Sunday, May 02, 2010

Sea Days

Of our 14 night cruise, a total of eight days were sea days and I have to say I really enjoyed those “down” days. For me, the sea days seemed a little less rushed as we weren’t trying to get out and going, there was no rushing around to see the sights and experience the port and there was no worry of making it back onto the ship by a certain time. There of course were plenty of activities to keep everyone busy and entertained, more than enough in fact as sometimes we had to choose between activities for what would interest us the most. On almost all of the sea days Maisie would spend from mid-morning through lunchtime at the Oceaneer lab or club, allowing me some time to attend some adult only activities. After lunch Maisie and I would take a nap together and then we would spend the afternoon together either at the pool, watching a movie or participating in one activity or another and then we'd take a trip up to Goofy's Galley so that Maisie could get her afternoon ice cream treat. The hours each day seemed to fly by and soon it was dinner time, then the theater or some other night-time entertainment, time for our hot chocolate & tea and in a blink of an eye it was 10:30 or 11PM so we'd be off to bed.

The one difficult thing about our six-day crossing was that for five nights running we turned our clocks forward an hour, thus losing an hour of sleep each night. For many this time change wasn’t an issue and they still got plenty of sleep as I noted that each day the do-not-disturb sign remained on their doors later and later. I though “forced” the issue and each sea day morning we were up at 8am and to breakfast by 9 so that 1) we didn’t sleep all day and stay up later and later each night, 2) were up and able to participate in all the activities and 3) when we did finally reach a port we were used to getting up and able to get up and out first thing in the morning to enjoy the full time in our port and not get out only after lunch like so many of the other people we knew. By losing those hours of sleep each night we were tired and after the third night of losing an hour it caught up with Maisie and it was another night of her falling asleep at dinner. Maisie really loved going to the theater each night so I knew she was "done" when she asked to skip the theater and just wanted to get her hot chocolate so that she could go to sleep. I too was knackered and I really didn’t care if we saw the show that night or not so I was happy to oblige. By 8:30 PM we were tucked in bed being rocked to sleep by some rough 13-foot seas which I have to say, we both found sort of comforting and enjoyable.

Maisie never asked or really wanted to go to the Oceaneer lab & club as she always preferred to stay with me, but I needed some breaks from her and once she was there, she always had a good time. Her favorite times there were when she was playing with Molly or Marta, watching one of the science projects or attending Ratatouille cooking school. Twice she and Molly partnered up to make and eat chocolate chip cookies and they were oh so cute together.

While Maisie was off doing her activities I was able to attend some of the adult only programs. I enjoyed seeing a lecture by Don "Ducky" Williams and watching him do about 20 drawings. I also attended a few cooking demonstrations with tastings and wine pairings, given by Chef Michael Bersell, some lectures by Disney Imagineer Gary Landrum and a few lectures about our ports of call, modern ship building, light houses and other nautical stuff by Capt. Kenneth Puckett. Maisie and I also became Disney VoluntEARs when we helped to paint a mural designed by Don "Ducky" Williams which was finished during our voyage and donated to a children's hospital in Barcelona when we arrived at the port.

Enough chit chat, on with the pictures. These are all stills taken off my Flip video which was easy to keep with me all the time so not particularly wonderful picture quality but memories none the less.

Untitled 0 00 38-04 A Maisie posing with Snow White

Untitled 0 00 20-14  B Maisie and Belle.

Untitled 0 00 29-12  C Formal night with Mickey & Minnie.

Untitled 0 00 42-22  D Maisie wanted me in the picture too.

Untitled 0 00 34-30  D Another formal evening with Belle and the Beast

Untitled 0 00 43-22  F Maisie giving the Beast a big hug.

Untitled 0 00 46-19  G Maisie and I being silly with Goofy & Max (yep, had to look up Max as I had no idea who he was!)

Untitled 0 00 18-10  G1 Goofy, Maisie and Max

Untitled 0 00 09-03 (2)  H More time with Goofy & Max

Untitled 0 00 06-01  I Maisie and ????, yeah I know, I should know who these characters are but Maisie didn't know either but wanted a picture. Thanks again to Ilene letting me know that this is Terk, Tarzan's friend.

Untitled 0 00 23-09  J Maisie painting part of the mural in Animators Palate.

Untitled 0 00 26-22  K Making good progress AND staying in the lines!

Untitled 0 00 11-05  L Maisie and I with Don "Ducky" Williams. Maisie wanted no part of wearing the Mickey ears as she told me, "I'm not a mouse silly, I'm a Princess and Princesses wear tiaras not ears!" Guess she told me.

Untitled 0 02 03-03  M The reveal of the mural.

Untitled 0 00 08-10  N The completed mural. Maisie and I helped to paint the square in the bottom row, second from the right. The hospital didn't have a wall large enough for the full mural so it was split into 4 pieces with each smaller mural having a character and balloons and they hung them on four separate walls.

Untitled 0 00 11-03 O Everyone sailing on this voyage received a limited edition commemorative lithograph, Who's the Vilest Villain of All? created by Don "Ducky" Williams and here I am having him sign it.

IMG_0802  P Children going onto the stage for the Friendship Rocks performance. See Maisie lined up in what was still the front row, tiny compared to those around her but adorable in her tiara and heels. All the children who attended the kid's clubs got up on the stage in the Walt Disney Theater to sing and dance and see a video of pictures taken during the voyage...very fun and cute and Maisie loved just being up on the stage.

IMG_0806  Q Maisie after the Friendship Rocks performance.

Untitled 0 00 31-08  R Marta & Maisie being silly, cute and adorable together at dinner time.

Untitled 0 00 08-17  S Colin & Maisie at dinner time playing on my iPhone.

Untitled 0 00 30-07  T Maisie and Molly at Ratatouille Cooking School.

Untitled 0 00 03-29  U Another day at Ratatouille Cooking School. After all their cooking, Maisie & Molly got to enjoy the cookies that they made.

Untitled 0 00 21-27  U Getting braids. Maisie wanted two on each side but after the second one wanted to know if she was done yet so she ended up with three on one side and loved that she matched her friend Molly.

Untitled 0 00 01-16  V Maisie loved this experience of watching a movie out on deck one cold evening and being snuggled in with her hot chocolate and some chocolate chip cookies.

Untitled 0 00 17-17  W Maisie and Marta watching Pinocchio.

Untitled 0 00 14-29  X Enjoying an afternoon ice cream.

Untitled 0 00 07-25  Y Maisie sound asleep at dinner in Lumiere's.

Untitled 0 00 01-03  Z Once again sound asleep at dinner time, this night in Animator's Palate. Maisie managed to fall asleep at least one time in each of the three restaurants. I just adore this pictures of Maisie as I find something so sweet with it, I just love my little Princess Pirate. It was Pirates IN the Caribbean night and she was completely knacked as we had spent the day probably walking about 10 miles up and down the hills of Funchal. Maisie ended up not even eating a single bite of dinner and only wanted to get her hot chocolate and go to bed. Unfortunately we missed the big on-deck party and the fireworks but we both got a good nights rest.

During our 6 day Atlantic crossing we did encounter some rough seas which caused all the small pools to become huge wave pools. The pools were closed for 2 or 3 days but all the hot tubs and the kids Mickey ear "hot tubs" remained open so when it was warm enough Maisie could still "swim."


  1. Goodness, I leave for a few days and miss all the awesome updates about your cruise. You and Maisie looked like you both had a wonderful time. I will comment more when I get some time. :)

  2. SO MUCH FUN!!! I've always dreamed of taking Hannah on a Disney cruise someday and you're helping to solidify those dreams.

    The mural is so neat! Love all the characters! Movies with hot chocolate and cookies on the deck...memory making!



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