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Check, Check and Check.

Posted Sep 09 2009 10:12pm

Hi everyone! Did you have a good holiday weekend?

My time in Arizona, though way too short, was very fun and productive…

  • Secure the church near my family’s house for 10.16.10 - Check!
  • Secure a reception venue with gorgeous mountain views – Check!
  • Start looking at wedding dresses and end up finding “the one” – Check!

I really did not expect to get so much done, but we did! It’s crazy to think it’s all officially happening. Granted, we do have over a year to keep planning, but it’s going to go by fast I’m sure. As for the wedding dress? Let’s just say that I can’t stop looking at the pictures! I wish I could post them on the blog but they are top secret! I can tell you that I am going to go with the deep purple for my bridesmaid dresses. I found several options that I liked this weekend, so now it’s a matter of finding out what they like best!

When we weren’t busy with wedding details, we ate some delicious food from Papa Bender. On Saturday night, the unofficial professional chef made steak + potatoes with all the fixins – mushrooms marinated in red wine (I promise you, the marinade made these the BEST mushrooms I’ve ever had), fresh tomatoes and onions marinated in butter and sprinkled with pepper (again…DELICIOUS).


We thoroughly enjoyed our steak + potato feast, complete with swiss chard on the side. And wine ;)


Papa Bender also made brunch for us on Sunday. He pulled out all the stops again.


We each were able to make our own egg burritos. We used My Nana’s tortillas, which are by far the best authentic Mexican tortillas that we’ve ever found at the store. There was also a bowl of popcorn – er, I mean scrambled eggs – and a plate of bacon + pork sausage to add to our creations.


I topped my egg + sausage combo with a little shredded cheese and fire-roasted salsa. Amazing.


To cap off what was already a fabulous weekend, we also went out to Benihana for dinner on Sunday night, in celebration of Bobby’s upcoming 23rd birthday on September 13!

As usual, this restaurant did not disappoint. We started out with their delicious broth + salad.


Then our chef Patrick (who promised he was a Japanese chef, but I’m not buying it) did his magic.


He was actually one of the most talented chefs I have ever seen there! We all started with fried rice, which comes with chicken, egg and veggies. It was amazing – and Bobby’s favorite part of the meal.


For his next trick, Patrick made shrimp, zucchini, mushrooms, onions and chicken…all for me ;) No really, he made a lot of different things, but that was what I ordered (clearly).

Shrimp + Chicken (aka the Benihana Delight )


And the veggies


At the end of our feast, we still had some wiggle room for the free ice cream! Bobby’s of course came with a candle and a birthday song in both English and Japanese :) I went with the rainbow sherbet.


I used to get sherbet all the time when I was little. Now I know why – it’s so delicious! My dad also got a good picture of the two of us with my bro. It made me think of the last time we went here for his birthday (we’ve done it for at least the past three years!). I love going back through old posts and reading your comments. It never fails to make me smile :) I was much better at responding back then, wasn’t I? Ugh…time, where have you gone? I need to bring back that interaction. I miss it.


It truly was a fantastic weekend. I love soaking up every moment with my family, but it also makes it that much harder to leave them :( I’m definitely struggling to get back into my Windy City routine this week. Don’t get me wrong, I love this city, working downtown and hanging out with Bobby, but a big part of me is always left in Arizona with my family. My heart aches just typing about it, so I’ll stop.

I’m still catching up on everything my blog friends have been up to this weekend. It looks like some of you had some really fun stuff going on! What was your favorite part of the long weekend?

Alright, time to get up and go for the day!



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