I turned 39 yesterday and had a great day to kick off the final year of my 30s (OMG WHAT?!)! I started the day by going to the Starbucks on H Street to get a free birthday drink—a perk of being a Starbucks Rewards member. Here I am squinting into the sun with my (necessary) toasted coconut cold brew around 7:30am, when the temperature was already 78 degrees!

Shoulda worn my big floppy hat.

I had considered going to a museum or doing some other kind of fun DC activity, but the temperature was expected to reach 96 degrees—the hottest day of the year so far (and yes, it did actually hit 96). I REALLY don’t do well in the heat, so I decided to mostly stay indoors and conserve my energy for whatever my husband had planned for us in the evening.

The heat gave me the perfect opportunity to go into Treat Yo Self mode at home! I had received a Charlotte Tilbury dry sheet mask in one of my birthday presents (more on those in a bit) so I decided to try that out. And this thing is the most horror movie serial killer-looking of them all!

Michael Myers meets Hannibal Lecter. It’s a good look.

My husband did NOT appreciate me sending him that pic.  😛

I also painted my nails using the Nails Inc “Rainbow Wishes” color from the unicorn polish duo that I bought not long ago.

Tuesday is my regular orchid watering day, so I spent some time with my plants and ended up repotting six of my orchids because I realized I hadn’t done so in at least a couple of years! I spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing and talking to family and friends.

My husband and I like to surprise each other with birthday dinner plans, so all I knew was that I was to meet him at the National Portrait Gallery at 6pm for an activity and then we’d head to dinner. Turns out that the Archives of American Art (located in the same building as the NPG) currently has an exhibit called Before Internet Cats: Feline Finds From the Archives of American Art. The exhibit is comprised of a small gallery full of fun cat-related materials, from artists’ sketches and paintings of cats to artists’ stories about their cats to photographs of cats lounging with artists in their studios. So that was a nice little pre-dinner activity—my husband knows me so well!  🙂

art + cats!

After the exhibit we jumped into a Lyft and headed to Adams Morgan for dinner. I had correctly guessed where my husband was taking me to eat, which is another indication that he just really gets me. 🙂  We had dinner at Mellow Mushroom, which is a hippie dippie pizza joint that I used to eat at all the time when I was in college in Atlanta! Mellow Mushroom is a fairly decent-sized chain now (we saw one in Denver on our vacation last fall, unfortunately after we had just eaten), but when I was in college I think there were only a few locations in Atlanta and maybe some others around the south.

I appreciate a fancy meal as much as the next person, but I’m also a simple girl: give me pizza or nachos and I’m totally happy. I was a little worried that the pizza wouldn’t be as good as I remembered, but it was SO GREAT! I started off with the Kentucky Sunrise cocktail, which contained Maker’s Mark, maple syrup, and agave sour, topped with  14 Hands merlot:

Cocktail with a wine float on top? Yaaaassssss

We split the stuffed portobello mushroom appetizer and each ordered our own pizza. I got the Kosmic Karma, which has house red sauce, feta, mozzarella, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, and roma tomatoes with a pesto swirl. I feel like I probably ate this pie on more than one occasion back in the day. IT IS DELICIOUS. Witness:

That crust! So buttery…

Mellow Mushroom, I love you and we will be back to eat your yummy pizza on the roof deck sometime when it’s not 8,000 degrees outside!

We had a little trouble settling on a nice bar in Adams Morgan after dinner—everything in Mellow Mushroom’s immediate area seemed really college-y or dive-y, not really what I was in the mood for on my birthday. With the help of Yelp we found a hotel with a bar located about a ten minute walk away, so we meandered downhill to Dupont Circle in the terrible heat. We were pretty much melted by the time we arrived at The Kimpton Carlyle Dupont Circle, but the lobby bar and restaurant—The Riggsby—fortunately had AC and plenty of space so we settled in on a couch.

The bar is really nicely designed! I enjoyed checking out all of its details. I was especially taken with the jewel green color of the walls and ceiling.

I <3 a good hotel bar.

I was also into the cool pop art-ish wallpaper on this one wall, so I had to sit on the velvet couch in front of it and pose for a shot:

Don’t mind my knobby knees.

We settled in for wine (rosé all the way for me, please!) and good conversation, and will definitely go back there to eat dinner at the restaurant sometime. All in all, my husband treated me to a very enjoyable birthday evening!

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention my birthday gifts! My husband ordered two gifts for me and one of them is still in transit. But I am in love with his first gift, a pair of gorgeous earrings with my favorite stone (labradorite) by my favorite jewelry designer (Melissa Joy Manning)! I wore them out to dinner last night.  🙂

Again, he knows me so well!

I also got a bunch of fun gifts from my mom, most of which I requested (she asks me for a list of gift ideas every year).

Ceramic pots for my orchids + an adorable cat mug, all from Anthropologie
Alabaster bookends from West Elm to spruce up my desk
A lacquer tray to help keep our coffee tabletop tidy
Limited Edition Birchbox x Vogue 125 …blog post to come.
Pretty earrings by Serena Kojimoto, a jewelry designer in Silver Lake (my brother’s LA neighborhood)

There are some books still on the way to me, too. YAY BOOKS!

And because I was too full of pizza to bother with dessert last night, I picked up a cake ball for myself during a Whole Foods shopping trip this morning. It was moist and dense. Yum yum!

I’m determined to make the most of this final year in my 30s. If yesterday was any indication, it will be a very good year, indeed.   😀