Coffee With Dad.

I’ve been home for the past few days, but on Wednesday, I woke up in Holland.

And I met my dad for coffee downtown on 8th Street, at 8 AM, where snow abounded, but the sidewalks were clear. Whoever implemented the heated sidewalks, I applaud you for your insight. You’re the real MVP.

I picked up my latte and lifted it toward my face, warm steam rising to tickle my nose.

“Thanks so much for coming here, Dad.” I said. I grinned. “It’s so good to see you.”

There’s something warm about having a cool dad. I know that he’s always there for me, and he’s always going to be there for me. I love to catch up with him about the things happening in his life and share the changes happening in mine. He invests his time to listen, and expresses his successes humbly. Someday, I hope I can be just like him.

I’ve been blessed with parents that know me from the inside out. Their insight is one of the most valuable gifts I could ever acquire.

To all the parents out there, and especially to mine, thank you. Thank you for putting in the time to take care of your kids. Thank you for traveling seven hours both ways to pick me up, most of the time in a snowstorm. And most of all, thank you for your grace.

JP's Coffee
[Warm coffee on a snowy day.]

Happy Thanksgiving.

Wishing you blessings upon blessings this Christmas season.

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The Apple Cider Challenge

We have a number of really great coffeeshops in and around Holland. Since I am (supposed to be) on a caffeine hiatus for a little while, I want to compare and contrast a few of them through taste-testing not coffee, not cappuccino, but apple cider. There’s just something about apple cider in the fall! I love it!

Control: Apple cider from my Keurig

Apple cider from my Keurig
Side note… I found this mug on sale and couldn’t resist!

Taste: 6

Smell: 6

Burnt tongue? Yep.

Size: Small (8 ounces, standard Keurig size).

Price: Super cheap. Less than a dollar.

Overall happiness factor: 6. I can admit that this is not the greatest, but it does the trick when I don’t want to make the trek anywhere else for a cup of hot cider. I’ve been tearing through this stuff since I’ve been sick. I think it actually might smell better than it tastes, but it’s all good. I’ve never had a cup of cider that did me wrong.


Apple cider from JP's

Taste: 9.2

Smell: 8.5

Burnt Tongue? Yep. I can’t wait for it to cool off at all… I just wanna drink it!

Size: The small was actually decent. I was pleasantly surprised.

Price: $3.05 (after tax)

Overall happiness factor: 9. This was really good. Really really really good. (Try adding caramel… Even better!)

Crane’s In the City

Cider from Crane's in the City
I got some apple crisp while I was at Crane’s as well. So tasty!

Taste: 7.5

Smell: 7

Burnt Tongue? YES. This was super hot.

Size: Average mug.

Price: $2-ish.

BONUS POINTS: This came in a mug with Santa on it. I love all things Christmas.

Overall happiness factor: 7.8. This was more of a “spiced” cider than JP’s (which is the way it was intended to be). It was definitely good and you can’t beat the price. I also highly recommend the chai-der (cider with chai tea! SO GOOD.).


Cider from Lemonjello's

Taste: 9

Smell: 8.5

Burnt tongue? NO SIR.

Size: Decent. Comparable to JP’s.

Price: $2.75

Overall happiness factor: 8.75…ish. It was really good.


JP’s was my favorite. LJ’s is also really really good. They were super close. I would get cider from Crane’s again, too! I don’t really think you can go wrong with a simple apple cider. I’ve never met one I didn’t like!

Thanks for reading! Send me an email at, leave a comment, or tweet me at @hopekathryn17!

“He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more.”

John 15:2