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Old 03-12-2012, 12:19 AM   #16
GooniesAndy
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Scans of Things from Our Room

These are scans of all the random things that were in the room that don't really belong elsewhere in the trip report:

If you want to order breakfast to your room, you hang this on the doorknob the night before:




Duty-free liquor price list:


Onboard shopping promotions info:



Phone & internet info:



Voyage Navigator/Cruise at a Glance:



Movie theater schedule:


TV channels & movies:

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Old 03-12-2012, 10:06 AM   #17
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Can't wait to read your TR!
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Old 03-12-2012, 06:11 PM   #18
GooniesAndy
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Day (Negative) One: Saturday Night

We live in San Diego, so we decided to drive up a day early and stay in a hotel in order to alleviate some of the stress the morning of the cruise. I followed the instructions I found on the Dis and got a room at the Crowne Plaza for $65 (plus taxes making the total around $82). I have to say, this was a great decision as we rarely get out of the house on my planned schedule when we are going somewhere early in the morning, particularly if it involves luggage. We left a little bit later than I wanted to (as I anticipated), but we got there shortly after the 3:00PM check-in time. Our room was nice, and we had a great view of the port.

We decided to just order room service for dinner, which I now regret. The food was very expensive and was barely mediocre. I had a rib eye steak, which was pretty tough. I asked for it with French onion soup and it came with vegetables. I called to ask for the soup, which did come very quickly. However, it was pretty lame French onion soup... it was beef broth with onion and some sort of dry herb in it. No bread or cheese in sight. Since we didn't want to go far, we should have just tried out the deli I saw across the street. It would have been a quarter of the cost and pretty much had to be tastier.

That night we didn't really do anything, just chilled in our hotel and watched one of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies on TV. We wanted to be ready to go in the morning!

My best tips for driving in and staying in a hotel the night before the cruise: Pack an overnight bag and then transfer the things you'll need for the cruise (toiletries, etc.) into your carry-on bag in the morning (or use that as an extra carry-on). We ended up using the plastic laundry bag provided by the hotel for our dirty clothes and left it in the car.
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March 4-11, 2012, Mexican Riviera on the Wonder
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Old 03-12-2012, 08:47 PM   #19
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Day One, Part One

Elliott was VERY excited and woke up pretty early, around 6:00AM. The first thing he did was run to the window to see if he could see the Wonder. There was nothing out there, so I opened up my phone to a ship-tracking website and saw that the Wonder looked like it should be there. Lo and behold, a minute later I looked up and just saw the front of the ship coming into sight. The kids were thrilled and spent quite a bit of time staring out the window while we got dressed.



After the dinner debacle the night before, we decided to head out to find some breakfast. We decided to walk over to the little portside restaurant area I'd heard about, but nothing seemed to be open yet. I used the Yelp app on my phone to find a likely place, a Hungarian bakery that specialized in strudel. However, we had almost finished walking there when I noticed that it didn't open until 9. I found another place, a standard pancake shop, and we decided to drive there. We were getting close when we saw a Jack in the Box and figured we'd save some money (more for the cruise!) and just bring some hotcakes back to the room. We were eating when my sister, Meghan, texted to let me know that they were coming across the bridge and in sight of the Wonder. They were going to grab a quick breakfast and head to the terminal.

We finished up and headed out around 9:30. The terminal was open when we got there, so I dropped off the guys and the luggage and went to park. The roundabout way you have to go was slightly confusing for me, but I made it through just fine. When I got back we headed in to a wonderfully empty terminal. There was no line at the check-in counter and we were able to get right in. The kids were in rare form, so excited that they were just being insane. We gave them our PSP and my tablet to play on and that mostly kept them calm. On our way in, they had given us our first day's Navigators, so this was a nice chance to sit and read it.






We'd been told that the desk where we could pick up the kids club bracelets would open around 11:30, but it was earlier, maybe 11:00, and we only waited in line for about 5 minutes. Oliver and I also went over to get see Minnie Mouse when she came in. Of course, I didn't think to bring my own camera and so I don't have any pictures!

Shortly after all of this it was time to board! We were in boarding group 4, which was called very quickly, in probably about ten minutes. Everything was very well organized and we were on the way onboard in no time!



I had been anticipating hearing them announce our family's name, but the kids were being so crazy that I pretty much missed it! We went over to guest services to ask about the tea party, but the woman seemed really appalled that our party of adults and little boys wanted to go to it, so we told her we'd skip it. She really didn't seem to want us to go. Luckily, that was the only weird moment we had the entire trip, and it was quickly forgotten. We were directed to Parrot Cay to eat lunch.



We filled our plates and ate our fill. I can't even remember all the tasty things that were available, but I particularly liked the prosciutto/cheese/tomato sandwich I had. I should have gotten more pieces of it!



After lunch we decided to take a walk around to check things out, since the rooms weren't done yet, and the kids still had lots of extra energy to get out (and were starting to drive us insane). We walked upstairs and ran straight into Belle, just chilling in the hallway!



As soon as Belle walked away, Snow White wandered by, so the boys got to have a private little chat with her. We must have been among the first to finish our lunch, because it was totally empty on the 4th floor!



We still had time to kill, so we walked up to deck 5 to visit the Oceaneer's Club and Lab during their open house hours. The kids were thrilled and didn't want to leave. An added bonus was that they were mostly empty since most people were still eating.

The Lab:






And the Club:








Next we walked up to deck 9 to check out the pools (and my husband's second home, the soda/coffee station). The kids got so excited when they saw the pool, which we had no intention of using that day, that we had to get them out of there!





We decided to walk down to deck 2, where our room was, and just as we got there they dropped the ropes and let everyone in. Hallelujah!

I must say, I absolutely LOVED our room and its location. We were in room 2114, on the portside, just a room forward of the aft elevators. Parrot Cay was at the top of the stairs, Triton's and the lobby were right down the hall from that, and Animator's Palate was just one additional flight of stairs up. When the kids had to use the restroom during dinner, which happened a lot, it was often easier just to run to our room than to use one of the public ones. The pools, drink and ice cream stations, and Beach Blanket Buffet were a quick elevator ride up on deck 9. Since I'd say about 80% of our time was spent in the back half of the ship, this was really really good.

Our room was a category 9C, with a large porthole. We didn't spend that much time in there, so it was plenty spacious for us! I packed one small suitcase for each of us, plus an extra for our "stuff" along with two carry on bags, our camera bag, my purse, etc. There was plenty of space for our clothing and all of our random things, and all of the luggage fit easily under the bed.

The bed was very comfortable, and I really enjoyed the bedding. The kids seemed fine in their beds, as well, though I was really nervous about Elliott falling out of the bunk. He did fall one time, but it was when he was coming down the ladder and he missed a rung and hit his head on the table on the way down. It wasn't a major wound, but that made me even more worried.

I liked the split bathroom, and it came in very handy. The shower/tub was great and was much larger than what I remember from previous cruises I've taken on other lines. I do wish the little shelves they have on the toilet side were in the shower side instead, but that's just nitpicking.



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And the the boys: Elliott (8), Oliver (5)

March 4-11, 2012, Mexican Riviera on the Wonder
Trip Report


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Old 03-12-2012, 08:48 PM   #20
GooniesAndy
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Day One, Part Two

We found our dining schedule ticket in the room, which listed which dates we were to eat in each restaurant, our table number (which was also on our Key to the World card), dinner time, and the information for our character breakfast. You never actually needed to give anyone this ticket, though the first night I saw people with them and ran back to the room for it. All they needed was your table number, though.



Our luggage hadn't come yet, but I had put our magnets and Fish Extender in my carry on bag, so we decided to put everything up:



Soon our luggage did start showing up (slowly, with one at a time arriving over the next few hours) and I started to unpack. Between unpacking and the kids being a bit difficult, we ended up not making it to our Disboards meet-up, which bummed me out. Soon enough, though, it was time for the muster drill and then the sail away party!

We headed up to deck 9 immediately upon being released from our muster station, and we were able to score a great spot right at the edge of the left side of the stage. The kids got their streamers (and immediately started inadvertently smacking people in the face) and had a blast watching the show. Hearing the ship's horn made me get teary!

We spent a lot of time with these guys during the next week:


And, of course:


After the sail away party, we went back to our room so that I could unpack some more. I sent out all of the guys' shirts and Mike's suit for dry cleaning or pressing, which was actually much less expensive than at home:



By the time I was finished unpacking everything and getting our room organized, it was time to head to dinner. I had requested the PTTAPTA rotation, in order to have pirate night in Parrot Cay and formal and semi-formal nights in Triton's, so tonight we were in Parrot Cay.

I didn't manage to get pictures or record all of what everyone ate, but I'll do my best to remember!

I ordered the West Indies Romaine Salad and Island-spiced Grilled Ribeye of Beef. My food was tasty, but that steak was massive! I barely ate half of it. And it came with a baked potato and corn on the cob... I thought I was going to pop!



Mike had the Island-spiced Seared Ahi Tuna and the Shrimp and Avocado Salad. He reports that both of these were good.





Meghan ordered the Crab Martinique and the beef. She said she liked them both.



Jason had the Island-spiced Seared Ahi Tuna, the Parrot Cay Salad, and the Mixed Grill. He said it was all good.





From the kids menu, Elliott had spaghetti, Oliver a mini burger, and Lucas chicken tenders. They all fell asleep and didn't eat much, but it looked good to me!

All of the adults ordered dessert samplers, and the kids woke up for Mickey ice cream sandwiches, which were very good.





We absolutely loved our dining team, Banjo (server), Phapakorn (assistant server), and Rakesh (head server). Banjo and Phapakorn were wonderful. When Banjo found out that Meghan is pregnant, he told her that if she was having any special cravings, if she'd let him know the night before, he'd ask the chef to make her whatever she'd like (as long as they had the ingredients). That's just one example of the amazing service we received from them throughout our vacation. I would absolutely request them again in the future.

When we got back to our room after dinner, we found that someone had put this in our fish:



Since I'd put a lot of work into our decorations, this totally made my night. We also found our first towel animal:



And our first gifts in the Fish Extender. The kids were beyond thrilled, and it lasted until the end of the cruise.



With that, we chilled for a while in our room until everyone was ready for sleep.
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And the the boys: Elliott (8), Oliver (5)

March 4-11, 2012, Mexican Riviera on the Wonder
Trip Report


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Old 03-12-2012, 09:50 PM   #21
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We must have walked out of lunch right before you, as Adelise caught Snow White coming out from the crew area. And we ran into Belle right after that, too. Great pics of the nearly empty lab and club!
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Cruisin' With Mickey! Disney Wonder Mexican Riviera March 2012 Trip Report

Ramada Maingate February 2014--First time as a family of five! Ramada Maingate July 2013--Last time as a family of four! Ramada Maingate December 2012--Club 33! Disney Wonder Mexican Riviera November 2012--We're addicted! Disney Wonder Mexican Riviera March 2012--First Cruise! Ramada Maingate September 2011--First Trip as a family of 4! Anaheim Hilton March 2011--Last Trip as a Family of 3! Marriott Anaheim December 2010--Grandpa Jim's First Trip Marriott Anaheim October 2010--Celebrating Our 1 Year Adoption Anniversary Marriott Anaheim July 2010--Isabel's 3rd Birthday Trip Marriott Anaheim May 2010--First Time at Disneyland & First Trip with Isabel! Off Site May 2009--Quick getaway with my two favorite guys, DH and Dad Pop Century September 2008--My first solo trip! Pop Century May 2008--Finally just DH and me again! All Star Sports September 2006--With Dad and The Otters All Star Movies October 2005--Pressed penny collecting trip on the heels of Hurricane Wilma! Off Site December 2004--One last trip with Mom...bittersweet memories Off Site April 2003--With Mom & Dad Off Site May 2000--First trip with DH! And way more trips than I can count while living in Florida and then visiting after we moved!
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Old 03-13-2012, 12:39 AM   #22
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For only getting back yesterday you have done a great job of posting! I can't wait to read more. We leave in just over two weeks for our MR cruise and I also have two rowdy little boys!
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Old 03-13-2012, 08:51 PM   #23
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Enjoy reading your story. I hope you had a good stress free time.
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Old 03-13-2012, 09:33 PM   #24
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Thank you for the photos! I now understand why the Fish Extender can only be 8 inches wide!
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:58 AM   #25
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great start. looking forward to reading more
we sail in 3 weeks
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Old 03-14-2012, 06:21 PM   #26
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Great pictures!
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Old 03-17-2012, 09:18 PM   #27
GooniesAndy
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Day 2 (Part One): At Sea

Day 2 Navigator:





I slept very well in my comfy bed, and woke up feeling well-rested. The kids were excited to get moving, so we got up and out pretty promptly, meeting up with Meghan, Jason, and Lucas for breakfast at Triton's. I ordered an omelette:



I really liked the omelettes onboard. The cheese was always perfectly melted and there was enough of it, which is important to me! I was disappointed in the bacon, which was very thin and seemed on par with what you'd get at McDonalds. I'm a bacon fiend, and this just didn't cut it. I didn't even bother to eat it when it showed up on my plate at most meals. Though I didn't order any with this meal, there were fabulous, big fat sausages that I really liked. The hash brown was dry and I didn't eat it.

Jason ordered the eggs benedict, which I didn't get a picture of. The yolk in the egg was pretty solid.

Meghan ordered the waffle sandwich, which sounded really tasty: two waffles stuffed with dulce de leche and rolled in sugar cinnamon. It didn't really look like it was rolled in sugar cinnamon to me, but it still looked good and Meghan said she liked it.



Oliver ordered the Peanut Butter and Jelly Typhoon.



And Elliott ordered Mickey's Special Combo Platter: three pancakes, a scrambled egg, and a Mickey waffle.



After breakfast, we went to the Oceaneer Club for open house, so that the two three-year-olds could learn the lay of the land while still under adult supervision. We wanted to be sure they could quickly locate the restrooms from any point in the club before we allowed them to go by themselves. We got there right after the Little Einsteins (one of Oliver's favorites) activity started. I wish we'd gotten there a few minutes earlier, because Ollie was reluctant to join in. At one point one of the counselors noticed him watching and invited him over, which made him feel more comfortable.





After we left the Club, Elliott decided he wanted to hang out at the Lab for a while, so we dropped him off over there. The rest of us went up to Deck 4 (where the jogging track is) where Jason wore the tots out running them back and forth while Meghan and I hung out in a couple of lounge chairs for a while.



The water was so flat, there was hardly any movement, and it stayed that way through about Wednesday evening. Even then, it was minimal until the last night. We got so lucky with the weather and sea conditions!



Mike, Oliver, and I decided to head up to Deck 9 to check things out and ran into Stitch, one of my favorite characters.



By the time we finished, it was time for lunch, so we picked Elliott up and met the gang at Triton's. I ordered the Apple Walnut Salad and the Angus Chuck Burger. These were both quite tasty, though the burger was massive and I could barely eat half of it.





Mike ordered the Assorted Seafood Sampler and the Fusilli Pasta. He thought they were both pretty good.





Meghan had the Vegetable Quesadillas and the Glazed Meatloaf (which I have to admit looked really tasty). She said they were good.





The kids pretty much ordered the same rotation of dishes the whole week. Today included the Mickey pasta and pepperoni pizza.



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And the the boys: Elliott (8), Oliver (5)

March 4-11, 2012, Mexican Riviera on the Wonder
Trip Report


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Old 03-17-2012, 09:22 PM   #28
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Day 2 (Part Two): At Sea

After lunch we went to see the 2:00 matinee of the Golden Mickeys, which we thought was a lot of fun. We got there at 1:30, thinking it would be really crowded, but the theater was MAYBE 2/3 full. Still, we had great seats close to the front, in the center section, so it was worth it.

After the show, I ran to the Promenade Lounge for Disney Tunes Trivia, which started right as the Golden Mickeys ended. I got there right when they were about to start and had to slink off to my own little table to play alone, since the rest of my group hadn't been up to trivia right then. Sadly, I didn't win this time, but I don't think having the others would have helped. The few song titles I didn't know were pretty obscure. Still, I had fun. I just love playing trivia!

We headed back to the Oceaneer Club for another open house session in time for story time with Belle, and then Oliver had an absolute blast playing the parachute games.





We stopped by our room to get into our fancy duds for formal night, and then took the kids to the Promenade Lounge where there were some live performers and a bunch of kids dancing, while we waited for dinner time.



Dinner was the Golden Mickeys (formal night) menu at Triton's. Our awesome servers already had the kids' preferred drinks waiting for them, which was great. As he sat down, Oliver started announcing his desire for chocolate milk, and we were able to put it right into his eager little hands. Phapakorn: 1, Oliver: 0.

I ordered the Prosciutto with Chilled Honeydew (and then I ate Lucas' that he decided he didn't want... yay!) and the Yachtsman Steakhouse Grilled NY Strip. I also made the kids, who didn't want anything for a first course, order the corn soup off the kids menu, because I wanted to try it. And it was delicious!





Mike ordered the Caramelized Bay Scallops, the Broccoli and Maytag Blue Cheese Soup, and the Sweet-and-Sour Tofu.



Elliott ordered chicken strips and Oliver had the pork chop.





Just as I was about to let my food get cold while I prepped for Oliver, magic happened:



Phapakorn: 2. Oliver: 0. And Mommy wins! Seriously, though, this was one of the nice little touches. One night Phapakorn even cut up Meghan's meat when Lucas fell asleep on her lap. Then, Oliver's nightly ritual:



Meghan and Jason took Lucas back to their room after he, too, fell asleep, but Oliver ended up rallying and we hit the post-dinner family dance party in Studio Sea. The kid-friendly dance sessions were one of my very favorite things. The boys were just so happy out there dancing, regardless of whether it was standard dance club fare or preschool music. Watching them have such a wonderful time made my heart feel happy and light.





After the boys wore themselves out a bit we headed up to deck 9 for a little stroll and some self-serve ice cream. Then we headed back to the room to have some downtime watching classic Disney shorts on TV. I ordered some Buffalo wings and cookies and milk from room service. The wings didn't really taste like they were proper Buffalo-style, more like spicy barbecue, but I really liked them and ended up ordering them several more times. The blue cheese dressing it was served with was REALLY good, with big tasty chunks of cheese in it. I didn't eat it with the wings, but with the carrots and celery that were also served on the plate.

We ended the night with our second towel animal, what appeared to be a lobster:

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And the the boys: Elliott (8), Oliver (5)

March 4-11, 2012, Mexican Riviera on the Wonder
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Old 03-17-2012, 09:49 PM   #29
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Nice trip report! We were on the MR cruise the week before you and had a great time as well!
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Old 03-17-2012, 11:08 PM   #30
GooniesAndy
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Day 3 (Part One): At Sea

Day 3 Navigator:





Today the adults had our brunch at Palo at 11:30, so we took the kids to Beach Blanket Buffet for a light breakfast. The boys were totally thrilled to see Krispy Kreme doughnuts on the buffet. A few weeks ago I brought a box of them home, and so Elliott recognized the box.

After breakfast, I stopped and got a chai latte at the Cove Cafe, which was very tasty. Then we took the kids down for the Playhouse Disney Dance Party in the Promenade Lounge. Lucas was a bit overwhelmed by the loud music and boisterous kids, so he hung back by the adults, but Elliott and Oliver ran into the middle of things and had a great time dancing and playing games with Stephen, who was one of our favorite crew members. He was great with the kids.



We dropped the boys off at the Club in time for Toy Story Boot Camp (Elliott loved this; he said it was his favorite Club/Lab organized activity) and went to get dressed for Palo. Mike and I were ready a bit early, so we wandered around on deck 10, which I hadn't checked out yet. It was nice up there! I wish we'd have had time to take the boys up to the soccer court during a slow time, because they would have loved that.





Then, it was finally time for Palo!





We were told there is one woman whose entire job is to make sure the shipment of roses is kept perfect for distribution throughout the week.



Our server was Toni, and he was absolutely wonderful. He took such good care of us. First, he showed us all of the different self-serve stations. There was a seafood table, a bread and cheese table, one full of pastries, antipasti, and desserts.









He also showed us the selection of entrees that are prepared to order.









Jason and I ordered mimosas, the others water, and our entrees. I ordered the gorgonzola and grape pizza, Meghan got the tomato soup, Jason the eggs Benedict, and Mike the eggs Julia. After our orders were placed, it was time to start filling our plates! I can't even begin to list everything we ate, but pretty much everything was wonderful.





Both men decided that their eggs were the best thing they had the entire cruise. Later we had a second round. I ordered strawberry soup, Meg got the chicken Parmesan, and Mike and Jason had their own bowls of tomato soup. We all ate some of the chicken, and it was as good as I've seen everyone say. Yum! Apparently we were too busy leaping into everything Toni put on our table to take pictures, because I don't have a single one!
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And the the boys: Elliott (8), Oliver (5)

March 4-11, 2012, Mexican Riviera on the Wonder
Trip Report


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