Ths DIS is a great place to ask Disney Cruise Line questions and share tips.
Dreams Unlimited Travel - The official sponsor of the Disney Cruise Forums Dreams Unlimited Travel - the official sponsor of the Disney Cruise Forums  

Go Back   The DIS Discussion Forums - DISboards.com > Disney Cruise Line > Disney Cruise Line Forum > Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports
Find Hotel Specials & DIScounts
 
facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS UpdatesDIS email updates
Register Chat FAQ Tickers Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read



Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 03-19-2008, 06:07 PM   #1
disneyfaninaz
It takes faith, trust & pixie dust!
 
disneyfaninaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 11,448

Our Magical "Mental Health" Western Cruise, March 8-15, 2008

We just got back from a simply marvelous, well deserved, mental health vacation and I thought I would share it with my fellow DISers who have been so kind in providing informaton and tips.

Bear with me as I am not up to the standards of Father Force, Ashman or Zwiehund, but I hope to keep you entertained and informed.

Cast:

Me 42, Disneyholic and Obsessive Trip Planner
DH 46, reluctant Disney convert,
DD 7, Disney veteran and our little Princess. Shares Mom’s obsession with Disney
DNeighbors, DNH, DNW, DNDD(15) DNDD(12)

Background

A little about myself: I am a Disneyholic. I was raised at Disneyland. I was even ready to go work for them one Summer, until reality set in and I accepted a Summer internship in my field of study. Even though I lived in Arizona, my family would go there almost every summer. My husband, on the other hand, had only been to Disneyland 2 times in his entire life by the time I met him. Well, it didn’t take me long to fix that! He is now a Disneyland veteran with 2 trips to Disney World to boot. My DD, on the other hand, is filling her mom's shoes quite well with a trip to Disneyland for every year of her life.

I am also a planner. I love to plan things months, if not years, in advance. I will pour over brochures, watch videos, watch the travel channel and search the internet researching vacation spots relentlessly. My DH's favorite chant is: "Gimme an "A"; gimme a "N";, gimme another "A"; gimme a "L", what does that spell? You get the picture. Anyway, he has wonderful vacations because of it, so it's all in jest.

Now, I have watched, like many of you, the Travel Channel special on the Disney Cruise Line. Like you, I have watched that show many times salivating over the opportunity to one day sail on that beautiful vessel. But, my DH was very difficult to win over. "It's too expensive."; "Our daughter's too young."; "There are other places I want to go first."; yadda yadda yadda.

Finally, last year (March 2007), our dear neighbors, whom we travel to Disneyland with on occasion, went on a land/sea package to Disney World and the DCL. Now, I have to tell you I was very jealous because I wanted to stow away in their luggage. Regardless, they had a wonderful time and highly recommended it to us.

That being said, in the meantime, I had been spending a lot of time researching a trip to Hawaii in the summer of 2008. My DH's father had promised my DH a trip to Hawaii upon his college graduation. Twenty years later, we were going to take him up on it. We were going to ask our neighbors if they wanted to go too.

Anyway, our neighbors got back and not even a week later they booked their second cruise, a 7 Day Western Caribbean cruise for March of 2008. Now I have my DH's interest. "Wouldn’t it be nice if we could go on a cruise with our dear friends?" Aha, gotcha!! So, guess what happened next? You got it! Aloha Hawaii, Hello Mickey! We booked our first Disney Cruise for March 2008 over our DD's spring break. We have a Category 7 room, obstructed verandah on Deck 7. (Thanks Barb & Tony)

Remember where I mentioned I pour over the internet researching trips, well in April, 2007, I ran across the DIS boards. I lurked for a while and then I signed in. Boy, was that addicting. To this day, I check the boards every day.

Next: The planning begins!

Last edited by disneyfaninaz; 11-05-2008 at 10:01 AM. Reason: Update
disneyfaninaz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2008, 07:29 PM   #2
JDBlair
DIS Veteran
 
JDBlair's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Chandler, Arizona
Posts: 1,616

Yay!!!! I can't wait to read all about your cruise!!!
Howdy Neighbor!!
__________________
Jac

Future runDisney races:
Dumbo Double Dare Challenge August 2014

Follow me as I train for these races!

Previous runDisney race recaps:
Princess Half February 2013
Tinker Bell Half January 2013
Disneyland Half 9-2-12
JDBlair is offline   Reply With Quote
|
The DIS
Register to remove

Join Date: 1997
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 1,000,000
Old 03-19-2008, 08:58 PM   #3
pixidustmom
Dreaming of the World
 
pixidustmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Las Vegas NV
Posts: 971

waiting

Ok it's gonna be good as I am new to the board and I can now follow along from the first day. I will now subscribe to your thread to not miss anything. I have enjoyed some other TR but most were older.
__________________

Come check out my pre trip report.http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3254412
POFQ 1996POR 2006 and 2009 Going to POP 2014 Disneyland too many to count
pixidustmom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2008, 10:53 PM   #4
disneyfaninaz
It takes faith, trust & pixie dust!
 
disneyfaninaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 11,448

The Planning

Well, the planning commences. We've decided to fly Southwest Airlines and anxiously await to book our flight to Orlando when fares are available in August and October. In the meantime, we had been discussing when to fly down and fly back. We decided to fly down on the Thursday night before our cruise and stay at the Port Orleans French Quarter . We stayed there for our 5th anniversary and loved it. Besides, it is very convenient to Downtown Disney and has a fun theme. I thought my DD would love the serpent slide. We also decided that we are going to spend Friday at the Animal Kingdom. Why, you ask? Well, we were going to Disneyland in October, 2007 so we don't need to see the Magic Kingdom. We've done Epcot and we have no interest in seeing Disney Hollywood Studios this trip (we have Tower of Terror in CA). Besides, Animal Kingdom has had the most new things added since we were there last, namely Expedition Everest and the Finding Nemo - The Musical. So AK it is. We will then proceed to fly home immediately after the cruise.

We applied for our passports on June 22nd. We'll see if the State department can get them to us in the 8 months before our trip.

I bought a Passporter (Love it). My neighbor and I are sharing the Birnbaum’s DCL Guide and Passporter back and forth to get information on excursions and such. I am definitely getting more information from the DISers and share. Meanwhile, one evening my DH went to get the mail and what do you think finally arrived after 10 weeks! You got it, our PASSPORTS! I have to admit, I was getting jealous reading about DISers getting there passports back in 4 and 5 weeks. I also found out that ours were sent to Charleston, SC. That’s a long way from Phoenix. My DH and I have also decided that we’re going to try to book a late nonstop flight home from MCO, rent a car in Port Canaveral and see the sights there after we get off the ship. I can either pay $105 for DCL transport back to the airport and wait all day, OR we can rent a car for $26, sight-see and get ourselves back to the airport. Sounds like a plan to me!

In October, we headed over to Disneyland for 3 days over Fall Break to get our Disney fix before the Cruise. Had a wonderful time, but that’s another story on another board. Anyway, on October 24th, “My Cruise Travel Kit” arrived in the mail. Only 2 more months until I can make ressies on line! Woo Hoo! It makes for an interesting read, but between you, me and the fence post, I already found this stuff out on the DIS!

On November 6th, I stumbled upon the dates for the Pirate & Princess Parties at WDW. I discovered that a party would be held on the night we arrive in Orlando (March 6th). We are so there!! I did not hesitate and bought my tickets through WDW on-line at a discount and received them 4 days later. Can’t wait!! We decided to keep this a secret from DD and surprise her when we get to the resort. “Hey, what do you say we go ride Splash Mountain instead of going to Downtown Disney?” She will be so excited!

In Mid-December we made our final payment to DCL. December 20th comes along and the DCL reservation site goes down, and remains down for 4 days. Now, I have been waiting 8 months to make reservations on December 24th for our long awaited Disney cruise and their system goes down. I was just hoping that some pixie dust would work its magic and fix the computer problems that DCL was experiencing. Fortunately, on December 23rd, lo and behold, the system comes back up. Alleluia! At 10:00 PM MST, I was online booking my Palo brunch reservation, my excursions in Grand Cayman, Cozumel and Castaway Cay. I was thrilled to be able to finally do this. It was almost too easy. For some reason, the on-line registration forms were not yet available. They must be on a different clock since my 75 day mark actually fell on December 24th. Only because I’m out West was I spared having to stay up until midnight to do my reservations. No worries, I just filled the forms out the next day and we’re done!

Next: News that almost sunk our cruise!

Last edited by disneyfaninaz; 03-28-2008 at 10:03 AM.
disneyfaninaz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2008, 06:53 AM   #5
mkmommy
DIS Veteran
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Southern Ontario
Posts: 2,586

Wendy

I am so glad you are doing a trip report, we are having serious post vacation depression and this will help us remember the trip. I am hoping to do a trip report also, but I can't remember half the things we did it is such a blur.

Lisa
__________________
Me, DH, DD 12 DD 10

mkmommy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2008, 09:24 AM   #6
disneyfaninaz
It takes faith, trust & pixie dust!
 
disneyfaninaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 11,448

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkmommy View Post
Wendy

I am so glad you are doing a trip report, we are having serious post vacation depression and this will help us remember the trip. I am hoping to do a trip report also, but I can't remember half the things we did it is such a blur.

Lisa
I know what you mean. I am going through the navigator's trying to remember what we did each day as well. One night I can't even remember.
disneyfaninaz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2008, 09:39 AM   #7
disneyfaninaz
It takes faith, trust & pixie dust!
 
disneyfaninaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 11,448

News that almost sunk our cruise!

Amidst all the joy of anticipation and planning, my world came crashing down on December 28th. For the last few months, along with having fun planning for this cruise, I was also dealing with the fear of breast cancer. In October, I found a lump in my breast. By the time I got a mammogram, ultrasound and biopsy it’s the middle of Christmas break. 4 days after I made my reservations on-line, I got the phone call from my surgeon that my biopsy was malignant. When asked about continuing with our plans, the surgeon said “Cancel.” We decided to hold off on any decisions just yet.


Along with all of the emotions of being told you have cancer, the cruise kept creeping into our discussions. Would we be able to go? Would it jeopardize my health if we went ahead with our plans? In the meantime, we scheduled my lumpectomy for mid January and waited for word on if the cancer had spread. Fortunately it had not gotten into my lymph nodes. Whew!! While my prognosis is for a complete recovery, I would still need 6 bouts of chemotherapy because of my age , 6 weeks and 3 days of daily 5 minute radiation treatments and then 5 years of medication. But it is all pro-active and not reactive. My next question to him was, “Can we go on our cruise in March?” “Sure!” he said. What? Did I hear correctly, there’s no problem? That’s right; my chemo treatments were scheduled so that we can go on our cruise. I should be feeling pretty good by then, considering. Well, you can only imagine how excited we all were to hear the good news, especially our daughter.

I believe that my mental health at this point is just as important as my physical health. If a cruise in the middle of 6 chemo treatments will help me make it through and give me something else to think about, then by all means I am going for it. After having gone through two treatments, without too many ill effects, I felt confident that I would be able to enjoy this cruise and our visit to WDW to the fullest. I was looking forward most to interacting with dolphins with my daughter and spending quality time with my husband strolling hand in hand around the ship. Did it mean more to me now than before, most definitely! When you are faced with news such as cancer, you get a different take on what is important in life. Let the packing begin!

Next: It's finally here!

Last edited by disneyfaninaz; 03-20-2008 at 12:13 PM.
disneyfaninaz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2008, 11:52 AM   #8
firemans wife
DIS Veteran
 
firemans wife's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,683

Quote:
Originally Posted by disneyfaninaz View Post
Amidst all the joy of anticipation and planning, my world came crashing down on December 28th. For the last few months, along with having fun planning for this cruise, I was also been dealing with the fear of breast cancer. In October, I found a lump in my breast. By the time I got a mammogram, ultrasound and biopsy it’s the middle of Christmas break. 4 days after I made my reservations on-line, I got the phone call from my surgeon that my biopsy was malignant. When asked about continuing with our plans, the surgeon said “Cancel.” We decided to hold off on any decisions just yet.


Along with all of the emotions of being told you have cancer, the cruise kept creeping into our discussions. Would we be able to go? Would it jeopardize my health if we went ahead with our plans? In the meantime, we scheduled my lumpectomy for mid January and waited for word on if the cancer had spread. Fortunately it had not gotten into my lymph nodes. Whew!! While my prognosis is for a complete recovery, I would still need 6 bouts of chemotherapy because of my age , 6 weeks and 3 days of daily 5 minute radiation treatments and then 5 years of medication. But it is all pro-active and not reactive. My next question to him was, “Can we go on our cruise in March?” “Sure!” he said. What? Did I hear correctly, there’s no problem? That’s right; my chemo treatments were scheduled so that we can go on our cruise. I should be feeling pretty good by then, considering. Well, you can only imagine how excited we all were to hear the good news, especially our daughter.

I believe that my mental health at this point is just as important as my physical health. If a cruise in the middle of 6 chemo treatments will help me make it through and give me something else to think about, then by all means I am going for it. After having gone through two treatments, without too many ill effects, I felt confident that I would be able to enjoy this cruise and our visit to WDW to the fullest. I was looking forward most to interacting with dolphins with my daughter and spending quality time with my husband strolling hand in hand around the ship. Did it mean more to me now than before, most definitely! When you are faced with news such as cancer, you get a different take on what is important in life. Let the packing begin!

Next: It's finally here!
Looking forward to hearing more about your trip! I am a breast cancer survivor too -3 years in May . DH and I took a cruise back in Decmebr 2005 to celebrate my health and my life!
__________________
1994 Carnival Sensation
1996 Carnival Tropicale1998 Carnival Ectasy
2004 first Disney cruise on the Magic
2005 Carnival Liberty
2006 Disney Magic
2008 Disney Magic nana head cruise
Lorna


firemans wife is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2008, 12:05 PM   #9
pixidustmom
Dreaming of the World
 
pixidustmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Las Vegas NV
Posts: 971

Wow what a lot of things you had going on. Having a lump removed when I was 28 was scary but thank God it ended up not being cancer. But that was a very scary time in my life. But nothing like a DCL to go on and keep your mind of what is going on in front of you. Best wishes on your recovery.
__________________

Come check out my pre trip report.http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3254412
POFQ 1996POR 2006 and 2009 Going to POP 2014 Disneyland too many to count
pixidustmom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2008, 12:11 PM   #10
disneyfaninaz
It takes faith, trust & pixie dust!
 
disneyfaninaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 11,448

Quote:
Originally Posted by firemans wife View Post
Looking forward to hearing more about your trip! I am a breast cancer survivor too -3 years in May . DH and I took a cruise back in Decmebr 2005 to celebrate my health and my life!
Congratulations! I am looking forward to many years of being cancer free.
disneyfaninaz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2008, 12:11 PM   #11
disneyfaninaz
It takes faith, trust & pixie dust!
 
disneyfaninaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 11,448

Quote:
Originally Posted by pixidustmom View Post
Wow what a lot of things you had going on. Having a lump removed when I was 28 was scary but thank God it ended up not being cancer. But that was a very scary time in my life. But nothing like a DCL to go on and keep your mind of what is going on in front of you. Best wishes on your recovery.
Thank you for your thoughts. The cruise was very helpful indeed.
disneyfaninaz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-21-2008, 09:47 AM   #12
disneyfaninaz
It takes faith, trust & pixie dust!
 
disneyfaninaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 11,448

The day has finally come!

I have been watching my ticker slowly creep down to single digits and the day finally arrived, the bags are packed and weighed and we are on our way to the airport to catch our 10:50 AM flight out of Phoenix. It was a beautiful day and until we got over the Southeast, a pretty uneventful flight. Unfortunately, due to bad weather we had to swing down to Tampa and then to Orlando, instead of the more direct route. Fortunately our pilot had made up so much time going that we still arrived on time in Orlando. When we arrived we headed straight down to Level 1 to the Disney Magical Express counter. Can they put the counter any further away in the airport? It was so nice not having to stop and pick up our luggage. Anyway there was no line and I got checked in and was immediately ushered to the correct bus. Unfortunately, it wasn’t one of the Magical Express decorated busses, but it was a motor coach nonetheless. We waited about 15 minutes for the bus to fill and were off to Port Orleans French Quarter, with a stop at Saratoga Springs first. Oh, by the way, did I mention it was raining. It seems to always be raining whenever we land in Orlando.

Anyway, we were dropped off at our resort at around 6:30 PM. After a quick check in with no lines, and a quick trip to the gift shop to buy my DD a toothbrush, which I forgot to pack, we were off to our room to get ready to attend the Pirates & Princess Party at the Magic Kingdom. When we got to our room, my DD was delighted to find towel animals waiting for us.



We were in Building 5 with a great view of the river. We didn’t tell our DD that we had purchased tickets. She thought we were going to Downtown Disney. I told her that I felt like going to the bus stops and getting on a bus and just see where it goes. So we went to the bus stop and waited with several families with their children dressed as pirates and princesses, when the correct bus arrived I asked my DD to read where it was going. She said the Magic Kingdom, that’s when we told her we were going to the party and she could ride Splash Mountain. You should have seen the smile on her face. It was priceless. At that moment, I was the best mommy ever!!

We arrived at the park at exactly 7:00 PM. We took our obligatory pictures outside the main gate and proceeded to get our wrist bands.



It had stopped raining by now and was a very nice evening. We headed first to Tomorrowland to get our Treasure Bags and to get something to eat.



We played a few games, won some tattoos, and got our treasure and headed to Cosmic Rays for dinner. Chip & Dale were dancing at the Eclipses Mini Mixes Dance Party. By this time, my DH was itching to ride something so we headed over to Adventureland, via Fantasyland, collecting treasures along the way, and got on Pirates of the Caribbean. We literally walked on to the ride. We found all of the Captain Jacks. By the time we got off the ride, it was time for the parade. We found a place in front of Pecos Bill’s to watch. It started raining just as the parade was starting. We saw all the princesses, Captain Barbossa and Captain Jack.



I particularly enjoyed the pirate drill team with the flags. I used to be a “flag girl” in high school so it was cool to watch them spin and throw the flags in the air. By the time the parade was over the rain was really coming down. Fortunately, I had remembered an umbrella and rain ponchos. My DH took our DD on Splash Mountain. They were already wet from the rain so why not get even more wet, right? She had a blast. In the meantime, I found an empty rocking chair inside the shop outside of Splash Mountain and waited in the warmth and dryness for my family. After getting yet more treasure, we headed over to the Haunted Mansion. I love this ride, however, for the last 7 years we have been to Disneyland it has had The Nightmare Before Christmas overlay and I haven’t seen it in its true form for awhile. I was anxious to see the new improvements made last year. I was not disappointed, they were very cool. It was then time to head to Fantasyland.



Unfortunately, Peter Pan was closed for refurbishment and it was still raining, so we headed into It’s a Small World. After we went through the ride, before we get off the boats, we started hearing booms. They had started the fireworks show. The rain was still coming down pretty hard. We ran off the ride and literally stood in the middle of Fantasyland and looked up into the sky to see the incredible firework show in the pouring rain. Only at Disney! We loved it when the pirates started firing canons at the castle to the “Pirates” music. The fireworks literally lit up the entire park like day light at a couple of points. It was amazing. I’m just sorry we didn’t see them from in front of the castle. Anyway after the show we went to ride Snow White and then Winnie the Pooh. Since we were going to be on the ship for a week we didn’t really seek any characters. They weren’t out much because of the rain anyway. We also didn’t get many photos because of the rain. After the Pooh ride we were pretty wet and cold. We headed to Main Street and got some hot chocolate at Casey’s and hit the stores before leaving the park. It had been a long day and we were ready to go. I enjoyed the party, but probably would have enjoyed it more without the rain. I wish we could have ridden more rides, but there are so many other things to do in such a short time that you just can’t fit it all in.

We arrived back to the resort to find that our bags had been delivered as promised. The Magical Express service is awesome. We got ready for bed and hit the hay.

Next: Animal Kingdom

Last edited by disneyfaninaz; 03-21-2008 at 05:42 PM.
disneyfaninaz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-21-2008, 05:32 PM   #13
misslissa
DIS Veteran
 
misslissa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Brooklin, ON, Canada
Posts: 1,957

I am subscribing, this is an awesome report! And, I am so glad to hear that you are feeling great
__________________
December 2004 - First Trip to Disney! - Caribbean Beach Resort
November 2005 - Old Key West
September 2006 - DISNEYMOON at Coronado Springs Resort
May 2007 - Pop Century Resort/Saratoga Springs Resort
May 2008 - First Disney Cruise to the Western Caribbean
February 2009 - Polynesian Resort
January 2013 - Port Orleans/Disney Dream (with baby)
June 2013 - Marriott Grande Vista in Orlando (with baby)
August 2013 - Joined DVC
February 2014 - First stay at home - Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge
misslissa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-21-2008, 05:48 PM   #14
JDBlair
DIS Veteran
 
JDBlair's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Chandler, Arizona
Posts: 1,616


You guys certainly had a long day with traveling and the park visit!! Lucky!!!
__________________
Jac

Future runDisney races:
Dumbo Double Dare Challenge August 2014

Follow me as I train for these races!

Previous runDisney race recaps:
Princess Half February 2013
Tinker Bell Half January 2013
Disneyland Half 9-2-12
JDBlair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-21-2008, 05:55 PM   #15
disneyfaninaz
It takes faith, trust & pixie dust!
 
disneyfaninaz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 11,448

Quote:
Originally Posted by misslissa View Post
I am subscribing, this is an awesome report! And, I am so glad to hear that you are feeling great
Thanks! Hope you enjoy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JDBlair View Post

You guys certainly had a long day with traveling and the park visit!! Lucky!!!
Well, our clocks were 2 hours behind, but yes it ended up being a long day, but well worth it.

Last edited by disneyfaninaz; 03-24-2008 at 10:24 AM.
disneyfaninaz is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS Updates
GET OUR DIS UPDATES DELIVERED BY EMAIL



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:59 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Copyright © 1997-2014, Werner Technologies, LLC. All Rights Reserved.