Let Me PUMP You UP!

studymoto

 

Finals week arrived. It was inevitable.
I’m not quite sure where the time went. Can you believe it’s been a year? This 1L is nearly finished. And, well, I don’t know about you – but I am exhausted.

I completely understand how tired you are. Tired of reading, writing, and thinking. I get it. Your classmates get it.

Trust me.
Everyone feels like a squished lemon, completely out of juice.

So let me tell you a secret.
You have a bit left in the reserve tank, kid.

Need some motivation? Here’s a little Pep Talk:

 

Advice to keep you on the right track:

  1. Set up your study schedule. Let your friends and family in on it – so they DON’T bother you during those time frames.
  2. Order in, or meal prep. You don’t want the hassle of cooking and cleaning, and getting distracted by Pinterest recipes.
  3. Settle into a good study spot. Find your little corner of the world with great lighting, perfect ambiance, and enough desk space for several snacks, books, and your laptop.
  4. HYDRATE! Make sure to have some water or some darn good sweet tea (you know, Texas’ drink of choice).

You’ve got finals in the bag.
Keep Studying, loves.

You’re almost through your 1L year!

Good luck on exams!

sarahheartsig3

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On Sundays, We Meal Prep

Last month, the ABA sponsored a Mental Health Day.
At UNT Dallas College of Law, the faculty and staff made a HUGE effort to focus on the importance of total-body wellness; Camp Gladiator visited and signed us up for CAMP! 

I was super honest up front and told the trainer that unless the Beau could come, there was just no way this derriere would find its way to an outdoor gym. 

 

donut
Thinking the trainer would just give up and move on to the next law student dreaming of getting a work out in, she sucker punched me with –
Oh, your sweetie can tag along. We’ll give him 4 free weeks of CAMP too!”

Well, damn.
Now there’s motivation to go. Because, it’s free. And…did I mention we’re going to a beach wedding in JUNE?! Yeah – my current shape is ROUND. 
All I have are excuses: clerkship, internship, class, extra-curricular meetings, walking the dogs, feeding myself, remembering to shower…

There’s no set reason for not being in better shape except that I start and don’t ever finish. I get through a week of working out, feel completely sore and just overall pissed off about eating carrots instead of chips, and decide to give myself a break

The boys don’t help, either; when I make a super healthy meal, this is pretty much their reaction: 

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I basically have to trick them into thinking they are eating an unhealthy dish. That’s virtually impossible without adding butter or — you know — flavor! Which means I can put together a great meal, but then they’ll inevitably want fried flautas or chicken wings for dinner the following day. It’s a vicious cycle. A deliciously vicious cycle.

 Now that I have an actual goal, and will be in wedding photos, I’ve got NO CHOICE but to work out. A big ol’ THANKS to CG for making my soreness a reality. I’m thanking you now, because I’m pretty sure I’ll be cursing your name tomorrow.

We’re signed up for a 5:30AM class. UGH!!?!?!
Which means I’m prepping our breakfast, lunch, and snacks for tomorrow because I’ve been promised by other CG campers that my arms will likely be limp noodles.

But hey – I’ll be able to see my abs again soon — that’ll be nice. 😛

anchorman-deep-burn-workout

Here’s to getting back to being fit! 

sarahheartsig3

 

Meal Prep for the Busy Law Student

Usually, I meal prep on Sunday. However, I was quite disenchanted with the mere thought of cooking then, and the kitchen passion didn’t quite hit me Tuesday, or today either, hence – I continued to procrastinate. [law school daze, right]

Put if off until tomorrow…I was happy with this decision.
Until I opened the fridge in the morning to pack my lunch and realized – I didn’t have lunch! Well, damn. Joke’s on me.

noidea

What was I expecting?

With assignments, study groups, reading, and trying to have a semblance of a social life (let’s face it – this one is definitely on the back burner right now) – time quickly passes. I chose to be law school lazy. My couch called my name, the dogs begged for tummy rubs, and I simply refused to cook.

Here I am, Wednesday evening, running on a cup of coffee, a bagel, and a pack of plain m&ms…the tummy grumblings arrived.
You know all too well how difficult it is to study on an empty stomach.
Sometimes it’s easier to pick up a meal on the way home; that option (for three adults) racks up a pretty penny, and fast!

Most weeks, I meal prep. Our pantry is stocked with everyday basics: rice, beans, pasta, risotto, polenta, cereal, Triscuit, bread, tuna….the list goes on with pretty much any canned or dried good you can imagine (even baby corn – yep, I make sure we have it in case a stir-fry craving hits)! But Finals are upon us – which means I’m in study mode and too nervous/busy/panicked/tired to spend that much time in the kitchen (aside from sress baking, of course)!

Thank goodness for meal prep services!
Last week, we opted to give FRESHLY a try!
We got to pick 12 meals, FRESHLY cooked and pre-packaged them, then delivered them directly to our front door.

Is this unbelievably convenient? YES.
Will we splurge on this every week? Likely, no.

However if the meals are good – then we can order them for busy weeks!

restaurant-delivery-site-reviews

 

Tonight we tried two of the meals: [Jerk Chicken] & [Southwest Chipotle Bowl]

Pros: The food was not disgusting. I’ll be honest, I was terrified it was going to be awful. Then, I found myself pleasantly surprised with the plated meal. I was not over-the-moon about my meal option, but I’m glad I tried it.

Cons: The meals are drastically different in calorie count. :/ This was a major bummer. The meal I chose (Southwest Bowl) was 740 calories, while Angel’s Jerk Chicken meal came in at 500 calories. What. The. Heck?!

I ended up storing half my meal for lunch tomorrow, which means there’s a little bit of a “pro” in the “con.”

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The mango salsa was a nice touch

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Adding Cilantro to a dish does not make it “Southwestern-style”

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Not a “pretty” dish, but still tasty. 

 

Overall, this first round was not half-bad. I’m excited to try the rest of the meals we ordered. I truly appreciate the convenience of this delivery service, but I’m not completely sold on the flavors or the price. Further recon necessary.

Have a great week!

sarahheartsig3

Law School Depression: Grades & Guidance

hell

Law School is ROUGH but – you’ve GOT this. 

THIS read made me realize how lucky I am. This semester has been grueling (more-so than last semester) for many reasons – but not one of those reasons stems from feeling alone. In fact, for my wonderful classmates who read this blog (and for those peers far and wide going through the same law school struggle) please know there are resources available for you. Talk to student services at your school. Reach out to TLAP, or the appropriate lawyer assistance program in your state. There is a support system waiting to help you – all you have to do, is call.

 

exhausted

 

Law school is hard, breaks you down, and makes you question your life-plan. That’s right – it’s not just you! Everything is harder for you. Before law school, you were a great writer, logical thinker, skilled speaker. Then, the world crumbled beneath your feet and you probably feel like nothing you do is right.
Give law school your best effort. Your grades are important, sure, but they do NOT define you. The sum of your cumulative experiences matters more. Yes, you should strive to earn high marks, but sacrificing your health is not an option.

Just know – you are better than you give yourself credit for!
We all feel shaken, battered, and a little worse for wear.
You are not alone.

I cannot speak directly for my campus, but I can say they have provided multiple opportunities for us to reach out to them. Our professors and campus staff have done a great job explaining how our Texas Bar resources apply to law students. They opened the channels for us to discuss good ways to deal with stress, rather than the stereotypical (and, quite frankly, more common) substance abuse methods used by attorneys and law students across the country.

I deal with stress in these healthy ways:
– Bake for my family and classmates
– Sing in the shower
– Run a mile (or two) while listening to music
– Work Out
– Dance It Out
– Scream into a pillow

Okay…maybe the last one is not the greatest, but it’s certainly not destructive. Sometimes a good ARGHHHHHHH does the body good.

Find something that works for you. Relaxing, cooking, dancing….anything that could help you relieve stress in a healthy way – find your stress relief.
If you need to talk to someone, PLEASE DO.

 

sarahheartsig3

How to Prep Your Oral Argument

You’ve been chugging along, gobbling up every nugget of wisdom the professors have to offer. Everything is ok. You’re fine. Law school is finally feeling right and then – POW!

koala

Your first oral argument comes bounding around the corner and you have no freaking clue what to do. This is the point where you realize one of two things:
1) Well damn. I don’t like to speak to crowds and this is going to suck; or
2) I’ve totally got this and I’m confident, so I really don’t need to prepare – right?

You’re wrong in both scenarios. 

If you’re in the first group, then you need to give yourself more credit.
You were accepted to LAW SCHOOL. 
You MADE IT THROUGH your first semester.

This oral argument is going to be another feather in your cap of amaze-balls. 
Don’t think it’s going to defeat you or break your spirit. 
The point of the exercise is to give you a little taste of how it feels to be a zealous advocate. You need to feel the rush of what it is to be a competent attorney, otherwise, your efforts to earn high grades in class fail to relate to the real world. 

legalsuperhero

Trust me when I say this: If you can speak and write eloquently, you will have a much easier time winning a Judge over.

Now, if you’re in the 2nd group, listen here, child. Bottle up that confidence and store it away for the actual argument. You need to strut your stuff to impress the Judges, but if all you have is confidence – it’s not going to get you far. Do not make the mistake of thinking that you can get by with a few quick glances to the case facts and a few briefs of the defendant’s motion for summary judgment. Do not be the one caught unprepared!

Here’s what you’ll need:
1. Folder/Notebook/Padfolio
2. Notecards
3. Tape
4. Document Flags
5. Permanent Writing Tool (sharpie, felt-tip pen, pen)

Oral Argument Prep

Organize! Organize! Organize!

 

Your argument should be mostly drafted by the time you get here. 
Why? 
This is because you will likely have been asked to draft either a motion for summary judgment or an opposition to an MSJ (or other Motion brought in front of the Court).

Set up your argument! Write like the wind, and be FIERCE.
You’ll want to practice your argument multiple times before the real deal. Feel free to use your family members, or even pets, as an audience.
[If you were told not to collaborate with ANYONE – follow directions!]

erin

True, but we love it.

 

Now, you’re going to set up your already written argument!
Get your notecards and give them titles. I needed to create arguments for each of 3 elements, as well as have an introduction and a roadmap (to let the Court know where I plan on taking them).

 

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So, extra? No – soooo prepared!

 

Use the tape and flags to organize your argument and keep everything in place.
On the front of your cards, include what you want to say. Only tape the TOP of each notecard, so you can flip it over when you’ve made your point.
BONUS – Write the case names and facts you need to have on hand (on the back of the notecard where your point is), in case a Judge asks you for them!

Notice, I also used the extra space on my folder to write key points and notes to myself.
They’re in smaller chunks, so that I can catch them easily when I glance down.

Remember – DO NOT read directly off your notecards.
I prefer to write my entire argument down because it’s basically a security blanket!
By reciting  it often, the argument morphs into information that is easier to remember and feels much more natural discussing out loud. Ideally, your argument should not sound as if it is coming from a robot – you need to add flair and passion to your style!

 

 

Be awesome!

 

sarahheartsig3

Best Damn Cheesesteaks

 

 

eating

 

I rarely get to post recipes anymore. This cheesesteak post was a long time coming, too. I made these for the Beau and his besties for boys night a while back. They gave rave reviews and demanded I make them again soon.

These Philly cheesesteaks are so easy to MAKE!
They’ll taste like they took forever, but you’ll have them on the table in under 45 minutes. 

Truly, the majority of the time goes into the fact that this recipe makes 2 entire 8×11 pans worth of buttery goodness.

What You’ll Need:
3 lbs. of shaved rib-eye (ask the butcher to shave it, this way you cut down your prep time)
3 large green bell peppers (slice, about 1/4″ thick)
2 medium-sized onions (thin slices)
1lb. of Provolone Cheese
2 packages of Hawaiian Rolls (slice horizontally to separate tops and bottoms)
Salt & Pepper, to taste
1 stick of butter, halved.
1 T of Olive Oil

 

Alright. Prepare yourself. 

serious

 

The Cooking Part:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. Add the oil and half 1/3 of the butter stick to a large pan
  3. Add the shaved rib-eye to the pan + the salt and pepper (I add about 1T of each)

  4. Brown the rib-eye, then remove it from the pan and place it in a bowl; KEEP the pan drippings in the pan though!
  5. Add onions and bell peppers into the pan that has the drippings, sauté until soft

  6. Place the bottom halves of the Hawaiian bread into two separate baking pans
  7. Melt the other 2/3 of the butter and brush a light coat onto the Hawaiian bottoms
  8. Lay down a layer of provolone cheese on top of the brushed Hawaiian bread
  9. Add a layer of the ribeye, distribute evenly
  10. Distribute the onions and bell peppers evenly over both pans (make sure to include the drippings!)

  11. Add another layer of Provolone cheese.
  12. Place the tops of the Hawaiian buns over the glorious feast you’ve already assembled
  13. Brush some more butter over the tops

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  14. Pop them in the oven for about 10 minutes, or until tops a crunchy golden brown

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Yes, you can swoon over me….and the amazingness you are about to devour!

 

sarahheartsig3