Thursday, April 17, 2008

"Dad-N-Lad" Outfits for All

Back before this blog started, my family took a cruise to Alaska on RCCL Vision of the Seas (my favorite ship to date, although I liked the Mexican Riviera better as a destination, because it was warm). Anyway, as part of preparations for that cruise, I bought the four of us matching raincoat/windbreakers that folded into their own pockets, so we could deal with the vagaries of Alaskan weather in June. They turned out to be quite handy, and I still wear mine occasionally. We referred to them as the "Family Von Trapp" coats, and I don't actually know how keen my familiy was to look even a little alike in that way.

Flash forward quite a few years (4? I think) and with 14 of us going on a cruise together, I'm starting to think that I have something a little strange in my mental outlook. Because after we found out that my parents were springing for the bulk of our costs, I used some of our surplus funds to buy all 14 of us matching embroidered polo shirts. Nothing traditional, though - polo shirts only because some members of the family were whining about the need to have collared shirts in order to eat dinner on the ship.

Ordinary people, going out to buy matching shirts for a family group, would have them embroidered with something like "X Family Cruise...." on them. Not me. Our shirts are essentially nonsensical (picture the Japanese fashion statement of having clothes with English words on them, notwithstanding the fact that the words make no sense), with an unrelated logo, and the only connection with our family was that the words start with the first initials of our combined last names. More than that, I will not say, since we haven't shown them to anyone but my parents yet. The big reveal is this coming Sunday at a mob birthday party. I think they're pretty cool, but I could be alone in that opinion.

My calendar thing says 1 month 3 weeks and the odd day! Woo hoo! On the other hand, I guess that means I really need to get going on the sewing, huh?

Friday, April 11, 2008

Shorts and stuff

I'm happy to report that all passports have arrived well in advance of sailing, and that I think we're all booked for shore excursions, although there were a few of us that didn't get in on the parasailing group before it filled up.

In any event, progress is being made - and in the right direction, too. I have solved the shoe dilemma, and have my new Birkies ("training sandals" according to my brother-in-law) in hand. And I think I've found some "dress" shorts - dressy enough for casual dining, anyway, which to me means chino walking shorts in a variety of colors.

I have some sewing on my plate yet - formal night dresses for my sister and my niece - but they should be reasonably quick, I hope.

This is all going way too smoothly.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

And then things got so simple!

Last Wednesday, I got an e-mail from my sister, with the subject "Just found this on Cruise review changes to Carnival Dress code!!!" The text was:

Hey this is from a thread that was just posted on 3/28. Might give some options for the non-formal dining nights without costing an arm and a leg.

She was right. We can now wear "dress shorts", t-shirts, and jeans to dinner on casual nights, and the "formal" nights have been re-christened "elegant" nights, and the standards accordingly lowered. My guess is that they're bowing to the inevitable, but whatever the reason, my pack list got a bunch shorter with that announcement. And the number of things I need to buy.

Not that I'm taking jeans - who'd wear jeans in June in the Caribbean? But shorts for most dinners, maybe one casual skirt... How cool is that?

It screwed up the 3-shoe challenge for a little while, but after thinking about it, it's still doable. I was going to take tennies, crocs, and dinner shoes (swappable between casual and formal outfits). But I don't think they make shoes that go with shorts and cocktail dresses. So I've shifted things. Now, it's tennies, formal shoes, and a new pair of Birkies, to handle shore-excursions and casual dining. I'll miss the crocs, but not that much.

Woo Hoo! Less stuff to do on top of way too much work all of a sudden (I know, these days, that's a good problem), a graduation party to plan, a family wedding, and 3 birthdays, all between now and June.

Cruise Clock ticker