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About cruisin'mama

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Riverside, Ca.

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  1. We will be on the Westerdam Sept 1st. I was looking forward to breakfast in the PG so we'll see how it goes.....
  2. We've been to Valdez twice. One time we kayaked around Valdez Glacier and the other time we rafted through Keystone Canyon. Both were great trips. The Valdez Glacier kayaking was the least strenuous kayaking trip there. We travel with our young adult son who has Down Syndrome and the other kayaking trips available might have been too much for him. The water is calm and there are small icebergs in the water. Apparently the glacier has been very active recently and 3 kayakers were found dead in the water just last week. https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/3-german-tourists-found-dead-near-alaskan-glacier-by-a-kayak-guide-giving-a-group-tour/ar-AAF9058 Keystone Canyon is gorgeous! It has the waterfalls that are stunning and you stops at Bridal Veil Falls for pictures.
  3. Honestly the last nightgown animal i can remember was on the SS Norway , which at the time I thought was a nice ship, not luxury but nice. It was back when you could cruise without an adult and I wasn't 21 yet. I wasn't cruising on HAL in those days!
  4. I seem to remember WAY back in the day....there were no towel animals but everything was made from our night wear.
  5. Well, everyone has different opinions about what is Must do.... If you are not going to see whales anywhere like in Seward on a Kenai Fjords boat trip, then your best bet to see whales, if of interest will be in Juneau. My first cruise to Alaska, we basically missed Juneau due to a medical evacuation. The next two times I was in Juneau, I rented a car and drove to Mendenhall Glacier , along with other points of interest, including going to Mass at the Shrine of St Therese. Last time, I took the excursion to Tracy Arm by myself and loved it so much, that I'm doing it again this trip and taking my family and friends along with me this time! In Ketchikan, I've rented a car and driven around to see the sights, rented atv's, flown to Misty Fjords, flown to Anan to see the bears, and done the crab excursion that includes the all you can eat crab at the lodge. this time we are going out on a zodiac tour. Some people enjoy the Aleutian Ballad crab tour, the Lumberjack show, kayaking, etc. In Haines, last time we rented a car ( I've only been there 1 time before, it was always Skagway on my other cruises) and drove to the lake to see bears, across the Canadian border and back along the river and saw more bears. This time we're doing that again because we enjoyed the freedom, the bears and it's an economical day! If you have any questions, I'll be glad to try to help.
  6. There will be 3 of us in our NS....will we get 3 bottles daily? If so, that's a great perk that I was unaware of!
  7. Since this will be my 7th trip to Alaska and since we've done the major attractions at least once before, this time among other things, we are doing some things that we've said we'd do "next time". Well, it's next time! We will start off flying to Anchorage, rent a car, and head to Girdwood. We'll stay overnight at The Alyeska then the next morning do a jet boat trip up 20 mile River to go kayaking in the backcountry around icebergs at Glacier Lake. We continue on to Seward to overnight before we head out to the Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge for 2 nights. When we come back, we head to Anchor Point and take a boat to Lake Clark for bear viewing. ( My son and I have flown to Katmai previously, but my husband won't fly in small planes so this was his alternative). After 2 nights in Anchor Point, we return to Anchorage. We will exchange our "regular" rental car for one from Midnight Sun that will allow us to drive gravel roads. Our first stop will be near Palmer for the night. The next morning we'll do the all day ATV tour to Knik Glacier then head to Willow. My husband wants to change it up and fish for trout this trip so he will do that out of Willow while my son and I go to Talkeetna for the day to do a flightseeing trip with the glacier landing with K2. The next day we will drive to Hatcher Pass from the Willow side with the gravel road and end up near Glennallen. We continue on the next day and drive the McCarthy Road. We'll stay at Ma Johnson's this trip and go white water rafting that we had planned last trip but weather conditions kept us from doing it. After 2 nights in McCarthy, we start heading back for Anchorage with an overnight back near Glennallen. We hope to bike around Eklutna Lake on our way back as well as hike the Thunderbird Falls. After returning the "gravel road " car and an overnight in Anchorage, we'll take the train to Seward and catch the boat to Orca Island where we will spend the last 2 nights before the cruise. It's not a conventional itinerary, and we aren't doing some of my favorite things or going to some of my favorite places, but we are doing things that have always been pushed aside to do other things before. I'm looking forward to it! And we are returning next summer so I can do some of my favorites then.....
  8. We will be on the Sept 1 Westerdam cruise and will be meeting friends onboard. There is no roll call for our cruise. I have never heard of your land portion add on but we are doing our own 2 1/2 week land portion prior to the cruise.
  9. One thing I do as an over-planner, is to look at our excursions and figure out how much I plan to tip, assuming it's a good experience, and get envelopes for them. I write on each envelope what the tour is, or who the person I'm tipping is, then put the money in the envelope. I put all my envelopes together in a ziploc and keep them in the safe. When the time comes for a certain excursion, I just grab the envelope and I don't have to think about how much extra money I need to bring or if I have the right denomination of bills. It's all done already! I know alot of people will think this is a little overboard, but it works for me!
  10. I prepay so I have a smaller final bill when we disembark.. We are spending 2 1/2 weeks in Alaska prior to our cruise and we will have a hefty amount on our credit card when we get to the ship from that. We pay off our credit card every month, so the less I come back owing, the better!
  11. We made final payment a month ago and I had my TA also add prepaid tips at that time....
  12. On the offer my husband just received, there were 5 "categories" with select cruises in each. The first category had free interior rooms ( 8 cruises to pick from in this category ) and the other rooms could be upgraded for a price...up to $799 additional for a NS. The other categories had interiors from $99-$399 and additional upgrades on NS ran from $800-$1600. Ocean-view, verandah and Signature Suites were also available for upgrades. Each category had 4 to 8 cruises to choose from.
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