Sunday, April 3, 2016

Mighty Magnus Makes A Wish: Boarding The Ship

 I left off my last post at the hotel where we had just missed the shuttle to the port where we would board our ship. I went and spoke to the front desk and complained that they told us the shuttle wouldn't leave until 10 AM and it was only 9:50. They told us that the shuttle was full, so they were getting our family a private company to shuttle us to the port. 

Oh! How awesome! Our nice, large, black with tinted windows SUV pulled up and our driver got out and put one of those little step stools down for us to get up into the shuttle. It was great having our own car and driver. The drive to the port was beautiful, even though the day was overcast. When we pulled into port to be dropped off, we were all amazed at all of the enormous ships that were waiting to be boarded. We had tried to tell the kids how big the ship would be, but they were all still shocked at the size. 
 We had a long wait ahead of us. The line was fairly long and something was wrong with the x-ray machines, so we had to wait for them to be fixed. The kids got a little antsy waiting in line for an hour and not even moving, but we played a few games and soon enough the line got going. We had to go through the whole security line and then through the whole check-in line, and then the photo line, and then the line to board, and then the line to get the kid's bracelets. These have our emergency meeting area on them should one of the kids get lost and that number showed us where to go to meet up with them.

The girls and I were ready with our cruisin' hats on!

We finally got everything squared away and then we were informed our rooms wouldn't be ready for about an hour. We decided to head up to the Kid's Club and get the kids registered so they could go in the playroom whenever they were ready. Then we headed to the buffets! We were hungry for lunch and the kids were so amazed at all of the food there was! 

After that we still had some time to kill before our rooms would be ready so we went and booked our excursions for the ports we would be stopping at. And finally we went to our cabins! They were tiny but oh so cute. We got two cabins that conjoined and it was so handy. The 4 kids shared one room. It is so cool how they manage to fit so much in such a small space. There are two twin beds on each wall and then two bunk beds that come out of the ceiling. In mine and Andy's cabin our twin beds were pushed together to make a king bed and one bunk was coming out of the ceiling for Magnus. It was perfect. Even though the rooms are so tiny, there is plenty of storage all over the room. We were able to completely unpack and get everything put away. 

After that the kids were ready to swim, so they all changed and headed up to the pools. It was pretty chilly in the pool so they spent most of their time in the hot tub.

Swimming didn't last long and at 5 o'clock everyone on the ship was required to go to an emergency evacuation meeting.  It was pretty boring and the kids had a hard time sitting still and listening because we could barely hear what was being said. 

When that was finally over we checked out the whole ship that would be our home for the next week. It was incredible. So beautiful and luxurious!
 Pulling away from land!

Watching the incredible sunset.

We ran back to our cabin to freshen up for dinner and found a packet from Make-A-Wish in our room. The packet had a Make-A-Wish contact (she was actually over the Kid's Club) named Janine. The letter basically said how honored Royal Caribbean was that Magnus had chosen to have his wish aboard their ship and that they would do everything they could to make it extra special. They included many things throughout the week that they were going to do for our family to make his wish unforgettable (more about these things later). One of those things was $100 credit to the arcade. The kids were thrilled. The letter also asked that we meet with Janine and her assistant in a little while. We headed up to the kids club to meet with them and they were both so sweet. She asked us all about Magnus and our family and wondered if there was anything they could do to help improve our trip and let us know she would keep in close contact with us throughout the week. She also told us they would refund any excursions we had booked in his name, so that as super nice of them as well. 

After squaring things away with Janine we headed to dinner. The kids just wanted to skip the dining room and hit the buffets again, so that's what we did.

After dinner we hit up the arcades. The kids loved it there and would spend many nights on the trip using Magnus' arcade credit perfecting their gaming skills ;)

 After the arcade the Kid's Clubs were open for the night, so the kids went and hung out in there, playing games and meeting new friends for the week. Magnus was in the 3-5 age club, Bear was in the 7-9 age group, and Daphne and Jonah were together in the 10-11 age group. lucky Laylah was in the younger teen group (age 12-15) and they actually didn't need to be signed in and out, but were free to roam the ship (and the young teen club) as they pleased. All of the kids had a blast in the clubs and everyone made some new friends. 

After a long couple of days of travel we headed to bed early (after Daphne had lost a tooth and put it under her pillow for the Tooth Fairy to come find all the way out in the middle of the ocean!)

It was a great first day aboard the Navigator of the Seas!

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