Thursday, September 15, 2011

Cruising

At the end of August, Owen and I finally went on our cruise to the Bahamas. We booked it forever ago for our anniversary/birthdays so it seemed like the time was never going to come. We looked forward to it ALL summer long.

The week before our cruise, Hurricane Irene rolled through the Atlantic and made us really nervous. It went right over all of the places we were going. Luckily, everything was back to normal and mostly cleaned up by the time we got there. I guess that's the risk we take for booking during hurricane season.

So we flew to Miami on Sunday. My little sister, Jessica, and her husband, Jake, came along too. Monday morning we all got on the boat in Miami and sailed away. We spent that day exploring the ship, eating all you can eat ice cream cones, getting settled into our tiny rooms and avoiding the crazy lightning storm outside. (I couldn't believe the kind of rain storms Florida had...it was kind of scary).

That night we went to the first formal dinner. We had the early dinner and our table consisted of us 4. The food was yummy, but kind of too fancy for my taste. I honestly would have been happy eating at the buffet for dinner every night...they had a lot more choices of food and you didn't have to dress up :) That night we played cards, went to a bingo game (and lost), watched a comedy show and watched a dance party. Cruise ships make for great people watching.

Leaving Miami
Owen was sad that people didn't wave us off like in Titanic. He he

The greatest thing about cruises is you drive through the night to your destination and by the time you wake up in the morning...you're there! Our kind of vacation...no effort at all for us. Every.single.morning Owen would jump out of bed and look out of our little fish bowl of a window to see where we were. And we could never get off the boat fast enough. Funny boy. So Tuesday morning we woke up in Nassau, Bahamas. We had tickets to go to the water park at the Atlantis Resort. It did not disappoint! It was our favorite day by far. I would have been happy just staying there for the rest of the time (maybe another trip?). The hotel was huge, the beaches were gorgeous and the sun was shinning and warm.

The water park was the best! It had lots of fun body slides and tube slides. I have been to quite a few water parks but the slides at this one were crazy. Super steep, super fast and super long. I screamed like a scared little girl in all of them. And maybe Owen too :) Everything around was was so tropical. The best part of the park was the lazy river. Hands down. It was a mile long, full of river rapids, it had tracks that took you up to slides and big waves rolling through. I almost died laughing on this thing. So fun. We also checked out some of the private beaches at the hotel. The water was amazingly warm and really clear. The sand was almost white. I love a good beach.


Atlantis!


You would go through fish/shark aquariums while going through the slides...
How cool is that!?



One of the beaches


Look how happy he is


One of the attractions they had at Atlantis were the dolphins. They were crazy to watch! I can't believe all of the tricks they learn and how sweet they are. They are amazing creatures. Jessica and Jake forked over the extra cash to swim with them. Even the baby ones. I about died of cuteness when Jessica told me how she swam with the baby dolphin.




Goodbye Atlantis!


Tuesday night on the boat consisted of a buffet dinner, around the world ping-pong, karaoke, more cards, hot tubing, and a sweet game of speed on the basket ball court. The best part of the night was laying on the top deck under the stars at the front of the boat. It was so neat to see nothing but the dark ocean everywhere with the moon's reflection shinning down.
Cruise Tip: Go on a cruise with people you know! That way you always have people to do things with. Never a dull moment when you go with others.



The boys' favorite : unlimited pizza bar
We had to stop by here every night for their midnight snack.


Wednesday morning we arrived in Coco Cay. It is a little island in the Bahamas that is owned by the Royal Caribbean cruise line. It also happened to be Owen's birthday day! So birthday boy woke up and got his presents, then we were quickly off the boat and on the island. They had beach chairs all around the beaches, hammocks were hanging on the palm trees and there were lots of activities to choose from. We were excited for a chill day on the beach.

The first thing we signed up to do in the ocean was the jumpy playground. It had giant trampolines, slides, and other fun jumpy toys. We were planning our obstacle course and getting really excited to play in the water. Now this is when the day started to turn bad. I was the last one to swim out since I ran back and got my camera. As soon as I reached the ball that Owen was on, my entire body felt like I got paper cuts and then it started to burn. I knew right away it had to be a jelly fish because I could feel the nasty tentacles brushing on me. So I told Owen and everyone else (who were already on the bouncy things) that I got stung. And guess what? They didn't believe me! Owen told me it was probably just grass. Seriously? Grass? And they happened to leave me in the water since they couldn't pull me up on the jumpy ball. Jerks. SO I swam back to the beach. I noticed my brother in law was not far behind me and he said he started to get stung too. Jessica and Owen were still out on the trampolines, but we realized no one was in the water at all. Jess and Owen said they looked down and saw jelly fish EVERYWHERE. Like every two feet there was a jelly fish. Sick. Next thing I know Jessica is getting a ride on a kayak by the life guard. And Owen is swimming through the jelly fish invested waters with a family of hysterical Mexicans on his back. They were all crying and scared so he took them all and brought them back in. It was kind of funny...it reminded me of the pioneer boys taking kids across the cold river :) So everyone ended up getting stung like crazy. Luckily, they were mild stinging jelly fish so the stings weren't that bad. I guess the current from the hurricane brought them in. But it scared us bad enough that we did not want to get back in the deep water.

Then to make the day more exciting, it started pouring rain. There weren't too many places to keep dry and the rain would not stop. We eventually just sat in the ocean (since it was pretty warm) and tried to wait out the rain storm. But it didn't pass so we got back on to the boat. We ended up taking a wonderful 3 hour nap then watched movies in our bed. What an exciting day in CoCo Cay. I just felt bad for Owen since his day was ruined, but he didn't seem to care at all.






Right before the jelly fish attack began


Chilling on the boat after our nap


Wednesday night we had a special birthday dinner at Johnny Rockets for Owen. It was special. because it was the only restaurant on the boat. But with the $5 cover charge and all that yummy food, we were in heaven. We ate lots of onion rings, burgers and shakes. We then went to the Love/Marriage game show that night which was surprisingly hilarious. At midnight, they had a buffet at the pool. The best part was the huge table of fruit and chocolate fountain. Delish. Then came the white out dance party by the pool. We got our white on and danced like crazy people. I guess that's one of the good things about now knowing the people around you. It turned out to be a lot of fun and probably the best night on the ship. Owen loved his 'birthday dance party' and it ended up making his birthday day really fun.


Waiting for the show to start

Midnight buffet


Yea, that's my 27 year old husband.





Thursday morning's stop was Key West, FL. We had reservations to go snorkeling here, but we didn't want to commit to 4 hours of it away from the island, so we bailed on that idea. We ended up renting little scooters and cruised the island. This place was awesome! I couldn't believe it was a part of Florida. The water was turquoise blue and the island was so chill. It made me want to live there. We checked out town, spent the afternoon at the beach and finished the day with food and shopping. And I also had to get the local Key Lime Pie. Yummy! I wish I could have brought some home with me.









After our Key West adventures, we got on the boat for our last dinner. We went to a few shows and played more games.





Friday morning we were back where we started in Miami and got off the boat bright and early. We decided to stay in Miami an extra day so we weren't flying home until the next day. Naturally, we headed to the beach. We went to Miami Beach and spent most of the day there. This beach was a million times better than the beach we live by in California. It was my first time on the Atlantic coast and I loved it. The water is so much warmer and clearer. I love. We layed out in the warm sun and snorkeled in the water. But as soon as we started seeing jelly fish in the water, Jessica and I stayed on our rafts. I wasn't about to get stung again. We left the beach when the afternoon Miami storm rolled through.






The best part about the end of our trip was our last minute visit to Arizona. We had a stop in Arizona on the way home, so we decided to just get off the plane there instead of going home to Cali. I got to spend my birthday in Arizona, we got to see our puppy, we spent lots of time with mine and Owen's family, we got to meet our new nephew Mason AND we had a great Arizona Labor Day. It was the best.



We loved our cruise! It was a great little vacation for us (and actually pretty cheap). Now that we are 'experienced' cruisers, we know what we want for our next one!


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Atlantis

Just a sneak peak of some of our adventures from our cruise to the Bahamas a few weeks ago.

This is from our stop at Atlantis. We spent the day at the resort's AWESOME water park
*lots and lots of pictures coming soon*

video