I’ve always loved coffee. When I met Mr K, our second date was a day in my local town and we had a few coffee stops, we both love a good coffee, and we both like the variety you get these days in coffee houses. Whenever we are out and about we always stop for coffee somewhere. Thing is though, it gets expensive always going out for coffee so I looked into coffee machines and decided it was time I invested in a good one!
I decided after reading countless reviews and comparing prices to go with the Tassimo T55 and I have never looked back. It is so easy and it is not just a sales line when it says “Perfect coffee every time” its true! Like I said I read countless reviews so if you want to know the technical stuff have a look elsewhere as I am going to tell you what I think is important about this machine rather than how many litres of water it holds and how much the average coffee costs!!
The first thing I love is that it’s not just a coffee machine, you can get T-Discs to make a variety of teas and hot chocolates too, and when I ordered T-Discs from tassimo they also sent me some t-disc blanks which you can use to make iced drinks, I haven’t done this yet though so won’t review that right now!! The varieties available are great, from Kenco and Twinning’s to Milka, Suchards, Jakobs and the new Costa range. If you love hot drinks, there will be something for you, although some varieties are only available online.
The water tank on this model includes a Brita water filter which for me is amazing. Our tap water is awful and to drink plain water I have to buy bottled, it’s ok for juice and I thought it was ok for tea and coffee, but how wrong I was! The difference it makes to hot drinks is astonishing really! It adds to the perfection of each and every cup, and how nice it is to have a cup of tea without the “scum” from the tap water floating on top! Ok the filters are not cheap, but each one lasts a month and there is an indicator on top of the machine to tell you when it needs replacing. You get one filter with the machine to start you off and I just bought a box of 6 filters for £16, which works out at less than £3 per month. Considering my machine makes from 1-10 drinks per day I’m definitely using it enough to warrant the cost of the filters!
Now if you are like me, quick and easy is best, I hate it when you get kitchen gadgets that are a pain in the neck to clean, but this is as easy as making a coffee. No really, you get a cleaning and descaling t-disc with it, and you just put it in and press the button and it does a cleaning cycle! All you need to do is wipe out the area where the t-disc sits and wash the removable cup stand! The cup stand itself comes off to put larger mugs under, or can be set higher for making espressos so you don’t get the mess of coffee splashes!
It really is so simple to use to, you put in a t-disc, which will only go in one way so you cant get it wrong, you close the lid, place a mug or cup on the stand and press the button! There are also + and – buttons so you can make your drink stronger or weaker to taste, the only down side is this alters the size of the drink. If you press +, this makes the drink weaker by adding more water and – makes it stronger by adding less water. I tend to + most drinks as I like a taller drink and that’s the right strength for my taste, but it was only by playing around that I have learnt that! I even let B make her own Hot Chocolate because it is so easy and safe, she is no where near the hot water that comes out and she loves that she can have a hot chocolate for bed without disturbing me when I am sorting out H.
So if you are a coffee lover and haven’t got one of these then I would recommend one without a doubt! As it’s that time of year maybe you should get writing to Santa!
It’s half term this week and for a change, I have taken a week off work for no other reason than to look after my girls. We haven’t gone away anywhere, we don’t have visitors staying, just a week of us all off together. So far the week has been pretty uneventful, we spent the day at Stanwick Lakes on Sunday with Mr D and his 2 children. Then on Monday the curse of the Autumn cold hit our house and me and B both felt pretty rotten, so we had a duvet day!! Tuesday and Wednesday H was in nursery, as I had taken her funded nursery place as 12 hours per week until Christmas rather than 15 hours per week of term. I had hoped to do some more grown up stuff with B, like Paint a Pot and swimming, but as we were both still a little under the weather we went shopping instead!!
I’ve sat and helped B with her homework without us falling out, I’ve set up sticker charts to try and get their behaviours a bit more on track, and I’m currently listening to Justin Fletcher’s new album “Hands Up..The Album” for about the 4th time today!! (Watch this space, the album is released on 21st November and I’ll be reviewing the week before!!) My house is a mess, small people are jumping around all over the place, I’ve read a book in 2 days and feel a little guilty for doing nothing. It’s great!!!
It’s all got me thinking though, what if…….?
I think it’s one of the hardest things about being a parent, getting the work life balance right. The choice varies for all of us, no two families are the same and so no two people’s decisions are or can be seen as the same. For me, going back to work was a bit of a rollercoaster ride. H was only 16 months old and I hadn’t looked for work nor had any thoughts of returning to work. As much as I am sure people judged me for it, I was receiving benefits that saw me through each month, I’d been thrown into a situation I had no choice over and after paying my taxes since 16 when I started my first job, I figured I was entitled to take stock of my life and be a mum until I had sorted out what path to follow.
Then it was all a bit of a whirlwind, a friend told me about some jobs coming up working with families and children in the area, she said she thought I would be ideal for it, so I applied expecting that my minimal experience would generate a “thanks but no thanks” letter. I was pretty surprised when one November morning 2 years ago a letter turned up offering an interview. I arranged for a friend to have H and travelled the 50 mile round trip for the interview and then found out just over a week later that I had got the job! There was worry, would I actually be better off, would I be able to handle the part time job on top of bringing up two girls, lots of what if’s?
It’s now 19 months on and I love my job, I love my girls, I love my life and what I have built but there’s still that “what if?” which this week has brought out. I could have had every school holiday like this, I could have been able to make every sports day, every assembly, H could have been at home more. I’d have less stress about childcare and what to do when I have to work late. But then I wouldn’t have been able to go on holiday this year both with and without the girls, I wouldn’t have a car on the road making days out very difficult. I wouldn’t have met some really inspirational women who I now work with, and I wouldn’t have developed how I have as a mum and person in my own right.
I know I’ve missed out on some things with my girls, but I am hoping that what I gain by working is worth it and out weighs the negatives. Both the girls seem happy with the arrangement and I know H loves nursery. I guess the hardest part is working with families and trying to help them put routines in place, or helping to manage behaviours and wishing I was at home with my own children reinforcing the same boundaries! I guess this is all proof I needed this week off with my girls!
How do you make sure your work life balance is right for your family? And do you ever wonder What If…..?
Inside these walls a lot has happened,
Memories that aren’t just for me!
The echoes of a family, the generations, the years.
As a child these walls to me were home, I remember the words
“Going home for the week”
To visit the family, rest, laugh and cry.
I never lived in that house, although I stayed over a lot
If a place could hold the meaning of love this is it.
For marriages, christenings and funerals alike,
we’ve congregated, celebrated and mourned
We’d take out the old, and bring in the new,
eat mushy peas and mint sauce as the years passed.
The women in the kitchen, the men in the room, the kids mingling and being told to move
The dogs that always got special treats, even though no dog had lived there!
Now those walls sit empty
Not one of us want to let go
But what are walls without the people that make them?
It’s not the same without Grandma, life and age have meant that she’s with us in our homes.
No matter what happens from here, when the time comes I pray the echo’s of the years and generations shout through
And I hope the same joy is blessed on the next family
Look after it and it will look after you!
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