Friday, January 28, 2011

cold weather makes me want to cook.

I don't know about you but cold weather makes me hungry. I want to put on the calories like a thick warm sweater. Hot yummy soups, bread-like substances, warm veggies with a new spice. Winter was made for us to put on a few extra pounds so we could hibernate, right?

So then comes the part about what to cook.
Looking for something new and interesting?
 Try this food journal out.

The photography gets you in the mood. 

Its not pretentious, not complicated... even taught me an easy way to poach an egg.

Even has gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian sections. 

The woman who creates this blog is cute as a button too.

Everybody Likes Sandwiches = Good Food, Good Times.
Lemme know what you think.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Karen Elson

beautiful voice. 
cool songs.
mother of two.
super model.
great sense of style.

I'm lovin' some Karen Elson on these cold Winter days.


Oh yea, her husband is pretty cool too.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Hope Farmer's Market

Good People, I love the whole Farmer's Market movement. I am so down with eating organic food and supporting local farmers. I like knowing the people who grow my food that I feed my children. The list of reasons why to eat organic, locally grown food is so long that I won't go there today.

I just have one teeny-weeny complaint about Farmer's Markets. I have a lot of stuff to do on Saturday mornings. I can't always make it from 8am - 1pm on a Saturday to do my grocery shopping. I've got garage sales to visit, kiddos' social calenders to coordinate and simple house-cleaning duties to complete.

And that's why I'm really digging the Hope Farmer's Market in East Austin. I like the Sunday from 11am - 3pm approach. It fits my groove just a little better.

Might I recommend The Gardener's Feast Chiapaneco tamale. Super tasty organic masa envelopes are stuffed with a yummy combination of chicken, spicy mole, raisins, and prunes. (Sorry there's no image, but the evidence was down the hatch before I could snap a picture.)

And of course, the veggies from Johnson's Backyard Garden are always awesome. 

I dig purple cauliflower.
  Good, local cheese. Ain't that something.

How about incredibly chic feather hair pieces for you and yours?

$4 a strand!
So...if you find yourself looking to buy some fresh turnips and taste lots of yummy food samples on a Sunday after 11am, Hope Farmer's Market is the place for you.

The vendors are ever-changing and always good.

PS: A live DJ booth providing cool jams and free margaritas this past weekend was a nice touch too.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Callahan's General Store.

If I have to explain why Texas is cool as sh*t, then this blog posting isn't for you.

I love New York and have lived there twice. I love Los Angeles and wanna spend more time there. I love DC and its rich history, cosmopolitan atmosphere and urban street culture.  I love San Francisco and its amazing art, food, wine, and technology scene.

But nothing, I'll tell you NOTHING, has that certain earthy, down-home, funky flavor of Texas - like Texas. You can walk out of your house... wearing a jog bra, a wife-beater, chanclas with socks and hop into your minivan listening to some Girl in a Coma full blast while on your way to pick up some chicken feed, and no one will say a word. Trust me.

But, say for instance, you aren't from Texas and happen to be in Austin? Well, you can drive on down to Callahan's General Store and earn your Texas badge of honor and wear it proudly, on the inside.

 Right off 183 and 71.

 Cutest little buggers. 
Come in on Thursday to get the best selection.

 My dream fridge.

Two haystacks fit in the back of a Toyota Matrix.

So next time you need to go to Home Depot, do yourself a favor and swing by Callahan's instead. 

That's right you're not from Texas
But Texas wants you anyway. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

wooden blocks.

I don't need more stuff.

I do, however, want more experience. I want to taste fine food, travel to different countries and try lots new experiential stuff. And, this is what I want for my girls.

Now here comes the tricky part. I love to give presents and I love to make stuff. I guess I've decided to combine these efforts by making gifts for people I love and enjoying the process of doing so with the family.

We decided to make chalkboard blocks for our dear friends' kiddos. 
Here's a pic of where we stole the idea. 

(Whoever originally came up with the painted block idea, you are rad.)

So you aren't completely stumped out of your gourd on how we made these, 
here's some pics of our recent journey.
Grammy nominated hands using a table saw = super scary.

 Chalkboard paint, I can't quit you.

 Blocks for Baby of the Black Moon.

Big blocks for Nadi and Vivi. 

We had blast making these little guys. 
Fingers crossed they enjoy playing with them as much as we did making them.

Cheers to wood, paint and good old-fashioned family time.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Raiders of the Lost Decor.

Friends, I am the Event Producer of the Texas Film Hall of Fame. Its certainly one of the coolest events in town and I am honored to work with the good folks at Austin Film Society for my fourth year. But more on that subject later...

With an event this large, the key to success is collaborating with fabulously creative minds.  Recently, the decor team (the awesome gals at Prototype Vintage Design) and I had the opportunity to stop by Strong Productions and take a tour of their decor warehouse.

Wow, wow and more wow, you know that last scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark? The one where they store the ark's crate in that massive warehouse and realize there's a ton of mysteries of the world we'll never know about. Well, that's what Strong Events was kinda like. Amazing decor adventures stacked to the high heavens.

 Need one of these guys?

 By the way, those lions are huge.

 Leaning Tower of Pisa ended up here.

 You need this cool head for your Mardi Gras soiree.

 Bolts and bolts of fabric and drapery.

The elves working away. Notice that giant Roman statue in the back.

If you ever have a need for some very cool decor options, you must schedule an appointment at Strong Productions. You will not be disappointed. Ask for Kyle... and tell'um Celeste sent ya. Or better yet, hire me for your next event, and I'll go for you.

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Storyteller.

I adore stories. When I was a little girl, my dad would read fabulous stories to me every night. Somehow I think these stories helped to develop my passion for all things creative.

We read stories to our kids just about every night, but every now and then you gotta pop in a show on TV to buy yourself some time.  These days, I'm kinda disappointed for my girls and what's left of storytelling, particularly in kids' film and TV. Movies for youngsters are so loud, fast and annoying. It's no wonder why so many kiddos have attention deficit disorder. We, as a society, are absolutely blaring in our taste.

However, I have stumbled upon a wonderful series of the past called "The Storyteller".  It was an American/British co-production which originally aired in 1988 and was created by the fabulous Jim Henson and developed by Anthony Minghella.

You gotta check it out. 
The images are wild and the storytelling is superb. 
Perfect for the kid in all of us.

It doesn't get much better than curling up on the sofa with your kid and enjoy explaining an old European folktale or Greek mythology. And it certainly beats the heck out of being the victim of a loud, green space alien guinea pig that plays an electric guitar. 

PS: Some may be a little scary or advanced for the average 5 year old, but most episodes certainly peak their interest. (But heck, I heard all kinds of Brothers Grimm fairy tales when I was little and it was fun to be scared!)

Friday, January 14, 2011

graham williams

Just utter the name "graham williams" to any music nerd in this town, and they know who he is. The guy who booked Emo's for 10 years. You know, the dude who founded FUNFUNFUN FEST and Transmission Entertainment. The dude who came up with the whole concept of FREE WEEK on the Red River music turf. The most under-stated, level-headed, non-animal eating, non-drug doing and alcohol-free dude out there in the music world.

To me, he'll always be my little brother. The one who couldn't stand the smell of bacon in the morning. The one who was reading noam chomsky at a very, very young age. The one who could shimmy up any pole on the playground. The one who totally got on my nerves when I was a teenager. The one I bailed out when he got caught stealing at Tower Records. The one who fell madly, truly, deeply in love with his soul-mate at 21 years old and had the balls to marry her six months later.

That's the one.
(pic taken in Guatemala)

(pic taken in Virginia)

(pic taken in Texas)

(pic taken on top of the world.)

Well, thanks for being my brother. 
I couldn't have picked a better one to look up too, literally and figuratively!

happy birthday (weekend), little brother! You are so loved.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

can I live here?

don't ask me how many times I've seen Lord of the Rings.
but this ain't no ordinary Shire.

 living room.

oh my gosh. 
Real people built and live in this real house. 
I love them.
learn more about this incredible project.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I am a spice girl.

I love the allure of spice.

Faraway lands growing exotic flavors. Little tiny jars filled with yummy tastes and smells. Beautiful earth-colored dust that adds magic to cakes, coffees and cookies.  The seeds of ancient plants in brown paper packets...

Spice is the mystical dust that makes mere cooking become alchemy.  And once you are hooked on the art of cooking, you have to figure out where to get the ingredients to cast your spell.  Well rest assured, we can all become attempt to become a magician in the kitchen with Austin's new Savory Spice Shop.

I've been wondering to get Grains of Paradise.
Thank goodness I've finally found them.

 These little pink peppercorns are kinda sweet and super savory.
Gotta try them whole.

 Neil Young must have stopped here before he wrote Cinnamon Girl because this stuff is the bomb.

Hope to see ya on the exotic aisle.