On the mirror in our bedroom, there’s a picture of the girls with the characters from Frozen. If I’m being honest, I have no idea how it got there, but it’s there and every time Kate sees it, she asks – Disney boat? We go Disney boat? Mostly, I’ve had to tell her no, that today is not the day we are getting on the Disney boat.
But today I got to pick her up out of her crib and say, “Kate. Guess where we’re going?!” To which she responded confidently, “My Disney boat!”
Macy still had school today, but we picked her up at 10 (gotta keep trying for that perfect attendance) and off we went toward Galveston. This was our first time to take the boat out of Galveston and let me just pause for a second and tell you how glorious it was NOT getting on a plane. No restrictions on luggage. No packing extra plane activities. No getting three little people (and their stuff) through security. No waiting at the gate.
It. Was. Amazing.
My dad dropped us off at the building where you get on the boat (port? gate? whatever.) and went to park the car while we waited with the luggage. During this 15 minutes or so, we had several people ask us if they could take our luggage. I appreciated their helpfulness, but wasn’t ready to give up my bags when I wasn’t sure how long it would take to get them back. The older two girls really stepped it up and each took on a rolling bag, which made our load much easier to bear.
We boarded right away and started off our vacation with the way I’m guessing everyone does on a cruise ship – by eating. Then we hit the kid’s club and played for a bit until the rooms were ready. The entire boat has been renovated recently, so it was fun to see all the changes they’ve made.
Over the years, Disney has changed the way that you have see certain characters on the boat. A few years ago, it was a first-come, first-serve kind of thing, where you just lined up for who you wanted to see. Then, they changed to a ticketed system, where you went to guest services and got tickets to see characters. The tickets were free, but you had to go get them in order to meet a character. This was only for princesses and Disney Junior characters – all the regulars were going to around the boat every day for anyone to see.
Anyway, now they’ve gone to an online system and you can log on to your account to get tickets for specific characters – Elsa/Anna/Olaf, the princesses, and a Disney Junior breakfast. All of these are free, but no ticket, no characters.
I didn’t know about the new system and when we booked the trip, I had no idea you were supposed to go online and book your character greetings as well. So by the time I figured it out, the Frozen characters were booked up. I called and they told me to go to guest services when I got on the boat.
When I went to guest services, I was told at first that there weren’t any more tickets to the Frozen characters. The girl behind the counter told me she would let me know if any spots opened up. I told her that was fine, but I had three daughters were who hoping to see Elsa and Anna. I also mentioned gently that it would be a good idea if the representative who books you on the cruise tells you to get online and get tickets to these special events so that my situation doesn’t happen to others. She looked at me with sympathy and told me she completely understood and that she would do her very best to help.
Within a couple of hours, we had tickets to the Frozen characters. I couldn’t believe it. That girl had really gone to bat for me – for my girls – and given them something completely extra and completely amazing. I went back downstairs to find her, but couldn’t.
So the next day, we got all dressed up and took our pictures with Anna, Elsa, and Olaf.
Definitely a highlight for the girls.
After taking pictures, changing clothes, and eating (yes, again), we were walking down a hallway when I saw the girl that worked at the front desk. I told the girls what she had done for us and they all hugged her and told her Merry Christmas. I told her how much it had meant to them to see Elsa and Anna, and how much I appreciated her help.
We got to see a lot of other characters on the boat – but Kate-Kate wasn’t going anywhere near the boys.
Except Mickey Mouse, of course.
Fortunately, there were plenty of girls to see as well.
And yes, in true Kate-Kate fashion, she only wore shoes about 20 percent of the time.
We did manage a couple of extra family pics –
Even to the point that Selah was DONE taking pictures.
Traveling with three littles is always exhausting, but Disney does know how to make it as good as possible. Their kids club has constant entertainment and characters coming in and out, they’ve got a nursery that will keep any kiddo under three, a TV in every room with a constant stream of Disney movies and Disney Junior, multiple pools, water slide, a splash pad for non-potty trained kids, and some amazing shows. Of course, the highlight for me is when the older two go to kid’s club, Kate takes a nap, Dad and Jeff are playing shuffleboard/backgammon/whatever, and I am in the room sitting quietly reading a book. Glorious.
We came back to real-life on the 23rd (a bit late due to a fog delay) and drove back home just in time to get everything back together for Christmas.