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Fitness at Home

I have always been a homebody so quarantine has not been a huge adjustment for me (thankfully). I know a lot of people are struggling with the new normal and I am doing my best to share relevant information.

Today I am talking about keeping fit at home. Many people practice fitness in gyms, yoga studios, pure barre studios, Orange theory... you get the idea. Unfortunately all of those places are currently closed. That doesn't mean you can't keep up your fitness routine at home though. I have never been a gym member or workout class attendee so I am pretty well versed in this. I am sharing all of my go to ideas and tips for working out at home.

Tips for Working Out at Home

1. Designate a Space (if you can)
If you have a spare room or basement, it can be helpful to designate the space to working out. It makes it more similar to a gym or studio. My husband has an area in our basement all organized for his workouts. Personally, I am pretty content to do Yoga in my living room or pedal my exercise bike in front of the TV. I do have a treadmill in the basement so I try to use that a few times a week as well.

2. No Need for Fancy Equipment
Even if you don't have fancy equipment, you can get in good workouts. No weights? Try cans of soup or books. No Yoga mat? Carpet works just fine for most moves. Get creative and make the best of your space and the things around you. There are also tons of ideas for equipment free workouts.

3. Pick a Time 
I find it helpful to set a time for my workouts so that it gets to be a part of my routine. Personally, I like to workout at night. So I make a deal with myself that I can't go to bed until I have done a workout of some kind. Sometimes its 30 minutes on the bike, sometimes its Yoga and sometimes I even run on the treadmill if I am feeling motivated. Whatever time of your day feels good, make that your workout time and stick to it.

4. Stop Making Excuses 
It is SO easy to make excuses to not work out. The gym is closed, you don't have room, you have no equipment..... STOP. Every excuse has a flipside which makes it possible. Where there is a will, there is a way. Stop making excuses and start figuring out solutions.

5. 21 Days
It takes about 21 days to make a routine that will stick. We are likely quarantined for at least 21 days if not longer. What a perfect time to make home workouts a part of your routine!

Ways to Workout at Home

1. Youtube
There are SO many amazing workout's on youtube. Search for whatever you want to do and you will be amazed at what is available... the options are nearly endless. I personally love the Yoga with Adriene series and it is completely free on youtube.

2. BBG
I did BBG all last summer and WOW did it work. It is super hard but very effective. It is within an app called SWEAT ($19.99 per month) and the workouts are about 28 minutes and require zero to very minimal equipment to complete. It is a great way to really tone your body!

3. Treadmill 
I bought a used treadmill 3 years ago and it has been great. My husband and I both use it regularly. I love being able to run and burn off energy right in my own basement. Search through Facebook marketplace and you would be amazed by how many great deals there are on exercise equipment. Off course, sanitize well after you pick it up if you choose to go this route.

4. Exercise Bike 
This folding exercise bike is perfect for tight spaces. It folds up small to be out of the way and works great when you need to get a workout in. Mine was under $100 and works really well. It lives in the corner of our living room and my husband and I both use it several times a week.

Happy exercising!

My Favorite TV Shows

Thanks to COVID-19, most of us are stuck in our houses and watching lots of TV. I have had this post in my drafts for a long time but now I had a push to finish it.

I am a TV lover. I sometimes wish I didn't enjoy it so much so I wouldn't spend so much time sitting in front of the TV but the fact remains that it is something I really enjoy. I am pretty wide open in my TV interests- I watch a little bit of everything.

I have broken this list up by genre and listed my favorites under each.

1. The Office (Netflix)

2. How I Met Your Mother (Netflix)

3. Friends (catch reruns on TV)

4. Gilmore Girls (Netflix)

5. New Girl (Netflix)

1. The Following (Netflix)

2. Criminal Minds (Netflix)

3. CSI: NY (not sure where you can see it)

4. Mindhunter (Netflix)

1. Into the West (buy it on Amazon)

2. Call the Midwife (Netflix)

3. Band of Brothers (Amazon Prime)

1. Outlander (Starz)

2. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Amazon Prime)

3. Jack Ryan (Amazon Prime)

4. The Resident (NBC currently)

1. Mysteries at the Museum (Travel Channel)

2. WW2 in HD (Netflix)

3. The Keepers (Netflix)

4. Five Came Back (Netflix)

5. Secrets of Great British Castles (Netflix)

Family Favorites
1. Boy Meets World (Disney Plus)

2. Full House and Fuller House (reruns and Netflix)

3. The Middle (reruns)

1. The Hot Zone (NatGeo)

2. Trisha's Southern Kitchen (Food Network)

3. Home Town (HGTV)

4. Great British Baking Show (Netflix)

5. Walking Through History (Amazon Prime)

Friday Five 3/20/2020

Happy Friday!

It's been a hot minute since I have done one of these but thanks to COVID-19, I finally have some spare time. I have decided to transition to doing these every other week moving forward so they aren't excessive but are regular enough to get info out.

This week was my first week working from home in my new position. I am the Assistant Director of Development for the law school I attended. So far, it has been a great job and I am enjoying learning new things and attacking new challenges. Working from home has thankfully been an easy transition for me because I grew very accustomed to this lifestyle while studying for the bar exam.

I am practicing strict social distancing in light of COVID-19. I am only leaving the house to buy essential groceries at this time. I am a homebody so I find this endless time at home pretty easy to acclimate to. I have extra reading time, time for home projects, time to get organized and extra time with my husband and puppies.

I know that COVID-19 has turned our world upside down and is very scary. All I can say is try to find as many silver linings as you can during this time. Make the best of the extra time at home. Pray for those infected and the healthcare workers if you are so inclined. Every pandemic our world has ever experienced eventually came to an end. This too will eventually come to an end.

Now to my Friday Five.

1. Budget Friendly Bathroom Organization 
Towel Holder
Towel Ring

Something I have been meaning to do for a while and finally had time for was refreshing my master bathroom. Our house is old (built in 1924) and our bedroom is the refinished attic. We are blessed to have an attached master bath but it is quite compact. This week on my lunch breaks, I was able to reorganize and add some new storage to the space and it has made a HUGE difference. I am attaching photos as well as product links to these budget friendly organization options for small bathrooms. Right now is a great time for projects!!


2. Love is Blind 

Yeah... I fell down this rabbit hole along with the rest of the world. Honestly, it was super entertaining despite how utterly trashy it was. If you are looking for mindless TV during quarantine, this is perfect.

3. Recently Read 
The Runaway Bride by Jody Hedlund. 
A historical romance with deep characters and plenty of twists to keep you invested! I finished this in just an afternoon because I didn’t want to put it down! You can never go wrong with a romantic triangle- a woman caught between two men and trying to decide with whom her future lies. I enjoyed the full character development and the undercurrent reminder that God is the answer. Arabella and Pete are imperfect characters- they have flaws and make mistakes but this only makes them more relatable to a reader.

I found this to be a very enjoyable read. When I am stressed, I gravitate toward sweet historical romances and this one was just perfect to let my mind wander away from the current crisis and get lost in the book. 

(Disclaimer: I received the book from the publisher complimentary but all opinions in the review are my own!)

4. My Favorite Work Flats
I may be working from home at the moment, but I am still wearing these every day. They are SO comfortable I can hardly believe it. If you need to treat yourself to something during this dark time, let it be these amazing shoes!

5. Midway 

My husband and I watched this movie on the way home from Switzerland and WOW. It was incredible. Such an amazing snapshot of a poignant moment in history. I get so emotional during WW2 movies and this one had me in happy and sad tears multiple times. I cannot suggest it enough!!!

5 Hobbies You Can Do In Your Home

Hello friends!

I have not blogged in so long. My life has been pretty hectic between the end of bar prep, the bar exam, traveling to Switzerland, arriving home and starting my new job and then the craziness of COVID-19 putting my state into quarantine.

Speaking of COVID-19, I decided to tailor my post to fit the current time. I am not stressing too much over being stuck at home. I am an introvert and a homebody so this isn't overly strange for me to be at home a lot and I am very content this way. I think that having several good hobbies that I do at home contributes to my comfort.

In this time of social distancing, you may be looking for ways to fill your additional time at home. I have outlined some of my hobbies that are easy to do from home and provide an excellent form of entertainment in this time of crisis.

1. Reading 
A tale as old as time... I truly believe there is no better way to enjoy time at home than to read. Books will transport you out of your home into other worlds, historical times, possible futures.... the possibilities are truly endless. There is almost nothing I love more than getting lost in a book.

If you are not a reader, now might be the time to explore it. Maybe you will gain more enjoyment from it now that your are out of school or maybe you just need to search in a different genre to find something you enjoy. There are some amazing resources out there that will bring books right into your home without every leaving it. Here are some of my favorites:
  • Libby app: this app allows you to download e-books and audiobooks for free with a library card. 
  • Kindle app: there are tons of free books and cheap books accessible in the app plus any other book you could want!
  • Scribd: this is another reading app that is offering a free month of unlimited access to their library which includes e-books, audiobooks and magazines. 

2. Blogging 
I started my blog in the lull between graduating college and starting law school. It was a great way to fill my time and flex my writing skills. It has remained one of my favorite hobbies throughout law school and beyond. A blog is a great thing to start up when you have some free time. You can have a blog on almost any topic and it can even become a side-hustle where you can make some spending cash. There are tons of people who have considered it and just not followed through. With some extra time at home, why not now?

I host my blog for free on the google Blogger platform. It is easy to figure out and navigate.

3. Knitting 
Knitting has been a pastime for hundreds of years. I started teaching myself to knit on breaks from law school. I found it to be very soothing and cathartic after the craziness of law school. Soothing is what we all need right now in this time of crisis and uncertainty. There are a million youtube videos that can teach you how and knitting needles and yarn are cheap and easy to find at your local supermarket (just please don't buy ALL the toilet paper while you are there) or on amazon.

I love that knitting gives you a tangible result. There is an element of instant gratification. It is also something you can do while watching TV or listening to music. If you are a busy body like me, it is a great way to keep your hands busy so you don't get antsy.

4. Yoga
I have practiced yoga on and off for almost 6 years now. Yoga is great because in my opinion, it doubles as a hobby and a workout good for the mind and the body. I love how I feel when I regularly practice yoga. It makes my body and mind feel better whenever I do it- it eases my tension and stress.

Right now is the perfect time to begin a yoga practice in your home. All you need is a yoga mat (Amazon sells them for $12). I practice yoga in my living room from free videos on youtube from Yoga with Adrienne.

5. Cooking or Baking 
If you are a person who generally eats out, this is a rough time. Many areas are shutting down restaurants to combat COVID-19. What better time to improve your cooking skills? This is a great time to add some quick, easy recipes to your recipe box. I personally enjoy cooking most of the time. I turn on a Netflix show on my ipad or listen to a podcast and get to it. It is a low stress moment in my day and that is something I appreciate. If you start cooking more, you might even find that you enjoy the challenge of cooking and can find some enjoyment out of something generally considered a chore.

Have you always wanted to learn to bake? Now is the time! Baking is one of my favorite ways to relieve stress. It is calming and you get something yummy at the end. Grab a bag of flour and sugar at the store and start mixing up something yummy at home. Dance around your kitchen with a bowl of brownie batter and make sure to lick the bowl- I promise you won't be able to keep the smile of your face.

For both cooking and baking, pinterest is my go to resource closely followed by the Pioneer Woman.

Stay safe and stay healthy! 

5 Things That Would have Changed my 1L Grades

Hello friends!

I know I have not posted much law school content lately. It is harder now that I am out of school. Because I am not confronted with the problems of law school daily, I find myself rarely thinking about it and even more rarely blogging about it. I promise to still do some law school content and my previously written law school content will never go away. But, as my life changes and evolves, I want this blog to do so with me. Law school is a temporary endeavor so I want my followers to be able to follow along in post-grad, work life, and everything that happens after law school so I can continue to be a resource.

Now back to the post for today: I have never made a secret of the fact that I had a hard first semester of law school. My grades were not what I wanted and I even failed one of my classes and had to retake it. The more I look back on my law school experience, the more obvious it has become to me what went wrong that first semester. Some people are naturally good at law school- I was not one of them. Multiple choice and bar style essays did not come naturally nor easily to me. I worked as hard as I could but the work I was doing was less effective than it could have been. I tried my best but my grades suffered.

Moving into my second semester and beyond, I took a good, hard look at what worked for me and what didn't and adjusted accordingly. My second semester saw a dramatic jump in my GPA and my grades were significantly improved. Throughout law school, my GPA rose steadily and I did very well. Law school was a major learning curve for me and it took a rough semester to figure a lot of the tricks out.

I know many of you are coming off of first semester disappointed in your grades as I was despite the hard work you put in. I am sharing some of the things I wish I had the first semester of my 1L year that in hindsight likely would have made for better grades. Further, use these tips to move forward stronger and have a killer second semester. It is completely possible!