Baja Mexico Cruise

Royal Caribbean - Monarch of the Seas
May 19-23, 2008

The Baja Mexico Cruise is always a fun get-away...
This was a family trip on Royal Caribbean's Monarch of the Seas
Aunt Julie was brave enough to join us :)
The boys really enjoyed their first cruise...
even though the weather was not the best.

Monday, May 19th
Boarding the ship in LA

Our Ship...

Unpacking the car at the port of LA in San Pedro

lots of luggage!

The boys checking out our ship before we started boarding.

Let's get on the ship already!

Julie, Me (Cathy), Jim, Ryan, Shea & Jake

Just before boarding...

Just on the ship in the atrium

Julie took a Family picture!

Jake with a drink of the day (non alcoholic of course ;) lol)...

Ryan, Shea & Jake with smoothies by the pool

Posing by the pool...

Ready for some fun!

The view was gorgeous...

Exploring the ship... (Jake)

Shea on the sports deck

"This ship is awesome!"

Time to see our cabins!
Shea begging for the key!

Jake, Ryan & Shea's cabin #8088

Cathy & Jim's cabin #8090

Inside our cabin!
Julie surprised us by ordering "Happy Anniversary" decorations for our cabin
to help us celebrate our 11th Anniversary :)
(thanks so much Julie!)

Inside the boys adjoining cabin...
Julie ordered them "Bon Voyage" decorations!
They were so excited! (Julie & Jake looking out the window)

The boys loved their "own" cabin :)

More ship exploring...
of course we found the casino! lol

The boys loved spinning the stools and checking out the closed casino...

Too young for blackjack?

Schooner bar... taking a break!

Shuffle Board on deck 7

Of course we had no idea what we were doing, lol.

.The windows to our cabins (parents on left/kids on right)

Ryan & Shea LOVED the floor to ceiling windows!

Ocean Adventure Kids Club... signed up but never went-lol.

Arcade in the Kids Club

Time to swim - the ONLY sun we had the whole trip!



Jake & Ryan

Jacuzzi time... the ocean water filled pool was COLD!

Julie & Jim

Shea & his Mommy

Lifeboat drill... fun fun fun!
The boys were so cute Royal Caribbean's Camera Crew filmed them during the lifeboat drill and they're on the "Cruise in Review" video
(Jake falling asleep?)

Ryan & Shea

Back to the cabin to test out the beds, lol (Shea)

Ryan & Jake

Sail Away Party!


The Carnival Paradise ship in the distance.

...and the Good Year Blimp, which we drove by earlier parked!

Sunset from Julie's cabin.

Dinner time on the first night...
Shea LOVED the window view at sunset

Ryan & Daddy

Jake & Daddy

Sisters! (Cathy & Julie)

Jake eating prawns off of the adult menu.

Anniversary Cake...

11 Years and still smiling :)


TRYING hard to keep the boys awake during the
Welcome Aboard Show in the Sound of Music Theatre.
I ended up carrying a sleeping Ryan and a half asleep Shea back to the cabins mid-show.
Jim, Julie & Jake stayed and then checked out nearby Kareoke

Tuesday, May 20th
San Diego

Jake… sneaking into my bed as soon as I get up lol.

Good Morning!
Ryan & Shea checking out the port of San Diego

Getting off the ship on our way to Seaport Village

What a view!

On the shuttle to Seaport Village

Riding the carousel…

Ryan had to have a golden horse.

Jake wanted the dragon.

Very cute bear…

Shopping and exploring in seaport village.

Looks like a painting!

Uh… Shea hugging a little too hard.

lol… Imitating the wooden statues.


Ryan has the funniest personality!

Bye Seaport Village...

Back on the Ship… drinks with Jake & Julie in the Viking Crown Lounge…

While Jim took Ryan & Shea to the Maritime Museum
Looking in the torpedo tubes of a Russian Sub.

Their view of our ship from the Museum

Top deck of the Russian Sub

Front of the Pirate’s ship

Ryan steering the Pirate ship

Shea steering!

”Firing” cannons at the RC Ship from the Pirate Ship


On deck of the Star of India

Model Boat for the kids to play on

Star of India Ship

Formal Night Dinner...
The boys picked out their own shirts and ties…
Shea was very excited to get to wear a tie! Lol
Ryan looking handsome!

and Jake...

...and Shea

In line for pictures.

The boys with their aunt Julie

The Smith Family all dressed up : )

Formal Pictures…

The boys with Aunt Julie

Looking out the window at the white caps… the ship was really rocking!

Jim at dinner


Shea loved those rolls!


The little boys with their mommy

Jake and his daddy

Shea and his mommy



Jake… he loved the soups!

Our Head Waiter doing magic tricks for the boys
(Assistant Waiter behind him)

Ryan loved the magic tricks!

Julie’s fun light up cup (Ryan behind)

The boys’ towel animal rabbit with Shea’s sunglasses

The towel animal in mine and Jim’s room.

Ryan ready for bed...

Shea ready for bed…

After the boys went to bed Julie and I went to the ship's casino... I won $700.00 playing video poker!!! : )

Wednesday, May 21st
Sea Day!

We were scheduled to visit Catalina Island but because of the stormy weather causing rough seas we weren't able to make the port. Instead, we had a very rough day at sea... the ship was rocking so much at times just walking felt like we had too many drinks (before we had any!) The weather was windy and much too cold for a day at the pool. We make the most of it and had a great day anyhow. : )

Shea being goofy at breakfast.

The buffet was at the front of the ship and the rocking of the ship was the worst in the buffet.

View from the Viking Crown Lounge...
Notice the people at the pool covered up with towels, lol.
There was a great BBQ set up on the pool deck too.

After walking all over the ship exploring…
Julie, Jim and the boys taking a break in the atrium.

My 4 boys

The boys loved the glass elevators in the atrium.

Ryan with his mom

Back up to the Viking Crown Lounge to watch a movie and play cards.

Shea learned how to play WAR, his new favorite game! Here he is playing with Ryan.

Shea and I got restless so we decided to go hang out together and do some shopping and exploring.

Steering the ship? lol

After shopping with Shea, we stopped at Ben & Jerry’s for some ice cream, his favorite.


Later at the Jade Lounge for MORE afternoon snacks...
The ship was rocking a lot and Jake was so nauseous I took him back to our room and away from the big floor to ceiling windows
that amplified the horizon going up and down and up and down etc… lol

Back in the room I was reading and Jake played his DS… then the gang came back and Ryan jumped in the middle of us, : )

Back at Julie’s room... Ryan

Ryan buggin Jake, who was nauseous from the rough seas.
Julie took the boys to her cabin on the 3rd deck because the rocking was less noticeable there…
(thanks Julie!)

Back in our cabin... hanging out.

Jake playing with the nightlight, lol....

Jim, Jake and Ryan were playing cards in the library and Shea insisted on swimming in the pool.
He didn’t care that it was cold and windy and the pool was filled with OCEAN WATER.
He just wanted to swim in the waves that the ships rocking created in the pool!

I called his bluff and let him put his bathing suit on.

He lasted about 2 minutes in the pool before he got out with purple lips and begged to take a hot shower!

Dinner Time Again… Ryan and Shea



Jake and Me

Ryan and Jim

Me and Jake again

Shea and Jim

Ryan and Shea

Jake took the camera and took a LOT of funny pictures... Ryan coloring.

Julie and Me

Eating dessert...

Julie (or Chewy as Shea calls her-lol)

Shea having MORE ice cream…

Our towel animal rabbit…

The boys got a monkey!

At midnight there was a the boys stayed up!
Getting the chocolate buffet ready… Ice sculpture



The chefs

Setting up the buffet

Fruit scewers

More chocolate


The boys ready for chocolate at midnight!



Thursday, May 22nd
Ensenada, Mexico

We originally planned to just take the kids to the toursit shopping area and not go downtown...
but because we had been to Ensenada many times and seen the poverty, we decided it would be a good life lesson to teach the boys.

Getting off the ship in Ensenada

Inside the tourist shops…

On our way downtown… I love this picture of the boys with the Mexican flag

It was a cool, windy day!

2 more blocks to downtown

Map of the area

Underneath the enormous Mexican Flag looking up!

The base if the flag pole

It was huge…

The grates at the base of the flag pole were filled with big cockroaches!!!

View of our ship :)

The boys posing for me again!

...and being goofy!

Shopping at a kiosk downtown

The boys were obviously moved by the poverty they saw in Ensenada.
They saw many children begging or selling trinkets on the street dirty and shoeless.
They wanted to know why they weren’t in school on a Thursday.
I think it was a great life lesson learned that day.

On the way back to the ship we saw a whale… but we weren’t allowed to get any closer.

Shea back at the tourist shops

almost back to the ship

Cervesa anyone?

Silly Shea...

Our ship!

Julie wasn’t excited to venture into downtown Ensenada with us…
Just as we were talking about looking for her when we got to the ship Jake looked up
…and there she was! In her cabin window waving at us, lol.


She took this picture of us from her window on deck 3.

The boys back in Julie’s cabin checking out the tourists boarding the ship.

Back to the buffet for some lunch… Ryan and Aunt Julie

(Jake taking random pictures again…)

The rest of the afternoon wasn’t exactly pool weather, so we pulled out the video camera and started exploring the ship again… it was day 4 and the boys were starting to get a little wild. Our first stop was the pool bar where Julie, Jim and I felt the need to order some strong drinks. (We were beginning to understand why my mom had a martini every night before dinner, lol.) Since we were video taping, we don’t have pictures of this other than the one below.

Ryan in the pool although it was freezing and very windy, lol.

Back by the Jade lounge for the “BBQ” that was there rather than the outside pool deck…
Shea bird watching!

Back to the room, just out of the shower and about to get ready for dinner…

watching tv...

Dinnertime! Jake being goofy.

Ryan & Aunt Julie


Our table (minus Julie)


Jim and me

MMmmm, dessert!

Our favorite bar waiter…

I told him he reminded me of Eddie Murphy, lol

The wait staff had fun dancing to “Hot Hot Hot”… a fun cruise tradition on the last night.

That’s our waiter

...and our assistant waiter doing the “Macarena”

Our awesome waiter and assistant waiter

The boys loved her, especially Shea…

The boys loved our waiter too... he missed his kids at home : (

That night we got swan towel animals...
although Jake says it was a snake! Lol

Shea... YUCK!

Ryan literally asked me to take this picture and to label it
”Ryan feeling homesick” – lol

I guess the chocolate on his pillow made him feel better : )

Jim went to the casino and I stayed in with the boys
we had fun taking pictures!

The boys playing “war”

Mine and Jim's cabin… last night getting ready to pack.

LOVED the decorations!

...and the boys cabin decorations!

(Back of the door)

Hallway from our door to the back of the ship

Luggage in the hall waiting to be picked up by midnight…

Down the hallway to the front of the ship

Shea finally asleep the last night

...and Ryan

...and Jake

Friday, May 23rd
Back Home!!!

We really enjoyed our cruise. I know it would have been more enjoyable for the boys if the sun would have come out, lol. They were all a little homesick by the last day and ready to go home... they even wanted to skip breakfast.

About to get off the ship…

Some more pictures of the atrium…

the library


Outside of our dining room, “Claude’s”

...more atrium

In line to disembark...

more atrium, lol...

the boys looking for Aunt Julie...


Julie found us just in time to go home : (
We are READY for another CRUISE!

Pictures of the ship

Monarch of the Seas


The Pool Deck

The Windjammer & Jade Buffets

Sound of Music Theater

The Gym

Our Dining Room, Claude's

Boleros Lounge & Teen Nightclub
this was JUST below our cabin and very loud

I won $500 in there!


Circuit Lounge

Onboard Lounge