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athenasbyshanna

Elation Birthday Cruise December 15-20, 2012 Picture Journal and Review

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Well, I am feeling a little bit better and decided to get some things done on the computer. I will start this Picture Review today and try and give you installments each day.

 

First a little background: We are Shanna (31) and Matt (28), have been dating for 3 years and this was our first cruise.

This is us in front of our hotel: The Westin - Canal Place in NOLA

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We cruised with one of my best friends from high school Lauren (30) and her fiance Alex (26?)

Me, Matt, Lauren and Alex

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and my friend Savannah (23) and her Mom (I won't put her age as I'm not sure exactly, anyways!).

Savannah, Dawna and me!

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A warning about this review: This was my 31st birthday cruise, which I had begun calling my 21st Birthday Re-do. We started off with a bunch of friends in New Orleans the night before and there will be a lot of drinking pictures! I may be 31, but I am super young at heart and most of my friends are actually younger than me. So, if drinking's not your thing, sorry! But there will be great pics of non-drinking things, too. :-)

 

Side Note: I just realized that Photobucket changed the order of my pics so this is going to be even more difficult and time-consuming than I thought! So, be patient, bear with me and let's press on!

Edited by athenasbyshanna

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We drove down to New Orleans from NW Florida on Friday so that some friends not coming on the cruise could hang out for my birthday!

Joy, Anna, Me, Red

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Joy, Jarrod, Matt

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I'll integrate more pictures from the night, but just so you see who all the players are!

 

We had all gotten a pretty good deal on The Westin for Friday night through H*tw*re. Lauren got mine and her rooms for $114.xx including taxes.

Westin Canal Place

Got in at 2pm, check-in was a breeze. Self parked in adjoining parking garage – two minor complaints: windy driveway(?) up the parking garage made me woozy before I ever started drinking or stepped foot on the boat. . . . and it is very hard to get from the parking garage to your hotel room with luggage. Imagine me, two rolling suitcases, one purse, one laptop bag, one grocery bag with cruise friends’ goodies and a hung shirt and jacket the BF left in the car. You have to get in one elevator, go to Canal shops, walk all the way through the movie theatre, get in another elevator go to the lobby, walk around the corner to yet another elevator to get the rooms. Weird weird setup. . .

Beautiful Hotel, nice clean room, excellent view of river and city.

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Weird elevator setup with Canal shops, parking garage, etc.

Flat screen TV, Coffee maker & Starbucks coffee, chair and ottoman, open space. Comfy King bed great comforter and pillows

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You can hear EVERYTHING in the hallways – screaming children, crying children, yelling children. . . oh, but you cannot hear their parents trying to keep them quiet. Weird phenomenon.

Lighting in the bathroom is amazing.

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I though my makeup was a little “much” when we were going out, but then all of the pictures before 10 pm turned out amazing!

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After 10 pm, something weird happened and my makeup made me look Drunk!

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Front desk staff was friendly enough. I did leave my friends’ goodies at the desk and they forgot to give them to them at check-in. So when coming in at midnight, the friendly girl at the desk said she would bring them up right away. We shall see if they got them. Oops: Lauren and Alex got woken up by our Goodie bag drop off. They did not have the same hotel experience as us. . .

Edited by athenasbyshanna

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It is taking FOREVER to upload my Cruise pics to photobucket. So I will try and put some pics of NOLA up, but it might be another day or 2 before we get to the actual cruise review!

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Some pictures of our night on Bourbon Street:

 

Trying to teach Matt how to smile normal for pictures:

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Because this is his normal picture pose:

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Almost. . .

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Cool hallway in a hotel or something we were walking by

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and their Christmas tree

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Me trying to take a picture. . .

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Our first drinks out of our hotel room: 2 for 1 deal = $13. . . I don't get it.

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For some reason I felt the need to choke myself with all the beads I got. . .

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Remember this was only the first bar! I think we were all just super excited to be away from home and celebrating mine and Anna's birthdays!

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He got it!!! (not. . .)

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Jello shots. . . .

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The MC started asking where "Shanna and Anna" were so we went down to the dance floor thinking he was going to do something special for our birthday. Instead he found 2 little hotties at a table by themselves and got "distracted". We took a picture with him anyways,. . . .

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For some reason I kept frowning. . .. Someone must have made me sad

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Oh I think Jarrod gave me my birthday spanks. . . .

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The "boys". . .Joy, Jarrod, Matt

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The bead monster

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And this is apparently how I felt about it. . .

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Lauren and Alex finally arrived from their long trip from SC and we decided to eat pizza for dinner! Yum!

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Bourbon Street Christmas lights

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We decided to head to Frenchman Street and didn't realize how early it was for nightlife since we had started so early! So we ended up eating and going back to the hotel.

Oh! we did make a souvenir shop stop!

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Found a Mexican restaurant on Frenchman and had a little birthday dinner hehe

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Somehow we lost Jarrod

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Birthday Sopapilla

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Beignets from Cafe Du Monde (open 24 hours)

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Back to the hotel :-(

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I'll spare you the drunk pictures from the walk home to the hotel. It was pretty funny when I realized it was only a little past midnight and we were hitting the hay for the night in NOLA!! We really are getting old! Guess it didn't help that we started drinking before 4!

 

Woke up real early and couldn't sleep so I packed up my stuff and got dressed. Took some pictures of the view:

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These might be from the parking garage. . I can't remember.. ..

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Then waiting for Lauren and Alex:

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Still donning the birthday crown even though my birthday wasn't till Sunday!

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12/15/2012

Got on the ship! Way later than planned. Again, Alex and Lauren did not have as delightful of an experience at the hotel as Matt and I did so there were some setbacks and time delays with checkout and parking for them. Did a CVS run for Gatorade, Wine and forgot the room spray!

Parked in Fulton St garage, shuttled to Carnival. Only issue with the Garage/Shuttle was we couldn’t hear anything the driver said in the back of the shuttle so we didn’t know what to do about our luggage or where to go to check-in so it was a little confusing. But after that it was a breeze to check in and get on the boat!

Not a wild bird! Obviously someone's pet we saw while walking down Canal Street!

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Alex and Lauren loved Betty Boop!

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Waiting for the other couple to board the shuttle!!

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Almost there!

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In the terminal!

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Thanks for the review, I sailed Elation in July but it was a bonding trip with my 11 year old son and my step mom so not so much a drinking trip ;-) You've got a great sense of humor though and I'm really enjoying another perspective! Keep it up!

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Enjoying your pics and review so far. Looks like y'all had a good time down here in NOLA. Calling it a night just after midnight in the Quarter is a bit early but you did start kind of early. Looking forward to more of your review.

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Enjoying your review thus far. I have stayed at the same hotel. It was nice. Sailing in February on the Elation. Can't wait to read more.

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Sailed the Elation a couple of times already and will be back on her in 24 days! Can't wait! Always a good time! Gonna do my best to make it down to NOLA earlier the day before so hubby and I can at least enjoy a little of that before the cruise. We're driving down from Memphis. My cousin and her hubby are coming in from Florida, too, to cruise with us.

 

Can't wait to see more of your review!

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Thanks for the review. We stayed at the Westin the night after you did (we sailed on the Conquest on 12/16). I was not happy. Elevator service was non-existent once you got to your room. We had to walk from the 14th floor to the 11th floor so we could catch the other elevator to the ground floor. Then when we went to check out, we had to go all the way up to the 25th floor before getting back down to the 11th. Walls were thin. I called for help with the luggage and was told it would be 30 mins. It just wasn't a great stay at all.

 

Can't wait to read the rest of your review.

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I appreciate a cruise review, this being cruise critic and all... But when do we get to the cruise? I hope for as many cruise pics!

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Having fun through your review. Cant wait till its our turn!!!:D

You'll have a blast!

 

Thanks for the review, I sailed Elation in July but it was a bonding trip with my 11 year old son and my step mom so not so much a drinking trip ;-) You've got a great sense of humor though and I'm really enjoying another perspective! Keep it up!

 

Yeah, its a little different than a lot of CC reviews! ;-P

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I appreciate a cruise review, this being cruise critic and all... But when do we get to the cruise? I hope for as many cruise pics!

 

It's coming, I promise! Photobucket and my interent were giving me problems, so hoping I can do a lot more today for you all!

 

I will be cruising in 14 days on the Elation! Enjoying your review. Please continue .... :D

You will love her! Small ship but beautiful and soo much fuN!

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Ugh, I keep trying to multi-quote and its messing me up! I will try and get a lot more done today and tomorrow. Photobucket is taking a long time to upload my 1000 or so pictures!

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Ok, I am back for hopefully more than a few more installments. We'll see how photobucket , CC and my internet cooperate!

Where was I??

Ahhh yes, getting onto the boat!!

Lauren and Alex

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Could be our luggage! But its not, I don't think. . .

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Allllmost!!!!

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Lauren walking over the edge!!

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My first step onto the boat (or a mistaken picture. . .):

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Atrium staircase

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Matt beat me in!

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Got to the room and found a bottle of Champagne, Ship on a Stick and a Happy Birthday note from John Heald! I had posted on his page when I first started planning the trip and was obsessed with all things Carnival to tell him how I liked his blog. Later found his facebook page and followed him for the months before my cruise and LOVED his sense of humor and witty posts. Posted again a week ago just to thank him for giving me one more outlet for my cruise obsession/insanity and that I loved his blog. How sweet of him to leave me these gifts!! I was overjoyed when I got into the room! I also had a Beer Cooler gift set from my Aunt and Uncle for my birthday! I’m loved! :cool:

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He doesn't waste any time

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The safe. Super easy to use with your debit card. We used it all week

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Making ourselves at home!

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We're finally on the boat! Time to get some food and maybe a DOD!

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Lauren took pictures of our pizza. I'll have to add them later when I can get them on photobucket. I was too hungry and thirsty to remember to take pics! :eek:

But I did remember to pull my camera out for this:

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"Officially the Best day EVER!"

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Some pool pics:

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Kids already in the hot tub! The weather in NOLA was perfect for this day!!

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Atrium from above - Everyone getting their first drinks and already a line at guest services! Sheesh people, relax!

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Found a kiosk to check our sail and sign accounts. Had $100 from my aunt and Uncle and my $50 from the Mastercard promo! Changed to a cash account with no problems!

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Word to the wise: Don't get excited and slap the lighted signs above your head telling you what's where. Those little lights are sharp and cut my finger!

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