Book Reviews, Project 4, Uncategorized

Fahrenheit 451 – Book No. 16

This book review is a part of Reading Week. To read more reviews, click here!

27. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (1953)

Dates: 7/6/20 – 7/12/20 (6 days)

Plot: In a dystopian future where firemen start fires instead of putting them out, one of the firemen becomes cognizant of the horrors of what they’re actually doing: burning books.

Experience Before Reading: I was assigned this book in 10th grade and I detested it. A little strange seeing as I definitely agreed with the themes – but we should never claim to understand high schoolers. It was probably cool to hate it at the time. Either way, I didn’t finish it back then.

Takeaway: This book hits differently years later. I enjoyed it this time around. Ray Bradbury expresses his thoughts so well on abstract issues, I thought it would be most impactful to take some of the themes I noticed and give you some quotes that really resonated with me:

Mass Media and Condensation of Information:

Digest-digests, digest-digest-digests. Politics? One column, two sentences, a headline! Then, in midair, all vanishes! Whirl man’s mind around about so fast under the pumping hands of publishers, exploiters, broadcasters that the centrifuge flings off all unnecessary, time-wasting thought!

p.55

Ignorance is Bliss:

We must all be alike. Not everyone born free and equal, as the Constitution says, but everyone made equal. Each man the image of every other; then all are happy, for there are no mountains to make them cower, to judge themselves against. So! A book is a loaded gun in the house next door. Burn it.

p.58

Impacting and Absorbing the Human Experience:

The difference between the man who just cuts lawns and a real gardener is in the touching, he said. The lawn-cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime.

p.157

‘Stuff your eyes with wonder,’ he said, ‘live as if you’d drop dead in ten seconds.’

p.157

He’s so eloquent, it really makes you think. Several of these passages made me stop just to really make sure I felt each and every word. I’m not sure to what extent I believe his messages, surely I find some element of truth – but I want to digest(-digest-digest!) these words before I make a definitive call on what I believe.

However, I do have to criticize this book a little bit because I thought that the world-building and character development was really lacking. This is a crazy dystopian world that could have been unpacked and it wasn’t. It’s just assumed to be normal. The characters aren’t anything to get attached to either. The main character just one day wakes up and sees everything around him. There’s no build-up at all. This was all such a missed opportunity.

This book has had a strange history. A novel that harps on the dangers of censorship, saw censorship itself. Schools have blacklisted the book from English classes. The publisher even made a censored version. In some ways the ironic boycotts may have even fueled popularity for the book. It really does hammer home Bradbury’s point, does it?

Also, just as an aside, I want to really commend Bradbury for predicting so much of the future. In this book, which was written in the 1950s, there’s flat-screen TVs, wireless headphones, and hand-held tablets. Whether he meant to predict or not, I was very surprised at how the technology did mirror present day.

All in all, there’s so much to like here, but it wasn’t wrapped up in a pretty little package. It seemed like an essay of someone’s convictions with a plot line loosely added to make it a “book.” That being said, it is a good essay.

Would I Recommend It?: Yes. In fact, I already did. Maybe I’ll update this post after my boyfriend reads it.

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Uncategorized

My Favorite Blogs – June 2020

I have been reading so much great content over the past month, so I thought I’d shout out some of my favorite content I discovered in June. Seeing as my blog is an amalgamation of all kinds of creative energy, pretty much any blog can provide insights on goals and hard work.

I thought it would be fun to focus in on newer or smaller creators to give them a little spotlight that they most definitely deserve! Sometimes I fall a little behind on my Reader, so it’s also a nice chance for me to spread the love. So with that, let’s talk about some of my favorite bloggers I found in June:

Reading in the Wildwood

About Megan: Megan is a book blogger. She writes such thought-provoking book reviews. Not to mention, when she does have a book, she takes a beautiful picture of it out in nature. I mean just look at this instagram page! She’s also so sweet and open, be sure to say hello!

Recommended Post: My Most Anticipated Summer Releases

The Madalyn Diaries

About Madalyn: Madalyn tests beauty products and reviews them. She gives her honest thoughts on the different products she uses and she tries to use them completely. So insightful if you’re looking for new products! Plus, it’s just so satisfying to see all of the used make-up in one shot!

Recommended Post: JUNE empties

Unsettled Essence

About Unsettled Essence: If you’ve ever thought of drastically changing your life, but wanted to do it responsibility, Unsettled Essence is for you. She quit her job and is now pursuing the RV life. Reading about her adventures is so inspiring because it’s so evident actual planning went into her journey.

Recommended Post: I Quit My Job and I Feel Great

One in a Million

About Aditi: Aditi is a book blogger, but aside from reviewing books, she writes book-related content. Just in her most recent posts she goes through her Harry Potter house sorting, discussing character archetypes, and short stories. So much creative energy.

Recommended Post: Creating Instagram Feeds for ‘The Raven Cycle’ Characters

Books and Pixels

About Jacob: As you may have guessed, Jacob writes about books and video games mostly. His posts are full of creative energy. There’s a lot of effort that goes into each of his posts and does not go unnoticed. The post I recommended just shows how much work I mean.

Recommended Post: Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag

Curious Words Blog

About Raven: Raven writes a little bit of everything. While this does include book reviews from time to time, there are so many whimsical thoughts all over that it’s just a breath of fresh air. You just have to read it to believe it.

Recommended Post: Never Bake a Cake in a Hurry

I could honestly go on and on, there’s so much good content out there. But I’d also like to pass the question off to you, what great blogs have you discovered recently? Feel free to shout them out, let’s support those that we admire!

Lastly, I’m thinking of making this a monthly series, what you do think?

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Motivation, Uncategorized

Reflecting on 6 Months of Blogging

It’s official: I’ve been blogging for six months. I’m not sure when I can accurately carry the title of blogger, but seeing as I got up early to write a whole other post and only after I finished realized it was my six months, we can definitely say I’m in the blogger head space.

I thought I’d take this opportunity to reflect on my experience. Because why not?

What I’ve Written

My content has taken a variety of forms as I learned which direction I was heading. I thought it could be fun to revisit my favorite post from each month and see how I grew.

January: Hello World! – My Very First Project

My first project was technically to CALI a law class – which is basically just earning the highest grade in a class. Since then, the project has evolved into general law school success. I was surprised re-reading my original thoughts. What a long way the project has come.

February: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About a 12(b)(6) Motion

I was really hesitant to write anything about the law because really, what do I know? I was just a first-year. Anyway, I gave it a shot and it was one of my first posts that I was really proud of.

March: Atlas Shrugged – Book No. 6

This was probably my favorite book I’ve read in Project 4. It was so thought-provoking. This was also when I realized that I had to put a bit of work into writing a book review. There was so much to unpack and trying to stay spoiler-free was tough. Book bloggers: much respect.

April: Cleaning Your Closet with Color Theory

This was one of my first posts that involved research. I did a deep dive on why you don’t wear certain shades of color in your closet. It was the first time I’ve developed my own theory about something – something I’ve done more and more of in the past few months.

May: What I Learned from Blogging Every Day

This was a self-reflection post. It’s pretty meta to reflect on a self-reflection post, so I’ll just leave it with that.

June: How To Learn a Basic Calligraphy Alphabet in a Few Hours

It’s always fun to see success. My calligraphy project has been nothing but pure fun and something I didn’t expect to enjoy. I’m looking forward to seeing where this project can go.

What I’ve Learned

What I’ve Learned about Blogging

It’s actually way harder than I was expecting. Writing a post in your head always sounds so much better than it does when you read over what actually made it to paper. Coming up with consistent ideas is impossible and finding the motivation to make sure they all go out on time is comically hard.

But I’m not here to be hard on myself. One of the reasons I write about my projects as I complete them is to reflect on the good and the bad. No journey is ever easy. There are setbacks and failures left and right.

On a more positive note, I think my writing has improved. Or at the very least, I think I’ve found a voice. I write much differently on this blog than I do for anything else – I treat this as a quasi-stream of consciousness, I hear myself talking in my head.

Also, I’m pretty proud of how the blog looks. This is something I touched on yesterday, but I’m proud of the style I’ve created around my content. Besides, there’s only so much you can do on a personal plan and I’m not about to upgrade.

My numbers are still small which is fine with me. I’m still under 100 followers and not many people see my content. This doesn’t bother me at all. My numbers are small but mighty. I’ve met some truly amazing and inspiring people by doing this.

What I’ve Learned about Goals

So if you just did the math, you might realize that that means I started my blog on January 1. While it’s true I went live at the beginning of the year, it was not a new year’s resolution. But hey, if it makes you believe that you can follow through on a new year’s resolution, by all means use me as an example.

This actually is something I’ve really learned about goals: they don’t operate on the same calendar we do. I used to start goals when I finished another task or maybe on the first of the month. This is such a mistake. Start goals while you have the motivation, don’t wait until the time’s “right.”

I’m also very proud of the progress I’ve made on some of these goals. Particularly Project 4, before this project, the last time I read a book was in 2014. Now I’m six months in and I’ve read 15. I’m definitely still learning how to pace myself, but I’m getting better by the day.

What I’ve Learned about Relationships

I’ve become a better friend, girlfriend, and daughter since starting the blog. This is done in two ways: 1) experiencing a fire inside of me, and 2) becoming more cognizant and sympathetic to other people’s goals.

With concrete goals, I’ve been more alive in these past few months. Feeling the roller coaster that is trying something new reinvigorates you. It also has made me really want to bring that out in others. The feelings that I’m feeling, I want to share them.

Understanding motivations is something I’ve tuned into a little more too. I wrote about this a little with the post on my and my boyfriend’s different lifestyles. While he’s more interested in completing daily and weekly goals, mine tend to be so much farther in the future. Learning that these goals were just as important to him as mine were to me allowed me to connect with him in a way I couldn’t before.

That’s about all the self-reflection I have in me at the moment. But let me know down in the comments below, how long have you been blogging and how has your journey changed your surroundings? I’m interested in hearing how people have perceived their own journey.

As always, appreciate you all. Thanks for making this experience so enjoyable.

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Project 7, Uncategorized

How To Learn a Basic Calligraphy Alphabet in a Few Hours

My calligraphy journey has been off to a great start! I’ve probably committed about 7 hours or so to it so far but I’m really proud of my progress!

The Skillshare class I’ve been following has been fantastic (not sponsored!). It’s meant for beginners and is a perfect introduction into lettering. Additionally, he shows you how to make a calligraphy pen out of a soda can and a popsicle stick, so if you’re unable to get a pen, he’s here to accomodate.

The first few classes were centered around learning basic strokes. For each stroke he taught you, he asked that you do a full page. At first, I was hesitant since it seemed like so much work. But I did it nonetheless. I’m so glad I did, because it really steadied my hand. It also taught me to recognize how much ink is on the pen and how often I need to refill.

The basic strokes ended up looking something like this:

And because I’m a child, I colored on some of the exercises. Sorry, but I’m not sorry. Note that the smudging on these came from my coloring, not from my ink which was strange since I colored the images days later.

I was really satisfied to see improvement across these images. I was starting to feel really confident with these basic movements.

From there, I tried my first alphabet. It turned out like this:

I apologize for the shortened video, I usually use my boyfriend’s phone but since he’s at work I used mine and well, I ran out of storage. Oops. I’m a professional. I’m also hoping I can make this videos higher quality soon. I’m doing the best I can here.

I’ve got a long way to go – especially with letters that are not within the parameters of the basic strokes I learned. Letters like g, k, p, w, w, x, and z all need a little workshopping. But for a first try, I’m pretty happy. It’s not wedding invitation worthy, but it’s definitely fridge worthy.


So there you have it: progress. Nothing more satisfying than seeing growth, right? Next I’ll tackle uppercase letters.

How do you think I did? Would you ever want to learn calligraphy? Let me know in the comments down below!

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Uncategorized

Project Updates – June 2020

Happy Hump Day! After finishing my law journal writing competition, I now have a week of freedom before my job starts. I’ve been thoroughly enjoying this week of nothing – maybe a bit too much. In anticipation of starting the job, I’ve been putting my all into blogging. Here’s where we stand with the projects:

Project 1: CALI a Law Class

This project has most definitely morphed into an amalgamation of legal success, which is fine by me. I won’t mention the writing competition again – but that was tough to do for the three weeks after finals. Burnout is everywhere.

But I’m excited to announce that I’ll be working at a downtown law firm over the summer! I’m really looking forward to trying out the career I’ve worked 23 years for, but nervous nonetheless. I’ve never really had a steady 9-5 job. All of my jobs in the past were either intermittent or entirely at home. It might take a little adjusting to go full adult.

Project 2: Get Organized

I’m almost done! Yesterday I tended to some much needed lawn care and general landscaping – a task that didn’t even make my list. I don’t have a lawnmower, but my front yard isn’t more than 20 square feet, so I just used scissors. It may have looked stupid, but it got the job done. After I get my next paycheck – shears. The bushes need trimming.

Everything else that’s left is mostly on my hard drive. My hard drive plunges into the depths of my childhood and it’s tough to clean without getting distracted. Oops.

Project 3: Make a Cover Album

I’m so slow on this project and I’m sorry. I’ve had very little motivation or inspiration for it. However, a slight breakthrough that might be a gamechanger: I got SkillShare (not sponsored). While I got it for my calligraphy project, I figured I could make use of it to really learn how to use FL Studio. Hopefully learning more about the program can inspire me.

Project 4: Read 100 Classics

Abbey and I have officially started a book club where we’re holding ourselves accountable to reading one book a week. This week is Madame Bovary. Outside that, I’m also working through Beowulf – but progress has been slow. When I’m not reading, I’m listening to Les Mis on Audible (not sponsored). So while it’s been over a week since there’s been a review, it won’t be much longer, I promise.

In the meantime, Abbey’s been crushing it. She actually surprised me by listening to Les Mis at work over the past few weeks. Not to be outdone, I got it too. She’s only one or two books behind me now and I’m a little intimidated (don’t tell her I said that).

Also, I’m on Goodreads! Come stop in and say hello! Reviews will be going up this week!

Project 5: Write a Book

Yeah, there’s been no progress here. Doing this project with Abbey makes it a little tough to work on since we both have to be willing and able. But I’m hoping to force her soon.

Project 6: Learn How to Blog

This project has shown the most promise. I’ve really put in effort here. You may have noticed my posts looking a little better and that’s no coincidence. I’ve been focused on creating better content.

I’ve also been diving deep into social media! It’s beyond overwhelming to optimize one platform, let alone several. I’ve been putting most of my effort into Pinterest, creating pins left and right. Everything’s scheduled, so expect to see a lot of pins there in the coming weeks.

It’s been so much fun meeting new bloggers. To the fresh faces, hello and welcome!

Project 7: Learn Calligraphy

I’m really, really enjoying this project. It’s a bit unexpected honestly. I didn’t expect to sink my teeth in as far as I have. After the first attempt, I’ve begun following a SkillShare course. I’m still learning basic strokes so while I haven’t written any words, I have pages and pages of lines and circles and boxes. I’m glad the course moves slow though, I’m actually seeing real improvement. I can’t wait to share it all with you!

Project 8: Run a 10K

This project was paused for my competition. Each and every day was spent writing and writing and writing. Now that it’s over, I’ve been slow to get back into the runs. Don’t worry, I will. It’s a minor setback.

And that’s where I’m at with everything! If you enjoyed today’s post let me know in the comments down below! Which projects are your favorite to read?

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Uncategorized

The Blogger Recognition Award

I’m excited to announce that Jess over at Beyond the Front Cover has nominated me for The Blogger Recognition Award.

A Little About Jess and Her Friends

Throughout my journey of reading 100 classics, I’ve found plenty of book-review blogs and Jess’s blog is one of my favorites. Her reviews are so well-written and even-handed that it’s hard not to recognize her ability to fairly review books. One of my favorite reviews of hers is Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier. It was a book that completely missed my list and after reading her opinion, it’ll be one of the first books I read once I finish Project 4.

Not only that, she has a great taste in blogs and the other bloggers she recommended are also fantastic: Alice from Alice and Her Bookshelf, Kate from KateHeartsLife, and Jess from Comfort Reads. I’ve had the opportunity to get to know them and their blogs from her and I can’t recommend them enough!

And lastly, I’d be remiss to not give a little shout out to Jess’s instagram. She channels cozy vibes and lazy Sundays so well. (You might even be seeing a slightly more chaotic Jacqueline of All Trades instagram soon… she’s got me inspired!)

If you’re interested in reading books a little bit more than you already do, send some love her way.

The Actual Award and Rules

There’s only six quick things you need to know about the rules behind the award:

  1. Thank the blogger(s) who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  2. Write a post to show your award.
  3. Give a brief story of how your blog started.
  4. Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
  5. Select up to fifteen bloggers you want to give this award to.
  6. Comment (or pingback) on each blog to let them know that you’ve nominated them, and provide a link to the post you’ve created.

So, what are we waiting for? Let’s jump right into it.

How Jacqueline of All Trades Started

I’m very new to blogging still; I started in January of this year. However, the concept of working on projects has always been a part of my blood. I have an insatiable curiosity for life. It’s led me down some strange paths of uncertainty like completing degrees in chemical engineering and international studies, all while keeping with the plan to go to law school.

I don’t like the idea of compromise and I believe we should always be exploring and creating anything that catches our attention. So outside of my academics, I found projects like making a cocktail book with my cousin Abbey or dropping an album just to throw the best party of all time. These projects slowly spiraled into a lifestyle – with some being finished and others left to collect dust.

Last fall, I entered law school. I quickly realized that everything around me was all related to law. I lived with other law students, was constantly doing my readings, and had no other hobbies. I was wilting. The blog was a way to salvage my creativity and give me something to work towards.

I almost didn’t even start the blog. I was afraid of possible repercussions for my legal career. Not that I’d be writing anything bad, it’s just it might not be seen as professional. But I realized that if I don’t do it, I would stagnate as a person. Being entirely immersed in law wasn’t something I ever wanted for my life.

So I did it. I started the blog. And oh did it catch my attention. I now live and breathe my blog (for better or worse).

Advice to New Bloggers*

Seeing as I’m a new blogger myself, I’m not sure I’m really qualified here. My blog has a fairly small following and I currently have a project all dedicated about learning how to blog. That being said, I feel like I’m more qualified to give advice to people who have a goal they aren’t chasing. It more accurately represents my story and my journey.

So here’s a few things I’d say to anyone hesitating on a project:

  • Excuses Can Be Contagious: Making an excuse about trying one thing will make you more comfortable to make an excuse about trying a second thing. Pretty soon, you’ll start thinking you’re less and less capable of doing anything. Don’t make it a habit.
  • The “I Don’t Have Time” Line: I once heard something that changed my life: someone who says they don’t have time for something is really just saying that thing is not a priority for them. You’d be surprised how much time you have. I promise you, deleting this sentence from your vocabulary will change your life too.
  • If You Have Something On Your Mind Right Now, Do It: If you’re reading this and a specific thing came to your mind, you obviously want to do it. So why not just start it?
  • Little Steps Are More Valuable Than Big Ones: This was something I implied recently: doing little bits turns into a lot of progress. Spending one day working hard on something will probably lead you to not pick it up again.

My Nominations

The fun part: picking blogs I like to read! I tried to pick a little bit of everything and each one of these blogs continually puts out great content that they pour their heart and soul into:

  • Meredith from Artsy Arrow: This blog is so much fun to read. Meredith does a little bit of everything and when it comes to blogging, she so talented. The website is so user-friendly and so engaging, good luck not getting trapped on it for hours! Also, be sure to check out her art skills if you do visit. Post Recommendation: I Painted a Mural on My Bedroom Wall // Summer 2020
  • Dave from Endless Roaming: Look no further for your daily dose of wanderlust. Posting pictures from his travels, Dave never disappoints. Be careful, endless scrolling abound. Post Recommendation: Cadiz Spain
  • Prerna from Read With Prerna: Another book reviewer I adore. Prerna puts serious effort into each one of her reviews and she flies way under the radar. She picks quotes that make you want to read all the books she does. Would probably be a great reading buddy. Post Recommendation: Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
  • Trisha from Trisha’s Musings: This girl hustles. She posts every single day about anything and everything that catches her attention. She’s new to the community and it’s really inspiring to see her produce better and better content. Not to mention, she’s sweet as can be. Post Recommendation: My Learnings From The 30 Day Blogging Challenge
  • Sarah from The Critiquing Chemist: There’s something I love about reading a book review from someone with an analytical mind. Sarah writes mostly about the books she reads, but she also has insane travel posts every now and then. Post Recommendation: Four Days in Jordan

Lastly, I want to give a big thank you to everyone who reads this blog. I’m still really new to my journey and am humbled by the gracious outpouring of support I receive. Each of you motivate me so much to continue doing the things I love. So please, don’t be afraid to stop by and say hello! I’m always a comment or e-mail away (jacquelineofalltradesblog@gmail.com).

But I know that I haven’t found all of the great reads out there: what are some of your favorite blogs? Who should I be reading next?

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Uncategorized

Celebrating the 100 Day Mark!

This morning my boyfriend and I popped a celebratory bottle of champagne. While the champagne served a variety of celebrations, perhaps the most important to me was that today marks the 100 day anniversary of my blog!

It’s strange, though I haven’t completed any projects yet (I’m so close with Project 2!), I feel a sort of equilibrium shift. While I’ve always been very creative and indulged in projects, I’ve never felt so much focus and coordination. The blog, though it only reaches a small number of people, serves as a heavy motivator for me – I feel the itch when I haven’t posted for a few days and have nothing to show for it.

Anyway, I thought I’d take this opportunity to take a look at my projects and what I’ve accomplished so far and what sort of ripple effects this blog has had:

Project 1: CALI a Law School Class

I couldn’t have possibly predicted that for the first time in my academic career I wouldn’t get a GPA for the semester. Given the constant flux of our grading system, I’m not even sure if a CALI is possible this semester. If it is, my only hope is in my legal writing class. I worked so hard on that brief.

I don’t think it’s looking very good for me in my other classes honestly. Working from home has been difficult and I haven’t kicked it into high gear for exams. If I can pull it together for my property class, I may have a shot. More on this all later.

Project 2: Get Organized

Since my last update:

  • I’ve gone home to completely clean my childhood bedroom (something that didn’t even make the new list?? I’m not sure how I forgot to include this?).
  • I’ve decorated my living room by painting some end tables white and rearranging furniture. All in all, my feng shui is pretty balanced, so I’m digging my living room.
  • I finished cleaning my school e-mail, which marks the end of my e-mail journey. I’ve gone through around 20,000 e-mails in the past 100 days and I promise you, I’ll never let it get this bad again.
  • I completed the process of sorting my clothes, which led me to giving away my clothes. I like to donate my clothes, though donations are not being accepted locally right now from the virus, so I gave them all to my mother as she’s been cleaning their house and assembling items to be donated.

I’m getting so close, I can feel it. I’ve been so surprised at how revolutionary getting organized has become for me. I really thought it’d be a project without much to show, but oh was I wrong.

Project 3: Make a Cover Album

I’ve just recently jumped back into this one. I find my music-making process cannot be sparked by brute force and without inspiration I’m useless. It was a problem for me in my last albums as well. I’m not worried. I’m hoping once school let’s out I’ll have more time (and energy) to devote to it.

Project 4: Read 100 Classics

I’ll admit that I’ve begun to drag my feet on this one. After finishing Atlas Shrugged, I wanted a little time off. Those characters so thoroughly threw off my worldview I needed time to digest. I’ve since been crawling through Arabian Nights. I do hope to finish soon, but I’m not ashamed of my pace.

I’m so proud of reading 6 books in these 100 days. As a kid, I was an avid reader and throughout high school I worked at a bookshop. Yet the last book I read, before this project, was in 2015. College stopped me dead in my tracks. I’ve been so thankful to this project because it taught me that reading can always be done. Even with school readings, it’s possible to read for pleasure.

PS: Abbey has finished 3 books so far. She’s a chronic reader, so she’ll lap me in no time.

Project 5: Earn Scholarships

I just started this one last week. No new updates and no life-changing testimonials. Yet.

Project 6: Write a Book

I started this project four days ago, so I don’t have any updates. But one thing I will say is this project would never have happened if weren’t for the blog. This would have been a “stop being ridiculous, you can’t do this” project if not for the confidence I’ve managed to build.


All in all, I’m proud of myself for taking these steps to have put this out into the ether. As a future lawyer, I’ve always been a bit hesitant about oversharing (or even sharing for that matter) online. But I’m glad I did.

Uncategorized

791 Days Left – An Update

It was a nice Spring Break this week – I thought. My boyfriend and I spent the weekend in Miami exploring the culture and weather having the time of our lives. We had some free miles that were expiring soon and it felt like the perfect getaway.

Away from the world, we had no idea just what was happening all over. The morning of our departure, we got notice that our university was shutting down for a few weeks. That’s when we knew it got bad.

When we went to the Ft. Lauderdale airport, there was no line for security. TVs were flashing everywhere with cruises that were quarantined, just miles away. That’s when we knew we had to rush home.

We’ve stayed inside away from as many people as we could for a few days even though we were showing no symptoms. In the meantime, our school announced it was switching to online classes for the rest of the semester.

So with social distancing for the next several months, it does change quite a few of my plans for these projects – and maybe future projects too. Here’s what’s on my mind:

Project 1: CALI a Law Class

Oh, online learning won’t be fun. But until I try it, I can’t really say too much. I’ll find out on Wednesday, my first day of online classes. My biggest concern is what it’ll do to the curve: will more students be studying harder with nothing else to do or studying much, much less?

Project 2: Get Organized

I don’t expect any changes here – it’s kind of the perfect quarantine project, isn’t it?

Project 3: Make a Cover Album

Again, I expect minimal changes. Though I really haven’t been working on this one too much – I should really get back to it.

Project 4: Read 100 Classic Books

This project couldn’t be going any better. I’m nearing the end of Atlas Shrugged (and loving every minute of it!). I should be done with in the next few days and I can’t wait to share my thoughts.

Future Projects

With some extra free time and not having to enter the law school for the next 5 months, I do have a little extra time on my hands. I’ve been brainstorming ideas as to how to use my time most productively. I’ve come up with three ideas that you may (or may not) see implemented in the near future.

  • A project with my boyfriend: I’ve been asking my boyfriend to do a project with me for a while, but I’m not pushing it. You may have noticed I don’t really reveal much about him either – that’s just because I don’t want him to feel uncomfortable. After all, this is my endeavor – not his. That being said, if we do a project, expect to hear a little more from him.
  • A running project: Five months is a good amount of training time. With most gyms closed, it does seem like the good ol’ outdoors is the best way to exercise. Could it be enough time to train for a race?
  • A writing project: With Abbey and I reading all these fantastic stories, we’ve been coming up with ideas for plot twists and turns. Actually, we’ve come up with a pretty solid book plot that’s hidden in the labyrinth of our shared files (aptly named The X Files). Would we really consider writing a book?

All of this being said, I am always open to ideas. If there’s any projects I need to try, I’m all ears. Just please, wash your hands first.

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806 Days Left – An Update

Happy Leap Day! It’s strange to think that by the next leap day this project will be finished.

Anyway, this week I’ve really been focused on getting little things done. Because of that, no project warrants a full update, but certainly there’s stuff to tell you.

Project 1: CALI a Law Class

As you may be aware, this week I decided to up the ante and work towards a 4.0. While I may not have had Rocky montage-levels of studying, I’ve felt a change. I’m more focused on getting my work done in the present (read also: do my readings before class and prepare the material). It’s been a lot of work during the week, but I do feel everything slowly beginning to come together.

I still have two papers to write for this week, so I expect some late nights. But after is spring break, so I anticipate an opportunity to catch up.

Project 2: Get Organized

This has been my big project. I’m most definitely focusing the most time on it because, well honestly, I want to get it done to work on more exciting things. I’m picking at things bit by bit and my goal is to be done with this project by the end of the month. Ambitious, I know, but that’s what I hoping.

Here’s what I’ve gotten done since my last update:

  • Snapchat Memories: I just finished college, so I have a lot of memories. I’ve been trudging through them and have currently deleted 1,021 photos. This is just on a first pass-through, I’m not even watching any of the videos. Mostly I’m in shock that I have this many photos saved on Snapchat. This is content that I’m not really looking at, but if it were on my computer sorted in files I would be. I’ll export the remaining files. There’s just a lot of moments I didn’t realized were captured. As a very nostalgic person, this is a lot of emotional work.
  • Sorting Through Clothing: I’m like 90% of the way there. I have a few more items to try on and decide about, but I’ve really worked hard on this one. I even had my boyfriend give me some (at times, brutal) advice on outfits – don’t worry, he had whiskey so he was a happy helper. I’ve gotten rid of quite a lot and I’m not sure what to do with it, so I do need to make a decision on that.
  • Computer Bookmarks: It really shouldn’t be surprising that that’s a mess for me, seeing as how my brain is focused on a million things at once. Going through my bookmarks is both fun and a little bit like the Reddit 50/50 page. Last night I was organizing them and ended up on the Wikipedia page for The Turk – which if you don’t know was a chess-playing automaton hoax from the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The “machine” beat both Benjamin Franklin and Napoleon Bonaparte.
Project 3: Make a Cover Album

Learning FL Studio is difficult. Thankfully Alex knows how to use it, so I’ve been using him for help. With a bit of struggling, I’ve managed to make a semi-reasonably cover beat of Mayores by Becky G. I can fine tune it a bit more, but once I get the cover right, I’ll start adding my flare. I think I want to change up the chorus – maybe a fuller sound?

Project 4: Read 100 Classic Books

I’ve been slowly making progress on Atlas Shrugged. It’s pretty dense and I haven’t had much motivation to pick it up. To make matters worse, my boyfriend has continually told me how important this book is to him and how he so badly hopes I enjoy it. It’s a little bit of pressure. Anyway, I’ve been missing writing book reports, so I might pick up some smaller books in the interim. Keep an eye out for that.

Monthly Match-Ups

We all dropped the ball on this one. Alex and I haven’t been doing much studying and I don’t think Abbey’s done with the test. That being said, the show must go on, so we’ll still be taking the test. Maybe music theory will make another appearance in upcoming months so we can do it justice.

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841 Days Left – An Update

While nothing fruitful enough has happened to warrant an update on any individual project, I have been chugging along on each and every one. Here’s where I’m at:

Project 1: CALI a Law School Class – This week my readings got the best of me. I’m not too far behind, but I am in desperate need of reviewing. This afternoon I’ll probably be making flashcards for all 30-something rules we covered in Civil Procedure this week. In other news, I’m also taking a legal writing course this semester (a continuation of the same course from the fall). There’s quite a bit of group work and my group works really well together. Could this be the class?

Project 2: Get Organized – Okay, I’m an email hoarder. I admit it. I rarely delete emails and instead leave them open to clutter my inbox. This week, however, I’ve focused my downtime towards a Cinderella-style scrubbing of my personal email. At the start of this project I had 18,132 emails and now I’m down to 1,397 emails. Yes, that’s right. I’ve gotten rid of 92% of my inbox. Even though I hardly use that email I was shocked at how much better I felt after doing it. All that’s left is to sort and file the important messages away.

For the sake of completeness, this week I’ve also:

  • Purged and organized my shoes – donating them mostly to Abbey. All of the hand-me-downs of hers I had as a kid makes it beyond worth it
  • Continued unpacking my house

Project 3: Make a Cover Album – Of all of my projects, this one has gotten the least love this week. Downloading my new music program has had hiccups in 1) getting my student loans and yearly finances taken care of before spending money I don’t have; and 2) making sure I had enough storage space on my computer. My hopes are to get this done this weekend and play with my new toy.

Project 4: Read 100 Classic Books – I’ve only got about 100 pages left in Lolita and I am eating it up. It’s so well-written you can’t look away, even though the images Nabokov paints in your head are incredibly haunting. If the point of reading a book is to make you feel, this one’s certainly doing its job. I’m just not sure what that feeling is.

As for Abbey she’s already finished The Handmaid’s Tale. I’ll publish her little book report when I finally read it myself – but what caught my attention was that it was actually the foreword that impacted her the most. I believe she’s now currently working on The Three Musketeers.