Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by Tinker326, Jun 13, 2014.
You mean I have to stick around to the end for the cupcakes... Way to string me along!
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You should just finish this one first. You don't remember anything from the other one anyways.
Then in the other one just keep writing: "And then we did...ummmm" and post a couple pictures.
Whoopee - can't wait to read along
I'm in! Can't wait to hear all about the high sea adventures!
Phew. Allright. I'm catching up here & then am going to actually do a post.
I am mean, aren't I? But truth be, while there are plenty of rum and pirates and sharks on that big blue...there were not many cupcakes to be found. Clearly, cupcakes are land faring food.
You have a point there Peter.. But I am going to do a summary on the other one. And it will consist of... ummm... I think I liked this vacation.
Howdy to my British readship!
Yhea! Thanks for coming over!!!
Okay, now on to an update!
So how did 'Living the Fantasy Life' come to be?
In 2012 we embarked on a 5 day 'double-dip (two stops at Castaway)' cruise on The Dream with hubby's brother and family.
We had planned to do a Disney cruise for ages with the in-laws and spent 2 years saving & planning for this vacation. It came on the tail end of our adoption proceedings (we went to China in August & this cruise was in June) and so money was very tight. In addition, our air conditioning officially died 2 weeks before the cruise.
We were so close to canceling. But the cousins had planned for so long & we decided to just cut some stuff out and go.
That vacation was wonderful. Magical. Everything I could dream a Disney Cruise could be. We had so much fun & we quickly decided on board (with the in-laws) that we wanted to experience it again. And so we all re-booked with plans to come back in 2014. (oh, the joy of dummy bookings with no expiration in the good old days!).
Life happens. Charlie happened. And we continued to save for this. Prices were released in December of 2012. We booked quickly two staterooms and got the savings account going. Sadly, the price increase pushed the in-laws out & the had to give up their dummy booking. We were on our own.
We decided to keep ours with the thought that Charlie would get one Disney Cruise. And I quickly found an awesome facebook group that just grew & grew & grew.....
We had members in the 'hundreds'. I also joined a subset of the group for women who wanted to lose weight before the cruise. We started out with great intentions of huge weight loss in mind. And quickly abandoned all weight loss plans as we all discovered we were a bunch of sarcastic, talkative women. And we just became 'friends'. Great friends & great talk with a GREAT group of ladies. There were about 30 of us gals.
Winter raged on....and on... and on.......
I think it stopped snowing the day before we left for our cruise. I wish I was joking. Oh how we needed this vacation!!! During our months and months of solitude with snow... I made plans & fish extender gifts & all that jazz.
OK, who are we kidding.. I literally finished my fish extender gifts approximately 2 days before we left even though I had 18 months prior to sailing to do it. Let's just all remember I work best under pressure.
Due to the wonderful winter from hades... my children's school that was supposed to get out May 30th was extended to June 5th. Lovely- now my kids were missing 4 days of school. I booked the latest possible flight out on May 30th so they could attend school that day. And that was a wee bit stressful as if ANYTHING happened we would not be on that ship. Since we were due to board May 31st at 10:45 am.
I have mentioned I have a tendency to be early to everything. Like way early, right? Well I do. They suggest you arrive at the airport 2 hours before boarding. Well, I like to be at the gate 3 hours prior to boarding. My husband and children love me for this. Ha!
True to form. The second the kids got out of school (which was 3pm), I herding them into the car and off we went to the airport. Did I mention our flight left at 7:50pm. And.. we only live 30 minutes from the airport.
Um Yhea. We had A LOT of time pre-flight.
I got into a tiff with the TSA agent (not really advisable people). Apparently I looked like a bomb toting terrorist and the lady decided she needed to dust my body for bomb residue. I get that I look scary. But the real problem was she pushed through my children and kept telling them to go ahead without me while she detained me. Hubby and Mother were behind me. I didn't want my children joining the long ling (that merged with other lines) alone. I don't think I was wrong here in arguing with her when I kept trying to tell my children to stay by me...and she kept telling them to go through alone. I mean, Charlie is five people. Give me a break.
Luckily, no bomb residue was found on me. Nor any drugs or other substances that would prevent me from arriving at my sunny, boating destination... and I was allowed past with a stern look from the wonderful TSA who flagged me. Phew. Dodged that.
And with about 2 full hours till boarding, we arrived at our gate.
We had time, lots of it. So we wandered the terminal. We ate glorious airport food. We played petshops and we colored.
Finally boarding and then sitting for 1/2 hour. Flight was fine- even if delayed. Charlie slept. The other girls played on their electronics. We arrived in MCO around 11:45pm.
Our bags, of course, were last off the luggage. BUT, they arrived! We had arrived in MCO. With clothes. NOTHING would stop us now.
I booked a 2 bedroom suite at Orlando Homewood Suites for the night. The had a shuttle bus. I paid $120 for this room and it was VERY nice.
Yhea, yhea.. it's a 'morning' picture after we slept in them. What can I say? We arrived late! And we went right to bed.
Next day. CRUISE EMBARK DAY!!!
Awesome start...I missed your humor while you were gone!
Love the group picture!!! Hey I see your mom is smiling ...but then again anyone would be smiling since you did not get locked up for being impossible with a TSA agent. Don't you know not to mess with them...although I would have been thrown in the slammer too if they sent my children ahead of me...but they would learn their lesson fast enough with my youngest on his own...
I am really feeling the need to book a cruise, if we just knew what was going to happen with this whole darn college thing with my oldest. She is really messing up any trip planning for me past PHM! I am going to have to pick your brain about how you got involved in all these groups...I would love to go on a cruise where we "knew" people!
My mom is smiling. Good observation. That's because she's still in an airport without a lot of children nearby her. Hahahaha!
The TSA agent was just being a crotchety old B. There is no reason why my children could not have stood right by me while they dusted me down for bomb powder. I wasn't trying to get out of getting screened.. I just didn't want my children navigating airport security by themselves. (for their safety and those around them as they pushed through, dodged lines & attempted to go through scanners with iphones!).
I already find vacation planning hard with my oldest going into 7th. I can't pull her from school anymore and that just throws ALL my touring plans- as I don't do well with massive crowds that accompany school breaks!
Almost all the cruises have disboard threads started. When you book one, just search out your dates in the cruise forum. Nowadays, they usually migrate over to FB- This one happened to be very big & very active. Our 2012 board was nowhere near the same. I think every 'group' is different. Depends on the people who end up joining! I got very lucky this go around!
I totally stole your pic of the group banner because I don't have a closeup of it in my two bazillion photographs I'm still sorting through....
Glad you could use it. I stole a picture of the group off facebook because we left before they took it...but I still wanted one!
That's what big Dis groups are for right?
I borrowed a few pictures from the Facebook groups as well. And this banner picture, too!
Ah TweedleDum, we are so alike with the getting to places crazy early. This will come in handy when I'm ready to head to the bus at 2:50am for the Princess Half! Yes???? I'm a bundle of stress, even when early, until I get there...then I can chillax and stop stressing while I wait three hours for whatever I'm early for.
Can't wait for embark day! Remember to explain stuff in detail to those of us non-cruisy peeps that have no idea what your cruise lingo is!
I also get way stressed out till I arrive where I need to be and find something new to stress about. It's the Type A in me!
I am also horribly impatient when waiting on dawdling people. We should be just fine together... bustling about to our places two days in advance of when we need to be there!
EPCOT will be like- ladies- the race doesn't start for another 12 hours- you can go to the hotel and sleep........... and then we can just do our Tweedle dance/song. And they'll be like like 'crazy ladies' and leave us alone. Or. Call police and throw us in jail. One of those situations!
Great start, travel days can be the most exhausting and stressful days but I love that feeling you have when you finally arrive and so do your bags!!
I'm kind of the opposite. While I am usually the guy screaming "Let's get going." when it comes to airports I HATE 'em, and usually try to cut things as finely as possible. In our case with a small airport and only 20 minutes from our house, I usually leave the house about 2 hours before the flight, which usually gets us to the gate about 20 minutes before loading.
Overall though, looks like travel was travel and you made it in one piece, so that's always a good way to go!
It is a good feeling. Kinda like 'nothing's gonna stop me now!!'
You just can't do that with O'Hare. I live 30 minutes from the airport. But if there's traffic, accident, construction- it could be a 2 hour trip. Once I arrive, check in and security could be 2 hours long. You just never, ever know with that airport. So I ALWAYS play it safe and am always WAY, WAY early to the gate.
I wrote that like Jamaica was on the itinerary and it wasn't at all. But I like saying it. So I will. This post is the one where we actually get on the ship.
Oooh. Course, that is all that this post will cover. Because my trip reports are ridiculously long and detailed filled with useless fluff no one really cares about. Until sharks swim along. But that totally doesn't happen in this post. (or really, any of my posts.. so sorry for that disappointment).
Ok. So last post saw us safety arriving in MCO. Bomb and Drug Free thanks to the to O'Hare security. It was late & we went to bed. The alarm rang at 7am sharp (per my handy dandy notes..because lets be honest- I don't remember what I ate for lunch yesterday let alone what time I woke up 3 weeks ago).
7am is not early when you are excited to be boarding a ship. We donned our super cool matching facebook group t-shirts one awesome lady arranged/made for us all.... and headed down for breakfast.
Now, I might have mentioned my tendency for needing to arrive early to all things. Well, our PAT (Port Arrival Time) was 10:45am. I scheduled Happy Limo to pick us up at 9am. It's less than an hour to port. So 9am is even early for this early bird. But dang it- we were going!
Well, the folks at Happy Limo take after my own heart. And they actually arrived right around 8:35. So. Long story short. We arrived at port really, really early.
I could not resist THE VERY FIRST PICTURE OF OUR SHIP!!! THERE IT IS EVERYONE!!!!
Man, that sky does not look good. Please don't rain. Please. Please.
Anyways, we were so early that they were still unloading the previous passengers off the boat. No Porters to take our luggage. So the early birds wait again.
I'll just sit here and look cute mom. Maybe some porter will take pity on us and get our luggage. Nah, they will just glare at us for being so stupid early.
My notes say "Bit by ant" Which now jogs my memory..as I stood there waiting, a d#mn ant bit my foot. And it hurt. Like a shark bite. But not really. More like a red ant bite.
Okay, anyways. I finally sent the hubby down to plead to some bored looking porter to take our luggage. He loaded it up and we tipped good to make sure we saw our luggage on the boat. And then we were herded up to level three of the parking garage to wait in line.
Here is the front of the Disney Cruise Terminal. I love this because no other cruise line has an entrance like this.
You can see the Carnival Liberty boat peeking out behind it. It was a pretty big too. Same size as Fantasy I would say- or bigger. But Fantasy is prettier.
We saw lots of our blue/green shirts. A sea of blue/green I have in my notes. Pretty cool to see that.
And up in the parking lot we waited and waited and waited some more. Remember, we were really early and they were still disembarking last weeks cruise. I felt sad for them. But happy for me. Their ending was my beginning.
Waiting in the garage. Least we had nice scenery in the background!
We finally started moving and in the walkway between the garage and the terminal. We took some pictures....
I think this is my 'f#cking ant bit my toe' face. Or "Stop complaining to me that I got us here 2 hours early so we could wait in line face'.
Notice DH does not have a beautiful blue/green DIS shirt. That, my friends, is his inner Disney kill-joy coming out. Homey don't do matching shirts. And Homey only wears grey, white or dark blue. Or Chicago Cubs apparel. Possibly Chicago Bears apparel if it's winter. Say it with me "Kill-Joy". There. Done.
Anyways. The rest of my cute little family happily wore them. Look at the cute backs. We still love these shirts! Thanks again Angie for making them!
I notice here that my mother commandeered Rebecca to haul her suitcase. Well played mother.
The ship. The ship! (the plane, the plane) Sorry Love Boat this is not.
Through security (no stops for drug or bomb residue this go around!) and into the terminal we went....
Now, I know it looks a little crazy. And it is. But for anyone who has cruised other lines and also Disney will tell you how NICE this terminal is compared to other lines. I guess you pay for it... but it is a very nice terminal.
We moved to the Castaway Club line and quickly were up getting our ship cards and boarding number. Group 5. Sweet. (there were like 40 groups).
We went off to sit for a bit. Notes say... "Sarah is cranky".
Capt Mickey was out & Char Girl and Becca wanted to see him. So we got in line....
And it moved pretty fast.... Sarah refused to join in the picture. Hugs for the best rodent around!
Aww, it would have a been a super cute family picture. You know, if Sarah had decided she was part of the family. And Kill-Joy wore a matching shirt.
For those of you unfamiliar with my previous TR let me take the time to introduce you to "Char face" That would be Charlie's forced smile. It's almost funny to watch it's progression in pictures. She's still learning to smile on cue. And many times has a W T F look on her face in pictures. You'll know it when you see it- the TRUE Charlie smile!" This, above, is not it!
They were already on group 3 by the time we were done with Mickey. I rushed my kids out to the deck to gasp and awe at the beauty of the Fantasy.
(Please notice me trying to tickle Charlie to get a real smile out of her. You will also see this a lot in these pictures).
We ran back inside. I snapped a quick picture of the model of the Wonder.
And just like that, our group was called!! In line we went and into the "Magical Mystery Mickey Ears". That transport you into a world upon the shark-ridden sea. But that also serves Rum".
'Doh' just saw DH photobombed my pic.
Past the Magical Mystery Mickey Ears I had to beg and plead for my family to stop for the Embark picture. More like. "Do it now". And so they did.
The white shirt. It's killing me.
And there were these signs...
And..sigh... heavenly sigh.. we were on board.
"Welcome XXXXX Family" Those of you unfamiliar with Disney cruises, they announce each family that walks on their ship over PA. And everyone claps and says welcome. It's cool.
Our Cruise tradition is. Get on board early. Get up to Lido Deck. Find deck chairs. Get Drink of Day. Get Ice-Cream. Put suits on Kids. Let them into empty ship pools (the ONLY time those pools are empty). So we followed tradition.
Drink o' Day. Check. (Oh yes, this one DID HAVE RUM!! It was called The Paradise.)
Ice-Cream. Check. First of hundreds maybe?
Empty Pool. Check. Only time you'll see this site. Look at the beauty of a pool so clean and pee-free.
Kids in swimsuits and into pool!
Based on the pool cliental.. 10 minutes after the empty pee-free pool pic..this pic probably is kids swimming in pee already. Side note- I never set foot in any cruise ship pool. Ugg. But my kids are allowed. Whatever. They are young. Pee does the body good. Makes them tough.
Aqua Duck Time!!!
There they go......
And that is my 25 picture limit.
But wait. Just so you know. My notes say we ate at Flo's (which was the fast food area). I got a wrap. And fruit. Kids got fried junk. It was ok. All food at Flo's was only OK. The fruit was pretty fresh.
Lordy, this was a crazy long update on a time frame that probably spanned 3 hours. It felt like it took me 3 hours to write.
So I guess I'll stop writing now. And let you digest it all. Mon'.
Your kill-joy is cracking me up! Because I have one of those too! GRRRR!!! Messing up the scrapbook album every single time!
Loving all the wait around to be called pictures...and spotted the first drink! Mom is still smiling!
The girls look they had a great start in the pool!
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