Travel: Nikki’s Bachelorette Party and My New Orleans Tips

It’s time to celebrate, and there’s no better place (except maybe Vegas) to have a girls trip, let alone a Bachelorette Party!
Nikki is tying the knot and this trip to New Orleans was all about her. Since she was one the  of last to arrive, it was pretty easy setting up the room to havethe cliche dicks everywhere. I mean, everywhere. There were curved penises, penises with flowers, the words “cock” and “dong”  plastered over the walls, the coffee table. everywhere.

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One of our first stops was for a burlesque show, where we met the very sexually aware, in control, cool and free spirited Sweet Pea.  The show was great, the crowd was loving it. If you’re planning a trip to the Big Easy, you should definitely make plans to stop by and see a show, or two. You won’t regret seeing that kind of artistry.
Sweet Pea as charming as she was invited us to a burlesque class she was teaching in the morning. Who knows if we were even going to make that?
We were off to the second stop, and not the last of the night.
We roamed the infamous Bourbon Street, and it was like a crazy college party everywhere you turned. Drinks, loud music, dancing, laughing, and some weird guy in the corner asking you to take your top off.

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Bourbon Street was nice, but I was enjoying Frenchmen street a bit better. It was less chaotic, and you had way more preferences of music.  Everywhere you turned there was a different story being told. One of my favorite things about street photography is the ability of catching people in the moment in their element. This poor girl in the image below, is the depiction of how I did not want to be this weekend.
I had a few drinks here and there, but I was basically the only one not drinking. The older I get, the more I’ve grown to know that my body cannot handle it the way I used to when I was in my early twenties.
I hope this beauty got home safe.
Moving on….

This Carousel bar was gorgeous, and even though I vowed to get a gorgeous shot of the whole thing… I underestimated the power of tourists. It’s so beautiful though, so if you’re ever in New Orleans, stop by this hotel bar and go check it out, just prepare yourself because you might not get a seat.

The Voodoo Museum was also a nice place to stop by. It is extremely tiny. You will have to suck in your stomach a bit to let other’s pass by you. But it’s a sight to see. You get to learn about, the history, rituals, and Voodoo Queens. There’s even an alter where you can give your ‘offering”.
I love learning about different cultures like voodoo, santeria (read about that from my trip to Cuba HERE) but I’m very careful to not touch anything, or even say anything crude. I walk in with the best intentions to not offend any spirits. I don’t need any bad juju on me.

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The most recognized drink… the one you see in all the movies. The Grenade. We stopped by Tropical Isle on Bourbon Street and Jenn ordered a round for all the girls. This drink is a blend of gin, melon liqueur, rum and who knows what else. The first few sips are really good, but I couldn’t finish it on  my own. But that’s just me.
Yes, you can walk around New Orleans with a drink in your hand, which probably explains why everyone  is always so cheerful and inviting. Just make sure it’s in a plastic container and not glass, because you don’t want a $250 fine. And yes, it’s enforced.

One of my favorite things about New Orleans had to be the houses. Every single home was a different color than the one next to it. I want to live in a colorful world! New York can be so grey sometimes. If you have time to wander and roam a little out of the touristy spots, a 10 minute walk can take you to Dauphine Street, or any of the streets near it. It’s a quiet neighborhood and just gorgeous at people  bird house watching. If that’s even a thing.
If you’re looking for ghost tours or cemetery tours and are debating if you should do it…. yes, do it.
I’m one that loves to wander alone, but many times I walk right past something and have no idea if it even means anything. It’s so nice to have someone putting in the pieces of the story for you. There are so many to do, and they’re super cheap. We used NOLA ghost riders for our St. Louis cemetery tour.  Ans yes, we were all pretty much swooning at house handsome our guide was, hubba hubba.

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The street cars are too cute not to mention, like c’mon. Though I didn’t get to ride with the girls. (I arrived a day earlier than everyone else, see that post HERE.) I got to ride with Grace. The lines are super easy to figure out. Hey, any public transportation is easy if you know how to read the NYC MTA maps. My advice, download the app RTA go mobile. It’s free to download, you have access to the map, and you can even get a 24hour day pass to ride around for only $3 bucks.

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Check us out, we actually got to make it to that Burlesque class. We had no idea what we were in store for. When Sweet Pea saw all of us show up, her  face was shocked “You girls actually came!”  We were in a room filled with women of all ages and sizes and there was something  so beautiful of it all. I was feeling super fat and not feeling my cutest at all. Burlesque is about feeling sexy and that was the farthest thing on my mind. But today we got to learn it’s not about looking sexy, it’s about feeling sexy. There’s power in how you treat yourself, in how you view yourself. Your body is a gift and you should be in awe of that.
We tried out some exercises and we all broke out of our shell really quickly, even some of us on the shy side.
You can find some classes HERE

Next on our list was to get out of the city for a bit. Our tour had our pick up included, so in the morning we just threw on whatever and headed out the door. I was  not a happy camper about meeting up at 10am, when we only got home (our hotel)  like 4 hours ago. I’m such a grouch with no sleep.
The ride was about an hour in, I told myself I would power through and take pictures of the view, but the only thing I wanted to was the inside of my eyelids…… zzzzzzz…

I absolutely loved this experience and it was such a nice change of pace from drinking and dancing all night. The swamp tour was everything, especially with that nice relaxing breeze hitting you in the face.
We got to make some new friends too.  This is Piggy Smalls, and he’s such a people person. He loved coming up to the boat and put on a show for us, someone loved all the attention!
If you’re interested, we used Cajun Encounter  Swamp Tours.
I ended up buying some cute reptilian souvenirs for my niece and nephew. 

This trip was a great get away from real life. Not to mention, how hard we partied in honor of our bride to be. If you’re going to New Orleans, I hope  my little rant has been helpful.

Thank you to all the girls, Nikki, Pia, Cintia, Jenn, Samantha, Bianka for making this a wonderful adventure.
See you guys soon!

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Travel: Twenty Nine In The Big Easy

Turning 29, you would think I was I would be panicking knowing that I’m only one year away from the big 3-0. Today doesn’t even feel like my birthday. I’m sitting in the airport for a flight that I had rescheduled for 8am instead of 2pm. It’s currently 4:30 in the morning, and my eyes feel heavy. I lay my head on my carry on book bag, and take a nap. The sound of a little kid wakes me up, and he’s the cutest little thing, just staring out the window, watching the snow fall on the planes.

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A few hours later I find myself in New Orleans. My sneakers aren’t really my friends right now. When I arrive at my airbnb, my host Katie introduces me to Grace, who just landed as well. I ask Grace if she has eaten already and she gladly agrees to find some food with me.
I let her pick the place and we settle at a nice organic spot near Jackson Square.

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I order a salmon Po Boy, while she goes for crab. Oh, my goodness… talk about delicious. We depart ways since she has a conference to attend to, and I decide to roam… give my feet more reasons to hate me.

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Grace is an absolute doll. I mentioned that I was going on a ghost tour later that night, and she signed right up to join me! I was so looking forward to that. I know I needed sleep, but I was pushing through.

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Birthday’s usually tend to be this big grand thing. I don’t have my birthday up on social media, haven’t advertised it in a few years. Though my day was nice and quiet, I have to thank God for my blessings. I am experiencing new food, in a new city, with new friend. God is good.

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I’ll be posting up more pictures on my instagram @millistephaniaphotography if you want to go sneak a little look.

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Photo Journal: Baby Girl in Black and White

Look at this precious baby girl! My niece makes my heart melt.
Here I am playing around with harsh natural lighting, one of the things I’m currently trying to get better at. Self teaching myself all the time, let’s see what I else I can come up with.

Photographer: Mia’s Big Blue Eyes

I get the cutest tiniest humans for clients,  I swear!
I haven’t seen Shana in such a long time, it was nice playing catch up and seeing her as a mom. Her daughter Mia is the cutest little thing, with the chunkiest cheeks and big blue eyes.
At first she wasn’t too impressed with seeing so much photography equipment in her play space. Once I broke everything down to make her feel more comfortable she had attitude went a full 180!
Here was this adorable. spunky, and playful girl. She really liked playing in her biog brother’s bed. Dad was super helpful as well, and not to mention, his cooking was delicious.
Thanks for having me over guys and trusting me to capture the essence of your family.

 

If you’re in the NYC area and are interested in family photography, I’m currently accepting requests. Send me an email to be considered and feel free to check out my rates in this link provided.

I never win these things.
And then I remember, I AM the prize ✨
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📷: @kattwomanxo

Illustration: LaTonya Yvette

Bringing in Women’s Day with a new illustration inspired by the lovely @latonyayvette ✨
Her love for her kids, writing, Brooklyn and natural hair gives me all types of — ” I want to be like this as a parent!”
Love,