Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Jan 15, 2012 - Florida and Bahamas vacation

We got a break from the usual cold, gray, cloudy NW winter and a had a family reunion/vacation in Florida.  Well, actually the reunion was aboard Disney's newest cruise-ship, the Disney Dream.  This is the 3rd largest cruise ship in the world.  4000 passengers and 1600 crew.  That's a LOT of people!

Kathy's entire family was there; her brother Brad and family from NY, brother Les and family from Colorado, and her parent's from Idaho.  There were 15 of us and we had adjacent rooms on the ship.  We were even able to have the crew open up the decks so we had one long balcony connecting all 4 rooms.  The kids loved this.  The ship left Port Canaveral FL and cruised overnight to Disney's private island in the Bahamas (Castaway Cay), then over to Nassau for a day, then out to sea for a day, then back to Castaway Cay, and finally back to Florida.  It was a great 5-day cruise.

We then spent the next week going to Epcot, a Disney Waterpark, a Disney indoor arcade, a Disney minerature golf, several other miniature golfs, an airboat ride through the swamps, and Universal Studios.  Prior to the cruise we spent several days exploring Florida by car.  We made stops at West Palm Beach, South Miami, and drove into the keys.  We put about 900 miles on our rental car in the two weeks we had it.  I feel like we saw quite a bit of southern Florida although it would have been nice to have another week to explore

Here are some pictures from the trip.

Florida Keys

The name of the cruise ship

Early morning walk while the boat was underway

Kevin catches a wave at Universal Studios

Getting ready for our air boat ride to see aligators and turtles.

Playing in the warm water - Florida Keys

People, one of the swimming pools, people, the cool waterslide, and people.
That's a huge TV that plays Disney movies during the day.  Did I mention People?

Kevin and Steve on a water toy ride.  The ship was HUGE.  1150' long.

Harry Potter World at Universal Studios.  Fantastic!
Heading into Epcot.
 After a great trip in the sun, playing in warm ocean water in the middle of winter, and the bright blue skies of Florida, we had to come home.  And guess what?  It was snowing in Seattle for our return.  The van was encaesd in a layer of ice and one of the sliding van doors was frozen shut from the ice.  It makes me re-evaluate where I live  :-)

We came back to this!  Snow in La Conner.  Brrrrr.......
Our kids had been out of school for the 2 weeks of winter break, followed immediately by our 2 week vacation.  Then, due to the snow and ice there was no school for an entire week.  Wow! 5 weeks with no school?  I hope they don't get held back a grade because of this...  :-)

Back to reality for all four of us; I hope we can take it.

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