In the event the embassy is convinced your itinerary is real, they will happily stamp your passport very quickly. At your interview, you'll be provided a date as to when it is possible to collect your passport. You are able to apply several days ahead of your trip, sure. however, it's always best that you give sufficient time for the embassy to research your application.
All the Schengen Member countries have agreed on the price of a Schengen visa. Also, as you have already utilized the visa once, it has to be valid for two entries or for numerous entries. The documents you should apply for Schengen visa from the USA.