Book Review #1 – The Ciccarellis | Seattle

We are a bit behind (like one whole month!) but still wanted to get our 12 in 12 book review out there so here it is…our first post – with 2 books combined! The September book was You, Inc. by Harry Beckwith & Christine K. Clifford and the October book was The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss. Scroll down to watch our live review via Vimeo or read our review instead just below the video.

 You, Inc.

This being the first book of the challenge had me (Marissa) thinking that I wouldn’t be able to get past the first chapter, BUT once I began I couldn’t help but look forward to my next reading! We definitely recommend this book, especially if you have your own business, are in a business-related field, you work with people, or just want to learn some tips about how to handle yourself and others better.

Take-Aways we use NOW:

1. Listen: “You have two ears and one mouth…you should listen twice as much as you speak.” Listening seems to be a lost form of communication, but super important no matter who you are. Everyone wants to be heard by a good listener. Try listening to someone without having a computer, TV, or iPhone in front of you. Better yet, challenge yourself to not jump in and share your input or connections until the person is completely done talking and you’ve asked a follow up question!

2. Simplify: The example in the book explains in order to write a 10 minute speech write a 20 minute speech, then take out 50%, then shave off 1 more minute so you only speak for 9. (Everyone likes to be done early.) We don’t give many speeches, but we do simplify everything we write including emails, blogs, and marketing. We start with what we want to say, then edit several times to reduce content that is simple and clear.

3. Quote: “He and she who laugh, last.”  We always try to keep it light, stay smiling and laugh a lot.


The 4-Hour Workweek

What a great book with concepts to be used by anyone! Will everything pertain to you and your career? Maybe not. Will you read things that will make you change your life for the better? Definitely.

Take-Aways we use NOW:

1. Effective vs. Efficient: Two statements we love: “1. Doing something unimportant well does not make it important. 2. Requiring a lot of time does not make a task important.” We prioritize and make sure the work we do on a daily basis is important, urgent, and gets done quickly.

2. Mini-Retirements: Why wait until you’re retired to go on the trip you’ve always dreamed of? What’s stopping you from picking up the hobby that you’re saving for retirement? Tim Ferriss will explain cost effective ways to take mini retirements. Who are we to know what life will be like for us when we are 65 or 70 or if we’ll even be around? Tim’s message: take advantage of life now. We take trips yearly (although we are not up to the recommended 3-6 month trips Tim Ferriss recommends), even if it’s camping or staying with friends to keep the cost down. We feel like the adventure helps our marriage and our sanity!


 We seriously recommend both books. We both enjoyed each and found alike, but also separate take-aways that were important to us, for the business & personally.

Let us know how these books helped change the way you think, or better yet – your life! Thanks for reading!

~Erik & Marissa

Book Review #2 – The Ciccarellis | Seattle » Ciccarelli Photography - […] by Dan Millman as the 12 in 12 book challenge continues. If you missed our 1st review, catch up HERE. It was a divergence from the usual non-fiction business books chosen for the challenge, but can be […]

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Samantha & Luke – Almost Married! | Queen Anne

When we first met Samantha & Luke we knew we were going to like them right away. Not only were they both dressed in Seahawks gear, but Samantha had a neon pink fanny pack! Samantha insisted we meet at Uptown Espresso in Queen Anne for coffee when we met next since we’d never been there before. Delicious! It’s definitely one of our new favorite coffee spots. We blame the great lattes on the fact that we talked for hours, but really we think this couple is super cool and just awesome to hang out with! We did a mini session around the block so they could get used to our style before the wedding. You can tell they have a fun, relaxed relationship. We are stoked to be shooting their wedding in just under two weeks!

Countdown to the wedding! See you soon!


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Owen – 1st Birthday | Queen Anne

Owen woke up from his nap oblivious to the fact that he was about to celebrate his very first birthday! His parents always say he needs to “reboot” after a nap and we just think it’s adorable how snuggly and shy he is after waking. In his PJs Owen showed us how he can stand against the wall and clap at himself. Once he saw his cupcake balloon he was overtaken with fascination for his first encounter with this flying object.

Just before the guests arrived the birthday boy was changed into his special blue jumper and 1 year old matching crown. He wasn’t shy or afraid to be the center of attention once all his loved ones were around. Erin made Owen his first cupcake ever (shhhh, it was actually vegan and had hardly any sugar, but he doesn’t know that…yet). Everyone sang and he was very tidy about eating almost every last crumb, except the tiny morsel he dropped and shared with his older brother, Moe, the pug. Of course when presents came Owen was fascinated by the paper, pictures on the cards, and the boxes – like every 1 year old we’ve ever heard of, but he did get some wonderful gifts that he will appreciate later. Happy Birthday Owen!

What a lucky boy to have such a loving family!

Erin Metzger - Thanks Marissa and Erik! You two made Owen’s 1st birthday extra special and these photos realy capture the magic of the day – I don’t know how you guys do it!

Marissa Ciccarelli - Thanks Erin! It wasn’t hard because he’s so adorable!

Margaret Cumming - So cute! Love the “Owen’s Place” box.

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Kayleanna – Work it! | Bellevue

It’s hard to explain the transformation we saw in just 45 minutes with Kayleanna. At first she was shy and hesitant with us, then she was adorably sweet with her mom, and then by the end of our session she was working it in front of the camera like any professional would! Even her mom, Angela, didn’t know where some of those moves came from. We loved it however and could fill pages with her funny photos, but decided on a few favorites here. Work it Kayleanna!

It was in the upper 30’s the morning we scheduled our session – abnormally cold for early November and unbearable for a 6 year old who is meant to smile for almost an hour. Lucky for us, Angela knows the area well and suggested we meet at Lincoln Square in Bellevue instead of the park. 5 minutes later we were in the warmth of a cozy and completely empty mall with floor to ceiling windows for all the light we needed…perfect! Great idea Angela!

At the end of our time together Kayleanna threw herself to the floor in this traditional senior photo pose – what a charmingly hilarious girl, love her!

Thank you Kayleanna & Angela, you were so flexible and fun to work with – we are truly looking forward to seeing you again this summer for the wedding!

Kym Leach - Kayleanna is my granddaughter and you did a beautiful job on these pictures! I can’t wait to see the wedding pictures this summer!

Willy Whisman - Great pictures, I have gigabytes of photos of kk since she was born. She is so photogenic, and as her papa I couldn’t be prouder. I agree with kym ( my better half) can’t wait to see the wedding photos. Thanks for sharing these.

Branden Contrino - Aw my little angel!

Miriam Holmes - So cute!

Josephine Contrino-Erol - well happiness flows throgh Miss KK so we must congratulate the love and care he mom Angela has given this child…

Marissa Ciccarelli - Thanks Kym! We really look forward to seeing you again at the wedding!

Geeta Thakkar - hi i tried to send u friend request i donot know it works or not. if nor u can send me one at geeta thakkar thanks

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Marx Family – Tickles | Green Lake Park

Look at these photos and tell us that this family is not one of the most photogenic families ever! They are so darn cute, it looks like we were shooting an ad instead of a family session. 3 year old Addison is certainly a bundle of joy and once warmed up to us was dancing, doing special handshakes, and running laps in the fields of Green Lake Park. Diane & Scott certainly love their bundle of joy immensely and were so caring and protective of her. When Addison was making funny faces a little tickle from mom or dad produced huge smiles that she must have inherited from her parents. She ended up getting tickled a lot this session!


At first Addison was hesitant to have a leaf fight with Erik, but once he got her about 4 times she was full of giggles and ready to retaliate!


Even though it was only about 46 degrees these three toughed it out and kept moving or playing to stay warm.

While taking a few shots of just mom and dad Addison felt left out and decided to squeeze herself between the two of them! Also, see their handshake below…

Love, love, love, love.

Thank you Marx Family!

Diane Marx - Thanks so much Marissa and Eric! Your warmth and great smiles made Addison a fan instantly. We had a great time and can’t wait to see the rest. We’re so happy we chose you for our family pictures!

Melissa Aden Sweeny - Beautiful!!! Love u guys!

Christina Apostolos Caylor - I love these!!! Xo

Stephanie Britton Birkmeyer - I’m a Marx family fan and these are adorable!!!!

Susan C. McDonald - I’m a Portia fan and thus a Marz family fan. You guys are gorgeous!

Marissa Ciccarelli - Thanks Diane! We had such a great time meeting your family. Addison is so adorable and giggly – what a sweetheart!

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