As some of you have surmised, today is my birthday. My 33rd birthday. As it is also a Monday, not a lot of actual birthday celebrating is taking place today. I did have a lovely lunch with my mother who gave me some money and strict instructions to spend it on myself. I have several things I have been needing so I was delighted with my small windfall. I decided to hit the mall this afternoon during The Weekids nap time.
At this point, let me stop and share a piece of advice. If someone gives you money to spend on yourself for your birthday, and one of the things you want to spend it on is a new swimsuit, don't even think about doing the shopping on your actual birthday. Because really, there is no more surefire way to ruin the anniversary of your birth than to strip half-naked in a department store and try on different pieces of way-too-freakin-small spandex clothing under fluorescent lighting.
And if, after you have sufficiently bruised your ego and given up on the swimsuit search, the thought pops in your head, "Well, I could use something cute to wear out with my husband this weekend, maybe I should look for that..." Don't do it. Just go home, have a piece of cake and a glass of wine and call it a day. Because as everyone knows, the moment you have guilt-free money to spend on yourself, one of two things will happen. Either the mall will stop carrying attractive clothing OR your body will morph into a freak of nature too deformed and misshapen to fit, or look decent in, a single item of clothing, no matter how cute it might look on the hanger. And when the latter takes place you will crawl home, on what is supposed to be a happy day, dragging your demolished self-esteem behind you and vowing never to be seen in public again.
Or you know, something like that.
So the advice? Don't try on clothes on your birthday. Unless you are one of those people whom everything looks great on. In which case, I am not sure I can continue be your friend.
Oh, I'm kidding.
On a happier note, I love bread. I mean I really love bread. All kinds. Dark ryes and pumpernickels, sourdoughs, seedy multi-grains and crusty baguettes. My love for fresh bread is second only to my love for chocolate. And it's a close second. So it is not coincidence that I woke up this morning I found a brand new bread machine sitting on the kitchen counter. I have been coveting one of these for years but never purchased one because I figured my hips didn't need the help. (The above shopping trip may be proof of this.) The Man, however, must not mind the hips because this was his birthday present to me.
I have been circling it all day and have picked up and put down the instruction manual several times. And now I have to admit, I am totally intimidated by this big shiny thing with all the buttons. The Man said I could exchange it if it was not the kind I wanted, but I have no idea what kind I want. I don't bake bread and I don't know a thing about bread machines. So I am asking for your help, my bread machine owning friends.
Is there anything I should look for in a bread machine? And what should I bake first?
Send me your recipes. And your tips.
Mercy, I'm asking for recipes for my birthday. Does that make me a grown-up now?