Sunday, October 2, 2011

Cruising on the Disney Dream

Way back last winter I decided we needed to go on a Disney Cruise. We chose September, hoping Mitchell would be a bit easier (he wasn't but I guess we are used to that).
We headed for Orlando on Saturday, September 24. Flying with four kids was an adventure. These pictures say it all about the battle for the window seat. The victor is obviously thrilled.

We got into Orlando very late on Saturday.
Sunday morning we packed up & headed to Port Canaveral to board the Disney Dream, a ship that only started sailing at the beginning of 2011, about as new as you can get! We were going on a four night cruise to the Bahamas.
We were so excited as we got to port & saw our ship. It was huge! Here's a model of the ship in the check in area.
We had two staterooms that adjoined, good thing! We had verandas which were really nice to go out on.
We had a great time exploring the ship.
We all checked out the Oceaneers Club where the three oldest could hang out.
They all loved the hand washing station. I want one of these in my mud room!

Mitchell loved RC in Andy's room.
Sarah thought the dance floor was pretty cool. The kids got to dance here with Mickey later in the cruise.
Pinocchio was our first character to run into & meet. Mitchell was a little nervous at first but then thought all the characters were great.
On Monday we went to Nassau. We did a glass bottom boat tour. It was fun but so hot & humid!

We wandered around & shopped a bit then headed back to the ship.

I took the little kids to Nemo's reef for a while. It's a little splash pad area. They had a great time!
We braved dinner with all four kids the first night. Mitchell was NOT cooperative at all since dinner took almost two hours. We booked him in the nursery for the rest of the dinners. It was so much nicer for the rest of us!
After dinner the big kids all liked to go to Oceaneer Club. This is where I found them all when it was time to pick them up.
Emma was dressed in a Tinker Bell dress coloring.
Sarah was in the animators station tracing characters.
Mason was playing a game like he was driving our ship. I'm really glad he was not, we'd all have been seasick!
On Tuesday we went to Disney's private island, Castaway Cay. It rained a bit as we got off the ship then again when we got on, but the rest of the day was just fine.
We followed Mickey for a while. Mitchell just ran after him yelling "a mouse!" He was in awe.
We saw Pluto too.
Sarah & Mason got to snorkel with Todd & me with some stingrays. Sarah was really nervous at first then thought it was pretty cool!

That night was pirate night. We got a great picture with Jack Sparrow (the picture the ship photographers took was better & worth the $19.95!). They had pirates of the Caribbean music playing in all the halls & our dinner was pirate themed. That night they had a great pirate show & even did fireworks off the top of the ship.
Wednesday was our sea day. Emma & I hurried to the atrium to see all the princesses. We waited in line for an hour to get her picture with all of them. Here she is with Ariel.
Mason did some swimming. We even braved the Aquaduck, a water slide around the top of the ship that had a section that jetted out over the ocean. Pretty fun! The pools were so full it was hard to even move, blah.
Every night the girls had Mickey bars for dessert. They were yummy!
The sunset on our last night. The kids loved to lay in the windows for pictures.
The last night at Oceaneer Club.
Funny story! Mitchell did not love going to the nursery, he's got separation issues. As we were walking with him to get Emma & Mason from Oceaneer we walked past the nursery. We paused at the door & Sarah asked him if he wanted to go to nursery. He said no & bolted down the hall as fast as he could. Todd & Sarah both chased after him. He ran half the length of the ship & was pounding on an elevator door when they caught up to him. The counselors at Oceaneer saw him run past & were about to chase after him until they saw Todd hot on his tail.
We now call that the nursery dash.
Our waiters Clive & Hector the last morning, way too early!
We got off the ship Thursday morning & headed back to Orlando. We were not flying home until Friday afternoon so we decided to go to Universal Studios. We've wanted to see the Harry Potter section.
I don't think this was the best idea. We were all worn out & it was in the 90s & super humid!
We spent a little time in the Harry Potter area & Dr. Suess area, then left. We were too hot.
Here's the back of the car as we drove to get some dinner before going back to our hotel.
Sarah was feeling a little queasy, so was Todd. Our only "seasickness" came before boarding the ship (Mason got carsick on the drive to the port) & after (Sarah did not feel good on Thursday). I guess that's pretty darn good!
We tried Harry Potter world again on Friday after we'd all slept for a very long time. It was still a hot day but we did have fun.
The ride in the castle was great.
Mitchell loved the butterbeer!
We flew home later that afternoon. We'd not been able to get on the same flights so Mitchell & I watched everyone else board a plane & taxi out (something I've not done for 10 years now) then we got on ours an hour later. Mitchell was good for our flight, we had a direct to Salt Lake. We went to visit Becky & grandma & grandpa at 9:30 pm while we waited for the rest of our family to arrive. It was a late night!
I want to cruise again but I think I'll let Mitchell grow up just a bit!

She's growing up!

I've been a blog slacker lately, but that's what happens with four busy kids I guess.

Emma's growing right up. She started a little ballet class that she loves. She's watched Sarah take ballet for several years now & was excited to get to take too.
Emma started preschool at our neighbor's house. It's so convenient to just walk around the block to get her there. She's having a great time & loves preschool days.