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Old 10-12-2014, 10:12 PM   #1
jenseib
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Hi, I’m Julie McCoy, Your TR Director

Ok, Ok, I am not really Julie McCoy. I am Jen.



(And that sweet bundle of joy is my new granddaughter, Gracie)

Take a good look as there are not many pictures of me at all in this TR.

So who is Julie McCoy? Well if you don’t know who she is you either grew up with no TV, had mean parents, grew up on a desert island, or you are just plain too young!
She was the cruise director on the popular series from the late 70’s into the mid 80’s called “The Love Boat”. Growing up this show…along with Fantasy Island…could not be missed. At least in the early years. The later years were not so good.
The Love Boat had a cast of regulars who played the crew and then many stars weekly would join the crew for a sailing. Of course they had love issues as well as many other life issues, but by the end of the show everything pretty much worked out and all lived happily ever after. They also had a few stars that came back for recurring roles, such as Charo…who I am pretty sure I saw on this sailing as well. They sailed on the Pacific Princess each week out of California….usually.

Growing up and watching this show had made me want to cruise. It looked like so much fun. My sister and I used to play “cruise” at times and we always put on my mom’s fancy gowns and pretended to drink pina coladas. Had I known what they were back then I would’ve switched to another drink….I hate coconut! LOL!

My first cruise was in the late 90’s and it was on a NCL ship. I had a great time. It was neat to see that things on the show actually really were on ships….Like the promenade and lido decks.

My 2nd cruise was also with NCL in 2003 for my belated honeymoon with my husband, Skip.
We had a great time once again, but for some reason Skip doesn’t remember that. He came home and within weeks he had some delusion about the cruise and said he wasn’t going to sail again for a long time. I have been working on getting him back on a ship since then and finally in 2011 I had us booked on Disney….only to have him have to cancel a few weeks prior because his brother and business partner broke his leg. Since they are dairy farmers, he had to stay home and take care of the cows.
My mother took his place.
I have now sailed 4 Disney cruises and I can’t tell you enough about them. They are fabulous and I have written reports on each of those sailings. (currently working on my most recent one)
I did finally get Skip on the Disney Magic this past March and he loved it. Right before we sailed he asked me why he didn’t like the NCL cruise …..and my reply to him was “I have no idea…something you made up in your head”. LOL!

So you know my love for cruising and its roots and you know I love DCL. So why did I finally try Princess?
Well there are several really. Without going into too much detail, I am working on a certification that requires me to travel and one of the travel requirements was that I sail on more than one cruise line. Secondly, I had a free Princess cruise sitting in my back pocket for years now. Yes, I had this baby since 2011 and I just could never fit it in my schedule. Also by sailing Princess I was earning a 2nd certification besides the other one I am working on. So it all fit in nicely.

Now how did I decide on my dates?
Well, I had certain cruises I could choose from and I went down the list and I had to fit it in at a time I wasn’t too busy. I had a business trip to Disney World in Aug and I really tried to make it work with that, but it didn’t. I thought Sept. would be good, but then we had my nieces 5th b-day party coming up and my sister was surprising her with a trip to Disney World for her birthday…I couldn’t miss that party. My oldest daughter Paige was expecting a baby, due Oct. 14, so it had to be before that.

In the end, the Sept. 29th cruise looked like the best date. It was a 5 night cruise on the Caribbean Princess. Being that I had not sailed on any Princess ships to date, I wasn’t too worried about which ship I sailed on and I read some decent reviews of it. The ports however were not my favorite, but I could live with it. Costa Maya is basically a junk hole as far as ports go, but we could get off the ship for a short time and then back on and enjoy the day. Cozumel is one I do like and I didn’t mind going again, though this would be my 3rd time there.

Now who would go with me? Well I asked my best friend Lisa, who had sailed with me on a girls trip in 2012. That was her first cruise and we had a great time. But she was remodeling her house and though the cruise was free, she would still have to pay for air and anything extra and she decided she better not go.
So I asked my Mom. She is easy to travel with and I knew she had been wanting to cruise again. She said yes and I booked us and then we had a few months to wait.

Now we had to find airfare. We found a good price for our flight home on Southwest….which I also had a lot of points for, so I could get a free flight. We booked that one early on.

So we waited and watched and the Sunday flights down (our cruise started on a Monday) were just way too high. So we decided to fly down on Saturday in the end and stay at the Fairfield Inn near the airport for 2 nights, which was cheaper than paying the higher flight prices.

So we’re all set. But this cruise and several surrounding it were not selling out. I really debated adding the cruise beforehand and making it a 9 day cruise, but Mom wouldn’t be able to take the time off and my husband was going to be watching our daughter Claire as it was, so I didn’t make that move and kept it as a weeklong trip instead.

Join me as I tell you all about the Caribbean Princess and our other adventures and what I thought about the Love Boat! Be warned…I will probably be comparing this often with the Disney ships…it’s just in my nature.
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Old 10-12-2014, 10:13 PM   #2
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Sept. 27, 2014, Saturday, Day 1
Time to Fly
Ft. Lauderdale and Seafood
Calling it a Night

Sept. 28, 2014, Sunday, Day 2
Disney Juice and the Everglades
Boarding an Airboat
Birds and a Peeing Igauna
Jessie the Gator
More Gators and Chris the Gator Boy
Crazy Chris and the Beach
Hollywood Beach
Room Still Not Cleaned, Dinner and Once Upon a Time


Sept. 29, 2014, Monday, Day 3
Port of Everglades and the Caribbean Princess
Our Inside Room, R407
Lunch and a View of the Port
The Sanctuary
Lotus Spa
Mocktails and Ice-cream
We Need Four
Good Bye Port Everglades
Dinner in the Coral Dining Room
Our First Princess Show
Duo Push
Enjoying the Evening


Sept. 30, 2014, Tuesday, Day 4
Early Morning Walk
Skywalkers
Exploring the Morning Ship
Breakfast and Food Art
Enjoying the Piazza
Lunch and an Afternoon Stroll
Afternoon Snack and Champagne Fountain
Formal Night Dinner
Not so Great Singers
An End to Another Wonderful Day

Oct. 1, 2014, Wednesday, Day 5

Oct. 2, 2014, Thursday, Day 6

Oct. 3, 2014, Friday, Day 7

Oct. 4, 2014, Saturday, Day 8

Last edited by jenseib; 12-20-2014 at 10:29 AM.
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Old 10-13-2014, 02:27 AM   #3
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YEAH! I'm in. Can't wait to fill in the details on your latest adventure!
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:12 AM   #4
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Congrats on your beautiful grandaughter! A future DCL cruiser to be sure!
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:32 AM   #5
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I should have known you would post here too! I just replied to you on the Princess board and now I have to decide if I will follow you here or there! I may end up doing a little of both with a short break for my own cruise on the Caribbean Princess. The main difference is that we will be stopping in Grand Cayman instead of Costa Maya. It will be interesting to see how our experience compares with yours. Regardless of whether I end up following you here or there I am coming along for the ride.
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Old 10-13-2014, 07:20 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mom2rtk View Post
YEAH! I'm in. Can't wait to fill in the details on your latest adventure!
I hope to get going on this but I still have my spring one to work on....so yes I am crazy to tackle both!

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Congrats on your beautiful grandaughter! A future DCL cruiser to be sure!
Welocme!!!!!
And yes, She will be a Disney lover, whether she likes it or not.


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Originally Posted by perfectmatch300 View Post
I should have known you would post here too! I just replied to you on the Princess board and now I have to decide if I will follow you here or there! I may end up doing a little of both with a short break for my own cruise on the Caribbean Princess. The main difference is that we will be stopping in Grand Cayman instead of Costa Maya. It will be interesting to see how our experience compares with yours. Regardless of whether I end up following you here or there I am coming along for the ride.
I knew you would find me at one or the other.
Costa Maya is not that fun. I did go to GC in 2012 on DCL. We snorkeled there. I would much rather go there than Costa.
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Old 10-13-2014, 09:43 AM   #7
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Day 1, Sept. 27, 2014, Saturday

So how does one prepare for a cruise on a Princess ship? Well you watch episodes of the Love Boat. I actually have seasons 1 and 2 on DVD and I have been watching them off and on for 2 years. I am still working on watching them in my spare time, but I did watch about 3 more the month before our cruise.

We had to leave fairly early this day for the airport. My Dad brought my Mom over to my house….and he stayed till we left. My Aunt was going to take us and arrive around 7:15 AM.
I had to wake Claire up so she could say her good byes to us…well mostly me and she was not too happy about it. There were a lot of tears. Though I think my dad was going to miss my mom just as much and if he could, he would’ve cried and held on to her leg as well. Claire then went off crying over to my mother in laws house next door.

We left around 7:30ish and drove up to Detroit Airport, with one potty stop because my Mom can’t make it anywhere very far when she drinks coffee.

I had done airline check in the day before, and wouldn’t you know it, Mom got the TSA pre-select….I did not.
We said goodbye to my Aunt and checked in our bags and headed through security, which for mom was a breeze and for me not too bad, and went to our gate.

I had an email from a client in the morning, so once we found a seat I had to make some calls to get things situated and send off some emails.
Then I decided I better eat something since it would be a few hours before I got something decent….and I am not a pleasant person when I am hungry.
I remembered the airport had an Earl of Sandwich, though I have yet to visit this location, so I looked on the airport map and found it and walked over and got myself a Full Montagu…MMMMM!





And it was delicious!!!!



After my sandwich was done, the airplane had arrived and we watched them load the bags and saw all 4 of ours go on it. Well we know our bags are making it at least one leg of the journey!





We were a B loading number so once we got on the plane we decided to go to the very last seat of the plane to sit together. Mom has to be on the end as she gets anxious sitting inside. I sat next to her, but then I moved over to the window seat. I had hoped no one would come this far back and sit with us and then we could have the seat to ourselves. The flight attendant told us the flight was not full, but close to it. She said there was a good chance we would sit alone.





We didn’t luck out. There was a lady that made a beeline to the back. We should’ve put a bag on the seat between us to make it look like we were waiting on someone else, but I wasn’t quick thinking. And I think this girl wanted the back row and she bypassed many other seats to come to ours.
Oh well you can’t have it all.

Soon we were in the air and on our way to Baltimore for the first leg of the trip.

Once we landed and exited off the plane….being in the last row makes you one of the last to get off….we looked for our next gate number and then headed that way. We had a little time before the flight and Mom was hungry, so she went to find something and I got us a table.





I ended up getting some spring rolls to snack on as I wasn’t super hungry, but I needed a little boost.

Soon it was time to head to the gate and it was packed over there. I stood at one of the recharging stations and charged my laptop and phone. My phone didn’t need much and a lady came over to charge hers only to realize she didn’t have the plug part. I let her use mine so she could at least top it off and we chatted for a bit.

Again we were B boarding and we went for the same row again…and this time we lucked out and had the seat to ourselves. It was nice to have a little bit of extra room.







I think we ended up pulling out a few minutes late, but it wasn’t too bad.





I love to take pictures out the window when I can.

















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Old 10-13-2014, 10:18 AM   #8
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Hey Julie, I mean Jen! I'm excited to read all about your trip. Marking my spot and will go back to read what you've posted so far.

Okay, so I'm all caught up. Looks like your travel day is going pretty smoothly so far. I had to laugh when you said that your dad would have cried and held on to your mother's leg if he could have.
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Old 10-13-2014, 10:49 AM   #9
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Hi Jen, I am really looking forward to your report! I have been looking at Pricess cruise line for quite some time as they do offer some interesting itineraries! Even if yours was not the most exciting one!!
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Old 10-13-2014, 12:10 PM   #10
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Here for the journey!

Question, which thread in your signature is the current Disney cruise?
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Old 10-13-2014, 12:15 PM   #11
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I'm in! I was obsessed with The Love Boat too. Got to see the set back in the late 70's when we visited Universal Studios in Hollywood.

Your new granddaughter is so cute!

Jill in CO
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Old 10-13-2014, 01:45 PM   #12
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Checking in. I had never realised that Germany was a desert island. We did not have The Love Boat, but we had our own TV programme set on a cruise ship.

I have very fond memories of Costa Maya, but when we visited I fulfilled a childhood dream of seeing some Mayan ruins. Cozumel is a favourite of ours.

Looks like your travel day went fairly smoothly. I am looking forward to reading more.

Corinna
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Old 10-13-2014, 03:46 PM   #13
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Saving my spot! Now going back to read! Thanks for the link, Jen.
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Old 10-13-2014, 07:46 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mickeystoontown View Post
Hey Julie, I mean Jen! I'm excited to read all about your trip. Marking my spot and will go back to read what you've posted so far.

Okay, so I'm all caught up. Looks like your travel day is going pretty smoothly so far. I had to laugh when you said that your dad would have cried and held on to your mother's leg if he could have.
It did go fairly smoothly, it's just a long day when you have to switch planes and they seem to take you out of the way to do that.
Yes, Dad and Claire were both having fits about us going away. I am not sure who was worse. I'll give you a little glimpse in the future....when mom turned her phone on after the cruise...he had called every single day and left her a voice mail asking her why she wasn't calling him....even though we told him we would have no phone access the whole time. He even called verizon and asked them if she could call and they told him yes....they neglected to tell him the cost of the calls though.

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Originally Posted by Flossbolna View Post
Hi Jen, I am really looking forward to your report! I have been looking at Pricess cruise line for quite some time as they do offer some interesting itineraries! Even if yours was not the most exciting one!!
I just saw the other day that you had a TR going but I haven't had a chance to get over and read it.
I do like Princess. I think I'll give you a good review of the good and the bad, but each ship is different as well. Some of the things I didn't like, I was told was not normal for Princess ships.

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Here for the journey!

Question, which thread in your signature is the current Disney cruise?
Well....it's the Tale of the Grow Walk. But I only just finished day 4 of the park days and have 3 more to do till I get to the cruise portion...I am going painfully slow on it. The good news is I have all the pictures for those 3 days edited and I just have to write it up. I am going to try and plow through those days in the next 2 weeks if I get time so I can get to the cruise portion. I have had a lot of people tell me they want to read that part as well the most.

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I'm in! I was obsessed with The Love Boat too. Got to see the set back in the late 70's when we visited Universal Studios in Hollywood.

Your new granddaughter is so cute!

Jill in CO
The Love Boat was such a great show at the time. Gavin McLoed does a lot of promotional stuff for Princess and I have taken classes where he does videos for them. I love it. Would you believe there was an officer on this ship with the name Gavin McLoed. He had no choice but to work for Princess.

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Checking in. I had never realised that Germany was a desert island. We did not have The Love Boat, but we had our own TV programme set on a cruise ship.

LOL! I had someone from England tell me they never saw or heard of it either, so it must've mainly been a US thing. You can find them on youtube. They are now somewhat cheesy to watch, but in its day it was a fabulous show.

I have very fond memories of Costa Maya, but when we visited I fulfilled a childhood dream of seeing some Mayan ruins. Cozumel is a favourite of ours.

We debated on going to the ruins and that would definitely have been worth it....the thing was a 2 hour bus ride each way and we just were not enthuised about that part.

Looks like your travel day went fairly smoothly. I am looking forward to reading more.

Corinna

It did go pretty smoothly. I was glad we had a whole extra day before getting on the ship too. We just really lazed around.

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Saving my spot! Now going back to read! Thanks for the link, Jen.
Hi Karin!!!!!!
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Old 10-14-2014, 01:50 AM   #15
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Awe congratulations on baby Gracie, how is Clair taking to being an aunt?
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