Thursday, October 31, 2013

quick takes

...on thursday! hooray for late posts.

i'm going to have to agree with namby pamby on the fact that lawyers need a CLE on costume propriety...not just for court but also for the office. and that CLE should break it down for folks in big law, even though i think that's probably a pretty clear "no, don't wear a costume", and for folks in small offices where the line is a bit more blurred.

you guys, i forgot how much shoulder-burnage goes on in level 2 of the thirty day shred. i guess this is to help get rid of that awkward area right at/below your shoulder blades? regardless, with all the plank work i guess it's a good thing we moved into the attic from the roof deck this week, even if it was only because i'm a wimp and mornings are cold.

even though i was absolutely slammed with work last week, i was so thrilled to spend my evenings {working} next to my fella. and to snatch a few days of vacation in the san francisco bay area when we headed up there for a wedding. time with him is always my favorite, and we got a great mix in of tourist time in sf:

lazy saturday mornings, and celebrating with friends at the rehearsal & wedding:

there's a lot of halloween spirit going on. wearing a costume at work makes me nervous, and my version of partying involves my couch, a ginger beer {nonalcoholic}, my fella and some good tv, but i can definitely get behind the innocent little ones dressing up to their heart's content, and the neighborly welcome of trick-or-treating. howeverrrr. the closest i came to a costume this month was the photobooth at my friends' fun wedding, so...happy halloween!

31 days of cards

i decided to jump on the 31 day train. i even linked up with the personal endeavors category. i liked the intentionality behind the idea. for me, it wasn't every day of october, because i didn't think this was about creating a burden for yourself. it was about creating a benefit, for yourself or for others. so this month i snail-mailed as many home-made cards as i could manage to make! i know the joy i feel when i get mail, so it only seemed right to spread that joy.

Monday, October 28, 2013

recipe: packet grilled radishes

16-20 oz. radishes
2 tbsp. butter
2-4 cloves garlic
salt, pepper & garlic powder to taste

slice radishes, then dice garlic cloves and butter into small pieces. place all ingredients onto a double layer of foil. sprinkle with salt, pepper & garlic powder, and mix. fold foil into a secure packet. grill for 20 minutes or until radishes are tender.

recipe: gazpacho

2 large ripe tomatoes, chopped
1 48 oz. can tomato juice
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 seedless cucumber, seeded & chopped
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 jar roasted red bell peppers, drained & chopped
1/4 cup lime juice
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. hot sauce (optional)

add half the solid ingredients and all liquid ingredients to a blender. blend until nearly smooth. add remaining solid ingredients to blender and pulse until desired texture. salt & pepper to taste. cover & chill 4+ hours before serving. best when served with a heaping helping of avocado!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

quick takes

i forgot to post a recipe this week because i was busy hanging out with my fella. in between research/memo projects. because i am drowning in federaljudicialopinions and statutoryinterpretations and howdotheseallgotogethertosaywhatweneeditto moments and can i just say i am really glad i got reading glasses? anyway. how about two next week? thaaanks.

day 8 of jillian's 30 day shred at 7 am with whoever shows up for the party. i am really glad i'm doing it, because exercise is good for me. i'm glad i'm doing it in the morning {really!}, because it gets me up and guarantees i move at least 20 minutes during the day. and i am really glad i am doing it on a monday-friday, break saturday and sunday pattern because after 5 solid days, that break is a glorious thing.

short week this week - two of my good friends are getting hitched this weekend, so my fella and i are headed to the bay area for a weekend of san francisco sights and wedding events. looking forward to putting a pause on work for a few days to enjoy some quality time!

so like i said, i am swamped with work. swamped. like, this is my last quick take for today swamped because i just got an email during lunch that they need a memo in brief format by "end of day".  but i'm quickly gaining familiarity with rule 45 and 34 of the federal rules of civil procedure {my civ pro prof would be so proud}, so that's cool... third-party and electronic discovery are my friends? 

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

quick takes

i almost forgot it's wednesday. it's gonna be short, and it probably won't be interesting to anyone but me. but if that didn't turn you away, read on...

my mornings are now starting at 6:55 am. i go vertical, grab the phone, hit snooze, and read e-mails and blogs in an attempt to actually wake up until the alarm goes off again at 7:03. at which point i throw on work out clothes, grab my laptop and meet various family members on the roof deck for a morning round of jillian michaels's 30 day shred. being outdoors makes it almost bearable to be lifting weights and jumping-jacks in that hour i always slept through just days ago. we're rocking this schedule 5 days a week, a six-week 30DS.

this is the second football season in a row i have felt the need for a game-day dress, yet done nothing to make one. someone get me some initiative. and some inspiration?

less than 72 hours till my guy is here for a solid week! these are happy times ahead, folks :)

the federal government is behind on legislating about technology and related privacy issues. but who's surprised? the stored communications act (title ii of the electronic communications privacy act) was enacted back in 1986. before the internet was a real thing, and long before email and social networking. there have been no amendments - zero - to the federal legislation dealing with our stored electronic data since then. the courts have filled in the gaps as best they can in the interim.

i went to visit the eye doc this weekend for my 6-ish month LASIK-round-2 follow up. 20/20 distance, 20/15 close, and the reading glasses are keeping stare-at-screens-headaches at bay. oh, and night-time eye drops are a really good thing because apparently your corneas swell at night and can stick to your eyelids and opening dry eyes can potentially cause corneal abrasions. which sounds super swell and not painful or problematic. at. all.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

a morning person

project become-a-morning-person commenced at 7am yesterday...

Monday, October 14, 2013

recipe: cinnamon walnut bread

it's been a while since i made this cinnamon walnut bread, but i've got the walnut butter {homemade!} ready to go for tonight. walnut butter isn't ideal for producing a tall, sandwich-size bread, so don't expect a lot of rise in the loaf. but! combined with the flavor, the petite size of this loaf makes a slice perfect for a sweet snack.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

quick takes

friends re-runs are great. i appreciate the episodes so much more now than i did when they originally aired. which, when you think about it, makes a whole lot of sense, since i was finishing high school when the final season aired. i might just have to do a marathon-watch next time regular-season shows take a hiatus...

my guy is amazing and a fantastic listener, and got me this adorable set of coasters adorned with oscar wilde quotes for my birthday. before you go wondering how i could get all giddy over coasters, it wasn't about the coasters. well, that's not entirely true. the coasters are amazing and full of oscar wilde wit. but the point is, he got them for me not because i asked for the, but because i raved about them, and he remembered that. he's a keeper, that one.

have you heard about the imaginary well-dressed toddler daughter? i just discovered this glory. and before you click the link and get all snarky about how i sent you to look at photographs of children for no good reason, read the captions. they make it wholly worth your while to stare at hipster-styled small fries. i love so many of them, but this one is particularly spot-on...

i got a kitchen aid! the neighbors set it outside their garage in the "we're moving" give away pile, and my parents snagged it in case i was interested. free kitchen aid?! interested?! yes please!! and while it came with just one attachment, kitchen aid is fabulous and makes all their attachments compatible with all their machines. win!

i have been wanting to expand my stamp collection - especially with this 31 day card challenge - but am less than inclined to shell out the money for stamps from craft stores, especially when all i'm looking for are simple shapes/patterns. i remembered a blog post about carving your own stamps, so a diy effort seemed to be in order. i bought a 3-pack of erasers for $2, busted out the exacto knife and {carefully} carved a few basic-design stamps! {don't tell on me but i may have started e-browsing stamp carving kits...}

people. it took twenty-something years {well...more like ten-something. because i didn't have a computer when i was a small-fry. but go with it.}, but i figured out how to get more than one line of text into each excel-spreadsheet box. go ahead and call me a nerd, but considering my recently discovered love of spreadsheets, this is genuinely thrilling. and so basic i really shouldn't be admitting that i didn't know. sigh. FYI: on older versions of excel, highlight the appropriate boxes, go to "format", "cells", "alignment" and hit "word wrap"; on newer versions, do the former or just hit the "word wrap" button under the home tab.

i seem to have a thing for dystopian novels lately. presently re-reading the handmaid's tale by margaret atwood. just finished angelfall by susan ee. i also enjoyed the passage and the twelve by justin cronin,  a long long sleep by anna sheehan, and daughters of the north by sarah hall this year, among others. many are technically young adult, but as long as they're also well written, that's just an indicator of how long it'll take me to get through it. any new recommendations? 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

quote: elisabeth kubler-ross.

i am still traveling the thought lines that inspired last week's post on kintsugi and brokenness. i can't say i'm surprised - it's a complex concept, being a human, living life.

the most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths.  these persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. beautiful people do not just happen.
          - elisabeth kubler-ross


Monday, October 7, 2013

recipe: overnight pumpkin chia granola pudding

i know this is my second pumpkin recipe in a row, but there's pumpkin in the fridge, so a girl has to get creative. i am not the biggest pumpkin person - you won't find me sipping a pumpkin spice latte - but when my creative efforts turned out this delicious concoction i had to share. don't mind the goldenrod color going on, that's just what happens when you mix pumpkin and yogurt.

Thursday, October 3, 2013


yesterday, i read a piece by glennon over at momastery, which is full of thoughtful insight on the human condition. {do read it.} within all the marvelous words, glennon offered up this gem:
"I used to say: I'm broken. Fix me. Then I grew up a little and said: WAIT A MINUTE. I'M NOT BROKEN. And now I'm a real grown up so I say: Of course I'm broken. And I love, love, love myself that way. If you're comfortable with that - come sit with me and we can laugh and cry and be broken and beautiful together. But don't try to fix me - I didn't ask for that. I just asked for some good company in which to be human."
this. of course i am broken. life well lived can be a rough and tumble ride, and no one ever promised you wouldn't fall to pieces over it. in fact, as oprah said, "we can't become what we need to be by remaining what we are." changing events may be gradual and almost unnoticed, or they may come hard and fast. they may lift you, but they may also break you. and that is okay. because what i have learned on this journey of life is that when you're standing there, holding the pieces of yourself - that is the moment of opportunity.  that is when you learn just who you are, how strong you can be - and how beautiful this life is. there is beauty in the broken.

but i think there is more to it than that, even. there is the marvel of broken, but not in pieces. the marvel that comes of when you slowly mend yourself, learning and changing and becoming something more the process, and the beauty grows. the ancient japanese art of kintsugi is the best example of this i have seen in a long time.

kintsugi, meaning "golden joinery" or "to patch with gold", is an ancient japanese technique for repairing broken porcelain, pottery and glass. it is about taking ugly breaks and bringing pieces back together in beauty. but instead of hiding the cracks, or trying to pretend a piece is as good as new, kintsugi artists carefully repair a broken vessel with sticky resin that hardens as it dries. they sand it until it's nearly imperceptible to the touch, and then they take a lacquer combined with real gold and adorn the crack.
photograph and information from here. video on kintsugi here.

they highlight the cracks. they honor the breaks, even as they remold the pieces. i have believed this for years. that we must be broken - and acknowledge our broken, even as we rebuild ourselves - to become our truest selves. being human is a messy, beautiful thing, and so worth it. and this messy, beautiful life - it's even better when shared. so please - like glennon said - "come sit with me and we can laugh and cry and be broken and beautiful together."

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

quick takes

today is my birthday {inching toward thirty one late-twenties birthday at a time}. 

my life is nothing i thought it would be as a teenager, and that is so okay. more than okay! i have love, i have joy, and an amazing group of loved ones and friends. i have a roof over my head, a steady and intellectually stimulating job, and home-cooked meals. i have experiences under my belt - experiences i never expected - that have been so amazing and brought so much to my life. so. today's quick takes are seven reasons {in no particular order, and absolutely not an exhaustive list} that i am glad my life took a different path than i once imagined taking to this age:

this guy, and the love and friendship we share

family who are also my friends and travel buddies

friends made during those years that may be spread all over the place, but are always there for me 

travels {so, so many more than pictured} that have showed me so much of this magnificent world, and taught me so much about appreciating the beauty all around in moments large and small

time spent living abroad, especially my year in london

football fandom

patience and grace gained through joyfully taxing experiences - working with children - and less joyful but still remarkably taxing experiences - the bar exam - that have already served me well in life. 

to another year!