Hey Ladies! LezCruise!

We hope you all had a Happy Thanksgiving.  We had a lovely holiday except for a pumpkin pie mishap that left Mary with a bit of a burn on her right forearm, which our evil cat Emma assisted by landing on claws first at every opportunity.

In this issue we invite you to cruise with us from the comfort of your own home, give you info on some techie ways to do it, and also update you on the status of one of our group cruises.  In addition, we're inaugurating a new column called "Meet Our Users."  As the name implies, we are going to try to profile a LezCruise user in future newsletters.   This month's featured user is Meredith.

Join us on a Virtual Cruise
We'll be in the Caribbean Dec. 15-22

We've wanted to sail on Crystal for some time now, and we were very lucky to get space on a Seminar taking place on the Crystal Serenity December 15-22. We're very excited about this cruise and plan to post to the blog live from the ship. We hope you'll join us on the virtual cruise.
Our first port of call is Key West, Florida. Since most of the cruise is already heavily scheduled for us in advance, we've decided not to schedule any shore excursions in Key West - we'll just go exploring on our own. We're hoping to visit The Ernest Hemingway House and say hello to all the cats. We're also interested in the Heritage House Museum which has a very large orchid collection.

Our second port of call is Grand Cayman where we have signed up to swim with stingrays.  In Cozumel, we chose the Catamaran Sail, Snorkel & Beach Party excursion where they're taking us to a beach with kayaks and hammocks.  Finally, in Progreso we will take a wooden boat through mangroves and swim in a cenote.
We can't wait to sail and hope that if you need a break during this hectic holiday season, you'll take a few minutes and join us on the virtual cruise at blog.lezcruise.com

RSS Readers
How to save lots of time as you addictively surf the net

Have you ever noticed that orange RSS symbol (   or    or ) next to many things you read on the internet these days?  RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication and basically what that symbol allows you to do is take all the content from all the websites that you are interested in and put it in one place.  In order to do this, you need an RSS Reader.  With your RSS Reader, you tell it what RSS feeds (those orange symbols) you would like to subscribe to and then you can go to one place to see if there is any updated content.  So what can you put on your RSS feed?  Here's what I have on mine:  LezCruise Blog, NPR News, NYT Home Page, Frommers.com Deals & News, and our Netflix Queue.

There are all sorts of free RSS Readers out there.  I play around with both Newsgator and Google's reader at www.google.com/reader.  Most Readers will also help you get started by giving you some choices of feeds to add to your reader.  If you'd like to add the LezCruise blog, you can use this address:   http://feeds.feedburner.com/LezCruiseBlog.  This article is also a much better explanation of RSS than the one you're reading.  Happy RSS Aggregating, but be forewarned.  It's addictive!

Time is running out for Royal Caribbean Alaska Group Space
Reserve your Alaska berth now

We have outside cabins reserved on Royal Caribbean's Vision of the Seas cruise to Alaska on August 31 of next year.  Royal Caribbean will take this space away from us on December 6, so if any of you have been thinking about this cruise, make sure you contact us before the 6th.  There are currently 6 LezCruisers booked on this cruise.

We also have group space on Holland America's Ryndam that sails from Seward, Alaska to Vancouver on August 12.  These are inside staterooms (unfortunately that's all that was left) but Holland America is giving us until March to fill the rooms.

Most of the mass-market cruise lines are full or close to full for Alaska 07, but the luxury lines still have some room.   For those of you with children, Regent Seven Seas is offering for kids to sail free on some Alaska cruises in May, June and July.  They are also offering free air on selected sailings.

In This Month's Newsletter:

Join Us on a Virtual Cruise
Meet Our Users
This month's user - Meredith
Meredith tells us, "I never really thought of myself as someone who was going to become a cruise fan."  But she found that she really likes that you can visit a lot of different places without having to unpack.  Every day on a cruise, she is "magically brought to a new place."  She's been to Alaska and the Eastern Caribbean on cruises and recently sailed to Bermuda.
One of Meredith's cruises was an RSVP cruise to Alaska, on which she worked as a sign-language interpreter. 
Since Meredith's wife was not able to go on the RSVP cruise, the two of them, as well as Meredith's mother, will be sailing next May to Alaska on Norwegian Cruise Lines' newest ship, the Pearl.  Meredith's mother loved the pictures Meredith brought back from Alaska so much that they promised they would take her.  And the cruise to Bermuda?  The in-laws were in the cabin next door.