our days at sea, the mornings.


There were four days at sea on our cruise. So basically, the majority of our vacation was spent floating around the Atlantic. This was one of the rougher trips we've had, with three out of the four days being a bit choppy. No one got sick or anything but let me tell you something running on a treadmill when the boat is rocking is no small feat. I almost died.

Moving on.
Our days at sea started bright and early as anyone with young kids can attest too. I would try and sneak out before the kids woke and run for a bit at the gym while my parents did their cardio as well. We saw the sun rise each and every day which I'm always a fan of. I tried to have all the kid's clothing out the night before so that whenever they did get up Matt could get them dressed without having to think about it. Once I returned and showered we would reconvene on Lido (which is basically the deck where "things" happen) for our breakfast. Somehow magically all of the group would find each other and we would all chow down. It's like a mad scramble these meals. Divide and conquer. Survival of the fittest. You name it. Our evening waiter was the supervisor up on Lido and he would be waiting on us hand and foot. The kids would have straws waiting each day for them to drink their chocolate milk just because on the first day he happened to hear them mention they needed straws. We figure Senvil had our tables bugged. There are ears everywhere that must work for him and report back. One lunch I mentioned that I wish there were unflavored fries aboard and within ten minutes a plate of fries showed up at our table. Unordered. He's amazing. But back to mornings.

After breakfast it was Operation Occupy Children. Most of the time this involved exploring the ship, checking out the shops, outdoor sports, or climbing stairs. 
By ten Camp Carnival would open. Now I am never one to want to leave my children but this ended up being a lifesaver for us. I had never intended for them to go there, like never crossed my mind because it was a no brainer, no they were not going. But then my sister made such a valid point, that it is the kid's vacations too and they would have more fun playing with kids their own age doing crafts and games than being stuck doing whatever it was the adults wanted to do. I read all about it and all the policies and such and felt confident that they (me, that I) could handle it. So CC it was. Each day at ten they would prance off to do whatever it is they do in there.

Normally this is when we would just sort of sit and stair at a wall. And start drinking. Somewhere on the Lido Deck the newly child-less parents would find each other and just enjoy adult conversation. Dom was surprisingly easy to occupy with a train or two and an arm chair to push them on. Camp Carnival has a two and over rule so he missed the cut off by a few months, schade. And yes I tried every color of margarita and I decided the blue was my most favorite.
And all of this before noon! The second half of our days at sea to come!

Happy Friday too by the way!


how the trovato's get to a cruise


There will be many updates coming blog side here in the upcoming week (or weeks) but I'll start off with a little about how we roll out to a vacation. There being a lot of us on our trips, fifteen on this past one to be exact, we take a lot of vehicles to travel. So, historically, my father has a van drive us to and from the cruise terminal or airport or what have you. Well with the addition of four other children since our last cruise he knew a van would not cut it. No. A Party Bus was needed. We had a lot of luggage. And a lot of people. And a lot of wine. And no car seats.
We cruised out of Baltimore so thankfully it wasn't a long trip. The babies actually did great not being restrained, even if the parents were a bit nervous about the whole safety issue. I think Dom only fell on his head once each way. Mainly he just sat and stared.

We arrived and boarded which is always a blur to me. There's a line, sure, but it moves and you know that at the other end there is food and more drinks. After the muster station drill, which is also a blur other than a tall Eastern European man ordering Dom and I to "come with me" we were able to unpack our bags that had been safely delivered to our room. We then explored the ship, hoping to watch us leave port. We were told that because of weather or winds or what have you that we would not be leaving until 11 pm? So our first dinner was eaten sitting at the port in Baltimore. It was also Mikayla's birthday so she got to blow out a candle and we all got to sing to the birthday girl yet again, and thankfully for her, she held in the tears.
We rounded out the first night with what would become routine, soft serve ice cream on the Lido Deck followed by bed.


a cruise video


So we are back! Back home and back into the swing of things as it were. School and lunches and outfits prepped the night before and all the fun things that come with a weekday during the school year. And it only took me four loads of laundry!

As some of you know our cruise was supposed to head down to the Bahamas but sadly because of Hurricane Matthew Carnival felt it would be safer to just reroute us north to Canada. Not ideal, but rather safe than sorry. And they were so good to us and gave us each $100 on board credits and 25% off a future cruise... and we could have cancelled should we have wanted to but we carried on! And I'm so glad we did!

I really tried to make a concerted effort to take more videos on this vacation than I normally do, which is usually no videos. So I threw them together here to share until I get around to recapping the vacation itself. We had such a great time and are so thankful for my parents who treat us to such wonders!

And if you make it to the end of the eight minutes or so than you must be related to me. God bless you.


farm show with the family


This is the final farm show post for the year, I promise.

I had gone in with Letty, and then again with David, so it's only fair we go in with Dominic too. My sister and her family as well as my parents came in on the final day of the farm show for lunch and some animal browsing. I think my mom feels badly for Dom, always destined to being contained in the stroller. But I have two arms and three kids so that's mainly where he stays. She's trying to do something about that and I know how much he loves it. Being free makes him just so very happy. 

It's amazing to me (although it shouldn't be) how young things start with my kids. I used to love going to the Farm Show in high school to see my friends, it was like a big reunion. As if I hadn't just seen them a few hours prior. Details. Well every corner we turned little Miss Letty saw some friend of hers or a teacher or somebody enjoying the Farm Show as well. And how happy it makes her to run into them outside of school. It's also happening in our development. I went for a walk the other day and didn't come back for close to two hours because we ran into two separate kids from her class and they just had to play for a bit. It's madness!

Back to the Farm Show! The only bummer to this little lunch excursion was that the milkshake line was far too long to wait in. I'm a big fan of these milkshakes, in fact that was going to be my lunch.... No matter! I got Letty and I one on the way home from McDonald's. Not the same... but we make do. Okay and maybe the other bummer was they had all the tractors roped off so the kids didn't get to climb on them per the usual.
Past family Farm Show visits here, here and here! I think this was the first year we didn't get to enjoy the Farm Show without our Fitzs! Is it the end of an era?! Say it ain't so!


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