Wednesday, June 24, 2009
ahhh yes, the cruise.
every year, my dear grammy takes the whole family on a vacation together. she has taken us all over the world and we love every minute of it. this year, our travels took all 23 of us to the caribbean for a pretty sweet cruise. this is a picture overload- so if you don't really think we are all that cool, just go ahead and skip to the next blog you were planning on reading today. i won't be offended.
so we flew into orlando in small, separate groups; yet, we somehow all manged to find our way into orlando's ghetto where super 8 rooms are a cheap 25 bucks a room (that even includes breakfast, cha ching!). despite the sketchy neightborhood, we all felt safe and right at home as we crammed into one another's rooms to catch up and hang out. little owen was as high as a kite until at least 4 in the morning.
the next morning, we all packed into the vans and headed out to board the ship.
cade was 'the most excited person on the entire cruise ship' and he let everyone know it. here he is making his first step from the gangway to the boat.
the first day we spent getting to know the ship and exploring as we sailed off to our desitnations.
our first stop was in the bahamas. we went out to atlantis resort on the island and visited the aquarium and such. they had cool statues and stuff, so we took a few jumping shots. yes, to answer the question i can already hear you asking, there was a crowd of people watching us jump of this ledge. but to see my grammy jump like this is priceless.
these are the jellyfish cade got to see because he snuck into some restricted area. he took a picture for the rest of us because there is no way anyone else but cade could get through without being caught. that's just cade's life.
the next few days at sea were spent gorging ourselves on delicious eats.
cade made sure to weigh himself before the vacation to measure how much poundage he could put on. in the end, it was a full 5 pounds. i wasn't that excited about stepping on the luggage scale at the airport so the ticketsales guy could shout out my weight for the record- so i will just assumed i gained 20 poounds or so... at least that is what i feel like.
nana and gramps loved spending time with the grandbabies.
our next stop was st. thomas. it was beautiful there. we did a little shopping and then boarded a ferry to another island, st. john, where we went snorkling. i wish i would have taken more pictures but we literally spent all of our time in the water.
our final stop was st martin. we had so much fun here. we all rented jeeps and took off to some great beaches. the unfortunate part was after just a few photos, our camera died and my sister left hers in another bag... so trust me when i say this place is great. here is one of 2 photos we got, and while it may look like we are safely enjoying the beach- a few seconds later a big wave took both of us out.
the coolest beach was about 50 yards off of the island's main landing strip. we would play on the beach and watch as all the planes would come flying in to land. it seriously looked like they were going to land on us. there was a huge jet that was getting ready for takeoff and we all foolishly decided to stand behind it as it powered up. dirt and rocks pelted into us and the blast sent one guy tumbling backwards into the ocean. if you ever get to st. martin- go to this beach! <- click that link to see a youtube video.
the rest of the time was spent on the boat as we traveled back to florida. cade was sure to keep a daily schedule in his pocket as to not miss anything. this resulted in a first place win in the ping pong tournament,
and our participation in bean bag toss competitions
mini golf tournaments
and free throw contests. cade didn't miss a thing and it was a blast being on a cruise with him.
on the way back to the airport, cade lied to my grammy and instead of taking us to get food, he took us all over tampa and even to his old apartment complex. i laugh now because i can still hear my grammy's voice yelling for him to turn back around because we were 'lost.'
really though, i am so thankful my grammy has these vacations every year. it is so fun to be with the whole fam and to make all these crazy memories.
i wonder where we'll go next year...