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Coffee At Home: My No Spend Coffee Month!

Well, I survived. Not without coffee, unless my children magically become sleep angels who do their own laundry, cutting coffee isn’t in the cards any time soon ;-). But at the beginning of the month, I told you over on my Instagram that I was partnering with Cameron’s and committing to a ‘no spend’ coffee month! What this meant was I would only be drinking coffee that I brewed at home (or from the break room at work if times got desperate). All month I have been sharing tips to how I survived just brewing at home. I wanted to give you all a summary of how I did, so keep reading for all of the details!

*This post is written in collaboration with Cameron’s Coffee. All thoughts and opinions expressed are solely my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Stang&Co!*

The Savings

First and foremost, I promised to give you all my savings. I was honestly scared to share this, because if my husband reads this and saw how much I was spending he may take away my credit cards 😉 Once I sat down to do the math, I was actually pleasantly surprised. For the month of May, I spent a total of $31 at coffee shops. I feared this number would be much worse, but ever since I became a Cameron’s Coffee fan, they’ve made it really easy and affordable to satisfy my coffee cravings with coffee brewed at home. However, that amount each month still adds up! $31 every month throughout the whole year equals out to $372 annually. It always helps so much to do math to look at the greater picture. $31 a month is a new top or dinner out, but $372 a year!? That is a new piece of furniture, or a good chunk of money to put towards a vacation! Since I love Cameron’s Coffee and their new summer blends so much, it made it easy to commit to getting creative and making my coffee drinks at home.

Getting Creative

Brewing all of my coffee at home definitely forced me to get creative! Most of the time I drink black coffee, but what about those days where I just want a little something extra? I used my Ninja Coffee Bar to brew espresso from my favorite Cameron’s Coffee blend, and added almond milk and caramel to make my own caramel macchiato! I also found that having a fun mug to drink out of makes all of the difference! Does anyone else just love the feeling of a coffee shop cup in their hand? I don’t know what it is that makes me love them so much, but a fun cup is everything! When I have something pretty at home I look forward to pouring my coffee into. Check out all of the fun inspiring quote mugs that Cameron’s Coffee sells!

Surprise Benefits

One other benefit of brewing from home more often is a no brainer: I majorly saved on calories! I don’t splurge on the super sugary drinks TOO often, but brewing from home cut them out entirely. I know that making my own lattes is WAY healthier than the concoctions I usually treat myself to! One new item that I added this month at the suggestion of multiple other coffee addicts was this oat milk creamer. You guys, it is SO good and creamy! My favorite combination was adding it to Cameron’s 100% Colombian blend. A new creamer can make all the difference in your morning coffee being exciting, but a healthy creamer in moderation is still WAY better than a sugary drink purchased at a coffee shop!

Did I Cheat?

I wanted to be sure to tell you if I truly did NO spending out on coffee this month. The answer is NO. Thanks to a gift card I was able to get a drink for free and didn’t pay out of pocket. And, a local gas station has $1 any size coffees on Mondays! It is such a nice pick me up when I am starting off the week to treat myself and a super low price. And after a crazy day at work with no lunch break, I caved and got a coffee from the bistro. So, compared to $31 last month, I spent a grand total of $6 this month! I really enjoyed the fact that I found ways to still treat myself, but without spending money, and limiting myself to the days where it was a deal!

Realistically, should I expect myself to never buy coffee out EVER. No way! But in my opinion it is a treat, not a necessity! Like I said, Cameron’s is so affordable and makes drinking my coffee at home something I even look forward to! Moving forward, I want to stick to getting coffee on Friday as an end of the week treat. Or, on special outings like girls day or when we are out of town. I was able to use this month to totally reset my habits. It feels great to longer feel the impulsive need to stop at a coffee shop every single morning! Tell me; have you ever done a no spend coffee month? I would love to hear tips and tricks for sticking to it!

 

 

Friday Favorites: Woven Pillows and Tall One Pieces Swimsuits

Hey you guys! Coming to you from snow covered, freezing cold Minnesota once again 😉 So, I have been doing what any Midwesterner in denial does when winter won’t get lost, and that is shopping for all of the spring and summer things! I mean, tall one piece swimsuits are what dreams are made of when it is still getting down to zero degrees at night, and it’s April 😉  I stumbled across some amazing items this week, so keep reading to check them out!

1. Woven Pillows

I was in Target this week and stumbled across their new pillows, and they are perfection. I have seen very similar styles at more high end retailers for literally triple the price. I am a huge fan of the woven and macrame trends, so these are perfect. They come in a few colors, and of course I am dying over the pink! It comes in a long lumbar style too, I may have to grab one for the bedroom.

2. Eucalyptus Wreaths

I haven’t gotten TOO much into the farmhouse decor trend. I really like it, but it doesn’t always fit the style of our home as well as I would like. The one thing from this trend I just LOVE deep greens in the house, and I think this one would look perfect in our entry way. However, I am also really loving the simplicity of this one, and the oversized leaves of this one. Tell me, which one do you most prefer!?

3. Tall Swimsuits

If you have been around here for any time at all, you likely have an idea that I am pretty tall. Which makes shopping for certain items a little challenging. With the new trend of one piece swimsuits, I have honestly been kind of bummed because trust me, if there is anything worse than being over exposed in a bikini, it is wearing a one piece that isn’t long enough! I almost cried tears of joy when I saw this option at Target. And I quickly discovered American Eagle has a whole selection of long swimsuit options. And HELLO to this sexy yellow one piece! I never thought I would be this excited about one piece swimsuits, but the trend came at the perfect time in life for me. I just can’t wait to swim with my boys this summer (we are hoping to put up a seasonal pool!) and not worry about being over exposed.

4. Roasted Sweet Potatoes

Obviously part of getting ready for swimsuit season is working on that winter body. And a long winter has meant more nights of cuddling on the couch eating chocolate than I care to admit. I have really been dedicated to cleaning up what I am eating lately, and loved these roasted sweet potatoes that I shared the recipe for earlier this week.

5. My Fitness Pal App

While we are on the subject of healthy eating, I started tracking my food intake this week in the My Fitness Pal app. And I am literally kicking myself for not doing it sooner. I have heard more than once that tracking your food intake can really be an eye opener, and maybe that is why I have avoided doing it. But oh my gosh, it has given me so much insight in just a few days to my eating habits. I learned very quickly that I am consuming nearly all of my excess calories in the evenings. There really is not much that I could do to clean up my daytime routine (aside from maybe treating myself to Chick Fil A for lunch a little bit less). It has been so helpful to be able to pinpoint where in the day I need to be more aware of what I am taking in. And while it seems silly, I resisted having a second cookie the other night because I knew how many calories were in the first one. Having that second calorie would put me over my ‘goal’ for the day, and that was enough to give me the will power to say no. If you are looking for a way to just be more aware of your diet and where your opportunities to improve are, this app is easy to use, so helpful, and best of all, FREE!

*Post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Stang&Co!

Easy Dinner Recipes: Creamy Parmesan Chicken Pasta Salad

I am an absolute sucker for pasta. I could eat it every single day. Usually my go-to dishes are warm, hearty dishes. But with spring right around the corner, sometimes there is nothing better than a cold pasta salad. This creamy parmesan chicken pasta salad is on regular rotation in our house year round. I am a busy mom, and unfortunately I cannot prep meals from my desk at work. Ridiculous, right?! I love the fact that I can whip up this creamy parmesan pasta dish the night before and not have to worry about cooking the next day. And we may or may not fight over who gets the leftovers. It is great to make a few hours (or even a day!) ahead. Just throw it into the refrigerator after making it and serve up at dinner time!

Ingredients

  • one box farfalle (bow tie) pasta
  • 1/4 cups unsalted sunflower seeds
  • 1 large can chicken
  •  2-3 ounces shaved Parmesan cheese
  • 8 ounces creamy Parmesan salad dressing (found by the refrigerated dressings)

Instructions

1. Boil noodles according to package instructions.

2. While noodles boil, combine chicken, seeds, and cheese in a bowl.

3. Drain and rise noodles with cold water.

4. Mix noodles into chicken/cheese/seed mixture.

5. Add creamy Parmesan dressing and mix well.

6. Refrigerate at least 1-2 hours before serving.