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mom2mybugs

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Everything posted by mom2mybugs

  1. Really enjoying the pics. It really does feel like a bigger ship with all those big open areas. I found all the windows helped a lot on makes. Thanks so much for the galley tour... So interesting! And the flag ceremony is one of my favorite things on the ship... Especially in the centrums! Jane
  2. I grew up flying out of that airport and that is definitely crazy! Yuck... Not a fun way to start the trip! Jane
  3. Day 2 pre-cruise Barcelona was a great day. Once again my good pics are on my camera but if you do one thing in Barcelona, go to the segrada familia. It was amazing. I hadn't seen pictures if the inside and it was spectacular. The audio tour talked about how all the sculpture and status are outside (except one of each of the hold family), which makes the inside more about the amazing space and structure. It was incredible!! We spent probably close to 3 hours there before heading back to the Airbnb to rest for an hour or so. After that we headed to the Picasso museum which was very interesting. It's not crowded or hard to get to and while it doesn't have many Davis paintings there, there is an incredible amount of his early work. It was interesting to watch him try out different types of painting before he found his own unique style. We left and decided to sit for a bit before heading back on the metro. We locked into a really great neighborhood Cafe that we enjoyed! We tried our first glass (well maybe 2) of cava and were getting ready to go when a street performer showed up with his sax to play American jazz. So we ordered a cheese plate and another glass of cava and stayed for awhile. It was so incredibly relaxing! I wish I'd taken more pics on my phone. There were so many people just out walking their dogs and chatting with each other. It was wonderful and relaxing and I could do it every day! In attempting to walk back to the metro, we happened upon the back of a big church. Walking around to the front we realized it was the cathedral of Barcelona. A street performer was getting ready to perform and there were a bunch of small cafes for dinner, but Madison was fading. It never feels late but it was after 10 by the time we got home. Hopefully we will get to the Gothic quarter and the ramblas tomorrow but there is an 80% chance of thunderstorms. Oh well...we will give it a shot and if it falls, then we head to a cafe for lunch! Jane
  4. We enjoyed it. It was not super crowded and they had a lot of his early and late works. Very little of his famous cubist period but the rooms where he painted pieces like valasquez's work Les meninas were really cool!!! It's pretty near the Gothic quarter and free with the Barcelona card if you get it. They had a temporary exhibit we didn't go into that had photographs of Picasso and it looked like it would be good! Jane
  5. It was soooo good. We needed something simple... Madison's had eggplant with ricotta and ours was salami with fennel. Jane
  6. Since there are so many Disney fans here, I have to post this picture I saw near an apartment! Today we spent several hours at segrada familia and now are trying to great you the energy for a couple hours at the Picasso museum! More later! Jane
  7. The end of the first day was amazing! We knew we would be tired so found a great Italian pizzeria. Drank cervasa and are thin pizza! We finished the night with a walk to get gelato near the segrada familia. The area is so funny... There is a whole street filled with 5 guys, McDonald's, taco Bell etc! The gelato was just ok but what was amazing was there was a big street concert set up. We ate our gelato on the stairs of the segrada familia listening to music. Amazing!!
  8. We are in an airbnb a few blocks from the segrada familia. It is a neighborhood with a mix of tourists and locals. There are tons of supermarcats to grab food from, and bakeries and gelato places (the one we tried last night was just ok... Looking forward to Italy lol). Airbnb pics: View from our tiny terrace: Again... More pics on the camera, but it's a decent 2 bedroom with 2 bathrooms. There are definitely issues... The walls are paper thin in this apartment and we hear lots of street noise... That's ok... But Madison hearing people at 3am doing "other things" wasnt great. There is also only 1 little futon to sit on in the living room. But it really is a nice spot for us! Jane
  9. More highlights:. Gaudi architecture is amazing. It is much more interesting than it is in the pictures. Our driver was awesome about stopping and having us take some pics! Apparently casa Mila (the first one) was called "the stone quarry" by the owners... They hated it. It is fascinating to look at these "modernism" buildings right next to Gothic type older buildings. Jane
  10. Our tour was very nice. Plenty of time to see things and get out of the very nice van. Here are some highlights:. Park guell:  I apologize in advance...I'm taking most pics on my camera but trying to do some for here on my phone. I had beautiful pics of the buildings with the columns in the back. I also have some amazing pics of the tile work close up. The pics here don't do it justice! Give yourself at least an hour here... We only had an hour and we'd have liked at least another half hour or so. Jane
  11. Ok... Still haven't figured out resizing so what I may do is a lot of small posts! Or flight took off over an hour late I can't fault Norwegian airlines since it was ohare traffic. They did make up a ton in the air (arrival times are seriously passed) so we were only 25 mins late. I got maybe 2 hours sleep overnight. The seats are divided and you can't lift the armrests so it was tight for our family (we were hoping to squash the skinny teenager lol) but would be good if you were sitting with strangers. The food was really solid for dinner (I had the Korean beef stew), and we were able to order a vegetarian meal for Madison. They even brought her a vegetarian breakfast the next morning! Bonus I picked the exit aisle at the boarding door for no extra fee. We had to store our bags at take off and landing but they let us keep them under our feet the whole rest of the flight. Tons of leg room and it was free!!!! We arrived maybe 25 mins late. Customs and baggage was an absolute breeze and when we got out our driver from Barcelona City tours was there with a sign to get us out of the airport. It was so much less crowded and stressful than O'Hare! Jane
  12. Lol... Can you believe I've never gone!! Hate dealing with the crazy amount of people lol!!!! Guess I will have to have another quiet drink in a cafe! Jane
  13. We are at the airport!!! Getting ready to board... The plane got in late but they insist they will board us quickly! We will see! Since I got 4.5 hours sleep last night I'm hoping I will sleep on the plane!!! Jane
  14. So far it's been fine... Was about 30-45 mins to check in... Guy was super nice. You had to stand in line though...no self check kiosk because they actually do weigh all the carry on luggage as well. I had to give Madison one of my bags lol! The gate area is really open and roomy though. I like the international terminal at O'Hare... Much less crowded and busy than the domestic terminals!
  15. Ok...it is two in the morning and I can’t sleep lol! We leave for the airport in 13 hours 🙂. I better get up early so I can try and sleep on the plane!! We have had a number of curves thrown our way...found out that my daughter needs to have surgery when we get back and I’m having to have some blood tests done. Yikes! But all should be ok and hopefully we are done with surprises! Norwegian air doesn’t let us check in online...which makes me nervous! We do have our seats though and we’re planning on getting to the airport 3 hours early. This is when it’s good to leave the teens home...one of them can drive us to the airport!! I can take the Uber fees and buy a sun hat in Cannes!! The weather is still pretty darn hot in Europe but that will be ok with me (hubby and daughter not so much lol). More to come later today! Need to go find the stream on apps for compressing pics! Jane
  16. Thanks twangster! It looks like an amazing ship and like Sabrina, I enjoy the pics because I’m thinking I won’t get on it. I have yet to meet a class I haven’t liked and I’m sure I’d enjoy empress! Jane
  17. I was thinking the same thing. We docked way out at the naval station and when your tired and hot, it felt like forever away. Jane
  18. Happy anniversary @Lovetocruise2002 And have an amazing cruise!!! I am waiting for prices to drop and then we are definitely trying symphony!! Jane
  19. We will be going to Athens, mykenos and Santorini. In Athens, we will be doing an all day royal Caribbean tour to kinda see everything. In mykenos we will hopefully not die of heat exhaustion and are going to ancient Delos, and in Santorini we are simply doing the oia on your own tour...there are 5 ships in that day...it will be worth having a royal excursion that day as the tendering situation might be tough. We leave on the cruise next week so as @AshleyDillo said, you can check my live blog section...I hope to post pics! Jane.
  20. T@ChefSpencer we leave tomorrow for our first European cruise. I will be in Barcelona as well as Rome. I hope to do a live blog that you can check out I'm there life blog section...I will let you know what we do in those cities. We decided to get the drink pkg if nothing else than for the bottled water and the wine at dinner. I think that with coffee and our sea day drinks, we will break even but it was a tough decision. In the end we decided to do it in part so we could prepay and not have a big cost at the end. Definitely look for the cruise planner sales. Jane
  21. Magens Bay was beautiful but can get crowded if you are a late stop or there are lots of ships. We took an excursion over to St John's and the beaches there were gorgeous and not crowded... It's one of our favorite stops. I haven't done a lot of beaches in St Maarten...I know many ilof they beaches on the French side are still recovering from the hurricane. On our last stop we just walked to the public beach... It was a short walk from the port, it was pretty, not super crowded and free. You could buy cheap buckets of beer and rent chairs but you totally didn't have to. Lots of bars and restaurants were around but we didn't hit any of them. Jane
  22. We have read all these too... My husband loves fantasy and he's read all like to cs Lewis' other books. Tolkien is great as well. Actually... Getting back to the topic lol...I love TS Eliots book of practical cats as well. But I almost always like the books better than the movies made of anything. Jane
  23. I saw on Facebook that the godmother for freedom of the seas was refusing m drafting a letter to NBC criticizing their decision to interview the parents. She went over summer of they facts and then emphasized that many people who could refute the claims were unable to speak out due to the impending litigation. I thought it was well written. Jane
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