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36 Things I Am Happy About and Grateful For On This, my 36th Birthday

1. My husband. Because being married to me is no picnic, but damn if he doesn’t make the best of it.
2. My family, close and extended (and by extended, I mean too many cousins to count). I love you guys!
3. My friends, old and new, who help me remember high school, give me fashion and life advice, commiserate about bad writing days and watch 90210 with me. I am a lucky girl.
4. Monkey and Coco. Who are, at this very moment, running wild through the house attacking each other while I’m trying to concentrate on writing this post.
5. Summer. Today is a beautiful day. So all you moms who are freaking out, not wanting to have your baby on 6-6-06, fear not if it does happen. It’s a great day for a birthday.
6. I’m going to lunch at one of my favorite restaurants today, with two of my favorite people. And might just have a glass of wine.
7. And I’m thinking I might get a pedicure.
8. And possibly go shopping. Eeek!
9. Good books. In particular, Frank Portman’s King Dork, which I am loving right now, and the new one from Julia Glass, The Whole World Over, which Courtney gave me for my birthday and I can’t wait to start.
10. Sleeping in, which I did this morning.
11. Waking up and reading US Weekly in bed, which I also did this morning.
12. Veronica Mars is on tonight! (I’m coming in four episodes late, I think, but hopefully I’ll still be able to follow?)
13. My new green purse, which just makes me sigh with happiness everytime I look at it.
14. Movie popcorn, which I will hopefully have when I go see The Breakup, sometime this week. Bring on the butter!
15. Music, including Jewel’s “Good Day,” which for some reason I am loving right now (maybe it’s that spoken word part? oh-so-poetic) and Kelly Clarkson’s “Walk Away” which I continue to be obsessed with, both the song and video. If you have not seen the video you should watch it, it will make you laugh out loud. Or maybe that’s just me.
16. There is still leftover macaroni and cheese from Bullock’s barbecue in my fridge. Yessssss.
17. Kathy Griffin’s Life on the D-List starts a new season tonight. (Although why is EVERYTHING on at 9 on Tuesday? VM, the Unit AND this show. Honestly. My Tivo is working overtime!)
18. Oprah. Just because.
19. Luke Perry. Ditto.
20. Netflix, which makes it possible for me to be even more of a couch potato, since I don’t even have to go to the video store to watch Beach Girls and Grey’s Anatomy, both of which I’m starting this week.
21. The Hurricanes won last night!
22. My zinnias, which are coming up gangbusters in the planters out on my deck. The downside: my impatiens, which were lovely until the deer came up ONTO MY FRONT PORCH and ate them. Honestly.
23. Finding a pair of pants that fit you just right. Wonderful. And look good? Better. And are on sale? Bonus. AND then your mother buys them for you as a birthday gift? Priceless.
24. Tour de France starts July 1st! (No Lance this year, but still, it’s exciting.)
25. Popcorn from Whole Foods. Really, anything from Whole Foods. It’s an addiction, what can I say?
26. Jane Green has a new book coming out , just in time for summer beach reading!
27. I did not work out today and I don’t have to feel guilty about it, because it’s my birthday.
28. Stila lipsticks. You just can’t do better. Period.
29. Yesterday, my dad’s paper shredder wasn’t working. My parents were ready to take it to the dump, but then I hit it with my fist and it started to work again. They were so happy. Amazing what a little punch can do every now and again, and I just love it when my parents are pleased with me.
30. The Dixie Chick’s new album, Taking the Long Way, especially, “I Hope,” which gets me all verklempt every time I hear it.
31. The fact that now, about a half hour after I started this list, my dogs are FINALLY starting to calm down. It’s like they know I’m trying to concentrate and want to make it harder, I swear!
32. This amazing year I’ve had, since sending off Just Listen just about this time last year. I still can’t believe how much support it’s had, and how well it’s been received. It literally blows my mind.
33. Butter rum livesavers. Cannot.Stop.Eating.Them.
34. I’m almost done with this list!
35. My cousin Caroline just called from Miami, my first birthday wish of the day, AND she made me laugh. Which brings me to….
36… All of you who read this journal, and have been reading it, day after day. You tolerate innane entries on all things pop culture, offer input on everything from hard boiling eggs to how to see Redwoods in San Francisco, and with all your comments, give me something great to read every day. Thank you so much.

Whew! I’m exhausted. I think it may be time to eat some birthday cake and start this day in earnest. Mmmmm….

edit: I just checked my comments and I can’t believe how many of you have written in to wish me a happy birthday. Totally honest: I got a little choked up. Thank you so, so much. It means more than you know.

have a great day, everyone!
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