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Welcome to #CheckIn for Wednesday Sep 11

There have been some interesting conversations all week with peeks into lives. Where I am, the weather is cooling calling for turning on the heater again and wearing socks (no-o-o-o). What’s your hot drink ritual? Whole bean, ground (includes Keurig/Nespresso or…instant)! If Tea is your thing – loose leaves or bags? Hot chocolate, Ovaltine or Milo? Spill 😉 your preferences (with a story I hope), send a mid-week 👋🏻 or update.

What is #CHECKIN?
It’s a longstanding daily tradition started by Lawrence (LD) Williams on g+. Peeps throughout the world check in to mingle. It’s been likened to what folks do around a water cooler, on a front porch or at a ca... show more

Grinded in the early morning, whole beans grinding during the day :-)

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Wednesday evening here, just turned 6:00 PM. My wife is enjoying the set of alcohol markers I got for her; 80 colors and a pad to draw in. She's got artistic talent and I'm trying to encourage her.

Nice! @Whuffo I'm trying a pottery class the Fall.

@Hans W not time for me to get up yet, it's only just after 4am. When I do it's will be ground coffee.

@Cass M Art is a wonderful thing. I use my fountain pens for drawings and I'll have to wait to see what Rosalie does with the markers.

ground coffee in a good old drip-brew coffeemaker which demands cleaning far too often
I know when it needs cleaning cuz the Finished beep happens at about the 10% mark

I just finished roasting another pound of Kapeng Barako. It's loaded into the grinder; the maid will clean the roaster for me. It'll be ground just before brewing, and I roast about once a week.

Whole bean coffee into the top of a Cuisinart Grind&Brew

Good morning! For me it's Twinings Irish Breakfast loose leaf with honey. My uncle got me started on drinking this back when I was in high school and it's been one of my favorite teas ever since.

My hot drink used to be coffee in the morning, with occasional tea during the darker/colder months.

A few years back, I noticed my stomach becoming less and less happy with morning coffee, so I switched to drinking tea in the morning, one coffee or espresso after lunch (as a digestif and warding off the post-food blood-sugar slump). The rest of the day: water.

I then also switched company and found a kindred spirit (and good friend) and we usually went through ~2 liters of tea every morning and another liter in the afternoon for close to six years of shared work life. I then left the company, but still drinking tea. I've now returned to the company and have won over many direct and indirect team mates that good tea is worth it.

I still like coffee, but tea is my main squeeze.

Good afternoon, I'm a tea person, Darjeling 2nd flush. I occassonally drink coffee, as well.

Tea: PG Tips is all I drink. I drink a lot of mediocre coffee, but not tea.

@Dan Weese +1 for PG Tips. I take it with me in my suitcase when I travel because there is no substitute.

The day begins here with Bigelow's English Breakfast tea.... followed by the first pot of Trader Joe's Coffee (I get the Medium Blend Beans in a can and grind them myself for each pot).

My wife usually has a cup of each before she goes out the door (tea with breakfast, coffee after to get her going for the commute).

I do about 4 cups of the English tea daily, and 4-6 cups of coffee.... sometimes supplemented with some green tea.

Well, NYC seems to be going against the cooling trend (at least today). It will be 87F/30C.

However, on cooler days I generally switch between French press coffee and brewed tea (from leaves). The tea is generally Irish or English Breakfast.

Every morning, one mug of ground coffee via a refillable filter in a Keurig coffee maker. I don't drink it again until the next morning. When it finally cools down around here, I'll have the occasional midday cup of tea for warming. High today is forecast for 93 F (34 C).

...high temp in the Philly area today is predicted to be 90F....along with high humidity and a Tstorm predicted for Grimm One has been in bad shape since yesterday..

Coffee: A mug of the milk in the microwave, tsp of sugar, tsp of instant coffee, microwave

Cocoa: A heaping tsp of cocoa and a tsp of sugar in a little hot water in a mug of hot water, stirred until not lumpy, fill the mug with milk, microwave

Chai Tea: mug of milk with a teabag of chai tea, microwave

Hello ; this afternoon pleasant temperature in the Paris region (20 degrees C); In the morning, when I wake up, I take a filter coffee, originally from Ethiopia in a big cup; after lunch I take a coffee with a spoon of rum. in the afternoon if I go out, I take in a pub depending on the weather, or my mood: either a virgin Mojito, or a mint tea, or iced tea. when I go to the restaurant I take what is called here: a gourmet coffee (coffee with small pieces of pies, cream, ice).

..every filled 32oz mug of Tea while at work...I switch around what kind...Oolong Mint-Chocolate tea, Earl Grey-Twinings; and Valentine's Tea-AdagioTea; Twinings Vanilla Chai...

QOTD: Since I quit caffeine, warm drinks are pretty much hot cider from a Keurig at the office...

Oh, forgot to add that the coffee is generally Tanzania Peaberry or a Fairway custom blend called Life Begins at Ladder 40. It's named after firefighters.

What’s your hot drink ritual?
Plain ol' black coffee.

Any old ground coffee in a can, preferably something cheap. My favorite is Chock-Full-of-Nuts, but I'll drink any brand if the price is right.

I grew up drinking tea but switched to coffee in my late 20s. I grind brands and French press to start the day. Later I drink Bengal Spice tea (hot or cold) or a chai rooibos tea. Cool rainy day so I'll be doing some preliminary audit work.

@Violante de Rojas I feel G's pain, I get that with pressure changes as well.

@Rod Mesa did I mention hump day anywhere 😉

Welcome to #Checkin @Tobias Klausmann

QOTD - Hot drink ritual? Coffee is one of mine.
I found the attached image I used to answer a similar question on g+ years ago. Except for the placemat I very often use the same objects: tray, french press, mug, milk pitcher! Though I do have a variety to choose from, these are still favourites. French press because I truly think coffee is tastiest made this way. I'm surprised this particular French press continues to perform as it did the day I first got it. The other objects I consider pieces of art since they were made by artisans I have known personally.

@Cass M good for you for taking up pottery. The mug in the picture was made by Helga Grove, originally from Stettin Germany. She and her husband Jan moved to Sooke, BC and flourished as potters and artists. I acqui... show more

I went through five or six French presses before discovering they came in stainless steel!

Love the story of your mug @Su Ann Lim

Oh, I forgot to mention: loose leaf tea all the way. It may be in my head, but I think bags just make the taste off, either by adding their own or inhibiting the leaves.

Speaking of leaves, I got through 1kg+ of tea leaves in ~3mo. More in the winter, less in the summer.

we now live in a pace that we can drink hot beverages all year round, maybe a week or two we have hot-ish weather. We are tea drinkers and we like coffee. I have only very good coffee since I do not like lousy coffee, hot cocoa is nice in the snowy times too. My tea is King Cole( Canadian) my coffee is Mystic Monk, my cocoa is made from scratch nothing premixed...I may need to try a french press since everyone seems to be in love with it. I like my 20+yrlod percolator since I have gone through about 50 electric drip things. I have a nearly 100 year old drip thing that also works perfectly.

Good morning! I actually saw the notification for this early this morning, but have just now found a moment to comment. I hope everyone is doing well.

I am a creature of habit. My habits have habits. I should be a nun, I'm so fond of habits.

Weekdays always start with coffee - ground, Kirkland, a regular Mr. Coffee style drip machine, one Stevia - and later in the morning, a cup of tea - Lipton, usually, or whatever they have in the break room, 2/3 of a packet of Stevia. Later in the afternoon, another cup of "coffee" - whatever comes out of the free coffee machine in said break room.

Shabbos, of course, is a bit different. We can't make coffee in the coffee maker. We put up an urn before Shabbos begins, and make instant coffee. My wife likes her Via; I'm less fancy. She will also make a cup of tea; I don't - there are a bunch of issues from a Shabbos standpoint that I've gotten in the habit of avoiding.

The urn stays up until late on Sunday, just because we don't want to waste the water - so Sunday also is usually an instant coffee day.

Against cold weather a hot Chai goes with the spicy curry dish I'd order. Fortunately its not at all that cold here yet, some 22C today and it feels like a late summer day. The mornings are cold and below 10C now, so a cup of espresso will do (I grind beans). If cold feet on the sofa, tea might do, Grog or not.

❤️ @Jodi Kaplan I went through the frustration of breaking glass ones too! The stainless is far superior - unbreakable, easy to clean and keeps coffee hot much longer.

I am a creature of habit. My habits have habits. I should be a nun, I’m so fond of habits.
@Philip Setnik do they take male, Jewish nuns?

@Nora Qudus do you mind sharing your recipe for hot cocoa?

We have a variety of options. Morning wake-up beverage is usually doppio cappucinos from the Rancilio Silvia on the kitchen bar, generally made using Coffee Bean Direct whole-bean coffee, currently a mix of five parts Seville orange to one part monsooned Malabar, fresh-ground through a Kitchenaid burr grinder.

There's also a drip coffeemaker on the bar that mostly gets used for making tea, along with an electric kettle. There's a box of whole-leaf Darjeeling teas and a selection of several different green teas (mostly either Tazo or Republic of Tea) and herbal teas, but I have to be very careful any more how much tea I drink. I used to drink three or four mugs of Darjeeling a day, but since I developed acid reflux (adverse effect from being on Voltarin too long back around 2002-2003), one cup every two to three days is about my limit of tolerance.

And we keep a stock of cocoa on hand, mostly for winter. It's really pretty decadent when made with steamed milk from the Rancilio. :)

The drip pot is currently a Cuisinart, but we've gone through a variety of... show more

Nearly every morning it is some keurig pod when I get tired of the rut, then it is

Jolly Roger Roasting Company - Home

They have changed the timing of roasting and shipping, but it gets to my house and smells glorious.

This is not a plug. Just like the coffee.

It is very aromatic, some don't think it tastes strong enough, but I love it and they used to be fairly frequent posters on the ploos...😢

Now to personal news:
When my colorectal cancer was diagnosed (Stage 3b), they saw a tiny spot on my lung. We live in an area where granulomas are common and it was small, too small to do anything about. So it was watched while the large mass was radiated and put through a course of chemo pills. Then the big surgery to remove the large mass, with a ten day hospital stay, and then a course of infusion chemo to kill any stray cancer.

All the while, that spot kept showing up.

Scan after scan.

Indeed, every 3 months I went in for a contrast CT scan. It was originally 0.3 cm x 0.2cm and everytime it has gotten just a little bigger. It is now 1 cm x 0.9cm

I'm sure I've telegraphed the "punchline". The granuloma is probably not a granuloma. It's not consistent with lung cancer, but likely to be one of 2 things. A benign cyst or a metastatic tumor consistent with colorectal cancer.

So as soon as their schedule permits I am going in for a radio(xray) guided needle biopsy.

I'll get the results in 3 to 4 days later, and then if malignant some radiati... show more

@David Thiery I use unsweetened cocoa powder for baking, It is to taste of course, I use a table spoon in a big mug, boiling water and sugar to taste I like the less sweet, to that mug of watery cocoa I use powdered whole milk( or powdered soy milk) until it is the right color I also have been know to use coffee creamer....If I am making for more than one I heat milk in a sauce pan to almost boiling ( I use vanilla soy milk or plain whatever I have use whatever milk you use ) I whisk the cocoa powder in and sweeten to taste, I whisk it over the heat until everything is melted and mixed well, and almost boiling, I serve in heated cups....I have been know to add a clove or two and a cinnamon stick to the milk before bringing to an almost boiling the first time and picking them out before serving. top with whipped cream or marshmallows, or a Andes mint if you are brave...use a spoon to stir as you drink since sometimes the cocoa falls to the bottom. I like it less rich at times and the in the wate... show more

@Griff Ferrell that's stressful news. I'm so glad you can talk about it because that in itself relieves a bit of stress, but also you've given us the opportunity to be supportive. Tough times are just a tad less tough when shared.
I'm very glad you've got clear next steps and a doctor and staff you can count on. I'm also glad you know we are here for you. Of course, we'll send energy your way. Allow us to distract you too (relieves a little bit more stress.) Peace be with you.❤️

QOTD Re: other rituals
Living in a cold clime I have many other hot drink rituals. Another - I adore the rituals of tea-drinking, from the full pageantry of the English tea service, to the various Asian rituals (stopping short of practising the Japanese tea ceremony, but almost), the Argentinian yerba communal gourd (@astheroth 明日照 is there something similar in Chi... show more

Some interesting stories today (as usual). I love these posts and the comments generated from round the globe.

My hot drink is coffee. I'm not too picky on it although stronger is better. I don't care much about the weather; hot or cold out, I will still have my coffee. When I worked, I often spent too much time between my office and the faculty lounge either carrying an empty cup or full, depending on my direction.

I have gone through phases when I have drank it nearly constantly to nearly none. Been through grinding, perculator, drip and as my laziness continued to grow, now it's two cups of instant a day; the first with a heaping teaspoon of fibre added. Other than that, black.

In the past I would have kept internal and let it eat my up, so a thank you to all

@Janet Logan ❤️🤗

@Jodi Kaplan ❤️🤗

@Su Ann Lim ❤️🤗

❤️🤗 ❤️🤗

@Griff Ferrell hopefully everything comes out well. Surgery can be very effective and chemo is more targeted.

@Nora Qudus if you like cloves you should try cardamon...

@Su Ann Lim that teapot looks very similar to mine, except mine is a cobalt blue.

Cardamom is excellent in coffee, probably in cocoa too. Have to try that when the weather cools off.


Coffee, black, preferably Peet's Major Dickanson's Blend. Whole bean,
Capresso reduction-gear burr grinder (doesn't burn the coffee while grinding).
Mr Coffee machine with an insulated metal carafe (no burner, the coffee stays hot for hours).

hot chocolate I don't make it very often, because I do it more like one would find in an 18th/19th Century 'chocolate house'. It is very, very rich.

@Carsten Raddatz (劉愷恩) hot chai is a drink I anticipate really enjoying but I have been disappointed with the versions I've had so far. I attribute it to not finding something authentic yet. North Amerca does come up with weird proxies or attempts to fuse cuisines e.g. matcha latte! 😝 Do you have a recipe or recommend something sublime that be available here?

Hmm where is the Darjeeling 2nd Flush meister? Oh there you are @Christoph S. I'm curious do you have a ritual related to drinking your favourite tea?

@Tobias Klausmann a tea connoisseur? You drink a lot of loose leaf tea. What kinds?

@Jodi Kaplan sis from different parents, Cobalt blue? Doesn't it work brilliantly? I had to go through several pretty/striking looking teapots before finding one that does the job well. Cardamon is on my shopping list now.

@Griff Ferrell, fortune and a good outcome to you. May it be a benign cyst.

Iced tea, even in the Winter.

@Phil Stracchino Hear, hear and thank you. 🤗❤️

Coffee on wake is essential.

@Cass M I have I use all sort of spices.

@Su Ann Lim Nope, here is not that social as Argentina. Perhaps in Chilean Patagonia or rural places of Chiloé. It depends really

Tea(loose leaves), latte, chai latte

Well, the ritual for the tea is usually preceded by having to get out of bed... 😋
Nothing special, except we found that 2:40 🕒 minutes are perfect and 8 teaspoons for roughly 1.2l of boiling water.
We order the tea from an online shop, the tea is actually some kind of ecological and fair trade tea.

@Christoph S That's very specific timing! I love chai tea:)
@Nora Qudus👍
@Su Ann Lim looking forward to creating - or at least glazing other's creations:)

@Christoph S 😄 TY. I had a feeling there were details. Yes. IMO, tea is one of the foods/drinks where organically grown products are distinctly more flavourful.

@astheroth 明日照 Thanks for the reply re: yerba mate. Mote con huesillo looks and sounds very exotic and yummy. Since I love dried apricots. I'd definitely try this drink!

(Source: Wikipedia)

..let me add my hopes that the cyst turns out to be benign, @Griff Ferrell!

@Su Ann Lim You are welcome... It's ideal when you are extra thirsty and it's very warm... Excelent!

Hi everyone! Sorry for being so absent. Life has gotten intense. I miss you guys. 😘

@Su Ann, finding good chai in stores, I too gave up trying to find one after disappointing attempts. The brands I tried from common supermarkets were either too spicy (as in "added so much of whatever to cover up we used cheap ingredients") or thin, in whatever small amount of milk you use to cook it comes out watery. Third, brands that have near infinite amounts of marketing monies so grow scepticism naturally instead of curiosity. Authentic recipe, no clue. Am I too critical? 😏 I shall check the Indian wholesale store I go to occasionally and report what they have. - What restaurants serve otoh is rich, cardamom-heavy, milky and often comes with a spoonful of honey.

Teapots separated at birt^Wfurnace? Anyhow thats quite a sizeable pot you have! (And beautiful!) Tea for ten?

@Carsten Raddatz (劉愷恩), I find Tazo's chai quite acceptable for tea in a bag. Republic of Tea's Republic chai is also decent. Doubtless neither comes up to making it from scratch.

@Griff Ferrell Sending my thoughts your way! If it's any consolation, both my Mom and her sister had colorectal cancer and discovered it fairly early. They both had long lives, my Mom dying at 98.
As a result of that, both my brothers and I go through the tests every few years. I don't know if I'll be able to get the next one free because I think they'll only do them until you're 70. One doctor told me they could totally eliminate colon cancer if they could test everyone, but that would break the system.

For drinks... Coffee in the morning through a cheap thrift store drip machine. About three cups does it. I do get the urge once in a while for Yorkshire tea, which I found out about on a trip over there. Best tea I've ever tasted, and I'm not a big tea fan.

@Violante de Rojas thank you so much, I do appreciate it. ❤️🤗

Best wishes @Griff Ferrell on getting thru all this with as little pain as possible.

Yes oh dear that photo is NOT good @Su Ann Lim. We are in cognitive psychology testing all day. So the pale pink lump looks entirely too brain-like for me to think that drink is appetizing.

@Beej now that you mention it, it indeed looks like a brain 🧠!
So it's brain food...😋

@Don Little as the oldest of 5, my diagnosis has forced early colonoscopies for both of my sisters and the next oldest is a brother and he is 3 years away (since I was diagnosed they get them at 45 not 50)

I appreciate the kind thoughts. 🤗❤️

@Joseph Teller hopefully no chemo just the radiation therapy, but I know my Doc. She will recommend another round of chemo just to safe

No pain, that's what I wanna hear! 🤗❤️

️❤️ @Griff Ferrell
Sending good vibes @Griff Ferrell
Peace be with you.❤️
I'll definitely agree with all of the above and add...

GO, @Griff Ferrell!!!

LOL @Beej Cobalt @Christoph S the only 'pretty' pictures of this drink I'd have to pay for, so, please use your imaginations. The brain-like appearance is from the reconstituted dried peach. Have you come across dried fruit which is not wrinkly? Very interesting - the more attractive stock photos of this drink look like canned peaches were used instead of dried peaches!

Besides I'm sure a few (but not all) here find the thought of sweetbread/cervelle/carbeza/headcheesse/etc. (culinary terms for cooked brain) appetizing, no? 😂

I found Sheldon's missing Earl Grey Tea!! (hence: Big Bang Theory series finale scene he's missing Earl Grey Tea in his Tea caddy and blames Leonard!!) {insert picture here except picture not inserting... Ok... Nevermind....}

@V. T. Eric Layton Oh, thank you sir!

I hope I GO for many more. 🤗❤️

Ok... Not topic related... But my new employer (Hachette Book Group of New York/Toronto/Zionsville, IN) (formerly Little, Brown Reader, Perseus, Chronicle and Princeton Press) has NYT books in top 3 this week... James Patterson (again!!!), Elin Hilderbrand Summer '69 and Alix Harrow's Ten Thousand Doors of January! I processed 500k orders to B&N, Target and Kohls distributers the other day!

@Di Cleverly we miss you too but we know you're insanely busy. We're happy any time you manage to find time to check in. You know we are here every day. I hope you, @David Thiery and the moderator team continue to see how appreciative the Pluspora community is for your efforts in creating and maintaining this safe place for us.

@Carsten Raddatz (劉愷恩) LOL the scale of the teapot pic is off. It serves a few, well, twice. Ok, ok the teapot is not small, but really, who drinks just one cup of tea- - when I drink tea, I take my time guzzling a few cups.

@Joe Dillmon re: pic insert failure
You're experiencing something every one of us has. Here's a link to a process that works for me. (There are variations of it.)

Comment insert image tips

As well, if you look back towards the end of Sep 6's #checkin post thread, you'll see @brainarbenz being helped by a few to reach his aha! moment.

BTW Woo hoo for your company's achievements, Joe!

Thank you @Su Ann Lim thought I might give this a try... take two... I found Sheldon's missing Earl Grey Tea!! (hence: Big Bang Theory series finale scene he's missing Earl Grey Tea in his Tea caddy and blames Leonard!!)

Well... Not quite what I meant to accomplish... But close enough!!

It says the page isn't working.

@Joe Dillmon I found out the hard way during my earlier days of trying alternate procedures that looked like it worked i.e. while I saw images on my screen, many others were still unable to see what I saw. Ready... I see an http 406 error. Please feell free to use a #checkin postthread to find your solution - you need the feedback to what they see and many here have excellent to the point advice.

The link is broken for me as well. If you want to use you don’t have to make an account.

Laziness, mornings since Keurig gone: walk dogs and then put kettle on and make instant coffee.
Work days: Keurig and log on.

The for best results use 16 spoons full post it note by the regular coffee maker at work, is also my handy work 😁. Yes, I wish we had an espresso machine at work.....

Nobody beats my laziness: I'm terrible at cleaning out my french presses,so for now, on weekends, it's 3 heaping spoonfuls of instant espresso, 2 heaping teaspoons of sweetened condensed milk, and hot water. (It's kind of a cheat: the s.c. milk makes me feel like I'm treating myself to Thai coffee.) At work, there's the usual coffee-filter and Philz coffee, which I think is less caffeinated that our previous supplier, Seattle's Best. I do enjoy nicer coffee, but right now, this is what time allows.

I think most tea bags are made from the stuff to crushed or crummy to be sold as loose, or as one friend puts it: floor sweepings. I still drink it. A bit grumpy as work is all out of Earl Grey. I'd rather do a proper, tea pot and all, milk in the cup first, but this time of year my schedule is so hectic it's hard enough just to have clean clothes.

Coming up: weekend mornings means Starbucks in full ren faire regalia with a friend, if we share rides, and I always order something seasonal (but without ice cream); if not that, then maybe Jazla's with room for milk before the op... show more

Waves @Isaac Kuo @Chel @David Thiery @Hans W @guygeens @Doctor Benway @David Calderon @Christian Nalletamby @Chris Johnson

Admin Stuff

The #Checkin talking stick is about to be handed from @Cass M to @Nathan Weaver at the beginning of tomorrow. Thank you Cass for the week of enjoyable post-threads. Looking forward to your week Nathan!

To minimize any glitch from the handoff, please follow all four moderators (all four are mentioned in the post) to ensure the daily post shows up in your stream. If you don't want to wait for the stream, just comment in a current #checkin post and you'll be added to the invitation list. Then, you'll be notified of the daily post as soon as the host launches the daily forum.

Please carry on, there/re still many hours left to this day's forum.

(Source:, Julie Donders blog)

Quad exspresso con pana every day. Yum.

@Joe Dillmon Your comment about Sheldon’s Earl Grey tea reminded me of something...

I used to drive my grand-nephew, age 10 and 11, across town to and from school. He noticed a cut-out of a waving Sheldon standing looking out a window on the landing of a triplex that we passed every day. We always kept a look out for him every time we passed.

One day, we noticed that Sheldon’s head was listing rather badly. The next day it was bent right off to one side... Then one day, his head was missing. Poor Sheldon! We watched every day for signs that he was repaired. Then, about a week later, his head was back, the neck wrapped in what seemed like a bandage.

I suggested that we send Sheldon a get well card and a selection of teabags because “when someone isn’t feeling well, you should offer them a hot beverage”.

We dropped them off, addressing it ti Sheldon Cooper, Second Floor Landing...

We both hoped that whoever the cutout belonged to... show more

And we offered to sing “Soft Kitty”, as a round, accompanied on the recorder...

@Doctor Benway now how can something that looks so yummy be only 35 calories? Bet it packs quite a caffeine punch! 😋 LOL (wiping tears)

@Su Ann LimOMG it's so yummy n yes has a good caffeine kick. I like to stir the whipped cream into the exspresso and enjoy the layers of sweetness . I used to drink all those Carmel machiatos and chai tea lattes but stopped when I realized how many calories and sugar they had. Trying to stay on track with my weight loss. After my initial huge weight loss from changing my diet and joining the gym 2 years ago. I have been losing a pound a month and keeping it off plus gaining muscle which is heavier than fat. My doctors are happy n I feel much better.

@Doctor Benway Congratulations on achieving a very difficult feat!

Thanks @Su Ann Lim Its much harder to lose the weight n keep it off after turning 50 but I'm doing great. Cheers.✌🌷

@Doctor Benway I did that challenge at 40. It's all in changing lifestyles. I want to avoid medications as long as possible.

Thursday morning here, kickstarted by a nice mug of Kapeng Barako coffee. Looking out the window it's apparent that it rained while I was snoozing. It'll probably rain more before the evening.

Thank you @Su Ann Lim @Jodi Kaplan @Cass M it's ok... I posted separately another link w/the pic here.... I enjoyed Mudhooks story... My nephew Jay is now 15 and loved that show since he was 7!!

Sheldon's missing Earl Grey Tea!

Keurig for my morning "joe", because it (1) doesn't require much thought and (2) allows Mr. Stranger to have his weird coffee without wasting so much or stenching up the whole house with a full pot.

Then we have a drip pot to keep me supplied with iced decaf.

Every now and again we make chai in the Keurig. If we get really ambitious, we break out the tea blend from the local Mediterranean buffet. That stuff is bliss in a cup.

I buy iced tea from Publix. Sad but true. It's just the right amount of sweet, and it's worth <$2 to avoid the mess of making it ourselves.

Time for me to go to bed. I have to be up in about 4 hrs to hit the road to take Grandma Dog for her scan. Send good vibes that whatever she has is operable!

Mess? Hmm. I make on average a gallon of iced tea every day. I just got home from a 12 hour shift and made a batch. Takes just a few minutes.

I like chai but I now make my own chai. That's what I did a few minutes ago. It takes the time to bring 2 quarts of water to a boil plus four minutes. I start with hot water from the tap so boiling goes quick.

@Su Ann Lim My standard morning tea is Earl Grey (No. 69 by Tee Gschwendner in Germany). In the afternoon it's usually a Darjeeling (I am no snob on quality, I can appreciate an FTGFOP, but just a GOP can be a nice and robust change). I'm trying to get into more off-mainstream teas like Sencha or Hojicha. Green tea really spurs my appetite for some reason, so I have to be careful to not drink a pot and then empty the fridge :)

And then of course there are all those special teas are less-known in Europe and you have to really seek them out.

Hey y'all! I'm closing this thread. I'll be posting the new one shortly.

@Lisa Stranger I going to post after I should in Wednesday to say THANK YOU @Lisa Stranger 🤗❤️

I make on average a gallon of iced tea every day.
Same here, @Phil Landmeier (ᚠ). When I'm not drinking coffee or bourbon, iced tea (lemony and sweet [Splenda]) is my drink of choice.

I strongly recommend against any and all artificial sweeteners. Bad, bad, bad.

I cannot live without them, unfortunately. I ONLY use sweeteners for one thing... my iced tea. I AM the lab rat for Splenda. ;)

Hell, I smoke real paper-wrapped tobacco cigarettes and drink copious amounts of whiskey. I tend to think that's going to kill me long before the Splenda does. ;)

Just one more comment on beverages...

I don’t know if anyone else has a reaction to the syrup that they put into coffees at Starbucks. I do.

They make me bounce off the walls.

No idea, since I don't drink their coffee. It tastes burnt to me. the only real reaction I've ever had is a tall caramel macchiato makes me wired and in frequent need of taking a leak; I've always assumed by way of caffeine and sugar content. But I don't tend to visit Starbucks more than a handful of times a year.

The funny thing about artificial sweeteners is that the first of them to be banned (saccharine) may actually have been the safest.

Yeah, yeah, I know, laboratory rats developed cancer, blah, blah, blah. What they don't TELL you about that test series (even aside from the fact that rats are not humans, and something like 70% of rodent studies cannot be replicated in primates, let alone in humans) is that if the control rats had been fed the same BULK of sugar — not even the same sweetening power, just the same bulk — as the test rats were fed saccharine, the control rats would have died first.

(It wouldn't have been possible to even force-feed the control rats the same sweetening power in sugar as the test rats got in saccharine. The control rats would literally have exploded.)

Yes. Nothing wrong with saccharine (compared to the other sweeteners, all of which are bad at another level.) Nothing wrong with sodium cyclamate either. But aspartame, now that's the thing for big beverage companies, and the reason they paid for research that showed all other sweeteners to be bad. Aspartame tastes sweet and makes you thirsty. YEHAAA! Jackpot!

Note: If you drop a 2 kilogram brick of sodium cyclamate from a height of 3 meters onto a mouse, it will KILL IT! Very bad, this cyclamate stuff. Replace it with the much better aspartame stuff.

Gods yes, I have no idea how SBUX sells so much over-roasted coffee. Does that much of the population have no taste buds??

Kirkland brand (Costco) was sbux at one time... not trying again to find out if it still is.
Hell, I smoke real paper-wrapped tobacco cigarettes and drink copious amounts of whiskey. I tend to think that’s going to kill me long before the Splenda does. ;)
@V. T. Eric Layton you'll just be too demented to care., wait, that's ace-K.

Anyhow, my theory is it's not so much the cigarettes that kill you, as the shit they put in them for your "benefit".

@Phil Stracchino +100

The first time I experienced the syrup was at a friend’s cafe. She made me a cappuccino and a couple on minutes later I started feeling really strange like I was going to pass out. I actually wondered if she had drugged it!

Then she asked how I liked it “I added vanilla syrup.”

I realized that it was actually causing my heart to race.

I have made sure not to get any coffee with syrup again.

But when I worked at the bookstore, there was a Starbuck’s in the store. I had gone down for my coffee break and gotten a tall latte and a coffee brownie which is made with ground coffee beans. After going back to my department, a Starbuck’s employee came around offering espresso shots to our staff. I took one and immediately realized that it was really sweet. I asked “Did it have syrup in it?”

It did... So, with the latte, the coffee brownie, the shot AND the syrup, I had the equivalent of what felt like nine coffees zooming about in me. I spent the next three hours bouncing off the walls. I was awake half the night.

@Lisa Stranger a lot of people drink 'bux for the simple reason they can always find one. Well, that and yeah, they've probably never had a good cuppa joe

@Jodi Kaplan said,
No idea, since I don’t drink their coffee. It tastes burnt to me.
I've never understood the thrill of paying $5+ a cup for that sludge shit they call coffee at Starsucks.
@Lisa Stranger said,
@V. T. Eric Layton you’ll just be too demented to care.
…no, wait, that’s ace-K.

HAHAHA! What? Who's that Eric Layton fellow you're referring to? My name is Rhett Butler.

With enough courage, you can do without a reputation. ffs be careful if you ever attempt to get coffee at McDonald's. (They do actually have decent coffee.) Syrup is the default.

DH is hypoglycemic and has no desire for the blood sugar roller coaster that comes from swilling coffee with syrup. He orders it CREAM ONLY. He finally learned to TASTE the coffee before he left the drive thru, because they reflexively put syrup in it.

Saying "no sugar" has no effect whatsoever. You must specifically say "no syrup". (Yes, Americans are so detached from their food, they don't understand that sugar and syrup are the same thing.) Even then, they still put it in. I mean, this is a guy who can literally direct traffic with his voice, so I'm pretty sure they're hearing him, you know? And why the hell is anything being put in the coffee that the customer didn't specifically ask for in the first place?!

I've actually had order takers incredulously pa... show more

Luckily, I don’t get McDonald’s coffee. If I get coffee it is at Timmie’s where it is sugar. But even so, I haven’t bought take-out coffee for myself in over a year.

The one think I can’t eat at all is lettuce, specifically iceberg lettuce, though I tend to generally avoid Romaine most of the time’s too. I also can’t eat alfalfa sprouts or bean sprouts.

I use to love iceberg lettuce on my sandwiches and salads but one day I got a tuna sandwich with shredded lettuce. A few minutes later, I started getting this horrible tinny taste in my mouth. I thought maybe the tuna was off. But I didn’t get sick. About a week later, I got a cheese sandwich with shredded lettuce and the same thing happened. And every time I had lettuce I would get the same thing.

And lettuce started smelling tinny to me, as do sprouts. Not so much Romaine though if I have eaten it frequently, I will get the same thing. I have no problem with spinach or spring greens.

I can actually smell if they have put lettuce on my plate and removed it wh... show more

@Lisa Stranger, not for nothing is it that we call it Charbucks.

Apparently the reason Charbucks coffee is, well, near-incinerated is because Peet's coffee is near-incinerated, and Starbucks wanted to buy him out, and he refused, so they just copied his coffee.

The cheaper the coffee, the darker the roast.

Yes. I assume you too learned that Cafe Bustelo, that everyone here in the USA thinks is special magic coffee, is the floor sweepings garbage that poor people in Latin America drink. Hahahaha. Marketing. It's all about marketing.

I like the coffee at Circle K convenience stores in Tucson. Hazelnut coffee brewed with hazelnut, not added syrup. Only available when I have early appointments. They usually ask if I'd like them to make it. Nah. Not for one [large]cup. So I get the cheap, I guess Dan, as I like that dark French roast, the darker, the better. :)

@Dan Weese, most of the time, yes.

If any coffee is roasted more than medium, the odds are I'm not going to like it much.

Of course, in honesty, at Percona Live in Austin this year I had very little alternative but to keep going on Starbucks lattes. I had four days of conference to get through somehow.

Yep. "You WILL buy our product and love it. BUY XYZ brand. It is perfectly safe. BELIEVE me."

@Phil Landmeier (ᚠ) Up in Xela, everyone just makes their own coffee, since they grow it in their yards.

But when I first came up to Xela, all those years ago, I was being introduced to the high and mighty in the ladino culture, lawyers and such, by my idiot father in law. The host took a shine to me and offered me a cup of coffee - really good stuff, but a few sips of it and I was buzzing for sure. "Qué hay in esto?" I asked him "Hoja de coca." Coca leaf. He imported the stuff from Colombia

Hahaha. Pretty funny. I often saw and once met the head of the family that runs El Departamento de Izabal. There is something to be said for the law and order, and stability brought by that arrangement. He rode in a fully armored but beautiful maroon F-450 pickup, with escort pickups ahead and behind, each with six of his soldiers, heavily armed. Very nice guy actually and didn't meddle in any of the affairs of others, except in two areas. He had a lock on all the cellphone stores in the department and he didn't permit any gangs from the city to even visit the area. If you had a shaved head and tattoos, you were dealt with in a matter of hours. Also, any "crime gangs" that the police couldn't track down and deal with quickly enough were dealt with. I remember one such gang that was robbing tiendas for a couple of days. Their last "job" they went to a public school, shook down the kids and stole all valuables. Within a few hours, they were all very dead. The Darwin award goes to a young man who decided that robbing cell phone tiendas was a good idea. And then, he went to the home base... show more

@Phil Landmeier (ᚠ), don't even get me started on aspartame. I have a strong suspicion that there is a causal link between aspartame, depression, and SSRI antidepressants. And I'm given to understand the stuff is banned in Germany as being toxic.

It is indeed banned in Europe. It's hard on the kidneys and dangerously bad for phenylketonuretics. I guess in the USA it's fine to spike soft drinks with a substance that makes you thirsty. Wtf?

You can see that the corporations were already "running things" and getting away with it, even back in the 1970s.

@Dan Weese makes me recall a friend's comments about the morning coffee he experienced France. Made for one cup, or watering down. Not for drinking like a fish. Enough so that some of the coffee addicts in his group got some severe stomach pains when they guzzled it a

These comments make me glad I grind my own beans and they keep fresh in vacuum seal bags I make when I buy in bulk. No sugar, no syrup, no novel flavors, and no cream. So I will taste each cup without distractions.

Yup. I grind my own once a week and today was the day. Usually, all I drink is one double-shot of espresso when I get up. I used to swill normal coffee all day long.

Aspartame gives DH raging headaches.

Also causes thirst, eh? I guess that explains why my friend is "addicted" to diet cokes. (Her friends have beggggggggged her to quit them, but she doesn't like anything else. Not coffee, not tea, nothing. And she already feels deprived by her paleo diet, so...)

There was a brand of stevia sodas DH liked for a while, then started feeling funny when he drank them. I suspect the original formula didn't scale up when they got popular. A couple of cases went in the trash. I still wonder what other sweetener they were smuggling in there.
@Beej Cobalt I gotta have cream! But nope, don't want flavor except for chocolate maybe once or twice a year.

@UnclePirate (Stan McCann) DH likes those flavored-not-syruped coffees from time to time. They're one of the reasons we have a Keurig.

@... show more

I have the good fortune of a very keen sense of taste and smell. This makes me the official food taster at the restaurant where I work. I immediately detect any errors, identify which spice is lacking, etc. I also find the taste of all artificial sweeteners disgusting. Aspartame tastes to me like sucking on brass car keys (which I remember from childhood. Bleah.) I can taste the difference between high-fructose corn syrup and white sugar.

But, it's now known that ALL low-calorie artificial sweeteners are a problem in that they can cause something called "metabolic syndrome".

It turns out that when you put something sweet in your mouth, before you even swallow it, your body instantly springs into action to get ready to receive the sugar hit that's coming. Stomach and blood chemistry both react instantly, when the stuff hits your tongue. Then when the sugar hit doesn't arrive, your system is left in a "hung" state. If you do this to yourself again and again, it results in metabolic syndrome, which is not well understood yet. It's likely connected to the obesity problem in... show more

FTR, I checked for Germany re Aspartame: it is not banned, a daily dosis of 40mg/kg body weight is declared acceptable by the German Health Ministry, and the value is agreed upon across the EU.
Which is basically soft power in action, offloading a risk to people who want to use it and responsibility to the companies producing soft drinks. No sanctions, no prohibitive law. The reasoning being "nobody in their right mind will consume more than 4l of diet coke per day".
(I don't buy soft drinks much, and none of the "diet" variety, so have no clue what they use.)

Can we soon move the discussion from this fence over to the most recent checkin please? Pretty please?

When I was in the hospital after having my gallbladder out, they had me on a liquid diet for two weeks. Actually, they had me on the liquid diet for three or 4 days and then said I could have a solid diet but despite the doctor sending the order down and despite my ordering solid (and sensible) food, they kept sending it up.

Not only was it liquid, it was all Aspartame-filled. No real sugar beyond what was in the apple juice that they sent up which I rarely drink because it gives me REALLY bad heartburn. And, since it was Albert Einstein Medical Centre, a Jewish institution, and it was over Passiver, the food was Kosher which meant that the 6 tons of “Jello” was a fake “Jello” made without real gelatine and Aspartame. It was disgusting. I barely ate.

I lost 26 pounds.

The first day I got solid food was the day they discharged me. And I had ordered a poached egg and dry toast... They sent up a huge plate of scrambled eggs made with some sort of orange grease and crumbled Matzo crackers. And it was REALLY salty.

I took one bite and se... show more

When I got left-turned in 1999, I spent a month in the hospital. I lost 40lb because the food at that hospital was so horrible. Many times I'd see something on the menu that actually looked good for once, I'd order it, it'd arrive under a cover, I'd be all eager to eat, I'd lift the cover and get one whiff and .... POOF. Appetite gone. Get this nauseating glop away from me.

It got to the point where my friends and family would smuggle me in a burrito or a burger just so that I could have some real food that actually tasted good.

My mother brought me bottled protein shakes. They were actually more revolting than the hospital food.

My friend was in the hospital in Seville where she ahas lived for the last 20 years. She posted photos of the food which not only looked appetizing, it was.

Now that the topic has totally moved on from coffee, tea or ovaltine maybe WE can move to a more current CheckIn to talk about hospital food and let this one fade away?

There's only two kind of hospital food. "Ugh, are you trying to make me sicker!?" and "More, please!".

I have some theory that the level of suckage either has to do with the level of funding or how much sourcing staff / patient meals differ.

One of the hospitals out here has a cafeteria that would almost be worth visiting when you're not stuck visiting anyone. When my mother had been there once upon a time, the food provided seemed much the same as the cafeteria but with menus filtered by the medical staff. She was just delighted to have steak for the 2~3 days we were there.

Area around that particular hospital has major cashola. I've had worse hotel rooms than where ma was checked into...and was very glad she had insurance, lol.