2011 Holiday Trip, With A Cruise In The Middle

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Remember when I posted those photos of characters going across the virtual porthole on the Disney Dream? I now have a video of a couple of them - Tink and Carl. Judge for yourself if Carl going across (or up) the porthole is one of the better ones.

http://youtu.be/o9IBUNNHMXs

Zz.

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Hubby and I always thought we'd want a cabin with a verandah when we get around to going on a Disney cruise. Now maybe we'd rather have an inside room on the really big boat.

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ZapperZ wrote:
Lizzy_B wrote:
Thanks for the porthole pics! Do you think you'll wait and book on the Fantasy when it's available?

I'm not sure. So far from our Vacation planner guide, the Fantasy seems to be going on longer cruises when compared to The Magic. We will have to discuss this with the rest of the gang when everyone is back.

Zz.

For sure. Everything I've seen about the Fantasy says that its voyages will be 7 days. I'd love to see both, though.

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One of the more amusing activities on our last cruise on the Disney Dream is this baby crawling contest that was held in the atrium. We were there in the middle of the whole thing, and saw some of the more hilarious race ever. I've uploaded the video that we took.

Note that there is something wrong with the audio of the uploaded file. The original video had no such audio problems. So I don't know what happened. Maybe I'll try uploading it again. But in the mean time, enjoy this one if you can. See if you are "tortured" by baby Matthew the way most of us were! Smile

Edit: OK, I think I've corrected the audio.

Zz.

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That's pretty adorable! What a cute idea.

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OK, so you saw the photos of The Magic, the Memories, and You earlier. This is the video that we took.

http://youtu.be/r17Z23okaN4

Happy Holidays!

Zz.

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Thanks for posting the video Zz. Truly amazing to see, and truly amazing technology employed by Disney to accomplish it. My Favorite part was when the castle morphed into the rocket ship taking off and then the castle going up in flames.

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Vettelover wrote:
Thanks for posting the video Zz. Truly amazing to see, and truly amazing technology employed by Disney to accomplish it. My Favorite part was when the castle morphed into the rocket ship taking off and then the castle going up in flames.

That is my favorite part as well! It's just spectacular.

I was almost ready with the video for Holiday Wishes before I left for the holidays. Hopefully, I'll finish it and upload it after I get back.

Zz.

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{Side note: I've corrected the audio problem of the baby race video that I posted earlier}

So what do Disney fans like me like more than Disney stuff? Why, it's getting Disney stuff for FREE! Yeah!

During the cruise, we got a few freebies, mostly due to DVC. Since we booked the cruise using our DVC points, we were "tagged" as DVC members during the cruise. On the first night, we had a reception for DVC members. During the random drawing, we won a lovely passport portfolio.

When we got to our room, there was another gift from DVC. It was a gorgeous wooden box that contained, among other things, lanyards for us to wear during the cruise.

Also during the cruise, they had a Disney trivia game. We formed a team and participated in the game. Between the 6 of us, we won, after a couple of tie-breakers! We got this medal.

On the last night of the cruise, for Pirate night, we were given bandanas to wear to the party.

Next, I'll post some of the stuff that we bought during the cruise.

Zz.

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Wow, so very cool, Zz! Congratulations on the win - love the medal!

Is there alot of pin trading activity on a cruise? Just curious.

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JeffC wrote:
Wow, so very cool, Zz! Congratulations on the win - love the medal!

Is there alot of pin trading activity on a cruise? Just curious.

Unfortunately, there wasn't. They had one evening where the officers came down to the atrium wearing lanyards with pins, and you can trade with them. But other than that, no other opportunities for pin trading. All the cast members were not wearing any pins to trade.

Zz.

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Thanks for posting the pics of the "loot" boy that looks like great stuff. I wish they would pass out some of that stuff at Welcome Home Wednesday instead of the hats of which I have at least 8 eek

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Vettelover wrote:
Thanks for posting the pics of the "loot" boy that looks like great stuff. I wish they would pass out some of that stuff at Welcome Home Wednesday instead of the hats of which I have at least 8 eek

Hat? Did you say hat? They passed out one of those as well! Smile

I actually like this hat. It has a simple, elegant design, and it is sooooo soft and comfy to wear!

Zz.

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We also bought quite a few other stuff while on the cruise. I won't list them all here (t-shirts, hats, sweatshirts, jackets, etc.) but I'll show a few notables ones.

Now Disney fans, if you can't get 'em for free, what is the next best thing in getting Disney merchandise? Why, getting Disney merchandise at a discount, of course! Luckily, for us, some of the inaugural voyage merchandise for the Disney Dream. But the BEST part is, ALL of the inaugural voyage merchandise were on sale at 40% off!! Of course, the LE pins and other stuff are mostly gone, but there were still other amazing items still left.

The first one is a baseball hat. And it is a Nike hat too!

This next one is the BEST item that we got, for a number of reason. This is the Mickey ears hat of the inaugural cruise. Everything from the hat to the box, to the velvet lining inside the box, is just outstanding. And get this, this is a limited edition hat, and we got 28 out of 1250! But here is the real killer. It retailed for $74.95. We bought it for $39.95!

The only regret I have is not buying a few more! I went on e-bay a week after we got back home, and the starting bid for one of these things was $90! I really am clueless on making money, I tell ya!

Zz.

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This item was not something we bought on the ship, but rather, BROUGHT onto the ship. For our birthdays (there were 2 of us who were making this our birthday cruise), we decided to bring 2 white, 9-inch vinylmations onto the ship. As soon as we got our luggage, we went to the Guest Relations desk and asked for the characters on the cruise ship to sign our vinylmations. This saved us from running around and looking for autographs from the characters.

On our last day on the cruise, these vinylmations were delivered to our state rooms, repacked in the boxes, and signed by the characters (or at least, have characters signatures). I don't collect vinylmations (in fact, I find them scary!), but even I have to admit that this was a rather cool thing to do and to have. So here are pictures of the signed vinylmation.

This is in the box as it was delivered to our room.

Vinylmation taken out of the box so you can see a bit more of the autographs.

On the back are all the princesses.

I now have to find a proper display case for this guy, or it'll accumulate dust very quickly.

Zz.

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Sleeping beauty is forever my favorite disney princess movie. And now I love the way Princess Aurora signs her name. I wanted so badly a picture with Princess Aurora and Prince Phillip while we were in Disney. The only thing that can top that would be a picture with the Evil Queen.

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Princess Tiana might want to consider modifying her signature just a little. Looks waaaaay too much like Princess Fiona to me, and now we're getting into a whole different fairytale franchise.

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While we were on this trip, we also paid close attention to the many wonderful holiday window display all throughout WDW. But the one that stuck in my head and one of my favorite was this one at Villains in Vogue at DHS. I just thought it was awfully clever.

Zz.

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When I did my trip report for "Room For 1 More", I didn't show one very important thing that will have some relevance for THIS trip. My friend Jan (who was the other birthday person on this trip) can really sew. For the Room For 1 More trip, she sewed for us these shirts that we wore during the 1-day event that got a lot of other fans' attentions. In fact, a few came over to use inquiring where we got the shirts. Look for yourself.

This is the front:

and this is the spectacular back.

So there were a group of us (~15) at that event wearing similar shirts, and people were willing to pay us money for the shirts! We of course didn't sell any because we would be in such deep doo-doo with the Disney folks.

Now, dial forward a few months for our birthday cruise, and Jan decided to make us shirts again for everyone going on the trip. She made for everyone t-shirts having this design on the front.

However, for the two of us who will be having our birthdays, we also have an extra denim shirt with this on the back.

It was just so much fun!

Anyhow, I'm mentioning this now because today is Jan's birthday, and tomorrow will be mine. We are both turning the BIG Five Oh! Oh no! Still, I'm hosting a holiday party for my close friends this evening, which will also double as a birthday party for the both of us for our friends that went on the cruise, and those who couldn't make it. It is a reminder, at least to me, that Friends such as these are a Family that we chose. Being Disney fans is simply a conduit for us to have such a family.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Zz.

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She did a great job. Happy birthday

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birthday and Happy New Year Zz. Enjoy your 50th.

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Thanks everyone! I had a great time yesterday. It's always nice to get together with friends, but it is extra nice when there's a special occasion. Now I have to spend time cleaning up the house today! Ugh!

Zz.

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A few thoughts on our cruise on the Disney Dream:

  1. Would we do it again? Definitely! In fact, we are in the middle of planning on a cruise for very early December of this year.
  2. The service on the ship is way, way better than at your typical Disney resort. This is not unexpected since many of the people you have direct interactions with (the housekeeping, the server, etc.) work directly for the gratuities. The cast members were extra nice and more than willing to help you with almost anything.
  3. Speaking of housekeeping, oh my god, are the sheets, pillows, comforter, etc. the softest, most luxurious thing you've ever had next to your skin or what? There had been several times where I would have been happy just cocooning in bed under the covers. And the toiletries? Outstanding. We got H2O spa collection, not the same ones you get at the resorts.
  4. You can eat yourself into oblivion. This is the honest truth. Since the first lunch we had when we first came on board the Disney Dream, till the morning that we walked out after our early breakfast, I will say that I can't remember ever being hungry at all! I would say that my favorite place to eat was the Cabana on Deck 11.
  5. Don't miss the soft-served ice cream on Deck 11, especially the banana-strawberry swirl.
  6. Go over all the on-board ship activity as soon as you get to your stateroom, and make reservation for the ones you want to go as soon as you can, especially if you wish to do such an activity during your full day at sea, if you have one. These get filled up very quickly.
  7. Your credit card is not accepted for purchasing on board the ship, or on Castaway Cay. All charges are done to your key card. However, Disney gift cards do work, and it is one way to keep track and keep in check of your spending. If you plan on doing your cruise during the holidays (December), and you spend time at the parks first, buy those gift cards that come with a complimentary holiday pins!

Zz.

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I'll finish off the last of my trip report that covers the final 2 days that we were at WDW.

We spent the morning of our penultimate day at DHS. Rode ToT, Star Tours, Rock N' Roller Coaster, Great Movie Ride, and drew a character at the Animation class. We got to draw Mickey (again!), and unfortunately, our animation instructor sucked! She tends to keep on rambling on and on about stuff, without giving us a lot of guidance on how to draw the characters. I hope I don't get her again in future classes. It was the first time ever that I didn't have a good time during the animation class.

We then hopped on over to DAK.

It turned out that it was a perfect time to get on the safari attraction. Because the weather wasn't too hot, a lot of the animals were out. A few even came very, very close to our ride vehicles, as you can see from these series of photos. A couple of times, we had to stop because there were wild animals along the ride vehicle path.

The lion also wasn't sleeping...

On the way back to our resort, we stopped by at the Caribbean Beach resort to get the Donald pin. They ran out at the Pin Central store in Downtown Disney, and the only other place to get it was at this resort. So we took the opportunity to look around a bit and had a nice gelato by the pool.

On our last day, we spent it at Epcot. We did Soarin, Test Track, Living with the Land, Sum of all Thrills, and then head on over to World Showcase where we did Maelstorm, and then went into the Mexico pavilion to do the ride.

While we were walking around the Italy Pavilion, we were just in time to watch the mime performance.

Before long, it was time to get to the airport for home....

Zz.

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Well Friends, that concludes my trip report for this trip. Sorry for dragging it on for so long, but it's taking me a while to sort through all the stuff and all my photos. Thanks for reading and following it, and I thoroughly enjoyed sharing it with you.

And oh, in case you didn't see it, don't miss Donald's trip report on the Disney Dream. It's a hoot, especially since he's being escorted by Perry the Platypus! He's going to post his trip report soon for when he was having his adventure on Castaway Cay, including an encounter with a surprise guest! So don't miss that!

Cheers!

Zz.

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Epilog:

While all good things must come to an end, there's nothing that says that you can't start another good thing.

Today, we booked on another Disney Cruise! It will be again on the Disney Dream, with the same itinerary, and will depart on Dec. 2, 2012. We are using DVC points, but many of your friends are paying cash. So far, there are already 6 of us going on this trip.

So, anyone here want to join us? Jeff? Smile

Zz.

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OK, I've been thinking about this for a while. I didn't think much about it when it happened, but then, I started to think a bit more and wondered if this was truly shouldn't happen.

Most of you know that I post Donald's "adventure" on my blog. I always try to take a picture of my cute, little Donald in a number of situations, and with cast members, characters, etc. The photos that I took at Castaway Cay for Donald's advanture is the one in question. In fact, it is one picture in particular, which I will reproduce here. It is Donald with Capt. Jack Sparrow:

So here's what happened. I saw Capt. Jack Sparrow walking along the beach. A number of guests stopped to snap a picture with him. Of course, I grabbed Donald, and made a beeline towards him. When I got close, I asked him if I could take a picture of him with Donald. He graciously said yes. But as soon as he said that, his "handler", who was walking with him, said something to the effect "Are you sure that's a good idea?" To which he replied "Oh, it's alright. I'm Jack Sparrow. I can do anything", or something like that.

Now, I didn't put too much thought on this at that time, but after a few minutes and after describing the whole thing to my friends, it just occurred to me that, maybe, just maybe, a picture of Jack Sparrow with Donald Duck might cause a rift in the spacetime continuum! Smile There could be a clash of "themes" here considering that Jack Sparrow shouldn't be with a fuzzy animated character. Maybe that's why his handler was not sure if he should have his picture taken with Donald.

It then made me think of all the characters that I had taken a picture with Donald. Now, would a princess be out of character/theme with Donald? Maybe the time frame might be different, but then again, princesses and the Disney characters often share the same stage, as in the shows in front of the castle at the Magic Kingdom. So they have been seen together, which was why I didn't hear any kind of issue when I took this picture:

I tell ya, this trip had a lot of stuff going on! Smile

Zz.

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Zz, I don't think we have any worries with the spacetime continuum, since Donald has been seen many a time before in pirate garb!

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mrhub wrote:
Zz, I don't think we have any worries with the spacetime continuum, since Donald has been seen many a time before in pirate garb!

Ah, but pirate Donald is a costume. Having Donald with Capt. Jack is mixing time! Smile

Zz.

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I think there are x's marked on the ground that tell the giraffes exactly where to stand... They were in the exact same place when we went... Lol

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