Katharine McPhee's Birthday Philosophy: Skip the Gym!
03/27/2010 AT 10:00 AM EDT
"My trainer texted me to come to the gym and do weights today," she tells PEOPLE. "But I just laughed. 'Haha, very funny. I ain't coming to the gym on my birthday!'"
McPhee wanted – and got – the mellow day she had hoped for. "I'm more of a homebody," she says. "I'm not one to make a big deal about birthdays."
So after sleeping in till 10 a.m., she decorated Easter eggs over lunch at the Pepsi Refresh cafe (which raised money for her favorite charity, Feeding America), where she enjoyed a chocolate cake. Then she visited her voice teacher and dug into a plate of Gorgonzola gnocchi for dinner with husband Nick Cokas and her mom at her favorite local Italian restaurant, L.A.'s Panzenella.
Last stop of the day: British jazz-pop artist Jamie Cullum's show at the Wiltern Theater in L.A., where a mutual friend introduced McPhee to fellow concertgoer Clint Eastwood.
"I kept my composure," she says. "I really enjoyed the show, and meeting Clint was a plus."
The gifts weren't too shabby either. While Mom got her two crystal chandeliers, her husband of two years followed up on an early present – a custom-made pave diamond initial necklace – with something more practical: gym clothes.
"He is so funny," she says. "I am the worst-dressed person at my gym. I always look like I'm in my pajamas, so he got me a bunch of proper gym clothes."
McPhee, whose sophomore album Unbroken was released in January, says so far 26 "feels great."
"I've had some years where I've woken up and I'm like, 'I'm so old,' and I'm not. People thinking 22 is old is unfortunately part of growing up in Hollywood," she says. "I'm not concerned with the number. I don't feel any different."
Next up for American Idol's season 5 runner-up, who starred in The House Bunny and recently guest-starred on NBC's Community: The network's new comedy pilot The Pink House, where she'll play a girl-next-door pharmaceutical rep.