First a couple things – my blog won’t always look this way! I am BEYOND excited for the new layout and design coming in the next month. It will be easier to navigate and look so much more customized and professional. Thanks for your patience and reading anyways. Same goes for when I’m posting – I promise to be more consistent. Moving, traveling, unpacking, working, you name it – it’s been a whirlwind. One of these days life will slow down and until then I’ll do my best!
Now, on to today’s post. If you’ve had a crazy few months like we have, you can probably relate to the excitement I had about a vacation we planned months ago thankfully – a Royal Caribbean cruise that was set to sail to Bahamas and Key West. I had never been to the Bahamas and LOVE water parks, so we were looking forward to Atlantis and a beach day at CocoCay with Brian and Amy, friends of Clint’s from college.
Fast forward to one week before the cruise, Hurricane Matthew was swirling in the South Caribbean. Already a nervous traveller, this was not ideal. My mom was all set to come down and Clint had taken the time off work. Royal Caribbean let us know about a couple of days before our itinerary was going to be changed to Cozumel and Key West to avoid potentially dangerous water (understandable). Knowing we’d still enjoy the food, entertainment and sunny skies on the ship, we were looking forward to the cruise nonetheless. I know a lot of people were disappointed by the itinerary changes, and I had been to Cozumel before, so I was one of them.
Day 1: We decided to spend a night in Miami, and it was such a blast. Clint and I had stayed in South Beach before we were engaged, and had dinner at Scarpetta in the Fontainebleau. This time we also stayed at the Fontainebleau and ate dinner at Scarpetta again, this time with Brian and Amy. The homemade pasta and amazing wine menu were fantastic! I highly recommend the polenta starter, ohmygosh it was heaven!
Day 2: We headed to the port and boarded the ship. It was pretty straightforward and right away we were amazed by the size of Enchantment of the Seas. We had done one cruise years before and it was a much smaller Carnival cruise ship. This one was nicer, the rooms were better, and we had a fantastic balcony.
Day 3: Day at sea! We explored the ship, laid by the pool, worked out (it was a big gym) and I won a $100 spa gift certificate so we had a couples massage. We also enjoyed the casino and entertainment on the ship.
Day 4: Cozumel. We decided to go to the water park Playa Mia. While it definitely wasn’t Atlantis, the beach was beautiful and the water inflatables were really fun (and exhausting). Amy and I tried the “fish pedicure” and she was way more adventurous than I was. The sensation of little fish biting your toes was BEYOND weird. I only ended up being able to put my hands in. This day we learned we were going to skip Key West and spend another day at sea because of the hurricane. Again – disappointing – but happy to be safe.
Day 5: My nerves and missing my kids was setting in on this day. I knew it would happen sooner or later, but I was missing Shep and Beau so much. My mom was amazing and we did FaceTime several times, but it didn’t replace snuggling both of them. We were also getting a little nervous about whether or not we would be able to make it back to Miami on Friday like originally planned. The hurricane’s forecast was beyond scary, and while I wanted to get home on time, I also didn’t want us in such choppy water that our safety was at risk. The weather on the ship this day was beyond beautiful, and we only had about 5 minutes of little sprinkles. We spent the majority of our time at the pool like normal.
Day 6: We got announcements that morning that the port wasn’t going to be open until later, and we had to wait with several other cruise ships to get the go ahead to dock. This was the only time the water was choppy. The cabinets in our room would swing open and there were several times Clint and I would look at each other like “oh my gosh, did you feel that?” We took advantage of the time and napped (we knew we couldn’t get that at home!)
Thankfully – again we feel like God continued to protect us throughout this trip – American Airlines rebooked us on a direct flight to Columbus. This got us home sooner and we got to avoid Charlotte which was our original connection and could have resulted in us getting a cancelled flight to Columbus. The second our flight hit the ground I was beyond relieved to be home and see our babies. When I got home, they were fast asleep but I couldn’t help myself and picked them up and snuggled them anyways! We spent the weekend with lots of laundry, hanging outside in the amazing cooler fall temps and prepping for the week ahead.
While we were disappointed with our itinerary changes, we really loved Royal Caribbean and would book another cruise – just maybe not hurricane season this time.
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