Haven't done Christmas, but did New Years, and that was magical. This was before they started doing double fireworks, so only on NYE. We did still have all the decorations though, and the trip was great as always.
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Tonight is the Captain's Gala menu, which I hate. There's no meat and potato dish on it (except for venison ) and it's full of seafood, which I find disgusting.
It also happens to be one of Rob's faves.
I asked Kira if she could make sure she was at dinner tonight so that Rob was not eating alone so, I could skip it completely.
I was looking forward to this night...10 minutes for dinner instead of 90 which means more pool time for moi!
I think we were wandering the ship at this point, I can't remember but I was walking by FQL and I didn't know if Rob had gotten some pics of the FQL so I grabbed a couple.
I mainly wanted this one because I liked that they had Dr. Facilier's hat hidden up there.
We had skipped the show tonight because we don't care for it and Kira had plans.
She said she was going to the Silent Disco Party and she had nonchalantly asked us not to come.
I had a feeling that it involved her friend R as she had regaled us with tales of R the entire cruise.
She used words like sweet and smart and funny and sassy
She said he was fun to be around and she could totally be her crazy, dorky self around him and he didn't judge her for it.
Awwww, my baby is crushing on a boy.
So, what did we do? Did we give her space and privacy??
DUH! No way, Jose!!!
Of course not!!
She is my little baby girl and I think, at least, in her eyes, she was going on her first "date".
I was NOT going to miss this!!
I have a feeling R did not realize that this was a date
So we snuck in and watched from afar for a few minutes...
I made sure that neither of them saw us and I got to document this moment in time
I told her later that night and as I suspected, she was happy to have some pics and a little video of it.
Rob went to meet Kira for dinner and I got some alone time.
I hadn't gotten a burger this entire cruise so that was my goal tonight.
It wasn't as good as other burgers I've had on previous cruises but it filled me up and then I ordered room service for dessert and a post-meal appetizer
Then, I hit the pool!
The last night is always the best night for quiet pool time because everyone else is either packing or soaking up the last few hours of their cruise experience. I had two whole hours before they closed it so I was in Heaven!
All the while, Rob and Kira had dinner together...
They got a selfie with Edwin, Emanuel and Bhoola
Rob had asked for a pic of Edwin and Emanuel together and this is what he got...
I think Kira left dinner early to join her friends for their last few hours in Edge and Rob headed back to the room to grab his book before he joined me poolside. He also put out our three large suitcases, which I had finished packing up before I had headed to the pool.
He found me all by lonesome, as I like it and very happy.
Heading back to the room sucked! No more pool time on the ship for me and all the doors looked so bare and generic
In addition to the regular questionnaire, they also left us a special Merrytime Cruise one.
I filled out the questionnaires and then Rob and I enjoyed some time on the verandah. We spied some lights off in the distance so I checked my Marine Traffic app to see what was around us...
Red ones are tankers, light blue ones are tugs, green is cargo and dark blue are passenger vessels.
I used this app a few times this cruise, it's cool to find other ships, I took this screenshot the other day....
Edge was closing at midnight tonight so we waited up for Kira and then we hit the hay.
Man, our room is so boring without all of our Christmas lights.
I woke up early when we were turning around in the basin. I'm a super light sleeper so this happens to me at each port. I went out to the verandah but forgot to take my phone with me though and then I tried to go back to sleep. That didn't work so I eventually grabbed my camera and headed back out onto the verandah. I caught the Enchantment of the Seas going by.
I was surprised at how many people were up and waving and yelling out to us as it went by.
And there she is later, in her berth.
I got up and got showered as did Rob. I never eat breakfast on disembarkation day and Kira didn't feel like it either. Rob went up to Cabanas on his own and just had his cream of wheat to tide him over and then brought his coffee back to the room.
I packed all of our items, triple checked the room and then headed out when they called our tags.
We were NOT happy about this!
We joined the line to get off the ship, popped our comment cards in the boxes and then sadly walked off the ship.
I hate this sign
Minnie is all the way down to the end...we spotted our bags easily, I love those Mickey suitcases!
We grabbed all three suitcases, went through customs and then outside to get the shuttle to Parking Lot B.
The shuttles were there waiting for us so it was very quick!
We got dropped off at lot B and then I found the car, good thing I have a good memory because Rob and Kira were clueless
We crammed all of our junk in it and off we went!
I love Texas, they have such amazing trees!!
Here's my Seussian-looking tree that I had spotted last year...
Up onto Broadway until 61st...no need to stop at Target this year so straight to the San Luis Hotel for us.
Ahhh, back in Galveston.
We had stayed at the San Luis last year and had a horrible experience. The manager reached out to me and invited us back for two nights, on him, so that is the ONLY reason we went back there.
We checked in but our room wasn't ready yet so we dropped off all of our stuff with Bell Services and then headed out to Waffle House
It was busy and we had to wait about 10-15 minutes for a table and as luck would have it, we got our table.
Kira was feeling all of those late nights LOL! She doesn't normally stay up past 10:30pm so those 1am bedtimes were catching up to her. Dark circles under her eyes is not something I see on her very often.
All signs of the best cruise ever though.
I can't believe I didn't take pics of our food! I must have been tired too.
They enjoyed their food well enough but my eggs were disgusting! They were snotty and runny and gross Enough to turn me off of WH for this trip!
Rob dropped me off at Kroger so I could grab us some snacks. Man, the USA gets so much variety for everything!!
Since we had some time to kill, we decided it was a good time for Kira's Galveston Beach pic. If you've read my previous trip reports, you will know that we always stop here to recreate a photo that Rob took of her back 2010.
We spotted this photo session on our way out. I guess she really loves Doritos?
Here it is...I kind of wished she didn't have transitional lenses because they are so dark, you can't see her eyes.
And here's a collage of her previous pics...
She then recreated her Galveston Beach dance again for me and then did this....
Rob was out taking a pic of me taking a pic of Kira.
Right back atcha babe
Back to the San Luis...
There were TONS of cruisers at the hotel now, we spotted several DCL tags on them, we were so jelly!
We checked at the desk but our room wasn't ready yet. We hung around the lobby for awhile, Kira was happy to have internet and was already texting all of her friends from the cruise. She was a little jealous of R because he was home already as he lives in Texas!
The public places at the SLR are very fancy and gorgeous so I explored a little after I got tired of sitting and waiting...
They have printed paper towels in the bathroom! Swanky!
Their Christmas decorations are just as gorgeous as last year, they really do go all out!
I headed out the main doors to grab some photos...
I am at my image limit, I will continue in the next chapter.
I am trying my best to get this finished ASAP as I leave in a week and I had hoped to have this report and my videos done before then and those take a full day each to do.
Awwww sad day indeed!!
I remember the fabulous stay you at the San Luis resort last time , but two free nights is a good reason to give them one more chance
And yay, another Kira photo for the tradition!
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I was still outside taking photos at this point...
I headed back in to say hello to Phydias...
My family, still waiting on a room....
I asked Rob to go up and talk to the guy in the suit, I kind of figured it was the manager that I had been emailing and sure enough, it was. It wasn't long after that, that we had our room.
He had given us a room on the top floor, which was a VIP floor. You needed to insert your room key in the elevator to get up there. It was odd because my key card didn't work in two out of the three elevators and Kira's card didn't work in one of the elevators so we kept having to try all of our room keys. Ugh! Plus there was one elevator that just sounded and felt like it was on its last legs! We tried to avoid it but the elevators were super slow and we kept getting that one over and over.
So we got to the lobby of our floor and there was a little counter there with free water and snacks, Kira immediately grabbed a water and an apple and then left and I said that I was surprised she didn't grab the entire bowl of Reese's PB cups. She yells out "WHAT! There's peanut butter cups!!???" and then she ran back to the bowl and grabbed a handful
The floor had all the big suites located here...ours was down a little...
Just a regular room like last year but with a few nicer touches, such as a nice digital thermostat, a little valet stand, etc.
Nicer art, I think..
Same crappy bathroom though.
The best thing about this hotel is the view from the balcony!
And of course, the pool!
I started unpacking and got us settled in quickly. I had to rearrange everything that was in the three big suitcases to get it home under the weight. I ended up forgetting some stuff in the car so Kira and I headed down to grab it. On the way up, she visited that little desk in the floor's lobby again but she was quick and sneaky and I didn't see what she had grabbed. When we got back to the room, I told her to show me her hoodie pocket and she was giggling...
She pretty much grabbed a small handful every time we passed by it LOL! Reese's is her favourite treat in the whole world.
I had originally planned to go visit Seawolf Park to watch the Wonder sail away but sometime that day I had found out that they were closed for refurbishment
So, we chilled in the room until it was time for dinner, which we were all excited for...
We stopped for another obligatory pic with Cha Cha...
And she threw in some teenage sass, of course!
They sat us right next to the water fountain and it was LOUD!!! Oh my gosh, we had to yell to hear each other! And Rob was getting wet so he had to keep his jacket on
I got the Club. It was okay but my fries were stone cold so I asked for more fries because these were almost inedible.
Kira got her usual, strips and fries. Her fries were nice and hot but her chicken strips were terrible. I had a bite and completely agreed with her! Normally they are so good here!
They were chewy and tough.
Rob had some tropical meal from the special menu and he said it was just okay.
Our waitress felt bad about Kira not liking/eating her chicken strips so she brought her out a cupcake. Normally they would take it off your bill or give you a percentage off the meal that wasn't eaten but nope, she gave us a cupcake!
She had asked if Rob wanted a coffee to go and he said yes and she brought him a little flimsy kids cup!
Umm that was not going to work for coffee! I think he took a big sip and then left it there.
This meal is normally our favourite in Galveston but this time it kinda sucked! It was almost $100 USD, with a piece of Key Lime Pie to go, so, way overpriced and this time and soooo not worth it!
So that was a bust for Waffle House, a bust for Rainforest Cafe...so far Galveston is not doing well on the food scale.
Weird for us since we have always planned Galveston around these two favourite stops of ours!
We walked back to our room and had the pie and checked out how busy the pool was...
At least that was good!
After our food digested a bit, it was time for the glorious pool! I like how the fog made the pool area look, it was neat to swim in it!
It was a little busy but it's such a big pool, so we still enjoyed it. Kira and I had a nice girls chat session where she told me all about her week with R and K and her new friends. Sounds like she had an amazing time with them all! She was bummed that R would not be coming back next Christmas as his family have a summer cruise planned instead. I found out later that K might be back next year, depending on how things go so that was good to hear.
We swam and chatted for just over an hour and then Kira had had enough so we went to sit with her Dad for a bit and I swam on my own.
It's funny how this hotel has the softest, nicest, biggest pool towels and nice soft, luxurious robes to wear down to the pool but the towels in the room are teeny tiny, thin and scratchy!
It's like they put all of their money into the public areas, so it looks gorgeous but then they use the cheapest and worst bedding, the hardest pillows they can find and most uncomfortable beds!
The grounds are amazing, they must use an extraordinary amount of water to get that crazy-green grass, the pool is massive and heated to the temperature of the hot tubs on the Disney Wonder and then the hot tub is super hot, they have an amazing fireplace there near the pool to keep warm, a fabulous bar area with swim-up bar....but the rooms are kinda sucky! No fridge (except for VIP rooms), crappy, poorly-designed, tiny bathrooms, terrible beds and bedding. So odd!
As much as I love that pool, the rooms are too expensive and not nice enough to get me back there again.
Back to the room we all went and I think we turned in early as it had been a long, exhausting day.
If you remember last year's report, you will know that our disembarkation got delayed and we got to have lunch on the Wonder, which was soooo awesome! I had secretly hoped we would be delayed again this year but it didn't happen sadly.
Apparently, we missed it by a day!!
This is what we woke up to...
Yup, there's an ocean out there somewhere...
Dang nabbit!!! Missed it...by that much!
We had slept in and then had taken showers and gotten ready. Our original plan was to go back to WH but after my meal yesterday, I quickly nixed that idea and headed for a place we had tried to eat at last year but it had closed before we even got there.
I think I would move to Galveston just for the trees.
Well, and the ocean.
We drove down the Seawall all the way to Miller's, where it was PACKED!
Rob dropped us off and then found parking a couple of blocks away.
There was a 45-minute wait, which we weren't thrilled about but while we waited we found out that a Carnival ship and a Royal Caribbean ship were both delayed and couldn't get into the channel today so Galveston was currently overrun by hungry cruise passengers awaiting their ships so we just stayed put and waited about 50 minutes for a table.
Yay, we finally made it!
The view would have been amazing....
We all opted for breakfast food...
This was mine and it was DELICIOUS!!! Rob and Kira enjoyed theirs but I almost licked my plate it was so good!
They are famous for their desserts, especially their award-winning brownie and Italian cream cheese cake. I suggested we get the brownie and share it there, since it was Kira's favourite dessert and then get the other one to go.
I had warned Kira that it had nuts, which she hates! She said she would eat around them.
It was so good that she even ate the nuts!!
She has NEVER done that before!!
This was the best brownie I have ever had in my life! It was super rich though and I could only eat a few bites. Rob was the same, just a few bites. Kira ate as much as she could before exploding
She never eats until she is full, she always stops well before full because, like me, she hates that feeling of being full, so that gives you an idea of how much she enjoyed it.
We put a decent dent into it but we could not finish this sucker!
We had to roll ourselves out of there! I am so glad we finally made it and were patient enough to wait so long! It was worth it!!
Hello, baby palms
We walked a few blocks to get to where Rob had parked...
Back to the hotel where we chilled for the whole afternoon. We had planned to head over to the Go Kart place but it was still super foggy and I didn't think they would be open so we stayed in our room.
Eventually we tried the Italian cake, as well as the Key Lime Pie that we may or may not have also ordered.
The Italian cake was good but I don't like coconut and there was just no eating around it so I only had one bite. The Key Lime Pie was WAY too lime-y for me!!
That brownie was the clear winner
For fun, I checked my Maritime app and saw that both of those ships were still out there waiting for the channel to open, 4:30pm and still there! Now that was terrible and I felt bad for all of those passengers waiting for them. Lucky for those still on the ships though.
They were just going in circles...
I had hoped to see a nice sunset but the fog had other plans...
This was the best it got...
We had debated about dinner as our plan was to return to Rainforest Cafe but after last night's experience, that was not going to happen!
I also had some Kohl's cash burning a hole in my pocket so although it was a bit of a drive, we decided to head back to Webster to kill two birds with one...visit. I shouldn't really talk about killing birds in Galveston, they're everywhere.
It was pretty late when we headed out and the ships had arrived and were still there, stocking up on provisions, I would imagine...
Back to our new fave...
Second (and not last!) visit to Cheddar's this trip.
They pretty much came for these...
Kira and I both got the chicken strips!! Night and day compared to those at RFC! Soooooo delicious!!! Fries were amazing too!
Rob got the chicken and shrimp with the carrots he loves so much!
Another win for Cheddars!!
A quick stop at Kohl's to spend my $30. I got myself a $7 discounted shirt and a nice hoodie/shirt for Kira, even though I told her I was done shopping for her.
Back to Galveston where I spotted these lovely lit palms.
And then it was time for our last pool visit. Kira was not up for the pool tonight but I was not missing it!
I didn't stay long, maybe an hour and then I was done. Rob kept me company catching up on news, I think.
This was the 22nd anniversary of my mom's death and I had debated on staying an extra day but I figured packing and travelling and flying would be a good distraction for me and it was.
No fog today!
Rob and Kira went to Waffle House on their own to have some breakfast while I stayed in the room and packed us up.
Two new ships today in port...
A storm blew in and I enjoyed it from the balcony for awhile. We had some time to kill because our flight wasn't until 6pm. We got a late check-out, so that helped.
I barely managed to get all of our stuff into our three big suitcases and the extra carry-on that I had brought. I didn't tell you but Rob packed on his own for this trip, usually I am there to help him. I had noticed that he packed way too much but he was adamant that he needed it all.
I assure you now, he did not.
I told him that was the last time he would pack without me.
We were packed full!
We kept laughing at this...there is a big sign with Jesus written on it, which is immediately next to a...gentleman's club.
In all previous years, we've taken the 45 all the way up to Frontage Road near the airport and ate at the Waffle House but this year we were changing things up. We wanted to eat at Cheddar's one last time so I checked out the closest one to IAH and found one in Humble that would work.
So we took the 45 to the 59/69, the way we go from IAH to Galveston, and then a little further up to Humble.
It was funny because it took us about 90 minutes and when we got out, Kira asked me what took so long. So I started explaining to her that we are past the airport now and it was a long way. She got out of the car, looked around and said "Ohhhhh, I thought we were just going back to the one in Webster!"
Umm no, that was only 30 minutes away and they weren't hungry yet!
No idea what they were laughing at but they were in a good mood. Looks like Rob is sunning himself with that menu BAHAHA!
First set of croissants...done!
I decided to try a Club sandwich and I am so glad I did! It was a million times better than the one from RFC and it reminded me a lot of the Club from Margaritaville, which is my fave Club sandwich ever!
Kira got the chicken strips, of course!
And Rob got salmon and shrimp, which he said was delicious!!
We all only ate about half of our food so we took it to go to snack on the plane. The tenders weren't fabulous by the time we got to them but the sandwich and Rob's stuff was delicious!
We were all kind of tired now and just wanted to be home. We still had a long journey home.
That was fabulous though, so glad we went to Cheddar's one last time! If we do this again next year, I think we will just do a post-cruise night in Humble and either skip Galveston completely or just do 1 night at a different hotel and then spend our last night in Humble. My brain is already filled with ideas for next time.
We took the back way to the airport, filled up the car with gas and then headed for the car rental place.
We actually got to see the airport this time. We normally come from the south and don't see it at all until the rental car shuttle drops us off.
Just look at these beauties!!
Dropped off our car, grabbed the shuttle to Terminal A...
We checked in with Westjet and all three of our bags just made it. Am I good or am I good?
He even offered to check our carry-on for free since it was a full flight. Oh, that made me sooo happy! It was sooo over weight and packed full of dirty clothes that I was all too happy to not drag around another second.
For the first time, our gate was on the other side, which works because that was the side where TSA Pre-Check is.
We found a seat at our gate, got some water and then waited to board our plane. Our plane was on the tarmac waiting for the gate to clear out and it sat there for at least 50 minutes!
I'm so glad we were not stuck on there, I hate waiting like that! I did that in NYC in October and it was such a pain, you can see your gate, you are there and ready but another plane is in your spot.
We left a little late because of it but I got to enjoy the sunset from my seat.
Good-bye, Houston! I hope we see you again in about a year!
Kira watched movies on her phone, Rob watched movies on his iPad and I stole Kira's blanket and Stitch pillow and slept a little. I got about an hour or so, which totally helped pass the time.
I am quite uncomfortable on planes because I have Restless Leg Syndrome and a birth defect in my lower back so sitting in those tiny seats for 4.5 hours can be rough.
Before long, we landed in Calgary and Kira was thrilled to turn off the airplane mode on her phone! She can text anytime now.
We were at the back so it took awhile to get off the plane and it's a very long walk to get to customs.
Thankfully we have Nexus and it's super fast to get through Customs. They were total jerks that night, the guy yelled at me for having all three of our printed forms in my hands. He said next time to make sure everyone is holding their own! Funny because the last time we came through together, in August, we all had our own papers and the guy told me to hand them to him all together.
Make up your mind, guys!
Normally it's the USA Customs that have the attitudes but the Canadian ones were snippy that night.
All four bags made it, yay!
We walked over to the Park2Go shuttle and they got us to our car very quickly! We loaded up our truck, and then we hit McDonald's on the way home. I wasn't actually hungry but I wanted my Diet Coke fix! I don't drink it except when I'm on vacation so it takes me a day or two to get the rid of the need for it
We got home, turned the water back on and then Rob went to get our Boo from her Uncle Ken's house while I unpacked and sorted all of the laundry. Good Lord, we had SO much dirty laundry!!
My Boo boo came home and we snuggled and everything was right in the world again.
This was an AMAZING trip, definitely my favourite Christmas cruise and Rob and Kira's favourite too, I think.
Thanks for reading along on yet another journey. We've been incredibly lucky to have quite a few of these lately. I am sooo very blessed!!!
I write these reports for myself mostly, so I can remember the details but also to share my knowledge and experience with you all in the hopes that you will learn something that might help you have a better cruise or vacation experience.
I really appreciate all of your comments, it only takes a moment but it means the world to me knowing you are here and enjoying all of the hard work I put into these. I hope this one has entertained you a little bit. Thanks everyone!!
My next adventure begins next week when I attend a work trip in Orlando and then Rob is flying out to meet me for a few days so that we can experience Star Wars Galaxy's Edge at Disney Hollywood Studios together.
Sadly Kira is not joining us and I'm not writing a trip report for it.
The last report that I wrote about attending a work thing was deleted, as I recently found out.
All that work and effort..gone! And they didn't even give me a warning or anything! Just poof GONE!!!
I will try my best to make a YouTube video for the SWGE part so keep an eye our for that, if you're interested.
YouTube channel is Cass327
I will also do my best to work on this trip's videos in the next few days and have them posted before I leave. I will post a link to them here when they are done.
What a wonderful TR! I really enjoyed it! I also read your Universal TR from Cabana Bay...your DD has changed so much in such a short time. What a beautiful young lady! (we are also a family of 3, with a DD)
We will be going on our first cruise ever this upcoming March! (not Disney though)
I'm really excited, and your TR had some valuable information that I'm sure will help out on ours!