Birthday resolutions

My birthday was not fantastic, insofar as it was parent-teacher conference night, and I had to work 13 hours, plus it snowed. I did get a free cupcake from Panera though, so it wasn’t all bad, and a very sweet handmade card from one of my favorite sixth-graders. 

But no one wants to hear about lame birthdays.

I decided a few years ago, when I still wrote in paper journals, before I started living with boyfriends, that I would make birthday resolutions instead of New Year’s resolutions. They seem more personal and less forced that way.

These are mine:

  • Finish the YA novel I started. Then send it to publishers. I think I’m cornering a niche.

  • Join a book club. In college I always thought, “I’m reading this novel that I like; why do we have to analyze the living hell out of it?” Now when I read a really good book I think, “WHO CAN I TALK ABOUT THIS WITH???”

  • Cook for people more often. I miss throwing dinner parties. Also, it would stop me from eating frozen pizzas every other night. Isa Does It was my birthday present to myself, so we can start there.

Laissez les bon temps roulez!

I’ve decided that making birthday resolutions makes more sense than making New Year’s resolutions, if you’re going to insist on making resolutions. My birthday resolution is to start writing again, and a couple of coworkers and I are starting a writing group, but there’s also this, which of all my many neglected blogs is the most recent.

Last night I threw my birthday party. I decided to make it Mardi Gras-themed, seeing as how I had hurricane cocktail mix that I bought on my trip to New Orleans last spring. Also, the official Mardi Gras colors are purple, green, and gold, and I really like purple and thought I could run with this.

Purple and green streamers, because if I’m gonna have a party, it’s gonna look like a PARTY: specifically, the kind of party a seven-year-old would have. Thus, balloons, too. And Christmas lights, because I had them. (PS: this was taken before the party. As soon as people started showing up, Ignatius hid behind my bed like a total asshole.)


The “bar area,” meaning the tiny IKEA end table I cleared off to squeeze on hurricane mix, assorted mixers, and assorted half-bottles of booze I happened to have lying around. But: I offered garnishes, which equals MEANING BUSINESS ABOUT BOOZE.


The spread: King cake is the traditional Mardi Gras dessert. I made it in cupcake form, because I didn’t want to buy a Bundt pan that I’d probably never use again. I used the fancy food coloring I’ve had for a year, although the purple it turned out sort of reminded me of Grimace from McDonald’s commercials, but I was too lazy to do anything else with it. Also, shrimp and bacon dip and Creole deviled eggs. I tried to really be Cajun about it but according to the Internet every Cajun food has shrimp in it, and seafood is expensive, y’all. As it is, I have tons of leftovers that I’ll be eating for a week.


Today I am hangover-free, but I’m still planning on spending Sunday on my couch with Glamour and the Christmas issue of Food + Wine.