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Summer RV Trip 2020

Nevada / Arizona / Utah Summer 2020


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.

Kingman, AZ KOA

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.

Grand Canyon White Water Rafting
Route 66 on our way to Grand Canyon

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.

Trailer Village RV Park Grand Canyon

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

(( On our way to Moab, we made a pit stop to check out Goblin Valley )) Short video HERE

Day 10. Headed to Kanab, UT for our one night stay at the Kanab Corral RV Park. We had a quick (and absolutely delicious) lunch at the Rocking V Cafe and then headed to our 4×4 Peek A Boo slot canyon excursion with Kanab Tour Company. The kids also got to do some sand skiing/boarding on this excursion! Video can be found HERE and one more 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!

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Back to School Portrait Session

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!

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Miami maternity photography

Expecting another boy and mom decided to do her first maternity shoot ever. GREAT idea mama! Gorgeous, fun and super easy going family! Thank you for trusting me to capture these photos!

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Pregnancy Photography

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.”

-author unknown

“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.”

– Joan Raphael-Leff

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Outdoor family mini sessions.

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.

See you next time Fort Lauderdale!

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City of Aventura HS Parade

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.

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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!

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Printing and Displaying your Photos

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.
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Disney’s Frozen Birthday Party

Kailani is the luckiest little princess! Her mama is so, over the top, talented! She always throws the best parties!

Kailani’s other birthdays can be seen on her mama’s IG page… CAKED by Cynthia White.

Her first birthday theme was Marie Antoinette.

Second birthday theme was Disney’s Moana.

Third birthday theme was Little Miss Muffet

Fourth birthday theme was Disney’s Sleeping Beauty.

Here are a few photos from her 5th.

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1st Birthday Cake Smash

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!

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Miami Family Session

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:

  1. 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. 
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. 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. 
  7. 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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West Palm Beach Baptism

God bless this little pumpkin named Robin! She’s the most relaxed and easy going baby I’ve met in some time! She loves to sit and observe. I feel the little wheels spinning in her head lol.

She was such a good girl during her christening at St Juliana in West Palm Beach.

Her mommy did a wonderful job planning the big day! The gorgeous cake was made by Parlour Vegan Bakery. The flower wall, table and other rentals were provided by Mi Vintage Rentals.

And last but not least, the gorgeous dress by Baby Beau and Belle.

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Broward Family Park Session

It was a gorgeous day in Davie! We finally had weather below 80 degrees and it was spectacular! I wanted to share a few photos of what a typical family session looks like. So glad they also brought their fur baby to the shoot!

As you can see, lots of fun was had! I just adore Ms. Gia Pie’s personality!! She is NOT shy and has a TON to say!!! Looking forward to seeing this little cutie grow up.

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Studio Maternity Session

I’m still on a high from photographing Laura, who’s 8-months pregnant with her little one and looking straight up gorgeous!

Her husband Cristian did a fine job of throwing up that fabric, didn’t he?

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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.

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Key Biscayne Maternity Session

Hi gang! 

I was so excited to meet up with Yussell and Kevin at Key Biscayne for a stunning, and terribly sweet maternity session. It was another HOT day in Miami but Mom and dad were absolute troopers while we were roamed around finding the best spots to shoot! And through it all, mom’s skin looked amazing, her hair was perfection, and her outfits were on point!

Not to mention, Kevin was a total rock star protecting his baby mama from the ferocious (not really lol) raccoons the entire time.

Can’t wait to meet your little man!

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Baby Hunter’s debut

It’s a glorious day, kids, and do you want to know why? Because I’ve got Heather and James’ brand new baby, Hunter, coming at you on the blog! There was so much love and sweetness in this shoot. Seriously, photographing them at their home felt like stepping into a warm, cozy bubble. 

I am so excited to see how this family continues to blossom, and I just know there are some very special years in their future. I’ll leave you with a few more images from our session, and catch you next time! 

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Fashionable Stud

Jaw dropping! Don’t you think?

My son seldom allows me to dress him OR take photos of him. This boy’s mama is lucky! Or maybe she just has him trained right : )

Seriously, look at this stud!!! The pose, the Burberry and Gucci! Sooo sharp!

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Broward Sunset Family Session

Stress-Free 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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Halloween 2019

Me as Maleficent because I’ve been dying to dress up like this for years! It is one of my favorite movies and I cannot wait to see the new one!

My little one as a spooky, scary, zombie. BUT she went as a blow up minion to trick or treat and I don’t have any good photos of it. Mom fail!

My other daughter was Harley Quinn.. it was so good she deserved her own post : )

Oh and my son? Well he’s too cool to dress up and go trick or treating anymore. He’s 12

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2019 Steel and Iron Open

The 2019 Steel and Iron Crossfit Competition was held at Steel Edge Crossfit in North Miami on October 20, 2019.

Scroll down below the pics to see the WODs.

Everyone did an amazing job and I hope this becomes a yearly event.

“Dig Deep, Finish Strong” is just what they did. Bravo to all the Athletes and a big thank you to all the volunteers.

WOD#1 “Grind & Climb”

INDIVIDUAL

9 MIN AMRAP:

9 Power Snatches

1 Rope Climb

(Rope Climbs increase by +1 each round)

TEAMs

11 MIN AMRAP:

Partner 1 (5 power snatches)

Partner 2 (1 Rope Climb)

*(Rope Climbs Increase by +1 for each partner each round)

RX: Power Snatches @115/80

       Rope Climbs (Must touch top of the rope for completed Rep)

Scale/Teams: Power Snatches @85/65

                         Rope Climbs (Must touch top of the rope for completed Rep)

Beginner:   9 Power Snatches @65/45 per round

                    Supine rope climb complete 2 first round, increase by 2 each round (begin standing, come to lying position, and full extension for completed rep)

*Scoring will be based on completed rounds and additional reps (Teams are completed rounds per team not each individual)

———————————————————————————————————————————

WOD #2 “Miami Speedway”

INDIVIDUAL – 11MIN CAP

35 Wall Balls

25 CAL Echo Bike

15 KB Goblet Squats

500M ROW

15 KB Goblet Squats

25 CAL Echo Bike

35 Wall Balls

TEAM – 13MIN CAP

80 Partner Wall Balls

40 CAL Echo Bike (20 each team member)

30 KB Goblet Squat (Each member completes 15)

1000M Row (500M Each Partner)

30 KB Goblet Squats

40 CAL Echo Bike

80 Partner Wall Balls

——————————————————————————————————————

RX:

KB weights are 70/53, Wall Balls 20/14

Scale: 

KB weights are 53/35, Wall Balls 20/14

Beginner: 

KB weights are 44/26, Wall Balls 14/10

TEAMs:

KB weights are 53/35, Wall Balls 20/14

Partner wall balls one partner tosses and the other receives is one rep. complete 80 total per team

Bike, goblet squat, row one partner completes half then the other partner completes remaining totaling equal work between partners

Scoring is based on completed reps and time if completed, TEAMs scoring is based off of completed team movement

——————————————————————————————————————

WOD #3 “Steel Finisher”

INDIVIDUALTEAMS
Time Cap: 11 MinsTime Cap: 13 Mins
2 Cleans6 T2B10 DBL KB DL4 Cleans8 Knees to Elbow20 DBL KB DL
4 Cleans6 T2B10 DBL KB DL6 Cleans8 Knees to Elbow20 DBL KB DL
6 Cleans6 T2B10 DBL KB DL8 Cleans8 Knees to Elbow20 DBL KB DL
15 Burpee Box Jump Overs30 Box Jumps
4 Cleans6 T2B10 DBL KB DL6 Cleans8 Knees to Elbow20 DBL KB DL
2 Cleans6 T2B10 DBL KB DL4 Cleans8 Knees to Elbow20 DBL KB DL
50 DUBS Buy Out120 Single Skips Buy Out

This will be broken up into stations, once completed with KB DL you will farmers carry them to the next station then return to your bar to complete the next series

RX: Cleans weight @165 / 105, Burpee Box Jumps Over (24/20) full extensions at top of box is NOT required – KB weight @70/53

Scale: Cleans weight @135 / 85, Knee to Elbow replace T2B, Box Jumps @24/20, 120 Single Skips Buy Out – KB weight @53/35

Beginner: Cleans weight @95 / 65, T2B are replaced by 10 B-fly sit-ups, (15) Box Steps Ups @ 20in, 100 Singles Buy Out – KB weight @44/26

Teams: Cleans weight @135 / 85

On Cleans it is 1 for 1 (one partner completes one then tag partner to complete next rep), K2E are tandem, KB DL one partner completes 10 then the next partner completes 10, 1 for 1 on box jumps at full extension, then partner completes. 120 Single Skips buy out is 60 each, one partner completes 60 then another partner completes 60.

Scoring is based on completed reps and time if completes, TEAMs scoring is based off of completed team movements

——————————————————————————————————————

Powerlifting Strength Test

7 min to find:

1RM of

Bench Press

Back Squat

Dead Lift

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Harley Quinn

My daughter said she wanted to be Harley Quinn for Halloween this year.

Actually, I think I may have heard my husband talk about it last year and perhaps she mentioned it before too. BUT, you know how kids are… they want to be one thing and then they want to be another and then they change their minds AGAIN….. and then, there you are with 3 different costumes…. I KNOW YOU CAN RELATE!

Anyway, this year we went for it and I must say, she makes a REALLY good Harley Quinn!

To be honest, I had no idea who Harley Quinn was, I had only seen some photos. I did a little google search and found info on comic books and was happy to see there was an actual movie! I ended up renting Suicide Squad on Amazon Prime so my girls and I can watch it. Great movie! AND now I know who she is.

Here are some of my favorite Harley Quinn quotes…

“It soon became clear to me the Joker was actually a tortured soul.
Yes, I admit it. As unprofessional as it sounds, I had fallen in love with my patient. Pretty crazy huh?”

” I’m rubber, you’re glue, whatever you say bounces off me and makes a six-inch-diameter exit wound in you.”

” I’ll never understand why Superman wears the same outfits every day.”

“I’ve made so many mistakes and there’s no one left who believes in me.”

“If I’m mad enough to skip the tears and go straight to laughing, you better run cause I’m about to lose my shit.”

“I’ll burn the world just to see the fire in your eyes.

“Sometimes the only way to stay sane is to go a little crazy”

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Princess Mya

Love this spunky girl! She’s always funny and so full of energy.

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