Monday, April 04, 2011

Cleaning Up After My Birthday

The beautiful cherry tree I can see outside my window every day

My birthday was on Saturday, and I celebrated it all week long. I went to movies, dinners, parties, and then a big celebration on Saturday night. I had a wonderful time, but this meant I mostly neglected my housekeeping duties. My bedroom is so messy I can hardly stand it, and there's lots of little things to catch back up with!


  • Pay any remaining beginning-of-month bills, rent/mortgage, etc.

  • Need to make any dentist, doctor, veterinarian or salon appointments for your family this month?

  • Plan menus for the week and create your grocery shopping list.

  • Look over your calendar for the next two weeks, checking for upcoming birthdays. Plan gifts, write and address cards.

  • Plan to plant some flowers this year? Pick up some flower seeds at the grocery store if you haven't yet already.

  • Does your coffeemaker get used a lot? Is it time to run a cycle of white vinegar through it, then another cycle of hot water, to clean it out a bit?


I've put my birthday gown (a purple velvet one I got on sale at Neiman Marcus, a store I can't usually afford to shop at unless there's a huge sale) into the dry cleaning pile, put away my shoes, hand washed the glittery Kate Spade stockings I wore with it, and unwrapped my gifts.

Today I need to write thank you notes for the gifts and also to the people who came out to my birthday dinner; clean, declutter and sanitize my bathroom counter which got makeup all over it during my preparations to go out; wash my bedding as a sick cat has been sleeping on my bed and getting extra fur all over it; wipe down all the kitchen counters; vacuum the house thoroughly; sweep out the fireplace; clean the microwave and stovetop; and a few other tasks like that which got neglected during my last week of going out to dinner every night.

LOVELY BLOGS: Souffle Bombay

Colleen's beautifully photographed, tasty looking recipes for everything from prosciutto and cheddar quick bread to roasted pineapple and browned endive with lime butter. Since I happen to have fresh endive and some limes in the house, I might try that one today!

LOVELY DRINKS: Matcha Green Tea

I've been trying for a while to find the same delicious green tea they serve me at my favorite local sushi restaurant, Kiku Sushi. There are all sorts of delicious green teas (and boy have I tried so many!) but the tea from this restaurant had a particular flavor I just loved. I tried making matcha tea myself with the whisk and green powder, but it just tasted disappointingly like grass.

So last week while touring the new Uwajimaya store in Bellevue, I decided to pick up Republic of Tea's canister. Delighted that it tastes the way I was hoping, I've been greedily guzzling three or four cups a day since!

Double Matcha Green Tea, at Republic of Tea

LOVELY MOVIES: Bridesmaids

This just looks like a fun, silly comedy - something colorful and cheerful to look forward to seeing in May. "Bridesmaids" looks like a perfect movie to see after lunch on a Sunday with my sister!

Bridesmaids Trailer, at Universal

LOVELY TV: Upstairs, Downstairs

Don't forget that this Sunday, April 10, PBS is airing the first of three episodes from their new version of "Upstairs, Downstairs." I can't wait to see what this is like.

Upstairs, Downstairs on PBS


America's Top 10 New Sandwiches - Veganized (Endless Simmer)

Apple Butter (Radishes and Rhubarb)

Chocolate Matcha Olive Oil Brownies (Passionate About Baking)

Crepes (Curious Confections)

Grilled Cheese + Onion Marmalade (The Urban Baker)

Household Binder Project (I Heart Organizing)

No Grandbabies? Try Grandpuppies (CNN)

Peanut Butter Cookie Cups (The Urban Baker)

Raspberry Lemonade Bars (Handle the Heat)

Welsh Cakes (Curious Confections)

What Women Over 40 Should Pack for Paris (Worth the Whisk)

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