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Old 09-18-2008, 08:55 PM   #61
King Charming
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Things that will be different

Looking back I can see where I could have better utilized my time, effort, and money. Here are the changes I will make.

Remove charging privileges from the kids cards. A couple of 5 dollar sodas wasn't so bad, but with them both hitting $100+ in the arcade, I'll buy the pre-loaded gamer cards and pass them out.
Bring a small bottle of liquor (to be replaced by a larger one in Georgetown GC). Why was I paying $6 (plus tip) for a shot when it could have cost less than a dollar? Sure, I'll have to fetch it and pour my own, but the mixers are free at the soda station.
Apply sunscreen more often, nuff said.
Get off the ship quicker during the week. Most stops are only 6 to 8 hours, so why was I putzing around the room? This goes hand in hand with...
Getting up earlier. Last time I was seldom awake before 10 am, and had to be dragged to breakfast. So maybe prowling around an empty ship after midnight ain't such a good idea. (although this was the best time to take the indoor 'empty ship' photos.
Make time for more character photos. It is, after all, a Disney ship w/ many photo ops. The CM's are real good about using your camera, so maybe I can leave Shutters for less than $100 again.
See some of the stage shows. I missed them all last time.
Play shuffleboard, deck 4 I think.
Bring cans of beer instead of bottles. Not only did all the bottle openers get put away at midnight, but cans will stack better in the mini-fridge.
Also not to expect this undersized unit to chill anything until it has been in there for at least 24 hours.
Buy T-shirts bought ashore 2 sizes bigger because they sure do shrink.
Stay hydrated!!!

Thanks to the dozens of pre/post TR's I've read, I knew what to expect and got to do EVERYTHING we wanted to; so of course this list will be short. Do you think I was dying to return to a ship full of stuff I was unhappy with and in need of change? Just because I recently read on the boards that the character Bfast has returned to the more traditional method (as KC snickers I told ya so), it doesn't mean they need to change a winning formula. As the four of us can attest, there is NOTHING wrong with Mic, or his ship.
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Old 09-18-2008, 09:47 PM   #62
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omg, how lucky are we to get a pre trippie from KC himself and Hypermommy! Now this is just an awesome thing, a whole year of entertainment. How I wish I was going on the cruise with you guys, you are SO fun.
Okay, so who are you kidding, up before 10:00 am?? Off the ship in the morning? You'll be lucky if you hit the sheets before 2 am again cmon now, you're talkin to your friends here and we know the truth. Cannot wait to read every detail of this trip, even if starts a year in advance.
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Old 09-18-2008, 10:11 PM   #63
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Busted

OK, so maybe I should have said I would TRY to get up early enough to eat a Mickey waffle. I just don't see how late night drinking and early morning wake ups can co-exist. I can, after all, eat LUNCH if I'm really hungry.

We are glad you folks are enjoying this, and (gulp) actually looking forward to 14 more months of commentary. Does anyone know how to rig a calendar so we won't have to wait that long?
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Old 09-18-2008, 10:30 PM   #64
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Alright, I will accept getting to lunch, now that is do-able, don't try and fool us again, breakfast and early morning is out of the question.

I am taking our middle son to DW in April, to maybe see our oldest son (20) doing the college program in the Spring (waiting for acceptance). And as much as I can't wait for that trip, my whole family would give anything to get back on the Magic! So until we can (cost was unreal for fam. of five two years ago, but hey, high school graduation is only once), we'll live thru KC and wifee .

So plan away man, plan away!!
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Old 09-19-2008, 04:25 AM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryAz View Post
Hmmm I am a little lost on the quoting thing. Hope it made sense.
Oh, it can really be a pain. When I have time, what I do is copy the opening quote tag (the one the goes [ QUOTE = MaryAz..... and so forth (extra spaces are necessary here to make sure it doesn't show up as a quote in this post. Then, at the end of each part of your message I want to quote I manually type in the ending quote tag (the one with the / in it) and then paste the opening one that I copied in front of the next part of your message I want to quote. Make any sense? It can be a bit difficult to do but I think it makes reading easier and I'm all about making life special for guests of this trip report.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jillpie View Post
omg, how lucky are we to get a pre trippie from KC himself and Hypermommy! Now this is just an awesome thing, a whole year of entertainment. How I wish I was going on the cruise with you guys, you are SO fun.
Okay, so who are you kidding, up before 10:00 am?? Off the ship in the morning? You'll be lucky if you hit the sheets before 2 am again cmon now, you're talkin to your friends here and we know the truth. Cannot wait to read every detail of this trip, even if starts a year in advance.
Oh, you have him sooooo pegged! I'm glad it was someone else that said he ain't gonna get up before 10:00 AM. Now I can sit back and take vicarious pleasure at someone razzin' KC!!!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jillpie View Post
I am taking our middle son to DW in April, to maybe see our oldest son (20) doing the college program in the Spring (waiting for acceptance). And as much as I can't wait for that trip, my whole family would give anything to get back on the Magic! So until we can (cost was unreal for fam. of five two years ago, but hey, high school graduation is only once), we'll live thru KC and wifee
Oh, please do tell us all about the college program! That's something I've already started trying to talk my sons into (they're 13 and about to be 15, remember). I really think that'd be a wonderfully advantageous way for them to start their actual working life (well, with the exception of the McDonald's jobs or whatever they get in high school) because it'll hopefully set that seed of customer service really down deep in them. I know we all find different magic in the Mouse, but for me that's what differentiates Disney in all it's incarnations (movies, theme park, cruise, etc.) from all other comers - the level of quality customer service that one can expect from them. When we started talking about cruising again, there was no question from either of us that it had to be Disney. We have a great travel agent who loves Disney but she also knows that saving money is a good thing so she was telling us about the good things about other cruise lines until we told her we're only interested in Disney.

Speaking of the TA, she was at the Earmarked convention thing this past week. I can't wait to pick her brain a little and see if there's anything she can tell us about what's coming up. She said she got to go in the Walt Disney Suite and look around and the other really nice suite out there. That's something I'm not sure I'll ever understand. Why on earth would you want to spend $200+ a night for a room (and I know those suites are probably in the 4 digits)? Although I must admit if I ever win lottery we're going to have at least a few nights in the Contemp for DH, the AKL for DS13, a few wherever DS15 wants (not sure where that would be) and the rest of the time (however long we decide) in the Poly for me.

Okay, I guess you've put up with my rambling enough now. I know, I know... I haven't even started the packing list yet. I will... I promise. It won't be this weekend though. This is Ladies Beach Weekend (for the past few years a bunch of friends and I have left the kids and hubbies at home and escaped to the beach for the weekend). I have my DCL cup all ready and I'm about to go print out the recipe for Konk Koolers. I've got my Castaway Club CD. I figure with all that, I'll be all set for the weekend.

Oh, one more thing. I just wanted to show off something I made the other day. You know I'm into the digital scrapbooking thing, right (and oh, boy, how I do love this hobby)? Well, one of the stores I'm a designer at - Digi Scrap Station - has a monthly ad challenge in their forums. Basically, they find an ad (usually full page print ad) and show it to us and then we're to take something from the ad as inspiration. I took the general layout of the ad. I just loved the way there was a strip of a picture across the middle and then the extracted item (in the original it was a bed because it was a mattress ad) is partly in the picture and partly out. And I loved the offsettedness (is that a word) of the ad. Anyway, here's what I came up with for the challenge. I just think it turned out really good and I wanted to share with my friends. Hope you don't mind.

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Old 09-19-2008, 06:42 AM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by King Charming View Post
Looking back I can see where I could have better utilized my time, effort, and money. Here are the changes I will make.

Remove charging privileges from the kids cards. A couple of 5 dollar sodas wasn't so bad, but with them both hitting $100+ in the arcade, I'll buy the pre-loaded gamer cards and pass them out.
Bring a small bottle of liquor (to be replaced by a larger one in Georgetown GC). Why was I paying $6 (plus tip) for a shot when it could have cost less than a dollar? Sure, I'll have to fetch it and pour my own, but the mixers are free at the soda station.
Apply sunscreen more often, nuff said.
Get off the ship quicker during the week. Most stops are only 6 to 8 hours, so why was I putzing around the room? This goes hand in hand with...
Getting up earlier. Last time I was seldom awake before 10 am, and had to be dragged to breakfast. So maybe prowling around an empty ship after midnight ain't such a good idea. (although this was the best time to take the indoor 'empty ship' photos.
Make time for more character photos. It is, after all, a Disney ship w/ many photo ops. The CM's are real good about using your camera, so maybe I can leave Shutters for less than $100 again.
See some of the stage shows. I missed them all last time.
Play shuffleboard, deck 4 I think.
Bring cans of beer instead of bottles. Not only did all the bottle openers get put away at midnight, but cans will stack better in the mini-fridge.
Also not to expect this undersized unit to chill anything until it has been in there for at least 24 hours.
Buy T-shirts bought ashore 2 sizes bigger because they sure do shrink.
Stay hydrated!!!

Thanks to the dozens of pre/post TR's I've read, I knew what to expect and got to do EVERYTHING we wanted to; so of course this list will be short. Do you think I was dying to return to a ship full of stuff I was unhappy with and in need of change? Just because I recently read on the boards that the character Bfast has returned to the more traditional method (as KC snickers I told ya so), it doesn't mean they need to change a winning formula. As the four of us can attest, there is NOTHING wrong with Mic, or his ship.
Thanks KC for posting this list....note to self (remember where this list is when it comes time to remember them)
I have enjoyed your reports right from the get go...thanks so much for sharing!
Not sure about drinking beer out of a can though....YUCK!!!
Is the place that you purchased liquor from in Grand Cayman easily found?
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Old 09-19-2008, 07:29 AM   #67
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I think for a lot of people, the ship is the destination - so KC, don't worry 'bout it from your first trip - that's what 2nd trips are all about - even the same itinerary - because there is always something you didn't do the first time that you can do the 2nd.

Hypermommy, we've decided to do the Dolphin Encounter at Cozumel with some other DISers on our own. I'll be sure to let you know how it is after we get back. 92 days to go!
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Old 09-19-2008, 08:21 AM   #68
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Hypermommy,
LOVE your digi scrapbook page!! I'm still a paper kinda gal myself (only cause I have lots of supplies I need to use up!!).

Will keep checking this thread and can't wait to meet you on OUR cruise!!

Cheers,
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Old 09-19-2008, 08:26 AM   #69
Hypermommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by binky1 View Post
Hypermommy,
LOVE your digi scrapbook page!! I'm still a paper kinda gal myself (only cause I have lots of supplies I need to use up!!).

Will keep checking this thread and can't wait to meet you on OUR cruise!!

Cheers,
Thanks! The thing I love most about digital is it doesn't involve getting out all the supplies. And, once I buy something I can use it again and again and again and again. And then there's the subject of clean up -- off button, done!

I'd love to see some of your work!

And NZ... very much looking forward to hearing about your experience with the dolphin encounter. Thanks.
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Old 09-19-2008, 10:13 AM   #70
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nice scrapbooking! hypermommy, i think you missed your calling! you should go into design or something! i don't have a creative bone in my body so i am jealous i am now sold on the cozumel tour thanks to you two and the reviews you have given on tulum. dh & i will most likely go this way only one time and that is the main reason i wanted this cruise, was for the ruins .so many thanks for the reviews in this and your last trip report.
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Old 09-19-2008, 01:43 PM   #71
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Thanks!

So happy to hear that you are gonna do the ruins. It really was a wonderful experience. Hope you get Juan (or whatever his real name was -- I'm guessing they probably use stage names). He really was great about finding shade. But in case you don't you might want to take a parasol or something.
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Old 09-21-2008, 11:25 PM   #72
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I thought I'd throw in a cheap plug for the old TR. For those who are cruising for the first time, you might be interested in what stuff costs. I can be extremely tight-fisted, (after years of necessity and practice) and wrote not only about where we went, but what we spent. Believe me when I tell you that after transportation costs to and from the port, and the stateroom, you can still easily spend thousands more .

Excursions, alcohol, pictures, tips, arcade, bingo, formal clothes, motel room the night before, shopping, on and on it goes. Some of these run into hundreds of dollars each. Granted, every budget will be different; to accommodate Palo, or the spa, or pet boarding,... well, you get the idea. My PRE TR dealt with my complaints as I discovered these expenses, and the TR outlined stuff like drink of the day costs to how much I tipped everyone. If you want to get a look at the true costs involved, stop on over when you've got a few hours to kill. The report has passed 18.5K hits and was generally well received. We had a real good time with it and look forward to doing it again.
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Old 09-23-2008, 04:29 AM   #73
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Of course, if you're like me and have your own personal King-Charming-like character (there cannot be more than one KC, of course) who is in charge of the money then you can be totally free and not have to think about the true costs involved! Others may think I'm kidding, but he's lived with me long enough to know that I'm serious when I say I don't think about incidentals such as pet boarding and so forth. It must drive him stark raving mad sometimes, but look at it this way, dear..... living with me is never boring!!

Ladies Beach Weekend went well. Very, very relaxing. I remember being out on the porch and looking at the line and thinking about KC and (cough, cough, sputter, sputter... don't anyone tell him) actually missing him terribly. And I remember thinking about how a vacation at the beach is nice but I'd rather be on a cruise. I think one of the things I like best about cruising is that we're at a really, really nice hotel -- something much nicer than we'd stay at on land (because we put our money in souveniers and stay at a value instead of putting our money in deluxe resorts). And the best thing about this hotel is that it's mobile. Every day it's in a new place.

Except for our next cruise when it'll be hitting the same place twice - the wonderful, magical Castaway Cay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 09-26-2008, 12:00 AM   #74
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Budget (why 2K?)

Granted, the biggest difference this time is that we will actually pay for the room. I thought that getting 4 people on the Magic for a week for less than $1K each wasn't so bad. But of course that means we can't blow through money on incidentals like we did. Last time I started with a budget of $ 1,500 (boy, did I ever miss that one) that mushroomed radically as we added more and more to our trip of a lifetime. Having done it once, (and not trying to do nearly as much this time) I think a realistic budget would look like this.

325 ships tips, 125 Hotel the night before, 100 gas, 200 shopping on ship, 75 meals on the road, 150 shopping ashore, 100 arcade, 100 semi-formal duds, 100 Shutters, 100 Bingo, 25 booze taken, 25 booze bottles, 50 booze ashore, 100 drinks of the day, 30 bus/cab fare (Hell?), 50 Cubans, 100 other tips, 250 kennels.

If you do the math there is about $2K represented here. I'll be sure to tell DW that any major changes will come out of the shopping dollars entry, so we should be able to stick with it. The boys have been warned that they are paying their own way on Castaway Cay excursions, and this assumes that the savings plan is successful. Now if I can just keep Hypermommy out of the parks for another year...
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Old 09-26-2008, 09:16 AM   #75
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Hmmm...... I think I hear something. It's really faint, but getting stronger. What's that? epcot.... epcot.... epcot. Yep... that's what I thought it was.

Okay... I keep promising a packing list.. here's my preliminary one.

Clothes
1/2 week's worth of underwear and socks (will do a load there)
1/2 week's worth of t-shirts (as we'll be getting some)
Jeans/shorts/bathing suits/shoes, etc.
Sunscreen
Pepsi
Vodka
Pepsi
Ziplock baggies
Watches
Shoe holders
Pepsi
Dry erase boards
Outlet strip
Laundry soap
Watches
Luggage address labels
Pepsi
Digital clock from our room
Glow necklaces
Fish Extender
Fish Extender Exchange stuff
Watches
Clothes Pins
Night Light
Pepsi
Cigs (mine are actually as cheap as the on ship ones)
Cash
Meds (all kinds of meds -- don't want to get overcharged at sick bay)
Pre-addressed labels for family postcards
Pepsi
Photoframe mat in mailer
Binoculars (if we can borrow some)
Lysol wipes
Watches

You'll notice there are a few items that are on here at least twice. Those are things that we didn't have enough of last time and definitely need to make sure we take.

Okay, y'all... what am I missing?
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