10 for 10::part 5

Final installment of drinks coming right up! Today I have a summer drink and a fall drink–java chip frappes and pumpkin spice lattes.

Java Chip Frappes


4 tablespoons chocolate syrup plus extra for drizzle (optional)
4 tablespoons chocolate chips
4 cups double-strength freshly brewed dark roast coffee (cooled)
1 cup milk
Crushed ice
Whipped cream (optional)
Caramel syrup if you want Frappuccino caramel


Fill blender half full of ice. Add chocolate syrup, chocolate chips, cold coffee, and milk. Blend until thick and icy. Pour into cups, top with whipped cream, and share with three friends!

And in case spring is slow in coming where you live, too, try the pumpkin spice latte. It’s my favorite because of simplicity and spicy, comforting flavor.

Pumpkin Spice Latte


1-2 shots of espresso or 1/4 cup double strength coffee
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon sugar 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, plus more for garnish* (optional)
Cool Whip or whipped cream, for garnish (optional)


Pour milk into a mug and microwave for one minute. Steam or whisk milk until frothy. Add sugar, vanilla extract, and pumpkin pie spice and mix well. Add coffee. Top with whipped cream and more pumpkin spice, just for nice. 🙂 (You may have noticed my recipe does not include pumpkin. No, that’s not a mistake. I like the spicy flavor without the pumpkin. It truly is a pumpkin spice latte, but if you’d like to add pumpkin, 2 tablespoons should be about right.)

Well, I’ve had a lot of fun! Keturah and I would love to hear suggestions from you–what would you like to see next? We can’t promise to try it, but we’ll at least consider it! What do you like to see? Something with installments like this one, tutorials, things we’ve done?Thanks for visiting! Oh, and yesterday was outsideoftheboxblog’s first birthday. 🙂


Customized journals

I’ve been teaching the Wednesday evening class at our church for the past several months. It’s a half hour class that I teach while the adults have prayer meeting. There are only two students and I’ve really been enjoying our little group!

There are several goals that I have for this class. They are habits that I want to cultivate in my own life and I’m hoping my students will too. The habits I’m focusing on are gratitude, encouraging others, prayer, and Bible reading. These journals are part of that plan.

This little project ended up being a lot simpler than my original plan. I was planning to make the journals, but my attempt proved that it would be much more efficient to go to the dollar store and pick up these nice journals and customize them. All I had to do to get what I was looking for was to add labels to divide the journal into four sections. So that is what I did and I’m quite happy with the results!

I used this old typewriter to make the labels for the dividers. I’ve been using it quite a bit for random projects like this and just love how the text is indented.

After typing the labels I cut them apart, folded them over and rounded the corners. Then I slipped the journal page between the folded label and sewed it on.

It’s a quick and easy way to get a customized journal with a handmade look.

May calendar: :free printable

Want to add a bit of spring to your desktop? Here is a free calendar printable to help you do just that! Feel free to download this and print it for personal use. I hope you enjoy it!

may copy(Right-click, “save image as…”, and print as a 5×7.)

 I’d love to hear from you if you’ve been using these calendars. 🙂

10 for 10::part 4

If you had chanced to pass our house a few weeks ago, the activity on our front porch would have put questions in your mind. A coffee shop of sorts was set up in the last available natural light. Mugs, milk, whipped cream, and various props littered the steps. Keturah arranged and shot pictures while I dumped and stirred things together. Occasionally someone stepped outside to watch the proceedings. It was a good arrangement….especially for one of our observers.

Needless to say, he stayed around for the rest of the evening in hopes of another case of spilled milk. 🙂

White Hot Chocolate 


White Hot Chocolate

Serves 1 to 2

1 cup milk

2 oz. good quality white chocolate

Pinch sea salt

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Whipped cream (optional, for garnish)


Combine the milk, white chocolate, and salt in a large mug. Microwave for 1 minute and stir well.  Stir in the vanilla.  Serve hot, garnished with whipped cream.

If you like yours frothy use an immersion blender or carefully pour the hot chocolate into a blender and process until frothy.

Homemade Espresso Truffle Latte

This will take care of your chocolate cravings for awhile. 🙂


8 oz hot milk
1 oz semisweet/bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 oz espresso
whipped cream, to serve


In a mug, whisk together hot milk and chocolate until chocolate has been fully incorporated and mixture is smooth. Top off with shots of espresso and a dollop of whipped cream, then serve immediately.

If you don’t have an espresso machine use a 1-2 ratio–1 part strong coffee to 2 parts steamed/frothed milk.

See you back next week for the last installment of 10 for 10. I’ll share my favorite fall drink–Pumpkin Spice Latte and a wonderful summer drink–Java Chip Frappe.

10 for 10::part 3

This project shows a bit of Keturah’s and my work together. We had fun taking pictures of drinks while I was home for Easter. I make drinks, she takes pictures, and we both edit pictures. Sometimes you see her finished product and other times I put the final touches on a picture. We’ve had fun comparing pictures and editing styles. And I hope you’ve enjoyed the drinks! As promised, I’m sharing two more recipes this week. Next week we’ll have an espresso truffle latte and white hot chocolate!

White Chocolate Mocha


6 cups prepared strong-brewed coffee 
2 cups milk 
1 cup white chocolate chips


Heat the milk in a small saucepan over medium heat until small bubbles start to form around the edges of the milk.  Remove from the heat and whisk in the white chocolate chips until smooth; this makes the syrup.  To make the quick version of the drink add 1/2 cup of the syrup to 12 ounces of coffee and top with whipped cream.  To make the latte version, pour 1/2 cup of the syrup and 12 ounces of the coffee into a blender and blend on medium/high until frothy, about 1 minute. Pour into a big mug and top with whipped cream and a few coffee beans!

Caramel Macchiato


1/2 cup double strength coffee
3/4 cup milk
2-3 tbsp vanilla syrup
about 1 tbsp caramel syrup


Microwave milk until almost boiling, then froth. I use the little frother I mentioned in the last post–it’s only a few dollars on Ebay and really handy. You can also use a blender, or pour it into a pint jar and use your muscles to shake it up before heating it  Add coffee and about 2 tbsp of vanilla syrup (recipe following).  Drizzle with a thick dessert-style caramel syrup such as Hershey’s or Smucker’s and stir.

Simple Vanilla Syrup

1 cups water
1 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract 

Combine water and sugar in a saucepan and boil.  Reduce and simmer for a few minutes, stirring until sugar is dissolved.  Add vanilla and stir. Remove from heat and allow to cool before storing.

I love this recipe! It’s so easy and versatile and economical.