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To live and enjoy every day to its fullest, use my gifts to help others, I travel to wherever passion finds me.

What Will She Paint?

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Friday, April 03, 2009

JOURNAL RAMBLE - IN NEED OF CAFFEINE

Hope you saw that the comments are now in a pop up window. I sometimes forget and keep clicking on "comment" like a mad woman, and then discover that it's hiding behind my blog!
The pleasant Californian weather took a dip in the 60ties, so I've put my sweater back on, and I keep myself warm with hot coffee and tea.
In my first years of living on this side of the big pond, I discovered to my big amazement that in most work- and school places in the US they don't have a coffee break in the morning and a tea in the afternoon.

In Europe they would not go for that. Coffee and tea is a serious business and should not be meddled with!
I came with my hubby and three kids to the US to do my graduate training, so after I got my doc degree and a job, things got worse. The only time to drink tea of coffee was when I was with a client. My meal times shrunk to 5 min. in between two appointments. Now, I have the freedom to make my own schedule.

Not any coffee will do. After so many years living here, my stomach would protest to the strong Dutch coffee. I do make a 2 hour drive to buy my fresh decaf cappuccino that they grind right in front of me. In the winter I often may drink a mocha or chocolate mix from Hills Bros.




But the morning and late evening I reserve for tea. At the moment my favorite teas are on the pic above, Jasmine Green tea, white tea with Pomegranate (from Trader Joe in CA stores), and fruit tea from Mightyleaf. From China I brought oolong tea, delicious, but pricey. One keeps the tea leaves in the water while one drinks it. I like to drink tea from a tea glass.


Apologize for the quality of the pic, you can see I suffer already from the jitters of caffeine withdrawal!

To have tea or coffee without a cookie is unthinkable in my world. Speculaas is a typical Dutch cookie on the left of the pic below, and is store bought. On the right is the wooden mold that they use for those cookies. You may see the word "wipmolen" underneath, which is one of the varieties of windmills Holland has (don't ask me for technical details, because I don't know, LOL). In Holland you can buy speculaas, as well as the wooden molds in all sizes.



The US must be the home made cookie land in the world. I never made cookies until living here. Just sent a package to my son in Asia with "stroopwafels", another Dutch cookie (translated: syrup waffle. Yes, waffles do not come specifically from Belgium, OR chocolate, OR what some call Belgian andive, for that matter - it seems a fable that is hard to erase, sigh)



I am borrowing this idea from Rosie's blog about my favorite coffee mugs. This coffee mug I like especially on cold days, because a tall and narrow mug keeps it hot longer. Even though I bought the same mug with "latte" on it for my hubby, since that is his favorite coffee, I have to hide mine, because he favors these so much that he grabs the first one he sees.
Can you read what is on the right mug? That's settled then:)
I have some coffee and tea stories, but I'll save that for another time. Have a good weekend, bloggie friends with your favorite coffee, tea, or other drink.

42 comments:

Whitemist said...

You sound like my kinda girl - the coffee thing that is! One year the secretary who worked in the lab came back from her native country (Columbia) with 2 bags of "not for export coffee" (clearly labeled on the bag) and that is when I discovered good coffee! Of course I have discovered NO good coffee in Stamford, except when the meetup group, Connecticut Coffee Society, gets together.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks goodness we follow the European way here with our morning and afternoon break for tea or coffee. Then there are people who are spoilt like me and have an office of their own, so I have it all the time and do ot need to take a break for it. I dont have cookies with it though. :)

I love hot chocolate in winter, it is definitely great to have some in bed after I have had a nice hot bath and am ready to relax.

SILVER said...

hmm.. i could use some.

:)

The Gossamer Woman said...

I'm a Senseo, espresso and cappuccino coffee drinker and when I drink tea, it is inevitably rooibos. My coffee is my sacred drink and I can not do without it, though I switch to decaf in the evenings. There's nothing like a speculaasje or two to have with your coffee, although a sprtiz is very nice too or a jodenkoek. There are so many good cookies over here. Do you go to the Dutch market and stock up on Dutch food? WE used to go there for the hagelslag especially. My kids loved it.

Dick said...

I have never heard of a "wipmolmolen" , it looks funny.
Have a nice day.

Jeannette St.G. said...

Whitemist,
wow, Colombian coffee is a pretty hefty coffee (in taste). Have no idea where exactly Stamford is, but is there a bigger city nearby, or may be you can mailorder coffee?
Thanks for keeping up, hope you're feeling better!

Jeannette St.G. said...

Joan,
happy to know that you're all set up for it:) No cookies???

Jeannette St.G. said...

Silver,
Too bad, we don't have wings, so I can fly over to where you are to have a cup together:)
Bytheway, I keep seeing new articles listed for your blog, but when I go to it, I keep seeing the goodbye one - are you writing new articles?

Jeannette St.G. said...

Irene,
I knew you would say something like that. They have Senseo right now at Walmsrt. Am waiting for my coffee maker to break down, so I can buy that one!! Rooibos I have, because I had Dutch guests stay here.
Yep, every month I go to the Dutch store, but they're getting very expensive (Maybe I start thinking too American!) 15 bitterkoekjes voor $3-

Jeannette St.G. said...

Dick,
I've seen pics of wipmolens, but never the real thing. Funny as in grappig or weird?
Did you see my 2nd comment, that one about using your pic? I'll go over to your blog, to make sure you have left a response there:)

DUTA said...

Coffee and Tea drinking is indeed a serious matter; it's what keeps us going. I'm more coffee oriented.

Since you've mentioned pomegranate - it has become the 'latest cry' in everything: tea, juice, cosmetics and it is said to be a powerful anti oxidant. I've tried only the pomegranate juice which is not bad but more expensive than the other natural juices.

Jeannette St.G. said...

AFTER Dick's SOMEONE ELSE COMMENTED(before Duta), and it GOT LOST - so sorry - please write your comment again? thanks so much!

Jeannette St.G. said...

Duta,
Guess most people need a little caffeine lift - haha - but it's also addictive, because it makes you feel good!
I heard they also call pomegranate "love apples." I like them mixed in something, because it's so much work to eat the fruit:). Always appreciate your comments, Duta.

TheWritersPorch said...

I do love my coffee! Two cups in the morning and one around 4 P.M.
I am one of the very few Southern born who do not drink Iced Tea. I also do not like hot tea. In the winter I do like a cup of hot spiced tea sometimes. Have a great
weekend!!
Carol

Gaston Studio said...

Also have an at home office and drink my Senseo coffee anytime I like. Not much of a tea drinker, but defnitely a cookie eater!

Jeannette St.G. said...

Carol,
I'm glad I connected to another coffee lover:) I used to drink tea only when I was sick, but someone introduced my to all the flavored teas- I never drink straight black tea. Sad that you don't like ice tea -even if you make it yourself?

Jeannette St.G. said...

Gaston Studio,
Like I said to Irene, I'm waiting for my current coffeemaker to break down to buy Senseo - I tasted it in Holland (my relatives always have the newest gadgets, except...moi) and it can stand up to the best cappucino!
Already thought you would be a cookie lover. I loved the way you wrote your post on food - very humurous!

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

No, NO COOKIES!! LOL!! I have to watch my figure even if no one else is. LOL!!

Jeannette St.G. said...

Two cookies a day won't hurt your figure - haha- if it stays with 2!

Reader Wil said...

When I was in Moscow for a women's conference, I missed my coffee break at ten AM very much. We didn't get coffee either in Singapore when we were sightseeing there. Fortunately my Australian daughter has kept up the coffee break with a cookie.
Spring cleaning is almost over and done with. The rest of the year I am lazy enough to do the floors once a week . The windows once in 6 months( I guess!) Springcleaning is also useful to see what clothes I can put away and if I can empty more cupboards and give the contents to scouting on Koninginnedag.

Jeanne said...

I'm with you Jeannette! That White Tea with Pomegranete looks delicious, will have to check my Trader Joe's to see if they have it. I love the clear glass with the tea leaves in it. Have you had any of the tea 'blossoms'?

Rosie said...

Great mugs - I love your glass tea mugs and your tea flavours look wonderful, coffee now that does have to be taken with a cookie or biscuit - I don't think I could work a full day without coffee in the morning and tea in the afternoon - we always used to drink at our desks though and carry on working, now I'm at home I can take a break and sit in the garden if I want to:)

Jeannette St.G. said...

Reader Wil,
You have been "everywhere", haven't you?
If you're the only one in the house, that's plenty of cleaning:) - no dust like in California (after 7 days it's visible). Have a great week!

Jeannette St.G. said...

You have Trader Joe there? Great! I thought they were only in California. where do you guy the Tea blossoms? Saw on your book that you definely like to read:)
Thanks for visiting!

Jeannette St.G. said...

Rosie,
Sounds like you enjoy your life! It's great that you're able to work at home (do you mean that you do your paid job at home?) and have your break wherever and whenever you want (smile).

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

My husband makes the best coffee. I start each day with a cup, or two. But, like you, I switch to tea in the afternoon and evening. If it's just one cup, I like a lemon/ginger tea made by Stash. But if it's a pot, then I go for Darjeeling, or Earl Grey. But, it seems it's never quite as good as in the UK.

And the cookies? Always homemade!!

Jeannette St.G. said...

Pamela,
You don't want to change that nice morning ritual, especially if someone else makes it for you:) Have to try the brand Stash, also the Darjeeling tea. But Earl Grey is my daughter's fav., and isalso a Trader Joe fan, so she gave me some samples.
Wow, always home made cookies? Maybe I have the wrong impression -that you were more a thinker than someone who likes to cook and bake. LOL, my mistake.

lovelyprism said...

I am in total agreement! We SHOULD have coffee and tea breaks here. I love my caffeine! And you have to have a cookie or pastry of some sort, don't you? One of my favorite coffees was a mocha coffee my hubby brought back from a grocery store in Belgium. He said the men he worked with there made fun of him because he bought the "cheap" coffee. But oh my goodness, it was wonderful! I'd like a cup now!

Jeannette St.G. said...

Oh, I was trying to be "healthy and frugal" when mentioning the cookie, instead of the pastry!!!
I love pastry too though. And actually, I like mocha (mostly) better than chocolate milk-now I want a mocha too:)

Lynette said...

I love your Maxine coffee mug and other photos. Maxine is so funny and I always enjoy her cartoons. I don't think I could survive without my morning cups of coffee, I would be dragging all day.

Violet said...

I learned to love coffee when I lived in Holland - not much choice really. I was dragged down to the coffee room twice a day and we always had a tea break at the beginning and end of our shift. I can still remember the silence and looks of shock on my co-workers faces the first time I reached for the koffiepot for a refill, they then cheered and laughed for days about my newfound addiction. I never lost it. Still love strong coffee. I go to IKEA to get mine.

Jeannette St.G. said...

Lynette,
You taught me something! I didn't know Maxine has more art. In the winter when it's cloudy I definitely need some caffeine! But in the summer, it is so hot that I curb my caffeine intake because (for me) it encourages hot flashes.
Have a great art week!

Jeannette St.G. said...

Violet,
Had no idea you've lived in Holland. I chuckled, because what you wrote is so typical of Dutch people. In general, they want others to be so much like them (hope that I have become more American in this aspect!) Caffeine is addicting, I quess it's Starbucks with all their yummy sounding choices that got me on the coffee again...

Catherine said...

Hi Jeannette, just catching up on your posts now, I will respond to your comment on my post soon. I love this as it resonates with me and I did write a post eulogising tea back in January! I am deffo more a tea person, and I wrote in that post how difficult I found the cultural differences in Holland re. tea and milk, a real culture shock! I do think that the Dutch are far more into coffee, and I like the koffie met gebak in the morning or koffie met koekjes, I love speculaas and I make cinnamon or ginger cookies sometimes. I love your funny mug, and the tall mug too. I don't like rooibos, though I drank it in Tanzania as we had a bush in the garden. I guess Earl Gray is the only one of the flavoured teas I like and even then I use milk - sacriligeous in the purists' eyes! And I like proper leaf tea, Assam is nice and strong, Darjeeling is very nice but a bit weak for my taste. Oh dear I am a bit of a philistine.
Anyway, at work I make my own teabreak if I have time as I work alone mostly, in my job. The local health office has a teabreak and they don't have an afternoon break. according to Irish Labour Law, workers are entitled to 2x15min. teabreaks per 8 hour shift, and a lunchbreak. So we are well protected there. That's why I support trade unions, they lobby for the laws to protect ordinary workers and I hate industries that don't recognise workers' right to organise and join a union or who don't negotiate with a union. Sadly a lot of US companies are guilty there, in Ireland the US multinationals don't allow union membership, and workers are very vulnerable as a result. Of course there are Irish companies who are culpable too. Gosh I am going off on all kinds of tangents, sorry about that!
Catherine.

Kilauea Poetry said...

I'm back on blogging and paying visits. What a cozy post!
I love coffe Jeanette! I saw a beautiful maroon red coffe mug- thermos type, while at Borders (now Seattles Best). Was a bit pricy though?
I have a favorite coffee..Mind Body & Soul) from Equal Exchange..it's so delicious. Now, the last one I picked up was Rawandan French Roast (Kirklands) from Cost Co. Not too shabby and neither was the price..soo, I'll be going back for more! I was able to stop into my first Trader Joe's in Ca..also the last trip to where I'm from). I wish we had a T.J's here! Anyway- have a good day Jeanette.

jeannette stgermain said...

Regina,
Thanks for all that info.! Got to look at Borders ( our weekly hanging out time is often at Borders). Mind, Body, Soul is that a store or a website? Trader Joe is the bomb- hope we never move out of state LOL

GutsyWriter said...

Please tell me you've tried Peet's Major Dickason? I love Peets and will do a detour to get it. I can't imagine driving 2 hours to get my special coffee though. I have to have one Peets real coffee a day. Love your mug on the right.

jeannette stgermain said...

I've been to Peets with my daughter, but can't remember what I ordered there, because my son-in-law was enthralled with the teas there. Next time, I'll pay more attention!
When we go to San Diego, I'll get my grind at a little coffee and teashop in Old Town. Remember (may be you don't like to remember-haha), in Orange County, you drive half an hour to get tooth paste!! A little exaggerated, but here we drive for everything!

matthew houskeeper said...

I love good coffee.
What I have been doing recently is only drinking coffee in the morning.
In the afternoons, I opt for a green tea, with a little bit of lemon.

Merisi said...

I once worked for a couple of months for a German employer (in the USA). Would you believe that the coffee cups went never empty? Each office had its own coffee maker! Unfortunately I was pregnant back then and nauseated all day long from the smell of coffee kept warm on the electric plates (they were very kind to me in every other way).

jeannette stgermain said...

Catherine,'Sorry, somehow I missed your comment - I agree about the labour unions. Many employers here can't afford it financially, because they're just making even - no vacation money like in Europe, and they would go under if their workers eveer would start a strike.
But...the upside of it is that it is a lot easier to find work (without the union).
Because of my work, koffie met gebak was impossible, but after so many years I'm so used to it. Glad that the mind and body does have the ability to readjust, LOL

jeannette stgermain said...

Matthew,
Good coffee must be hard to get once in a while, when you're travelling all the time? Or, do you always keep a stash of good coffee?
Bytheway, my love for boats and ships comes from being on an oceanliner for 3 weeks when I was 5y. old, travelling from Indonesia to Holland, going through the Suez canal, and Bay of Biscay, where half of the ship was seasick! After decades I still remember parts of it.