Thanks for being so patient! I am finally organised enough to share some photos of the cruise with you.
We arrived back Monday morning and Amy (my daughter) had her first GCSE exam so the moment I landed so I had to put my holiday thoughts on hold and be here to support the kids with lifts, meals and a little bit of calm – its not easy after a holiday of a lifetime let me tell you!! My son is also taking is A’level exams and by the end of this week they will have completed 4 exams between them, I keep telling myself just 5 more weeks…….
Look how immense the ship is!!!
So we flew out Friday to give us 2 nights in Fort Lauderdale. A lovely fellow demo from the Shetland Isles, Rhoda and her husband Alastair, picked us up and took us to the Hyatt at Pier 66. It was lovely getting to know Rhoda and Alastair better, they were wonderful company and let us join them for breakfast and shopping the next day. I made a beeline for the Coach outlet and was not disappointed :0) We also managed to stop at Hobby Lobby too and just wish that I could fit all the lovely things I saw in my suitcase but I knew there would be lots more loveliness to come from Stampin Up so I restrained myself.
A few of the UK group met for dinner on Saturday night and visited a very plush restaurant called Bistro Mezzaluna. It was so dark inside the restaurant we could barely see each others faces let alone the menu! Funny thing is that they had anticipated the problem and the menu’s lit up when you opened them!
The food was delicious and the lobster was some of the best the group had ever had! Back at the hotel we saw lots of familiar faces as demos from all across the globe jetted in. This is the first incentive trip where all markets celebrated together and it was amazing. That is the thing that sticks out most for me this trip – the people. I am so lucky to have spent a whole week in the company of strong, intelligent, fun, sharing and inspirational people.
After a good nights sleep (we still were on UK time so all the UK group were waking at 5am everyday) we prepared to board the coaches to the port and to board the ship.
The time passes so quick and before I knew it I was on board. To be honest I felt a little lost, Simon and I just wandered around dazed expecting to see some other demos but it was SO huge and everyone was staggered in getting on the ship we did not see anyone! We had a bite to eat and then visited our cabin to unpack.
Those wonderful people at Stampin Up really do think of everything! This was hanging on our door and we had a cabin with a balcony on the 14th deck. The bed was HUGE and oh so comfortable, in fact I cannot stop talking about the bed since we got home!
We had dinner in the Adagio restaurant and was welcomed onto a table with some wonderful US/Canadian demos. We sat with Ronda Wade, Jenny Peterson, Tamie Akerson, Maggie Patterson, Mandy Grant and their guests. They made us so welcome and I was a little in awe.
After too much food and several desserts we went off to the see the show. The set was phenomenal, they were able to change the depth of the floor of the pool so that one moment people were walking/dancing on it and the next it was deep enough to take a high diver!
So with the last few sips of my Strawberry Daiquiri in hand we called it a night ready for an action packed day the next day…
The food on board the ship was amazing, you could pretty much get whatever you wanted any time of day. There was so much choice and my waistline is now regretting my choices! We had a group gathering where Shelli and other Stampin Up corporate team members welcomed us. There was even prize patrol, it was great to have everyone in one place but no enough time to mix and mingle so I only managed to catch up with a few people. The daily itiniery on the ship was jam packed but Simon and I were just happy to relax and sit in the sun as it seems a long time ago since we saw any!
It was formal night and the chance to dress up and for the European demos to meet up and say ‘Hi’ to one another. I missed being part of an intimate group but the we get to do that again next year in Madeira so I made the most of the opportunity and had a photo taken with lots of the overseas demos I had been following and admiring from afar for years….
So of the UK girls above, we relaly bonded as a group this trip and I know that I have made lifelong friends. Some may like to think we are in competition with one another but we really aren’t. I am so lucky to have spent time with all my fellow UK demos at some point on the ship.
These photos were not all taken in one evening, this was all the star spotting from an entire week on the ship!
The next day was a visit to Labadee in Haiti and we pretty much relaxed on the beach most of the day. I was lovely to have a swim in the sea and although there were lots of activities such as the zip wire, roller coaster. Some of the UK and German group thought it would be fun to hire some jet skis. I was happy to go along as a passenger with Simon driving but little did I know what was in store! I have no photos of the jet bikes as I did not let go for a moment to admire the view. My head was firmly pressed into the back of Simons neck shouting crys of ‘Slow Down’, ‘Get in the wake’ and ‘when will it be over!!!’ with some screams thrown in for good measure. Seriously they were fast and the water was choppy and the ride bumpy coupled with the fact that we were cutting it fine to get back on the ship and to say it was not my favourite experience was an understatement!
We were the last back onto the ship with minutes to spare before departure…
We showered and had dinner and then met up with some fellows demos to talk and chat about our businesses. I slept well that night and the next day we arrived at Falmouth in Jamaica.
Amanda from the UK had arranged an excursion to a remote and less known waterfall. I was just so beautiful and our tour guides were so much fun. I am yet to see the photos from the waterfall as we used one camera but will share these as soon as I can.
En route to the waterfall we stopped at the roadside for coconuts, apparently coconut milk has some interesting side effects for men which is why we are all so giggly in the photos!
We could not resist a little fun with the hats too!
This is waited for us when we arrived at the falls
This day was definitely one of the highlights of the trip for me. Great company and very many happy memories!
So I am going to leave this post there for now, come back to hear about the rest of trip and to see the samples and swaps I received as well as the lovely pillow gifts and prizes!
Hope you enjoyed reminiscing along with me, see you soon!