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Old 02-13-2007, 09:17 AM   #151
DisneyZell
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Chapter 15 Snorkling and losing in paradise

So first I need to apologize for not writing in a while. I slipped to page 2! how sad! So most of you who started reading this long ago have probably faded into the mist...already went on your trips...or generally have lost interest in my trip. But I need to finish, and am only a few episodes away from it!!

This was Friday, and my favorite day of the whole cruise...but also my least favorite. I absolutely 100% love Castaway Cay. We love it so much that our next trip (Now booked for Christmas 2008!!!!!! we are soooooooo excited) will be a double dip. I can't imagine anything better than two trips to Castaway Cay.

Quick digression back to our first cruise on the Magic. I was sick as a dog, and had been for a good chunk of the night before. I managed to struggle out to the beach, got to play around a bit, but let me just say that going out into the water was like being stuck with a ton of needles with every step I took.

I ended up going back to the ship early with my youngest. He took a nap and I passed out. After sleeping for about 3 hours I was much better...but it was a terrible experience.

So naturally when this was your last experience on a trip...I was awake for a good chunk of Thursday night worrying about what would happen if I was sick again. Amazing how your mind can play tricks on you as you go along. Fortunately I was fine...and did eventually drift off to sleep.

Deanna and I woke up pretty early, early enough to watch us approach Castaway Cay. I am a big fan of watching us come in to dock...seeing the land get bigger and bigger. I took some pictures every few minutes as we approached the island...those will go into the video that I will make if I ever finish this crazy trip report, among the 15 other video projects I have on my list. not that I procrasinate or anything...

Here is one of the many pictures I took. if you have never been to Castaway Cay...you are in for a treat!!!

So we wandered up to topsiders for breakfast (yes, more bacon and syrup. I'm a sick, sick puppy). The view was great from up there...it's very magical.

Me and the boys on deck at topsiders

And then it was time. The mad rush for Castaway Cay. When we went the last time we were packed in waiting to get off the ship. This time just seemed more relaxed. we grabbed our stuff (no we didn't bring a suitcase this time, I learned my lesson) and headed out. There is a mad rush...I think that is just natural. Everyone really wants the hammocks...that isn't really a necessity for me, so we didn't feel that was a big need. In fact, we hit the post office right away (last time it was a rush at the end of the visit), mailed our post cards.

****WARNING****TIP COMING*****WARNING******
Mail post cards to yourself. It sounds hokey, and it is, but there is something very, very cool about getting a post card from Castaway Cay. I don't know what it is...but it's neat. Your kids will think you are very cool...and if you are really creative, make it from Mickey and/or Minnie...say they were excited to see your kids...etc...etc...they will think that is very cool. OK, only if they are younger, but you know what I mean!!

We found Max...and took a picture. I think the last time we went to Disneyworld (or Disneyland, not sure which). I had no idea who Max was. I have since seen cartoons involving him...but he is such an obscure character that I find it funny that he is on the ship. I guess he is geared toward the young teen set? but come on...do the teens really care about characters anymore???

Nick, Connor and Max.

We also took the standard picture with the fish holding the hook with the hot dog. Again, I don't think that this picture spot is that great, but tradition takes over. Plus it will be fun to compare these as they get older. yes I'm hooked on DCL!!!

Chris, Kathryn, Connor and Nick hooked by a hot dog.

We made our way to the family beach and found some chairs. We weren't up front because we were a little late, but we were kind of in the shade which I actually liked better. Plus we spent very, very little time using the chairs, the majority of our time was spent in the water or wandering. So my personal recommendation is not to stress about rushing to get a chair...if you are rushing to get the most of your time that's one thing. there are plenty of chairs, just keep walking. and once you have your spot...you won't care anymore. Unless, of course, you want a hammock. then I recommend you stand in line early to get off the ship.

So Deanna and Nick decided to go snorkling. We had brought our snorkling stuff with us and they headed out in search of the sunken Mickey. They saw various boats and other things, but it wasn't until they were headed in that they saw the Mickey. Sorry folks, no picture!!!

On the way back Nick's fins started getting loose. He dropped one fin to the bottom which Deanna dove down to get. Then he dropped the other one...but it was too deep. One less fin for Nick. So they came in, and while walking up the beach they noticed that Nick's mask was missing. Let's just say it wasn't a stellar moment for Nick. He is 8, he tends to lose things on a regular basis!!

Like I said at the beginning, snorkling and losing in paradise!!!

This is a short one...but I wanted to get it out there. More to come soon, I have the pictures all ready to go...and there will be much more of them!!

Next up: Chapter 16: Crabs in a shell
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Old 02-13-2007, 09:11 PM   #152
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Boy wasent that long ago when is your next trip
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Old 02-14-2007, 12:08 PM   #153
DisneyZell
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Boy wasent that long ago when is your next trip

December 08! Christmas cruise with a double dip!
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Old 02-16-2007, 07:35 PM   #154
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Great trip report. Thanks for all the information you gave that was so detailed!
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Old 02-17-2007, 02:01 PM   #155
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It has been forever, hasn't it! Well, at least we haven't been on our trip yet. You have until May 3rd to get it done!
And I am so amazed to see new pictures of you, still looking so slim after all those mornings of bacon and syrup!
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Old 02-24-2007, 10:24 PM   #156
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Thumbs up I Can't Wait

I have to tell you that I have spent the last three hours reading your trip report and others' comments. We are scheduled to go on this same cruise next month 3/24 and have never been on one before. We are empty nesters and are being forced to go by DD who is 24 and works for Disney! Hope you finish the tr before we go - btw - DD is the Disney Freak!
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Old 03-12-2007, 01:47 PM   #157
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Originally Posted by Floridagram View Post
Great trip report. Thanks for all the information you gave that was so detailed!
why thank you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Madisonznana
It has been forever, hasn't it! Well, at least we haven't been on our trip yet. You have until May 3rd to get it done!
And I am so amazed to see new pictures of you, still looking so slim after all those mornings of bacon and syrup!
Karen
you know...I've put on weight since then, but the bacon and syrup seemed to have been ok. I guess walking up and down those stairs and dragging luggage onto islands kept it off!!

uh oh...only until May 3rd?? hmm. don't know if I can promise that. I'm close....but finding time has been a pain!

Quote:
Originally Posted by KLGDISNEYFREAK
I have to tell you that I have spent the last three hours reading your trip report and others' comments. We are scheduled to go on this same cruise next month 3/24 and have never been on one before. We are empty nesters and are being forced to go by DD who is 24 and works for Disney! Hope you finish the tr before we go - btw - DD is the Disney Freak!
WOW! thank you...I'm truely humbled and honored with such kind words. The funny thing is...I spent hours and hours reading other folks' work...never imagined that someone would read mine! again with the pressure to finish...I'll see what I can do. now, on with the story!
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Old 03-12-2007, 03:14 PM   #158
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Chapter 16: Crabs in a shell

I feel like every time I add something here I apologize for being so long between posts. so I'll start that way here as well. I apologize. Life keeps getting in the way of posting. Reading through the couple of responses I saw May 3rd as the first request to be done...I'm thinking that's do-able. then someone said March 24th. Wow. Don't know if I can pull it off...but I MIGHT be done with Castaway Cay.

So after finding our chairs we immediately hit the water and headed out for the little playground. Nick swam his way out there with no problem, I had to help Connor, but he did have a life vest on.

****WARNING****WARNING****TIP COMING****WARNING

So, if you have a child who does not swim...I highly recommend bringing a life vest. While you can use floaties, of course, and other things...I think for the money you can't beat a life vest. We just so happen to have a boat, so we have it anyway, but apparently it is pretty comfortable (he doesn't clamor to have it off immediately unlike the floaties), and it's nice to not have to worry too much. If you watch Target you will see these go on sale pretty regularly...and you can get them for less than $20. They aren't too bulky...and very light. just a tip

To be honest, though, once we got out to the play structure it wasn't nearly as exciting as I remembered it. Nick climbed the ropes a bit, and Connor wandered the platform, but in general it wasn't very exciting for them. So we only stayed for a little while.

That's not to say they didn't have fun swimming around which they did. But there were a ton of kids out there...and, well, there are other things to do that are more fun!

So we came back to the beach. Did I mention that one of Connor's favorite things is to play in the sand???

Connor poses in the sand

I went out in the water for a while and splashed around with Nick until we got bored. We decided to try to find DW and Connor so we went up toward the buildings. We bumped into them getting ready to do Hermit Crab races! woohoo! this was very exciting, and provided an excellend picture opportunity:

DW and Connor with their beautiful hats

Here is our crab

Our crab did pretty well, he made it into the finals. However in the finals he was apparently kind of tired as he just simply hung out in the middle for quite some time. Once he got going he moved fast...and I honestly think he would have won were it not for his late start.

In fact, I kind of felt for him...it's how I feel most days. I get going fast once I get going...but the beginning part of the day is brutal!

So it was off to lunch. While lunch was good...I wasn't blown away by it. It's interesting, if you read the trip reports there is a broad mix...some will just rave over the food, and some will not like it at all. I'm somewhere in between. The ability to eat food outdoors in a beautiful setting, barefooted without worrying about someone taking your stuff...just makes everything taste better, even just a hamburger! so from that regard you can't complain!

Connor and Nick eating lunch

They also serve ice cream which was very good..

After lunch we hit the beach for a bit longer waiting for our neighbors to come back from a sailboat rental (at least I think that's what they were doing. They might have just been snorkling, but frankly speaking I just don't know. I know they did Snorkel...because I saw them returning the stuff...)

****WARNING******TIP COMING*****WARNING****TIP COMING***

so how do I know they snorkeled you are asking? I can tell you, and along with that comes tip #543. Actually I have no idea how many tips I have given you or if they are any good...but needless to say you get them. It's part of what you pay for.

So I enjoy digging in the sand like anyone else. However I should have remembered from the last time we visited CC that there are lots of shells and shell fragments in the sand on CC. So while digging I managed to slice open one of my fingers. This is a painful experience...so if you are going to be digging in the sand...and you dig below the soft top...don't go sticking your hand into the harder sand....cause you will regret it!

So I wandered over to where they sell masks in search of a band aid. This is where I bumped into our neighbors returning their snorkling stuff. And the nice people whipped out a first aid kit and patched me right up. Nice to know that's there if you ever need it. So this is actually a twofer...1. don't dig in the sand with your fingers, and 2. if you are stupid, like me, go get band aid from snorkling station!

I made it back and we took some pictures...

DW and the boys

DW and the boys part 2

I warned you that this section would have alot of pictures. I'm sure I'll have to split it up when I post this because of that nasty need to not allow me to post as many pictures as I darn well please. But I digress.

We then decided to take a walk. If you recall my earlier discussion I was quite sick on the day we visited CC the first time...so I never made it farther than the covered lunch eating area. This time I was determined to explore at least a bit of the island. So with our neighbors we started off. We saw a couple of interesting things.

First we saw braiding stations. I had an ongoing joke with DND (Kathryn) about braids in my hair. I would distract her when she was upset or grump by asking her how she liked the braids in my hair. This pretty much carried through the entire cruise. So walking past here I almost got a braid just because it would be funny. Imagine the pictures.

HEY, I said ALMOST!

Then we passed a boatload of bikes. Huh, I thought....that would be pretty cool to do. Note to self: when returning, look into renting bikes as that seems like a pretty fun thing to do.

So we wandered through the Bohemian jungle being passed pretty frequently by bikers (huh...excellent idea), when we came accross this cool old plane parked on the runway. VERY COOL. I am a child by the way. Ask anyone.

My initial reaction is...PICTURE OPPORTUNITY!!!

Yes, I'm sick. Naturally the best thing to do when presented with a rusty old airplane is to prop your kids up on it and take their picture. so I did.

they are there, really.

OK, closer.

we have a few others...but I had to pick the best out...I don't want to put you to sleep or bore you completely. well...maybe I do. but anyhoo....

We then walked back and went to the beach where the stingray excursion is held. we were able to see into where the stingrays were and it looked pretty cool. Might be something we do another time. The best part of this beach was that there was no one there. it was deserted. Talk about your great space to go if you want to be alone. I don't know how many folks actually wander that far off the main beach...but if you want some time with a book and the sun...just walk a bit.

one of my favorite family pictures.

from there we headed back. DNH (Mike) and three of the kids ran ahead (Connor was still with us) when we discovered that there was a little bar on the far side of the family beach which had some great picture opportunities. We tried to yell to get them back, but to no avail. So Deanna, Kim, Connor and I walked out and took pictures. The view was fantastic, and again no people. Again a tip is to walk down the beach...cause it's great!

Deanna and Connor...and a GREAT shot of the ship.

My little strong man. He did this pose on his own by the way.

Right next to the bar was....*GASP* an empty hammock. I love hammock's. Not so much that I will leave the ship early and run my little tuckus down the beach, but I do love them. Unfortunately it was toward the end of the day...so no resting and reading my book. Maybe in 2008.

Deanna, Connor and I in the Hammock. I frankly don't know if I'm spelling hammock right. I know I shouldn't have capitalized it...there are english teachers throughout the world who are grimacing right now.

So alas it was time to go. I won't say we were the last folks off of the beach...as that just isn't our style. But we were able to take a leisurely stroll back up there...and that was very nice. And on the way, guess what??? We took pictures!

This is an important one to get. if you don't see these things...look harder. don't know what they are...but they make good pictures!

The necessary picture with the Mickey Boat in the background.

I think we all recognize that little ship! Very cool to see it up close. the detail on it is amazing.

One of the saddest signs I will ever see.

and back onto the ship!

So a great day on Castaway Cay. Interesting tidbit from my neighbor. When we talked about it they were very skeptical. they thought it would by like Disneyland where everything would be expensive and it wouldn't be relaxing. They were surprised to find it more like an extension of the ship...while things cost money (of course), there is lots to do for free there...and the atmosphere just can't be beat.

Next up: Chapter 17: Our final night!
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Old 03-12-2007, 04:45 PM   #159
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Great chapter Disney Zell! I do believe you will make it by May 3rd!!
Karen
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Old 03-12-2007, 08:20 PM   #160
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Geesh! Waiting for the rest of your trip report took almost as long as this board is taking to load tonight! I swear (well I don't swear, but you get the implication) I have several more gray hairs just waiting here for your next installment!
You know I am kidding, I love the report and if you notice, I am cruising with Madisonznana, so here is two people that want you to finish by May
3rd! (oh the pressure!

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Old 03-12-2007, 09:51 PM   #161
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Great report. I spent most of the day reading it so I got nothing done. Definitely worth it though.
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Old 03-13-2007, 09:16 PM   #162
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Yeah new installments........life sure does get in the way doesn't it....but it's ok. We are here & we will wait some more patiently than other ( I have quite a long countdown left compared to others).

Love, love, love Castaway Cay. Wish you could bottle the feeling of being there & spray it on when you were having a bad day.

More please.
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Old 03-14-2007, 11:46 AM   #163
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Great installment!
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Old 03-28-2007, 08:18 AM   #164
DisneyZell
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Great chapter Disney Zell! I do believe you will make it by May 3rd!!
Karen
aaaargh! you jinxed me!!!

[QUOTE=MickeyD]Geesh! Waiting for the rest of your trip report took almost as long as this board is taking to load tonight! I swear (well I don't swear, but you get the implication) I have several more gray hairs just waiting here for your next installment!
You know I am kidding, I love the report and if you notice, I am cruising with Madisonznana, so here is two people that want you to finish by May
3rd! (oh the pressure! [/QUOTE)

now this I apologize for. I never want to be held responsible for the addition of gray hairs. I think we all have enough of those. Fortunately when I use Gel in my hair it hides the gray!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mom_of_2_pricesses
Great report. I spent most of the day reading it so I got nothing done. Definitely worth it though.
but isn't it better since you started reading it later? not much waiting for you. Feel for Madisonznana who has been with me from the start! ouch!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Disneygrl36
Yeah new installments........life sure does get in the way doesn't it....but it's ok. We are here & we will wait some more patiently than other ( I have quite a long countdown left compared to others).

Love, love, love Castaway Cay. Wish you could bottle the feeling of being there & spray it on when you were having a bad day.

More please.
agree with you that it would be great to spray on Castaway Cay. While looking back at the pictures is pretty cool, it's also sad beause I'm not there!!

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Originally Posted by Stenogoddess
Great installment!
Short and sweet. Thank you.

Thanks to everyone! hopefully I'll find time to bring another installments soon! until then...have a great spring
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Old 03-28-2007, 08:36 AM   #165
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Im lovin your pics, and your report of course!
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