August 22, 2023


Ep. 339 - Bonus - The Last Frontier: A DCL Cruise to Alaska + Listener Questions

Hosted by

Brian Sam
Ep. 339 - Bonus - The Last Frontier: A DCL Cruise to Alaska + Listener Questions
DCL Duo Podcast: A Disney Cruise Line Fan Podcast
Ep. 339 - Bonus - The Last Frontier: A DCL Cruise to Alaska + Listener Questions

Aug 22 2023 | 00:49:01


Show Notes

Jennifer shares her family's recent Disney Cruise Line sailing to Alaska aboard the Disney Wonder with her son and daughter. We were so excited to hear all about the excursions Jennifer booked with her kids - from train rides, to glacier viewing, helicopters, zip-lining and more! It was great to hear the breadth of experiences Jennifer had with her two kids and the new challenges they tried together as a family. We're also answer some listener emails and voicemails this episode. All that and more on this week's bonus show.

If you want to join the DCL Duo Inaugural Podcast Cruise aboard the Disney Magic for her three-night sailing on June 19, 2024 from Ft. Lauderdale to Nassau and Lighthouse Point, you can head over our to our booking page at My Path Unwinding Travel to secure your room today!! Rooms are going fast and some categories are already sold out.  So, book today to ensure you can join us for all the fun in Summer 2024!!  We've got so many exciting things planned, you won't want to miss this opportunity.

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Episode Transcript

00:00.00 dclduo Welcome back everybody to this week's bonus episode of the DCL duo podcast brought to you by my path unwinding travel and Sam we are heading to the great white north I guess that's Canada actually we don't call Alaska the great white north but we're heading that direction pass that direction to Alaska. 00:11.84 Sam Yeah that's that's right well and because it's a Disney Cruise that we're going to be talking about. We are actually heading to the great white north first right? so. Ah, Disney Cruise sales it's Alaska cruises out of the port of Vancouver so we are technically heading to the great white north first Brian the pit stop. But. 00:28.98 dclduo A pit stop the pit stop with thereven north but we got to start by welcoming our guests back who has been on the show several times and is kind enough to join us this evening to talk about her trip to Alaska because we did not go to Alaska ourselves so you start by welcoming Jen to the show. Welcome Jen good. 00:44.80 Jen Hey how is everybody tonight. 00:47.76 Sam Good good to see you again for those of you who? well you probably remember once we start talking but Jens been on a bunch of a bunch of times probably most famously with possibly the worst trip to Egypt ever. Um, so. 00:48.57 dclduo For doing good. 01:01.82 Jen And my daughter still brings it up, not infrequent. But so there's that. 01:04.34 Sam Ah. 01:06.38 Sam I. 01:07.81 dclduo Ah, you know, um well Jen remind folks about your Disney Cruise line ah background and I do actually have an abd question for you this evening but remind folks first of your ah Disney Cruise line background 01:19.30 Jen Ah sure. Yeah I mean we started I think like a lot of folks do with the parks because it scratches that type a planner itch I Think in a lot of us and. 01:29.17 Sam Um, ah. 01:31.35 Jen But we're not huge ride people a recurring theme in our trips as my daughter has a lot of motion sickness issues and so even though we still like just walking around the parks. Um I sort of dragged everybody on a cruise for the first time I want to say it was 2000 01:49.77 Jen 18 or 19 um to try it and then luckily it was a smooth selling and everybody had a really great time and so we've been back now on quite a few and just hit platinum. So did our tenth one and so that was really exciting. 02:03.82 Sam Yes, yes. 02:08.93 Jen And and then we've done yeah sort of a selection of adventures by Disney and then a couple random trips on our own like to Tokyo um, which of course you know included the Disney parks amongst other things. So it it well no actually um. 02:21.27 dclduo Nice is this your first time to Alaska. 02:28.77 Jen My son has always wanted to Cruise to Alaska and we had it planned in 2020 and obviously that didn't happen and then um I don't think they were cruising there in 2021 either so he and I did a land trip with adventures by disney actually when they restarted to Alaska that summer. 02:41.66 Sam Oh cool. 02:48.39 Jen Um, but he sort of still wanted to do the cruise and then my daughter wasn't able to go on the land trip. So and she's always wanted to go to Canada so we thought 2 birds 1 stone will get a few days in Vancouver go a little early and then do the Alaska Cruise because I'd always heard. They were really great. 03:03.22 dclduo Right. 03:08.10 Jen So. 03:09.56 dclduo And if I recall correctly jen you're coming from Dallas Houston San Antonio Santonio ok ah oh my geez up. 03:11.50 Jen In Antonio yeah, we're pretty pretty far south currently like a hundred and fifteen with the heat index. So this thing we're missing Alaska right now. It's pretty awful. 03:16.70 Sam Yeah, oh my god. 03:27.35 dclduo Well, it's how did so you flew up to Vancouver on or did you fly through Seattle do you fly direct to Vancouver. 03:32.90 Jen No, actually we um San Antonio doesn't have a ton of direct flights except you know to like Orlando and l a in those places. So but I found a direct from Austin to Vancouver so it was definitely worth the. 03:47.43 Jen Just shy of hour and a half drive to drive up to Austin to do the direct. Unfortunately, there's one a day I think it was on it was on air canada um, but the 1 coming back. 03:48.54 Sam No nice. 04:01.35 Jen Which disney always lands on Mondays from the Alaska Cruise and so the 1 coming back was at like 39 or something and we couldn't make that so we did have to fly back through I think we stopped in Minneapolis st paul so something like that on the way back. 04:16.64 dclduo Nice and and how far in advance. Did you get in for the for the cruise as you go and just a day before. Did you spend some time in Vancouver. 04:22.65 Jen Ah I want to say late Friday night and so we had basically all day Saturday and Sunday and then actually did a food tour Monday morning and even kind of rolled onto the ship um around one one 30 p m. 04:37.23 Sam No, that's awesome. That's a good amount of time. 04:37.58 dclduo This. 04:39.80 Jen Actually the kids were getting a little stressed about it first. They were like oh no, you know what? if we were acid. Well you know it doesn't leave to like 3 or 4 you know wouldn't rather have a little more time in Vancouver and they ended up really liking it because um. 04:47.70 Sam Ah. 04:55.22 Jen I mean we were concier so we probably wouldn't have had to wait anyway. But but it was great because we just showed up most people were on board. We'd already eaten a lot so we weren't worried about getting to the lunch. So yeah, we just kind of got in and the rooms had just opened so it was kind of nice, just kind of went to our room and threw our stuff down and and then ah. 05:13.85 dclduo I Was gonna say but bold move doing a food tour on embarkation day. Not from a timing standpoint but from a food quantities there. Yeah. 05:14.24 Jen You know, walked around a little bit. Um, yes, yeah, yeah, this family is all about the food tour so we get into this trip. 05:19.92 Sam Um, yeah from a food standpoint and that's right. 05:26.33 dclduo Ah, what? how? how did you? How did you find that tour and you know what else did you get up to in Vancouver before you set sail. 05:32.66 Jen Yeah, well we we? um I think it's called Vancouver foodie tours and they were. They were great I mean it wasn't um, a private tour. It was a group um, but the first day we were there on Saturday morning we got up and we took the. Metro to the richmond area which is sort of um the asian part of town. Um, and we did a I think it was called asian eats food tour and it was wonderful. We had a pretty small group. Oh it was great. There was maybe. 05:48.71 dclduo And yeah. 05:57.14 Sam Oh yeah, that's where that's where like all the big dim sum places are and there's a ton of Indian restaurants there too. Yeah. 06:06.59 Jen Eight seven or 8 of us. Um, and our guide was wonderful. She was I think a theater major and sort of does this as a you know a side job and um so she was terrific and then yeah and just everything we ate was wonderful and then we. Spent some time afterwards just kind of wandering around. Um I think it's called Aberdeen Center the mall down there which is sort of all. Ah you know asian stores and obviously there's great souvenirs and up. Sorry wow you guys um. 06:30.18 dclduo Here. 06:45.39 Jen So so so that was really fun and we kind of spent the morning and early afternoon doing that and then we brought Garrett back to the hotel just to you know, relax a little bit. My daughter and I can walk around all day but he you know he needs breaks now and then because he's my my younger one. He's about 11 and um, and then so she and I continued to walk around. Um, we went to see kind of the gas town steam clock and and check out a couple of the stores kind of in the area of the port. So not too far so we could come back. You know within an hour to him and then we had ah a nice dinner downtown and. 07:10.53 dclduo M. 07:25.23 Jen That was Saturday and then Sunday we went over to the capalna suspension bridge which I'd heard people on your podcast talking about before which was a lot of fun. We had good weather and and walked around all the bridges all morning and then we went up to grouse mountain. Um, you can take a gondola up there which. 07:27.93 dclduo In. 07:43.81 Jen Did manage to make vi a little sick. So then we we figured we'd better hang out on the mountain for a while and there was still snow which was fun and they have a couple of um briizzlies which you know can no longer be in the wild so you can kind of go see them. Um. And then they had a lumberjack show which was a lot of fun because we had not signed up for that in catchakan like a lot of people do, but it was a great show. It was outdoors and and the kids actually really enjoyed it and it was pretty humorous which was good and took the little chair lift up. Um, on the mountains. So we so we spent a while on the mountain and then we we came back and kind of called it a night and just had some sushi near the hotel. 08:30.27 Sam How far how far away was that from sort of the downtown Vancouver area. 08:30.47 dclduo Nice. 08:35.38 Jen Yeah, we ah we had it. We hired a driver for that kind of day. Um, and so I don't think I timed it exactly but I want to say we so we on the way out of town. We stopped in Stanley Park and saw the the totems. I hung out for a bit and then went to the bridge and then the and the mountain and I know more than half an hour I don't think the longest drive is coming back because we hit some traffic. 09:03.11 Sam Um. 09:04.42 Jen And then Monday morning before we got on the ship we went to Granville Island that was the other Vancouver beauty tour and they do um a tour of the market at the island which was terrific I mean obviously you know they're going to a bunch of the the stalls in the market. 09:06.51 dclduo Yeah. 09:06.73 Sam Oh yeah. 09:12.85 dclduo Are. 09:20.64 Jen Um, and they have you know everything kind of prearranged. But um, you know the selection was really diverse and really great and there was a mix of all ages on the tour which was nice. Um I think the agent eats or you have to you'd have to know that your kid's willing to um. 09:31.49 Sam That's awesome with Grandville island. 09:38.97 Jen You know likes Asian food or or willing to kind of try a variety of things and the the dim sum part requires you know sitting for a while so they have to be a little patient versus the market. You're kind of constantly moving and walking around and there's a lot to kind of see and I think that would keep most kids entertained. 09:43.94 dclduo Yeah. 09:51.26 Sam Um. 09:55.66 Jen And they end with bonus. So you know. 09:56.52 dclduo It and and whereabouts that you stay in Vancouver. 09:59.37 Jen We say I think like a lot of people recommend it that pan Pacific overall was great. They they handled your bags. They just take them right onto the ship in the morning all them to your room. They pick them up. They take them on the ship. 10:03.48 dclduo Okay. 10:05.68 Sam Yep. 10:09.88 Sam Oh that's really nice. 10:10.20 dclduo Oh nice. 10:15.94 Jen I'd say other than that I mean the hotel is probably starting to show its age a little bit I mean it was the view was great. We had a view of the the ah port and the ships in the morning. But um, the rooms have double beds which you know is a little small as your kids start to get bigger. Um. 10:30.66 Sam Um. 10:34.99 Jen So we had 1 room with 2 double beds and and like I said the the room was really spacious. It just you know it's looking a a little aged I would say for the price but it's got a prime location so and Vancouver in general is a little expensive obviously. 10:39.29 dclduo Yeah, yeah, yeah. 10:44.87 Sam yeah yeah I think it's cool that you did the lumberjack show outside of Vancouver and I am thinking because as you mentioned a lot of people do it in catch a can. But there's like a lot of different excursions of course to do. 10:47.40 dclduo Yeah, yeah. 11:03.15 Sam And catch a can and you might want to do like you know you might might have a hard time deciding between 2 or 3 and we've heard good things about the lumberjack show up there? Yeah, but it also but if you can do it in Canada outside of Vancouver you know. 11:04.42 Jen Um, yeah. 11:09.78 Jen Yeah I have a getdy on our cruise who did it seemed to enjoy it. Well yeah, it worked out. Yeah. 11:21.24 Sam Maybe maybe then savior you know, get a helicopter or whatever you can you know, whatever else you can do and catch you can. So I think it's a good tip if you've got you know a limited number of date port days. Of course. 11:26.20 Jen Yeah. 11:32.80 Jen Yeah, my kids enjoyed it but I will say their favorite day of the entire trip. Cruise included was that you know hanging out ah at the Aberdeen mall and then doing the ancient food tour and just because they love I think especially after being in Tokyo it was fun to kind of relive seeing all those little. 11:46.63 Sam Um, yeah. 11:50.41 Jen Um, you know all the little fun items and and and my son's very into anime at this point in his life. So there's also that. 11:54.40 Sam I yeah. 11:57.16 dclduo Nice well you make it on board. The fabulous disney wonder and I'd like to focus I guess on some of the ports because Alaska is a port heavy cruise which ports did you visit on this ceiling. 12:13.91 Jen Sure I will our um first day was c of course I think theyd book in first and last or c days the second day is their glacier days so we went Tracy arm curored and then it was three port days in a row which was um. 12:19.48 dclduo Here. 12:19.89 Sam No. 12:30.28 Jen Gagwid you know and catch a can in that order. So. 12:30.87 dclduo How is the fjord or the you know the the what you call it the iceberg day I Guess the yeah glacier day glacier day. Yeah, no icebergs when we're talk sailing. 12:36.33 Sam The glacier day quickly. 12:36.35 Jen Yeah I was It's fun. It kind of reminded me of um the marvel day at sea energy because everybody is like excited to see the characters in their costumes and kind of running around on deck and it. It was cold which was fun for us because we don't get that very often. Um, and we had mostly pretty good weather I mean it was sunny or slightly cloudy and then we got just a couple of very brief. Um, you know, kind of spurts of rain. So it wasn't too bad. We kind of ran around and. Usually the kids are not very into characters. But I think you've given a challenge like seeing a bunch of them in the costumes my daughter as a teen will will kind of latch onto the challenge. So indulge me and then drag Garrett along so so we did a lot of that we took the later. Um. 13:16.66 Sam Um, yeah. 13:20.96 dclduo Um. 13:27.81 dclduo The. 13:28.18 Jen Smaller boat excursion at three P M which um I think we enjoyed it was fun to see you know the glacier the kids got the glacier ice and their drinks and ate some snacks and we had a beautiful rainbow you know as we were cruising. But I think that as. Similar name to the whale watch. Um, you know when you start spendingning more than like an hour and on the the water in the small boat. Yeah, most kids kind of kind of get a little bored though. Um you know? Ah so I think overall they enjoyed it and my daughter had ah a. 13:54.69 dclduo Yeah, yeah, yeah. 13:57.33 Sam They're a little bored after that. Yeah. 14:06.45 Jen Ah, paulamen patch on the whole time so she did well except actually our first and last c day really were a little rough which is unusual in Alaska it said on the the way out I think we missed our opportunity I didn't totally understand but to go through. Maybe it's the inside passage part. Um. 14:09.64 Sam Um. 14:13.93 dclduo Who. 14:26.23 Jen So anyway we ended up having to go kind of a long way around. Um and we were on the Pacific Ocean kind of the open ocean it was. It was pretty rough even my son got a little sick that night. So um, but luckily they were able to fall asleep and you know woke up feeling fine. Andly day was really smooth. 14:29.76 Sam Um. 14:30.40 dclduo Oh. 14:39.93 dclduo Yeah, yeah, you said your next. Oh go ahead see him. 14:42.30 Sam Yeah I I was going to say I feel like that patch though is kind of ah a miracle worker. Um. 14:43.96 Jen But a little rough that night 14:52.94 Jen It's helped her a lot I mean she's she's so bad that she can get sick even with the patch but but overall I mean we used to be have. We used to have to kind of almost give her constant heavy duty drama mean which was pretty awful because then you know they're exhausted and um and inevitable. 14:58.27 Sam Um. 15:07.00 Sam Yeah, you're grumpy and drowsy. 15:10.34 Jen With that much stramine. It would kind of bother her stomach So at least with the patch. You know she has some dry mouth and sometimes loses a little of her near vision temporarily but is interesting. But yeah. 15:21.80 Sam Ah, side of likes little little side of Banks I didn't know about that one. Ah. 15:21.86 dclduo Oh jeezed. 15:27.70 Jen Right? To that being said and we've been able to do a lot more now that she can wear that. Um you know she can fly with it. She can um she got sick on a couple of things this trip but but it's been much better overall. So. 15:32.94 Sam Um. 15:40.87 dclduo And and first up on ports again was did you say Juno is first skagway. Ok so and how was skagway. What did you get up to in Skagway. 15:44.25 Jen We did skagway first. Yes. 15:52.60 Jen Skyby was fun. We um, the first thing we did is I took the white pass rail. Um, after I knew the kids it was gonna be a lot of ah you know port stops in a row. So I said you know do you guys have an interest in going on the train and of course they were like yeah so. 16:05.97 dclduo Oh. 16:09.54 Jen And they're old enough now I'm into my daughter's 15 So I said okay well you guys can stay on the the ship you know, ah for the I think the hole I was gone maybe 2 hours it really wasn't that long and I did the rail which was beautiful. It was relaxing but ah. 16:25.60 Jen I knew I made the right choice because every kid on the train with me seemed bored. You know so just because you know you're just sitting there. You don't get off, you go up and then circle around and come back. So I did that and then went back and we we had a little lunch and my daughter and I walked around the small you know it's small. Small town a bit and then we had um, a helicopter excursion in the afternoon altogether so we took a helicopter to a glacier and got to kind of walk out and walk around the glacier. So the theme on this trip is we each picked 1. 16:47.25 Sam Um. 16:49.71 Sam Oh amazing. 17:03.24 Jen Excursion we really wanted to do so this was my son's choice. He really wanted he loves helicopters so um, he would have preferred to do the dog sledding but he and I had done that when we were on our land trip in Alaska and we figured for my daughter's sake you know between the motion sickness and the allergies we would try this and of course. 17:04.63 Sam Oh. 17:16.60 Sam Um. 17:22.58 Sam Ah, she has allergies to yeah oh my goodness she just hit the genetic lottery there. 17:23.31 Jen It. Ah yeah, worth saying not all the the the troubles in the family. But um so I know flow we ah she of course did get sick on the helicopter ride even though it was about 15 minutes 17:40.31 Jen But she did try it. It was the first one. She'd been on and but they loved walking around the glacier. You know it was cold and of course we were underdressed but you know there was a waterfall and they got to walk around with little ice poles and crampons and then they got to drink out of a little glacier stream. Um. 17:54.83 Sam Oh cool. 17:58.25 Jen You know on the glacier which was really fun. Um, and then we flew back on the helicopter. So the whole thing was maybe 2 hours so so it was one of those things where she was like I survived it I don't know that I'll be back on a helicopter because you know that part was hard for her. Um. 18:13.32 Sam Yeah, yeah, and and that's and that's really the only yeah and that's really the only way to get like. 18:16.37 Jen But they they really liked being on the glacier and of course my sp liked the helicopter. So so it was a very easy day for me. But for the kids who found it this dependent 1 thing. Yeah yeah. 18:28.25 Sam Onto the glacier right? is if you do the helicopter I don't think any of the other excursions get you on a glacier. 18:31.89 Jen I Yeah I don't know that you'd be on it I mean I think you know like when mind and all day some people like drive out to there but um to get on any of them I think you really have to take the helicopter and you know it wasn't that long but we we got a little unlucky. There was um, it was. 18:38.29 Sam M. 18:42.67 dclduo Nice. 18:50.33 Jen 4 in the back and 3 in the front and we all got the back. So I think and she was in the back center and they're very rigid you know because they're doing it based on weight and we're a smaller group of people so we kind of got all put in the back with 1 other guy and then you know they had 3 in the front. So. 18:56.25 dclduo Oh. 19:09.60 Jen So I think that was hard too because you just it's a little more nauseating than. 19:14.60 dclduo Any um, any reticence from anyone in your party about doing the helicopter I'm just thinking about like I don't know how excited our son would be initially to get into a helicopter. 19:20.65 Jen Well no, my daughter has always been reticent so before she has always stayed behind with her dad because they have never had any interest because she was nervous about it even though she's my older one and my son gets nervous about heights sometimes. But. 19:28.60 dclduo Who. 19:31.30 Sam Um. 19:37.33 Jen For some reason the helicopters don't bother him. He really likes those so he and I have been on maybe four or five of them. You know in various places but this was the first time you know she tried to go so that was sort of the theme we were each going to try something new and you know. So she said you know I can check it off I can say I've done it because she's always felt a little bit of fomo before but she's like now I know and it may not be something I can do so but you know yes exactly and nobody threw up so that was you know that's something. 20:05.73 dclduo Well bravo for trying Bravo for trying here. You go there, you go. 20:13.28 Sam Ah, that's a win nobody through. Ah. 20:15.76 Jen Yeah I always make sure know where the bags are but luckily ah, we did not have to use them. 20:19.83 Sam Ah. 20:20.15 dclduo All right? So after Skagway Juno was next up. 20:25.52 Jen Yes, so Juno was the one and where I picked the whale watchingching tour because I'm always wanting to see wells. But so it was called well watching I think an orca point lodge so we started with sort of um. Ah, the well- watchingtching part and and she actually did pretty good on that she gets it because it's a fairly good sized boat. It's like double decker and you can stand or above or below or go inside. She has a little trouble when they stop and then you're bobbing a little bit. You know, um. 20:49.20 Sam Um. 20:57.93 Sam Um. 20:59.70 Jen But luckily with the patch she did fine. Um I'd say this again like the glacier day because we saw you know several humpbacks but you're you know you're seeing them from a distance. You're seeing the you know we saw a couple of flukes but again from a distance. So I think it's going to sound. 21:09.12 dclduo M. 21:18.78 Jen Um, kind of absurd. But I think after being in um, the Galapagos where you're literally standing next to so many animals and then in Costa Rica where my my daughter and I went recently where we saw ah many animals from a distance but also a ton up close. It's just um Alaska. 21:22.67 dclduo In. 21:25.18 Sam Um. 21:37.40 Jen The animals tend to be much further away right? like you're seeing Poll Eagles in the trees or you're seeing like a bear from a a fast distance or the whales from a large distance. That's I think the kids are like okay, cool putting. But yeah, so. 21:37.70 dclduo O. 21:40.35 Sam Um. 21:50.95 Sam And they're like let's go back to the galapas. Ah. 21:54.67 Jen So anyway, we cruise around for a while and we see some animals he did take us to see some a huge colony of sea lions up pretty close so they enjoyed that and then they stop at orca point lodge which was actually really was quite enjoyable. It was um, you know on a little you know island and they had sort of ah a lunch prepared. Um, that had I think everything from like reindeer meat loaf to you know Mac and cheese for like for kids and then my kids tend to eat they like to trial the adult food quote unquote. But anyway everybody got plenty to eat and they had vignets for dessert. 22:20.42 Sam For for the kids. 22:30.88 Sam Um, yum. 22:32.26 Jen Which was nice and then we kind of got to walk around the grounds of the lodge for a little bit. Um so they actually really enjoyed that part which was good because um, you know you kind of never know depending on the food and stuff how how that part will go but and then. Basically just headed kind of right back. So the whole excursion was maybe four or five hours so it was sort of a good length. It wasn't like ah some of the juno tours were eight nine hours which seemed like that might be pushing it a little bit. So. 22:56.66 Sam Oh wow. 22:59.10 dclduo Oh wow yeah, did you book all of your excursions for the trip I mean outside of what you did in Vancouver with ah with Disney or did you use a third party. 23:07.65 Jen Um I did um I know when we went to europe I did maybe half and half some through Disney some on my own but this I just thought well there's plenty of things that they offer that I'd be willing to do and it seemed simpler. 23:13.42 dclduo We. 23:15.78 Sam Um. 23:22.99 Jen Since I was also planning the Vancouver part on my own. So yeah, that worked out that worked out fine. 23:25.54 dclduo Um, yeah, nice and um so after Juno we're at catch a can would you get up to and catch a can. 23:33.79 Jen Yes, so catch a can was violet's day she picked and she picked she wanted to zip line because she funny with all the things she can't do the 1 thing that does not make her sick is zip like I guess because growing fast I don't know. But. 23:42.99 dclduo Ah. 23:43.76 Sam Um, oh. 23:48.69 Sam Um, ziplining. Well, it's real smooth too. So yeah, yeah. 23:53.75 Jen I Get Yeah, it's like the only motion she does not get sick on so roller bosters. No but sipline she can do so and so it's sort of the opposite. My son has never really wanted to do that because um, he he yeah the heights and he has a fear that he'll be stuck on it. Um. 24:03.85 Sam Oh the heights. 24:12.56 Jen So we really had to kind of cajole him and say oh you know and it's our last cruise we had done parasaling on castway key and um, he was very reluctant and we sort of um I try never to drag anybody on anything kicking and screaming. But we sort of really had to like. 24:13.95 Sam No. 24:30.61 Jen Can you know, talk him into it and he almost backed out but then he got up there with us. It was the 3 of us went luckily all at the same time and he really enjoyed it so it was like okay so I said look you really enjoyed that and you weren't sure you can do it. Let's let's try and um it was going so well I mean he was just. 24:37.66 Sam Oh. 24:50.70 Jen Flying through all the lines and of course the very last line it was a challenging course I have to say because it was the first my daughter and I have done maybe 5 or 6 of them and this was the first course where you had to use your hand and physically break yourself like push down on the line which you're wearing a glove. But. 24:56.74 Sam M. 25:02.24 Sam Oh. 25:02.42 dclduo Oh wow. 25:07.99 Sam Right? too big for a kid. Yeah. 25:08.29 Jen I Mean the gloves are huge right? They're too big for me much less it and it's it's hard to do that. So anyway, the longest fastest line was last and um, he just he started breaking too early because he was like oh maybe I'm being too fast you know and so of course. 25:23.46 Sam Oh no. 25:26.76 Jen He gets almost to the end breaks too early and starts sliding back. You know and so the the gentleman you know they were the guides were gray. You know he got but he had to gear up. You know, go out onto the line pull Garrett back I mean it was he was out there for a while and so um. 25:30.66 Sam Oh no, so he's like. 25:32.36 dclduo Ah. 25:41.61 Sam Oh yeah. 25:44.92 Jen That was scary I think and so he ended it I mean he he hung in there but I could tell he was like I don't know about thats so we'll see I don't know if you'll want to do it again. But um, but yeah, it was so it was tough because he made it so far and the very last my mind. 25:50.45 Sam Oh. 25:57.93 Sam So far and it was and was having fun. 26:03.15 Jen But the guides were really like you know, kept saying how Grady did and obviously I tipped the gentleman who who had to go real him in because it was it was hard work. Um, and um so I'm hoping overall he thinks of it as you know. Ah, big accomplishment and that even though what he feared the most happened happened you know it was okay, he made it. You know everybody else in the group was very patient and supportive which was really nice. So um, but but yeah I mean obviously you know. 26:23.40 Sam It was okay. 26:38.95 Jen <unk>s yeah and like I said all the other ziplines we've been on either. The guides will break you if you need to slow down or um, you break just by kind of grabbing what amount to like little handles and you know jimmming them. So I've never had to. 26:52.43 Sam Mm. 26:52.80 dclduo Um. 26:56.79 Jen I Mean it was a nice course. But I've never had to kind of put that much work into it if you know what I mean so and it's hard to know when when you should break you know? So yeah, you know it will. 27:01.69 Sam Um, yeah, yeah. 27:05.28 dclduo Yeah, yeah, I'm impressed at 11 years old doing that on your own like that's ah, that's not easy. That's not easy. 27:11.64 Sam I'll be honest I'm not sure I would want to do so I've done zip lines before and I terrified every time I've done it before I do it and then I love it. But I don't know that I want to do one that I have to self break like honestly, that's that sounds terrifying. 27:16.00 Jen Um, a yeah. 27:23.92 Jen Yeah, yeah, it's tough I mean my daughter and I have done them since she was probably about 8 You know she started pretty young and um and so it's hard to know because you want your kids to um, not be afraid to try things and to have a sense of confidence that they can do something that maybe they thought they couldn't. 27:35.54 Sam And if no. 27:41.92 Jen But you know you obviously don't want to push them beyond what they're comfortable with so so it's a balance So anyway, but I think overall we had a positive experience and then we we took him back to the ship to relax and then she and I kind of just walked around the town a little bit. We went to a great crate place. 27:46.34 Sam Um. 28:01.41 Jen Um, it was actually not raining in the evening when we were walking around which was really nice and I think rare there so pretty late I want to say maybe 7 7 eight pm something like that. Yeah. 28:06.95 Sam How how late were you guys import there. 28:15.90 Sam Oh Wow and are were most of the ports like that I mean I get the sense and I don't know if ever asked the question directly but I get the sense that they're long port days much longer than. 28:25.30 Jen Yeah, you know in catch a can where skagway I felt like we left a little earlier and it was a much smaller place to walk around I think Skagway from what I remembered so. 28:35.75 dclduo Yeah, yeah, um I'm curious too on that point like how early were you getting into port and did you do late dining or or main dining. 28:43.59 Jen Yeah, we did late dining I mean the kids are old enough now where we can do that and obviously ideally we'd be eating somewhere in between right? The early s really early and the late fairly late. Um, but overall it was good because you know we could snack we were at. 28:54.90 Sam Um. 29:01.87 Jen We made good use of the concierge lounge this trip. You know we had a lot of we pregamed you know with Sna around 5 or six p m and they really liked. You know they would have little samplings of like you know little cheeses and prisudo or whatever and and so or looks little sushi rolls. Um and they could get you know a. 29:07.36 dclduo Um, yeah. 29:12.40 dclduo And. 29:21.66 Jen You know a sparkling juice or whatever. So um, so they made good use of the lounge and in the evening and then sometimes in the morning. Um, and ah and it worked out I would say obviously sometimes we were pretty tired by the time dinner was finishing but we also had a ah pretty quick. Serving Team. They seemed really busy always and so they didn't really have time to chat or do the magic tricks or anything like that but they were they kept things moving which I appreciated especially in the evening like the food got served pretty expeditiously and we were out of there. You know. 29:51.56 Sam Um, yeah. 29:58.73 Sam That's nice. Yeah I have a question about you know Garrett being 11 and whether or not that made an impact really in you know excursion choices because I know there are some excursions on with Disney with in Alaska specifically that are. 29:58.88 Jen Print quickly. So. 30:04.17 Jen Um, the. 30:14.74 Jen Yeah I want to say there was one we wanted to do that was 12 and up. Maybe it was like see trying to see bears or something I can't remember what it was but it was it was something you had to be 12 and up and then there were some that just seemed like they didn't come back after the pandemic like they were listed but then you couldn't actually book them. You know. 30:15.30 Sam 12 and up was there. 30:21.80 dclduo Me. 30:30.19 Sam Oh interesting. 30:34.60 Jen Um, it's been such a while since I booked everything but um I think that was the main issue. So yeah, they did I mean he and I did a version of that when we were um, we did it on our own not through abd. But when we were on that abd trip and and it was great I mean you helicopter out there. 30:38.17 dclduo Do they have the dog sledding excursion. 30:50.13 dclduo No. 30:54.22 Jen Um, you get to be on your own sled. You know even Garrett at the time he was I guess maybe 10 got to drive his sled you know around the the loop. Um, so like I said we we chose not to redo it this time I mean it. It is very expensive but um. 31:01.20 Sam No cool. 31:11.65 Jen If Philla really wanted to do. We would have we just figured between her allergies because you get to cut a lot of puppies which is fun and she wouldn't be able to resist it you know, but between the allergies and um, um, you know she's sometimes is a little sensitive about. 31:15.98 dclduo Him. 31:17.54 Sam Right? alright. 31:28.00 Jen You know, even though the dogs seem to be well cared for and in good condition and ah you know I just were in the the teenage girl phase so you never know you know she's really need to free all the dogs or something. Um, yeah, it's just um I've. 31:35.84 Sam Um, yeah, ah they are working dogs. Yeah yeah I can understand they are I mean they are working dogs. It is ah. 31:39.61 dclduo Yeah. 31:47.10 Jen Figured she she had She wasn't sure so we thought you know what? let's just keep it simple and go walk around the glacier which which they really enjoyed. So so I think it was my choice. 31:53.62 dclduo Nice what about on board the ship you mentioned you know the special character outfits which I think a lot of people will be familiar with are those not mickey mini anywhere. Just kind of fun Winry outfits I think Mickey has like a like a rain slicker outfit and. 32:01.43 Jen Um, meaning. 32:06.30 Jen Yeah, yeah, he is a great sticker which's a little odd but the the rest have like ah you know snow snow gear which we got a kick out of and and they're you know, especially Donald and daisy really pam it up which is fun. Um, and then we had we had. 32:12.43 dclduo Yeah. 32:25.78 Jen Naturalist on who did a couple talks I dragged the kids to the first one he was a little dry I think for kids So so they were kind of like yeah one is enough. Um, they premiered a little mermaid on the ship because they opened that weekend which we enjoyed and um, other than that. 32:39.70 dclduo Crow. Nice. 32:44.96 Jen You know we tried to give Garrett some breaks he likes to do some relaxing but violet and I we drew a lot. We do a lot of the animation classes and we do a lot of the trivia and actually the wonder was pretty good about um, even if it said adults only since she's fifteen I mean um. 32:52.83 Sam Oh. 33:04.37 Jen Like there were a lot of trivias in like the crown and fin pub and and drawing even that was quote unquote adult and they didn't seem to to give us any hard time I mean we weren't there obviously after 9 it was during the day but in the wish the wish was more no adults only this is you know? um. 33:15.43 dclduo M. You. 33:20.52 Sam Yeah, yeah. 33:23.94 Jen More rigid about it. So um, so you know for instance, we did like ah I think a two thousand s music trivia which was a lot of fun. Um, even those you know quote for adults you know like I said I think if you have a teenager. It's. 33:37.29 Sam Um, yeah. 33:41.40 Jen On on most of the ships. That's it's really not a big deal and then the kids I think are crowning achievement is the kids they um they love ah how well do you know your family and so I swear for 2 years my um 33:51.47 Sam No. 33:51.79 dclduo No. 33:58.80 Jen My daughter and her her dad were trying to win that and they finally did and then she and I have won it once and then so she said um, Garrett's much more um, a little more you know, not it's into public speaking or or a little more you know, um. 34:03.16 Sam Ah. 34:17.48 Jen Reticent to be up on the stage but ah, but he said oh you know I'll do it with you and ah and so she asked the host you know can I can I enter it with my brother and she said oh I guess so and you know they they handed it up during the the. Picking of the contestants so they they got chosen and they went ah they went against 3 teens and their parents. So I thought this could be really bad right because I didn't really know what to expect of Garrett when he got up there. You know he might just freeze and not be able to answer. No. 34:36.10 Sam Oh. 34:41.77 dclduo Are rough. 34:41.90 Sam Right. 34:47.82 Sam Oh. 34:51.31 Jen But they swept it. They got every answer right on each other. Yes, they was the yeah the 2 of them. Um, yeah, knowing each other's responses which was just hilarious I was just shocked honestly. 34:53.23 Sam So they knew each other well enough to get every. That's amazing. 35:09.78 Jen I Spent a lot of a time obviously at home fighting right? So you figure but I guess you know each other well when you fight. Yeah, we know how to push each other's buttons. So so they were made man. Yes, it was really ah, a crowning achievement for the family. Um. 35:15.24 Sam Yeah, fight exactly? Ah, that's awesome. Oh now did they? What was the prize did they get like the mickey medals or something. 35:29.26 Jen Oh yeah, just ah, you got a medallion. Yeah I think it was a chippendowe one so they were very excited for yeah yeah, and then Trivia we we. 35:32.26 Sam I would be excited actually for the for the new. Those new ones are pretty cool like the different character ones. Yeah yeah. 35:42.38 Jen Did okay but we never I think the only one we well we we co one one. The Alaska Trivia actually my daughter and I um tied for first but I think that was because it was the least well attended of all of the trivi. It's look contest. 35:52.81 dclduo Europe. 35:55.58 Sam Ah, so that's a good tip out there if you want to try and potentially win trivia pay attention to you know all your tours and go to the Alaska Trivia I like that. But. 36:01.46 Jen Groups. Yeah men We always do all right? but nowhere near as well as most people so are the winners. 36:09.22 dclduo What my my sense is Jen that Alaska is the star of the show on these cruises. You know there's plenty to do on board but did you feel like I know when we were in europe or or when we were Norway I felt like we didn't spend a ton of time on the ship did did is that how it felt for you. 36:22.74 Jen Um, yeah yeah I think so and just I think the the uniqueness of being somewhere cold on the ship which maybe Norway was similar I'm sure like you guys we we mainly are just um or at least for us. It's. 36:33.40 Sam Um. 36:40.75 Jen Convenient to kind of hop on. We mainly do a lot of 3 and fournite kind of shorter ones either out of Orlando or San Diego because we're kind of equidistant. Um, although somehow we haven't made one out of galvestin yet which we could in theory drive to but um, but we're always in. 36:55.32 Sam Um, yeah. 36:56.24 Jen Warm weather and even when we went over to the mediterranean obviously it was hot. It was in the summer so um so I think we really liked the fact that it was cold. You know the kids bought the absurdly expensive jackets on board. You know were fuzzy and we'll probably almost never wear again. But. 37:08.17 Sam Right? The hellie hansen. Yeah. 37:14.41 Jen But it was just fun to to bundle up and and walk around you know in the cold weather too. 37:19.65 dclduo Nice. 37:20.99 Sam Yeah I take it you didn't have any pool time on the deck. Ah. 37:23.42 Jen How we to not I was not I did not really miss that to be honest, ah so you know trying to dry out swimsuits and all of that So I was okay with that there were kids that got in that pool but we were not. We were not among them. 37:28.20 dclduo Ah. 37:30.40 Sam Ah. 37:35.60 Sam Um, yeah, yeah, yeah to be fair, they are heated but ah, you couldn't get me in one of the pools in that kind of cold weather. You could get me in one of the hot tubs but probably not. 37:42.56 Jen Yeah, yeah, there were some adults in the hot tub I noted and Garret would have done that but I just thought well but you're gonna be really cold when you get hot. So yeah. 37:51.25 Sam Yeah. 37:54.64 Sam Yes, really cold. Yeah. 37:54.65 dclduo Yeah, but we failed to ask Jen what kind of room you had I mean being in concieurs you had a veranda of some sort. 38:04.97 Jen Yeah, just had a concis I don't know what it just? um, maybe they call it family Veranda I'm not sure. But yeah, um, and so I mean yeah, well yeah I sat on it quite a bit. Um. 38:08.64 dclduo Yeah, yeah, yeah, did you use The veranda did you use it. 38:20.67 Jen Thinking I was going to see you know the whales and but and the way the weather was really nice, but um I would say you know we do best honestly in the middle of the ship. Um kind of a mid-level middle of the ship because of the motion. So conciiers is sometimes rough for us because you're up high. We did try to pick at least the middle. 38:33.30 dclduo M. 38:36.28 Sam So. 38:40.47 Jen Up high. But um, but like I said we had some days in even our last C day I was trying to run around the track and it was Windy and so the ship was like I was losing my balance running around the track. So um. 38:54.57 Jen And ah violet was doing a drawing class on her own and that was the 1 time she got kind of sick that day because she was doing so much drawing you know, looking down and the ship with moving. She's like okay I got to take a break you know and then it it calmed down but for a little while there in the middle of the day. It was pretty pretty windy and rocking. 38:59.80 Sam Oh looking down and concentrating. 39:04.10 dclduo Oh. 39:13.42 dclduo Interesting. Well I mean overall jen did you find so 1 did you enjoy the Alaska cruising experience and 2 Ah you know would you do it on Disney again or was you recommended on Disney to others or would you say you know man. 39:27.54 Jen Um, yeah I mean. 39:30.70 dclduo For what it was maybe Norwegian is a way to go. 39:32.87 Jen Yeah, no I think we you know I keep thinking oh I'm gonna ah veer away from Disney and and we did take like the celebrity cruise to to Greece which um, which my son absolutely loved. But um I think for my for my daughter even though she's a teen and she's not She's not really going to the vibe ever participating in the teen club she loves having those activities on board and the shows and and that bit where Garrett cares more about you know the ship and sort of the the luxuries of the ship. So I think for us we do still. 39:53.00 Sam So. 39:55.48 dclduo Um. 40:08.19 Jen Kind of enjoy what Disney offers overall. Um and I mean I think it's worth going to Alaska no matter how you do it. So if um, you know one of the other ships based on price or itinerary is better than you know it's worth doing but but I was glad we did it this way. Think that being said, my son came out of it saying you know I liked the Land Alaska trip was my favorite and that may in part be because it it was just he and I right? you know so it was sort of a mother sun trip which was a lot of fun. Um you know and he liked the variety of activities probably that we did a little better. 40:29.80 Sam How interesting. 40:32.67 dclduo N. 40:45.20 Jen Um, but they both really loved Vancouver so so that was a really big hit and and they liked to cruise I mean they had a nice time on the cruise. But um, you know they think there's you know the excursions overall I think we we had a pretty good selection. 40:48.91 dclduo Nice. 41:04.28 Jen Um, you know it's ah it's There's always sort of highs and lows with each one so but nothing was like a a disaster and like I said no no vomit bags were used. That's a bit when my family. 41:09.12 Sam Yep. 41:15.34 Sam Ah, which which yeah, which which one would you say for for you which one was your favorite of the activities excursions that you that you all did. 41:15.49 dclduo Ah. 41:27.85 Jen Um I think for me, it was tough. It would have been the zip lining had it not been that very last because you know he was doing so well violet was loving it even though we can do that in many places that was really nice and um and um. 41:34.30 Sam Me. 41:44.87 Jen And I loved being on the glacier that was a lot of fun. You know having the kids like stick their faces in the street and freeze with a who you know? So yeah. 41:48.40 dclduo The. 41:49.20 Sam Ah, that's that's awesome. 41:54.91 dclduo Nice I I wanted I would be remiss. So um, we were supposed to have you on a few weeks ago or a month ago or so now to talk about this trip. You had to Costa Rica and we we couldn't make it work but as we're exch changing email around that trip. 42:05.95 Jen Um, enemy. 42:09.81 dclduo I wanted to ask you about something which was you've done a ton of adventures by disney trips including went to Alaska and you mentioned over email when I asked you about how things were going with your Costa Rica trip which was not adventures by Disney how much you miss your adventures by Disney Guides and so I was just I was curious now that you have done. 42:15.23 Jen Um. 42:22.97 Jen Yeah, yeah. 42:28.66 dclduo You know, adventures by Disney led trips and you know this Costa Rica trip that you sort of I think plans with the help of a ta but but kind of on your own. It was not an organized necessarily organized in the way that ab d would be right? Yeah, what. 42:39.56 Sam Right? Not a group trip is a family trip. 42:43.16 Jen Um, in. 42:44.13 dclduo What was the yeah, what? what led to that comment. What was making you miss your adventure guides. 42:48.24 Jen Well I think there's always a balance I think with Costa Rica what went better than I expected is we really loved the 3 hotels we picked and obviously we had total control over that versus abd you know you're you're using whatever hotels they book and the hotels were wonderful and um. 42:54.22 dclduo In. 42:56.48 Sam Um. 43:05.82 Jen You know some of the places we stayed were great but I'd say Overall we you know we had a hodgepodge of guides and some were very good and others were like not very good. Um, and so with abd you're kind of you know that you're getting a certain kind of quality with the guides. Um. 43:13.11 dclduo Who. 43:15.81 Sam Um. 43:24.13 Jen And they they're very good. Um I think um I Don entertaining is not the right word. It's not there entertain you per se but you know they're very good at engaging the kids and the adults and um, um, and there is a certain kind of camaraderie that develops on the with the group. 43:32.65 Sam And. 43:42.94 Jen Um, which since we're all fairly introverted I mean we always have a good time. You know, um, as just a family unit but it is nice to kind of have you get a little bit of that time on your own and then you get some of the time in the group. Um, so it I mean it's still. Was a wonderful trip and I'm really glad that it was just my daughter and I and it was it was great to spend that time with her and we did some really amazing things. Um, but it did make me appreciate I think you know, um, what you're getting with abd as well. Being said, we did Tokyo on our own and that was probably my favorite trip of all time you know, but part I think that was the you know that destination was still. You know, kind of just the you know the top thing we've done. So um, so yeah I think that would be sort of my summary is is a. 44:17.71 dclduo E. 44:17.84 Sam Yeah. 44:35.20 Jen You know the guides I think I don't know what have interest by Disney paid some but it's probably not enough because they're I mean they really kind of make those ropes and ah and to a large extent. 44:41.72 Sam Ah, they're just that good. Yeah well and I know um you know you used my path unwinding travel for that Costa Rica trip and they helped you plan that itinerary. Um, do you feel like um. 44:55.46 Jen Um, and then. 44:58.69 Sam You know with abd you have you're kind of stuck with the with their itinerary right? So did did that assist you in being able to you know steer your vacation to places you wanted to go. 45:02.19 Jen Um, yeah. 45:07.38 Jen Yeah, yeah, I mean they keep me like I said they would give me some ah well here's sort of 3 hotel choices. You know, different kind of price ranges and locations and so you know we kind of work together to patch together the itinerary and they I think they tend to work with whatever third party kind of vendor. Helps arrange things locally and so it was really sort of the the quality of some of the guides I think was the problem of the third -party vendor. Um, you know like 1 like 1 ur our big our big guide for multiple days was it was supposed to be. You know. 45:32.90 Sam Here. 45:42.68 Jen Bill is like an expert guide driver and and he was basically just a driver right? and so and like sort of very um, low energy. So um, so it's just sort of um you know he was kind of like a miss. But that being said, um I mean. 45:47.23 Sam Ah. 45:53.74 Sam Oh that's a bummer. Yeah. 46:01.36 Jen It was it reminded me of the galapagos in the sense that you're there I mean one of the hotels was like on the beach and they were you know they had like morning yoga and there'd be like Monkeys everywhere hopping around while you're doing yoga and there would be sloss right in the trees above you and macaws and I mean it was Amazing. So. Um, but that's sort of um, kind of I think the beauty of that Destination. You know the variety of animals and everything. So. 46:24.19 Sam Right? I feel like doesn't abd have its own Costa Rica crip 46:33.16 Jen They do? Yeah um and my daughter and I went over spring break but I want to say either the timing didn't work out or they were booked or or both I don't know because I looked into it briefly. But um, but yeah, it just didn't work out so I was like okay well we'll still go and we'll just kind of. 46:38.96 Sam E. 46:48.59 Sam Um, yeah. 46:49.55 Jen Your own thing. 46:53.50 dclduo Well jen anything we missed in talking about your fabulous Alaska sailing with Disney Cruise line you want to be sure to ah to highlight. 47:00.99 Jen Um, no I think we we summed it up pretty well I mean um yeah I mean I guess leave some time in Vancouver that would be my recommendation. 47:07.90 dclduo Yeah, it it is a fabulous city is. 47:08.14 Sam Absolutely. 47:11.40 Jen Us Yeah, they don't get to visit very often. It was We was even we thought we'd enjoy it. But we we liked it even more than we were expecting to. 47:19.11 dclduo Rice. Nice. 47:19.33 Sam Yeah, it's like the it's like the big better brother to Seattle hello put it that way I mean we live in the Seattle area. So like um but I I think Vancouver is just such an amazing town. Um. 47:26.70 Jen Um, yeah, yeah, yeah. 47:32.23 Jen Um, yeah, that was great. 47:35.53 Sam Yeah I Just love it. 47:38.32 dclduo Well jen thank you so much for coming on as always we love to ah to chat with you and really appreciate you sharing your fabulous Alaska Cruise experience with us in a bit of an abbreviated fashion for our bonus show but still fun nonetheless. So thanks for taking the time. 47:52.70 Jen Um, yeah, thank you for having me.

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