Stretching our fancy coffee budget

It’s well into September and the air has been hot and sticky again. We had a brief cooling off around Labor Day, but summer is isn’t ready to let go yet. I don’t mind so much, but am ready to feel cooler air. My body is telling me the hot 80’s is not natural for this time of year. But as long as it’s hot, I will tell you how I have been using our morning coffee to ward off extra coffee making during the day and extra coffee buying (Starbucks anyone?).

My husband is a real coffee drinker. I didn’t start drinking coffee in any regularity until after we had been dating for some time. I have been through phases when I had to have sweet desert coffee, straight black coffee, almond creamer, coconut milk, soy creamer; I have experimented with all kinds of ways to drink my coffee. One thing that has never changed is that I like cold coffee.

When I was a kid, my mother worked third shift. Some of you may not even know what third shift is…it’s the same as the ‘overnight’ shift, sometimes called the awake overnight shift as it is known as today. My mom had two small kids and worked all night, came home to get my brother on the school bus and then off to bed while I basically entertained my toddler self. Apparently I used to eat butter straight out of the refrigerator, a habit that also manifested in my older child. Genes are expressed in funny ways!

My mother is also a hard core coffee drinker, but ALWAYS takes hers black. So in 1980 when my mother would come home form work, drink her coffee while getting my brother off to school, she would leave her cup out on the kitchen table as she lumbered off to bed.

In my toddler curiosity, I used to steal sips of that coffee, pretending to be an adult like my mother. By the time I made my way to her leftover coffee, it has long grown cold. To me, cold coffee almost tastes like it’s ‘normal’ state. Cold and bitter. Today, I either like my coffee fresh and piping hot, or ice cold. There is no in-between for me and my coffee.

So after that fresh morning pot is no longer fresh and hot, what is a frugal gal to do? I have been using it to make my very own cold brew at home. We have many left over plastic Starbucks cups we reuse, so I get one out of the cupboard, fill it with ice, add about 1/4 cold water to it and pour the contents of my coffee maker right into the cup. I press the top on, pop in the straw and put it into there refrigerator until my mid-afternoon slump.

And that my friends, is how I have been stretching our fancy coffee bill. While we are paying down debt, there are no cold brews. Why pay for something I can make at home? Ah, that’s right….convenience…well life is not convenient when you are broke, in debt, or trying to save for a major financial goal.

Do you get thrifty with your coffee? Do you reuse your coffee grinds, or put them in your garden?


4 thoughts on “Stretching our fancy coffee budget

  1. Caitlin says:

    I love coffee but am unfortunately unable to drink it much – the intense acidity gives me a terrible stomach ache that day and the next. But I can get away with espresso, which is less acidic, so I drink a lot of americanos.

    My dad sometimes makes iced coffee like you, and I wanted to tip you off to his trick – one day, use the leftover coffee to make coffee iced cubes, then, the following day, do your normal routine with ice in cup and leftover coffee in fridge, but use the coffee ice cubes. That way your coffee doesn’t get watered down by the melted ice.

    Liked by 1 person

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