With Mother’s Day just around the corner, I break down my top 7 gifts for your favorite person!
- Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer: This hair dryer is the mother of all dryers! I have a TON of hair and it has cut my style time down in half! I’m talking 40 to 20 minutes out the door! The best part? It’s light weight and comes with a variety of add-ons to help curl, minimize frizz and so much more. No more going through blow dryers all the time. Dyson makes pretty great vacuums, so it only makes sense that they’re killing the blow dryer game! Hurry, because these sell out pretty quickly!
- Beautycounter’s Flawless in 5: Nothing says I love you like #cleanbeauty! Flawless in 5 takes you from drab to fab in just 5 short minutes! It includes your choice of a foundation (with or without spf), eyebrow pencil or gel, volumizing mascara, refillable creme blush and lip gloss. All of the shades are customizable to you and your skin tone. Need help? Just message me and I’d be happy to guide you in the right direction! New clients receive 30% off with the code “CLEANFORALL30” through the end of April. Shop now at Beautycounter.com/brianadandrea.
- You know I’m a #lillypulitzer gal and I just can’t get enough of the the new 2 piece Rosalie Skirt Set. The dainty shoulder ties and the periwinkle color is just so darling and the perfect Mother’s Day outfit. Nothing says Happy Mother’s Day like a floral Lilly set.
- Meet your new best friend: The Bogg Bag! This waterproof, functional bucket bag is waterproof and perfect for that beach or boat day! It comes with a variety of inserts and clip ons for you to mix and match for tip top organization! The best part? It comes in a variety of fashion forward styles. I of course chose the Palm Tree print, the leopard comes in a close second!
- It’s time to set those feet in motion and hit the pavement in my favorite Nike sneaks! The Metcon 6 Nikes allow your feet to get the oxygen they need to move at lightening speed! In the most breathable design yet, limit pressure and increases stability! Plus the variety of colors are fun!
- Get them hater blockers out! Diff Eyewear is a company with a purpose and their shade styles are quite the fashion forward piece! I opted for the “Vania.” Black and classic yet with a statement, these shades are the perfect “mom”-cessory. More than 2.7 million people have received eye care thanks to Diff’s program, “Gift of Sight.” Each purchase helps someone in need to see a bit clearer. Now if that isn’t a reason to sport these, I don’t know what is. #giveback
- With summer just around the bend or maybe a Mother’s Day getaway, Beautycounter’s Countertime travel kit is the gift you never knew you needed! It comes with the most adorable little mesh (TSA approved) bag and 5 products designed to keep your youth even while on the go. Featuring Countertime Anti-Aging Lipid Defense Cleansing Oil, Mineral Boost Hydrating Essence, Tripeptide Radiance Serum, Antioxident Soft Cream and Tetrapeptide Supreme Cream, the perfect recipe to minimize fine lines and wrinkles! What could be better?
You and your people in your favorite place…all smiles, hugs and good vibes.
Making memories that last you a lifetime.
Taking photos with your family should be a fun and engaging time.
If I’m being honest, I know it can be tough to rally the troops and get the look you were hoping for, but with these top 5 tips you’ll be sure to stay ahead of the game when it comes time to snapping those pics that leave lasting memories!
- Plan Ahead!
- Discuss with your photographer when and where you want to shoot!
- Golden hour (sunset) makes for the best pics, so keep that in mind.
- Remind your family of your expectations! Is it one location? 3? Map out your day so everyone is on the same page. Communication is key!
- Don’t make any other plans for the day. Coming straight from a birthday party or event can make for some overtired kiddos!
2. Simplicity is key!
- Don’t overcomplicate your outfits. Yes, you want to look fabulous, but let’s try to keep everyone comfortable too! Try to color coordinate…the less busy the better!
3. Come prepared!
- Snacks, iPads, perhaps or a special treat? Give the kids something to look forward to, so they know once they’re done they get to reward themselves for cooperating!
4. Learn to pivot!
- Yes, it might rain, kids might break down, but be open to shifting your expectations of what the perfect shoot should look like and manage your ability to realize there might be some obstacles and it will be just fine!
5. Have fun!
- You will look back at these precious photos for years to come and be so glad you took the time to make your family feel so important!
The next time you decide to book a family session you should totally consider working with Elina’s Dream Photography. Elina has an artistic passion for photos and snapping just the right one! Her mission is to let the love shine through every photo she takes.
We met via Instagram, had a brief phone conversation and I just knew we had to collaborate! From connecting as Wellington mamas by way of New York and a true love for doing all things creative, she was open, honest and totally flexible.
Our session started on Palm Beach Island where we snapped some pics on a dreamy winding road (kids decided to pass out on us, so we let them sleep and enjoyed was was almost like an engagement shoot! Lol) and of course it started to rain! So we ducked for cover and took some amazing photos at Bethesda by the Sea, made our way to the iconic Palm Beach clock tower and finished off the shoot, by the famous “blue doors.”
Our photos came back so fast and each one was more beautiful than the next.
Elina IS a dream and I would absolutely recommend her for your next family photo session.
You can get connected with her and see her incredible work here.
Since the holidays have come to a close, the curtains are up at the Kravis Center and the New Year calls for new shows, designed to both get you out of your seat and keep you mesmerized!
The family and I got the unique chance to get all dressed up to see “Rudolph the Musical,” just before closing out 2021. We put on our Christmas best and headed to the performing arts center in downtown West Palm Beach, to see one of only two exclusive shows of season. With strict COVID protocols in place, (*see below), we felt safe and at ease while singing along to everyone’s favorite reindeer tune! Upon being greeted by a giant red tree, grabbing a few tasty snacks, we found our seats and were ready to ride on Santa’s sleigh! The costumes, the set design and even the original score were incredible! Shockingly, I think my husband has been bit by the showbiz bug, because he thoroughly enjoyed it as well! It took me back to my high school days, performing on stage and feeling the rush of the curtain call. It was such an incredible time had by all and we cannot wait to go back soon!
Today marks the 2022 season at The Kravis Center, as they welcome their latest show “SUMMER: The Donna Summer Musical,” known as the girl from Boston with a voice from heaven in what is said to be a ‘moving tribute to the voice of a generation,’ with tickets starting at $33.
This weekend The Eisenhower Dance Troop invites patrons to experience an evening of exhilarating dance in a show called “F-E-E-L,” for $40 and a free drink. Cheers!
Then later this month Ledisi sings “Nina,” which is considered a beautifully orchestrated mixture of classical, jazz and rhythm & blues in honor of the great Nina Simone and if you can’t catch that show, then hopefully you can grab a ticket for Pink Martini and China Forbes, which will feature dozens of musicians singing songs in 25 languages. Both shows are offered at a starting price point of $29.
The month will close out with an “Ultimate Tribute to Tina Turner” in “PROUD Tina!” From a live band to vocalists and dancers, the show is guaranteed to be an electrifying showcase of The Queen of Rock and Roll’s greatest hits throughout the decades! From her smash hit ‘What’s Love Got To Do With It?,’ to ‘Proud Mary,’ the show will certainly have you rolling on the river! Tickets start at just 25 bucks!
*Upon entry everyone is required to show their vaccination card or a negative COVID test result, no less than 3 days old. You’re welcome to arrive early on site to take a complimentary test if that works better for you. Children under 12 are not required to do so.
*Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post and a partnership in conjunction with Kravis.org. Opinions mentioned are original and that of Briana D’Andrea and momgirlblog.com. Follow Briana D’Andrea for her latest updates!
Visiting Kennedy Space Center exceeded our expectations!
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex has always been on our family’s travel bucket list since the day our 8-year-old son was born! Although he and my husband are both Star Wars fanatics, most recently our little guy has had an affinity for space and the world beyond. After seeing some rocket launches and doing a virtual visit with an astronaut this past year, we knew we had to jump on the opportunity to get to Cape Canaveral. We had quite the incredible experience at America’s spaceport from start to finish and the best part was, it’s fun for ALL ages! With our 5-year-old daughter in tow and a celebration for my mom’s birthday, we chartered a journey to the Space Coast!
We started off the day by taking the obligatory photo in front of the NASA meatball and it was the most gorgeous day! Something really awesome is the visitor complex is on an island, so the cross breeze is absolutely glorious! We made our way to the very back of the park to get things started off on the right foot…our journey to “Atlantis.” This larger than life exhibit was at the top of our must-see things to explore while at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, so we wanted to make sure we started off with a bang! After watching a quick and inspirational movie, we did a self-guided walking tour of the ship, complete with interactive exhibits to keep the kids fully engaged and learned all about NASA’s Space Shuttle program. From sitting in a cockpit to an interactive space simulation activity and even a slide that boosts you to another dimension, we were able to play astronaut for the day and see what it was like to eat, sleep and live in outer space.
We then made our way over to Planet Play. This new interactive play space is a glow in the dark, 3 story behemoth of a playground, where the kids can let loose and just be kids! Next stop was lunch! From a variety of salads and sandwiches to choose from and not just your typical pizza and chicken tenders lunch, it was great! We had a Cobb salad and a Beyond burger from the Orbit Cafe. We were lucky enough to dine in the courtyard otherwise known as “NASA Central,” where we snapped a quick photo op with a spaceperson! We ducked into where we learned all about space moving rovers and how they travel around Mars!
Next stop was “The Space Shop.” Whether signed memorabilia or space food is your thing, there’s something for everyone in this two story shop, which might I say, was very well done! After grabbing a few mementos to remember what was already such an incredible day, we grabbed some “Space Dots,” ice cream and boarded a bus for our next mission on the other side of the compound. *Best bet is to book your bus tour upon arrival, so you get to pick the best time for you and your family to explore.
The “Space Bus,” dropped us off behind NASA’s pearly gates, where some of the most famous spaceships in our nation’s history have prepared for launch! We drove past the Vehicle Assembly Building, one of the largest buildings in the world by volume, where rockets like the Saturn V moon rocket was assembled and arrived at the Apollo/Saturn V Center. We were able to see the Saturn V…the largest rocket ever flown! *Fun fact: Every human who has stepped foot on the moon, launched from Kennedy Space Center aboard a Saturn V rocket! It was completely breathtaking and larger than life and we are already planning an overnight trip to stay there at the facilities! Yes, you can do that! After learning about man’s first trip to the moon and honoring the three heroes, whose lives were lost in Apollo 1, we prepared for lift off, back to base camp just in time to catch a 3D IMAX movie about asteroids, which totally blew our minds!
On our way out we explored the “Rocket Garden,” home to incredible and famous rockets from NASA programs like the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo…a place where you literally feel like an ant in a sea of giant space vehicles.
We had such an incredible day and can’t wait to visit again soon! Highly recommend paying a trip to the Space Coast! For more information or to book a trip to visit Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.
*This is a paid sponsored post with Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. All opinions are true and that of Briana D’Andrea from momgirlblog. Follow Briana D’Andrea to see more photos from our trip and follow her family adventures on her lifestyle blog momgirlblog.com. #kennedyspacecenter #momgirlblog #lookup
Check out our fun day in under an IG reel under a minute here!
This easy pasta dish with just 4 ingredients is sure to be a weekly household staple.
Have you ever had a dish you felt was just good for your soul?! For me it’s always a heaping bowl of pasta and I don’t discriminate. Whether it’s fusili, tagliatelle, bucatini, lasagna, parpadelle or penne…I LOVE THEM ALL! The thing that makes it the ultimate treat, is I don’t have it too often, so when I do, I go ALL IN!
When Lynora’s and I decided to partner up and share with the world our affinity for family and food, we were mutually ecstatic! It didn’t hurt that the kids and hubby were on board too! As they like to say, “Take me to Lynora’s” and that’s exactly what my family did! I had been a huge fan from the little squares I was swooning over on Instagram and couldn’t wait to dine at their fast casual establishment in West Palm Beach in what used to be a gas station! How retro is that?!
The company founded by an old school Italian couple, started the Lynora’s brand back in 1974. Raffaele and Maria Abbenante migrated from a small island in Italy called Ponza to share their love for Italian culture and food. They started by selling pizza by the slice right here in Lake Worth, FL and the rest is as they say “storia.” 35 years later, the Abbenante’s have 4 locations throughout the South Florida area with a cult following who crave the culinary traditions and old school recipes handed down by Maria’s mom. 2 restaurants are in West Palm Beach, 1 in Jupiter, another in Palm Beach Gardens. With Boca Raton set to open fall of 2021 and Fort Lauderdale in winter of 2021 and I can’t wait to pay them a visit!
Full disclosure, I’m not Italian, but my husband Michael is. (I think my love for spaghetti inspired my choice to marry him!) lol I do however remember visiting places throughout Brooklyn growing up, sampling some of the best pasta and pizza that New York had to offer. Now that we have little ones with ancestors from Naples & Sicily, eating and cooking Italian is a right of passage for me. Ladies and gentlemen Lynora’s is as good as it gets and I’m pretty sure we’ve only scratched the surface.
We were greeted by some of the most friendliest staff, who were so attentive and helpful every step of the way. Ana especially made our visit extra special. It felt like we were dining at our grandma’s house! It was sort of ironic how she even had my grandmother’s name!
We sampled the housemade meatballs, Arugula Stem Salad with shaved parmesan, cherry tomatoes, artichokes & a truffle mustard vinaigrette, the Burrata e Prosciutto Pizza with Bufala mozzarella, arugula, cherry tomatoes, prosciutto & the Rigatoni Alla Funghi, served with cream, porcini mushrooms, shaved parmesan and truffle oil. The kids had the Margherita Pizza, that was just as cheesy as it was tasty! Every single dish was perfection. You could tell that the recipes were well thought out and not something that was just slapped together. We enjoyed a glass of their house Cabernet Sauvignon, which paired nicely with our meal.
After dinner were were able to shop for all of the ingredients we needed to make dinner for the following week, right on site! There’s something to be said about supporting local. It just feels right.
Once we devoured our leftovers we went in for seconds. This time in our kitchen! The kids helped me choose the menu and chop the veggies for our very own Lynora’s homemade pasta dish. Hopefully this post will inspire you to try the recipe out and share such an incredible restaurant right here in our backyard.
You can purchase a bunch of the products on site at any of the Lynora’s restaurants in South Florida and for those of you who aren’t local, but are interested in trying out the brand, head on over to Lynoras.com/store to get the deliciousness delivered to your door!
*Some items are available for purchase at your local Whole Foods Market too.
As they say at Lynora’s with a little bit of flour, water, salt and ton of passion you’ll have the perfect dish!
Four Ingredient Momgirlblog Lynora’s Pasta
Lynora’s Roasted Garlic Sauce
Lynora’s Cabernet Sauvignon
1/2 red onion diced
1 cup baby bella mushrooms diced
Pinch of salt & pepper for taste
Pinch of 365 Whole Foods Parmesan Cheese
Optional: 1 basil leaf
Bring pot of water to boil
Add a pinch of salt to the water
Chop red onion & mushroom
Add 1 tbsp Lynora’s evoo
Saute onion & add mushrooms once onions are soft
Toss the Lynora’s roasted garlic marinara to the veggies and simmer on low
Add Lynora’s penne pasta to boiling water cook on medium heat for 8 minutes
Add 1 tbsp of Lynora’s cabernet sauvignon to sauce and let reduce for a few minutes until pasta is done
Add a pinch of salt and pepper to taste
Drain the pasta and a tbsp of Lynora’s evoo to the pasta to keep moist
Scoop some of that yummy sauce goodness onto the pasta and sprinkle with some freshly grated 365 Whole Foods Parmesan Cheese
Top with a fresh basil leaf and enjoy!
Watch my children and I make the dish here!
*This is a paid sponsored post with Lynoras Kitchen. All opinions are true and that of Briana D’Andrea from momgirlblog. Follow Briana @brianadandrea to see a video of the recipe in action and follow her family adventures on her lifestyle blog momgirlblog.com. You can follow Lynoras @lynorasrestaurant, @lynoraskitchen or @shoplynoras #takemetolynoras #momgirlblog
If you’re looking for a fun-filled family vacation full of summer vibes then look no further.
I can almost hear the words in my ear. Billy Joel singing “Noreaster Alexa.” You know the part where he says he had chartered a course to the Vineyard, but tonight he is Nantucket bound? I can now really connect with that verse, after taking a visit to the Cape this summer with my family for the forth of July. It’s been a tradition of ours to explore a new destination and there’s something really special about that part of world. Perhaps it’s the easy breeze that hits your face coming off the coast, the back and forth rocking of sailboats on the docks or the sound of the seagulls chirping by, but one things for sure…no visit is complete without a trip to the cape’s neighboring islands…Nantucket, otherwise known as “The Grey Lady,” or The Vineyard you know…Martha’s?
I knew when I was doing my research and planing our vacation, a trip to the Cape’s sister islands was a MUST, but I just wasn’t sure how I would swing it, with the limited amount of time we had and two kids with such short attention spans, it didn’t seem like the stars would align. Between our trip to Portland and Acadia and a visit with the majestic whales (also a must and probably a separate blog post), I knew our trip had to accomplish a lot in a short amount of time. That’s where Hy-Line Cruises came in to play. Their staff, especially Ruth were so incredibly helpful with customizing a perfect trip for our little family. With a fleet of ships and an array of excursions to choose from, you can’t go wrong with the adventures they offer. We settled on a trip “Around the Sound,” and what an adventure it was!
We departed Hyannis Port at 8:30a, quite literally ‘Nantucket bound,’ aboard the aptly named Grey Lady! The ship has sight seeing decks, a snack bar, bathrooms and plenty of room to stretch your legs both inside and outside on their rooftop decks. We made sure to arrive 45 minutes before departure and just before we loaded up, we grabbed a quick bite at their amazing on site restaurant, “The Landing Cafe.” Whether you’re a breakfast person or lunch is more your thing, there’s something for everyone! The kids split a bagel with cream cheese and a fresh fruit smoothie and the hubby and I had a quiche and an egg, cheese and bacon English muffin. Everything was fresh and the staff were super helpful and sweet. Highly recommend their grab and go section of salads and wraps too, in case you wanted to do a picnic on one of the islands. Next time I’m snagging a freshly baked popover! Yum!
ALL ABOARD! We were off! While the kids played patty cake (we had a nice chat about this trip being a little bit of work time for mommy, so they were on their best behavior! Lol) Michael and I honed in on exactly what we wanted to accomplish while on the islands. It took about an hour or so to get to our first destination and thanks to to all the health protocols put in place, it was a stress-free and relaxing little trip.
Once docked, it was like we were transported to another dimension. Don’t get me wrong the Cape is great, but Nantucket? It has just a je ne sais quoi. Think hydrangea blooms, cobblestoned streets, gray shingled little cottages dating back to the 19th century, yachts along the dock, a beach for the kids to play (aptly named “Children’s Beach”) and the list goes on. The town was founded in 1641 and while most of the island is accessible by bike or foot, you can ship your car over for a small fortune. From little boutiques to cafes and hidden vias, this island is much like Palm Beach (my favorite local place), only with a much richer history. The fact that Beautycounter and Lilly Pulitzer have some real estate on the island didn’t hurt either and the people who come to summer there year after year, are some of the friendliest you’ll ever meet.
After hitting up a couple of shops (The Nantucket Surf Club is super cute and worth checking out), a quick bite at The Nantucket Tavern and a dip of the toes in the sound at Children’s Beach, we were back on board for our next leg of the trip. Make sure to arrive at least 15 minutes before departure, so they can scan your tickets and get a seat in the best possible spot. Should you need any assistance, Hy-Line has an adorable little office right on the port.
On our way to the vineyard we had an incredible view of the famous Brant Point Lighthouse on the top deck of the ship and I happened to spot a pirate ship setting sail across the sound, which was pretty neat and made for a perfect photo op!
After some incredible seaside views and quick cat nap, we disembarked on to Martha’s Vineyard. The vibe there was a tad different than Nantucket, more of a laid back flip-flops and beer kind of energy versus the oysters and champagne. (Both great in my opinion).
We made our way over to a local ice cream shop where the hubby and I shared a coffee and Oreo ice cream and an iced coffee and the kids landed on rainbow sherbert and mint chocolate chip. We meandered our way over to the historic Gingerbread District, a real sight to see! Painted in shades of sky blue and peach cobbler, these whimsical homes stem back more than 150 years to 1826. Each one more darling than the next, in an array of colors with their own themes and names. Almost like a real life Disney World. We saw one for sale and just might make an offer! Lol
Once we snapped out of it, we skipped back down to the beach (where jaws was filmed), passing the world’s oldest carousel and let the kids take a quick dip to cool off. (We told them the Jaws tidbit after the fact! lol) They guzzled down some fresh fried cod, before boarding the ship back to our home base on the Cape at the Anchor In.
As I write this, it was such a dream come true to be able to make those memories with my family, an experience most definitely worth while and one I would highly recommend thanks to Hy-Line Cruises. Hy-Line makes it easy to travel with your family to create memories that will last a lifetime. We will definitely be back someday.
*This is a sponsored post with Hy-Line Cruises. All opinions are true and that of Briana D’Andrea from momgirlblog.com. The “Around the Sound” trip was sponsored and paid for by Hy-Line Cruises. For more information or to book a trip today visit hylinecruises.com. Follow Briana D’Andrea for more adventures with her family on her lifestyle blog momgirlblog.com. #thisishyline #momgirlblog
Here are some fun ideas to get the dad in your life what they truly want for being the Best father!
I had been looking for a place to whisk our little family away thanks to COVID-19 and all of its travel restrictions that came along with it. If you know anything about me, it’s that I love to travel and am always in search of a new adventure. Enter Margaritaville Cottages. It’s like a little slice of key lime pie smack dab in the middle of Orlando. An escape from the hustle and bustle if you will. Your daughter’s 5th birthday only comes along once and since we had to cancel our plans last year to the happiest place on earth, there was nothing coming in between my family and the mouse’s house this year! We packed up our stuff and went there just for the night and man do I wish we had stayed a week!
All of the cottages are just darling! We were in a 1/1 called “Twist of Lime,” this tiny, adorable lime green mini house decorated to the nines in a Key West vibe. There’s no shortage of options when it comes to stays for your entire crew! Whether you’re looking for a few bedrooms or just simply one, a pool or just a deck sitting atop shells (V was in absolute heaven), there are price ranges fit for every budget.
Most of the cottages come equipped with a Margarita maker and you betcha I took full advantage of it and all of the creature comforts like a dishwasher, washer/dryer and linens and place settings you need to feel like you’re at home. It’s a short walk to the little downtown area called The Promenade at Sunset Walk, so you won’t have to worry about blowing out your flip flop. See what I did there? lol With lots of shops and restaurants to choose from and even a live band and car show which we were lucky to catch, (I believe they’re on Saturday nights), it was literally the perfect little getaway for our family.
We made our way over to the hotel to walk around, smell the scent of coconut and feel like we were in the Keys (another one of my FAVES) and when the fireworks are back in business, I hear their top floor is the best seat in the house. We unfortunately weren’t able to catch any this round.
Will definitely make it a point to stay there again, especially because we want to check out Island H20 Live! A waterpark right on property, where you’ll most likely find me knee deep in the water somewhere once they open this summer! So the next time you shoot up to Orlando from South Florida or perhaps you’re making O-Town your home for the week, I would most definitely recommend Margaritaville Cottages, because after all, no passports are required!