One of my gifts I made this year, which is definitely going to become a holiday tradition, is home made vanilla coffee liquor. It's one of those things that although simple to make, you have to commit to ahead of time, as it needs to be bottled for at least a month before drinking. Here is the recipe:
3 cups sugar
3/4 cup instant espresso powder
2 vanilla beans
3 cups vodka
Bring sugar and 2 cups water to a boil and stir to dissolve sugar. Add coffee and reduce heat to maintain a steady simmer. Cook, stirring to fully dissolve the espresso, for about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer to a large glass jar or seal-able pitcher and let sit until more or less cool. Meanwhile, split vanilla beans open and se the back of a knife or a small spoon and scoop out the teeny tiny seeds (it seems more like a paste). Add seeds and pods to the coffee syrup. Pour in vodka. Seal and put it away for four to six weeks. Remove and discard vanilla pods.
I've personally been enjoying it over ice with a little milk, which I highly recommend. It makes a great dessert drink, as it would over ice cream. I have yet to have it in my morning coffee (surprisingly) but I hear it's a nice little winter warmer.
Bottle it up and you've got a tasty homemade Christmas present!