Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Norwegian Cruise Giveaway

It is that time of the year again…the kids will be out of school for the summer, and we get to have fun! We get to visit the fun places in our local area, such as museums, fun centers and pool. Plan a summer picnic with family and friends. Play outside all day and watch movies till their eyes droop. Sure, there are lots of things to do every day, but I also love going on a big family vacation too.

I don’t know about you, but it’s not like we can afford a costly family vacation every year. That is why when we have the opportunity to do so, it is such a big deal for us. To make sure that we get the maximum fun for our modest budget, I get busy researching and planning for our trip. What do I do and where to start? There are a few key points I think about when I am planning for our trip. 1. Where do we want to go? 2. What is our budget? 3. How do we get there? 4. Where do we to stay? 5. What kinds of activities are there? Are they going to satisfy everyone? What kind of restaurants are nearby? Of course your list might contain something different from mine, or the order might be different, but for our family vacation planning, those are the things that come to mind. Let me share some examples how I planned our family vacation according to my list…The last couple big vacations we took was to Lego Land and Sea World one year, and Disneyland another year.

Because we wanted to take our children to those places for a long time, the answer to the question No.1 was easy. The No. 2 question on the list… budget… Mr. TRH and I already had a budget, but we decided to add a bit extra just in case (which turned out to be a good thing… on one of our trips, our van broke down after we got to our hotel, we needed repairs and that cost us over $300!). No.3 on the list “how to get there?” took me a very long time, here is why. Because we drove instead of flying, I looked at the actual map and got on Google maps. I not only looked at the route from our home to the destination, after I decided on questions No.4 and 5, I went back and marked all the places we wanted to go. Then, printed out all the directions on how to get from point A to B, B to C, then C to A and such; then I put everything in a binder. You might think that this is unnecessary, but I am glad I did. Our navigator system wasn’t working, and we weren’t familiar with that area at all! That planning totally helped us and we never had problems finding places.

The next thing on the list was where we are going to stay. I started looking for all the nearby hotels. Comparing their prices, location, and all the amenities are very important. Also, some hotels have special offers such as combining hotel stay and Lego land/Disney Land park tickets. I spent a long time looking for great deals and it was totally worth it! No. 6 on the list is amenities, activities and restaurants. Since our vacations have been pretty economical ones, our family is pretty easy to please. Here are the few things I look for… a pool at the hotel is a “must”, being able to watch movies in our room, having a small refrigerator, and a microwave would be nice. I also look for other activities to do, and finding interesting restaurants is one of the exciting parts for our family. Phew… I feel like planning for the family vacation is a lot of effort and time. Don’t you agree? That is why one of my dream family vacations is to go on a cruise!

 

Have you checked out Norwegian Cruise Line lately? I have been doing some reading on their site and found out many awesome things about them! They offer Freestyle Cruising, there are so many activities and entertainment for people of all age groups, and the youth program seems very interesting. I have children ages 7 to 12 years old, and a 5 year difference at this age is pretty big. If we were taking our family on a cruise, I would want to make sure that we will all have fun. On their kids and youth program, there are many things that caught my eye. I know my kids will surely enjoy something like CIRQUE DU JOUR (a circus program) and many of their sporting activities. There are of course overall family-friendly ship features to enjoy too. After all, we go on a family vacation to enjoy each other and make lots of fun memories.  Head over to Norwegian’s site and find out more about their family vacation options.

 

Now, Norwegian and BlogHer are doing a sweepstakes for one grand prize - a cruise voucher for a family of 4!! This is one prize for all the blogs in the program---not a family cruise for each blog. “What is your dream vacation for your family?”  Answer in the comments section below for a chance to win!

 

Sweepstakes Rules: No duplicate comments. You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: "#SweepstakesEntry"; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry. The Official Rules are available here.

Entries from all participating blogs will be pooled for winner selection; only two entries per household. This giveaway is open to US residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected. This sweepstakes will run from 5/7/2013 to 6/2/2013. Be sure to visit Norwegian Cruise Line's brand page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts! 

 

Good luck everyone!

130 comments :

  1. Something adventurous, educational and where we could bring things to the less fortunate in that country.

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  2. My dream vacation would be to take my family on a cruise. I have never been on one and have always thought it would be so much fun!

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  3. I'd love to win this, we haven't gone on a vacation for a few years!

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  4. I grew up near Disneyland and had annual passes basically my whole life until we moved to Utah. I have never been to Disney World though. My family and I would love to go. It has been a dream for a very long time. Alas with a daughter with health problems and lots of medical bills, it is never in the budget. Perhaps someday!

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  5. Oh that would amazing! My dream family vacation is anywhere warm and sunny with nowhere we HAVE to be...just relaxing!!!

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  6. My kids have been dreaming about Disneyland for years!!

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  7. https://twitter.com/brendabecket

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  8. Our dream vacation is a long jaunt around Asia. China, Korea, Japan, Vietnam (for the man's family ^.^) and wherever else we can stop on the way!

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  9. I would love to take a family vacation to Europe! I think it's so important to instill a sense of adventure in your kids early. Now to save up the money...

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  10. My husband and I never got to take a honeymoon. With life as crazy as it is (a new business, recent relocation and an ongoing custody battle), there just wasn't time. I would love to be able to run away with our family for a few days just to bring us back to center.

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  11. Dream vacation is simple - two rooms so the kids can go to bed early! Someone else in charge of food is a bonus too!

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  12. Fun! my dream vacation is going to southern Spain or a week at Disneyland.

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  13. Dream vacation is a resort in Bermuda.

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  14. My dream vacation for my family would be going on a cruise to Bermuda. My husband and I for years now have wanted to visit Bermuda and what better way then to be able to have our kids enjoy Bermuda with us.
    Thanks so much
    rickpeggysmith(at)aol(dot)com

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  15. I tweeted: https://twitter.com/peg42/status/331914401462493184
    Thanks again.
    rickpeggysmith(at)aol(dot)com

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  16. our dream vacation would be that all nine of my children (currently scattered across the globe - literally one child is 12 hours difference from us) would be there

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  17. probably Alaska - always wanted to cruise Alaska!
    tvollowitz at aol dot com

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  18. My Husband is a quadriplegic and vacationing is really hard for us. A cruise seems like it would be the perfect vacation as we could count on the ship for accessible lodging, transportation, and accommodations. Our twin girls age 4 1/2 would have so much fun enjoying all the activities on a cruise. We probably wouldn't even care what the destination would be we would be happy with any destination as long as the family could be together for a fun filled vacation.

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  19. A Cruise is the best way to go. Nancy P.

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  20. Going to Disneyland with my husband and daughter. Spending enough time to really have fun and spend time together as a family.

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  21. I've always thought a cruise would be nice.

    sewingwithtrudy@yahoo.com

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  22. Oh I would love to take my teenage kids on a cruise! They've never been on one and with them growing up there would be so many different things to experience. Wonderful memories would be made.

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  23. Our dream vacation is a trip to Australia. My husband and I have both dreamed about it well before we even met!

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  24. I would love to go to Panama with my husband, and no kids! If it were a family vacation I would like to go to Disneyland before they are too old!

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  25. My dream vacation would be to someplace cold, breezy, and quiet, like Scandinavia. Life is so stressful now, but a cruise would alleviate that stress, if only for a few days, and would be unforgettable for my kids and my husband and I!

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  26. our dream vacation would be to spain. my husband lived there for two years and we'd love to go back and visit!

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  27. Many years ago, we went on a cruise and it was so much fun. I daydream about what it would be like to do it again.

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  28. I would love to visit a beach with warm water. shelly sal4qtatgmaildotcom

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  29. I would LOVE to win! I've cruised on Norweigan once before and had a fabulous time. My dream vacation would be to cruise with my husband and 2 children anywhere! I love cruises and would love to do one a year if we could! -Jen @ Eat. Sleep. Make.

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  30. I tweeted about the giveaway!
    https://twitter.com/eatsleepMAKE/status/332201772854693888
    Thanks!
    Jen @ Eat. Sleep. Make

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  31. Cruises are a great way to see a number of different places in a relatively short period of time. Can't beat going to bed in one port and waking up in another!

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  32. The best vacation would be relaxing, with lots of warm sunshine, and near or on the ocean or large lake. All inclusive with food and drink would be lovely. A hot tub would be the essence of relaxation. And the chance to mingle and really get to know the local people, particularly their art scene.

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  33. My dream vacation definitely would be a cruise! We have never been on one. It would be so fun and relaxing - no driving, no cooking, just being together and having fun.

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  34. I tweeted! https://twitter.com/aggiesmom1/status/332313378993369088

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  35. I would say my dream vacation for my family has always been a cruise! It would be so fun to be able to relax together as a family and enjoy the sights without one of us having to drive!

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  36. Tweeted~https://twitter.com/Songberries/status/332495745527713793

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  37. fun and sun and relaxation

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  38. My dream family vacation would be anywhere warm with crystal clear water ad white sandy beaches!

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  39. Tweeted!
    https://twitter.com/SquishyBeeshop/status/332543245898874880

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  40. My ideal trip would be an eco-tour in Africa but I'll take what I can get! I love to travel!
    Amy
    ajh15@hotmail.com

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  41. I would love to take my kids with us on a cruise--seriously--I have done two without them and would love to do one with them. As long as there is some kind of dolphin watching or Italy and my family that would be a dream come true for me!

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  42. We have NEVER taken a vacation in the 8 yrs we've been married. We visit family and they visit us. It would be amazing to win a cruise! We'd love to go to Europe...anywhere!

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  43. my dream vacation would be to take my family to the galapagos islands
    stigay at comcast.net

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  44. I'd love to take kids, inlaws and grandbaby on a week in a beach house somewhere.

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  45. Nothing would be nicer than winning a cruise that I could take both my kids on!

    gmissycat at yahoo dot com

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  46. Tweeted here too

    https://twitter.com/gmissycat/status/333253885818990592

    gmissycat at yahoo dot com

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  47. A cruise to the Virgin Islands would be a dream for us!
    nuthouse(at)centurytel(dot)net

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  48. tweeted: https://twitter.com/KerryBishop/status/333402383579246592
    nuthouse(at)centurytel(dot)net

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  49. I would love to sail the Turkish coast, but I'm not picky!

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  50. I'd really like to take my kids and husband back to Okinawa, where my mom grew up, and spend some time with relatives. I haven't been back since I was in preschool and it would be amazing to get back in touch with that part of the family.

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  51. Tweeted: https://twitter.com/superdumb/status/333723224397475841

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  52. Southern Italy would be a decent trip

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  53. Our ideal vacation would be... something fairly quiet. Neither my husband nor I are risk-takers. Something with beautiful sights and rich history, I think!

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  54. I would love to take my family on an adventurous vacation where we'd spend time outdoors together!

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  55. how amazing! We have never cruised as a couple or as a family! it's on our bucket list before the kids leave home!
    brassymeg at gmail dot com

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  56. tweet tweet! https://twitter.com/BrassyApple/status/334706318449442816

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  57. My daughter who is thirteen years old dreams of a vacation on a cruise ship. I would love for us as a family to experience this together.

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  58. My thirteen daughter dreams of a cruise ship vacation. I would love for us to experience a cruise together.

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  59. i love crusies & think this one looks especially fun. The only vactions my husband & I have been on the last few years have been to travel for funerals, so we need a fun vacation.

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  60. My dream vacation would be to go back to Hawaii, with the kids, so they can see the beauty that hubby & I enjoyed for our 25th anniversary.

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  61. I would love to cruise most anywhere. Going on a cruise is on the top of mu 'bucket list.'

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  62. I'd love to go on a cruise with my family! We did it once years ago and it was awesome!

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  63. My dream vacation would be somewhere all 4 of us could relax, and my daughters could focus on having fun, and not arguing with one another! :)

    Great giveaway!

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  64. We haven't had a vacation in years and a cruise vacation would be the ultimate family vacation!

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  65. I would love to go on a cruise. It would be relaxing and entertaining for my whole family. It would be a dream come true!

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  66. Would love to take my twin girls on a cruise. they would absolutely love it!!!

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  67. The UK, love the history and culture all squeezed into a small area.

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  68. My dream vacation for my family would be Disney World! I would love to see the joy on my girls faces when they see that! I wouldn't mind a cruise though!

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  69. My dream vacation would be kayaking and island-hopping in either Okinawa or the Caribbean. It's been years since we took any vacation because of my medical bills and my husband's medical bills due to a surprise bout of meningitis! (I wouldn't recommend this to anyone.)

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  70. I tweeted too :)
    https://twitter.com/zeldaminor/status/336547300908347392

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  71. Does Disney still do land and sea cruises? That is my family's dream vacation. My girls would love that!

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  72. I tweeted this giveaway https://twitter.com/vonmell/status/336558515118288896

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  73. Probably a European cruise. I've traveled more than my husband but I think it would be sooo fun!

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  74. I would love to take my immediate family to meet my extended family in Greece. That is probably my dream vacation. Greece is gorgeous and I would love to meet the family that lives there. Thank you!

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  75. I would love to cruise Mexico!

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  76. Tweeted! https://twitter.com/sroysews/status/336885659245617152

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  77. My dream vacation would be to just about any country in Europe. We have done one cruise before and loved it, unfortunately haven't been able to go on another one!

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  78. Europe! I love it all, but my husband would like to do the historic WWII spots - so maybe start there?

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  79. A family cruise sounds like a fabulous, fun, memory making adventure!

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  80. I'd love a trip to the South Pacific!
    aleksnearing gmail com

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  81. I'd love to win. Never been on a cruise ^_^

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  82. My dream vacation includes the beach and someone else cooking and cleaning....otherwise know as a cruise!

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  83. My dream vacation is to relax at the beach!

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  84. my dream vacation is a Mediterranean cruise!
    addictedtorodeo at gmail dot com

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  85. This is my actual dream vaction. I have a sister that has gone on many cruises and I have always wanted to go on one but where it is colder than here in Texas. I have never been out of Louisiana,Texas. This would also count as our Honeymoon we never had 18 yrs. ago. Thanks so much!!!!!

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  86. I would love to take my family on a European vacation!

    snunnrob at yahoo dot com

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  87. I tweeted!

    https://twitter.com/SaMiKaY101/status/338880303407976448

    snunnrob at yahoo dot com

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  88. Somewhere warm..the Caribbean sounds lovely

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  89. Beautiful photos--I'd love to go on a cruise.

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  90. My dream vacation is an around the world cruise - bucket list item!!

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  91. I've never been on a cruise, so I am so happy to have the opportunity to participate in your contest. Thanks. I tweeted too :) https://twitter.com/intent/favorite?ea_u=93807831&ea_e=1370977666&tweet_id=339457917407350784&ea_s=0453061c4b531a1b4ea7fa475afd08b901af72f5

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  92. I've never been on a cruise, so I am so excited to have this opportunity. Thank you for the chance to win. I tweeted too :) https://twitter.com/intent/favorite?ea_u=93807831&ea_e=1370977666&tweet_id=339457917407350784&ea_s=0453061c4b531a1b4ea7fa475afd08b901af72f5

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  93. I would be thrilled to be anywhere in the caribbean!

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  94. What a fun idea! OUr kids are getting older and will be off on their own in a couple years...this would be a great vacation to take together!

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  95. My dream vacation is a trip to Europe! There are so many places I would love to see.

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  96. Our dream vacation would be to see Europe.


    hlee99 at gmail dot com

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  97. Would love to cruise anywhere. I d would love to take my Marine son and his wife along with me to have fun and relax.

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  98. My family's dream vacation would be full of kid friendly activities that would bring lots of fun, laughter and love to all of us! Preferably somewhere warm and sunny, but anywhere with the family, away from the hustle and bustle of home life, would be fantastic!

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  99. My dream vacation would be a cruise to New Zealand.
    Thanks for the contest.

    slehan at juno dot com

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  100. https://twitter.com/slehan/status/339891685922336768

    slehan at juno dot com

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  101. The activities and meals are so fantastic. Traveling with the family would be the greatest memory for all of us on this cruise.

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  102. Our dream vacation would be a few weeks in Colombia, that is where my sons were adopted from.
    Diane Baum
    esldiane@gmail.com

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  103. My dream vacation would be with my love and my family. We have had such a rough year that this would be an amazing opportunity to get together and enjoy the little bit of time we have left as a family. (Due to complicate family circumstances, my eight year old nephew will be back with his mother soon, unfortunately.) I would love something like this- fun, exciting, and relaxing all at once. Thank you for offering the giveaway!

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  104. Want to take my Boy on a cruise for a Graduation, this would be Incredible!!!!!

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  105. We've cruised spain and italy with Norwegian so now it's time for Venice, Turkey and Greece.

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  106. https://twitter.com/ky2here1/status/340563701063114752

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  107. I'd love to trek through India.

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  108. Costa Rica is where my family wants to go!

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  109. Any place that has a beach and the smell of the ocean. We love the Ocean.

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  110. I would love for us to go to Hawaii

    daveshir2005@yahoo.com

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  111. tweet
    https://twitter.com/2005daveshir/status/341029043870781440

    daveshir2005@yahoo.com

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  112. I would love to go to Fiji!
    adrianecoros(at)gmail(dot)com

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  113. https://twitter.com/LAMusing/status/341074359059877888
    adrianecoros(at)gmail(dot)com

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  114. we'd love a cruise in the caribbean--big water fans!

    eugeniewu [at] gmail-dot-com

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  115. I would love to go to the Bahamas!! Thanks for the giveaway! :)

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  116. favorate family vacation would be the galapogos island ty.

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  117. I would love some sort of European cruise. Having never been anywhere in Europe, ANY locations would be great.

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  118. I have always wanted to see the Panama Canal! My family says our ancestry stems from the region, so I would love the chance for myself and my family to see a place so near and dear to our history. The Bahamas have always been on my bucket list as well!

    tho3640@calu.edu

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  119. A place for the kinder to be active while I sit on my rear! lol! I think a cruise fits the bill, and I'd probably appreciate a great temperature...so, Hawaii? Yes.

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  120. Tweet - https://twitter.com/ilovetoclap/status/341327507116666880

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  121. Going to Hawaii with my family. The beach would be great!!

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  122. It sucks that I missed the entry deadline on this giveaway but I'm going to answer the question anyway. Just for fun!

    My family dream vacation is a cruise on the Mediterranean. We would leave from Barcelona, Spain and travel to Venice, Rome, Sicily, Tuscany, Athens, Istanbul and Cyprus.

    luckybutterfly47 (at) gmail (dot) com

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