Sunday, July 1, 2018

Flying to Vancouver, Hotel Stay, and Embarkment

We started out at 6:30 a.m. on our adventure!  We drove to D.C. and the guys let us off with the luggage while they parked a million miles away.  This is just a little bit of our luggage!

For having gotten up at 5 a.m., the kids were really chipper and excited!  We had a little bit of drama related to pulling the suitcases, but we dealt with it!

We got through security pretty quickly (you can read about our experience here) and had some time to rest before we got on the plane.  I asked the person at the desk about boarding first since we had so much medical baggage, and they agreed...but then didn't call us.  I had to elbow my way up to the front and make some first class customers angry, but they probably would have been more upset if we had whacked them with the ventilator or run the oxygen concentrator over their toes!  

For the most part, we sat with the same people each flight.  Matt sat with Caleb and Sara on the aisle across from me so that he could help get me medical supplies.  Abby sat with me and Lucy and Anna alternated sitting with us.  Mom and Dad sat together with Bruce, and Amy sat with Owen and either Anna or Lucy.

The girls went between coloring, playing games, answering trivia questions, watching movies, playing on Abby's Kindle, and taking selfies.  They were all very well behaved on all of the flights!

Abby proved that she really did need oxygen during the flight.  She maintained her oxygen saturation levels with just 1 liter on the way there, and I checked her quite frequently.  On the way home, I had to bump her up to 1.5 liters and eventually to 2 liters.  We aren't sure what changed except maybe for the humidity, but she was definitely struggling more to maintain her sats.

We had a layover in Dallas for a few hours.  Most people want direct flights or shorter layovers, but we needed a longer layover in order to recharge all of Abby's equipment--especially the oxygen and ventilator.  She did a neb during the layover too!  

This was our first view of snowcapped mountains!

The hotel we stayed at was connected to the Vancouver airport, which made getting to and from the airport really easy!  Our room had sliding doors in between the bathroom and bedroom (we're not really sure why!) but the little girls loved to go through them from one room to the other!)

The next morning, we waited in the lobby for the Disney transport we had arranged.  It wasn't the cheapest way to get to the ship, but it made things SO easy! 

We took some family pictures in our shirts we'd gotten made.  The front says, "Best Week Ever" and the back says "Thanks, Paw Paw!"  

While Amy was trying to get groups of kids to smile, Lucy was doing her part too!

When we got to the port, we had to go through several different lines for various check-ins.  This is where we got our Key to the World, itinerary, and where the kids got their bands for kids' club.  Then we were ushered into a large room with chairs where we were to wait for our boarding number (9) to be called.  It's a pretty efficient system and we didn't have to wait all that long.  It was a great time to take a bathroom break and get a few pictures. 

Abs sang a little song about going to Alaska while we waited!

When our boarding number was called, we headed onto the gangway, which was large enough for another person to walk beside the wheelchair and was very handicapped accessible.

This woman swiped our Keys to the World and officially allowed us to enter the Wonder!

We made it!  Let's go cruisin'!

This was taken just as we entered the ship!  Let the fun begin!

Next up:  The first day on the ship and first impressions

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