I turn 32 on August 5th, which seems a little bit crazy because when did I get so old?! Don't get me wrong, I don't feel old. It's just that I still remember all too well the panic that set in when I turn 20, & then 25, thinking about how close I was to 30 - & now I'm inching toward 40. And yes, 40 still sounds old to me, but don't tell future-me I said that, OK?
Anyway. As a grown-ass woman, I no longer expect gifts for my birthday (although, I mean, they're welcome, if you're so inclined). I did, however, dip into some of my recent freelance money to make two special birthday purchases for myself: The first is a magical memory foam pillow that's made sleeping much cozier & is doing its small part to combat my insomnia; the second is the long-coveted Kindle Paperwhite, which I scored on sale on Amazon Prime Day.
Here's a short list of all the other goodies I'd treat myself to if money were no object. Because while I no longer expect gifts, it sure is fun to think about them!
"Never a Quiet Year at Hogwarts" print: I've been coveting this gorgeous print by Philly-based artist Anne Lambelet for about two years now. One of these days I'll pull the trigger & buy the XL framed version to hang in the guest room, which we want to decorate with writing inspiration. What better inspiration than the Harry Potter series?!
- A massage and/or acupuncture: This is an always-want. I haven't gotten a massage in ages - nearly a year, on my visit to LA last August - despite the fact that I'm perpetually sore. I live with chronic pain as a result of my scoliosis & the stainless steel rods along my spine, & while massages don't actually do much for that pain, they are relaxing as hell. Same with acupuncture, which I used to get acupuncture for pain management; it was divine.
- Someone else to clean my floors: We've got unfinished hardwood floors
that get dirty very easily, & cleaning them is my least-favorite
chore. I'd love to hire someone to come in & do a deep clean of the
whole place, ideally every six months or so - but hey, even once would be glorious!
- Book of the Month Club subscription: I'm just wrapping up a three-month subscription to BoTM, which I absolutely love & will write about at a later date. Suffice it to say that it's building my personal library & introducing me to tons of interesting new titles, & I'd love to continue my membership. (PS: How great is their Instagram?!)
A bicycle: I left my last bike in New Jersey with my
ex-boyfriend, a decision I continue to regret. I think I'd be much less
afraid to bike in Cleveland than I was in D.C., so I've been looking
into the possibility of investing in a new one. No more waiting on Uber
to take me downtown! Also, my mom is an avid cyclist, & while I
probably can't keep up with her, it'd be fun to try.
- The Gilded Bauble Necklace from 31Bits: This brand sells jewelry made of recycled paper beads, handmade by women
in Uganda. And they are gorgeous. I look at their website a few
times a month & pine over, like, everything they offer, imagining my adopting a bohemian style that includes wearing a different 31Bits
necklace every day. But hey, I'd settle for starting small.
The Tory FitBit Bracelet in Brushed Gold: I've been wearing my FitBit every day (when I remember to charge it, that is), but I'd like to be able to continue wearing it during fancier moments, like at weddings & events. Alas, it's pretty ugly & clunky as-is, so I concede & remove it when I'm dressed up. This bracelet is designed to cover it up & make it look much, much nicer - & fancy-clothes-appropriate!
- A vacuum cleaner: This is the most depressingly adult thing to ask for, I know, but vacuum cleaners are expensive, man, & my cat sheds a lot, & my rugs are hard to clean. I don't know a damn thing about vacuums, & I have no interest in researching them - possibly the most boring task I can imagine - so ideally, I'd like for someone else to do the legwork & just, you know, give me a good one. Damn you, adulthood.