1. How could you afford to do this trip? Or, the more common but less of a question: "Must be nice to be able to afford it." Since Zach and I have been married we have only taken a handful of vacations. Nearly all have been baseball related and the longest one we took was for three days. We usually stay in questionable hotel accommodations and we watch every penny we spend. Since we started planning our honeymoon, which was to Santa Fe, we agreed that for our ten year anniversary we would try and do something big. So, about two years ago, we started planning. We put back nearly every extra dollar we received, either through an unexpected job, or money we received at Christmas and birthdays. In September we officially booked the cruise and we were able to make payments. Our flights, which we also booked early, we used our tax refund to purchase. That, coupled with my incredible "cheapness" enabled us to be able to afford this wonderful trip. It wasn't luck, it was work and conscious effort on our parts to make sacrifices to be able to afford it.
2. How could you leave your kids for that long? It was hard, trust me. I am grateful to have a wonderful set of in-laws who were able to watch our kids for that long. There were many moments during our trip that I was racked with guilt and worry for leaving my kids. We were also unable to be in contact with them much which made it harder. However, with everything that our daily lives encompass: school, work, church, kids, family, etc., we needed this time together. I loved the moments and experiences we were able to share together, Zach and I. So many memories were made that are priceless. Also, for someone like me, who has never been out of the country, I treasured this experience with travel. I was able to check many things off my bucket list that at times, I was quite emotional about it. I kept thinking, what if we had kept putting this trip off, to when we thought it was "more convenient" and maybe missed having this experience at all?
3. What was your favorite part of the trip? This is a tough one. I asked Zach this question and he said that his was visiting Vatican City, more specifically St. Peter's Basilica. He said, "It's amazing to think I'm standing on the same ground where many Popes have walked. Where Peter was crucified."
There's Zach's feet, in the purple chucks, standing where the Pope has walked.
No doubt about it, that is cool. As for the Basilica, no words can describe the beauty of that place. You walk in and your jaw drops. You think you know what to expect, but you just cant.
For me, it's hard to pin down the best moment. Rome was awesome. Malta and Sicily were amazingly beautiful. I got to walk on the beach in Corsica. The ship was lovely, the service was perfect, and the food divine. What's not to love?
4. What was your least favorite part of the trip? Hands down it would be trying to find the hotel in Barcelona. Here's a tip, don't try to save money when trying to get around a place like Barcelona, just go for the cab. We went with a bus then the metro. Never again. Taxi all the way.
5. What cruise line did you go with? We went with Royal Caribbean and I would highly recommend it. We were on the Vision of the Seas which isn't a huge ship but large nonetheless. The service was impeccable and we seriously have no complaints about anything about the ship.
I mean, two desserts each! What's not to love??
6. Would you do it again? YES. In fact, we would do this exact same cruise again. There's so much to see in this world and a day at each of the ports was simply not enough. The only thing we would change is we would like some friends or family to go with us and share the experience. Not to mention, sometime our "selfies" were a little difficult to pull off and some willing hands to help us out with pictures would be nice.
See what I mean, that bleached out part behind us is the Trevi Fountain.
I'm going to begin now to save those dollars. Who wants to join us?
Sunset view from the ship.