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Old 02-09-2013, 04:13 PM   #1
AZMermaid
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Nursery during dinner

We are sailing to Alaska in July with my then almost 3 year old and 17 month olds. They are decently behaved at dinner.... but they behave like 1 and 2 year olds! I am unsure what to expect during the long meals. I am planning on using the nursery during dinner but toying with the following scenarios- either way, they will be dining with us the entire meal for the first night (not open, right?) and Toy Story night as I think my son will love the show. So, for the other 5 nights....

a) a modified dine and play plan each night, they eat first and someone runs them to the nursery halfway through dinner

b) putting them into the nursery for 2-3 full dinner times (like 5:30-8:30 or so- depending on if we want to see the show) and doing the full dinners with them the other nights (so 4-5 evenings of the 7). I would assume we would need to feed them ahead of time?

or a combo of the two... What are your thoughts? What has worked for you?
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Old 02-09-2013, 04:33 PM   #2
Melissa S
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What works for us is 6-7pm every night. I don't know what you meant by not open the first night. The nursery and club are open every night. We only have one child so DD eats at the MDR (we ask the servers to bring out her meal right away) one of us slips out and brings her to the nursery, we have our meal, the other one of us brings her back at 7 so we all can have dessert together. After that we usually go to a family dance party or see characters before we see the show together.

Every child is different but DD LOVES the shows. We've been cruising since she was 16 months and we never miss a show. The dinners are a different story. They are just too long for her so the hour break works for her and we get to have some time to ourselves. Have a great cruise!
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Old 02-09-2013, 05:28 PM   #3
k3chantal
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZMermaid View Post
We are sailing to Alaska in July with my then almost 3 year old and 17 month olds. They are decently behaved at dinner.... but they behave like 1 and 2 year olds! I am unsure what to expect during the long meals. I am planning on using the nursery during dinner but toying with the following scenarios- either way, they will be dining with us the entire meal for the first night (not open, right?) and Toy Story night as I think my son will love the show. So, for the other 5 nights....

a) a modified dine and play plan each night, they eat first and someone runs them to the nursery halfway through dinner

b) putting them into the nursery for 2-3 full dinner times (like 5:30-8:30 or so- depending on if we want to see the show) and doing the full dinners with them the other nights (so 4-5 evenings of the 7). I would assume we would need to feed them ahead of time?

or a combo of the two... What are your thoughts? What has worked for you?
With my 18 month old, we quickly learned that everyone involved (especially her) was happier while she was in the nursery during our dinner rotation. Nope, you don't need to feed them ahead of time. You just need to make sure you are at the nursery and club when they are serving dinner.

When you are on the ship, you will most likely be able to book additional times for the nursery as long as everyone has had an opportunity to book their hours. So from then on, we booked during dinner.
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Old 02-09-2013, 05:59 PM   #4
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I'd be interested in people's experiences as well. Right now we have nursery reservations for our then 15 month old for 9 pm every night that we plan to be in the MDR. We opted for late dining that starts at 815.

I think 30 minutes at dinner would have been ideal but nursery reservations are at the hour and half hour.

And speaking of toddlers and dining, I'm assuming it would be too tacky too use the adhesive table toppers in the MDR. My toddler would throw real dishes though. Any ideas for how to handle this?
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Old 02-09-2013, 06:06 PM   #5
k3chantal
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I'd be interested in people's experiences as well. Right now we have nursery reservations for our then 15 month old for 9 pm every night that we plan to be in the MDR. We opted for late dining that starts at 815.

I think 30 minutes at dinner would have been ideal but nursery reservations are at the hour and half hour.

And speaking of toddlers and dining, I'm assuming it would be too tacky too use the adhesive table toppers in the MDR. My toddler would throw real dishes though. Any ideas for how to handle this?
Share your concern about plates being thrown with your server and assistant server. They will come up with a solution. My middle boy was so thrilled to learn before the cruise that he could order off the adult menu that when, at the first meal, they gave him a child's menu, he became upset. We never saw a child's menu again (until we were off the ship )

So explain the 'issue'. They will probably be happier to come up with a safe solution than to pick up the toddler's meal off the floor.

But I still say from my other post in this thread, leave the child in the nursery and let them feed them. Enjoy yourself!
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Old 02-09-2013, 11:19 PM   #6
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Thanks for sharing these ideas. We took DD on a different cruise line (without a nursery) at 16 months and are VERY excited to have a nursery available for our upcoming DCL cruise (she'll be 2). I'm trying to figure out how to best utilize our available time (we're doing WDW for the first part of the week, so I'm sure we'll be ready for some adult time on the Dream).

I agree with others about having the kids with you for the first part of dinner, DD loves mealtime and is quite pleasant while she is eating. Keeping the kids at the table the first half hour or hour is nice, but I also love the idea of them taking them to the nursery and enjoying the rest of the meal at a more leisurely pace. The adult venues are also very nice for between the meal and the show, so I might consider leaving DD in the nursery until just before the show then taking her to the show with us.

I'm also "budgeting" some of our nursery time for us to go to either Palo or Remy
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:30 PM   #7
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Thanks for the input- I appreciate it! I think we are leaning towards a mix-
2 nights- full dinner with us
2 nights- half dinner (thinking 6:30-8:00- dinner starts at 5:45, does this seem right?)
2 nights- full dinner in nursery (5:30-8:00?)
1 night- I think our Ketchikan excursion is going to run into early dining and they serve us a meal on the excursion. If the timing isn't right, I will adjust, I may book the full meal ahead of time and cancel if needed.

We can pre book 18 hours per kid on 7 night cruises, right? Since I have 2 kids nursery age, I want to be sure to pre-book the dinners especially. We are hoping for a Palo brunch but are first time cruisers, so we may end up having to book that on board. My in-laws are going with us, so we figure if we can get brunch, worst case, they can watch the kids during that time.

Also, is it hard to extend after 8:00? I am thinking we might check on them and if they are fine, stay out another hour or so. They go to bed at 7 on the dot here at home, but are unlikely to sleep in the nursery, so we'll see how that goes. But, my thought was people likely book starting at dinner for the rest of the evening, so it is unlikely that anyone would be starting their nursery time at 8:00 or later.... or is that naive?

Thanks for the info about it being open the first night. For some reason I thought that was all Open House the first day!
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