Arts, Crafts & Motherhood

  • Nicole Hanks

I feel so honored to have been asked to be a guest on the amazing podcast, Not the Way I Planned, to discuss our infertility and adoption journey. This is such a personal subject for most, but for us, something we truly enjoy sharing. The conversation of adoption has been taboo for far too long and the only way we can end that is by talking about it. Educating those who are truly just curious and have questions about adoption, is the first step in my eyes. I knew nothing about adoption before we started our journey and now I feel as if I could write a book. We learned so much and want to make a difference in the way that people view adoption and families who have experienced adoption.

Please take a listen to our story, here: https://notthewayiplanned.com/instant-family/

  • Nicole Hanks

This week is a very important week for us as a couple. It is National Infertility Awareness Week. We struggle to grow our family naturally. But that hasn’t stopped us from growing the most beautiful family in the most amazing and untraditional of ways. Our next journey, surrogacy! Eek! (She’s not pregnant yet, we’ll share our timeline soon) We’re so excited to share more of the entire story with this amazing lady. We’ve been asked to be guests on podcasts and share our story in print as well. Stay tuned!

  • Nicole Hanks

Since moving to the West Coast seven years ago, we have definitely found our favorite place to travel for a quick reboot. We love visiting California, because it's a quick, direct flight and generally, airline tickets from Boise run just under $100. I am a master planner and love the challenge of finding the best travel deals possible. It's quite ironic, because I don't think I've ever cut a coupon in my life, but I love finding the best rates and lowest prices on our travel plans.

We decided this time we would fly into LAX to spend a few days in Anaheim and Disneyland, then take the easy, two-hour drive South to San Diego. One way flights were also a great deal at this time.

First stop, Disneyland! Cooper has been to "The Happiest Place on Earth" to celebrate his third and now, fourth birthday. I wasn't sure if three was a good age to visit after reading some mommy travel blogs, but after going, I am SO glad we didn't wait any longer. He loves the Dumbo ride and Peter Pan!

We normally hit the park early in the morning and then head to the hotel for a nap before finishing out the day back at the park. But, Cooper fell asleep in the stroller while we were walking around, so we just stayed at the park and used that time for the adults to tag team the bigger rides. At one point, we saw Pluto doing photo ops and thought it would be cute to take one while Cooper slept and show him when he woke up. He thought it was hilarious and couldn't stop laughing. It's one of our favorite memories from the trip. I really enjoyed the fact that it was our second family trip to Disneyland, so we knew exactly where we wanted to go and Cooper had his own opinions and requests on what he wanted to see again.

We also spent some time walking around downtown Disney, shopping, dancing to live music and of course, our favorite cupcakes from Sprinkles were a must!

The next morning, we grabbed breakfast and headed to San Diego. We stayed at the Loews Coronado Bay Resort this time and it was our first time visiting this property. We had a fantastic room with a marina view. It truly is one of those places where you can't decide whether you want to venture out for the day or stay on the balcony and enjoy room service with a view!

We definitely enjoyed breaking the trip up into two parts and visiting both Anaheim and San Diego! We're already planning our next trip!