new things

August 2, 2008

Well, despite my father calling this a move to the dark side (but look it’s white and shiny and sleek and pretty!) I’ve followed the call of my soul and purchased my first Macbook.

Say ooohh pretty...

Say "ooohh pretty"...

My Acer TravelMate has served me well the last four years, but he wasn’t going to survive the back and forth, in and out and moving around from library to apartment to home and back for three years. Armed with the UW Doit Tech Store student discount and assurance from the law school that I would not have issues taking exams on this baby, I made the switch. It’s actually been six years (gahh – I graduated from undergrad six years ago!) since I last used a Mac, so it’s quite different, and I’m still getting used to it.

But so far, very good.

I even saved $70 on Office for Mac (student discount) because someone I know was able to give me a copy, and I got Adobe Acrobat for free! I don’t need that software, but I now I can explore the wonderful world of creating PDFs! Yeah!

Another goal is to complete several projects around the house before I start school. I now have an entire week to tackle some of the more time consuming ones, like finishing the steps that lead up to our upstairs. Last year I ripped out the carpet in this area and had the floors re-sanded. The steps turned out really well, right?

Well, until you are going up them. Then you see this:

Ahhhh – so ugly I know. The people who did our floors didn’t have the part or whatever to do the vertical side. The sad part is, I’m so used to it, I don’t even notice. However, a month or so ago I cleaned out part of my basement and found my electric sander, which will make it a hundred times easier to take care of this. Then I will get it painted and be done with it.

I also need to paint my living room. I’m not sure about getting that done, but posting the goal on the internet is extra motivation, I think.

Last goal is general de-cluttering, starting by selling old books. I have boxes of books in my basement that, in reality, I will never want to look at again. I keep the books I love, but I don’t need these books. So I started a “store” on half.com, and already sold one book! I’m hoping the pile will shrink and I’ll make a few bucks, and the rest I will donate.

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it’s all happening so fast!

July 30, 2008

Just when I was feeling that my tenure at my job would never end, that the summer was crawling by, that I would never get to law school, it all snuck up on me. Last week I was busy planning a bridal shower for my dear friend Jen. I got my class schedule thursday night, which inspired a few not-so-productive hours of trying to find information about my professors on the internet. The weekend, with the shower and a family barbecue on a perfect Sunday, flew by.

Sunday night I decided I should do myself a favor and take a week off between finishing up at work and starting law school orientation. So August 15th will be my last day at the ‘Mart, and I’ll have a full week to get stuff done around the house, pack whatever I’ll need in Madison, and get somewhat settled in Mad-town. Suddenly, the the 15th seems alarmingly near. I have lots of things to do to transition out of my job, but chances are I will save most of them until next week and those last five days. My customers are in very good hands around here, so there’s no reason to worry. Not that I would worry… okay maybe I would. For a few weeks. It’s in my nature. The same way I wondered how my Qdoba was doing in sales for a few months after I quit.

The saddest part will be not spending eight hours a day sitting between my work buddies Jenni and Joel. I will especially miss participating in our ridiculous chats about work, life and vaccines. And also, most importantly, laughing silently but hysterically when we find the perfect random image to express ourselves from the internet:

Yes, that is an inside joke. No, I will not explain to you.

In other news, I’ve gotten a few bits of good news regarding my schedule. The first is that I received an e-mail from my 1L mentor (who knew such a thing existed?!), and she had the same Civil Procedure professor I will have. The report: “very unothodox” and “very fantastic.” Excellent. I’m also starting to adjust to the idea of afternoon and evening classes. My plan is to join a class at the SERF pretty early in the mornings, and once I get up and work out, I will be up for the day. I’m hoping this will help me fight the nature to start sleeping late again.


oh yeah

July 12, 2008

And I decided to forgo the whole anonymous blog idea, at least for now. I couldn’t come up with the perfect name nor the perfect new layout on some other blog service. And it was going to be a lot of work to maintain two blogs. I’ll just keep being Laura (or laurafern for those who insist) going to the University of Wisconsin Law School.


notice

July 10, 2008

I cannot believe it’s July. The summertime is flying. I had an agreement of sorts with my department manager to give my notice at work after I came back from Vancouver, and I did so Monday. It wasn’t any surprise to the company president as various people already knew I had been accepted to UW and probably assumed I would go there over Marquette. Still, it’s a relief to have people know what is going on. No more awkward evasions of certain people and questions.

In seven weeks I’ll be in the midst of law school orientation. I’m giddy right now, but aware that in 10 weeks I’ll probably be up to my ears in books and cases and new terminology. Yesterday I received an e-mail from the admissions office asking for my shirt size to order my t-shirt for the orientation community day. I had to write a short bio to introduce myself to my classmates. I’ve got loans taken care of, but I need to deal with student health insurance, changing my car insurance and doing something with the money in my 401K.

Being at the AILA conference, however, really gave me a vision for the future. Meeting and spending time with attorneys Laurel Scott and Heather Poole, I felt even more confident that, although it will be daunting, I can run my own practice one day. If I have to start it out of my living room, so be it. But I know I can do it.


meeting my rockstars

June 24, 2008

Tomorrow at this time I’ll be on my way to Canada for the American Immigration Lawyers Association annual conference. I’m thrilled that I get to go, especially now that I know that my lawyer friend intends to “corner” some government officials to grill them on the questionable ways they are interpreting a particular tidbit of immigration law. Also because I get to meet some amazing women I admire greatly and hopefully all sorts of other people that will eventually be my peers.

In a week or two, after the conference is over, I plan to give notice at my job of two plus years. It’s been a good run. Overall I’ve had a successful time here. My job as a general manager for a fast-casual restaurant was sucking my soul; I was way too young to be that stressed-heading-rapidly-toward-burnout. I needed out and when I interviewed at this local medical supply company with a national vaccine division I could see relief. This job has been a blessing, most definitely a relief – a period of relative boredom and a dearth of workplace challenge that allowed me to find a passion for law. Ironic. I’m not the first person to be bored into finding their passion here. My now-close friend worked here for a year before heading to Europe for months and then starting her own personal chef business.

It will be sad to leave though. I have made two good friends here, and gotten to know a number of great people. I sit sort of between my two friends, and some days we have exchanged 100 e-mails about frustrations, vents and funny things that have happened. It’s a strange aspect of modern office life I suppose to make jokes entirely in writing to people sitting 5-10 feet away from you.

I’ve also been thinking about how this might be the last 35 or so days that I work for someone else. I imagine I will do at least one internship during law school, and will definitely work (in a coffee shop or retail or as a paralegal) during school at certain points, but that’s different somehow. Those will all be temporary stints leading up to the day I hopefully open my own little law practice. And from there, I will wear jeans when I want. I will play the music I like and bring any children I might have to the office, which might very well be my living room for a while. It’s immensely freeing and satisfying to envision this future.

I do realize there are huge obstacles to making it happen, but getting into school was one of the biggest, completing my 1 L year alive will be the next.


immigrate2us.net forum down

June 12, 2008

I have a surprising amount of hits today, probably because immigrate2us.net is down and people are wondering what is going on. If that is your reason for stopping by, they are working on the problem and it should be back up in a day or two. Don’t panic!


busy

June 2, 2008

In three months I should officially be a law student. Crazy!

And that timeline has gotten me motivated to spend my weekends doing work around my house that I have wanted to for years. It’s funny to even have lived in one place for “years,” but I think four qualifies.

So, not much to blog about lately. Still trucking on with law-school prep, forum activity, work and gardening.

Hopefully inspiration will strike soon.