Saturday, March 29, 2014

Cruise Recap : Did we enjoy it? (and some pictures)

I'm sure that everyone is sick of cruise recap posts. If so, you can go ahead and skip over this post. I'm writing these because I want to look back and remember everything. Too bad I am still writing these 6 months later. Oops.

We loved our anniversary. It was the best to date. We drove down to Cocoa Beach, spent an hour looking for a hotel room, spent the day at the beach, and ate the best buffalo shrimp I have ever tasted. And that was just Friday - Saturday. Our week was off to a great start. To think that we had basically 9 days free from stress was fantastic. Sunday, boarding was  a breeze. It took us no time at all, and we were on the ship before we knew it. It was a ship we had never been on before, so exploring was the first order of business. (We didn't figure out which side of the ship our room was on until at least half way through the cruise.)

Leaving port meant we were officially on vacation. We watched the ship pulling out of port from the helicopter pad (Freedom of the Seas : Deck 4, all the way to the front - it is no where near as crowded as the upper decks), but eventually made it back to our room to sit out on the balcony as we headed toward our first stop. We had the late dinner which meant that we had plenty of time to unpack, and see what all the ship had to offer. I think I walked over 10 miles in the 7 hours between boarding and dinner. The first night of a cruise for me is always the most exhausting. Between getting boarded, unpacking, and trying to figure out where everything is, you just get run down pretty quick.

When we woke up the next morning, we were at CoCo Cay. As I mentioned before, we decided not to get off the ship. Instead we enjoyed the FlowRider, the pool and lots of pizza. We even attended an art auction which was actually pretty interesting. That night, was the Captain's welcome which meant it was a formal night, the nights that are my favorite on a cruise. We dressed up and headed out to the reception. Side note : We got a bunch of compliments about how good we looked. Obviously I am extremely hard on myself, so I didn't agree, but it was nice to hear.

The next day was a day at sea. Talk about relaxing. We slept in, ate breakfast in bed, and just enjoyed our day. Cs love for the FlowRider continued. We spent hours out in the sun. Dinner was more casual, so it didn't take any time to get ready.

Having a balcony room was a great choice. When you pull into ports when you have a room without a balcony, you have to go to one of the decks to watch. Seeing as how most all the rooms on a cruise ship are in fact interior rooms or rooms with just a window, lots of people crowd the decks. Having a balcony meant that we were able to watch the ship pull into port without fighting through a crowd. The views for St Thomas were amazing. 

Ive already talked about our time on St Thomas. That night was our anniversary dinner, so even though it was not formal, we decided to dress up a little more than we would have for the main dining room. We celebrated by going to Chop's. It was fantastic, and I recommend you go as well if you are ever on Freedom of the Seas.

We were in St Maarten the next day. St Maarten was beautiful, but you can read more about it here. Back on board, we ended up at another art auction where C accidentally bid on some art that we didnt want. We were so glad someone bid after him. 

Our last two days were spent at sea. Those days were my favorite. They were spent sleeping in, laying out, watching C fall countless times on the FlowRider, and just relaxing. We had out last formal night, and once again, we dressed up. 

We got all packed up the night before, and actually got a decent nights sleep. We were up a 6 am, and ready to go by 6:15 am. Waiting to depart was pretty easy, and the whole departing process was easier than any other cruise I have been on. Leaving was bittersweet. We were lucky though because it felt like I was a lot longer than a week long vacation. It went by slow, so heading home wasn't near as bad as I had anticipated. By the time we got home though, I was already wanting to plan on next cruise. Cruising is just our vacation of choice, and I am sure we will go on plenty more! In fact, only about 200 days until our next week long cruise! 

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