China: Law School Adventures

The most interesting thing I’ve done with my life recently is venture to China with a few of my law school classmates for a two week study tour of Xi’an and Beijing.

Last summer I had the once in a life-time experience of studying law at Cambridge and I had gone back to a meeting to talk about my experiences to new students who were considering going to Cambridge this summer. I discussed my time with them but I also learned about this incredible opportunity to go to China and earn up to 3 credits of law school credit while doing so.

My first thoughts were “no way, I could never afford that…but wouldn’t that be the coolest experience, like ever?”. I still (of course) put my name on the information sheet anyway, but the more I learned about it the more I realized that I could totally make this work (all we paid for was airfare and credit hours to the university) so it really wasn’t that expensive, and plus I got 2 credit hours out of the way for the next year and memories to last a lifetime.


Here I am in front of the university in Xi’an, this was the law school building and where we had our lectures from Chinese law professors. We learned about Chinese Company Law, Chinese Civil Law, Chinese Constitutional and Administrative Law, Chinese Civil Procedure Law, and Chinese contemporary economy. We also had a session where former Chancellor and current law professor Harvey Pearlman had a comparative session on US and Chinese law. Overall, the classes were crazy interesting and really a great opportunity to learn about another country’s legal landscape.


The coolest part of this trip was the opportunity to see the Chinese court. We toured Xi’an Intermediate People’s Court and got the chance to converse with judges in the court (pictured here in the light blue shirts). This was by far a highlight of the trip and of my law school career. It was an amazing opportunity for cultural exchange and conversation, even though there was a language barrier the conversations we had are something I will remember forever.

One of the highlights of this trip was the food and the cultural experiences. My top favorites being the fish spa, the delicious yogurt from the street market, dumplings and the hot pot dinner we did.

There is always something fun about a challenge, we had a VERY short amount of time to climb to the top of the Wild Goose Pagoda in Xi’an, and we accepted the challenge and ran up to the top. Worth it.


Seeing the terra cotta warriors was also a highlight of the trip. For sure a must see if you get to Xi’an, downright amazing are the only words to describe this. Something you’ve gotta see for yourself to completely understand how amazing it is. Definitely a must see world heritage site.


Horse Ownership, the struggle is real.

horses are a way of life.

Ever since I was young I’ve loved horses and dreamed of owning a horse of my own. When I finally got a horse of my own I was thrilled! I was able to show him and ride him whenever I wanted (or could get a ride to the barn). I took him to shows, was responsible for his care for the most part and I enjoyed the joys of horse ownership for quite some time. Then one day I discovered that my horse was lame. The beginning of learning how the world of horse ownership works. Although my pony eventually got better he was never back to normal but still was able to have a useable life and even have a job.


My first horse, Eddy.

The worst part of horse ownership is figuring out what to do when your horse is no longer able to do what you want to do. The question is whether or not you should retire with your horse, or if you get a new one. I decided to let my very special pony move on without me and teach other little ones the joys of horses, but I will never forget him or not wish for a moment that I could have kept him forever.


My horse Callie and I at our last horse show.

Fast forward about 7 years. I’ve had a horse in between but my current horse I bought as a show horse and she’s ended up being much more than that. Not only did I regain my confidence on her but she became my second once in a life time horse. She is my very best friend but she is also without a doubt probably not going to show again (there’s a slight chance, but it’s really slight).


Nothing can take away our cuddles.

She’s finally back to regular turnout and I can ride her minimally, but she’s not jumping anymore or going to shows. I went through phases where I was mad that she was no longer the show horse I bought to move up to the bigger adult hunter classes on but now just a really fancy trail buddy. It sucks, but for a variety of reasons, it also doesn’t.

I started law school this fall and knew I wouldn’t be showing any time in the near future, so actually if she was going to become a pretty little ornament this was the best time for her to decide to do it. With a busy schedule the time I had to come out and ride all I wanted or needed to do was what she was capable of doing. We went on trail rides with barn buddies and hacked out in the front fields alone and she was good as gold. A perfect little stress reliever.


Callie and I this fall, coming back from a peaceful solo trail ride.

In the age of the internet where I can see all of my friends and people I don’t know who I follow on the internet successfully showing and doing things with their horses that I can’t, it can seem like you are pressured to keep going, buy your next show horse and put the one you have out to pasture and forget about them. For a while I wished I could do that, but I know better. This is best, this is what was meant to be. I’ll keep my best friend as long as I can and we will do what makes us happy and what we are capable of doing. I can’t pay board on two horses, and I don’t need to. My precious moo cow as I call her is all I need. Hopefully one day I’ll show again, but until then I’m happy bopping around on my favorite big ‘ol gimpy pony.

1L of a Christmas Break


Hello fellow 1Ls. Looking for a way to minimize communication about those awesome finals we just took- share this article with friends and family that will answer hopefully all of their questions they have about our latest academic endeavors so you don’t have to endlessly relive the finals experience.


how is law school going?

Well, I just finished taking a week and 1/2 of tests of which I won’t know the results of for almost a month and are worth most if not all of my grade, but other than that, fine.

how are your grades?

Excellent question, wish I knew- I’ll let you know right before the next semester starts. Also- once I know please don’t pester me about them, if they aren’t any good, I probably won’t want to talk about them. Like ever.

do you like it?

Well, yeah. I just invested a whole half a year to learning about future estates, intentional torts, homicide, statute of frauds, and other super exciting things. Of course I like it hence the want to continue with law school. Also I signed up for it so, yup, it’s pretty great. (I’m actually not being sarcastic, I really am interested in this stuff- weird, right?)

have you been to court yet?


can you help me with some legal advice?


(I semi-understand (maybe) the most basic legal foundations, you don’t want my help with anything right now…)

when do you graduate?

It’s a three year program. I just finished my first semester, so 2 1/2 years left! We are hopefully 1/6th of a lawyer!

that’s a wrap.

Hope this answers everyone’s questions. Law school is grand, it is one of the most challenging things I’ve ever done and I can honestly say I love it.

Now I should probably finish studying for that Property final tomorrow…one left. So close.


Study Abroad: London Packing List

the run down.

Here’s the down and dirty what you gotta have to start off your time in the world’s most fantastic city, London. Almost everything is easy to purchase, but its nice to have at least the essentials when you first get there while you get used to everything.

the essentials.

  1. laptop
  2. cell phone (either get a pay as you go plan or turn off data and only use for emergency calls)
  3. power converter
  4. British Pounds (if you plan on changing dollars to pounds make sure you bring NEW bills that aren’t old otherwise they aren’t happy to change them)
  5. credit cards with chip (an preferably no foreign transaction fees)
  6. any important medications and toiletries
  7. any favorite american food that you CAN’T live without (totally personal preference, I only brought some initial snacks so I wouldn’t starve if I couldn’t find a Tesco)
  8. Passport and any documents you might need (don’t forget your ID/Drivers License!)
  9. rain boots
  10. A good coat

things you’ll need.

  1. an oyster card (the tube is necessary my friends)
  2. good walking shoes
  3. I promise you you’ll need rain boots (wellie warmers are also nice to have on those cold english days)
  4. layers of outerwear, make sure you have at least one waterproof outer layer.
  5. The rest is pretty much up to you! Study abroad is what you make it 🙂

random tips.

Go exploring immediately, unpack the essentials and go out and be a tourist for a few hours. Figure out where the closest tube station is or bus stop. Find a Sainsbury’s or Tesco or what not (a food source). Explore the neighborhood you’ll be in all semester, check out the local pubs and restaurants.

Go see the big sites, bring out that camera and go take a ride on the London Eye, see Big Ben, Tower Bridge, Covent Garden, Leister Square, Piccadilly Circus, the Globe Theater ect. Some other fun touristy things to do are:

  • London Walks (I recommend the Jack the Ripper and the Harry Potter walks!)
  • The London Dungeon
  •  Horseback Ride through Hyde Park (Ross Nye Stables is fantastic and located adjacent to Hyde Park and usually takes walk-ups and is a once in a life time experience that cannot be beat!)
  • Hop-on-Hop off Bus (only do this if you don’t want to pay to use the tube for a day and want to be identified as a tourist)
  • Boat ride on the Thames (some have packages with the Eye and other attractions).

If you plan on visiting any of the palaces (Kensington, Tower of London, Hampton Court or Kew) buy the palace pass- find a friend and buy the “couple/family” pass and it will be even cheaper and you can go again and again in case you go on a day with a few too many tourists. Also, whenever people come to visit you they can get in on the pass as well since it is a “family” pass.

Here’s a link for more information on the pass.

I hope you enjoy your time in London as much as I did and have fun exploring!



The Final Countdown


It is nearly that time of year …

Christmas music is playing, snow has already appeared on the ground, the temperatures are falling, the leaves have all fallen off the trees, you are stressing about what presents you’ll have to be buying for friends and family, and if you are lucky enough to be attending law school- panic is in the air.

For myself as a 1L, I’m only panicking about half of the time, the other part I’m trying to tell everyone that, yes of course everything will be fine. But will it be? Perhaps, perhaps not. This isn’t youth soccer, not everyone gets a trophy for participating. But luckily, I think most everyone IS panicking.


The library has turned into a sort of panic zone, study groups comparing notes and trying to work through practice exams. The realization after you’ve completed a practice exam that you still have so much to do, and then the sheer panic that follows. It’s crazy to think that we’ve already gone through the whole fall semester. Even crazier to think that on Monday at 1pm we will be sitting down to our contracts final. Stressful yes, but we’ve been working all semester to get to this point. At times during preparation I find myself having fun figuring out a crazy hypothetical problem. I think that has to be the key to surviving these next few weeks of almost pure torture- remember why you came in the first place and keep finding interesting things that keep you interested in the material.


What I have seen as not being useful is just freaking out in general. It’s a waste of energy and distracts from studying. For example, I’m writing this blog instead of sitting on the couch watching tv as my study break, I do have the TV on but I’m trying to occupy myself in such a way so I don’t worry too much about the now very uncomfortably near future.

It’s one of those cases where you think finals are never going to get here, and then one day you wake up and finals are knocking on your door. Now there is no way I’m going to reinvent the wheel and figure out all of what has happened during the entire semester of any given class, all I can do is solidify what I know and try to clear up anything that I completely don’t understand. Although I’m by no means an expert on these type of things yet, in true blogging style I’ve come up with a list on how to survive finals. Or at least how to make it through finals, I’ll let you know if I actually survived at the beginning of next year.


My finals survival list:

  1. Don’t forget to be a human being.
  2. All the coffee.
  3. Exercise is key.
  4. Don’t forget to eat.
  5. Go to bed and wake up at a set time, don’t sacrifice your sleep- it won’t help you to take your finals with not enough sleep under your belt.
  6. Talk to people who aren’t in law school. There is a life outside those four walls full of knowledge.
  7. More coffee.
  8. Don’t waste time, but take time out for yourself.
  9. Don’t give up.
  10. Ask questions for clarification.
  11. Take practice exams.
  12. It’s okay to freak out a little bit.

0f92f2df94fc0a299e6ca02b0001669fThat’s all folks. I’ve sufficiently recharged so I can now finish figuring out some future interest problems. Over and out, and may the curve be ever in your favor.


Fitness Class Frenzy


fitness class frenzy

Upon beginning Law School I knew I would need something extra to keep me working out regularly. So when I found that UNL offered a group fitness class pass I immediately snatched it up and made the class schedule part of my every-day routine. I go to four classes a week in the evening as part of my exercise regiment. Occasionally I will go to a morning class or a class on Friday as well for an additional workout.

I love having a set schedule and having paid for the fitness pass and having a workout buddy who expects me to show up every evening really helps me meet my goals and get up and moving.


Cardio dance

My Monday evening class is Cardio Dance. It is fast becoming one of my favorite workouts as you essentially have a dance party every Monday evening. Once you figure out the moves and get into the swing of it you really have a great time for an hour just dancing to some popular songs and really working up a sweat. This is a medium impact class, but you can tailor it to be easier or harder depending on your fitness level or goals. Some Mondays I come out of class dripping and others I’m just a little red in the face, depending on how I feel and how hard I work.

The benefits of this class are numerous. My balance has improved (slowly, but I’m sure I’ll get the hopping on one leg thing down better eventually), I’ve noticed my legs have become stronger and leaner, and my endurance is slowly building up.

Even if you can’t dance, and dancing really is not a strong suit of mine, anyone can do this class. When I first started doing the class someone mentioned that if you don’t know what the move is, just jog or bounce in place, and that really works. Even if you don’t know exactly what to do you still get your legs moving and your heart rate up. Eventually the moves will come to you and now I can’t hear a song on the radio that we do in class without mentally thinking of the dance that goes along with it.

I would highly recommend anyone trying out a cardio dance class, I think it is a great stepping stone to Zumba as well as a great way to increase your fitness level in a fun and causal environment.



Part of every exercise regiment should include yoga I believe. Especially in a world where you constantly sit and hunch over, yoga really helps relieve stress and stretch out everything that needs to be stretched. As well as increasing balance, I’ve noticed my strength has improved. I can now downward dog way better than on my first attempt at the beginning of the year.

Yoga can also be tailored to everyone’s skill set, it doesn’t have to be impossible, just do what you feel comfortable with. But remembering that you must keep pushing yourself to continue to improve.

Relaxation and breathing is also a key part of yoga. It gives you a chance to step away from your day and just breathe and recharge. This class helps me go back to my studies recharged and ready to learn again and is beginning to be one of my favorites that I look forward to every week.

Here’s an article that mentions some of the awesome benefits of yoga.



Cycling class is also one that I look forward to every week, every week is a new opportunity to see how far I can push myself. Cycling has always been something that I’ve been tentative about pushing myself further in because I have knee problems, but once I was shown how to adjust the seat and handles correctly it no longer hurts my knees at all!

It is easy to set personal goals and push yourself in these classes, but it is also easy to just spin along and not push yourself. So the key in these classes are to keep on top of everything and push yourself as hard as you can.

Make sure your resistance is high enough and that it never is too easy, the feeling of coming out of a class utterly exhausted is excellent and this is my favorite class to release all that inner stress.

This is a beat based workout, and I’ve found that spinning along to the beat makes the hour class go much faster.

I like to keep track of my miles in each class and it is fun to see how much progress I am making and to see how much harder I have to push myself so I can begin to see results.


HIIT Strength

Usually my final class of the week, HIIT (high intensity interval training) Strength brings together all the workouts and culminates the week with a high intensity full body workout.

This class combines cardio and strength and targets every part of the body and leaves you exhausted and stronger. I think out of all the classes this one is the most beneficial and enables you to make more progress in the other classes.

Although this isn’t my favorite class content wise, the workouts we do in this class are always interesting and challenging. It is also harder to skimp in this class and not work as hard since everyone is doing the same thing. There are modifications, but I try not to use them unless I’m absolutely exhausted.

Final thoughts

Overall, all the fitness classes I’ve tried thus far have helped me keep on top of my fitness even though I rarely have time set aside to go for a jog anymore, I still am in decent shape since I have my fitness classes scheduled into my everyday life.

Some tips:

  1. Stick with it- pick classes you want to go to every week and make yourself go EVERY SINGLE WEEK unless you have a necessary commitment.
  2. Give it your all- if you aren’t focused and trying your hardest, you are wasting your time. You took time out of your day, make it worth while.
  3. Hydrate and eat well- don’t let your hard work go to waste!

My schedule: Monday- 5:30 cardio dance, Tuesday- 5:30 yoga, Wednesday- 6:30 spinning, Thursday- 6:30 HIIT Strength.

5 Things you Must Do in the Highlands of Scotland

One of my top favorite places to go in the world has to be Scotland, more specifically the highlands. I’ve compiled a list of my top favorite things to do, but there is so much more. These are just some of the interesting things I did when I visited.


  1. Hairy Coos

When visiting the highlands you must find these beauties. Our bus tour got so pumped every time we saw one. At one point our driver graciously stopped for a photo op. I love these fuzzy cows! You must find one and take a picture of or with one- which if you drive around the highlands you are hopefully bound to see some!


2. IrnBru

This crazy looking beverage is a must try in Scotland and although crazy sweet, it is strangely addicting and I often find myself wishing we had it in the US.


3. Castles

See all the castles. They are awesome and never get old. Our tour guide called our tour the ABC tour, or another bloody castle tour. Which was true, but it didn’t make it any less interesting. I would do our exact same tour again anytime but would love to see more castles that I haven’t gotten to explore yet.


4. Play with weapons

Do something crazy, like pose for a photo with an ancient sword outside an awesome old castle in the middle of nowhere in the highlands. These kind of awesome crazy things happen, and it is fantastic.


5. Climb a big hill

Go hiking, see the beautiful views, break in those wellies. Every blister is worth the amazing view from the top. We accomplished mountain goat status by hiking up some awesome hills and seeing some ancient homes with fabulous views. Don’t forget to venture through some streams and take some pictures. Also, try to spread your arms in victory better than I did, I suck at it.

Other things I enjoyed.

  • Lochs
  • Haggis
  • Rain
  • Loch Ness
  • Edinburgh
  • Everything

Here’s a link to the tour company we used through school!

One Man’s Dream: A photo tour

One Man’s Dream is officially closing in it’s current location. On my last visit to the world I wanted to go visit for the first and last time. This is truly an extraordinary exhibit and a testimony to Walt Disney. My entire family left feeling awed and a little bit teary eyed, especially after the film that was showed after you walked through (you know how us diehard disney folk get).

I documented most of the exhibits and tidbits of information I found interesting. I took all the photos on my iPhone camera so unfortunately they are not the kind of photography I would normally share on this page, they are merely documentary style and low quality but a way to show others some interesting parts of the exhibit.

I took much too long writing this blog from the time I visited so I unfortunately don’t remember a lot about what each photo entailed but the gist of the exhibit is a walk through the making of Disney.

This is also where you may become an ‘honorary citizen of Walt Disney World’ by answering questions for a quiz that you obtained by asking the cast member at the entrance of the exhibit for a quiz. The answers were all in the exhibit and were pretty easy to find for the most part. At the end you turned your quiz in, got your answers corrected, received your pin and got to sign the guest book! Very fun activity, especially when it was raining outside.

I’ll now proceed to my virtual photo walk through the exhibit. Enjoy and feel free to leave any comments with anything you know or liked about the exhibit!

The quiz.

The quiz.

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Walt's desk.

Walt’s desk.

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How the animation worked.

How the animation worked.

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Entrance to the theater.

Entrance to the theater.


Completed Quiz.

Completed Quiz.

Quote on the back of the quiz.

Quote on the back of the quiz.

Signing the guest book.

Signing the guest book.

Honorary Citizen of Disney World!

Honorary Citizen of Disney World!

A shout out to all my favorite Disney Facebook Groups: Diehard Disney Nuts, Loving Disney, Disney Vacation Club Members, Disney Worldwide Dreamers, and Disneyland Dreamers just to name a few.

1L: Month One

So, I’m on week five of law school. So far so good. I’ve survived being cold called a few times, I’ve dug through hundreds of pages of cases and statutes and rules, and I love every minute of it. Weird, right?

Things I love about school: free lunches, speakers, tons of activities and groups, new friends, library time, yoga, fitness classes and how nice everyone is. Almost every lunch period I’ve had somewhere to go listen to someone talk about an area of the law or something pertaining to school in general. Usually these talks include food of some sort, which is an added bonus! I’ve gotten to listen to a couple visiting speakers, the most interesting to me so far being the visitors from West Africa. I loved learning about how the law works in that part of the world and how they are trying to develop something like the EU in Africa. I have also noticed how there is never ending activities, so I’m never at a loss for what to do weeknights or weekends. Whether it be a football game, trivia night, or the upcoming barrister’s ball- I love the endless activities that I can choose to attend. I also love our library. Up to this point I’ve never used a library really and I enjoy using a few hours at the end of each school day to try to wrap up a bulk of my work there in that serene setting surrounded by my peers all doing similar work. Also, I love how genuine this school is, everyone really does care about how you are doing and if you are enjoying school. I’ve also had the benefit of taking advantage of the fitness classes and brand new facilities on east campus for much needed late-afternoon study breaks.

I’ve found a great rhythm already and I’m starting to get in the groove of everything, I’m awaiting the return of my first practice test and we’ve just been assigned our first graded legal writing assignment. So time to start working even harder.

This post is mainly for me to organize my thoughts, but I figured I might add some notes for people perhaps considering law school.

What to expect:

  • you are going to work harder in law school then you ever have in undergrad
  • the professors are there to help you, don’t be afraid to approach them with questions or ask questions in class
  • being cold called sucks, but no one will judge you if you don’t give a brilliant answer
  • make a schedule for reading and life in general, it really helps, trust me
  • don’t waste time sitting doing silly things unless you are purposefully unwinding
  • make sure you take breaks from school, burnout is a real thing
  • exercise, law school requires lots of sitting, but staying healthy is key to getting everything done, so be sure to get in a workout- I paid for a workout class membership to encourage me to workout at a scheduled time each day, so far it is working pretty well!
  • set goals and make sure you reach them
  • try out a study group, talking things out helps you understand
  • ask silly questions (simple questions) if you have them
  • start outlining when you start to have an idea what is going on, keep outlining once you start
  • read the case once before you attack it with the highlighters
  • color coding highlighters helps me pick out the different parts of cases and helps when cold called in class (ex. green = facts of the case)
  • be a human, take a day off once in a while when you can to help relieve stress and come back more prepared to start work again

Overall, so far I love school. I’ve found the reading long but interesting, so I think I’m in the right place. Keep looking here for more updates as I have time to write them, this blog is serving as an unwinding tool for me- but feel free to comment if you have any questions about law school, or any tips for me as a 1L if you’ve finished or are further along in law school than I am!

1L over and out.b5a998d2cd15c5de7c3fcd3dac29c73f

The 1L Life: Starting the Journey


It’s my first year of law school, I’ve worked so hard to get here and I can’t wait to see where this journey takes me. I’m about half way through my second week and I finally found time to sit down and write this blog. It was the last thing I wanted to do, I much rather be sitting on Facebook or splatted on the couch not using my brain power for an hour or so before I go back to studying. Law school is intense, but in a good way, I actually really like it in this crazy sort of way.


For anyone thinking about Law School, it isn’t for the faint-hearted. This takes dedication and skill, or at least these first two weeks have. I’m exhausted, but I’m learning. My classes are beginning to make some sort of semblance of sense and I’m beginning to think differently about what I read. I no longer take 6 hours to read 5 cases, so life is looking up.

I had so much I wanted to say in this first Law School blog, but my brain is so mushy I’m struggling to recall all I’ve wanted to say. I’ll try making a new heading, perhaps that will help…

Tips and tricks, from someone who is by no means good at this yet.

Stay on top of things! Even though I don’t know what the heck I’m supposed to be doing, I’m reading and trying to analyze and outline what we’ve learned the very best that I can. I feel like if you get behind at this point it will be a slippery slope downhill for the rest of the year.

Make a calendar and follow it, I’m a scheduler and it is helping me to no end so far. I schedule time to workout, time to relax and mostly time to study. This ensures that I at least have a game plan for the day and can figure out what I’ll be doing when.

Be sure you take time out for you. I decided to purchase a fitness pass and so far an hour out of almost every school day to work up a sweat really helps you come back re-energized and ready to take on the rest of your workload. Don’t try to just keep going, I don’t think it’s possible to study day in and day out and continue to get useful information coming out of that studying, breaks are good.

Random thoughts

As my brain seems to be actual mush, I’ll probably end this post earlier than intended, but I’ll leave you with some thoughts.

I like torts, I think I understand them.

My contracts teacher told us we should be good at law school because Sesame Street taught us how to find which one of these things aren’t like the others.

All the assault cases we’ve read now have me hyperaware in under lit parking lots with some overgrown shrubbery.

Highlighters are my friend, but I probably need to calm down, half of my cases look like a crayola box threw up on them…

Also, we had a property case about whales, and I shall always remember it because whales.

(I hope I’ve demonstrated the mush that my brain has become and that this post entertains you or at the very least entertains me later…)