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About mitsugirly

  • Rank
    20,000+ Club

About Me

  • Location
  • Interests
    Nursing & Photography
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    NCL, Carnival & RCL
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Caribbean cruising

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  1. Hi and thanks for the comments. Glad you have discovered and enjoying the reviews. I wouldn't say I primarily cruise with any at the moment. It just happens that Carnival has had what I'm looking for as far as port itineraries, ships I haven't been on and pricing I'm looking along with timing. The problem with NCL (for us) is that we like to cruise the Caribbean and NCL pulls most of their ships out during certain times of the year (summer) and the other problem is that I've cruised most of the fleet (excluding a few of the newer ships) and I don't like to sail on the same ship again if I don't have to. So, I struggle with trying to find a "new" ship I haven't been on that works with the time frame I have to vacation and the ports I want to go with. Actually my cruise before this one was with Royal Caribbean. So, I have a mixture of the 3 I cruise with. We usually vacation or cruise 3x a year. However, the last 2 years we have discovered a love for Aruba and have been doing a few weeks in the summer on a land vacation there now. So, that has taken away from the cruising during the summer months. I don't have anything booked at the moment, but will be cruising for Spring Break in April. I just have to find that perfect cruise still. hehe Yes, I'm a home health nurse at the moment. I did 30+ years in the hospital (not as a nurse) and the last 4 were in the ER/trauma. I absolutely loved the fast paced ER but decided it was time to refocus on my goals and slow things down. My love for cruising factors into it as well (I can vacation at any time I want with a 2 weeks notice and have as many vacations as I want as well with HH). Also, I went back to school for my BSN and that takes up a lot of my time and I just didn't want to spend 12 hour days standing on my feet when I can do anywhere from 2-4 hours daily and have more time for schooling and we own(ed) 2 businesses. Life is hectic for us at the moment to say the least. I love having the same patients daily and they are like family to me.
  2. Thanks so much. I'm not sure who St Greg is. I'll have to check it out. I always post the camera info on the first page with details. I actually have 3 of them (all Olympus Tough). Thanks and glad you enjoyed it. I absolutely LOVED it! It was a beautiful ship. I never really care for the entertainment. We aren't really into the "song and dance" Broadway type shows. We always like it when they have a variety of different types of shows like a magician, ventriloquist and so on. Carnival never seems to have much of a variety to us. Food was pretty good. I believe the "kids club" stops at age 17, but I'm not completely sure. He's considered an adult, so he would pretty much be able to do the things any adult on the ship would do...go to the adult comedy clubs, dancing, night-life, various things they have on the ship (like the arts & crafts, which I know most 18 year old guys probably wouldn't be interested in, but it's just an example). They have plenty of different things that's going on during the day and will be in the daily Fun Times they give you each day. But as far as special things for that age group, I'm unaware of anything. Well congrats and I hope you have a wonderful cruise on the Horizon. Thanks for the link. I like that itinerary and it includes bonnaire! I will have to look it up on the US site and see what I come up with.
  3. mitsugirly

    Street with umbrellas-where is it?

    Wow that looks amazing! So pretty. Thanks for the link. I'll have to go back to visit now. (Anything to have an excuse to go back to one of my favorite places). Thanks for the comments about my reviews. I really appreciate it. We loved Decanter. When we return, we will probably go back there to stay again. I liked its location too.
  4. mitsugirly

    Street with umbrellas-where is it?

    Hey friend! Is this something new or did I somehow miss this the times we have been to PR? I don't recall any umbrellas (other than places you eat at outside the restaurant). Any pictures of what they are talking about?
  5. I would LOVE to do a New Years cruise. That would be so cool. But, I bet very expensive. I'll have to check this out! Thanks Bruce! I really appreciate it and glad you enjoyed it.
  6. mitsugirly

    Bio bay

    This place is pretty far away in Fajardo and unless the ship offers something for this, I wouldn't risk it. We have stayed on the island and rented a car and stayed in a hotel near by there. It's a bit of a drive to get there and then the time it takes to do the boat tour is quite a while. When we went, it was very hard to see the dinoflagellates and they had tarps we put over the boat and water to try to see them and it was still hard. I had read, prior to going, that they left the area after a big storm and they have been slowly coming back over the years. Also, you have to go at a certain time (new moon is the best time from what I have read) or when there's cloud cover or hardly a moon. The darker the better. Also, the tour we took was complaining the the lights in the city nearby are also causing problems seeing them.
  7. mitsugirly

    San Juan at night?

    We have visited several times and stayed days before and after a cruise. We have walked the streets every night we are there and feel very safe each time. Just know it's like any other city, they do have people begging for money here and there but no worries, they ask and then don't bother you anymore. I love San Juan!
  8. It sounds like you really love the Epic. It was my very first ship we went on when we started cruising again back in 2010 and it has remained one of my favorites in the NCL fleet. If it sails from San Juan, I just may be interested again. That would be awesome! When does it start sailing from there? Yes, we loved HMC. It's so beautiful there and makes for a great "free" day on the island. GSC is great too. I love the private islands that the ships go to. It's been a while since we went to GSC and would love to go back again. I can only imagine the improvements it has now. The last time we were supposed to go there, we missed it due to high waves and I haven't been on an itinerary that goes there since. :( Maybe one day again.
  9. Thanks so much. I appreciate it and glad you enjoyed it. Thank you so much. I'm so glad you enjoyed it and I agree...I definitely want to find a cruise that goes to bonaire. Of course when you ask someone from Curacao (as I did) about "the best scuba/snorkeling being in Bonaire and what's the difference" they'll tell you it's all the same area and same reef and you'll see the same things and one is no better than the other. I guess I'll have to see for myself. ;) hehe Thanks for reading and enjoying the review. I really appreciate the comments! I have heard about the Blue Channel in Roatan before but thought I read somewhere that it's too far to travel to get there when you are cruising? I'll have to check this out since it sounds like maybe it's not. Thanks so much! I just ran across one of my old reviews when answering a questions to someone and seen Sakari at 3 years old and thought "wow! she was so little when this all started". They have grown so much. The ship was awesome! Definitely a favorite of mine (along with the Breeze) for Carnival. I just couldn't believe it just didn't feel too crowded at all and the no lines is what really got me! Like where was everyone??? lol Even check in and getting off the ship was amazing! Oh wow, I hadn't heard about the rough water between DR and Aruba/Curacao before. We did this itinerary before and never had issues either. Haha about Jason Blanchard. He didn't do anything with a towel animal this time darn it. lol I'm thinking you did mention getting the TG5 last year. I hope you end up with some great snorkeling pictures when you get to use it. I just love mine. I hope the issues I'm having is with the SD card and not the camera itself. Thanks and glad you enjoyed it. Thanks and I agree...I would love to be hired for the reviews! It really is a passion of mine and I really enjoy doing them. Why thank you and glad you enjoyed it. Thanks and yes they are getting so big. When we rented this last time we did Airbnb for the house and VRBO for the condo. I search them all to find the perfect place and price. Thanks so much. You are welcome and thanks for reading. I appreciate it. Thanks and glad you liked it. You're welcome and thanks! Aww, thanks so much for all the comments. I really appreciate it. I'm having that same after cruise suffering right now myself. I can't wait to go back. You are very welcome and glad you enjoyed the review. I was aware of the Weeki Wachee (I went there as a kid myself) and told her about it a year or so ago. I wasn't aware there was a camp though. That would be so cool. I'll have to check into that. She would LOVE IT! Hi and glad you were able to learn a few things and enjoyed the review and pictures. I would LOVE to do the Bliss! We actually did look into it for this cruise but I really wanted the itinerary we were on. But it's definitely on my "to-do" list. We have done the Epic twice now (and I normally don't repeat ships if I don't have to and the only reason we did it again was that was the only ship we had been on that Sakari didn't go with us...her "pre-cruising days". But it sounds wonderful! Yes, I have been to HMC and it is absolutely beautiful there. I should have a review of it in my signature line but I know my signature line is at it's limit and I can't add more (haven't been able to add any more for the last 2 cruises). Blah!
  10. mitsugirly

    Beach Club Breakdown - Includes Prices (September 2013)

    By cab and it was included in the price. The people at Almaplena paid the driver once we arrived. We spent the entire day there and didn't have any problems getting back to the port with time to spare. Just let them know when you want to go.
  11. If you return to Mangel Halto, it's an absolute must to do the water scooters with Aruba Bob. It is AMAZING! He takes you way out there and the reef is amazing! Much easier using these sea doos because you won't get tired and you go pretty far. Check it out. He's amazing! We love (especially Sakari) Baby Beach. Snorkeling is pretty cool there but man is it hard getting around that corner with the water flowing and the area is somewhat small but still good. Yea, we try to avoid down town when the cruise ships are in. I'll even drive in the middle of Aruba to avoid going down that way during those days. It gets crazy. I will definitely look into Yemanja downtown next time we go. Well...now it's officially over. 😞 Our next cruise will be our yearly Spring Break cruise in April. I'm not sure where or what ship yet. I haven't had time to check in to anything. Happy cruising on the Breeze and Freedom this year. We absolutely love the Breeze!!!
  12. Sunday December 23: Time to Leave. Alarm woke us up, we headed for breakfast, I hate this day. It was now time to do the dreaded task of checking the weather back home to see what we might be returning to. Yep, just as I expected. COLD! But hey, at least there wasn't any snow in the forecast as they had predicted prior to leaving for the cruise. We hung out waiting for them to call our numbers. We were number 20. The kids were drawing to pass the time by. Kendra had a rough but fun cruise. The kids drove her nuts with the arguing. She vowed to never take them again alone. She needed a vacation now. She said the minute she got home...she was shipping them off to family. LOL Beautiful weather outside...just not as hot as it had been during the week in the Caribbean. 58 DEGREES!!! What the heck? Are you sure we returned to Miami? They called our number to get off around 9:15 am. We headed to the bathroom and then to get in line to get off. While we waited, Lorelei entertained us and we all sang Christmas songs. It was only about a 10 minute wait and we were off the ship before we were doing the dread walk in the wrong direction off the ship (in my opinion because we should be heading on the ship instead). We were at the luggage area by 9:30 am There is a screen that tells you where to locate your luggage depending on your number. However, all of the luggage had came out...but Kendra was missing one. We waited and looked and searched and asked questions to the people working in the port...but no luggage. We spent 40 minutes trying to locate her luggage. FINALLY it came out on a different belt and with the last few people to get off the ship. Someone screwed up! We headed to customs and there was not much of a line. We spent maybe 10 minutes from getting into line to walking out of the building. Wow, quickest process ever. Outside we tried to get our Lyft driver to come get us in his Black XL but he wasn't answering. We did put in for 6 people and they summoned a van to come. When it arrived, there was NO WAY we were all fitting in it along with our luggage. We had to pull the luggage back out and order the kids back out of the van. It just wasn't going to work. Time to order 2 separate cars. Ours said it would be there within 10 minutes. Kendra's said 15 minutes...then 20 minutes, then 1 hour...then 2 hours!!! WHAT THE HECK??? She was watching her guy come and go on the gps locator and circle back onto the freeway and head in the opposite direction. We wasn't sure what was going on. I felt bad and she was completely stressed at this point. She tried cancelling it and reordering one and she was having all types of issues. Our car arrived and we piled in and pulled away. I felt so bad leaving her standing there with the kids and all that luggage...wondering if she was going to make it or would be left sitting there for hours. Finally I caught word that her ride showed up shortly after ours. We compared mile markers and she was right behind us thank goodness. Then before long...she obviously passed us up and arrived at the airport before us and was already in line to get her boarding passes and check in her luggage. While we were standing in line to check in our luggage, I hear someone say "Are you Mitsugirly?" I had been spotted. The funny thing was, this lady was someone I talked to years ago when I was planning my trip to Bermuda and had tons of questions about the bus system and buying tickets for it. She was so helpful and nice and ended up mailing me her left over bus passes from the last time they had visited. We talked for quite some time and I was so happy to have met someone that had helped me out so much in the past. She had also just gotten off the Horizon and said they hadn't cruised in 2 years (and I believe maybe her first Carnival cruise). Well welcome back to cruising! We were starved by the time we made it in the gates at the airport...so it was time for some lunch. Time to board the plane and off we went. It was an uneventful trip home with a route from Miami to Tampa with no plane change and then on to Columbus. The second half of the flight was a little delayed. We had quite a few passengers that were handicapped and the hubby helped lift one up in the seat, that couldn't walk or move himself, and we were rewarded with free booze on the way home. You can't beat that! We arrived safely, but later than scheduled, back home and Kendra had a later flight. (Procrastination of booking air flight meant she didn't get the same plane as we did and also had a plane change). However, she arrived much later HOME because she was picked up at the airport and went straight to drop the kids off at their aunts before heading home. LOL She wasn't lying when she said she needed a break when she got home. THE END....
  13. Back to the room to get Sakari and she was doing her norm...pictures of her husky. Carnival always gives us drink coupons to use. We each get one. They can only be used on the last night. Sakari always loves getting these grown up looking drinks (for her). We hung out watching the Christmas movie they had playing on the big screen. Then headed back to the room to tag our luggage and put it outside. I laughed on the way back commenting "remember the time that I packed everything, put it outside the door, and it was collected already.... and completely forgot to leave Sakari any clothes out and she was only in her underwear?" I will never forget this! So, remember how I was so excited that our room steward allowed us to keep our collection of towel animals the entire cruise? I was preparing to lay them all out on our bed tonight and get a picture of them all together. I arrived back in the room to see that he had taken them all away and only left us with a heart! Ugh! Complete failure at this point. Darnit. Sakari worked on her drawings while I completed the process of putting the luggage out. We sat the alarm and headed for bed.
  14. I had actually been packing throughout the day. I didn't want any last minute packing to be done like it has in the past. Kendra, being the procrastinator and slow-late-to-everything person that she is...actually packed the day before. You go girl! There's hope for you yet! I headed down to pick up our luggage tags. I find this weird since I have always had them delivered to our rooms with the other cruise line. But, I guess this is a good thing since you can get the right amount you need AND pick your own time according to when you need to get off the ship. We found only 2 choices: Early or Late. Ok, well that's easy enough. We would pick late. At some point, we headed back to the casino to play a little bit and we needed to cash in our winnings by the end of the night. Now I have not been on any cruises where I did ANY good on the last day. I would swear they reset these things to gulp up everyone's money on the last night. HOWEVER...I did awesome! I also played several machines that I hadn't played the entire cruise and they were all hitting. Woo hoo! I hit on the second push: $112.95 I knew I didn't want to push my luck too much and decided it was time to cash out and walk away with my winnings from the night. I checked on the hubby and he was up somewhat but not a whole lot. Ok, time to cash in!
  15. I honestly don't remember much of what else we did during the day. I'm guessing it consisted of a lot of packing. lol The next set of pictures and memory consisted of dinner. See how cruises just seem to revolve around food? No wonder we always gain weight with every cruise. So I pulled out my phone and used the app to make a reservation. I was told 5-10 minutes. Sakari did not want to go and wanted to go to free play at the kids club at 7 pm. So, party of 2 it was. Now I just want to bring this up for those of you that use the app to make reservations and do My time dining. Notice the description below with the times and wait times and so on. Well take a good look at the "location" (5 mid). However, it's not located on 5 but in fact located at 3 Aft!! It was such a major mix up the first times we did this and we kept ending up at the wrong dining room. They really need to change this. I really love their baked onion soup. It's just so yummy and I always try to get it now when we cruise. The hubby got the flatbread as a starter. This was the Cinnamon Pumpkin Cheese Pie. It was a main course. I questioned it with the waiter. It just seemed odd to be a main course. I had no idea what it was, how filling it would be or what my feeling would be about eating it for dinner. But I ordered it anyhow. But I would also order the penne shrimp and bacon...just to be on the safe side. I'm happy to report the pumpkin dinner was excellent! I also love their bacon mac and cheese. It's so yummy and I could eat just it for dinner if given the option. We were stuffed at this point and decided dessert was just not an option tonight.