Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I Have Been Diagnosed with a PITA

I could not make this story up if I tried...well maybe I could but it's true..

Sometime in late September I started having pain in my lower back which I reluctantly went to the doctor for who gave me a prescription to basically go away, which is exactly why I'm always so reluctant to go to the doctor.  That one week of meds didn't help so I went back, and an X-ray was ordered which determined that there were no bulging discs and the space between my vertebrates looked normal. So the doctor changed the meds, giving me an actual entire month's supply this time, and also prescribed physical therapy which I started today.  

I went in to talk to the physical therapist describing my pain as feeling like a Barbie whose leg wasn't quite connected right - you know how she gets when her leg falls off and you can't quite get it back in the way it's supposed to be - that's how low the pain is...almost in the hip but not quite...

Upon feeling me out (literally) and determining that it wasn't really the lower back or the hip joint itself, it wasn't a sciatic nerve or bursitis - between cheek rubs he said, and I quote:

"This is what we lovingly refer to as a plain old PITA."

I started laughing.

"Oh you know what a PITA is huh?"

"Well I do have a husband and two kids.."

Best. Diagnosis. Ever!  I couldn't be more proud!

Who knew that a PITA was an actual diagnosis?  

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Parade of Lights

Our black Friday was all lit up with our local Parade of Lights led by the Grinch and included a group dressed up like KISS that went by wishing everyone a Merry KISSmas!  Since we moved here, we go every year, my sister and her family come down for the fun. Here are some of the highlights that came out on the camera.  The decorated horses are always my favorite..

Some of the floats took you away because they didn't look like something sitting on the back of a truck..

This would go quite nicely in my yard!!

My son was reluctantly in the parade with his Boy Scout troop this year.  He's normally all about the candy so we had to convince him there wouldn't be much thrown out being that the parade was at night. As they passed, they invited my daughter and my niece to jump on their float - what a great way to kick off the season!  Sorry I didn't get a decent picture of the KISS people but they did give away commemorative cards.  The parade is usually what gets me going for Christmas so we are decorating the inside today with Chipmunk and Elvis music.  

How do you kick your Christmas season off?  Are there certain traditions you do the same each year like music or cookies?

Enjoy your weekend!!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Extra Caffeinated Breakfast Anyone?

Thank coffee it's Friday! 

Here's hoping you didn't have to go out in the thick of the craziness that shopping is on this the blackest of Fridays...and that you got all the deals you wanted if you braved that insanity!  You won't catch me out there fighting for my life but would love to hear your story, please grab a cup and share...if you stay long enough you'll leave with a recipe that will perk you right up!

My dad gave me a bunch of instant coffee to take home from Thanksgiving because he doesn't like it (in so many words) so I decided to look up some instant coffee recipes in order to use it without having to drink it myself.  Not that I wouldn't recommend instant ever, it's only because instant is just not strong enough for my taste... I won't tell you what my dad said about it..

Since 'tis the season and people are all about the new recipes, this week, Java Joe Mamas chooses to share one with you that is sure to be a pleaser.  I baked these last night seeing as I amazingly had all the ingredients (aside from the nutmeg) because you know, we can never get enough to eat on this holiday. I used my *ahem* will power to save them for breakfast this morning and I gotta say, they were the perfect pairing for my morning cuppa joe!

Cappuccino Muffins


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso coffee powder (or instant coffee)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate mini-chips


Preheat oven to 375. Line muffin tins with papers or grease liberally.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, espresso or instant coffee, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Set aside.

In a medium bowl, mix milk, butter, egg, and vanilla until combined. Stir milk mixture into flour mixture only until combined. Do not overmix. Fold in chocolate chips.

Fill muffin cups 3/4 full. Bake 15 to 20 minutes for standard muffins.

Yield: 12 muffins 

Note: I did not miss the nutmeg...I also used more instant coffee than it called for because you know, I like it strong...

There was not a call for frosting but I thought something chocolate would compliment it well or even (from what I hear) delicious Nutella...yumm

There you have it, another coffee recipe this time from the kitchen of CLM who by the way doesn't bake...

Thanks for joining the Java Joe Mamas for another educational and slightly entertaining edition of Coffee Chronicles giving you the scoop about coffee each week.  We are indeed thankful for all of you that show up to find out what we're cooking or dishing out every week! Don't forget, there's a mug giveaway for all you hard core coffee lovers out there...CLICK HERE for the post.

So what are your thoughts on instant coffee? Do you use it or can't you bring yourself to being the coffee snob that you are?

Let us know what inside coffee info you really want to hear by leaving it below or emailing us at:


See you next week!
Java Joe Mamas

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Kids Talking Thanksgiving

So happy I was able to get in on #KidsTalkingTurkey as I have a couple of hams who were quick to volunteer their expertise in the Thanksgiving area...or lack there of - you know, it could go either way here and I think it did.  Still, they are both convincing enough that you can agree one way or the other..

Although I'm not quite sure what she meant by be nice to the turkeys, I'm sure she will be eating some come Thursday!

Loved being able to link up!


Vlog Talk

Friday, November 18, 2011

Dos and Don'ts of the Eggnog Latte

THANK Coffee it's Friday! 

THANK YOU for joining us again for another rendition of Coffee Chronicles with the Java Joe Mamas where we give you the low down on coffee info every Friday. This week's question comes to us just in time for the holidays when we know you will want to be indulging in the sweetness of the seasonal, sweet and calorie rich drinks at your local coffee house.  Don't forget, I'm giving a mug away this week for all the coffee lovers out there...CLICK HERE for the giveaway post.

What is the deal with eggnog? I mean really, aside from making amazing Frappachinos (probably spelled wrong I know.), it just doesnt really taste all that great when added to a hot coffee drink. Agree? Disagree? Discuss!

It's coming up!! The holiday drinks which means cute red cups, yummy recipes and.....

A shitload of calories.

But c'mon, you guys know this!!

One of the ones that everyone gets extremely giddy about is the Eggnog Latte.

And it's one of the ones I dread making all year.
It's not that it's harder to make or a pain to create... well...
Have you notice how loud the milk steaming is during the holidays?

Reason: Fatty Eggnog

It's so heavy that it takes a little more effort, patience and humility to make. My clothes get sprayed with eggnog daily during the holidays.

But you don't care about my woes, what you should care about is this:

21 grams of fat!?! Yikes.

So the alternate?

Basically, you are given the option to go nonfat, 2% or whole.

No whole milk unless calories mean nothing to you...

The ONLY way to create a great coffee beverage with eggnog (in this JJM's opinion) is to make a 16oz QUAD shot half eggnog/ half milk. Lots of cinnamon spice on top and a pump of cinnamon dolce syrup... Seriously, you die it's so good.

However, I do recommend keeping it tall, keeping it nonfat or 2% and keeping it a once a week or every two weeks treat.

Because wouldn't you rather eat a few of those holiday cookies instead? :) 

Have a coffee question? No question is to big or small...
We really enjoy bringing you the coffee info and snark every week but without your questions we wouldn't be here so please keep them rolling in!

Please feel free to leave your question in the comments below or just let us know what you really want to hear by emailing us at:


See you next week!
Java Joe Mamas

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Have I Got A Mug For You!

This idea was born on twitter so you know the story is good.
I think it may have started out as a bumper sticker idea that turned into the 'yeah you should make one of those' irresistible Fred Flinstone ideas that sounded really great at the time which probably was some ungodly hour. 

I made one for myself obviously forgetting the fact that my children can read so I don't use it often enough - there is your fair warning for timing on this as far as if you really want to win it.  If you have high school teens, you might be safe, if you have toddlers, you will be safe for awhile but the 5 - Jr. High range is not recommended unless you can erase their memory of it before going back to school to be absolutely sure they don't repeat it.

I can't really take credit for what I am about to unveil here today which I am passing on to you.  So if you are a coffee lover and would do anything for your coffee, (of course you do, you are here) this is for you:

I have said forget about the Klondike Bar, ask me what I would do for my favorite coffee...

Here's all you have to do to win your own one of a kind mug:

  • Mandatory: Leave a comment telling me: What would YOU DO for your favorite coffee or what was something crazy you have done??
  • Mandatory: Make sure you follow GFC - leave me a comment saying you do
  • Optional: Tweet: Tell @coffeeluvinmom what you would do for your favorite #coffee here: http://bit.ly/sZQiii to WIN a one of a kind mug! or something of the like...leave the link for your tweet here in the comments.
  • Optional: Leave one comment on another post or whatever else your heart desires to stalk me further.

Winner will be selected Friday December 2 at 12am CST in a random drawing, contacted by email and must respond within 12 hours with additional information.  Leave a separate comment for each entry, the more comments, the more entries.  Good luck!

Friday, November 11, 2011

French Press Tutorial - Four Easy Steps

Thanks for joining us again for another sahweet edition of Coffee Chronicles where we Thank Coffee it's Friday each week sharing with you our readers the inside snark and unpredictably entertaining coffee information most of the time..

This week we present a special video French Press Tutorial we think you will enjoy and learn from courtesy of a lovely seven year old who thinks she is iCarly.  Showing you just how a French Press coffee maker is to use in four easy steps :  

(French Press Instructions: So easy a seven year old can do it)

The Great Coffee Tip she was trying to tell us about was that if you fill the carafe - or your own coffee mug - with hot water prior to pouring the coffee in, the heat will keep your cuppa joe warmer for longer.

Always boil your water rather than putting it in the microwave to heat it, please for your own safety and future well being.  Just a thing..

Use the most coarse grind on your beans when using a press unless you enjoy grounds in the last cup. Auto-drip grind may leave you crunchy in the end with a bad taste in your mouth - you don't want that now do you?  
Respect the cup!

Have a coffee tutorial you would like to see? A coffee question you need answered?

Please feel free to leave your question in the comments or feel free to let us know what you really want to hear or see by emailing us at:


See you next week!
Java Joe Mamas
now available on Twitter @JavaJoeMama1 and @JavaJoeMama2

Friday, November 4, 2011

Cappuccino Crunch Bars for the Sweet Tooth

Is it really Friday? Can I just say it's about time?  
Why does it feel like it took a year to get here this week?

Thank Coffee It's Friday people!  You'll be glad you grabbed a cuppa joe and joined us for Coffee Chronicles this week because we are treating you to what's bound to be a hit at any party you may have ...wait, screw that, make these for yourself and make your coffee lovin' mouth smile a little bigger - that's what I'm gonna do!!

From the kitchen of TRM:

If you have a sweet tooth and want some delicious while sipping a steaming cup of hot coffee, these bars will satisfy you.  They are so good.

The hubby informed me that dessert was a bit scarce around the house so I quickly whipped these up.  It's really hard not grabbing one every time I pass through the kitchen.

The coffee addition really gives them a rich background flavor and the white chocolate chip and toffee really puts them over the top.  Just what we needed with all the excess Halloween Candy over here!

Oh well, these are nice to have around the house for the holiday season and would be a great addition to any cookie platters you have going out to friends.

Photo credit: Food.com

Don't eat them all at once.

Cappuccino Crunch Bars
Adapted from Bake Sale Recipes

1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup butter, room temperature
1-1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons instant coffee granules or espresso powder, dissolved in 1 Tablespoon hot water and cooled to room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup toffee baking bits

Combine flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in large bowl; set aside.

Beat butter and sugars in large bowl with electric mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy; about 3 minutes.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Add coffee mixture and vanilla; beat well.  Add flour mixture; beat until well blended.  Stir in white chocolate chips and toffee bits.

Spread batter evenly in a well greased 13 x 9 pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 35 minutes or until golden brown (mine took 25).  Cool completely on a wire rack.  To get nice clean edges on the bars I refrigerate them for a couple hours before cutting them.

These really brown up nicely in the oven.

And there you have it folks, our treat...no tricks here!
Just our little way of saying thanks for showing up every week with the hopes of being a little more informed in your coffee knowhow. We enjoy broadening your horizons that way...

Have a coffee question? No question is to big or small...

Please feel free to leave your question in the comments or just let us know what you really want to hear by emailing us at:


Thursday, November 3, 2011

At the End of a Gun

Last week for Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop, I listed 
22 things I have done in my life.

This Week's Prompt: Did you create a list of 22 things you’ve done in your life last week? This week, choose one item from your list and elaborate! We want the story.

Well here's The Real Story to the best of my recollection:

Late 1990

It was still warm weather even though school had started again, my first year of college - we had just spent the evening hanging out at his house - he was taking me home in his mom's Mustang convertible with the top down.

It was a Thursday night I remember because we were talking about what we were going to do for the weekend on the way home and how he wanted to just drop me off quick to be ready for work in the morning.

We pulled into an unusually dark driveway which I didn't even think twice about my mom turning off the porch light.  It wasn't past midnight, I was home on time for a change.

My house was one off the corner and he pulled about half way in the driveway almost to the porch leaving the back end of the car exposed to the street light on the corner.

We chatted probably making out a minute taking advantage of the darkness of the driveway with the car still running because he was leaving soon when a figure appeared out of the shadows from the neighbor's house on his side of the car.  A short, non-intimidating build, it looked like my neighbor from across the street as he came in casually asking how it was going...We responded that is was going good when he told us this was a stickup - no disguise, no gun, he wanted my boyfriends wallet.

I instantly became enraged sitting in my own driveway, a place I should feel safe - with my adrenaline pumping I decided to give the guy the what for in words I can't exactly remember but I know I was pissed. I'm sure it started with "Are you kidding me?"

Somewhere in the middle of the short lived rant about being in my own driveway, a gun came in from behind me against my temple with another hand holding my head and the voice of a much larger man: "I suggest you do what you are told lady."  

The rage instantly turned into shock and fear as the hair stood on my neck thinking about what was going to happen here.  Was this really happening?  It was Thursday night and there was guaranteed only a couple dollars (if that) in the wallet being that tomorrow would be payday.  So many scenes played out in my head knowing we didn't have anything to steal but the car.

They told him to turn off the ignition. 
The keys to the car were demanded and then tossed up to the front of the driveway close the back gate. 

Why they didn't demand we get out of the car and just take off with it was beyond me, it was the only thing worth what they were after.  The wallet was confiscated and my pockets were checked by the hands of the voice of that big dude from The Green Mile after I told them I didn't have a purse.  There was a pair of fake RayBans on the dash that they swiped before taking off around the corner in a flash with the sadly bare wallet.  

We sat there a moment before I looked over at his pasty face still in disbelief. 
He shakily whispered that he thought he better stay for a little while.