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CarnivalFan2
December 3rd, 2009, 08:32 PM
Hey Marty and Jeanne and all the rest of the Sogno, Sogno, Sogno passengers,

We miss you all and hope you all had a Happy Thanksgiving!! I am still trying to get my (978) photos in order!!! With the holidays rushing up upon us so fast, it is really hard to have time to fit photo organizing in, but I will get it done soon.

I am so glad to see the thread is still up and running. I do think about you all often. It was really so nice to have met you all.

Marty, I loved the video and cannot wait to see the next installment!

Jeanne, how are the wedding plans coming along? Do you have a date yet? Am I still invited???? lol I know you won't forget me if I keep asking you that!! lol;)

Jeanette, I really liked the "dime" story!! I really do believe in stuff like that. I am sure your mom wants you to know that she loves you "10" times more............:)

Marty, how can we forget the 40/70??? We lived it too!!! :eek: In 19 cruises, we never, ever had seas close to that! It was truly an experience!

Anyway, I will check back with you all soon...take care and happy holidays to all!!

Love,

Linda and Mike:D
Hi Linda & Mike!

Thanks for the nice comments/feedback on the video! For the wedding, we are leaning toward July 2010, possibly in Niagra Falls (Canada side). You guys definitely are invited and we'll keep you posted.

Terry - bon voyage and Happy Birthday!

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
December 4th, 2009, 03:27 PM
Marty, Just got a picture from my cousin in Houston. You guys have more snow than we do!

All, Just read the Magic was scheduled to be ready May 2011. Did they move that up a bit, or was it always scheduled to be ready in May?

CarnivalFan2
December 5th, 2009, 02:29 PM
Marty, Just got a picture from my cousin in Houston. You guys have more snow than we do!

All, Just read the Magic was scheduled to be ready May 2011. Did they move that up a bit, or was it always scheduled to be ready in May?
Hi Denise,

Yes, we had a snowstorm yesterday! Even got out of work early! On record as the earliest snowfall in Houston ever and also the first time it has snowed down here in consecutive years. We think it has to do with Jeanne's mom (Margo) who is with us visiting again this year. She was here last year in Dec also, and she predicted it would snow. I have labeled her "The Snow Queen". She seems to bring the Canadian winter weather with her! Fortunately, it doesn't last long and it is all melting already. Our temps are coming back up and we'll be in the 60's-low 70's by the end of this upcoming week! Hope all is well up in Michigan!!

Re the Carnival Magic, I think I did see it was suppossed to enter service May 2011, so I think that's right. Did you see where Carnival has ordered a 3rd Dream-class ship which is supposed to enter service in 2012?

Well, I need to go put up outside Christmas lights, but I want to make sure my roof isn't too icy!! Cheers to everyone in Sogno, Sogno, Sogno this holiday season!!

Marty & Jeanne

wyomingirl
December 5th, 2009, 06:57 PM
Hello to everyone!! Just got back from the cruise yesterday and all I can say is that ship is tiny compared to the Dream. I missed having all the choices and extra room, however, the ocean was very calm and no excitement with cups crashing.

Marty-got my video together also and everyone at Thanksgiving really enjoyed it. It is a lot harder than it looks and takes quite a bit of time...The hardest part for me is the music, how about you? Also does it say where that ship might go in 2012??

Janis-you must be super organized to be ready for Christmas already. I did get the tree up today and hoping to get packages shipped and wrapped this coming week. Hope you and Dick are both doing well.

Terry-everyone always laughs at that business card. They can't believe the pictures either, maybe grandma shouldn't see those lol...

Take care and Happy Holidays to everyone.

Anna

CarnivalFan2
December 5th, 2009, 11:22 PM
Hello to everyone!! Just got back from the cruise yesterday and all I can say is that ship is tiny compared to the Dream. I missed having all the choices and extra room, however, the ocean was very calm and no excitement with cups crashing.

Marty-got my video together also and everyone at Thanksgiving really enjoyed it. It is a lot harder than it looks and takes quite a bit of time...The hardest part for me is the music, how about you? Also does it say where that ship might go in 2012??

Janis-you must be super organized to be ready for Christmas already. I did get the tree up today and hoping to get packages shipped and wrapped this coming week. Hope you and Dick are both doing well.

Terry-everyone always laughs at that business card. They can't believe the pictures either, maybe grandma shouldn't see those lol...

Take care and Happy Holidays to everyone.

Anna
Hi Anna,

Yes, editing does take some time. I'm using Pinnacle and the music wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. I was even able to figure out how to import from iTunes store. The next one will be lengthy and I will have to divide into parts...have alot of images, both still & video! Can you post your video here or to a share site?

No word on where the 3rd Dream-class ship will be sailing. Way too early. Carnival should let their customers name the ship in a naming contest. Any ideas Sogno, Sogno, Sogno?

Marty & Jeanne

luvcdays
December 7th, 2009, 01:38 PM
Hello to everyone!! Just got back from the cruise yesterday and all I can say is that ship is tiny compared to the Dream. I missed having all the choices and extra room, however, the ocean was very calm and no excitement with cups crashing.

Marty-got my video together also and everyone at Thanksgiving really enjoyed it. It is a lot harder than it looks and takes quite a bit of time...The hardest part for me is the music, how about you? Also does it say where that ship might go in 2012??

Janis-you must be super organized to be ready for Christmas already. I did get the tree up today and hoping to get packages shipped and wrapped this coming week. Hope you and Dick are both doing well.

Terry-everyone always laughs at that business card. They can't believe the pictures either, maybe grandma shouldn't see those lol...

Take care and Happy Holidays to everyone.

Anna

Hi Anna,

I got your email and just replied to it. We're doing great, thanks.

Did you have a good time on the cruise? Please tell us more about it.

Yes, I am organized, but it helps that I don't have a job, let alone 2 like you do! Also, the problem I have with finishing early is that sometimes I just keep shopping. Oh well.

Take care.

Janis

CarnivalFan2
December 9th, 2009, 10:34 PM
Marty, Just got a picture from my cousin in Houston. You guys have more snow than we do!

All, Just read the Magic was scheduled to be ready May 2011. Did they move that up a bit, or was it always scheduled to be ready in May?
Denise,

Here's the evidence!

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Houston/th_SnowinHouston09.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Houston/?action=view&current=SnowinHouston09.flv)

Marty

GRAMMYTAN
December 9th, 2009, 10:43 PM
Hello to all of you guys who are helping to keep this thread active and this group connected. It's been a couple of weeks since I have had a chance to log on and I had to catch up. Sounds like all of you are very busy as well. I think we should all plan to have a reunion at Niagra Falls (Canada side) and attend the big wedding. Marty and Jeanne you need to hurry and give us a wedding date.

Thanks to all of you for your kind words regarding my saga of the dimes. I am still finding them every few days.

We are almost finished with the Christmas shopping, but still have not put up the tree. Our work schedules have been very hectic since we got back from Italy and it seems we just cannot catch up on anything. We do have a trip planned to my sister's house in Florida over New Years and we are going to a New Year's eve dance there.

We have decided that we just don't really need Christmas presents this year and have asked our children not to buy us anything, but to buy gifts for some children whose families are having hard times. I am sure they can do this through their churches or employment or even an Angel tree child. Locally, there is a home health organization that puts up trees at Walgreens with the names of Senior Citizens and their needs (a lot like the angel tree children) so Ray and I are buying for them instead of each other. We feel like this will give us a much greater gift by helping someone else and give us a much more joyous Christmas this year.

By the way I don't know if any of you have ever heard of the hunger site on line, but my granddaughter asked for her gifts to be purchased there. When I went to the site to place the order, I found that they donate food to the hungry with every purchase and the more you spend the larger the donation. Then I found out that I cand log on to that site every day and just click the icon (without a purchase) and food will be contributed to the hungry. She is a great girl, who really thinks about others more than herself. She even orders her shoes from a site that donates a pair of shoes to needy children with each pair she buys.

Hope you all have a Merry Christmas.

Deanne Willis
December 13th, 2009, 06:58 PM
Jeanette,

What is the exact site name of the hunger site? It sounds like such a good idea!

Anna,
Has Randy started his dance lessons yet? I agree with Janis, we need to hear more about your cruise.

Terry and Tom,
Are you back yet? Did you have a great time?

Marty,
We were down in the single digits last week, just for a short time. I drove home from St. Joseph, by trying to find the reflectors on the side of the road. The wind was so strong and it was snowing like crazy!

Take Care, Denise

wyomingirl
December 14th, 2009, 12:31 PM
Hello!!

Marty I am somewhat challenged on computer posting so I haven't a clue on how to post a 18 minute video....so we will just wait for yours:D

Denise did you really think Randy would take dance lessons? He has been very busy this season, something every Friday and Saturday. It's a good thing I do the Christmas buying, wrapping, etc...otherwise no one would get anything. We have been very cold too, in the -20 range every night and wind. Looking forward to 30 degree weather this week.

Janis my cruise with mom was nice. She now has a better idea on how the system works so come August she can help with grandma and grandpa as we set sail for Alaska. I have to say I liked the colors of the Elation, but the layout was a little weird. A lot of split floors, kind of reminded me of the Destiny. Our waiter was the one we had 5 years ago on the Miracle and he will be on the Spirit next August so we will have to catch up. My mom just looked at me and said what are the odds? We participated in a lot more trivia games and tea time, very different activities than the DH would do. I thought Ensenada would be a throw away port but I did find a Nativity set made out of leather that I bought and some tequilia. And as always Catalina was very nice, we even rented a golf cart to putt around the island. The Wrigley Gardens were also something to see.

Caroline keep watching those Christmas shows and wrapping presents. Try to stay warm.

Take care everyone,
Anna

GRAMMYTAN
December 14th, 2009, 05:06 PM
Here in LA (Lower Alabama) we are in the midst of monsoon season, we have had rain since Friday and expect more tomorrow (Tuesday). If this keeps up, we are considering cutting wood at the mill to begin construction of an ark.


Denise to access the Hunger Site go to
http://gearthatgives.com

There are several tabs at the top (including Breast Cancer, Child Health, Literacy, Rainforest, and Animal Rescue). You will need to select the tab labeled The Hunger Site. At their home page scroll down the list on the left hand side until you see "go to hunger site" and then select the button "Check here to give"

Thanks
Jeanette

mom23guys
December 14th, 2009, 05:07 PM
Hi all, We're back. The Crown Princess is a lovely ship. It was all decorated for Christmas-trees in the Piazza and DRs, garland on the railings, etc. The weather at the ports was sunny and warm-close to 90 most days. What a shock, It was 25 when we landed home. It was a much slower paced cruise than ours. One thing I found was the 7 day seemed so short:). Spent today washing and writing cards. Most of the shopping is done but very little of the wrapping. I think we'll go tree searching tomorrow.
That's it for now. I'm stiull rocking even though our seas were pretty flat. Oh almost forgot. We picked up a cuban refugee on Thursday. We were about 45 miles from Cuba. I don't know what he left Cuba on but they picked him up holding onto two pieces of styrofoam. He hadn't eaten anything for 4 days. It was amazing that they spotted him floating alone like that.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
December 14th, 2009, 06:33 PM
Hi Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

Well, Jeanne & I are well into the Christmas season and Jeanne has the house "just a little bit decorated" :eek:. As per my video above, we had our white Christmas early!

Terry & Anna- I'm jealous, you have already cruised again :cool:. Thanks for sharing. We'll have to "cruise vicariously through you", as I've got to pay some bills.

Anna- I was looking at the Elation to sail with my boys out of SD in Feb (when I plan on going out to see them), but when I looked...no cruises! I found out that the Elation will be used up at the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, so it has been chartered. Then, I was looking at a short cruise on the Carnival Paradaise out of Long Beach.

Our next big cruise will probably be Alaska. We're not looking to go until summer of 2011.

Well, I've got to get cracking on the video (Livin' The Dream...Shoreside).

Take care all and happy holiday season!

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
December 17th, 2009, 07:23 AM
Merry Christmas everyone!

I should be wrapping, but I wanted to wish everyone of you a very Merry Christmas!

Anna, I love to tease Randy! I knew he wouldn't really take lessons. I'm glad his business is doing well.

Terry, I'm glad you guys are back safely. I can't imagine floating all by myself in the ocean with just a couple of pieces of styrofoam! I'd be so afraid!! We are cruising with two couples who have never cruised in February on the Freedom so I'm hoping for calm seas and sunshine!

Jeanette, Thanks for the link to the hunger site. It seems like there are so many families in need this Christmas. I hope your family has a wonderful Christmas!

We are having a different Christmas, this is the first Christmas we haven't spent with all the kids at one time. I think it may be a little quieter, but hopfully it will be good.
Here in Michigan we have snow forcasted every single day starting tomorrow for the next week. So I think we will have a White Christmas!
Marty, we are looking forward to your video, but no rush. I know how busy everyone is at Christmas. All my patients are requesting Drive-Thru
dentistry this time of year. Fortunately, we don't have that yet. It's probably coming!

Merry Christmas Everyone, Joe and I hope this thread keeps going, it was such a pleasure to meet all of you.

Denise

maryann2
December 17th, 2009, 05:44 PM
Wishing you all well with your preparations for Christmas.

Terry and Tom, glad you enjoyed your cruise, 7 days is too short though.

Daniel and Jenny's wedding went really well. One down, three to go.

Jeanette, I loved your story about the dimes, your mother is letting you know that she is still close by even though you can't see her.

Mary

mom23guys
December 18th, 2009, 08:16 PM
I'm glad I got all my shopping done before we left. We just finished putting up the tree(but haven't put the boxes back in the attic.)
We're expecting the biggest December storm since 1906 tomorrow.Yuck!!! Hate to see that much snow with 40-50 mph winds. Hope we don't lose power. Wish I was in Grand Cayman.
Merry Christmas to All!!!.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
December 20th, 2009, 06:59 PM
Seasons Greetings Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

Hope everyone in the NE fared well with that blizzard :eek:!! No more snow down here in Houston, but we've had lots of rain. Finally, sun and clear skies returned (in the 50's, so nice & cool for the Christmas season).

Well, definitely inthe Christmas spirit now :rolleyes:! Only have to work Mon, Tues & Wed this week, and then only Tues, Wed next week :)!! Time to raise our glasses of egg nog (I like mine with a shot of Crown Royal) and salute to CHRISTmas, family, friends, especially all of you in Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

We're staying kind of close to home, but Jeanne's brother & niece are coming in, so we will be making a road trip to New Orleans (Nick- you out there?) the day after Christmas for a few days. It will be interesting to show Jeanne's mom & brother the French Quarter, as they are French Canadian.

Jeanne & I wish you the merriest time with your family, friends & loved ones this holiday season!

Marty & Jeanne

luvcdays
December 21st, 2009, 12:32 PM
I'm glad I got all my shopping done before we left. We just finished putting up the tree(but haven't put the boxes back in the attic.)
We're expecting the biggest December storm since 1906 tomorrow.Yuck!!! Hate to see that much snow with 40-50 mph winds. Hope we don't lose power. Wish I was in Grand Cayman.
Merry Christmas to All!!!.
Terry


Happy Monday everyone!

Terry, I bet your really missing your cruise ship right now. It sounds like you had a great cruise. I'm dreaming of a White Christmas, but not the kind your having! We hope you stay warm and safe.

We hope everyone has a wonderful memory filled Christmas.

Janis & Dick

yooperwoody
December 22nd, 2009, 08:43 AM
HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO THE DREAMERS!

The Yoopers are entrenched in a white Christmas as always. And Gordie has the thermal thongo out and ready for the hot tub!

We just wanted to let you all know we think of our Dream trip and fellow dreamers often. We hope you your holiday season is filled with family and happiness. And we hope the new year brings joy and most importanly another cruise! We are cruising on the Dream again on Feb. 28. Since we're up to our necks in snow, that can't come soon enough.

Marty, my glass of eggnog is held high with you (only mine has some of the Captain in it).

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU ALL!

CarnivalFan2
December 22nd, 2009, 05:51 PM
Merry Christmas Vicki & Gordie!

Man, I'm so envious :cool:! Going back on that beautiful ship in a very short time!

Hope you have a wonderful "encore" cruise and we want pictures posted on this thread! I'm sure you guys will be ready to escape the Great White North at that point.

Speaking of Great White North, Jeanne is talking about a Christmas-time wedding in Quebec :eek:. Preferred transportion method for arriving guests-> dog sled :p..

Again, Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
December 27th, 2009, 10:47 PM
I hope everyone had a great Christmas (and I suspect you are all just as glad it is over, as I am). We had all the kids and grandkids here Christmas night to exchange their gifts and for a big family dinner. I decided to forego our traditional seafood dinner this year and made a huge (18qt) roaster pan of spaghetti sauce with meatballs and Italian sausage using some of the spices I brought home from Italy. We also had fettucine alfredo, a huge Italian salad, turkey, garlic bread, Tiramisu, and the red wine we bought at the winery on our tour from Florence.

One of the best gifts we received was a hardcover photo book that my son and daughter-in-law did for us with wonderfuld pics of our grandkids. I had just started looking at these and think I might put together one of these with the pictures from our two trips to Italy. I think the number of pages may be limited so I might have to do several, maybe one for each port and another for the Dream and the Freedom.

We are back to work Monday for a couple of days then off again to head to my sister's house in Florida. Hope all you have a safe and wonderful New Years.


Marty and Jeanne are you sure don't want a nice summer wedding? BRRRRRR

mom23guys
December 27th, 2009, 10:59 PM
Had a great Christmas-16 for Christmas dinner and Christmas night. My son from Annapolis and his fiancee came on the 23 and stayed until the 26th. What fun-she's is a terrific girl. My son, DIL, and grandson were here for Christmas and the following day. BTW, Lauren brought a few things that are in her cookbook. Her butternut squash gratin is to die for. Of course my youngest who is living at home and his financee were her too. I'm exhausted.
Christmas in Quebec sounds beautiful but freezing.
All our snow melted in the heavy rains on Christmas Day-oh well it was white in the morning.
Our wine we ordered from the winery bu San Giminiano(?) arrived on Christmas Eve. Yum.
Stay warm all.
Terry

GRAMMYTAN
December 28th, 2009, 03:19 PM
Had a great Christmas-16 for Christmas dinner and Christmas night. My son from Annapolis and his fiancee came on the 23 and stayed until the 26th. What fun-she's is a terrific girl. My son, DIL, and grandson were here for Christmas and the following day. BTW, Lauren brought a few things that are in her cookbook. Her butternut squash gratin is to die for. Of course my youngest who is living at home and his financee were her too. I'm exhausted.
Christmas in Quebec sounds beautiful but freezing.
All our snow melted in the heavy rains on Christmas Day-oh well it was white in the morning.
Our wine we ordered from the winery bu San Giminiano(?) arrived on Christmas Eve. Yum.
Stay warm all.
Terry

Terry, you have probably posted this info here before, but can you give us some info on Lauren's cookbooks?

mom23guys
December 28th, 2009, 06:24 PM
Lauren has published 2 books this year. The first is Notes on Cooking. It is not a cookbook per se but more of a book that lists pearls of wisdom about cooking. It's great as a gift especially to the new cook.
Her second book-just out is The Competent Cook. It contains some essential info but also some great recipes. This one was just published in Nov. Lauren hasn't done much promo for it-lots going on in her life.
If you are interested they both sell on Amazon or barnesandnoble.com. You can find them by looking up her name, Lauren Braun Costello. Thanks for asking:).

mom23guys
December 31st, 2009, 11:00 AM
Happy New Year!!!

Terry and Tom

Sanjuro
December 31st, 2009, 12:31 PM
Guys, I haven't been on here since the cruise! I hope everyone is doing well.

I've been busy editing videos of the places we went. Those of you who remember me (Ben and Wendy) probably recall that I never put that damn camera down. :)

Now I have the "travel bug" unfortunately. Ever since I have been home, I just want to leave again! Maybe a cruise of the Greek Isles next? Ha ha.

My aunt who has been all over the world (though oddly enough, not England or Japan) has one thing she really wants to do... An African safari! Maybe I should tag along. I suppose the only drawback would be the possibility of becoming breakfast for a lion...

maryann2
December 31st, 2009, 05:18 PM
Happy and prosperous New Year to everyone.

Mary

CarnivalFan2
December 31st, 2009, 08:40 PM
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

from Marty & Jeanne...

also- hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas!

mom23guys
January 1st, 2010, 11:09 AM
Hi all,
Ben, good to hear from you again neighbor. My son went on an African safari for his honeymoon, returned alive.
HNY to my cuz, Mary
Marty and Jeanne, 2010 should be a great year for you.
Denise and Joe.I'll e-mail you.
Terry

Liney1982
January 2nd, 2010, 12:04 PM
Hey Everyone:

I've been keeping up with reading the posts but haven't had time to post a reply.

I hope you all had a Joyous Christmas filled with love, laughter and family. I also hope that your New Year was happy and safe and that you are excited to see all that 2010 will bring. ~~ from Josh and Caroline

Josh and I are doing well. Work has gotten crazier but I'm coming to realize that that is the new norm for this company. All well, more work is a good problem to have! Josh is now in his final semester of school. He spent a few days working in the ER this week and enjoyed it. He is anxious to start his ride-outs and we are looking forward to his last day on May 9th. A few days later we leave for Jamaica! I'm enjoying planning that trip and am starting a list of places I'd like to visit in the next couple of years so I can start planning and budgetting :) Yup, the travel bug is back!

I've been lucky lately and have not gotten sick yet this winter ... but I think my luck has run out. My throat has been rough for the past few days and now I'm starting to cough and lose my voice. Come on cold / flu. Come, do your thing, and be gone!

Anyway, I hope you are all enjoying your long weekend.

Cheers!
Caroline

Deanne Willis
January 3rd, 2010, 12:47 PM
Hi all and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!!

Here is a picture of Libby in the snow. We've gotten 24 inches so far this weekend.142115

GRAMMYTAN
January 4th, 2010, 04:48 PM
Happy New Year to all of you. It is sooooo cold here in the usually warm deep south. We are having temps in the high teens and low to mid 20's this week. I freeze when it hits the low 50's so I feel like a popsicle.:D


I sure wish we were all back together on the Dream this week (but in warm weather).

Deanne Willis
January 6th, 2010, 09:10 PM
Jeanette,
I would gladly trade places with you this time of the year! I have heard that January is going to be cold then the rest of the winter will be much better. So we will see. I'd rather be on the Dream too!
Denise

GRAMMYTAN
January 7th, 2010, 11:27 AM
Jeanette,
I would gladly trade places with you this time of the year! I have heard that January is going to be cold then the rest of the winter will be much better. So we will see. I'd rather be on the Dream too!
Denise


No thank you Denise.:) I don't know how ya'll live in Michigan and other northern states. When we get two weeks of it here, we are all like bears trying to hibernate. All I am wanting to do these days is to hide under the electric blanket or huddle in front of the fireplace. Oh well, this too shall pass. I just have to keep thinking about our cruises to warmer climates. I have a group of pictures in my office of a trip we made to Grand Cayman, Cozumel and Montego Bay and find myself staring at them throughout the day. If we don't get some warm weather soon, I will probably go AWOL from work and head to the Islands.

CarnivalFan2
January 11th, 2010, 06:01 PM
Happy New Year Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

As John Heald would say, global warming my arse...

We've also been FREEZING down here in Houston and our neighbors had pipes burst (sprinkler systems mainly). I think we're out of the woods, as it is warming back up again-> a heat wave, as it will be in the 50's!

Jeanne & I had a wonderful holiday and enjoyed Jeanne's family staying with us. Really enjoyed taking Jeanne's brother Denis to the Texans vs Patriots game. Texans pulled it out and finished with their FIRST winning record in their history :). Next year, play-offs for sure :rolleyes:. This year, I'm pulling for SD & New Orleans.

With the busy holidays, I have not had time to get my other video edited (ports of call), but promise, I will deliver.

Re wedding plans-> Jeanne is still thinking Christmas wedding in Quebec :eek:. Guess with this freeze, I'm getting practice...

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
January 13th, 2010, 12:07 PM
Hope all of our Southern contingent survived the cold spell. We still have snow on the lawn, not normal for Cape May. Just checking in to say Hi.
Terry

wyomingirl
January 13th, 2010, 09:59 PM
Hi everyone and Happy New Year!!! Hope it is getting off to a great start for everyone. I hear a lot about how cold everywhere is and I would have to agree that Arctic air was miserable. We were at -28 last week without the windchill. Cars don't like to run in that cold weather. We now have snow, ice, snow and very slick streets...it was like a blizzard coming home Christmas night (wind and light snow don't make for a fun drive). Oh well back in the 30's today and saw college students with shorts on, summer is coming.

Terry-started making some plans for Alaska and having a hard time deciding if whale watching is worth the time and money. I mean do you really see much other than tails? Husband would rather go on helicopter sightseeing trip with Temsco. We did reserve a car to drive to Emerald Lake from Skagway. Hope it isn't bad weather when we visit.

Denise-here's hoping that the rest of the winter is better...your dog is so cute.

Anna

mom23guys
January 16th, 2010, 10:01 PM
Anna,
Helicopter sightseeing is fantastic. We loved the whale watching but the helicopter trip is awesome too. We saw whale bubble-feeding really close to the boat both times we went but there are no guarantees. Last summer there were tons of orca. We saw them right from the ship and up close on our excursions in Ketchikan. What month are you going? We went the end of June/beginning of July on our first trip and the end of July on our second. We took the train/bus from Skagway to Emerald Lake. The scenery was awesome. I'll try to e-mail you a few photos.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
January 17th, 2010, 09:03 PM
Ciao Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

Just popped in to say hi from Jeanne & I. Enjoying this 3 day weekend and finally got the exterior Christmas lights down :cool:. I was going to do it earlier, but we had that arctic freeze :eek:. However, sometimes it pays to live in the south in winter...back in the 60's & sunny today :rolleyes:.

Don't know how many of us are still staying with this thread, but Jeanne & I will. Enjoyed meeting all of you and I really miss our Dream! That cruise was an experience of a lifetime that Jeanne & I will cherish...

Still have to get on my video...sorry, dreaded procrastination appears to have set in. Not really...it was really busy here with the holidays and Jeanne's family here. Now, back to normal, so the editing of the ports can go forward ("Livin The Dream..Shoreside").

Denise - I think I had a sighting of the "Little Abombidable Snow Dog" :p. Thanks for sharing the pic! My mom says it's like it was when she was a little girl up there in Michigan, with all the snow...

Jeanette & Ray - I know, and plans are still for a Christmas wedding in Quebec :eek:. Denise- I may have to borrow Libby to help pull the dog sled ;).

Hope everyone is having a great start to 2010!

Arrivederci,

Marty & Jeanne

CarnivalFan2
January 17th, 2010, 09:10 PM
Ahhhhh...the memories :rolleyes:

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_DSC00207.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=DSC00207.jpg)

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
January 19th, 2010, 07:28 PM
Hi all!
Libby, my dog is very flattered by all your compliments!
Marty, I know how busy everyone is so no problem with waiting for your 2nd group of pictures! I agree with you Marty, we can't just let this thread die.
Terry, the same thing applies to you, email me if you get a chance! I am curious to know which time do you think is the best time to see Alaska? I know it's hard to predict. I think we may be going on a cousins Alaska cruise in 2011, but that's hard to predict too!
Anna, When are you going to Alaska? I know you have told us but I can't remember. We are going to the Western Carribbean on the Carnival Freedom in a few weeks. I hope we can get out of Chicago!

Take Care,
Denise

Deanne Willis
January 19th, 2010, 08:22 PM
Did you guys see they posted the itineraries for the new Carnival Magic on the Carnival website?

Denise

wyomingirl
January 20th, 2010, 01:27 PM
Hi Denise--We leave on August 10th via the Spirit from Seattle with parents and grandparents in tow:eek:

I am so jealous of those people going on the Med cruise next year. Unfortunately we are already booked for the caribbean again with some friends. Will be interesting to see which port the Magic ends up in. I wish they would have done a Baltic cruise I would have figured out some way to hope on that cruise.

Talk to you all soon.

Anna

maryann2
January 20th, 2010, 03:41 PM
I am booked on the Magic Oct 16th 2011. Hope to do the transatlantic too but not open for booking yet. I love all the Med ports and there are so many options for things to see and do. This will be similar to our Oct 15th 2009 trip except out of Barcelona. Hey, all those who missed Barcelona this is your chance. Really looking forward to going back to Venice and hope it won't be so cold this time.

Marty and Jeanne, Honeymoon?

Mary

CarnivalFan2
January 20th, 2010, 05:48 PM
Denise - I'm jealous again :cool:! Carnival Freedom, nice! And the Freedom does an "exotic" Western Caribbean cruise I believe. We definitely want pictures!!

Jeanne & I are both keeping it low key, to save some $$ (wedding late Dec) this year. However, I've got my "eye" on a semi-short 5 day cruise on "my ship", the Carnival Ecstasy out of nearby Galveston. I'm thinking about taking my 2 boys when they're here this summer (July).

The Ecstasy went through the "Evolutions of Fun" upgrades, including the addition of balconies (like Sensation). I looked at one of the balconies, and the cruise price was approx $2,800 for all 4 of us! Stay tuned...

Anna- we want to sail the Carnival Spirit to Alaska as well, however, won't be until 2011 earliest.

Yes, saw the Carnival Magic's itinerraries. Looks like an extended European season, but Carnival will bring her to the U.S.? I'm sure everyone is still wondering what U.S. port she will home port out of :confused:. Depending on where that will be, I wouldn't mind looking at the trans Atlantic voyage...

Hope all is well with the remaining Sogno, Sogno, Sogno! For all going on upcoming cruises, full reports with pics please, so I can vicariously cruise through you!

Ciao!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
January 20th, 2010, 09:25 PM
Just checking in. I didn't see the Magic schedule so I'll have to check it out.
Our next trip is on the Legend to the Western Mediterranean. We stop at Belize, Roatan, Cozumel and Grand Cayman. We were able to get a balcony for $629 each-happy about that, We stopped at three of those ports on our last trip but Tom had Norovirus so he didn't get off the ship in most of the ports so now he'll be able to. I got it the last day but only missed Princess Cay.
I'm seriously considering a trip to Bermuda on the Celebrity ship out of Bayonne but we're not sure. We're bringing the boys and their fiancees to Disney in June and Kevin is getting married in October. Brian is still looking for a house. Going to NYC this weekend to see my grandson and have a Lauren cooked dinner. Yum!
Terry

Deanne Willis
January 23rd, 2010, 06:48 AM
Hi Denise--We leave on August 10th via the Spirit from Seattle with parents and grandparents in tow:eek:

I am so jealous of those people going on the Med cruise next year. Unfortunately we are already booked for the caribbean again with some friends. Will be interesting to see which port the Magic ends up in. I wish they would have done a Baltic cruise I would have figured out some way to hope on that cruise.

Talk to you all soon.

Anna
Hi Anna,
Joe and I would love to go on a Baltic cruise someday. I'm not sure Carnival will ever do one. But I know Princess and other cruise lines do. Is there anyone else in our group who would like to do this? Probably not this summer, but maybe 2011. :)

Denise

mom23guys
January 23rd, 2010, 11:04 PM
Denise and Anna,
I agree with you about the Baltic cruise or maybe a British Isles cruise. We have some friends here that we've talked about doing a Princess British Isles cruise in 2011. They did Baltic in 2009 and are doing Med in 2010. This summer we're probably doing wedding planning with son and future DIL. We have talked about Hawaii in Jan or Feb of 2011. So many choices- so little money.

CarnivalFan2
January 24th, 2010, 06:31 PM
Ciao Sogno, Sogno, Sogno (those who are left)!!

First, NFL football--> Colts are in (no surprise). Now, the good game-> Minnesota @ New Orleans! WHO DAT SAY DEY GONNA BEAT DEM' SAINTS?

As youcan tell, I'm pulling for the Saints! Peyton Manning vs his Dad's (Archie Manning) old team who make for an interesting sub-plot :rolleyes:.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend. Weather is beautiful down here. Not a cloud in the sky (sunny) and cool :)!!

Well, regarding my video project, I'm again making some progress. Here's Part 1 of the shoreside of "Livin' The Dream". Hope you enjoy...let me know what you think (*during the upload, I think part of the audio track at the end got dropped...).

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part1.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part1.flv)

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
January 24th, 2010, 10:30 PM
Congratulations Marty!

We'll be watching the Super Bowl on the Big Screen on the Freedom. Joe will be cheering for the Colts, since Indy is so close. Should be a great game!

Denise

CarnivalFan2
January 24th, 2010, 11:25 PM
Denise - I just have one question for Joe....

"Who Dat say dey gonna beat dem Saints? WHO DAT?"

Should be a good Super Bowl. The Colts are like a machine! Hope the Saints don't play like they are just glad to be there :cool:...

I've always liked the Saints and they have been through so much, with the years of futility and then Katrina...I'm glad their time has finally come :rolleyes:!

Nick- are you out there in Who Dat Nation?

Marty

mom23guys
January 25th, 2010, 10:53 PM
Marty, Loved the video.
We of course were routing for the Jets. They gave it a good shot but when Manning started calling his own plays in the second half, they just couldn't hold it. He is amazing.
Terry

wyomingirl
January 26th, 2010, 04:07 PM
Hi Anna,
Joe and I would love to go on a Baltic cruise someday. I'm not sure Carnival will ever do one. But I know Princess and other cruise lines do. Is there anyone else in our group who would like to do this? Probably not this summer, but maybe 2011. :)

Denise


Denise we could be in if it is 2012 we don't have enough vacation to do two long trips in 2011. Keep me posted.

CarnivalFan2
January 26th, 2010, 06:31 PM
Marty, Loved the video.
We of course were routing for the Jets. They gave it a good shot but when Manning started calling his own plays in the second half, they just couldn't hold it. He is amazing.
Terry
Thanks Terry. More Parts to come!!

I think Peyton Manning is a cyborg...he is TOO efficient. We know him well here in Houston, since we have to face him twice a year (Texans in the AFC South with the Colts). The silver lining is that playing against the best can only make you better...

Marty

Deanne Willis
January 27th, 2010, 07:46 AM
Marty,
Thanks so much for the video. It sure brings back so many great memories.
Denise

CarnivalFan2
January 27th, 2010, 06:47 PM
Marty,
Thanks so much for the video. It sure brings back so many great memories.
Denise
Your welcome Denise, glad you enjoyed it. Stay tuned for the rest ( I have a lot of images, both stills & video...)

Marty

GRAMMYTAN
January 30th, 2010, 01:50 PM
Hi guys. I did see the itinerary for the Magic and found it very interesting with a variety of itineraries, cruise length, and departure ports. I wish we could, but that is the year we promised a cruise for our 3 grandsons' graduation present.

We did book a cruise last week though. We had two other couples who have been after us to put together a cruise for all of us. They are all newbies to cruising so this should be fun. We are sailing the Fantasy again out of Mobile (back to Mexico) for 5 days in late April. We realy had not planned on doing another Mexico cruise for a while, but it is such fun to introduce newbies to our world. With this cruise (our 17th I think:confused:) we will have introduced 28 newbies to cruising since we started in 2003. Pretty good record huh?

I finally got around to taking our cruise videos to the camera shop to have them put on CD and am picking them up today. I guess I need to buy a box of Kleenex on the way home, since I know that watching them will make me cry.

Ray and I are planning on going to a movie this afternoon, "When in Rome." (More Kleenex) I'll let you guys know if we like it or not.

Oh yeah, the Senior Bowl is in Mobile today (the South will rise again):)

CarnivalFan2
January 30th, 2010, 11:10 PM
Ciao Sogno, Sogno, Sogno (those of us left!),

Hi Jeanette & Ray! Enjoy the CARNIVAL FANTASY and good you are catching her before she changes homeport to Charleston, S.C. Looks like I will be booking a cruise on her sister, the CARNIVAL ECSTASY (my 3rd time on ECSTASY), in July. I want to take my sons on their first cruise. This will be a 5-day cruise to Cozumel & Progresso. I'm interested in seeing the "Evolutions of Fun" upgrade the ECSTASY received, including the addition of balconies.

Well, my video project continues and it appears I'm able to get traction on the weekends (there's a surprise, eh?). Here's part 2. Hope you enjoy it...

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part2.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part2.flv)

Marty

maryann2
January 31st, 2010, 11:44 AM
Marty, I loved it. You had me crying again.

I loved hearing the Italian voices in the background and the music on the canals. Well done.

Jeanette, it seems that I'm not the only one to cry when I see all this beauty and memories.

CarnivalFan2
January 31st, 2010, 12:02 PM
Marty, I loved it. You had me crying again.

I loved hearing the Italian voices in the background and the music on the canals. Well done.

Jeanette, it seems that I'm not the only one to cry when I see all this beauty and memories.
Thanks Mary. I don't know why, but the video drops portions of the audio (music) track during after uploading onto Photobucket. I need to figure that out...

Glad you liked it and stay tuned for more parts!

Marty

GRAMMYTAN
January 31st, 2010, 03:56 PM
Ooooohhhhh Marty and Jeanne. I am (sniff, sniff) crying too. How beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing all of your videos and most of all this wonderful moment with all of us. We may, never meet again, but even so, I feel that we have made some of the most wonderful friends.

Marty, is your video camera one with a cd or a tape? Ours has a tape and it took them to the best camera place in Mobile and got the DVD back yesterday. The video was fine, but the sound is nothing but skips and a roaring noise (like wind). I am going to check our tapes again for sound and may have to take them back for a redo. I have quite a bit of video that I did on my digital camera as well, but have no idea how to even start working with the videos on the computer.

We did go to see the movie "When in Rome" last night. It was a cute enough movie, but we were very disappointed in the footage from Rome. There was very, very little footage from Rome and a lot of it appeared to be superimposed (maybe from google maps:D) and background still photo scenes. We stayed and watched all the credits to see where actual shooting may have been done and the only credit was for the footage at the church, which was S. Maria Maddalene. I found the church online, but I really think that fountain is fake. I could not find a fountain near the church except for the one at the Pantheon and it definately is not the one in the movie. If any of you find it, I really be interested in knowing where the fountain is.

mom23guys
January 31st, 2010, 07:07 PM
So cool to be able to watch your proposal. I was a little misty eyed too.
I have this feeling that no cruise will be able to top Sogno, Sogno Sogno.-itinerary, new ship, but most of allgreat people to share the experience with.

Denise, your Freedon cruise is close. We leave on 2/19 for a week in Orlando before our Legend cruise.
Terry

Deanne Willis
February 1st, 2010, 07:56 AM
Could you pass me the box of tissues! That was so cute!
Thanks Marty and Jeanne for sharing that with us.

Yes Terry, We are leaving in a few days. I get to see my son in Ft. Lauderdale, then we hop on the Carnival Freedom and go to Key West, Grand Cayman and Jamiaca. We are just touring around Key West, Grand Cayman, we're going to Stingray City, and Jamiaca it's Dunn's River Fall's.
We've never been to any of these places, so any must see's or travel advice from you experienced cruisers? Terry, I hope you guys have a great trip!

Jeannette, I do want to see "When in Rome." I was also wanting to see more of Rome's sites. I'll look for the fountain scenes.

I have to say this "GO COLTS"!! We'll be on the cruise during the super bowl and we're six miles from Indiana.

Take Care you guys,

Denise

GRAMMYTAN
February 1st, 2010, 10:37 AM
Denise you have probably been to Grand Cayman and Jamaica before, but I wanted to let you know about two excursions that we really liked. They were through Carnival, so a bit pricey, but you might want to look at them. In Jamaica we took the river raft trip where they put you (two per raft) on a 30' bamboo raft and use a bamboo pole to take you, slowly down the river (gondolier style). In Grand Cayman we took a Carnival excursion where we drove jeeps around the Island, caravan style, with a tour guide in the lead jeep. We made several stops at various points of interest and then went to Seven Mile beach where we had lunch (optional) and then the bus took us back to the ship dock area.

CarnivalFan2
February 1st, 2010, 09:28 PM
Denise, Terry, Jeanette - thank you so much for the kind words on the video(s) and the proposal. With all the pre-cruise "scuttlebutt" on my plans, you all deserved to see the "real deal"! Technology is wonderful, isn't it? I look forward to showing that scene to my sons, when they get older :rolleyes:...

Denise - full report on the Carnival Freedom pls, with pictures (remember, I am vicariously cruising through you ;)). I've done that cruise (twice) and, yes, Dunns River Falls (btw, you don't HAVE to stay with the group, holding hands when you climb the waterfall. Both times we were there, we ventured on our own, and climbed the falls by ourself). Also did Stingray City in Grand Cayman...really cool! Feed the rays the squid; to me, they had the personalities of dogs, acting just like dogs would when handing out treats! I liked Jeanette's excursions also and probably should have done these when we were there the second time! By the way...WHO DAT SAY DEY GONNA BEAT DEM SAINTS?

Terry- also have a great time on CARNIVAL LEGEND! Again, cruising vicariously through you.

As you can tell, I still have cruise fever. So, Wed, I think I will be booking that 5-day cruise on CARNIVAL ECSTASY, July 10th, with Jeanne & my 2 boys. Price VERY reasonable--> $2,800 for a balcony cabin (2 pull down bunks in the bulkhead for the boys), for all 4 of us for the 5-day cruise :)! I love Carnival!

Jeanette - my camera is a Sony HD with built-in hard drive. I have a high quality editing program, and it is easy to upload the raw video/still pictures off the camera onto my computer. Then, I work with the editing program to get the finished product. On your video, regarding the "roaring sound" (like wind), if the video was recorded out on deck of the moving ship, it probably is wind. Some camera mics do better than others for wind. Also, there are "wind filters" that you can buy, I believe, that help. With my camera, I think it did pretty well with those kind of shots, as I don't remember the wind sound being too bad.

Thanks again everyone for the wonderful comments. I have Part 3 "in the can" and will post on this thread, right after I sign off here. Have a great week!

Marty & Jeanne

CarnivalFan2
February 1st, 2010, 09:33 PM
As promised, here's Part 3. Enjoy!

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part3.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part3.flv)

Marty

maryann2
February 1st, 2010, 11:11 PM
Thank you again Marty. I'm glad that you showed the Rialto Bridge. I passed under it but did not get off. I think that next time I will walk from Piazza Roma to St Mark's. There was an arrow to the walking path.

Lovely, Thank you again.

GRAMMYTAN
February 2nd, 2010, 11:22 AM
Marty the video of Venice was wonderful. I could just picture myself there the morning you were filming, in fact, I was looking in the crowds to see if might be in the video:)

I guess I will have to take my tapes back to the camera shop and ask them to re-do the DVD. The roaring sound is not the wind since it appears, along with the broken sounds, in the dining room when Ken was singing, in the cars on our tours and other inside areas.

Just keep your videos coming for us as we all enjoy them so much.

CarnivalFan2
February 2nd, 2010, 08:38 PM
Mary - thanks! Yes, we opted to look around the Rialto Bridge area instead of going to Burano. We had a great time and Jeanne bought some gifts for her mom & family on the bridge. I loved all the cafes along the water by the bridge, where, we enjoyed a nice Italian "birra" :)...

Jeanette- thanks also! Sorry to hear about your camera (mic). Hope the shop can restore/re-do the DVD.

Still have more images (video/stills), so stay tuned for more parts! Probably get more traction this Saturday (Sunday is Super Bowl ;))...

Marty

CarnivalFan2
February 3rd, 2010, 10:06 PM
Sogno, Sogno, Sogno-

Q. What is the cure for "Carnival cruise fever" :o?
A. Another Carnival cruise :)!

Just booked the Carnival Ecstasy for Jeanne & my 2 boys, for the July 10th 5-day cruise to Progreso & Cozumel, MX!! Sails out of Galveston, so no airfare reqd.

I'm excited about seeing how this Fantasy-class ship looks after the drydock and "Evolutions of Fun" upgrades. We have one of the newly created balcony rooms on Empress deck.

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
February 6th, 2010, 05:58 AM
Marty,
Thanks for the video. Again, it was wonderful! Congratulations on your new cruise. The boys will love it. Have they ever cruised before?

Terry, Are you snowed in? Let us know how your doing.

We are getting ready to leave for our Superbowl cruise.

Have to say this for you Marty...GO COLTS!!!!!:D

Denise

Deanne Willis
February 6th, 2010, 06:02 AM
OH! Thanks Jeannette and Marty for the advise for excursions in Jamaica and Grand Cayman, it helps.
Denise

CarnivalFan2
February 6th, 2010, 01:40 PM
Denise- your welcome! Yes, this will be Ryan & Colin's first cruise.

I'm looking into (I've posted the question on John Heald's blog) whether Carnival has the "Behind the Fun" tour on the Ecstasy, because I would like to take my boys on it. I have a maritime background, so I am trying to expose my boys to the operation of a commercial ship. Should be a great trip & really looking forward to it! I know we'll be spending ALOT of time at waterworks and at the lido pool :D...

Oh, have just one more question...."Who Dat say dey gonna beat dem SAINTS"??!!

(I still think Peyton Manning is a cyborg. He is SCARY efficient! Colts will probably win, but I've got to root for our "cousins" on the Gulf and east on I-10, New Orleans...)

Hope everyone's having a great weekend and will enjoy the big game tomorrow. Hope folks in the mid-Atlantic (DC, NJ, etc) are holding their own with that snow blast!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
February 7th, 2010, 04:55 PM
Denise, If you check this have a great time. Glad we didn't book that cruise because we'd miss it.
We got hammered with that last storm. We're still not dug out of our driveway. Had about 21 inches but it drifted plus there's a layer of ice in the middle of it. At least we have power. My son Brian was at his fiancees house. They haven't had power since friday night and may be with out it until the end of the week. The barrier islands had their lines knocked down with ice. There's a travel ban so they are pretty much stuck there, unless they want to go to a shelter.
Another Nor'easter expected Wednesday. Yuck!!

mom23guys
February 8th, 2010, 10:03 PM
Brian's fiancee's family just got their power back tonight. It has been out since Friday. Another storm approaching. We haven't even gotten out on the road from the last storm. Tomorrow we're restocking groceries. Can't wait for next week.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
February 9th, 2010, 07:22 PM
Terry - best wishes in "hunkering down" for these snow storms!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
February 11th, 2010, 09:17 AM
Made it through this one with our power intact. We've fared better than most of the people down here. We leave a week from tomorrow for Florida:D Disney for 9 days and then our Legend cruise.
TGerry

GRAMMYTAN
February 11th, 2010, 10:38 AM
Terry I know you will be so glad to get to Florida after all that cold weather and snow. Hope you have loads of fun.

Marty, congrats on your cruise to Progreso and Cozumel with the boys. Have you done those ports before? If not, we have many (actually too many :D) times but we keep going back. Anyway, I have lots of ideas for both ports if you want to hear them.

Everyone be praying for me today as I go for an MRI. I am the clumsiest person in the world. I fell again last Saturday and have been laid up all week. and am on a walker anytime I am not in bed. The docs say I did not fracture my hip, but are worried that I might have either a ruptured disk or a fracture inside the hip socket. He said that I had to be very careful until I can get this MRI because he said if their is a fracture inside the socket, further damage can make the socket explode. I am hoping that all of this is going to be some badly pulled muscles, but need your prayers in the meantime.

Jeanette

maryann2
February 11th, 2010, 05:15 PM
Terry I know you will be so glad to get to Florida after all that cold weather and snow. Hope you have loads of fun.

Marty, congrats on your cruise to Progreso and Cozumel with the boys. Have you done those ports before? If not, we have many (actually too many :D) times but we keep going back. Anyway, I have lots of ideas for both ports if you want to hear them.

Everyone be praying for me today as I go for an MRI. I am the clumsiest person in the world. I fell again last Saturday and have been laid up all week. and am on a walker anytime I am not in bed. The docs say I did not fracture my hip, but are worried that I might have either a ruptured disk or a fracture inside the hip socket. He said that I had to be very careful until I can get this MRI because he said if their is a fracture inside the socket, further damage can make the socket explode. I am hoping that all of this is going to be some badly pulled muscles, but need your prayers in the meantime.

Jeanette

I do hope the results are okay Jeanette. Will be thinking about you. Prayers too.

GRAMMYTAN
February 11th, 2010, 11:19 PM
Thank you so much, Mary. I am going to be positive about this and hope that it is only muscular. I had two separate MRI tests today, one on my hip and one on my back, so I was on that hard table for a long time. I do feel better today, though, and just have to wait until Monday when the doc is back in the office to see what is going on.

Terry - are you sending your weather to us? Can you believe we are expecting anywhere from 1 - 5 inches of snow tomorrow in Alabama? And I can't even get out and make a snowman, unless I do it on this d**m walker:) Maybe I can get Ray to make one and put my walker in front of it. If so, I will get a pic and post it here.

We miss all of you so much and are blessed to have found so many friends on the Dream.

Jeanette

CarnivalFan2
February 11th, 2010, 11:38 PM
Jeanette - our thoughts & prayers to you and that the results of the MRI bring good news! By all means, I'd love some ideas about Progreso & Coz.

I'm out in SD now visiting my boys. At first, I was going to keep the cruise a "surprise", but couldn't do it and told them about it! They're excited about it and my oldest (Ryan) says he wants to go snorkeling. Should be a great trip and really looking forward to seeing the "new" Ecstasy!

Had a blast today with my boys...weather, (sorry folks out east)..65 and sunny & warming up! Supposed to stay this way throughout my stay...I fly back to Houston Tues, 2/16.

Take care all (especially you Jeanette). Bye for now from SoCal :)!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
February 12th, 2010, 10:34 AM
Well we are still sitting here waiting on the snow and watching the liquid stuff come down. However, about 45 miles north of us our friends have
5 inches of snow on the ground already.

Marty thanks so much. Glad you and boys are having a great time.

Well, let's see what I can tell you about Progreso and Cozumel. Progreso is more like a real Mexican town where Cozumel is more Cruise Resort style so there is a big difference. In Progreso you will first go through the typical cruise style shops. The first one is a really nice one and has very good silver and alcohol selection and prices, but you can shop there on the way back to the ship to pick up your choices. After the short trip through the shops, you are going to board a bus to go down a long pier into town. The bus stops near the town square which is like a straw market. A young man will step on the bus and offer you a list of excursions that you can purchase right there at a much cheaper price than Carnival. Our first trip there we took one to see the flamingos, and some ruins and it took about two hours or so. I don't know how interesting this might be for the boys but we enjoyed it. There are beach breaks, trips to Merida etc as well.

We always pay $2 each and board the little open air bus (top deck is best) and take a 20 minute tour of the town first to get our bearings. The beach is about 3 or 4 blocks from this area and their are a few good restaurants along the beach. You can have lunch in one of those (I will have to look up the names of the ones we tried) and some will even come across the street to take your order and serve you on the beach. You will find clean restrooms at these restaurants where you can change to/from beachwear. The town has a beautiful open air style church and a pretty little park as well.

The town is great to just walk and look and take pics as well. We loved the local shopping area with all the flowers and fresh produce, meats etc. There is always a band playing at the straw market and you will find clean restrooms there as well.

The beach is so close to the street with lots of vendors, of course. We try to get a massage on the beach before returning to the ship and bargain with them. Our best price so far was 3 massages for $45 total. There are lots of groups offering these massages but the ones we used we really liked and they seemed very knowledgeable. As you are walking to the beach you will make a sharp turn to the right near the bridge. Very near that curve there is a tall statue and these girls are set up near the statue and they all wear white uniforms. The one thing I would advise on this is to keep your belongings with you. They will try to take your bags and set them in a chair behind you, but I just put mine on the ground under the head of the massage table, where I can look down and see them right below me.

Be sure to buy a hammock chair in Progresso - watch the vendors prices vary from $10 - $100 EACH!

In Cozumel, you can do so many things on your own, or you can book a snorkeling trip. Cozumel has several docking areas, but each pier is set up to go through the shopping areas first, then you can find a taxi stand to take you wherever you want to go. When we have a group, we always ask (before entering the taxi) how much and make sure we are clear that we want the total cost for the number of people. This keeps us from being overcharged after we reach our destination.

Cozumel has several nice beach areas and Chakanaub State Park is very nice. We usually choose Chakanaub or Paradise Beach. Chakanaub has a pool, some ruins, a restaurant and shops and you can do or watch the dolphin excursion there. We have hooked up with a snorkeling guide there and used our own gear and paid him about $15 -$20 each to take us snorkeling. This is a swim in tour - no boats, but very nice. The boys will see lots of Igaunas there as well.

Paradise Beach is wonderful and very beautiful. No pool, but great water toys like the rock climbing, trampoline, floats and kayaks. You purchase a wrist band to use the water toys. If you are not using the water toys, there is no charge but they do like you to order a little food/drinks. They have a very nice area of lounge chairs where the waiters serve you beachside or you can go to the open air style restaurant. The boys will love the bungee and tree climbing there. They have free internet and clean restrooms. Tom is the owner and he has a great place here. We arranged a snorkeling trip from here where a catamaran picked up all the kids and grandkids and took them snorkeling. I don't think they do that anymore, but you can e-mail Tom to see if he can set something up for you.

Go to CozumelInsider.com and also look up Paradise Beach on-line. You will find coupons and beach info, snorkeling, a ship website, ship schedule, etc there, and Paradise beach shows a menus, prices etc.

In the old part of town in Cozumel there is a beautiful park, great ocean veiws and nice "old" shops that are not so much the resort style shops. There is a wonderful marine sculpture on the main street (waterfront) in this area.

We love Margaritaville and it is a great place to take the kids as well, great food (a little pricey) but lots of fun.

I loved the trips where we took our grandchildren to Cozumel. It is so much fun doing this trip with kids. Our April cruise is with us and some other "old" people but we will have fun too!:)


Jeanette

CarnivalFan2
February 12th, 2010, 01:02 PM
Jeanette - thank you so much! Some great info on both Progesso & Cozumel.

I've been to Cozumel a few times and finally got smart, did some research and we found Chakanaub Park, where we went snorkeling. The first time in Coz, we made the mistake of having a taxi driver take us to a "good" snorkeling beach & he took us to a beach resort, but no good snorkeling. All we saw was a small sunken row boat & about 3 or 4 tiny fish :(. No reef..all sand bottom.

Chakanaub was a totally different story and we did some wonderful snorkeling there. Paradise Beach sounds very intriguing and my boys would love the water toys. Do you know if they did para-sailing there? One of my bucket list items...

Thanks again Jeanette, really appreciate the info! Best wishes on the MRI again...

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
February 12th, 2010, 03:06 PM
Marty & Jeanne - try this link for Paradise Beach:


http://www.paradise-beach-cozumel.com/

I am pretty sure I remember them having parasailing at the beach, but there is a contact list on their website where you can ask them. Also be sure to ask them if they can arrange for a snorkeling trip starting at Paradise Beach.

By the way, we recently started watching a new channel about travel.
It is called R&R and, on Direct TV, it is channel 354. They are showing some great shows now - see "extraordinary vacations" and Island Style. The vacation one we saw this morning was about cruising and Island Style shows different Islands and a lot about Jamaica.

Jeanette

mom23guys
February 13th, 2010, 12:07 AM
Jeanette, hope your MRI comes out fine. Prayers coming your way.
We're going to Chakenaub in March. Stay warm at least your snow will melt soon.
Terry

GRAMMYTAN
February 13th, 2010, 10:42 AM
Thanks Terry. The US had snow in 49 states yesterday, Hawaii was the only state without snow. Here in Mobile the north part of the county got 5 or 6 inches accumulated snow and we saw some great pics on the news and from friends. We are only 3 miles from the coast so, we got more rain and we did get some pretty heavy snow. It snowed twice for about 10 minutes each time with huge snowflakes, but it melted as soon as it hit the wet ground. I really wanted Ray to be able to make me a snowman and dress it up in "cruise wear" with my walker.:D

Hope you enjoy Chakanaub. Be sure to go to cozumelinsider.com and get your coupons. The last time we went to Chakanaub we had the coupons, but our taxi driver gave us a better deal for discounted admission, two t-shirts and 2 drinks, so be sure to check on that as well.
Jeanette

CarnivalFan2
February 14th, 2010, 12:51 PM
Hi Jeanette & Ray - thanks for the link to Paradise Beach. This may be the way to go...looks like you can go snorkeling from there and also the boys will have a blast on all the water toy thingys.

I watched the travel channel last night and they had Samatha Brown on the Carnival Inspiration out of Tampa going to Cozumel. Not sure if it was an old episode, but the Inspiration had the upgrades (less the balconies, I think, but it had the resort pool, waterwork slides on the back, adult serenity, etc..).

Perfect timing, as I had my boys watch it with me and they were able to see what it is going to be like in July on her sister ship the Carnival Ecstasy.

Hope us Sogno, Sogno, Sogno remnants are enjoying the long President's Day weekend! Me & the boys are out here in SD! I had wanted Jeanne to come with me, but she was still busy with her Master's program (not much more to go though...).

Marty & Jeanne

maryann2
February 15th, 2010, 11:18 AM
Enjoy your time with your sons Marty. I bet they are thrilled to be going on a cruise too.

Jeanette, thinking of you today and hope the results are good.

Cousin Terry, hope you and Tom enjoy your time in Disney and that you enjoyed your superbowl cruise Denise and Joe.

GRAMMYTAN
February 15th, 2010, 03:53 PM
Hi guys, just back from the doc and had somewhat good news: no breaks, no fractures. I do have bulging disks and more degeneration of the spine than before. I have some pretty bad internal bruising, fluid and bleeding around my hip joint, low spine in the muscles and ligaments which will take some time to heal. I was able to get off the walker and got another pain shot in the hip today. Now I just need to go back to work tomorrow after a full week plus today off, and start trying to mover around and walk some to get rid of the soreness.

I'll be back on the dance floor in a couple of weeks. Ray and I stopped on the way home at our TA and paid off our April cruise. We were waiting on these test results to finalize this trip.

Marty tell Jeanne that I hope she does well on completing her studies towards her Masters. My daughter (who is an elementary school teacher) began working on hers a few months back and then plans to do some further studies which will allow her teach at a Junior College Level - and she has two kiids, one stepdaughter and has been raising an abandoned child for 9 years.

Thanks to all of you for your thoughts and prayers.

Jeanette

mom23guys
February 18th, 2010, 05:42 PM
We leave for Florida tomorrow. I'm just looking to see lawns instead of snow.
Maryann,
How's it going with the Olympics?
Denise,
How was your cruise.
Marty, It will be so special cruising with your boys. We still enjoy going on vacation with ours and their getting O-L-D.
Jeanette, Glad there are no breaks. Stay off the ice.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
February 18th, 2010, 09:16 PM
Terry - thanks! I just got back to Houston from SD and seeing them. They are doing great & growing! Yes, this will be a FUN cruise with them. I plan I taking them on the "Behind the Fun" tour, so they can see how a big commercial ship is operated :)...

Jeanette - really glad to hear about the good news and you were able to finalize your upcoming cruise. Congrats on both fronts! Thanks, and I will pass on your sentiments to Jeanne re finishing up her studies. For this last part of her Master's program, she has to do a lot of volunteer work, e.g. even as I type this, she is at the library helping someone (adult) learn to read in a literacy program. I don't know where she gets the energy, working a full day and then volunteering more time at night! I get tired watching her ;)...

Well, I'm leaning toward Paradise Beach in Cozumel (I think the boys will have fun with the water toys and maybe we can rent a jet ski and possibly even para-sail :eek:). I'll probably just hire a taxi to take us directly there, so I won't have to worry about paying for a shore excursion.

For Progresso :confused: Carnival has a dune buggy tour that spends some time at a Mayan run & then a beach resort. The dune buggy holds 4 people, so it would fit us all. A possibility. I heard (read) that the beaches are nicer in Cozumel than Progresso, so that's why I want to do Paradise Beach in Cozumel.

Denise - are you back yet? Full report (w/pics) please ;). Also, WHO DAT?

Hope everyone is having a good week!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
February 18th, 2010, 09:59 PM
Thanks Marty and Terry. I am back at work, but moving slowly and gently, still very sore. It will just take some time, but I will get there.

Terry hope you have a great cruise and trip to Florida.

Marty we have been to Cozumel many times and Progresso about 4 or 5 times and I do think the beaches in Cozumel are better than Progresso. A lot depends on the time of year as well. The first couple of times we were there it was in October and the water and beach were pretty yucky. When we were there in the Spring and summer months it was much nicer.
I know your boys will have a great time. Be sure to get them into the Camp Carnival initial meeting to register them. Then, if they want to go to some of the activities, they will be signed up and if they choose not to participate, that would be okay too. You probably won't be able to keep them away from the pool and waterworks area anyway.

The first time we took our grandkids on a cruise I cautioned them about the rails and climbing. I told the older ones (young teens) that if they fell overboard, that was it, there was no need in even trying to stop the ship and find them. Maybe that was wrong but it scared them enough to keep them away from the rails and horseplay. As far the younger ones, we just made sure that one of the adults was with them or they were in Camp Carnival at all times. We also signed a form stating that they could not leave CC on their own. Either a parent or grandparent had to sign them in and out.

The grandkids ranged in age from 4 to 14 at the time of their first cruise and they all loved it.

CarnivalFan2
February 20th, 2010, 10:39 AM
Thanks Jeanette, great advice on cruising with kids! Yes, I'd like to sign them up for Camp Carnival (or for my older, I guess it would be "Circle C" now).

My boys are kind of shy socializing with kids they don't know, but I'm hoping they'll meet a friend or 2 on the waterslides and they'll want to go to Camp Carnival & Circle C with their new friends.

I think I will follow your advice and sign them up initially regardless and attend the initial meeting (kid's version of a "meet & greet" ;)?). That way, they're registered and we'll be able to check out the facilities.

Anyway, Jeanne & I are prepared to spend the whole time with them and won't force them if they don't want to go. However, the Carnival sitting/slumber party service sounds good, as it would allow Jeanne & I some "adult time" to go dancing :rolleyes:. Did you use the sitting services with Carnival before?

I told Jeanne she could "escape" anytime and I'd watch the boys if she wanted some time at the new adult serenity area on the stern of Ecstasy.

Again, thanks for the great advice & Jeanne & I are glad that you're on the road to recovery.

Have a great weekend Sogno, Sogno, Sogno (or what's left of us...Terry, Jeanette & Ray, Denise & Joe & myelf & Jeanne :confused:)...

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
February 20th, 2010, 12:56 PM
Marty you are a great guy. I know Jeanne will need some "escape" time and you and the boys will need some "just the guys" time so you have it all worked out. We were concerned about the grandkids being shy in CC since they had to separate them (due to age groups) but they enjoyed their time there. They didn't stay in CC a lot because they had so much fun in he pool and slide, but did enjoy a few of the activities.

We really didn't use any sitter service, but the three younger kids went to the slumber party on formal night so the adults could go to the late show and the Grand Gala Buffet (which Carnival did away with). BTW the kids alse enjoyed the Karaoke, but had to leave around 9 or 10 before it got too adult.

Oh yeah, I wanted to let you know about a great CD I found at Target and it can be downloaded on-line from Lifescapesmusic.com. This one is "Afternoon in Venice" and is a 2 CD instrumental CD of beautiful Venetian music. You are such a whiz with the videos, that I thought you might like to use some of this music as background for your videos.

CarnivalFan2
February 21st, 2010, 11:31 AM
Thanks Jeanette :o!

Also, thanks for the tip on the music for Venice. I need to sit down and continue on with my editing project today! More parts to come...stay tuned!

Marty

Deanne Willis
February 21st, 2010, 12:28 PM
Hi all,
Sorry I've been so busy lately, I've been MIA. We loved the Freedom Cruise, so did our friends. The ship was a lot like the Dream, I missed the fun hubs. I loved Key West, my friends knew this man who had his boat docked there and he was our personel tour guide. Grand Cayman was beautiful. We went to Stingray City, with Captain Marvin's tour company. They did a great job! We took the 8:30am tour, and there were only 9 people on the boat. The weather was fantastic, the sea was so calm you could see starfish and giant sea turtles on the bottom. I was a little nervous about the stingrays, but managed to hold one. Then we went snorkeling, that was great too.
Jamaica was okay for me. Joe liked it because he got to climb Dunn's River Falls, I took the steps. The terrain is beautiful there, but so much poverty.
We just finished doing a play at our church about a cruise ship. We have been really busy with that, this week. I turned out good, but what alot of work!!
Jeanette, glad your MRI was okay. I get to go for my yearly physical this week, I never look forward to that!
Marty, I'll bet the boys will have a great time on the cruise!
Terry, I know this is late, but have fun.
Denise

Deanne Willis
February 21st, 2010, 09:53 PM
Opps! I just read my prior post. When it said "I turned out good ", I meant, It turned out good. I was not in the play. I just worked on it.:o
Denise

CarnivalFan2
February 22nd, 2010, 07:00 PM
Denise & Joe - welcome back! Don't forget the pics :D!! Did you like the Carnival Freedom?

We're looking forward to our July cruise aboard the refurbished Carnival Ecstasy!

Marty & Jeanne

CarnivalFan2
February 22nd, 2010, 10:42 PM
O.k., Sogno, Sogno, Sogno, here's Part 4. Enjoy!

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part4.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part4.flv)

Marty

Deanne Willis
February 27th, 2010, 05:51 PM
Marty,
Thanks!

You are reminding us of all the fun memories!

Joe and I were at Buza, but early. The weather wasn't great so we left. Also, I needed to try to get a call through to check on my son. We finally got through to him at a little shop close to the ship. shortly after that call, the sun came out!

Sorry I haven't responded, but we've been so busy with work, and I had a ton of meetings this week.

I'm really excited about part 5! Please keep them coming!!

Denise

Deanne Willis
February 27th, 2010, 05:53 PM
Marty

Yes, we loved the Freedom!

CarnivalFan2
February 28th, 2010, 11:08 PM
Denise- sorry we missed you guys at Buza :(. We were lucky, just as we went through the "hole in the wall", the sun came out and it wa beautiful :rolleyes:! Like it was meant to be...

As promised, here's Part 5. Enjoy! Critiques welcome :eek:...

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part5.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part5.flv)

Marty

P.S. apologize for the skipping/repeating music track in some spots. It happens during the upload to Photobucket; don't know why & how to correct.

maryann2
March 1st, 2010, 12:02 AM
Thanks Marty. Loved both videos. Had forgotten about the rough seas en route to Barcelona.

I loved the Freedom. Did 3 transatlantics on her.

Deanne Willis
March 1st, 2010, 06:58 AM
Thanks so much for these video's they are great. Tell Jeanne "Hi" for me and it was fun to watch her part of the video. You're a lucky man Marty. She is a very sweet lady!

Mary, Are you getting excited about your Magic trip? I would be.

We don't have any cruises booked now and I am not dealing with it very well! We would like to take the kids and grandkids somewhere, but have to save our dollars.

Denise

CarnivalFan2
March 1st, 2010, 06:31 PM
Hi Mary - thanks! I've noticed that the mic on my camera is very good, it acts like a directional mic. For instance, when I was recording the high winds & seas, you can hear the door to the balcony rattling!

Denise - thank you for the comments on the videos and regarding Jeanne...I agree! I will definitely say hi to her for you :)!

Ok, for our wedding plans....we have reverted back to "Plan A". I convinced Jeanne that Dec 23-24th in Quebec was going to be REAL tough getting my family there from Michigan, with the winter weather, distance, etc.

Sooo, Plan A- getting married in late July at Niagra Falls (Canadian side) at a hotel tower, with windows over-looking the falls.

This really shortens the drive (Denise- my mom & step-brother, his family will be driving from Muskegon) and the weather should be nice. Also, my boys will already be with me for summer, so just a matter of them flying with Jeanne & I from Houston to Buffalo, N.Y. We'll rent a car at the airport in Bufffalo for the short drive to the Niagra area.

As part of this change, Jeanne says I have to promise to get the boys up to her mother's in Quebec for Christmas :eek:. We'll cross that bridge...

Anyway, that's the latest! Well, making progress on the video, up to Monaco now. Stay tuned for more parts! Have a great week!

Marty

P.S. - Denise, time to book that next Carnival cruise! We're going to be busy in July...sail on Carnival Ecstasy Jul 10-15, one week back at work, then fly to Niagra Falls for the wedding!!

GRAMMYTAN
March 1st, 2010, 11:18 PM
Congrats Marty and Jeanne on setting the date and wedding plans. It will be here before you know it. Also, thanks so much for the wonderful videos - you are keeping the Dream alive for all of us.

Denise sounds like you are having a great time with your travels. Good luck on your physical.

Mary, are you watching the Amazing Race? I can just see the two of us with those llamas, but still haven't decided which one of us would have been able to do the tightrope.:D

I headed up our company team again this year for the American Cancer Society annual chili cook-off over the weekend. We arrived at the site at 3:30 am to unload and set up after a night of cold heavy rain. This was only our second year and we placed in the top 20 out of 125 teams. The event was a great success and we raised $250,000 for cancer research and fed a crowd of 20,000 - our team served 700 bowls of chili from our batch. Now I am starting to plan several fund raisers throughout the year including cook-outs, car washes (using the local high school golf teams), yard sales, auctions, etc. If any of you have never been involved in something like this, you need to check it out. It's a ton of work, but you get so much satisfaction when you hear how much money is raised for this cause.

CarnivalFan2
March 2nd, 2010, 08:31 PM
Jeanette - thank you! And congrats to you for the wonderful charitable work you are doing/have done for the American Cancer Society :)!!

Marty & Jeanne

Liney1982
March 8th, 2010, 06:32 PM
Hey Everyone!

Thought I would stop by to say a quick hi! How is everyone doing?

Marty, congrats on the wedding date! How exciting! Niagara Falls is beautiful in the summer!

Grammytan - way to go with the chili cook of! That is amazing that you were able to raise so much for a great cause. I have just started my fundraising for my charity event this year. I am again riding in the Ride to Conquer Cancer. I have to raise a minimum of $2,500 on my own and right now I have $700. Right now I'm focusing on starting my training as riding 200kms in 2 days is no easy feat. I did it last year and can't wait to put in the work and time to make a difference!

I have been looking at my pictures from the trip and I'm getting the traveling itch again. Josh and I are going to Jamaica in May but I;m not sure that will satisfy my need to travel! I'm hoping to go to Montreal / Quebec in the fall with my cousin and maybe New York in the winter.

Anyway, I hope you are all doing well.

Take care!
Caroline

GRAMMYTAN
March 8th, 2010, 06:41 PM
Hey Caroline - great to see that you are still posting to our thread. Good luck on your upcoming cruise. Just wanted to be sure that everyone understood that the money raised for American Cancer was from the entire Chili Cook-off, all 125 teams, not just my team.:D It is a great cause and we enjoy doing this.

CarnivalFan2
March 8th, 2010, 08:12 PM
Hi Caroline & Josh!

We'll, we're coming along with the wedding plans. We'll be getting married at the Konica Minolta Tower, 23rd floor with big windows over-looking the Canadian horseshoe falls. Got it booked, as well as the airfare for Jeanne, myself & my 2 boys; we'll be flying to Buffalo and then renting a car for the short drive to Niagra Falls.

All- well, Part 6 (Monaco/Nice, Eze) is almost done. Stay tuned for the posting here :rolleyes:.

Oh by the way, John Heald published my post on his blog today. My post is the last one of the day....

Have a great week!

Marty & Jeanne

CarnivalFan2
March 8th, 2010, 11:03 PM
Sogno, Sogno, Sogno- as promised, here's Part 6 (Monaco, Nice/Eze). Enjoy!

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part6.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part6.flv)

Marty

P.S. getting there, have just Florence/Pisa left....whew!

mom23guys
March 11th, 2010, 11:24 PM
Hi all,
Marty, love your videos. Thanks for taking so much time to help us all relive that amazing trip. Congrats on getting everything set up for the wedding. Will some on Jeanne's family from Canada be there.
Denise, glad you like the Freedom. We loved the Legend. Really happy staff.
Mary, hoy you doin cuz? Ken, our maotre'd will be switching to the Legend in May. Our hostess on Your Time Dining was the Your Time hostess on the Dream.
Jeanette, Congrats on the fundraising. Caroline, still can't believe that 200k bike fundraiser.
Every year we do a fundraiser for a local charity with a group of teachers. We have arcade games for the kids, a yard sale, bake sale and raffle. We usually raise 8,ooo to 10, 000 for local groups such as autism, Shriner's hospital, and 21 Down. Not bad for a spring day in the school yard.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
March 13th, 2010, 09:45 PM
Buona Sera Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

I'm afraid I'm losing my Italian :o. Now, I have to bone up on Spanish for our Ecstasy cruise to Mexico ;). Plus, Spanish is always welcome here in Houston!

Terry - thank you for the nice words on the videos. With that 12-day cruise, there are so many images (both video & stills), BUT, almost done. I'm working on Part 7 (Florence/Pisa). I forgot, then there's ROME :eek:. Re the wedding, yes, Jeanne's side will be there. That's part of the reason we chose Niagra Falls, because it is almost exactly in between Michigan and Quebec. All is coming together...I even booked our rental SUV (out of Buffalo) today!

Nice report on the Carnival Legend. For our honeymoon, Jeanne & I are considering doing the Carnival Spirit out of Seattle, and also spending some time up in the B.C. (Vancouver, etc). How did you like the "smaller" Spirit-class ship compared to the Dream?

Anyway, just wanted to drop in and say Hi :)! Hope everyone's having a nice weekend!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
March 15th, 2010, 12:07 AM
Hola Marty,
I love the Spirit class ships. They rarely feel crowded. The Spirit was our first ship. It's the ship that got me hooked on cruising. I think Tom would have loved it anyway but I was a little reticent to cruise at first. We did the Alaska cruise NB from Vancover to Whittier. I think they are doing the RT out of Seattle now. I'm sure you and Jeanne will love it. If you get a chance, we love the extended balconies. They are the ones above the life boats but they are really deep. Feels like so much more room.
Ciao for now.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
March 17th, 2010, 09:26 PM
Happy Hump Day Sogno, Sogno, Sogno :)!

More of the video completed; here's Part 7. Enjoy & comments welcome...

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part7.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part7.flv)

Marty

CarnivalFan2
March 17th, 2010, 09:27 PM
And also Part 8 :D! Enjoy!!

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part8.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoreside-Part8.flv)

Marty

P.S. for some reason, the music track on this part (8) cuts out about half way through. Don't know why :confused:...

GRAMMYTAN
March 20th, 2010, 01:15 PM
Terri keep up the good work (sounds more like fun actually) but it is always is when you are doing work for a great cause.

Marty and Jeanne congrats on finalizing the wedding plans and thanks so much for keeping the Dream alive for all us with these videos.

I have been busy all morning preparing two huge electric roasters of spaghetti sauce with meat and meatballs. Of course I used some of the spices I brought back from Italy with me. My sister and her friend will be in Florida today and her kids, grandkids, friends from Dallas as well as her kids and grandkids from Mobile and my kids and grandkids and my sister's family from Mobile for a "little" birthday party/reunion for my sister.

After making 75 meatballs (Ray did the rolling for me) and the sauce and a big bowl of bruschetta to put on toasted bread later, I decided to take a break and give myself a pedicure. Of course, I am doing this at the puter and watching all the videos that Marty has provided for us. What a way to relax! Now all I need is a glass of nice Italian wine, later of course since it is only noon here.

CarnivalFan2
March 22nd, 2010, 10:51 PM
Thanks Jeanette,

I was going to reply earlier, but these boards were messed up :eek:. Looks like CC got the problem fixed :). Thanks for the comments on the videos...I have the first part of ROME done, but the upload was taking FOREVER on Photobucket, so I "bailed". I'll try again tomorrow eve.

Spagetti & meatballs sound good (I had a meatball marina sub from Subway tonight for dinner :D). Nice glass of Italian wine at noon? Sounds good to me...;)!!

Well, John Heald is on the Conquest out of Galveston. His blog was very funny today, relaying his travels from Florida to Houston-Galveston.

Have a great week Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
March 23rd, 2010, 06:33 AM
Hi guys,
Marty, thanks for posting your video's! I haven't had time to see them, but I'm planning to make the time tonight! Joe and I have both been sick with colds, he had pneumonia. Also, we are trying to do some painting, because we are putting our house up for sale. We may move out to the cottage for a while, then buy something later.
Denise

GRAMMYTAN
March 23rd, 2010, 12:41 PM
Denise
Hope that you and Joe are feeling better now. Good luck with the sale of your house. The market here is terrible. We have been trying to sell 11 acres for a couple of years and have only had a couple of nibbles and no real offers.

CarnivalFan2
March 23rd, 2010, 07:16 PM
Hi Denise & Joe,

I was thinking about you and glad you're still on this thread :)! Sorry you weren't feeling well, especially Joe with pneumonia! Get well soon!

Thanks for the comment on the videos. I have Part 1 of Rome also done and hope to upload tonight (the upload to photobucket was horribly slow when I first tried, and I had to "bail", as it was my bedtime :o).

Jeanne & I are also feeling the real-estate pain of trying to sell. Jeanne has still not sold her condo in Cleveland :mad:! Going on 3 years now :eek:! She also just had the interior painted out (looks like a new place), so with the tax-credit deadline of April 30th approaching, we're hoping we'll finally get it sold :rolleyes:.

Y'all reading John Heald's blog lately? He's out here and currently sailing on the Carnival Conquest (Galveston). I asked him on his blog today whether Carnival would consider adding a variation on the western itinerrary for the Conquest and have her sail to Belize & Isla Roatan (Mahogany Beach). No reason why they can't, since the Triumph does this route from New Orleans..

Well take care and again, hope you & Joe are feeling better soon!

Marty & Jeanne

P.S. Jeanette- have you got the Elation repositioning cruise booked yet? From SD to Mobile via the Panama Canal. Perfect for you guys! I think it sails for Mobile at the end of April?

CarnivalFan2
March 23rd, 2010, 10:29 PM
As promised, here is ROME - Part 1; enjoy :)!

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoresideinROME-Part1.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoresideinROME-Part1.flv)

Marty

P.S. again, apologize for the music track ....happens during the upload to Photobucket. I may have to send Photobucket an e-mail :cool:.

maryann2
March 26th, 2010, 06:01 PM
P.S. Jeanette- have you got the Elation repositioning cruise booked yet? From SD to Mobile via the Panama Canal. Perfect for you guys! I think it sails for Mobile at the end of April?

I am booked on this Marty, leaves 30th April. Fully booked now though. a few from the Dream transatlantic are on it too.

Loved the Rome video, felt like I was back there on a bus going through the streets. Well done.

Denise, hope Joe is feeling better. Pneumonia will take the stuffing out of him.

Jeanette, hope the spaghetti party went well. what a lovely get together for your sister.

CarnivalFan2
March 26th, 2010, 06:56 PM
Hi Mary!

Thanks about the Rome video. We were actually on one of those buses when it was hit by another tour bus rounding a turn :eek:! I think I got some video of the 2 drivers out in the street shouting at each other in Italian :p. Stay tuned (how's that for a "hook"?)...

Wow, very cool that you are booked on the Elation repositioning. Why am I not surprised ;)? You know how to cruise Mary! Do you stick with Carnival mainly?

If that Elation cruise was in mid-late June instead of 30 April, I would've have seriously considered taking my sons (Ryan & Colin) on that one. It would've been perfect from SD (as that's where they live) and sailing to Mobile. Then, it would've been easy to get home to Houston from Mobile.

That would've been cool to share the Panama Canal with my boys. It would've been extra special because their grandfather (who they never met, as unfortunately, he passed before they were born) worked on the Panama Canal as a ship's pilot. I did many Panama Canal transits as a kid while staying with my dad during summers.

Have you been to/through the Panama Canal before? It is an amazing and fascinating experience...especially sailing a ship over the "continetal divide". How they cut a ship canal through those mountains is astounding!

Anyway...looking forward to "my other ship", the Ecstacy...almost down to double-digits :)! Then, a week after getting back from Mexico, we fly to Niagra Falls, Canada to get married! I'm calling the summer of 2010 the "Across Both Borders (South & North) Tour" :D!!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
March 26th, 2010, 08:39 PM
No Marty we didn't book he repo on the Ecstacy. We just didn't have enough time for a 16 day after taking off 3 weeks in October.

Mary, if you are on that one sailing into Mobile, please let us know. If you are going to be here for a day or two, we would love to show you around Mobile and take you to dinner.

Hey Marty and Jeanne Ray keeps looking at the Niagra Falls. What date did you set for the wedding?

maryann2
March 27th, 2010, 11:01 AM
No Marty we didn't book he repo on the Ecstacy. We just didn't have enough time for a 16 day after taking off 3 weeks in October.

Mary, if you are on that one sailing into Mobile, please let us know. If you are going to be here for a day or two, we would love to show you around Mobile and take you to dinner.

Hey Marty and Jeanne Ray keeps looking at the Niagra Falls. What date did you set for the wedding?

Thank you for the kind invitation Jeanette but I will be getting off in Tampa. As it is I am using airmiles for flights and originally it looked like too many changes from Mobile.

This is my first Panama Canal cruise Marty. It will be a great experience. I don't always sail with Carnival but it seems to be that way recently. I have been on Holland America, Celebrity and Royal Carribbean but don't have elite status in any of them.

I think your trip next year will have to be a Panama Canal transit with Ryan and Colin. All those memories to share with them.

CarnivalFan2
March 27th, 2010, 11:56 PM
Hi Jeanette & Ray - the wedding will be July 30th (Fri) at 7:00 pm. The cemony will be at the Konica Tower overlooking the falls (Canadian side).

Let us know if you'll be up there during that time-frame...we'd love to have you attend! To give you an idea, here's a link to where the wedding will be;

http://www.niagaratower.com/index.html

If you haven't done Niagra Falls before, you have to experience it! The Canadian Horseshoe Falls are more dramatic than the American side. Definitely recommend doing the Maiden of Mist boat trip...it is awesome! The boat gets you so close to the falls, they give you rain gear to put on 'cause you get the spray!

Hi Mary- you'll love the Panama Canal transit. An incredible engineering feat. Yes, I hope to bring Ryan & Colin through there someday. I'll be looking for the next time Carnival sends a ship through there!

Re the Ecstasy...wow, glad we booked our July cruise before March 22nd. The cruise fare went up $200 per person for that cruise :eek:. Really saving some $$ on this cruise. Will be able to spend it on my boys :)!

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
March 29th, 2010, 04:24 PM
Mary, too bad you won't be in Mobile, we had hoped to see you again, but have a great trip.

Marty & Jeanne, the site looks wonderful. I will let you know if Ray comes up with anything.

Everyone have a great week. We are Sunshine and mid 70's all week.:) And we sail again in less than a month! YEA!

CarnivalFan2
March 29th, 2010, 08:14 PM
Jeanette & Ray - thanks. Yes, please let us know if you can make it! You probably told me, but what ship are you sailing in less tha a month?

Marty

P.S. I have ROME Part 2 done, just have to get it uploaded to Photobucket, then I'll post on here. Should be tonight...

Deanne Willis
March 29th, 2010, 10:25 PM
Hi everyone!
Mary, Thanks for asking, Joe is much better now. Have fun on your cruise

Marty, I am so excited for you two! July 30th is the date. It should be a beautiful wedding.
I loved the Florence video. Joe and I didn't make it to Florence because we were supposed to see it prior to the cruise. My son got sick so we didn't leave the US until the day before we boarded the ship, so we missed the tour we planned with Terry and Tom, Patty and Jim (quiltgal) and Dennis and Terri (can't think of their CC name, but I think it had NC in it!). Anyway, the excursion ended up costing them more because they had to split the cost 6 ways instead of 8. We reimbursed them when we met them at the meet and greet. (None of them wanted to take the extra money, so we had to talk them into it!) A couple weeks ago we received a check from our trip insurance covering changing our airfare, 2 nights in a hotel and even our part of the excursion to Florence. We were so suprised, we didn't expect them to cover everything! I'm certainly a believer in Trip Insurance now!

Jeanette and Ray, I don't remember where you're going either!:o

I'm trying to keep up with all of you, but around here we've been painting and cleaning, with many trips to Goodwill to try to clean out things. If we don't sell, at least my house will be clean and tidy!

Denise:)

CarnivalFan2
March 29th, 2010, 11:14 PM
Hi Denise & Joe! Great to hear from you again. Thanks for the comment re the wedding. Yes, I do remember that about your planned trip to Florence before the cruise (since we were in Florence on a Monday). Glad you got well reimbursed from the trip insurance. We had it also for that trip, being on such a big scale, so far from home & for so long. However, I passed on the insurance for our upcoming Ecstasy cruise (saved about $285). Speaking of $$, I went back on the Carnival site and re-looked at the cruise fare for our cruise and our cabin category (8C), and the cruise fare was $440 higher :eek:! So, again, glad we booked before March 22nd :cool:.

Florence was probably my favorite place in Italy, as it seemed to be the REAL Italy (if you now what I mean). Had the best lasagna I've EVER had in my life there :rolleyes:! I was a little worried at first about the museum being closed, but we had a wonderful tour & guide that it was well worth it.

Well, it looks like just a few of us are the remaining Sogno, Sogno, Sogno-ites! Ours was such a great roll-call :). Trying to get a roll-call going for the 7/10 Ecstasy sailing and it's like "crickets". Wonder why it is so different?

Anyway.....as promised, finally got ROME-Part 2 uploaded, so as promised, here it is...enjoy!

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoresideinROME-Part2.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoresideinROME-Part2.flv)

Marty

mom23guys
March 30th, 2010, 12:20 AM
Hi all,
Haven't been on for a week or so. My youngest son Brian and his fiancee just closed on his house. He had been living here since November 1. We also were down in Annapolis last weekend to check out the venue for our middle son's wedding. It is right on the Chesepeake(sp? it's late:eek:)
Marty, I'll be watching the last 2 videos tomorrow. Thanks for taking me back to October. July should be great at Niagra Falls. So happy for you and Jeannie.
Denise, glad you are getting better. Tell Joe to take it easy, it's hard to get over pneumonia. Are you going to stay in Michigan after you sell your house?
Mary, congrats on your future cruises. It must be in our genes;). We're looking to book something later this spring-maybe Bermuda from NY. Just trying to fit things in with weddings, showers, and trying to work around planned company.
Jeanette and Ray- it would be cool to get to NF for Marty's wedding.

The rain here seems to be never ending. After the snow melt and now 3-5 inches of rain every week, the ground is really saturated. We've been lucky but many of our friends have had flooded yards and basements and crawl spaces. One of my friends hasn't had her normal heat since she got home from Florida after our trip. Her crawl space is flooded and that's where her furnace is located. She's had to use space heaters. My former principal's house is surrounded by water- They actually put up elevated walkways like they had in Venice so they can get into the house. Last week they were removing belongings with a boat. I know some places in the country are used to spring flooding but I've been here for 33 years years have have never seen anything like this.
Hope all are well.
Terry

GRAMMYTAN
March 30th, 2010, 04:58 PM
Hi guys - haven't had a chance yet to check out the latest video, but know it will be great! We sail on the Fantasy from Mobile - 5 days with stops in Progreso and Cozumel (Mexico). Been there, done that several times already, but still enjoy the cruise and getting to show two NEWBIE couples the ropes of cruising is always great fun.

I understand about the cost of the insurance, but can't seem to turn it down. The one time, we didn't take it (probably posted this here before), we sailed from NOLA on Saturday before Katrina hit Monday, Ray's dad died Monday, we had to fly home from Cozumel to Houston, finally found a flight to Atlanta and were lucky to rent a car to drive home from Atlanta - Total cost over $3000 and no insurance. We also lost our car which was parked in NOLA.

Marty, I think the big reason that the Meet on Board sites for the Europe cruises are more active, is that everyone needs to share excursions, drivers, etc., and for anyone who has never been to Europe there is great info on these boards to prepare yourself for the trip.

Hope everyone has a great Easter.

CarnivalFan2
March 30th, 2010, 08:29 PM
Hi Jeanette - thanks! I agree with you about these boards. However, with the "Songo Thongo", I think we were talking about more than excursions :o;). Yea, can't go wrong getting the insurance, so I'm rolling the dice a bit. If we had to fly and the cruise was longer, I probably would get the insurance.

Cool you are sailing the Fantasy out of Mobile! We'll be on her close sister, the Ecstasy in July. When do you sail?

Terry - thanks so much on your comments about our wedding. Going to be a busy July, that's for sure. The "Across Both Borders (South then North) Tour". It'll be fun doing this with my 2 boys :)! Sorry to hear about the flooding...seems like the east coast/NE has been hammered this winter! We've had a strange, winter also-> snowed twice almost 3 times here in Houston :eek:. Here's the reminder;

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Houston/th_SnowinHouston09.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Houston/?action=view&current=SnowinHouston09.flv)

Well, glad that's over and looks like spring is finally here. Starting to see the high 70's, low 80's now.

Take care Sogno, Sogno, Sogno and have a great week!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
March 30th, 2010, 10:30 PM
Wow, loved the Rome videos. You even had a photo of our hotel Teh Excellsior on the Via Veneto. Did you use Angel Tours for the Vatican Tour. Although it wasn't the same guide ours carried the same bag.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
March 31st, 2010, 09:48 PM
Wow, loved the Rome videos. You even had a photo of our hotel Teh Excellsior on the Via Veneto. Did you use Angel Tours for the Vatican Tour. Although it wasn't the same guide ours carried the same bag.
Terry
Thanks Terry! Yes, it was Angel Tours. I really liked the tour guide...the kid really knew his stuff & as you can hear on the video, had a great Irish accent!

Well, I think I'm almost finished ("whew"). I think I have one last Part for Rome (Part 3) and the entire trip will be completed.

Marty

mom23guys
April 3rd, 2010, 08:28 AM
Happy Easter to All
Terry

CarnivalFan2
April 3rd, 2010, 12:15 PM
Thanks Terry, u2....

HAPPY EASTER!!

to all remaining Sogno, Sogno, Sogno-ites, still on this thread!

Marty & Jeanne

CarnivalFan2
April 5th, 2010, 10:55 PM
WOO-HOO! Finished the entire video series of our Grand Med cruise & ROME. Here is ROME - Part 3 (& final!); Enjoy....

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoresideinROME-Part3.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoresideinROME-Part3.flv)

Again, your feedback is more than welcome! Hope you enjoyed the entire series!

Marty & Jeanne

P.S. woops; learned something else. I'm limited to 10 min on these videos on Photobucket, so I went over on this Part, trying to get finished. Apologize... I'll will fix it, but for now, you have most of it!

wyomingirl
April 6th, 2010, 12:39 PM
Hello to everyone,

Looks like things are going well and hope everyone had a great Easter!

Haven't visited the post for a while but love the videos Marty. I so wish we could go back for the debut of Magic but Alaska calls instead. Randy definately wants to see Barcelona sometime so probably will find a cruise that includes that port.

Joe and Denise glad that your insurance worked for you, good to have when you need it. Our insurance did not cover us for the extra night we had to stay in Denver on the way back home. They said since our plane landed in Denver it's final destination we could not compensated for the hotel room even though we live in Wyoming. Oh well.

Opening Day at Coors Field for Rockies on Friday and supposed to have good weather...woohoo. Have snow on the ground today:(

Well better get back to work, everyone take care...

Anna

CarnivalFan2
April 6th, 2010, 10:45 PM
Thanks Anna! We also want to do Alaska...maybe summer of 2011.

Here's the corrected version (nmt 10 min) of ROME - Part 3. Enjoy!

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/th_LivinTheDreamShoresideinROME-Part3.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Grand%20Med%20Cruise%20Oct%202009/?action=view&current=LivinTheDreamShoresideinROME-Part3.flv)

That's a wrap! WHEW! Feedback welcome!!

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
April 7th, 2010, 09:35 AM
Hi Guys,
Thanks so much for the video's they were a great reminder of how wonderful the Sogno Thongo trip was. I still think we need to plan a Sogno Thongo reunion cruise, even if it's a year or so in advance.

Terry, Joe and I are planning on staying in this area, somewhere within 30 miles of where we are at now. We are busy remodeling, but still no one has come to even look at our house yet. (It's probably a good thing, Joe's bathroom is torn apart!!)

Anna, Good to hear from you! We are thinking of Alaska next summer too. All of my cousins and their husbands want to go. No plans on dates or cruise ships yet, just thinking. When are you guys going? I still would like to go to the Baltics too!

Jeanette, We are anxiously awaiting to hear how you liked your cruise.

Hope everyone had a Happy Easter!

Denise

CarnivalFan2
April 7th, 2010, 07:24 PM
Hi Denise!

Were you thinking Alaska cruise this summer or summer of 2011? How about Songo Thongo cruise to Alaska in 2011? May be a bit cold for the Thongo in Alaska though :eek:...

Jeanne & I were discussing the possibility of doing Disney during my boys' (Ryan & Colin) next spring break, April 2011. And...guess what, the brand new Disney Dream will have just entered service in Feb 2011, so we're thinking of a land-sea combo. Something about that Dream name :rolleyes:. If y'all get a chance, check out the Disney Cruise Line web-site. There are some real good graphics of the new Disney Dream...the waterslide "The Duck" looks incredible. We'll see...

Jeanette - have you left for Carnival Fantasy yet, or is that later in the month? John Heald will be going over to the Fantasy after the Conquest later this month (he's staying on for the repo to Charleston, SC). That'd be cool if he was doing one Progresso/Cozumel 5 day cruise first, and was on your cruise!

Anyway, glad the "Livin' The Dream" video is finally done. I think the total tally was, 11 shoreside videos, including 3 of ROME alone and 1 of just the ship. Next up...our trip to New Orleans! I won't subject you to this one, but you'll be able to view it on my photobucket page, once completed. Should be completed a lot faster that the 12-day Med cruise video!

Take care Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
April 11th, 2010, 08:09 PM
Marty,
That sounds like a great idea! The timing is going to be an issue for us because we've talked to my cousins about going to Alaska next summer so I'll probably have to go when they can go. To make it a little more complicated, they liked Norwegian. They might be swayed. Were you thinking of Carnival?
Anna and Randy, When are you going?
Marty and Jeanne, When were you thinking of going?
I guess we need to get together on a date and then go from there. Anyone else interested?
Denise

CarnivalFan2
April 12th, 2010, 08:40 PM
Hi Denise-

Either the Carnival Spirit or Princess (still staying loyal to Carnival Corp ;)), July/August 2011. I asked John Heald if sailing Princess still counts toward platinum, since it's still Carnival Corp. Anybody know?

Princess has some interesting looking cruise/land tours with lodges, trains. You can tell Princess is well-established in Alaska. However, I also want to sail a Spirit-class Carnival ship and I think the fun quotent would be higher on the Spirit...although Princess' ships are beautiful & elegant...

We're interested in sailing with our moms, as a special family reunion. However, it may be Jeanne's & my honeymoon/anniversary cruise :eek:!!

We don't feel too upset about not having an immediate honeymoon after the wedding...the Carnival Dream cruise more than made up for that! But, we'd still need an "official" honeymoon, so we'll see :rolleyes:...

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
April 15th, 2010, 02:24 PM
Hi guys - the video was great. I hope that we can return to Italy one day, maybe 2012. Ray and I want to look into renting an apartment in Rome for two weeks and then taking a few day trips and/or overnight trips out from there. As for 2011, we have promised to take the 3 grandsons on a cruise for their graduation, so that will probably be the extent of our cruising for next year. However, the Alaskan trip sounds interesting if we would get the chance to share it with some of our SOGNO group. We had been putting off that trip for our "old" age when we felt like we couldn't do anything else, but I think we are getting there fast!:o

I can't believe we are on the seas again in 9 days! We are looking forward to introducing our friends to cruising. They are two couples that we met through square dance and then through ballroom dances and have never cruised. They are getting so excited and it is contagious! Maybe John Heald will be our CD on the Fantasy this time, before he goes to Charleston. He was our CD on the Freedom on our Grand Med cruise in 2007 and he was great, so we would love to see him again.

wyomingirl
April 16th, 2010, 10:55 AM
Denise we sail on August 17th out of Seattle on the Spirit in one of the L shaped rooms that is now a 9B category. Should have a nice big balcony for viewing. We are taking the grandparents and parents so it should be fun and interesting at the same time. Terry gave me some good info so we have some excursions lined up and even paid for:D Prices keep going up and up so no OBC for me on this one. Did snag a little for the parents and grandparents in their category back in December so we are trying out the supper club because we loved it on the Dream.

2011 brings us back to the Bahamas with our friends. We sail out of New Orleans in April on the Triumph.

Marty I think I asked my PVP about the using other ships and having them count towards platinum and I think his answer was no it had to be one one name brand line. So if that is incorrect please someone correct me because I might like to try some of the sister ships.

Take care everyone...Anna

CarnivalFan2
April 16th, 2010, 08:02 PM
Happy Friday (& day after tax day :eek:)!

Thanks Jeanette on the video comment. I checked the CD schedule on John Heald's blog and he doesn't get on the Fantasy until May 3rd, so it looks like you'll be just ahead of him. Have a great cruise to Progresso & Coz! We'll be heading down there with my 2 boys on July 10th on the Ecstasy!!

Hi Anna- thanks for the info. I posted the question on John Heald's blog, but, of course (with the volume of posts he gets) there is a delay, so I haven't heard from him on this yet.

Please let us know how the Spirit is in August. Anyone else been to Alaska on the Carnival Spirit? Sailing out of Seattle would be easy and we could take some time seeing Seattle & Vancouver. However, I did like the lodges that Princess has in Alaska and the train that takes you there :rolleyes:.

Mmmm..wonder where the Carnival Elation is these days? Wonder if she's getting close to her Panama Canal transit? Isn't Mary on board?

Mary....are you out there on the Elation? We need a cruise report ;)!

Take care Sogno, Sogno, Sogno and have a great weekend!!

Marty (& Jeanne)

CarnivalFan2
April 16th, 2010, 08:23 PM
Woops! Checked the Carnival web-site & Elation doesn't leave for the repositioning cruise (from SD to Tampa/Mobile thru the Panama Canal) until APRIL 30th. For some reason, I thought it left March 30th :o.

Sorry for the pre-mature shout-out Mary :D:o. Hope you're having fun anyway and you're only 2 weeks out from sailing. If you can, please keep posting on this thread during the cruise :rolleyes:...

Marty

mom23guys
April 16th, 2010, 10:15 PM
Hi guys,
Our first cruise was on the Spirit to Alaska. We did a Northbound out of Vancouver to Whittier. We then planned our own "cruisetour" up to Denali. We actually booked the train to Talkeetna and stayed in the Talkeetna Lodge. We then hopped on the train up to Denali and spent a couple of nights at the McKinley Chalet (that's the hotel that Holland and Celebrity use) took the long tour into Denali and then went back to Ancharge on the train. The Alaska Railroad handled the luggage and picked up and delivered from the hotels. By planning ourselves it saved us hundred of dollars and we were able to go to the places we wanted for the length of time we wanted.
The Spirit was a great trip. I loved the one-way. They had a great naturalist on-board. We also went on Princess Round Trip out of Seattle. That was great too. Loved the elegance of Princess. Princess really does Alaska very well. They also had a naturalist and invited Libby Riddles(from the Iditerod on board as a guest speaker. Given the time and money I would choose a one way with a stop in Glacier Bay.
Marty, Alaska is different than the Caribbean-more like a European cruise since it is so much about the ports- definitely not about nightlife even on Carnival. We usually arrived in ports early and came back to the ship exhausted. Even my son who was 25 at the time was in bed early. Glacier climbing, rock repelling, whale watches, and hiking when we switched 4 time zones did us all in early.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
April 18th, 2010, 09:16 PM
Thanks Terry...great info! It does sound like a European cruise; and Jeanne & I can attest to the early bed times after doing the tours! We're not decided but one thing for sure, it will be with Carnival Corp one way or another (either Carnival or Princess). I do like the sea/land options Princess has to offer and it would be a chance for us to try Princess :rolleyes: (never sailed with Princess before...). Also, one thing I noticed was that Carnival only does Glacier Bay once per season, where it seems Princess cruises it every cruise?? Is Glacier Bay a must see?

Things are going good with the wedding plans, Jeanne already has her dress. When it was delivered, I almost walked in on her in the bedroom and saw it :eek:. Got a quick glimpse only...promise. We're about to go under 80 days until we cruise to Progresso & Cozumel, Mx on the Ecstasy, then a week later, head up to Niagra Falls for the wedding. Going to be a busy July! It'll be great that my 2 boys (Ryan & Colin) will be there right with us on the "Crossing Both Borders Tour" :).

Hope everyone had a good weekend!

Marty (& Jeanne)

mom23guys
April 19th, 2010, 11:31 PM
Marty,You'll love Princess. They did a great job in Alaska. If possible I'd choose Glacier Bay The Spirit did College Fjord which was great. We also went to Tracy Arm on Princess. The scenery was out of this world but we never actually got to the glacier. It is often blocked by ice and you just can't make the turn so you can see the glacier. We'd been before but it was a great disappointment to those who had never seen a glacier in Alaska. If you are interested in creating your own post or pre-cruise tour-check out a group called Alaska Tour and Travel, just add dot com after the name. You can book all the bits and pieces at cost. If you have ay questions just ask.

Glad we're not in Europe now. My brother, SIL, and nephew were there visiting my other nephew who is doing a semester abroad in the Czeck Republic. They were supposed to fly home Friday, connecting in London on BA. They have been on a trek through Europe taking trains etc to get to Rome so they can fly out hopefully tomorrow. They are pretty exhausted. Fingers crossed.
Terry

mom23guys
April 21st, 2010, 11:00 PM
My brother and family finally got back to the US.
Terry

Deanne Willis
April 22nd, 2010, 06:50 AM
Terry,
I am glad they made it back!! How are you doing? Someday I might just give you a call to catchup on things.

Marty, Since we are having trouble putting an Alaska Sogno Thongo reunion together, maybe we should try for 2012 for a Baltic reunion. I think there was some talk of that earlier. On Alaska, I just can't get my cousins to commit to a time yet. You would love them, they are a lot of fun. But it takes them awhile to decide on things.

We have been very busy with trying to sell the house with no luck yet. I forgot how stressful it is trying to keep it picked up, in case someone wants to see it! I do read the boards, but haven't had much time to write.
Take Care,
Denise

CarnivalFan2
April 22nd, 2010, 08:59 PM
Hi Sogno, Sogno, Sogno (remnants :eek:?),

Terry- thanks again for the Alaska info. I looked at Princess' web-site again and I do like the way they have their cruisetours set up...and lots of variations to choose from. Also, I like the way the ship goes one way, and as part of the package, they fly you back to Seattle.

As you can tell by my sign-on name, I'm a big fan of Carnival...but for Alaska, I'm leaning toward trying Princess. Hey, still staying loyal to Carnival Corp right ;)? Btw- glad your brother & family made it back "across the pond".

Denise- welcome back! Fully understand the logistical issues with a reunion cruise. When we offically book, I'll let Sogno, Sogno, Sogno know, so anybody that wants to join up are welcome to do so :)!

Right now, my mom is just trying to get her Enhanced Driver's License, so she can cross over to Canada for the wedding (July 30th). Long story..but her birth certificate needs to be corrected, so she's going through all that :cool:.

Anyway, speaking of cruising and cruising with other lines...if we can manage it financially, for 2011, Jeanne & I want to do 2 special family vacations that are once in a lifetime opportunities. In April 2011 (when my sons have their spring break), we want to do Disney World, with a short cruise on the brand new Disney Dream, which will have entered service in Jan 2011. Then, at the end of June, we're thinking the Alaska cruise, and Jeanne & I take our moms. Also, Jeanne wants to bring her niece as a HS graduation present.

We feel now is the time on both cruises, as my boys and our moms are getting older. So, my oldest son would be 13 and my youngest 10 (perfect ages for going to Disney World). And, for Alaska, we'd like to share this cruise with our moms. Jeanne's mom is much more mobile than mine, so I'd like to do this cruise with my mom, in case her physical condition gets to where she can't travel (she's had 2 knee replacements).

Anyway, sorry about this lengthy post :o. We're in the 70's (days) for our Carnival Ecstasy cruise. Anyone see that she made the news with an evasive turn to avoid a partially submerged ocean buoy? Believe me, those buoys are made of steel and are huge....would've done some damage if the Ecstasy had hit it. The ship heeled over to starboard (I heard different #'s on how much it heeled over), but people were sliding on deck and unsecured items were coming loose and breaking. Water came out of the pool. Some passengers had minor injuries and were treated by the ship's medical staff. I'm sure some will try & sue to get something out of Carnival.

There were great reports on how the crew handled the aftermath of the situation. I give the bridge watch/captain credit for being able to avoid the buoy, which they probably didn't see until the last minute. Those ships do turns like that and even harder over during sea-trials...so the ship was never in danger of capsizing or going over on her side, even though it probably felt like it was to the passengers.

Take care Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

Marty (& Jeanne)

P.S. if we do go to Disney, we have the option of sailing on our Carnival Dream again (I'd go cove balcony cabin). However, I'd like to check out the new Disney Dream. Funny that both competing companies' ships are named "Dream"...

GRAMMYTAN
April 23rd, 2010, 04:49 PM
Hello everyone - just wanted to post one more time before we sail tomorrow to Mexico on the Carnival Fantasy. We have had absolutely gorgeous weather for 2+ weeks and now the powers that be are saying 80% rain and severe weather tomorrow. Looking at the radar the entire state of LA appears to be covered up right now, so we are hoping we will get the bad weather tonight and it will be out of here by lunchtime Saturday. Since we have 4 newbies with us, we want everything to be perfect for them.

A few years ago, we sailed out of Mobile on the Tiny Little (Old) Carnival Holiday on Saturday, April 30 - six of us in that group as well. About daylight that morning we had a terrible flash flood rain with about 15" of rainfall. By the time we sailed, the rain was gone but it was overcast. We sailed into a cold front and 80 MPH winds. We watched (from inside) as the water would come up through the pool and splash over the sides of the deck above the pool. We looked like a bunch of drunken sailors trying to navigate around the ship and water was pouring in through the windows, so we were wading in the Promenade deck. The staff was putting towels and blankets in our cabin windows to try to stop the water that was pouring into our cabin. All night long we had to hold on to keep from being tossed out of our beds and we had cotton jammed in our ears to try to drown out the sound of the creaking of the ship as it was going through all the turbulence. It never really scared us - we have always felt confident in Carnival's captains, but it was a rough night for a lot of people. I just hope our "newbies" don't experience anything like that on their first sailing. Of course this is a larger ship and we don't plan to tell them about our past experience with the bad weather.

Hopefully this time Saturday we will be about to set sail for Mexico. Everyone have a great weekend!:)

CarnivalFan2
April 23rd, 2010, 06:41 PM
Hello everyone - just wanted to post one more time before we sail tomorrow to Mexico on the Carnival Fantasy. We have had absolutely gorgeous weather for 2+ weeks and now the powers that be are saying 80% rain and severe weather tomorrow. Looking at the radar the entire state of LA appears to be covered up right now, so we are hoping we will get the bad weather tonight and it will be out of here by lunchtime Saturday. Since we have 4 newbies with us, we want everything to be perfect for them.

A few years ago, we sailed out of Mobile on the Tiny Little (Old) Carnival Holiday on Saturday, April 30 - six of us in that group as well. About daylight that morning we had a terrible flash flood rain with about 15" of rainfall. By the time we sailed, the rain was gone but it was overcast. We sailed into a cold front and 80 MPH winds. We watched (from inside) as the water would come up through the pool and splash over the sides of the deck above the pool. We looked like a bunch of drunken sailors trying to navigate around the ship and water was pouring in through the windows, so we were wading in the Promenade deck. The staff was putting towels and blankets in our cabin windows to try to stop the water that was pouring into our cabin. All night long we had to hold on to keep from being tossed out of our beds and we had cotton jammed in our ears to try to drown out the sound of the creaking of the ship as it was going through all the turbulence. It never really scared us - we have always felt confident in Carnival's captains, but it was a rough night for a lot of people. I just hope our "newbies" don't experience anything like that on their first sailing. Of course this is a larger ship and we don't plan to tell them about our past experience with the bad weather.

Hopefully this time Saturday we will be about to set sail for Mexico. Everyone have a great weekend!:)
Hi Jeanette & Ray,

Have a wonderful cruise to Progresso & Cozumel on the Carnival Fantasy! We have a front coming through, but the line of rain looks thin and it is supposed to come through fairly quickly. Since we are west of you, it'll clear us first, but it shouldn't be too much longer it clears you as well out of Mobile. After this front, weather looks fantastic again! Low 80's & sunny!

Jeanne & I may go to the International Festival in downtown Houston tomorrow. Theme is Caribbean this year!

Again, have a great cruise Jeanette & Ray and everyone have a great start to their weekend!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
April 24th, 2010, 06:48 AM
Thanks Marty & Jeanne and have fun at the festival. We did get some rain in late Friday afternoon and the first big band has cleared but now we are seeing another huge band on the radar. Local weather prediction for this to clear by noon so we have our fingers crossed.

We are up early with our coffee and last minute packing before getting ready to go to the ship. Thank goodness we have a 20 minute drive and not a 15 hour flight!:)

CarnivalFan2
April 24th, 2010, 01:16 PM
Thanks Marty & Jeanne and have fun at the festival. We did get some rain in late Friday afternoon and the first big band has cleared but now we are seeing another huge band on the radar. Local weather prediction for this to clear by noon so we have our fingers crossed.

We are up early with our coffee and last minute packing before getting ready to go to the ship. Thank goodness we have a 20 minute drive and not a 15 hour flight!:)
Hi Jeanette & Ray- BON VOYAGE! We'll be on her sister (Ecstasy) in a couple of months doing the same cruise.

If you can, keep posting on here so we can cruise "vicariously" through you :)

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
April 25th, 2010, 07:51 AM
Have a great time Jeanette and Ray!
Denise

mom23guys
April 27th, 2010, 10:25 AM
I know you're cruising now but hopefully you have great weather and calm seas.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
April 27th, 2010, 06:31 PM
Speaking of Sogno, Sogno, Sogno alumni continuing to cruise....

How about Mary getting ready to set sail from SD to Tampa on the Carnival Elation via the Panama Canal :rolleyes:! Sailing April 30th? I think I got it right this time :o.

Mary - I'm sure you are busy packing and excited about this great repositioning cruise! Please keep posting on here so we can cruise wth you ;)...

Marty & Jeanne

P.S. we'll be in the 60's (days to cruise) for Carnval Ecstasy very soon :)!

GRAMMYTAN
April 29th, 2010, 03:45 PM
We're Baaaaaaaack!:)

Hi guys, tried to log on while cruising but could not access the site while on-board.

Well we had a big rain storm in Mobile Saturday and boarded just a little bit later than usual because the ship was late unloading Saturday morning. No outside deck sail-a-way this time due to the weather, but had a great time, and it is was pretty smooth sailing, although windy on the open decks. We never made it to the Serenity area, due to chair hogs. The area opened at 8:00 am and people would go out at daylight and tie their towels to the chairs and leave books, bags etc out until they were ready to take over the chair for the day. We just found some other areas on the ship to lay around, get some sun and listed to some great Carribean live music.

We had 3 couples in our group and we each took on 2 bottles of wine so we had wine with dinner every night, even Champagne one night. One of the couples got married a little over a year ago and never had a real honeymoon so they took the cruise as a belated honeymoon.

The shows on this cruise were Nightclub Express and Ticket to Ride. We had seen both previously (a few times :)), but still enjoyed them and our "newbies" were quite impressed with the talent.

On our 4th night there was a great deck party that we all went to. No-one was dancing so Ray and I started to dance, then the other two couples and another "senior" couple joined in. Our friends (all in their 70's) got up and started line dancing and pretty soon they had a good sized group with them. I told them that it was pretty bad when the 70 year olds had to get the party started. They all had a great time and I am sure they will be cruising again.

In Progreso we took the ship's free shuttle down the long pier into town and then paid $3 to take the little double decker bus tour around town. We hooked up with one of the local tour guys and he set us up with a taxi out to the Mayan ruins (Dzibilchaltun). The driver waited for us to tour and brought us back to town. We paid $8 for the entrance fee and paid $10 each for the taxi ride.

Back in town we had lunch at Flamingos where they boasted margaritas at 2 for $5 (they were pretty small) followed by a shot of tequila with sprite . We actually preferred El Mirador where we had lunch last time and found out later that they had them 2 for $4. We then went over to the beach, shopped a bit and finagled 6 - 40 minute massages for $10 each before returning to the ship.

By the way Carnival wanted $49 to take us on the same bus to town and have us walk a short ways to the beach for a Corona Beach Break with open bar. We spent less than that for our entire day, including lunch, ruins, and massage. The $99 Reef Club excursion through Carnival is $49 if you book with the local group that meets you when you get off the free shuttle in town.

In Cozumel we used the taxi service to go to the old part of town (San Miguel) for a little shopping, then headed out to Paradise Beach for a while before returning to shop around the Puerta Maya Pier. We didn't make it back to Margaritaville this time :(, but there is always "next time."

CarnivalFan2
April 29th, 2010, 06:39 PM
Hi Jeanette & Ray....welcome home!

Thank you for sharing the highlights of your cruise and for trying to log on to post while you were sailing :)! How's the Fantasy these days? I'll bet you're sorry to see her go to Charleston, but don't worry, Mary is bring over her replacement...the Elation.

Sorry to hear about the chair hogs in Serenity :mad:. I wish Carnival would enforce their own "chair hog rules"!

Great story about getting the conga line going at the deck party :rolleyes:. Are you sure it wasn't a "thonga line" ;):p? Maybe the Songo Thongo effect!

Glad you had a great cruise and we're about to go into the 60's (days) before we do the same route except out of Galveston (no suddern turns please Carnival :eek:).

Marty & Jeanne

P.S. - did that big oil spill (& continuing to spill) out in the Gulf affect the Fantasy's route?

GRAMMYTAN
April 30th, 2010, 05:36 PM
We have been wondering if the cruise routes from Mobile and New Orleans are going to be affected by this spill. The news states that the spill will be ashore in our area (Dauphin Island) by Sunday. They are asking for volunteers to put their boats in the water around the Island and help put out the devices to stop the spill from coming ashore and my nephew is joining in that effort with his boat. CNN has been on Dauphin Island today covering the story. Our local seafood industry will be lost and from the sounds of it, it may take years to recover. A lot of these guys around here who fish, shrimp and oyster commercially are just beginning to get back on their feet from Katrina in 2005, so it is really devastating to them.

CarnivalFan2
May 1st, 2010, 11:43 AM
Hi Jeanette & Ray,

Just noticed Carnival has posted a travel advisory regarding the oil spill. They're monitoring it closely, but the advisory was for the Carnival Fantasy out of Mobile.

A shout out to Mary on the Carnival Elation! Mary, are you out there :confused: Hope you are underway on your repositioning cruise through the Panama Canal. Watch out for oil when you get to the Gulf :eek:!

Have a nice weekend!

Marty (& Jeanne)

Deanne Willis
May 2nd, 2010, 06:44 PM
Jeanette,
I am so sorry for all the people whose lives are affected by the spill. From the sounds of things, it is getting worse, rather than better.
Let us know what you hear.
Denise

wyomingirl
May 4th, 2010, 04:33 PM
I feel so bad for all these people...there livelihood has sure taken a hit over the last few years. We wondering what effect this might have on our April cruise next year.

Everyone take care,
Anna

GRAMMYTAN
May 6th, 2010, 05:41 PM
I was wondering if anyone is planning to cruise on the Fantasy soon when it moves to Charleston. We had the sweetest little waitress in the Celebration dining room last week. Her name is Ivanka and she is from Croatia. We just fell in love with her and are now e-mailing with her. Our second night on board, I asked her at dinner if she liked chocolate. She said "I adore chocolate." I took her hand and slipped the two little chocolate mints from our pillows into her hand and she just smiled. A few minutes later she came by and leaned down and whispered, "I have already eaten one." So everynight, I slipped her our chocolates. I would like to see if Carnival would allow us to send her a box of chocolate on-board, but don't want to get her in trouble. If any of you sail on the Fantasy in the next few months before her contract is up, be sure to give her your chocolates.

We had told her early in our trip that we loved Croatia and how beautiful it is and she really opened up to us, talking about the money she sends home and that a lot of people there do not have a lot of food. Over the next few days, I couldn't help but think how hard it must be on some of these employees who have that kind of experience at home and then see us gorge ourselves on these cruises and worse, how much we waste. It really is sad for them isn't it?

As to the oil spill on the gulf coast:
The golf course that I help manage is very near a little coastal fishing town, Bayou la Batre, AL and also close to Dauphin Island so we have quite a few members and "regulars" who make their living with fish, shrimp and oysters, charter boat captains, offshore workers, etc. The area has quite a few seafood restaurants that will suffer as well, and the gulf coast tourism is already being affected with cancellations of rentals of condos and vacation homes along the coast. I can see this as creating a huge snowball effect on our economy which is already threatened (as it is nationwide). When you work for a business that is "recreation" centered you have to hold your breath since non-essential expenses are the first things that people have to cut out of their budgets.

I also, wonder if this is going to affect the cruise lines traveling from Mobile and New Orleans through the Gulf of Mexico. That would be another huge blow to our local economy. An hour away from us in the Biloxi/Gulfport area we have a lot of casinos right on the beach highway, that will be threatened both with bookings and their restaurant sales since their biggest draw is seafood (other than gambling). This could cost a lot of jobs to that area and it has made very little recovery since Katrina.

We all need to keep this area in our prayers for a clean recovery - and that it will come quickly.

CarnivalFan2
May 6th, 2010, 10:23 PM
Hi Jeanette & Ray!

Loved your story about your Croation waitress Ivanka on the Fantasy and her love of chocolates. As a suggestion, you could write John Heald on his blog and tell of Ivanka's great service and ask if you could send her some chocolate. Or, who knows, John Heald may be able to arrange something with you to get her some chocolate from the shop onboard :rolleyes:.

Re the Oil Spill; yes, this is a big disaster, but still one that we can recover from. I know BP (& the Govt) was slow to respond, but they are now putting a trememdous amount of resources at the problem and I know they will eventally cut off the source of oil and then the clean-up can truly begin. It will take awhile unfortunately, but hopefully, the cause of the disaster will be determined and they can design a better blow out preventer, perhaps with additional well sealing devices, to hopefully prevent this from ever happening again. My thoughts, prayers & best wishes to all who are being directly & indirectly affected by this disaster and that things start turning around soon.

John Heald says the Fantasy is getting to do a rare 7-day cruise out of Mobile, before doing the sail (without passengers to Charleston, SC). I'm kind of surprised Carnival is repositioning the ship without passengers, since they could make some $$ on a nice repositioning cruise with stops in Key West,...oh wait, never mind, I just remembered, by law they can't. The Passenger Vessel Services Act prohibits foreign flag passenger vessels from embarking U.S. citizens from one U.S. port and debarking them at another U.S. port (ship has to return to the same U.S. port). That's why when Carnival sails the Spirit to Hawaii, it has to embark U.S. passengers from Ensenada, MX or Vancouver, B.C.

Anyway..hi to all Sogno, Sogno, Sogno remainders out there :)! Still looking to here from Mary on the Elation :confused: On John Heald's blog, he is posting photos from Carnival's Sr. Photographer, Radu, from the Elation during the Panama Canal cruise. Ship is in Acapulco now.

Take care all,

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
May 8th, 2010, 12:00 PM
Marty and Jeanne the Triump and Elation (NO and Mobile) are scheduling 7 day tours next May as well. Unfortunately, they are mid May or I would plan the 3 grandsons graduation cruise around that schedule. We will not be able to sail until the very end of May since one of the boys is in school until May 27 2011. We are going to watch for sales on the Dream and the Legend for right now and hope that we can get a decent price for the 5 of us in two cabins. I would love to try the Dream Cove balconies with them. It doesn't look to me like the Legend has the big screen theatre on the lido deck which I am sure the boys would enjoy.

I understand what you mean about the laws for passengers and repositioning, but what about the Elation moving from San Diego to Mobile with passengers. Wouldn't that be the same scenario as moving the Fantasy from Mobile to Charleston with passengers, or am I missing something here?

Hope everyone has a great Mother's Day weekend.

CarnivalFan2
May 8th, 2010, 05:04 PM
Hi Jeanette & Ray - happy Mother's Day (almost). Jeanne & I are going to the Melting Pot to celebrate her birthday (May 12th) and also, kind of her graduation from her graduate program (she missed graduating with honors by .03 pct pts! WOW! I'm so proud of her).

Good point about the Elation having passengers. Just guessing, but they may have chartered bus'd people to Ensenada (like they do when they sail for Honolulu) and Ensenada was the official embarkation port. I bet they shifted the Elation down to Ensenada from SD without passengers.

We'll have to ask Mary, since she's onboard. Mary :confused: Hope she checks in while she's on the cruise.

With your 3 grandsons (how old?), I would vote for our Dream and yes, Cove balcony :rolleyes:. I think your grandsons would love the waterslide on the Dream, as well as all the other amenities (as you mentioned, Seaside Theater). Also, they'd love being close to the water in a cove balcony.

After the wedding, Jeanne & I will look at Disney Dream in April 2011 & then Princess cruisetour to/in Alaska in summer of 2011. As with anything, depends on finances.....need a big tax refund in Feb 2011 :cool:.

Have a great Mother's Day weekend!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
May 9th, 2010, 09:58 AM
Happy Mother's Day.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
May 9th, 2010, 03:18 PM
To all the Sogno, Sogno, Sogno mom's out there...

Happy Mother's Day!! :)

From,

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
May 9th, 2010, 09:36 PM
Hi guys,
Thanks for the information on the oil spill, Jeannette. We are still hoping and praying for the best. Today, in our little church here in Michigan we were praying for you in the gulf states. Please keep us posted. As for Joe and I, we have no cruise planned as of yet. It makes me very sad.:mad:I keep looking for one though. We really don't have much vacation time this year, and we're trying to save it, just in case we sell the house! Hope all of you have great cruises this year!
Denise

CarnivalFan2
May 10th, 2010, 09:20 PM
Hi Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

Hi Denise & Joe!

On John Heald's blog today, he announced that Carnival will be greatly increasing cruises to Bermuda from NY, Baltimore, Norfolk & Charleston in 2011.

ALSO, BIG NEWS; the Carnival Dream's 3rd sister now has a name;

CARNIVAL BREEZE

Not sure if I like the name. Guess it's alright, but I think Carnival could have done better. I suggested that Carnival have a naming contest among it's loyal customers. Oh well, Carnival Breeze, will join her sisters Carnival Magic & Carnival Dream in the Dream class :D.

Hope all mother's had a nice Mother's Day yesterday :rolleyes:!!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
May 15th, 2010, 07:09 PM
Hi all,
Jeanette and Ray, you are in our thoughts. I was walking by the ocean today and just thinking of those effected by the oil spill.
We don't have any cruises planned yet either. We are going to do something probably in August-maybe another 5 night to Canada but I'm waiting to find out about wedding showers for my future DIL. We are going to Disney in June(Hot!!!) and have a week planned in Orlando in Nov.
We are supposed to go on a cruise with about 10 others in Feb. but I'm not planning it so I can't book some of these great deals:(.
Congrats to Jeannie on her grades-going back to school is super hard.
Have a great weekend.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
May 15th, 2010, 09:37 PM
Terry- I passed on your comment to Jeanne about her schoolwork. Thanks from both of us :)!

Mary on the Elation should be in the Gulf (I'm surprised she didn't post on here :() . Not sure when they are supossed to get to Tampa, then on to Mobile. Did everyone see the aerial photos (from Radu) of the Elation going through the Panama Canal? If that trip would've been the end of June vice end of April, I would've definitely taken my boys on that one, since they live in SD. I would've loved to shared the Panama Canal with them...maybe some day :rolleyes:.

John Heald is still on the Fantasy and will be repositioning the ship (no pax) to Charleston soon.

Hope everybody is having a nice weekend.

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
May 16th, 2010, 12:32 PM
Good Sunday morning to all of you Sogno, Sogno, Sogno diehards:)

Well the Elation arrived in Mobile yesterday. We saw her in dock as we drove across the bay to the Eastern Shore (Fairhope and Daphne). Not sure what time she was supposed to sail from Mobile yesterday afternoon, but at 9:15 as we drove back across the bayway to Mobile, we saw her still in the bay all lit up and beautiful. We crossed over into Mobile and drove along the western shore of Mobile Bay and watched her sailing. It was a beautiful site. Here is a link to a local TV news clip about her:

http://www.local15tv.com/mediacenter/local.aspx

She looks great and, I hear from our TA that at some point we will have to put her in drydock to complete her upgrades. I hope Mary had a great cruise from SD through the Panama Canal.

As for the oil spill here things are really heating up. As we drove across the bayway yesterday we saw about a dozen or so oyster and shrimp boats headed west toward Louisiana. My son has a nice boat that he bought last year (about 22' - I think) and he has had his application approved to use it in shallow water assistance. He works 6 or 7 days a week in the engineering dept of Northrup Grumman and Ray's work is slow these days, so I think that Ray may captain the boat and put our 18 year old grandson on board as a deckhand for a few weeks to help out.

Jeanne congrats on your graduation - that took a lot of hard work. Now you can focus on your wedding and honeymoon plans - YEAH!

We are still working on the grandsons' cruise and I have priced a few that we are going to focus on. I need to watch for sales and upgrades to pull this one together. After much consideration, we have decided that we are not going to do a balcony for them. I don't think I would rest for a moment thinking about 3 teenage boys horseplaying on the balcony. When we took them on their first cruise they were 12, 13, and 14 and I put the fear of Jesus into them when we boarded. I took them to the top deck and told them to look down. I said "if you fall overboard, the ship doesn't stop to look for you. There is no need since you will be sucked under the ship and never found!" It worked then, but now they are too old to believe me on that one:)

I would really like to do the Dream with them, but Ray thinks we should do a 5 day (due to cost) and because our son, daughter-in-love and granddaughter are considering joining us and they are on a pretty tight budget. Of course, these days almost everyone is. If any of you hear of any great deals let me know!

Have a great week everyone and stay in touch.

GRAMMYTAN
May 16th, 2010, 01:08 PM
http://intotheheartofitaly.yahoo.com/#19398178

Direct TV channel 115 is having an all day program about Italy by Bertolli. You can enter a Trip to Italy sweepstakes through your TV or on-line. You can also watch the episodes online. Once your register, you are asked several questions pertaining to the episodes, but you can elect to watch the episode where you find the answer while on-line at this site, then go back and answer the question.

Hey - somebody is going to win it! I might as well be one of us.

CarnivalFan2
May 16th, 2010, 05:55 PM
Hi Jeanette & Ray!

I passed on your congratulations to Jeanne about completing her master's degree. Thank you for those kind words...from both of us :)!

Cool about the Elation....wow, time flies & it didn't seem long for her to get over here from SD! Jeanette, do you know when Elation goes to drydock for the rest of her "Evolutions of Fun" upgrades? I'll let you know how those new balconies are...we're in E217 on the Ecstasy.

Another suggestion Jeanette on cruises- how about Carnival Triumph out of NOLA? She has a real neat Western itinerary where she goes down to Belize & Isla Roatan (Mahagony Bay). Triumph has the Seaside Theater I believe. I noticed that Triumph does 4, 5 & 7 day cruises...so quite a selection. For cost savings...if you get the Early Saver that will save some $$. Also, anybody retired military? I believe Carnival is running a sale for active duty & retired military during May (book in May).

Re your teenagers and balconies...you could add that not only do you get sucked under the ship but they will get drawn into the propeller and get chopped up :eek:. Works for me! Maybe too graphic...sorry :o. Well, if you sail Elation, she doesn't have the added balconies yet, so you could go with an ocean view (or even an inside, if you really want to save $$). The only balconies on the Elation are the Cat 12 & Cat 11 suites. Btw..I'd love to sail in a Cat 12 suite on the Ecstasy...they were ahead of their time because they are like "cove balconies"!

Re oil spill....man, I hope they can get this stopped soon. Very admirable that Ray & your grandson are going to help out with clean-up ops in shallow waters, using your son's boat. Thank you for their efforts...

Re wedding plans; everything seems to be falling into place. Yesterday, purchased my boys airfare from SD to Houston (roundtrip). From last year, airfare has gone up 75% :eek:. Well, at least all of the airfare is taken care of. We go on the 5 day Ecstasy cruise, come back for a week, then "shuffle off to Buffalo", to get to Niagra Falls. We spend a week at the Inn at Lock 7 on the Welland Canal (ships lock through right out your back door). Both the trips & the wedding are right around the corner!

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
May 16th, 2010, 07:42 PM
Marty I noticed a couple of nice variances to the May 2011 itinerary for Elation and Triump, but unfortunately, they are mid May and the boys can't sail (due to school) until the last weekend in May.

We love the Empress deck on the Fantasy, although we have always stayed in the Ocean View cabins and try to stay as mid-ship as possible. The great thing about the Empress deck is that it is on the same level as the pursor's desk and shore excursion desk, plus it is the deck that is used for embarkation and debarkation. It's also one deck away from the dining room, and theatre and the has the Atrium with the glass elevators. The decks below the Empress are only accessible via the regular elevators.

When did you say were going to be on the Ecstasy? A young man who works for us at the golf club is getting married June 5 and will honeymooning on the Ecstasy, sailing June 7.

CarnivalFan2
May 16th, 2010, 08:07 PM
Hi Jeanette,

We sail July 10th. My boys will be flying from SD to Hou on June 26th. We fly up to Buffalo (for Niagra Falls) on July 25th. The wedding is Friday, July 30th.

Yes, I noticed that about Empress deck. We're in the first new balcony on the stbd side on that deck, so there are no balconies forward of us. It looks like it's going to be a very convenient location, as I assume we will be going to the aft dining room (Wind Song), and there is a lot back aft, like the waterworks, Serenity (I told Jeanne she could break away for some private "her" time; I'll be with my boys), Lido buffet (Panorama).

On our 2 previous cruises on Ecstasy, we were both times down on Riveria deck, but we did have ocean view cabins. I'm really looking forward to seeing how she looks after the upgrades & refurbishments. I think Carnival made a wise business decision and got "like-new" vessels at a fraction of the cost. The Fantasy class ships are a nice design and I can see why a lot of people like them. After sailing on one of the inaugural voyages of Ecstasy back in 1991, I can't believe that now, she is considered one of Carnival's "small" ships!

Oh, btw, I saw a thread about when the Elation goes to drydock for the rest of her upgrades. I'll see if I can find the thread & copy the link for you...

Take care,

Marty & Jeanne

Jeanette- here it is (hope the link works...)

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1201905

GRAMMYTAN
May 17th, 2010, 03:39 PM
Thanks Marty. I didn't even realize that they had an actual date scheduled for this. Our TA had told us a few months back that this would take place, but didn't know when. Our friends that we just introduced to cruising are looking at a cruise in November and want us to go, but I think we will need to wait until I take care of the Graduation cruise.

This economy stinks - it cuts into my cruise time!:confused:

maryann2
May 17th, 2010, 11:29 PM
Congratulations Jeanne on completing your Master's Degree, and now your wedding to look forward to.

Sorry have not posted for a while but just arrived back from PC cruise. I know how you feel when you saw the Elation in Mobile Jeanette, I was thrilled to see her in Vancouver during the Olympics as she housed the RCMP. Several of the staff mentioned the great time they had in Vancouver.

It was a great cruise but the ports were really too hot and humid for me. Perhaps earlier in the year it may have been a little cooler. My favourite port was San Diego Marty, and your sons are growing up in a lovely area. I went to dinner in Old Town with a friend who was on the Dream TA and spent a whole day with other friends from the Freedom TA and was able to see almost all the main sights. I loved seeing the seals on the beach at La Jolla and seeing the pelicans in flight during the evening.

From San Diego we went to Cabo San Lucas, we did not have to bus down to Ensenada as they did for the Hawaii cruise. Then Acupulco, Puntarenus Panama Canal, Cartagena and Grand Cayman. Going through the locks and the canal was very interesting and took all day so we were able to go in and out to cool off inside. Lots of people from Alabama on the ship, about 75%, with many older seniors. they wouldn't have been able to do the amazing race with us Jeanette, LOL. Some of the waiters were talking in Alabama accents before the end of the trip.

There was a good group of cc and we did lots of activities together.

So sad about the oil spill. What an awful thing to happen.

Mary

GRAMMYTAN
May 18th, 2010, 03:34 PM
Mary it was so good to hear from you and we are glad you enjoyed the cruise. I bet you didn't know what to think about all the "southern drawls" and "ya'lls" from all the Alabama cruisers.:)

To all of the Sogno cruisers, I have a funny story about the southern drawl situation. As all of you know, most employees on the ships are of foreign nationality and speak with an array of accents. I was having breakfast with two friends on a cruise and the waiter who appeared to be Asian, began asking us around the table if we wanted coffee. He would say in a very definate southern drawl, very drawn out, "do you want some coooooffee?" My friend thought he was mocking us, so she repeated it in the same drawn out drawl, everytime he asked someone at the table. My other friend and I noticed that he would look confused and we quickly figured out what was happening. I finally asked him where he was from. And he said (very slow and drawn out) "Texasssssss." My friend turned every shade of red.:o:)

CarnivalFan2
May 18th, 2010, 06:20 PM
Hi Mary! Welcome back from the Carnival Elation repositioning :)! Thanks for sharing some of your observations. Yes, SD is a wonderful place. Weather seems sunny & cool (perfect) all year round! My boys love it there (I don't blame them) and it's funny, but talk about heat & humidity, my boys complain about that when they come to Houston in the summer. However, we do LOTS & LOTS of water activities (the planned community I live in has 2 beautiful pools), so we can beat the heat here in the summer.

How did you like the Elation? Was she in good shape? Jeanette & I were discussing when the Elation would go to drydock for the rest of her EOF upgrades, and it looks like fall of 2011. Do you know if the Elation will get the 98 balconies?

After you settle in, please share some more on your cruise and maybe even some pics ;):D. While you were cruising, I had a couple of "shout-outs" to you on here, in case you bought the wireless time.

Thank you very much for the kind words regarding Jeanne completing her masters degree & our upcoming wedding :). I will pass this on to Jeanne. Again welcome back!!

Jeanette- very funny story about the waiter. Although a southern drawl also, I'm sure the Texas drawl varies somewhat from the deep-south Alabama drawl. Did I ever tell you my grandmother was from Mobile, Alabama? Have you picked out a graduation cruise yet? You could check out the Elation and you don't have to worry about the balconies (unless you get a suite)...

Take care y'all <-- Texas drawl vice Alabama :p

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
May 19th, 2010, 01:37 PM
Marty what was your grandmother's name? Does she still have people here in Mobile?

No I haven't pinned down the Grad cruise yet, still watching for sales. I didn't want to go out of Mobile or NO since that is basically Progreso and Cozumel, and the few that offer a change in itinerary will not fit our schedule since the boys will still be in school. We really hope to take them somewhere that they have not been before. I have them on 2 cruises to Mexico already and, of course, Ray and I have been many times.

CarnivalFan2
May 19th, 2010, 05:48 PM
Hi Jeanette,

Her married name was Babe Paul; can't remember what her maiden name was :o. She definitely had family in the area because one of my early childhood memories was going to visit them. I remember going to Dauphin Island (probably remembered it 'cause it sounds like "Dolphin" Island :p).

The Carnival Triumph out of NOLA leaves Jun 5th & July 31st on "exotic" westerns, where it goes to Isla Roatan & Belize (& of course Cozumel). Also, she does eastern (Jul 24th) where she goes to Key West & the Bahamas. Key West, unfortunately, may be affected by the BP oil spill :(. Wonder if Carnival will start avoiding Key West :confused:

Marty

mom23guys
May 19th, 2010, 07:20 PM
Jeanette, Thanks for the link to the bertolli contest. BTW, we have a few friends who work in environmental clean-up specifically oil spill here on the Delaware. Some of them are now in the gulf. Hopefully they can contain the oil. They are talking about it reaching the Atlantic sometime in June.

Welcome home Mary. I'm with you, it's just too hot down in Mexico and the Caribbean for me in the summer. I guess for those of you who live in the South it's fine but in the summer we tend to go North although I might try Bermuda if the price is right.
Marty, that wedding is fast approaching and so is the trip with your boys. Big summer ahead for you.
Stay cool. Terry

GRAMMYTAN
May 20th, 2010, 03:30 PM
Hi Terry & Marty.
Someone sent me an e-mail with reference to a video about a Golden Retriever eating with his hands. It was one of the cutest things.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HaAVZ2yXDBo


Marty I had not seen the June 5 cruise out of NOLA and will have to look at it. I was looking at May and guess I missed this one. Thanks.

I knew some people with the last name Paul. that might be related to you. I think one was a Mary Paul and she had a bookkeeping service in Mobile in the 70's. I guess she was around 60 or so then.

Ray and I decided to take one of our dinner time picnics to Dauphin Island after work yesterday. We picked up dinner and drove down around 5:30 pm. When we stepped out of the car we could smell the oil. After eating, we walked the beach until almost dark, about 2 hours and really enjoyed it. We figured we better enjoy it while we can. :)

CarnivalFan2
May 20th, 2010, 10:54 PM
Terry - thanks! Yes, time is flying and our "Crossing Both Borders Tour" will be fast upon us. Just have to get my mom her Enhanced Driver's License, so she can cross into Canada & return to the U.S. She's run into some beaucratic snags/delays. I told her that if she doesn't get it, we'll put her up at a hotel on the American side of the Falls with a telescope, so she can see the wedding :cool:.

Jeanette- I double-checked and yes, June 5th, Carnival Triumph out of NOLA sailing to Isla Roatan (Honduras), Belize & Cozumel. Looks like a nice cruise, as there are 3 sea days as well. Triumph has the Seaside Theater, which your grandsons' would love.

Thanks for the video...I will definitely show Jeanne. She very much loves dogs. When you mention a Mary Paul, it rang a bell, but I think that was my grandfather's sister's name. Anyway, I know my grandmother has family in the Mobile, Alabama area. My grandfather met her while stationed with the CG in Mobile (my grandfather used to chase rum runners during Prohibition).

Speaking of rum, I sent a post to John Heald & an e-mail to Carnival about their recently announced policy of not selling bottles of spirits (Crown Royal, etc) from the Bon Voyage Dept anymore. People on CC were angry! Anyway, Carnival quietly retracted that policy and you can still order liquor from the BVD and have delivered to your stateroom prior to sailing.
We did that on the Dream, and had a big bottle of Crown Royal in our room...however, we barely drank any and ended up giving it to our wonderful room steward!

Take care Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
May 25th, 2010, 11:07 PM
Couldn't stand being without a cruise. We just booked one that leaves in a little less than 3 weeks. We're going to try Celebrity this time. We got a great 1 day sale rate for this trip to Bermuda that leaves from a port less than three hours away.
Terry

maryann2
May 26th, 2010, 09:56 AM
Those Tuesday specials are a great deal Terry. Well done. We stopped overnight in Bermuda on our TA last year. You can get a day pass for the bus and take the ferry across too as it is easy to get around.

CarnivalFan2
May 26th, 2010, 05:09 PM
Terry - congrats on your new cruise booking on "Brand X" (as John Heald calls Celebrity). I was lucky enough to have visited Bermuda on our school ship when I was in college (Texas Maritime Academy), a few years ago (ahem :cool:). Beautiful island & especially the water!

Hi Mary!- what's your next adventure? We'll be sailing to Progresso & Cozumel, MX in 44 days on the Carnival Ecstasy :)...

A shout out to Denise & Joe up in Western Michigan!

OH, BY THE WAY, great news, Jeanne (well, really both of us) finally got an offer on her condo in Cleveland :)! It's a cash offer and the prospective buyers have buyers of their house with pre-approval, so looks real good. In this market, we did not even counter-offer and accepted the offer. We'll be writing a big check at closing, but at least we'll finally have it SOLD (after 3 years on the market :eek:).

Hope everyone is having a good week!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
May 26th, 2010, 09:58 PM
We really did get a fantastic deal. We got the last Concierge cabin for less than the OV guarantee that I called about. We never sailed with those amenities so looking forward to a new experience We are in Bermuda for three days which should give us a great amount of time to explore.
We used a TA for the first time. Denise I think its the same one you told us about. We got nice OBC too.

Marty, congrats to you and Jeanne on the condo sale. I know both my son and his fiancee each own townhouses and would love to sell them both to buy a house but the markets is still not cooperating.

Mary, hi Cuz.

I swear my Carnival PVP must be attached to my computer. She called today to see if I wanted to book a cruise this summer. She's great but its kind of eerie.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
May 29th, 2010, 10:04 AM
Thanks Terry - it's been a loooong time coming....3 yrs on the market :eek:. But, this offer is really solid so we just have to see it through to closing.

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!! Very grateful to the men & women in the armed forces who gave their lives for the freedom we currently have. Also, thanks to the men & women currently serving :)!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
May 30th, 2010, 11:57 PM
Hello everyone. Just wanted to post a quick note tonight. Ray and I went to see the movie, "Letters to Juliet," last night and really enjoyed it. You all have to go see this movie, if only for the wonderful Italian scenery of the Verona and wine country of Sienna. I didn't want to leave when the movie ended. I felt like I was back in Italy once again.

CarnivalFan2
May 31st, 2010, 02:23 PM
Thanks Jeanette. Jeanne & I definitely want to see that movie. We probably would have gone this weekend, but I've been battling a sinus infection.

Went to my doctor last week & he prescribed a certain antibiotic, but didnt' work, so I ended up going to urgent care clinic Sun morning. This time, I believe, the doctor got the right antibiotic (Augmentin), as I have been on it for 24 hrs and am already feeling better. Enough of my whining.

Well, we just went under 40 days (WOO-HOO) for our 5-day Carnival Ecstasy cruise to Progresso & Coz with the boys. Also, Jeanne & I were talking, and we're pretty sure we will be booking the Diamond Princess for northbound Alaska leaving out of Vancouver on June 25, 2011. We will be bringing our mothers, as a surprise (for my mom, she will get the ticket as a X-mas present, so she can't say no :D). Also, we decided to belay Disney & bring my boys with us on this cruise, plus Jeanne will be bringing her niece as a graduation present. So, this will be a big family cruise. We're also considering doing the full cruisetour, where you spend 2 nights in their lodges (Mt. McKinley, Denali & Fairbanks).

Hope everyone's having a great Memorial Day weekend :)!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
May 31st, 2010, 04:13 PM
Wow, Marty and Jeanne what a busy schedule you are going to have and loads of fun with family. The big day is getting closer and closer isn't it?
The movie (Letters to Juliet) would most probably be described as a "chick-flick," but Marty you will love the scenery.

We watched Leap Year on PPV last night and got a huge kick out of the scene where the girl plugged in her blackberry in an Irish hotel room and blew out the power in the entire village. Sure did remind me of when I did that at 4:00 am Civitavecchia the day we sailed. I blew out the entire block and no one could get back into their rooms after breakfast. All the keys had to be re-coded at the front desk after the power outage.

CarnivalFan2
May 31st, 2010, 04:48 PM
Jeanette- glad you weren't at our hotel in Civitavecchia ;).

That's o.k. about "Letters to Juliet" being a chick-flick. I'm comfortable in my masculinity...so, I'll go :rolleyes:. As you recall, I'm the guy who waited to propose to my girlfriend in Venice, in front of the Bridge of Sighs no less, so needless to say, I have a bit of a romantic streak in me :).

Yes, we'll be getting "busy". My boys fly in June 26th. Then, a week later, the "Crossing Both Borders Tour 2010" begins; southern border first (Ecstasy cruise to Mexico), followed by crossing over the northern border in Canada (Niagra Falls) a week after we get back from the cruise!

All is on plan for the wedding; my mom just has to get her Enhanced Driver's License (long story). I keep telling her that I might have to put her up in a hotel on the American side of the Falls with a telescope, so she can see the wedding!!

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
May 31st, 2010, 10:30 PM
Wow Jeanette,blew out the block:o:D.
Marty, just a suggestion. If possible pick a cruise tour that will give you two nights in Denali. It will give you the opportunity to take the longer tour into the park. I know it may seem like the shorter tour would be long enough but time just flies by in Denali. The further you go into the park the more wildlife you'll see. You may be lucky enough to see McKinley from there too. We only saw the lower part. The mountain is not really"out" that often. It makes its own weather and the summit is often obscured. We didn't see it at all when we stayed in Talkeetna(the town with McKinley views) We finally saw it in all its majecty from the train going to Anchorage.

CarnivalFan2
June 1st, 2010, 07:19 PM
Thanks Terry. All Alaska advice welcome, as I believe we will definitely be doing Alaska :)! We'll refine plans & probably book after we get back from the wedding trip.

I was looking at the different cruisetours and Princess offers a 13 day cruisetour with roundtrip to Seattle. On this particular one, the Diamond Princess sails north on a 7 day cruise, then on the land side, you spend 2 nights at Princess's Denali Lodge and 2 nights at their Mt. McKinley lodge. As part of the tour, it includes a hotel night in Anchorage and a night in Seattle (night before tour is over). The tour also includes a flight from Anchorage to Seattle.

I like this option, as everyone can plan on meeting in Seattle & getting roundtrip airfare to/from Seattle :rolleyes:.

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
June 2nd, 2010, 09:37 PM
Those two nights at Denali are awesome and the Denali Lodge looked fantastic. Actually that whole cruisetour looks great.
Have any of you been to Bermuda. Still undecided about what we'll do there for three days- I know Horseshoe Bay and the Harbor Nights festival but open for more suggestion.

Terry

maryann2
June 3rd, 2010, 09:58 AM
Those two nights at Denali are awesome and the Denali Lodge looked fantastic. Actually that whole cruisetour looks great.
Have any of you been to Bermuda. Still undecided about what we'll do there for three days- I know Horseshoe Bay and the Harbor Nights festival but open for more suggestion.

Terry

Good Morning cousin! I have been to Bermuda twice. The first time I did a tour of the island and the caves which was good as it explained a lot about the history.The roofs are white and channelled to collect rain water as it rarely rains. The second time just bought a day bus and ferry pass and travelled that way. The tourist info place on the dock has bus and ferry times. Easy to get everywhere by bus.

GRAMMYTAN
June 3rd, 2010, 11:49 AM
Mary can get anyone - anywhere by plane, train, automobile and even a water taxi. She was a whiz at deciphering those schedules on our day trip to Burano Island from Venice:p

I got an e-mail from Shala this week. You all remember Shala and her mother, Eunice. I have kept in touch with her to see how her pregnancy (and Eunice) were coming along since our trip. I thought you all might like to hear what Shala had to say this week, with her permission to post this to the board, of course:

Hello! I just wanted to drop you a line and let you know that baby Lyndon was born on May 20th. He was 6lbs7oz and 20 inches long. He is perfect and so sweet. We are so happy and feeling blessed! We hope you are all well, healthy and happy. Shala & Eunice.

She also sent me some of Lyndon's first pics and he is a definately a "keeper!"

Ray and I have met several couples while cruising that we have stayed in touch with. Shala is the third person we have met while cruising (and kept up with) who has given birth within a year of our cruise. BTW, all three have had boys!

mom23guys
June 6th, 2010, 07:36 AM
Well, Jeanette-I've had boys but definitely not having one after our cruise:D. Great news about Shala.
Mary, thanks for the suggestion we were thinking of getting a multi day pass for the busses and ferries and pretty much seeing things on our own.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
June 6th, 2010, 08:53 PM
Hola Sueno, Sueno, Sueno (getting ready for Mexico ;)),

Hope everyone had a great weekend! Well, we're getting excited now, as we're in the 30's for our Ecstasy cruise to Progresso & Cozumel. My boys get here in less than 3 weeks :)!

Weather has definitely turned hot down here, so we are into full pool ops!
We'll be doing a lot of pool action this summer with my boys.

We may be making a quick weekend trip down to South Padre Island. Jeanne has to go down for business on Sat, 6/19 in Brownsville, Tx. So, we may take Fri, 6/18th as leave & fly down there on Southwest. They have an internet special for $39 ea way! Almost can't drive down there for that, considering gas & wear & tear on your vehicle. Anyway, may be a quick adult beach weekend before the boys get here :D!

Have a great week!

Marty & Jeanne

Deanne Willis
June 7th, 2010, 09:47 PM
Hi everyone!
I am so envious of everyone's vacation plans!! I have no cruise planned as of yet, so I'm really looking forward to hear about yours.

Marty, Tell Jeanne to take a sweater when she goes to the falls, I think the high today here was 73 degrees. It's encouraging to hear that Jeanne sold her condo!

Terry, I would love to go to Bermuda, we're looking at Celebrity for our next cruise, (if we ever plan one.

Hi Mary and Jeanette! Sounds like you've got cruise plans too!!

Denise

mom23guys
June 8th, 2010, 10:29 PM
Hi Denise. I guess no news on selling your house. I'm getting really excited now. I love not having to worry about flying. It makes packing so much easier. Looking forward to checking out Brand X.
Wish we had our RC friends joining us.

CarnivalFan2
June 9th, 2010, 09:08 PM
Terry- enjoy your cruise on "Brand X". Please give us a full review ;)!

Denise- thanks, I told Jeanne about the sweater & passed on your congrats for selling her condo (still a go). Hope you get an offer on your house also.

You & Joe need to book a cruise! Did you see the sale Carnival is running right now? How about a quick flight over to NYC or Baltimore and sail one of the Spirit class ships (Carnival Miracle out of NYC or Carnival Pride out of Baltimore)?

You know what Carnival should have done? They should have kept the Holiday in the fleet & positioned her in the Great Lakes (e.g. out of Chicago) during the summer. She was the only Carnival ship that was small enough to fit through the Welland Canal.

Could you imagine Carnival homeporting a ship (summer) out of the 3rd largest city in the U.S. & sailing the beautiful Great Lakes (Lake Michigan, locking through Saute St. Marie & cruising Lake Superior)?

Well- we're getting close now....30 days from sailing the Ecstasy! My boys arrive in just over 2 weeks :)!! Then, "over the falls in a barrel", getting married in Niagra Falls, Canada.

I will be recording lots of video & pics, so I'll be able to share our "Across Both Borders Tour 2010" with Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!!

Adios,

Marty (& Jeanne)

GRAMMYTAN
June 10th, 2010, 12:16 PM
Marty we can't wait to see your next "production" of videos. Be sure to include some from the wedding.

CarnivalFan2
June 10th, 2010, 01:11 PM
Marty we can't wait to see your next "production" of videos. Be sure to include some from the wedding.
Definitely Jeannete & thanks for asking. Jeanne's brother (Denis) has already been designated photographer/videographer!

Marty

mom23guys
June 10th, 2010, 04:43 PM
Marty,
It'll be so great to be able to be part of the wedding even after the fact.
Thanks for the good wishes. I'll let everyone know how we like Celebrity.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
June 10th, 2010, 05:20 PM
Thanks Terry, very much appreciated & happy to share with us remaining Songo, Songo, Songo-ites :)!

Please post some pictures of your Bermuda cruise on this thread; I went to Bermuda a long time ago when I was at the maritime academy, summer of 1979 I believe. I remember it being a very "pristine" island, very clean & beautiful beaches, water (pink sand beaches & blue, blue water :rolleyes:).

I am totally unfamiliar with Celebrity, so I jumped on their web-site & checked out your ship & cruise. I really like how they have their web-site; it was very user-friendly to take a virtural tour of the ship. The Summit looks beautiful (opulent)! I saw where they have a thalassotherapy pool :rolleyes:...now I know where Carnival got the idea!

Your Bermuda cruise looks amazing and I was surprised that the ship only goes there and stays 3 nights in Bermuda. That is really great, as it is like you are travelling to Bermuda and bringing your hotel with you!

As you can tell by my sign on name, CarnivalFan2, I'm pro Carnival, but I need to venture out a bit, and try another line. Looking forward to trying Princess in Alaska in summer of 2011.

Have a great cruise & stay in Bermuda!!

Denise & Joe - have you booked yet ;)?

Marty & Jeanne

maryann2
June 10th, 2010, 08:01 PM
:)!





As you can tell by my sign on name, CarnivalFan2, I'm pro Carnival, but I need to venture out a bit, and try another line. Looking forward to trying Princess in Alaska in summer of 2011.



Marty & Jeanne

Sadly will no longer be booking with Carnival now that they have increased their 1A solo prices. Was waiting for the Magic transatlantic. Now booked on Voyager, Barcelona to New Orleans Oct 30th 2011. $1195 total, solo for an outside cabin.

Terry you will love Celebrity. Especially to Bermuda.

CarnivalFan2
June 10th, 2010, 09:29 PM
Hi Mary!

Sorry to hear about Carnival raising their 1A solo prices. I'm unfamiliar with that fare, was it a deal on Carnival before?

Very cool you're doing another TA! Actually, I was looking at an RCCL ship that leaves SD and sails in Alaska...would've been perfect to pick up my sons in SD! However, the dates were no good (they're in school). So, that's why we're looking at Diamond Princess.

Marty & Jeanne

mom23guys
June 11th, 2010, 04:48 PM
My countdown clock is at 1 day:D.
Mary, I was reading about NCL Epic. They have these new solo cabins center around a group sitting area-and they said they would have actual single pricing.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
June 11th, 2010, 06:21 PM
Terry;

BON VOYAGE to Bermuda!! :)

Marty & Jeanne

wyomingirl
June 15th, 2010, 04:55 PM
Hi to everyone!!

Looks like plans are being made for sailing and some lucky people (Terry) are sailing now. We leave in 55 days to Seattle to sail on the Spirit to Alaska and I can hardly wait. Can't seem to get any OBC our prices have gone up $400 per person since we booked for the 9B.

Terry PVP's can see when you are checking on cruises if you are logged on so not too eerie if they are calling you.

Thinking of changing our sailing for next April on the Triumph out of NOLA to the Freedom that goes down to Panama and Costa Rica. Has anyone been to these ports? Would it be a good switch in your opinion?

Congrats to Jeanne on finishing school, and of course to both of you on your upcoming wedding.

Denise I was wondering how things are going in Michigan. Have you been to the lilac festival on Mackinaw Island...my mom is making some noise about wanting to visit.

Jeanette thanks for keeping us informed of our pass Dream cruisers it is fun to hear what everyone is doing.

Take care and talk to you all soon. By the way any guesses on where the Magic will be sent to?

Anna

GRAMMYTAN
June 15th, 2010, 05:50 PM
While I haven't officially booked the boys graduation cruise, I think we will most likely just take them on the Elation from Mobile to Progreso and Cozumel (again:p). The more I thought about it, I felt more comfortable taking them to ports that we had already visited and were familiar with, rather than one where we had no first hand knowledge. Two of them have been to Cozumel twice, one to Cozumel once and, all three of them to Progreso once, but they will be fine. They are really more interested in the cruise experience anyway. By going out of Mobile, I will save two days driving (round trip to ship) and two days of meals for 3 teenage boys, plus two hotel rooms for two nights. I will probably save enough to pay for the cruise for 1 of them.:p

I have already told them that they will have plenty of free time on their own to just hang out on the ship. Even though they will be 17, 18 and 19, I refuse to turn them loose in the ports. If they want time on their on in port, I will book a Carnival excursion for them and drop them off and pick them up at the excursion meeting point. I can just hear them now, "Oh Grammy!", but there are just too many things that can happen to them on their own. I can just hear them now, "Oh Grammy!"

Happy Father's Day all you guys!

CarnivalFan2
June 15th, 2010, 06:24 PM
Hi Anna! Thanks on both accounts :)!

There's a thread on CC that is saying that peole have been calling Carnival directly (not TA's), and have been told (& even booked) the Magic's Trans-Atlantic to.....(drum roll please)--> GALVESTON :D! However, I have not seen anything announced by Carnival and not even on John Heald's blog ("PA 007"). If it is true, I told Jeanne we could do a "make-up" for Barcelona and bring the Magic home! Only a one-way flight required :rolleyes:!

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1218332

Stay tuned, Carnival is supposed to be breaking this news this week. Another part of the thread said that the Conquest & Ecstasy are relocating to New Orleans and the Triumph will join the Magic in Galveston.

And another "twist", I read where a Spirit-class ship (Miracle) may relocate to Galveston. I would LOVE that, as the Sprit-class ship would probably do longer/farther cruises. But, I would be shocked if this part were true. I do believe the Conquest going back to New Orleans and the Magic coming to Galveston. With this scenario, Carnival greatly increases the capacity in both Galveston & New Orleans, 2 very strong markets for Carnival.

Jeanette - thanks for the Father's Day greeting :)! When are you sailing the Elation with your grandsons? Maybe we'll see you in Progresso and/or Cozumel ;).

Marty & Jeanne

CarnivalFan2
June 15th, 2010, 08:17 PM
*UPDATE to above post*

I went back on the thread and apparently, Carnival opened up the TA booking by accident to the general public. It was only suppossed to be for special groups (VIPs, TA's etc). So, a mistake...but, it did let us know where the Magic is coming across the pond to...Galveston. This has been confirmed by Cruise Critic.

Based on this latest info, I have a new theory; Magic will come to Galveston and do at least one Caribbean cruise from Galveston. HOWEVER, the Magic WILL NOT homeport permantly out of Galveston. After one or two Caribbean cruises out of Galveston, the Magic will be repositioned to LA and do what the Splendor did and go around South America!!

My theory is that the Magic will be homeported out of LA to compete against Disney's new ship(s). The Splendor will take over Carnival Spirit's Alaskan run (perfect vessel for Alaska with the retractable roof over lido deck main pool). After the Alaskan season (winter), Splendor could be positioned in SD (like the Spirit was) and do Mexican Riveria cruises.

That begs the question; where will Carnival Spirit go? I'm hoping THIS is the rumored Spirit-classed ship that will come to Galveston, to replace Conquest that will return to New Orleans. But also, this would leave Spirit & Ecstasy in Galveston, not enough capacity, so Triumph will also come to Galveston :D!!

Just a theory....we'll see in a day or so. Carnival is suppossed to announce this week & there is only 3 days left!

Marty

GRAMMYTAN
June 16th, 2010, 11:01 AM
Marty we are planning the end of May 2011 for the boys grad cruise. I hope we do get the Conquest back into NOLA. We have sailed her a couple of times out of Galveston and really liked the ship and the 7 day itinerary she offered. This would be fantastic for the gulf coast to have a change from the same old Cozumel/Progreso itinerary year round. Our first Italy cruise in 2007 was on the Freedom (it's third sailing - just like the one on the Dream) which has the Conquest design. I think this is our favorite ship design so far, even though the Dream offered some new innovations for Carnival.

Hopefully, this crazy oil spill will not rule out all cruising from Mobile and NOLA!

CarnivalFan2
June 16th, 2010, 09:02 PM
Hi Jeanette - update on my theory. From these CC boards, some posters are saying you can go onto the Carnival website and see the dates in late 2011 & 2012 for the Magic.

So, I retract my thoughts about it going to the west coast...it may homeport out of Galveston :). I still think the Conquest & Ecstasy will go to NOL and the Triumph will come to Galveston to join the Magic.

Folks (including me) are getting really "antsy" waiting for Carnival to announce the news. I thought today might be the day, but no word from Carnival yet. Nothing on John Heald's blog either.

I'm sorry, for some reason I thought the graduation cruise was this year :o. By May 2011, this oil spill better be cleaned up :mad:!!

Well, we fly down to South Padre Island day after tomorrow for a 3 day weekend (except Jeanne has to work on Sat). I'll be at the hotel pool or beach, drinking Carnival-like DOD's! (practicing for Ecstasy July 10th :D)

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
June 17th, 2010, 11:34 AM
Marty you have such a tough life hanging out by the pool while Jeanne is working. Oh well, tough life, but as they say somebody has to do it!:p
Hope you both have a great weekend.

BTW, one of our employees just got back back from his honeymoon, which was a first cruise for both of them. They were on the Ecstasy out of Galveston and loved it. They did the snorkel swim at Chakanaab and had a great time. You can book that on line directly through the Chakanaab website, much cheaper than through Carnival.

CarnivalFan2
June 17th, 2010, 07:45 PM
Jeanette- I know; but somebody's got to "bring home the bacon" to pay for these cruises :p;). I'm doing my part by practicing drinkng Carnival-like DOD's by the pool :D.

I booked the Dune Buggy Beach Break excursion (Carnival's) in Progresso. It was pricey but I didn't want to mess around since the ship is not in Progresso that long. With this excursion, if we're late for some reason, the ship will wait for us :). The dune buggy's are converted VW beetles and hold 4, so Jeanne, myself & my 2 boys will all be in the same dune buggy. The excursion tours the Yucatan countryside & stops at (I forgot the name) ruins. Then, it goes to a beach resort (The Reef, I think :confused:), where we can swim in the pool and/or ocean. Then, we drive the dune buggys back to Progresso. A good thing about this excursion, and from what I've heard about the loooooooong dock in Progresso, we board a shuttle bus right from the ship & it drives us to the dune buggy's.

Still no announcement from Carnival, but the predominating consensus is that the Conquest & Ecstasy will go to New Orleans and the Triumph will join the new Magic in Galveston; fall 2011.

Glad the employees loved te Ecstasy cruise. I'm glad we're booked on her if she will be leaving Galveston. However, New Orleans is only 5 hrs away, so we can always cruise on her. I'm looking forward to booking a cove balcony on Magic out of Galveston :rolleyes:...

Take care! And, I'll be bringing my camera down to South Padre Island, so I'll have a video/photo slideshow for you next week!

Marty

GRAMMYTAN
June 18th, 2010, 12:52 PM
Marty, sounds like a good excursion for Progreso. If you get a chance go to El Mirador (sp) restaurant on the beach in Progreso for the 2 - for $4 Margaritas before going back to the ship.

CarnivalFan2
June 20th, 2010, 05:48 PM
Hola Sueno, Sueno, Sueno!

Back from South Padre Island. Wonderful quick trip and beautiful sunsets over Laguna Madre :rolleyes:! I have a short video & some pics which I'll post shortly...

Jeanette - thanks! I wanted to stay with the Carnival excursion to make sure we didn't miss the ship. With 2 margaritas for $4, I believe this will cancel out this precaution & we would miss the ship :eek:! How much is a taxi from Progresso to Cozumel :p;)??

Marty

mom23guys
June 23rd, 2010, 07:53 AM
Hi all,
Just back from Bermuda. Loved the Summit and Celebrity. The food was fantastic, the T-pool awesome, and staying in Bermuda for all three days was just great. No worries about returning to the ship on time until Friday afternoon. It was really relaxing.
So now I like Carnival, Princess, and Celebrity. Maybe it's just cruising I love. While on board I booked another cruise in February to Panama and Costa Rica. I just noticed there is a similar itinerary on Carnival. I need to check out the prices.
We're leaving for WDW on Saturday with my two youngest sons and their fiancees so just time enough to wash and repack.
Kevin is getting married in October and now Brian is getting married in December.It's going to be a real expensive year.
Marty-that wedding is going to come up really quickly now.
Anna, you will love Alaska.
Jeanette, how's the oil spill down there now. We have a beach wedding to go to near St. Joe in Florida(near Panama City) next year.
Buy for now.
Terry

CarnivalFan2
June 23rd, 2010, 10:08 PM
Terry - glad you had a great cruise on "Band X". Have any pics to post ;)? Yes, we getting close now! My mom got her Enhanced Driver's License, so the Canadian Mounties will let her in :D!! Looking forward to our wedding and what will also be a family reunion!!

Also, cruising on the Carnival Ecstasy very soon. My boys get here Sat :)!

Looking at the itinerarries of the Carnivak Magic & Triumph fall 2011, early 2012. Kind of disappointed; itins are the same as what the Conquest & Ecstasy has been doing :(. Couple of "wrinkles", like a 6 day cruise, the very first cruise out of Galveston... goes to Costa Maya & Cozumel. Also, an 8 day Christmas cruise to "exotic" western caribbean ports (Roatan, Belize, Costa Maya & of, course, Cozumel).

Marty

CarnivalFan2
June 24th, 2010, 09:38 PM
O.K. Sogno, Sogno, Sogno;

Here's my video of our long weekend in South Padre Island (June 18-20). Jeanne was on a business trip & had to work Saturday, 6/19 & I went along to "escort" her ;). Yes, I know, just an excuse to get my practice- DOD drink on :D! Also, no Songo Thongo on the beach...sorry.

Hope you enjoy it...

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/South%20Padre%20Island/th_OurLongWeekendinSouthPadreIsland.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/South%20Padre%20Island/?action=view&current=OurLongWeekendinSouthPadreIsland.mp4)

Marty

wyomingirl
June 30th, 2010, 11:12 PM
Thanks Terry I am getting antsy to go to Alaska just 37 more days before we fly to Seattle. Have the excursions all set so as usual we will be busy every port day.

We decided to change our cruise next year out of New Orleans we just aren't confident about what the gulf is going to look like. So back to the Miracle in January 2012 to the Southern Carib.

Hope all is going well for everyone and I will check back in later. Happy 4th of July!!! Got the camper ready and leaving tomorrow night for a relaxing weekend.

Anna

CarnivalFan2
July 3rd, 2010, 03:36 PM
Hola Sogno, Sogno, Sogno!

Boys are doing great and we sail on the Carnival Ecstasy in 6 days!! WOO-HOO!

Happy 4th of July week-end everyone! :)

Marty, Jeanne, Ryan & Colin

mom23guys
July 7th, 2010, 03:36 PM
Had a great long weekend trip to WDW with 2 of my sons and their fiancees. Then we had company for the 4th weekend. No more trips planned until Feb since we have 2 weddings coming up in Oct. and Dec.
Marty that cruise is coming up soon. Hope your enjoying those boys.
Terry

GRAMMYTAN
July 7th, 2010, 04:13 PM
Terry you Do have a busy schedule, but sounds like so much fun! Glad you are getting to spend time with family.

Marty & Jeanne - I know that you are really doing the doc dance now. Hope you all have a great trip and don't see any oil!:)

We have almost decided on taking the boys on the graduation cruise next year out of Mobile on the Elation, but feel that we need to wait a little while to see what the oil mess is going to do to our ports here and in NOLA.

This has really devasted a lot of people and businesses here along the coast and, of course, that means a trickle down to almost everyone when you really think about it. Several businesses have closed and/or laid off employees and it looks bleak for quite a few more. It has been really slow here at the golf course and it makes me so sad to look out on this beautiful course and see so little activity these days.

Our only travel plans right now are a couple of days with comp rooms at one of the casinos this weekend. I plan to just take a book and hang out at the pool most of the time. In August we are going to Florida to help my sister together a Luau dance and we also are planning to spend a couple of days in St Augustine while we are there.

CarnivalFan2
July 7th, 2010, 08:30 PM
Thanks Terry & Jeanette!

2 more days :D!! My boys are SUPER excited and I'm loving sharing this first cruise with them. We should have a blast :rolleyes:!

In the process of packing and we're in good shape. Even pre-paid our gratuities, so we'll have a nice "zero'd out" S&S account to start out.

We're having some tropical weather associated with that tropical wave coming off Yucatan and now moving into Brownsville. Not an Alex repeat, as this one is doubted to even make a tropical storm. However, it is creating some rain here....but, keeping it cooler. Heck we're cooler here than up in the NE (New York, Baltimore, Philly...).

Anyway, we're ALL excited about this cruise and I'm just hoping the weather gets nice after this tropical stuff blows ashore tomorrow & Friday.

Glad you guys posted again....for a second, I thought "Sogno, Sogno, Sogno" was defunct, as it was pretty quiet on here for awhile.

Take care and I'll, of course, be doing a video of our cruise & I'll post on here when we get back.

Marty

GRAMMYTAN
July 8th, 2010, 11:35 AM
I know Marty - I haven't posted for a little while myself. I was kind of "puny" over the holiday weekend and didn't even log in to my 'puter.

I guess I didn't realize that this was a "first" cruise for your boys. I know they will love it and that you will all have a blast. I can't wait to see your video when you get back.

BTW, have you made plans for the boys in case they are sea sick? I used the children's chewable Bonine for our grandkids when they were smaller and took along some Pepto, just in case, but they did fine. Ray and I use the "Less Drowsy" dramamine and only have to take 1 a day. We take them at dinner time, starting the night before we sail and if they do make us a wee bit sleepy, then it just helps us rest better at night. Our last cruise in April we only took them once or twice - very smooth sailing.:)

Tell us again, the ship name and date of your honeymoon cruise if you will.

Oh - we hope we have some good news. We are holding our breath and almost afraid to even say this out loud (I guess it is ok to type it though):). We think we will have an offer this week or early next week on the 11 acres we have been trying to sell for 3 years. Everyone please keep that on your prayer list that this comes through for us.

CarnivalFan2
July 8th, 2010, 03:30 PM
Thanks Jeanette. I didn't know they made a kids' chewable Bonine...I'll have to look for it. The plan was Bonine, one each night before bed, starting tomorrow (night before cruise).

I've tried the less-drowsy Dramamine, but it still made me very sleepy.

Well, can't say we have a honeymoon cruise. We'll be getting married in Niagra Falls, Canada, and will be going on the "Maid of the Mist", so I guess you could call that our honeymoon cruise :p.

Actually, it's kind of "bugging" me, because we don't have a honeymoon planned (yet?). Our engagement cruise (the Sogno, Sogno, Sogno cruise) was so huge that we kind of put the honeymoon "on the back burner". However, I feel like we need to go on a honeymoon :rolleyes:!!

Jeanne & I want to take our moms and the boys on an Alaska cruise/tour next summer (2011), so I think that's why we're shying away from planning our honeymoon. We joked about designating the Alaska family cruise as our honeymoon; we'll have grandma's there to babysit ;).

Anyway, the "Crossing Both Borders Tour" starts day after tomorrow!! Thanks for your well-wishes and I'll be back on here with a full report & video of the cruise :)!

Marty

GRAMMYTAN
July 8th, 2010, 06:32 PM
I am getting so forgetful, that I thought the "crossing two borders" thing was this cruise and another one after the wedding. Anyway, it will be hard to beat the "Sogno, Sogno, Sogno" trip, but you probably enjoyed it and the planning of it more by taking it early instead of as a honeymoon. It is great that both of you love to travel (and cruise) so you will have many years enjoying this mutual interest together as husband and wife.


Bon Voyage to Marty, Jeanne and boys - have a great time!

CarnivalFan2
July 8th, 2010, 07:00 PM
Thanks Jeanette & Ray!!

Weather forecast is looking much better and by Saturday, sunny, high 80's and seas settling down to 1-2'. SWEET :)!!

It'll be good to see "my" Ecstasy again, especially after her "make-over"; the EOF upgrades at last drydocking :rolleyes:!!

I have a feeling my main activities during the day will be drinking DODs and going down the big slide :eek:!!

Marty, Jeanne (Colin & Ryan)

GRAMMYTAN
July 9th, 2010, 12:58 PM
Hey Marty - are you on-line now (Friday noon)? I need to ask you a quick questions.

GRAMMYTAN
July 9th, 2010, 05:48 PM
Hey Marty - are you on-line now (Friday noon)? I need to ask you a quick questions.

Friday 7/9/10 - 4:45 PM) Marty, please disregard. You and I took care of this on E-mail today.
Thanks and have fun!

mom23guys
July 15th, 2010, 01:51 PM
Jeanette,
How are things going down on the gulfcoast? I was reading an article in our paper two days ago about two of the companies that are involved in the clean-up. My son Kevin worked for both of them. His current company isn't involved with oil clean-up so he doesn't have to go to the gulf.
Hope your life is not too adversely effected. I know it would feel awful to have something we've come to love like the ocean so messed up.


Denise, Anna, Mary- how are you all doing?
Terry

GRAMMYTAN
July 15th, 2010, 03:42 PM
Hi Terry - good to hear from you. This mess with the oil spill here is very depressing, particularly in how it is affecting the local economy. As with any kind of disaster, there will always be a few who profit by being in the right place at the right time, but a lot of jobs and businesses are on the line here. The already slow housing market is much worse now due to the bad media coverage of the situation. The seafood industry may never be the same on the gulf coast either. We just have to hope that they can stop this spill and get it all cleaned up before the damage is permanent.

Jimmy Buffet put on a free concert here last Sunday to try to bring in some tourist business to Gulf Shores and it drew a crowd of 35-40 thousand people. Agents who rent out the condos in Gulf Shores/Orange Beach were given tickets to draw renters in. If you rented a condo, many would give you a ticket to the concert. My sister and her family rented a condo and went to the concert. Ray and I thought about it but the heat and crowd were just too much for us. The shuttle buses started at 10:00 am, the gates opened at 3:00 pm and the concert started at 5:00 and ran a couple of hours. No drinks, chairs, or umbrellas were allowed, and people were starting to line up at 10:00 am and stayed until 8:00 pm in the sun and heat. I'm glad they enjoyed it, but it was not my "cup of tea." :) We spent the weekend at the casino with free rooms, and meals, and hung out at the pool with a book and my MP3 player and a cool drink. That's my cup of tea!:)

By the way, Marty, Jeanne and the boys should be back from their cruise today so we should be hearing from him soon. Hope they had a great time.

mom23guys
July 17th, 2010, 10:05 AM
Thank goodness they were able to stop the flow of oil.
Terry

GRAMMYTAN
July 17th, 2010, 11:48 AM
This was good news for the gulf coast and we hope it continues to work without adverse effects. Now the can really get to work on cleaning this mess up down here.

CarnivalFan2
July 18th, 2010, 09:36 AM
Hi Jeanette & Terry!

We're back from the Ecstasy and we had a wonderful cruise :)!

We were very fortunate on the weather & seas; sunny (with some clouds to provide a break now & then) and the seas were so calm that we didn't need the Bonine at all. We had only taken 1 the night before we left.

I have the first part of the video already edited and I'm uploading it to photobucket, as I type this. Uploading to Photobucket sometimes takes a couple of tries to get it to "take" (upload). Don't know why :confused: Anyway, should have it uploaded shortly and will post it on our continued "Sogno, Sogno, Sogno" thread.

Boys had a good time; although, it took a little "acclimation" :cool:. My boys are not good at just jumping in with a group of kids, so they did not want to go to Camp Carnival or Circle C. I knew they wouldn't, but that was o.k. by me, as I wanted to spend as much time with them on the cruise anyway. On the video, you'll see the boys' attitudes change (more than once :eek:). Seriously, they had a fun time. Their favorite part (& mine too), was Paradise Beach in Cozumel. They were out on the water toys the whole time!!

Anyway, just wanted to check in and say hi and that we're back. We work next week, but then it's "Crossing Both Borders Tour 2010 - Part 2", as we head to Niagra Falls, Canada. We leave this Sunday, July 25th. The wedding is Friday, July 30th at 7 pm at Konica Tower.

Anybody heard from Denise & Joe? I haven't seen them post in awhile....

Time to check on the upload. Hopefully, success, and I can share it on here. Bye for now,

Marty & Jeanne

CarnivalFan2
July 18th, 2010, 10:00 AM
O.k., we have a successful upload :)!!

Here is Part 1 of "Back in Ecstasy"; hope you enjoy. *note- again, the soundtrack drops briefly in the beginning and skips in a couple spots....happens during the upload to photobucket; don't know why :confused:

http://i650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Ecstasy%20Cruise%20July%202010/th_BackinEcstasy-Part1.jpg (http://s650.photobucket.com/albums/uu223/marty_paul/Ecstasy%20Cruise%20July%202010/?action=view&current=BackinEcstasy-Part1.mp4)

More to come (only 1 or 2 more parts; not near as much footage as our Sogno, Sogno, Sogno cruise :eek:)!

Marty & Jeanne

GRAMMYTAN
July 18th, 2010, 12:18 PM
Marty glad you all had a good time. Paradise Beach is one of our favorite places in Cozumel and the Grandkids loved it too!