The calm before the storm

Well hello there!

I hope everyone is having a happy Friday! (I’m writing this in anticipation of my Friday and it will publish while I’m at work…but don’t worry I’m too busy to do this at work and I never would!!)

It’s been quite a while so here is a recap on me. I’m about to go into my fourth and last year at USF Law as a part-time student. It’s been a long time coming! I’m starting to think about bar prep now but can’t really do anything about it until January because my Fall is going to be a busy one.

I’m currently working as a paralegal at a civil litigation firm, mostly focusing on employment law. I’ve been here for a little under a year and was so fortunate to find it. This is the area of law that I have pictured myself practicing and I am able to be immersed in it every day and to see some of the best attorneys at my firm and learn from them. I’m so happy to report that after being here, this kind of practice is still at the top of my list and it didn’t scare me away! I was afraid that transitioning out of the workers’ comp world would not be everything I hoped it would be, but it is and I’m so glad.

I am also interning this Fall at my local District Attorney’s office, which is a major change for me. I’m so lucky to have taken my summer course, Trial Advocacy and the Ethical Prosecutor because it directly led to this opportunity. My professor is a veteran prosecutor and offered me a position in homicide, I could not turn that down. It’s a position that many people would love to have and I don’t know how I was able to swing it but I did. I’ve only been there one day so far, but it was amazing. Everything about criminal practice is different than civil. Part of me thinks I might really love it but who knows! I’ll try to keep you posted. The prospect of falling in love with another part of the law has rocked my world this summer because I have to start planning my post bar strategies differently should I decide to pursue it. It’s far to early to tell if it is something I’d actually want to do so I’m not going to go too far down that rabbit hole at this point.

Finally, I’m still taking four classes Monday-Thursday after work and my internship. I’ll be in Mediation, California Civil Procedure, Legal Drafting, and Trial Practice. All will be intensive but thank God I only have one final. Classes start on Monday and I have about 8-9 hours worth of homework to do this weekend 🙂 In about 9 months I’ll never have to take a final or worry about homework again. Only the real homework that you get paid to do, not the work you pay to do.

Enough about my professional life, my personal life is great as well. I’m going to be an Auntie this Fall and I’m so excited to meet my niece! She’s supposed to be here at the end of October, so it’s getting close. My sister and the baby girl are both doing well. I was able to feel her kick me two weekends ago when I visited and it was so special. I love that little peanut so much already. I crafted a sign for the baby shower that I’ll have to share with you guys soon.

Joe is doing well also. He has had one of the busiest summers of his life with work and has been working late hours and weekends. I hope he gets some relief soon because he is a little burnt out.

Some notable events this year include my 30th birthday this week, a trip to Universal Studios Hollywood to see Harry Potter, camping, and a trip to Arizona for the Giants spring training. I’ll leave you with a highlight real until next time!

IMG_20160604_155146093IMG_20160701_193704742IMG_20160716_102226327_HDRIMG_20160716_103342403IMG_20160806_093326950_HDRIMG_20160806_160531992IMG_20160815_193236IMG_20160817_065820279IMG_20160817_211239363

XOXO,

Amanda

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Projects, Projects, Projects

Good Morning Early Birds!

I woke up bright dark and early at the lovely hour of 4:30am and have not been tired since.  I know that will kick me in the butt around 4:00 this afternoon!

I have a lot on my mind and thought I could share it with you. Maybe it will help me to get going.  Just thinking of this stuff give me heartburn!

First and always prevalent is my homework.  I have 3 more books to read and 6 papers to write by the middle of May. YIKES!

I totally thought my classes would interest me a bit more this semester but so far I have been bored by them.  I guess you could call it senioritis.  This is what I have been looking at for the last 3 hours while on Pinterest:

The Life We Were Given

Doesn’t that look like a must read? NOT! I do like the topic, but the last book was so sad that I have been putting this off for a week now.

Project #2- I have been on Pinterest for a reason, believe it or not!  The second project on my mind, or should I say the first as I am avoiding my reading for now, is making my Mom a Life/Medical Binder for her diabetes.

It is a project I tasked myself with in the hospital a few weeks ago and I feel badly for not getting it done immediately.  My goal is to bring it with me on Easter.  I will post pics and progress so you can make one for yourself or a loved one with a serious illness.  Heck, you can just make it to keep track of your medical history!

I have seen so many creative family and life binders too, with things like budgets, to do lists, recipes, exercise info, and SO MUCH more.  I think it is a great idea for families, especially with children.

Click here to see more on my Organize It Pinterest board where I have pinned some of them!

If any of you have any tips or ideas please send them my way! Either by commenting here, on my Facebook page, or via email!

Other projects on my mind: finishing a wreath that I started a while back, and starting a new one for the summer.  Also crafting some cards on my Cricket for birthdays and other various happenings coming up soon!

On top of all that, my schedule is heavily on mind.  Even though I keep a weekly planner and write it all down, I still loop it through my thoughts every 30 seconds.  Not only due dates for homework, but holidays, sporting events, weddings, visits with family and friends, and law school admissions decision dates. (Oh yeah and a little thing called OUR 10th ANNIVERSARY next Thursday!) You know I have had his gift wrapped for weeks, lol!

Phew, I am tired of thinking of it all (but not tired enough to go back to bed, unfortunately!)

On the agenda for today, Joe and I plan on walking over to the fairgrounds to see a classic car show and then he is going to watch some March Madness while I do homework.  I will probably go get some supplies for the binder too, as that seems 100 times more fun than reading that book!

Enjoy your weekend!

xoxox

Amanda

Valentines Crafts

Today my house got a little Valentines Day love! 

I have not put out all of my décor, but I did make a quick candy candle and some simple bunting.

vday 13 candy candle

I added some conversation hearts, just like I did with the candy corn on Halloween! (PS my shelf isn’t dirty it is just old and cheap so it has scratches and they look like dust!)

The bunting came together with help from my wonderful Christmas gift, my beloved Cricut!  I cut out the letters to LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED on several valentines day scrapbook papers and cut some plain white cardstock squares as background.  I did not cut the squares perfectly because I like a little homemade look!

Vday 13 Cricut sheet

vday 13 bunting letters

vday 13 bunting before

I used a trusty glue stick to place the letters on the squares and then simply used sewing thread in red.  I taped it to the back and hung it up!  Probably the most simple bunting ever, it’s not very fancy but it’s cute! 

TIP: Tape toward the top of the letter or it will flip over!

vday 13 LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED

It’s not an ideal picture because I have a chandelier perfectly in the way and I can’t get a picture head-on.  Sorry!!

If you have the time or the fabric, you can then glue those squares onto large triangle pieces of paper or burlap.

I just realized that I meant to say ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE, but oh well!

As for the rest of my night? Some LSAT studying and hanging out with the LOVE of my life!

xoxox

Amanda

PS… This post was added to a linky party on The Kurtz Corner!

Christmas craft roundup 2012

Good Morning!

As promised I am here to deliver the odds and ends of my Christmas crafts for 2012.  The last two days I have posted about recycled Starbucks glasses, and wine bottles, but today I will show you how to make monogramed ornaments, tile coasters, a movie basket and a cute glass bottle tree.

Monogramed Ornaments:

Before I ever knew that I would make the others, I decided to make monogramed ornaments out of wood letters that I found at Joann’s.  They are pretty simple, but can require a bit of patience.

E ornament

Wood Letter ornamentsWooden letters drying

J ornament

What you’ll need:

Wooden letters

Mod Podge (and brush)

Scrap paper

Ribbon

Name tags

Scissors

Sharpie or other colored markers

First I picked out the letters that I wanted, then chose several sheets of Christmas themed scrap paper. I don’t recommend using the thick or glittery sheets, they do not bond as easily.  I also purchased some cute ribbon and little tags to write my name and the year.

I started by tracing the letter on the paper and cutting it out.  That is the patience part, especially if you have one with a hole in the middle, like a B!  Next I used my silver or gold sharpie to fill in the sides of the letter so that they aren’t just wood colored.  Then I spread some Mod Podge on the letter, centered my paper over it, and let it sit for a few minutes before adding a coat on top. I ended up adding a second coat, making sure to get the edges sealed.

After it was dry, I hot glued a loop of ribbon on the back so it can hang on the tree.  I also wrote my name on the back because the name tags will probably come off.  I tied the name tags on with jute and attached the letters to the gift bags!

Glass bottle tree:

What you’ll need:

A glass bottle

Spray paint

Elmer’s glue

Glitter

Tree toper for small tree

I also made a cute little tree for my sister Jamie.  She collected most of my Starbucks bottles for me, and also gave me an oddly shaped one that was a different kind of drink. She said, you can make this one into a tree! So I did Smile 

Jamie's tree before star

xmas 12 glass table

That picture was taken before I hot glued the star to the lid, but that was the only one that I have!

I began by spray painting it green, along with the lid.  I purchased the star from Target in the small tree dĂ©cor section.  I used regular Elmer’s glue to make dots all over the tree (after it was completely dried of course), and then sprinkled glitter over it.  Simple Simon, and very cute for her room!

Tile Coasters:

What you’ll need:

6 Square Tiles

Pictures printed on regular paper

Mod Podge (and brush)

Scissors

This year I made tile coasters for my Dad! Last year I made him some cork coasters, but his dog ate them! (Stewart!!) They were round and I cut maps from all of the important places in his life, where they have lived, where he was born, or favorite place,etc.  I should have put the cork on wood but I didn’t think they would get ruined. That was BEFORE they got a dog! So they died and I needed to make him new ones. 

This year I used cheap square tiles from the Home Depot (under .50 each!).  Instead of maps I printed out pictures of everyone in black and white and Mod Podged them, just like the ornaments.  I wrote on the reverse side of course, and used felt furniture pads underneath so they do not scratch the table. There were 6 in all.  He was surprised and loved them!

Tile Coasters

Instead of pictures you could use cute napkins or other paper that you like, you could also monogram them! The possibilities are endless. I think I will make some for us now!

Family Movie Night Basket:

What you’ll need:

A basket

Lots of Treats

A movie or a gift card to rent movies

Lastly, and this doesn’t even qualify as a craft, a movie night basket!  Joe and I were stumped when thinking of something to get for his uncle’s family. They have four kids, two in high school, and twins in 5th grade.  They all enjoy board games, but we weren’t sure which ones they already had.  My Mom came up with a great idea, a family movie night basket!  They all love movies and treats, and they don’t often get treats so we thought it was a great way to get them to spend time together.

Family movie basket

We got the basket at Michaels, for 60% off baby! Then we went to Cost Plus World Market and the grocery store.  Inside we have root beer, cream soda, pop corn, pop corn seasonings, crackers and fancy cheese, licorice, old time taffy, some chocolate covered espresso beans, and some other chocolate treats.  We also wanted to give them a gift card to rent a movie, but that seems to be a lost cause these days. We found out that you can get Redbox gifts on their website and the codes will be emailed to the recipient so that they can use them whenever they want.  It was $6 to give them 5 rentals, what a deal!!  On Christmas Eve we sent them the email so they wouldn’t see it before and when they opened the basket we told them about the email. 

They loved the basket and the idea, the kids wanted to eat everything right away! Originally I wanted to put a bowl in there too, but we ran out of room!!

Well now you know why I wanted to share all of this ahead of time! Many of these can be used all year long, except for the ornaments, unless you like them that much!

Until next time,

xoxox

Amanda

Wine Bottle Crafts!

Hello there!

Continuing on my with my craft posting, I thought I would share with you all why I needed so many wine bottles this year!

I asked my family and friends to collect bottles for me so that I could craft something for Christmas, them not know what it was or who it was for.

I still have some bottles left over, including some uniquely shaped ones, and I still have so many ideas, so expect more posts like this in the future!

I made 4 different styles of wine bottles, let’s start with the basics.

I did some Pinterest research to get some ideas and went from there. 

I decided that I would group them into threes and began by taking off the labels.

Wine bottle before  Wine and Goo Gone

Wine bottle after goo gone

Some of the labels were bastards and I found that using a hair dryer to warm up the labels really helps them peal off.  If you are planning on doing this, I would try to stay away from bottles with clear plastic labels, they suck!

I then put the bottles together to make sure the sizes were varied because I like a height difference.  Then I spray painted them. (Again, use gloves if you want to protect that manicure!) I painted all of my bottles at the same time- both wine and Starbucks glasses.

Spray paints Painted fingers

Painted wine bottles

I also painted one for myself with chalkboard paint!

Chalk bottle

I will be making a few more of those, even if I leave it blank, I love the texture.

With the silver bottles, I bought two kinds of paint. One was a metallic silver and the other was more sparkly.

Silver bottle

The sparkly one dripped really easily, and was very hard to see on clear glass bottles.  I recommend using the dark glass so that you can see the paint, but don’t mix the two in a group because the tint is different as the paint is very translucent.  I kind of like the dripped look on the silver, it looks like oil to me. I still LOVE the sparkle and kept one for myself.

With the metallic silver I used a hemp rope, tacky glue, and scissors, then chose two styles.

Hemp Rope

Tacky glue

Wine hemp ingredients

It is as easy at it looks, and tacky glue is AMAZING!

Glue bottle neck

Hemp bottle tops finished

Hemp bottle middles done

The next variety is a snow covered bottle! These would look so cute with some snow around the bottle on your table or where ever it is displayed. I used the white bottles, Epsom salt, and adhesive spray.

Epson Salt and Spray Adhesive

I simply put a bag on the surface (outside because it is smelly and SUPER sticky), then sprayed the glue and sprinkled the salt. Simple Simon.

Snow bottles

HINT: Don’t spray the neck if you don’t want to use it because it will stay sticky, and also, don’t spray too close because the paint will chip if too wet.

There you have it, wine bottle crafts! As you can see, these do not have to be Christmas specific, the snow bottles can be for winter use, and the others all year long.

Stay tuned for a random craft post as I round out my holiday craft series!

xoxox

Amanda