September 14, 2023


Ep. 345 - Bonus - Baby Onboard: Sailing with an Infant on Disney Cruise Line

Hosted by

Brian Sam
Ep. 345 - Bonus - Baby Onboard: Sailing with an Infant on Disney Cruise Line
DCL Duo Podcast: A Disney Cruise Line Fan Podcast
Ep. 345 - Bonus - Baby Onboard: Sailing with an Infant on Disney Cruise Line

Sep 14 2023 | 00:42:33


Show Notes

Imagine setting sail on a magical journey with your six-month-old baby aboard Disney Cruise Line. Our guest, Alex from the blog Second Dad to the Right, did just that and he's here to share his experiences and top tips for cruising with a tyke in tow. From early dinner seatings to comprehensive childcare options, he unveils the secret strategies that make a Disney cruise with a baby a smooth sailing experience.

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Episode Transcript

00:00.00 dclduo Welcome back. Everybody did this week's episode of the actually nopes he already did it screwed it up hold on welcome back I take breath. Welcome back everybody to this week's bonus episode of the Dc L Duo Podcast brought to you by my path unwinding travel and Sam I feel like we needed a lead in song like we needed like the whole in credit hoster lead in like something with baby be mine I don't know because we're going to be talking where. 00:25.43 Sam With Jackdack I know we're talking about babies. Yeah, we're gonna talk baby talk. We're not. 00:27.60 Alex Smith Hey. 00:28.79 dclduo Yeah, where are all my infants at out there today. Ah right as sano what you can't write. That's right because where we talk about? Yeah, we're go me talk about. It's a small world right? Ah, the nursery. 00:38.56 Sam That's right, we're not actually going to talk in baby talk though just to be clear I'm not going to talk in baby talk for the show but we are going to be talking about babies and what one does with a baby on a Disney Cruise and we have to be completely candid that. We never sailed with Nathan when he was an infant so we have no personal experience of bringing a child on board that is under three years old and so we have an expert with us. He has his own blog. It's called. 01:10.62 dclduo No, no, no second dad to the 01:10.73 Sam Second star to the right dot com sorry second dad to the right and I just we literally just said this and I I was just reading his blog second dad to the welcome the dad from second dad to the Alex welcome. Yeah i. 01:28.49 Alex Smith Thanks, thanks for having me guys I'm really excited to talk about it. 01:32.68 dclduo And I actually for those of you listening to us we will probably try to put this out as video too. But ah Alex is wearing just the most on point t-shirt you could be wearing for this episode right now. It's like is it Jack Jack and like Nerv. It's like the nirvana album cover Jack Jack and I I love it. I love everything about it. So there you go? Um I like that goal. 01:51.20 Alex Smith Yeah, it's ah it's a private goal of mine to find the most random awesome shirts. 01:55.75 Sam It is a random awesome shirt. It is quite perfect. Yeah. 02:01.15 dclduo Yeah, so Alex we always like to start with our guests Disney Cruising background and Disney background. So tell folks how you you know what your experiences with Disney Cruise line the parks how you got into blogging about the parks and yeah. 02:14.22 Alex Smith Okay, so ah, 2000 I want to say December Two Thousand and seventeen I wanted to run the 3 spartan races which is like a obstacle course race and they've got like a 5 k one a ten k one and then a fifteen k one and the fifteen K one was in Tampa and the other 2 were in Atlanta where I live and so the only way I was going to get there was I said hey I told my wife I said I'll take you to Disney for two days if you'll come let me run this race and she said sure. Yeah we'll do that and it turned out to be a trip with not just her but also my 2 daughters and my mother-in-law and my grandmother-in-law and we went to Disney for like six days straight and then I had to run the race on the last day and then drive home. Ah. 02:54.44 Sam I. 02:59.67 dclduo I. 02:59.77 Sam Oh my God Now that's I mean that's like a marathon within itself right? I mean that's a ton of walking. 03:04.33 Alex Smith Yeah I mean I was getting 25000 steps I only got I got about 32000 steps in the race about 25000 steps every day in the park so it was almost good training because I was running with the stroller from line to line because that was back when fast passes you know you had a fast pass that started. At 1131 that started at 12 and so I would have to sprint to the next ride and then so we did that made a couple trips and then I got super into disney I mean I'll be honest, like the race was pretty much an afterthought after that and then we were like hey. On Disney Cruise it's like the Disney parks but it's relaxing so we actually went on the Disney wonder in February of Twenty Twenty out of New Orleans and literally I mean literally we some people who did back-to-backs from the Facebook group. 03:47.32 Sam Oh right before? yeah right before the shutdown. 03:58.17 Alex Smith Let us know that like a whole bunch of cast members and everybody got sick at mardi garage like the next week and so everything shut down so we were like either the last or the second to last trip out of New Orleans for however, long before they opened it back up so it was. 04:01.70 Sam Oh my goodness. 04:14.49 Alex Smith And and it was an amazing experience and then we've done 3 more cruises since then we did two on the fantasy and then we just did the magic in April ripe I'm I'm really good at doing things right before things happen I literally I think I was on the last cruise before the dry doed stop. 04:28.74 Sam Oh nice. 04:29.82 dclduo Yeah that's right, you got to see well not the original magic because you read magic has gone through dry dock before but at least you know you got 1 more time on the magic before all the upgrades happen. So and and some people would say the upgrades weren't all that upgrade. So ah, upgraded so there you go? Um, well. Alex I'm curious I first I got to start off by saying anyone out there who chooses to take a child under 3 on board a cruise like kudos to you I couldn't do it I would not have had the patience as a parent to get that done so kudos to you Alex as well. Um. 05:01.30 Sam I can I can vouch for that by the way Brian would not have had the patience to take Nathan on a cruise when he was under 3 Yeah, ah. 05:08.91 dclduo no no I would not have I would not have had that available of patients. But um Alice why Don we start step back and start by helping people understand how the it's a small world nursery orients in with the rest of the kids offerings like what's the ages. And what's just the sort of general experience like for It's a small world nursery as compared to maybe some of the other kids club offerings on board. 05:32.78 Alex Smith Gotcha so um, it's a small world. First of all is the only one that costs money. Um, and it's it's I consider it nominal considering how much the cruise cost I mean you're paying $9 an hour which is less than we pay our babysitters. 05:42.20 Sam Right. 05:47.72 Alex Smith Um, at home and you're getting this unbelievable care with you know, just the great cast members and characters are coming to visit them I mean the the money is it's immaterial. But it's six months which is the earliest you can bring a child on the cruise ship unless it's you know one of the at the. 06:07.68 Alex Smith Transconal oh sorry, my bed I'll start over. Okay, so um, the the it's a small world is it's ages six months to 3 years and six months is the earliest you can take a. 06:08.90 dclduo Hey Alex let me let me stop you for one second I think you're hitting the table and it's causing reverb in your mic. Um, no worries, no wories. Ah, just yes, start over, go ahead. 06:26.20 Alex Smith Ah, child on a cruise unless it's one of the I think that the transatlantic ones that are you have to be a year or maybe the ones that go around through the Panama canal. Um, but ah so we took our son I mean we took our son at so right after six months and there's a funny reason for that. 06:32.83 Sam Yeah. 06:35.47 dclduo Um, yeah. 06:45.97 Alex Smith And then we also took him right? just at like a thirteen months um but ah, it's you know you've got the you've got the the infant care and toddler care. It's a small world up until 3 years and then they move up to the ocean ear stuff and they can stay there till. Really til 12 but of course you also have the 11 and twelve year olds at is edge and then vibe for the um for the teenagers and now I guess on the wish they have like a special ah was eighteen twenty hideaway thing yeah 07:15.16 Sam Yeah, on right? Well they have the they have the 18 to 20 society on all the all the ships but on the wish they do have a space the hideaway that it's not. It's not exclusively for the 18 to 20 year olds but they do a lot of their events in the 18 to 20 in. 07:22.41 Alex Smith Right now. 07:31.79 Alex Smith But they'll judge you if you walk in there. 07:34.14 Sam In the Hideaway space. Yeah yeah, absolutely well and I think they use it a lot with because it's right next door to vibe they use it a lot for the the teens as well. 07:44.30 Alex Smith Got him. 07:46.30 Sam Um, but yeah, it's a really cool. It's a really cool space. So how much is it per hour for the it's a small world nursery. 07:53.67 Alex Smith So for for whatever reason on the website they want you to know how much it costs per half an hour I guess maybe that's the increment you book in but it's four fifty for half an hour so it's in my head that's $9 an hour. Um and which is way cheaper than childcare just about anywhere. 07:56.47 Sam Oh. 08:02.73 Sam Yeah. 08:10.77 Alex Smith Um, we pay our babysitter a little bit more than that. Um, and so yeah, yeah, yeah, think we we do about 15 but we visited some friends in Palo Alto or not Palo Alto Fresno that were like you can't do it for under 20 08:14.20 Sam Um, well I will tell you we're in the Seattle area we pay babysitters about $20 an hour so it's it is yeah. 08:18.81 dclduo Yeah, yeah. 08:27.91 dclduo Yeah, yeah. 08:28.70 Sam Yeah, yeah, and and I will say like we only have one kid so that like tells you we're paying $20 an hour for 1 kid like we have friends who have 2 or 3 kids they're paying between 25 and $30 an hour because they're paying more for more kids. 08:30.41 Alex Smith Um, yeah. 08:39.32 Alex Smith Yeah, yeah, you us should come to Atlanta because we do 15 for three kids. 08:46.69 dclduo There you go there, you go hey I remember my dad was $2 a ride home and a mcdonald's dinner for the babysitter. So yeah, um, what it and so that's a good question about the it's a small world nursery if you have multiple kids is it four or 50 per half hour per child or is there. 08:48.88 Sam Yeah, yeah, apparently. Ah. 09:04.39 Alex Smith They prorate it down I want to say down to $4 I mean I don't even know why they bother. It's kind of like the ah ah 3 to 9 year old at the parks. It's like they take like fifty cents off per hour for an extra kid. We only have one that age we have. 09:04.73 dclduo Like. 09:08.60 Sam Um, a little break. 09:19.16 Alex Smith So we have it. We have a 1 year old and then we have 2 daughters that are 7 and nine now and so that's why we took a baby on the cruise to begin with because we were already fully entrenched and we are Disney people we go to Disney for our vacations and then all of a sudden we have our pandemic surprise and we're like well he's coming with us. 09:20.77 dclduo Okay. 09:21.11 Sam Okay. 09:31.10 Sam Yep. 09:34.78 dclduo Nice. 09:36.85 Sam That's right? well and the girls are both going to ocean Ears club and Ocean ears lab and so yeah, you got to? you know you got to do something with the little one too now. How. 09:40.57 Alex Smith Um, and I love it. Yeah, um. 09:45.49 dclduo Yeah, and and let me, um, let me hold on to him. Ah, let me go back to 1 thing we said earlier just to clarify it. So for the minimum age requirements. Ah six months you're right across the board for most sailing but those itineraries that require one or older are now lists on the web site as the south pacific. Transatlantic Hawaii and Panama canal repositioning cruises. So those link much lengthier cruises seem to require at least 1 year old and also probably those are the cruises that are sailing out in the middle of the ocean for long periods of time. So yeah, go ahead. Sam. 10:16.59 Sam Yeah, so I was going to ask Alex um, what about booking or how does booking work for for the small world nursery I know that there's some amount of booking can do in advance but I have no idea how much and. Ah, whether or not that is actually sufficient. 10:36.18 Alex Smith Um, as far as the way it worked in April and everything keeps changes I don't want to say that I'm definitive on this because you know even as much as I mean we were when we went a a year ago we were worried that they wasn't even going to be open but ah. Basically you get 10 hours that you can reserve just like you would reserve a caba or an excursion so whatever class castaway level. You are you know if you're you know, platinum or concierge you can do it one hundred and twenty days and then you know if your first time is seventy five days 10:52.50 Sam Um. 11:08.68 Alex Smith Um, and so you get those 10 hours which freaked me out because I thought that was it um and so then we get there and you find out that you can book as many as you want after that. So everybody gets there 10 hours that you try to fill in and you want to get those early because you want those prime time. Some people all want them. 11:11.15 Sam This. 11:26.36 Alex Smith At dinnertime because they're going to pao or they just don't want the baby at the dining table. Um or they want them during the shows or they you know, want them. Maybe they want them at 7 8 at 8 in the morning so they can take a nap I don't know. Um, ah we really liked like. 11:39.65 Sam But what do you? What do you guys find are the for your family. The most important times to get coverage. 11:43.99 Alex Smith We We We like doing it right after lunch. So That's kind of like we're we're slow risers so we get up and we get breakfast and just kind of Mill around with the whole family. Then finally everyone kind of wakes up around lunchtime and our kids go off to the ocean ear lab or club. And then if we can get him off to ah to the nursery. Then we have like a couple hours to ourselves and then we also like doing it right after we always do the early dinner. Um, That's a good thing for parents to know from what I understand from what I understand with ah um. If. You have a baby and you request the early dining you pretty much get it no matter what? Um, if you've got the baby in your party and that's worked out for us twice both times when we went to check In. We had the late dining and as soon as we requested early dining. We got it even on our last cruise which was really full. Um I don't know if that I mean I don't want to. 12:27.95 dclduo O. 12:28.63 Sam Are. 12:39.40 Sam Oh nice. 12:42.68 Alex Smith Say that that definitely happens but that's definitely the the word on the street is that if you got an infant. They'll definitely give you the early dinning and so we would take him. Yeah, so we would take him to dinner but then we would take him to the nursery for the shows and just um. 12:47.41 Sam Yeah, that makes sense to prioritize. Yeah. 12:58.22 Alex Smith And sometimes we would try him at the shows and then if he got fussy then we would take him there or if he just got loud or bored but sometimes the the shows just completely captivated their attention and especially if it's something on deck with all the fireworks or you know the loud shows will try to have him in there for that and then any other times you can kind of. 13:02.31 Sam And. 13:16.34 Alex Smith Just play it by ear. Um, so what I always recommend to people is ah as soon as you get on the boat go straight there and try to get the rest of the hours you want because everyone else is doing that too. That's the only like I would never go near guest services if I didn't have to when you first get on the boat because it's always slammed. But. 13:33.59 dclduo Are. 13:35.27 Alex Smith I'll always race to it's a small world nursery just to try to get those spots in a couple other things you can do is you can um you can book ah childcare for excursion. 13:48.31 dclduo Oh. 13:49.77 Alex Smith So if your family wants to go on excursion. They don't take anyone under 7 or anyone under 9 Whatever the rules are for the particular particular excursion. They'll watch them and even if they're booked up if you have an excursion you get you get in no matter what? um ah and they don't they don't do that. 14:03.12 Sam Oh nice. 14:08.59 Alex Smith Automatic for Castaway key but you can also have the baby stay on the boat for castaway key for part of it or all of it depending on what you want. 14:14.37 Sam Oh wow are they are they open then during um like the whole day casto a key and the reason I asked that is because I know that. 14:14.43 dclduo Well. 14:24.64 Sam Oceanir's club and and lab are not typically open for the whole day. They're open I think part of the day but because they have a kids club on the island. They don't have it completely open on the ship the whole day. 14:36.15 Alex Smith I Don't know the exact hours but it's pretty much the whole day because they don't have anything like that on the island and of course you know babies you have to be a lot more careful with sun care and dehydration and that kind of stuff and so um, but yeah, we definitely had him. 14:38.35 Sam Wow right. 14:46.78 dclduo He. 14:51.63 Alex Smith In the nursery for most of the time that we were on castaway key in April um. 14:53.70 Sam Wow And do you know the hours are on like a let's say a C day for example, like what time they open in the morning and what time they stay open till at night. 14:57.81 dclduo Um, what can. 15:04.21 Alex Smith When I wrote that ah piece on it. It was actually kind of hard to find but for when I can tell it's 8 a m to midnight. Um I think before covid they would even stay open until one in the morning. Um, but yeah, it's 8 am to midnight because with you know, with babies they sleep in the child care. 15:10.11 Sam Wow. 15:22.42 Sam Right. 15:24.80 Alex Smith I mean it's not like your 5 year old is gonna be up till midnight if it's an infant like you can you can actually tell them you say put them put them to sleep and they'll let you dictate that and they'll they'll they'll do the nap time for you or if the child's tired. They'll. Unless you specifically told them not to they'll put them down for a nap. 15:42.70 Sam Wow. 15:42.99 dclduo And I've heard that they'll keep them potentially beyond your booked hours if they're sleeping like they will not awake a baby up for you to have to take them out. Did you have you heard that. 15:53.18 Alex Smith I I haven't my well First of all, my son is terrible about napping at daycare or he doesn't he doesn't do well if other people are running around. He's just like he wants to be in the middle of it and then he'll crash later. Um, but so I didn't run into that I imagine that's possible. Um I don't know how they would. 16:02.70 Sam Right is stimulated by. Yeah yeah. 16:08.97 dclduo In. 16:13.80 Alex Smith I've never had a time where I mean I Guess that's not true. There's been a couple times where they absolutely were like you have to come pick them up right on time because we're full. It was usually on a C day right before a show starts which was fine because we were usually picking them up to take them to dinner anyway. Um, but usually they're not full and they'll keep them. 16:22.60 Sam Gotcha. 16:23.66 dclduo Okay. 16:32.51 Alex Smith But they'll charge you Um, if you just leave them in there. They're like okay just reminder your time's up. We're charging you extra now. Um, which but yeah I mean it's just the hourly rate nothing. Yeah, no, no penalty just just once you start that next. 16:33.87 Sam Right? right? ah. 16:38.50 dclduo Okay, what's see what's the extra fee got you? Ok so not like a penalty fee like a per minute fee years because yeah, yeah, because roll. 16:40.64 Sam Now What kind. Um, yeah. 16:51.22 Sam The next half hour yeah oh really. 16:52.12 Alex Smith Like 30 minutes and they're going that. 16:55.19 dclduo A Caribbean had like a penalty fee for their kids's club like if you didn't pick them up by a certain time and they were closing like this was a time when the kids club was otherwise going to be closing start charging by the minute. Yeah. 17:01.44 Alex Smith Yeah, dont I never ran into that I imagine there's probably I don't know if it's a financial penalty or you're not allowed to use the nursery if you're just leaving your kid in there long after clothes they probably hunt you down with the app. 17:09.62 dclduo Yeah, yeah for sure. 17:13.52 Sam Probably probably. They'll probably Gps location you with the new magic bands or Disney Band pluses um so I'd love to know some of the logistics um of when you have your child in It's a small world nursery like feeding and diapering and. Do. You need to bring their food with you or do they have you know formula that you can use or puree foods that you can use like those kinds of logistics. 17:43.98 Alex Smith So ah, you do need to bring your own diapers bring your own wipes. Um and then with food they have a few things that they will give if you let them. They've got milk. Could you some water and yogurt and. And want to say animal crackers something like that. It just says crackers I Assume it's animal crackers could be saltines I don't know um and so you can you got this long sheet.. That's one thing I always I would want to warn parents is that there's a lot to fill out when you drop off your kid. 17:58.98 Sam Um. 18:07.65 Sam A. 18:09.94 Alex Smith And so if you're you're sprinting to get to a show like you better, be ready to at least sit there for two or three minutes and fill it all out. You got to say this is what I want them to nap this is when I want them to eat and this is what I want them to eat and then you you can bring prepackaged sealed foods. You can't bring you can't bring something that's already open. You can't bring just like a. 18:22.88 Sam Is. 18:29.70 Alex Smith Half eaten bag of cheeses or something like that. Um, yeah, it has to be sealed. You have to give them a spoon. Um and they'll do that or they'll give them stuff that they've got I think they got bananas too I think that's so they've got like a fruit and drinks and crackers and yogurt. 18:44.61 Sam Nice What about formula or breast milk. Um, you know, ah at you'd have to yeah you Well I imagine they don't give you their own breast milk. But ah right, it would be disney. 18:48.85 Alex Smith You'd have to bring your own. Yeah yeah, if there was one cruise ship that would it would be Disney they have to get in international waters. First Yeah yeah. 18:56.13 dclduo Ah. 19:00.30 Sam They would have a wet nurse and head and international orders. Um, but yeah, they will they will I Assume they'll give your child that if you bring it ready to go. Um. 19:04.67 Alex Smith Next level. 19:09.13 Alex Smith yeah yeah I guess that's true. Yeah, because that wouldn't be factory sealed. But yeah you you provide that milkwise or formula I imagine the formula is not mixed already. You give them a powder or a can or something I think that's what we did. We had a can that we gave them for our first cruise but then he was already transitioned to whole milk. 19:18.49 Sam Right? right. 19:27.78 Alex Smith That they could provide for the rest of the crews. Um, so it's it's limited there. But what's amazing I don't know if you guys want me to go into it but the dining what they can do for babies dining is insane. 19:29.83 Sam Um, that's super helpful. 19:38.33 Sam Oh yeah, I'd love to hear what they do so you were talking in the main dining room not in It's a small world nursery Yeah, we'd love to know what they do for infants. 19:42.69 Alex Smith Yes, yeah, yeah, so the first night you get there. They'll pureate anything on the menu. So if you want your kid to have persets in animator. You can get them to grind that up but usually. 19:53.87 Sam But like steak. Ah you hear that Josh if you have another baby Josh and you want bring them and have that make them try travel up set. You can. Ah. 19:55.22 dclduo This. 20:06.42 Alex Smith You can get it all pure aid. Um I don't in fact that if that'll do it for adults probably too. But you want to smooth I Knew that was a thing for you all but ah, but so usually we pick one of the vegetables. 20:07.87 Sam Yeah, shout out to Josh in Gullingham Washington ah ah, 20:16.32 Sam I Love it I Love it. 20:23.20 Alex Smith On the menu and and puree it. But then if there's something specific that they like you tell tell them and they'll do it every night. So for instance, we discover just by chance that asher loved butternut squash soup and literally they brought it out to him every night and he would just devour it. 20:36.46 Sam I Mean who doesn't love butternut Squash soup. Ah oh. 20:41.70 Alex Smith But they'll puree anything they'd puree strawberries they pure agree beans they puree chicken they mix it all together if you wanted them to and so like they just had this I mean it was amazing. So you could try all sorts of new foods and I mean I felt like it was almost. 20:51.39 Sam Smoothie. 20:57.24 Alex Smith More options for them than it was the kids you know kids ordering pizza not on the menu too. But our kids they're picky. 21:03.15 Sam Ah I Love it. That's awesome. Okay, well I feel like we have to talk about like the fun stuff that the babies and the toddlers are doing it. It's a small world nursery like do they have I mean as much as you can have organized activities for babies and toddlers. Do they have activities that they sort of regularly do with with the kiddos in there. 21:24.23 Alex Smith So part of it is. It's a lot of self-driven so they've just got toys everywhere and if a kid you know sees the they'll play with the kid with without toys trying to get them to do stuff together doesn't usually work as if they think they watch movies. 21:32.74 Sam Um. 21:39.72 Alex Smith And then they'll have some like like me like a dance time and then they'll have characters come in and see them and I thought it was really funny that he was not excited to see Mickey because he loved mickey. In fact, I'm pretty sure oh boy were his first words um like he doesn't know what mickey is he just goes oh boy. 21:51.67 Sam Oh my goodness. That's so awesome. 21:53.47 dclduo Ah. 21:59.12 Alex Smith Every time he's sees like a picture of him on his wall or something So um, but yeah, so they they do that. It's but again, you know kids are coming in and out and it's not like the ocean ear club where you can like get them all to gather round. Yeah right. 22:07.19 Sam Sure right? They're not doing Gaga ball in the middle of the club right? Of course not well that sounds fun though. 22:16.85 Alex Smith Yeah, or some kind of some kind of I don't account you. 22:20.92 Sam Yeah, we I will say we've gotten a chance to go into It's a small world nursery on a several of the ships just during open house hours and it really is a beautiful space and I would say the wish space is even more beautiful. Um, for anyone who hasn't seen it. It is all of them are Mary Blair Themed but as you said I think in your blog post Alex the the ones on the four we'll call them the 4 original ships. The first four ships are all really It's a small world ride Mary Blair themed whereas the wish has other um. I p other disney I p but themed in like a Mary Blair way right? am I getting that right? Yeah yeah. 23:06.52 Alex Smith Yeah, so I mean first of all I'm second dad to the right? So um, they got the peter pan on the door at the wish I think and then they've got like Marvel characters that look like it's a small world. So I think it's pretty cool I'd like to have a shirt that has all those on it. 23:18.97 Sam Yeah I think that would actually be. It's really fun theming I thought it was beautiful. Um, and they had like a train up top over like the Tv in the at least in the one and on the wish I I thought it was amazing I just couldn't get over it. 23:24.62 Alex Smith Um. 23:29.82 Alex Smith Yeah I haven't been on the wish yet, but it looks like the kids the ocean ear stuff is way next level compared to the other ships too. 23:39.86 Sam It is it is the theming I think the theming in all the kids spaces um really is just next level I think edge and vibe are pretty similar to what they are as far as theming on the other ships. Um, but the spaces are really beautiful and and modern and updated. So. Um, but yeah, ah the ocean ears club and it's a small world nursery are just I think incredible spaces. Yeah yeah, so I feel like we need to talk a little bit about what one does with a baby onboard a Disney Cruise in general right? like. 24:11.50 Alex Smith In. 24:13.54 Sam Okay, when you're you when you don't have asher in. It's a small world nursery What kinds of things are you doing around the ship because there are some spaces that are more probably baby friendly in other spaces that are probably less baby. Friendly. 24:31.69 Alex Smith Well he and we could talk about this in a second he he hasn't been walking on yet. He hadn't started walking which will play into attack Jack but ah, um, ah. 24:43.23 Sam Ah. 24:44.82 Alex Smith So you know he just stayed in the stroller and he's pretty chill. He's not like real fussy and needing to get out and do stuff he is now. But ah so if we go again, we're we're looking to go again soon? Um, we'll see how that goes but ah, um, you know he just he enjoys all the sights all the sounds. Um. 24:50.10 Sam Right. 24:55.55 Sam Um, yeah. 25:03.33 Alex Smith You've got the the little splash pad that each ah um, each each cruise ship has even because you're not I thought it was a strange because you know at the resorts you can take a baby in a diaper in a swim diaper into the pools but not on the cruise Ships I guess because it's so much smaller. Um. They could contaminate a whole lot more. Um, oh I didn't know that. Okay. 25:22.28 Sam It Well it's it's because they don't use chlorine on the pool in the pools. Yeah, so the pool deck pools they're using Salt water and so it's and you know it's naturally you know chlorinated in that sense. But it's not. 25:22.36 dclduo If. 25:30.68 Alex Smith Okay. 25:38.88 Sam Chlorinated so it's not killing poop bacteria and so that's why they don't allow babies and it's not just Disney. It's all the cruise lines have the same thing because none of them are using chlorinated water. Yes, exactly exactly so they want to keep the poop out of the pool which you can understand. But yeah it does limit. 25:39.94 Alex Smith Okay, that's fair, no I'm and also stomach bugs on Cruise ships are much bigger deal than they are on land and yeah. 25:57.83 Sam Yeah, it doesn't limit what you can do with baby on the pool deck but you're you're right? There's the dory in the Nemo splash pads and then on the wish there's the it's a toy story theme splash Pad and they're beautiful. They're really great. 25:59.60 Alex Smith I left. 26:11.68 Alex Smith Yeah, and and they're great and but I don't think he's even allowed in the bigger splash pads like the Huey Dewey louis thing um but he loves it. He played with those you know I mean he he's basically at this point in his life. Just. Sit to stroller watching stuff crawling around being excited about seeing stuff and then sleeping you know half the day. So um, and then if you really need to get him to move around. You don't want to be out in the sun I think I mentioned this and in a different blog post but you could just set them loose. And the atrium when no one's in there I mean that's a wide open space. They keep super well vacuumed. Um I even posted I posted an Instagram post of like we were my daughters and I were throwing paper airplanes off the balcony and we were the only ones in there like it was like two o'clock in the afternoon. 26:47.59 Sam Yeah. 27:01.75 Sam It It does get pretty empty, especially like on a ah port day Frankly port days are probably the best for the atrium because it's It's just completely dead. Um, kind of midday. Yeah, now have you gotten to check out with asher I know they do some hours in the morning. 27:05.86 Alex Smith Yeah. 27:18.19 Sam Know on the magic and the wonder they do they open up Andy's room I think they do it on the fantasy and the dream. Um I know and I know on the wish they open up. They have a it's a mickey and mini themed play area. Um's like Captain Mickey Captain minnie open that up for toddlers and infants for kind of big chunks of time and they call it open house hours. But it is really geared towards those younger cruisers have you guys gotten to experience playing in those spaces. 27:46.76 Alex Smith Yeah, we took it. We took him in there. Both cruises that we went on um on the fantasy we took him in there and he wasn't crawling yet when we took him there. He's only six months or seven months old then um and so we took him in there just like we would set him in Andy's ah 27:53.20 Sam So. 28:04.66 Alex Smith And his toy box and take a picture of him because he was in his buzz light year. Onesy um, and then on the magic you know he could crawl so we have like 1 of the older sisters would hold him and go down the slinky dog slide and and so that was fun. 28:08.36 Sam Oh Mike ah. 28:16.25 Sam So cute. 28:20.30 Alex Smith Um, it was crazy crowded in there I mean the open house was packed so it was a little bit hard to maneuver in there because like I said and we went spring break. So I think it was a completely full sailing. Um, and but ah, but yeah, so yeah, we've definitely gone in there with him a good bit. Um. 28:27.30 Sam Yeah, oh yeah, yeah. 28:36.97 Sam Nice. 28:38.82 Alex Smith And and I like the I like the smaller shit the magic and wonder um kids clubs better because they've got that awesome toy story area. Yeah. 28:44.86 Sam That slide. Yeah I agree that Andy that Andy's room on the magic and the wonder is way better than Andy's room on the dream and fantasy I will highly highly highly. Recommend. 28:46.21 dclduo Here. 28:59.80 Sam For folks with real young kids to go on the wish because that mickey captain Mickey Captain mini space that they have that they do open up actually a lot more than the other spaces for open house hours specifically for the toddlers and infants. It's just a really beautiful space and it's got. Very like infant and toddler appropriate kind of climbing things. Um, when I say climbing things we're talking very low to the ground stuff. Nothing where nothing where there's like a ah tall slide or anything. They're like those. 29:26.14 Alex Smith Then. 29:31.67 Sam If you think of like the splash pads at some of the resorts that are aimed for the really really little kids. They're like that but not obviously with water. 29:37.24 Alex Smith He did manage to give himself a goose egg by climbing up on top of a chair and they gave him one out. They get certificates like for and he got one called the parkor baby even though he wasn't even walking yet. He was trying to climb everything. Yeah. 29:48.91 Sam Ah, it was climbing listen our son Nathan was he was climbing before he was walking he was climbing. We lived in a townhouse when he was little and at like I think it was ah he was about seven months old 29:52.52 dclduo Um, ah ah. 30:03.98 Sam He started climbing up the stairs now he couldn't get down the stairs but he was climbing up the stairs of our townhouse and they were quite steep and we were kind of terrified. Yeah yeah, couldn't walk you know could barely crawl but could climb. Yeah Nope yeah terrifying. Absolutely. 30:10.33 Alex Smith Yeah terrified he does that now and he tries to turn around and go back down it just like it's terrifying. 30:12.58 dclduo Um, yeah. 30:23.88 Sam Now we have to get to like the highlight of babies on cruise ships because we would be remiss if we didn't talk about Jack Jack's diaper dash. Um Alex I know that asher has competed in this amazing competitive. 30:41.50 Sam Wonderful experience on Disney Cruise line but why don't you tell our listeners who haven't maybe been on tell us what's Jack Jack's diaper dash. 30:43.48 Alex Smith Grueling. 30:48.30 Alex Smith So Jack Jack's incredible. Diaper dash is they roll out this track I think it's twenty feet long they roll out this mat across the atrium I don't know how they do it I think they have a new space that they do it in on the wish but in the in the 4 original ships. They've got the atrium and. They I mean it's there was probably 15200 people watching across you know the you've got the the atrium floor and then you got the 2 balconies and it was just packed. They're using all sorts of light effects to make this like feel like a boxing match and announcing stuff. 31:13.60 Sam Um, yeah. 31:21.00 Sam Yeah, it's like a thunderdome I think it's like. 31:24.49 Alex Smith They're interviewing us like what? what'd you do to prepare um, kinds of stuff like that and our training plan is that he wants to get away from me and he wants to go back to mom like that's what I told him? Um, yeah. 31:29.34 Sam Ah, was your training plan. What are you feeding the kid. 31:37.34 Sam I Love it now. They do it in the hero zone on the wish. So you're correct. They don't do it in the age in the Grand Hall on the wish. Um and it's It's a better space for that event on the wish because the Atrium's bigger I'm sorry. 31:47.29 Alex Smith And I think they do 2 of them. Not they I think they do 2 of them on the wish too which is even more incredible because it's a shorter cruise. 31:59.27 Sam They might because there are a lot of um there are quite a few babies on most wish cruises I will say we were on the wishmaideen voyage and there were only 2 babies on the entire ship and so it was a head to head competition. 32:10.00 Alex Smith Nice, but. 32:11.30 dclduo If. 32:12.19 Sam For Jack Jacks incredible diper it was the quickest I've ever seen that competition go. But. 32:16.96 Alex Smith Yeah, so yeah there I don't there were a lot of babies on the cruise because like I said it was packed but I guess there weren't as many as you normally would because it was spring break for schools. So there was a lot of kids. Um, so he only competed against four kids. So but ah. 32:29.70 Sam Um. 32:29.85 dclduo Um. 32:33.86 Sam That's not bad. Yes, sometimes they have multiple heats because there's so many babies on board Now How did he? how? Okay so and how how did he do. 32:34.58 Alex Smith Um, but he yeah so we had two heats of 2 yeah, so in the first heat. Um, they took off and he just went straight to mom and the other kid went about halfway and then tried to. Crawl onto the rope to get to his sister and then kind of looked like he took a nap and asher never lost focus. Actually that's not true. He'd sat up for a second and everyone was like no and then he finished the race in one but the best part. Ah and I sent you the video. The best part is that when. At this point he doesn't do it anymore. But now if I'm holding him by his stomach like he's flying like Superman he spzzs his limbs out like this and so he would just like and everyone would just die and laugh and 200 people were hearing and then as soon as I set him down. He just took off to get because. 33:25.76 Sam Um, this oh my god. 33:28.00 Alex Smith Mom and both sisters were all waiting for him at the other side and so he didn't he didn't hesitate and then the second time he did it again and our competitor made a mistake by letting mom release the baby and so the baby just turned around and held on a mom's leg and. 33:39.31 Sam Oh stayed with mom. Oh yeah, they I smoked baby. 33:46.11 Alex Smith Astor did not care about me. He wanted to get to his mom and so and so we and so I am the proud father of the disney magic April First to fifth or whatever dates we were there. Ah Jack jacked incredible diaper dash champion. We got a medal. 34:01.86 Sam Oh my goodness. 34:05.68 Alex Smith Was a little disappointyed. We didn't get to keep one of the stuffed animals so we bought one. Um we got home but we got a metal and then I've got the sticker that he competed with that they put on his back. It's on the back of my laptop. So. 34:15.84 Sam Ah I love that now which metal did you get did you get 1 of the original Mickey medals or 1 of the new medals does it say winner on it. Yeah yes, so those ah those the original mickey. Well I don't know original is the right term. But. 34:21.51 Alex Smith Um, it's a mickey plastic um thing it doesn't say anything on I think it's his winner. Yeah yeah. 34:33.69 Sam Those are the ones they've been giving out for years. They have some new ones that they have launched and we've seen around some of the ships but they haven't made their way I feel like everywhere and not for every competition but those mickey one? Yeah, probably probably? ah. 34:43.42 Alex Smith Got they probably got him in dry dock I missed it by one week I'll bring it with me see if I can trade it in on my next cruise. Yeah. 34:52.89 Sam Listen I think those mickey metalals are collectible items. So I think you should keep that mickey metal I think you just need to take a sharon again. You know to compete and even if he's walking um at that time just telling me has to crawl I'm sure listen. 35:05.51 Alex Smith Yeah, I'm sure that'll work I'm sure I won't get yeah. 35:13.60 Sam Well I think you know as we said like that you as you said, the secret is um, dad has to be the one to release with mom on the other side holding up. Whatever fun stuff that the baby might want. Um I think if we ever tried that competition that would be the method we would have to go as well. So. Ah, sorry Brian. Ah. 35:32.91 dclduo Well Alex I'm curious. Can you also speak a little bit about the special touches and extras that Disney will provide in the room for an infant and I'd be curious to know what kind of room you sail in or have sailed in with an infant. 35:47.29 Alex Smith So. The first time we went we um brought my parents and they ah so they had the girls in their room and so there was 4 in their room and then we had 3 in our room and so it was just him on the side. So ah, we just had a normal size cruise ship. Um, and that was on fantasy. We got one of those extended decks which was awesome. Um, right in the middle of the ship on level 5 and then this last time on the magic we you there was only certain amount of ah rooms staterooms that are available that you can put 5 people in and basically it was a it wasn't. 36:07.36 Sam Oh nice. 36:24.58 Alex Smith Um, it was actually on the conciers level next to the concierge rooms and so when when our our travel agent booked it I was like wait I'm looking at these I'm looking at reviews I think you might have gotten us into casciers and she was like it's I Promise it's not concier and I was like it looks like it is um. 36:27.67 Sam Here. 36:39.62 Sam Yeah, so on deck eight on the magic and the wonder the the conciers rooms and regular rooms are kind of mixed together in that where versus on the dream and fantasy and even wish like the concier's rooms are kind of in separate areas with sort of 1 exception on the wish. But. Yeah, so they are interspersed. Um, although I will tell you the room you had may now be a conciers room because they did convert on the magic some of those rooms on the magic to conzier. Yeah, but you would have paid conciers prices Alex so yeah, but. 37:07.99 Alex Smith But ah should have just pulled them out of school. Yeah, that's true. That's true. So basically it's ah it's a normal size stateroom veranda size state room but then it'll have another three feet of space for the pack and play to sit in and then it has the veranda the normal size veranda. Um, and so. 37:24.58 Sam Um, yeah. 37:26.79 Alex Smith We were able to put everybody in there though I think you would have they won't let you book a 5 person room with a baby like a normal size room even though I think you could have fit just fine in front of the girl's Bunk beds but they wouldn't let us do it so it was very specific. What room we had to have. 37:36.58 Sam Right. 37:43.43 Alex Smith Um, so I'm trying to convince grandparents to come with us again. So that we can do it? yeah. 37:43.66 Sam Yat. Get the smaller room. Yeah, you can get the slightly smaller room now tell me they they provide the pack and play in the sheets I I Assume for the baby but are there any other things. 37:56.38 Alex Smith Yeah, and 1 trick that we did yeah one trick that we did was we took the that quilt off of the front of the mate of the main bed and folded that up under the sheet and then put the sheet over it um to give him a little bit of extra padding because the pack and play is. 38:02.74 Sam Oh. 38:11.71 Alex Smith And don't think it's really meant to be a crib for a whole week. Um, but ah so we did that. Um, they'll if you ask they when we did this. The first time we you know he was just drinking milk the second time so we don't really need to but the first time they would give you a bottle sterilizer. Um that you could use. Um, and then um I'm blanking. There's but they have several other things that you normally oh without us even asking. They gave us a diaper genie. Um, if for those of you don't know what those are basically it's ah it's a trash can that pinches the smell closed when you drop the diaper in. 38:40.80 Sam Oh nice. 38:51.13 Alex Smith Um, and I never had to empty it. So I assume that that ah the stateroom hosts were taking care of that. Also um, yeah, so they did that. Yeah. 38:55.81 Sam Oh that's a really nice benefit because I remember having to empty those in those and they're not fun. They're stinky. 39:05.44 Alex Smith Yeah, then of course I think you know we could order room service and get milk delivered the kid. You know if azure sleep had taken a nap. We can order room service and then have a glass of wine on the porch or on the veranda. Um. We could get ourselves a cheese platter and pretend. We're having a date when really, we're just Snaptrapped. Um so or one of us goes out and have fun while the other one just sits there that? Yeah yeah. 39:24.63 Sam Nice. 39:30.99 Sam Ah, well, but that's the benefit of veranda right? I mean if the baby's napping. You can at least sit out on the veranda and enjoy the scenery. Even if you can't leave the room. 39:39.61 Alex Smith And I don't want to say for sure but they didn't mind that we brought the monitor with us like that wasn't one of the no no electronic devices at least they didn't tell us not when they went through our luggage so we would have um, we could even shut the veranda door so we didn't wake him up and. 39:50.42 Sam Oh. 39:57.54 Alex Smith Just listen to the monitor on the deck if it wasn't too loud outside from the wind. 40:00.34 Sam Oh that's very smart I wouldn't have thought of that I'm guessing it probably didn't have much range for you to leave in the other direction. 40:10.21 Alex Smith Ah, a lot of monitors will go up to I mean they say nine hundred thousand meters but I assuming that's direct line of sight I don't know how it would go through the walls. We didn't try to wander off from him I may consider trying to do a ah split room stay. 40:19.97 Sam Um, yeah, yeah. 40:27.92 Alex Smith You know with you know the baby and one adult in one room and the girls and the other adult and a room and then we could put the baby down in one room with the adjoining door and have the monitor in the other room I'm sure it would work fine because it's working all the way across our house right now. Um, so. 40:38.81 Sam Um, yeah. 40:43.64 dclduo Nice. Well Alex we appreciate you taking the time to come on and share all of your expertise around sailing with infants on board. The youngest of the Disney cruisers. So hopefully is it your son or your daughter Alex who's the infant son. 41:01.77 Alex Smith Son is the baby then got 2 daughters. 41:02.00 Sam Um, son asher yeah. 41:03.58 dclduo Asher. Okay, so hopefully asher will be a Platinum Castaway Club member soon. Well on his way to pearl. Ah, but we just appreciate you taking the time to share this info with us. Do you want to let folks know where they can find and connect with you if they want to. 41:09.94 Alex Smith Yeah, he's got to. 41:17.71 dclduo Follow your travels read your blog posts about the it's a small world nursery all that good stuff. 41:22.53 Alex Smith Yeah, so we I started a blog ah called second dad to the right and I talk about cruising with ah family and I talk about going to the parks at Wal Disney World with family right now because we live in Atlanta so it's only a 7 hour drive for us. In fact, now that we have the baby mom flies. And I like on spirit for like thirty bucks with the baby and I drive all the luggage with the girls um because and cause mom also needs to take lots of bathroom breaks too. So um. 41:47.77 Sam Ah, so the baby doesn't have to be in the car for all that time. 41:58.77 Alex Smith So we send them and it cuts down our travel time by like 2 hours 42:04.86 Sam Ah I'm I'm the one who when we are in a yeah long car ride who makes us stop every 5 minutes for the bathroom as well. So I sympathize. 42:05.50 dclduo Um. 42:12.56 Alex Smith So so I started the blog I mean I'm ah I'm a pastor I mentioned that and so I've spent a long time knowing how to explain things to people and making it funny along the way so they'll pay attention and so it worked out really well with blogging that can do that people ask like. A lot of friends come to me wanting to know like tricks and tips for dealing with kids and everything for going to Disney so I started writing about it so you can go to second dad to the or you can find me on Facebook second dad to the right or Instagram at second dad to the right? but. 42:32.93 Sam Um, yeah. 42:48.56 Alex Smith Mostly I'm trying to and build out long form blog posts helpful stuff like how to handle it's a small world how to go on your first Disney Cruise how to my my ah my oldest daughter who is about to turn 10 She wrote her favorite rides for each park. Um. 43:01.10 Sam Oh nice. 43:04.36 Alex Smith Ah lot I've sent to some people when they're asking about you know what? Ro show take my kids on I was like well this is here's the perspective of 9 year old so if you got a nine year old. Try this one out. 43:11.71 Sam Ah I love it. You also have um, a blog post on packing for Disney Cruise um you have blog posts on tips for first timers. So you have lots of great. Um Disney Cruise line content as well I would just for our listeners out there. 43:19.86 Alex Smith Um. 43:30.36 Sam Um, yeah, so and and some really cute and funny pictures of you and your family out there cruising and at out there at the parks. Um, in particular one that I enjoyed of asher dressed what would look like for formal night. But as you said in your blog post. There is no formal night within the it's a small world nursery despite his outfit to the contrary. So I did also see the eyebrow pictures for it. It was an April fools. Ah. 43:55.99 Alex Smith Did you see the eyebrow pictures. Yeah, so our first day of sailing was April fools. So my wife thought I'd be funny to color his eyebrows with ah with a um eyeliner and so every time we're going through security. 44:08.72 Sam Yeah. 44:13.90 Alex Smith You know they everyone's like oh hi they lay down the baby and they're like I could try not to and try not to insult the baby and and then we just say April fools and they would start laughing when they realized what was happening but they couldn't figure out why this kid had this like crazy uter brow. That's. 44:16.80 Sam Ah, like that's weird. Ah. 44:25.93 Sam Ah, crazy. Ah. 44:30.64 Alex Smith When all the rest of us didn't have dark eyebrow but it was so funny. 44:31.74 Sam It was a it is a really cute picture I love it? Well thanks again so much Alex for coming on the show and for letting our listeners know where they can find you and follow you on your travels but we really appreciate it. 44:46.48 Alex Smith Yeah, thank you so much for having me. 44:48.75 dclduo All right.

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