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Old 05-14-2013, 10:54 AM   #16
Moxin
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Wow, you guys have some awesome advice! This is getting me more and more excited about the trip!!! I cannot wait!! Thank goodness we are headed to WDW after the cruise otherwise I think I would fall into depression!! ROFL
Ah, another faux pas. Word of advice, do the parks BEFORE your cruise. That way you go through all of the hustle and bustle of the parks, then you get to relax on the cruise. Did that once, never again...we always do the parks before the cruise now.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:08 AM   #17
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Ah, another faux pas. Word of advice, do the parks BEFORE your cruise. That way you go through all of the hustle and bustle of the parks, then you get to relax on the cruise. Did that once, never again...we always do the parks before the cruise now.
If I did it this way I'd get nothing done at WDW. Just wander around all mellow from the cruise.

Of course there's always just skip the parks and take a longer cruise.
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:37 AM   #18
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My funny tip, since you mentioned you have a DD. Make sure she's not wearing sparkly nail polish on her toes! My daughter had on purple sparkly polish and the fish at Castaway Cay kept swarming her like she was a delicious donut. Took me a few minutes to realize what the attractant was. I couldn't stop laughing but she was not happy, lol. She had at least a few yellow tails take a taste of her tootsies. The bites don't hurt but they sure freaked her out!
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:44 AM   #19
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I'll tell you one tip I'm super excited about is dropping off an item at Guest Services for character autographs. A lot of people mention a pillowcase, but I opted for a white photo mat. It'll go great surrounding a family picture from the cruise!
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:47 AM   #20
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We did our first cruise in April - 3 days on the Dream - it's just dd9 and me. We were surprised that she didn't make friends at the kids club. She makes friends pretty easily but she said it was not set up for alot of group interaction. She was very excited about going to the kids club and wasn't too thrilled with the experience. We were there during spring break and had a storm on our Nassau day so the club was PACKED with lots of crying kids. Having said that, she wants to go back. I just thought she would want to be there more.
There are a ton of family activities - which surprised me a little. I thought there would be lots for kids and lots for adults but was very happily surprised at the amount of family activities (and you can purchase an alcoholic beverage during these family activities . We definitely tried to do it all and came home very tired. Next trip is already planned to just relax. My dd loved the bingo and we went to all the shows and ate at all three restaurants. From an atmosphere perspective, Animator's Palette was our favorite.
My dd was afraid to ride the Aquaduck - not sure why, she rides all the mountains at Disney. I convinced her to try it our last day and then couldn't get her away from it. So, lesson learned, I should have forced the issue earlier!
Finally, one tip that was shared with me is the Deck 13 front of the ship is an adults only lounging area. It was empty and wonderful and relaxing - I took a little snooze while dd was in the club.
One more, we did the ship tour at 1:00 on day 1 and was very grateful we did. It was a nice way to see the ship and the guides were great (and then we saw them throughout the cruise).
Enjoy!!
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Old 05-14-2013, 11:55 AM   #21
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If you haven't already checked out the thread for your meet group, I would get over there ASAP! We took our DD on the Dream last year when she was a few months shy of her 9th birthday. She had seemed really excited about the Lab before the cruise, but once we were on the ship she got really skittish about it. We went in with her for a little while on the first afternoon, but she never went back. Fast forward to this year on the Fantasy. I reached out ahead of time to a couple of parents with daughters my DD's age. She met one of them early in the cruise and they hit it off and ended up spending a lot of time together. My DD was willing to give the Lab a try because her friend was going. From that point on, she spent a couple of hours there each evening after dinner.

One other tip: Make sure you take your camera to character meet & greets. You can take your own photos or ask a CM to take photos of your family.
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Old 05-14-2013, 12:00 PM   #22
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I'll tell you one tip I'm super excited about is dropping off an item at Guest Services for character autographs. A lot of people mention a pillowcase, but I opted for a white photo mat. It'll go great surrounding a family picture from the cruise!
I had a photomat cut out to allow me to put 2 5x7 and 2 4x6. I figured I would have more than one picture to put into the mat. Have one of each cut for vertical and horizontal.
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Old 05-14-2013, 12:02 PM   #23
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I'll tell you one tip I'm super excited about is dropping off an item at Guest Services for character autographs. A lot of people mention a pillowcase, but I opted for a white photo mat. It'll go great surrounding a family picture from the cruise!
We went the pillowcase route and used fabric markers. what ever pillow they put it n is now their favorite pillow.

Also make sure at least one night order room service and get a mickey dream bar. Before going on excursions off the boat the night before order some uncrustables and ask to NOT open them that way the next day you have snacks for DD while off the ship.

30 minutes prior is the mantra to any major character meets. I'm only talking about princess meet and greet and see ya real soon (the last day).

Find your cruise's meet and greet and sign up and do the fish extender. It was like Christmas every day they found something inside. The kids are still playing the all the kazoos and magnets on the fridge.

Don't think you can do it all. you won't just enjoy you're vacation

Hope this helps.
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Old 05-14-2013, 12:04 PM   #24
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Ah, another faux pas. Word of advice, do the parks BEFORE your cruise. That way you go through all of the hustle and bustle of the parks, then you get to relax on the cruise. Did that once, never again...we always do the parks before the cruise now.
Our first cruise (non DCL), we did 2 long walking base days at the parks, embarked for a week, debarked and went right back and hopped all day. So my vote is actually for BOTH before AND after the cruise! (Aren't I greedy?)

Assuming that that isn't an option (like this last DCL), we fit in one long wild and crazy hopping day and then enjoyed our cruise. I feel like it's a great way to get it started, under the fireworks at Cinderella's castle. In the end, some land and some sea, however you work it, it is great! great!
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Old 05-14-2013, 01:42 PM   #25
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Like a pp said, always bring your camera to character meet and greets. Two reasons:

1) Sometimes there is no DCL photographer. We went to a Mickey meet and greet and were surprised to find there was no photographer. So glad we had our camera. Originally I didn't and had gone back to the room to get it and was happy I did.

2) The DCL staff are happy to use your camera to take pictures. This kept us from having to buy all of the professional shots. We bought a few but were grateful to have some of our own pictures also.
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Old 05-14-2013, 02:50 PM   #26
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My dd was afraid to ride the Aquaduck - not sure why, she rides all the mountains at Disney. I convinced her to try it our last day and then couldn't get her away from it. So, lesson learned, I should have forced the issue earlier!
On the first day, my DD7 got halfway up the steps and then came down crying because she was scared. We gave it a couple of days, and then I told her if she went with me on it, she could get two ice cream cones from Eye Scream. She agreed, we rode the duck, and she got off the ride beaming and said, "I want to do that again - after I eat my two ice cream cones!"

I don't always bribe my kids, but when I do, I make it a good one.
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Old 05-14-2013, 04:24 PM   #27
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On the first day, my DD7 got halfway up the steps and then came down crying because she was scared. We gave it a couple of days, and then I told her if she went with me on it, she could get two ice cream cones from Eye Scream. She agreed, we rode the duck, and she got off the ride beaming and said, "I want to do that again - after I eat my two ice cream cones!"

I don't always bribe my kids, but when I do, I make it a good one.
Good use of "Dos Equis" quote! LOL
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Old 05-17-2013, 01:58 AM   #28
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I had a photomat cut out to allow me to put 2 5x7 and 2 4x6. I figured I would have more than one picture to put into the mat. Have one of each cut for vertical and horizontal.
That is a great idea! I never thought of "customizing" my own photo mat. Was just going for the standard 8x10. (we are also doing a pillowcase). What size frame did you end up having to buy to fit the mat that had the two 5x7 pics?
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Old 05-17-2013, 05:57 AM   #29
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search for navigators and give them a look now so you can see what kinda things interest you and when the timing is so you can plan accordingly,,, but you absolutely cannot do it all,,,, we tried and failed, LOL,, play goofy golf, that was one thing we missed but wished we did, kinda cheesy but where else can you play golf with a wonderful view
expect crowds to all the main deck gatherings, depending on how u feel about crowds this may influence your positioning at the gathering, ie up front and close or on the fringe
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Old 05-17-2013, 06:23 AM   #30
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Good use of "Dos Equis" quote! LOL
Ha! Got a good laugh out ta that one. Hey Dad raised us on the biggest roller coasters in the world at CP Sandusky and every yr a bigger one came out. (Talking 200 ft). We would get to buy the T-shirt if we rode it! It pretty much worked! Now he has go get em girls although funny enough him n mom were convinced we would be drowned or eaten by a shark when we were the only ones snorkeling the reef at BL! He whistled and pitched a fit til we came in, and we now are 31!! What happened to the good ol days of adventure dad... Sheesh...

Anyway good job bribing mom. It does work! (Don't have kids, but my four legs will do literally anything for treat treats! Guess its about the same thing.)
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