August Wrap Up

You Guys…

HOW is it September 1st ALREADY?! I feel like the Summer flashed by my eyes in two seconds. It was the most wonderful Summer, full of Weddings, Engagement Parties, amazing photo-shoots AND the birth of our brand new baby niece Kiera.

I’m not going to like, I’m very excited that it’s September 1st. Fall is hands down my all-time favourite season, and I can’t WAIT for cardigans, tights, boots, hot drinks, cozy reading nights at home, changing leaves.. and HALLOWEEN. Also my Wedding is in less than three months! This is equal parts terrifying & amazing.

There is so much to look forward to in the next few months, and I feel so incredibly lucky.

August was a great month for Movies, T.V & Reading. I loved almost everything! I can’t wait to tell you guys all about it.

I hope you have all had an amazing Summer! Without further rambling.. here is my August Wrap Up,

xo,

Love Carly

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TV SHOWS

The World of You-Tube

I’ve been watching You-Tube for the past few years, discovering new creators and channels weekly. I love You-Tube so much, that I actually almost watch more You-Tube than Television these days. So many You-Tube creators have their own You-Tube Original shows, like Buzz-feed and Vice, and the content is amazing. During August, I fell SO in love with two specific You-Tube shows, and I had to tell you guys all about them.

1.) “Worth It”

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A few weeks ago, I just randomly decided to search for “Ramen” on You-Tube. I ended up coming across a video called “Worth It: 3$ Ramen VS 79$ Ramen: Japan”. I clicked on it, and just fell so in love with these two guys, and the whole show in general.

Steven Lim, and Andrew Ilnycky who both work for the hugely popular Buzzfeed, created this digital food review show called “Worth It”. Basically, each week they pick a new type of food “Tacos, Burgers, Ramen, Buffet’s, Macaroni, etc”, and they fly all around the world on the most hilarious food adventures. For example, if the pick of the week is “Pizza”, they will try three price points of Pizza.. cheap, middle-of-the-road price, and crazy expensive. They go to hyped food places all around New York, L.A, New Orleans, Montreal (best Poutine episode), and even as far as Japan! It’s so much fun to see them discover all of these amazing restaurants, hole-in-the-wall gem’s, and hidden places you would never have thought to check out. They flew across the country for hours, just to try a $169 Hot-Dog!! After they have tried all three different places/price points on their episode, they will choose which one is the most “Worth It’. In one episode they tried a $100 taco, but they decided the 3$ one was more “Worth It”, because of how incredible the Breakfast Tacos were, and how much you got for your money.

There are three seasons out of this on You-Tube, totally free to watch, and trust me you guys its AMAZING. These two guys are so hilarious together as well. Be warned though, this show makes me and Ryan so hungry.. we always end up on Uber Eats ordering Tacos or Ramen, within minutes of the episodes ending haha. Can’t wait for Season 4, which starts soon!

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2.) “Sideswiped”

A You-Tube Original Series

First Two Episodes are Free to Stream

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I had no idea that “You-Tube” was getting into the whole Original Series game, much like Netflix Originals. I guess it was only a matter of time, given the millions of people who are watching You-Tube for hours a night. I came across this totally blind, and decided to watch episode one. It was SO good, I was shocked! I don’t know what I was expecting, maybe something more amateur.. but this was as well produced as a regular television/Netflix series. It also has an incredible cast, with many actors I recognized, like Tyler Posey, Peter Gallagher (aka Sandy Cohen from “The O.C”, Bryan Gallagher, etc!

The episode made me laugh out loud, and it was so current and really hits the mark on modern dating & social media. It’s all about this woman who finds herself single on her 35th birthday, and decides to give Tinder a chance and really hit the track running.. with many many dates. It’s so entertaining, and laugh out loud cringe-worthy. Some of the dates she goes on, and the situations she gets herself into.. are a NIGHTMARE.

They only have the first two episodes out on You-Tube to watch for free, but if you sign up for “You-Tube Premium”, you can watch the whole season. I didn’t want to sign up, but you can do a free one month “trial”, and then cancel within the first 30 days to get a full refund. I planned to binge watch, and then cancel my subscription (what a little scammer), but once Ryan got wind of this.. he started looking into You-Tube Premium.. and apparently it has a ton of tech shows he’s interested in, so it looks like we are keeping it after all, haha!

I would really recommend checking out “Sideswiped” if you are a fan of “Sex and the City”, or if you yourself are finding yourself in the midst of a Tinder swipe fest. You will love this.

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3.”Casual”

The Final Season

On Hulu

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Ryan and I got rid of our cable, a few years ago. With Netflix, and other streaming sites, we watch more shows than we could ever list. No commercials, endless choices.. it’s really the most wonderful invention. Apart from Netlfix, we also subscribe to HULU, and also having Amazon Prime, we get access to Amazon’s streaming services (which are unreal). I think I need to do a separate Blog Post, about all the streaming services, and my thoughts on which are worth it or not.

So Hulu does a lot of “Hulu Originals”, much like other services. My #1 Fav show they have come out with is “Casual”. I’ve raved about this show many times on my Blog, and during August I watched the entire Final Season. I’m so sad to say Goodbye to these characters, I love each of them so much, and I’m so invested in their adventures haha.

I won’t get too into the plot of this season, since it’s the final season, and I don’t want to spoil anything major. I will say though, that this show took a big risk this season. They opened the season, with a FIVE YEAR TIME JUMP. A time jump in a show is always a risky move. They did this in “Pretty Little Liars”, and it wasn’t very well recieved. It makes the audience kind of feel like they missed out on so much.. and it’s a bit jarring. I think that “Casual” did this well, especially given it’s the final season.. I think they needed this time jump to happen, so they could really wrap this story up with the finality it deserved.

Alex, and his Sister Valerie, are the most hilarious duo, and I love their brother sister relationship so much. I could watch the two of them banter back and forth, and analyze each other’s disastrous love lives, forever. I will really miss this show.

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MOVIES

1.) “Eighth Grade”

Written and Directed By Bo Burnham

10/10

I could have written an ENTIRE Blog Post about how much I adored this movie. 

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This movie has been so hyped, I’ve been hearing about it, and reading about it… everywhere. It has a 98% rating on Rotten Tomatoes (which is quite the achievement), and everyone that has seen it, can’t stop raving about it. I couldn’t get to the movie theater fast enough.

This movie was written and directed by Bo Burnham, who began his hugely successful comedy career, on You-Tube! He is so creative, and his stand-up is so hilarious. When I found out he was writing a film, told from the perspective of a 13 year old girl, I was so intrigued. After seeing this movie, I still can’t believe how SPOT ON he nailed the desperately awkward internal struggles of being a 13 year old girl. He is so insightful, and I was blown away.

This movie is the story of 13 year old Kayla, who is in the end of Eighth Grade.. about to Graduate Middle School, and move on to the mystery that is High-School. She has a You-Tube channel, where she makes little beauty and advice videos, that nobody really watches, but they are the cutest thing.

The character of Kayla, is one of the greatest characters I’ve seen in a film in so long. Elsie Fisher who plays Kayla, was so brilliant. She felt so real, so authentic, and the amount I related to her awkward socializing struggles, was insane. She managed to convey the feeling that I think we have all felt growing up.. just the paralyzing self-doubt, anxiety, and painfully awkward interactions with other kids and parents. The one scene where she gets invited to a popular girl’s pool party.. and she’s just standing on the other side of the glass door, literally terrified to walk outside and join the party.. oh my GOD I felt like I was watching a home video of one of the most mortifying moments of my life.

Bo Burnham nailed the experience with so much insight, and so much heart. This movie was heartbreaking, and so hilarious as well. I laughed so loudly at the mall food court scene (you will know what part I mean, if you’ve seen it). Her Dad is also the cutest character in the world, I loved every second he was onscreen.

I think every single one of you needs to go see this movie, and tell everyone you know to go see it as well.

Best movie I’ve seen all year, hands down.

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2.) “Crazy Rich Asians”

10/10

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So over the last few years “Crazy Rich Asians” has been a hugely successful best-selling book. I’ve seen it all over Chapters, all over Book-Tube, and I always meant to pick it up. There are a few books out in the Series already, and I always felt a bit overwhelmed by it, and kept putting it off. Then I saw the trailer, and realized the movie was about to come out! I’m a bit disappointed I didn’t get a chance to read the first book, before seeing this movie.. but let me tell you.. as soon as the credits rolled, I immediately ordered the next two books in the series haha! This movie was INSANE. So visually spectacular, so funny, so heartwarming, and honestly the most fun I’ve had watching a movie in a long time.

This is the story of Rachel Chu, who has been dating her boyfriend Nick, for quite some time. He invites her to go with him to Singapore for his best friend’s Wedding. He also plans to introduce Rachel to his family in Singapore, who she’s never met. But the huge twist is, Rachel has no idea that Nick’s family are INSANELY rich. Also apparently Nick is one of the most sought after Bachelor’s, with hundreds of women dying to date him. Rachel is so shocked by all of this, and can’t wait to meet his family, and find out more about his life. It doesn’t go as well as she hoped, and lets just say Nick’s Mother is TERRIFYING. Like the Mother in Law, from Hell. This was so much fun to watch. I think my favorite character was Peik Lin Goh, who is Rachel’s best friend. She lives in Singapore, and Rachel gets to spend time with her while she’s there for the Wedding. Peik Lin is the Fashion Stylist of Rachel’s dreams, and she’s SO SO funny. She is played by the Actress/Rapper Awkwafina, and I think she’s one of the most hilarious actresses ever. I wanted her to be in every single scene.

Aside from all the juicy family drama, this movie is rich with traditions, and history. It was so beautifully shot.. from the Fashion, to the spectacular homes and vacation spots.. to the FOOD, and the cars. The whole thing blew my mind, and I loved it so much. It was such a sweet romantic movie at it’s core, and it might be one of the best Romantic Comedies I’ve ever seen. It’s also a hugely important movie, given it’s the first movie from a big time Hollywood Studio, to have an all Asian cast.. since “The Joy Luck Club”, which came out in 1993!!

10/10! I can’t wait to see it again.

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3.) “Adrift”

8/10

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This is the heartbreaking true-story of a young couple Tami Oldham Ashcraft and Richard Sharp, who set out on a sailing trip from Fiji to San Diego. They were both very skilled sailors, and were thinking this would be the adventure of a lifetime. Disaster strikes, as they end up sailing right into Hurricane Raymond (one of the most catastrophic hurricanes in history). I won’t say anything else to spoil it, just that it’s an incredible true-story about what it takes to survive.

This movie was beautifully filmed, and the acting was great as well. I really loved this movie. I found it quite hard to watch in parts, and it gave me a lot of anxiety, because I knew they were about to hit the Hurricane. Such an inspiring true-story though, and absolutely worth a watch.

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BOOKS

1.) “Baby Teeth”

By, Zoje Stage

10/10

This book was the stuff of NIGHTMARES. It scared me so deeply, I can’t even explain.

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“Now that she knew the name of the game – Scare Mommy – she should be able to defend herself. But goosebumps rose on her skin, even under the heat of the water, when she thought about her creepy daughter. The whites of her eyes. Her ability to sneak up on her as she slept.” 

You guys… This is the most horrifying book I’ve read in a long time. It scared me so much, that I had actual goosebumps and a twisted stomach, the entire time I was reading this. Some chapters I realized I was holding my breath the entire time. It was incredibly unsettling, frustrating, and so chilling. It just really creeped me out, in a way I’ve never experienced with a book. I was actually scared.

This is basically the story of a child psychopath, and the havoc she unleashes on her family, mainly her Mother. The story is told from dual P.O.V’s, the Mothers.. and also the Daughter/Psycho Hanna. Hanna is seven years old, and doesn’t speak. She can hear, and she CAN speak, she just has chosen not to, for seven years. That is until one day she decides she has something to say to “Mommy”, as she creepily calls her Mom in her inner monologues. Hanna hates her Mother, and while reading from her P.O.V, we get a horrifying insight into the way her mind works. The sophisticated manipulation, the plotting against her Mother.. mainly pitting her against her Father.. but acting out in an outrageous way, and then when Dad gets home.. she acts like it never happened. He then doubts his wife, and isn’t sure what to believe. Meanwhile, as soon as he leaves for work, Hanna is plotting again.. doing some really twisted and awful things to her Mother. The gas-lighting, the manipulation, the utter terror she puts her family through. This book was so perfectly evil. Loved it so much. I will also have nightmares for the rest of my life. Also that ENDING!!!

“Hanna stopped barking but held her mother in a hateful stare. She whipped her head toward Suzette’s extended arm, opening her mouth as wide as she could. Suzette pulled her vulnerable arm in and instinctively pressed her other hand against her daughter’s forehead to keep her at bay. “We do not bite! You know better!” Hanna clacked her teeth together, biting the air, twisting her head against her mother’s resisting arm. “Stop it!” She made growling noises in her throat: rabid, dangerous sounds. Grabbing Suzette’s arm, Hanna tried a new tactic in her fight to get close enough to bite her.” 

 

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“It was hard to pour endless love into someone who wouldn’t love you back. No one could do it forever.”

(Good-Reads Plot Summary)

{Sweetness can be deceptive.

Meet Hanna.

She’s the sweet-but-silent angel in the adoring eyes of her Daddy. He’s the only person who understands her, and all Hanna wants is to live happily ever after with him. But Mommy stands in her way, and she’ll try any trick she can think of to get rid of her. Ideally for good.

Meet Suzette.

She loves her daughter, really, but after years of expulsions and strained home schooling, her precarious health and sanity are weakening day by day. As Hanna’s tricks become increasingly sophisticated, and Suzette’s husband remains blind to the failing family dynamics, Suzette starts to fear that there’s something seriously wrong, and that maybe home isn’t the best place for their baby girl after all.}

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2.) “So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed”

A Non-Fiction Investigative Masterpiece

By, Jon Ronson

10/10

“As somebody back then wrote, “Facebook is where you lie to your friends, Twitter is where you tell the truth to strangers.” 

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“We are defining the boundaries of normality by tearing apart the people outside it.” 

One of the best books I read a few months ago, was the Non-Fiction book “The Psychopath Test” also by Jon Ronson. I loved that book so much, and I knew I immediately had to buy and read all of Jon Ronson’s other work. When I heard about his new book “So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed”, I was very intrigued. The topic of public shaming, mainly being shamed on the Internet/Twitter etc, is a really current issue our society is dealing with. People who make a stupid mistake, tweet a bad tasteless joke… their lives are being ruined with one click. Going “viral” for the wrong reasons, losing their jobs, their families. It’s intense.

Jon Ronson is such a talented Writer/Journalist, and manages to write information heavy subject matter… with such humor and lightness, that it actually reads like Fiction. I sped through this book within a few days, and I was utterly gripped from page one. Each chapter was about a different Public Shaming story. From a disgraced Author, to a girl who tweeted a horrible joke, to reputation-saving companies.. and just so many more fascinating stories. He really analyzes and investigates the whole deep dark hole of Social Media, from several different angles. He aims to discover, why when outraged the public will band together to “shame” someone online. Is it crowd contagion, is it being anonymous that gives them the strength to online bully? It’s just the most INTERESTING book. I loved it so much.

It was also a horrifying read, because it just goes to show you how easily you can ruin your own life, or someone else’s.. all with the power of the Internet. He meets so many different people, who have been to Hell and back with this… and he tells their stories with so much empathy, and zero judgement. It was the same when he was interviewing the Psychopath’s in “The Psychopath Test”, he never judges them, just tries to understand the “why”. Highly suggest this to anyone interested in social-media, or just the Internet in general. Gripping. Jon Ronson is absolutely one of my top 5 fav writers now.

“A life had been ruined. What was it for: just some social media drama? I think our natural disposition as humans is to plod along until we get old and stop. But with social media, we’ve created a stage for constant artificial high drama. Every day a new person emerges as a magnificent hero or a sickening villain. It’s all very sweeping, and not the way we actually are as people.” 

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“The snowflake never needs to feel responsible for the avalanche.”

“We see ourselves as nonconformist, but I think all of this is creating a more conformist, conservative age.” 

“We’re creating a culture where people feel constantly surveilled, where people are afraid to be themselves.” 

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(Good-Reads Plot Summary)

{Now a  New York Times  bestseller and from the author of The Psychopath Test, a captivating and brilliant exploration of one of our world’s most underappreciated forces: shame.
 
‘It’s about the terror, isn’t it?’

‘The terror of what?’ I said.

‘The terror of being found out.’

For the past three years, Jon Ronson has travelled the world meeting recipients of high-profile public shamings. The shamed are people like us – people who, say, made a joke on social media that came out badly, or made a mistake at work. Once their transgression is revealed, collective outrage circles with the force of a hurricane and the next thing they know they’re being torn apart by an angry mob, jeered at, demonized, sometimes even fired from their job.
 
A great renaissance of public shaming is sweeping our land. Justice has been democratized. The silent majority are getting a voice. But what are we doing with our voice? We are mercilessly finding people’s faults. We are defining the boundaries of normality by ruining the lives of those outside it. We are using shame as a form of social control.
 
Simultaneously powerful and hilarious in the way only Jon Ronson can be, So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed is a deeply honest book about modern life, full of eye-opening truths about the escalating war on human flaws – and the very scary part we all play in it.}

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3.) “The Light We Lost”

By, Jill Santopolo

9/10

“The thing about roads is sometimes you happen upon them again. Sometimes you get another chance to travel down the same path.” 

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“some relationships feel like a wildfire-they’re powerful and compelling and majestic and dangerous and have the capability to burn you before you even realize you’ve been consumed…..some relationships feel like a hearth fire-they’re solid and stable and cozy and nourishing.” 

I have so much to say about this book, I don’t know where to start. Firstly, this COVER is absolutely stunning. One of the most beautiful books ever, with the gold foil, and the New York City skyline in the background. Secondly, I don’t think I have cried THIS hard in a book, since “The Fault in Our Stars”. I was not expecting this book to be so intense, I thought it was going to be a light and fun little lost-love Romance thing.. but it was so much more than that.

This book was told in a very unique P.O.V style. It’s told from our main character Lucy’s perspective, completely in second person. It becomes clear right away that she is telling a story to Gabe, her first love. Rather, she is telling him the story, of their love story… from the very beginning. You aren’t really sure why, but that becomes clear as the story goes on. She tells the story of how they met, in New York City on September 11th, and how their relationship blossomed, and changed after that. Ambition, work opportunities, distance… and the inevitable falling apart. They never lose the feeling, and even when Lucy gets married, she will always have Gabe in the back of her mind. I won’t spoil what happens, but it is equal parts intense love triangle, and with a gut-punching heartbreaking twist. It reminded me a lot of “The Notebook”, but obviously with a more modern setting and situations. Such a cute book.

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“Love does that. It makes you feel infinite and invincible, like the whole world is open to you, anything is achievable, and each day will be filled with wonder. Maybe it’s the act of opening yourself up, letting someone else in— or maybe it’s the act of caring so deeply about another person that it expands your heart. I’ve heard so many people say some version of I never knew how much I could love another human being until . . . And after the until is usually something like my niece was born or I gave birth to a child or I adopted a baby. I never knew how much I could love another human being until I met you, Gabe.
I’ll never forget that.” 

 (Good-Reads Plot Summary)

{He was the first person to inspire her, to move her, to truly understand her. Was he meant to be the last?

Lucy is faced with a life-altering choice. But before she can make her decision, she must start her story—their story—at the very beginning.

Lucy and Gabe meet as seniors at Columbia University on a day that changes both of their lives forever. Together, they decide they want their lives to mean something, to matter. When they meet again a year later, it seems fated—perhaps they’ll find life’s meaning in each other. But then Gabe becomes a photojournalist assigned to the Middle East and Lucy pursues a career in New York. What follows is a thirteen-year journey of dreams, desires, jealousies, betrayals, and, ultimately, of love. Was it fate that brought them together? Is it choice that has kept them away? Their journey takes Lucy and Gabe continents apart, but never out of each other’s hearts.}

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The 3 Classics For 10$ Deal At Chapters

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Every year Chapters has the greatest Sale ever, and it’s the perfect time to stock up on Classics. They have all of their Classic editions (with the most stunning modern covers), on for 3 Books for 10$. I wanted them all, but I ended up going with these three. I wanted some cozy creepy books, for the upcoming Fall/Halloween Season. I can’t wait to curl up with some Edgar Allan Poe, and H.P Lovecraft! Also “1984” is a terrifying story in it’s own right. So happy to add these beautiful editions to the ever-growing Home Library.

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They have so many other books you guys can grab.. Jane Austen, Mark Twain, Sylvia Plath etc. I think I’ll be hitting the Sale up, just one or two more times, haha!

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“A Little Life”

The Sweatshirt

Life is MADE

You guys have heard me talk on and on, about the book “A Little Life”, by Hanya Yanagihara. It’s a masterpiece of a book, and it took me almost a month to read the entire thing. It’s very long, and very dark and depressing.. but I still loved it.

“A Little Life” has a major cult following, especially in New York City (where it is set). Recently I was watching the Netflix show “Queer Eye”, and one of the Fab 5 Antoni.. was wearing a t-shirt that stopped me dead in my tracks.

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The shirt said “Jude & JB & Willem & Malcom”. This might not have caught anyone else’s attention.. but if you are a fan of the book “A Little Life” you were probably screaming. The names on the shirt, are the names of the four main characters from the book. I have never searched for something so fast, my fingers were shaking. I ordered myself a little black hoodie from the same company, and it’s the cutest thing ever. I will be wearing it until it falls off. I can’t wait to meet a fan of “A Little Life” out in the wild.

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“You won’t understand what I mean now, but someday you will: the only trick of friendship, I think, is to find people who are better than you are—not smarter, not cooler, but kinder, and more generous, and more forgiving—and then to appreciate them for what they can teach you, and to try to listen to them when they tell you something about yourself, no matter how bad—or good—it might be, and to trust them, which is the hardest thing of all. But the best, as well.” 

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Thanks again so much for Reading you guys,

I will see you soon with some exciting new posts,

Cabin Travel Diary, September TBR, and more Fall things!

I’ll attach some more random photos from August

xox,

Carly

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(All Photography @Carly Ingram Photography 2018)

(All Images of TV Shows, Movies, and the Image of Antoni from “Queer Eye”, @Google Images 2018)


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