Joanna Anastasia

3 healthy lunches with only 2 ingredients

Every January, I feel like eating more healthy and cooking more plant-based meals. 

And every January after around 2-3 weeks I kind of give up. And this year, after all of that COVID life that we went through, I haven’t even pretended that I would try!

I was sick and tired of cooking all the time. Now that me and my hubby both work from home, and with the schools being open on-and-off, it felt as if I moved into the kitchen for good. And while I generally enjoy cooking, at some point enough is enough!

Add to the mix my kids who don’t really like meat but are kind of picky with veggies, and you can imagine the mental state I was starting with this year!

So, I must say I was thrilled when I got to try the Evive’s new lunches! What are they, you must be asking? Well, imagine a plant-based, nutrition-packed, versatile meal, ready in minutes – and then add some amazing flavours to it, and here you have Evive lunches! 

So let me show you how in less than 5 minutes I can create a nutrient-dense, healthy and yummy lunch – times three!


Delicious Quinoa Chili 

  • Evive Bam Chili
  • Cooked rice
  • Favourite toppings (optional) 

Start with cooked rice (I usually cook some over the weekend and keep a bowl of it in a fridge) then top it with the Evive cubes and either reheat for 3 minutes on the stove or in the microwave. That’s it, your lunch is done! Made with natural and simple ingredients like black beans, spices and quinoa, it’s simply so yummy! But, you can also take it to the next level with your favourite toppings. I love adding some avocado, a bit of lime juice, spicy peppers and fresh coriander! 


Creamy Squash Pasta

  • Evive Mac Squash 
  • Cooked pasta of your choice (it’s equally yummy with rice pasta, noodles or italian spaghetti!) 
  • Toppings of your choice (optional)

If you have some cooked pasta and Evive’s lunch cubes, you’ll be ready to go! 

For the simplest version mix cooked pasta with the Mac Squash cubes (made with cashews, butternut squash and turmeric) and steamed broccoli (or another favourite veggie of yours). For a fancy bistro vibe you can get creative and add fresh herbs, some sprouts and spicy peppers. It’s guaranteed to be yummy either way!


Tasty Thai soup

  • Evive Tom Thai 
  • Vegetable broth (or any other you prefer)
  • Toppings of your choice (optional) 

Simply heat your broth with the Evive cubes, stir and enjoy a yummy hot and fragrant soup! Tom Tai is made with edamame beans, zucchini and coconut cream and will satisfy the biggest foodies out here. You can get fancy and add some fresh greens, herbs, and a drop of coconut milk! I like to use steamed bok choy, fresh basil, spicy peppers, and a bit of sriracha sauce! 


Now, once you try these ideas, you’ll see that you can actually use any of the Evive lunches as a soup (mixed with a hot water or broth) or over rice or pasta. The possibilities are simply endless! 

And the best part is that when feeding kids, you know they are eating healthy, but they can’t tell that this “mac n cheese”, or that creamy soup is actually made with incredible vegetables that they would usually discard off their plate! Now, this is what I call a mom hack!


Disclaimer: this post is brought to you in collaboration with Evive, all opinions and enthusiasm remains completely my own!  

DIY book crate on wheels

My oldest daughter is such a bookworm, always reading and always asking for new books. So I decided to surprise her and make a DIY rolling book crate for here- aka little liberty on wheels!

It’s a very easy project, and one you can make in one afternoon! I’m showing you the step by step in this little video- though I’ll also explain how I did it, don’t worry!

DIY Book crate on Wheels how to:

First gather your mayerials:

  • simple wood crate
  • leftover of paint
  • a drill
  • wheels with Socket Type Mounting
  • decals

I started with whitewashing my crate- I didn’t really like that yellowish tone of wood, but my daughter didn’t want it completely white either- so whitewashing it is! If you’re wondering what is whitewashing then let me tell you- it’s the easiest way of updating wood surfaces ever. Simply mox paint half in half with water and with a rag wash it over your surface. That’s it! Alos, it dries really fast!

Next, I pre drilled the holes for my wheels, and then I screwed them in.

I found the wheles on amazon- simply look for wheels for furniture and you’ll find plenty to choose from!

Then I went and made some decals with my Cricut- my daughter speaks both french and Polish, and she’s just learning english, so it was her who decided that one side shall be in english and one in french.

And then, it was all done!

All that was left was to fill it with her favourite books, and tadam, tiny library on wheels is all ready! Of course, her younger sibling decided to take over her reading nook when she was in school, but that’s just normal right !

I hope I inspired you to make a little diy book crate on wheels for your kids too!

Woodland toddler bedroom

So when we first moved in here 4 months ago I remember thinking how my son is the only one who is losing space in the move. Our old home was much smaller and all the rooms where tiny- our new home is really big and all of the rooms are really spacious- except of Julien’s room. It’s really small.

Let me show you how small it looked on the day we moved in-these are screenshots of the video I took so don’t mind the quality- with wall to wall old carpet, and all in gray blue shade:

And here’s how it looks now!

Isn’t the power of wallpaper just amazing! So first thing we did we painted the room half wall warm white and half a more saturated shade of blue., and my hubby have changed the flooring! We added his furniture, art on the wall and new lights and after all that I still felt there was something missing. So when Photowall reached out to me asking if there’s a room in my home that I would like to add wallpaper too, I knew right away that it was Julien’s room that needed it desperately!

Because there’s nothing like a wallpaper to add depth and character to a small space!

Also, let me just say that it was the first time ever we have put a real wallpaper up- and it took less than 2 hours! And was so much easier than I anticipated! The wallpaper itself is made out of amazing material, doesn’t tear, has a great feel to it, is mat and was really a breeze to install! Totally unlike my experience with removable wallpapers from the past.

And I must say I really loved how Photowall had sooo many designs to choose from- all organized by themes and colors!

Now, even though Julien’s room is the smallest in our new home it’s now the one with the most character! And I’m pleased to say that he loves it now to!

If you’d like to change up your walls I have a code for you :

And remember, every space can become cozy and inviting! And now to help you add more charm in to your home I have a discount code that you can use:  joannaanastasia25 ! ( This code will give you a 25% discount on any product at http://www.photowall.com and is good for a month of January!

Disclosure- I received this wallpaper as a gift, all opinions and enthusiasm remain exclusively my own.

Christmas 2020 Home tour- in our new home in the woods

Hello in my home in the woods all decked for christmas! If you came here straight from Danielle’s home tour, welcome! I’m so happy you stopped by!

So first of all let me just say- what a year! Just like everyone else on the planet I’m glad it’s coming to an end! However, despite the struggles we’ve all went through it’s also the year that we where blessed with abundant family time. A year in which my kids has grown ,and laughed and played. And a year when we have finally moved here, to our forever family home!

It’s been almost four months now that we moved, and while we still have a long way to go ( I’m looking at you unfinished staircase, and you old carpet-abundant master bedroom) I’m still so happy to call this place our home and to decorate it for the season!

So one of the first things we did after moving was painting – first, the entire open space white, then the kids room, and lastly the front door. I just love how the red doors pop now! I added a wreath I made with dollar store supplies, and I think they look perfectly welcoming for the season now!

Right when you’ll come in in the main hallway there’s our diy advent calendar- my kids are so excited every night we open it- even though there’s nothing but little chocolates and candies inside!

After you go further and pass by the advent calendar you’re directly in the middle of our open space- the living room that connected to the dining room and to the kitchen

So in here I decided to go with lots of white, with a pops of red and pink this year- my kids are finally big enough not to play with my vintage ornaments- but still too small for me to decorate on the coffee table ( since it’s usually there play area!)

Then the dining area is right in between or family room and the kitchen- I just love how we are close to the christmas tree glow when we sit here- and how I can see it all from the kitchen island!

And as for the kitchen, I made this little hot cocoa station that’s usually on the kitchen counter – I just love it when decor gets practical- because hot cocoa is an everyday need am I right?

The rest of the kitchen is rather simple- a little garland on the kitchen window, a DIY festive cutting board and some greenery set the mood in this space!

Now, you won’t see our master bedroom today because it’s still awaiting some major renovations- but since our kids rooms are done ( there where some really old carpets and very dark brown walls here when we moved!) I decided to deck their rooms a bit!

Thank you so much for joining me in my home tour! I hope you found some simple inspiration for your holiday decorating!

Next stop is Amber – I’m sure you’ll love her home tour!

This week I’m joining some of my talented blogging friends for the Christmas Seasonal Simplicity Series home tour week! We’re all sharing part of our home decked out for Christmas. Be sure to check out these fabulous Christmas decor ideas by clicking on the links below each image.

Sharing with me today…

Wednesday

The Handmade Home / Finding Silver Pennies / Joanna Anastasia / AmberTysl

The DIY Mommy / My Sweet Savannah / Dans le Lakehouse / Fynes Designs

And sharing the rest of the week…

Monday

The Happy Housie / Inspiration for Moms / Maison de Cinq / This is Simplicite

Chrissy Marie Blog / Modern Glam / Nick & Alicia

Tuesday

Cassie Bustamante / Cuckoo4Design / Lemon Thistle / Love Create Celebrate

tatertots & jello / Jennifer Maune / She Gave it a Go / Clean & Scentsible

Thursday

Two Twenty One / Cherished Bliss / Life is Better at Home / All Things With Purpose

This is Our Bliss / Home Made Lovely / Place of My Taste

Friday

The Tattered Pew / Life is a Party / Rambling Renovators / House by Hoff

Deeply Southern Home / Grace in My Space /
Taryn Whiteaker Designs / Just a Girl and Her Blog

Cozy Traditional Christmas Mantle

“Nothing ever seems too bad, too hard, or too sad when you’ve got a Christmas tree in the living room.” Nora Roberts

That and a mantle above a fireplace all decorated for Christmas!

I remember very well the list of features I made many years ago when we where looking for our first home- and a fireplace with a mantle was on the very top! Ofcourse, as often life unfolds, we ended up in a cute little city house without a fireplace but close to the metro instead (as back in the days I couldn’t even drive!) and after a couple of years there I got an electric fireplace to at least have a vibe of a real one!

Fast forward to this past summer and we have finally moved to our dream home- that has not one mantle to decorate but two- since the fireplace we have now is double sided! But, the second one is in my office which means it’s probably covered with crafting supply at this very moment!

All that to say, our family room mantle is all decked for Christmas and so is the Christmas tree next to it- and today I wanted to share it with you along my blogging friends and their gorgeous Holiday Mantles!

This year I decided to go for a white red and pops of pink with some fresh greenery colour scheme- although if you have been following me for awhile now you know that I might as well change it up in a week! I just can’t stop puttering around my christmas decor!

Make sure to check my friends beautiful mantel ideas too!

Today I’m joining some of my talented blogging friends for the Christmas Seasonal Simplicity Series. We’re all sharing our holiday mantel decor with you – be sure to check out these fabulous Christmas mantel decor ideas by clicking on the links below each image.

Cozy Cabin Christmas Mantel Decor with Pops of Red at The Happy Housie

Fresh Cedar Christmas Mantel at A Pretty Life

Bright Colourful Merry Mantel at Tatertots and Jello

Red, White, and Gold Christmas Mantel at This is Our Bliss

Cozy Traditional Christmas Mantle at JoAnna Anastasia

Natural and Cozy Christmas Mantel at Modern Glam

Christmas Mantel Decor Ideas at Craftberry Bush

Merry and Bright Christmas Mantle at The Handmade Home

Assymetrical Christmas Mantel with Fresh Greenery and Blue Accents at The DIY Mommy

How to Hang a Garland on a Shelf for a Christmas Vignette at Fynes Designs

Elegant Holiday Living Room and Mantel at House by Hoff

Traditional Christmas Mantel at Rambling Renovators

Christmas Mantel Decorating Ideas at Jennifer Maune

Christmas Mantel Mixing Faux and Fresh Greenery with Grey Accents at Deeply Southern Home

How to Decorate a Mantel for Christmas at She Gave it a Go

How to Decorate a Mantel with a TV Above It for Christmas at Home Made Lovely

My Classic Christmas Mantel with White and Red at Life is Better at Home

How to Style Your Shelves for the Holidays at My Sweet Savannah

Christmas Mantel Decor Ideas at Clean & Scentsible

Modern Minimalist Shelf Styling for the Holidays at This is Simplicite

Christmas Mantel Decor with Lighted Garland at Grace in My Space

Rustic Luxe Christmas Mantel Decor Ideas at Cherished Bliss

My Green and White Christmas Mantel at Cassie Bustamante

Holiday Mantel at Life is a Party

Asymmetrical Garland Mantel at Taryn Whiteaker Designs

Best gifts for girls 6 to 9 years old this Holiday season

My girls are now six and a half and almost nine so I figured that I’ll share with you the best toys, books and dress up ideas we discovered this year- things that they really play with constantly, that are still on their dear Santa list and that I’m sure your daughter too will love too!

So first let me start by saying that some of the items I have personally bought for them and some we had the chance to discover – hovewer they are all the absolute favourite, loved and tested- and would all make for amazing christmas gifts – withoit breaking a bank!

HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE FOR GIRLS AGE 6 TO 9

So here’s what I wholeheartedly suggest this holiday season:

DOLLS

  • Blume dolls collection. Every single toy from this collection is adorable, sparks imagination and offers endless play possibilities! Fun starts as kids unpack the dolls ( or Blume pet ) with dolls either blooming from a pot, or blooming in a flower- only to discover lots of accessories, water play ideas and plenty of uses to the packaging itself ( plant flowers, store accessories, craft- the options are endless) These toys are also really affordable so they won’t break the bank while being a sure hit! So me, I’m getting more of the Baby Blume dolls for my girls this holidays!
  • VTech Myla’s Sparkling Friends– technically not a doll but a sparkly animal but offers same imaginative play while singing, changing colours and asking questions! ( my middle girls favourite evening-by-the-bed toy – since it looks so pretty in the dark!)
  • Dolls By Polina handmade doll- a heirloom quality decorative- yet sturdy to play with- beautiful hand made doll- perfect for any little girls room decor
  • Cuddle and Kind– while technically these are baby dolls, my girls still love having them in their beds, as they are both adorable and super soft to sleep with ( and every purchase helps feeding kids in need!)

BOOKS

  • Books from the Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls series. Encouraging short stories about real life woman and girls from both long ago and not that long, these stories are a great way to show your daughter that woman can do anything they set their mind on- even if the road to the goal is long and difficult!
  • Books by Raina Telgemeier for kids. Her unique style of cartoons will charm your daughter while presenting her with smart, unique and sensitive way of storytelling. Both of my girls are in love with The Baby-Sitters Club series ( they will be getting new toms in their stockings this year!) and the trilogy based on Raina Telgemeier teen years ( we have the french version) – and really I love how intelligent and charming these books are while being a great educative tool and a way to start conversetaion with your preeteen on a number of tough subjects.

Imaginative play

  • Mini & Me dress up dresses. These dresses are beautifully made, great quality dress up gowns that are made for your daughter and her doll. I love their quality ( none of that plastic feel of halloween princess dresses) and they love how they can dress up matching with their dolls. Very unique gift that encourages imaginative play!
  • V-tech KidiZoom creator cameraWe got to discover some of the Vtech new toys earlier this season, and while Julien loved his finds ( I’ll share our favourite toddler gift ideas next week!) girls got to discover this camera- and let me tell you, it’s not your regular phone camera! No tonly it is kid friendly, but also it comes with a green screen that lets kids create tons of fun videos with special effects ( traveling to space, meeting dinosaurs, deep diving just to name a few!) My oldest daughter is absolutely obsessed with it, and since we are still at home quite a lot this camera let’s them not only play and create but also feel like they’re on an adventure- while staying safe at home!

I hope these ideas can help you shopping this holiday season!


Disclaimer- some of the items listed where given to me while some were my own buy, all of them are equally amazing and reflect my true thoughts and feelings!

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