The Bay Area recently fell victim to a monster heat wave (temperatures have been over 100 in San Francisco and Oakland… eek!). Heat waves always leave me grumpy and not terribly inclined to love much of anything, but I still was able to find a few things I love.
I’ve lived here for years and these are the hottest temps I’ve experienced. Since we don’t (usually) get that hot, very few people – including me- have air conditioning. We just have to sit around and be miserable until the heat breaks.
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The Things I Love: Heat Wave Edition
Coffee Shop Favorites
I’ve mentioned before that I love the Toddy Cold Brew coffee maker. One down side to the Toddy during a heat wave is that it means I miss out on a trip to the coffee shop, where they have glorious air conditioning.
If I’m going to bask in the cool air of a coffee shop during a heat wave, I have two go-to drinks, depending on where I am:
- Peet’s Black Tie – Cold pressed coffee, a dash a cream, and a little bit of sweetened condensed milk.
- Starbucks Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew – Cold brew coffee ‘topped with a delicate float of house-made vanilla sweet cream that cascades throughout the cup’ (as they describe it on their website). I’d call it cold brew that tastes like it’s been mixed with melted vanilla ice cream.
Starbucks has been known to run out of cold brew mid-day when it’s really hot, so it’s a good idea to have a plan B, but so yummy when you can get it.
Both have a touch of sweetness, without being the overly sugary frappuccinos.
More coffee and less milk shake.
Zoku Slushie Maker
After a heat wave run, after I’ve had my immediate refueling beverages of choice (usually good ol’ fashioned water and Nuun) and a bit of food, I’m ready for something a little more exciting. Plain water just won’t cut it.
A few years ago, on a total whim, I got a Zoku Slushie Maker. It makes a single serving of slushie, and it doesn’t take up the entire freezer. The maker has an inner liner that is kept in the freezer. When it’s slushie time, you pull it out, put in a beverage of choice and stir for a minute or so and it turns into the perfect slushie consistency.
My beverages of choice for a post-long run slushie are orange juice or chocolate milk.
Full disclosure: This item is in the ‘ordered, but not yet tried’ category.
I love Otter Pops and other tube-style popsicles. However, I was a little spooked by them after volunteering at a race where my job was to hand them out for a few hours. My hands were stained by Otter Pop food dyes for days. What must be in those things to cause so much staining?
A few weeks ago, I read a story about a woman who made up a batch of margaritas and put them in Zipzicles, zip lock bag style popsicle punches.
I knew immediately that this project would be in my future and I immediately ordered the bags on Amazon.
I won’t get the Zipzicle bags until after this heat wave has passed. Next heat wave? I’ll be ready with homemade margarita Otter Pops.
This was a product I forgot existed until I was at the Minnesota State Fair a few weeks ago – the Nada-Chair.
Since I don’t have air conditioning, on hot, miserable days I like to head to a nearby lake to hang out, write, and read. It isn’t a lot cooler, but at least there is some chance of air flow.
But I find it hard to sit on a blanket for long stretches of time. I get slouchy if I sit up and lying flat makes it hard to read.
Enter the Nada-Chair!
It has a pad that goes behind your back and straps that loop around your knees. It gives you back support like a chair, but folds up into nothing and is easily carried around. Their tagline: The Nada-Chair is the chair that you wear.
A picnic blanket and a Nada-Chair is the perfect combo to (try and) chill by the lake during a heat wave.