Thursday, May 2, 2013

Our Disney Cruise–Part II

Arrrggghhh! It wasn’t a lie when I said there was more pirate fun!


Uncle Adam & Aunt Nen doing their best Captain Hook


Kels with her nephews & nieces

After the pirate deck party, it was time for the show. DSC_5480

Friday night’s show was called “Villains Tonight” and was really good. I was worried it might be scary to the girls, but it was really cute and really funny. Mamie loved it and I left a little worried that she enjoyed the villains so much. :)  

Later that night (@ 10:30), was another pirate celebration and the fireworks, “Buccaneer Blast”! The girls stayed up and did great. AB loved the fireworks and they didn’t scare Mamie at all. Disney fireworks in the middle of the ocean…Pretty awesome. Dinsey 2013 191There was a full moon that night and it was such a sweet gift.Dinsey 2013 185 The moon always makes us think of our Cooper. Even at the happiest most fun times, part of us will always ache knowing he’s not with us. I always say I’ll choose bittersweet over just plain bitter any day, though.

We went straight to bed after the fireworks and nobody had to rock any of us to sleep…

Saturday we woke up to see the most gorgeous view out of our magical porthole… DSC_5489We were docked at Castaway Cay, Disney’s private island. DW went to breakfast and brought us something back to the room. DSC_5487We wanted the girls to sleep as late as possible since we wanted to stay on Castaway as long as we could that day. After everyone was up, we made our way to the island. DSCN0388


AB couldn’t believe how green the water was. DSCN0392She kept saying, “That water is GOOOORGEOUS!!!” Dinsey 2013 242My thoughts exactly.

We decided to walk and not take the tram in…DSCN0395it was a beautiful walk and we even ran into some friends along the way…DSCN0396



For Pop…


We finally found the rest of the gang and settled in for the day.

The guys all braved the water first…it was pretty chilly, but refreshing. :)DSCN0418

AB insisted she needed a float, so her Daddy rented one. DSCN0441She and Mamie both had the best time on it. My mom found these matching swimsuits for the girls and they were the cutest girls on the island in them! :)



DW and the girls gave me my birthday present a week early this year! I got a new underwater camera and they gave it to me so we’d have it on the cruise. It made it great for getting pictures in the water. It’s the same one they got me LAST year for my birthday (I LOVED it all summer and then lost it in August…I was so sad, but excited to get a replacement this year!!!) :)


AB was really glad that we have another underwater camera, because she got used to taking pictures last summer. Here’s one she took at Castaway..DSCN0507

We were all spread out, but she made everyone “squeeze together” and “get in close..” she was too funny telling us what to do (you’d think she’s had a camera in her face since the day she was born or something…) :)

DW and I took our girls to the splash area to play…Mames and AB both loved it! DSCN0500



AB also loved that Taylor hung with us…


On our way to the splash park we ran into Captain Jack Sparrow…who gave AB some treasure, which she calls “Golden Balloons” (Gold doubloons). DSCN0474

Lunch was our next stop.

We’d checked out all the activities going on that day on the island, and had decided to go to the character dance party and to the crab races. When we got to the first gazebo for the dance party, it wasn’t very crowded at all--- it made it perfect for seeing Mickey, Minnie and Daisy when they came up…DSCN0512 it also gave AB a good chance at dancing with them! DSCN0518

DSCN0522After one freestyle song, they started the cupid shuffle – AB tried to keep up, but was happy when Nie-Nie jumped in and saved her. :)

DSCN0532 The conga-line was next and then another couple free style songs…DSCN0573

After the dance party, we had to head back to the other gazebo for the crab races. We totally lucked out and got in line quick enough to get to have a crab! If you’re one of the 8 groups to get a crab, you get to name it. I told AB we should name our crab a pirate name – and she said “Captain Hook” was the best pirate name she knew. :)  Probably the only pirate she knows (other than Jake), but still, she did good naming him. Everyone in the crowd loved his name, too and there were lots of cheers for Hook! :)DSCN0587

DSCN0595 They put the crabs in the middle circle and then they race to the outer edge. DSCN0596Captain Hook won the first race! I was jumping up and down and AB was just standing there, not sure of what happened. Ha… DSCN0601They do a couple more rounds to see who will end up in the finals… The championship was totally stolen from us when Captain Hook came out of the box on his back! He finally got flipped over and started heading for the line, but ended up coming in second. Dern. It was really fun though and I was so glad we got to do it. AB was just worried about getting a drink after the race, but later that night she told me the crab races were her favorite part of the day. :)DSCN0606

We got ice cream after, because it’s just what you do when there’s an unlimited amount of soft-serve and cones. That was for sure Mamie’s favorite part of the day…note she has two cones below…one with ice cream and one without. :)Dinsey 2013 250

The line for the water slides was gone, so DW, Pappy, Adam & Elliott went to do those.DSCN0609 DSCN0619They had the best time and even when I couldn’t see them, I could hear them laughing. DSCN0623

Pappy even got a bonus sinus cleaning when he came down one time…DSCN0616

Around 2:30, we started packing up and heading back to the ship in different groups, but we took one group picture before we split up again…Dinsey 2013 266 

Mamie and DW laid down for naps, but me and AB got off the boat again DSC_5526to take a few more pictures and to mail our post card from the Castaway Cay post office! DSC_5490So fun… DSC_5492She wanted to mail a postcard to Grammy & Pop and insisted on writing it herself. So sweet…DSC_5499

While we were walking back up to the boat, Captain Hook and Mr. Smee came walking down the gangway!DSC_5500 So fun…DSC_5509


Dinner our last night, was in the Enchanted Garden dining room.DSC_5549

Two little girls had some red sun-kissed cheeks that night! I just knew DCF was going to be coming to take them from me at any minute…

Dinsey 2013 285

After dinner, it was back to the room to do some packing… Boo!DSC_5558 I seriously could have stayed another couple days…and that rarely happens anywhere for me! (By day three of being anywhere, I’m almost always ready to come home).

After packing, it was show time! DSC_5588The show that night was “Disney’s Believe” ---it was so precious and although I tear-ed up during the previous two nights shows (Disney always makes me cry!), I did the full cry at the end of this one. (I was really glad I had to take Mamie to stand in the back of the theatre, by that point!) :)  It was such a sweet story line about the magic of childhood and how love makes everything grow and the little girl grew up and it seemed like it was just yesterday that her Daddy was playing in the yard with her… and there we were with our little girls, who will be grown in the blink of an eye… it was just a sweet reminder to savor every single stage and to make making memories a priority. It was just one of those “my heart is so full it might bust” moments because for the past two days, that’s exactly what we’d been doing. It was nothing short of magical to hear our four year old gasp and giggle as “Tinkerbell” fluttered above the audience that night or when our 16 month old threw her head back and squealed every night at dinner when the waiter sat down a bowl of ice cream and sprinkles in front of her. Dinsey 2013 134(We learned that Mamie does love her some Mickey Mouse sprinkles!)

Even the stages that bring 4 year old temper tantrums that lead to “I’m so mad at you! You’re not my daddy anymore!” right on the middle of amazing Castaway Cay are precious. (That’s a true story, to keep this real)…  Or the stage that brings the realization that “it’s going to be a LOOOOONNNGGGG time before you get to eat your own dinner while it’s hot!” (I’m looking at you, Mamie Girl!)…They’re all part of growing up and you have to take the good with the bad. (kind of like being part of a family…)

Trips and making memories at this point in our little family’s lives takes a lot of work…there’s no relaxing with little ones, but it’s so worth it. We’re blessed to have family that help us out, too. Everybody pitches in and grabs a bag or a hand when they need to and I’m thankful for all of them. I’m not the best at accepting help…I’m a do-it-myself-er all the way, and I feel like our children are mine and DW’s responsibility, but its so nice to know we have family who love our kids so much and gladly help us out.

That show had my heart full for sure. Like I said, it was just precious. As badly as we didn’t want to admit it, though, our trip was coming to an end… It was time to finish packing…& change Mamie’s diaper! Whew---

When we got back to the room that night, another surprise was waiting for the girls…DSC_5587

I’d read about how you could take a pillowcase to guest services on the first night and they would have all the characters sign it and return it to your room on the last night of the cruise. I was all set to do the pillowcases for the girls, but then I thought of something that would be even better for us… I knew the pillowcases would be cute, but there’s no way I’d put it out on their beds (I’m still way too OCD about how their rooms are decorated and a signed pillow case doesn’t exactly match their Pottery Barn Kids duvets… Ha… Not to mention what if the permanent marker ink bled on the said duvets? Yeah- not happening.) Anyway, I tried to think of what we could do other than a pillowcase and a few days before the cruise it hit me… a photo matte! We bought this signable photo matte from Michaels for like $5.00 and took a pack of colored sharpies, turned it in to guest services and just like they said, they had everyone sign it and had it delivered to our cabin the last night! I cannot wait to get a picture of the girls from the cruise printed and frame this in our playroom!!!)

Two jammied-up girls loved finding chocolates on our pillows every night. DSC_5617Thankfully Mames didn’t discover them until the last two nights. DSC_5612The last night I just let her loose with them… I mean it WAS VACATION!!!

The last big event on the ship was the “Farewell Friends” in the lobby that night at 10:00. DW and Mamie went on to bed, but I took AB (in her jammies) to the party. It was fun seeing all the characters come down the staircase and wave goodbye, not to mention do something fun with just my big girl. After their little performance, they all scattered around the lobby for meet and greets. AB wanted to see Minnie Mouse. DSC_5631I was glad, too, because the cruise just wouldn’t feel complete without a picture of Cruise Minnie!

On our way back to the room, we also saw Belle. AB wanted to see her, too, and since her line only had 3 people in it, why not? DSC_5636

The trip was wonderful and we definitely want to do it again one day! I’d recommend it to anyone! It was perfect, too, for a big group. There was literally something for EVERYONE… It worked out great because we could all do our own things and do what best suited our little families, but then every night we knew dinner would be together and there were activities (like the shows) that we did as a big group. I can’t say enough good things about the Disney cruise.


Thank you, Pappy & Nie-Nie for such a great trip and all the wonderful memories!




Anonymous said...

my heart is about to bust too !!! :) a well deserved vacation for a very deserving family...mine !! dollar amount on the memories...priceless...cannot wait to do it again :) nie-nie

SaraBeth said...

I love the autograph photo idea! I'm so glad you had such a wonderful trip:)

Alex and Jill said...

Alex and I want to take the girls to Disney but not until they're older. I've been thinking a Disney Cruise might be the way to go until we decide they're old enough for Disney World. Love your posts about your trip!! What fun!!

Carrie said...

Mamie is too funny for words! She is so cute eating with her child sizer silverware. You weren't kidding, it's adorable!

Rebecca said...

I have never, in my entire life, thought a Disney cruise was a good idea . . . you have CHANGED my mind! This looks awesome . . . thanks for sharing your adventure!

Paige Colson said...

What a fun trip! You've made me REALLY want to take a Disney cruise...and I have to say I really loved Island Minnie's beach outfit. :)

Anonymous said...

Just loved your Disney cruise! Our family group will be sailing in Dec. 2014 and I've already started to plan my DIY projects. Thanks for sharing. S.A.H.

Wade's World said...

We are doing a 3 night Disney Dream cruise in September, and your blogs about your trip were exactly what I wanted to see. We are going with my entire extended family, and we can't wait. Thanks for sharing!