There once was a lovely princess who lived in the magical kingdom of Café au lait. Her kingdom flourishes by trading its goods to the rest of the world. Their best and most magical export? The coffee bean, of course. The kingdoms magical coffee bean has been worshipped and revered amongst the people since the dawn of time (or at least since I created this kingdom in my head). Like most Café au lait citizens, the princess adored her kingdom. It was beautiful and thriving, filled with energy and life. Everyone had places to go, people to see and coffee to drink along the way.

The princess was a little different than the rest of the citizens. When she was 18 (the legal drinking age in this kingdom), she was presented to the people as the future ruler of Café au lait. Her inauguration was celebrated in front of her subjects with her first official sip of coffee. She remembers this experience all too well as it was a turning point for her future rule as Queen. That day, she walked out to the balcony and faced thousands of loyal subjects. She stepped towards to end of the balcony where there was a tall ornately decorated bistro table. This was the same table her father and grandfather had stood at when they were inaugurated. Atop the table sat a delicate little teakettle that is too pretty to describe to the mere mortal (yeah, I don’t have time for that, so use your imagination). Beside the tea kettle, lay a perfect little princess mug that was designed especially for her. She practiced this moment hundreds of times with her handmaids. Although each time she practiced, she simply sipped hot lemon water to prepare.

She glided slowly towards the table and lifted her eyes to the crowd below her massive balcony. They all gazed with expectant eyes as she slowly lifted the mug with perfect grace and delicacy. She closed her eyes as she brought the mug to her nose and breathed in the rich aroma. It filled her senses and she experienced a rush of excitement. She felt her proud parents eyes while they stood by her side quietly anticipating. She brought the warm mug to her lips and tilted it just enough to find the perfect sip of warm buttery goodness. She stopped, and then tightened her cheeks and lips. The next few moments flew by so quickly! Her thoughts were racing!

“OMG, I don’t like coffee! My parents will disown me! My citizens will hate me! How has every ruler of Café au lait enjoyed this terrible drink? What am I going to do?”

The princess unclenched her jaw and relaxed her lips to a slow smile. She fluttered her eyes open and lifted her mug to the crowd. “Many blessings to the kingdom of Café au lait! Here’s to many cups together! ”

The crowd went wild! And like a chorus melody they shouted back to the princess, “All hail the future Queen!”

For days after the inauguration, the princess was sick to her stomach with worry. She was beginning to master the art of pretending to enjoy her daily cup of coffee with her parents. Before breakfast, they would gather in the dining room with the gentleman and ladies of the kingdom. She sat politely with very little to add to the subject of politics and useless gossip. She quietly pretended to sip on her coffee until she was the last at the table. Only then, did she feel safe to pour it down the latrine.

Then one day, she was caught! Her grandmother grabbed her arm before she could be rid of the coffee and pulled her into the corner of the kitchen.

“My dear princess, this cannot be. Tell me you are not well and that is why you are disposing of your java.” The princess cried to her grandmother as she confessed her “sin.” But to her surprise, a sly grin crossed her grandmother’s face. “Come child, I have a secret to tell.”

They took the stairs down into the basement of the castle and weaved through the dark halls until they it led them to the deepest corner of the castle. The princess stopped at the door astounded to see a small kitchen full of very round and large women. They were all bustling about as they gathered items and poured them in a huge pot located in the middle of the room. She was shocked! She had never been to this part of the castle and furthermore, it was rare to find overweight women in the land of Café au lait.

“What are they doing, Grandmother?”

“They are magic! They concoct a potion to pour into your coffee! This potion makes your coffee delicious.”

“Grandmother, forgive me. But why are they all so round?”

“My dear, I must tell you the truth of it. The potion is made with sweet ingredients beyond our understanding. It seems that exposure to the potion causes the body to inflame and round out.”

The princess was confused. How was thing good news? This solution doesn’t seem natural. There had to be another way.

Then a large woman stepped away from the boiling caldron and offered her a mug. The princess looked into the mug and was astonished to find a milky brown liquid that was giving off a very sweet aroma. She was intrigued. She took a slow sip and didn’t stop. It was sweet and tasted GOOD! Magic! The princess was relieved but felt conflicted.

“Grandmother, you’re telling me that I could use this potion every day and ENJOY my coffee? But it comes with the side effects of possible weight gain, brain to gut confusion, increased sugar cravings, insulin resistance and risk of type 2 diabetes?” (Ok, she didn’t say that but I want to make sure you understand the metaphor here).

Her grandmother nodded and then her heart sank. Was this worth it? There has to be another way! She hung her head and closed her eyes. Then, it came to her! She shot upright and kissed her grandmother on the cheek. “I have a better idea!”

She raced back upstairs to the main kitchen and called for her parents. She jetted around the kitchen as she reached for spices that she knew as child. These spices were second to the famous magical coffee bean but still a very valuable export for Café au lait. Before long, the princess had a pot of boiling water and was strategically throwing spices inside to cultivate the flavors. The kitchen was a hot box of delicious aroma!

She hurried through the kitchen as she sang to herself. “A little ginger for anti-inflammatory, a dash of peppercorn to boost the immune system, a sprinkle of cloves for the circulatory system…” Her song continued with more spices and countless health benefits! Could she improve the health of her people and add an alternative to the other closet coffee haters?

When the king and queen arrived, their daughter had set a place for them at the end of the counter. She presented them with a tea kettle, three small teacups, a small jar of honey and milk. They sat quietly as their daughter gracefully poured her newly created tea into each cup. She then stirred in a teaspoon of honey and a slow pour of milk. She urged them to try her new recipe by pushing the cups towards them. They glanced at each other and shrugged casually.

For the next hour, the threesome laughed and enjoyed one another as they sipped on their delicious tea. It was decided that from that day onward that they were not only the land of the magical coffee beans, but they were the land of the mystical cup of tea.

I hope the moral of the story is not lost on you. Just in case, I will translate!

Coffee is not bad for you! It’s the insane amount of additives that are! Not to mention anything in excess probably isn’t a good idea for the body.

About a month ago, I realized that I didn’t really like coffee all that much. I liked the creamer that I added to the coffee. It was sweet and delicious. Not only that but having my cup of coffee with creamer was habitual. It was the perfect additional to my workday. It was my routine.

Yes! I knew it was terrible for me! But balance is important and this was the one thing that I wasn’t ready to give up yet. Then one day, I decided to give it a shot and try something new. Can I replace my “not so good” choice with a better one? I had identified what I truly loved about my coffee experience. So I took what I knew about myself and applied it with a delicious tea blend that I ADORE!

Now every week, I make a gallon of my yogi tea. I love it! I don’t miss caffeine. I don’t miss the flavor of coffee. And I definitely don’t miss the lower belly pooch that comes with drinking coffee with creamer. I feel better! I look better and I have more energy! Not to mention the crazy amount of benefits I receive from this concoction. I’m a happy and healthy nutrition coach!

Sound like something you would like to try? Here is my favorite recipe! Add the honey and almond milk as desired! Happy sipping and long live the Queen!



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