Mr. A calls me the plant lady despite not having a green thumb. What I do know how to do is keep succulents alive therefore they are all over our home, porch and backyard! It's so easy to even use trimmings from other succulents to make indoor potted plants-you don't need to buy a ton of cactus. Check out my latest DIY video on How to Pot Indoor Succulents and then be sure to subscribe to my website and YouTube channel for more!
There's something about creamy frozen fruit made soft serve style that makes me feel like I'm eating ice cream for breakfast. I had the chance to create some easy breakfast recipes while I visited the Chick-fil-A headquarters recently and my smoothie bowls were a huge hit. This is a staple at Casita Amazing, so much so, that our freezer is always stocked with all the must haves. You can get the recipe and read all about my trip by heading to the Chick-fil-A blog, The Chicken Wire! Then come back here and let me know what your favorite smoothie bowl combination is!
Every morning Mr. A and I have breakfast together. Sometimes I make him bacon & eggs or a big breakfast sandy but most mornings he is in the kitchen making us smoothies. He seriously makes the best smoothies. They're the perfect consistency and I love the flavors of all the fruit combinations he comes up with! Be sure to subscribe to my YouTube page and also here on BrandiMilloy.com and let us know what else you want to see us shoot together!
From the first time I spoke with our maternity photographer, Jenny Quicksall, I knew she was the perfect person to capture this special chapter in our lives. Not only is she incredibly talented with an eye for detail, lighting and composition but she is an absolute joy to be around. Her beautiful energy is infectious and being a mama of two, she and I immediately connected about my pregnancy and our babies. Jenny is extremely easy to work with and makes shooting with her feel natural when photoshoots never "feel natural." She made the entire experience so much fun despite it being cold and cloudy that even Mr. A was even enjoying himself! We chose to take our maternity photos at El Matador Beach in Malibu, CA since we love the beach and wanted to get some shots with the large rock formations. While we were taking photos we realized that a year ago we were in Joshua Tree shooting our engagement photos with Brandon Kidd. So wild to think of all the milestones we've reached together in a year. We got married in August, traveled to Greece & Italy for our honeymoon, found out we were pregnant with Little A, bought our first home together, renovated our first home and now we are only weeks away from becoming a family of three. What a truly amazing year we've had! Seeing these photos really makes me appreciate Mr. A even more. He is such a great partner, friend and husband but I really can't wait to see the wonderful father he's going to be. He already does so much for @LittleAmazing and I and I thank God everyday for our life together.
Continue scrolling to see our maternity photoshoot sneak peek with Jenny Quicksall @JennyQuicksall and stay tuned for the full feature on POPSUGAR.com
CREDITS: Photography by Jenny Quicksall | Dresses by Pea in a Pod | Hair & makeup by Kasia Bohos |
Babymooning might be a fairly new concept but I'm all for it. Going on one last epic trip before the baby comes was a great way for Mr. A and I to celebrate us and our family of two. We know the big adventure is yet to come when we welcome our little one in July but we also realize life will change for a bit and it won't be as easy to just jet set to Hawaii for a romantic getaway. It was tough to choose one island to visit but ultimately we chose Maui for its mix of paradise and resort amenities. Our trip was 5 days and it was the perfect amount of time for us to connect, enjoy one another and experience new things with each other. Together, Mr. A and I compiled our list of must have spots to visit while on the island whether you're there babymooning or not.
COCKTAILS & MOCKTAILS AT MAMA'S FISH HOUSE
Everyone told us Mama's Fish House is a must visit. So we went directly from the airport to the famous restaurant for lunch. The place faces the water with breathtaking views and a refreshing ocean breeze. Tiny little birds fly in and out of the restaurant and the intoxicating smell of gardenia flowers is everywhere. Decked out with bamboo chairs and Hawaiian decor, it's the epitome of tropical. And while the food was good and completely authentic (fresh seafood and traditional Hawaiian sides), it was really expensive and we ended up having plenty of dishes on our trip that were more delicious elsewhere on the island. So for us, we would suggest going there for a cocktail (or a mocktail)... and if you dine there, go for a sunset dinner on one of your last nights to really make it special.
MAUI'S HEART ROCK AND NAKALELE BLOWHOLE
Despite being almost 7 months pregnant with cankles that wouldn't quit, I had no intention of just spending our babymoon hanging at the resort all day sipping virgin pina coladas with my feet up! I wanted to explore Maui as much as possible! We walked, hiked and climbed our way around the island and during a day trip to Kapalua we made our way to find the Heart Rock and Nakalele Blowhole. There's a trail at mile marker 38.5 where you scale rocks and sandy dirt down to the famous spot. Round trip it's about a mile hike with a couple steeps spots so I would recommend wearing tennis shoes or secure sandals. Once you get to the bottom, you'll see the blow hole to your left and if you turn around and look to the right along the water, you'll see the heart shaped rock! The blowhole is quite impressive, powerfully shooting water over 100ft in the air. But beware, signs along the trail warn visitors that the blowhole is dangerous so it's best to stay at a safe distance when visiting.
BREAKFAST AT GAZEBO RESTAURANT
Our wedding photographers, Brandon & Kristin Kidd suggested this spot as an absolute must eat. Maui is one of their favorite places to visit and they frequent there pretty often to shoot weddings making them practically locals plus they are foodies just like us, so we knew it would not disappoint. The Gazebo is located in Lahaina on the property of an apartment complex by the pool. The casual restaurant is on a gazebo (this is probably obvious) with limited seating and a wait time averaging an hour. But trust me, the wait is worth it! The portions are large and meant to be enjoyed family style. Once you're seated, the service is quick and the food is hot! I enjoyed a glass of POG (pineapple orange guava juice) with Hawaiian fried rice and pineapple mango pancakes. Mr. A ordered the Portuguese Sausage Platter. Despite being super hungry and eating a ton, we still had leftovers!
MAUI'S SUNFLOWER FIELD
it's hard not to stop at the Sunflower Field in central Maui and snap a pic. As far as the eye can see the land is speckled with bright yellow flowers. It's absolutely gorgeous! The Biodiesel Sunflower Project offers tours for visitors but keep in mind the field is on private property and a working farm so respect the land and please don't pick the flowers!
ROAD SIDE SMOOTHES
While Shave Ice will always be my first love, you rarely marry your first love (although I adore a good high school/college sweetheart story and admire those couples who find each other early on in life)! And while I had plenty of shave ice while we were in Maui, the sugary snow just didn't compare to the fresh fruit smoothies we enjoyed during our babymoon. Our favorites were found on the side of the road on our way around the north part of the island. Family owned and made in a small truck, we placed our order with one of their young daughters. I ordered pineapple mango and Mr. A got guava peach. When they came out you could just see they were the perfect consistency. Thick ribbons of frozen fruit with the most intoxicating smell. Oh my goodness they were the best things I had ever had! I guzzled mine so quickly I almost forgot to snap a pic!
BLACK SAND BEACH
For me, going to Black Sand Beach was worth the trip to Maui alone! From the smooth black pebbled beach to the nearby lava rock anchored by the turquoise blue water, the Black Sand Beach lives up to all of the hype I've ever read about. If you get there early, you'll find yourself alone where you can really soak up all of nature's beauty. Black Sand Beach is off the Road to Hana (another HUGE must do when visiting Maui-so important that it deserves its own post coming soon). The area is lush with palm trees, birds of paradise and every other hypnotic Hawaiian flower. It's like nothing you've ever seen before!
Whether you go to Maui for your babymoon, honeymoon or any other special celebration my recommendation is to take advantage of the entire island! Rent a car, roll down the windows and let your heart be your guide! There is so much more to do on Maui than just hang by the pool. For more photos, go to Instagram @BrandiMilloy and search the hashtag #littleamazingmauimoon.
Full disclosure: I put these together in my car in the Michael's parking lot! It's super easy and so much fun. Transforming my go-to nude heels to these precious white floral & pearl showstoppers took about 5 minutes and cost about $5.00. Read all about it and get the full tutorial at POPSUGAR.com
One of my #1 style guidelines is that anytime I've investing in a new decor item or piece of furniture, I make sure to only purchase versatile multi-functional pieces. Our house doesn't have a lot of storage space so this is a great way for me to maximize what I bring into our home. And because I love to entertain indoors and outdoors, I'm constantly moving decor and using items in more than one space. That's why I love World Market's indoor outdoor collection. The pillows are amazing and made with recycled water bottles so they are weather resistant but still soft. The accent tables are great for outdoor entertaining but I also have one of them beside the glider in my nursery. Living in sunny California we spend so much of our time outdoors and I love that you can really achieve an outdoor living space with World Market. Click here to read more and shop some of my favorite items!
Anyone that knows me knows I love Dr. Pepper. We've had a thing since I was a teenager. I love everything about DP. I prefer it in the can but love a good fountain drink with baby ice. If I drink it from the bottle, it's gotta be the one made with cane sugar. God I love the way it feels going down the ole pie hole. It's so good! And the flavor is amazing! Some people like to compare it to root beer (gasp!) or even cherry coke (what the what?) but there is NO substitute. Dr. Pepper has helped me through break ups, final exams in college and it's my drink of choice on a hot summer's day. It's not like any other soda out there. Anytime I go home my Dad makes sure the fridge is fully stocked. I remember in college my girlfriend, Jola and I would drink 2-3 in one night. She always had cans of it in the fridge and we'd talk about boys and gossip and just sip our happy drink- it was the BEST!
Ok...I just reread this and now you all know what I weirdo I really am, but I don't care. Did I mention I've been to the Dr. Pepper factory in TX? And I own the Dr. Pepper bbq sauce, the Lip Smackers lip gloss and a vintage photo of a Dr. Pepper pick up truck? SO RANDOM. Anyway, WATCH HERE to learn how to make my Dr. Pepper Cupcakes! And scroll down for the full recipe.
DR. PEPPER CUPCAKES by Brandi Milloy
- For cupcakes:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 (12-ounce) bottle Dr Pepper Made With Cane Sugar
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- For icing:
- 1/2 cup butter
- 5 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup cream cheese
- 5 tablespoons Dr Pepper
- 1 tablespoon maraschino cherry juice
- Maraschino cherries
- Dr Pepper gummy candies
- To make cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a cupcake tin with wrappers.
- Into a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugars, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, add Dr Pepper, butter, and cocoa powder. Cook for a couple minutes until a boil starts to form. Pour into flour mixture.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla until blended. Add to batter and mix. Pour into cupcake liners 3/4 of the way full and bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- To make icing: Into a medium-size bowl, whip butter until light and fluffy. Beat in sugar, followed by cream cheese. Then slowly beat in Dr Pepper and cherry juice.
- To assemble: Frost cupcakes and garnish with Dr Pepper or cola gummy, maraschino cherry, and a small straw.
Makes: 24 cupcakes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
I can't believe I'm already in my third trimester with Little Amazing! It has flown by. We are getting so close to meeting our little miracle baby 7/17/17!!! I've had what most people call an easy pregnancy-no morning sickness, not a lot of aches and complaints and I've actually been busier than ever! However, once the third trimester started, I definitely started feeling a little more uncomfortable than usual. Here is a list of my favorite products that have been my must haves during my pregnancy. If you know someone who is pregnant, these are great gift ideas especially as we approach Mother's Day!
My friend, Liz gave this to me shortly after I announced I was pregnant. I thought I wouldn't really use it since I was sleeping just fine and already had a body pillow. Oh how I was wrong. Towards the end of my second trimester I couldn't snuggle up to the pillow fast enough. Now it's the only way I can get comfortable in bed. You can use it a multiple of different ways and it offers just the right hip and back support. It's been a God send with the inevitable acid reflex I heard so much about because I can use it to lay on my side but also prop my chest up at the same time. I even use it to elevate my feet to relieve my poor cankles! It's definitely a bedroom must have regardless of if you are carrying a baby!
I've always been a big fan of compression socks. I wear them for recovery after a work out and love wearing them when I fly across country. They help prevent swelling, energize legs, alleviate achiness and even help reduce varicose veins. When I have to shoot all day and be on my feet, these save me from swollen calves and ankles. They really work and I love the cute designs. And although I've been a fan of VIM & VIGR for years, I saw Whitney Port just listed them as her pregnancy must haves too. :)
During my first trimester my allergies were so bad. It could have been the time of the year (winter) but there were some nights I couldn't stop sneezing and my nose just kept running. My midwife recommended I use a humidifier with essential oils. I found that the breathe blend helped me the most. It's a combination of peppermint, rosemary, lemon & eucalyptus. I would also add a couple drops of lavender to help me sleep. Even now, I will use this to help me relax or create a somber environment while I do prenatal yoga.
When I asked all of my Mommy friends what belly cream they used, a majority swore by this one. Even though I'm pretty sure getting stretch marks from pregnancy is a right of passage and totally dependent on your genes, I still have been religiously rubbing my belly down morning and night with this stuff. If oil isn't your thing, I've been alternating with this cream too!
Mr. A calls these my MC Hammer pants! They are SUPER soft and incredibly comfortable. I'm obsessed with them! For me, my tight yoga pants started being too tight around my belly and no longer comfy so these were a great swap for me! They actually look really cute with a casual tea but I wore them on our babymoon with a tight body suit and kitten heels and it actually worked for an evening look.
I'm happy to share that I will be posting more about my personal life right here on BrandiMilloy.com From being married to Mr. Amazing and our journey together as newlyweds, new home owners and soon-to-be new parents to decor ideas and renovation projects from our 1930's Spanish bungalow to entertaining ideas and recipe hacks PLUS my travel guides and must have food spots....I can't wait to create and share more with you all! So be sure to SUBSCRIBE to BrandiMilloy.com, my YouTube page and follow me on Instagram, Facebook & Twitter. xoxo, B
I had so much creating this segment for KTLA featuring a self-serve Nacho Pie Bar, Waffle Ice Cream Tacos with Coolhaus Ice Cream & Sugarfina Cactus and Pineapple Gummies, DIY Mexican Fruit Cups and a Make-Your-Own-Margarita Bar. Be inspired to host your own party by watching the full segment here! Yippity Yippa Yiyiyiyiyiyiiii!!!
For my favorite products for Cinco de Mayo, scroll down!
I finally convinced Mr. A to do an AMA with me. He was nervous at first but I think he'll get the hang of it! We had fun doing an Ask-Me-Anything video for POPSUGAR FOOD and then did a bonus video for my YouTube Channel. Head over to my YouTube Channel to watch all of the fun and let me know what you think. Be sure to subscribe because we'll be doing more content together...showing you our relationship, life with a baby on the way, home renovations, trips, our favorite recipes and more!
When TODAY Show asked me if I could make a couple of my favorite desserts dairy-free for Hoda, I was up for the challenge! This Ice Box cake features fresh blueberries, bananas, Golden Oreos and a delicious coconut whipped cream made with coconut cream. This dessert isn't too sweet, totally comforting and perfect for spring or summer. The star of the show is really the coconut whip! The trick is to you put the cans of coconut cream in the refrigerator the night before. This allows the cream to solidify so that you drain the liquid and only mix the cream. Once you see soft peaks, add a little powdered sugar and vanilla beans/extract. It's absolutely delicious and a fantastic frosting too! Click here for the full recipe and to watch my segment on TODAY!
Even though it's been 3 years since the first time I was invited on the TODAY Show I am still SO grateful anytime they invite me on the show and the butterflies are always there up until the cameras roll. I think if you don't get butterflies when you're doing LIVE television, you have no soul! Just kidding but seriously the rush of doing LIVE television is so exhilarating but stressful too because you want to make sure you say everything you need to say, don't skip a step, etc. Well most of those rules go out the window when I'm with Kathie Lee & Hoda. They are always so much fun and this time they had a sweet surprise just for me! You can watch the entire segment where I showed the ladies how to make my Cookies & Cream Cinnamon Rolls and my Banana Blueberry Ice Box Cake right here.
I'm doing everything in my power not to lick my screen just to taste this Lemony Tear & Share Bread. It's like sunshine on a plate!
Warm and gooey, featuring zesty lemon, soft fluffy dough, a sticky sweet sauce made from Chick-fil-A lemonade and a to-die-for cream cheese frosting, it's what brunch dreams are made of! Get the full recipe right here and let me know what you think!
What an honor it was to be invited to the Chick-fil-A (CFA) HQ in Atlanta, GA to come up with my very own recipe hacks using some of my favorite breakfast items from CFA.
From my Mini Muffin Frittatas to my Hashbrown Breakfast Lasagna and Lemony Tear and Share Bread, these are some of my favorite and easiest dishes to make for my family. You can watch all of my behind the scenes fun and get the full recipes here!
This is what happens when PEEPS die and go to heaven. They become the most delicious, soft and chewy gourmet marshmallow cereal treats! Get the simple recipe I created and more by going to the World Market blog now.
There's nothing I love more than creating a pinterest perfect tablescape. But I must admit-I'm a shameless host-I love when my guests walk in and "oooh" and "awe" over every little detail and that's half of the satisfaction! Creating this scape was so simple-every single item is from World Market, even the adorable sugar cookies! I had a casual & playful vibe in mind but I still wanted it to look pulled together and elevated. Head over to the World Market blog to see all of the details and learn more!