Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hey MacCormick! When this hat flies in the air, you better have your butt in gear.

Me: It's summer, you're getting some sun. My skin town is usually darker than yours.
Truman: I think I'm getting the same amount of sun. You're just getting less.

Ah, yes, I dream of days when I didn't sit in the office watching endless hours of BarBri videos (seriously, why did I not choose to study for the bar during winter?). I'm doing 90% of my bar studying at home. I mostly study here so I can try and talk Emmy out of hosing down our living room. Well, there's a small problem. Our place doesn't have air conditioning and it has been about 100 degrees in Denver this week. Moral of the story: pants are overrated. In fact, so are bras. I'm basically a slightly more productive Homer Simpson, watching a screen and getting depressed in my undies. Good times.

Here are some pictures from a few weeks ago when I was still pretending to have a life.

 Checking another one off the list! We went to Red Rocks to watch Footloose on the big screen. So fun! There was popcorn, there were friends, there was hooting at Kevin Bacon, and there was dancing in the aisles! I know it's not terribly stiff competition at this point, but it's definitely one of the most fun things I've done this summer.

 There was an opening band, Julia wasn't impressed. 

 When the band blows you have no choice but to try to catch popcorn in your mouth...I think Jane failed in this one. 

 Ah, remember when I used to have time to shower and put make up on before leaving the house? Whatever, at least I put on pants and a bra. 

 Karl and Nicole get the prize for bring the best snacks. 

Alright, only two more hours of online bar prep videos to watch tonight. Better get my butt in gear. 

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Totally Normal

Do you ever have those moments where you realize that the things you do are not the things that other people do? I had a friend in college who looked at me in utter amazement one day and said, "why are you eating the skins of the edamame." Um, because normal people just eat the beans, friend. I've had a couple edamame moments myself today.

I think I'm going to give Truman one of his Christmas presents. 
So, yes, I start my Christmas shopping in April. It's true. I stand by the idea that this is brilliant. You have eight months to bargain hunt and winter stuff is way cheaper if you but it in, say, June. Plus, it spreads out the financial hit. And! it makes for way less stress come December since all my shopping has been done for a couple months. Here's the problem, I can be a total little kid when it comes to excitement about Christmas presents. I'm not jonesing to open my own gifts but I cant wait for other people to open the stuff I bought them. I've only been hording it under my bed for like 6 months, you know.

Anyhow, that brings me to today's plan. I ordered this really super awesome thing for Truman and it came in the mail today. I intended it to be a Christmas present, but waiting another 5 months to give it to him seems way unnecessary. The thing is, if I give it to him tonight he is going to think I'm really crazy since this gift is particularly winter-y. Oh,and I was going to wrap it. Getting the bows out in July will totally make me seem like a normal balanced adult.

I'm considering going to Chick-fil-A ... to study. 
Classy, right? So I'm pretty much just working or studying these days. I was doing all my studying in the newly fancied up office but not leaving the house can get a little claustrophobic (and the dogs can get a little annoying) so I've started heading out to coffee shops.

Truman is busy again tonight which means it's night two of single girl food for me (I usually end up eating rice or cereal or bacon when left to my own devices). Cooking for one blows and I don't really have the time to spend more than 10 minutes cooking food. And, lets be honest, Chick-fil-A might be the sole reason I'm not a vegetarian. I feakin' love me some little nuggets. Well driving the 10 minutes over there and 10 minutes back violates my don't-spend-more-than-10-min-prepping-food rule. But! If I go over there and know, like going to a coffee shop...then it totally doesn't violate the rule right? And I don't have to feel guilty about spending money on eating out (when there's perfectly good bacon and rice at home) because it's like a cost of studying. When you go to a coffee shop to study you have to buy something in order to perch your bum in a seat for four hours. So the $5 I spend on the kids meal is pretty similar to the couple bucks I was going to spend on a chai right?

Even if I don't set up bar study central next to the children't play place and the awkward cow ads, just the fact that I've spent this much time debating the option of studying in a chick-fil-a makes me a little nutty, huh? Well, I might as well be nutty and have chicken.

Monday, June 27, 2011

All My Friends are Getting Married...

...I'm just getting drunk.

Ok, that's only sort of true. I'm usually the designated driver. Click it or ticket, people. None the less, 'tis the season. Apparently it's also preggo season. All our friends who aren't getting married seem to be incubating fetuses (feti?). I'm not drinking the water.

Anyhow, this weekend we attended James & Amber's beautiful wedding. We felt so privileged to be part of their special day.

They hosted an intimate wedding on Saturday afternoon. It was held in the round on a bridge above a little lake in a public park. They wrote their own vows and pretty much had the whole place in tears before ever getting to "I do." 

As I make my way through the wedding circuit I find myself admiring wedding ceremonies that have an element of realism. We all know I'm a big ol' mush. I love Love. So I'm down with all the "forever"s and "always"s  but I also find myself admiring when the officiant or the couple talks about the amount of hard work they are commuting to. Is that morbid? 

Merriam-Webster defines romantic as "marked by the imaginative or emotional appeal of what is heroic, adventurous, remote, mysterious, or idealized." When you think about it, promising to go into the world together forever, despite the fact that you know that you will both grow and change over the next 40 years is pretty idealistic. If agreeing to put someone else's needs ahead of (or at least equal to) your own, to grow with them, and to prioritize each other is possibly the most heroic thing I can thing of. To look at an astronomical divorce rate and still want to commit, to do it, and to take on the world as partners is a pretty awe inspiring endevour. So I guess to answer my own questions, including a bit about hard work in a ceremony isn't morbid at all, it's romantic. 

During the ceremony James promised to "stand up for, with, and up to" his new wife. It stuck me as a good blend of honesty, romance, and humor for wedding vows. I think that's the stuff love, commitment and forever are made of. Congrats James & Amber! 

 The only picture I took of us. Must start handing the camera to other people. Also, my hair has some blond in it now, more pictures to come. 

 Truman and Jeremy, groomsman and wedding site protector extraordinaire (he may have had to call the cops on some wedding site interlopers just before the ceremony).

 The sprinklers went off just as we were exiting the ceremony. The father of the bride's shoe took one for the team. 

 God I love dessert tables. 

 Details at weddings make me happy. Ok, festive details in general make me happy. 

 Mr. & Mrs. (and apparently someone being excised in the background).

Weddings = love, tasty treats, and dancing. What more could you want?

Friday, June 24, 2011

Balls, Pride, Crash and Triumph

How much are your (used) balls, sir? 

You know you're a new(ish) dog owner when you get really excited to find a used sporting goods store that sells used tennis balls 3 for a dollar. If you don't own a giant neurotic dog you may not know that tennis balls are a dollar each at the pet store and about fifty cents on ebay (but you have to forty at a time). Between Emmy and Truman we loose about 3 balls a week. It's the little things in life, but Tru and I were both pretty stoked to discover the used tennis balls...then again, we'd both just had a couple glass of wine (for $2!) at happy hour so that may have had something to do with it.

"We're directly across from Dykes on Bikes."

I often have moments where I realize that my "normal" is not the same as other (less cool) people's version of "normal." I don't believe in normal, hence the quotes. Anyway, last Sunday we were standing with my church waiting to march in the pride parade when the woman next to me said into her cell phone, "Yeah, we're on the other side of the park from where you are. You know, directly across the grass from Dykes on Bikes." No one around noticed. Dykes on Bikes was a perfectly useful reference point. I wondered how many times my family members or law school classmates have used that sentence. Philosophically speaking, having Dykes on Bikes as a reference is kind of awesome.

On a Less Happy Note 

Despite my week consisting of long days and still managing to fall behind on bar prep, I think Truman managed to take the crappier week prize. His grandfather passed away last week. Bill lived a good life and it was his time...but that doesn't make loosing your grandfather any more pleasant. A bunch of work deadlines are coming up which is pretty stressful and he and I have had our own squabbles about his work situation. So, all in all it's been a pretty stressful week. Which is something his body might be trying to tell him. On Tuesday he had gotten up early to take Emmy out and fainted (like topple over fainted) int he restroom. I heard a thud but I assumed it was the rambunctious dog. Needless to say I was pretty scared when he crawled back into bed with blood on his face.

He's fine. Other than a pair of glasses there were no major sacrifices to the high stress/low blood sugar gods. Well, he does have some minor chips to two teeth and a gash inside his lip (where the teeth hit). It will definitely merit some dental work once his lip heals but it's a very small consequence in comparison to how bad a fainting spell like that could have been. I'm very happy that it wasn't anything serious and that I was able to work from home to make sure he was feeling better.

I Officially Passed! 

No, not the bar exam. And by the way, studying for that totally blows. I take it at the end of July.

I passed all my law school classes! A mere month after graduation the law school finally got around to inputting my grades. Beacons of efficiency and competency, I tell you. Anyhow, I passed. Woot! In fact, it may have been my best semester GPA yet, for whatever that's worth.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Cat Gets Caught Barking by Humans and Resumes Meowing

If Roxy could do this in order to get Emmy in trouble, I have no doubt that she would.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Goodwill Hunting

I'm studying for the bar and (mostly) working at home these days. Which means I spent a lot of time in our office. Our home office used to look like this, which is why it made the list of things to do this year

The other side of the room has Truman's desk, which we're not talking about. 

Over the last couple of months I found an awesome desk on craigslist, conned Truman into helping me stencil the office (you know, at one in the morning, which is totally logical once you think about how busy we are...what, you don't intricately stencil your office after midnight?), and I pretty much spray painted every decorative piece I could find at goodwill. Here are the pictures of our all-over-stencil adventure:

Crazy humans, why are you moving all the furniture after bed time?

You know they love you when they even help to put things back together the next morning...and let you take silly pictures for the blog. 

So much better! Yay for work space! 

And then, as a bonus, today I discovered that I'm a trend setter. Yep.

In the mail came Pottery Barn and West Elm catalogs which featured the very same items I just decorated the office with! But at 10x the price of course, since everything in my office is from the thrift store. Check it out, I'm kind of proud of myself. 

 West Elm Lanterns - $8 - $49 

Pottery Barn - $49 

ARC - $3

Thrifted for a total of $20 plus spray paint. 

And here is my favorite project. I found an awesome frame and matting cleverly disguised as ugly dentist office decor at goodwill. Some pliers and a can of green spray paint later, it is what the exact thing I had in mind for my favorite picture of my grandma. My grandma was lookin' fierce before lookin' fierce was cool.

Now, I just have to find some more stuff to spray paint green. 



And my least favorite part of the office...doesn't my summer look fun? God, studying for the bar exam sucks. 

All for the low price of $2,000

Weekly Wackadoodles

At the blog I run for a living (how cool is that!) we do a weekly roundup of feministy legal news. I usually have no shortage of news stories I personally want to share so I thought I'd mirror the concept here. No guarantees I'll remember to do it every week...but here's to trying.

The crazies in CA think Judge Walker is to gay to be a judge. Awesome. By that logic no Christians, Blacks or Latinos should be judges either right? Good times.

A really awesome school for teen moms is closing. You don't have to have seen every episode of teen mom (um, yep, I'm still Tivoing) to know that this is a terrible horrible no good idea.

Jane Fonda is...73 and still looking super fly! I want to be her when I grow up. Do you think they let everyone hold up a rally fist in their mug shot?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Shake, Rattle...Roll?

You ever have those days were the commercials on the radio are just MAGICAL? No? It's just me? Well, maybe you should be paying more attention to the radio because today, it was pretty amazing.

First was my all time favorite, the don't shake your baby commercial (also did you know you could go to for resources!?). Here's what I wonder though, does the commercial actually work? Maybe it's just me, but I don't think of the baby shakers of the world as the most rational people. Are there really people out there who were going to shake their baby, but heard the commercial and decided it was a poor idea? Or, better yet, did they listen to the commercial but think, "You know, this not shaking the baby stuff is interesting but I'm not convinced. Their stats could be off. I'm going to need some more resources on this one." And then go out and visit f'ing

I think the guy who goes to the baby shaking website might actually be scarier than the one who just goes straight to the baby shaking. Frightening shit.

The next commercial was even more magical. It was a 1-800 number looking for volunteers to test a new kind of birth control. I'm not a doctor but testing birth control sort of sounds like testing shark bite repellent...there really only seems to be one way to know if that stuff works. I almost called. I want to know what happens if it doesn't work. Do they pay for the resulting baby? Its college tuition? What the fuck does that waiver look like?

Also, I'm pretty sure that the people who sign up for the birth control study are the same ones who look into shaking their baby.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Why I Miss LA...

... I'm pretty sure it's the only place on the planet with a Whole Foods and a 99 Cent Store in the same parking lot.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Girl has Expensive Taste

Back in April, when I was interviewing for my current job, I splurged on some new shoes. I really needed black pumps to go with all my career-lady clothes and my former payless pair had seen better days. So off I went to DSW and of course the pair that fit the best and were the most comfortable were $80 Ralph Laurens. Generally, I don't spend that much on shoes but I needed them before I got on a plane a day later. So I decided to get them (and didn't get any blisters!).

Last weekend I left a few pairs of shoes in the living room and didn't really think about it because my $10 knock off converse and $15 crocs had been sitting in the living room for weeks without Emmy touching them. She periodically chews things but never shoes. 

Oh, wait, until there are nice shoes in the picture. 

Thankfully, Truman is wonderful and saved the day by replacing them for me. 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Studying with the Animals

Studying for the bar is exhausting...just ask the animals. Well, the dogs think it's exhausting (and yes, Emmy stole the cat bed). Roxy thinks it's boring, no pen is safe. 

They better get their acts together, I'm not sure that they are going to be able to pass the bar. 

Monday, June 6, 2011

We Adopted a Sociopath

–noun Psychiatry .a person, as a psychopathic personality, whose behavior is antisocial and who lacks a sense of moral responsibility or social conscience.

We adopted a sociopath. Thankfully, we got a friendly one. Olivia and I had sort of worked our groove out. We know the rules of engagement and we know how to behave around each other. If Olivia is going to do something she's not suppose to (1) she's sneaky about it (which is pretty humorous) and (2) when I catch her she sulks and gives me little doggy apology eyes.

Emmy is an entirely different ball of wax. She shows no remorse or acknowledgement when Truman or I am unhappy. I've yelled, I've tackled, I've pinned her down...and she just wags her tail. The situation usually goes something like this, "Emmy! No digging!!! BAD DOG! BAD DOG! NO DIGGING!!!!" Emmy: Wags tail, wonders if I would like to dig with her.

I realize that none of this is terribly unique. What I do think is interesting is that this lack of results doesn't actually stop either Truman or me from yelling. We're still out there screaming in the backyard. What is it about punishment that we think will make us feel better? After all, it must be about punishment because a carrot would work much better than a stick and yet, we insist upon the stick. So it's not about results, it's not about actually making the situation better it's about....justice? habit? our own unresolved anger problems?

This of course got me thinking...what else in the world is like this? I feel like there are models here for child rearing, romantic relationships, and our need to wage international war. Are we just not happy until we've retaliated...regardless of whether or not it actually gets us to a better place in the end?

Emmy has the horrible habit of barking endlessly and running back and forth in the mud along the fence when the neighbor's dogs are out. Truman and I used to scream, yell, and chase. Resulting in both of us falling in the mud when the dog dodged us. It's cute. And by cute I mean maddening and embarrassing. Amidst the barking, the dog still doesn't come when I yell at her. This morning, instead of yelling I offered her her bacon in exchange for quietly coming inside. It turns out that Emmy subscribes tot he universal truth that bacon is way better than barking at the neighbor's dog. She may be a sociopath but even sociopaths love bacon. Admittedly, offering bacon seems a little counterintuitive. It feels like I lost. My dog did something bad, I gave her bacon. This isn't justice! Bad dogs shouldn't get bacon! They don't deserve bacon! 

But, what we sometimes forget is that seeing it as "loosing" is only one way of seeing the situation. Don't forget: Emmy came in and I didn't fall in the mud. And really, isn't that what I wanted all along? Is it really so terrible (unjust?) that I offered a compromise? That I gave up the notion that I deserved to yell and chase?

What might the world be like if we all leaned to be OK with offering bacon rather than slinging mud?

Friday, June 3, 2011

New Blog, New Goals (or, do you want to come over to our house and build a fort?)

A couple nights ago Truman and I came up with a list of things we want to do in the next know, to celebrate our new (and more fun) post-grad school life. The list ended up getting a little unwieldy but whatever, I'm pretty sure we can two-birds-one-stone this business. You know, like have our neighbors over form some eggplant parm and to build a fort in our living room. I'm sure they will think that was perfectly normal. Good times.

1. Teach Emmy to walk on a leash.
2. Go backpacking near Lake Charles.
3. Fly a kite.
4. Take a golf lesson.
5. Ride an alpine slide.
6. Go ice skating.
7. Soak in the Orvis hot springs. Done! Read about it here.
8. Enjoy some wine tasting on the western slope. Done! Read about it here.
9. See the aspen leaves when they are actually turning (rather than the week after they fall). Done! Read about it here.
10. Go on a hut trip.
11. Spend the night at a B&B. Done! Read about it here.
12. Spend at least 10 evenings on rooftop patios.
13. Take the tour at Celestial Seasonings.
14. This one is whole life doesn't need to be on the interwebs, ok?
15. Pretend it's 1957 by hosting a progressive dinner party.
16. Take a salsa lesson and spend the evening dancing.
17. Find the best mojito in Denver.
18. See the Pirate exhibit at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. Done! Read about it here.
19. Dress up and check out a Denver Cruiser ride. Done! Read about it here. 
20. Buy something cheap or knock-off-y at the Mile High Marketplace Flea Market. Done! Read about it here.
21. Make cake balls.
22. Make homemade ice cream.
23. Build a fort in the living room and protect it from Emmy.
24. Bike to brunch. Done! Read about it here. 
25. Relax under the stars at an event at Red Rocks. Done! Read about it here.
26. Check out a local band at Swallow Hill.
27. Teach Olivia to shake.Done! Read about it here.
28. Check out Slam Nuba at the Crossroads Theater.
29. Go to Yoga, more than twice.
30. Learn (basic) swing dancing together.
31. Read a (basic) CRT book together.
32. Scrapbook.
33. Talk a friend into trusting us to babysit their child.
34. Feel small at Dinosaur Ridge.
35. Volunteer at the Habitat for Humanity pumpkin patch.
36. Go to Frozen Dead Guy Days.
37. Eat fried food at a county fair. Done! Read about it here. 
38. Pretty up the home office. Done! Read about it here.
39. One random act of kindness each month.
40. Make baked Eggplant Parmesan.
41. Come up with a creative way to say I love you each month.
42. Have dinner with our neighbors.

Oh, and you're all invited to join in for the fun! Well, except for maybe number 14. But, serious, come over, teach our dog to shake and lend us your baby!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

California Love

I was in California this weekend for Alison's wedding and, I know I say it a lot, but damn do I love sunshine. I got in at the crack of dawn on Friday, worked in the world's noisiest Starbucks all morning. Realized I was way over my part time hours for my job and headed out to soak up some vitamin D. I had a pretty fantastic date with myself reading and playing tourist in Balboa Park, followed by catching up with Rachel when she got off from work.  

On Saturday I headed up to Claremont for Alison's wedding in her parent's beautiful back yard.

On Sunday, Lindsay and I drove up to Redondo Beach to meet Tiffany for breakfast. We also dropped off thank you gifts for my grandpa and aunts.

My body got mad at me for stressing it out...and immediately got sick upon arrival in Denver but the trip was totally worth it. On this trip I realized that California is about sunshine, but it's also about girlfriends. A girl needs her girlfriends. It was nice to laugh, to reconnect, to talk about silly things (and some slightly more serious things), to realize it's easy to be a feminist when you have so many amazing women in your life. I swear, if I could live on a commune with all my favorite people it might even be worth growing my own food (or whatever people on communes do).