Disney Wonder Western Caribbean Day 9

This morning we woke up extra early to get dressed and pack our last minute things.  We do the express walk off to avoid standing in line at customs.  That means you carry your own bags off the ship and you don’t have breakfast onboard.  OMG! we had SO much stuff! I swear we didn’t get on the ship with that much stuff!!!  We got off the ship and went through customs in record time.  No lines at all!

We packed up the car and went to breakfast.  CSP found a good prospect on Yelp so we went there.  It’s called Southern Charm Cafe.  Good thing we got there when we did (about 8:15am) because once we got seated, with no wait, a huge line appeared and people were waiting all out the door and down the sidewalk!

All the waitstaff wear t-shirts with cute sayings on the backs like “Raised on Sweet Tea” and “There’s Nothing Biscuits and Gravy Can’t Fix”.  Well one of the servers’ shirts said “Well butter my butt and call me a biscuit!” IMG_0944.jpg CSP apparently had never heard that saying before (being from Minnesota and all).  He laughed about that all the way home!  Breakfast was really good.  We decided to make that place our go to spot for post cruise breakfasts from here on out!

We hit the road for home and should have been home around 5:30 pm but somewhere in v rural SC on I 95 there was a HUGE accident.  So Nigel, my phone’s navigator voice, rerouted us through this TINY town to bypass the wreck.  That added about an hour onto our trip.  We finally got home around 7 pm to some really excited pugs!

Now….to save our pennies for the next cruise!!!

Disney Wonder Western Caribbean Day 8- Part 2

Castaway Cay Day!!!  Our 17th anniversary!!!  So, back to the island!  While CSP was out riding his bike I read my book out on the mini sofa. All around the cabanas are trees and lush vegetation.  Birds were flying everywhere!  In and out of the cabana.  Hummingbirds and sweet little tiny colorful birds. They were sure not scared of us!  I was drinking a Sprite and a wee bird came and perched right on my can and helped himself to a drink!  He wasn’t even a foot away from me! Then he must have gone and told his friends because within a few minutes there were tons of birds hanging around, drinking CSP’s Coke, eating CSP’s chips (!!!) and dive bombing us!See the bird on the left side of picture? Contrasted against the towel.

CSP came back from biking and we took a couple of the low beach chairs down to sit in the water.  

Our cabana is number 15, to the right of our yellow umbrella. To the left of the umbrella you can see the bin of floats & tubes.

The weather was AMAZING!  74* and a few tiny clouds in the sky.  The water was pretty cool, but I like it cool. It wasn’t too cool for the cabana kids to be swimming and playing in it- they were having a great time!  And the fish- lots of tiny fish swimming all around our feet and we even saw a huge white fish swim by.

Next thing we knew it was time for lunch.  We walked down to Cookies Too BBQ and got a table.  The tables are all under this big structure so you’re in the shade for lunch.

CSP went and got his food first.  Kwan was there (our assistant server).  She is SO sweet! She came right over to talk to me and kept asking could she go get my food.  CSP came back and I went to the buffet to get my lunch.  On the way back to the table 3, THREE different crew members asked to take my tray to the table! Finally a man just took it from me! I led him to our table and we had a nice lunch. They have all kinds of stuff for you to choose from.  I had a spicy chicken sandwich, corn on the cob, and some potato salad.  CSP had some mahi mahi and chicken and a bunch of other stuff I can’t quite remember. Kwan brought us some coconut and banana bread to try and it was lovely.

We walked back to the cabana

(coconuts in that tree!!!) after lunch and CSP had a wee nap.  I chatted with our neighbors and read my book.  We had another little wildlife visitor in the form of a curly tailed lizard. IMG_0726.jpgSo cute!  Before we knew it Glenn, the concierge guy, came by to tell us the island taxi would be by to pick us up at 3:30.  The afternoon just FLEW by.  I got my stuff together but CSP decided he would rather walk back to the ship on his own.  He wanted to stop by the shops on the way to the ship. While I waited for the taxi I took a selfie and that’s when I realized I’d forgotten sunscreen on my face!!!  Doh!

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I looked like a tomato!!! Soon enough the golf cart came and I piled on with Laci & family.  Here are some pictures CSP took on the way back to the ship.

I got back to our room at about 4.  Soon after the phone rang.  It was Guest Services looking for CSP!  Is he there? No. When did you last see him?  I left him in the cabana.  What’s going on?  Just have him call us ma’am.

OMG!!!! CSP is causing yet ANOTHER international incident! Click here to read about his first incident!  A few moments later CSP walked through the door. I filled him in and called Guest Services.  The lady who answered said “Oh yes, we’ve been looking for him.  I’ll let the officer know.” WHAT??  Turns out that what happened was when I boarded the ship they logged in my Key To The World Card and I guess just assumed he was with me because they asked for just one KTTWC per stateroom.  But then he didn’t tap his card in when going through security when I went through because he wasn’t with me.  So I guess they thought I lost him somewhere between the security checkpoint and the ship!

All’s well that ends well!  Next up: pool time, extreme winds, & Mardi Gras!!!

Stay tuned for Part 3!

Disney Wonder Western Caribbean Day 8- Part 1

Castaway Cay Day! Our 17th Anniversary!!! It’s a big day with lots to talk about and tons of pictures to share so I’m breaking it up into parts.

Last night when we entered our room we found an envelope. IMG_0661.jpg Inside was a map of Castaway Cay, a lot of information, and 2 wristbands for our CABANA!!!!  Yep! I miraculously scored a cabana on the family beach (the best side in my opinion)! Gather round and I’ll tell you how it happened.  Our new friends Laci and Rusty sailed concierge this cruise.  Concierge gets first dibs on the cabanas and there are only 25 on the whole island! 21 on the Family Beach and 4 at Serenity Bay, the adult only beach.  Well, Laci and Rusty ended up with 2 cabanas and they only needed one.  So they offered up the 2nd cabana to our cruise group! So generous and nice!!!  I plead our case, that it’s our 17th anniversary and we reeeeeaaaalllly wanted one and they let us have their spare! Woot!!!  I mean, we still paid for it but just getting the cabana is a huge feat in itself so we are immensely grateful!

Fast forward to this morning.  The golf cart island taxi was scheduled to pick us up at 9:30 am.  Well you’re allowed to leave the ship for Castaway Cay at 8:30 am.  So CSP said SEE YA and went on without us.  He really enjoyed having the cabanas all to himself! He was the first of the cabana guests to arrive and instead of stopping to check in like he was supposed to… CSP just bypassed that altogether and walked straight to our cabana with the cabana crew members running behind him yelling “Sir!  Sir!!!” because they are all about only letting the cabana guests into that area.  OMG! CSP’s causing an international incident!  Knucklehead!

Once they determined that CSP was legit, a crew member gave him the grand tour of our cabana, #15! To get to our cabana you walk down this lush path.  Our’s was right near the restrooms which is v v convenient!

Here it is!

When you walk in there’s a closet immediately to your right that holds a safe and some towels.  Then there’s a counter top with a drink menu and a basket full of snacks. On the wall above the counter there’s the controls for music and there’s a button.  Push the button and a cabana crew member will appear to help you! Under the counter are more towels, a garbage bin, and a mini fridge that’s stocked with water, soda, a fruit bowl, and chilled towels. V v fancy!  To your left is the main living area. There’s a sofa, a couple chairs, some small tables, a bench, and a changing area.  Keep walking forward and there are 2 chaise lounges and a mini sofa with a couple more tables.  On one of the tables is a basket with sunscreen in it. Overhead is a sail cloth shade so you’re not in direct sunlight. Walk down the stairs and to the right is the shower and to the left is the hammock. Walk straight ahead and there’s the Caribbean sea and the private beach. Amazing!  Just check out our views! Your own private world!

There are sand toys on your deck ( we gave ours to the Atkinson kids next door to play with.) Oh I forgot to mention that our next door neighbors were Laci & Rusty and family! Best neighbors ever! The cabana also comes with usage of bikes and snorkeling equipment, beach chairs, an umbrella, and a huge bin full of floats and inner tubes! Everything you could possibly need for a fabulous day at the beach!

I arrived at around 10am and found CSP snoozing on the hammock.  He woke up and I slathered him with sunscreen then he was off to ride a bike around the island and up to the observation tower. Oh, how I wish in that moment I had remembered to slather my own face with the SPF 100 sunscreen I brought with me.  CSP put sunscreen on my arms & neck and I did (most) of my legs.  I missed one spot on the inside of each knee somehow.  Burn, baby, burn. While CSP was out riding his bike I read more of my book “My Not So Perfect Life” by Sophie Kinsella.  V cute beach read, perfect for this trip.

CSP came back from his bike ride and……

More later! Stay tuned for Part 2!

Disney Wonder Western Caribbean Day 6

Grand Cayman Day! We slept in a bit and missed breakfast.  We’ve been to Grand Cayman a few times and the one port adventure we wanted to do was sold out so we opted to stay on the ship again.

We got into our swimsuits and went up to Cabana’s buffet for lunch.  CSP was so excited to finally get his peel and eat shrimp and that boy put away a ton of them!IMG_0640.jpg

After an early lunch we spent all day at the pool.  It was awesome! No crowds, easy to find 2 chairs together in the shade, blue skies, not too hot, and it was nice and quiet!

 

There were a ton of cruise ships (7!) in port today and lots of private yachts too!

Finally it was time to go get showered for dinner & our movie. Tonight’s movie was Thor Ragnarok. OMG it was SO funny!  We don’t have cable or satellite tv at home so we don’t see a lot of previews for movies.  So we’ve been going into these movies with 0 expectations. And I have to say I like it better that way- they are all a total surprise!

While we were getting dressed for dinner an announcement came over the loudspeaker. Bright Star, bright star, some other code words and a cabin number.  That sure didn’t sound good. 😦

After Thor we went back to the Promenade Lounge to wait for dinner.

By now the Captain had come back on the loud speaker to explain that there was a medical emergency and our departure was delayed.  So sad.

Tonight’s dinner was at Triton’s again.  IMG_0644.jpg

Kwan surprised me with a whole bowl of the yellow sweetener for my tea. IMG_0645.jpg So sweet that she noticed that’s the sweetener I use!  A Southern girl has to have her sweet tea!

CSP was looking especially handsome tonight.  IMG_0646.jpg

On the way back to our room after dinner we spied Chip and Dale! IMG_2798.jpgThey are too cute!  We got back to our room and changed clothes because we had a date! More on that in a minute. First I want to show you our door. IMG_0647.jpg We decorate it with magnets like a lot of people do.  But we found out on this cruise we are conservative in our decorating! Some people go all out! It really does make it easier to find your room though in those long hallways of white door after white door.

We discovered a turtle on our bed when we entered! IMG_0648.jpg

Each night CSP would take the towel animal and very carefully place him on the sofa to preserve him so we could enjoy him during the day.  Sweet.

It was time for us to head up to deck 8 for our date! We walked the length of the ship on the pool deck on the way.

Finally we arrived at Laci & Rusty’s Concierge Suite! Boy was it nice!  In the space that is our entire room they had a bathroom, closet, dining area and living room with giant tv. Then off that there was a huge bedroom and ginormous bathroom with jacuzzi tub!!! Granted they were there with their 3 children so they filled up the space easily but I could sure see CSP & I enjoying a suite like that one day! We were there to play a card game CSP & I had never played before:  Cards Against Humanity. IMG_0649.jpg OMG! people! This game is insane!  The only thing I’d ever heard about it was that it is not for the easily offended. All I can tell you is that we laughed SO hard for so long!  It’s a super fun game! At one point CSP’s entire head and neck were purple from laughing so hard!  Laci and Rusty were the perfect people to introduce us to the game. They are hilarious in their own right!  Plus they had the game plus booster packs.  Enough cards that we played until 2 am!!!  Finally we pulled ourselves away and retired to our room with sore cheeks from all that laughter.  Cards Against Humanity is on my shopping list now!

Tomorrow- sea day and Palo brunch!

Disney Wonder Western Caribbean Day 5

Costa Maya Day!  Another port we’ve visited before, so we decided to enjoy the empty ship again today.  We woke up early and went to the buffet in Cabana’s for breakfast.  Costa Maya was pretty crowded with cruise ships today.

There was even a little ship wrecked on the shore. IMG_0615.jpg

After breakfast we went back to our room to get ready for the day. IMG_0617.jpg

First on our agenda was another movie- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 It was so good! Baby Groot is the cutest thing!!!

After the movie we went up on the pool deck to grab a snack since we missed lunch.  I had a chicken shawarma which was really good.  Then we went back to our room to drop off the popcorn bucket and get ready for afternoon tea.

Our cruise group had an afternoon tea in the Cadillac Lounge. IMG_0619.jpg It was so nice!  Plus the Cadillac Lounge is very cool- great theming.  We arrived and got our goodies IMG_0618.jpgand then Laci and Rusty and their kids arrived and joined us.  It was the first time we were meeting Birthday Girl Keci and their son Kade. We all had a great time during the tea.  It was such a nice break during the day.  The Wonder had coffee, hot tea, iced tea, and so many little desserts and finger sandwiches.  I’m mad I didn’t get more pictures!

Once tea was over we rushed to the other end of the ship to the Buena Vista Theatre again to see Black Panther.  We were excited to see it because it had been sold out for so long at home! On the way to the theatre we walked right past Belle. IMG_0620.jpg I went to the restroom before the movie and discovered this:  IMG_0621.jpg I had to take a picture for CSP.  He loves all the behind the scenes stuff! Speaking of restrooms, I don’t know how it is in the mens’ rooms but in the ladies’ there are fresh roses! IMG_0583.jpg

It’s a v nice touch!

After the movie we had about 40 minutes before dinner so we went back to the Promenade Lounge for cocktails. I’m realizing as I’m writing these blog posts that it seems like we’re drinking all the time.  We’re really not big drinkers, especially at home.  But on the cruise I like to have a coconut mojito when I can and CSP takes part in the big beer mug program.  You pay something like $15 and get a big beer mug, then when you refill it they only charge you for a pint of beer instead of the full 22 ounces.  It’s a great deal.

Tonight’s dinner was at Tiana’s Place.  We were very excited as this was our first time there.  Again, the theming was spot on.

In the bottom right picture above you can see Louis came out to greet everyone with his trumpet!

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They have a live band playing during most of dinner.  They were good!  It was fun having the music.  All the kids got up and danced with Tiana.  Speaking of Tiana….she went around to each table tonight and greeted everyone! IMG_0630.jpg

That woman has endless energy! To do this for 2 dinner services a night, plus all the singing and dancing!!!

Oh, and the food was really good too! Louisiana Cajun style. IMG_0632.jpgThis is CSP’s tiramisu.  He liked the little frog on the plate.

After dinner we went up to bed. It was another great day!

Disney Wonder Western Caribbean Day 3

Sea Day! We woke up early and had breakfast at Triton’s. IMG_2677.jpg IMG_2657.jpgThen we went back to our room to get ready for the day. We took our time and hung out in our room until it was time for lunch.  Right back to Triton’s for lunch!  Then we went to the Buena Vista TheatreIMG_0547.jpg to see Coco.  I’d seen it once already but CSP hadn’t seen it yet.  Disney cruises show all their current releases in the big theatre on the ship.  It’s an awesome way to see new movies without paying extra! Also, on sea days the pools are PACKED so good luck getting a chair in the shade!  Back to the movie…I secured our seats and CSP went up on deck to get us drinks.  He brought me back a surprise Dole Whip! I was so excited! I’d never had one and had been looking forward to trying one on this cruise.  IMG_0548.jpg

It was SO yummy!!!

After the fabulous Coco we went down to the Future Cruises desk.  We already had our cruise booked for January 2019, but we were able to re-book it onboard and save a ton of money plus we will receive a $200 onboard credit when we sail now. Yay!!!

Once we had our next cruise sorted we went up to the Quiet Cove Cafe to officially meet Laci and Rusty for drinks.  We all got along famously and before we knew it, it was time to go get ready for dinner!  Time flies when you’re having fun for sure!  We made a quick pit stop in Crown and Fin Pub on our way back to our room.

Dinner tonight was at Animator’s Palate. IMG_0556.jpg

We were seated at table 51. IMG_0554.jpg You have the same table number every dinner, and the same service team, just in a different restaurant each night! Love how Disney does this! Tonight was formal night so we got all dressed up IMG_0555.jpg(which is one of my favorite parts of cruising- getting dressed for dinner).  Our servers were Alit from Bali and Kwan from Thailand.  You can see Alit in the picture above and I’ll show you Kwan later.  We just LOVE them both!

Tonight during dinner they dimmed the lights and put on an animated show IMG_2700.jpgand then CSP’s favorite Sorcerer Mickey came through the dining room!!!  IMG_0562.jpg

After dinner we went up to our room to get ready for bed. IMG_0571.jpg

Each night we’d come home to a fabulous towel animal, chocolates, and the next day’s Navigator (a newsletter showing you what goes on during each day of the cruise).  About 1 am I woke up and saw that Laci had texted me while we were asleep.  I answered her and before I knew it, her daughter was at our door delivering a case of Evian water and some goodies! We were able to text at sea via Disney’s Cruise app, so no extra charges.  Yay!

Disney Wonder Western Caribbean Cruise Day 2

This morning we woke up early, got ready and went downstairs to get breakfast. During breakfast I dropped a bagel loaded up with cream cheese and honey toppings side down right on my chest. CSP laughed so hard at me I thought he was going to stroke out! So much for my clean shirt!!!

We got on the road to Port Canaveral just before 10 am arriving about 11:20. By the time we got parked, unloaded the car, got through port security and check in, we were able to walk right on the ship! LOVE Disney’s organized check in system. We went straight to Guest Services to borrow a power adapter for my CPAP machine. Then we went to the Promenade Lounge to change our dining rotation. Easy peasy. IMG_0528.jpgNext up was lunch at Triton’s. We prefer to eat at the sit down restaurant on embarkation day because Cabanas up on the pool deck is packed with people.

Lunch was very nice. The people at the table next to us were first time cruisers. I remember that feeling!

After lunch we went back to the Promenade Lounge for our Facebook group’s meet and greet. One thing I always recommend to people cruising is to join your Facebook cruise group. You get to know some of your fellow cruise mates ahead of the cruise and if you’re a newbie you can learn so much! Plus you can sign up for gift exchanges and special events. Our group administrator was just amazing! So my main goal at the meet and greet was to let her know how much I appreciated her. In line to check in at the meet and greet I met Diane and her mom. Diane is mentally challenged and turned 30 on the cruise.  It has always been her dream to go on a Disney cruise. Her mom is part of our Facebook group and posted Diane’s picture so we’d all know what she looks like so we could wish Diane a happy birthday.  It was so great to finally meet them!

Our rooms were ready at 1:30 pm so after the meet and greet CSP and I went to our room to drop off our bags.  Upon arrival to room 6534 we found our Castaway Club gifts: a sling pack bag and 2 cool luggage tags. IMG_0530.jpg

We checked out our room IMG_0531.jpg

and I discovered Disney left us a little giftie for our anniversary! IMG_0532.jpgI also discovered CSP had packed his pockets full of Cholula hot sauce for the cruise. Keeping it classy! IMG_0533.jpg

CSP LOVES watching the dock workers prepare the ship from our veranda. IMG_0534.jpg

Then unfortunately it was time for my least favorite cruise activity- the muster drill. UGH.  Our muster station was up on deck 4 right in the sun. IMG_0535.jpg

After the dreaded muster drill we went down to the new Crown and Fin pub for a cocktail before we set sail.  The Wonder recently went through a large renovation and the ship is just beautiful! You’d have no idea it’s 19 years old unless someone told you!

 

I enjoyed my first coconut mojito of the trip and CSP had a bourbon fizz.  To our surprise we noticed we had started moving at 4:45, 15 minutes early.  We watched the shoreline disappear from the pub then headed back to our room to unpack. Upon arrival we found an anniversary present from Laci & Rusty! L&R are a couple we “met” through our Facebook cruise group.  Turns out they only live a couple hours from us and we have tons in common!  They gave us the sweetest tea cup set! IMG_0893.jpg

We were unpacking when we ran out of hangers.  I stuck my head out our door and found our room steward Niel.  He brought us an extra dozen hangers and was so sweet!

Then we got dressed for dinner. Tonight we were in Triton’s for dinner. IMG_2637.jpg They had a French menu so CSP was thrilled to eat his escargot!  IMG_0540.jpgI had my favorite creme brûlée for dessert.

After dinner we spotted PlutoIMG_2632.jpg on the way to the shops onboard to pick up our traditional magnet with the year on it and a gift for CSP’s mom who’s home pug sitting.

After our little bit of shopping we went back to our room for bed! IMG_0541.jpg It was a long, but great day!