Coffee, Cooking, and Colorado

Just a quick post about what I’ve been up to this past week!

I’ve started drinking coffee
I am not a coffee drinker. I’ve tried but I’ve just never been very fond of the taste, so the only time I would drink it is when I really needed some caffeine – whether for an early morning at work or for my late night classes. However, our friends recently returned from Puerto Rico and gave Andrew and I some Puerto Rican coffee. I wasn’t planning on using it (since I’m not a fan of coffee) but Andrew made some one morning and I took a sip of it and couldn’t believe how good it tasted!

I am trying not to drink too much of it (I like a lot of sugar in mine still :P ) but I always will make myself a cup after work on Mondays and Wednesdays. After working an eight or nine hour day, I then have class until 10:00pm, so I’m always really dragging about halfway through my lectures. The coffee  definitely helps. And, we found the coffee online for a reasonable price so we can purchase more in the future when we run out!

Coffee

Also, is this not the cutest teacup? My coworker gifted this to me over Christmas and I’ve been really enjoying using it for my coffee. Makes me feel fancy in the morning! :P

I have been trying lots of new recipes!
I feel Andrew and I have been eating the same foods recently, so I’ve been trying about one new recipe a week for the past couple of weeks! So far everything has been really good! I’ve made Penne with Spicy Vodka Tomato Cream sauce, Black bean and corn quesadillas, Cajun pasta, and my mom’s recipe of homemade pot pie which I’ve never made before! I’ve noticed that I tend to gravitate towards dishes that have a lot of spices and flavor.

Penne Vodka Sauce
Penne with Vodka Tomato Cream Sauce

Trying new recipes has actually been really fun, and I’m learning to cook with new ingredients. I’ve started cooking with real garlic now instead of using powder, and I’ve been using a lot more spices in my cooking! All of these dishes that I’ve made are definitely going to be made again in the future! And, because I’m using more vegetables and fresh ingredients, I feel better about what we’re eating, too. :)

Planning spring break vacation!
Andrew and I are planning a vacation for our spring break at the end of March. We had some airplane vouchers from our honeymoon we were going to use, but then we decided on someplace closer: Colorado. I’ve always thought that Colorado is such a beautiful, beautiful state, but neither of us have visited before. The hope is that it will be very relaxing and relatively inexpensive as we mainly just want to visit state parks.

We planned out all the activities we’d ideally like to do and are spending two days at Rocky Mountain National Park, three days in and around Denver, and then two days in and around Colorado Springs. We will do some sightseeing in downtown Denver, but other than that we just want to see nature and mountains!  

Once the weather gets warmer we are going to try and be a bit more active to prepare for all the hiking and walking we will be doing. I’m just hoping it won’t be too cold! ;)

22 thoughts on “Coffee, Cooking, and Colorado”

  1. Trying to use more spices is always plus for me. I love cooking and I believe I get it from my grandmother and my mom. I honestly would not mind having your mom’s homemade pot pie recipe, if that’s okay with you and your mom, of course?

    Anyways, Tristan and I still need to have fun. We are ending our second year and we still haven’t had much fun. Though, with bills piling and stuff, it’s kind of hard to do so. I’m just hoping that with Tristan’s upcoming Supplemental Instructor jobs coming up in the fall (He’ll be Supplemental Instructor for both C# and C++ for two different professors), we’ll not be struggling as we are now. Ya know what I mean? I believe we are the definition of struggling college students. Haha.

    Colorado is a state I would enjoy going to as well. If by any chance you guys have some free time, you should try to make it to California. I would definitely love to meet you guys, since we’ve been friends for a long time now. That would be cool. Oh! You guys should definitely check out the cave of winds if you haven’t already plan to do so? Tristan went there when his grandfather lived in Colorado and they went there and said it was pretty amazing.

    1. I know I get my love for cooking from my mom and grandma. I always loved cooking with my mom growing up, so it’s definitely paying off now! And sure! She wouldn’t care. I think she may have gotten it from a recipe book anyways, so I’m not really sure it’s “her” recipe. :P I will type it up and email it to you when I get a chance!

      I have an aunt and uncle who go to Colorado all the time and their photos are always so beautiful! If I read correctly, Cafe of the Winds is in Pike’s Peak and we do plan on going to Pike’s Peak! So we will have to make sure and stop and do that, too. Thanks for the suggestion, Jamie. :)

      1. You’re very welcome Becca! It was actually Tristan who suggested it to me, and I just remembered him going there with his grandfather and dad. I rarely get to travel outside of California. I think the farthest I’ve gone was to Nevada for my mom’s wedding. Oh well, that’s what a college degree is for right? To get out of this no-traveling-funk. Right?

        And sure, any time. I understand you’re a busy woman and have to take care of yourself and hubby first, before anyone else! So no worries.

  2. I’m more of a baker than a cook but I love trying out new recipes, finding new ways to do things… it’s great fun, and no-one complains when I have batches of cupcakes or cookies or muffins for them to try.

    I’m glad you’re having fun being creative with what you eat :)

    1. I don’t feel that I’m a very good baker. Baking seems more of a science to me, and I always seem to do something wrong, haha! I usually just end up buying store mixes, add eggs to it, and call it a day! :P

  3. I haven’t been able to get into coffee either because of the taste. I think that’s interesting that you found a coffee that you like though! Maybe I just need to try different kinds :) Right now, black tea is my source of caffeine. The tea cup is really pretty!

    Yum, that pasta looks good. I love vodka sauce on pasta, and I’m a big fan of things with more spices too. That’s great that you’re cooking more and using fresh ingredients! Not only is it better for you, but I always get a feeling of accomplishment after a good home cooked meal. It’s like feeling better both mentally and physically, haha.

    Colorado sounds like an exciting trip! I’ve only ever been for skiing, but it looks beautiful during other times of the year. I would love to take some photos there!

  4. I started drinking cappuccinos last week. I had two hours sleep because I wasn’t well, so used some we had in the cupboard for when Andy’s parents come round, so I could stay awake at work. Now I’m getting a little bit addicted. It’s becoming one every morning now, which isn’t that much, but I’ve gone from rarely having caffeine to that in a short space of time. Probably not a good thing!

    I wish I could cook, but I never take the time to bother. It’s always just a rush to stick anything in the oven for me. I’m way too tired when I get home from work to do anything else. Your pasta looks amazing!

    Hope you have fun on your trip!

  5. You inspired me to find new recipes for dinner!

    That looks hella yummy, and I always try to cook, and that has gotten my weight down and keeps it down. Eating out is too expensive because it adds up and it isn’t healthy at all.

    Have fun on your trip~

  6. Coffee’s amazing, you should try Keurig coffee. :)
    Those recipes look amazing! I made orange chicken (my mom’s recipe). It’s just panko breadcrumbs, Mrs. Dash, a juice of an orange and lemon and cooked children. It’s good and easy!

    Have you been to Colorado? Its like my favorite state to travel to. :)
    I always go to Aspen but Colorado Springs is really fun! Whitewater rafting is fun if you’ve never been before. Are you driving to Colorado Springs? I’m going to Toronto over spring break!

    1. I’ve been really wanting to try some new Chinese and Asian recipes but unfortunately Andrew doesn’t like Asian food. So I’m waiting for him to go out of town :D

      LOL. I don’t think you meant to put children but that cracked me up. What is Mrs. Dash? I’ve not heard that before.

      We have never been! I went white water rafting on a family vacation when we were in Arizona (I think? I was little). We are going to drive! It’s about eight hours to Denver so it shouldn’t be too bad! Otherwise we would have to drive to St. Louis, then fly, then rent a car. Too much of a hassle to not just drive ourselves.

      Toronto sounds super fun! What all do you plan on doing?

      1. HAHAHA I meant cooked chicken. Thats funny I put children. :) I’m not a cannibal. LOL
        Mrs. Dash is just brand of a lot of spices just put together. My mom uses it in like everything.

        Oh okay eight hours isn’t that bad then! Its like maybe 15-20 hours to Colorado where I live.
        I’m going to Toronto with my family and we’re doing all the touristy stuff like the CN Tower and stuff. We’re also going to Niagara Falls hopefully. :)

        But there’s a stuff to do in Colorado. There’s caves that you go into which is fun!

        1. Haha! I figured that’s what you meant! ;)

          Niagara falls is beautiful! The Canadian side is much, much prettier than the American side. You’ll love it!

  7. That pasta is literally making my mouth water! I just ate dinner but I’m hungry again. Then again, I am a HUGE pasta and carb addict. Like, you have no idea.

    I’m not a fan of the taste of coffee. I need a lot of favor. I’m pretty much an avid caramel coffee and latte/macchiato drinker. Oh, and frappes.

  8. YAY FOR COFFEEE! I had a “coffee-phase” at one point in my life a few years ago, I drank like 3 cups a day to get through the day, it got to the point where I felt that I was dependent on it :( SO I had to cut back a lot and too much caffeine is bad for you anyway D: (especially my family w/ diabetes and heart disease passed down in the family) I’m glad youre having some though; it’s a lovely taste and definitely not something you should avoid because it definitely makes me happy when I have it!

    WOO for trying new recipes, I haven’t actually cooked in about a month so I should probably go look around to try new things but I am a terrible cook so I always avoid it!

  9. I’m not a coffee person either and it makes me feel really unhip if you know what I mean?! Tea for me all the way. *waves British flag*

    I’ve also been trying new recipes! I got a cookbook for Christmas and having been finding things in there, although there aren’t many pictures which annoys me. I really like seeing what the dish will look like at the end (or should do, anyway).

    Yay, a holiday! You deserve it, you work so hard. I’ve never been to the USA but I really should one day.

    1. Haha, yes! I feel like it’s the “thing” to drink coffee. But I’m also not a tea drinker. So I can’t even be apart of the cool crowd that doesn’t like coffee but likes tea. :'(

      That’s really weird it doesn’t pictures. I find a lot of recipes online, but if it doesn’t have a picture I almost always skip past it! I find pictures really helpful, plus like you said, I want to know what it’s supposed to look like!

      There’s so much to do here! There are so many places all over the world that I’d love to travel, but there is still so much to see here in America. I’m not sure how people choose when they come visit! :O

  10. I love coffee. Once I tried these independent coffee houses coffee, I can’t really stand chain coffees! Love me the coffee places in my area. Their coffee is so good that if I order a latte, I don’t need any sweetener, unlike Starbucks where I need sweetener.

    Yay for cooking! I don’t mind cooking, but there two Cs I hate the most with it: chopping and cleaning LOL I’m a horrible chopper and the cleaning afterwards doesn’t appeal to me. But yum! That pasta looks delish!

    Also I wish you and Andrew a great trip! Colorado sounds like a fantastic destination :D I want to travel somewhere, too, but that’s going to be held off since I’ve got some major financial things coming up XD

    1. Oh my goodness, I hate cleaning up after eating! We don’t have a dishwasher, so I try to wash the dishes while I wait for water to boil or something to simmer, etc, that way it’s not as much to clean afterwards.

  11. It took me years and years to find a type of coffee I liked, and by the time I discovered something I enjoyed I found out that I couldn’t tolerate large amounts of caffeine. So now I drink decaf coffee purely because I like the taste!

    The pasta looks amazing. Do you have the recipe?

    That sounds like a great way to use your airplane vouchers. :) I hope you managed to arrange an awesome trip.

  12. I’m not a coffee drinker myself either! I always get mine decaf if anything @__@. Hopefully the coffee you got will help you out! The teacup looks legitly vintage XD.

    Good on you to try out new recipes! I like the sound of vodka from the sauce XD. Using real food will bring you a long way!

    Have fun with planning out your spring break vacation! Looking forward to hear about it ;).

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