Banana Bread

When I am stressed, overwhelmed, or anxious I turn to cooking and baking. I do not know what it is but cooking or baking always makes me feel better. It can be something as simple as making pasta sauce or something with a few more steps like oatmeal cookies or a cake.

Today, I was following my cleaning schedule – bathroom Tuesday here today ugh! – and, when I finished, I was picking up a few of my daughter’s toys she left in the kitchen when I noticed our bananas were not looking so fresh any more. Decided to make some banana bread; perfect recipe to make the house smell yummy on the cold, rainy day we had.

I followed a Juice Plus recipe using Dutch Chocolate Complete for a healthy, plant-based bread.  This isn’t my usual go to recipe as it’s kicked up with the addition of protein! The recipe calls for French Vanilla Complete but I switched up the Complete flavor because we usually add chocolate chips to our banana bread so decided to give it a bit more chocolate flavor with the Complete. Love the options Complete has. Not only can I make delicious smoothies but I can bake with it too!

Find the Recipe here!

Interested in learning more about what Juice Plus has to offer? Let me know!


This past week was Hydration Week with my JuicePlus team. Aside from my morning cup of coffee, and some times an afternoon one, all I have during the day is water. The minimum I drink each day is 48oz but I always try for more. During Hydration week I challenged myself to drink more everyday, and then, make it my new minimum daily intake.

During hydration week, I started each day with a large glass of water, sometimes with lemon, to get a start on my goal, rehydrate my body, and jump start my metabolism. My goal was at least 64 oz/daily then my plan was to continue that intake as I took the baby steps to reach half my body weight in ounces.

I missed my minimum 4 out of the 7 days. One day I was out doing errands, following my areas social distance guidelines, so I limited my intake due to not having access to bathrooms while out. The other days I have no reason/excuse, just wasn’t drinking my water. The other 3 days I was drinking with and without my drinking reminders from the Water Time app I started using. Those 3 days I noticed an increase in energy, my skin looked and felt better, and I felt more alert those 3 days.

On those 3 days, I found that I reached my daily minimum plus some because I had a water bottle I liked. I also added some fresh fruit or fresh mint to it to add some flavor. I made sure I had at least half of my minimum ounce intake gone by mid day. I would drink the rest before dinner, if possible, so I was not running to the bathroom instead of sleeping!!

What I have learned from this hydration week was that I was not as hydrated as I thought I was. On the days I missed my minimum ounce intake, aside from the opposite of the positive side effects I mentioned above, I noticed my hands felt dryer and I was tired. Crazy to think I never tied my water intake to my energy level. I also noticed that my daughter, who is 2, was drinking more because she saw me drinking.

Why did I share all this?! Because I know that I am not the only one out there who didn’t think to tie my hydration level to negatives in my life. Drinking more water and staying hydrated will make your life so much better by not only giving you more energy but by aiding in weight loss, helping you think clearer, and you’ll see it in the glow of your skin. Water will also help lessen headaches AND joint pain!

Join me in the challenge to drink more water and to hit that ounce goal EVERY day!


Mother’s Day

I follow Petra K. McEwan, MD* on social media. She shares different advice on motherhood, self care, and marriage. I joined her 7 Day Motherhood Challenge this Mother’s Day. Across the 7 days, she challenged participants to learn something new while taking time to truly focus on their children. Our daughter is 2 and I hope Dr. McEwan does a challenge like this every year so I can see how things grow and change.

Day 1 was to focus on your child(ren’s) favorite things. This was hard for me because our daughter loves almost everything. But, after looking through some pictures and thinking about what really makes her eyes light up, I knew what some of her favorite things were.
She loves having picnics either inside with a movie or outside under the sunshine. Her favorite picnic meal is either a cheeseburger and fries or pizza; this girl would eat pizza every meal if we let her! She loves being outside no matter the weather and she has a new discovered loved for hunting for worms after rain storms. She has a teepee that she goes to when she’s upset or needs a minute to calm down. It is also her go to place to read. And coloring, I couldn’t forget coloring. Whether it is with markers, crayons, paint, whatever leaves a mark, she will color with it! I think that is one of my favorite things about her is her creativity.

Day 2 was to show your child how much you love them. I think my daughter would prefer if I started to limit it! I love hearing her giggle as I chase her around the house asking for a cuddle or a kiss. And I especially love when she turns around and does it to me or randomly comes to me and gives me a hug or kiss. Day 3 was to slow down and have some quiet time together. Usually, quiet time was only after dinner due to busy schedules during the day but with quarantine it has become part of our daily routine and I love it! I told her we needed to have some relaxing time so she grabbed her new coloring pad and asked me to watch her. She loves when we sit with her when she colors even if we aren’t coloring with her. This allowed me to truly focus on her, watching as her creative ideas flowed.

Day 4 was to be creative. Well, this day was not a challenge for me. We do art pretty much everyday between coloring or a step-by-step craft. On this particular day she was really into her dress-up clothes and couldn’t decide what princess to be. After going through all her choices she decided to be all of them! She had on 4 different skirts, 3 tops, and 2 head bands! I couldn’t help but giggle. She wore that ensemble for almost an hour before she started leaving layers around the house.

Day 5 was to be physically active. It was cold (have been having a lot of colder weather in the Midwest lately) so we ran around the house and did her favorite movement song “Run Baby Run”. This particular song includes jumping, spinning and of course running and was stuck in my head for the rest of the day! Day 6 (Mother’s Day Eve) was to learn something new. We had a gorgeous day so we took advantage of the sunshine and played outside. We have always put her in the toddler swings but she insisted on swinging “like a big girl” on the regular swing. Well she rocked it! As my husband knelt behind her giving her gentle pushes and prepared to catch her if she fell, she held on and copied my younger cousin on the opposite swing pumping her legs. Have a feeling we wont be using the toddler swing much any more!

snapshot from a video, sorry for the blur

The challenge ended with Mother’s Day being day 7. The Chicagoland area had a wet, cold Mother’s Day with some snow flurries thrown in there as well. But, my husband and daughter made it the best day. And while I sat back with my coffee watching the snow, my heart went out to all the mom’s this Mother’s Day. I know that for many of you life isn’t what you expected it to be. Some are dealing with loss, death, or estrangement while other’s are in need of a miracle. Some mom’s have the weight of the world on their shoulders being a single mom, a mom in the military, a widow, or a military wife. I know Mother’s Day can be hard but I want to say thank you. Thank you for showing up, for loving, for giving, for caring, for fighting, for believing, for being there, and I thank you for doing all the hard things. Mothering is not easy but know that I see you and know you are not alone.

*Connect with Petra K. McEwan, MD on instagram @wifeymommydoc or on her website

Coffee Everyday

Even before I was a mom, I had coffee sometime throughout my day. But now that I am a mom, I have a morning cup and some days, an afternoon cup. My coffee maker sits on the counter in a corner of our kitchen and I have been wanting something to put by my coffee maker for a while now. I searched stores and just could not find the decor that screamed yes! I finally found something thanks to Chalk Couture.

Today I used the A Day Without Coffee transfer along with some Bright White Chalkology Paste and a simple shadow box I found at my local craft store. This transfer is from the new Celebration’s Suite and sells outs quickly so when it is restocked and available I would highly suggest snagging one! I was planning on using artificial coffee beans but due to cost and length of time it would take to get to me I resorted to filling it with some old coffee beans I found buried in my freezer.

Check out the video below to see how I made this truthful kitchen decor.

*I have received questions about my coffee maker–you can find it here:

Same Storm

Illinois’s stay-at-home order has been extended from April 30th to May 30th. Not going to lie, this caused severe anxiety for me even knowing it was probably going to happen. I am starting to run out of ways to keep my daughter occupied at home as I am sure most parents are. I know that she is at a young age where she probably will not remember this stage of her life aside from hearing stories about it later in life but it breaks my heart hearing her say that we can’t go to the zoo, or as she calls it “The Monkey House”, because people are sick.

I have been avoiding Facebook more lately but, was able to get through this recent anxiety attack after I read a statement from someone on there. She said “We are in the same storm, but not in the same boat”. This could not be more accurate. We are all riding out the same storm but all of our boats look 100% different. That small statement made me sit back and think about everything and realize how grateful and fortunate my family is. Along with being healthy, my husband’s company is ‘essential’ and he is still working thus we do not have that worry about our bills like some of my family and friends have.

Even though I LOVE my breaks and me time, I realize how lucky I am for my time at home with our daughter as a SAHM. So, in retro spec, our daily routine and lives have not changed aside from our trips out to places and her scheduled activities. So, our boat we are on during this storm hasn’t really changed. But, my family and friend’s boats have changed. Some have changed due to not working now or because some have not received any of the support others have through unemployment and the stimulus check. Many of my friends and family are juggling working from home while also now being a teacher for their kids. I have family and friends who own their own business so they are stressed while juggling everything that comes along with owning a business on top of not having any money coming in.

So, even through we are in this storm together, and as we navigate the storm we are in, please do not say “We are all in the same boat” because honestly we are not. Reach out to those who are in a different boat than you and offer any help that you reasonably can without upsetting your boat. My family has been doing this by getting food from locally owned restaurants, offering food or supplies to our family and friends, and checking in with those who are adjusting to their new normal at home.

Earth Day Project

Chalk Couture has ways to live a little greener while crafting!

With washable chalk paste, you have a green way to decorate your home! Whenever you’re ready to switch up your home decor, just wipe off your board and start your new project!

I found the beautiful, framed board I used for my project at a garage sale. It was perfect for an Earth Day project because I was able to clean up the board a bit and repurpose it to create decor for my daughter’s room.

I am still trying to figure out how we want to decorate our new house. For my daughter’s room, I want to keep it simple without going too overboard with a specific theme as I do not want to have to change it too much as she grows.

Today I am using the You Are Awesome transfer along with some Bright White Chalkology Paste. This transfer is from the new Celebration’s Suite released last week and when I saw it I KNEW I had to have it for my daughter’s room. I originally was going to put it right onto the wall until I remembered I had the beautiful frame it would be perfect for.

Check out the video below to see how I made this beautiful, simply stated project.

What day is it?!

I am seriously starting to not know what day it is these days. Being a stay at home mom, I was only able to know what day it was based on the scheduled activities we had for my daughter. But, now, with those activities cancelled, I only know it is a week day because my husband is gone at work.

We are all living through the same thing these days with the COVID-19 pandemic but we are not going through it the same way. Some of us are essential and still working like any other day while others have either adjusted to working at home or not working at all. Whatever your situation, it is hard to not compare your experience with those of others. I personally have caught myself comparing my response to everything to those of others.

When the announcement of shelter in place was made for my state -Illinois- I was overwhelmed, unsure, and worried for how this would affect my young daughter and my family. I went and stood in long line at the grocery store to ensure my family had groceries for the next month and then did not step foot into a store for the next 3 weeks. I read almost every news article that came across my phone and tried to stay up to date on everything. It was after we were 2 weeks into our shelter in place that I noticed I was not sleeping well, I was having higher anxiety than normal, and I was questioning a lot of what people where sharing on social media.

I began to adapt my daily routine. I would check the news once in the morning for any major updates that could have changes for my family and then I did not check anything else COVID related the rest of the day unless the Governor was making an update on the shelter in place. I noticed a decrease in my anxiety and I stopped following certain people on social media because they would have me questioning everything.

And it was then that I realized how resilient in our own ways we all have come during all this and that there is no right way to be responding to this aside from following what the CDC recommends. I have given myself credit for realizing I needed to step back from those I unfollowed on social media for my own mental health and I have realized that I am not the only one who struggles to know what day it is these days.

Mama’s Mission

I have always tried to eat healthy and stay active but I never seemed to be able to always stay consistent with both. I would either eat super healthy while watching my intake of junk and fast food or I would be active daily and not always eat right to support my active lifestyle. Once I became a mom I knew I had to focus on both of these together to be the best I could be for my daughter. I started spending more time in the produce section when shopping and started to meal plan more dinners at home than eating out. Now, I am not saying eating out is not healthy BUT, when we eat out we always tend to indulge and go outside of our healthy eating.

Flash back 3 years ago. I had a conversation with a family friend regarding how I felt when I took vitamins – nauseous if I didn’t take them right after eating but otherwise did not really feel a difference if I took them consistently or not – and how I was trying to eat better but felt like it was always a struggle. She shared information about JuicePlus, their 30+ Clinical Research studies that have been done that show the benefits of taking JuicePlus in some form, and her personal experience with the products. I ordered that night and I started making morning shakes with JuicePlus Complete to get those nutrients and protein I was missing from whole foods.

Once I started a consistent routine of having a Complete shake daily, I started to notice a difference in how I felt. My energy was up and I noticed how I started craving certain foods over others. Less junk food was being eaten and more whole food snacks were been chosen instead.

Fast forward a year. My life was busy. I was a new mom, and I was adjusting to not working for the first time since I was 16. Now, these shakes are beyond easy to make – throw one scoop of the Complete into a blender with a frozen banana and my favorite almond/coconut milk, mix, and then drink. Super easy right?! Even with how easy they are to make I started slacking on taking my shakes and I eventually just stopped making them altogether.

My friend didn’t push or force different products on me but I continued to follow her business and would make a Complete shake here and there when I saw a new recipe that sparked my eye. But, after a year, I realized I needed to be putting more whole foods into my body than I was so I reached out and started taking the Capsules and I have been for the last year. Every time I take my capsules I am putting 20 different fruits and vegetables into my body (see image below) and my body is thanking me. My energy is up, I am not as sick as the rest of my family or friends when they catch something or I do not get sick at all. I notice a difference in how I feel if I miss a couple days of not taking my Capsules but nothing like I felt when I was taking those other vitamins. My daughter also gets the benefits of the capsules when I mix the blend into her oatmeal or yogurt.

Because of my experience with JuicePlus, I decided to join and share all the whole food benefits JuicePlus offers, and help people FUEL their bodies for the health, healing, vitality & the FUTURE they ask of that body they live in! I help people with education and coaching along with connecting them to raw, vine ripened, pesticide, herbicide and GERM FREE whole foods in a capsule, Gummie, or smoothie. I am loving having healthier and happier people around me!

THAT is why I am a Creative Mama on a Mission! It is what I do and why I recommend JuicePlus! Can you relate to any part of this?! Want to know more? Reach out, I love sharing my story and the now 40+ clinical studies that back JuicePlus!

Creative Side

I have always loved crafting from DIY projects to step by step projects either at home or at an art studio. I own a Cricut and I love making gifts or home decor using my machine. My Cricut was my go to when I wanted to create. Then, a friend on Facebook shared a project she made using Chalk Couture. I was sold with her project and made my 1st purchase of the Donut Give Up transfer and a couple paste colors.

At this point, all I knew was I was very intrigued about this company and it’s products. I did some research, asked my friend a ton of questions, and watched a few more of her demos. I then took the step in January of 2019 and became a Designer with Chalk Couture.

Since taking that step I have found the craft/activity I never knew I was missing. Chalk Couture has everything you need to create beautiful DIY home decor, gifts, or anything else you can find to decorate. I have decorated anything you can think of from my dishwasher for the holidays to a framed chalkboard with a motivational saying!

Chalk Couture is my me time, the thing I turn to while I am overwhelmed or anxious. It allows me to be creative and make what comes to my head or I can create the project Chalk Couture has on display in the catalog. Either direction I take, I come out of my me time happy with my project and ready to finish the day ahead.

This is my first post about Chalk Couture and it for sure will not be my only one. I hope you enjoy my future projects and join me on my Facebook business page for some live demo’s (the picture above will bring you there)

The Mama behind Creative Mama With a Mission

I am Anna, and I am the mama behind Creative Mama with a Mission.
As of this post, I am a mom to 1 beautiful girl and I have been married for almost 2 years. Along with being the CEO of our house as a SAHM, I am also a designer with a DIY Home Decor Company; Chalk Couture and a JuicePlus Representative.

Social media and I have had a rough relationship in the past. I love the ability to connect with people and to share anything and everything with them but that, at times for me, it can cause some mental anguish. I have sense learned to limit who I follow and what I share….but I always wanted a way to be able to share what I love and my passion behind it. Thus Creative Mama With a Mission was born.

For years I never thought I would have my own blog. But, having followed and learned from other teammates, I started to see this new opportunity for me as I have always been more open when it comes to sharing my thoughts through pen and paper – or keyboard and screen- than I have face to face.

I hope you’ll stick around for more of what’s to come, and check back often. This site will be the hub of getting to know me, and what I love most – crafting, creating, and helping my family and friends live a healthier life.