Cruising, Anniversary and Autism

Several years ago, hubby and I joined hubby’s sister and her significant other  (now husband), on a 7-night cruise to the Western Caribbean.  It was by far, one of the most memorable trips we have ever taken.  We danced, we laughed, we ate, we drank, we visited some amazing places, we shopped and at the end of the cruise, we were sad it was over.  Sadness at the end of a trip is a good indicator that it was an awesome vacation.

About 1 1/2 years later, we brought Lili home and two years later we brought Naomi home.  However, the dream of another cruise stayed with us and in January, 2011 we boarded our second cruise.  It was a short cruise to the Bahamas and while still memorable, we did not replicate our first cruise experience.  The ship was older.  For a matter-of-fact, it’s no longer part of the Royal Caribbean fleet.  The service was not comparable to our first cruise experience and quite honestly, we just weren’t that impressed with the Bahamas.  Although we did enjoy Coco Cay – Royal Caribbean’s eco-friendly private island.

Despite not having a time-of-our-lives second cruise, we weren’t willing to give up on cruising altogether.

This year we celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary.  Our girls are older which means they are able to enjoy the kid-friendly activities offered by the cruise line.  The girls go to their activities, while mom and dad spend some adult time enjoying each other’s company.  It’s a win-win kind of vacation 🙂

So this January we will board our third Royal Caribbean cruise.  Instead of winter weather in Central Illinois, we’ll spend a week of fun, sun, exploration and relaxation in the Caribbean.  Ahhh!!!!!

This afternoon I was looking for some information on Royal Caribbean’s website and stumbled across this . . . .

Autism friendly Adventure Ocean program

Royal Caribbean International was named by Autism on the SeasTM as the first certified Autism Friendly Cruise Line in February 2014. Autism Friendly Certification is awarded to cruise lines for their efforts to ensure their products and services are accessible for inclusion and participation by the autism and developmental disability community.

I am the parent of a son with autism.  Although my son no longer lives with us and won’t be going on this cruise, I was thrilled to discover that Royal Caribbean has worked to create an environment that is more autism friendly.  It makes me even happier that we’ve chosen Royal Caribbean for each of our cruises.

For those who are interested in learning more, you can read all the information on their website here.

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