My Morning Routine

My Morning Routine

I’ve never been much of a morning person. (The words troll, grump and zombie come to mind.) No matter what, jumping out of bed never seems quite as alluring as basking in my cave of comfy sheets and blackout curtains. But lately, I’ve found that a few rituals make the early hours manageable, and even (dare I say) enjoyable…

My Morning Routine

As soon as I climb out of bed, I drink a humongous glass of water, to rehydrate and get my system going. Then, I make a cup of coffee, otherwise known as The Elixir of Life. I love all manner of coffee — French press, drip, iced, espresso — and have been known to rotate between them. No matter how I prepare it, though, my favorite coffee is Blue Bottle.

My Morning Routine

These days, my drink of choice is a homemade latte, using their Hayes Valley espresso (with hints of dark chocolate and brown sugar) and a healthy splash of coconut milk. There are few things as comforting as a warm mug in my hand and a warm dog at my feet, especially while scanning the news, checking emails and — let’s be honest — seeing what’s popped up on Instagram.

Caroline's Morning Routine

Once I’ve caffeinated and caught up with the world, it’s off to the gym. As a reformed sloth, I’ve found that squeezing in a daily workout keeps me happy and sane. Since November, I’ve rotated between a bunch of classes: yoga, cycling, kickboxing, dancing, circuit training and Pilates. Having a regular routine doesn’t mean you can’t keep it interesting!

My Morning Routine

“But how do you stay motivated?” friends will sometimes ask. Two words: crazy pants. Crazy pants make all things achievable.

My Morning Routine

On the way to work, I drink my breakfast-smoothie-of-champions: banana, peanut butter and almond milk, with a handful of spinach thrown in. (The spinach makes it look green and healthy, so you feel all virtuous drinking it, but it tastes… exactly like peanut butter. No one ever has to know.)

My Morning Routine

If I need an afternoon pick-me-up, I’ll hit up my neighborhood Blue Bottle outpost. Once the weather turns warm, you will find me there always, sipping their cult favorite New Orleans, a sweet, creamy iced coffee cut with chicory. The baristas really know their stuff, and you always get a perfect cup.

If you don’t live near one of their cafes, you can order their beans — and so much more — directly from their site. All coffee is shipped within 48 hours of roasting, for optimum flavor. They even offer an at-home coffee subscription service, which you can try for free. (I also love their handy brewing guides, which distill tricky brewing techniques into easy-to-follow steps.)

My Morning Routine

Today, Blue Bottle is giving FIVE lucky readers a drip coffee tote, including a ceramic Bonmac dripper and a package of filters — everything you need to brew the perfect cup at home. To enter, please visit Blue Bottle, then leave a comment below. The winners will be chosen at random on Monday, April 11th. Good luck! (Update: The giveaway winners have been notified. Thanks for participating!)

Bonus for all readers: Blue Bottle is offering free shipping on first-time orders of anything on their site — beans, brewing gear, you name it — through April 30th. You can click on any link in this post to place your order. Thank you so much, Blue Bottle!

My Morning Routine

(Photos by Julia Elizabeth Photography for Cup of Jo. This post is sponsored by Blue Bottle, the coffee I drink every day. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Cup of Jo.)

  1. I need to make time for workouts in the morning! They really do help get you going for the day. I also LOVE blue bottle – it’s so smooth, rich, and delicious :)

    http://www.littleblackshell.com

  2. Alex says...

    Kind of an odd query for something specific, but what coconut milk do you use in your coffee? I know there are different kinds/brands, etc…AND I NEED TO KNOW IMMEDIATELY BECAUSE THAT SOUNDS AMAZING. thanks!

  3. Jenny says...

    Holy thousand+ comments, Batman!

    I love me some smoothies (banana, pineapple, spinach, almond milk, and a spoonful of plain greek yogurt is my jam), so I tried out your smoothie recommendation in this post. And you weren’t kidding! Even with the spinach, it tastes like a peanut butter milkshake! I froze the banana and it made it extra smooth and creamy. Mmm.

    • Jenny says...

      And a fall favorite (which is totally out of season right now)
      -1/2 cup pumpkin puree (I used Libby’s brand)
      -1 banana (preferably frozen)
      -1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
      -Large spoonful of plain Greek yogurt (optional)
      -1 tablespoon honey
      -1/2 teaspoon vanilla
      -1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
      -1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
      -Pumpkin pie spice can be substituted for cinnamon and nutmeg
      -About 5 ice cubes

  4. angela barraza says...

    Oh, this is going to be a great gift for my husband!

  5. Geoff Yuen says...

    After recently getting into manual pour over brewing, I really wanted a high quality, complex, and rich coffee.
    I went with Blue Bottle Bella Donovan and 3 Africans.
    Wow, I love both, especially 3 Africans, with some cream and Just a bit of sugar.
    Just fantastic, delicious coffee! I love Blue Bottle!

  6. Sabrina says...

    Love Blue Bottle!

  7. Tonia says...

    I loved Blue Bottle when I interned in the Bay Area for 3 months! Wish there was one closer to me now!

  8. Valentina says...

    Really? Really! :-)

  9. Katie Lee says...

    Blue bottle will lift spirits regardless of mood, day, season, or reason!

  10. Tess says...

    Such a lovely day! No complaints to having some brewing equipment to brew Blue Bottle on at home:)

  11. Hannah K says...

    Love starting my day off with coffee!!

  12. Kristy says...

    I so wish we had a blue bottle here! Fell in love on a trip to sanfrancisco several years ago

  13. Eric Wong says...

    Cannot beat their fresh beans!

  14. S says...

    Those leggings!

    Do you work out every morning?

    Lemon water – best thing in the am for subtle detoxing. (needs to be warm to hot).

    Love your articles.

  15. Amanda says...

    I really need to start grinding my own beans – I make my own everything already it’s a bit silly not to! Blue Bottle looks really cool – and I really like their subscription service.

  16. Verbal Gold says...

    While it’s simple, I really like that you include a big cup of water AND coffee in your morning routine. I often find myself trying to choose between the two in the morning, either because I’m trying to only stick to water, or because I won’t need to drink the water if I’m drinking the coffee. Drinking both every morning gives the best of both worlds!

  17. Annie says...

    Would love to try this brand. We have a local roasting company here in Arkansas called RozArk that is surprisingly amazing and my go-to. I might have to treat myself to a bag of blue bottle coffee soon!

  18. Sarah says...

    Okay, questions of eternal significance:

    1. How early do you wake up to squeeze all this in before work?
    2. Do you shower and get ready for the day at the gym, or go back home?
    3. Do you prep your smoothie at home or is there a kitchen at the gym or work you use to concoct your brekkie drink?
    4. How do you make sure no spinach leaves get stuck in your teeth? (My own daily battle with the morning smoothie).

    You’re adorable! xo

  19. clarisse says...

    I’ve been wanting to try blue bottle for so long but the cafe was so far from my last office in midtown. I would love to try their blends!

  20. Fran says...

    Would love to try the coffee!

  21. Karina says...

    I’ve always wanted to try and haven’t had a chance.
    Would love to win!

  22. Oblicuez says...

    Am a single working mother, trying to stay awake and fresh everyday. Would love some Blue Bottle! Oh and I can’t wait for it to be open on Broadway and 3rd in the Bradbury Building! I’m right around the corner.

  23. Liz says...

    I recently got to try their New Orleans for the first time during a visit to San Francisco! I’d love to win. :)

  24. Lauren B says...

    I’ve heard such good things but never tried it…fingers crossed!

  25. Megan says...

    I’ve heard a lot about this company before! It would be nice to try it out since I don’t live close to a café.

  26. Kirsten says...

    Might have to take a stroll to Blue Bottle right now myself.

  27. Emily Richards says...

    Their coffee looks divine!

  28. Jordann says...

    excited for the giveaway!!! <3 Blue Bottle

  29. Meredith says...

    Moving to Texas was made doubly hard by having to leave behind Blue Bottle.

  30. Gayatri says...

    Love the sound of that smoothie/caffeine in any form!!

  31. Heather Hawkins says...

    Ahhhh best giveaway ever. Hope I’m not too late.

  32. Audra says...

    I’ve recently given up a few vices and adopted daily coffee rituals instead. Pick me! Pick me!

  33. Amanda says...

    I recently moved from my hometown of Los Angeles to Nashville and have missed Blue Bottle almost as much as I miss the beach. Would love to get involved in this at home program!

  34. Jessica says...

    As a fellow sloth, I pretty much need to win this giveaway :)

  35. Amy says...

    Cool to see how much Blue Bottle has grown across the country!

  36. Rebecca says...

    I am obsessed with Blue Bottle!!! Would love to win the giveaway!

  37. Kelsey says...

    I am a caffeind!! I’d love to win the giveaway (:

  38. Alicia L says...

    Just stopped by for the first time last weekend! New fav spot

  39. Meg says...

    This would be so exciting to try! Ive have not experienced the renowned Blue Bottle coffee, but I hope to soon enough !

  40. Rebecca Elmore says...

    Would love that tote and ceramic dripper! We typically use french press or aeropress but have been wanting to try drip for a while now…

  41. Nancy says...

    Love those crazy pants!

  42. Bee says...

    The New Orleans coffee looks fab!! Pour me a cup!! :). Thanks for opportunity!!

  43. Gabrielle says...

    Love love love Blue Bottle!!! Watched the Barista documentary recently and just loved it!

  44. Erin says...

    I love trying new coffee and would love to try brewing with the ceramic dripper. Thanks for the giveaway :)

  45. Jessica says...

    I <3 Blue Bottle. They make Smith Street mornings more delicious. Also, hi we're neighbors!

    P.S. your pants are awesome.

  46. Jen says...

    LOVE blue bottle — their lattes are such a special treat!

  47. If Caroline recommends it, I will absolutely try it! The New Orleans Iced Kit sounds like the perfect way to welcome spring weather in Wisconsin :)

  48. I just tried Blue Bottle for the first time a couple of weeks ago at their Hell’s Kitchen location. Definitely got me through my work morning! :)

  49. Hayley Marcus says...

    I went to Blue Bottle when I visited San Fran. It was so delicious! I hope I win! I’d like to have blue bottle in my home more regularly.

  50. Your outfit is so cute!!! I’ve realized that going to the gym in the morning helps me too!

  51. Jessica says...

    Love! This looks amazing. I need a new good coffee!

  52. Shikha says...

    Wow… their mug is so cute ! Would love to win and taste some of their coffee :)

  53. Angella says...

    Mmmmm coffee with chicory… One of my favorites!

  54. aly fried says...

    love blue bottle! luck enough to live in SF!

  55. Liz says...

    Yum !

  56. Oh my goodness I love this!! Would love some blue bottle to start my mornings off right :)

  57. Emily says...

    Yasssss Blue Bottle! One of my favorites :)

  58. katie says...

    The flavor combination sounds delicious!

  59. Naomi says...

    Love love love blue bottle!

  60. Meg says...

    I fell in love with Blue Bottle in SF. Thanks for the opportunity!

  61. Jenny says...

    LOVE Blue Bottle!

  62. Kate says...

    Blue Bottle in the market was one of my favorite spots on a trip to San Francisco. I am addicted to their New Orleans cold brew! And with an infant, keeping a mason jar of coffee in the fridge is so much easier than waiting for water to boil …

  63. Amy says...

    I wonder if Blue Bottle has plans to come to DC? I’m a Peet’s fan, but also eager to try this! (PS: Caroline, your hair looks amazing!)

  64. heidi says...

    took my mom to blue bottle straight from the airport last time she visited :)

  65. Blue Bottle–smoother than a fresh jar of Skippy!

  66. Aruba says...

    Blue bottle sounds awesome!! mmm

  67. jess says...

    I love Blue Bottle! Most coffee gives me terrible heartburn but I can drink their cold brew. It’s magical!

  68. Kate says...

    This is awesome! I just ran out of beans from Caffe Ladro and was wondering what to order next! Sign me up for the contest too, please!

  69. Renee says...

    Love blue bottle!!!

  70. Nora says...

    I’ve heard great things about Blue Bottle. I’d love to try it!

  71. Fie S. says...

    Hah, The Elixir of Life! Sums it up perfectly. Fingers crossed all the way from Denmark!

  72. Johanna says...

    Oh fun! I would love to try Blue Bottle. :c)

  73. Haley says...

    Love coffee – always fun to find new favorite! Would love to try Blue Bottle!

  74. Cate says...

    Love that smoothie!

  75. B says...

    Oh my! Yes please! Is this open to your Aussie readers?! Eeepp I’d love this!

    Also really loved this post and everything you’re wearing Caroline!

  76. Hahaha love your ‘crazy’ pants!! I have been dying to try the blue bottle coffee in Venice, CA

  77. katie f. says...

    YUM!!!

  78. Irene says...

    Blue bottle is so wonderful! I don’t live near one, but I went to their store in San Francisco and was blown away!

  79. sophie peterson says...

    where is the sofa from??? xo

  80. Jenny M. says...

    I am a Mama of 3, soon to be 4 and to say I RELISH my one (ok 1.5) good cups of coffee in the AM is the understatement of the year. Pick me, pick me, pick me!!;) But seriously, pick me…

  81. Mimi Xu says...

    The best latte I’ve ever had was Blue Bottle’s!

  82. Robin says...

    Pleeeassseee give info on the frida leggings and leather jacket :)

    • Robin says...

      whoops–nevermind. I found the answer from old comments! sorry I was just excited!

  83. Abby says...

    we love blue bottle! I got my husband a subscription for beans for Christmas and it may have been his favorite present ever.

  84. Susan says...

    Looks Great! I wish I could fit a workout into my morning routine! Way to go gurl!

  85. Kate says...

    Love it!

  86. christine says...

    looks delicious.

  87. I wonder how their decaf is- so i could drink it all day long ;)

  88. Jenny Koenig says...

    I love the blue bottle on abbot kinney! Big fan of the granola there, as well as the coffee of course.

  89. Julie says...

    I’ve heard such incredible things about Blue bottle! I’d love to try them out!

  90. Megan says...

    I’m dying to try the New Orleans iced (and that peanut butter smoothie of yours;)!

  91. David says...

    I like to visit Blue Bottle whenever I’m in New York.

  92. Abby says...

    Yum! It’s so hard to go wrong with a really good cup of coffee, hot or iced.

  93. I love hearing about coffee brands I haven’t tried! Next time I’m in the city, Blue Bottle it is.

  94. rc says...

    elixir of life indeed!

  95. Chris says...

    Love blue bottle. Is that the LES outpost?

  96. Katee says...

    My favorite, too! I’d love a chance to win!

  97. Jordan says...

    Blue Bottle is the best! Would love to try drip coffee at home.

  98. Joanna says...

    I’ve heard so many good things about this coffee – looking to get away from my instant Starbucks! :)

  99. Kristin says...

    Sweet, chicory-laden perfection in a glass…say no more!

  100. Elizabeth says...

    LOVE Blue Bottle. There’s nothing better than a well-done cup of your beverage of choice!

  101. Alex says...

    Great coffee – thanks for the opportunity!

  102. Christina says...

    I love Blue Bottle – from the yogurt parfaits in mason jars to the perfect latte.

  103. I need more blue bottle in my life.

  104. Julia says...

    I have wanted a pour over set forever. This was a fun post. Where does one find Frida printed active wear?

  105. Bella W says...

    would love to try it, sounds delicious!

  106. Caitlin says...

    Awesome giveaway, blue bottle is definitely my fave as well.

  107. Delaney says...

    Oh come on now – you can’t post a pic of yourself wearing the most amazing activewear pants we ever did see and NOT tell us where they’re from! Where can I get some for myself?

  108. Amy says...

    Oh that kettle! Swoon. <3

  109. Veronica says...

    I’ve always heard adding chicory makes a great tasting cup of coffee, er should I say Jo. Slap knee accordingly.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Hahahaha nailed it

  110. Isabelle says...

    I love totes, and I love coffee! Great combo.

  111. Caroline says...

    Caroline, i’m also Caroline. Tried Blue Bottle for the 1st time last month. LOVE IT!

  112. sarah says...

    sounds really good- i would love to try blue bottle!

  113. Evan says...

    Sounds so good! Makes me want an iced coffee right now!

  114. Yvonne says...

    We received a fancy coffee grinder as a wedding gift, and have been dying to use it! Thank you for this lovely giveaway!

  115. LCarp says...

    Blue Bottle coffee might be one of the best hostess gifts I’ve ever received!

  116. The New Orleans is straight up addictive.

  117. Emily says...

    I’ve yet to try Blue Bottle coffee. Sounds wonderful!

  118. Mallory says...

    I’ve come to realize quality coffee makes all the difference in the early mornings!

  119. Kelsey says...

    I am in need of a good coffee! Would love to try Blue Bottle. And your smoothie combo is a tried and true favorite.

  120. Leah says...

    Please share where you found your Frida leggings:)

  121. Dani says...

    need this!

  122. Lily says...

    I’m cutting my caffeine back to one cup so it has to be the best cup! Would love to try this one!

  123. Lindsey says...

    I am also SUCH a fan of Blue Bottle. I wish they were local so I could make them a part of my morning routine.

  124. Ari D. says...

    We have lots of great coffee in Portland but Blue Bottle is always a treat.

  125. gloria says...

    Blue Bottle is my Absolute favorite! I had their affogato in SF and recently tried their iced coffee; amazing nonetheless!

  126. Lauren Smith says...

    Ooooohhh I’m intrigued! Definitely need to try some Blue Bottle! Thanks for sharing! Coffee is my everything…especially GOOD coffee!!! <3<3<3

  127. Sara says...

    yay coffee!

  128. Stefani says...

    Blue Bottle is the ONLY coffee I’ll drink black. My husband would be thrilled if I won :)

  129. Lauren says...

    Love Blue bottle! Caroline, where do you get your crazy pants!?

  130. Allison says...

    I’ve never tried Blue Bottle but would love to! Their espresso sounds delicious.

  131. Brittany says...

    Would love to try a great new coffee! I’m a Seattleite and am always looking for a favorite new morning brew!

  132. Lindsey Wikman says...

    I’ve only recently been introduced to drip coffee, this set is lovely!
    LW