May 19, 2006

 locopops' one year anniversary

Mark your calendars and save the date 'cuz we're havin' a party.

That's right - we wouldn't still be here if it weren't for ya'll, so we'd like to say thank you for a great 1st year. Here's the scoop:

Date: Memorial Day, May 29th
Time: 5:30pm - 8:30pm
Place: Locopops, 2600 Hillsborough Rd, Durham, NC 27705
(well, in the parking lot, really, which sounds like high school but is better than
behind the gym! Please note: the parking lot will be closed to traffic, so walk
if you can - more info on parking next week)

Good Stuff:

* free food & drinks (snacks with a bit of a Mexican flair, iced tea and lemonade - sorry, no kegger)

* pops for sale with all proceeds benefiting Habitat for Humanity of Durham.

* music by The Carolina Chocolate Drops (music starts at 6:00pm)

The Carolina Chocolate Drops are a group of young African-American stringband musicians that have come to together to play the rich tradition of fiddle and banjo music in Carolinas’ piedmont. Although we have diverse musical backgrounds, we draw our musical heritage from the foothills of the North and South Carolina. We have been under the tutelage of Joe Thompson, said to be the last black traditional string band player, of Mebane, NC and we strive to carry on the long standing traditional music of the black and white communities. Joe’s musical heritage runs as deeply and fluidly as the many rivers and streams that traverse our landscape. We are proud to carry on the tradition of black musicians like Odell and Nate Thompson, Dink Roberts, John Snipes, Libba Cotten, Emp White, and countless others who have passed beyond memory and recognition.

Posted by xta at 2:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

May 10, 2006


Locopops (at 2600 Hillsborough Road) is now selling "pupsicles" for dogs -- frozen broth on a rawhide stick, and ALL of the proceeds go to Animal Protection Society which manages the Durham County Animal Shelter.

Posted by xta at 6:23 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

May 8, 2006

 oh my gosh my days are getting longer


the island got updated with a lawn chair and a house this weekend in honor of the historic home tour that was going on in old north durham.

again, apologies for the lack of substantive blogging. i'm just not feeling all that inspired lately, i guess. what i HAVE been is busy... i've been pulling some double-shifts on-air to help out a co-worker. i've also been busy shoe-shopping (check out this discount site i just discovered!), trying to find shoes to match a dress i'll be wearing to a wedding in july. i've also been knitting a gift for this wedding. and doing yard work... which, surprisingly enough, i'm enjoying. i've spent so much time loathing yard work that it's rather stunning to find myself enjoying it.

the trick is to do only as much as is interesting. in other words, i'm not knocking myself out to get any one project done. i'll go piddle around a bit, maybe lay a bag of mulch or two, then quit... and not feel guilty about it. because these short spurts are rather easy and pleasant, i find myself enjoying the sunshine and the birds chirping in the trees, and am actually seeing more progress than before, when i dreaded it all. back then, i would go out of my way to find reasons to not do yard work and consequently not get much done.

so, this weekend i uncovered even more brick border (as i did last year), and before that i spread newspaper and mulch over some really overgrown beds in the back yard. i really want to get to work on the landscaping in the front of the house, too, but i'm so ignorant about plants that i have no idea what to put in the ground. i want something that will soften the look of the house, but i don't really want shrubs. i'm going to have to start tivoing some gardening shows for ideas, i guess. (here's what the front of the house has looked like over the past year or so, if you have any suggestions. note that currently the landscaping is most like the bottom photo... cut-back, bare and dead. it's lovely.)

i also foolishly told the locopops lady that i would build her a website, and suddenly i'm feeling less than excited about that. i finally have the ambition to work in the yard and on the house, and the last thing i want to do is sit indoors and build a website. b'oh.

Posted by xta at 3:32 PM | Comments (10) | TrackBack

January 31, 2006

 locopops reopens wednesday

Locopops Gourmet Frozen Pops
Reopens Wednesday, 2/1/06!

Yes, we're back from vacation and reopening with flair! We've got a great menu with lots of favorites and some new twists. See below for the nitty-gritty (* indicates a new flavor).

Paletas de Agua (water-based):
Momo (a french mojito with lime, mint and Chambord)*
Plum Black Currant*
Spicy Apple Hazelnut (with black and white peppercorns)*
Guava Mint
Very Berry
Pomegranate Tangerine
Mango with Chile

Paletas de Crema (cream-based):
White Chocolate Almond Kirsch*
Clementine Thyme Mint*
Lemon Curd*
Thai Rice Pudding (with vanilla, cinnamon, coconut milk & lemongrass)*
Chocolate Brownie
Strawberries & Cream
Mexican Chocolate
Cookies & Cream
Nana & Nilla
Chocolate Malted Milkball Crunch

Also, if anyone knows a school art teacher interested in a place to display students' work, let us know. Displaying kids' art at the shop is the brain child of Nancy Hamilton, who brought the Japanese scrolls of her students at Club Blvd Magnet School to Locopops. The show was quite a hit with lots of customer comments, and we'd like to make rotating kids' art a tradition, if possible.

Hope to see you soon!

Locopops Gourmet Frozen Pops
2600 Hillsborough Rd
Durham, NC 27705
(919) 286-3500

Posted by xta at 11:30 AM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

November 6, 2005

 walking backwards looking forward to getting done

my toilet is acting up. it flushes, but not with its usual gusto. we've plunged until our arms are limp, but it doesn't seem to be getting any better. i fear i'm going to have to call in a plumber. ray thinks i should just buy a plumber's snake and try to fix it myself, but the last time i did that for a sink clog i achieved absolutely no results (and then sneakily returned the snake for a refund). i hate paying for stuff like this.

but i rather enjoy paying for loco-pops. it's been so long since i've bought a popsicle... i feel ashamed and neglectful. they've got a couple of new flavors, the most memorable of which is "apple spice". she's using that asian five-spice blend (which she used with great aplomb in the "asian plum" several months back) with the pureed apple. it's a nice fall flavor. by the way, they've reduced their hours for the season -- they're still open 12-8, but now only wednesday through sunday.

speaking of fall, i did some yard work saturday morning. i've been meaning to get a couple of the flower beds in shape, but i hate yard work so much that i've really been dragging my feet. on saturday morning, i didn't even touch the beds. i just focused on trimming back some of the overgrown shrubs at the back of the yard near the beds.

and you know why i stopped short? because of one single plant that makes me loathe yard work --detest it-- more than mere words can express. this evil thing is a weedy vine, and as far as i can tell the only reason it exists is to grow thorns. it's one long, continuous meandering stalk of thorns. and it tore my arm all to hell.

with roses, you know, we put up with the thorns because we get a pretty flower in return. but this fucker of a vine just grows thorns and that's all it does. just to piss me off. there's no other reason for it to exist. grr.

so after a mere hour of yard work i was tired and grumpy and decided, upon pinky's suggestion, to go find some no pudge brownie mix. pinky, i am forever indebted to you for that... them's some rockin' brownies.

and then, even though i told myself i wouldn't buy any more clothes until i drop another size, the yard work got me so down that i felt i deserved some retail therapy. i bought a new lightweight jacket (the snazzy denim one i bought last year is ridiculously big now) and some workout clothes from the fashion bug (i do so hate the name of that store); two tops from look out, then mary suckered me into more shopping with the lure of a coupon from new york and co., where i bought a pair of pants.

i now own 5 pairs of pants in my new size. i don't want to buy any more until i'm a size 10. what are the chances i can hold out that long? i'm taking bets.

i've started knitting again. my current project marks several firsts for me. i'm knitting with two yarns simultaneously, and i'm using an entirely new stitch. this was going to be a fancy little poncho for roxi, but i think it is probably too delicate for her at this age. i'm not sure what it's going to be now. maybe the beginnings of a new pair of pants. ;-)

Posted by xta at 10:01 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

September 7, 2005

 loco-pop injury

i hurt my neck the other day. a part-time massage therapist (who also works part-time at the station) felt me up and said that i'd pulled my levator scapula. that sounds so fancy, doesn't it?

the injury seems to have occured after i drove myself to loco-pops on sunday. my friends suzie and joel were in a car following me, and after i parked i was so excited to have them taste the gourmet popsicles that i leapt out of my car and did a little jig right there in the loco-pops parking lot. an hour or so after that my neck started to hurt.

i dealt with it (by bitching loudly) for a couple of days, but i finally broke down and got a prescription for skelaxin. i'm feeling a bit better now.

i find myself wanting more popsicles, but i'm scared to go get them; i never knew that place was so dangerous.

Posted by xta at 11:27 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

August 19, 2005

 hello. i'm back.

whew. what an exhausting couple of days. my webhost upgraded its operating system and inadvertently threw my movable type database into a tizzy.

aside from the headache of trying to figure out how to fix it, the inability to blog resulted in an overwhelming sense of relief.. i didn't have to come up with anything creative to write about. it was a mini-vacation of sorts. (one which was filled with research and computing, but a vacation nonetheless.)

well, as it happens, i still don't have anything creative to blog about, so i'll just talk about the most recently-discovered loco-pop flavors:

sweet corn

yes, sweet corn.

mary called it "creamed corn on a stick". it's a little chunky and a little creamy. and it was good, if a little disorienting. secret: there's a little bourbon in it.

summer said while she was apprenticing in mexico she learned how to make corn paletas with chili and lime. that sounds divine... let's hope that one makes it to the menu board soon!

raspberry white chocolate

man, those white chocolate flavors knock my socks off. this was very rich and very, very yummy.

chocolate with rosemary

unfortunately our stomachs got full before we could try this one. but you should try it, and you should tell me about it.

asian plum

this was the second time i've had this one. it is SO GOOD. plum, dry sherry, and chinese five-spice. it's divine. total yum.

Posted by xta at 11:54 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

July 30, 2005

 thanks, alicia...

i had managed to put loco-pops out of my head until someone in the comments of the vasectomy post suggested i treat ray to popsicles as he recovers.

thanks a lot. i was doing so well...

...but what was i to do? ray had heard that there was a chocolate orange flavor (one of his favorite combinations) so i had to go get one for him. or maybe two for him. no, three. and three for me. no, two for me and four for him.

it was a long decision-making process.

anyway, they had several new flavors which i will now review for you:

1) white chocolate peanut butter

holy mother of god, this is the best fucking popsicle on earth! it tastes like cold fudge. stupefyingly rich. i had to force myself stop myself after 3 bites and let ray finish it... i could feel myself gaining weight just being near it. o so decadent. i shall dream of this loco pop every night until i die.

2) pineapple basil

this so SO much better than the pineapple mint! it's not sugar-free, though, as the pineapple mint was, which is sad. but summer (the popsicle maker) told me that because her pineapple is so naturally sweet, the pineapple-flavored popsicles actually have very little added sugar. so i don't feel too bad for having devoured a large one.

man, that was good. i can still taste the basil on the back of my tongue... it's the perfect complement to the fruit. whoda thunk? not me. summer is a genius.

(oh, by the way, summer also said that the very berry is relatively low in sugar, too. she also said she was going to try to make a sugar-free hibiscus for me! woo!!)

3) ginger cream

whoa. this tastes like an ultra-creamy cream soda. or something. if i didn't know what this flavor was, i don't think i would guess that it was ginger. but it's really, really good.

Posted by xta at 10:39 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

July 22, 2005

 melty popsicle

so, because of the d-word (almost 10 pounds lost, btw), i've cut way back on my loco-pop intake.

i still eat them, don't get me wrong, but i only go about once a week now and generally choose from the sugar-free flavors (which currently are pineapple mint and something like strawberry-orange-nectarine).

if i go with friends i'll always taste their sugary flavors (chocolate orange... mmmm) and not feel guilty about sampling. i'll even order a full-blown "paleta del agua" if it's fruit-based. i'm not depriving myself, believe me. i've simply cut way, way back.

but this morning as i was making breakfast i thought, "hey! i could use my milk/protein serving and my fruit serving to make a faux popsicle!" so i did.

one of loco-pops' early flavors was blueberry lemon cream. so for breakfast i mixed up a cup of milk, 3/4 cup of blueberries, and a shot of lemon juice with some ice in the blender. yum!!

one of my favorite loco-pops is cantaloupe ginger. i think i could try that too (omitting the milk, of course... blecch).

my morning melted popsicle made me ridiculously happy.

Posted by xta at 11:15 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

July 14, 2005

 me too

here's what i feel like:

i feel like i have a secret, and this secret is overriding every other thought in my brain.

it's not really a secret, though. i tell people about it all the time -- in person. it's just that i haven't told the internet about it yet, and so it still feels like a bit of a secret in some way.

keeping this out of blogland is creating a big backlog in my head, though. like, i can't figure out a way to blog about anything else until i blog about this. (yesterday's post was simply a manifestation of the secret, as a matter of fact.)

and really, the secret itself is no big deal. truly.

so the secret is this: i'm on a diet.

see? no big whoop. it's just that i was reluctant to post anything about it here because it seems like it would be weird for me to write about dieting. i don't know why. and really... it's not that interesting, is it? see... you're bored already.

anyway, i really want to move on and start thinking about the other things piling up in my noggin, so i'll go ahead and talk a little about the diet and be done with it. if you catch me mentioning this again, though, please slap me on the hand.

i started this diet on monday. (i'm not going to tell you what diet it is --sorry-- because someone always seems to have something bad to say about whatever diet you choose) and it's going well. i'm very happy about it so far. it's easy, and i'm making progress. 4.5 pounds in 3 days, as a matter of fact. yippee for me!

the truth of the matter is, i can't stop counting calories. i've replaced my loco pop addiction with a calorie-counting addiction. (it could be worse, i suppose.) in following this new diet plan to a "t", i seem to be keeping my intake to 1200 calories or less with little effort. and the pounds roll off.


ok, that's enough on the subject. let's hope i can now start thinking about something else.

Posted by xta at 5:47 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

July 13, 2005

 uncompensated testimonial

us_soda_sfcreams_th.jpgoh my god. i am in love.

while on a healthy-shopping kick in target the other day, i put lettuce and cucumbers in my basket then i veered into the soda aisle to look for interesting diet drinks.

behold! the most amazing zero-calorie soda on earth! jones sugar-free cream soda!

actually, this is almost too sweet for my taste, but it has none of that cruddy aftertaste that regular diet soda has. i can't wait to try their other sugar-free flavors: watermelon, tangerine, twisted lime, and of course the standard root beer, among others. (the sugar-free and "mid-calorie" flavors seem to encompass almost half of their total output.)

the more i read about this "jones soda" company, the more i love them. they take photo submissions from their customers, choose their favorites and plaster them on their bottles. they also donate a portion of the revenue from their sugar-free sodas to the american diabetes association.

jones sodas started out as a kind of renegade company, it seems... putting their own coolers in skate and surf shops. now they're carried in places like target, kroger, barnes & noble, and world market.

a friend even told me today (after i made her taste my cream soda) that beyonce (or someone like that... i get all of those scantily-clad singers confused) demands jones sodas in her performance contracts. and i see from googling "jones soda" that this kooky company put out several thanksgiving-flavored (sugar-free) sodas last year: green bean casserole, mashed potato, turkey & gravy. soda. all of it soda.

am i being too weird about this? i think i love this company. i'm probably being suckered in some huge, obvious way... but i think the jones soda founder is canadian, so it's all good, right?

besides, this will help curb my loco pop addiction for the time being.

Posted by xta at 3:07 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

July 7, 2005

 things i'm looking forward to:

  • the arrival of two new pairs of shoes (both in black) from a newly-discovered source. woot!

  • seeing the tusselwuppers again this evening.

  • popsicles

  • kooky hip-hop modern dance (tonight - saturday @ ADF)

  • wendy's reading at the regulator (friday night at 7pm)

  • mykull's party afterward

  • a wedding in duke gardens saturday evening

  • more popsicles (did i mention that the owners know me by name now?)

  • drinking at the federal with the ventrils, just before they leave town forever (boo!)

  • the wusses and haulin' oates at king's, saturday night (long live the little river band!!)

  • sleeping for a very long time

    Posted by xta at 12:43 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack
  • June 27, 2005

     i'm busy

    friday night:
    after a brief (and unfruitful) stop at the durham library's book sale, i partook (is that a word?) of several glasses of fowler's $2.50 wine. (every friday they open a a few bottles and sell individual glasses for $2.50. rockin'!) unfortunately, i am amassing some evidence that wine now gives me migraines. i don't know when my body started rejecting the grape, but it SUCKS!

    we completed season 5 of the sopranos on DVD, which was incredibly cathartic. then, in the afternoon, i got a wild hair to do some yard work. i decided to just run outside and start pulling weeds without changing clothes or anything. (i knew that if i thought too much about it i would talk myself out of yard work altogether.) i started to get the side bed under control, then realized i was working near a patch of poison ivy and was wearing flip-flops. i went back inside.

    that evening charo & i saw les primitifs du futur at the museum and had a great time. there were a couple of adorable children dancing right in front of the stage whose adorableness distracted everyone from the music for a while, but no harm done... the musicians also enjoyed them.

    i thought i was being efficient in hopping right out of bed and going straight to the raleigh farmer's market, but when i pulled into the parking lot i realized i was too early! i couldn't believe it. it was only 9:30, and less than half the vendors were open. still, i managed to get some corn on the cob (from little old mr. farmer, who offers 4 ears for free if you promise to do a good deed for a neighbor) and a bunch of liriope.

    when i got home it was still cool enough to plant the liriope and finally complete the brick-uncovering project on the back bed. that bed is really pretty now. but i still hate yard work.

    ray and i saw the wild parrots of telegraph hill sunday afternoon, and i surprised myself by crying my eyes out. which naturally means i loved the film.

    then we had a nice last-minute invitation to have cocktails on a screened porch, which we did. we all sang songs while kurt played his ukelele (i wish people gathered to sing more often; it's heartwarming) and i got sloshed on cosmopolitans. (which were made from this surprisingly delicious mix.) apparently liquor doesn't give me migraines like wine does. i didn't even have a hangover this morning.

    finally, and i'm a little embarrassed to admit this, i've had loco-pops on 3 of the last 4 days. i have a serious problem. i'm afraid i'm going to have to check myself into some sort of rehab clinic soon. anyway, among the new flavors: rice pudding (which is AMAZING), mexican chocolate (ditto), mojito, peach, and cinnamon-watermelon (sugar-free).

    the week upcoming:
    tonight i'm going to an ADF performance.
    tomorrow i'll finally see "music from the inside out".
    then, on wednesday, my brother and his family (roxi & lulu) are coming to visit!!

    somehow, between now and wednesday (juggling a pretty full schedule) i need to get ready for their visit by removing mold from the bathtub grout as well as a year's-worth of grime from the carpeting in the den. (i know lulu would tell me to chill and not bother, but i want the house to be in tip-top shape for the most beautiful little girl on earth.)

    so for the next week or so expect sporadic blogging at best. if anything, it'll probably just be photos of the most beautiful family on earth.

    Posted by xta at 2:20 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

    June 22, 2005

     gooing, gooing, gone

    thanks to charo for this. we both have popsicles on the brain lately.

    Largest ice pop has its moment

    Like Icarus flying too close to the sun, a giant Snapple kiwi-strawberry pop couldn't take the heat.

    NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - The world's largest ice pop had a brief moment in the sun Tuesday.

    But the dream of beverage company Snapple and its partners quickly melted away when the enormous frozen pop turned into slush and spilled onto the streets of New York City.

    Snapple was trying to beat the 10-ton mark for world's largest ice pop, set in 1997 in the Netherlands, said Lauren Radcliffe, a spokeswoman for the company.

    The area was closed off because the substance was sticky, Radcliffe said, and the Fire Department had to hose down the street after the incident.

    The kiwi-strawberry bar was about 35,000 pounds, well above the roughly 20,000 pounds of the existing record-holder, Radcliffe said.

    But a representative of Guinness World Records said the sculpture needed to be free-standing in order to qualify. " We couldn't deem it worthy, as it were," said Stuart Claxton, the Guinness representative.

    "Maybe we should have done it on New Year's Eve," Radcliffe said.

    and as luck would have it, CNN has video of the disaster.

    Posted by xta at 4:46 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

    June 17, 2005

     popsicle of love


    between four of us, we sampled a huge array of the popsicles tonight. we're loco for loco-pops!

    1) i tried the banana pecan and thought it was pretty good. the creamy popsicles are harder to bite into than the, uh, watery ones.

    actually, here's a photo of the menu:


    it's divided into "paletas de crema" and "paletas de agua".

    2) i also tried the hibiscus, which friggin' blew me away. the flavor was so incredibly intense i think i yelped when i first tasted it. it was very much like cranberry, and very very very good.

    3) david had the tamarind which was promised to taste like lemon iced tea. i think it was a little more subtle than that.

    4) david also had the sugar-free pineapple mint, which may have been my favorite of the evening. it was the perfect balance of the two flavors. david and i agreed that all it needed was a shot of vodka and it would be perfect.

    5) elizabeth had the chocolate with chiles and felt the burn.

    6) she also had the ginger cantaloupe, which come to think of it were the two i had the night before. copy cat!

    7) charo started off with the pomegranate tangerine,

    8) moved on to the creamy lime,

    9) then finished with the chocolate with chiles.

    she spied a few people using a punch-card "frequent flier" thing, and with three popsicles under her belt in one night i think she should have investigated that program further.

    the best news of the evening is that the owner is going to expand her hours of operation! currently they close at 7pm, which is ridiculously early, especially for the summertime. so she's looking for a little cheap staffing to help keep the place open later into the evening.

    i swear these things are addictive. maybe i'll stop back in this weekend and try some of the more interesting-looking flavors like cucumber chile or mango chile.

    Posted by xta at 10:50 PM | Comments (16) | TrackBack

    June 16, 2005

     something sweet and sticky running down my hand

    "Woman's frozen fruit bars give taste of Mexico"

    i tasted my first loco-pops tonight:

    1) chocolate with three chiles:
    holy crap! very smooth chocolate, but overall just a bit too spicy for me. my mouth burned after each bite. definitely a wicked-cool sensation, though... icy chocolate plus caynenne, ancho & chipotle.

    2) watermelon with choclate chips:
    i wasn't crazy about this one. plain watermelon would have been good. the chocolate chips confused me.

    3) ginger cantaloupe:
    i died and went to heaven. bright and summery, and the ginger taste was very mild... it just added a little kick to the fruit.

    i am going back tomorrow for more!!!!! charo and i discussed bringing a cooler and LOADING UP! at only a buck apiece, why the heck not??!

    Posted by xta at 10:52 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack