Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Legal Research

I never realized how much a good research plan/knowing where to find things can help you. The law school librarians are amazing. I've started making progress on my BIG paper. And by progress I mean I found about 100 articles and books I need to start reading. It's a start and I'm glad I have a list going. Did you know that there are sites where you can export all of your searches on various legal databases to a site that complies all of them in bibliographical form? I didn't, but that sure seems like a much better solution than keeping 50 tabs open on random Firefox windows. Finding databases, search option and other items on my subject is helpful. Wow, people actually wrote about it. No one has written about my exact topic, double bonus. The parsing must begin soon. I have 4 hours of solid time tomorrow morning to work on one of my papers. And then I have the 3 hours of travel time to my mom's. The thing about not being the driver is, I always fall asleep. It's not the worst thing in the world, but not the best for getting sh*t done. Friday, I'm devoting 5 hours to writing, 2 to sleeping in, and the rest will be spent with the family. I will stick to this schedule. I will not go on perezhilton or any other gossip site. I WILL DO IT! And if I don't, I can't have any treats over the weekend. It will be nothing more than iron supplements, fruits, veggies and whole grain. No ice cream or cake, which would actually be possible this weekend because it isn't someone's birthday. In my family that is really a time to be remembered. It's pretty much always someone's birthday. Yummmm cake!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Anemia

I had one of my few remaining check ups today and found out that I am anemic. Boo! Where did all my iron go? Then I thought about it and I can't even remember the last time I ate red meat! I don't think a meatballs sub from Subway counts. And I'll need iron supplements. I've heard they can wreak havoc on the digestive system. Not looking forward to those repercussions. On the bright side I only gained 5 lbs since my last check up 5 weeks ago. I think my total is so far is +7lbs from the beginning. The doc says it's totally fine and I'm lucky, so no more worries about any of that. I guess another ice cream cone here or there won't be too damaging.

I'm still waiting for all of this free time to appear, but so far it hasn't. Must stop talking to my husband for 3 hours everyday! I'm not even exaggerating. We can just talk about nothing for an entire day and I love that about him. Finding someone you can just sit on a couch with and watch tv with for a weekend is so important in a marriage. It's not all nightclubs, fancy dinners, crazy trips, etc. This will be especially true once the baby arrives. Our kitchen dance parties will have to do. While Liam cooks, he is pretty much the exclusive cook in the house, I sit and keep him company. We each take turns picking a song off iTunes or youtube and if the cooking doesn't require constant attention have a bit of a dance off. There is a sound system in the kitchen. Liam can listen to pretty much any pop/rock/alternative/funk/soul song and know the artist, album and year. I really hope Z inherits that ability or at least an appreciation for music. And will be so embarrassed by his/her parents always dancing in the kitchen. I'm definitely looking forward to that one!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Writing Must Commence

I have 37 days to write 55 pages. My huge seminar paper finally has a topic, well kind of a topic. It at least has an idea. I really need to start working on my research and getting that done. My intensive course is finally over after a disastrous presentation. The guy that went before me did an awesome one and my puny powerpoint after his seemed like an afterthought I sneezed out. Oh well, not much that can be done about that. This means I now have 9 new free hours of writing time each day and I have no excuse to fill with tv/slacking/non-school related reading.

But my first chunk of time will be filled with a doctor's appointment. I'm having my 30 week check up next week. It's a bit late, but apparently getting an appointment with my nurse practitioner is like getting tickets to the hottest concert in town. The OBGYN medical practitioners must feel like the rock stars of the hospital if the waiting lists for their appointments are any indication. After this visit, I'll only have 2, maybe 3 more until I leave. I can't believe the end is coming up so soon. It seemed like it was taking forever for about the past 7 months and now I can't believe the end is nearing. I keep thinking about the things I'll miss and the only thing I can think of is feeling Z move. I'm sure once I get a kick to the lungs/ribs/something else equally painful I'll lose that last bit of rose-coloredness and just want this kid out! In the meantime the belly dancing that goes on completely independent of anything I'm doing will just have to be enjoyed. And in a little more than month Liam will get to enjoy it as well. We're halfway through our separation and we only gets closer to being together. That is definitely a motivating factor in getting through it all. Who was the crazy person that came up with this plan?! Oh yeah, it was us.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Pain and Good News

My hips are totally f*cked! Well just one side. My trainer thinks I have pulled my hips out of alignment. Awesome! This means I walk a little faster than my grandmom before she had both her knees replaced. I struggle to put on my pants while standing and stairs are something I have to think really really hard about. I'm not opposed to taking the elevator to go up one floor. Yes, I will be that incredibly annoying person. There isn't anything that can be done about it until Z is born because any realignment would pretty much just be thrown out of whack over the next 2 months anyway. So, I'm relegated to the hobbling pregnant majority and hope I'll remember how to walk normally once the little one walks on out.

I have an extension on a presentation I was supposed to do today. Why, do you ask? Because the person who went before me and did their 10-20 minute presentation took 1 hour! It was complete with a game of Jeopardy at the end. Complete with prizes. I lost during final Jeopardy, sooooo pissed about that one. But come on, talk about making the rest of us look bad! The prof has thankfully requested that we keep ours to 10 minutes and I'm glad because I'll be grasping to get that much. 10 minute presentation, followed by writing my paper and that's one class down. I was also informed of my make up final exam date, which is so great. I can now buy my ticket and really start planning my last weeks of babylessness.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Ready to Travel

On a plane. I'm in need of a vacation. I know I've only been back in the US for about a month, but I also haven't been on a vacation in over a year. Liam and I have traveled to see each other, I've met him at home and he's come to me, but an actual vacation has been elusive. There hasn't been any exploring new destinations, the excitement that comes with checking a destination off of the list or the fun of unexpected changes of plans that come with new adventures. In the nearly 2.5 years we've been together we've been to more almost 10 countries together. And as I was writing this and on phone with Liam he out of nowhere starts telling me that he misses our vacations! Damn, we are in sync. So now we're trying to figure out a good vacation plan around life with a baby. It might just be an overnight in NYC in the new year or maybe a circuitous trip back home from the US stopping in the UK. We will see, but it's nice we're both on the same wave length. I guess it will all depend on how amenable Z is to air travel. It's a pretty huge fact of our lives, vacations or not we're flying at least 5 round trips a year ranging from 40 min-14 hour flights. Having family on 2 separate continents and living on a 3rd sure increases the frequent flier mileage! I'm so glad this Christmas is our stay at home year. Not that we would be able to travel if it weren't, but it takes any pressure or need to explain off the table. Christmas 2011 is with Liam's family and 2012 is with mine. Z is going to be able to navigate airport security like a pro by the time s/he can crawl!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Is there such a thing as too much class?

I need some of these classes to end. I'm in class pretty much 9-5 most days. This leaves very little time for me to actually read, outline, eat, whatever. The one class that's been taking up the bulk of my daytime time will be over next week and I'm so excited. I also have to bang out my paper for that one, but once the class is over it will be so much easier.

The week after my ADR class ends, my other big paper class also ends. This will free up about 13 hours of study time/wk. I am ready for that especially because the focus of the classes is getting us to think about paper topics. Class discussions matter when it comes to the grade, but the actual reading we have to do has almost no bearing on the final grade. I kind of wish it did because I actually enjoy the readings although they take up a crazy amount of time.

I've been devoting a much larger portion of my time and energy to the classes that end earlier for obvious reasons. That said, I don't want to get too far behind in my other couses because we all know how that ends. I don't really have the time or energy to be up until all hours trying to cram 14 weeks of information into my brain before a final. Once these two are finished, I can start catching up, start writing and not running around like a crazy person. I almost wish I had kept my ridiculously overpriced apartment. The commute it really not helping things any. Today I spent just under 2 hours getting to campus. If my commute works the way it should, I can get to campus in about hour and it's free. If it doesn't it will take at least 2 hours and cost me $3. It isn't the worst thing in the world, but what screwed my commute up really sucked. My first bus was 7 minutes late. I missed my connecting bus by 3 minutes. Holy frustration batman! This meant a 7 block walk to another bus and arriving 5 minutes late for class.

**Warning**
Mild Pregnancy-Related Rant:
Ahh walking...so far I've been pretty good with being able to walk, run (hobble) and quick walk. Now things are starting to get more and more difficult. I find myself swaying from side to side and kind of walking like an old lady. Trying to be super vigilant about my posture has been something I've credited with keeping me from adopting the pregnancy waddle. I think I've reached the end of my normal ability to walk. The pregnancy walk is here to stay, well at least for another couple of months. In other pregnancy related news, I can't say that I have actually popped yet. This is great in many respects, no one trying to touch my stomach, no unsolicited advice from strangers (only family and friends), but is also means no perks. I don't get a seat on the bus, no one offers to help when it comes to getting my luggage off the rack of the train, I'm lucky if I get a door flick. I don't mind too much about the door and the luggage, but the seat thing actually makes me want to just start asking people. My center of gravity is completely off and slamming into people is pretty awkward. Or perhaps I'll just start pawing my stomach a bit more conspicuously and push it out. What's a pregnant gal need to do to get a seat on public transportation?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Well Talk About a Start

I feel like I'm already halfway through the semester. Everything is happening at a breakneck speed. I get that this happens when you cram everything into a semester that you can, but jeez. I'm prepping for some serious work coming up. I'm trapping myself in various study spaces around campus and making myself write the number of pages needed per day to not get slammed at the end. It has been working so far. 1-3 pages per day has been my goal. My large research paper has taken a backseat for right now because I haven't actually determined my topic yet, but it's coming up. 1 page per day gets me to my 30 pages easily. This way I can add more, delete and edit it over the month following and actually make it readable. I'm a terrible stream of consciousness kind of writer. Sentences will end midway through as I jump from idea to idea. Not so great when you need to turn something in.

In my other non-writing intensive classes, I kind of feel like I'm in the Twilight Zone. It's a tax class and everyone else seems to know wtf is going on. There wasn't another tax requirement to take it, but I get the feeling I'm way behind. I plan on asking the prof. about it, so we'll see if I can catch up or maybe I'm just paranoid. Once the next couple of weeks are over I can also really focus on wtf I'm going to be doing for the next 2 years. I'm still just making plans that I'm sure will completely be thrown out the window. Once the baby is here all of my preconceptions, plans and other ideas will be out the window, but the plans are my security blanket so I'm planing away!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Loving the Gym

I find it hilarious that I'm better at working out while pregnant than not pregnant. I've been leaving the house at 7am everyday to workout. Getting in anywhere between 30 min to and hour 4/5 days a week. I'm not doing anything particularly strenuous. It's a lot of elliptical, arms work, and stretching on my own and with the trainer more strength exercise. Part of it is fear of gaining too much weight, wanting to be fit enough to bounce back after the birth and also just wanting to stay healthy during the pregnancy. It's amazing how quickly being in law school can take a back seat to real life.

My classes are going well. I have one that ends early this semester and I'm actually really sad it will end early. The hours fly by and the discussions are so fun and exciting. I guess I'll just have to soak up as much of it as I can before it ends. There are 2 big papers due this semester and I'm starting to get a little nervous about that. It will be a total of anywhere between 55 and 70 pages of research papers. I'm not nervous yet, but I'm thinking I'll get there. It helps to not have any outside extracurricular distractions. I selected the main journal for write on. I didn't think I would make it on and I didn't and I'm glad. I would be ready to shoot myself right about now. It sucks that I can't put it on my resume, but that's about the only thing that sucks about it for me. Bluebooking while sitting in the OB/GYN waiting room for an ultrasound does not sound fun. I'll just have to make due with classes, visiting my family, writing these papers, finding things we need for the baby and fighting with the insurance company about paying for my delivery in a foreign country. More than enough on my plate!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

I want cake

Cake has been on my mind. A particular type of cake comes to mind and it's probably because I can't have it. I worked at a bakery for a summer and my family went there for about 30 years. They closed down 10 years ago and I really really want some of their cake! I haven't had a good cake in a good long while. I don't like the fancy stuff, vanilla or chocolate with vanilla butter cream frosting. My birthday is coming up, so I'll be sure to relay the message to my family for my cake buying. CAKE!!! That is all for today...CAKE!

P.S. This baby is eating all of my food/muscle mass/bone density. Measuring large for his/her age. I'm still at pre-pregnancy weight and a little worried. This kid might actually grow strong enough to punch its way out of my stomach!

Friday, September 3, 2010

First Week of Classes

My first week of 2L is complete. So far, so good. I'm going to enjoy most of my classes a lot more than last year, but I'm not sure how much longer that will last. After getting all my classes I just have to cope with 16 credits. One large research paper is calling my name. My focus is generally international law, transactional work and other things I've worked on in the past. All of the 1Ls are all so cute wandering around unsure of where to go. They have no idea what's in store for them. The good news, you'll block out the most traumatic things by the end of the summer when the craziness of OCI will hit them. I just keep repeating the mantra, only 2 more years, only 2 more years...

On the baby front, my sleep schedule is being seriously f*cked with. Last night I woke up 4 times to go to the bathroom. One of those was to brush my teeth after some serious heartburn lead to a nice retaste of my previous meal. This meant 5 pillows piled high and me pretty much sleeping sitting up for the rest of the night. I don't know what the hell Z was doing, but the movement at about 3am was ridiculous. I don't know if it was break dancing, line dancing or ballet, but I wish Z wouldn't do it at 3am. There is also some weird movement going on where I swear the baby is like crawling on the bottom of my belly. It feels super weird, but I swear it's so much movement all at once. A poke here, a bump there is the usual, but lately it's been a lot more. I guess getting in all this stretch time before things get tight is the thing to do. No news from my doctor's office about the glucose test and it's been over a week, so I'm guessing no gestational diabetes. Awesome!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Success!

My schedule is finally complete. I got all of the classes I wanted/needed, now I just have to do well in these classes. I'm a bit concerned about my large research paper that will be due this semester. It's pretty much any topic of my choosing as long as it's provocative, but it's also 40-50 pages. I want to bang this out before I leave. I know it's not going to happen, but I need as much of that done before I leave.

Other than that, my days are much fuller than they were before. I have places to be, reading to do and before I know it it's 3pm. I'm still crazy tired and haven't yet found a good nap spot on campus. There is certainly a need for a nap room. I'm going to lobby the SBA. I can certainly see this semester going quickly and October being here before I know it. It's a blessing and a curse. I keep looking at the light at the end of this tunnel. BABY! So far this kid has been cooperating, knock on wood. I think Z likes my lectures as the kicking is most furious then. The fact that I have another human being inside of me still hasn't hit me for real. I know it's true, but the thought is still so up in the clouds. The fact that I'm still not really showing has meant that I'm not getting the pregnant woman attention, which is fine by me. I don't need anyone pawing my belly. So far I'm +2lbs. I don't know how much longer that's going to keep up, but working with my trainer will help keep it in track. The general recommendation would be for me to gain between 10-15lbs, so I'm pretty much on track. Only 12 more weeks so go until we get to see Z, 14 until the end of the semester and 8 more until I get to see Liam!