This gift idea occurred to me last Friday night as I was surfing blogs for some inspiration this week.

The children were asleep and I had my new Audrey Assad CD playing through iTunes and the kitchen was not “put away.” I have a mild obsession with the kitchen being cleaned up before I can end my day. We had visited a little friend at her soccer game and it was COLD! OK. So it was only like mid-50s, but I live in the South and appreciate it so mid-50s with a stiff breeze might as well be 10 below zero. When we arrived home I made some stove-top-with-oil popcorn (we usually air pop) and then rinsed the pan (I don’t collect kitchen tools) and made hot cocoa. What a great snack before bed. Warm, filling, and not too terribly heavy.

So I am sitting at the bar looking over the kitchen and I see the aftermath which includes a lime green Fiesta mug filled with once-hot-cocoa. And it hit me! Here’s a great gift idea to carry with you to a friend as a sweet, unexpected treat when you attend a rec league (or high school or college) soccer or football game on a chilly night – hot cocoa!

Grab inexpensive thermos’ (or is it thermoses?) and then before a game make a batch of this Creamy Hot Chocolate for your family and a friend family. Tie a sweet ribbon in team colors (theirs, not yours!) around the gift thermos and attach a card cheering on the team member. You can include a few styrofoam cups in the event they don’t want to swap slobber between gulps. Wrap the cups with a piece of ribbon as well.
Yes, it is a more-costly-than-usual homemade gift. But the thought, so appropriate and unexpected is so tender that it outweighs the burden. You could minimize the cost by snatching up vintage and gently used thermoses at yard sales and thrift shops.

Had I not thought of the idea at nearly 11pm, I would have done this very thing for a sweet football family for we had a  morning game the next game. But I will keep this very gift in mind. Husband’s college homecoming is coming up and I know for whom this would a precious way to show appreciation.

And I did eventually shut down the laptop and clean up the kitchen. 🙂

I altered the Creamy Hot Chocolate recipe linked above by using fat free condensed milk, increasing the vanilla to 2t, and using 2 1/2 c of water, 2c of 2 per cent milk, and 2c of fat free half and half.

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