The McSparklesons are BACK and they are CRUISIN! COMPLETE 10/4

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Trip Reports' started by karajeboo, Mar 4, 2011.

  1. Beth D

    Beth D DIS Veteran

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    OK. I just looked up our excursion for St. Thomas. We're lookinga at a full day sail and snorkel and beach day at turtle cove and honeymoon beach.

    Hopefully it's not as crowded as Maagens Bay? :confused3
     
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  3. KristiMc

    KristiMc DIS Veteran

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    We did the St. John Eco Hike which ended with a trip to Honeymoon Beach and it was not crowded at all. Not sure if it is like this all day or not but it was beautiful. It stated to rain when we got to the beach so the pics did not turn out that great.

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  4. karajeboo

    karajeboo DISmom by land and by sea!

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    ;)

    If I had it to do over again I would hire a boat to take us to St John. My friend Ellen (podsnel) has a captain she uses when she goes to St John every year, and I think she just used him this week for their RCCL cruise to STT! We are doing something along these lines in Grand Cayman next March with another family......

    Kristi, those pics on your TR look so nice!
     
  5. MAGICFOR2

    MAGICFOR2 DIS Veteran

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    Sounds like a great day!

    This looks so nice - even in the rain!
     
  6. karajeboo

    karajeboo DISmom by land and by sea!

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    We left Magen's Bay, and when I look at the photos now, I can sort of see why it's one of the world's most beautiful beaches, but I was glad to leave nonetheless.

    We headed back to our designated meeting spot, and there was Alexander Awesomely waiting for us!

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    We were first on! I didn't want to take any chances of missing this shuttle and then having to wait. So we got on and just waited a couple of minutes before we were on our way!

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    The ride down was so pretty, and as promised, we stopped for a few minutes at a scenic overlook.

    These photos are panning from left to right....

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    Panning the port - VIDEO

    The main port (Havensight) is to the left, and the "others" get the port to the right. You can see the Magic and the HAL ship all alone over there.....

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    Apparently Captain John did NOT tell the port authority that the McSparklesons were on board..... :snooty:

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    In just a couple of minutes, Arthur Awesomerelli was calling us to leave.

    He asked if anyone wanted to be dropped off at Havensight, the main shopping area, other that going back to the ship.

    Since it was only 1:00 and all aboard was not for another three hours, we decided to get off and do a little shopping.

    This is where Ally had fun.

    If you remember I had gone to a St Thomas Shopping Highlights presentation by "Flash" Gordon. During this presentation I got lots of "free" coupons that Ally was intent on collecting.

    So off we went. She became quite a pro at walking into a jewelry store, flashing her coupon, and following the associate to her treasure.

    She got a sterling silver dolphin charm, a blue gem, a gold charm bracelet, a "pearl," and we even sprang for a $20 sterling silver chain for her to keep all her collectibles around her neck!

    By the time she was done she looked like the gansta that she tried to be in St Maarten!

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    Word.

    Jeff was checking out all my shopping highlights, and making sure Ally didn't miss any of her freebies, when he started really looking at what St Thomas was known for.

    And he found ammolite. It is the newest "rock" to achieve gemstone ranking and he was adamant that his lovely bride would be taking home some ammolite jewelry this trip.

    See, Jeff's birthday was April 2, the day we debarked this cruise, and I told him to look for a watch in St Thomas, since it is THE jewelry shopping capital of the world. He needed a new watch anyway.

    I really didn't need anything.... except apparently for ammolite.

    Now all I can figure is that with the Magic in port, there was pixie dust all over the island, because Jeff was trying to get Ally some special earrings, too. We tried to find her a nice set of ammolite earrings to match mine, but it didn't quite work out.

    We looked for aquamarines, her birthstone, but couldn't find the "deal" that we needed.

    We must have hit 10 jewelry stores in Havensight.....

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    The last shop we walked into, at about 2:30, had the ammolite earrings I wanted. So they rang us up quickly and asked us when our ship left.

    We told them 4:00, and the gal said, "Oh no! We'd better hurry!"

    We couldn't understand what she was talking about, it was only a 5 minute cab ride to the port......

    But there was rush hour.

    Yes. Rush hour. In St Thomas.

    So she walked us outside, and flagged down the first cab she found. They were going the other way. So she directed us to a cab stand and told us we HAD to get one right away!!!!!

    By now, we were freaking out! I didn't want to fly home from St Thomas!!!! I wanted to get on that big beautiful ship and sail away!!!!

    So Jeff said, let's walk! Everyone told us it was only about 20-30 minutes by foot. And it's not even 3:00 yet.

    So we started walking, and right then I saw him.

    Our eyes met...... I think I heard "Some Enchanted Evening" in the background, but I'm not sure.....

    All I know is that the cabbie asked me if we needed a ride, I asked him how fast he could get us to the Disney Magic, and he yelled, "Get in!"

    So I yanked Ally up into the cab, Jeff tried to stop us because this guy was going the opposite direction from what the gal in the jewelry store told us we needed to go to avoid rush hour traffic.

    But he got in behind us, and right then, the bottom fell out. I mean, it POURED!!!!

    Jeff sat there quite smug, however, saying, "I hope we make the ship."

    And 5 minutes later, we were getting out of my new favorite cab, driven by Speedy McSpeedster, to bright sunny skies, and an hour to kill before all aboard!

    Now who's lookin all smug? Hmmmmm?????

    Jeff overtipped Speedy, and we were on our way. We even had time to shop at the port for some overpriced sunscreen, which Ally STILL uses sparingly this summer, and every time she smells it, she says, "This is St Thomas sunscreen."

    We never did find those earrings for Ally, but we did learn to ALWAYS give ourselves plenty of time to get to port!

    If not, this is what happens......

    This is what happens when you are late for all aboard! - VIDEO

    You are met at the dock entrance, and escorted directly to your ship. And Captain John is looking down on you and he is NOT happy.

    No way could I have upset Captain John....... :sad2:

    But it didn't bother us to wait on them. We had more time to enjoy the St Thomas Sail Away!

    St Thomas Sail Away - VIDEO1

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    St Thomas Sail Away - VIDEO2

    It was like the Port Canaveral sail away all over again! Well, except for the part that our vacay was more than 1/2 over with by now!!! :scared1:

    And after our "close" call getting to the ship, it was time for one of these while we enjoyed the Sail Away party.....

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    Up next, PALO!!!!
     
  7. karajeboo

    karajeboo DISmom by land and by sea!

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    As we pulled out of St Thomas, we said goodbye to our good friend HAL, and then it started to rain. Not a downpour, just a slight drizzle.

    Leaving St Thomas - VIDEO1

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    Leaving St Thomas - VIDEO2

    It was just enough to send us down to our cabin, where we began to get ready for our much anticipated dinner at Palo!!!

    But first..... Goodbye to St Thomas!

    Leaving St Thomas - VIDEO3

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    Leave St Thomas - VIDEO4

    I loved St Maarten so much more than St Thomas. STT was centered around the Havensight shopping district which was.... dirty is not the right word, because it was actually clean. It just didn't offer anything "Caribbean" for me. It just seemed a lot more touristy than St Maarten?

    So after enjoying the Sail Away from St Thomas, we were getting ready for our early dinner at Palo. Now I scheduled it early so that we could still possibly make our regular dining time at 8:15 so we could still eat with Ally in Lumiere's for the French menu. So we were eating at 6:30 at Palo.

    And Jeff begged me not to lug my Nikon to Palo, so I took my little point and shoot, and I regret it! Next time, I may just bring all my lenses AND my big ole camera!!!!

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    I should have stopped in during the day to get better shots, but suffice it to say that it is so nice to sit on Deck 10, and look out and "watch the sea go by." Ah, yes......

    Technically, I guess we were sitting on our afts, and watching the sea behind us, as there was nothing behind us but blue sea!!! So pretty!

    But I did feel the motion of the ocean, dining up so high (as opposed to the other dining rooms on Decks 3 and 4). It left me a little unsettled at times, but once the wonderful food showed up, they could have tipped us on our side and I'd have thrown my life jacket aside to grip my plate instead!!!!

    We began with the antipasti that they bring to your table on a little cart and prepare before you.

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    Jeff and I both opted for the Grilled Portobello Mushroom and Polenta — with a Roasted Shallot Sauce and a Parmesan Crisp as our appetizer, and I must say I did not care fore it. I loved the portobello, but the polenta not so much.....

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    For his entree, Jeff was really looking forward to the Osso Buco di Vitello — Slow roasted centre cut Veal Shank with Gremolata and Risotto Milanese

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    And I couldn't decide between the Lobster and Mascarpone Ravioli — with a light Truffle Burro Bianco

    OR

    the Branzino in Cartoccio — Sea Bass Papillote with Spaghetti Vegetables and Ginger Orange Glace

    So what's a McSparkleson to do?

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    ORDER BOTH!!!! Actually, Francois, our server, told me he would bring me a small portion of the lobser ravioli, but he actually brought me a full serving.

    And ya know what?

    I ATE THE WHOLE THING!!!!!

    Let's just say that the sea bass may be the best thing I have ever tasted! It was like buttah! I mean really, it just melted in my mouth! Jeff tried it too, and we have the recipe just waiting for him to make it...... me? No way could I attempt that.

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    It was incredible. But we weren't finished yet.

    Chocolate souffle anyone?

    Jeff ordered his with chocolate sauce....

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    And I ordered the vanilla sauce.....

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    Palo, is worth every bit of the $20 surcharge. And being on a Disney Cruise is wonderful, but having a couple hours with no children is icing on that wonderful cake!!!!

    Dinner took much longer than we anticipated, and I really don't think Francois was into us. He seemed to be paying a lot more attention to the couple behind us, so we waited quite awhile in between courses, so our dinner was over 2 hours.

    Not that I complained at all, because we were able to relax and enjoy some adult time before heading back down to the Oceaneer's Lab to pick up Ally for dinner.

    We came in late to Lumiere's and I felt so bad, especially since we came in for one thing and one thing only......

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    ESCARGOT!!!! We knew it was the French menu tonight, and it would be our only chance to have those little snails..... so Jeff and I each ordered some, while Ally got her usual burger......

    And somehow, I got down almost all of those slimy little buggers...... I have no idea how, with everything else I had eaten this night.......

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    And I STILL was not finished!!!!

    I needed just one more souffle, right? Gran Marnie souffle!!! Yummmmm!

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    Dobo and Willy asked us where we had been and we told them we had been to Palo.

    Willy: "I don't promote Palo." :rotfl2:

    But Dobo asked us about our experience, and we felt a little guilty for cheating on them, but we told them we really enjoyed it. We told them that of course Francois was nowhere near as good as they were and Dobo said, "Francois? Oh, da French, :snooty:"

    Have you ever heard a Bulgarian do a French accent? :rotfl2:

    We had our share of wine at Palo, and then we kept our glasses full at Lumiere's so it turned into a bit of a gigglefest for Jeff and I throughout the night, while Ally would roll her eyes at us.

    I did tell Jeff that I would be glad when I got home and could wear my sweats and stained t-shirts to dinner and he surprised me by saying he actually enjoyed getting dressed for dinner.

    Yeah, that's my honey. He thinks he's all stylin but he's really just Jack Dawson in a tux borrowed from Molly Brown...... :rolleyes1

    But he's unsinkable too! Me, on the other hand, would sink like the Titanic if I went overboard...... TWO appetizers, TWO entrees, and TWO desserts!!! I definitely ate my share.

    Jeff was so proud of me!!!:worship: I definitely made of for the first night......

    Up Next.... Happy Birthday Ally!!!!


     
  8. snowmanlover

    snowmanlover DS was in the CP and LOVED it!

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    OK, I must confess....I have been lurking on your report since the beginning and have enjoyed it! :worship: Sometime, I even laugh outloud! :rotfl2:

    I love Disney and cruising, but have never cruised with Disney! Reading your report makes me want to try DCL!
     
  9. Wicket's Mom

    Wicket's Mom DIS Veteran

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    OMG, I can't believe that you ate all of that food! My DH would give it his all, but I would be so sick eating that food.:sick:

    I guess that means that the food was wonderful!

    When we were in St.Thomas, we went to St.John. The beach there was beautiful & not so crowded. St. Thomas seemed ot be mostly shopping & has the highest crime rate.
     
  10. MAGICFOR2

    MAGICFOR2 DIS Veteran

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    :eek: Glad you made it back to the ship! Those would have been some really expensive earrings.

    How fun for Ally to collect all the freebies!:thumbsup2

    So funny how different people view things. We didn't like St Maarten - felt like it was unfriendly and commercialized. Then we really enjoyed ST. Thomas - we felt relatively safe there because it is a US held territory. No idea about the crime rate!pirate: I love the videos!:thumbsup2

    Your Palo dinner looks delicious! How funny you went to Lumieres for a round of snails!:rotfl2: Of course the Chocolate souffle was delicious, but I LOVED the Grand Marnier - good call on getting that one too!

    I love the "half-way" sail away party you had! I didn't know they did that - way cool! :cool1: Of course I see that hussy Minnie was really working on your guy! "Oh Mickey your so fine...."

    Edit: You got a "drive of shame":lmao:
     
  11. tony64

    tony64 <font color=blue>Should've been a Cowboy<br><font

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    I don't don't know where you put all that food,you look such a petite little lady.:) very impressed with your food storage capability.

    How was the chocolate souffle?

    I'm soooooo looking forward to trying that one. :goodvibes
     
  12. Beth D

    Beth D DIS Veteran

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    Awesome update Kara! The food looks to die for, especially chocolate souffle! :thumbsup2

    Glad you didn't miss the boat! That's kind of why i want to do DCL excursions - I know they won't leave without us! :yay:
     
  13. iloverags2

    iloverags2 DIS Veteran

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    Love Palo! One cruise we even went twice. (And I fully admit to doing the double dip dining also!)
     
  14. jcarwash

    jcarwash DIS Veteran

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    I've been away from your report for a while! Just noticed it was still going on :goodvibes. Enjoyed paging through the updates and reliving the cruise.

    We're booked on another Eastern on the Fantasy next year...Magen's Bay will not be one of the stops. We took the Disney excursion over there and our experience wasn't any different from yours.

    Also interested to learn about the free beach in Phillisburg. We also took the Disney excursion to Orient Bay and it was great...but $$$free$$$ is a big word in our family.
     
  15. luvndizny

    luvndizny Mouseketeer

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    Add me to the list of reliving this cruise....I can hardly listen to one of the cruise CD's that were given as FE gifts without sniff-sniffing a little bit..Heck I have to skip over "Wonderful Cruise" if I am headed to work or they'll think I'm hungover or something....;)

    Of course, reading everyone's TR's has got me trying to find a way to cruise before Christmas 2012 but I wouldn't feel right without hubby! However, a trip to DW maybe...LOL!

    Oh man, I TOTALLY forgot about my TRIP REPORT!! Aghhh!! Maybe I can work on it this weekend. No way I will remember what I ate though..LOL!

    Just wanted to add too- I will also never forget how my daughter acted the first time she saw the Princesses in DW..."They're so BEAUTIFUL!" Sob...sniff...sob. I got only one trip in where she wanted to do the whole BBB and then the next? "Yeah, Mom..I'm way past that stage in life.":sad2:

    Looking forward to more! :thumbsup
     
  16. jenseib

    jenseib Mommy to Claire

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    I'm loving all the updates. Teh food looks awesome. I would love to sail the Magic some day. I see they are doing 5 nighters next Spring and for much Cheaper than the Dream, so maybe I can get DH aboard! :thumbsup2
     
  17. podsnel

    podsnel <font color=blue>just skippin' around, amusing mys

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    How awesome to come home from my cruise and re-live the Eastern Caribbean on your TR! :goodvibes But we did different things....the day with Thomas was the BEST!! And we are NOT fans of ST Martin- I think I would do it differently there next time- my favorite part was sitting at the Guavaberry Stand at the port and getting YOUR guavaberry booze while drinking a DELICIOUS GB Colada......:goodvibes

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  18. karajeboo

    karajeboo DISmom by land and by sea!

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    And here I am wondering, do I love Disney cruising or do I just love cruising.... and Disney? Who cares as long as I can do both!!!!

    And thanks for coming out of lurkdom!

    I thought StT seemed not so safe, too. I don't know what it was but I just got that feeling. I would have loved to hire Ellen's captain Thomas, but we didn't know other families on our cruise at that time... if I did it again I would for SURE find someone to split that cruise!!!!

    No, WE didn't get a drive of shame, but someone did!!!! :rotfl2: So funny how people perceive things.... I LOVED St Maarten! But I would never got back to St Thomas, and if I were there again on a cruise, I would do a St John excursion......

    "Half way" sail away! Exactly!:thumbsup2

    Amazing how I have you fooled with my "magic" camera! I am down 14 lbs since the cruise, and if I can, I will pack it ALL back on during our Palo dinner in March!!! :rotfl2:

    But then you miss out on all the excitement! :rotfl2:

    In March we are doing Palo for brunch AND dinner!

    Hey!!!! So looking forward to hearing about the FAntasy from you!!! Since I know that you experienced the Magic when we did! We are going to be in port with the Fantasy on her maiden cruise in Cozumel AND Grand Cayman next year!

    I miss it so much!!!! That's why my nerdy family and I sit and watch youtube videos of Disney cruises!!! :rotfl2:

    "way past that stage in life?" :rotfl2:

    I love the Magic. She may not be the newest, the fanciest, or the biggest, but she is truly MAGICal! Yeah, that was bad, huh? :confused3

    Well, there is something sweet about enjoying a guavaberry colada while waiting to get the heck out of there, if you didn't like it.

    I hate that you didn't like St Maarten! I just thought it was beautiful, and I loved the people. To me, it reminded me of the "no problem, mon" mentality of Jamaica. Maybe it was just that Pods couldn't read a "map?" :rotfl2:
     
  19. luvndizny

    luvndizny Mouseketeer

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    I do too! LOL!:lmao:

    Man, we made that guavaberry colada last as long as possible after we got home, but alas it's all gone now. :sad2:
     
  20. MAGICFOR2

    MAGICFOR2 DIS Veteran

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    Love that shop!:lovestruc:lovestruc:lovestruc:lovestruc
     
  21. Beth D

    Beth D DIS Veteran

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    How did you like Orient Bay? We are looking at that for our other excursion. I like the fact lunch is included. How European is it? He's at the giggly age right now when discussing anatomy and such.:rolleyes1

    We are kind of set into the other one for snorkeling. DS turns 7 the last day of the cruise, and so many of the snorkeling trips are 7 and up. The one we found takes 6 year olds.
     

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