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my 38th

February 19, 2014

Last week I turned 38.

I normally don’t ask for anything. But seeing as I received light bulbs last year, I decided to be a little more proactive and request a few things that couldn’t be purchased at a hardware store.

On the weekend...more snow.

On the weekend…more snow.

Here’s what I asked for:

  • From Ali (this request occurred nearly six weeks ago to allow for fulfillment): A single, duplicate earring to replace the one that somehow fell out of my ear. (How do screw on earrings fall out? I am very confused.)
  • From Maya: The latest issue of Marie Claire magazine and a bar of organic 73% chocolate from Trader Joe’s. (I had to keep within her $5 budget. I saw $55 in her wallet the other day though. Again, I am very confused.)
Weekend lunch: Our usual Fig & Olive. Where one can never go wrong....

Weekend lunch: Our usual Fig & Olive. Where one can never go wrong….

Here’s what I got:

  • From Ali: A dead orchid. (I was told this orchid wilted and died as it made its way from Trader Joe’s to our apartment, due to a snowstorm.)
  • From Maya: 3 bags of One Lucky Duck macaroons. These were appreciated, no doubt. But I have to wonder: why am I asked what I want if it’s going to be completely disregarded???
@ Maison Kayser where Maya enjoyed a birthday eclair on my behalf.

@ Maison Kayser where Maya enjoyed a birthday eclair on my behalf.

In short my 38th was completely unremarkable.

I went to work, I broke a nail, I nearly had to swim home due to the aforementioned snow storm, I cleaned the kitchen, I argued with Maya about doing her homework / taking a shower / watching TV / babysitting the class stick bugs, I moved Ali’s socks, and then I went to sleep.

Brunch @ Bryant Park Grille: Ali ordered a salad! That was a first.

Brunch @ Bryant Park Grille: Ali ordered a salad! That was a first.

The highlight of my day was when I found The Lowland at the library and the librarian was kind enough to disregard the lengthy wait list and let me borrow the book.

It takes so little. Really, it does.

67 Comments leave one →
  1. February 19, 2014 1:05 am

    Yay for librarians! Belated happy birthday. Next year buy your own gift, wrap it and give it to hubbie to give you. That’s what I do!

    • February 20, 2014 6:39 pm

      Why bother wrapping it? It’s just more work for yourself.


  2. February 19, 2014 5:09 am

    I was ecstatic when my husband told me he’d folded clothes while I was away (a chore I absolutely detest!). It really does take so little. Thank god for the lil joys.
    Belated bday wishes, hope you had a good one! 🙂

    • February 20, 2014 6:40 pm

      He folded clothes? That is unheard of around here. Nobody folds anything, especially not clothes…you are lucky!

  3. February 19, 2014 5:10 am

    Happy belated bday! I have the Lowland on hold at the library. Need to know your secret of convincing a librarian to nix the wait list! I hope despite everything, you had a good bday ❤

    • February 20, 2014 6:40 pm

      The Lowland takes a while to pick up but then is good. Not as good as her other books but still absorbing!

      Good luck with the wait list. 🙂

  4. Seana permalink
    February 19, 2014 5:19 am

    Happy Birthday! A dead orchid? Is Ali crazy? Dry it and save it and regift it to him on his birthday. At least Maya gave you something you like. Not what you requested but not crazy. On the bright side, be thankful you didn’t get another light bulb:)
    On a diff note, I didn’t see those silk long johns on LL Bean, but Sierra Trading Post has them online. Tell Ali you’ll get him some once he replaces that earring,,,and provide you w/ a non dead flower. Life is all about negotiations (try living with an attorney).

    • February 20, 2014 6:42 pm

      I made Ali go exchange the orchid. I can’t throw away $12!

      Ali often says he’s living with an attorney but I tell him I excel at arguing with him. Not with everyone, just him!. 🙂

  5. February 19, 2014 6:24 am

    Happy belated birthday!!!

  6. glamorous glutton permalink
    February 19, 2014 6:26 am

    Seana has the right idea – re gift it! I’m very specific about what I would like and luckily Mr Glam finds it easier to get what I’ve asked for than to think of something else. GG

    • February 20, 2014 6:59 pm

      I wish people around here would find it easier to get what I’ve asked for!!

  7. February 19, 2014 7:09 am

    Happy belated birthday! I laughed out loud at “babysitting the class stick bugs.”

    Your photos always remind me I want to try Fig & Olive. Everything looks wonderful!

    • February 20, 2014 7:00 pm

      It’s one of our favorite places here in NY and in LA. Fig and Olive is a hit every time.

  8. February 19, 2014 7:33 am

    You are so right – it definitely takes so little!
    Belated Happy Birthday – I hope the day/week after is better!

  9. February 19, 2014 7:35 am

    lol happy belated! when we were kids we’d pester my mom weeks before her bday asking her what she wanted. she’d always say i just want everyone to be good for one day. we’d say not happening so pick something. the only gift i can remember us getting her back then is a milli vanilli tape. poor mom.

    one lucky duck macaroons? yum! never had them but have tried other vegan macaroons in toronto.

    • February 20, 2014 7:01 pm

      Milli Vanilli! I had their tape. Blame It on the Rain….

      I always ask for peace and quiet…I never get it. I feel your mom’s pain!

  10. February 19, 2014 7:40 am

    Happy belated birthday, friend!

    Glad the librarian was able to make a wish come true! 🙂

  11. Jessie E. permalink
    February 19, 2014 8:17 am

    Haha!!! Oh gosh, Ameena 😛 It’s the little things, right? I cracked up at the macaroons – they’re almost like chocolate, in a way … 😉 BIG HUGS for your birthday and I hope you’re staying warm!!

    • February 20, 2014 7:02 pm

      The macaroons are addicting…love them!

      I hope you are staying warm too. Today was fabulous! Never thought I’d say that about 45 degree weather but it’s true. 🙂

  12. February 19, 2014 8:43 am


    you. crack. me. up.

    Your misfortunes become our entertainment!

    Happy 38th! xx

    • February 20, 2014 7:03 pm

      Thank you friend! I appreciate your kind comment. 🙂

  13. February 19, 2014 10:23 am

    wishing you a belated happy birthday. I usually buy my own gifts on my birthday 🙂

    • February 19, 2014 12:28 pm

      Yep, buy your own gifts, that’s a plan. I do that too…

      • February 20, 2014 7:03 pm

        I buy things when I see them and can’t be without them. That happens so rarely! And never on or around my birthday when I can excuse the purchase…

  14. Lydia permalink
    February 19, 2014 11:57 am

    Happy belated 38th birthday Ameena! I agree, little things that count. Now if only Ali picks up his own socks… 🙂
    That’s why I never ask, I just tell my husband to get me a gift card. It’s more practical.

    • February 20, 2014 7:04 pm

      Ali picking up his socks would be a birthday, Christmas, and anniversary gift rolled into one.

      Won’t happen ever, I’m sure…

  15. February 19, 2014 12:14 pm

    Happy belated birthday!!

  16. February 19, 2014 12:27 pm

    Happy Birthday!!! I really hope some day to be able to celebrate with you!!

  17. February 19, 2014 2:43 pm

    Happy Birthday Gorgeous. One of the best Birthday posts ever. It really made me smile. I cannot wait to tell my Mum about this, once she’s back in city:) Wishing you a very blessed year full of love light and blessings

    • February 20, 2014 7:05 pm

      Thank you Maha! You always leave the nicest comments. I appreciate it. 🙂

  18. February 19, 2014 2:55 pm

    Birthdays seem to get less and less important after the age of 21. Or maybe 25 because your car insurance goes down… Either/or. If it makes you feel better, last year on my birthday, my boyfriend had to work and dinner plans were cancelled. I got myself a salad from Whole Foods and ate it alone while watching The Big Bang Theory. Meh.

    • February 20, 2014 7:05 pm

      Sometimes Whole Foods just hits the spot. And at least on your bday you can justify the overpriced-ness of it all…

  19. February 19, 2014 2:59 pm

    Happy belated birthday gal. Next time , tell your hubby once a day for two weeks what you want. It helps believe me 🙂

    • February 20, 2014 7:06 pm

      I think I mentioned the earring to him at least 2 X a week for 6 weeks. It made no difference! Strange.

  20. February 19, 2014 3:37 pm

    Those macaroons look good! Trust Maya to figure out what you really meant to ask for 😉 Happy Belated Birthday, mamma- you look great! 🙂

    • February 20, 2014 7:06 pm

      Thank you A. I always appreciate your nice comments. 🙂

  21. February 19, 2014 3:42 pm

    Happy Birthday……turning 38 n all!! Though she didn’t stick to the list, gotta appreciate Maya’s taste – Macaroons! And totally agree with you. It really does take just a little. Now if only the Misters could figure which little! 😀

    • February 22, 2014 5:06 am

      Exactly…identifying which “little” is always the problem. 🙂

  22. February 19, 2014 10:31 pm

    Belated happy birthday! Lowland is a powerful, interesting novel. I am curious to know what you think of it.

    • February 22, 2014 5:24 am

      I had mixed feelings on The Lowland. It wasn’t Lahiri’s best for sure: slightly too long, a bit dry at the beginning, unlikable characters. But her writing style is always beautiful to read.

      Overall, I’m not sure if I’d recommend this one. Curious what you think as well?

  23. February 20, 2014 1:53 pm

    Sorry your birthday was anti-climactic. I find that the older I get the more Birthdays feel like ordinary days but I still think it’s important to celebrate even if it’s in some small way. It’s your own special holiday to yourself even if nobody gets you what you want!! Happy Birthday and you are looking great.

    • February 22, 2014 5:25 am

      Thank you Cece…I suppose it’s important to celebrate but life is always so busy that it feels like just one more thing to do. 🙂

  24. February 20, 2014 6:10 pm

    Happy Birthday, Ameena!! Photos of your restaurant endeavours always make the jealous. I’d have been pretty darn bummed if my birthday went like that too…which is practically every year these days. Maybe the fact that I never really had an amazing birthday kind of makes me really want one, just one time, and overrate birthdays in general.

    • February 22, 2014 5:26 am

      You’ll have to come out to NY Asuma and we’ll celebrate your next bday at Fig & Olive. It’ll definitely be an amazing meal to overrate that one birthday. 🙂

      • February 27, 2014 5:47 am

        Haha, don’t mind if I do! I’ve never been to the States, but I can’t wait to get to visit the big city of New York someday not too far 😀

  25. ERIKA permalink
    February 20, 2014 10:24 pm

    Happy belated birthday Ameena.
    Isn’t family a blessing? yay? nay? hello? 😉

    • February 22, 2014 5:26 am

      I suppose I should say yay? But really every fiber of my being wants to also say nay!

  26. February 21, 2014 11:18 am

    Tsk, tsk. Happy belated bday as well Ameena. I may not always get Kathryn exactly the gift she wanted, but I DO always make her day special. Do most of her end of the daily routine, keep the kids from driving her up the walls, special dinner, etc. Hey, there’s always next year!

    • February 22, 2014 5:27 am

      Well K is a lucky girl…having someone take over the grunt work relating to the daily routine is really the best gift of all.

      Yes…I suppose I’m looking forward to next year when I turn 39?

      No…actually I’m not at all! 🙂

  27. willgoh2 permalink
    February 21, 2014 5:34 pm

    Happy Belated Birthday!!!

  28. February 22, 2014 5:44 am

    It has been a long while since I last visited your blog. I blame moving from my city to another for a new job and my wedding and the aftermath of all that. I, hardly, was able to update my own blog let alone read others. Good to see though that not a lot has changed here. Happy birthday belated one of course. 38? you are kidding right? no way you look like a 38 year old so good going 😀 … Maya is looking a bit grown up now and adorable as ever. and ali looks funny all wrapped up :D… cheers

  29. February 22, 2014 10:43 am

    Ali sounds like he shops with my husband. One year mine bought me camo boots, seriously do I seem like I’d ever wear camo. So here is my best advice, just buy yourself a huge bunch of flowers, have them sitting in a vase on the counter the morning of your birthday and and come out modeling the new jewelry you bought yourself. Hope you had a very Happy Birthday despite the oversight.

  30. February 22, 2014 12:52 pm

    Happy belated 38th daaaaahling! I agree with amanda, there’s nothing wrong with buying your own present (even though u shouldn’t have to), at least that way you know you’ll get exactly what you want.
    *kisses* HH
    p.s. does Maya want to take me out for lunch? 55$?

  31. February 24, 2014 9:13 am

    So the librarian gave you a better birthday than Ali and Maya, huh? 😉

    Happy Birthday!!

  32. February 24, 2014 9:26 am

    Happy Birthday Ameena! this post really makes me laugh, as we ‘fight’ about my birthday present year after year, and i have now resort to dragging him to the shop so he will get it right! Humour aside, I hope u have the best of years to come 🙂

  33. February 24, 2014 9:31 pm

    Now I can’t help but wonder what my 38th will be like ;). The librarian sounds like a sweetie!

    Happy Birthday!!

  34. February 25, 2014 12:28 pm

    Happy Belated Birthday!
    My husband and I celebrated birthdays this month too.. and we had cake and a few kidless hours to go to the movies.. but all in all unremarkable.. and I sat by him while he did errands on his computer reminiscing about those childhood birthdays when birthdays used to be such a BIG deal..

  35. February 26, 2014 5:12 pm

    Happy birthday Ameena – I think your husband is a lucky guy. If I’d given a dead flower as a present to my wife I would now be sleeping in the shed… :-/

  36. February 27, 2014 7:17 pm

    Welcome to 38! For my birthday, I gifted myself a half day at the spa and told my husband he was taking me out to dinner. I felt that getting a gift for myself was sort of a gift to him, too. Lol. Maybe Ali and Maya will stick to the list for 39?

  37. March 4, 2014 6:25 am

    Belated Joyeux Anniversaire 🙂 Having a birthday in your new home is enough to celebrate!

  38. March 5, 2014 6:23 pm

    Yikes how did I miss this post. Happy happy belated birthday to my favorite blogger. Love you Ameena. And here’s hoping that Ali and Maya do a better job of sticking to the list the next year!

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