figured for the public knowledge's sake I figured I'd post what I've found.
I took my measurements for my siding needs, and went and purchased stucco based upon that, which was about 70 bags. Home depot rents a big pickup truck for $20/hr, so I rented that and did 2 runs with 35 bags each. I got 'amerimix' brand stucco. Now, I was planning to do 2 coats (since I'm applying directly to block, if I were applying to wood I'd be using lathe/paper backing first, then 3 layer application. But for my application I was going to do 2 coats (first at about 3/8", second at maybe 1/4") with the same stucco.
The problem I found was with coloring. I wanted to do a tan color, and because I wanted greater color endurance, I decided I'd go with the color powder additives (sakrete makes these, available at home depot as well. It's like $5/box, they come in a few colors). The problem I ran into was that my amerimix stucco was standard color - gray. So, of course, gray + tan powder won't make a light tan (I actually made a bunch of test batches, you can barely tell when there's tan added to gray. *but*, tan added to a white masonry powder, that works real well
So, with some extra white mortar I had laying around (from recently tiling a couple bedrooms in this house), I mixed in some of the colored powder. Even at half of the recommended powder level, the tan was very dramatic.
Lesson learned here is that I'm gonna now have to go back to home depot and buy another ~20 bags of WHITE stucco mix that will take this color pigment powder. The white stucco is more expensive, but the good part is that I plan on using the gray amerimix stucco as my thick scratch coat, and then for my thinner finish coat I'll use the white stucco with powder in it.
I like the idea of powder color added in not only for durability, as it won't flake off, but also because I believe it will be cheaper than painting subsequently, it will allow a finished exterior quicker (i'd have to wait for curing before painting the stucco if i were doing it that way), etc
The drawback to not using a paint for the stucco, is that now I'll have to color match paint to the stucco for accent use (I want to paint the cables, pipes, etc on the side of the house to match, but since the stucco's colored with pigment, I'll need to try and match up an exterior paint for use on these details).
I'm planning to begin this week, real soon (basically as soon as I get a power washer to strip the concrete blocks a bit before application). I will post back with pics once it's up and going, but if not, I'll def post pics once it's finished.