Saturday, December 29, 2012

Ho-Hooooo! (7 Holiday Quick Takes)

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!  Here are some highlights from mine:


To kick things off, here is Lola's picture with Santa from this year.  About three seconds after this picture was taken, Lola whimpered to Santa that she wants a dinosaur.

The look of pure terror.

I went to an ugly sweater party this year (like most everyone else), and we did a white elephant gift exchange (a game where you swap wrapped presents that everyone brings to the party).  My favorite part of the night was either: (a) winning a box full of DVD sets like Gilmore Girls, the O.C., and Dawson's Creek or (b) seeing my friend Drew dressed in his mother's sweater vest and a dickey carrying around a hot pink Kaboodle.

Nevermind.  (B) is the winner.


I spent the night before Christmas at my brother's house so I could wake up Christmas morning and watch my two-year-old niece open her presents from Santa.  My brother and his wife did an amazing job with Lola's gifts.  Here is a picture of their living room before Lola woke up.

There were 5, yes 5, princess dresses hanging from the tree.
All month Lola has been asking for a "Mickey cake" for Christmas.  We have no idea where she got the idea from, but Santa brought her one.  Not only is this a Mickey Mouse cake, as requested, but it does not contain any egg or wheat, since Lola is allergic to both.  I found this incredibly endearing.


Lola was very polite while opening her presents, telling everyone "thank you."  Somewhere along the line, however, she got the idea that Santa Claus sounds like a rap artist.


As usual, we all ended up having a dance party upstairs.  Lola wanted to try out her new ballet skirt and gymnastics shirt.


We had dinner at my dad and Tammy's house.  Tammy had the place looking like something out of a magazine, as usual.  Dinner was delicious, and I loved getting to see the whole family together.  I was also excited to finally give my dad the Star Trek Next Generation Pez Collection I bought him.

John (little bro) and my niece, Haylee, at dinner.

Today my friend Anna gave me the best Christmas present ever.  It is an entire book filled with potential lists you can make.  I love making lists!  The OCD in me is just dying to take this book for a test drive.  Giving me this gift is like taking a hoarder to a rummage sale.  Thanks Anna!

See Jen for more quick takes.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

One Blog Post to Rule Them All

“The world is indeed full of peril and in it there are many dark places.
But still there is much that is fair. And though in all lands, love is now
mingled with grief, it still grows, perhaps, the greater.” 
― J.R.R. Tolkien

I would hate to use my blog for something as apropos as a political rant, so instead I will merely lead a brief discussion on The Lord of the Rings.  A fantasy-filled literary discussion about hobbits and elves never offended anyone.

So, there was this Ring.  A Dark Lord named Sauron wanted to use it as an ultimate weapon in conquering all of Middle-earth.  If Sauron had the Ring, he would send the land into complete chaos and mayhem.  What could possibly be done to prevent this from happening?

Well, it fell onto the stout shoulders of a young hobbit named Frodo.  Frodo had to get rid of the ring.  He was tasked with throwing that son-of-a-bitch straight into the fire of Mount Doom.  You know why?  So bad people wouldn't get ahold of the ring and use it to hurt people.  Some things are just too powerful to have any practical use in the general public.

I'm sure this brings many questions to mind.  Questions that I will now address:

1.  What if some Middle-earthian just wanted to keep the Ring as an heirloom or for a collection?

I'm glad you asked.  A creature named Gollum tried to do just that.  He couldn't let go of his "precious" Ring because it made him feel powerful and protected, or else this nonsense could have been stopped a long time ago.  I mean, Gollum actually bit off Frodo's finger trying to get the Ring.  Let it go, man, it's just a Ring.  There are more important things.

2.  Shouldn't Middle-earth have gone to the root of the problem and tried to develop a system to rehabilitate Dark Lords and prevent new ones from rising up?  Then Frodo could have just kept the Ring.

That's an excellent idea.  But, what if a Dark Lord unexpectedly skirts the new system?  No, we have to be safe.  There is too much at stake.  The two solutions could both be effective, but they are not mutually exclusive; the Ring still has to go.

3.  But, what about horses?  They trampled people during the Battle for Middle Earth!  And that's not to mention the accidents horses cause when their riders are intoxicated!  By your logic, shouldn't the horses be thrown into Mount Doom, too, as they hold the potential to hurt people?

No, ass hat, because a horse's primary purpose is not to cause harm to other people.

4.  Okay, well what about other weapons like swords and bows and arrows?  What's the difference between those and the Ring?

Well, I'm glad you asked.  Those weapons could be needed for protection of Middle-earth or to hunt for food.   The main difference is that by their very design they are unable to inflict the quick and widespread harm that the One True Ring could.  True Rings are not used merely for hunting or protection.  If you must use something for protection, use a standard weapon like a normal person.

5.  Well, if the hobbits and elves had their own True Rings, they could have defeated the Dark Lord Sauron without destroying the Ring.

Maybe, if the Dark Lord didn't use his Ring for evil before the others even knew what was coming.  Also, more Rings just means a greater availability for other Dark Lords.

6.  Did you ever stop to think that maybe this trouble started because Eru Ilúvatar, the supreme being, was prohibited in Middle-earth schools?

No.  I never thought that.  Because it is nonsense.  First of all, Eru Ilúvatar is not prohibited in Middle-earth schools.  In fact is is welcome in the schools.  It just isn't mandated by the Middle-earth government or the school system itself.  Second, what does this have to do with a Dark Lord getting ahold of a weapon and wreaking havoc?

7.  But it is my right as a Middle-earthian to own a Ring!

It is not your right to own or do anything you want, especially if the harm to others outweighs the benefit.  It isn't your right to own underage hobbit pornography (as an aside, hobbits are underage if they are younger than 33).  You know why?  Because as a society we have decided that in the interest of public protection it is reasonable for that "right" to be denied.

Was I saying the Ring this whole time?  Bah.  I meant assault weapons.  Oh well, I'm too lazy to go back and change it.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Who Doesn't Love Before and Afters?

Can I still call myself a blogger when it has been this long since my last post?  I'd say it's questionable.  At this point "Lawyer? I Hardly Know Her" could best be described as a blog that focuses on apologizing for not writing in my blog.

And the amount of loose ends I have left untied is just shameful.  For example, you might be wondering if I ever made the grand prize stuffed animal for my sweepstakes.  The answer is yes.  I made it out of a t-shirt, cotton balls, and love.  I neglected to post a picture, however, because the grand prize winner, Jackie, has been traveling the United States doing residency interviews and we have been unable to meet up as of yet.

However, now that I have shown her a picture of her new stuffed animal friend, I feel okay posting a picture.  She asked me to make her a stuffed pug (her choice, I swear!)  because it just so happens she has an adorable pug-mate named Duke.  I tried to make my pug resemble Duke as he looks in a picture from Jackie's wedding day.  First, here is the picture of Jackie and Duke that I used as inspiration:

Note the classy green polka dot bow tie.

Now meet t-shirt pug.  I added a top-hat in addition to the green bow tie,
only because I think Duke would look dashing in a top hat.

Next on the agenda is the renovation of my bathroom.  I decided to walk you through the arduous process with pictures.


The theme was fish and Crayola wallpaper, which might work if I had kids.  But I don't.  So it doesn't.

Anyway, step one was wallpaper removal, which just so happens to be my personal hell.  Also, this particular bathroom had wallpaper on top of other wallpaper.  Twice the fun!

After removing the wallpaper and the towel racks, I spackled, sanded, and taped in preparation for painting.

Never use a sander without your respirator and Mr. Magoo goggles.
Next, I removed the old sink and countertop and repainted the vanity and wall-shelf.

Ye olde sink.

New wall-shelf color.
Then, as discussed in an earlier post, I picked out a new toilet.

Ye olde can.
The bolts were a little rusty.

Underneath the toilet.  This visual still
haunts me every time I close my eyes.
Naturally, I bleached the shower tile grout next.

My friend Josh was kind enough to help me install the new floor.

Much better!
Finally, I nailed the base molding back in place, installed the new toilet, and reattached all of the water lines.  I still need to get a new mirror and shower curtain, but here is the current before and after!

Even if you don't think it's much of an improvement, feel free to tell me it is because I don't think I've ever worked so hard on anything else.  Except for the stuffed pug.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Lawyer, Writer, Falconress.

This past Saturday I got to mark a very important item off of my bucket list:  take a falconry lesson.  God heard my plea for falconry training and presented the opportunity to me via a Living Social deal.  I used to think Living Social only provided deals for frivolous things like food, vacations, and spa pedicures.  I apologize Living Social, for I misjudged you.

My friend Sarah and I each bought a lesson, and then drove to the Greenbrier Resort in White Sulfur Springs on Saturday morning.  Neither of us had ever been to the Greenbrier, so we were excited to see it.  Once we were inside, I pictured myself sitting in the parlor drinking tea with white gloves on, giggling girlishly while saying things like "I do declare" or "why, he ain't got the good sense God gave a goose."  I can be high society as well as the next girl.
The resort was all decorated for Christmas, which 
included a tower made of 1 million presents.
As the shuttle pulled up to the "Falconry Academy," as it is called, I was so excited I could have peed my pants.  Before the demonstration, we learned about the history of falconry, and how the sport applies to all birds of prey, not just falcons.  That is when we met these guys:
That there is Mr. Eagle, Mr. Hawk, and Mr. Owl.
I laughed at the eagle because I thought he looked like a cartoon character.  Then he tried to eat me.  With his eyes.

"Step OFF before I wreck you!"
The instructor took us outside and did a demonstration with the hawk.  This included encouraging the hawk to fly so close to our heads that its feathers tickled my ears.  Then we walked through the trees with said hawk before watching it devour a (dead) baby chick.  My first most favorite part of the demonstration was getting to hold the falcon ourselves.  My second most favorite part was seeing the falcon with his "hood" on.  The hood is like a miniature leather helm that makes the falcon look like a tiny warrior.  Man, I love animals in hats.
Santa Baby, put a falcon under the tree for me.
That same night, my sister-in-law Brandy had a toy drive party at her house.  She is the world's best party planner, so of course the food was amazing.  She had crab cakes, pecan-crusted brie, and little brownies wearing strawberry santa hats.  Oh!  And chocolate liqueur in shot glasses made of peppermint.  Everything was edible.  It was the adult equivalent of Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory.  And the company was fantastic!  Plenty of woman attended who are inappropriate conversationalists like myself.  They taught me what vajazzling is.  It really opened my eyes.
Me with the hostess, and some of her delicious party fare.

Me with my friend Sarah.  Also, I threw in some pictures
of frosted marshmallows and the aforementioned
Santa hat brownies for good measure.