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Keurig: Cutting The K-Cup Cost

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So a couple of weeks ago I wrote about the Keurig Coffee maker I had received as a gift. We are still using it and still loving it. We used it over the weekend to make some big insulated cups  (I also have a couple of these) of coffee and cocoa to take with me when going on our hunting adventure.

One way we have found to save a bit of money is by not buying the cocoa in K-cups but rather the individual packets. The water heats up quicker than my tea pot and you can have a cup of cocoa in seconds. (I have a homemade cocoa mix that we will be using soon.) Continue reading Keurig: Cutting The K-Cup Cost

Hot Cocoa

My kids, and myself, love Hot Cocoa. The weather right now is just right for sipping on a steamy cup. I have many fond memories from when we lived in Virginia and North Carolina that involve this delicious treat. It is even better after coming in from building snowmen and having snowball fights.

We haven’t seen any snow since we’ve moved to Florida several years ago but the weather still gets a bit nippy. This weekend was definitely cocoa weather. I used the Keurig to make my cocoa to take out to the woods with me. Just place the cocoa in your mug and set it under the Keurig. You don’t need a K-cup as the hot water will flow right through it, into your cup, and Voila… Hot Cocoa. Enjoy it as it is or add some marshmallows.

We also enjoy making this when we have our ‘Polar Express’ parties… hopefully I’ll be writing a post about this soon. This is also a great treat to take camping with you to enjoy on those crisp mornings.

I have two versions of this and you can try them both to find your favorite. I often make double batches as we can go through quite a bit of this rather quickly. (You will need a large container with a tight lid to store this in.)

Hot Cocoa (Cheaper version)

Ingredients:

  • 2 c. powdered milk
  • 3/4  – 1 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. powdered creamer
  • 1/3 c. unsweetened Cocoa
  • marshmallows (optional)

Directions:

Mix everything together and place in a sealed container.

Spoon about 1/3 cup of mix into a mug. Add boiling water and stir.

Top with marshmallows and serve… this will be HOT!

This next recipe is just as easy to make but it can be a little more expensive depending on the price of the chocolate mix you use.

Hot Cocoa (Richer version)

Ingredients:

  • 2 c. powdered milk
  • 1/2 c. powdered chocolate milk mix (Nestle)
  • 1/2 c. powdered creamer
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/8 t. salt

Directions:

Mix everything together and place in a sealed container.

Spoon about 1/3 cup of mix into a mug. Add boiling water and stir.

Top with marshmallows and serve… this will be HOT!

Freezer Board

I think I mentioned here that I was planning to hang a dry erase board to keep track of where I had stored all of our refrigerated/frozen foods as we have 2 freezers and 2 refrigerators that we are currently using.

Well, I did manage to get the board hung up on Saturday but the sticky hooks weren’t strong enough and it soon fell down. Today I went to Walmart and picked up a couple of command hooks:

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And a pack of small sawtooth hangers:

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The plan was to attach the hangers to the back of the dry erase board and then use the hooks to hang it on the wall. First problem was getting those hangers attached because the nails were so darn tiny!

Then I remembered a trick I had seen somewhere before:

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The picture is a little blurry but I used a comb to hold the nail in place so I could hammer it in without smashing my fingers.

Voila! A few minutes later I had them both attached.

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Next was to place the hooks on the wall. I just eyeballed this… sometimes my OCD kicks in and I will spend a few hours measuring and checking the level but not this time.

I then used some alcohol to prep the area.

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While I was in the bathroom grabbing the alcohol and cotton balls Mr. Coffee Connoisseur decided he would ‘fix’ himself a hot chocolate but luckily he can’t reach the power button. He insisted he was ‘just getting it ready’ so Momma could finish it.

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We talked about how the new coffee maker was not a toy and then I told him we would all enjoy a nice hot chocolate after we finished this project.

Then I got the hooks ready:

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The hooks came with three sticky pieces. Each side is labeled so it makes it pretty easy. (They also remove very easily, if needed.) Once the hooks were ready I put them on the wall:

Once the second one was attached I hung up the dry erase board:

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I attached some sticky back velcro to the board and to my dry erase marker. (I thought about attaching the eraser too but I would probably use my finger anyway.)

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And the board was complete. Well almost….

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Mr. Coffee, who loves to practice writing his name, had added his own little touches to the board while I was attaching the hooks… never a dull moment here. Then I let my OCD have its way, just a little, when I rewrote the bottom half of the board.

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I wrote the items in order as you can find them in the porch freezer. The other freezer is a chest freezer and it is fairly organized as well as the outside fridge.

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Now the board is finished… I am still thinking of a catchy name for it other than ‘Freezer Board’ though. I am hoping this will be a handy addition to help with managing our grocery shopping and meal planning. This allows not only me but my oldest daughter to be able see what we have on hand, where to find it, and what we may need to get or add to the grocery list.

Mr. Coffee was happy to see it finished and he asked if he could write his name on it again but I explained to him that this was Momma’s board and reminded him that he has his own. Then we made some hot cocoa, (Momma had some Twinings Earl Grey tea) and had some powdered donuts for a snack. (A special little treat, Just Because.)

 

 

Just Because: Not My Birthday Present

I’ve been teasing you all a bit with my ‘Just Because’ and I promise I am working on some posts. However I was surprised with a ‘Just Because’ moment this weekend.

Saturday, after my trip to Sam’s, Mr. Awesome showed up carrying some bags and a package. I asked him what he had, because I’m nosy, and he replied that it was my birthday present. I gave him a puzzled look and laughed… ‘Silly, its not my birthday!’.

He stopped and looked at me with a serious look. ‘Do you mean to tell me Tuesday isn’t your birthday?’

I realized it was a joke as Tuesday is Halloween… haha… am I really that mean?

Anyway he came inside without telling me what he had. I finished up what I was working on and then headed inside as well.

I found him busy in the kitchen setting up a new coffee maker. I had mentioned before that I wanted to get a Keurig but I was waiting for my old coffee maker to give out. He had purchased the K-Compact as he knows that I am always trying to save space here and this one is considerably smaller than some of the other models.

After unboxing it he cleared the old coffee maker off the counter. (It will be given to a friend.) He then proceeded to set it up, without reading the instructions, and plugged it in. Within 10-15 minutes I had a hot cup of coffee to sip on.

First step was to rinse everything out and fill the reservoir up with clean water.

Next was to power it up.

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Then you place an empty cup underneath.

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Lift and lower the lid which should make the three brew buttons starting blinking.

Press the small cup button to do your cleansing brew. Then discard the water.

Now you are ready to make your first cup. Place your cup underneath and select a K-cup.

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Insert the K-cup and then close the lid. (Don’t take off the foil!) The three buttons will start blinking again. (Large mug=10 oz, Small mug = 8 oz, Small cup = 6 oz) Select your size and wait about a minute.

You can now enjoy your HOT coffee. (We have been able to get 2 cups of coffee out of each K-cup. We pour both cups into a larger insulated mug but this doesn’t work with the cappuccino or cocoa as they are too weak on the second cup.) Be careful when removing the used K-cup as it will be hot.

I am also looking into getting some of these reusable filters as I just purchased a new can of coffee.

Mr. Awesome also brought several packs of K-cups including Folgers Colombian, French Vanilla Cappuccino, Krispy Kreme Smooth, Swiss Miss Hot Cocoa, and Twinings Earl Grey Tea.

You can find a wide variety of K-cups to suit just about any taste including many assortment packs like Coffee, Tea, Cider, Cappuccino and Hot Chocolate Single Serve Cups For Keurig K Cup Brewers Variety Pack Sampler, Twinings Keurig 2.0 K Cup Sampler Assortment,  Coffee Variety Sampler Pack for Keurig K-Cup Brewers, Ultimate Hot Chocolate K-Cup Variety Sampler, and Coffee, Tea, Cider, Cappuccino and Hot Chocolate Single Serve Cups For Keurig K Cup Brewers Variety Pack.

I found a small drawer to store a variety of the k-cups in. After cleaning it up a bit we placed it underneath the napkin holder. It works perfect and I can refill it as needed. There are a variety of organizers you can buy also like Keurig Approved 3-tier K-Cup DrawerKeurig Brewed K-Cup Drawer, or K-Cup Carousel. I just happened to have the drawer on hand and it works.

I know that Christmas is coming up and I had kind of thought this would be a great Christmas gift to myself but now know it is a great ‘Just Because’ gift. Sometimes we don’t need to wait for a special reason or occasion to show those around us how much we care about them. Do you have something special you would like to do for someone? Don’t wait, do it now! Tomorrow is not promised so we really need to be sure that those around us know, today, how much they mean to us. That is the basic principle behind my ‘Just Because’ ideas.

(The peacock mug was another Just Because gift from my sister a while back.)