It’s the end of an era. Can 4 months be an era?

After nearly four months of no work or school, (and technically if you don’t count the 2.5 months of bar study as school, 6.5 months) tomorrow I reenter the working world, this time permanently.  I have a very long to do list for today in preparation of that, and one of the things on that list is to update here because it’s been a few days!

Wednesday I got up early and drove out to Las Vegas for Thanksgiving.   The drive was beautiful and I didn’t hit any bad traffic.  I also stopped at a Coach outlet on the way and picked up a couple of christmas presents.  A couple of the workers there kept commenting on how tall and pretty I am.  I had a great outfit on that day and my hair looked nice, and it was sure nice to have people just compliment me and not be like “omg how tall are you? is it hard to find clothes/dates/shoes/general acceptance in society/etc?”

The couple of days I spent in Vegas were very relaxing and nice,  and then yesterday I went out to a Target before coming home and bought a fake tree (for $25!!) and some decorations to set up when I got back to L.A.   The traffic home from Vegas was HORRIBLE.   I really expected the bad traffic to be today (which is why I left on Saturday instead).   It was really only bad from  close to the California border through Barstow and after Barstow it cleared up (thank God because seriously if there had been cliffs around I might have driven off one).  Still,  it took me about 6 hours to get home when Vegas-L.A. is about 3.5 hours without traffic.  And it was so weird to have such bad traffic in just that area because there isn’t ANYTHING there but desert.  It’s not like there were lots of onramps dropping tons of desert people onto the freeway or anything.  As far as I could tell, it was all the same people.  But somehow we were only capable of driving more than 1-20mph when we were in Las Vegas or outside of Barstow.   Ahh!   I did actually start crying while waiting in a Starbucks drive thru in Barstow before the traffic had cleared up.   It was just so maddening and frustrating and I was so tired.  And then the window opened for the lady to hand me my drink and she was like “Sorry about the wait” and I turned to her as I was wiping away my tears.   Sorry for that awkward moment I put you in, Starbucks lady.    I’m telling you, my tolerance for traffic is much less than the average bear.  It’s rational to get upset in traffic but my response to traffic reaches irrational levels.   That cliff thing wasn’t really a joke 😉   On that note, it’s a REALLY good thing that I don’t have to drive to work in L.A.  (I walk .3 miles!)

When I got in, I unloaded all of my stuff and then took off to a friend/coworker’s place in Echo Park to hang out for a little bit.   We made plans to go to the gym tonight.   She has already joined one and has a 30 day pass and my body needs a gym.   I’m really hoping I’ll be diligent about it!   I got back to my loft around 11pm and decided, despite my exhaustion, to try to set up my Christmas tree.    It looks pretty good!  Now I just need a tree skirt and some pretty presents wrapped under there 🙂

So there you have it!

I have a busy few weeks coming up.  Besides the fact that I’m starting my new job, this Wednesday I’m getting sworn in to the state and federal courts with my fellow bar passing coworkers, and then Friday I’m attending the swearing in for my law school as well, and Alexander is coming to town for the weekend for that.   Then the following weekend my friend Becky is coming to visit me, and that will leave one free weekend before Christmas when my mom and brother come to visit me! 🙂

For now though, I need to stop going over future events and deal with right now:  the rest of my to do list for today.

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New hair, New wardrobe.

I had my hair appointment today at Chrome in Culver City.   Jared did an awesome job!  I also bought some new work clothes yesterday and I told my mom I would take pictures of me in some of the new clothes to share with her, and I figured.. why not post it here and share it with the blog world? 😉    Also, it would have been a lot easier if (1) I had someone here to take the pictures of me; or (2) I had remembered my automatic timer. But I tried, and without further ado, here are a few of my new purchases and some shots of my new red-turned-dark-brown hair 🙂

White button down w/ruffles. I'll probably wear this with a jacket or under a sweater.

This grey turtleneck is my FAVORITE. Sadly, I couldn't get a great photo of it.

Can you tell what size I wear?

This doesn't really showcase the shirt, but the black and white top is new too.

One of my only purchases with color 🙂

Guess what my favorite color is lately?

The top doesn't look quite as see through in person. But I really like this one 🙂

Sorry for the slightly inappropriate nature of this angle.. but it shows my new layers well! 🙂 (also, would be worn with a sweater)

Ruffles and grey are my current favorite things apparently. 🙂

So there you have it!  I also bought another blue top, grey sweater and a grey vest which aren’t featured in photos here, but this is already way to many self-portraits for one post!

 

Ten on Tuesday (1)

NOTE: I keep trying to fix the spacing and wordpress keeps ignoring me.. so… I apologize for the lengthy unspaced paragraphs and questions.  I’ve tried 4 times now and nothing helps 😦
1. When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I had a WIDE array of things I wanted to be.  I wanted to be a writer, a saxophone player, a truck driver (how awesome would it be to get to travel everywhere and get paid to do it and have a bed with you no matter where you are?), an artist, a teacher, a senator (due to this random Gordon Smith commercial with a girl on a swingset)… actually I remember at one point thinking “you know, technically I don’t have to choose.. I could be all of these things.” However, because I liked to argue and could almost always convince people I was right, my mom and grandparents always told me I should be a lawyer. I liked the show Matlock, even as a little kid so I thought “sure ok!”  … and then I found out it took SEVEN YEARS OF COLLEGE to become a lawyer and decided I would rather be a clothing designer for tall chicks (true story- I started college as a business major).
Well,  after my first semester of business classes I decided (1) I hate business classes; and (2) overall college is not so bad.  So I switched to Poli Sci and Communication (in case I wanted to be a Senator someday still), and was on my path to law school.   Just graduated from law school in May! 😉   I’m sure my parents are elated that I did not become a truck driver.
2. Name 3 of your irrational fears.
Oh my gosh this is a bad question to ask me.  I could name a billion irrational fears.   Technically, my biggest fears are things that HAVE HAPPENED, it’s just that the events are so rare.  I don’t fear common things happening to me, I fear the extreme stuff.  Here are my top 3-
(1) getting snipered while I walk down the street (once in London I randomly thought about this and suddenly panicked realizing I had no idea what to do in London in the case of an emergency and imagined myself sitting there bleeding to death on the street.  At that point Alexander and the Looneys had already left London so I didn’t even know what friends to call. Crazy, I know).
(2) the big one (earthquake)  hitting while I’m at work. My 2L summer we had a 5-point-something hit like 20 miles away and it still made my office on the 52nd floor in downtown L.A. shake so bad I thought maybe it was the big one and vowed not to take the job if I made it out alive.  Fortunately, I was overracting and everything was fine.  And I still took the job… good idea?  I start Monday on floor 50.   (Apparently the building is meant to withstand up to a 7.0 but after that the top of the building snaps off.  That is not very comforting).
(3) a helicopter crashing into my apartment or office (the apartment is a lot lower than 50 floors, but I see helicopters, planes, and blimps flying really low over here all the time, and if the sound is loud enough I stand there paralyzed like a deer in headlights waiting to make sure its not going to crash into my building)).

3. If you had a $200 gift card to any store, what would you want it to be? (Nothing responsible allowed. Can’t be used for groceries or anything)
Right now I would want it to be somewhere that sells christmas decorations because I REALLY want to decorate for Christmas but I have to wait until I get a paycheck which won’t be until 12/14 booooo 😦   I might try to buy a few things sooner.
4. What is your most (blog-friendly) embarrassing moment?
I embarrass myself on a daily basis, and I’ve learned that embarrasing moments make funny stories which helps me deal with it a little 🙂   The instance that popped in my head (definitely not my most embarrassing moment but its burned in my brain for some reason) is when I was on a field trip in second grade, and I was holding a baby chick on my lap and I felt something warm on my leg.  I lifted up the chick and it had like diarrhea pooped on my leg!  I remember my face turning bright red and my eyes tearing up as I was (nervously) laughing.   OH, and once in high school I accidentally pulled down my pants in the library.    I’ll just throw that out there too.   Oh, and when I lived in Tennessee, one of the little boys I lived with had hung a scooby doo towel out of the grill of my car (apparently to dry from the pool) and I didn’t see it before leaving.  My whole way to work people were flashing me and motioning at me and I had no idea what they were talking about.  Who cares if my lights aren’t on? It’s DAYLIGHT. I got to work and went inside and shortly thereafter my boss came in.  “Michelle,  are you aware there is a scooby towel hanging on the front of your car?”   Oh man, embarrassing.
5. If you were only allowed to eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would you choose?
My answers to this in the past have been “chicken” or “chocolate cake.”  I have since given up eating chicken, and while I do love chocolate cake I think as I’m getting older my ability to metabolize it isn’t what it used to be.  Not going to be able to live off that for every meal!  Probably pizza or pita bread ❤   Or chips and salsa.  Except I managed to buy some chips last week that made “chips and salsa” disgusting and I haven’t bothered to go buy new chips yet because I’m still grossed out.  Ugg.
6. What was your favorite toy growing up?
I was a big fan of barbies.  But my parents wouldn’t let me have a Ken so I would make Barbie date my brothers’ G.I. Joes.  How little did I know back then that the Barbie to G.I. Joe ratio would be the story of my life.

7. Do you have a “go to” outfit? What is it?
I think my go-to outfit right now is probably skinny jeans with my brown boots, some kind of top, some kind of sweater, and this BR necklace I bought that has a wooden key on it and a few other random dangly things.   As for the sweater, it is usually either this yellow sweater I recently bought at Urban Outfitters, or a long grey one I bought at Banana Republic around the same time.   I paid full price for the yellow sweater (I think it was $45?) and I felt guilty about it at first but I have seriously worn that thing multiple times per week.  Definitely worth the money.
8. Who was the best teacher you ever had?
Hmm… I will tell you who is NOT the best teacher I ever had.  My second grade teacher (grr why is your name escaping me? probably because traumatized me wanted to block you out!) OH! Ms. Gayle!  Ha! I do remember your name!   Anyway,  I remember her as a crusher of dreams which is a bad role for a second grade teacher.  One time we had an assignment to write a one page story that we were going to put on big butterflies for open house.   I wrote two pages.  And you know what she did? She wrinkled it up and threw it away because I “didn’t follow directions.”   Ever heard of tape or a staple lady?   Also,  I went to Kindergarten and 1st Grade in Alaska on a military base so by the time I was in Public School in Portland for 2nd Grade I was actually ahead of the kids in my class.  I had already learned a little bit of cursive, and Ms. Gayle also threw away one of my papers for doing cursive Ys. 😦   So mean!!!  Not to mention she always yelled at me and I’m pretty sure it’s her fault I developed a problem of talking way to loud for the rest of grade school/middle school/part of high school.
As for good teachers, my4th/5th Grade teacher Ms. Dakkuk was the first one to recognize that even though I looked like a dirty poor kid, I was actually a SMART dirty poor kid and she was responsible for me basically doing 4th and 5th grade in one year.  I was never in the Talented and Gifted group in grade school because apparently only the rich kids (or even just middle class kids) get noticed for that.   She also brought in some hand me down clothes for me (in 5th grade I was already the size of an adult woman.  sad).
Also, my english teacher in high school was the first one to encourage me about my height.  She made me stay after class and she was like “Michelle, you are a beautiful girl.  Why do you slouch all the time.  You need to stand tall and be confident in who you are.”  I love her for that 🙂  I wish I could remember her name so I could track her down and tell her how much it meant to me!
Lastly, as for non-school teachers,  the pastor of the youth group I was on staff with back in Portland, Pastor Jason, taught me a lot during my high school and college years and his advice has helped me through many of my biggest trials.
9. If you could buy any car right now (something at least SORT OF within the realm of reality…so, you know, a Rolls Royce may not qualify), what would it be?
I actually just bought a brand new car back in December.. it’s a Ford Edge.  I love it 🙂   However, the car that I tend to lust after the most, and am ashamed of myself for it, is the Range Rover 😦
10. How do you reckon that Chelsea comes up with 10 of these questions every week? It was hard! What’s your theory on how she’s so creative? Are you going to help her?
I have no idea.  If I had to come up with 10 questions every week I would probably keep asking the same ones all the time.  Lol.  “You just asked that same question as #4.  This is only question #5.”   I could probably try to think up questions but I’m new to this thing and I might end up repeating questions that were already asked.    I really liked these ones though so good job creator!  (As you can tell by the novel I wrote for each answer).

Banana Republic Support Group, Anyone?

(First, apologies for not updating yesterday.  Quite honestly, I had a super boring, relaxed day yesterday and I kept intending to update later but kept forgetting.)

Today, I have been TCB’ing, otherwise known as “taking care of business.”  I finally mailed off an overdue speeding ticket (for going 5 miles over in a rural zone in Nowhere, NV.  Seriously, if they penalize me for being 5 days late I will be more annoyed than I already am).  This was quite a process because I had to go to the bank to get a cashier’s check, and then I walked over to a hotel to try to buy stamps so I didn’t have to walk to a post office, and then back to my building to drop the thing off in the outgoing mail.  Good riddance.

I also finally found a drycleaner.  Hopefully?  Back in the day (aka when I lived in Portland), I had this great drycleaning place that was $2/item, any item.   Here in L.A., it seems impossible to find a place that charges less than $5 for pants.   I thought I’d found my DREAM drycleaning place when I ran into a lady in the elevator who said her place delivers to my building on Tuesdays and Fridays, $2/tops, $2.50/pants.  Sign me up, I thought, and quickly got her number.   Sadly for me, either she gave me her number wrong or I put it in wrong (or she is no longer answering the number) because all I get is ringing when I call 😦   So I spent the morning trying to find a new place, and ultimately realized there is another drycleaner in my building called “Clean Concierge.”  You put your stuff in a locker, take the key, request a pick up online, and 2-3 days later drycleaned clothes appear in the locker.  I put 8 items in there.  In hindsight, I should have taken a picture or something of the items.   Anyway, here’s hoping it turns out ok!  $3.99/pants, $2.50/tops, and no charge for pickup/delivery.

This drycleaning issue is important because finally, after a 4 month hiatus, I reenter the land of actually having something do to on a daily basis: work.  Related to this, lately I’ve been looking in my closet at my clothes thinking ho hum closet you are boring me. However, since I don’t currently have any income, I was trying to wait until I actually started work to buy any more clothes.  But when will I have time to drive out to the Banana Republic Outlet once work starts? So, you guessed it, this morning I rationalized to myself that going to Banana today was a good idea.  It’s a bit of an illness I have.  Sometimes I can walk in Banana and not buy a thing.  But other times I go in there and I spend at least $100-$300.   The problem is that when I do see things I actually like, I just can’t say no.  I can’t even say “ok Michelle, pick your FAVORITE thing.  You can’t have everything.”  I feel like I have to have everything.  I just LOVE the feel of their clothes.  After growing up on hand-me-downs, then upgrading to thrift store clothes, then upgrading to walmart, and eventually making the giant leap to Target clothing, Banana Republic clothes are a big luxury to me.   However, “poor girl” still exists deep down so I usually only binge on Banana when there is a good sale (I did buy a full price top there once for $65 and I still feel a little guilty about it).  Today, everything in the store was 40%, plus I had a gift card with $96 on it.  So that means I got 9 tops, 2 sweaters, and a skirt for $202 of my own dollars including tax.  I love my new clothes!  It makes me excited to get back to work so I can wear it all!

Tomorrow I am getting my hair done at a new salon and hoping it turns out well.  Assuming it does, I’ll plan to post a pic or two of the new hair and maybe some of my new purchases tomorrow 🙂

Here We Go, One Last Week of Freedom!

After being sick for several days, today I finally feel like I’m on the mend.  Thank goodness!  After nearly four months of freedom, this coming week is my last completely free week before I make my grand and permanent entrance into the Grown Up Working World.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had quite a few jobs in the past (including working full time during times I wasn’t in school), but they have always just been jobs to pay the bills while I’ve made my way through school.  This time,  I’m not going to a job just to help make ends meet.  I’m starting my actual career.   And, a lot of luck and hard work means I’m starting my career in one of the best places for a new lawyer: a top law firm in a top legal market.  I’m excited 🙂   (Of course, the fact that this job pays nearly 8 times what my pre-law school job paid is pretty exciting too.  Between Uncle Sam and Uncle Arnold (Schwarzeneggar), I don’t get to keep a lot of it.. but it looks really amazing on paper ;)).

Today, I added a page to my blog:  30 in 3.   It’s a list of 30 goals I would like to accomplish in the next 3 years.  Feel free to check it out.  As I accomplish the goals, I’ll write posts about them and link the posts on that page 🙂

I am still so excited re: the bar results of myself and most of my friends.  I saw an email that said the overall passage rate for July 2009 was around 56% (but that number is a little misleading.  Overall passage rate for first time takers was 79%).  I was genuinely fretting the possibility that I could have failed.  However, at the same time I sort of arrogantly thought, “if I failed, how could so many people pass?”  I worked really hard in law school and did extremely well, graduating Summa Cum Laude.   And I studied really, really hard for the bar.   Way harder than I ever did in law school.  I don’t think there was a single day during the bar where I didn’t touch anything bar related, and only a day or two where I took most of the day off.   And still, I felt a bit of panic in my stomach that maybe I failed.  After all, there was one essay where I read the clock wrong and didn’t even finish half of the subparts.  I had headings, but nothing else for the other parts.  I felt a lot less comfortable with the multiple choice than prior practice tests.  It was possible, I thought, that I could have missed enough between the multiple choice and my lacking Evidence essay that I could have failed.   However, whatever I did was good enough and I passed 🙂   Unfortunately, California does not give scores unless you fail.   It would help me, in terms of giving advice, to know if I barely passed or passed by a significant margin.  Instead, I will just have to tell my friends the only advice I can give: study as hard as you can and practice, practice, practice.. because you don’t want to take that thing again!

Anyway, enough bar talk!  I’m going to go eat dinner and watch The Breakfast Club.   By the way, I was out at a happy hour a few weeks ago and a random guy asked if I was Molly Ringwald.  My hair is currently red, it was dark, and I was sitting down… So I guess it could be a reasonable guess?  The guy was also kind of a creeper so I wouldn’t put too much weight into his guess.  But since I’ve been watching quite a few Molly Ringwald movies lately, I loved it 🙂

 

 

Putting the “Daily” in TheDailyChelle.

I’m realizing that I miss the good old days where I blogged a lot more often, and could actually look back and see what was going on when.  Additionally, writing in my former blog every day (livejournal) had a therapeutic/unwinding effect that was fantastic.  So, I can’t make any promises, but at this moment I have every intention of trying to turn this blog into something I write in daily, or at least almost daily.  So.. without further ado..

Where have I been lately?

Well, last week I went to Las Vegas with some girl friends who are all starting at law firms this fall as well (2 of 3 with me).  I’ve been to Vegas quite a few times now but this was the first time I’ve ever been as a tourist.  My friend Lindsey is a hardcore/awesome poker player, and as a result we could get a suite at the Palazzo for CHEAP.  It was an amazing room and we had a FANTASTIC view of the strip.  I don’t know what it is about lights but I LOVE THEM.  Honestly, in Vegas I would have been perfectly content to just sit on the couch in our suite and stare out at the view all night.

Pictures of the view from my iPhone (don’t quite do it justice, but they’ll do!)



(I think my love of city lights at night is one of the many reasons I LOVE my loft.  Unfortunately, due to my stalker fear, I cannot post pictures for you of the view from my loft.  However, if you know me in real life, feel free to email me or check on facebook for pics.)

We decided to roadtrip with Bella (my car), and the drive both ways was smooth and easy.  (Except for some major traffic we hit on the way back because a construction crew was randomly shutting down all but one lane of the 10 for no apparent reason in the middle of rush hour.  Good idea?).  But other than that, it was was totally easy.  While in Vegas, we ate delicious food, caught a show, and gambled a bit.  I was only willing to lose $20, and managed to keep my $20 plus win around $160.  However, I gradually lost $50 of my winnings, and that quickly ended my momentary mesmorization with gambling.  See, I generally adamantly follow the rule: only gamble what you are willing to lose.  I was willing to lose $20.  However, then I actually WON money so I was thinking “I wasn’t supposed to have this money anyway, it’s like free money, I can gamble more!”   And then I lost $50 which was annoying. As a girl who grew up poor, whenever I lose money or waste money it drives me crazy.  It could be a dollar and it would drive me crazy.  And this was fifty of them.  Ugg.   But don’t cry for me (Argentina), I still was over $100 up by the time we left.  I figured out that thanks to my winnings, my trip to Vegas only cost me just about $100.  That includes seeing a show ($80), two nights in the Palazzo, all my meals, and gas! Two nights and three days in Vegas for $100?  I call that a STEAL! 🙂

The night I got back from Vegas (Friday night) I proceeded to watch 3 straight hours of DVR’d TV (bad Michelle), before driving out to Beverly Hills to meet a couple work friends for a happy hour.  The main thing I must tell you about this event is that there was a weird man wandering around the place (Trader Vic’s in the Beverly Hilton) who was wearing all leather and a top hat type hat, and walking around with a HUGE wolflike dog. And at 6’4″ *I* am huge, so if I call something else huge, that’s really saying something.  HUGE.  Anyway, later when I was waiting at the valet to pick up my car (had I known valet would be $16, and had I known there was a self-park option, I would have self-parked), I saw the weirdy man get on a MOTORCYCLE, pat his lap so the giant dog JUMPED UP TO RIDE IN FRONT, and he pulled away from the hotel.  When my car rolled up, I may or may not of been standing there staring with my mouth hanging open, unfortunately too shocked at what I was seeing to whip out my iPhone.  The valet guy said, “have you ever seen anything like that?” and I just laughed and said, “No.. No I have not.”  And hopped in my car and drove away.

Saturday morning I had to wake up early to unpack and repack my suitcase, and catch a cab to the airport.  Technically it’s a lot more expensive to take a cab than to drive and park, but it’s easier to take a cab, and I prefer Bella to be safe in her parking spot in my garage, and not in some random parking lot in Inglewood.  No offense to anyone from Inglewood, Bella’s just not an Ingelwood kind of girl. I LOVED taking a cab.  Technically I cheated and walked over to an expensive hotel and caught a cab from there and a bell hop guy instantly helped me out with my bag and asked how my stay was and I just said “It’s been wonderful.”  I wasn’t trying to be a fraud, I just didn’t know where to tell a cab to stop outside of my building if I called one for myself.  I’ll figure it out, don’t worry.  I won’t keep taking advantage of hotel cab access.  But yeah, the point is taking a cab to the airport was fantastic. I didn’t have to burden anyone to take me to the airport, I didn’t have to be the one fighting with traffic, I got to relax in the back seat and text to my hearts content.  Loved it!  Plus, it totally made me feel like the city girl/young professional that I am.  I think that may be my preferred mode of transportation to the airport from now on 🙂

Where was I headed?  Off to the hot tourist spot otherwise known as Fayetteville, North Carolina (that was sarcastic, there really isn’t anything exciting about Fayetteville as far as I can tell.. except the people who live there!).  My brother, SIL, and 3 kids live on a military base there.  The two times I’ve been out to visit them since they’ve moved to North Carolina we haven’t really done much besides hang out at home, go to the mall, and go out to eat.  As far as I know, there doesn’t seem to be much else to do.  But that’s all good because the 3 kids aren’t really “go out and do lots of cool stuff” ages (they’re 2, 1, and 10 weeks).  It’s a lot more fun to stay at home and just play with them all. Kaylynn, the oldest, is turning 3 tomorrow (November 20th).  My mom (Grammie/Gammie) flew out at the same time, and she gave Kaylynn some great “stinker bell” (her way of saying tinker bell) birthday presents.  Kaylynn LOVED the presents and asked me if I would please get her three stinker bell presents.  I’;ll see what I can work out for Christmas 😉  Kaylynn also quickly figured out how to look at pictures and watch videos on my iPhone.  The first day she LOVED the video tour of my loft.  She kept watching it over and over and she would say “Theeeeere’s your kitchen…. Theeeeere’s your potty!”  The next day I made a video of her giggling as she was playing catch with a sock with Gammie.  Once she saw the video the first time, EVERY TIME I had my phone out she would say, “may I please see the video where Kaylynn laughs and throws a sock?”  And I would say, “Ok, but only one time.”  And the tricky girl figured out the right way to touch the screen to make it replay again, and she would be like “Oh, Oh it’s not over yet.”  Triiiicky, tricky those almost-three-year-olds!

I also have randomly picked up some baby skills.  It used to be that babies were freaked out by me, but all of a sudden babies LOVE me.  Also, whenever I would hold a baby and it would start to fuss, I would instantly give the baby back to its parent.  But recently with babies I’ve started figuring out ways to calm them down.  My mom LOVES it.  She’s like “omg Michelle you are totally ready to have your own babies.”  And I’m like “No, I am now capable of occassionally babysitting the child of friends or family so they can have date nights, but I am not going to be having any babies.”  I think my nieces and nephew are cute, but kids have waaaaaay too many needs for me right now.  Kids cry all the time over every little thing and make messes and need constant attention.  I can handle it for a couple of hours and then I’m like “take me now Jesus!”  It is good to know that if I ever do want kids, I won’t be a complete failure, but don’t get any ideas friends and family.  Michelle will not be having any babies any time soon.  (And might I also point out I am not married or even close to engaged, so even if I wanted babies they are still a long time coming.)

As an example, at one point the baby, Carsyn, was fussing at the mall while I was holding her.  I decided to hold her out in my arms to bounce her and make faces at her, but to my surprise she fell asleep in my arms in like .5 seconds.  I ended up carrying her around like that for awhile.  That baby is HOT.  I was sweating due to her body heat on my arms/stomach.

And just for kicks, a cute pic of the other two kids on the carousel at the mall 🙂

Another thing that’s bad about kids (besides the crying and pooping and needing), they get sick a lot and pass on the “goodies.”  I haven’t been sick in forever but I spent a day in a mall full of kiddos and BAM.  I feel like I have the plague.  The pressure in my head is killing me, my nose is running, my lungs feel like a big fist is crushing them if I try to laugh.  Bad sign?

I can’t be sick!  Tomorrow, besides the 3rd birthday of my precious niece, is also D-Day, aka the day the California Bar Exam results get posted.  Wow, I want to barf right now just typing that.  I’m supposed to go celebrate with work friends after the results come out (celebrate either passing or failing although of course we all hope its passing!).  Also, one of my favorite people who I haven’t seen in over two years is supposed to roadtrip out to stay with me for the weekend.  I can’t be sick!  We have so many fun plans already.  Did you hear that body?  You can’t be sick!

I’m writing this now from about 38000 feet with 34 minutes of flight time left in my flight from Atlanta to Los Angeles.  I will be arriving at LAX, catching a cab back to my place, and hopefully posting this while watching the season finale of Project Runway.  Then hopefully, my dear body will let me sleep for a solid 10-12 hours or so and feel miraculously better in the morning.  Please body?

Regardless, I will definitely be posting tomorrow because pass or fail, I will be posting the results for it here as soon as I know 🙂

**UPDATE**

So I fell asleep during Project Runway, and got a little over 8 hours of sleep, and still feel bad, and my friend isn’t coming anymore (although due to other complications, not me being sick).

BUT, I have lots of DVR’d tv to keep me company while I wait for bar results at 6pm.

Adding a New Blog…

I’ve decided to start blogging about my experiences living and working in downtown L.A., so I’ve made a separate blog for that purpose.  At this point I’m thinking about keeping both.  We’ll see how it works out.  Technically I could have just changed the byline to this blog and continued this blog with my new purpose, but I didn’t do that.

Oh, by the way I’m going to Vegas a couple of days this week and then after that to Fayetteville, NC.. so there will be more travel stories to come! 🙂

Oh, if you want to check out the new blog, it’s L.A. Law(oft).

Lions and Tigers and Clowns, OH MY!

Okay, okay, there weren’t any lions or tigers involved in my night last night, but there were definitely a lot of clowns.  French clowns.  That’s right folks, last night I went to my first Cirque du Soleil show, Kooza, down at the Santa Monica Pier!  I’ve only heard good things about Cirque du Soleil, and I definitely wasn’t let down.  One thing to note though is that it’s a very intimate setting, so you don’t have to pay for the most expensive seats.  Every seat in the house is a good seat.

The acrobatics were INSANE.  At a couple of points I felt like I might vomit out of fear for the acrobats involved.  (For example, there is a part that involves spinning rings high up in the air and at one point one of the guys was running on the outside of the ring, way up in the air, and he started jump roping up there and then his foot got caught.. oh my goodness I almost lost it.  He didn’t though, he got his foot loose and kept on going without missing a beat).

I absolutely loved the show, totally thought it was worth the money, and definitely recommend it!  However, I do have two negatives.  First,   some of the clown parts (where it was just clowns being silly rather than any acrobatics going on) dragged a bit and were a little boring to me.  However, most people were laughing the whole time, and those little comedy breaks are probably necessary to keep the masses from having heart attacks due to watching all the crazy acrobatics!  Second,  I probably would not take my children to see Kooza.   I didn’t see any kids when I was there, and I’m not sure if it was because of the price tag ($60-$130), because of the time of the show I went to (8pm on a school night) or because other people knew it was more of a show for adults than for kids.  It wasn’t super adult themed (a la Zumanity),  but quite a few of the clown scenes had sexual/potty humor.  Granted, kids might not even get it (kind of like I never noticed any of the sexual references in Grease when I was a kid and was shocked when I watched it when I was older!).  And it wasn’t really bad, there were just several times where I thought “wow, if I had kids and brought them to this without knowing what it would be like, I would be a little upset.”  Kind of like when you watch a PG kids movie and there is a cuss word in it.  You expect it to be completely kid friendly and it’s like “whoooah where did that come from?”

Another perk of seeing the show was that it was right down at the pier in Santa Monica.  Despite having lived in the L.A. area for almost 3.5 years now, I had never even been to the pier until a week or two ago.   I drove down early to miss traffic (although whenever the 405 is nearby trouble will ensue, and sure enough I hit traffic on the 10 for miles leading up to the 405 exit, but it was completely clear the moment I passed 405).  Another perk of getting down to the pier early was that there was actually parking available on the pier!  So instead of parking somwhere else and taking a shuttle or walking back up the pier after the show, I got to walk right to my car in about 2 minutes 🙂  Plus, the view down there before the show was BEAUTIFUL!  I captured this shot on my iPhone:

kooza

Prior to the show I accomplished two tasks.  First, I beat the friend I was meeting by about an hour and my bangs have been driving me CRAZY.  So I googled nearby salons and found one .5 miles away and called to ask if I could come in for a bang trim.  I went to Studio 1452, and I really liked the girl who trimmed my bangs.  We talked hair color for a few minutes too and I’m seriously considering driving down to SM for my next hair appointment and trying her out.  About 15 minutes and $10 later, my bangs were finally out of my eyes again.  Hallelujah!

Second, when my friend arrived we grabbed dinner at Rusty’s Surf Ranch on the pier.   It has mixed reviews on Yelp, but we decided to give it a try because it was so close, and they have a great happy hour.  The decor inside feels a bit like a “hole in the wall” beach cafe kind of place, but it’s very fitting for its location.  I ordered the veggie burger for dinner and it was DELICIOUS.  Veggie burgers at restaurants have been very hit and miss for me so far since I converted to vegetarian, and I’m pretty sure this one was my favorite so far.  I will definitely be going back for more!

That’s all for now.  My cruel body has me up earlier than I wanted to be, so I’m going to go for a walk.  I want to join a gym, but next week I’m going to Vegas for a couple of days with some girlfriends, and then the day after I get back flying to North Carolina for about a week, so I’m going to wait to sign up until I get back.

Speaking of walking-  I’ve figured out that my walking experiences in downtown L.A. are much more enjoyable with earbuds in (with or without music).  Everyone thinks I’m listening to music, so nobody bothers me.  I like it that way.  Another thing about walking… I don’t mention being tall on here very much,  but sometimes walking alone is very frustrating because I notice people gawking at me a lot more when I don’t have a friend walking with me that I’m talking to.  It’s so frustrating.  It’s like, yes, I know that I am ridiculously tall for a woman, but leave me alone already!   I do really love being tall, but sometimes (probably similar to a celebrity) I really wish I could go out in disguise.

 

All Good Things.

Yesterday I met a friend on the Westside to get dinner and see a screening for the movie “All Good Things.”  Apparently we were the very first people to see the finished movie, so that’s pretty cool.  It’s a love story/murder mystery based on a true story from New York.  I really liked it actually (despite the fact that I’m usually not a fan of unhappy endings), and look forward to seeing it once it comes out to see what they changed, if anything.  (There is one very unnecessary scene with full frontal nudity of Kirsten Dunst, I hope they get rid of that but they probably won’t.. ohhh publicity.)

We planned our meet up time based on when I could miss traffic on the 10.  But shocker of all shockers, there was an accident on the 405 that jammed traffic on the 10.  Soooooo glad that I don’t have to drive in L.A. on a daily basis!   As I was driving back home later, all of a sudden it really hit me that I *live in downtown* now.  I was leaving the west side, where I used to live, to drive *downtown*, where I live now.  Crazy!   And even though I’ve been here for around 3 weeks now, it just really hit me for the first time that I live here.  This is my loft, my place that I come home to.  Crazy!

On another note, I have had the urge to paint for awhile.  I’ve only painted once before… in my art class in high school and despite numerous attempts I could not figure out how to paint a human face.  So somewhere out there I have a painting of a grandpa with his grandaughter on his lap and a nice background, but they have no faces.  And not in a cool “I did it on purpose” way, but in a very obvious “this chick couldn’t figure out how to paint a face” way.

Anyway, I’ve been wanting a painting of trees for awhile, and then I was in Crate & Barrel with my friend Juliana one day and they had this really cool print of trees for $500.   She said it was her favorite painting and I thought “I bet I could paint this myself, and it would be a lot cheaper than $500!”  Well, a couple of days ago I was sitting at home working on a photo book for a friend, and I decided to google nearby art supply stores.  As it turned out, there is one pretty close to my place (as it also turned out, although it wasn’t too far it was definitely in the ‘wrong part of town’ for me, and it is unlikely that I will venture back there anytime soon).   I bought a canvas for $9, two colors of acrylic paint (black and yellow), and two paintbrushes.  I’ve worked on it a couple of hours a day for the past several days and today I finished:

firstpainting

 

It didn’t turn out exactly how I wanted, because I don’t know anything about brushes and I bought the wrong brushes (and ended up using 2 makeup brushes for the trees), but I like how it turned out nonetheless 🙂   Also, that picture you can barely see on the shelf below is a picture of me meeting Margaret Thatcher.  A candid shot of her making a joke about my height.  I love that photo!

Along with taking up painting, I’ve also taken up cooking Vegan meals.   For the record, I have never been much of a cook.  Prior to the last few weeks, I’ve only cooked actual meals a couple of times in my life.  Really sad, I know 😦  But since I’ve been living alone and finally have my own kitchen I’ve been learning how to cook things.  Tonight I made brown rice with avocado slices and vegan chicken and a little sauce.   It was yummy.  I definitely ate more than a reasonable portion.

Tomorrow night I’m doing something very exciting, which I will post about later!