Joanna Anastasia

Lifestyle

Ice Cream Truck Birthday Party

This past weekend we have celebrated Julien’s second birthday- and I still can’t believe that my baby is officially a toddler now! It’s so bittersweet to see them change and grow and lose their babyness in what seems to be a blink of an eye! And while I’m so proud of the little boy he’s becoming I’m also sad that my last baby is not a baby anymore.

To celebrate our sweet boy I wanted something special- he never had a birthday party before since on his first birthday last year we went camping ( third child problems) and then he got sick so we never got to really throw him a party before!

But I was also quite tired these last couple of weeks – the quarantaine at home with kids was pretty exhausting and I guess I’m still not fully back in shape! And because of covid we’re still in social distancing mood here in Montreal- however we are permitted to having people in the backyard! So I needed to find a way to make it fun, easy and appropriate for the social distancing. 

That’s when my friends from Luluthia have contacted me with their new Party Box concept- a Pinterest worthy 100% personalized party in a box shipped to your door! With everything in the box I didn’t have to run around the stores to get things – everything was there!

We decided to go for the Ice Cream Truck theme- since the Party Box is completely personalized – to match my toddlers love for trucks and cars with my own inclination towards everything pastel and cute!

Everything was matching my pastel colour palette and had the cutest Ice Cream Truck theme on it ( plates, cups, cutlery, balloon garland, name garland, picture frame for the sweet table, table decoration, gift boxes etc)

We received the cake and the sweets from the Patisserie Montebello and it was definitely the most beautiful kids birthday cake we ever seen- with the oh so cute and realistic rice krispies Ice Cream Truck on top!

On the sweet table we had the cutest Ice Cream shaped cupcakes , colorful macaroons, rice krispies ice pops, and cake pops- all from Patisserie Montebello.

The flowers where from the Luluthia Designs and let me tell you, they looks and smelled absolutely amazing!

Now, for the social distancing aspect ( in the context of phase 3 and permitted backyard gatherings) here are my tips:


Social Distancing Backyard Birthday Party:

  • Make sure you have enough space in your backyard for your guests
  • Set Picnic blankets with 2 meters of distance around your backyard
  • Set up the disinfectant station at the entrance of your backyard and at the door that leads inside
  • If possible set the sweet table outside and serve guests one by one
  • If you can’t set it outside let in your guests one by one to serve them snacks at home 

So while we had to make sure we are keeping our distances, it was nevertheless the sweetest and most fun birthday celebration we ever had!


Disclosure- while this birthday party was gifted all opinions and our excitement are our own!

Poppy’s popcorn & a printable quote for celebrating Trolls World Tour

Ever since me and my girls watched Trolls a while back we where instantly enchanted with the life philosophy of Poppy, all the songs and the imaginary world of Trolls.

Playroom Printable

Our favorite quote from the first one was definitely this one here, so much that I decoded to make a printable for my kids playroom! And of course you too can print it for your kids! ( download here) :

“Happiness isn’t something you put inside, it’s already there! Sometimes you just need someone to help you find it.” Poppy


So obviously we where over the moon when we learned that there’s a second part, Trolls World Tour , now available on DVD and Blu Ray and that we get to be one of the first ones to enjoy it at home! My girls where spoiled with the cutest Trolls toys and new Lego ( you can find them all at your local Target, Walmart or on Amazon !) and this mama is pretty obsessed too!

Poppy’s Popcorn

To celebrate we made Poppy’s popcorn that I’m sharing the printable recipe with you too, so you too can make a fun movie night with your little ones! You can download it here!

Trolls World Tour Movie Night Celebration

So as you see first my girls got to build up their excitement for the Trolls World Tour with the new lego and some coloring books- they learned about the new character Barb and got all curious about the plot.

Then we have set up the movie night in our family room and the DVD version is so fun because it also has a sing along mode and lots of extras!

Also, next time you’re shopping for makeup make sure to look for limited edition PUR and Trolls makeup! I must say I’m obsessed !

And of course now there’s a Poppy next to my girls bed and apparently she’s “the best!”

We’re all definitely obsessed with Trolls World Tour!

Disclosure- this post was written in collaboration with Trolls , however all opinions and excitement are my own!

Your most common Cricut questions answered

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Cricut for Cricut. All opinions are 100% mine.

Your most common Cricut questions answered

Ever since I bought my first Cricut machine last year I became pretty much obsessed with it. So much that I made most of my hand made gifts with it for Christmas last year, followed by updating my and my kids wardrobe in the winter months followed by a plan to open an Etsy shop with my hand made creations later this year!

Yes, I’m a Cricut obsessed blogger now, and a proud owner of two beautiful machines- Cricut Air 2 and Cricut Maker. And while there’s still so much I can learn, I have become acquaintance with them pretty fast- and today I want to answer all of your questions!

Let’s start with the most common one:

1.Is a Cricut Maker worth the price?

I bought my first Cricut machine- cricut Air 2- in early December last year as a gift from me to me – and I can honestly tell you that yes it is! Why? Because the possibilities of crafting (or making products for sale) with your Cricut Air 2 ( or Cricut Maker) are ENDLESS. The end result always looks professional. And crafts that used to take me hours, or where way beyond my skill level, now take me fraction the time and I can make all the things I used to buy at Etsy before!

2.What kind of DIY projects can I make?

If you get yourself a Cricut Air 2 you can make beautiful cards and paper goods: from banners, to fancy cake toppers to paper mobiles to cardboard projects to giant paper flowers. You can make all sorts of vinyl projects: like wall decorations, organizing etiquettes, wood signs and decorative pieces. You can put vinyl monograms on glasses and tumblers, or personalize water bottles. You can make iron on projects: t-shirts with quotes, personalized baby onesies, matching mommy and me t-shirts. You can also use it to cut out felt for hair bows or felt flowers for decor projects ( like wreaths, personalized banners or mobiles).

And if you get yourself a Cricut Maker than you can do ALL THAT plus: you can use your machine to cut patterns out of fabric for sewing ( from dolls, to kimonos, to dresses, here the possibilities are endless). You can use your Maker to cut through faux leather and make baby moccasins , leather earrings or hair bows. You can use it to cut through thin wood and make personalized puzzles, 3D sculptures, state wood signs, coasters etc. You can cut through thin metal and make jewelry! Thanks to an engraving tool, you can cut out your own jewelry pieces and monogram them! I will repeat myself, but again, the possibilities are endless!

3.Will it be easy for me to learn the software to make projects?

Yes. It’s very intuitive in my opinion. It took me one afternoon of trial and error and I was able to make my first projects with it. There’s tons of great step by step videos on the Cricut platform too, for anything from the basic vinil project to more complicated crafts, all with step by step explanation. And there’s a ton of youtube videos too!

And, you can have access to the Design Space ( Cricut software) from your laptop, ipad or your phone- so even if you’re on the go and want to make a last minute birthday card, you can access the software from the application on your phone and have a card ready in minutes!

4.What materials can I cut?

As I mentioned before, the list is really long! You can cut through:

  • paper
  • thick paper
  • cardboard
  • vinyl
  • iron-on vinyl
  • felt

And if you get a Cricut Maker you can cut through all that AND:

  • material
  • faux leather
  • thin wood
  • thin metal

5.Is it easy to use a Cricut?

Yes. It took me one video to understand the steps. Basically they all go down to:

  1. Choose a project you want to work on in Design Space ( Cricut software)
  2. Choose your material ( let’s say it’s vinyl)
  3. Put your vinyl on a loading mat
  4. Load the mat into your Cricut
  5. Choose a right cutting setting ( the software will guide you)
  6. Press ON ( machine will start cutting)
  7. Unload the mat ( press a button)
  8. Pull out the cut material from the mat
  9. Transfer it on the project / finish your project

Depending from the material used ( vinil, paper or wood) you’ll use different mat, different cutting tool and different cutting option. But the good news is that the software will guide you through all the steps and after one -two projects you’ll remember which material goes with which cutting tool.

I hope I have answered all your questions today! And if you’ll be looking for me you know where you can find me- by my Cricut in my crafting space, creating and making new things!

Disclosure- this post was written in collaboration with Cricut, however all of the opinions, enthusiasm and thoughts remain entirely my own and are based on my own experience.

Simple hack to serve kids more veggies and fruits in one serving

After months of quarantine at home with kids I’m pretty much out of ideas for cooking healthy meals and preparing healthy snacks. And when our days all look the same it’s hard to find new special ways to motivate kids to eat their veggies more than ever, am I right? 

I’m sure we all feel the same now- we’re tired. We’re taking care of children during quarantine and we’re making sure they eat right and are stimulated and educated… it’s exhausting.

But just when I was ready to throw the towel and abandon the idea of feeding my kids anything other than carbs I remembered Evive Smoothies. Absolutely delicious and chocked full of nutrition in every cube! I think they’re absolutely amazing for breakfast as a simple smoothie bowl! Or for a midday snack in the form of a smoothie- and they are the only smoothies that are ready to use, without a blender needed!

I discovered them last year as my mom-on-the go breakfast idea. They’re unique on the market as they come in a form of cubes that are ready to be popped in a mason jar, covered with milk or water and ready to be enjoyed in no time . ( They will dissolve on their own within 10-15 min) . But if you want to have them ready within seconds,  you can also use a blender- I think they’re delicious either way!

My kids current obsession is Touk-Touk ( a sunny blend of tropical fruits, veggies and plant based proteins) that is also a flavour of a wonderful project in collaboration with the Breakfast Club of Canada.  During the first two weeks of June, they will be donating a percentage of all their sales of Touk-Touk flavour towards this amazing cause!

Now, if you enjoy cooking you can use the Evive smoothies in your meal prep! As a base for frozen treats or in pinterest-worthy smoothie bowls. But since I’m a mom like you (currently in quarantine mode without schools nor daycare) I simply make the most delicious smoothies for my kids! That they actually drink !

Here’s a couple of fun ideas that I tried with my kids and that ARE NOT COMPLICATED

( and that taste delicious with Touk-Touk) 

  • Mix the Evive smoothies with milk ( cow milk, nut milk, or oat milk)
  • Mix them with low sugar apple juice 
  • Add some apple sauce and water to your Evive smoothies cubes
  • Serve them in a bowl as a simple smoothie bowl with some cut fruits on the side
  • Mix the Evive smoothies with yogurt for extra creamy texture
  • Serve it in a bowl with low sugar cereal 
  • And if you’re feeling extra fancy you can get a coconut and serve your smoothie inside – your kids will think it’s the best treat ever!

Now that I’m making these smoothies once a day my kids are actually eating much more veggies and fruits in one serving ! And in my books, that’s the best mom hack ever!

Now, if you’re wondering where you can find them, you can either order online , or check your local ( Canadian) grocery store frozen aisle. And, their packaging is 100% recyclable, so there’s no harm for the planet!

I hope that you will find them as life saving as I did ( and as yummy as my kids think !)

Disclosure: this post was brought to you by Evive Smoothies. All opinions remain completely my own and are based on my own experience.

Valentines day tablescape

Every year we do something fun with my girls for Valentine’s day- because why for many this is another made-up holiday, for me it’s a great opportunity to celebrate love and family in the midst of our cold canadian winter!

Now, if you prefer making gifts for your loved ones, or simply watch romantic movies and eat heart shaped cookies – you do you boo! I think all that really matters is to take this day as an opportunity to talk about why we love each other, what we appreciate about each other and how we should be grateful and appreciative of all the little things all year round.

However setting up a cute Valentines day table for breakfast or an afternoon tea is definitely something fun to do for/with kids! And for me, seeing my girls eyes getting big out of excitement when they see what I have prepared for them is what makes my heart full!

It doesn’t need to be expensive to be fun- here are my simple ideas for a Valentine’s day tablescape:

  • hand written paper table runner
  • paper heart hearts layered on the table
  • felt heart hearts spread around the table
  • heart shaped chocolates and cookies layered in a colorful mess
  • hot milk with marshmallow hearts
  • cake with marshmallow “cake toppers” ( store bought or baked- whatever works!)
  • valentines balloons
  • heart garland
  • ceramic lanterns
  • some fruits

And I found most of this set up in my local Dollar Store- it took me around 10 minutes to set it all up. And I had so much fun! Because celebrating doesn’t need to be over the top difficult to set up nor expensive!

Now I hope I inspired you to throw a simple Valentine’s day celebration in your home too! Happy Valentine’s day everyone!

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Printable Christmas gift tags & wrapping paper set

Christmas is only a month away and in my books it means that it’s about time to start the preparations! I know there’s still time for the cooking and baking, but when you’re an usually busy adult then during the holiday season ( full of activities, obligations, parties and extra magic- and much more parenting effort then usually!) then you’re basically on the edge of a breakdown! Unless of course your start early, get your gifts ahead of time, wrap them and tag them right away and hide away before the real holiday rush starts!

So this year I decided to make my own printable Christmas gift tags- and some wrapping paper that goes with it, in an effort to :

  • always be ready to wrap a gift ( just press print and voila)
  • be more eco friendly ( I already have lots of paper at home, and I don’t need to buy any new wrapping paper or tags!)

I couldn’t be happier with this little printable set I created- it’s cheerful, joyful and perfect to mix an match! I made two shapes of tags for you, 9 different designs of tags, and 4 different wrapping paper sheets!

I printed everything on regular paper, and I just love how it turned out! My girls where helping me cut out the gift tags, we have put on some holiday music and with the snow outside it felt like christmas is only days away!

Clearly I’m obsessed with red, white and blue this season- also, everything hand lettered and cute! I hope you’ll like my little wrapping set as much as me and my girls we love it!


You can get the PDF file HERE – simply download it, print at home, cut out the tags and get wrapping with the wrapping paper sheets!

And make sure to share with me how you wrapped your gifts with my set – just tag me on your Instagram photos ( @joanna.anastasia_ ) I can’t wait to see how you’ll be using them!


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