Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Want, want, want

A vacuum that kills germs and mites and other grody stuff without funky chemicals (just UV light).

I have maybe never wanted a physical object more. I have definite vacuum lust.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

How to pass the Virginia Bar Exam on your very first try

  • DO take PMBR's 6-day Course
  • DON'T let that course freak you out. It is designed to kick-start your studying, and to reinforce the fact that after 3 years of law school, you know pretty much nothing, and that you do, in fact, need to study for this Bar thing.
  • DO take BarBri courses. Preferably the Richmond BarBri, trust me on this one.
  • DON'T try to work and study for the Bar, if at all possible. Three solid months of non-stop grumpy studying will, if nothing else, give you the confidence to go in and show the Bar Examiners all that you know.
  • DO follow the schedule BarBri gives you. This way, you won't skimp on too many areas to make study room for the same subject over and over. If it's giving you fits, leave it be.
  • DON'T leave all your studying until the last minute. The guy sitting next to me, who was taking the test for the second time, told me he had studied "like, really hard, for like, two weeks, man." DON'T be this guy- his name wasn't on the pass list.
  • DO as many practice essays and multiple choice practice questions as you can. It is totally OK to refer to your notes as you go along.
  • DO listen to the PMBR CDs (especially if you, like me, have a dedicated hour commute one way to BarBri classes). Just replace your regular CD/radio time with those. The last thing you want is a Bananarama song stuck in your head during the exam.
  • DON'T change your study habits drastically for this test. It is hard, and it is long, but it is still a test. You know the study techniques that have been successful for you in the past (after all, you made it through law school somehow). Now is not the time to abandon the strategies that work for you. Personally, I made all my own flashcards from the BarBri lecture notes I took each day. Other friends who passed just made outlines. Bottom line- DO what works for you.
  • DON'T bother with PMBR's 3-day course (unless there are 2 weeks between the end of your BarBri and the exam). For me, it was just too close to the exam (I only had one "dead" week between the end of BarBri and the test itself, which I used to study the heck out of my own flashcards).
  • DO get your hotel reservations WAY in advance. Stay at least the night before the first and second days (if you can afford to stay after the second day is over, your drive home will be far less white-knuckled than mine).
  • DO bring your own breakfast to prepare in your hotel room. I was so glad to have brought my own oatmeal when I saw my hotel's excuse for continental breakfast get demolished by every other Bar Examinee.
  • DO get plenty of rest throughout the entire studying process. That extra hour of cramming contracts into your head at 12 am is not going to help as much as if you got that hour of sleep to refresh you. Same deal during the exam period- study a little the night before each session, but at some point, you need to set the books down, eat dinner, watch Little Miss Sunshine on HBO, and fall asleep.
  • DON'T PANIC. This is the very most important bit of advice I can give. Don't panic during study time, and certainly don't panic during the test. If you've followed your study schedule, you will be more than prepared for anything the Bar Examiners can throw at you. If you see something you don't know on the exam, DON'T let that rattle you. Breathe, relax, and let the answer come to you. Even if it never does, chances are nobody else understood the question either. Even if you get a softball of a question wrong, MOVE ON. Far better to not choke, and only get one question wrong, than to choke and get that question, plus a few others wrong in your panic.
  • Finally, Mom's sage wisdom. DO YOUR BEST.
I'll be happy to answer any other, more specific questions ya'll have, just let me know. Disclaimer: your mileage may vary. I obviously can't make any guarantees, but as advice goes, the above is the best I've got. I passed doing this crap, but you may or may not need something different. good luck.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


My name is on this list

Thank you, God.

Saturday, October 13, 2007


We just bought a house.

For real.


Friday, October 12, 2007


We're buying this one.

It'll be finished in April (which really means June).

Thank you, God.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Dear God,

I have two small favors to ask.

1. Please just let me have passed the Bar Exam.

2. Please don't let this mortgage lady tell us we can't afford this amazing townhouse.

Thank you, and Amen.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

ball o' nerves

Almost mid-October now...part of me wants an answer now, part of me doesn't ever want to know...

Everyone has been really, really nice about this whole bar thing- all "Of COURSE you passed, just don't worry", "I have a good feeling," et. cetera.

Honestly, the most comforting thing anyone has said to me in the last week was my boss: "It's OK to be freaked out of your mind. We've all been there. There is no way not to worry about it."

The happy thoughts are nice, keep 'em coming, but I can't make my hopeful-yet-pessimistic brain believe them.