I have this strange history with my birthday ... as do most summer birthdays (those of you out there are nodding right now, I feel it). July 29 is almost a perfect midway point between school's out for the summer and school's starting blues. As a little kid, I couldn't wait for my birthday and simultaneously dreaded it due to its inevitable pronouncement of school. Plus, the whole class didn't sing to me and I didn't get any special arrangements at school (like a gym skip day). Days of tears followed my birthday as I mourned the impending loss of my freedom. After about a week, I was able to accept my fate. Two weeks later, back to school shopping (I hated the shopping, loved the notepads/pens/organizers). Three weeks later, school. And a week after that, the crisis passed. I was back in school, the transition was over, and all survived. But, oh, the drama.
As I've aged (ever so slightly), my birthday and I have determined a truce. I don't have to go back to school and in turn, I use it as an excuse to travel. Florence for 26, Charleston for 28, San Diego for 30... you get the picture. And this year, with my husband launching a business and my starting a new job the day before my birthday, the birthday and I had to make another truce. How to celebrate without travel or tears.
So Russell and I planned a "home-staycation" (I'm hoping to coin the phrase). On Friday, I returned home from work to find this amazing set up. In his words, "I hope it looks good but I had no idea what I was doing". But I feel, and I think you'll agree that he did an awesome job!
Friday night, we hit up Ruth's Chris for a very special birthday celebration. We wanted to check it out anyhow because our September GNO is at Ruth's Chris! When we got there, Kendal had arranged for confetti and birthday cake (not to mention the AMAZING food)!!! It was such a wonderful evening!
On Saturday, we asked friends to join us for some bowling at Bowl & Barrel in City Centre. We bowled competitively and Russell won the night (but just because we ran out of time). We had some fantastic eats and drinks and I even ended up with a couple precious gifts! Sunday was spent resting from all our merriment, getting our chores done, and preparing for the week!
Overall, it was a wonderful birthday and I'm looking forward to spending the next one in ... Argentina? Paris? Vienna? Grand Canyon? Isle of the Palms? Thailand? Help me out by voting below!
It is HOT AS HOUSTON out there today ... so it's the perfect day to sit at home and recap our launch event from this last week! It's been a busy week for me. I trained for and started a new job at The Source for Women. And... we also had our first EVER Houston Housewives in the City Event ... and it went splendidly!!! We had over 50 women in attendance, 8 incredible vendors and the most amazing venue.
First, I must give a huge shout out to all of our amazing vendors, all of whom you can check out below! All vendors made a huge presence and impressed all those attending!
I also have to thank our outstanding venue, Aloft Hotel Houston in the Galleria for the wonderful service, free food + drink and amazing space. What a wonderful place to have a Launch Party!
And last but not least, we must thank our talented photographer: Rohan Betgeri of Mozaic Photography, who took excellent photos and really captured the evening!
If you missed this event, you missed a lot of fun, social and networking opportunities, not to mention the loads of Swag ... but don't worry because next month we have another event at Revolver Houston! I am SO excited for our second launch event! Check out the event page for more info! Below you can see our vendors from July. Please reach out to them directly for any of your health/beauty/wellness/home needs! This is what they love and why we love them!
Summertime. Every year I look forward to this time. It's no matter that I no longer get summers off. I'm not looking forward to being out of school or getting to "play". I can take time off or have fun any time of year now. Still, as June approaches, I feel the tinge of excitement as I anticipate summer. Never mind that it's hot, humid, and at times unbearable. Never mind that I have to get up earlier to run. Never mind that I get ready for work and it's all undone the second I step outside.
I've been thinking about it this year. What is it that I think will happen when summer rolls in? What is my excitement about? What am I anticipating? I suppose it must be that some residual feelings of "freedom" that still remain in my mind when thinking of this elusive season. In other words, my body remembers what my mind forgot. Summer means freedom!
Growing up, summer meant freedom from the great oppressor: school. It meant sunshine, friend-time, family-time, all-day-play-time. It meant slip-and-slides, fireflies, road trips, vacations, days spent entirely outdoors. The pool opened, storms raged, daylight lasted, and my birthday arrived promptly at the end of July. So much to look forward to yearly. The world transformed into a playground seemingly overnight and remained until August.
And, oh, the summer fruit! Watermelon, strawberries, peaches, plums, mangoes, and... lemons. Ok, now I know lemons are technically not a summer fruit. Still, nothing reminds me of summer like a lemon. Bright flavor and color like sunshine!
While at the store, I noticed multitudes of lemons beautiful and beckoning. So, I purchased this inexpensive Black + Decker Citrus JuicerI Then I returned to the store, grabbed thirty lemons, and headed home to discover all I could create with this multipurpose fruit. I made lemonade, lemon curd, lemon sauce, lemon-dill codd, and even the occasional lemon drop (yum). Here’s what I learned: I can make a lot of delicious, healthy and low carb recipes with this miracle fruit! Here are the best hits! Enjoy!
#3 Low Carb Lemon Muffins with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes about 12-15 medium sized muffins
Preheat Oven to 350 degrees (F)
Ingredients for muffins:
+ 1 cup superfine almond flour
+ 1 cup unflavored protein powder
+ 2 tsp baking powder
+ 1/4 tsp arrowroot powder
+ a bit of salt
+ 1/2 cup/1 stick of butter, soft
+ Stevia to taste (I use END Stevia from Bolivia—an all natural, very strong stevia. So it only
takes a teaspoon or so. If you’re using a stevia found in the grocery store you may need to
start with a 1/2 cup and taste as you go.)
+ 3 large eggs, room temp
+ 3 TBSPs lemon juice
+ 1 TBSP lemon zest
+ 1 tsp vanilla extract
+ 1 cup full fat sour cream
Ingredients for frosting :
+ 8 oz/1 container cream cheese, softened
+ 5 TBSPs lemon juice
+ Stevia to taste
+ 1 tsp vanilla extract (or 1/2 vanilla bean, if you’re feeling fancy)
Mixing the Muffins:
Combine all dry ingredients—almond flour, protein powder, baking powder and arrowroot
powder, salt—in a bowl. Set aside.
In a mixer combine butter, stevia, and eggs until incorporated.
Next add lemon juice and zest, vanilla, and sour cream.
Baking the Muffins:
Bake for 15 minutes and check the muffins using a toothpick. If not finished, bake an additional
5 minutes until done. When done remove from oven and let cool.
Frosting the Muffins:
While waiting for the muffins to cool, make the frosting.
Using a mixer or whisk, mix all ingredients together. Taste and adjust sweetener as needed. If
the frosting is too thick, add additional lemon juice until it’s reached desired consistency.
To frost fancy: Scrap into a prepared piping bag and frost as desired.
To frost lazy (as I did): Scrap out of bowl and smooth on top of muffins.
Source: adapted from Melissa Sevigny’s blog I Breath, I'm Hungry.
I may not be one for salons and spas but that’s just because I can’t afford the time or money. But no big deal! I’ve learned to DIY my mani/pedis, facials, and detox bathes. But let’s just tackle one at a time… my most favorite mask! Mostly because it's easy to make but also because it's useful for cleaning out pores... and scaring your family (with your alien-green face)!
My favorite standby DIY mask recipe is a clay mask only requiring two ingredients: Aztec Clay and Bragg's Organic ACV. Reason I love this mask in particular: I have sensitive skin. While I have an olive complexion that tans well, my skin is ridiculously uptight. I can’t use products with scent (yes, this is super annoying and expensive), severity (anything with benzoyl peroxide or even tea tree oil), or just whatever my skin dislikes (it picks and chooses depending...jerk).
This mask, however, reacts wonderfully with my skin. Why? Well I suspect it’s because it is (A) all natural (just clay and vinegar), (B) no scents added, and, (C) frankly, my skin just likes it! I use this mask on a weekly basis. Typically, on an evening when I just want to veg out, binge watch Netflix, and do some self-maintenance. It also scares my husband … so that’s just fun.
But enough about me… Here’s what the scientists say about the Aztec Clay and ACV mask:
Below is an act of solidarity, sister. I put on the mask and took pictures to demonstrate the stages. I'm not scared! And yes that is a headband from middle school. Enjoy!
Inquiring minds want to know! What is this Housewives thing all about?
The short answer is bringing together Houston's finest for networking and fun.
The longer answer can be found below in these FAQS.
WHAT IS HOUSTON HOUSEWIVES IN THE CITY?
First, let me just say: no, we’re not a TV show… but we do have a catchy name and a lot of fun!!! Housewives in the City is a network of female bloggers and event coordinators in over 45 cities in the country (and growing quickly). We seek to connect women in our communities by hosting Girls Night Out (#GNO) events. Additionally, we support local! Local businesses, local professionals, and local charities! We are all about forging relationships with the our communities!
Houston Housewives in the City (HHITC) is our fine, fantastic and fabulous Houston chapter! During our Girls Night Out (#GNO) events, you’ll be able to connect with other incredible women in your community. Additionally, we’ll ask local businesses, business owners, entrepreneurs, and other professionals to “set up shop”. You’ll be able to directly interact, network with, sample, and ask questions of all our vendors. My goal is to connect the best of our city to the best ladies in town!
DO I HAVE TO BE A HOUSEWIFE TO ATTEND THE EVENTS?
This is my most commonly asked question! And the answer is NO! It’s just our name! Houston Housewives seeks to connect women of all ages, professions, and backgrounds. Our events are for ALL women to get out, have fun, meet new people, and network with other women in their community.
HOW MUCH ARE THE EVENTS TO ATTEND?
Our events are FREE for guests! Come one, come all! You definitely do not want to miss out! We always have a great time, fabulous vendors, giveaways, eats, and drinks!
WHERE ARE THEY HELD?
Our event location varies by month! Follow us on Facebook, Insta, and Twitter at Houston Housewives in the City to keep up to date on all future events!
HOW DO I HOST A GIRLS NIGHT OUT AT MY RESTAURANT?
If you are a restaurant, bar, hotel or other similar venue and would like to be featured on our Blog, Facebook, Insta, and Twitter by being an amazing host of one of our events, email us at email@example.com!
HOW DO I BECOME A VENDOR?
If you want your products/business to be highlighted at our event and on our Blog, Facebook, Insta, and Twitter by becoming a vendor, sponsor or other participant email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
ANY MORE QUESTIONS?
Welcome to Houston Housewives in the City! I’m thrilled to be a part of this community of supportive women—sharing our lives and businesses with one another. I’m excited to meet each and every one of you at our monthly Girls Night Out (GNO) events!
A little bit you may want to know about me: First, I’m Emily. I grew up in Nebraska but I’ve also lived in Idaho, St. Louis, North Carolina, and Las Vegas until I followed my husband out here to Houston. I met my future husband, Russell, in Las Vegas. He moved to Houston while we were dating and I followed him out here when I finished my Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Houston is much bigger than any other city I’ve lived in and it took awhile to get used to the traffic, people, etc. Now that we’ve lived here for awhile, I’ve really come to appreciate the diversity and activity Houston offers. I’m quickly becoming a Houstonian!
After we were married, Russell and I moved to West U! We live less than a mile from the NRG stadium and about two miles from downtown. We love attending local festivals and events including, but not limited to, the Texas Renaissance Festival, the GatorFest, the Bayou City Art Festival, etc. We also love to travel and thus far have explored most of southeast and mid-Texas including Fredericksburg, San Antonio, Austin (my sis-in-law is the Austin Housewives In The City Hostess/Blogger), Texas Wine Country, Houston’s Chinatown, Galveston (in fact, we got married there), and Brazos Bend State Park.
Other than spending time with my husband and friends, I love running (I compete against myself), worshipping/studying with my church, cooking, reading, watching comedies, walking/exploring the neighborhood, discovering new restaurants, and studying (you can never know enough in my field). My job is my main hobby! I absolutely love meeting with people to help them see their potential to heal and grow. I believe people thrive in an environment of honesty, support, and encouragement. My clients are brave, amazing people—they are my personal heroes! I specialize in adults and children who struggle with anxiety, depression, OCD, OCPD, trauma, substance abuse, addiction, and codependency.
I love traveling and have been to Canada, Mexico, Ecuador, Italy, Spain, France, Germany and Great Britain. And I intend to go to Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Columbia, Austria, Turkey, Budapest, Czechoslovakia, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Vietnam, South Korea, etc., etc., and you get the picture. (Russell says I want to go everywhere… and he’s right!) I love Pinteresting, laying out by the pool (gettin’ that vitamin D!), and learning/reading all I can about mental health.
More than anything, I care for my relationships with family and friends. I love meeting new people and cannot wait to meet and make new friends here in Houston!
Hello Houston! I'm Emily, your hostess and guide to Houston Housewives in the City (HHITC)! I'm a counselor, wife, runner, foodie, unofficial "chef", etc. etc. My husband, Russell, and I have lived all over the country and landed here in Houston. Together we love exploring the city, attending local events, and enjoying all the great food Houston has to offer. I look forward to seeing you at one of our upcoming monthly events!