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Sunday, February 28, 2010

Day 8: Costa Rica

All I have to say is Costa Rica is BEAUTIFUL!!  Today was one of our family excursions where EVERYONE went!  We went to the rainforest and had a nature walk (yes me) followed by a tram ride through the rainforest.  The walk was fun, luckily it wasn’t to long or hard.  The tram ride however was absolutely stunning!

DSCN0344Portion of the family on the nature hike, the sticks turned out to be more of props then anything…they were annoying!

DSCN0353I’m trying to remember what animal Jaime was acting out…I think a snake :)

DSCN0366In typical Benson fashion a family gathering isn’t complete without a visit from the paramedics!  Kelly got head exhaustion and ended up not being able to go on the tram.  Luckily she turned out to be fine after some sleep and after her blood pressure went back to normal.

Aaron & Sue in their tram

IMG_1981                         On the tram ride we saw lots of toucans!

Some photos of Costa Rica!

IMG_2025IMG_1935IMG_1937IMG_2020 IMG_2024And of course the token self-portrait of Brandi

After shopping and the excursion we got back just in time for dinner and a friendly game of family feud.  Kelly signed up our family to play and then didn’t end up being chosen to participate but the rest of us did….hmmmmm…

My mommy & daddy at dinner

Our waiter made this napkin person for us.  He folded the napkins and made a person, it was hilarious!!

DSCN0408Alex & I going up against each other in Family Feud…did I mention MY team won??!!


DSCN0384Hi Girls!  Once again I forgot to have your parents write you a message before we went our separate ways for the evening, so I thought I’d post a couple of pictures of your parents that we took today!

The first photo was taken at dinner tonight and the second photo was IMG_2014on the aerial tram this afternoon.  They took Baby Doll with them and wanted to make sure Baby Doll got her picture taken too!

I got you a surprise today so I cannot wait to see you girls and show you!

Love, Cori


We are at sea again tomorrow, I am ready to sleep in!!

this is my 400th post!!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Day 7: At Sea

Post #1 @ 1:50pm

Here we are At Sea again.  Once again I woke up early this morning, this time to Jaime knocking on our balcony door to tell us an 8.8 magnitude earthquake had just hit Chile and a Tsunami is heading towards Hawaii where they will be evacuating.  We immediate turned on CNN (one of about 10 miscellaneous channels we get on the ship) to watch the news coverage.  My favorite point was when they showed a map and pointed to Chile and then to Hawaii….uh yah….we’re right smack in between on our little boat floating in the ocean!  However, I later found out that we’re safe, it’s better to be in a boat then on land with earthquakes and tsunami’s.  Still, I was ready to post my last will and testament on Facebook, just in case we went down – lol!

After watching for a while everyone else went to breakfast and I crawled back into bed and slept in until about 10:30am!  Spent a few hours out in the sun and now have returned to my stateroom to watch more CNN and rest.  The rest of the family is going to the Art Auction, but I don’t think I’m going to attend this one, they are kind of boring!

Tonight is another formal night, that means I should probably get in the shower soon since it’s already 2pm.  But in the meantime here are a couple of photos from the sun earlier today.

DSCN0287Zak & Uncle Henry playing Ping Pong.
You might ask “Who is Uncle Henry?” Uncle Henry is our adopted uncle, he joined our family while playing Jeopardy on the first night!  Since then we see Uncle Henry everywhere!  He is a super nice man, who seems to enjoy being our new uncle!

DSCN0282Olympian Michael Phelps….oh wait, I mean Zackery Fields!

DSCN0283Kelly sunbathing and playing with her I-Pod

DSCN0285Alex standing in the water of the Lido Pool

Post #2 @ 10:33pm

Tonight is the second of three formal nights.  Not only was it a formal night but the Captains Circle Party (all passengers who have cruised with Princess before are invited to attend) and we got professional pictures taken…plus of course the photos that were taken at the table by all of us!

DSCN0319Dad, Grandma & Jaime

DSCN0305Kelly deciding what to eat

DSCN0313Brandi & I 


Good Evening Girls!  We miss you lots and hope you are having fun for Erin!!  We got you more surprises today that we cannot wait to share with you guys!  Love, Mommy & Daddy


DSCN0298This is a beautiful photo of the main atrium of the cruise ship!!

Tomorrow we go to Costa Rica and are taking an aerial tram tour of the rainforest!!  I cannot wait, it should be very exciting!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Day 6: Panama City

Last night after we went through the Panama Canal, we anchored in Panama City where we stayed until this evening.  This morning we got up early and headed out.  Since we were anchored we took “tenders” (little boats) to the dock.  After getting to the dock we rented a cab and went on a tour of Panama City. 

The first stop we made was back to the Panama Canal, where we visited the Visitors Center and got to watch a ship go through the Canal.  It was really cool!

DSCN0222Alex posing in front of the ship going through the Canal

DSCN0224A great view of the two water levels!!

After visiting the Canal we went on a tour of the Old City.  This was another beautiful town with beautiful buildings and skylines!  We were lucky enough to have a tour where the guide took us to a number of great stops through out the city!

A couple of views of Panama City

Right now I’m watching Julie & Julia in a Movie Under The Stars “production”!  We’re about 20 minutes into the movie and it’s pretty good…kinda funny though that it is blog based and here I am blogging during it – haha!  Anyway, I took these pictures a few seconds ago and the people sitting next to us say “Oh my gosh, lightening!”.  Hehehee they think it’s lightening when it’s really the flash from my camera!

DSCN0277Julie & Julia Under the Stars

DSCN0280Me watching the movie

DSCN0278Aunt Sharon & Alex


Okay, we have another Sea Day tomorrow, so I plan to sleep in!!  YAY!!


Good Evening Madison & Emmalee!  We visited Panama City today and got you girls more surprises today!!  We cannot wait to see you and hope you are having fun with Amy & the girls!!

Love, Mommy & Daddy


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Day 5: Panama Canal

Today was the Great Panama Canal – I had heard both “the canal is the most amazing thing ever” and “oh my gosh, it was the most boring thing ever”!  So I wasn’t sure what to expect!  But I have to admit it was pretty cool!!

There was a total of three locks that we went through and it took more than 9 hours to complete!  The canal was built 1913 and is still completely functioning!  Absolutely amazing!!

IMG_1695The locks either opening or closing (not sure) to let the water in causing us to raise and/or lower!

 IMG_1697 IMG_1708
Some shots of the canal worker people and the cute little choo-choo trains that pull the boats through!

IMG_1704Me looking out over the canal!


This is the Centennial Bridge, no idea what its for, but here it is!  Apparently this is the “new” Bridge of America.

There were a lot of people at the Panama Visitors Center watching us go through the final set of locks.

This afternoon I took a little nap, I was exhausted!

Alex looking like the most beautiful person i have ever seen before the show we saw tonight.

Okay I’m to tired to even add my signature to the end of this post! See ya later!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Day 4: Cartagena, Columbia

Today didn’t start out to great, woke up to the worlds worst smell.  Our room smelled like a garbage dump, I quickly learned that was just Cartagena.  It was extremely muggy, gross and hot already.  So I wasn’t expecting much when we went into town.  Cartagena turned out to be an absolutely beautiful town!

IMG_1541Did I mention how muggy it was?  Brandi’s camera fogged up immediately, leaving us with this lovely photo!

IMG_1649Later on in the day we tried the picture again!

We were able to rent a cab for $15 for the whole day (per person) and the cab driver stuck with us all day on a private guided tour.  Our cab driver was really nice and showed us all around town!

IMG_1552On our cab ride we saw donkey’s pulling carts!!

We started out by going to a very old fort.  Zak, Jaime & I climbed up to the top of the fort and had fun wandering around the top of the fort!

IMG_1557Brandi in front of the fort

IMG_1562Zak & I posing halfway up the fort

IMG_1570….now at the top!!

After the fort our cab driver took us to Old Town where we walked around and shopped.  Old Town was bustling with lots of people, activity and even a movie being shot right in the middle of the town square!


After we got back to the ship we all imediatly jumped into the pool.  It was so hot today.  We were told that this will probably be the hotest place we stop.  The humidity was unbearable and we later found out that it was only 45% humidity today and tomorrow it’s going to be 66%!  What the?!!  I don’t even know how that could humanly be possible.  Today the humidity felt like at least 150%!

IMG_1657Showing off my Olympic skills…standing on Zak’s shoulders.  Both pools on the ship are very deep, with the ‘shallow’ end being 5ft, 2in!

IMG_1659Kelly chillin’ out by the pool

Alex taking a dip to cool off!

At dinner tonight, Alex was complaining about very high pitch ringing that was going on in the dining room.  I heard it for a few seconds, as did Kelly…but no one else did!  Poor Alex kept having to hold her ears!



 Hi Madison & Emmalee,

Today we were in Cartagena and once again Baby Doll got her picture taken!  Daddy & I had a lot of fun picking up some surprises for you girls!  Here are a couple of pictures we took today!

IMG_1586Mommy & Baby Doll posing in front of a large horse statue!

   IMG_1668Mommy & Daddy posing at dinner tonight!

We miss you both very much!  Love you girls!!


Okay, it’s been a really long day today so I need to get to bed!!  Tomorrow we go through the Panama Canal!  I’m excited to see what all the hype (or lack of) is all about for myself!!  Oh and here is a picture of our cruise ship….



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