Tag Archives: CoffeeShops

A Signature Smoothie


I began this blog with a dilemma: hating coffee, but, loving coffee shops. And I’ve spent the past one-and-a-half years trying to recreate the sparks of thought, reflection, and creativity that coffee shop ambience inspires within me.

Well now, I’ve found a solution to the first half of my polar quandary. Instead of cups of gourmet coffee with frothy hearts atop their steamy ceilings, I’ve developed a recipe for a Mocha Smoothie.


An all-natural, caffeine-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, vegan alternative that satisfies the taste buds while nourishing the body and soul.

I drink it after workouts; post-yoga; in-between meals when cravings try to sneak in.

So, now I have the drink to sip. I just need the human company. The live conversation. The tangible infusion of the senses that only a brick-and-mortar shop can provide. That’s my next challenge.








For the moment, though, here’s the recipe:

  • 7 – 8 ounces of Water
  • 20 Raw Almonds + 5 Raw Cashews, soaked overnight and then rinsed
  • 1 tsp Maca Powder
  • 1 T Cocoa Powder (My favorite is Just Like Sugar Cocoa Mix)
  • Handful of Fresh Blueberries
  • 1 Scoop of Vegan Protein Powder, Mocha Flavored (My favorite is Vega)
  • 1/2 Banana – Frozen, Fresh, or Pureed (Yes, as in baby food! It offers a sumptuous, custardy texture.)
  • 8 Frozen Cherries

Place in a single-serving blender in this order. Blend for 30 -45 seconds.


And may your cup always be filled to the rim.


The Grind


Mocha Muse has its very own newspaper, The Grind. It may contain a quote, a poem, song lyrics, snippets of overheard conversation or fascinating facts about creativity/life. So, leather sofa in Home Interiorsnuggle into the sofa, unfold the paper and reach for your morning cup of coffee.

Here’s the twenty-sixth issue. . . just click on newspaper to enlarge, then continue to click until text is readable for you!




Thanks to: Mitch Hedberg

Daily Déjà Vu






One day a plane hit a building

then another plane

then another building.


My father sent me a newspaper clipping

a full front-page photograph with a caption

and an enormous bold black headline

as angry as a cold black fist in the pit of my stomach.


Since that day the grey tones of life have diminished.


Black and white is louder now.


Two bold choices scare me.


I get terrified when the comfort and safety of colors fade

when poetry can’t take me home

when coffee shops are tense with lying laughter

when the vice of black and white squeezes my crystal soul.




Cutlery Love


A waitress ponders behind a smile:

Standing at the counter, tossing clean cutlery into the grey rubber corrals .  .  . she thinks of how their relationships mirror the stages of humans interacting intimately.

In the first furrow, the spoons merge. Nesting into one another. Curving and fluid.

In the middle corrugation – the middle years – the forks predominate. They grow prongs. They have open spaces. And defensive weapons. And the capacity to weave into and out of each other’s wefts.

In the final trough, lined like slender soldiers, the knives lie in wait. Straightened. Having grown rigid. Having bared serrated edges. Living parallel lives.

All tucked neatly into a gallantly folded napkin.




Edible Good Luck


Holidays can be very flexible, if we give them permission.

And if a holiday doesn’t get celebrated on its calendar date, well .  .  . nothing is really lost. Its spirit will unfold when the time is ripe. All will remain aligned in this infinitely vast universe whether I forget or remember.

Personally, on New Year’s Eve, I’ve abandoned the ritual of crafting lists of rigid resolutions in favor of sighing into the agility that yoga practice has taught me. Now my importance is: exhaling deeply, contemplating expansively, embracing whimsy.

I’m not a holiday purist.

But I do enjoy New Year’s. And I did neglect to post this on the absolute first day of 2016. What I’m thinking is that the whole weekend is the holiday. It’s been stretched like chewing gum since it fell on a Friday. That makes it extra special.

Now getting around to edibility, what I want to say is that since my younger self dug some pretty deep roots in the Appalachian South, you could say my grey matter is soiled with some superstitious belief that eating a feast of black-eyed peas and collards will start the new year with luck and money.

Some years I remember; some years I blithely forget. I’ve never kept track of either one’s luck factor. So who knows what brought good fortune or poverty in any given year?

This year I semi-remembered. We ate “luck and money” Southwestern style: Spanish Rice, pinto beans, doughy white tortillas, green broccoli.

It may sound aberrant, however, here’s the full Southern blessing:

Rice for riches,

peas for pennies,

collards for dollars,

cornbread for gold.


Rice symbolizes wealth and community.

Black-eyed Peas, because they swell when cooked, represent prosperity.

Collard Greens symbolize dollar bills.

Cornbread, cooked to a rich saffron yellow, looks like bars of gold.


My thoughts are this: Sometimes Southern-style white rice is accompanied by pickled beets. So.  .  . since a little bleeding of red is auspicious, because red is for rubies, why not Spanish Tomato-red? It’s a jewel tone.

And Pinto Beans; they swell also. So, prosperity should be well represented.

Broccoli. Lightly steamed. Emerald in color. Shade tree in shape. My father always insisted that money doesn’t grow on trees, but, I refused to fully believe. It’s a forest of glistening emeralds.

Doughy White Tortillas. I think “dough” says it all. Besides, do gold bars really back our currency these days?


To all, Blessings and Good Fortune and Prosperity in this nascent year, whether you eat your luck or disguise it in alternate forms!

And check out #3 on the list of New Year’s Resolutions in the photo above: “Drink Good Coffee.” Mocha Muse Coffee Shop supports this one!



**Reference Source: Our State, for the Southern New Year’s Blessings and Translation.

Gypsy Man


Imagine an exotic, Turkish-inspired coffee shop on the second floor of a cluster of Santa Fe art galleries. Run by sheikhs, all porcelain-white people wearing white turbans and sculpted sour expressions.

The decor is lush. Lots of hand-tufted rugs and handwoven textiles stuffed into pillows. Lavishly tassled and tossed into raised-bed booths and corner hammocks.

Deep red is predominant. The tones of aged wines from quixotic and ancient cultures create a space of timeless welcome. A safety net to sink into and forget the worries of twenty-first century America.

This space is everything I want a coffee shop to be: an afternoon ride on a magic carpet.

And as I nest into a corn crib of pillows, a genie appears.

Squatting across the private table from me – uninvited – unsummoned – a man sits pretzled in a perfect lotus flower. Dressed in handwoven/hand-dyed clothing, he is nearly camouflaged by the cafe itself.

His hair is dark as espresso. Crinkly and curly.

He has chin stubble that wants to give birth to a beard.

His dark eyes sear through the dusky light into my consciousness.

He wears amulets.


He carries a deck of tarot cards that he ceremoniously places on the table.

He is silent, and, keen upon appearing more enigmatic and mysterious than his birthright.

He is .  .  . a self-created apparition.

And as he pokes a hole in my solitude, I’m offended.

I wind my legs in a knot and tuck them under my turquoise-tiered, gossamer skirt. This posture grounds me as I choose to lift my eyes and meet his in a direct standoff: a soundless dartboard of eyeballs bouncing. A game only strangers can play with the logic of graceful hatred.

As my green eyes bite his chocolate malt-ball eyes, it is war.

The rare ecstasy of invisible sparring begins.

Before I can thunder kick him with words, he turns over a handful of intricately beautiful images. All glossy patterns on sturdy card stock.

Tarot Cards

My anger diffuses.

“What’s your number?” he asks with soft determination.

“I don’t know. I’ve never understood numerology, but, my favorite number has always been eight.”

“What’s your birth date?”

I give the date. He converts it into numbers. Adds them up. They total “8.”

“You are right to trust your instincts. Eight has been, and always will be, the guide of your life.”

He shuffles several cards and lays them out on the table in a pretty little pint-sized argyle acre of tidy tilling.

I’m fascinated. His nimble fingers work so quickly. His voice speaks through the wine colors of the room. He is a weaver of words and prophecy, and, I am soon nearly tipsy with the trickery of old.

In a trance, I hear mention of money. Is he asking me to pay for oracles I haven’t ordered?

My anger reawakens. I sit stone cold like a clay-slab plate perched at chest height.


He evaporates like the fog he’d ridden in on.

Magic carpet: exit stage left.

I sip my tea. But I’m not able to relax again. My peace has been robbed by a thief with stolen eyes.

Untangling my legs, I slide from the booth, reluctantly leaving its pillow-safety behind.

On cat feet, I creep down the back stair exit. I glance left before entering the sidewalk. In my periphery, I see Gypsy Man in all his robed glory, seducing the soul of another solitary woman who sits silently at a white wrought-iron table on the street level patio. Trying to smile without entangling her dignity in his Turkish taffy eyes.

I cross the street, wondering about the safety of playing with numbers. I think: Roulette wheels. Poker. Stock Market portfolios.

But I still love the number 8 with all its loops of infinity and lazy filigree meandering into the future.

It’s crazy.

It all started with an 8-Ball sitting in the lap of my childhood. The friend of a lonely little girl.

It answered my dreams and talked with my fears. Over the decades, its status was raised. It earned its place as the lone star flag of my heart.

And neither the Silk Road scammers nor the market analysts can steal – or – correct the investment it holds in my destiny.

For what it’s worth, I’ll continue to toss my own dice. To count my own numbers. Dance with them. Love them. Follow their wisdom of happiness and contentment whenever I can solve their intricate equation of existence.

No interlopers invited.

I’m a solitary integer in this cold, dark universe of arithmetic.


The Grind


Mocha Muse has its very own newspaper, The Grind. It may contain a quote, a poem, song lyrics, snippets of overheard conversation or fascinating facts about creativity/life. So, leather sofa in Home Interiorsnuggle into the sofa, unfold the paper and reach for your morning cup of coffee.


Here’s the twenty-first issue. . . just click on newspaper to enlarge, then continue to click until text is readable for you!




The Grind - (8-24-2015) Rhythmic Coffee Spilling


In my experience, waitressing can be a dance. A form of art in motion. A balancing act with a tray of plates or a single coffee cup perched in the palm of a hand.

It may look like drudgery to the untrained eye, but, actually it can be transformed to performance art.



Reference Source: UberFacts