Sunday, August 31, 2008

birthday purse

birthday purse, originally uploaded by houston mamacita.

Letitia made me a purse for my birthday. Don't you love the print? Thanks, L.

Mommy's Little Capitalists

We decided to get the kiddos a vending machine. It's their high-tech lemonade stand -- a way to learn about business and making money, yadda yadda. We set it up at my office. This picture captures the only instant that they were helpful at all.

Drink of the Week: Hurricane

Stupid Gustav ruined my birthday plans. The threat of being unable to return to Houston means that I wasn't with my family tonight at my own birthday party. They were sitting on the deck of my parents' house eating grilled shrimp and drinking hurricanes WITHOUT ME. Oh, the injustice of it all.

[Plus, the stupid hurricane is going in at LAFAYETTE, and not for two more days. Stupid stupid local weather people getting themselves in a lather over nothing.]

So let's drink.

(makes one drink)

1.5 oz. light rum
1/5 oz. dark rum
2 oz. passionfruit juice
1 oz. fresh lime juice
1 oz. unsweetened pineapple juice
1 tsp. grenadine
1 tsp. simple syrup or superfine sugar
orange slice
maraschino cherry

That's a lot of ingredients. Better to make in a batch, I say. So, yeah, blend 'em up and serve. To me, tonight.

image: Wikipedia

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Do you like my new haircut?

because I HATE IT. And fucking Nancy Grace is probably going to come after me for royalties.


Today is a big day in the blogosphere. It's the birthday of the three muses,

and Moi--

The Gorgeous Ladies of Blogging
. Happy birthday to my bloggie-triplets! I shall raise a glass to you tonight. And to me, and to ... J. Crew ... and brunettes with big asses ... and cookies ... and all other lovely things in this world. It's gonna be a long night.

*Yeah, her birthday is technically one day and *mumblesomething* years behind ours, but we claim her anyway.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

How Is It Only 10 a.m.?

Any chance we could be evacuated TODAY for the hurricane? Because today works for me.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Mamacita Takes the Gold in 2012

Was there a Synchronized Beach Jiggling event at the Olympics this year?

Part of a gallery of great photos from the Olympics. [The site is NSFW, though the photos themselves are not.]

HT: Kottke, as ever.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

What mamacita is ...


I know I'm late to the party, but Adrien Brody is sooo adorable.

Listening to


The end of astro-acne?

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Oh, Cool

Start with a design...

Have you ever wanted to design your own fabric? Spoonflower lets you come up with a design that they print on cotton for $16 a yard. In the words of a satisfied user:

I am an architect and have been working with programs like Photoshop for years, but Spoonflower really opened up a new world for me: fabric design. It's a service that let's you upload an image to a web site and the company prints the design as a pattern on 100% cotton fabric. Their customer service is great, and I think the fabric is reasonably-priced: it costs $18/yard, not counting shipping, and an individual 8x8-inch swatch is $5. The site is still in beta, so I had to request an invite to use Spoonflower, but a week after contacting them I was experimenting with patterns and ordering fabric.

Check out the flickr pool.
End with a skirt.

HT: Cool Tools

Friday, August 22, 2008

Drink of the Week: Helan Går!

Actually, we get TWO drinks this week. Who doesn't like a twofer?

First, the IKEA dinner. Carl* (Mr. Cayce) got some tickets to the Swedish Club of Houston dinner at IKEA. IKEA was having a special Crawfish Party to introduce their new Executive Chef. The chef served up some Swedish specialties: meatballs, lingonberry sauce, dill-flavored crawfish (served cold), some crispbread and Havarti. I guess you, uh, have to be Swedish to fully appreciate those things.

But it was a nice party anyway. The Swedish are very big on drinking songs, and they had a songbook at every place (along with a silly hat and bib -- also traditional). We learned a great Swedish drinking song, which went something like this:



Oh, and to drink they offered lingonberry juice, though you could buy Shiner Blonde or vodka shots, too. So the natural thing was to put the vodka in lingonberry juice, which wasn't bad. We have dubbed this notional drink the "Baltic Breeze." I think it would be even better with a twist of lemon, or even a spot of lemonade. Further experiments to follow. Cayce and Carl brought me some Aquavit from Sweden, so we'll have to work that in somehow. (Carl insists that this is a "sipping vodka." We'll just have to see about that.)

And then, back at the Carlsson huset, Carl made spicy martinis by combining Absolut Peppar with few slices of jalapeño. Now that was just painful. But Papi and the other menfolk really liked it.

So thanks for a fun evening, Carlssons -- Tack ska du ha, Carl!

top photo: David Castor
Helan Går! means something like "Drink the whole thing or you won't get even half next time."
*Carl is a badass -- he speaks Swedish, Danish, Spanish and English. In spite of being raised in Florida.

Semantics Friday

The frenemy of my frenemy is my ...?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

I Need Another Favor

Here's the deal: the theme for the Fall Festival this year is "I Love Rock 'n Roll." So for the poster, I'd like to do something "inspired by" a vintage concert poster. The design has to really communicate "rock and roll" because the actual concert information will be replaced with info about the school carnival.

If you have a favorite vintage-style concert poster, I'd like to see it. If I end up using your design, I'll send you a batch of Nutella cookies. So put a link in the comments or email me.

Or text HOTTIE to 54321. That's another good way to reach me.

P.S. I am quite aware that Flatt and Scruggs are not a rock 'n roll act.

What mamacita is ...

Obviously, James Lileks is a genius, because he's setting us up with a real-life mystery so we'll keep tuning in.

Have I ever mentioned how much I love Alexis Stewart? She is, to use a tired phrase, my girl crush. I would follow her around like a drooling dweeb if we ever met.
I was really anxious to get this book, and I haven't been disappointed. If you're a fan of installation art or graphic design, you will love it.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Here We Go Again

The first PTA meeting of the year is tonight. You can't even stand the sexxxy.

BTW, did you know that Donna Reed won an Oscar for playing a prostitute? It's true. You never know about those mom-types.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Happy Birthday, Billy Joe Shaver!

You are THE MAN.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Drink of the Week: Dark and Stormy

Tomorrow is Becca's birthday, and this describes one side of her personality. The other side is all sweetness and light, but watch out for this one. [I have no idea where she gets that moodiness. None.]

Dark and Stormy
2 oz. dark rum*
8 oz. ginger beer**
twist of lime

Serve over ice.

*Most traditional is Gosling's Black Rum.
**Ginger beer is nonalcoholic. You can substitute ginger ale if you wish.

photo via

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

What mamacita is ...



I'm well-stocked with material for the plane ride home.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Muscongus Bay harbor in moonlight

Boats in the haabah, Muscongus Bay, Round Pond, Maine

Monday's Outing

Went to the Farnsworth Art Museum yesterday. I hadn't planned to go in, having seen the Wyeths in the permanent collection already, but I saw that there was a big Alex Katz exhibition. It turns out that it was an exhibition of paintings that Alex Katz had donated to the museum -- works of other artists. But I was glad that I went anyway.

There was also a Louise Nevelson exhibition. I'm not a huge fan of hers, but it was an interesting experience. They had works from her very early days, when she was painting, all the way through her most prolific days of sculpture. I always like seeing an artist's progression, watching how they work out ideas for themselves.

Okay, that's all the pretentiousness I have for now.

P.S. Alex Katz spends his summers in Lincolnville, ME; Louise Nevelson is from Rockland and Hunt Slonem is from Kittery. Didn't know that.

Monday, August 11, 2008


nasturtiums, originally uploaded by houston mamacita.

These nasturtiums were humongous. Those leaves are the size of tortillas.

Flickr set

If you'd like to see the whole set of Maine pics, I think this link will work.

Cutest House Ever

To cleanse your eyes after the last post, I present the cutest little house you ever saw in your whole life.

Oh, Joy

Crocs jewelry, originally uploaded by houston mamacita.

Crocs jewelry, y'all.

And this lovely image is my 500th post.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Pictures of Main Street, Damariscotta ME

Cute little drugstore with a soda counter.

She sells bouquets from her garden on Main Street.

Morning glories in a planter outside a shop.

American flags are posted outside every door.

Friday, August 8, 2008

A Blow-by-Blow Account of What I Ate in Maine, for Those of You Who Were Wondering (Letitia)

If you are ever in Portland, ME, you must eat at Flatbread's Pizza. It is fantastic. They make a big deal out of their local and organic ingredients: milk from pampered cows; sausage from unionized pigs; vegetables that received tuition reimbursement and partner benefits. But never mind all that: it's just incredibly good. Nonnie and I shared a flatbread pizza with roasted tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, maple-fennel sausage, and carmelized onions. It's worth the trip, y'all.

Since I've been here, I've also had good ginger-spice cookies, brie baked in brioche, oatmeal, cranberry bread, Maine-style hot dogs (on the buns used for lobster rolls, with great local pickle relish), and Maine Moose Tracks ice cream (espresso ice cream with heath bar candy and ribbons of fudge).

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Drink of the Week: Seabreeze

Have I mentioned that I'm in Maine now?

1 1/2 oz Vodka
4 oz Cranberry juice
1 oz Grapefruit juice

Pour vodka over ice into highball glass. Add mixers. May be garnished with a wedge of lime.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Real Housewives of Atlanta

Oh, joy. Bravo has brought us another edition of Real Housewives. This time they’re in HOTlanta. This crew has more in common with the OC ladies than the NYC ladies. The series is set in a number of gated communities that we shall call “The Land that Taste Forgot.” SGM will be bringing you the episode recaps this fall, but first, let’s meet the cast:

(from left to right)

Lisa Wu Hartwell

OC Equivalent: Vicki

Hi! I’m Lisa Wu Hartwell! I’m a real estate agent/ entrepreneur/ jewelry designer/ children’s clothing designer/ model/ actress/ writer! I’m so busy with my seven careers, husband in the NFL, and three children that I pass off to a nanny! OMG I’m so popular and accomplished! Suck it, Kimora Lee!

DeShawn Snow

NYC equivalent: Francois

Hi! I want everyone to know that I’m sweet, even though I’m as dumb as a box of rocks. My husband makes a whole lot of money as an NBA player. I’m trying to hire a nanny, governess, chef, maids and whatever else. But first I have to hire a household manager to do all that stuff for me. I need to leave myself plenty of time to stare off into space vacantly. Oh, and I have a charity foundation and stuff. I want to instill self-esteem in teenage girls. Because … it’s important to have self-esteem. You have to esteem yourself even if you’re kind of a waste of human cells.

Kim Zolciak

OC equivalent: Jo's career interests and Lauri's work ethic

Don’t I look like Carrie Underwood? I’m gonna be a singer, too. This mean lady at the studio was all, “well, you need to work on your singing,” and I was all, “WHATEVER. What does my singin’ have to do with it?” ‘Cause I already took a whole bunch of pictures in slutty outfits for my album cover and stuff.

At home it’s tough because it’s all on me, as a single parent. I have to be the one to teach my daughters how to whore themselves out for luxury goods. Nobody else is around to teach them that. I have to do all that on top of spending six hours a day getting my hair done.

My boyfriend is “Big Papa.” He’s so ashamed of me that he won’t even let me use his name on the show. That’s probably also ‘cause he’s still married and stuff, but WHATEVER, ‘cause you know he really loves me. Look at all the stuff he buys me. We’re gonna get married one day, I just know it.

One thing I don’t understand, though, is why all these other women keep whispering “token bitch” behind my back. What does that mean anyway?

NeNe Leakes

NYC Equivalent: Maybe Jill, though you’ll tire of her much quicker.

GIRL, I learned how to talk from Ellen Cleghorne’s characters on Saturday Night Live. GIRL, I am easily the most down-to-earth of this crew, though that isn’t saying much. GIRL, I am the only one on this show with a goddamn bit of sense, but my voice will sound like fingernails on a chalkboard within two minutes. And GIRL, I don't believe in bras. GIRL.

Shereé Whitfield

NYC Equivalent: Ramoner all the way, topped with a dollop of LuAnn's haughtiness

My name is Sha-RAY Whitfield, and I am the craziest housewife of them all. I believe that men are men are intimidated by me because I am an “accomplished woman.” Getting divorced from an NBA player is a big accomplishment. I want you to know (within the first 60 seconds of meeting you) that I am looking for a lump sum settlement in this divorce.

It's also good for you to know that I live to pick fights with other women. Let me just tell you, I will cut a bitch.

photo courtesy of Reality TV World

Monday, August 4, 2008

What mamacita is ...

Reading: Lighting Up: How I Stopped Smoking, Drinking and Everything Else I Loved in Life Except Sex

I think I got the idea to read this from The Happiness Project; I will be forever grateful.

Port Arthur Little Theater presents: The Music Man
That's my friend Keith on the left as Professor Harold Hill. I knew a few other people in the cast.

Listening to
I know it's one of Papi's favorites; he sings the music around the house all the time.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Hook a Sister Up

I'm leaving for Maine on Wednesday (squee!). If you have any ideas about places I shouldn't miss, do pass them on. I am staying at a friend's house in the mid-coast area, but we will be headed to Portland at least one day. I've been here a few times before, but I'm always looking for new places to go in the area.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Twitter from Mars

Water confirmed on Mars -- FTW