Simply Sonja Photography » Capturing life's simplicities one photo at a time...

If I haven’t said it before, engagement shoots are one of my most favorite things to do, ever. There’s something magical about having a couple look into each other’s eyes, kiss, dance, laugh and tell fun stories about their plans for the future, for their wedding. Tyler + Sarah are a beautiful couple, not just on the outside but on the inside. Originally from Wisconsin, this lovebird couple is planning a destination wedding to Jamaica! They said they decided to move to Seattle because it was something different, and because they could! Sometimes I wish I could live life like that…just making a change because I can!?

Take a look at their SUPER-cute dog, Maverick! Oh my gosh, he was such a playful sweetheart! I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day…it was rain-free and full of fun colors.

Happy fall – enjoy this shoot, xoxo.


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There is something uniquely beautiful about fall and all the gorgeous colors it brings!? I had a ton of fun with this special family! Who can blame me, you can tell just by the photos how sweet they all are. I’ve done 4 shoots with them now and I cannot believe how much these children have grown over the years. I feel so blessed to work with such a special family.

Enjoy and happy fall, xoxo.

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This story will make you melt: Erin is a really close friend of mine, a best friend. But, I would have never met Erin if our husband’s were not on the same ship. My husband has been on many deployments, but this one was different. I was pregnant and so scared to do this on my own. But, I was being watched over by God when I met a couple of spouses on his ship that were also due while on the deployment. Erin was one of those incredible spouses! We share a love for the Navy (she served 10 years herself), a love for Jesus and a overall zeal for life. We both chose to look at the positives, even when life is filled with the negatives. So, we instantly bonded.

Our men were deployed for nearly 8 months. They came home a little over a week ago. And, her husband not only was away from their two sons, but missed his daughter’s birth. Erin captured some photos of their first meeting, but after settling into being back home (and before they move on to their next set of orders) we had to capture this family’s photos.

Saturday was more than a photoshoot to me; it was photographing one of my best friends, a sister. We share an experience that most people will never understand, but that’s what makes our friendship so special. I’m grateful to God for this friendship and for our husbands being home.

Enjoy the photos. Kiss and hug your family. Those of us who are military families know how fortunate we are to have them around, even though it doesn’t last.



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Happy Halloween!

My childhood days of tick-or-treating were filled with many wet and cold nights. We’d start off with a hot and hearty bowl of soup, crafted by my mom (still the best chef I know). We’d also go out in our “troll masks” and stick our heads out the window. Those who’ve been friends with the Vlcek’s (my family) for years know about our tradition but sorry, not spilling too many secrets today. Then we’d go out and get candy in our best costumes. I can remember being cat-woman, Jasmine from Aladdin, JFK (yes, I did really dress up as him), I was a cheerleader and so many other non-morbid characters.

I’m excited to pass out candy tonight! Our little man is not old enough to go out and trick-or-treat, but it’s his first halloween so we’re going to start some traditions. For his first Halloween, Michael is a dragon! We actually thought it was a t-rex costume when Elaine (my mother-in-law) helped me pick it out. But dinosaur or not, it’s a non-morbid and cute costume for a 3-month-old. Let’s be honest, at this age this costumes are for mommy and daddy and for posting on Facebook.

I think the best part about photographing an infant, especially your own, is you only have a few minutes of them being “content” before havoc breaks out. Here are a few pictures that Michael allowed me to take of him.

I hope everyone has a safe, dry and happy Halloween!


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Those of you who don’t know me on a personal-level probably may not realize that my husband just returned from a 7.5-month-deployment just last week. He met his 3-month-old son for the first time and has instantly jumped into fatherhood. He’s just amazing! And, our little guy started doing an army crawl this week. Ironically, my husband is not army, he’s navy…but somehow a “sailor crawl” or a “squid swim” just doesn’t do it justice.

Here are a few action shots I captured of him today…

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