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sparkysj

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About sparkysj

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  1. Cozumel: We ended up booking Dolpinaruis through Carnival. I honestly had no desire to do the dolphin excursion but DD really wanted to & since she was free until 6 thought might as well now. I was really glad we did because I really enjoyed it!! We were w/a group of 8 (5 from our party) & were in water probably 40-45 min & the man was friendly & very knowledgeable. What I was unhappy with was it was all inclusive for food/drink but the buffet was terrible & they had 1 bartender for whole facility. The price of pictures initially makes Carnival pics look like a bargain. They refused to take a group picture of our family-said everyone has to take one alone which is of course because they want to charge you $29 a pic. When we got into the pic area the package for all pictures (on CD- they don’t even print) was almost $300. Long story short is keep bargaining. We ended up paying $154 for all pics & the video. I offered $150 & the manager came back $4 more. I normally would not spend this much on pics (spent $45 on ship) but DH & DD really wanted them & figured sometimes it is ok to splurge. I know the pictures from there are not Carnival’s but let’s be honest- they contract with these places so you know they could have some say in the prices. After the dolphins we took DD to CC for a little shopping and yep of course back to ship for family pool time. Stores on ship: Basically what you find on all ships. My dad & brother spent $$$$ in the jewelry store. Dad bought a yellow emerald & the salesman was unbelievable….he was pretty pushy to the point 2 times he recognized my DH & I in the pool & was still trying to make a sale by telling us how “rare & valuable” his jewels are….yeah sorry dude but if what you had was truly valuable it wouldn’t be basically only available on ships. He told my dad he owned the mine yet in pool told us he worked for a company that paid all his expenses so not a very honest man IMO lol I went to a local jewelry store when we got back to have a ring cleaned & awhile there asked them about "yellow emeralds" and they had never heard of them. My DH did by an Invitivca watch when they were 75% off but when we were back & I googled the exact one he bought he could have got it back here cheaper (even counting tax). It wasn't that much of a difference & since he didn't spend more than $150 on it I think was still good deal & nice looking watch.
  2. I can't remember my dad's cabin number but his was around yours & was the one that was COLD. He actually turned the heat on at one time lol
  3. Belize: Did not do an excursion because the ones that were interesting to us were so far away & no way DD could handle a 5-6 hour day w/long bus rides. Since we have never been here either we wanted to at least touch ground so could say had been here. Sky was overcast when went out to get on tender & then as we were getting on it started pouring rain. Rest of family was talking about just getting off but I asked one of the crew & he said forecast didn’t call for rain so should go away. He was right & in about 10 min it was gone. They gave us the safety info on how to use a life jacket & we began the LONG tender ride. Unless it is perfect weather I would not ever go back to Belize. The ride there was beyond horrible. None of us are prone to sea sickness but we were all queasy by time got there. We actually had one man who was throwing up off side of boat. Didn’t really like the shopping available at the port- can get stuff cheaper at other places. We planned on going into the Moho (I think) chocolate place & walked in and right back out. It smelled like manure! Literally....my DD of course loudly proclaimed as we walked in "why does it smell like poop in here" lol Has anyone else noticed it smelling in this place?? We only stayed for about 30 min & went back to ship to hit the pool/water works again.
  4. Loved the Lanai deck (5) & the BBQ food on sea days was delicious!! We had it on 2 of 3 sea days. Loved how it went all way around ship but didn’t like the glass at night. They kept lights on so there was a glare & couldn’t really see out. This is another feature I wish all the ships had. Even if not the lanai at least the BBQ :) Roatan: 1st time here & had no idea how beautiful this country is- at least from what little we saw. It was so green & lush. We did not do an excursion (like to stay close to port w/DD) but if we ever cruise w/out kids or when she is older we would love to explore more. We walked over to the free beach and it was nice. Not HMC nice (but after going there one gets kinda spoiled lol) Did not like how there were nowhere near as many chairs as HMC & when we tried to move one up closer so could keep eye on stuff (there was room to move) we were told we couldn’t. The chair we tried to move was not one of the special ones you have to pay to use. Unlike a lot of people we only get 1 chair to put all our stuff on (this was for all 8 of us) but so many chairs I saw for the couple hours we were there & no one was ever sitting on them. Didn’t like the really thick seaweed either. After couple hours at beach we took DD to CC so we could pick up couple gifts & then back to the ship to hit the pool. We would def go back here again.
  5. We were in 1338. It was awesome!!! It is going to be hard to go back down to a regular room since not many of the ships have these rooms. It was well worth the $30 upgrade & heck now that I have been in that room I would have paid even more.
  6. Camp Carnival: Very happy with them & especially Leigh-Ann from California. DD just loved her & they bonded very quickly. We usually only have DD in CC for hour or 2 in morning & then again after dinner for couple hours. We like to spend afternoons in Waterworks/pool together & take her on any excursions with us. The only exception is when at a docked port we will go out with her & then take her to CC long enough for us to go pick up a few gifts for those back home. It’s much easier without a 5yr old! I don’t like how they always close for the build bears- do that activity elsewhere! It was nicthat they didn’t seem to close as much as on other ships we have been on. On the smaller ships on sea days they don't open until 10 & then close for lunch, open back up for couple hours, close for bears/prepare for dinner etc. It's not that we want our DD in there all the time but sometimes there are what we consider adult type events going on we want to go to during the day and seems like they are closed then. The Dream was 1st time I have seen CC not close for lunch which was nice. They don't feed your child for you but for us that is fine. Since the lido pools were packed we adjusted our normal routine & hit the pool in am & then didn't take her until after feeding her lunch. CC has always been a hit or miss with DD- she has ADHD & some sensory issues & while CC is awesome not all teachers are really the best to handle kids like this. There was a male teacher in there & DD didn't really like him- which IMO it was more of his tone of how he spoke. DD is also right at the cut off to move up to next age group- even though she would not turn 6 till after off the cruise they offered to let her move up. We gave her the choice & she didn't want to. Not sure if she would have had better luck in the older group. CC is one of the reasons we choose to cruise- don't have much family who lives by us so this is the only break we really get lol Spa: 1st time I have ever used the spa & this was only because my dad bought me a massage/facial. It was nice & lady was great. Very overpriced though compared to back home so unless I’m not paying for it not likely will ever do again. She did try to sell me expensive products/other services which I nicely declined. I was interested in a couple of them but told her I needed to talk with DH about cost. She said she was going to send info to my cabin but never did & I didn't pursue it. Serenity: Loved it!! For 1st cruise we were actually able to find a seat at any time of the day. Wished they had more than 2 hammocks & more drink service but other than that it was awesome. This ship seems to have a lot of either glass or actual solid "walls" all over & that I don't like (except for the safety feature with little ones). On Fascination (I mention this ship a lot to compare because we have been on it 4 times)you can see through the railings to look at the beautiful sea & not always the case here or in other areas of the ship either. We were really happy to finally get to enjoy this area though since rarely do on other ships. I wish I could figure out how to post pics but I have tried with no luck :(
  7. Cruise Director: Was Hennie & although I had heard some didn’t like him we really did. Loved the fact he didn’t announce things all the time like many do. Thought he was funny. He reminded me so much of my oldest who wasn’t on cruise personality wise & with his crazy hair so maybe that’s why we liked him .  MDR: We had the best wait staff!! Our servers were Enrico, Dane & Zorica & were just awesome. Dane made our DD napkin animals/flowers just about every night. On the night we celebrated her birthday he made her mouse “ears”. DD is really shy at 1st & this was the 1st time in 6 cruises she has ever got up and danced! Enrico got her to dance the whole song of Gangham (not sure if that is the actual name). We never had to ask for refills or anything even though it was obvious they were busy. When we would order the WCMC instead of one small dish of ice cream, Enrico would put 2 on plate & called it Minnie mouse. I can’t say enough nice & positive things about these 3!! The maître D was not very visible. I think he only came around once. I do miss how each night the maitre D would tell you the weather for next day since no way of checking yourself. The food was always good & the one time I tried something new & didn't like it they brought me something else within a couple minutes. We didn't try the steakhouse but they do offer items from it for I think $20 in MDR. My brother did this one night (after teasing my DH & I for being "cheap since we see no reason to pay for food when we can get all we want for free) & he ended up regretting it. The steak they brought him was 3/4 fat. He said from then on he was sticking to the free stuff lol We ate at the Italian place a couple times for lunch & it was good & fast.
  8. On all the ships I have been on there are really not any kid things to do except Camp Carnival. We do take our DD to camp for a few hours each day (usually in am & little after dinner) but up until now we have only been on fantasy class ships so not many possibilities for anything to do after dinner and we thought this ship would offer more since it is bigger. Our DD loved laying in a chair & watching a movie with us the 1st night so it was a shame not able to do that more. My DD loves hanging out with us & the other adults because she is almost like an only child since her siblings are 23 & 19. She is also what I like to call an unique child & doesn't always do well in Camp Carnival.
  9. I meant more of having the dance parties outside on Lido deck than the nightclubs. They had some kind of a party almost each night it seemed like on lido deck that started about 10pm. We tried going one of the nights but DD was so tired that after about 10 min we took her back to room before a meltdown happened lol I am fine with them playing PG-13 movies even each night but usually they played 2-3 movies each night so to me it would have been nice if the early movie was a kid one or even if every other night they would have offered one. The movies they played we would have liked to see but to me they were not 5yr old appropriate (The Other Woman, Divergent, etc). Granted we are probably more conservative in what we allow our DD to watch. None of the movies they played would have kept the attention of younger kids even if we would have allowed her to watch. Heck I rarely watch a R movie myself because the content usually does not interest me. I do understand they can't make everyone happy but would like to have been able to enjoy it more with DD-after we had talked about it for months. Even though she is only 5- she LOVES to get online w/me to looks at the ship we are going on, what they have etc.
  10. This was the only time in 9 cruises I have ever smelled sewage on any cruise but the idea it is because of the foods people are eating cracks me up! I guess we have never cruised with such gassy people before lol Shows: Only went to comedy once- it was ok. Most shows were later & close to time to pick DD up from CC so didn’t go. We have already seen Dancing in Streets so didn’t go. Disappointed they didn’t have Hasbro. LOVED Fun Force dancers!!! They were awesome. Wish they were on all ships. Other activities: Would really like it if they have more of the dance parties before 10pm. My DD & I love to dance (she loves the Cha Cha slide) but she is a morning person & up early so by 10pm she NEEDED to sleep. Other than sail away the parties are at night. Also disappointed about the movies played on big screen. They played kids movies one night- the 1st night (Frozen & Rio). Rest of cruise all the movies were PG-13. I understand adults want to watch movies too but would have been nice if at least one of the movies each night was a PG or G. Not judging others but for us personally we don’t allow our 5yr old to watch PG-13 (careful with some PG’s too lol) & every night she wanted to watch a movie we had to say no…. We were really excited about being on a ship with the movie screen. Maybe they play more kids movies during the summer when there are more kids on board...
  11. Ok well didn't work....anyone know how to post pics on here?
  12. I agree that one will find different opinions from probably just about every person on the same cruise. It's not that I think the Dream is a bad ship- just that personally I don't think it is one that is good for those with younger children. I am trying to post a pic of the Waterworks from Fascination to show the difference-hope it works lol
  13. Waterworks: Disliked this more than anything on the ship. The layout is terrible & has the most uncomfortable seating right around it. We only cruise on ships with Waterworks because of our DD. On the Fascination you can basically see the entire area from any seat on the deck. They have loungers to sit in. The Dream only has loungers on the side decks & basically out of the view for most of the slides. We love to grab a lounge chair (usually right by the small kid slides) & enjoy the sun while watching DD play on the slides w/kids & also joining in on bigger slides some. We are not parents who are ok with not having a visual on our child so on this ship you have to either sit in the horrible chairs or keep walking back & forth. Until our DD is old enough for us to be ok with not seeing her at all times this will prevent us from going back on this ship. Whoever designed this obviously has no small kids- or just doesn’t care to watch them lol Drink service: It was almost non-existent on Waterworks, lido & Serenity. Waited 30 min for a drink once only to have to wait another 15 for him to bring receipt back for me to sign. Sure there are bars on lido & on the lower level of Serenity but once you have a good seat you really don’t want to get up & risk losing it. Would have bought more drinks if they had more people around. It was the same in the show lounge. When my PVP called to check on us after cruise she told me this was a common complaint because they are short staffed.
  14. We were on deck 1, midship. My dad was deck 7 midship & DS & brother were deck 7 aft. All of our rooms were very comfortable. The elevators were pretty hot at times though.
  15. Sorry but I don't know. No one I know purchased Cheers :(
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