Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Monday, November 24, 2008

Monday Updates - 11/24/08

I am done with legal writing for the semester -- yay.

I spent most of the weekend working on my paper, reading for Torts, and starting my Civil Procedure outline, but I managed to have some downtime. Curtis and I went to Best Buy and Target on Saturday so that I could get Windows Vista for my computer (the exam software required it), and he also bought a new monitor to replace the one he gave to me. We walked down to the Farmers' Market and ate at Johnny Rockets, which was fine except that the average age in there was 14. On Sunday the Grove had their annual tree lighting ceremony so we watched the fireworks from my building.

Now that I'm at the 6 month mark, I'm going to start following this beauty regimen laid out in one of the magazines I have. It involves stuff like taking care of your hair, drinking a lot of water, and avoiding processed foods, all of which don't bode well for me. But I think it's worth the effort since it's good for my overall health and well-being. Stay tuned for a post on that.

Law School:
Now that writing is over, my main focus is outlining and practice exams. My outlines are in fairly good shape, I think I'll have a better idea of where I'm at when Thanksgiving is over. The biggest challenge is staying motivated and efficient.

Thanksgiving Plans:
I'm going to be in Mission Viejo from Wednesday night until Friday afternoon for Thanksgiving festivities. I'm hoping to see Australia while I'm there. I'm excited to eat a lot of pie, stuffing and mashed potatoes (not a big turkey fan) :-).

That's all for today - have a good week!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

6 Months - Ack!

I thought i just posted that we had 8 months to go? Planning is going well, and I'm still very excited, but to be honest I'm just amazed by how fast the time is going. In half a year I'm going to be!

On the ridiculous side but appropriate for the occasion, while I've decided to change my name (Christine Hart), I'm trying to decide what I should do about my Facebook name. Many married people will put both last names up on the website so that friends can identify them by either name ("Christine Harding Hart"). On the other hand I'm not very "findable" to begin with on Facebook so I'm not sure if it makes a difference. I know I know, a ridiculous thing to think about, but that's what happens when all you do is study case law. :-)


After sleeping 13 hours on Thursday, 9 on Friday, and 9 on Saturday night, I realized that there might be something to all of this sleep. After consulting with one of my law school friends and Google, I think I am "stress sleeping".

According to what I read, there are two ways that stress can affect sleep. In the first, you fret about what's going on in your life and lose sleep, and in the second, you suppress your feelings and end up sleeping more, because that's the only way the body can process all the anxiety. It looks like this week I am in the second category. It truly is amazing how easily I can fall asleep these days. The only problem is I get tired really easily (like at 6:30 PM, which was the time I went to bed on Thursday) and there's still a lot to get done before time finals start. So with the help of some kind of stimulant and a well-organized schedule, I'm hoping to remain well-rested and still be ready for finals by Dec. 9th.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Wedding Nightmares

Last night I had my third wedding nightmare. From what I've heard this is a common occurrence, but nevertheless it wasn't fun. This one featured hair problems. I will say that I looked really good in my dress, but my hair was not done and so I was sitting in a private room waiting to get my hair done while all of my guests were eating and while my photographer was on the clock.

I'm hoping these dreams don't increase in intensity as we get closer to the date, because they're very scary!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

1 month

In one month from now, I'll be done with my first semester of law school! It's crazy how fast the time has gone, and it's crazy how much I need to learn/understand/memorize in the next four weeks.

In other news, I was very happy that I wasn't sore today when I went for my walk/run. I'm trying to go 6 days a week but I had to take 3 days off because the air quality from the fires. I think that those 3 days were good for my legs to heal because I've been really sore/still lately. One thing I've found that is really good for my upper body is Wii Boxing. My skill level is about 720, I haven't lost a fight yet, but the problem is the next day I'm really sore, so I'm hoping I can do it more often during the week so I can still lift my arms the following day.

That's all for now :-)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Goodbye to TV

So yesterday I spent the evening not working on my outline like I had hoped, but on getting a last binge of TV in before life gets even busier. I caught up on Gossip Girl (4-5 episodes, I lost count), watched Dancing with the Stars, and then got rid of the season passes for all of my daily shows: PTI, Daily Show, Colbert, Oprah, and The View. I'm trying to cut out as many potential distractions as possible, and I'm also trying to make sure I have enough space on my DVR to save episodes of Brothers & Sisters and Desperate Housewives to watch during the winter break. At least I feel like I got a good "last hurrah" in before I have to focus 90% on school.

In other news, the air quality was good enough to open a window last night so I was able to fall asleep (it was really hot in my room w/o any windows open and I don't have any windows in there). I'll start walking again tomorrow morning.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Monday Updates - 11/17/08

I can't believe we're already in the middle of November. Seriously -- I'm not sure how I'm going to know everything i need to know in the matter of 4 weeks. Quick update today:

So.Cal. Wildfires/Weekend - For those of you not residing in SoCal, we're dealing with some pretty nasty fires that have destroyed a ton of homes and structures. I haven't been personally affected, other than than the air pollution that is all over the region. I stayed indoors most of Saturday and all of Sunday but today is much better. From what I've heard the fires are quickly becoming contained, but they are still worried about the wind turning and the fires moving back towards residential areas.

Weekend: Curtis was around, so we went to my new favorite restaurant on Friday, Wood Ranch at the the Grove. On Saturday we went to Louis' to watch the Stanford-USC game (yes USC won, but we still have 1 more opportunity to become bowl-eligible if we beat Kal on Sat.), and spent the rest of the weekend cleaning up the apartment and studying.

This week will be taken up working on my open research memo (due Monday) and outlining for Torts and Civ Pro ;-) Have a good week!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Stanford v. U$C

I've been getting a lot of questions about who I'm rooting for in the big game tomorrow. Let me make this clear:


I am a Stanford Cardinal fan, I will always be a Stanford Cardinal fan, no matter that graduate schools I attend, no matter what schools Curtis attends, and no matter what schools our children attend. :-)

(I feel better now)

Have a good weekend!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Tuesday Updates - 11/11/08

Law School: It's starting to get tiring again, as I'm trying to get my outlines done for contracts and torts this week so i can take on Civ Pro and Law, Language and Ethics this weekend. Class is still fairly interesting, but overall I'm in study mode.

Wedding: the Save the Dates got here last week and I sent most of them out yesterday and today. I'm very happy with the way they turned out. I need to finalize the bridesmaid dresses this week, because there is a discount opportunity at the end of the month, and I think Curtis is going to start looking at tuxes pretty soon :-). I set up an appointment with my florist on Jan 8, the start of I'm sure a week of wedding planning, which is good since I won't have much else to do.

Next Summer: Starting Dec. 1 I can reach out to employers for 1L summer jobs. I want to either work for a judge or work at a law firm in LA or OC. There are advantages and disadvantages for both, but I do need to decide fairly quickly if I want to go for a federal judge externship. You have to apply early since it's competitive, and if you get an offer, you have to take it. I haven't decided yet what I'm going to do, but I'll keep the blog updated.

That's all for now. Have a good week!

Friday, November 7, 2008

The Blog is now Blue!

Yes, I changed it, Christine's "world" is no longer pink (in reality, my world still is pink and the blog is an exception). I like to change the picture to reflect the season and have a fresh start, so enjoy =). I took the picture in January 2004 from the charter bus on our way back from Tahoe.

Finding Time

One thing about being a law school is the allocation of time is a lot different than undergrad or a full-time job. For one thing, at the beginning of the semester you're a lot busier than you are in undergrad. Maybe it was just a 1L fall quarter thing, but I'm currently looking back at my notes from the first week of Contracts and I clearly had no idea what was going on. Because of that it takes a ton of time to read and understand the cases. And between learning in class, carrying your books around, getting to know your peers, and unpacking, it takes a lot out of you.

Then after the first month, the reading suddenly gets easier. It's still voluminous, but it goes a lot faster and it's easier to glean the important facts, rules, and rationales from each case. Plus, you don't need to get everything, because the prof. usually goes over it in class - you just have to have a good faith familiarity with the case.

But then it becomes November and the task you've been dreading - outlining, suddenly takes over your sub-conscious. In between doing the reading and going to class, you also have to make these outlines to make sure you understand and memorize everything you've learned. These outlines can take days or they can take weeks, and they have to be done well in order for them to be truly effective. And once Thanksgiving hits, you're in full practice-exam mode, taking as many practices exams as possible to get the endurance aspect down.

So how do you fit them into the schedule? I'm currently struggling with that question as I continue working on my contracts outline (the first of 4). I think I'm going to have to give something up so that I'm forced to make the time and still get sleep/exercise. Here are the candidates that I'm willing to consider:

1. Facebook - probably a half hour to an hour per day.

2. TV - this is a big one - 2-3 hours per day. I'm thinking about doing it by show: I can watch Stanford Football and Dancing w/ the Stars but everything else sits in the DVR until Dec. 19.

3. Eating out - Curtis and I probably go out to eat 1-2 times per week, and that takes up double the time that eating at home or getting take out would take. Plus it's expensive.

4. Sleep - I'm seriously considering training my body to operate on less sleep. I currently need between 8 and 8.5 hours of sleep per night to function. If I could somehow drop to 7, or even drop to 6 plus an afternoon nap, that might increase my overall productivity. As I've told many people, my best quarter at Stanford was the one in which I took a nap everyday.

Anyway, those are the options. Chances are TV is definitely getting cut, and I might try the sleep thing, we'll see how it goes. And don't be surprised if I'm not on Facebook from Thanksgiving until Dec. 19. And I will probably do 1 short Monday Updates a week, just as a little respite from studying. I can't believe how fast this has gone!

Have a good weekend :-)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

2 New Pictures :-)

This one was from last night, just before CNN called the election for Obama (Notice our matching "I voted" stickers)!

This one was actually from a few weeks ago, just before we finally went to a "Bar Review" in LA. (That's code for a law school bar night - they happen every Thursday)

Monday, November 3, 2008

Monday Updates - 11/3/08

No class until 1:20, so I have some time to do a quick post between contracts reading!

Very interesting weekend, only because it involved extremes. Thursday night I went to the Halloween Bar Review thrown by the law school in Hollywood. That was pretty fun actually, I purposely did not go crazy since I was going out the following night, and I had class on Friday morning at 10:30. I went dressed as an angel with an Obama t shirt on (I was sent by God as a surrogate for Obama...get it?). Then on Friday night I went to my first mansion party in LA! I dressed as an angel again, but without the Obama shirt (didn't want to be too political). Unfortunately, I overdid it because I was really sick Saturday morning until about 5PM. Luckily I had 2 friends who stayed over with me to make sure I was okay and Curtis came over in the afternoon to take care of me. The good thing is I felt pretty normal again by Saturday night and got a lot of sleep (I was very grateful for the extra hour).

Sunday I worked on my paper all day and turned it in at 6, and then Curtis and I went to the BBQ place we love at the Grove (Woodranch) and I had baby back ribs, baked beans, a baked potato, and pomegranate lemonade! It was delicious and I still have some leftovers! So, other than those 5-6 hours or so on Saturday, I had a good weekend :-).

Law School:
Law school is starting to get intense, because in order to prepare for our exams, we create these massive outlines. I started my contracts outline on Thursday and I'm hoping to put a few good hours into it tonight. But let me tell you -- I thought I knew what law school was like but I was completely unaware that we are supposed to do these outlines. I understand the rationale, it's just a big job to do. Plus, my second Legal Writing paper is due in 3 weeks, and I want to put a lot of time into that to make sure that I get a good score. But I can't believe that it's already November and we have finals in a little over a month! It's just going so fast.

That's all for now, have a good week!