My Dream Wedding on the Carnival Dream W/PICS!!!

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#1
St. Louis, MO
141 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
Warning: this may be long

my husband (yeaaa it feels so good to say that haha) and I have been together for 9 years now, since we were 17. We were engaged for almost 2 years and are now finally husband and wife When we first got engaged we knew we didnt want a traditional wedding and started looking online for different destination weddings. Cruise critic and this board actually helped with our decision to do a cruise wedding and I couldnt have been more happier with my choice. So now let me recap you with our planning and finally the big day.

We booked the wedding in Dec of 2011 starting our countdown at 417 days and I didn't think the day would ever come and now I can't believe its gone. The first thing we did was send out our save the dates made from vistaprint and also made a website with all of the info for our wedding and the cruise. We wanted to give people as much time as possible to plan for our wedding and cruise. All of our family is from Mass so we knew everyone would be cruising with us we ended up having about 40 guests cruise with us (which was a lot more than we expected).

After those were sent out and people started to pay the initial deposit with our travel agent I started to gather things for our "welcome aboard bags" which were a huge hit by the way. Heres the link with more info for those bags: http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1742030

You will also see in our pics that I had my own silk flowers made from a vendor on etsy which were much nicer than the carnival provided bouquet which is very small.

Alright so on with the review of the actual wedding.

We had so much stuff to bring down to Port Canaveral that we had to drive which was only 6 hours for us so it was not bad at all. We stayed at the Radisson at Cape Canaveral with all of our guests that flew in from Boston, MA the friday before the wedding. Thats a story to tell too, we almost didnt have any guests at our wedding. The northeast had a major snowstorm that friday and sat and were canceling a lot of flights. The flight with our guests on it was one of the last to leave the airport before they shut the airport down. I almost cried the night before while we were checking the flight statuses like every 20 min. I am so glad they were all able to make it! When we got to the hotel we gave the front desk a newsletter to give to every guest as they checked in to the hotel.

We had reserved a meeting room for that afternoon and had everyone meet us there. This is where we passed out our welcome aboard bags and wedding day timelines. I also had tshirts made for our wedding party and parents which everyone loved. My in laws then paid for everyone to have dinner right next to the hotel at Kelsey's which is like an italian/pizza restaurant the food was fantastic. Everyone had a great time and the party actually continued on to the hotel where they had a bar and live music outside by the pool.

The next morning my two "maids of honor" and the moms came to my hotel room (we kicked the groom out) where we had Tiffany from professional elegance do our hair and makeup. She is fantastic!!!! I highly recommend her I cannot believe how great she made us look and she was so sweet. We had room service bring us breakfast and mimosas and had a some great bonding time.

We then took the hotel shuttle over to the port. It took them about 3 runs to transport us and all of our guests and luggage to the port. This is where I wish I had planned better for because there was so much confusion and I needed help carrying all of the wedding stuff on board. My husband was with me at this point and we gave our luggage for the cruise to the porters right away that left us with a bag of "getting ready stuff" his suit my dress, 2 boxes for the wedding and a plastic tub with all of the flowers. We clearly could not carry all of that by ourselves so we had everyone grab something and go. This is where it got all crazy. We met Mary, one of our wedding coordinators, right away once inside the terminal she was amazing and I couldn't have asked for a better coordinator she helped us get all checked in and then said we would be taken to a private room with our guests and she would go over everything with us. Well no that did not happen because the ship was cleared for customs right away and everyone was rushed to go through the security pictures and board the ship right away. This is where I lost track of all my wedding stuff because everyone just took off for the ship and I didn't know who had what and where they were. I started to panic a little when Mary said she needed the stuff so they could set everything up. Eventually everyone converged in the lobby of the ship and I was able to located everything and stop my mini panic attack. So my advice is to assign something to everyone and know whose taking what before you even get to the port. I also have to give a shout out to my husband who carried my 2 wedding dresses (I had a short one for dinner) his suit, and our 2 sisters gowns all held over his head the entire time so they would not get wrinkled. I think I had to give him shoulder massages all week haha.

to be continued....
Attached Files
File Type: pdf wedding day timeline .pdf (289.0 KB, 524 views)
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RCI Harmony of the Seas - September 2016

Previous Cruises:
Carnival Dream - February 2013

My DREAM Wedding Review
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1793081
#2
St. Louis, MO
141 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
Once I got all the wedding stuff together I gave them to Mary. I had one box for the ceremony and one box for the reception. Each box had a set of instructions and also the CD of music for each one (i just used burned CD's and they worked fine). Mary told me after the wedding that I was very organized and it was so easy to set everything up, well that was the plan! She gave the boxes to someone else I cant remember her name right now who brought them to the wedding locations. She then brought our wedding party up to the 2 rooms we had ready for us. The groom and his two groomsmen used our room to get ready, we just had a balcony room. I and my maids of honor used my in laws room as they had gotten a suite. All of our guests went to explore the ship at this time. With the wedding day timeline in hand they all knew where they had to be and when.

Once we were in the room Mary just went over the ceremony and reception details with me and then left to set everything up. I thought we had all the time in the world to get ready but time flew and all of sudden we were scrambling to finish up. Once the girls got me in my dress they got dressed and had to run down to the ceremony location which was in the Song lounge on the Dream. This left me alone for about 15 min which seemed like forever!! Our photographer, Jay, then called the room asking to get some pictures of me I said sure so he came up and took some "getting ready" pics. They tell you exactly how to pose even where to look with your eyes he made it very easy. Once he left Mary came up about 5 min later and walked me down to the Song lounge. Once we got there they started the music and our parents walked in and then the bridal party. Once me and my dad started walking down the aisle I was trying so hard not to cry because my baby sister was bawling her eyes out standing up there. After that the rest of the ceremony is such a blur because I was so emotional and happy.

After the ceremony we did a bunch of pictures in the song lounge and then we were brought over to the Caliente disco (we reserved the DJ) and were introduced as husband and wife. We went straight to the cake table and cut the cake and then yes we smashed in each others faces (I definitely started that one he said he was gonna be nice but I couldn't help it!) definitely made for some great pictures. We then had my sister and his best man do a toast. They were both great and so funny and we got both of them on video. Then into our first dance and followed by the mother/son and father/daughter dance which we did together. Those were the only things that we wanted to do at our wedding. After that it was all dancing and drinking! I heard that the food was fantastic, although I didn't have a chance to try it. The drinks were flowing and we had a great time on the dance floor!
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RCI Harmony of the Seas - September 2016

Previous Cruises:
Carnival Dream - February 2013

My DREAM Wedding Review
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1793081
#4
St. Louis, MO
141 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
Jeff the "fun dude" the manager of the comedy club is actually who DJ'd our wedding and he was amazing. He actually did the cupid shuffle with us which was so much fun. I can't believe how fast that hour and a half went by. Once our reception was done we all had to go to muster right away. My husband was certainly a little tipsy and was telling everyone he just got married (like they couldnt tell haha) and also making everyone fist bump with him everyone was a good sport and were cheering and clapping for us. After the muster drill we met with Jay the photographer again) We spent another hour and half going around the ship with him taking pictures and in fact my husband even pulled some random people into our pictures. We had a great time and Jay was laughing so hard at us by the time we were done.

After this we got back to our stateroom where I was able to unpack some stuff and change into my shorter wedding dress. We had everyone meet at Sam's piano bar at 7pm we had drinks before our late seating at 8:15 in the dining room. Our group was seated at 4 big tables in the same area every night. That night they brought our wedding cake back out and sang "happy honeymoon" to us, it was a lot of fun. After dinner we all went back to Caliente for some more dancing although we didnt last too much longer were in bed by midnight haha.

It was an amazing day and I am so happy with our decision to do a cruise wedding.

Jay called us in our stateroom on tuesday morning letting us know our pictures would be done that night after our dinner. We met with him in the photo gallery where he took us to a private room and started a slideshow for us which had me crying. Now let me tell you this going into this wedding I was not expecting great pictures I have seen good and I've seen bad pictures on this board. I was blown away with our pictures! He did an amazing job. This also had me crying because there was no way I could pick and choose which ones I wanted. We had budgeted about $1500 for pictures and he started out saying he wanted $6600 for everything. There is no way we could afford that. At this time my in laws met us and watched the slideshow and then looked at the photobook and they agreed we needed everything haha. So my husband and his dad started negotiating with Jay they got him down to $4500 and also had him include 3 copies of the pictures on CD and 3 copies of the slideshow that would also include a print out of every picture (about 300) and a leather photobook and 2 canvases. Well thats all great but we still could not afford that. So we made another apt with him for the next morning. We talked with my in laws alone and they let us know that they would split the cost of the pictures with us, which was incredibly generous of them. The next morning we met with Jay again and after much negotiating and me almost in tears we got down to $3700 for everything. There was just no way I could leave any of those pictures behind. Below is a link to our pictures.

http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...1&l=a6b9ecb33c

Happy wedding planning
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RCI Harmony of the Seas - September 2016

Previous Cruises:
Carnival Dream - February 2013

My DREAM Wedding Review
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1793081
#5
Miami
4 Posts
Joined Dec 2012
The pictures look great, I especially love your flowers I've been looking into having a cruise wedding in March 2014 but I wasn't sure which cruise line to go with, I've never been on a cruise.
#6
Atlanta, Ga
85 Posts
Joined Feb 2013
Congratulations! Thank you so much for doing this review, I enjoyed every word! I do have a question, what decorations did you bring for the ceremony and reception? My wedding is on Carnival Imagination, October 7, 2013. I don't think the decorations they recommend are worth the money so I'm curious to know what you bought. Thanks again and you were such a beautiful bride!


Originally posted by albean86
Once I got all the wedding stuff together I gave them to Mary. I had one box for the ceremony and one box for the reception. Each box had a set of instructions and also the CD of music for each one (i just used burned CD's and they worked fine). Mary told me after the wedding that I was very organized and it was so easy to set everything up, well that was the plan! She gave the boxes to someone else I cant remember her name right now who brought them to the wedding locations. She then brought our wedding party up to the 2 rooms we had ready for us. The groom and his two groomsmen used our room to get ready, we just had a balcony room. I and my maids of honor used my in laws room as they had gotten a suite. All of our guests went to explore the ship at this time. With the wedding day timeline in hand they all knew where they had to be and when.

Once we were in the room Mary just went over the ceremony and reception details with me and then left to set everything up. I thought we had all the time in the world to get ready but time flew and all of sudden we were scrambling to finish up. Once the girls got me in my dress they got dressed and had to run down to the ceremony location which was in the Song lounge on the Dream. This left me alone for about 15 min which seemed like forever!! Our photographer, Jay, then called the room asking to get some pictures of me I said sure so he came up and took some "getting ready" pics. They tell you exactly how to pose even where to look with your eyes he made it very easy. Once he left Mary came up about 5 min later and walked me down to the Song lounge. Once we got there they started the music and our parents walked in and then the bridal party. Once me and my dad started walking down the aisle I was trying so hard not to cry because my baby sister was bawling her eyes out standing up there. After that the rest of the ceremony is such a blur because I was so emotional and happy.

After the ceremony we did a bunch of pictures in the song lounge and then we were brought over to the Caliente disco (we reserved the DJ) and were introduced as husband and wife. We went straight to the cake table and cut the cake and then yes we smashed in each others faces (I definitely started that one he said he was gonna be nice but I couldn't help it!) definitely made for some great pictures. We then had my sister and his best man do a toast. They were both great and so funny and we got both of them on video. Then into our first dance and followed by the mother/son and father/daughter dance which we did together. Those were the only things that we wanted to do at our wedding. After that it was all dancing and drinking! I heard that the food was fantastic, although I didn't have a chance to try it. The drinks were flowing and we had a great time on the dance floor!
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#11
239 Posts
Joined Apr 2012
Originally posted by albean86
Warning: this may be long

my husband (yeaaa it feels so good to say that haha) and I have been together for 9 years now, since we were 17. We were engaged for almost 2 years and are now finally husband and wife When we first got engaged we knew we didnt want a traditional wedding and started looking online for different destination weddings. Cruise critic and this board actually helped with our decision to do a cruise wedding and I couldnt have been more happier with my choice. So now let me recap you with our planning and finally the big day.

We booked the wedding in Dec of 2011 starting our countdown at 417 days and I didn't think the day would ever come and now I can't believe its gone. The first thing we did was send out our save the dates made from vistaprint and also made a website with all of the info for our wedding and the cruise. We wanted to give people as much time as possible to plan for our wedding and cruise. All of our family is from Mass so we knew everyone would be cruising with us we ended up having about 40 guests cruise with us (which was a lot more than we expected).

After those were sent out and people started to pay the initial deposit with our travel agent I started to gather things for our "welcome aboard bags" which were a huge hit by the way. Heres the link with more info for those bags: http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1742030

You will also see in our pics that I had my own silk flowers made from a vendor on etsy which were much nicer than the carnival provided bouquet which is very small.

Alright so on with the review of the actual wedding.

We had so much stuff to bring down to Port Canaveral that we had to drive which was only 6 hours for us so it was not bad at all. We stayed at the Radisson at Cape Canaveral with all of our guests that flew in from Boston, MA the friday before the wedding. Thats a story to tell too, we almost didnt have any guests at our wedding. The northeast had a major snowstorm that friday and sat and were canceling a lot of flights. The flight with our guests on it was one of the last to leave the airport before they shut the airport down. I almost cried the night before while we were checking the flight statuses like every 20 min. I am so glad they were all able to make it! When we got to the hotel we gave the front desk a newsletter to give to every guest as they checked in to the hotel.

We had reserved a meeting room for that afternoon and had everyone meet us there. This is where we passed out our welcome aboard bags and wedding day timelines. I also had tshirts made for our wedding party and parents which everyone loved. My in laws then paid for everyone to have dinner right next to the hotel at Kelsey's which is like an italian/pizza restaurant the food was fantastic. Everyone had a great time and the party actually continued on to the hotel where they had a bar and live music outside by the pool.

The next morning my two "maids of honor" and the moms came to my hotel room (we kicked the groom out) where we had Tiffany from professional elegance do our hair and makeup. She is fantastic!!!! I highly recommend her I cannot believe how great she made us look and she was so sweet. We had room service bring us breakfast and mimosas and had a some great bonding time.

We then took the hotel shuttle over to the port. It took them about 3 runs to transport us and all of our guests and luggage to the port. This is where I wish I had planned better for because there was so much confusion and I needed help carrying all of the wedding stuff on board. My husband was with me at this point and we gave our luggage for the cruise to the porters right away that left us with a bag of "getting ready stuff" his suit my dress, 2 boxes for the wedding and a plastic tub with all of the flowers. We clearly could not carry all of that by ourselves so we had everyone grab something and go. This is where it got all crazy. We met Mary, one of our wedding coordinators, right away once inside the terminal she was amazing and I couldn't have asked for a better coordinator she helped us get all checked in and then said we would be taken to a private room with our guests and she would go over everything with us. Well no that did not happen because the ship was cleared for customs right away and everyone was rushed to go through the security pictures and board the ship right away. This is where I lost track of all my wedding stuff because everyone just took off for the ship and I didn't know who had what and where they were. I started to panic a little when Mary said she needed the stuff so they could set everything up. Eventually everyone converged in the lobby of the ship and I was able to located everything and stop my mini panic attack. So my advice is to assign something to everyone and know whose taking what before you even get to the port. I also have to give a shout out to my husband who carried my 2 wedding dresses (I had a short one for dinner) his suit, and our 2 sisters gowns all held over his head the entire time so they would not get wrinkled. I think I had to give him shoulder massages all week haha.

to be continued....
Hey albean86! I have a question, what brand and style are your shoes? They're so pretty! I'm actually looking for purple ones though.
#13
Arlington, VA
959 Posts
Joined Jan 2011
Congratulations!!! I've enjoyed reading your review, and your pictures are beautiful!

And I'm glad to see that the timeline saw some action. Lol!

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2
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Upcoming Fun!






Past Fun!
7-Day Exotic Caribbean, Carnival Glory, May 2015 (Sister Cruise with the Twin)
8-Day Southern Caribbean Repo, Carnival Splendor, November 2014
7-Day Bahamas, Carnival Pride, March 2014 (Girls Cruise with the Twin and Grandma)
6-Day Caribbean, Carnival Breeze, January 2014 (Bday Cruise)
9-Day Repo, RCL Grandeur of the Seas, April 2013 (Honeymoon Cruise)
3-Day Bahamas, Carnival Imagination, April 2013 (Wedding Cruise!)
3-Day Bahamas, Norwegian Sky, June 2012 (Just Because)
4-Day Bahamas, RCL Majesty of the Seas, January 2012 (Birthday Cruise)
4-Day Bahamas, Norwegian Sky, October 2011 (Halloween Cruise)
4-Day Bahamas, Norwegian Sky, June 2011 (Last-minute Summer Getaway)
7-Day Western Caribbean, Norwegian Spirit, January 2011 (Bday Cruise with the Twin)
3-Day Bahamas, Norwegian Sky, April 2010 (Officially Obsessed With Cruising)
3-Day Bahamas, Norwegian Sky, January 2009 (Bday Cruise and First Cruise)
#14
St. Louis, MO
141 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
Originally posted by newricangrl
The pictures look great, I especially love your flowers I've been looking into having a cruise wedding in March 2014 but I wasn't sure which cruise line to go with, I've never been on a cruise.
this was actually our first cruise too and we loved it!! good luck planning your wedding
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RCI Harmony of the Seas - September 2016

Previous Cruises:
Carnival Dream - February 2013

My DREAM Wedding Review
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1793081
#15
St. Louis, MO
141 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
Originally posted by MrsFreeman21408
Congratulations! Thank you so much for doing this review, I enjoyed every word! I do have a question, what decorations did you bring for the ceremony and reception? My wedding is on Carnival Imagination, October 7, 2013. I don't think the decorations they recommend are worth the money so I'm curious to know what you bought. Thanks again and you were such a beautiful bride!
For the ceremony I had made rack cards on vistaprint just thanking everyone for coming and being a part of our special day. I had also made ribbon wands for everyone to wave when we walked back down the aisle. I also provided silk rose petals for the aisle.

For the reception I had the custom napkins, pink and blue straws, signature drink signs for the bar. More rose petals for the cake and favor table and our cake topper and ribbon for the cake plus the favors and guestbook. The rest of the decor in the disco was fine. As a bonus they had the dance floor lit up in our wedding colors navy and pink (which I did not ask for but made everything come together!)
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RCI Harmony of the Seas - September 2016

Previous Cruises:
Carnival Dream - February 2013

My DREAM Wedding Review
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1793081
#16
St. Louis, MO
141 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
Originally posted by 4EverHis2013
Hey! We have the same wedding date! Just different ships! :-)
yeeeaaa congrats on your wedding too
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RCI Harmony of the Seas - September 2016

Previous Cruises:
Carnival Dream - February 2013

My DREAM Wedding Review
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1793081
#17
St. Louis, MO
141 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
Originally posted by 4EverHis2013
Hey albean86! I have a question, what brand and style are your shoes? They're so pretty! I'm actually looking for purple ones though.
thank you! I loved my shoes too the shoes were actually purchased at Davids Bridal when I got my dress once I told the sales associate my wedding colors she grabbed these and they were love at first sight I'm pretty sure they come in almost any color and they were pretty comfortable heres the site http://www.davidsbridal.com/Product_...-2-to-4-Inches
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RCI Harmony of the Seas - September 2016

Previous Cruises:
Carnival Dream - February 2013

My DREAM Wedding Review
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1793081
#18
St. Louis, MO
141 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
Originally posted by Twin A
Congratulations!!! I've enjoyed reading your review, and your pictures are beautiful!

And I'm glad to see that the timeline saw some action. Lol!

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2

Thank you so much for that timeline as I wanted to do one but I got so lazy at the end with everything else going on haha. It was actually the one thing that everyone used the day of and there was no confusion of where they had to be and when, it was perfect
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RCI Harmony of the Seas - September 2016

Previous Cruises:
Carnival Dream - February 2013

My DREAM Wedding Review
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1793081
#19
239 Posts
Joined Apr 2012
Originally posted by albean86
yeeeaaa congrats on your wedding too
Oops! I meant to reply to Ericas85 on the matching wedding dates! I'm getting married 5-5-2013. Sorry for the confusion! Silly me lol
#20
239 Posts
Joined Apr 2012
Originally posted by albean86
thank you! I loved my shoes too the shoes were actually purchased at Davids Bridal when I got my dress once I told the sales associate my wedding colors she grabbed these and they were love at first sight I'm pretty sure they come in almost any color and they were pretty comfortable heres the site http://www.davidsbridal.com/Product_...-2-to-4-Inches
Thanks! I will have to go to DB and try these on!