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I'm Shillawna


McMackins & Duncans


I’m taking you back to California this week for another reunion with two dear families I met many, many years ago! I met Gail McMackin when my husband and I moved to San Diego after college back in 2006. She was pregnant with her first child and she was the cutest little thing! Gail was sweet, kind, soft spoken, and was so generous in taking me under her wings. She and her husband quickly became close friends of my husband and I.


Both Gail’s and her husband, Kevin’s, families lived in the area. Not only were Gail and Kevin kind enough to befriend my husband and I, their parents and siblings also took us in. We were invited to many family holidays and gathering, ranging from baby showers, to Thanksgiving dinners, and 4th of July celebrations on Gail’s grandfather’s boat. We had so much fun lighting bonfires on Fiesta Island, day tripping to Jamul for apple picking, and enjoying Baked Potato Bars on Valentine’s Day couples nights. Thinking back on all of these memories really makes me so grateful for The McMackins and Duncans for the kindness and generosity they showed my little family.

Fast forward more than a decade, multiple moves, and 5 children between our two families. Needless to say, it was a special treat to be able to meet up with Gail, Kevin, their two kids, and Gail’s parents and siblings for an extended family session.

Location + Wishes

We met at Presidio Park in Mission Valley and spent the afternoon enjoying the sunshine and warm temperatures, chatting, and snapping some really beautiful family photos. I loved reconnecting with a group of people who knew me at a very pivotal point in my personal and professional life. It felt amazing to be able to use my talent to preserve a special moment in their lives for them. I know when I come across these photos in the future, I will remember the McMackins and Duncans with fondness. It’s my hope that, while they are reminiscing over the cherished faces in these photos, they might remember me warmly too.

  1. Gail McMackin says:

    Beautiful job, Shillawna! We are so happy with these portraits and forever grateful forever grateful for our friendship. Hope to see you on another trip to SD in the not too distant future! ❤️

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