11 nights in the Mediterranean!! With the Mouse!! I got a last minute special too great to pass up! Anyone who knows me, knows how much I love Disney cruises. This was my fifth. 4 of which have been in the last 15 months. When this deal came out, I was scrambling to make it work. Dh couldn’t get off work for two weeks, but he was beyond sweet and told me to go ahead! I knew the kids would love it too, but there was no way Ds15 could miss two weeks of high school. Dd12 however, no problem! I talked to Ds who insisted he could go at first. After a week passed, I decided to talk to him again. The conversation went like this – “So, about this cruise…” – Me “Mmhmm” – Him “You know there’s no way you can miss two weeks of school, don’t you?” –Me “Yeah, I know.” – Him “So you won’t be bitter if I go?” – Me, sounding hopeful “No, I guess not.” – Him “Would you be bitter if I took your sister?” – Me After an eternal silence – “No, but you’re going to have to buy me off.” – Him (obviously my child) Now, who else to bring? My parents were tempted, but Mom felt like it was someone else’s turn since she took advantage of the last travel agent special cruise with me. I started talking to friends, and one, Debbie, didn’t hesitate, she was in! She didn’t mind taking her dd14 out of school for this kind of opportunity. And bonus, she has a ds17 who could commiserate with my ds15 while we were gone. We talked to the girl’s teachers and got the green light. Woo hoo! My parents were still toying around with going. I checked the military specials and there was a great one. They got a category 5, verandah, for an 11 night cruise for $2300. Total. For two people. Pretty amazing! I realized my in-laws wouldn’t want to pass that up either, so they booked a verandah too. Here we all are. These photos are your teasers for different parts of the trip! Dd and I: Debbie and her dd: My parents: My inlaws: The scene was set, we were ready to plan! And we only had about 6 weeks to do it! About three weeks before the cruise, we got our room assignment. A verandah!! I couldn’t believe it! With all of my cruises, we’d never splurged for one before. We’ve always been happy enough with our portholes. I was crazy excited to try a verandah, though. What a perfect cruise to have one on! About a week before we left, the Icelandic volcano started to erupt, shutting down European airspace for days. We were flying directly into Barcelona, which thankfully wasn’t immediately shut down. I was pretty worried we weren’t going to make it, and incredibly thankful we purchased trip insurance. I DID NOT want to use it, but it sure provided some piece of mind. I have to tell you, of all the reasons I thought we might have to use our trip insurance, illness, flight delays, etc., a volcano in Iceland never crossed my mind! I had also devised about 13 alternate plans to get there, including – flying into Madrid if it was still open, flying anywhere in Europe we could get to, flying into Morocco and taking the train/ferry/train to Barcelona, and meeting the cruise at any port we could get to. Well, thankfully, about two days before we left, everything started to open again. Woo hoo, indeed! After several days spent researching ports and excursions, little bit of shopping, and lots of packing, the big day had finally arrived!