Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by bobbi565, Feb 19, 2008.
Great TR so far.
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Hi has anybody seen or posted the navigators anywhere??I can not find any recent ones anywhere
Great report, heres hoping X Lynne
This site has a Western posted from February:
Nevermind, they've still got that one blocked.
Sorry I didn't respond to your pm! I have the Navigators but haven't made the time to scan them yet. I will try to do that. As you can see, the time dedicated to posting the TR has become more scarce as of late, but I'm working on getting the next installment up.
can't wait to read more It's funny how real life gets in the way of the DIS. It can be a real pain
Love your trip report so far! We are doing the western this November. We also plan on going to Boatswain Beach and Chankanaab, so thank you for the info & photos. I know my kids will be anxious to swim in a pool that is bigger than the cruise ship pool. Do you know how much the "other bracelet" cost at Chankanaab to use the pool? I was not aware there was an additional cost for this. TIA!
I wish I had an answer for you. I checked the park's website when I came home and it lists "swimming areas" as incuded in the admission fee and doesn't list swimming pool in the extras. DH got the feeling the employee was handing us a line...
It was our second sea day, and this time I remembered my camera when I went up to Deck 4 to watch the sunrise.
We were really looking forward to a relaxing day aboard the Magic. I had my Personal Training session scheduled for today, and Id gone through the Navigator and noted all the character appearances on my daily agenda along with the Family Crafts session at 11:30 in the Promenade Lounge and the rehearsal and performance of Celebrate the Journey. Other than that, DH and I wanted to see Disney Dreams and hit the Midnight Dessert Buffet. Yeah, I know---its what we call a relaxing day at CPA (Compulsive Planners Anonymous)! I got another latte (next time Ill have to get one of those buy 5, get the 6th free cards!) and wandered around Deck 9 a bit before heading back to the stateroom. Once the boys awoke, we did our Topsiders/Ariel Screen breakfast routine, and then DH, who LOVES to buy presents for DS, suggested we visit Mickeys Mates. Normally, I try to avoid souvenir shopping with DS and DH together, as I can usually manage to keep the bill from skyrocketing when shopping with just DS---but hey, its vacation! We wandered about picking out tee shirts, a Christmas tree ornament , a notepad cube, and a couple of Disney Racers---little die-cast vehicles inspired by various Disney characters---that DS just adored. I had gotten him one on a visit to MM earlier in the week, and this time I let him pick out a couple more. In the midst of shopping, DS informed me he had to go to the bathroom, so I put our stuff down and hustled him over to the nearest restroom. By the time we were finished, I really needed to head up to my 9:30 appointment at the fitness center, so I dumped all my souvies and DS on DH and told them Id see them later. I hightailed it up to the Vista Spa and arrived at exactly 9:30 to find Matthew from South Africa waiting. He brought me back to his office in the fitness center where he instructed me to take off one shoe and sock. He attached a skinny wire with a tiny sensor of some kind to the top of my foot and another to the back of my hand. After typing some information into his computer and making a few adjustments to a little machine with a roll of what looked like cash register receipt paper in it, it printed up some data that he pulled off the machine. He studied the figures gravely, and then began to go over the results with me. He actually expressed some concerns about the body water numbers and said that he would recommend my embarking on some type of detoxification program (for which he would be glad to sell me the products), but was worried about my response after trying out his sales pitch on DH three days earlier. DH can be a bit intimidating when he gets his ire up, and apparently was less than enthusiastic about Matthews suggestions about the products that might improve his level of fitness. I informed him that I possess a vastly different temperament from DH, but that I would politely decline his sales pitch and do some independent research on detoxification upon returning home. We talked a bit more about fitness and diet, and he informed me that most people consume in the neighborhood of 6000 calories a day onboard---WOW! Eventually, we headed out to the fitness area. He asked me what I hoped to achieve in the personal training session, and I told him that I felt my usual workout routine had sort of stalled out , and I wanted some new ideas to mix it up a bit. He led me over to the free weight area, handed me a pair of dumbbells, and instructed me through a series of super-sets, combinations of exercises designed to hit complimentary muscle groups. Three sets each of three exercises followed by a three minute run on the treadmill gave me a high end sort of circuit training approach. After three of these supersets highlighting muscle groups in the upper body, he grabbed a pair of dumbbells and walked me over to the leg extension machine. We continued supersets for lower body with leg extensions and dumbbell squats. These were REALLY killer, causing major burn and driving me right to the point of muscle fatigue. I have to admit, I was climbing the stairs gingerly for the remainder of the cruise as a result of this training. Finally, he grabbed a yoga mat and we did a series of Pilates exercises to train abs. He was also pretty merciless with these, which was ok since I wanted to jump start my stalled out training routine. When I was finally released to my own devices, I decided Id earned a trip on the elevator, as opposed to my usual habit of taking the stairs. I paged DH on the walkie talkie and found him and DS on Deck 9. I ran up to meet them so I could take DS to the family craft session in the Promenade Lounge. When I found them, DS was wearing the green tee shirt Id picked out for myself earlier at MM. Whats he doing in my tee shirt? I asked DH. Your tee shirt? he responded. Yeah, I said, thats my tee shirt. How is that your tee shirt? he asked. Its a ladies small---I buy his shirts oversized and mine fitted. I guess theyre starting to look about the same size! I laughed. After DS offered me the shirt off his back, we got him another shirt from our stateroom and headed over to the Promenade Lounge to get crafty. When we arrived, there were a few tables each with a child or two mostly accompanied by one parent, all moms if I recall correctly. The craft was doorknob hangers which were made of a sturdy craft paper with a variety of colors from which to choose and markers and foam stickers with which to decorate them. Three CMs distributed materials and circulated offering praise as the little ones created their masterpieces.
DS enjoyed making his craft for about 15 minutes or so and then was finished. He wanted to go hang it on our doorknob, so we headed down to the stateroom to do so. On our way back, we walked smack dab into the Princess Gathering in the Lobby Atrium. Still basking in the afterglow of his princess encounters of the night before, DS excitedly insisted that we get in line. The line was pretty long and, once again, filled mostly with little girls in princess costumes. But, honey, I prostested, you visited with Snow White and Cinderella last night! But I want to see her! he insisted, pointing a little finger at that vision in sunshine yellow. Belle... I breathed reverently---an English teachers ideal heroine. How could I deny my son an encounter with the most perfect of all princesses---intelligent, independent, sassy, loyal, loving, and literate---everything he should grow to value in a woman. Ok, I caved, grabbing his hand and leading him to the end of the line (reaching almost to the rear entrance of Lumieres), lets go get Belle to sign in. I must admit, the Princess Gathering is a pretty efficient way to get your character meet and greets accomplished. One line, three princesses all in a row (Snow White, Belle, and Cinderella), and you get to move from one to the next---one, two, three. The only catch is theres no ships photographer, just pictures with your own camera. Ok, I can deal with that. After getting in line, a CM took a position in line behind us and informed everyone else who tried to get in line that the line was closed---whew! The line moved pretty quickly, and we breezed past Snow White (sorry, lady, BTDT) and got our shot with Belle.
Then we returned to our stateroom, hung our craft on the doorknob and grabbed the cute little Disney Racer cars to take them up to lunch. I was excited that today was the seafood buffet at Topsiders Id heard about on this message board. DH joined us after getting out of the shower with his usual Plutos cheeseburger lunch, while I pigged out on crab legs, crawfish, muscles, shrimp, seafood salad, and freshly made sushi (yummmm!). DH ate some bread, as usual, a few orange slices, a chocolate chip cookie, and chocolate milk.
After finishing lunch, we headed back up to Deck 9. DS couldnt wait to get pictures with Donald and Max, scheduled to appear in the Gazebo, and sign them in. We werent up there long before an announcement was made for all the children to come up and take a seat at the front of the stage under the Ariel View to get front row seats for the ice sculpture demonstration. During this, CMs circulated around serving giant popsicles. One 300 pound block of ice, one chainsaw, one chisel, one DCL ice sculpture artist, and about 15 minutes and we got to see this
turn into this
When that was over, it was time for pictures first with Donald
and then Max (surprisingly, I think, DSs favorite)
After the pictures, I tried to get DS to go to the rehearsal for the big graduation ceremony. Unfortunately, he only wanted to do it if I could go onstage with him, so we passed on that (maybe next time) and decided to spend some time in the pool instead. A quick trip back to the room to change and we were pool ready!
I intimated to DH that after my rigorous morning workout, I could sure use some Jacuzzi time, and he offered to supervise DS in the Mickey Pool, so I could head over to the Quiet Cove. We spent the afternoon by the pool, and I relieved DH after about a half an hour to hang at the pool with DS so he could take a nap back in the room. DS had learned that if he brought the aqua soaker wed picked up at Ron Jon, he never had a shortage of playmates!
DS and I went back to the room in enough time to get dressed for semi-formal night and catch Goofy in the Lobby Atrium at 5:15.
When DS and I were finished with Goofy, DH was still getting dressed, so we told him wed meet him at Parrott Cay and set off for Shutters to see if any new pictures were up. When we were done, we walked downstairs to Deck 3 and started down the hall to PC with lots of time to spare before dinner. Being semi-formal night, all corners of the Lobby Atrium were set up for formal portraits where the lines were sizeable, but as we made our way down this hall, we encountered a photographer with a sunset on the ships deck backdrop. She was shooting a couple, but there was no one in line. I turned to DS and asked, Would you like to have a picture with Mama? Sure! he replied. Se we got in line and got these pics (forgot to scan them before framing them!)
I surprised DH with them at the end of the month for our anniversary and had sworn DS to secrecy. We met DH at the table and were reminded by Roberto that jdabi and DW had Palo ressies that night and would not be joining us for dinner. This really threw DS for a loop as he was looking forward to his usual dinnertime silliness with jdabis DS. Vally and Roberto went into overdrive cheering up DS with jokes, magic tricks, and general goofiness and worked their magic on him. He ended up having a great time in spite of himself, and I made a mental note to give them generous extra on their gratuities. After dinner, we returned to our room where we were greeted by that nights towel animal, one of DSs favorites
We changed DSs clothes and brought him to the OC, promising to pick him up in time to go see Chip and Dale in the lobby. DH and I made our way to the Walt Disney Theatre in plenty of time to get good seats for Disney Dreams. The show was quite enjoyable, and the pager was mercifully silent throughout. When it was over, DH headed for the lobby to queue up for Chip and Dale while I made a beeline for the OC to pick up DS. When I got there, he was in no hurry to leave! They were doing a Carnival Extravaganza which included a variety of games and activities the kids could play to win little prizes. I paged DH on the walkie talkie to let him know that DS was reluctant to leave, and he instructed me to take my time---the Chip and Dale line was a long one. We played a couple more games and took DHs place on the Chip and Dale line in enough time for him to run down to our room, change clothes, and return in time for the pictures.
After Chip and Dale, we went back to the stateroom and DH and I planned to chill until we could take turns at the midnight (really 11:15) dessert buffet while DS slept. DH decided to kill some time up on Deck 9 and hit the buffet on the way back down. He wasnt terribly impressed, but when he came back to the room and it was my turn, I found plenty to keep me happy!
My complaint, however, is that the line was so long and the buffet got soooo crowded it was difficult to even get at the offerings. But I made a plate, brought it back to the room, and ate myself into a sugar-induced oblivion.
A Day in Paradise.
Great pictures. Admire your committment to exercise Glad you made it to the buffet. I was too tired and in my pj's so we sent dh to get a plate
Can't wait for the next installment
I am loving your trip report. My family and I are taking this western cruise in January!!
I love your trip report! We are hoping to go in October
Just started your TR and am LOVING it! It's great that you have posted so many pics!!! Can I ask, who made your incredible FE? I'd love to get one for our family's cruise this November. Thanks!
Well, I've received many requests for these, so here they are!
http://s226.photobucket.com/albums/dd48/bobbi565/May 3-10 Navigators/
I hope they are informative and helpful
Great report, thanks for sharing. The pictures are a great addition.
Really enjoying your report! You are giving me lots of ideas about our cruise next year!! I was especially pleased to see pictures of the fitness room as I plan on attacking it each day!! Was there always enough equipment free or did you ever have to wait for anything?
Your cruise report is AMAZING, Love the pics! We are doing the Alternate Western Sept 27 and its great to read about the most recent Western
I'm enjoying the cruise report! We're going on a 7 day in the summer and deciding between the eastern or western. My dd loves sea turtles-that would be a great trip. Thanks for all the details-like reading a good book...it's already 1:00 am!
I never had to wait for equipment, but I was always at the fitness center when the doors opened, and I don't think too many people get up that early to work out on vacation! DH went later in the morning and in the afternoon to run on the treadmills a couple of times and had no trouble at those hours either. Good luck!
Hi, gang! Remember me? Well, life has really caught up with me, so its been a long time coming, this recounting of our day in paradise. Im sure by now anyone who WAS in the least bit interested is probably saying, Bobbi who? but I cant just leave the story without an ending, and even though its all a bit hazy due to many delicious Konk Koolers and my not keeping up with my travel journal, I will do my best. It was kind of crazy, but misunderstanding and miscommunication still could not ruin the beauty and delight of Castaway Cay for the James Gang.
Because, as some of you may remember, this cruise was doubling as a business expense (look for DHs story in this months issue of Open Air in USA Today), DS decided that he had to try out the running route on Castaway Cay recommended to him by Daniel, the food and beverage manager on the Magic (more about him later, ladies!). In order for this to happen, DH was going to have to disembark as soon as allowed and meet us at the beach later. We had discussed where the best place to set up camp would be and recalled our last (and first) DCL cruise on the Wonder (cue flashback music and fuzzy focus transition.) We had taken the shuttle to the first stop at the family beach and found a likely spot to camp out. It had been pretty densely populated, but we had been able to find some sun beds and an umbrella. After renting a tube and playing in the water for a while, DH had towed me and DS in the tube farther out along the family beach until we noticed there was hardly anyone on the beach out there. This is the place to be! DH declared, and left me and DS frolicking in the water while he ran back to get our stuff and relocate us farther down on the beach. So a year older and wiser, we decided to make the hike out to just east of Castaway Rays and set up camp there.
By now the faithful reader knows my routine; I did my usual catnapping through the deepest hours of the night and awoke in the wee hours of the morning to prowl the upper decks in the company of the maintenance crew, teens gone wild, and fellow insomniacs, my nose pressed pitifully against the glass of the Cove Café before opening, awaiting my fix of a skinny caramel latte. When the boys finally began to stir I greeted them with caffeine induced exuberance and hurried DS into his clothes. While DH got dressed and readied for his run, DS and I headed up to Topsiders for our usual breakfast and Ariel Screen entertainment. From there, I took some shots of the DCL CMs readying Castaway Cay for guests.
As we were finishing breakfast and disembarkation time approached, DH came up top in his running gear and checked out the scene. They were running a few minutes late on the alls clear announcement, so we were all getting a bit antsy. There was finally an announcement about how to get down to the gangways on Deck 1, and DH went down under to check it out. I told him wed see him down there, and hurried DS along with breakfast. After finishing, we headed back to the stateroom where I had added the final magnet to our door
Seeing me photographing the door in its final configuration, DS insisted I shoot him along with it
When we reentered the stateroom, I began to pack up all our gear for CC. As I went through the safe for my passport, I noticed DHs still stowed securely within. Hows he going to get back onboard? I asked myself as I glanced up at the walkie-talkie charger. There sat his handset in the unit. I was confused. I thought we were going to meet him on the beach, but how would he locate us without the walkie talkie, and how would he get back onboard to change into his swimsuit without his passport. I decided we would wait it out in the stateroom for a while. Surely if he tried to reboard without his passport they would let him call us to bring it to him. We waited
and waited. I kept an eye out our porthole, which had a beautiful view of the gangway and sidewalk where I was sure I saw DH approaching at least a dozen times. Finally, I decided we would venture out and see if we could catch DH on his way back in. It had been an hour and a half and DHs runs rarely take longer than an hour (he runs between 5 to 7 miles on a typical run). As we approached security at the gangway, we saw DH pacing on the sidewalk below. I could literally see the steam coming out of his ears. Apparently, he had followed Daniels running route and then some and had logged somewhere in the neighborhood of eight miles. When he was done, he was accosted by a Shutters photographer
Then he had prowled around the easternmost section of the family beach awaiting our arrival. Where were you! he fumed at me. I explained my confusion, but he was having none of it. We said we would meet on the beach! We specifically decided we would meet at the spot where we were last year at the far end of the family beach. Ive spent the last twenty minutes walking back and forth down there looking for you, but you were nowhere to be found! I saw [jdabi], but not you! Now Im sunburned and exhausted! How did you plan to get back onboard if I hadnt seen your passport? I asked. I dont know, DS snapped back, I figured Id be able to sweet talk my way back on. After a few more words of disagreement, I handed him his passport and handset, and he headed back toward the Magic saying, You guys go ahead; Ive had enough sun for the day. Ill spend the rest of the day onboard. Ok, our final day of Disney Magic, a day in Paradise, and no DH? That didnt sound like a great way to end this wonderful vacation, but DS and I were going to have a great time no matter what. We had booked all three of us for the Stingray Encounter at Castaway Rays, and we were pretty well on schedule to get out there, have a little play time, and snorkel with the rays; so DS and I forged ahead. We encountered the photographer who got a shot of the two of us
Then DS demanded, Now one of me alone! The photographer laughed, OK, thats a great idea! Apparently, this photographer was not quite as enterprising as the one we had last year whod had the idea to shoot DS alone on his own!
We ambled down to She Sells to look for a souvenir. My moms best friend had given DS $10 to spend on vacation, and we had designated it for CC souvies. After careful examination of the goods, we settled on a Nemo floaty for $3.50, indubitably the best bargain on all of DCL, happily made our purchase, and caught the tram to the Scuttles Cove stop. We walked for a ways beyond there until we reached the far end of the family beach and spotted a couple of sun beds under an umbrella. We set up camp and began to enjoy our day in paradise. I had my eyes peeled for jdabi and family, but didnt see them yet. I was happy for the Nemo floaty. Although quite a few children had them, it in addition to a neon yellow bucket had we had acquired at Ron Jon in Cocoa Beach made DS easy to spot in the water. After a while, my walkie talkie started to squawk. Apparently, DH was having some difficulty acquiring food (and maybe some remorse at having deserted his family), and was planning on joining us. I told him where we had set up camp, and he prepared to meet us. Momentarily, he was by our side but was still pouting. It was almost time for our stingray encounter, and we prepared to relocate, but DH decided that he was not going to participate. I wondered if they would refund our money if I told them that DH had gotten sunburned was trying to stay out of the sun (FYI, the answer is no!). At any rate, DH sat with our stuff while DS and I enjoyed a really nice and nonthreatening experience with DCLs domesticated rays. Shortly after we checked in at Castaway Rays, jdabi and family arrived. We had actually booked this excursion together from jdabis laptop after I had rejected the Stingray City plan at Grand Cayman, so I was anxiously awaiting their arrival. Having his buddy, jdabis DS around seemed to make everything all that much more fun for DS.
After the stingray encounter, we ambled back to the family beach and set up camp for the rest of the afternoon. It was a great spot; just a stones throw away from the restroom, Conched Out Bar, and Cookies BBQ. While DS and I set up camp on the beach, DH decided to nurse his wounds at Conched Out, so DS had some great quality time with his buddy. Jdabi spent some time playing with the boys in the water, while I tried to help jdabis DW get their DD to take a nap on the beach. After a while, we decided it was lunch time. DH was ready to rejoin the group at this point, so we had a very nice lunch of burgers, ribs and those unbelievable chocolate chip cookies! When we returned to the beach, DH decided to join us, so the family was reunited again.
The beautiful blue sky and warm tropical surf soothed any remaining tension, and as we played in the water DH shared with me an interesting conversation hed had with one of the bartenders at Conched Out about the life of a Disney cast member and what high standards of behavior face characters are held to. We spent a few more hours enjoying the sun and surf of CC before deciding it was time to head back in, pausing for a shot of DS at Mt. Rushmore on the way back.
The only downside was, because DS and I headed out so late, there werent many Shutters photographers on the beach anymore and most of the characters had called it a day as well. I guess the absences of the paparazzi could be considered a good thing since I had already upgraded my package at Shutters twice!
We got back in enough time to have a rest in the stateroom before preparing for dinner. I was particularly excited about our last meal with DCL because it was exactly one week until my birthday, and wed decided to celebrate on this last night of our cruise. We arrived at dinner and before long, jdabi and family joined us and presented me with a gift! It was the DCL scrapbook kit, which I appreciated greatly. I do most of my scrapbooking digitally, but I was anxious to get home and scan in all the backgrounds, borders, and stickers to use for the scrapbook for this cruise. The best birthday present of all, I think, might have been this one from jdabis DS
the first successful attempt of many to get a nice picture of the two boys! DH surprised me with a bottle of champagne, and dinner was wonderful! I wish I could remember what I had for my meal, but I do remember a bananas foster crème brulee that was delicious. While we were eating, Daniel, the food and beverage manager, came over to chat with DH about his run at CC. His "movie star" good looks were a great accompaniment to our delicious meal. I leaned across the table and whispered to jdabi's DW, "Isn't he unbelievably georgeous?" She replied, "I know! I was just about to say the same thing!" To which jdabi scolded, "Girls, stop talking about me like that! You're embarassing me!" Wish I had a picture of Daniel to post for you, but I didn't think of it until it was too late! This one of me with my own handsome guys will have to do...
And of course, a piece of birthday cake, which you cant really tell from the picture, but its large enough to share with the whole table
After dinner we headed back to work on packing before the Till We Meet Again gathering at 10:15. We were greeted by our final towel animal
I know the board warns against trying to do anything at guest services this last night, but I had made the mistake of not returning our stroller before now, so when I had my packing just about done, I hauled the stroller up to deck 3 and got into a rather ponderous line. It didnt take long for me to realize that I was not going to be finished with this chore before the character gathering started, so I buzzed DH and reminded him to take DS and the camera up in time for all the merriment.
After some more time standing on line, my phone rings. DH seems to be overwhelmed by the crowds at the character gathering and requires my assistances, so even though Ive been on line for something like a half an hour and am only 3 4 people away, I lug the stupid stroller back to the stateroom and seek out the boys to figure out the difficulty.
I get DH and DS in the right place to meet some characters (sometimes DH is just overwhelmed by life outside his office!) and we get some fantastic shots. We were disappointed that Daisy was not part of this celebration, and we were simply unable to get her autograph and photo (our first line of business next trip).
DS was a really happy camper to have this last visit with all of his new friends before drifting off to dreamland
After getting DS settled in, I got back into a long line at guest services with the stroller and, after an interminable wait, checked it back in and had our $200 deposit credited back to our account. Having this business taken care of, I collapsed into bed. I planned on getting up for the final breakfast, then returning to the stateroom to collect the boys and disembark. Thats exactly what happened. As it took me this long to get this last full day reported, I may or may not share our disembarkation experience later, if the mood strikes me. There was a pretty amusing incident, so if I get around to it, you might have a chuckle. At any rate, now that DS has started kindergarten, and Ive returned to work, the memory of this wonderful cruise is a poignant reminder of all things wonderful about being a SAHM for the three brief years I was able to do it. Im sure the Land/Sea vacation of this June will not be filled with quite the multitude of door magnets or the elaborate fish extender bags of last year, but the anticipation of returning to the magic of all things Disney sustains me through many a difficult day teaching middle school. May your Magic-al or Wonder-ful vacation be everything you dream it will be. Ours have provided us with a lifetime of irreplaceable memories that we can revisit in our dreams again and again
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