I viewed the entire slide show and agree that your cabin was not up to the standards that should be expected. These are typical of a ship that is overdue for refurbish. Stains on the carpet, a frayed shower curtain and mildew in the grout and caulk lines of the bathroom are not what you want to arrive to on a cruise. With that said, I've cruised on ships that were in need af some attention, Rhapsody of the Seas in 2006 was one. It was showing more wear and tear than I'd have liked, even considering the age of the ship. Despite some mildew, worn sheets and faded bedspread I had a wonderful vacation with a staff that was spectacular. I didn't get to find out how their Customer Service was on that trip, I didn't ask them to intervene or for compensation of any kind. I was disappointed with a few things but the benefits of having a great vacation, great food and service for a week outweighed any down-side. I'm sorry you didn't have a great staff and food to help ease the frustration. I agree that Millinneum is not in the kind of condition that Celebrity normally provides. I'd had several long term cruisers give similar reviews and comments on her over the past several months. They should indeed take action immediately to resolve this as they are obviously also aware of the condition, they get feedback from clients each and every sailing. Is it uncommon for lines to go longer than they should between the expense of the refurbishment? Yep, Galaxy had similar issues before her last update. HAL Zuiderdam did as well. I can remember doing a ship tour of Grand Princess when she was berthed in Galveston and she had a sewage smell on the lower decks. For several sailings complaints came in with the same horrible odor problem. It happens in the industry, it's a shame when it does and it would be great if they addressed all issues as soon as they come up.
My best advice is to come to boards like this one and ask questions of recent travelers on the condition of the ship you're considering. Check to see when it was last refurbished. You wouldn't book a hotel that had a vast number of complaints in it's reviews from recent guests. A ship is your hotel on the water. They are not all the same, regardless of which line you choose. Be more cautious of older ships. Most of all, whatever you find when you board, try not to let it ruin your vacation. Try to also find the good things about your trip and enjoy them. State of mind can change expectations, when your expectation becomes that this is going to be a horrible trip takes over, it can become a self fulfilling prophecy.
I'm very sorry you and your family had so many issues with your first sailing. There were definately things that were beyond your control and below acceptable standards. Was there anything good about your first cruise? I hope so. If not chaulk it up to one of lifes many disappointments and start plannig your next vacation. That has a way of making the disappointment of the last less sharp.