Getting tired of these posts yet? TOO BAD! We’re only halfway through. It was a looooong (and awesome) vacation.
Sunday, August 9
We woke up early, to make sure that we had all our bags ready to go when the porters came by at 8 to pick them up. We were going to have a few small bags with us, such as my purse and Kile’s carry on/diaper bag. The rest were going on the bus! Even the carseats since you can’t use carseats on buses. Did you know that? I didn’t. Now I do!
We hurried but we still were running short on time and weren’t quite 100% ready when they came for the bags. Luckily, they were busy dealing with the rest of my family so we were able to catch the last minute things and gather them together. And then? Our bags were GONE.
We had a decision on what to do that day. We had several hours until our bus was leaving for the boat. Not enough time to go to one of the parks, but too long to sit around an empty hotel room. We could have gone to the pool but I didn’t want to have to deal with wet suits. We decided to go back to Downtown Disney. Harry had missed out on going back on our first day and he still needed to pick out a souvenir from the Disney store and he desperately wanted to see the Lego store there too.
The boats weren’t running quite that early so we took the bus, which stopped at Typhoon Lagoon first. It made me sad we weren’t able to do the water parks while we were there. Something to add to our “must do” list for next time! When we got to Downtown Disney, nothing was really open quite yet. We took our time walking through and took some pictures of the Lego sculptures outside the infamous Lego store.
Yes, ALL of those were 100% made out of Legos. Amazing. And awesome. Harry was entranced (as you can see). While the boys waited the few minutes remaining for the store to open, Evie and I went next door to the World of Disney store that was opening already (for the “Bibbity Bobbity Boutique” located in the girl’s section which was already cranking out little princess in tiaras and sausage curls at this early hour).
Yeah… not too impressed with the princesses just yet. And I am perfectly okay with that, otherwise just walking into that store would have cost me a small fortune. We wandered around the store, in a daze pretty much, until we met the boys over there. Harry decided he wanted a t-shirt as his souvenir. He wanted something with Epcot on it, specifically, but if you can believe it we weren’t able to find anything. We did eventually find a great shirt that had all the parks on it and he was happy with that. I also got a “Cars” themed WDW shirt for Liam that I had had my eye on for several days. And I found Evie the most perfect “My first trip to WDW” tshirt. But for me and for Kile? That’s where it got sticky. I was pretty particular with what I wanted. And also cheap. Everything I wanted was really expensive. Everything that was more reasonably priced, was too flashy for my taste. I didn’t want something emblazoned with brightly colored Disney characters. But I wanted something that said Disney World or something akin on it. And the year wouldn’t be bad. A tall order!
I found the perfect sweatshirt that I desperately wanted. However, I couldn’t reconcile myself to the price. Even now, I wish I had gotten it because I loved it so. But oh well. Too late now! It’s what I get for being so damned cheap. Of course, it turns out there were about fifteen thousand other Disney stores in Downtown Disney that we never even saw. I guess we should have explored some more! Kile and I decided we would just have to try to find tshirts on the cruise. We picked out a few things for the co-worker who was kind enough to shuttle us to and from the airport. And then we were on our way back to the resort.
The boats were running by then so we caught one and rode back, trying to savor our last trip along the lazy, winding river system. Back at the resort, I thought I should maybe take a couple pictures of it to remember it by. I never did take pictures of our hotel room but I can assure you it looked something like this.
We found a table to situate ourselves in near the lobby and the cafeteria. I had the munchies (no breakfast that morning, but again, not much point since shortly we would be on the boat and it would be EAT EAT EAT, all the time!) so I grabbed a drink and a toasted bagel from the cafeteria. The rest of my family started trickling in, as did other guests who were going on the cruise.
We didn’t have to wait too terribly long before the employees prodded us outside and onto t
he waiting Disney Cruise bus. Time to say goodbye to the French Quarter and to Disney World! It felt sad to leave, even though we were embarking on another amazing adventure. I wish I could have stayed another week!
The bus ride wasn’t terribly long but Evie was VERY squirmy and I had a hard time keeping her still. The bus had movie screens on it and they showed some Disney cartoons as well as some promotional material for the cruise to get us all jazzed. I think I was beyond being jazzed at that point though, and was mostly just frustrated trying to keep Evie happy and NOT scratching my sunburned neck. (Yes, I had been STUPID that first day and didn’t put sunblock on before our first trip to the parks. A mistake I did NOT repeat, thank goodness!) (Also, notice my out of control bangs. It did not matter that I straightened them hours before. My straightener had NOTHING on the Florida humidity. UGH.)
It wasn’t long before we were pulling up in front of the boat in Port Canaveral. I didn’t take many pictures at this point because I was so frustrated with dealing with Evie and just wanted to get the show on the road, so to speak. It was all a lot better once we had her back in the stroller where she (and her sharp claws) (note to self: clip fingernails before trip next time) was contained.
Checking in was a piece of cake since we had essentially already done all of that at the resort. All we had to do was go up to a gal, get Evie a “Key to the World”card (we’d already gotten ours at the resort) and have her snap some quick pictures of us to put into the system. Then… it was onward to the ship! It was only now that I thought, “Hmm… I should take a picture!”
We checked in with our cards and then got an embarkation portrait done (in which we all looked like zombies so we didn’t purchase one). Next thing we knew, we were walking onto the ship, being greeted by the staff and found ourselves in the gorgeous atrium.
Since it was after 1pm at this point, we could get into our rooms so we headed right there. We made a mistake in taking the midships elevators. We came to hate the midship elevators because they were always SO busy. And we needed an entire elevator to ourselves since ourselves and our two strollers took up the entire thing. Eventually, we got down to Deck 2 and then worked our way aft towards our room. (Aft is “the back of the boat, to the nautically challenged out there.)
Woot! The room was small, yes, but bigger than it could have been. And our “porthole” was awesome. We all settled ourselves in (but we didn’t unpack… something else I would probably change should we ever do something like this again) and took some pictures.
As you can see, it’s rather tight near the door (and the doors to the bathroom and shower) with the strollers there. We would constantly be battling where to park the strollers and often folded them up and put them in the closet to get them out of the way.
We headed back out to get some lunch at Parrot Cay up on Deck 3. It was the nicer of the two buffets and we were hungry for some good cruise food! We wandered around a little after that, exploring the upper decks to see the pools. There were already quite a few people in the pools, particularly the Mickey pool with the slide.
We also checked out the children’s programming. We got Harry signed up for the Oceaneer’s Lab and stopped in to check out Flounder’s Nursery too. Since Liam isn’t potty trained yet, we couldn’t use the Oceaneer’s Club for him, but we could put him in the nursery if we wanted. We were thinking we needed a break from the little ones so we made a reservation right then and there to put them in for two hours later on so we could enjoy dinner in peace. It was $6 an hour for the first child, $5 for the second. $11 an hour seemed a small price to pay for the sanity.
We headed back to our room for the safety drill. We all had to suit up in lifejackets and follow the instructions on the PA system.
There was even a wee little lifejacket for Evie which she didn’t care for in the slightest. We found our assembly point and assembled. A crew member kindly told us we could take the little ones out of their lifejackets to keep them settled. That helped a lot! It wasn’t too long before we could go back to our room. Our luggage wasn’t there yet, but we set up the pack n’ play crib for Evie and checked out the movies on the television. We could watch Disney movies at any time of day, and even some other flicks like Star Trek (which I did end up watching several times) and Monsters vs. Aliens. We chose to sit out the Deck Party/Send Off up at the pools, rathering to chill out instead.
We were underway! And we could DEFINITELY feel the motion of the boat. It was almost like flying, but with no turbulence. A constant, gentle motion. And the constant but quiet thrum of the engines below. Still, it took some getting used to.
We still weren’t used to it when we went up to Deck 3 for dinner at Tritons later on. We had dropped the little ones off at the nursery and they hadn’t even been sad to see us go. They had their eyes on all the fun toys in the nursery and couldn’t have cared less about us! Unfortunately, Harry wasn’t feeling so well. I don’t think it was entirely seasickness, I think he was tired (again from the super long day we put in the day before and the late night the night before that) and a little dehydrated. He had a headache and felt dizzy and tired. Kile eventually took him down to our room so he could sleep and then rejoined the rest of us to eat.
The food at Tritons was great, it was “French dinner” night and while Kile was brave enough to try the escargot, I stuck with the french onion soup. I had a wonderful lobster pasta dish for dinner and a sampler dish for dessert (I would have the sampler dessert every night, so I could try a little of everything!). It was all very good but my stomach was definitely not used to the rich food yet!
After dinner, Kile checked on Harry, who was content to stay in the room and then we picked up the little ones from the nursery. There was a show that night, “The Golden Mickeys” and we all went to see that.
The little kids really enjoyed the show and stayed surprisingly still while it was on. Evie just loved the song and dance and fanfare. The applause was probably her favorite part.
By the time the show was over, we were all bushed. We headed back to the room where the luggage had been delivered (Kile had actually seen it when he first took Harry down to the room during dinner). We got the kids all set in bed, with Harry in the pull down bunk, Liam on the fold down sofa bed (with a bed rail) and Evie in the pack n’ play. We pulled the curtain across to block the light in the room from them and settled down. This is where we found a serious flaw: the tv was located on the kid’s side of the curtain. We couldn’t have the curtain drawn and watch TV at the same time. On later nights, we would just pull the curtain across enough to block most of the light while we could still see the TV. But it would have been nice to have a TV across from our bed.
We ordered from room service and got the infamous cheese platter we had heard so much about. It didn’t disappoint.
We didn’t stay up terribly late though… we were rather tired from our exciting day. So with the engines thrumming beneath us and the boat ever so gently rocking, we all fell fast asleep.
Coming up: stopping in Nassau!