How Not to Have a Mental Breakdown During Your Session
Family pictures are great – they help you create and remember fond memories of your loving family. However, this day can get very stressful, and we want to ensure this doesn’t happen. If you’re stressed it will show, and we want your photos to be carefree. Here are some tips you can use on picture day to help you relax:
1. Take some deep breaths. Deep breathing is a common relaxation method. It can quickly calm your stress level and you can do it anywhere. Breathe in through your nose and exhale through your mouth, counting slowly in your head while letting it all out.
2. Laugh. Laughter is a great way to release tension. It will also help your family relax to get some genuine smiles. Have everyone pretend to laugh and they will feel so ridiculous that they will actually laugh. This will ease everyone into relaxation mode.
3. Count down slowly (in your head) from 10. Take a deep breath between each number. If you’re still feeling super stressed, start the process over, back at 10.
4. Distract yourself. If your family isn’t cooperating and you are getting stressed, suggest that we play a game or take a walk. This will let some of the energy out and also give us some good interacting photos. Prior to your session, think of a short game that your family would enjoy – it could be something like duck, duck, goose, or dancing to head, shoulders, knees, and toes, etc.
You can also distract yourself by going to your ‘happy place.’ Try to take yourself out of the situation you’re in and let your mind wander.
5. Trace your hand. Take your finger and trace a figure eight on the palm of your opposite hand. This helps relieve stress and muscle tension.
6. Give lots of XOXOs. Not only will these make for cute poses, but one of the most effective ways to relieve stress is to hug someone or to kiss them. Gather your family in a big group hug, or give your husband a kiss and let your worries melt away.
It has been 3ish months since our summer trip and I think it’s about time I blog about it!
Let me begin by saying that I started planning this trip in October 2019 so that I could surprise my family with this trip on Christmas Day. I decided on this particular trip because out of all the vacations we have taken, my children always say that our 2015 RV trip was their favorite. Fast forward to the start of covid pandemic when many of our friends told us to cancel or delay the trip BUT I very much wanted to still go, so we went for it. Thankfully, nobody got sick!
Here’s what we did….
Day 1. Flew AA from FLL to Vegas early morning and did a little sight seeing that day. We checked out the M&M store & dipped in the New York New York pool for a bit. Later we drooled our way through Hershey’s Chocolate World. We stayed at the NYNY because it was one of the few hotels open at that time and we figured it would be nice for the kids to ride the roller coaster…… we never rode the coaster hahahaha! oops!
Day 2. Enjoyed Vegas – We took the local’s advice and had breakfast at The Peppermill and then went to the Adventure Dome for some kid fun. Due to the pandemic, we practically had the place to ourselves. Kids did the rides over and over!
Day 3. Picked up our 30′ RV from Cruise America, shopped for essentials at Walmart and unpacked our suitcases. We then drove to our first destination – KOA in Kingman, Arizona. I picked this Campground because it was on the way to our first big excursion in the Grand Canyon. We got there kind of late so all we did was plug in, have a drink and went to bed.
Day 4. Woke up early and drove the RV to Hualapai Lodge in Peach Springs, AZ for our whitewater rafting trip with Grand Canyon West tours. What an amazing, once in a lifetime, kind of adventure!! All day in the 100 degree weather and 30 degree water bouncing around like bobbleheads! The kids passed out hard once we got on the bus that took us to our RV. If you’re interested in watching a video clip of this day you can find it HERE.
After our very exciting day, we drove to our next destination, Trailer Village RV Park in the Grand Canyon National Park. Got there late so we just plugged in and went to sleep.
Day 5. We woke up, was greeted by elk, had a nice breakfast and then decided to hike from the RV park to the Grand Canyon Rim. This was the first time it dawned on me that this was the most perfect time to travel! It was NOT packed! We didn’t have to fight crowds! It was glorious! We enjoyed the views then hiked back to our RV and took off.
We headed to Lake Powell and stopped at the Horseshoe Bend overlook. This was only a 2 hour “rest” stop. It was a short hike and a magnificent view! Took off from there and drove to our next “home” for 2 nights, Wahweap Campground and RV Park in Lake Powell. Hooked up our RV, grilled dinner and made some s’mores and passed out.
Day 6. We woke up early again and went to pick up our 19′ power boat rental to explore Lake Powell. We spent the entire day on the lake, cliff jumping, swimming and touring Antelope Canyon. AGAIN, glorious time to travel! We drove our boat through the canyon ALONE! Nobody there! The boat rental people told us that normally we would not be able to drive the boat in there due to too many kayakers and paddle boarders. Well, lucky us! Click HERE to see a video of our day on Lake Powell.
Day 7. Headed to Moab KOA and decided we needed to relax and do nothing this day. Well, almost nothing. I bribed my girls into allowing me to do a mini shoot of them playing on the campgrounds.
Day 8. Still in Moab and decided to do a Hummer Tour , to experience the petrified sand dunes, that Moab is famous for. You can see a video of our Hummer Tour Experience HERE
Day 9. Left Moab to head to our next destination which was the Fruita Campground in Capitol Reef National Park. This campground didn’t have any hookups so we only stayed one night. It was one of my favorite campsites from the entire trip! We were surrounded by fruit orchards and allowed to pick/eat as much as we wanted! In the morning, campers can walk over to Gifford House to grab fresh baked cinnamon rolls and pies before they run out. They were delicious! The cherry pie was my favorite. Here’s a video of this location – click HERE
Day 11. Left around 10am to head over to the Zion National Park area. We made a pit stop to check out Zion Mountain Ranch (Video is HERE )and play on their grounds for a few hours. They had a few outdoor games and some chickens that the kids enjoyed playing with. This location has cute cottages to rent but since we had an RV and couldn’t park it on their property, we stayed on their RV campsite ( Hi Road Base Camp ) for the night. Just a mile or two down the road. (Honestly this was my least fav camp site but it was just one night, to have plug ins while we slept). Video HERE
While we were checking out the area, we accidentally came across an amazing looking resort! Wish I had known about it when I planned this trip. Here’s the info on it….. Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort. This place looks amazing!
Day 12.On to our next campsite which was the Zion River Resort. Very cool location! My favorite part was the river! The kids played in it for hours on this day.
Day 13. We went to explore Zion National Park. We drove the RV over to the Visitor Center and parked it there while we hiked the Par’us Trail. Click HERE for video. We found a nice little river area and the kids swam, jumped and played with the tadpoles. Made it back in time to have a nice bbq dinner and roast some more marshmallows. This was our last night in the RV.
Day 14. Returned the RV and spent 2 more nights in Vegas. First night at Paris and 2nd night at Mandalay Bay.
Day 16. Back to Miami
Hope this helps with your next trip plan! I am ready to start researching and planning our next one! RV travel is so much fun!
I had so much fun with the 2020 back to school portrait sessions! The kids had the freedom to be as creative and silly as their little hearts desired. They loved to show me how they really felt about the 2020 Pandemic school situation. Please don’t judge them hahaha!
It has been tough for our kids to deal with virtual learning BUT they are persevering. They are learning new skills and navigating through 2020 like rockstars!
Ladies, please don’t miss the opportunity to capture this very special journey into motherhood. You will treasure it forever, I promise.
“Making the decision to have a baby is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body.”
“To be pregnant is to be vitally alive, thoroughly woman, and distressingly inhabited. Soul and spirit are stretched – along with body – making pregnancy a time of transition, growth, and profound beginnings.”
– Anne Christian Buchanan
“In giving birth to our babies, we may find that we give birth to new possibilities within ourselves.”
–Myla and Jon Kabat-Zinn
“In pregnancy, there are two bodies, one inside the other. Two people live under one skin. When so much of life is dedicated to maintaining our integrity as distinct beings, this bodily tandem is an uncanny fact.”
How about some front door mini sessions? YES and YES !
Fort Lauderdale has some amazing houses and front porches BUT the best part is the people. Love these families and their adorable kiddies. Thankful to see them from time to time and see how they’ve grown.
The city of Aventura’s Class of 2020 Graduation Car Parade, was a huge success! Thank you Michael Stern, the entire Aventura Commission and the Aventura Police Department. These kids and their families are surely grateful!
Here are a few photos.
If you’d like to see all my photos from the event, leave a comment below (with your email address) and I’ll send you a link.
Wonderful news! My friend Rachel is running for Aventura Commission and I couldn’t be more excited for her. Truth is, I sort of knew when she asked me to photograph her and her adorable kiddies right before this Covid-19 pandemic.
You can read more about Rachel here and follow her on IG here to see some amazing things she’s been doing this month! I’ve seen posts of her delivering food to hospital workers, emails about the future of our students and other important things that need to be tackled.
Good Luck to you my friend and thank you for all that you do for our community!
Now that your session is over, it’s time to decide where you are going to put your photos and what will look best in your home.
Canvas – stretched over varying thicknesses of wood to make it stand out more or less depending on your preference. These photos are free-floating and do not require a frame.
Framed on Wall – Dress your photos up with stylish frames to match your home décor.
*When hanging photos on your wall (framed or canvas) you can choose to hang a single photo, or a group of photos in a collage to change it up.
Framed on Shelves, Desks, Tables – If you are renting or don’t want to put holes in your walls from prints or canvases, you can also frame your prints and place them on shelves, desks, or tables around your home. (You can also do this in addition to the wall hangings if you’d like.)
Photo Boxes – Customized photo boxes are totally in! These are very popular amongst our clients. This is a great way to display your photos, and you can keep more prints inside or use them as a keepsake box to house your precious memories.
Wall Calendars – Enjoy your photos all year long with these beautiful wall calendars!
Albums/Coffee Table Books – If you just can’t pick out a few photos to display in your home and you need more space, you can always get an album printed up and place it on your coffee table or bookshelf. Pull it out and look through it to remember how fun your session was, and how much your family loves each other.
Just a few favorites from little Ms. R’s, in home, cake smash session.
Not too many birthday babies enjoy their cake! They don’t like getting messy or they make funny faces when they taste it and start to cry but not this cutie! She loved her cake as much as I love cake hahahaha! She is an easy going baby and made my job easy. The funny dancing and signing by mom and dad during the session also helped. I should’ve take a video of that for my future entertainment lol!
Lovely meeting and getting to know this new family. Happy first birthday to this little nugget! He is one of the happiest babies I’ve had the pleasure of meeting!
A lot of fun was had by all and I hope to have the pleasure of capturing your these adorable smiles again !
How to Prepare to Ensure a Stress-Free Picture Day
Suggested Post Title: 7 Tips to take the stress out of picture day
When it comes to family picture day, a lot of stress is typically associated with days leading up to the session. We’re here to help you relax and be prepared all at the same time. Here are some tips:
Find the outfits you want everyone to wear a month in advance and set them aside somewhere safe. Then try them on a week ahead of time to ensure everything still fits comfortably and that you didn’t miss any stains or holes that you couldn’t see until they were being worn.
As soon as your family changes out of their photo attire, make sure it is clean and pressed to be ready for the big day. Set the clothes together (sorted by person) and place them somewhere free from harm and dirt. Be sure to tell everyone that these are picture clothes and not to be worn until picture day. This will help to be sure that no articles of clothing go missing. Don’t forget about shoes, jewelry, belts, and other accessories.
About three to four days prior to the session, start talking with your husband and kids about the session and what will happen and how they should behave. If you plan to use a bribe, now is a good time to set that in place. Continue to talk to your children daily to prepare them for the session.
Two days prior to the session, pack a bag of everything you will need on picture day – snacks, props, bribery, etc. and put it somewhere you can grab it and go. Be sure to include wipes in case things get messy, an extra hairbrush, and other “emergency” items, such as bobby pins and a backup lipstick.
On the day of the session, make sure everyone is well fed, but not overfed. We don’t want sick little tummies from overeating, but we don’t want anyone getting “hangry” (angry because they are so hungry) either. Do not get your family dressed in their photo clothes until after they have eaten and brushed their teeth. This will prevent spills and other messy accidents.
If you have young children, avoid any colored drinks the day of the session until after we are finished. Also, get them to wear a bib or drop cloth if they drink anything on the way to the session to save their shirts from wet spots or stains.
Once you get to the session, try to relax. If you have set a bribe, please let me know so I can use that throughout the session if the children get restless. Trust your photographers – know that I will take care of things and will deliver amazing photos of your family.
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