Nicola + Ben

Dear Expectant Parent,

Excited and honored are the very first things we would like you to think of now that you've met us. We're excited because we can't wait to go on this journey with you. It will be an adventure for sure and we're excited to experience it with someone who cares enough about their child to be willing to share this gift. We're honored because you are willing to consider sharing this huge responsibility with us. We can't imagine the path that brought you to us, but we're so happy that your road has led to ours. We hope that you will share your journey with us so we can better understand the honor that we already feel and together we can go forward as a family.

-Nicola & Ben

Why Adoption

“Why Adoption” Image

Adoption for us stems from our passion for adventure. We're having so much fun with each other and we feel that it's important to share these experiences, and more importantly this spirit within us, with someone new to the world. We feel that the experience of life should be shared and growing our family from two to three is a big step towards that goal.

Our other inspirations for adoption come from our community. We have worked hard for and received amazing opportunities in life. Up until now we have tried to share our fortunate circumstances in any way we can. Nicola helps run a charity here in New York and Ben serves as a mentor for our friends' kids. However, we realize that we would like to opportunity to shape a child's future on a permanent basis.

Finally, our New York family and our nuclear families are additional sources of inspirtation for our decision. Nicola has a large number of cousins (56 first cousins!). 4 of whom are adopted. Her grandmother was also adopted over to Northern Ireland after the Dublin fires. Our chosen family in NYC also includes many adoptees. The standout among them is Mike, Ben's best friend for over 15 years, who also happens to be married to Nicola's best friend of over 20 years, Jenn. Mike and Jenn are the reaosn there is a "Nic and Ben". We couldn't ask for a better chosen family. Mike's wonderful relationship with his adoptive parents has always stodd out as a great example of what adoption could mean for our family.

For us, adoption is a way to share our blessings and be blessed in return by making our family a safe place for someone new to join.

Our Story

“Our Story” Image

Adventure: this is how we always describe our relationship. Our relationship began as an adventure. Nicola promised to take Ben out for poutine (delicious, we must try together). She was in San Francisco for work one Thursday and we were talking on the phone. Ben asked if she had plans for the next night. She joked that she would take him out for poutine if they were in the same city. Ben told her he'd see her the next day. He hopped on a plane, met her at the hotel, and they went out for poutine. It was a perfect first date.

We've been adventuring ever since. When Nic changed jobs and had two months off in between we went on an around-the-world adventure. We experiences diving the Great Barrier Reef, going on safari in South Africa, and swimming with giant manta rays in the Maldives.

Not all of our adventures are big ones. When Nic travels for work, we'll often go together and explore a city. London is a favorite because of the food, theater, and museums. Other high points were Abu Dubai, UAE, Madrid, Spain, and Marrakesh, Morocco.

Our wedding in 2018 came about because of a little adventure. We stopped in Iceland on our way to London and fell in love with it. Although we planned on a wedding in Brooklyn, we moved the party to Iceland and invited all our friends. 90 of them came and we spent a magical week surrounded by family and friends, exploring caves, waterfalls, indoor tomato farms, and hiking across the continental divide.

Our relationship is an adventure. We surprisei each other every day and keep exploring the world together.

Meet Nicola by Ben

“Meet Nicola by Ben” Image

Nicola is a rock. She is everyone's go-to person for anything life can throw at you. She becomes your emergency contact the moment you meet her. She's responsible, organized, and the calm center of any crisis.

And then she's fun. She brought a karaoke machine to her destination wedding so she could sing Black Velvet loudly. On a Saturday night you can often find her in a "dance off" with her goddaughters. Needless to say, they often win.

Nicola is deeply caring: she wants you to be happy and does everything in her power to make it so. From going out to dinner with someone who's having a bad week to providing emergency babysitting for her goddaughters, she is there when you need her.

All these qualities and many more have made her a force within the financial industry for the past 20 years. She is a leader, an innovator, and a highly sought-after talent who, if you know her at all, is your friend, your mentor, and your first call if you need anything.

Meet Ben by Nicola

“Meet Ben by Nicola” Image

Ben is curious about everything. He's constantly wondering about this, researching that, and figuring out something else. An innovator at his core, Ben believes there's always a new and exciting way to do something. He used this power and his powers of make believe for 20 years to achieve success in the film industry. He's since branched out into inventing and has a patent on the way, and a whole host of new things to build with it. His future will hold boats, ships, scooters, ATVs and whatever pops into his head.

When he is not building something, Ben likes to head out into the nature that surrounds New York and paddle, fish, and hike. Don't worry, though: the fish are safe as he hasn't caught anything so far!

On weekends Ben can be found in the backyard smoking various food products and chatting with our friends and family while teaching our friends' kids about his latest invention (this week it's a telescope).

Our Families

“Our Families” Image
Our families are near, far, and all around. Other words to describe them would be massive and everywhere. Ben has 22 first cousins and Nicola has 56. We've never been anywhere in the world where there wasn't a relative willing to host us or join us for an adventure. Nicola comes from an Irish immigrant family in Canada. Her mother Carole and father Bob moved their family to Canada in the early 1980s to escape the Troubles and find work. Her family had a particular issue with the Troubles as her mother is Protestant and her father is Catholic. Since love doesn't always listen to religion they had to journey to the Channel island of Jersey to get married, as there wasn't a priest in Ireland that would marry them. They had Nicola and her sister Karen and moved the whole bunch to Canada. Since then, Nicola has picked up a brother-in-law (Karen's high school boyfriend) and a niece and nephew, the lovely Nora and Owen. Ben's family started when his parents met at a college dorm party and has grown from there. His mother Susan saw promise in his father Gary and together they went through college and medical school together. After getting their MDs and hanging up their shingle in Central Wisconsin they decided they were ready for an addition to their family. When they saw that Ben was such an easy kid, they decided to add two more to the clan and along came his sister Gabrielle and sibling Madsen. They received another blessing - and Ben finally got a brother! - when Gabi married Matt. They've since enhanced the family further with the addition of Catherine and Everett. Our nuclear families visit often despite them living a little distance away. Matt and Gabi in Minnesota work as a pediatrician and engineer, Karen and Garreth in Canada work as a speech pathologist and accounting partner, and Madsen in Michigan works as a research scientist. As with any family, their visits will most likely increase significantly with the arrival of a new grandchild. Our support system is real, enthusiastic, and thrilled to expand the circle of love. Our Framily is also a big part of our lives. When we left our families and moved to New York in our 20s, we quickly connected with like-minded friends who had also moved away from their families. They became our Framily. These are people we see every week and would drop anything if we needed them. We experience the joys of living in New York together and have developed our own holidays outside of traditional holidays so we can celebrate events with them (think Friendsgiving and Football Sunday). Our kids will grow up knowing them as aunts and uncles, and they will love our children like their own.

Thank You!

“Thank You!” Image

We are a very active family and are always on the move. Nic is a collegiate runner and a big part of our life together is working out and staying healthy. We like to run, hike, bike, lift weights, golf, and work out with friends.

Nic is a master baker and many of our friends' kids get a masterpiece of cake sculpture for their birthday. Sometimes that cake is a favorite cartoon character, or a theme cake on their newest obsession, and once it was even a cake carved to look like our friend. Nic also loves baking for Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, and Canadian Thanksgiving, so we are usually up to our eyeballs in delicious treats.

Nicola is also an expert in wine and beer making and has completed all the courses required to become a sommelier. Our dream is to retire together, run a vineyard, and meet people from around the world, offering wine and tasty homemade baked goods. We even have a dream name, NicNac Snacks!

Ben loves woodworking and recently he's been busily filling the house with handmade furniture to welcome our new arrival. Kids' bunk beds coming soon!

Send Nicola + Ben a Quick Message: