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    Welcome to the blog! My name is Nikki Tran and I am a Wedding & Portrait Photographer based in the wonderful Twin Cities of Minnesota. Snuggle in your cozy chair, grab a cup of tea, relax, and enjoy reading about my adventures as a photographer, a wife, and a mommy to a furry little child named Rusty. I am so glad you are here! Check out my latest posts on the right --->

Our Anniversary in Mexico

It took awhile, but I think I’ve managed to narrow down my favorites from our trip to Mexico. :) There’s still a lot…just a warning. :)

A quick note before we begin:

We have an amazing group of neighbors. Two of them baby-sat our little love all week long and one of them brought us to and from the airport. It is such a wonderful feeling knowing a. we don’t have to worry about Rusty when we’re gone and b. that we have people/friends we can depend on. So, thank you a MILLION times to Kraig, Bruce, and Traci – we are so glad we moved across the street and next door. :) xoxoxoxoxo

Alrighty, on to our journey!

Welcome to Secrets Capri Riviera Cancun!!

That beautiful romantic-esque building was one of our favorite places to eat. Amazing fajitas.

See that path towards to resort? That’s the one Paulie and I took when we found out it was super close to our room. :)

This is a rare occurrence. There were never any blue floaties available. It’s because there is a storm brewing…

Another lovely path that leads even closer to our room! We didn’t discover this until the end of our trip…:(

It was like clockwork. Everyday around 3pm, the winds picked up, the skies went dark, and everyone went scrambling for shelter.

But before I show you the beach and all its wonders during a storm, follow Paul!

This is as “fall” as it gets.

Look! Paul is so happy he’s doing a dance.

Beautiful inside and out.

Welcome to our home away from home!

Our maids were just lovely. Everyday we had new towel friends. :)

Poor Paul – his slippers didn’t fit him. More for me!

Hello handsome!

Those eyes. My goodness.

I was so excited to bring back Traci this gorgeous hat! I had to get a photo of it before it left me. :) 

The bathroom was just amazing. That bathtub needs to be in our house soon. Jets, arm rests…my book and I couldn’t have been happier.

Just me!

When Paul napped, I tried to write. Sometimes with a colorful drink by my side.

So lucky to have had this view!

Okay, enough of our room. Back to the storm. Just follow the grey brick road.

When normal people run away from the storm, Paul and I run towards it. 

This guy’s job was 24/7. So much seaweed!

Hello again!

So intimidating, but it only lasts about 20 minutes. 

I might love Paulie even more after seeing this photo of me. All of my favorite things rolled into one photo (except Rusty and my tea).

We’ve been married far too long.

I’m sure people were starting to stare when I tried to croon with the birds.

And when the rain finally hits, we go get food…

And drinks. And more food.

Paulie’s favorite – Riviera Maya.

And the storm has already gone!

At night there was always something to do. On Tuesday night we were picked from the audience of a huge crowd, to be a participant of “The Perfect Couple” game show. Seven couples were chosen to come up on stage but we had to be eliminated to 3 before the next round. So, with all eyes upon us, we had to demonstrate the “perfect kiss”. The audience was our judges and we had to give it all we had. Let’s just say I was a ginormous ball of nerves. On stage? Under bright spotlights? In front of 60+ people? Kissing?? My goodness, I’m surprised I even made it. When it was our turn, we did something like this:

And the whole time I was just picturing a disaster and hoping it didn’t turn out like this:

Surprisingly, it was down to us and one other couple to be the finalists. They won (I think it helped that I kept shaking my head and pointing to the other couple to win) and we were able to enjoy the rest of the show without sweaty palms and nervous breakdowns (Paul was enjoying it all – I was too nervous to speak). On our anniversary, Wednesday, we got all dolled up at night, had a table reserved on the pool side for the resort’s water acrobatic show, and shopped for art at the vendors’ tables. We bought 4 coaster size paintings and one larger print (all gorgeous and hand-painted right in front of us! I’ll show you someday :)).

We had prime seats – everything was right in front of us, including this wonderful jazz player, playing in the middle of the pool!

I do like him. Quite a bit.

Our poor waiter! He kept trying and trying to take our photo until we realized Paul had never turned it on when he gave it to him! Ha!

This whole show was absolutely amazing!

At night, the resort is breathtaking. 

And because it was our anniversary…

I vowed I would wake up to watch the sunrise. On Thursday morning (Paul and I were given tap water – hopefully by accident – so he was already sick and I was in the beginning stages – so thankful I wasn’t too sick to see this!), I woke up to this. I grabbed my camera, lenses, diary, and ran for the beach. 

See my little pile of goodies? That was my spot.

I wasn’t the only one!

And then it started cracking like an egg through the clouds. Amazing.

I know, I’m corny. :)

The people in the water asked another person to take their photo – sneaky me got a photo of a photo being taken. ;)

And it was time for me to go back in and take care of my man friend.

Unfortunately after that morning, we were both out for the count for the rest of our trip. That entire rest of the day was devoted to drinking as much water (bottled) and getting as much rest as we could. We watched a bunch of movies (Dumb & Dumber 2, The Kid – quality movies :)), and as weird as it sounds we still had a great time just being together, cocooned in our hotel room, taking care of each other. :) Needless to say, Friday (our departure day) was a loooong day. Delayed flights, missed connecting flights, being sick, long lines – not so much fun. But, we made it! And we were so grateful to be home, cuddling with Rusty on our couch, cocooned from the cold autumn night. :)

I hope you enjoyed the photos, friends!! And for you photography friends, I just posted the NEW set of skies specifically from Mexico! They’re on my website (I’m in the process of creating befores and afters to show you) and they’re only $12!! I know!! So, check them out – you will love them. :) Happy Friday, friends! xoxoxo

 

 

Cielos de Mexico (sky overlays)

 

Brad & Leah ~ Chaska Engagement

My goodness, this session was an absolute DREAM. Before you think I’m exaggerating, just take a quick skim to the bottom. Go ahead. I’ll wait.

…………….

See what I mean?!?! I know! Here’s the deal: I love fall. Fall is my season and in the words of Anne of Green Gables

 

photo credit

 

It’s the time to burn pumpkin scented candles, drink apple cider by an oh-so-cozy bonfire, search for the perfect pumpkin, thrill yourself with the eeriness of Halloween, bake pies, pick apples, jump into piles of leaves with wet suckers, listen to the wind, watch the birdies fly south (flying V!!)…my goodness all of that sounds absolutely wonderful!! And for these two, this was a time to get engaged. :)

Last year, in the midst of this beautiful season, Brad carved “Marry Me?” into his pumpkin during a pumpkin carving contest they had with just the two of them. :) How stinkin’ sweet?! When I had the idea of going to the huge pumpkin patch near our house, I’m so grateful they said yes. I’ve been wanting to shoot a session there ever since I discovered it two years ago. It’s one of my favorite things about the area where we live and I was so excited to have all of my visions come to life!

Brad and Leah, thanks for the wonderful time – you two were amazing and this session is going to go down in history as one of my all-time favorites. :) Thank you for humoring me with the pumpkins!! You made this girl’s year!! :) Enjoy your sneak peek! We are so happy for the two of you!! xoxoxo

Love!!

Gorgeous ring! You’ll be seeing a lot more of it…:)

Gorgeous, Leah!!

So thankful the colors are still so bold and beautiful. :)

Love all of these!!

Ahh!!

Gorgeous, Leah!!

Goodness.

Oh you two. So stinkin’ cute.

Those colors!!

Seriously, all of these locations were just wonderful.

Love this!

Annnnd the pumpkin patch. And those colors?! Amazing.

Whoo hoo!!

It was so hard to choose favorites.

Probably my favorite ring photo.

Stud.

Swoon.

Annnnd I’m in love.

Ahh!! Amazing!!

Oh I just love these and I hope you did too, friends. :) Happy Wednesday!! :)

Much Needed Vacation

Hello friends!! While you’re reading this, Paul and I will be on our way home from a much needed vacation to Mexico. I’m writing this before we leave so I don’t have to work on our trip (which is how all the posts have been done this past week), so this might sound weird. :) This season has been both extremely wonderful and exhausting and we are so excited to relax on the beautiful beaches of Mexico. We planned this trip just thinking we were going away for our anniversary (did you see our wedding day post??) but once things started getting booked in the fall, we realized this was going to be a very blessed time to just relax. :) I’m planning on taking a billion photos to show you and, if skies permitting, I’m planning on putting together another set of sky overlays for The Enchanted Collections – wouldn’t that just be wonderful?? Mexico sunset skies??! I know!! I’m already missing Rusty but he will be in the wonderful hands of our amazing neighbors – thank you Bruce and Traci!! :) So, be on the watch for some lovely photos coming on the blog next week – there will be another engagement session, photos from Mexico, and, if I’m lucky and find a wonderful couple, perhaps a session on the beach??! Whoop whoop!! Happy Friday, friends!! Cross your fingers I get tan and not burnt!! :)