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March is in full swing which means our strip malls are once again inhabited by college kids dressed up as the Statue of Liberty twirling eye-catching signs, H and R Blocks are springing up in abandon office spaces everywhere, and Turbo Tax is prominently on display at the entrance of every store. In case you have neglected to notice or have somehow forgotten, tax day is fast approaching. For millions of Americans, this means an influx of cash in the form of The Tax Refund.
There will, of course, be all sorts of articles being published in the next month or so talking about why you shouldn’t want a tax refund and what you should do with your money if you are “tragically” going to be receiving one. I’m all for it. Read those articles (with a manually brewed cup of coffee of course) and ponder the deep intricacies of your personal finances.
If after several brooding sessions and several cups of coffee, you decide to throw all that good advice out the window and blow it. Why not spend at least a little bit on coffee?
Here is it is: The Brewing Coffee Manually Blog’s official guide to blowing your tax refund on coffee
The Art of Blowing Money
There are, obviously, countless useful things you can spend “found” money on. There are even many things within the manual brewing spectrum that would be responsible and sensible purchases. If you are in need of a quality grinder or a gram scale for instance, those may be a wiser purchasing decision. Still, it is fun to behave opulently and indulge. The list below contains items far from necessities. They are fun, extravagant and may scratch that indulgent itch.
A cup of coffee ($2.00-$10.00)- I’m not sure I’ve even heard of a tax refund in this range, but I’m sure that they exist (Wow, you must really have your withholding dialed in). Go get yourself a cup of coffee and not just any cup of coffee, I want you to try something new. Go to your local coffee shop and learn something. Heck, even if you have to pay a little taxes you might as well reward yourself for doing your civic duty and go get a cup of coffee. Cheers!
Here are a few ideas of things you could try:
- Siphon brew
- Manual Pour over
- Try a new origin
- Get a milk based coffee drink (Latte, Cortado, Flat White….)
A fancy coffee mug ($8.00-$35.00)- If you are drinking your coffee out of the generic coffee mug or from a set someone gave you for your wedding, you might want to think about getting a new mug. There are so many different directions you can go once you’ve decided to make an addition to your coffee drinkware collection. If you think your have the mugs covered at home, maybe look into a new travel mug.
Here are a few options to get your started:
- Bodum Bistro Double Wall Mug
- Hand Thrown Pottery Mug
- The Aviator- Leather and Mason Jar Mug
- Zojirushi Travel Mug
Fresh roasted specialty coffee ($15.00 – $40.00)- Are there any roasters that you are curious about or origins you have been wanting to try? Take this opportunity to take a chance on new origin or roaster. There are so many roasters out there with great coffee, try some. Many roasters also offer monthly subscription services if you want to reap monthly benefits of your good decision making. You can find more information on choosing a roasted coffee here.
Here are a few roasters that I want to try in 2015:
Fund a Kickstarter campaign ($1.00 – $150.00 and up)- If you are unaware, Kickstarter is a great website where start ups can seek funding by taking pre-orders for their products. Among the hundreds of Kickstarter campaigns running each day, there are usually some interesting coffee ones. They range from start up roasters to coffee related products. Pick a company to back and become part of something new and exciting.
Here are a few Kickstarter campaigns that interest me at the moment (Last Updated 3/10/15):
Buy The Dragon Brewer with Assassin Case ($395.00)- Todd Carmichael’s (La Colombe) modern brewing marvel, The Dragon Brewer, is beyond cool. Even the name sounds like something I want to brew coffee with. What is it? It is a pour over plus manual siphon all in one. It currently comes with a scale, coffee samples and an “Assassin Case.”
Go on a coffee vacation ($1000.00 and up)- If you are the type that is motivated by traveling and experiences, why not go vacation in a coffee destination. Because of the climate needed for optimal coffee growth, coffee plantations are situated in some of the most beautiful geographic places in the world. I’d recommend checking out the Tarrazu region of Costa Rica or Boquete, Panama.
That is by no means an exhaustive list of coffee related things you can do with your money, but it should serve as a creative springboard. For more ideas you can consult my 2014 Christmas gift guide. Don’t be afraid to treat yourself, even if it is something small like a cup of coffee, and tell me about it. I’d like to hear what you are up to.
Are you going to spend your tax refund on anything coffee related? Do you have any suggestions for my list? Let me know in the comments section below.