Sunday, January 30, 2011

Iron Chef

Last weekend Gary and I participated in an Iron Chef competition with our great friends.
Key ingredient: Peppers

Nicole and Erinn working hard as their husbands....
chat it up about their coveted FSU football team. They had to leave the kitchen because football and cooking don't go together in one room. We had a good laugh.
Gary watching over our dish, making sure everything is cooking just nicely.
The Matthews get the team award because of the matching aprons. The best part was that Mike wasn't ashamed and wore it in style.
Finished Product:
Nicole and Garrett- Jack Pepper Cheese Biscuits
They also made the desert which was fried bananas covered in brown sugar, yum.
Dave and Erinn- I do not remember the name but it was delicious: peppers,cream cheese, stuffed in a crescent roll
Mike and Katie- sliders with a gourmet pepper and cheese topping
Us- bow tie pasta with a pepper marinara sauce
The food was fantastic and the company was great, we were missing Tyler and Jodi but they joined us later when we went and watched BYU win at Mike and Katie's apartment. It was a great night and so refreshing to get away from homework and responsibility to just laugh with people who are going through the same stage of life... also the boys love reminiscing about their past life as roommates.


Sunday, January 16, 2011

Mexican Rivera: Day: 6 & 7

Boating Back to LA:
Friday we spent boating and anticipating Christmas Day. We kept it low key. The boys played a lot of mini golf, the girls read their books in their rooms(that day it was freezing), and we ate a lot of ice cream and food. That night Nate sang in karaoke contest and we played some rounds of UNO. We had some great family togetherness!
 Christmas Day:

Christmas Morning we slept in,walked around the boat, and soaked in some sun. We did stockings and everyone was in charge of buying a stocking stuffer for each person. All 12 of us stuffed ourselves in my parent's room and by the end of opening all the gifts we were dieing of heat.
Later in in the afternoon we all treated ourselves to some Johnny Rockets and soda!
And that night was our last dinner on the boat and we took another family photo. It was one of the best days on the boat thus far.
Getting Off the Boat:
To say the very least we were all so sad to depart from our ship. It was a great vacation and a much needy one. Thanks Mom and Dad! It was the best Christmas! 
The family went their separate ways after this photo...Gary and I boarded the plane to come back to Provo so I could start work the next day. Back to the real world.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

bed yet?

It is 12:42am and we are up...why?
Because we are waiting on our laundry to come out of the dryer!!!
There are 8 apartments and 1 washer and 1 dryer-
we have been in line since 5 o'clock p.m.
we watched another attendant load one load after another after another as our measly little basket stood on top of the washer as we waited and waited
Am I venting...yes
Do I want my own washer and dryer, YES
one day right?
(one day I will be boasting to my children about how mommy and daddy survived without a washer and dryer of our own and it wasn't the end of the world-well maybe...depends how much longer I have to stay up)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Mexican Rivera: Day 3,4, & 5

Cabo San Lucas
 -snorkeling
-beautiful fish, scary experience swimming w/ them but got use to it (especially for Baby B)
-salt water = nasty
-Carlos, great tour guide
-semi-cold water, it's December
-see the Sun
-went to a Carlos's favorite fish stop, interesting
-introduced to pesos
-awesome first day on the beach!
Mazatlan
-Party on the Beach
-Close encounters w/ sea lions
-scenic boat ride
-banana boat ride (Gary tipping the banana boat causing his mother-in-law to go under, off the Christmas list)
-pictures w/ iguanas, gross
-Utah VS Boise State (go Boise)
-laying out in the sun
-horse carriage ride
-Hugo, another awesome tour guide(How about that! Take a picture)
-authentic Mexican food
-flat soda... :(


Puerto Vallarta
-last stop in Mexico
-another beautiful day
-sailing through the trees!
 -w/ the Sexy Mexicans as they called themselves: they had our whole family died from laughing
-Baby B got scared but made it through!
-about 15 mosquito bites on each person
-ate at a delicious Mexican resturaunt
-bus ride to the Mexican Baskin Robins, yum
-bought souvinours
-Wonderful Day!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Proposal

Three years ago today- Gary and I got engaged! Crazy, huh? Well, I thought I'd share the story.
Gary and I decided we wanted to get married Dec 25th, yep Christmas Day. A few days after Christmas we started going ring shopping, went on for a few days...shouldn't have because the first ring I tried on was the ONE.
Well, I started school at UVU Jan 4th, but was excited to get done and go party with Gary all day long-BYU hadn't started yet. While sitting in math class I get a text from Gary.
"hey, I was just wondering if it was okay if I went snowboarding with a friend today, I'll be home later tonight"
Oh boy was I upset, but we were in love and I couldn't be mad at him and deny him of one of his greatest passions. So I text back...
"Ya, see ya tonight"
It was a very lonely day. Then 6pm rolled around and Gary called me and I was SO happy to hear his voice. He asked if I could drive down to his apartment....WHAT, after being apart all day he wanted ME to drive to HIS place. Again, we were in love and I just said ok because I was dieing to see him.
I show up... knock on the door, and it takes a minute before Gary gets to the door and turns on all the lights in the apartment. The minute I walked in it hit me that this was IT!!!
I was overjoyed and was so willing to forgive Gary for being a dork- and comes to find out he was lieing about the whole snowboarding thing, he was trying to get things planned.
He proposed first thing and then we ate Papa John's pizza over candlelight.
(I was craving Papa John's the whole week)
It was a great night and is still such a vivid memory!
I just can't believe it was 3 years ago?!?

Monday, January 3, 2011

Mexican Rivera: Day 1 & 2

It all started Easter Day when our whole family was in St. George, except Nate. But for some odd reason when my parents gave us our little Easter bag they insisted Nate be on the phone with us all. Well, it was because of an envelope inside(which I was thinking it must be $$), so my parents asked us all to open the letter up together. Well, you can imagine the madness that when on after that when we opened up a read: You are invited to the First and LAST(my dad added that in) Benham Cruise over the Christmas Break. So, the countdown has been on and now it is over and we all couldn't be more sad that we are back in the real world.

We woke up at 5am to catch our 7:30am flight out to LAX airport. We were so excited-so waking up that early didn't even phase us. Well, we should have woken up earlier because we made it through security and heard, "Finally, boarding for Southwest Flight out to LAX airport". Gary was hoping for a scene like Home Alone...and we got it, we started bookin it...and made it!
Here are the 5 flyers when we all got into Los Angles-waiting for our shuttle to take us to the ship!

The whole Benham Family(12) together for Christmas-it won't happen again for another 6 years. We were all giddy loading on to the ship. Most Benham's haven't ever been on a cruise so we had no expectations-and we loved every minute of it.

Gary and Me! Excited to be on the Boat! -I think the 5am wake up call is finally wearing on Gary;)

First Dinner-I am wearing the skirt I made in sewing class. I promised myself I would try new things and I am glad I did. Our waiters were great, and so was the rest of the cruise staff. We felt like kings who ate a LOT after the 7days.
First thing Monday morning the boys played in a ping-pong tournament. Blake took second place and it made my mother happy to know our ping-pong table was worth buy.


They had an all you can eat soft served ice-cream, so we took a lot of "walks" around the boat and then some how we would end up with a cone in our hand. It was delicious. I think my Dad took the most "walks".

The boys enjoyed going rock climbing too. Blake with his great gymnastic skills put Nate and Gary to shame. He was up there in 2 seconds.

It was also Baby Bethany's birthday on Monday so we celebrated her big day. She turned 12 and got a lot of earrings. Nate gave her laptop earrings and we were all dieing, but the best was the pair of earrings Kyle and Jenny gave her-if you know my family-you know that we are the BIGGEST Jayhawk fans alive-well Bethany now owns a pair of Jayhawk earrings that are so big her ears hurt when she puts them in. It was so fitting for our family.

Monday was the first formal night and I convinced Gary to wear a pink shirt to match me. It took a lot of coxing and convincing him we do not look like high school dance dates-maybe. It also took some effort to just convince him to pack his suit. He thought the cruise was a break from his suit, I assured him it was not.
My mother sent out an email a couple nights before we left on the cruise stating the apparel for dinner: NO Jayhawk apparel, no khaki shorts, no basketball shorts, no t-shirts, and again...absolutely no Jayhawk apparel. The boys did well and only complained a little.



We took a family picture- with intentions to make the "real" one the second formal night.
But still enjoyed the cheesiness of it all. We were all in heaven!



We came back from dinner to find an elephant on our bed. Bethany was stoked every night to get back from dinner and to see what the new animal it was. We were also graced with a bunny, monkey, and doggy.


That night we ended with going to Johnny Rockets on the boat and had a great time. We danced to the YMCA and ate some onion rings, fries, and Oreo sundaes.


Our first two days on the boat were a dream and we were excited to see what our destination stops had in store for us. We kept losing track of time and we never wanted to bring up which day it was in case it made time speed up faster.