Tag Archives: Christmas

A Christmas Story from Trader Joe’s

23 Dec

EucalyptusI was headed to the 12-items-or-less line on a Saturday afternoon with a basket of four things. The woman in front of me had two items – a package of eucalyptus and a rosemary tree.

At first she rolled her cart back to let me through. I said, “I’m going behind you!” As I took my position in line, she held up the eucalyptus package to my nose and said, “Smell this!” Of course, it was wonderful. I thanked her for sharing the fresh scent. Then she had me smell the rosemary – again, lovely – and even broke off a little bit to share with me.

She was drinking a coffee sample. I was a little tired, and realized I forgot to get a sipper. She immediately offered to hold my spot for me to go get a cup, pushing my basket in front of her cart.

I west to get the coffee, and I chatted with the woman in charge of the sample station. She pointed to an envelope full of coupons and said that a woman left it there, and she described the coupon owner. The physical description was similar but not exact to the woman in line, but the sample woman said, “She was so nice.”

I went back to the line and asked the woman, “Do you collect coupons?” She said, “Yes!” enthusiastically, and then turned to realize her envelope was gone. I told her it was at the sample station, and before I could get it for her, she was off to retrieve the pack.

She got back and said, “See, if you hadn’t gone for a coffee, I wouldn’t have gotten my coupons!”

The line finally reached the check out. She insisted I stay in front of her. She said, “You have so little!” I pushed back, “But I have twice as much as you!” She wouldn’t relent.

I told the guy at the check out that the lady behind me was one of the sweetest people I’d ever met. The checker – Cory – turned to her and said, “I’ve been hearing some really good things about you.” She said, “You have?” Cory looked at her basket and said, “You know what, for being so sweet, I’m not going to charge you for the eucalyptus.”

She looked at me with a big smile and said, “Merry Christmas.”

I said, “Merry Christmas, to you,” and left.

Several times I started to introduce myself and ask her name, but then got distracted by something and didn’t. I hope I see her again. She may have gotten the gift of the eucalyptus, but she was a gift for those she talked with even for a moment.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone! Wishing you that warm, fuzzy Trader Joe’s joy all year long.

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Christmas classics: Chestnuts, candy cane coal and gingerbread cookies

24 Dec

On the day before Christmas, we’re running around getting last minute gifts, making sure we’ve seen all the holiday movies, sung our favorite carols and put our cards in the mail.

It’s also time to make sure we’ve had a taste of our favorite Christmas dishes before the season’s over!

Here are a few things you may have missed, and that Trader Joe’s makes easy to serve:

Chestnuts always make me feel like I’m in 18th Century Europe. If you’re a Martha Stewart disciple, TJ’s offers chestnuts in the raw.

raw chestnuts from Trader Joe's

Chestnuts in the raw

However, at this late date, I know I don’t have time to roast them in the oven, let alone over an open fire!

If you’re like me, you might opt for Trader Joe’s package of peeled and cooked chestnuts for any recipe need, or just for warming up and pretending they came from a German vendor at the Kindlmarkt.

ready to eat chestnuts

Chestnuts, ready to eat

Gingerbread men are another holiday treat. These cookies fall on the list of things we love but only eat during the winter holidays. And we always wonder why that is…

cookies of gingerbread

Little gingerbread men will give you your gingerbread fix

And who doesn’t want to miss out on getting their yearly lump of coal?! Trader Joe’s turns a frown upside down, makes lemonade out of lemons and takes a sad looking thing like a chunk of coal and makes it delicious, too!

Trader Joe's makes coal delicious

Because you’ve been so good this year: A lump of coal for you!

Thanks, again, Trader Joe’s!

Merry Christmas to everyone from Things I Love at Trader Joe’s!

Follow Things I Love at Trader Joe’s on Twitter: @TraderJoesKC

Follow Things I Love at Trader Joe’s on Pinterest: Trader Joe’s

Related links:

Chestnut Growers, Inc. – recipes and information

Chestnut recipes and tips from Epicurious

Health.com: Healthy holiday chestnut recipes

Holiday gifts from Trader Joe’s

19 Dec

ScrabbleTitleGiftsB

  • The rush of feet.
  • The cold, crisp air.
  • The credit cards
  • that get lots of wear.
  • It’s Christmas time.
  • and we hurry to find
  • gifts for those we love.
  • We feel so behind!
  • Yes, the aisles of Joe’s
  • yield tasty treats,
  • like cheese and fruit
  • and seasoned meats.
  • But … what’s this? you say,
  • on shelves are sold
  • packages of goodies –
  • gift-giving gold!
  • There are jars of jam
  •  – four flavors in a pack –
  • there’s raspberry and orange
  • for a spreadable snack!

Trader joe's jams

  • And the ultimate choice
  • in hostess gift selection:
  • You’ll find mini soaps and bath salts
  • in the toiletry section!

Trader Joe's Bath Salt Trio

Mini soaps brighten every occasion!

  • So, to all a Merry Christmas,
  • and the end to gift-buying woes.
  • You’ll find treats for everyone
  • at your local Trader Joe’s.

Thank you, Trader Joes!

And thank you for visiting Things I Love at Trader Joe’s!

Follow Things I Love at Trader Joe’s on Twitter: @TraderJoesKC

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Trader Joe’s Sipping Chocolate: Cocoa heaven

19 Oct

It’s Friday, and it’s time for the best drink of the week and of the season: hot chocolate. TJ’s offers a delicious selection. I mean, I am wowed!

Trader Joe’s Sipping Chocolate

Back story: I’d just tried another store’s hot chocolate, and I wasn’t a fan of how it tasted. So, I was scared that TJ’s version might not connect with my taste.

I was also a little worried that it would be overly sweet because sugar was listed as the first ingredient. The directions ask you to put three tablespoons of chocolate in heated milk, and then said to add more sugar, if needed. That sparked my curiosity. More sugar?

The milk was heated. The cocoa added. I sipped. Wow! Delicious flavor on the lighter side, yet rich and full. And not too sweet! I can see how someone might want to add more sugar, but for me, this was perfect.

NOTE: It’s meant to be a small, thick drink. Check out the photos in the sipping chocolate review below, under “Related Links.” However, I used a full cup of milk with three heaping spoonfuls of chocolate and loved it. So, enjoy it how you like and make it your own.

Trader Joe’s, thank you. Really. Thank you.

And thank you for reading and following Things I Love at Trader Joe’s!

Have you tried Sipping Chocolate? If so, how did you make it, and what did you think?

Follow Things I Love at Trader Joe’s on Twitter: @TraderJoesKC

Follow Things I Love at Trader Joe’s on Pinterest: Trader Joe’s

Related Links:

Sipping chocolate review

Nutrition information

Sips of the season: Pumpkin potables from Trader Joe’s

17 Oct

It’s comfort drink season!

Pumpkin Spice Coffee

Pumpkin Spice Rooibos, an hearbal tea

Pumpkin Spice Chai

Pumpkin Ale

Thank you, Trader Joe’s!

And thank you for reading and following Things I Love at Trader Joe’s!

Have you tried any of these pumpkin products? If so, what did you think?

Follow Things I Love at Trader Joe’s on Twitter: @TraderJoesKC

Follow Things I Love at Trader Joe’s on Pinterest: Trader Joe’s

Related Links:

Pumpkin Spice Rooibos tea: Review from Club Trader Joe’s

Recipe: Pumpkin Buttered Rum

Drink recipes from Trader Joe’s Fan

 

 

 

 

It was peppermint to be…

29 Aug

My dad used to keep peppermints in his pocket. On cross-country drives in particular, I remember the radio tuned to a baseball game; the family playing license-plate bingo; chatting about the things we were passing by; and the occasional wrapper crinkle of a sugary niblet smoothly and quickly maneuvered from pocket to mouth. The sweets were a good hunger reliever, handy to pass the time, but they also helped Dad cut down on his smoking.

So, a lot of hard candy gratitude and nostalgia goes into eating a peppermint for me. Layer on peppermint’s presence as the ghost of Christmas candy, and that little sucker has the ability to pack a hefty emotional punch!

But then there are also the taste-based factors. I’m not a fan of the airy peppermints. My hard candy needs to be dense. Hard means hard.
Buying peppermints is not a guaranteed slam dunk.

Peppermint candies

However, as you can see, TJ’s version has claimed a place at the Things I Love table. The peppermints are small, dense and the flavor is resonant. Really, they’re delicious and almost unseasonable to eat in summer – they’re that Christmasy tasting.

They’re the perfect kind of peppermint. The kind Dad would like.
Thanks for the memories and mints, TJ’s.

Follow Things I Love at Trader Joe’s on Twitter: @TraderJoesKC

Follow Things I Love at Trader Joe’s on Pinterest: Trader Joe’s

Related Links:

Peppermint and candy cane recipes

Peppermint bark recipe

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