Gift for the Family

Personal on this one.  My wife and I are celebrating our 10 yr anniversary in March.  We’ve been talking about a bunch of different things to do, which are all complicated by the fact that a) it’s during March break and b) we can’t realistically leave our kids behind for a week without some serious planning / support.

We’ve been fortunate enough to take the kids on quite a few trips over the years, including two down south.  We also took a couple trips on a cruise (just the two of us) and I personally enjoyed that experience more than an all-inclusive.  Thinking was to see if we could find a cruise that was more family-friendly – and that generally means Royal Carribean.

Also motivating – we’re both on the edge of burnout through work.  The winter holidays were good to refresh, but we are clearly in need of the “no need to make big decisions” for a while.

We ended up booking a trip on Harmony of the Seas.  That’s around 5,500 passengers at double occupancy.  And has full time kid activities if the wife and I want to do something else for a bit.  Oh, and an ice rink.  Ridiculous.


I was in the ship to the far right, and I thought that was immense.  HotS is the 2nd most right.

I am utterly fascinated by the logistics of running a floating city, with people talking different languages, and a very high standard of cleanliness and service.  Just the linen service takes an army.  If you ever have the chance to watch a documentary on how these things run, you should really take the time.

There is one port in particular – Labadee, Haiti – that is entirely self-served by the ship. Over the course of 2 hours, enough food/drinks are pulled off the ship to shore in order to support an 8 hour day at the beach.  Amazing coordination.

I won’t hide the fact that this is entirely a luxury, and one that we are lucky enough to afford.  Every time we bring our kids out on something, we make it a point to have them recognize this fact.  Entitlement is a concern for both my wife and I.  My kids experienced more by the age of 4 than I did until I was in my 20s.

It’s good to have things to look forward to.  Makes driving through feet of snow and ice a bit more bearable.  I’ll see what kind of photo collage I can put together when I get back.

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