Thanksgiving Freedom Cruise 2017...Lots of Pics

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#1
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
First off sorry its been so long to get around to writing this. We left out of Galveston on the Carnival Freedom for 7 days over the week of Thanksgiving, with stops in Key West, Freeport, and Nassau. Some background information, this was the first cruise taking both of our girls on ages 7 and 4. The oldest had been on a cruise when she was 2 but doesn't remember much of it. This was the wife and I's 4th cruise. We just did this exact same cruise in July for our 10 year anniversary and decided we would take the girls with over Thanksgiving for a family trip. We live in the Houston area so we were driving down to the port the morning of. We had everything packed up on Friday night and anxiously awaiting for Saturday morning to arrive. We got up and I loaded up the car, then took the other car to drop the dogs off at the vet for the week as DW got the kids ready. By the time I got back home they were waiting in the car and off to Galveston we go. It was probably about 8:30 at this time so we knew we would be there in plenty of time. We had FTTF and used it in July as well it is so worth it. We pulled into Galveston around 10 o'clock and then we came over the little bit of a hill and the girls saw the ship. They were so excited now that they could actually see how big it was. I dropped them off and gave a porter a few bucks to take care of our bags....make sure you get the orange tape if you have FTTF. I took the car over to lighthouse parking which we have used and never had any issues with. I parked the car and was on a shuttle bus back to the terminal.
The best part of FTTF came right now when you go to the left and walk by all the people standing in line waiting to go through. From the time we were outside to the time going through security, checking the wine, and sitting in the lobby was literally 5-10 minutes and that was with 2 kids. Well we made it through now we sit, wait, and visit until they let us on the ship. Hope you enjoy the review!!

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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#2
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
Everyone was excited and surprisingly the girls did better than expected waiting. There was no weddings on this cruise so we were hoping that would speed things up a little bit...then they called for Platinum and Diamond members and wow there was a lot. Finally it was our turn FTTF so we headed up the gangway.



Those first couple steps on to the ship are always so great as your vacation has officially started and there is no worries.
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#3
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
We headed towards our room. This was our first time ever staying in an interior room and we were on deck 2 as well as in the back. DW was a little nervous as this was a lot of changes for a room all at once. We made it to our room and had ordered the girls a little surprise so below is the video of them entering the room.




Overall the room wasn't bad with the two pull downs it did feel smaller, but hey we are on vacation and the room is for sleeping and showering. Time to go do some exploring and get some lunch...since we were in the back we jumped on the elevator and headed straight up to go to the pizza place because of course my oldest wanted pizza. I do believe she had pizza almost everyday.



DW and Ainsley headed to the BBQ place and we would meet them once our pizza was ready. Since it was so early they were still in process of making them and the fact that I enjoy a custom pizza-quatro and add mushrooms and pepporoni. While we waited had to get a selfie in.



Makenna decided she has this cruise stuff down to a pat within the first hour haha
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#4
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
We are totally foodies as well so if you don't enjoy food or looking at pictures of food I suggest you stop reading right now....here is that pizza I was talking about.




The little one and DW had some bbq but we all sample off of each others plates. The mac n cheese was amazing today at the bbq place.


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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#5
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
Of course we had to get a little dessert after that meal. We had to limit the kids cuz they were amazed at all the desserts. For some reason though the buffet desserts look so amazing and many of them don't taste nearly as good as they look.


Ainsley thought the cake pops were amazing.

Makenna enjoyed some chocolate cake.


I got some lemon marange pie which wasn't too bad.
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#6
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
After our food and dessert we decided to go check out where our table was in the main dining room. We took a tour but they did not have all the table numbers up yet.


We then headed up to Camp Ocean to finalize our registration and let the girls check everything out. They were so excited when they saw the book area.



They have many Dr. Suess books, toys, and coloring pages all in this area.


I must say I think DW was just as excited as the kids.
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#8
Texas
2,057 Posts
Joined May 2014
I'm really enjoying following along with you. Our first Freedom cruise is booked, but have to wait til spring of 2019.

I loved the pic of your family all decked out in pink shirts and am eager to read more.
#9
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
We did all the pre-registration online and then just had to check everything once getting on board. I highly recommend you do this right when you get on board as very few people do and that way you are not waiting in long lines later on. Ainsley was in the Penquins group which is ages 2-5, with her we received a phone so they could contact us at all times. Here is a little tour of the Penquin area.



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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#10
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
Makenna was in the Sting Ray group which was ages 6-8. I will say I think she was a little disappointed with her room initially but she had a lot of fun as they did many games and activities.


Next we decided to go outside and check out the playground.


Ainsley thought it was great however Makenna got upset when we told her she was a little big to be playing on all that stuff. So what makes you feel better a selfie with mommy.
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#11
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
After all that hard work I mean it has been almost 2 hours since we have ate anything so off to Guy's burger.

Looking out at Galveston as more people board. Had to also get a Miami Vice to make it feel like we really were on vacation.

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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#12
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
We headed back to our room and all of our luggage was there so time to get unpacked. The kids checked out their beds while I got everything organized. A few things we bring along that we feel are helpful is a collapsible laundry basket, magnet hooks to hang sail and sign cards by the door. We also bring a shoe organizer to hang on the wall with magnets. If you are looking for some amazing magnets Harbor Freight sells a 50 lb magnet for like $4. I got two of them and there was no way our organizer was coming down...side note getting them back off the wall was quite interesting.
Everything was unpacked and put in its place. Just relaxing and waiting for the muster drill. The horn went off and off we went. We waited for a decent amount of time for all the people to arrive. It was kinda warm but not too bad.

Guess in this picture you can actually see our matching cruise shirts we had made as well.


Time for sailaway...we enjoy going up to deck 5 and watching from the couches as we sail away rather than the open deck.


We had to wait a little longer as the Valor was in port too and headed out before us.

The girls saw lots of dolphins as we were leaving and waved to the ferry.
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#13
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
Before dinner we headed down to deck 3 and then outside. The girls decided to do a little photo shoot.


The weather was a little stormy leaving Galveston and you could feel the waves a little bit but nothing bad.

Taking some photos on the bench


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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#14
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
With time before dinner still we headed into the Atrium to listen to music. The girls wanted to dance.

Mom and dad were excited to relax

For those of you interested in seeing the first day Texas has a different drink menu on Carnival. It is below.


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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#15
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
Time to make our way towards dinner but not without a stop at the Taste Bar.

It was kinda cool that during this cruise had a few different people come up to me and say hello from reading our cruise review from July. It is always fun to actually get to meet some of the people here on Cruise Critic.
Tonight's serving


We passed on the pumpkin bisque. Ainsley enjoyed the rib...she is my little sauce girl and loves to dip.

Makenna thought it was ok.

I find these to be very tasty so that meant more for me haha
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#16
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
We arrived at the dinning room.

We were upstairs in a booth just the 4 of us which was very nice.
Tonight's menu:



The kids got a menu as well but ended up getting stuff off the adult menu for the most part.
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#17
Somerset, New Jersey
12,862 Posts
Joined Apr 2013
GREAT start to your review! The Freedom is a ship we have yet to sail on.
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#18
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
Originally posted by Jamman54
GREAT start to your review! The Freedom is a ship we have yet to sail on.
Thanks....you would love the Freedom
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#19
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
Ainsley was very excited for her strawberry soup and she ate every last drop of it. She wished they would have had it every night.

We get a cheese plate as an appetizer to eat with the bread.

I had the vietnamese rolls which were good.

I also had the fried calamari and I thought this was very good. Definately something I will get the next time we cruise!
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007
#20
545 Posts
Joined Mar 2017
The fried shrimp was something most of us got at the table.


I also got the glazed pork loin but don't have a picture of that it was ok. Makenna decided she had to have a hot dog.

Next up was dessert.

Ainsley fell in love with her new favorite dessert, chocolate melting cake in which she had pretty much every night.

I had the strawberry dessert and butter pecan ice cream

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Past Cruises:
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, November 18, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Freedom- 7 day, July 22, 2017-Cruise Review
Carnival Triumph- 5 day, July 30, 2012
Carnival Conquest- 7 day, July 22, 2007