My New Side Project: Vacation Advisor with a Disney Focus!

Cinderella Castle decked out for the holidays, 2017.

Hi, friends! I’d like to ask for a big favor from you today: I’m embarking on a new side venture (don’t worry, I’m still planning on blogging as usual!) as a trained vacation advisor for a company called Mouse Counselor. I know you’re all aware of my obsession with Disney, so it probably won’t come as a surprise when I tell you that I’m specializing in Disney vacations! I’d love to help you, your family, and your friends plan the most magical trip possible. Best of all, my services are all for free! So if you could please like my new Facebook page, Mouse Counselor: Christina Doka, and help spread the word, I’d really appreciate it. I can also be reached by email at!

Thank you so much! 😍😘

Vacation Memories


As recently as last month, my parents hadn’t been on a vacation since their honeymoon. They’re two of the hardest working people I know, and I thought they deserved some time away, so I convinced them that we should take a family trip to see the West Coast—from Phoenix to the Grand Canyon to the Hoover Dam to Las Vegas to Los Angeles. I’ll eventually share details about each part of our trip (including the best deep-dish pizza I’ve ever eaten and our kayak surprise), but for now I just wanted to share a picture from each leg of our trip and say hello to everyone I’ve been missing these past two weeks:

Grand Canyon


Todd and I at the Grand Canyon, one of the most stunning vistas I’ve ever seen.

Las Vegas




With Nick Wild from Zootopia at Disneyland. I loved taking family photos with characters!

Los Angeles


On the Santa Monica pier, my favorite spot in LA.

Going Back to Disney World


I don’t often do #TBT posts, but today I decided to share some pictures from my 2012 trip to Disney World! (Okay, okay, so 2012 isn’t really that long ago, but it’s still technically in the past ….) These pictures make me smile and get me excited to travel back to the “most magical place on Earth” with Todd this August. In a later post, I’ll fill you in on some details about our plans and preparations; for now, let’s just share in the memories that a photo can capture.

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Book Review: Savage Harvest by Carl Hoffman


Savage Harvest book coverI only purchased this book because I read a short excerpt in my National Geographic magazine and thought maybe it sounded interesting. I had never heard of Michael Rockefeller’s disappearance in New Guinea in 1961 on a trip to collect art for his father’s new Museum of Primitive Art. I didn’t know that his boat had capsized or that he tried to swim to shore or that the most prevalent rumor about his death was that he had been killed and eaten by one of the New Guinea tribes.

I learned a lot from Savage Harvest, which really drew me in with its sprawling vistas and cultural questions. Did the tribes of New Guinea know the truth about Rockefeller’s death? Would they reveal their secrets to Hoffman as he delved deeper into their culture and into their lives? The narrative expertly wove together Hoffman’s quest for answers with an account of Rockefeller’s journey, and it didn’t skimp on historical background.

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