I have just planned my second cruise.
I found reading the "boards" extremely helpful. From packing tips, to shore excursions to information about the ship - being well informed is a must.
The packing list section gave me ideas of things I wouldn't have thought of. Some of the things listed, I did not take and would never use. I feel I am on a cruise and on vacation and that is a time to treat myself. Spend a few extra bucks for something or service, instead of taking too much and the kitchen sink.
PACK LIGHT. One afternoon do a load of laundry, if necessary.
Buy a coke card
Take a highlighter
Sticky notes - to leave notes for family members or the room steward
Small battery operated travel clock
A dollar store over-the-door organizer
Different sizes of zip lock bags
Back pack for shore excursions
Order some chocolate covered strawberries, or something, to just treat yourself in your room or on your balcony.
I utilized room service quite a bit. Wonderful - especially when I was having some health issues.
Enjoy as much as you can with your family - do as much, or as little as you feel like - memories are the BEST thing to bring home with you.
Enjoy! and give us an update when you get back