My Royal Caribbean Cruise

I’m going to start with three facts:

1- A group of my cousins had started planning this cruise late last year.  While my mom and I were visiting with my cousin Audra at Rusted Gingham’s barn sale in November, my mom just kind of invited my sister and I along!  Not being able to pay for this, I immediately protested.  But my mom and cousin added us on, in a room with my mom, all paid for by my mom.  Never would have been able to do this without her.

2- A bunch of us cousins did almost this exact same cruise 20 years ago!  And I didn’t remember liking it.  So I was worried.

3- It was scheduled during my kiddos’ last week of school.  And I was going to miss the Boerne Retailers Style Show & Shopping Event.  Timing was weird.  I was meh about the whole thing.

 

But then it was time for the cruise…

 

My mom drove the two of us to Galveston.  So I got time to rest, after working my booth at The Boho Market the entire day before.  Which was awesome of her!

All of us remembered our correct identification and documentation.  No problems getting on the ship.  So we dumped our stuff in our rooms… and headed to the buffet.  Score!  I have to tell you, between the buffet, the formal dining room, and the pizza place, we could eat just about anything, just about any time of day.  And we did!!!  From pizza, burgers, fried chicken, sandwiches, and salads, to fish, pasta, steaks, lobster, soups, sides, and ALL the breakfast items.  Plus desserts.  It was wonderful!

{My absolute favorite thing was a chocolate cake, chocolate mousse, chocolate ganache dessert, that they cut into perfect rectangles.  It was incredible!  I ate more than my fair share.  And I am on the lookout for a similar recipe.}

Now, the ship.  Royal Caribbean‘s Liberty of the Seas.  In the seven days, I swore that we had walked all of it, explored every corner.  But I found out this week that we somehow missed that there was a basketball court and a rock climbing wall?!  Ha!  Otherwise, we covered all the floors of staterooms.  There was the three-story dining room.  A section of the ship was dedicated to an art gallery.  There was a casino, an ice skating rink, putt-putt golf, a walking track, waterslides, a pool, swings, hot tubs, a theater, bars, stores, an ice cream and a cupcake shop, a kiddie splash park, an arcade, a teen room, a karaoke bar, a gym, a spa, and more!

We lounged, we walked the track, hit the gym once, ate a lot, enjoyed the art, did some of the activities, I watched Bohemian Rhapsody under the stars, and went to just about every show there was (three different comedy acts, a singer, an ice skating performance, an acrobatic act, and a musical).

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, entertainment

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, movie under the stars

 

 

The staff in the dining rooms and our stateroom were all wonderful!  We did get a few towel animals left for us.  We were also part of Royal Caribbean’s 50th anniversary celebration.  And when I wore my FREE HUGS t-shirt?  Five of the crew (including the cruise director) came in for big hugs.  Seriously.  They were all fabulous.  🙂

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, towel elephant

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, cake, towel monkey

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Free Hugs

 

 

The biggest little addition to the ship was this new craze- the cruising ducks.  My sister happened to find a rubber duck in an elevator.  With a note attached, we got some information about the purpose… and where the duck came from.  So, I took it upon myself to get some great pics of the duck having fun on the cruise, before leaving him for someone else to find and enjoy.  Loved it!

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, cruising ducks

 

 

And then it was time for our three stops…

 

Day 3 was Cozumel, Mexico (gorgeous, sunny day)
My cousin Robin had been to this port so many times, she became our tour guide.  No need to pay for an excursion.  No need to worry about being on our own either.  She got 10 of us into a cab… and just under 10 miles down the road.  To Chankanaab Park.  We each paid $21 to get in.  A few purchased the buffet for lunch.  And we spent the day at this spot.  You could zipline, swim with dolphins, get in with the manaties, watch the sea lion show, go on a nature walk, snorkel, scuba dive, and more.  All of us were back and forth from the comfort of our lounge chairs… to the beautiful waters.  I ended the day with deep snorkel lines all over my face.  😉  Because the water was a stunning, clear, rich blue.  I found coral of all kinds.  And fish were everywhere.  It was wonderful!

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab, snorkeling

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab, snorkeling

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab, snorkeling

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab, snorkeling

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab, snorkeling

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel, Chankanaab, snorkeling

 

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cozumel

 

 

Day 4 was George Town, Grand Cayman (overcast, rained on us quite a bit)
Cousin Audra insisted this was a beautiful and very safe port.  So Mom, Angie, and I hopped in a cab with some strangers, hoping to head to a gorgeous part of Seven-Mile Beach.  Since four of the girls talked highly of Royal Palms Beach Club, all of the rest of us in the cab decided to go there too.  This turned out to be just $3 a person?  And then we paid about $20 for a couple of lounge chairs and an umbrella.  And it was all incredible!  Spent the whole day here, enjoying the soft white sands, admiring the stunning turquoise waters, and chasing fish!  So yes, more snorkel lines all over my face.  But this was incredible, y’all!  There were reefs just feet from the shore, so the corals and sealife were just below your feet!  So I was all over the place.  A snorkeler’s dream!  And thanks to the very calm waters, it was easy to swim and float around too.  After this dreamy outing, we decided that the cruise ship was close enough to walk back.  Mom enjoyed all the plants, trees, and vegetation the whole way back.  And Angie and I got to shop for souvenirs.

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman, snorkeling

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman, snorkeling

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman, snorkeling

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman, snorkeling

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman, snorkeling
Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman

 

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, seven mile beach, Grand Cayman

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Cayman Islands, Grand Cayman

 

Day 5 was Falmouth, Jamaica (sunny, muggy, downpour after lunch)
Here is where my sister and I went off on our own.  Because I wanted to zipline.  And because she didn’t want me to go by myself.  So we both paid for a $131 excursion to Chukka Park.  With this, we got a bus ride with a bunch of other cruise guests, with a driver that filled us in on a bunch of Jamaica’s history, agricultural information, and state of affairs.  Once on the property, they took us all down to the Martha Brae River, for a fun tubing trip.  Then we got to soar through the rainforest, on their ziplines.  Next, we were treated to a traditional lunch of Jamaican jerk chicken, rice and peas, slaw, and festival bread (all of which I’m determined to whip up for my kids this next week).  And last, we were given a few hours to enjoy their beautiful pool, waterfall, and waterslides.  Which I did.  And I kept going on the waterslide, until the rain was just too heavy.  So then we headed back to the port, for more souvenir shopping.

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Chukka, tubing

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Chukka, tubing

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Chukka, tubing

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Chukka, tubing

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Chukka, ziplining, live a great story

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, Chukka, Jamaica, jamaican jerk chicken

 

 

Takeaways…

My ThinkSport sunscreen from The Farm Connection rocks.  I don’t think you can tell *at all* that I just got back from a seven-day cruise.  Oh, and it’s reef-safe!
Our all-purpose salve is a lifesaver on dry skin, after all that salt water.  And if you add a touch of cooling peppermint essential oil to it, it’s a perfect sunburn soother.  (I’ll admit- I missed one part of my body on the sunny day of snorkeling.)
My Olympus waterproof camera is the bomb!  No matter what condition, no matter what lighting, I always got great pictures!
Even if you eat ALL the food on a cruise, you can keep the weight off.  Keep moving!  Just keep moving!
This may be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.  See all the shows, do all the activities, enjoy all the things!
You can stay on a budget on a cruise.  Just stick to your free food and entertainment.  And look for ways to save money during your days on shore.
The wi-fi package was where I splurged.  That way, I could keep up with my kids, stay in contact with customers, post to social media, etc.  I believe that was about $70.  And it was worth every penny, even though that meant I couldn’t afford alcohol or shopping for myself.
Royal Caribbean is great for all ages.  Littles were having a great time.  Teens were everywhere (there was even a whole group of senior boys sailing together).  Couples were having fun (there is child care available).  There were groups of women (just like our group) enjoying themselves.  And the older generations were having a blast too.  I have to tell you, every time I was REALLY enjoying an activity, a show, a food, a beautiful location… my thought was always “Evan would LOVE this!”
And if you go on a cruise, watch for formal nights, casual nights, tropical nights, decade nights.  You may just want to take part… and dress up for dinner and the fun!

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, formal night

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, formal night

 

Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, stateroom

 

 

If you want further information, I did link to just about every important detail in this blog.  And you’re welcomed to ask me lots of questions.

Royal Caribbean
Website
Facebook
Instagram

 

PS- The Boerne Retailers Style Show & Shopping Event just happened to be rescheduled!  So I didn’t miss it!  And I’m SO looking forward to it!!!!!!
Here’s the facebook page that you can “like.”
And here’s the facebook invite, that you can rsvp YES to!

 

Videos!!!!!!

 

 

 

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