Sunday, April 27, 2008

Birthday Brunch

I'd just like to say that I hate brunch. I hate eggs, and I hate the brunch crowds. We went to Bistro 33, arriving at 1:30. It was tiny. I didn't realize. There were 5 of us, so we were told it would be a wait of about 15 minutes. We sat outside, just waiting and talking, while the largest table inside seemed to be finishing up and getting their check. After 15 minutes they ordered a plate of fries (we could see because they were on the other side of the window we were sitting next to) and so we checked on the time and the waitress said she just didn't know how long it would be. Of course, we'd called several days ago asking if we could make a reservation, but of course it was Sunday brunch so they wouldn't.

Needless to say, we decided to leave and go searching elsewhere. We ended up at 718 which I happen to love anyway, and had a much better time (though still had to wait 15 minutes - damn you popular Sunday brunch!) and the family was happy with this and it was a lovely way to bring in my 30th birthday. Hooray, and cheers for 718!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Spa Day and goodbye 20s!!

Today I cashed in on a Christmas gift AND a birthday gift by going to spa LATHER, which was lovely!

Dear husband had given me a gift certificate for an aromatherapy massage back at Christmastime which I never used. I hadn't taken advantage of this gift yet because unfortunately I seem to subscribe to the "you never know when you'll really need it" belief system... so I have a tendency to, for example, not finish bottles of lotion, not use free passes to movie theaters or to get a free cup of coffee, or, apparently, to not use a much-needed massage and instead wait four months to cash in.

But, it worked out, because just two weeks ago I was looking in the mirror and being very critical of my face and skin and almost-thirty crow's feet and beginnings of lines, when I realized what a long time it had been since I'd had a facial. Ringy-dingy to mummy and a birthday-present request for a facial at the same spa was made, and thus the purchase of a gift certificate and subsequently, the reservation to knock all these services out in one day, being today, being the day before this old broad turns 30. Phew. And so here we are.

Services were lovely. I'm not a spa connoisseur, but I'm not an idiot either. I've been to a couple other spas in NYC and some lovely smaller ones upstate, had many facials in my time and about four other massages.

Spa Lather was very nice - husband had chosen it because it had pretty good reviews on citysearch, and was close to the train and has gift certificates you can purchase online and then print out. Very convenient for today's busy thirty-somethings such as he and I. Considering those were his criteria, it turned out to be extra great!

I won't get into all the details, other than to say it was a very nice and relaxing experience. When I first walked in and was asked what scents I was interested in for my aromatherapy massage, I was given a list of categories and popular scents, but the woman was a little rushed. Without giving me time to look over the choices, she indicated the shelf of scented oils behind the counter, and began asking if I was interested in "citrus, something something something?" It was a little overwhelming (it was also 9:40am on a Saturday, and we were in the front of the spa which is the storefront and people were around and I felt rushed) so I agreed on Citrus (which I do like, though when really thinking about aromatherapy I realized what I wanted was to relax, and I'd assume citrus invigorates, which is not something I'd like to feel for at least another full day). Anyway, it ended up smelling great and the services were great and the massage therapist and esthetician were lovely, and it was very peaceful. I know it was pricey, but if anyone has the chance and financial means to try it I would recommend it.

And now here we are, 11:40 on Saturday night. Tomorrow is my birthday. The big 3-0. I will be eating out a lot, first at Bistro 33 for brunch with the family, then to La Flor in Woodside with my dear friends and loved ones. I haven't been to Bistro 33 since it was Li'l Bistro 33, over here on 36th ave (which is funny because their website still has the "lil"!). That was only once, but we loved it! Then they went and moved and now they're over on Ditmars. But I hear they are still cooking up some great food, so it should be lovely. Especially since I looked at the brunch menu and agreed to go there only because it actually looks good and there's things other than freakin' eggs on there. I'm not a big egg fan, and Mr. S. and I actually nearly boycott brunch. Yuck.


...One place where I had some good eggs was at La Flor. We'd tried to go there once with friends, but they were closed. So we found ourselves there for a Sunday brunch, just Mr. S. and I, and I had the huevos rancheros which were pretty good (though nothing compared to my best egg breakfast EVER at this restaurant). Anyway, we're going for dinner tomorrow and we can't wait. It should be a lovely birthday and I'm looking forward to it!!

Back again!

It's true!! I couldn't believe it either - it's been 4 long months since I last posted anything. Who the hell am I?? Who do I think I am? Some fancy too-busy-to-blog person, apparently.

But, seriously. I wouldn't leave my public (which I'm pretty sure only consists of my mom) for no good reason. That reason was... teaching, people! This job is strenuous! Especially year one, so they say. And especially when you're going to school, too. So I say.

But I'm getting back in the swing of things. After the holidays, I returned to school and got totally swamped, sucked into more lesson and unit plans, the state ELA exams, class novels, etc. It really is an amazing amount of work that goes into it. No one but another teacher or someone who lives intimately with one would understand.

But now it's the end of Spring Break. I've stayed in NYC all week, relaxing, walking and getting exercise and exploring my city. Sunday is my birthday, and tomorrow I go for a spa facial and aromatherapy massage...

...More when I return... (I promise!)