Disney Cruise- Day 1 Embarkation !!

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We made it onto the boat!! Hooray!! The Disney Dream really is a dream!! I think our family has memorized every Disney Cruise YouTube and Pinterest Post that is out there. We couldn't be more excited for our adventure with the 60 members of our extended family who have joined us!!

Everyone said we had to hustle to the Aqua Duck first (the roller coaster water slide that shoots you around the perimeter of the boat). So Warren and the kids that were big enough, ran over to get in line. My aunt even convinced my non-water-slide-riding mom to go on it! 

Mia (3), James (1), and I, went over to the splash area.

I was really bummed to find out that babies aren't allowed in any of the pools- even with a swim diaper. James absolutely loves the pool, so that was hard for us. The splash pad was really cute, but it's really removed from the other family area, so I was a kind of cooped up over there. 

I was happy to see the splash pad worker interrogating a strange man who came over to the kiddie splash area that was childless. He kicked out anyone without a child present. I was really happy Disney was doing their very best to keep my kids safe from creepers. 

Mia was having an absolute blast on the kiddie slide when she slipped on the step and ended up with a huge black eye. Sad!!!! The Disney Crew Members were awesome to get me ice packs right after and find a chair for us to lounge in while I tried to calm her down. It felt like a bit of a crisis for a while there. Warren was on the Aqua Duck with Cass, the boys were headed in different directions and I was trying to hold an ice pack with a screaming girl and a squirmy baby. She really wasn't calming down, so we decided it was probably time for lunch. 

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My dad had already staked out a table, so we grabbed the boys and headed over to Cabana's Buffet and loaded up our plates with delicious fresh seafood: crab, shrimp and mussels. I also had a nice salad, and we all had soft serve ice cream cones. The all you can eat ice cream cones have been a big favorite with the kids. Food was just what we needed to turn the mood around.

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After lunch, we headed to check out our room and see the set up before we reported for our mandatory boat drill. We checked out the balcony in my parents' room and had the amazing luck to catch to dolphins on tape during the 20 seconds I happened to be recording!!! Check them out below!

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My cute people!!! 

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From there we went to Guest Services (they are the BEST and seem to solve everything). We were hoping to drop off some frame mats for the characters to sign. We read on Pinterest somewhere that you can drop off items like pillow cases, frame mats, etc. at Guest Services and the characters will have it signed for you by the end of the cruise. NOT TRUE! Apparently, they stopped doing that over 3 YEARS AGO. Don't believe everything you read on Pinterest!!  

Did you catch a glimpse of Mia's black eye in that video? Yikes! So nice the kids had something to watch while we were in the Guest Services line.

My grandmother requested we all get together as a family for a quick hour before dinner to connect with each other before the cruise really got going. The Evolution Lounge was reserved for us and they had appetizers and the choice of mango or strawberry smoothies. The strawberry was tasty, but I really loved the mango. I realized when I got there I had forgotten my cousin's family Disney shirts that we needed for the big fam photo. Well, the Lounge was in the Aft (back) end of the ship and we were housed in the Forward (front). It was a really long walk!! I was sad to miss most of the get together but at least I got the shirts there in time for the picture!!

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I did my best to stay away from the appetizers because next was dinner at the Enchanted Garden. The restaurant was beautiful!!! My pics just didn't do it justice. 

At dinner you have the same seating arrangement every night. You rotate to 3 different restaurants, and your servers go with you. My mom had the task of creating the family seating chart for the 60 of us. No easy feat!! My kids were super happy with the arrangement. My boys sat at an all boy table with a bunch of their teen/tween cousins. Hallie (7) got to sit at a table with all of the young girl cousins. Cassidy (16), Mia (3) and James (1) sat with Warren and me. We had my cousin and her family, and my Aunt Becky at our table. We had such a fun time sitting with them!!

James was pretty happy to have macaroni and cheese for the second night in a row. Mia loved it when the server put ketchup on her plate in the shape of Mickey Mouse. Our server - in his wonderful Croatian accent- told her that (the ketchup Mickey) was his boss. So cute! We LOVE our servers!!!

The dinner was amazing!! I had the lobster ravioli for an appetizer, a cup of asparagus soup, and the amazing prime rib for my main dish. I loved everything. The chocolate brownie sundae was really tasty as well- but that prime rib was really the star for me tonight. Cassidy had this really pretty dessert- I love the Mickey ears on the white chocolate!! Disney is in all the details. It really is incredible.

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And just a tip: don't do your photo editing with your sun glasses on. Oh brother!!! I forgot I was wearing them!! I'm sure this picture above looked a lot better before I started working on it. 

We waddled out of dinner and headed back to the rooms to figure out the sleeping arrangements while Cade (14) and Luke (11) went with their cousins to hang out at the "Vibe" and "Edge teen/preteen areas. Jake (9) went with the younger boy cousins to the Oceaneer Kids Club, and Cassidy (16) headed to the teen area. The boys loved the kid areas. 

The big boys continued to ditch us, but everyone else met up for the Golden Mickey's Show with most of the extended family. 

I thought it was a fun show, but Mia absolutely loved it. She sat on my mom's lap and laughed super loud through the whole thing- even at the parts no one else thought was funny!! She was a riot!! I was sitting next to them and it really made my evening. James had a ball and was happy to have his blankie and clap along with the crowd in his pajamas. He really did amazing. It was a late night and busy day with no naps.

I came back to the room and put James, Mia, and Hallie to bed, while Warren took the big kids to meet up with the Jardine boys to watch "Avengers Infinity War" at the Walt Disney Theater. So fun!! I would love to see it again, but I'm actually happy showering in peace and sitting here writing in a quiet room eating a chocolate chip cookie brought by room service. 

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We have one of the interior rooms- so we get a magic porthole. At first I wasn't too sold on the idea- but it really is very cute. We get a real time video of what is happening outside, along with a bunch of different Disney characters who zoom in and out. We've seen Tinkerbell, Lightning McQueen, the bug from Princess and the Frog, some muppets- maybe Nemo?? It's been really fun. It's also a great night light for the kids.

It's been a wonderful day. I'm so grateful to have such a generous grandmother to make this possible. She is a joy in every way. Even her stateroom door brings a smile to my lips.

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Y'all Tees gave her a bonus t-shirt for free for her large purchase, and instead of wearing it- she hung it on her door with a Christmas bow on top of Minnie's bow. She is so funny!

(Didn't these customized tees turn out cute?? Y'all Tees did a wonderful job designing these and handling such a large order.  Make sure you check them out on Facebook or Instagram.) 

If you made it to the end of this post- you must be as tired as I am!! And this only captured our day from noon on! If you would like to hear more about our cruise preparations, traveling to the cruise boat, customs, etc.- please read our post just before this: Top 10 Things We Did to Prep for our Disney Cruise.  Also, if you have any questions for us about the Disney Cruise, please post in the comments or email me: hill@helpingofhappiness.com . I'll tell you all I can from our experience. I am always in the mood to talk about travel.

Check out our other posts about our Disney Cruise below!

The Day Before our Disney Cruise- How we got there- Top 10 Ways we Prepped

Disney Cruise Day 1- Embarkation  

Disney Cruise Day 2- Castaway Cay Island

Disney Cruise Day 3 - Atlantis Resort, Nassau, Bahamas (Water park and Dolphin Excursions)

Disney Cruise Day 3 Part 2 - Animator's Palate and Evening Activities

Disney Cruise Day 4 - Castaway Cay and Pirate Night!    

Disney Cruise Day 5 - Day at Sea

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