We decided right at the end of our stay that we wanted to take a cruise to the Bahamas. There is a cruise ship that leaves from Ft Lauderdale every day and does a five hour trip out to Grand Bahama Island. There, you can do a quick tour and return on the ship for another 5 hours, or you can stay at a hotel for any number of nights and go back another day. We opted to spend one night and left on Thursday July 9th returning the 10th.
The boat ride out to the Bahamas was pleasant. We left the house at 5:30 am to make it to the boat around 6. We enjoyed a buffet breakfast (included in the ticket price) after the ship left dock and then William, Anna and I napped in the cabin we had reserved. It was a tight fit, but we snuggled up just fine. Kip and Becca ended up napping on a deck under the lifeboats. We got to the Bahamas in the early afternoon and headed to the hotel. It was a beautiful hotel and we had two rooms connected, unfortunately not facing the ocean. The hotel pool was gorgeous with an aquaduct-like construction going over that spouted waterfalls in several place. The ocean water at the beach outside the hotel was amazingly blue and clear. I wished we could have had more time so we could have gone out to the coral reefs in a glass-bottom boat.
We took the boat back the next day - Friday. After going through the security and getting in line to have our tickets and passports checked, we realized that Becca's "loving blanket" was not in any of our luggage. This was a disaster. She adores that blanket and can't sleep without it. I asked one of the security workers if we had time to go back to the hotel for it. He said no and suggested we use the phone in the main office to call the hotel for it. Kip went up to the main office and started the calling. In the end, it was decided that we would have the hotel staff give it to a taxi driver and have him drive it to the dock where we would be waiting to pay him for his delivery. It cost us $25 to have this done and he arrived just as the lady in charge of loading was about to tell us we were out of time and had to get on the ship. (All five of us in a taxi from the dock to the hotel had cost $25, so that blanket was an expensive passenger.) It was worth it. Becca took a nap as soon as we got onboard and found our cabin.
On this trip, Becca napped first with Kip while the kids and I lounged and toured the ship. Then we all had our buffet dinner (really good pasta and bread) and I took William and Anna to the cabin for bed. Eventually Kip and Becca joined us back in there and we learned that 4 out of 5 of us could fit in the little beds.