Dole Whip

Dole Whip

A favorite stop at any Disney place that has it is the Dole Whip. My husband, especially, has to always get one whenever we go to Disney World, and when we went to Disneyland.

So what about you? If you have that same love of the Dole Whip and really want a taste of it, here’s a recipe that my husband says is really close:

Ingredients:

  • 1 big scoop of ice cream
  • 4 ounces of pineapple juice
  • 2 cups of frozen pineapple

Directions:

  1. Add pineapple, ice cream and juice to a blender.
  2. Start blending at low speed and increase to high speed. Blend until smooth. Make sure that lid is on tight!
  3. Use a piping bag with a star tip to create a classic swirl, or just scoop right into bowls.

If you want to keep it more original, use dairy-free ice cream.

No Cruise for Me

No Cruise for Me

I was supposed to be getting back from a cruise today. It was cancelled. It was going to be our first Carnival Cruise on the Carnival Dream (shown above). I know it’s not the fault of the cruise line. Since other countries are closed to tourism anyway, cruise ships have no place to go.

By the way, we opted for a future cruise credit.

I am, however, looking forward to the time I can get on a ship. As I’ve said before, I am not afraid. I’m more afraid of what happens on an airplane when it comes to cleanliness than I am on a cruise ship. I’m more afraid of what I see happening in grocery stores (all that stuff people touch and don’t buy, and now with unwashed gloves on, which hold germs much more easily).

Cruise ships have always been good at keeping germs to a minimum. Can you catch something? Yes, but that goes for anywhere you are.

Anyway, I hope travel opens up soon – especially cruises – my favorite!

Who Would Take a Cruise?

Who Would Take a Cruise?

Cruising has gotten a black eye when it comes to the COVID-19 virus. Is this fair? I don’t believe so. While some people have gotten the virus while on a cruise ship, that doesn’t mean the majority of people got it that way. I would venture to say that airlines contributed much more.

Anyway, would people take a cruise now? Well, a recent survey of people who have cruised within the past year, 58% said they would hop on a ship right now.

What does this tell me? It tells me that those who know cruising understand being on a cruise ship doesn’t make your chances of contracting the virus any higher than anything else. They know how well cruise lines work to keep germs and the spread of disease at a minimum (nothing can be 100%, unless you live in a bubble).

If you are interested in reading the article:

I can’t wait to get on a ship! Happy cruising!

Surprise Again

Surprise Again

I had so much fun watching the surprise video earlier this week, that I had to share another one.

Surprise Vacation

Surprise Vacation

From time to time I like to go through some videos where people are surprised to hear where they are going. Some of them are boring, some show a lot of ingenuity, and some get you so excited because of the reaction of those surprised. Here’s one of the latter, enjoy!

Who Would Take a Cruise?

Disney Cruise Line – Beauty and the Beast

We have never seen the cruise ship version of “Beauty and the Beast,” but we did get to experience (and I mean experience) the cruise ship version of “Frozen” on the Disney Wonder. If “Beauty and the Beast” ship version is anything like the “Frozen” cruise ship production, it’s a must-see.

Here’s a sample from Disney’s YouTube channel:

I’m Ready!

I’m Ready!

I am an introvert who enjoys staying home, but not all the time.

I’m ready to get out and about. I want to go to church. I want to go to a restaurant. I want to go to the grocery without people wondering why I’m not wearing a mask (it makes me feel closed in and I feel panicky).

I also want to get on a cruise ship! Yes, a cruise ship!

Since our May cruise has been cancelled, we need to decide on another one. I don’t want to travel in the summer, because I prefer the off season – fall, winter, and spring. So, now we’ve got to search again.

I’m not afraid to get on a ship. Why? Well, cruise ships have always taken great care in keeping things germ free. They know what can happen. That’s why they also ask people about illnesses they may currently have or may have been exposed to. (Yes, some people lie about it, and that is on them. It shouldn’t be on the cruise line.)

They are constantly reminding you to wash your hands and have hand sanitizer stations around, especially by the restaurants, with people even making sure you use it.

Cruise ships got a bad name and it wasn’t even their fault. Airplane traffic could have spread it much easier, but you wouldn’t know it came from there, because that was just a short time you were together with those people. You don’t think about that short time.

I’m ready to get out and about!

Photo Tips for Rivers

Here are a few tips on photographing rivers and their movement from the Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic YouTube channel. I didn’t know any of these techniques when I took the above picture years ago. I wish I had known.

Who Would Take a Cruise?

Ship Horns

Disney cruise ships have a different ship horn. While you’ll recognize the regular sounds all other ships have for warnings and the like, they have something special.

Disney ship horns can play Disney songs. Not all of the ships can play all of the songs, but all can at least play one. While we were on the Disney Wonder visiting Nassau, the Disney Dream was also there. One Disney ship would call out to the other and then would receive an answer back from the other Disney ship – in song.

Here’s a video from Disney’s YouTube channel for you to hear and guess the songs:

Who Would Take a Cruise?

Disney Cruise Hyperlapse

When Wayne and I decided to finally try out cruising on the ocean, we chose a Disney Cruise. We chose a 4 night cruise, just in case we didn’t like it. Well, we wish we hadn’t chosen a short cruise.

Disney’s YouTube channel has this Hyperlapse of a Disney Cruise:

Real ID

Real ID

While the deadline for the Real ID has been pushed back to October 2021, you don’t have to wait to get one.

Starting October 1, 2021, you will need either a Real ID Driver’s Licence or a Passport to get on an airplane.

How do you know if you have a Real ID? Check to see if there is a star in the top right of your Driver’s Licence.

Travel Discounters

Travel Discounters

Yes, many times you can find a real deal with an online travel discounter like Book It, Priceline, Expedia, etc. You can also sometimes find a good deal with Sam’s Club and Costco.

However, what happens when suddenly travel has to be shut down due to, hmmm, let’s say a virus? That’s when you find out that your great deal may not be such a great deal.

Some of the customers to those found it difficult to know what to do. Sometimes they would call the vendor (cruise line, resort, airline, etc.) and be told they must contact their travel advisor.

The discounts are real on this travel, but that’s because almost everything is automated and getting a real person, while normally not that difficult, can become difficult when everyone wants to or needs to change their plans.

Using a travel advisor in a situation like this would have made these customers much happier. Yes, they would have paid a little more (the regular price, or the sale price of the vendor), but the travel advisor would handle everything else.

Many vendors notified us (travel advisors) that refunds or future credits would be automatic. The vendors also explained how to handle those who didn’t want a future credit but wanted a refund – and when. This made it much easier for the travel advisor to handle all their clients much quicker.

While those travel discounters can offer some better deals (typically not by much), it can be a bit difficult when there is a mad rush to cancel or change plans. Know this going in if you use one.

How has COVID-19 changed things?

How has COVID-19 changed things?

Well, our day to day activities in our home haven’t changed much. We mainly work from home already, so nothing new.

But we do now have to keep an eye on the ever-changing activities of the travel industry to see how it affects our clients.

We are keeping an eye on refund changes, final payment changes, final cancel date changes, etc. Our goal is to be sure you know what is going on. If you have a trip booked through us, we will watch things for you and let you know. If you need to cancel, or you are due a refund, we will handle that for you. That’s why we are here – to help you.

What about the future? Well, I would expect to see some great deals once things start getting back to normal. But those will most likely be gone quickly. So, if you are looking for a deal, now is the time to contact us to find something for you.

Food!

Food!

One of the things everyone talks about on a cruise is the food. Yes, there is a lot of it. Yes, it’s good. Yes, it’s easy to gain weight.

Yes, they have a walking/running track on board. Yes, they have an on board fitness room. You can use them, if you want, to help burn those extra calories.

I thought I’d share some pictures of some of the food on those ships.

Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream and Johnny Rocket’s isn’t included in your cruise fare, but it is available for purchase on the ship.

Rock Climbing in the Ocean

Yes, you can do some rock climbing while on a cruise. All the Royal Caribbean ships have rock climbing walls. No, they aren’t all the same, but if it’s something you enjoy, you can do so without additional charge while on any of the ships.

This wall is on the Symphony of the Seas. You get to it from the Boardwalk (an experience in itself) right outside the Aquatheater (another fun experience).

Whoever said there was nothing to do on a cruise ship hasn’t been on a cruise ship, or at least lately.

The Ultimate Abyss

If you like slides, but don’t always want to do it with your swim suit on, then hop aboard the Ultimate Abyss, which is a slide without the water. You can find it on three ships, Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas, Harmony of the Seas, and Oasis of the Seas. It will soon be added to Allure of the Seas!

This slide has an average speed of 9 mph. That’s plenty fast for a long winding slide down several decks.

This is a picture of the entrance to the slide on the Symphony of the Seas. Yes, I did hear some screams, but they sure sounded like fun screams.

Check out Royal Caribbean’s video: