Fizbo’s Demise

A few weeks ago, our beloved Baller came to visit. It was SO wonderful having her here, even though we were (sensing a theme here?) forced to spend a lot of her visit in coffee shops, learning all of the law. But, she (as ballers are wont to do) definitely made the best of it, and explored Boston on her own. (I guess after you tackle Australia solo, one city is child’s play).

We did take her to Giacomo’s, though, (because we care about her as a person) and tried to make up for our lackluster hosting with butternut squash ravioli and playfully grumpy waiters. It was fantastic as usual (seriously, if you ever find yourself in Boston, it is a mandatory stop), but what happened on the way out the door was even better.

We’re walking along, an intelligent group of conversating adults, when we passed this ice cream cone smashed on the ground.

It didn’t even really blip on my radar, but Baller leapt over to that square of sidewalk like it was her own personal frozen treat that had just bitten the dust, and yelled, “SAD!!! Sad. A clown died there.”

Just…what?

And that is why I love her.

Advertisements

Equity Salad

Because equity regards as done, what should be done. And this salad should be done. Slash “made.” And I apologize to everyone not currently knee-deep in the MBE right now, but it has infiltrated all parts of my brain.

20120629-140317.jpg

It’s a seriously delicious, summery salad, perfect for all the times when your desired food prep level is hovering around “assembly.” Throw in all the fruit in your fridge, add grilled chicken and goat cheese, and go back to doing property questions. Or, you know…whatever.

Equity Salad
Spinach, torn into pieces (excellent for right after you score your practice test)
Blueberries
Strawberries, chopped
Dates, pitted and chopped
Cucumber, chopped
Goat cheese, crumbled

M made his amazing Mediterranean chicken to put on top, and I’ll have to ask him for that recipe. As far as I can tell, it involves him standing over the stove for five minutes and constantly squeezing a lemon over a pile of garlic, but theoretically there might be another step.

Happy summer, everyone! Someone better be lying on a beach in a floppy hat in my stead right now!

An Affirmation of Previously Held Beliefs

My darling maid of honor and the man I married have a lot in common. They’re incredibly friendly, curious, and athletic. They were probably both puppies in a former life. They are also both blond, which is pretty much irrelevant.

However, they also share a profound love of a game they like to call, “Let’s Convince Her to Go Camping.” The “her” is me, an individual who was recently caught up in that game and is consequently covered in bug bites…but still somehow very much in love with both of these scoundrels.

The Culprits

Now, in their collective defense, I was a willing (if temporarily insane) participant in this latest excursion. Both M and A.Bo’s boyfriend were having birthdays soon, and we hadn’t been to the Cape yet (despite living here for three years…law school, you are just embarrassing everyone). Somehow those two facts merged into a plan to surprise the men with camping at the Cape for a weekend. A. Bo says this was my idea. If so, it was only because I was distracted by the boatload of brownie points that were to be mine once M was made aware that I had voluntarily gone camping in his honor. You guys, I can’t even count that high.

Despite the fact that it involved flesh-eating bugs and sleeping on the ground, (totally understand why people do this for fun) the trip actually gave us a chance to be with several of our favorite people (Andrew came too!) and meet some new faces. This group shot of our Troop Beverly Hills is brought to you by Mike, a dude at a fire pit half-way down the beach whom A. Bo somehow convinced to come play iPhone photographer. Be careful around her, the people-wrangling skills are not to be underestimated.

I will have you know that, actually, camping is not all bad. Since we were at the Cape, there was a lot of time to do this:

You know, play beach volleyball. Or sit on a towel and watch beach volleyball. However you personally happen to roll. There was also time to sit around a campfire and drink whisky and make s’mores. I may not like dirt, but I am firmly in favor of Johnny Walker and chocolate. (Side note: what is it about s’mores? One obviously great ingredient + two elements that in real life would merit a resounding “eh” = oh my everloving melted sugar high. That’s the kind of math to which I could’ve applied myself in high school.)

Chocolate and lounging aside, the best part was realizing how lucky I am to have these two in my life. A. Bo knocked herself out to plan this trip. She coordinated everything while I was in finals, brought us extra tents, shopped for all the food…this kid, I swear. And M really was so flattered that I had faced mosquitos for him that, by the end of the weekend, I was getting “survivor of a personal tragedy” level compliments. “I am just so proud of you…this experience is making me see you in a whole new light…thank you for tapping into these reserves of strength just for me!” (To refresh, we were just…camping. Like, not in Bosnia.)

So despite their love of the (previously aforementioned) game, I seriously count these two tow-heads among my blessings.

You know, when I get tired of counting the mosquito bites.

The Zeus Mollifier

20120626-180945.jpg

The weather in Boston has been certifiable lately. Thunderstorms that indicate Zeus is working through some feelings. Crushing heat waves that trap people with their spouses (and bar materials) in the only tiny air-conditioned room of their apartment. And perfectly beautiful summer days, of course. Today has been a mixture of all three, and in celebration of both this weather schizophrenia and the fact that we’ve studied for two days in a row, (we’ll take what we can get, celebration-wise) M made a pretty much perfect variation of the standard G & T.

Enjoy!

The Zeus Mollifier
A significant amount of gin
A whole lime, squeezed
40% of a giant lemon, squeezed
Splash of tonic water

 

27 1/2 by 27 1/2

Maybe it’s just the looming feeling that the bar is imparting to my life these days, but I feel a little compelled to pump up the “human” part of my life. It doesn’t need to be swallowed by the law. Well, it kind of does for the next month, but after that, I want to reach for more balance.

I’ve never made a list like this before, but I don’t believe in waiting until January 1st to start a new life practice anyway. So, here is a list of things I’d like to accomplish before the earth gets a chance to rotate again…

1. Pass the California Bar Exam the first time around. (I guess this one is obvious, but it’s earned the number one slot for this rotation).

2. Go to ballet class at least once a week.

3. Actually make it past barre consistently.

4. Become more re-attuned to my body, eating, and fitness plans so that I feel like I have my dancer body back instead of this more athletic situation.

5. Do one pull-up. (What? I like contradictions.)

6. Post at least twice a week on this blog.

7. Move the blog to a hosted site and actually configure the design in a way that looks somewhat professional.

8. Go to Spain.

9. Attend the first ever annual FriendFest! (I am embarrassingly excited about this one).

10. Buy a bar cart for our new apartment and stock it with everything so that I can make any guest any cocktail upon request.

11. Have a living space that feels like it reflects us and the things (and people) we love.

12. Use the Rosetta Stone and become somewhat conversational in Spanish.

13. Speak to all my closest friends once a week. (In person or on the phone, ideally.)

14. Institute a girl-only night so that I see my (local) female friends on a weekly basis. (I’m thinking a standing brunch date sounds like a really good idea…)

15. Paint something good enough to hang in our apartment. (I used to love to paint before high school, and just totally let it go.)

16. Go to New Orleans.

17. Read at least two books a month.

18. Buy fresh flowers for our apartment every week (or so), and arrange them in all the rooms. (Such an inexpensive and fast way to make sure you wake up every morning and are greeted with beauty).

19. See my family at least every other week.

20. Talk to Dan at least once a week.

21. Go on a real, get dressed up, wear perfume and meet at the restaurant date once a week. (With M). (Obviously).

22. Have a perfume wardrobe. (Scent has always been my most immediate and important sensory impression, and I’ve always felt like my mood can be changed immediately by a spritz of a different perfume. I love it, and yet it’s something I never buy for myself.)

23. Have an edited, adult wardrobe that’s stocked enough that getting dressed for work every morning, for brunch with friends and for dates with M are not sources of stress (and hopefully even fun).

24. Have an operational budget.

25. Pick a cause in which I feel invested, and start offering my time and money.

26. Learn to make at least ten totally new paleo dishes.

27. Take a weekend trip somewhere with just my female friends.

27 1/2. Be a delightful human being as often as possible.

What do you guys think? Any suggestions/substitutions?

Little more of this, little less Rule Against Perpetuities.

Little more of this, little less Rule Against Perpetuities.

Normally Costco Is Not This Profound

Yesterday, M and I were walking out of Costco when he said something that reminded me so much of my dad.

We were steering our overflowing cart out of the exit, and the path to our car was blocked by a little girl looking up at us with giant eyes and meandering veeeerrrry slowly across our path. She was maybe two…not old enough to realize that she was in anyone’s way, and just concentrating on absorbing the world around her.

I just stood there, waiting for her to finish her toddle, so that we could pass. We weren’t in any terrific hurry, and she was trying her best to exist, so there wasn’t any point in rushing her. M, normally a hustlebot of the highest order, watched quietly next to me, and when she finally crossed, he said emphatically, “Beautiful kid.”

She was; all blond ringlets and huge blue eyes. But I heard my father in his statement, because most people probably would have described her as “cute.” “Aww, so little! Excuse me, sweetie!” But my husband and my father are both people who, while they normally fling themselves headlong through life, will recognize and stop to pay homage to actual beauty. She was perfect, and what an amazing thing to have a tiny, perfect person cross your path while you push yourself through the minutiae of your day.

And how lucky I am, that I could watch my father see the world this way, and that I found a man who shares that gift.

We Can Never Forget His Birthday

The last time I showed up at a hospital because of an impending birth, I was back home within the hour, tucking into some macaroni and cheese and laughing at Mej doing the grandparent voices in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I was mildly aware of the gravity of the occasion (my brother was being born, after all), but I was only seven, and not fully cognizant of what was transpiring in the delivery room. I just knew I had tossed every lucky penny in every fountain, and blown out every birthday candle, with the same wish (“I want a little guy to play with!”) and soon that wish would be granted.

Recently, I was lucky enough to see that same wish granted for our good friends…only this time, there was no delicious cheesy pasta to temper the immensity of the experience.

Arriving at the hospital...the first time!

Arriving at the hospital…the first time!

A few weeks before Dane was born, Ron and Trina asked if I would film his birth. I was totally honored that they felt we were close enough to share that seminal a moment, and of course I said yes…and then wondered if I should watch a few on YouTube so that my first reaction to a human being entering the world didn’t result in fainting. (“Um, no, I didn’t get any footage of your firstborn…and I broke your camera when I passed out cold. Sorry!”)

We were “on call” starting on Monday morning. I woke up to a text from Ron saying that Trina was laboring at home, and they would let us know when to head to the hospital. Around 10:30 that night (aka FOREVER if you are waiting for a fun baby to be born, and are instead stuck studying for the bar) we headed to the hospital. Of course, because we wanted to fit in some pregnancy cliches, we first ran to a few different convenience stores to find the right brand of crackers for Trina. (“We can’t take her regular Wheat Thins! She is in labor! Where are the reduced fat ones? What do you mean you don’t carry them??”) It was so fun to be on this side of the experience first. Honestly, it make me much more comfortable (prospectively) about asking people to help me when I’m pregnant/in labor. We were so incredibly excited to meet the baby and witness this actually happening in real life…forget crackers, I would have stood on my head.

Anyway, so we get to the hospital, take blurry excited pictures in the entryway, hand over the crackers, and…wait. Several episodes of Community later, Ron came out looking semi-exhausted and told us to go home. Apparently “labor” was not interested in the fact that we wanted to meet Dane immediately, and had decided to return again another day.

So, back to the waiting game…until a certain day which was already fantastic for other reasons. Mostly because this guy…

…happened to be born on it, twenty-seven years prior. Correct: Dane was born on M’s birthday. At the exact same time. If that’s not a clue that this new human being is destined for greatness, I don’t know what is. (Maybe the fact that both his parents are great themselves. Whatever. You see the point I’m going for here).

Round two at the hospital happened so fast, there wasn’t really time to absorb things as they were happening. Ron called as we were finishing breakfast, with the instruction “Come now! But not so fast that you hurt yourself.” We figured a cab was a good compromise. I left M in the waiting room, and Ron swiped me in through the giant double doors of the delivery wing.

Being present at a birth was overwhelming. I rounded the corner into Trina’s room, Ron pressed the video camera into my hands and turned back around to her, and suddenly I was a fly on the wall, overlooking the most intimate experience possible. Granted, there were also two nurses and a midwife in the room, but the amount of tension and emotion encircling these two people who were about to be parents made it feel like they were steering a ship into port themselves, and we were all just around to pull on some ropes if called.

At one point, Ron had to leave the room to call their parents, and asked me to step in and hold Trina’s hand as she pushed through a contraction. I guess I thought she would be more shy, that my stepping in for him would throw her off balance. Not in the slightest. She just grabbed me and squeezed (so strong for so small a person!) and it was just so clear that she was in charge of what was happening, and not the other way around. It was thrilling to watch. People might talk about “mama grizzlies,” but this was the true manifestation of that core instinct– a woman tapping into her deepest physical being to do what is needed to help her child.

The rest of labor was over so quickly. Trina asked for a mirror so she could see the baby’s head crowning, and when they wheeled it up, she could reach down and touch it. I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone squeal with glee under an oxygen mask before. That was it; if she could touch him, she wanted to hold him, and within five minutes there was a head…and then a shoulder…and then astonishingly fast, the whole rest of a whole baby. The wave of emotion that accompanied his entry into the world knocked me right in the face. I’ll be very surprised and grateful if their birth video is not set to the tune of my muffled crying.

And then there was so much to do right afterwards. There was afterbirth, and placenta, and weighing and blankets and learning how to breastfeed immediately. Even as only a witness, I was internally echoing Trina as she was continually turning to Ron, saying, “I can’t really hear them…will they tell me all this again later?”

I’m not sure he was hearing them either, because he was following Dane around the room, affirming every part of his seconds-old existence. The nurses were dictating his weight, (“8.4! What a great weight!”) assuring that his little head would immediately round out (“And even if it didn’t, that would be ok!”), and the new father just couldn’t verbalize enough of his love and support.

And…can you blame him?

I think we can all agree that is one perfect little baby.

And that this picture is just not. even. fair.

Welcome to the world, Dane Davis. We sure do like you already.

I am a hot mess and we went to New York a million years ago

The last month or so has been just a crazy whirlwind. Our families came for graduation, we took Megan to NYC, bar exam studying is in full force, M turned 27, we helped welcome a friend’s baby into the world, we went camping, and now Baller is here visiting. I want to write about everything that’s happening, but that’s an extremely optimistic goal given that blogging is going to be a “write furiously in snatched snippets of time” thing for the next month and a half. Oh, bar exam. How I thought I was going to dominate you, and instead you are just owning my very soul. Please just make your presence intense enough that we need never meet again.

Ok, so. Begin at the beginning? That would be graduation, but as I was one of the be-tasseled, I didn’t take that many pictures. I’ll save that for after I get some from my mom, and hopefully by then I’ll feel emotionally connected enough to make it seem like the “life event” that it (theoretically) was. (I can’t help feeling very ambivalent about big events on an arbitrary day, graduations especially. They always feel a little…forced, I think? Anyway).

Megan had to miss her graduation to be at ours, so M’s parents funded a little NYC trip so that we could show her around as a consolation prize. Um, yes please? If I could barter for a trip anywhere, my cap and gown would be sitting in a lonely heap in a corner. (That’s probably exactly where they are right now anyway, since we’ve had to return the rented ones we used for the ceremony. There is no ceremonial hood chillin on the wall.)

Hotel prices were kind of astronomical, so we rented a VRBO place in Brooklyn. It turned out to be wonderful (all loft-y and clean, with a full kitchen and Vogue issues littered about) but the trip getting there was…interesting. Neither of us had been to Brooklyn on our previous trips to the city, and so there was a lot of frustrated, suitcase-laden wandering. Google maps said we were supposed to go over some bridge, and then somehow we were walking into an industrial shipyard trying to get directions…let’s just say it was a good thing there were three of us, one was a male and it was broad daylight. Good grief. BUT! The Box House Hotel (as that was, in fact, its name) once found, was situated about 40 seconds from the Brooklyn Ice Cream factory. I’m pretty sure that’s all we need to say about that.

It was kind of subversively fun showing Megan around the city and pretending we actually knew it (“Oh, I have to take you to this cookie place…No, let’s go to this show…”) and she was pretty game for all of it. We haven’t spent that much time together, so this was a chance for me to get to know her more as a person, and less as “his sister.”

Speaking of sisters…Sister Act! While we were leafing through the programs and waiting for the lights to darken, Megan realized that Raven-Symone was playing the Whoopi role. I didn’t believe her at first, and then was a little freaked that I had accidentally picked the Nick Jr of Broadway shows for her first experience. Um, joke’s on me. I don’t care if she was annoying as a four year old on Cosby, current Raven is just an excellent showgirl nun. Talk about accolades you’ve hoped for your whole life.

Best bloody mary EVER at the Clover Club in Brooklyn. This was literally the Platonic brunch. They had deviled eggs with different toppings as appetizers, and M’s shrimp and grits made him a little weepy. There were huevos rancheros with quesadilla instead of tortilla. I can’t even talk about this anymore right now. Just go.

Siblings! And the spiciest jalapeno tequila drink the world has ever known!

And the view from the bar in the Standard. Win.