Sunday, January 31, 2010

Sinking Fast

Three weeks until B-day (bar exam day).

I'm starting to feel confident in a couple subjects (torts, contracts, evidence, landlord tenant law, con law) but totally spazzing out about others (crim pro, real property, indian law, civ pro). UGH! And I hate the person bar prep is turning me into. I'm constantly whining, miserable, stressed and always feel like the world is out to get me. Nothing is half full, there is no light at the end of the tunnel and lemons only give you sour lemon rinds.

I just want this horror to be over.

I've been studying about 8 hours a day everyday (even weekends) for the past month. The only exception to this was one day when I studied 4 hours in the afternoon and took the rest of the night off. But you can bet your bottom that I was tormented every second of that brake because I wasn't studying.

I wake up each morning dreading the day ahead of me and I go to bed each night dreading that fact that I have to eventually wake up and face the morning. I'm pretty sure other people survive bar prep without feeling so miserable and horrible, why am I having such a negative reaction to it?

Maybe it's the fact that I've studied for more hours this past month than I did all of last semester (possibly including finals week). And I feel like I'm wasting precious and rare hours with my baby- he's practically being raised at his grandparents' house right now and I feel HORRIBLE. The floors in my house are NASTY. I'm running out of clean underwear. I'm sick of eating frozen pizza for dinner. I'm sadly depleting all available credit left on my credit cards. I'm starting to wonder why I even bother to shower because I never leave my house (except for a chocolate run) and I don't even remember the last time I got any action in the bedroom (not due to any lack of trying on my part). I don't even remember what life was life before I had this huge bar exam chain around my neck. Seriously, people survive this crap?

And if I hear one more person tell me they passed the bar and they only studied the two weeks before the exam, I'm gonna go serial killer Dexter style on these people! I'd rather go through another semester (maybe 2) of law school than deal with the stress and tortures of the bar exam.

Why does my life suck and why do I suck at life?!

Friday, January 29, 2010

What She REALLY Wants For V-Day

Sure flowers are good. Who would turn their nose at a box of chocolates? And who would decline free dinner out on the town? But if your girl is like me, these things are just pretext for what she REALLY wants. And the good news guys, what she REALLY wants won't cost you a dime.

What a girl (at least me) wants for Valentine's Day is REALLY simple. So why can't guys ever get it right? Maybe it's because they are so focused on making reservations or are totally overwhelmed by what to buy. The best V-day gift, however, cannot be found in a department store (although, we do like things in department stores). It cannot be bought on (although, feel free to blow your wad on a ton of stuff for us- we won't mind, really).

What she really wants is.... YOU! Amazing huh? Or to be more specific, your total enamoration and constant attention. This is all I ever want for any special occassion- attention! For one night out of the year, I want the luxury of pretending I am in a romance novel and the main hero (you) cannot get enough of me. I want my guy to at least PRETEND that his every next breath depends upon him being in close proximity to me. I want him to act like he doesn't see me every day of his life. To pretend I am hotter than a stolen Honda Accord complete with six-cd changer stereo and subwoofers so powerful they could shoot your backseat granny straight through the roof.


Since guys are SIMPLE. And the prior paragraphs are probably too much to soak in all at once, let me spell it out to you in PLAIN. SIMPLE. ENGLISH. Here is a list of things I recommend that guys should do on V-day. Since, I'm not sure about the male species' ability to count above ten, I will keep this list short (just kidding guys- I love you).

1. Tell her she looks beautiful. More than once.

2. Act like you mean it. Seriously. Don't just mumble "your hot" under your breath. Step back, look at her, take a deep breath and say, "wow, you look beautiful." This is important. Got it?

3. Hold her hand. It won't kill you. Buy hand sanitizer if you're worried.

4. Put your hand on the small of her back whenever you are not holding her hand.

5. Make an effort to dress up. Then complement HER outfit. Ok, technically that's two but they are related.

6. Put your hand on her knee whenever appropriate.

7. Lead her into at least one unexpected and romantic kiss (against a wall, sneaking a kiss in public, in the rain, under the moonlight, on a beach, surrounded by green fairy dust and a serenading moon in a bohemian themed musical- whatever floats your boat- or hers).

8. Act like you want her. Scratch that- you NEED her. Your body needs to take her right then and there. But you won't, of course, because of those inconvenient laws against "public indecency." Show her you need her by flirting with your touches and your longing gazes all night long.

9. Show fore-thought. Even if it is making reservations one day in advance. Or writing a short little note. Don't just pick up a card on your way home for work. And if you do, heaven's sakes, take it out of the plastic bag and sign it BEFORE she sees it.

Now, Good luck (husband are you reading?)!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Wanted: Fashion Advice For The Office

Nothing gets me more excited than having a reason to dress up. My two summers of employment at The Firm were awesome due to the simple fact that I got to wear shirtdresses and blouses and blazers. I LOVE IT.

However, I was always self conscious. Am I wearing this bazer right? To tuck in or not to tuck in? Are bare legs appropriate?

So I'm seeking YOUR help!

First question: Tuck in your blouse or don't tuck in? I like the look of a sleek tucked in blouse on others. But I think I just look funny. Is it unprofessional to not tuck in your collared button up? Secondly- has anyone tried those Victoria Secret bodysuits? The look awesome but I have a long torso and really, onesies for adults?

Skirt Length?
I personally like my skirt to fall right at my knees (my knees are kinda gnarly anyway). But I always have a hard time finding this length. Maybe it's me- I have long legs AND a long torso. So skirts always fall a couple inches above the knee (office skank?) OR they are a couple inches below (office prudely matron?). What's the most appropriate length? Why do above-the-knee skirts look appropriate on others but make me feel, to put it nicely, like a $2 ho-bag?

Blazers & Jackets
When you wear a suit, do you button the suit jacket or leave it open? If you button it, which button do you button? All of them? Are there different standards when you are in-court versus hanging around the office picking the lint between your toes? Ew, I SO do not do that, btw.

Bare NEKKID Legs?
I HATE panty hose. But they DO keep my legs warm in the winter (and they offer an extra day or two between shavings). Is it appropriate to be bare-legged at the office? What about court? I've heard people refer to the "tie rule." When a guy has to wear a tie, that's when a girl should don the horrid panty-hose. What do all you hip, modern women think about that?

Open Toed Shoes.
The answer of course is YES! I love peek toe shoes. But my real question is, is it totally a fashion sin to wear sheer leggings with pants and open toed shoes? Sometimes I have to wear leggings. The world needs a protective barrier between it and my feet (public safety, y'all).

Under the Blazer or Suit Jacket.
I usually just wear a collared shirt under a suit jacket, because I am boring like that. What else can I wear under one? A thin sweater? A frilly tank top? Are those no-nos?

Bright Colors?
I tend to be conservative when it comes to colors. I hate to stand out. But I feel like my wardrobe is drowning in greys, blacks, off-whites and blues. How do all you professional women avoid the drab without becoming a bee attracting eyesore?

Other considerations: I really like to live by the motto, "dress for the job you want not the job you have." And personally, I look younger than I am (I hate that!). So I try to be more conservative and professional in general so that people will take me more seriously. I feel like this is really important for a woman in the legal field. But I don't want to be stuck in my grandma's era of professional attire. So anything that you can offer as advice is so appreciated! Thanks in advance!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

O To The B To The AMA

The aforementioned being...


That is all. Good night.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Don't You Just Hate That?

You are in a big building with dead end corridors everywhere you turn and staircases leading you into a never ending maze. Bullets whiz by you and explosions burst from every which way. You suddeny realize you are being attacked by terrorists.

Then a big hunky man emerges from the fray. Tall and slender but with muscles that would make The Rock green with envy. "Down!" He instructs, holding you to the floor with his body as a bullet flies by your face. "Stay here!" Then he's off, muscles and all, down the hall to stop the attack, save the building and save your life.

He's gone a while but you're too afraid to move. You sit in the dark, trembling. Hoping the terrorist attack stops. After a while, the explosions stop. All is quiet. You hear something coming down the hall towards you, it's heavy footsteps. Your gut tightens and you try to make yourself as small as possible, hidden in the corner. Then a tall figure approaches. His manly frame is backlit but you immediately recognize him as your Hunky Hero. He limps towards you, his shoulder is bandaged.

"What happened?" You ask, pointing to the stranger's shoulder. "Ah, that's nothing. Got caught in the crossfire. But it's over now. They're gone." He slowly comes towards you. "How about you. Are you ok?"

"I'm fine." You assure him, still feeling flustered.

"I can see that." He replies, with a mischevious smirk. He continues to approach you. Your heart feels like it's on fire and your blood is pulsing on overdrive. He wraps his big, strong arms around you like he is going to lift you up, but he doesn't. You can smell gunpowder and sweat on his skin (so manly!). Then he leans his body into yours. Slowly. Slowly. His eyes, intently focused on yours, read your desires like an open book. Your lips are just a finger breadth apart from his now. And then....

You wake up to the sound of a screaming toddler. Who probably just took the world's largest shit in his diaper. It's 7:32 am. Your eyelids are heavy. And you have to face a full day of Criminal Procedure lecture.


Monday, January 25, 2010

Keeping It In The Family (AKA: "I Have Issues")

I think I mentioned on here once that I have a mini crush on my father-in-law. Ok, ok, it's not really a CRUSH- I just think he's cute. And nice. And funny. And I have this thing for older men. I feel ashamed to bring it up again because most people commented their horror and disgust about my little secret. (But hey, it's not THAT farfetched, I mean he's the genetic source of my husband's good looks afterall).

The problem is, it's not much of a secret. Once when I was out drinking with my sister-in-law, I just MIGHT have mentioned that I thought her dad was cute. Then one time hanging out with my cousin-in-law, before I married my husband, I might have told her that I thought her uncle was cute. I know, I know. WHERE is my (1) decency and (2) self control?

My husband tells me these people I had unfortunately confided in have big mouths. So I am very paranoid that Father-in-law knows I have a thing for him. This makes me slightly uncomfortable when, during family get togethers he shifts his attention towards me and asks me how my life is going and I turn bright red for no APPARENT reason, although there are plenty of unapparent reasons bubbling beneath the surface.

If my father-in-law wasn't in on my secret before, I'm pretty sure he is now. This year he friended me on facebook. I'm friends with many of my husband's adult relatives so that, in and of itself, is not weird. We've been facebook friends for a while now and it always concerns my husband when he goes to pick up our son from his parent's house and my father-in-law makes some comment about my facebook status. My husband jokes about using me to get to my sister, so I joke about using him to get to his dad- talk about dysfunctional family right?

Anyway, I was going over some old family photos in my facebook albums. There were plenty of photos of my husband's parents from our wedding that I had posted before I was FB friends with Husband's family. I realized that I had tagged my father-in-law in each picture where he appeared, even though he didn't have a FB account yet. To my HORROR I realized that I tagged him as "husband's hot dad" in ALL OF THEM. WHAT WAS I THINKING? I'm SURE Father-in-law has seen them.




Family Planning II: In Sum

Thank you all for your great comments on my post about family planning as a first year associate. They were really helpful! I don't feel so conflicted or concerned now.

The general consensus seemed to be:

1) don't wait too long
2) but get SOME experience in first (enough to make you employable/become a value to the firm)
3) find out my employer's policies re: maternity leave and whether the FLMA applies to them
4) try to cut down the commute
5) ultimately, do what you WANT
6) A lot of women are worrying about this issue too!

I think my plan will be to get a year under my belt before I'm in the situation where I have to take maternity leave. I honestly don't think I can wait 2 years though. Of course, you can't fully control babies- but it's nice knowing I have a plan either way.

Unfortunately I can't really move closer to work at this time because our home has negative equity right now (we bought before the big real estate bubble burst) and because of my husband's work. BUT there are plans in the works to get a faster ferry that may cut my commute in half- so awesome!

I always find it funny the ranges people consider to be a "mid-sized" firm. I always considered my firm of about 25 attorneys mid-sized because I previously worked in a two-attorney firm. But I've heard others, and previous commenters talk about "mid-sized" 300 attorney firms (thanks for the comment Lyn)! I guess in the world of international 500+ attorney firms, that is true. It still blows my mind that a firm can employ that many attorneys.

Thanks again everyone for your awesome advice!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Bar Prep Is Good For Something

The bar exam is really just a very very cruel form of punishment disguised as a way to prove your "competency" as a lawyer. It sucks. It sucks so bad. I'd rather pull out each of my own teeth one by one ("The Hangover" style) than continue to study for this stupid test. I wake up dreading each day. I go to bed each night dreading that I have to wake up dreading each day. My entire existence right now is full of misplaced anger wanting to take root into something and suck it DRY.

Basically, bar prep makes me hate myself. It's really THAT horrible.

But I did find one independant use for it thus far. If bar prep is entirely useless in every other way, it is at least a good way to (1) get your friends to excommunicate you or (2) entertain them with some legal drudgery.

This afternoon as we were wandering thrugh the mall, I noticed one of our cd/music stores was closing. The sign on the entrance said, "All fixtures for sale." At first I just caught a glimpse of the sign, thought "who wants a bunch of old metal cd-shelves" and continued my mental trek towards a far more exciting destination (like should I have cinnamon rolls, ice cream or bubble tea for dinner). But then I stopped. Wait. Did that sign just say "fixtures?" OMG!

I looked at my husband and released my messy diarrhea (why can't I ever spell that word without consulting a dictionary? Why was it never on one of my elementary school spelling lists?!) of the legal mouth all over him:

"Did you read that sign?!"
"It said 'All fixtures for sale."
"Do you know what?"
"I know the legal definiton of a fixture!"
"A fixture is an item of personal property intended to by phsyically and permanently attached to a piece of real property and the use of which is intended to be integrated into the use of real property!"
"Oh and you know what?"
"A tenant can generally install fixtures without a commercial landlord's consent and may ALSO remove the fixtures before the end of the leasehold estate as long as he repairs the damage caused by their removal."
"I learned that from bar bri!"

My husband just stares at me, blinking blankly.

"Ok, I just thought I'd share."

Husband then replies: "Can we have hotdogs for dinner?"

Family Planning As A First Year Associate

Family planning might as well be called "career planning" around my house.

Jacob is 16 months now and everyone around me is getting pregnant or having babies. I definately have the itch to have another baby- ok, correction, I've had the itch for over a year now- I know, I'm crazy!

We talk about not wanting our babies too far apart in age. The children in my family were two years apart. My brother was born on my second birthday- lamest present ever, ha ha. But how far is too far? I think three years is as far apart as I want my children. I mean I don't want to be 40 when I'm popping out my fourth kid (yes, I totally want 4 even after my horrible 2 hours of pushing + emergency c-section experience during which I experienced every possible problem under the sun). But I love babies and I guess that love overcomes my faulty memory.

So, it should be easy right? Go light some candles, put on some mood music, club my husband and drag him to the bedroom, right? WRONG!

See, I start work in March. I will be a first year associate at a crazy, busy litigation firm. In Seattle. My commute will be 1 hour and 20 minutes and involves a long ferry ride and a 2 mile walk- one way. I will be busy and tired and stressed. I've waited practically 6 years for a real job in a real career! This is a long time in coming and I want to do well. I want to prove myself. Aren't your first couple years as an attorney critical in developing skills and proving yoursef to your employers?

So, where does another baby fit in? I was pregnant and working as a summer associate at this firm two summers ago. I still performed well, but I didn't have the BILLABLE HOUR hanging over my head. And I was distracted ike 35% of the time. I couldn't wait to get out of there at the end of the summer and meet my baby. Then there were the million bathroom breaks, the half million snack breaks and the EXHAUSTION.

Then what happens when I have a baby? I'll want to take time off but I won't want to take time off- you know? If I was a couple years into practice I feel like this issue of family planning wouldn't be so crucial. I'd have proven myself a little, got some skills in and would feel more comfortable taking a couple months off. But I can't just start a job then request maternity leave right?

Any thoughts or experience out there on having babies as a 1 or 2 year associte? In the meantime I'll try to talk some sense into my reproductive system. Thanks.

(P.S. Is it just me or do other moms get jealous of all the attention that their friends and family get when they have a newborn? It's so immature but I get ridiculously jealous and want to have another baby right there to steal back the spot light. Now excuse me while I put myself in time out for just admitting that.)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Strange BedShowerfellows

I just totally checked out of the reality of the bar exam. My parents took Jacob overnight. Theoretically this was so I could do six practice bar exam questions, outline criminal law, and finish a lecture for criminal procedure. But, as usual, my homework to do list was much more optimistic and energetic than I was.

So, in consecutive order, I did the following instead:

1. Went on a gym date with husband and jogged for the first time in months (months and months and months). (sidebar: do they make push up sportsbras? Because as small as I am, that dern baby did a number on my body- sorry for the TMI- and no one wants to watch pancakes flapping in the wind. Ok, so very sorry for that... moving on...)

2. Went on a grocery story shopping date with my husband for an emergency stock of Skinny Cows- omg, heaven in a(n?) 150 calorie ice cream sandwich!

3. Vegged out in front of a mindless movie.

So, there's one thing I left out between #2 and #3, and that is the subject of the rest of this blog post. Between #2 and #3- the impossible happened! A rare and aweing event that only occurs every other blue moon...

I took a hot, steamy shower with my husband! Literally. It was hot. And it was steamy. Don't worry this post is staying PG-13. I think you can figure out why this is a rare event in our happily married household:

"Hey there, wanna join me in the shower as I clean away all this gym grime?" (Aren't I so tempting?) I ask while rubbing provocatively against my husband, all the while unintentionally blocking his view of the sports car images on his computer.

"Uh, maybe." He replies as he pushed me out of the way of a suped-up, shiny mustang.

I discard my gym clothes and climb into the shower. To my surprise, my husband follows behind me. SCORE! I try to show my enthusiasm by getting all friendly with him.

"Knock it off." He says. "I'm here to take a shower."

"Uh? Hello? Why do you think I asked you to shower with me?"

"OMG, the water is f*cking hot!"

"No it's not- it's perfect. Hey, now it's freezing. Turn it back up."

"Are you trying to burn my skin off?"

"Awww, you're cute when you're mad. You're also cute when you lather your hair. You look like a character from the goof troop."

"Can we stop with the commentary? Can't I just take a shower in peace please?" He pouts (he's cute when he pouts). "Please block the water while I lather."

I try to slap his bottom- you know, because it's too much to watch him rub exfoliating lavendar body wash all over his manly body.

"I said block the water! Geez!"

"Sorry" - I gave one final slap.

"Ok, now you're hogging all the water. I need to rinse."

"HEY. Now I'M freezing!" I try to join him under the waterfall.

"Knock it off, I'm trying to rinse. I still have soap on my back."

"There's no more soap on your back- now share!"


"You're cute when you do your bottom rinsing dance."

"AGAIN, enough of the commentary!"

"Wanna shave my legs?"

"No. Be sure to put the drain plug in. And block the water as I get out..... I SAID BLOCK IT- YOU'R LETTING THE WATER GET ON THE FLOOR!"


Ok so not my idea of a hot steamy shower. And this is precisely why we do not shower together- EVER.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Growing Up Is Hard- On The Parents At Least

Tonight I rocked Jacob for a couple minutes before I put him in his crib per our usual bedtime routine. He fit so perfectly in the space between my arm and my body and he rested his soft, sweet smelling baby head on my chest. We rocked back in forth in silence and he reached his hand up to pat the side of my face.

The tears just started flowing. Without notice and without explanation.

I thought right there in that moment that I didn't want Jacob to change at all. I didn't want him to grow any taller, any smarter, or become any less innocent. It's hard watching your baby grow before your eyes. You know you are helpless and you can't do a thing about it but you also can't ignore it or walk away from it. You have to live with the daily knowledge that your baby is growing up and going to eventually grow away from you.

I've lamented this inevitable processs of growth from day 1. I've cried many tears (especially post-pardum) over this very thing. And then he grows. He changes. He learns something new. And, even though I thought it was impossible, I end up loving him even more. So while I'm embracing my sadness over the fact that my baby will not be my baby forever, I have to remember that I will love him in the next stage even more. But it's still hard. Especially now.

Jacob is at such a cute age. He is obedient and joyful and loves to explore the world around him. When we ask him to do something, he does it excitedly as if he can't wait to show off the fact that he can do what we just asked him. He does it without needing to know why. Without questioning us. His mind is simple and there is something so sweet about that.

He is also into imitating everything he sees. Lately he has been putting both his hands up in the air to gesture "I don't know." And when we ask him where his binky is, he will twirl around, quickly looking on the floor. If he can't see it he does the "I don't know" gesture and looks at us so expectantly as if we have the map to all missing things.

He knows exactly what he wants and makes sure that we know it. He tells us when he wants to brush his teeth, when he wants to wear socks, when he wants to wear slippers, when he wants to ride in the car shaped shopping carts at the store, when he wants to watch "lala" (elmo) and when he wants a "nack" (snack) or "cacker" (cracker) or some "num" (drink). If Jacob has his mind set on something, oh boy, you better watch out. He'll throw his head back until he is laying on the floor and squeal in a little boy tantrum. And, of course, I just think it makes him look both cute and ridiculous at the same time.

Our all time favorite phrase that Jacob says is "my ma ma" or "my da da." It makes my heart melt when he calls me "my ma ma" and then wraps his little arms around my neck.

So seriously, if you are out there Keeper of the Time, I wouldn't mind one bit if you could slow this train down a bit. I want to soak up all the toddler Jacob I can. Now excuse me while I wipe all the tears off my laptop keyboard and try to convince my husband to have five more kids with me.


I FINALLY got my last lawschool grade in from last semester. I was hanging on to my sanity by a thread waiting for it. My cumulative GPA was barely a 3.0 and I needed a 3.0 to be cume laude. Plus, I wanted to know if I really, officially graduated and didn't fail my last exam.

I started out my lawschool career in the depths of despair when it came to grades. My grades were NOT good. But I could say I was at the top- I was at the top of the bottom half of the class. My GPA averaged 2.7. I had NEVER gotten a C before in my LIFE- not in highschool and not in college. Now I was averaging B-. I felt stupid. I felt like I could never be good enough for law school. I felt like I should drop out.

But I kept with it despite the initial shock of my grades. Second semester 1L year was not much better- but a little better. I was at a 2.8. 2L year, I had enough law school exams under my belt to kinda know how to prepare better and ended with a 2.9. The hardest part was that no matter how hard I tried I always got the same results. It was definately frustrating. And even doing a little better didn't help much because all my achievements got absorbed by my horrible 1L grades.

By 3L year, I had it down. I knew how to barely study at all and still pull a B average. At this point each A I received was cancelled out by a C. But the point I want to make is --- fear not! All you law students who feel crappy and horrible and think that you suck. It is and will be OK. Law students are pretty much the cream of the intellectual crop to begin with. If you only get C's in law school, it's because you are competing with all the most brilliant minds of your generation (or older generations). And guess what? If you do horribly 1L year, you can gradually work your way to an acceptable place by the time you graduate.

My last semester is great evidence of that. Before last semester I had a 2.91 average or something like that. But all my experience from past semesters and all the skill I obtained about taking effective notes, picking out the important things from notes, and taking an exam really paid off- finally. By then I knew how to take a law school exam and that is really the key right there. You can know all the rules by heart but if you don't know how to take a law school exam, it won't matter. That is really the key right there! So, this semester I I ended up pulling off a 3.59. I don't know how I did. But I did! I can graduate cume laude now!

I finally feel like I got the results I deserve. I finally feel recognized and appreciated. I finally feel like law school is paying off. While I have always been a proponent of grades don't matter (I got a job offer while my GPA was still a 2.9). I do appreciate how amazing it feels to get the grades you feel that you deserve.

So hang in there 1Ls and don't let your grades get you down too much. You will still learn a heck of a lot in lawschool and at the end of it you will officially be a Doctor. I am so excited to be Dr. Cee now. I can't wait to make a hotel reservation under that name and see if I get some special treatment.

"Do you know if the hotel is pager friendly?"
"I'm not getting a sig' on my beeper."

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Legal Mind Droppings

Randoms legal thoughts provoked by my bar prep studying:

Does anyone else think of crazy go-go-gadget arms when they hear the term "long arm jurisdiction."

So the Secretary of the Interior is NOT in charge of picking out white house furniture and wallpaper?

Running with the land- not quite as adventurous as running with the bulls but much safer.

"Spousal incompetency" may be an evidence term but it seems like just a nicer way of saying erectil dysfunction.

And.... "An Easement Runs Through It" the next famous legal novel.

Stay tuned for more study induced insanity as the days progress.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

You May Be A Mother In The Legal Profession When You Daily Handle Misplaced Poop, Scare Away Friends, And Try To Survive Barbri

I can say that I have been studying for 15 days straight. And when I say straight I mean continuously (hey that's just three elements shy of adverse possession!). I don't know how to describe the feeling of coming out of a two week period of constant study just to realize you still have over a whole month to go. Think about how horrible law finals are then wrap your brain around extending those two weeks of hell into two months of hell.

I have so many laws swimming aroung in my head right now that I'm afraid of talking to other people. I'm afraid that something in our conversation will remind me of a rule of law and I will feel compelled to share it right on the spot. I'm afraid of reading anything other than my barbri books in case new knowledge in equals old knowledge out. Most importantly, I am afraid of over-complaining to my husband in case doing so will terminate any chance of future reproduction I have with that man. So far I think he just takes pity on me and, above anything else right now(aside from willing the bar exam out of existence), I want everyone's pity.

It's immature, I know. But I'm so miserable in bar exam land (and I'm doing it all alone at home!) that I want everyone around me to know and feel how miserable I am. I want to share with everyone how horrible it is, this thing I have to do. And that is why I should be thankful that I am a recluse shut-in until AFTER the bar is over.

And yes, we don't have the MBE here in Washington but you know what? You should still feel sorry for me because we have INDIAN LAW. No, it's not as fun as it sounds-nothing about cool indigenous rituals, nothing about buffalos or wolf packs, no bow and arrows, and NO COWBOYS. It's all federal preemption, complex federal statutes, jurisdiction and defining Indian Country (which incidentally may include Indian land and non-Indian land). Did you know there is a difference between non-Indians and Non-member Indians. Yeah, I had to re-listen to that lecture five times.

The worst part of bar prep is that I feel like I'm letting the rest of my life fall to the wayside. My house is a mess, my laundry is in heaps around my house (and I think it may be harboring something organic) and I don't get to spend any time with my quickly growing toddler. He learns new stuff everyday at his grandparents house and I just get to hear about it after the fact. At night when I put him to bed, I just want to cuddle with him, hold him in my arms forever and try to preserve everything about him that's so precious. Lately he's been missing me so much that he wants me to rock him to sleep each night (he usually goes into his crib and falls asleep on his own). I rock him for a little but the stress of three untaken practice exams waiting for me is just to much and I have to put him down.

So I try to make the times I do have with him count. Making him breakfast and getting him ready for bed. And everyday, no matter how much I have to do, I take time out for us to eat dinner together. All this juggling and balancing is making me exhausted. And then I give Jacob his bath and he drains out all the water and poops in the tub. Then, while I'm grabbing some toilet paper to clean it up, he grabs the poop and rubs it all over his belly. WONDERFUL!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

My Favorites

Here are some of my favorite recent pictures of Jacob. I can't believe he is 1 1/2! He's got the most pinchable cheeks, even when they are covered in yogurt!

And I love the color of his eyes. Sometimes they are grey, sometimes they are blue and JUST SOMETIMES they look hazel. I've heard of blue eyes changing brown even after kids turn 2. I hope Jacob's eyes don't change!

This old fence in our yard makes for some good texture in our Jacob portraits. He loves this dog- he calls it "oof" and wants to take it everywhere.

He recently learnd how to say "moon" and to identify it in the night sky. But now he is always looking for the moon, even in broad daylight.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Things I've been telling myself all day:

"Everything I know about the law, I actually learned from Barbri." Because the first time I learned this stuff (i.e. Con Law, Corporations, Prof Responsibilities) it all seemed like hazy mush in my brain. Relearning it all again within a three hour time frame and from a bird eye's perspective, it actually is starting to make sense! Take that Business Judgment Rule!

"Minimum compentency." This is my hourly mantra. I only have to be minimally competent. I've been mediocre my whole life, how hard can this be?

And my FAVORITE quote of the year, from my all time favorite show: "I'm like the dollar store, because you know, at the dollar store you can have everything you ever really wanted in one package, for a dollar!"

I seriously forgot how much I LOVE American Idol. I forgot how addicting it is. I had to force myself to turn it off halfway through so I could finish my corporations practice problems. I hate you Bar Exam! American Idol might just be the cause of my career downfall.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Highschool Hunky Old Man Crush

I probably won't post much in the next 46 days. But during my spare time I have been diligent about reading other blogs, just too lazy to post comments. During the course of my hateful hours spent barprepping, I actually refresh my blog roll, facebook, and my two email accounts constantly hoping there will be some gift just waiting to interrupt me from the tedium of listening to lectures and outlining.

This is my random thought of the day:

Walking down the candy aisle of the grocery store (I consume like five times my normal amount of chocolate when I'm stressed) I passed a wall of magazines. This reminded me of when I was in highschool purchasing a magazine from this very same store.

People magazine had a huge cover photo of Leonardo Dicaprio. I snatched up the magazine and walked to the check out counter. During checkout, the clerk looked at the magazine, looked at my 16 year old self and smiled.

Then she said, "I guess you're buying this magazine for the hunky man on the cover." I returned her smiled and coyly replied, "yes."

Little did she know that the hunky man on the cover that was behind my purchase was NOT Leonardo Dicaprio. I guess a lot of people swooned over that guy when I was in highschool but I never saw the attraction. To me he looked like a squinty-eyed baby. I hated his hair. I hated his eyes. I hated his movies (yes, EVEN Titanic). When I first set eyes on the magazine, my retinas quickly scaned over DiCaprio's face and focused intently on the man in the upper right hand corner photo.

For in the corner of the magazine was a glaringly handsome photo of Harrison Ford. Now THAT was a real hunk. In highschool I was completely in love with Harrison Ford. Maybe I just had a thing for older guys. He was a REAL man. My ideal man. His rugged looks and crooked smile sent me over the edge.

but what is a 16 year old to do? Confess, explain and justify my true love and obsession with a much older man to a grocery store clerk? Or take the easy way out and let her believe the reasonable conclusion of her own thought process? I took the easy way out.

But my discomfort in expressing my hunky old man crush did not stop me from plastering his face all over my school pcoket cover binders. Ahhhh, Harrison Ford..... A part of me still swoons when I think of him.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

That Horrible Seven Letter Word!

Can only be: BARPREP!

I doubt anyone who has never had the pleasure of preparing for the bar exam can EVER understand how painful bar preparation is. I wonder if there is a similarly painful exam anywhere in the world? I don't know how board exams are for doctors so I really cannot compare.

So I started bar preparation this week and sometimes I feel so absolutely hopeless that I want to just abandon the idea altogether. It's like prison. Serious limitations on bodily AND mental freedom. It will last about 6-8 hours a day for 53 consecutive days. People, that's longer than the 40 days and nights Noah was stuck on that dang Ark! The horrible part is that when you are not studying or taking practice questions, the bar is all you can think or worry about. When I'm not commiting slow but inevitable suicide pouring over my bar material, I'm thinking that's exactly what I SHOULD be doing or else I'll completely fail the bar exam!

I'm doing the mobile version of barbri. It's kinda nice because I they lease you a fancy pants ipod touch and you can watch barbri lectures in (pick your favorite): (a) your jammies, (b) your panties, (c) the fleece pants and hoody you've worn ten days in a row without washing, (d) full body alligator costume with matching hat. I'm a personal fan of (c).

But barbri is so frustrating to begin with. It is full of contradictory instructions:
1. Review the subject outline before class. You can either do it or not do it but don't spend more than 30 minutes doing it.
2. Here are some already prepared outlines and checklists. You really should not use these.Create your own outlines. But I'll shove these in your face anyway.
3. Study 6-8 hours a day. You should study for any duration of time you feel necessary.
4. We provide sample student answers to past bar exam questions. They will contain wrong information but study them anyway.
5. Take the practice questions. You wont know the answers but just do it anyway.
6. Take practice bar exam questions found in the W.A.T. book. The book is called "Washington Essay Tests" (WTF? Isn't that WET not WAT?!)
7. You won't have to learn any rhymes or plays on words to remember this subject. Here is a song to help you remember the concept of Ultra Vires....

See what I mean? But my hate of barbri lives in symbiotic co-existence with my love of barbri. Because after the hell of my first week of bar prep, I've already taken ten practice exam questions and I actually can spot all the issues and cite the correct rules for Constitutional and Administration Law. Seriously, I feel like I know Con Law better now (after one week) than I ever did while taking the class. Crazy!

But seriously, this 6-8 hours of study a day, seven days a week is starting to get to me. How did other mothers survive bar prep? By the time I get myself and my baby fed, changed, and out the door and complete the 4o minute drive to his babysitters (my mom or mom-in-law) it's already noon and my day is shot.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Why I Married This Guy, Or Picking Cantaloupe: A Tutorial

My husband is (often) charming, handsome and witty (key word: often). Those are good reasons why I married him. I also married him because I knew he would produce cute babylings. But the fact that my husband worked in the produce department of a local grocery store was the real "clincher." This is what really set my heart-a-fire four plus years ago when we met. I still get weak-kneed when selects the plumbest tomatoes from a tomato mound in a matter of mere seconds. Or when he walks into a grocery store and says, "the produce here is a mess!" Or when he lectures me on the proper handling and bagging of grapes. Swoon.

The following cell phone conversation, which took place about an hour ago, is a good example of why I married my husband:

Me (freaking out): "Help! I'm standing in the produce aisle at the grocery store and there are like a million cantalopes! How do I pick the right one? Should they be green? Soft? White?!"

Husband: "No, don't pick a green cantaloupe, that means it's not ripe."

Me: "But I think they all have some green on them!"

Husband: "Ok first, locate the stem of the cantaloupe."

Me: "Huh, cantaloupes have stems? I guess that makes sense if they grow on trees right?"

I think I can hear him shaking his head in disgust.

Husband: "Well, the stem is probably cut off but locate where the stem used to be. You know, on the end of the cantaloupe."

Me: "Ok, got it- locate the stem."

Husband: "Then feel around the stem. A ripe cantaloupe will be soft around the stem. The actual stem is hard, just the areas AROUND the stem should be soft."

Me: "Ok."

Husband: "You can also try tapping the cantaloupe. If it makes a hollow sound, you know that it's ripe."

Me: "Uh, ok. Never knew this was going to be so complicated."

Husband: "You can also SMELL the area around the stem. Most cantaloupes smell like cardboard. But if your cantaloupe smells like cantaloupe, then it is ripe."

Me: "Uh, ok..."

I proceede to pick up one cantaloupe after the next, feeling them up, tapping their asses, and inhaling their cardboardy scent. I don't stop to think that I probably look like a freak. I feel like saying, "Hey there sexy cantaloupe, you have a fine ass, you feel soft and you smell great- wanna come home with me?" But there is a problem, none of the cantaloupes I see smell great, nor are they soft in the hiney.

Me: "I don't think these are ripe."

Hussband: "I doubt you'll find a ripe one. This time of year, they are rare to find. You have to take them home and wait a week for them to ripen."

Me: "That would have been nice news to know BEFORE I started molesting cantaloupe! I need it for TONIGHT!"

Husband: "You can always go to the deli and grab some freshly cut cantaloupe."

Me: "Gee, thanks."

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

This Happens A Little Too Frequently For My Sorry-A$$ Married Taste

Husband is under the covers in bed. I am lying on top of him having just passed out after a kiss. Our room is colder than a an ice fishing shack. We are wearing sweat pants and three layers of hoodies.

Me: "We haven't done it in a while." (That would be precisely two days to be exact.)

Him: "You should fix that."

Me: "YOU should fix that."

[one minute silence]

Him: "You should take your clothes off..."

[pause for effect laziness]

Me: "YOU should take my clothes off..."

[one minute silence]

Him: "This is too much work."

[one minute later]

Him: "zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz"

Me: "zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz"

There is always tomorrow night....

Disclaimer: BarBri Is Making Me Crazy

In between trips to the grocery store in my sweat pants for "HELP, MORE CHOCOLATE!" and listening to Barbri lectures on my loaner fancy pants ipod touch, I'm constantly hitting the refresh button on my school email, waiting for the long overdue emails indicating that my grades have started to trickle in. (By the way, funny story: when my son was born one of our good friends told me "Ok, just don't let yourself go and become one of those moms who does her grocery shopping in her sweats!" I didn't know what to say to that considering the fact that I had been grocery shopping in my sweats since college. How are you supposed to fit the donut in the car ride home into your belly if it that belly is being restricted by tight waisted jeans?- DUH!).

So, it's been almost a month since I took my first exam and I had yet to receive a single grade. Meanwhile, one of my best highschool friends took her physical therapist licensing exam to practice in the state AND received her passing results in the manner of two weeks. What's up with that people? The law school has taken my money, the tattered remnants of the last good years of my youth and my self-confidence. Do they want to take my sanity too? Because I'm going crazy wondering if I passed law school or not. Are they trying to wring out as much pain from me as possible? You know as a nice parting gift?

At 4:30pm, I figured I would refresh my inbox one last time for the day figuring if they don't post grades during business hours then they certainly won't do so in the middle of the night. Wistfully and doubtfully, I hit "refresh." My heart skipped a tiny beat when I noticed that I had one new message in my inbox. My heart skipped a medium sized beat when I read the subject of that email: "Grades for Pre-Trial Advocacy Have Been Posted." Oh lordy. Here we go. This was my big whopping 4 credit class and probably the greatest variable as far as my grades went this semester. You see, my professors for this class decided that, although we had to turn in actual legal work product for a pretend case, such as Motions for Summary Judgment and Discovery Requests as well as give a final oral argument in front of a REAL judge, we hadn't received ANY qualitative feedback whatsoever.

I wonder what goes through the heads of other students as they retrieve their grades- what do other students feel? My experiences have always been the same. I click on the link to retrieve my grade and my heart starts pounding wildly in my chest. I have to enter my log in information and I can barely see from the crazy pounding reverbrating through my body to the cores of my eyeballs. As I am about to click the button to load my grades onto the screen, warmth injects itself into all my veins. I seriously can feel the blood pumping through each one in my hands, in my feet, in my forehead. Then I start to tingle. It's the kind of suspenseful tingle you get right before you almost fall off a ten foot ladder but catch yourself just in time. But mostly just my bottom is tingling. Don't ask, I have no idea why. My bottom always used to tingle when my mom would kiss me goodnight as a kid. It used to tingle when my husband would kiss me when we were dating. And, it also tingles when I look up my grades- it never ever tingles outside of these three instances- weird huh?

Ok anyway, enough tingling, the page starts to load and I whisper to myself, "Please God, please God, please God!" Something about the situation always insights the deeply buried relgious zealot on me. And right before I scroll down to see the tiny little letter grade wielding oh so much importance, I pause to think. "This is it. In one second I will either be happy or sad."

The moment of truth arrives. The tingling and the heart pounding has built up into an unbearable zenith and.....


I stop a moment to think about if this is good or bad. In college, as like other law students, I received straight As all the time. A B+ in college would have made me sad. But this is lawschool, this is an entirely different ball game. Law school has stripped away most of my confidence and my high standards, leaving me to feel as if I were completely and utterly naked on a busy public street. So, my metaphorical nakedness considered, this is.... the BEST GRADE EVER! (I have received an occasional A in law school, but without fail, it has always been tempered by a big fat C).

I am happy. I think I'll scarf some more chocolates as I sit in my sweats and listen to Barbri lectures.