Hug in a Mug…3-ways


This weekend we went hard at the Christmas prepping.  It’s a tradition to have my cousin K out for a long weekend in November to decorate the tree, make cookies, decorate a gingerbread house and watch all the cheesy Christmas movies we can…all with a crockpot or two of something yummy to sip on through the days! Here’s three amazing recipes to get you set and on your merry way for all things Christmas.  A definite mug in a hug!


First up is this Caramel Mocha Masterpiece.  It’s so simple and making your own marshmallows or picking some up from a gourmet shop is an added gooey bonus.  Here’s how to make it:

  • 1 L milk
  • 5 cups fresh brewed coffee (we used decaf)
  • 1.5 cups of your favourite hot chocolate powder (I even found some caramel hot chocolate mix at the bulk barn!)
  • 3-4 tsp caramel extract
  • 1 large pinch of salt
  • marshmallows and caramel sauce to garnish.

Put everything (except the garnish) in a crock pot and cook on low for a few hours until hot, serve with marshmallows, a drizzle of caramel and a pinch of salt sprinkled over top.


Next up on this amazing line-up is this White Chocolate Candy Cane Hot Cocoa!  Admittedly this one is pretty sweet for my liking…but it was a hit with the little guy! It’s pink and minty and full of Christmas cheer! Throw everything into the crockpot, heat on low and serve with whipped cream and crushed candy canes! Here’s what you need:

  • 1 1/2 L milk
  • 1/2 cup chopped white chocolate
  • 1 1/2 cup candy cane hot chocolate mix (I found mine at the bulk barn)
  • whipped cream and crushed candy canes to garnish



Last on the menu is this favourite!  This Gingerbread Latte will fill your house with all the holiday smells.  It’s not too sweet, decadent but not so decadent you can’t drink it all day, and it’s so dang cute!  We topped ours with cute little gingerbread cookies that we made, whipped cream and yummy cinnamon gingerbread man sprinkles!  Here’s how to make it:

  • Half a pot of strong brewed coffee (we used decaf)
  • 1 1/5 L milk
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • Whipped cream, gingerbread sprinkles and fresh baked gingerbread man cookies (to perch on the edge of the mug or to dunk…you decide!)


I’m telling you, any one of these yummy steaming sippers is sure to warm you right up and fill you with the holiday spirit!  The only thing missing this weekend to make our time prepping for Christmas over the top was a fresh blanket of gently falling snow!  I love the holidays but I especially love all the anticipation and getting ready for the festivities.  Traditions are extremely important to me and I love that my dear K still wants to partake in these traditions! Who knows what kind of yumminess we’ll dream up for next year! My heart is full, my tree is trimmed and more memories were made!

‘It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!’


Chai Spice Smoothies


I love chai tea lattes…I don’t love how much work they are to make yourself so you can control the sweetness. Tassimo makes a great one that is super easy to enjoy in the morning but it’s just so full of sugar.  Here’s an easy recipe for chai spice smoothies, perfect for your May long weekend mornings or anytime really!!  They’re extremely smooth and frothy and filling and perfect for sharing.

Here’s the recipe for two:

  • 1 frozen banana, chopped in thirds
  • 2 cups milk, I used coconut
  • 1 scoop of your favourite vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 pinches of ground cardamom
  • a pinch of ground clove
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 pinches ground ginger

Whiz it all up in your blender and enjoy with someone special!



Vodka Sunshine Spritzer


Spring-like weather is taking its sweet time to appear but until the heatwave arrives this is a lovely cocktail to enjoy even despite the cloudy and chilly weather we’ve been having.  Hopefully soon it can be mixed up and enjoyed on your patio or deck in full sunshine! Inspired by Smirnoff’s recipe for their “Paloma Rush”; here’s my version, the “Vodka Sunshine Spritzer”!

Here’s how to make it:

  • 1 oz Smirnoff Vodka
  • 1 oz fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
  •  1/2 oz fresh squeezed lime juice
  • Club Soda
  • Ice
  • Garnish: lime wheel, grapefruit wedge

In a tall glass filled with ice, mix juices, vodka and top with club soda! Cheers!

**Head over to to check out other great cocktail recipes!**


Apple Pie Smoothies


I first made this yummy drink (that dare I say tastes more like a treat) almost a year ago after E and I went on an early spring hike….He really liked it then and holy smokes, he really really liked it this morning! (I’m not sure why I haven’t made this since then…it’s a way bigger hit with my little guy than the berry smoothies I typically make!) He gulped it down in record speed, singing the whole time! (He sings when he’s really enjoying what he’s eating, and he’s done this since he was first introduced to food! Be still my heart!)


It’s really easy to make and super healthy too!  I use applesauce that I made in the fall with fruit from my mom’s trees (since our trees are still very young and only produced a few apples last year!) so no sugar added!  Making applesauce is so easy and it’s nice to know that the only ingredient is apples!  You could also add a tbsp of flax, chia or hemp seed if you have it on hand too to bulk up the nutrition.  We kept it pretty basic this morning!

Here’s how I make it for my little guy and me:

  • about 1 1/2 cup milk (dairy or non-dairy, it makes no difference!)
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 3 tbsp oatmeal (I use old formula scoops in my flour and oat canisters for a simple hack!)
  • 1/2-3/4 cup-ish frozen applesauce
  • a squeeze of fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin pie or apple pie spice (or just plain old cinnamon if that’s all you have!)
  • Blitz everything up in your bullet or blender and enjoy!  Hopefully you have someone special to share it with too!



Irish Coffee (heaven)…


I was lucky enough to travel to Ireland with my husband and parents a few years back…it felt like a second home and I cannot wait to be able to go back.  Insanely it took us halfway through our trip to discover these mugs of heaven, Irish Coffee! And from that moment forward my life was forever changed!

My husband and dad had chosen to spend the day sightseeing around the town of Ennis where we were staying and my mom and I decided to shop (surprise surprise).  It was one of the few rainy days we experienced while we were there but it was cold and wet and so at the beginning of our shopping day we decided to slip into a pub and have something hot to warm up.  Can I just add that the pubs there are as amazing as you could possibly imagine. So much culture and heritage and warmth!  We both ordered an Irish coffee and it was brought to us on a plate with a package of thin ginger cookies (that were heaven-sent too I swear!). That coffee….oh that coffee!  I still dream of it.  Later on that day when we had hooked back up with the guys it turned out that they too had stopped in that pub and had Irish coffees as well…it was like the angels were sending us there separately but together so we could all experience it!

After that we continued to order Irish coffees whenever we ate out (unless we were having a Guinness day!) and at one point we finally asked how to make them knowing full well it likely would never be the same once we were home!  Here’s the recipe we were told!

~In a large clear glass mug add a hefty shot of Irish whisky (Jameson) to 2 tsp brown sugar. Stir and top with hot, strong brewed coffee.  Top with unpasteurized heavy cream, whipped to a beautiful froth. (Herein lies the problem here in Canada…unless you can hook me up with a generous dairy farmer as I don’t think I want to start milking my own cow anytime soon!  The whipping cream you buy in the store just isn’t quite like the cream in Ireland…likely due to the pasteurization so our friendly mixologist at the pub told us.) Do not stir the coffee at this point.  You want to sip the coffee through the heavy cream.

I wanted to post this amazing recipe in ample time for you all to go out and gather up the ingredients (specifically that divine Irish Whiskey) so that you too can toast to my favorite time of the year!  I plan to enjoy these hot mugs of heaven all week leading up to St. Patty’s Day! And if by chance someone from Ireland reads this post and knows what I’m talking about with those thin ginger cookies I would forever be indebted to you if you wanted to send some my way!

Slainte!! (Cheers!!)