Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The Adventure Home

After three days of adventures we were excited to have our last two days to relax on the boat while at sea. We started each day with a yummy breakfast (seriously my favorite part of the cruise was having a deluxe breakfast and hot chocolate to start my day haha!) and then would head to the pool before it got more crowded. They showed movies on the big screen by the pool both days at 10am (Minions and The Princess Bride), so the kids would start swimming at 9am, we would get good spots for the show and then they would get lunch at the grill or pizza place out on the deck when they opened at 11am for lunch while finishing the movie. It was a great little routine! On Friday it was really windy and the pool was like a little wave pool, the kids LOVED it. Saturday was much more calm and I think they were a little disappointed that it was just a normal pool :-).

We also explored the ship in the mornings...the sky walk, the basketball court and the (not very cool) mini golf area.
That afternoon the girls went to get ice cream and explore more with Meema and Papa. (Preston was in trouble so he didn't get to go...it's tough to be little learning still :)
These two are so cute together!
There were some black Friday sales on the ship that we checked out and our family went to one of the nice restaurants that night for dinner. The food was definitely the best we had while onboard. It also was the 2nd formal night so we went ahead and posed for a few more pictures before dinner and then met up with Mike's fam for some more afterwards. (I was a little tired of doing my hair and makeup every night :-)
Meema and Addie were twins :-)
The next day was supposed to be our last day on the ship and it was so relaxing! We just hung around and did whatever we wanted to do. Back to the pool and another outside movie, reading, watching the cruise ship channel on TV about all the other cool places we want to go :-), etc.
he could only play it on our balcony, but of course he stood right by the door haha
That afternoon there was a family fun festival. Mike and I went to see Mission Impossible with his parents while the kids relaxed and then we caught the end of the festival. I was pretty impressed with the face painting skills of the kids' club workers!
Preston opted out of both glitter tattoos and face painting.
Cookie decorating was an acceptable activity however ;)
This was in the main atrium of the ship which the shops and restaurants surrounded (the balloons up top were ready for the balloon drop that night). There was a little cafe here that was open 24 hours and different little sandwiches, panninis, salads and desserts each day. The kids loved the tuna sandwiches and desserts especially so even though it was almost dinner time we had to get them one more time. There was often music being performed here which made it a fun little place to hang out and eat (piano, violins and in this pic a singer)
Our last dinner on the ship and the presentation of the Baked Alaska

That night we got all packed up and ready to get off the ship the next morning at 8am. We were so sad our week was already over! I really thought I would be ready to get off the ship and back home, but I wasn't! I wanted to stay forever!
Well, surprise! The next morning we were up and relaxing for a bit and had noticed how foggy it was out on the water. The captain came over the ship's sound system and told us we were stuck outside the port of Houston because of the fog and that once they gave the clearance for us to go in, it would be nearly 4 hours before we would actually be docked. The ship opened up for breakfast as a result so we went and enjoyed another big breakfast and enjoyed our extra hours of having no responsibilities.
The first part of the morning it was nice to be stuck on the ship, but as the updates kept coming we realized there was a very real possibility we would be on the ship an extra night which wasn't as exciting. The crew whipped together a schedule of activities and movies (we took the kids to see Ant Man when they showed it for example) but mostly it was a lot of just hanging out in the room on Sunday waiting to hear what would happen.
In the end we were never allowed in to the port and we had to unpack a few things to spend another night on the ship. Ella was getting stressed about missing another day of school and I was feeling really badly for all the people stuck at the port waiting to get on our ship to start their cruise...that would be such a bummer!
Luckily we got into the port early the next morning (Monday, the 30th) during a small window when the fog let up. We hurried back home, changed the kids' clothes and got Ella to school first. Then Preston and I threw together his Christmas project that we thought we were going to have hours to do on Sunday and got Addie and Preston to school as well.
It was a bit of a stressful end to a fabulously stress-free week!
I am SO sold on cruises now! In fact, we nearly booked another one that was leaving December 17th, but in the end decided to let some time go by first so we are looking more forward to it. Until next time :-)!
another night on the boat
back to the real world

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