now V had gone through her arcade card so we popped down to Wavebands for BINGO. For $50 (maybe $60?) at Bingo we got one electronic board and two sets of paper boards/cards.

V played the electronic one but DH and I are more conventional and punched out the numbers.



This was a Spa bingo so lots of free goodies being handed out - but not to us. Good thing its fun to play because we never win LOL.

By the time we were done there it was time to fetch K and herd everyone back to the stateroom to get everyone cleaned up and into our fancy duds for Formal Night. DH looked sharp in his tux. I haven't seen him in a tux since our wedding so it was love at first sight all over again

As we sailed through the Atrium on the way to the Golden Mickeys show, we discovered that there's trays of cosmos (and another drink that I've forgotten, because I was drinking cosmos) wandering through the Captains Welcome Reception in the Atrium.

Would I like a drink? Oooh yes please!

Et voilŕ, I had a (free) drink for the show.

And for those smarty pants who are thinking "but if you're coming from deck 7, you don't go through the Atrium on the way to the theatre"....To them I reply, 'you do when there's free cosmos being handed out!'



We even got to the theatre in time for the girls to be interviewed on the red carpet.

There's just no living with them now!



We had missed the Golden Mickeys on our last cruise, due to a certain someone who shall remained nameless but happened to be violently ill that night (okay, it was V!) so we were really looking forward to finally seeing it. DH was feeling a little concerned that he wasn't seeing a lot of men in formal wear. As we were enjoying our drink and waiting for the show to start, another gentleman in a tux came over to shake his hand. The upper classes must stick together and all that LOL...What was funnier was he came from the same part of the world as us!

(okay, everyone into a chorus of It's a Small World...')


Ha, now you're all mad at me cause you have that song going through your head.

Ah, my work here is done.

After the show (which was wonderful! One of my faves, tho I admit I do like them all) we wandered back through the Atrium.

Oooh, a drink? Why, yes, don't mind if I do!

However, we weren't just trolling for drinks at this point (maybe a little). One of the other items on the To Do list was FORMAL PHOTOS! Is it too much for a mother to ask to have everyone cleaned up and looking snazzy for a photo? Apparently not as my family cooperated enthusiastically!

You get the picture. And so did we. Yay, now we have something to put in our Christmas cards!


There were also the poses where they have the girls do the hands on the hip thing. The turned out looking dumb, but not as dumb as having DH do the rapper arm cross LOL. We didn't buy those ones or I'd have a visual aid to help explain. This is where you just have to use your imagination.

Oh yeah, and don't our shoes look lovely? I think that was the last time we wore them (more like the only time) as omg were they uncomfortable. I figured the kids would be the first to give up on theirs, as we had bought them new just before the cruise (and V's were bought against maternal advice!) but they had promised to wear them for the photos. Mine were hand me downs from my mom and had been soooo comfy to wear at home. They got pitched in the garbage at the end of the cruise, you know...to save on packing space LOL . So again, if you were horrified at a family running around in stocking feet on formal night, yeah, that was us. DH was the lone hold out. I believe he made it through the evening fully shod.

After the photos, we may or may not have snagged another cosmo (okay, yes we did) and then ran into a FB group friend in the Promenade Lounge so sat and socialized for a bit while we waited for dinner.

I will say I much preferred having the late dining. There seemed to be more time to do things, and to have time for a drink before dinner and relax. The only downside was we did seem to arrive late to the evening parties i.e. Pirate Party. But that's still a couple of days away so forget I said that!

Dinner was in Animators Palette tonight.



Sadly, I have no recollection of what any of us ate, nor do I have any food photos. I love food porn on the disboards. But I haven't mastered the art of photographing &/or remembering my meals. When it is served, I'm too busy eating it to stop and think of photos. I apologize for that. I will say I didn't have anything that I didn't enjoy. Some things were delicious, some things were okay, but everything was eaten with gusto.

Another item on the To Do list was to enjoy a nightcap each night in a different lounge. This turned out to be an enormous FAIL. We didn't manage to stay awake long enough for a nightcap until the last night. Oops...spoilers!

Oh oh oh...had to come back and edit because I'd forgotten we DID do something after dinner.

Back to the cabin to check the map:


Then we put on our comfy clothes and went to Studio Sea...for Karaoke Night! V used to sing in a choir and has a pretty darn good voice. She does. I don't. She wanted to sing. I didn't. She picked her song - Bryan Adams' Summer of '69 and then we waited for her turn. What a great supportive environment - everybody was cheered and applauded. And then V started to get stage fright.

- Mommy, come up and sing with me!
What the...yeah, NO.
- Please please, Mommy.
sigh...okay

So I got up and sang with her. I am so, so sorry. But I didn't sing long. Once she got going, then I just...stopped. She was very peeved with me but she kept on till the end of the song.

Then it must have been back to the cabin to say good night to our towel friend:

__________________
Disneyland, April 2010
Disney Wonder, Pacific Coast Repo Cruise, Sept 2011 ("Best holiday EVER!", says 10 year old daughter )
Disneyland, September 2011
Disney Wonder, Western Caribbean, November 2013 Trip Report ("Even better than the first cruise!", says 12 year old daughter )

Last edited by FergusBC; 03-31-2014 at 10:48 PM. Reason: Sense & Karaoke (Jane Austen's little known first draft...)
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