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The Moments Family Vacations Are Made Of

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Moments Family Vacations Are Made Of

It's hard to believe that just a few short days ago I was cruising around tropical paradise in my bathing suit, soaking up the sun, and tonight I'm back in Dallas, curled up in bed with the heater on.  I'm happy to be home, but part of me definitely misses the gentle rocking of the boat as I drift off to sleep at night and the excitement of the unknown as we loaded up the kids and headed off to explore a new city at each port.

I was lucky (so lucky!) to go on a Disney cruise last week.  We set sail on the Disney Magic and experienced a seven-night cruise to the Western Caribbean that I'll never forget!  My cruise expenses were covered by Disney, and I went as a blogger for Today's Mama (where I blog about fun things to do in the Dallas area, and I would say a Disney cruise definitely qualifies as fun!).  You'll find information about Disney Cruise Line sailing out Galveston, the fun I had on board the ship, stories about our shore excursions, and more over at Today's Mama.

But I've got a few stories and pictures to share that don't quite fit in my Today's Mama blog posts, so I'm going to share them here.

Here are a few of my favorite random memories from our week at sea.

This is the only picture I have of all four of us.  At least Claire looks cute, right?  Polly looks awkward, I look like an old lady (more on my awesome bathing suit later, that thing was the BOMB), and Jack has his eyes closed.  But still, a big "thank you!" to the random guy who asked if we wanted a picture of all four of us together.  If it weren't for him, we wouldn't have one.

Oh, how I love her.  And...that bathing suit?  Completely ridiculous (it has little bumblebee wings on the back).  Claire spent an hour or two every day we were at sea playing in this splash pool.

Aunt Polly took this picture of Jack enjoying his ice cream after I had retired to our stateroom with Claire.  This was right after he'd finished a giant glass of chocolate milk.  What a fun Auntie Polly, right?  Well - I saw that ice cream - the digested version - around 2AM, when Jack climbed into bed with me and then proceeded to puke all over the pristine white bedding.  All.  Over.  It.  We called Guest Services and had someone come take our vomit-covered blankets and change our sheets for us.  And then, Jack threw up again.  And then added in some diarrhea for good measure.  No more ice cream after dinner for Jack.

Oh, don't mind us.  It's just Claire, rolling around on the floor in the main Atrium because she wouldn't stay in her seat for formal dinner!  Shortly after I took this picture, she started climbing up the white marble staircase leading to the restaurant and fell, busting her lip open and bleeding ev-er-y-where.  Seriously.  Most notably, all over the white marble staircase.  I scooped her up and ran to the Guest Services desk and asked for a rag to clean up the puddle of blood before someone slipped in it (nice, right?).  Being awesome, they cleaned it up for me AND gave me a few tissues to stop the blood flowing from her lip (unfortunately, it was too late to keep it off of her cute party dress).

After all that bleeding and vomiting and diarrhea (which all happened on the same night, thankyouverymuch), we were pretty tired.  Jack, Claire and I took a nice nap the next day.  In fact, maybe the Best Nap Ever.  I opened the door to the verandah (oh yes, we had a verandah), and the kids (and I, apparently) fell asleep to the sound of the wind blowing through our door and the boat cutting through the choppy sea.  I'm glad Polly thought to take a picture...I don't ever want to forget these peaceful few hours of my life!

Guess who turned into the World's Clingiest Little Howler Monkey this trip?  That would be none other than Claire, who could not stand to be separated from me for even one little second, as evidenced by the colossal tantrums she would throw when I dared to pee alone.  OK, truth be told she was traumatized by Polly on day one - she was asleep when we picked Polly up from the airport and awoke to find a stranger staring at her in the back seat, and this did not go over well. And, it turns out she cut a tooth while we were at she had that going on, too.

And you know who was really, really good and a lot of fun to travel with?  Jack.  But you can't tell from this photo.  I think I caught the only time he was really cranky the entire trip in this picture.  He was *so* excited to go to the Mayan Ruins...I mean, reallllly excited.  And then we got there and he was all into it and interested and on the lookout for iguanas (there are lots of them in Cozumel), and then it started to get really hot.  And Jack deals with the heat like his mother, which is to say, he whines and cries about it.  So, by the time I was ready for this photo op, he was over it.

Moments like this - my two little ones staring out of a porthole at the endless ocean - make me realize how tiny and how huge our lives really are.  I mean, up against the ocean we're just insignificant little specs...and yet, these tiny little people are bigger than the world to me. And to see them together, sharing a unique experience like this, makes my heart feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

These are some of the little memories I don't want to slip away.  Sure, I would have been perfectly fine if Jack hadn't thrown up all over my bed (twice) and if Claire hadn't insisted on being held for ten hours out of every day, but in the end - that's what family vacations are all about, right?

Disclosure:  My expenses were paid by Disney.  The opinions and experiences, however, are all mine. You can read more about our trip over at Today's Mama!

Oh!  And guess what?  If you want to book a Disney cruise sailing out of Galveston, now would be a great time to do so - kids SAIL FREE on many of their upcoming cruises!

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At November 2, 2012 at 8:18 AM , Blogger Growing Tween said...

What an adventure! Cute post. We've done disney but never a cruise- sounds fun!

At November 5, 2012 at 1:17 PM , Blogger Carrie said...

Oh, it was so fun! And apparently they have cruises that go to Disney World...I think that's the route we'll take when the kids are old enough to do Disney World!

At November 6, 2012 at 9:14 PM , Blogger Julia P F said...

I want to be Today's Mama!! Those are some of the cutest pics I have ever seen. Where you get the bumble bee?! Must. Have. It.

At November 6, 2012 at 9:20 PM , Blogger Carrie said...

Crazy 8! I bought it about 6 months ago though. It is the Cutest Bathing Suit Ever.


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