Balancing Acts

A working single mom attending law school

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Posts Tagged ‘legal skills’

Crunch time

Posted by newlawmom on October 21, 2008

Everything needs to come together now. I have a memo I’m working on. A paper for a contest which needs to be finished. And outlines that need to be updated and prepared for the exams which will come altogether too soon. I love school. I really do. I’m enjoying my memo and finding cases to support getting my client off the hook. I’m not sure I’ll succeed but I like the challenge, realizing that I need to argue the opposing side with equal diligence. So ultimately, it really will be the case law that determines the outcome. Still, it is enjoyable. I love the library. Less so Westlaw on the computer. I hate Westlaw. Give me books any day of the week. So…I am off to read some cases for my memo and organize a contracts outline for tomorrow. Wish me a splendid day despite the rain. I hope your day is nice as well.


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Legal Analysis

Posted by newlawmom on September 18, 2008

Does it seem that I should be able to master the art of writing legal analyis? Is three papers enough to get it right? In every aspect of my prior life the answer is yes.  Legal skills class? Oh my. I am missing something. I’m not sure what. I met with the prof. Listened carefully. Heard him say I was on the right track, followed his editing suggestions. And it is still not good enough. OR….it is fine. And so is everyone elses. And therefore I should not expect my grade to reflect anything spectacular. It is frustrating to be sure. My current plan is to edit again based on his written comments and ask him to review it, explain that I do not want to stop working on it until I get it right. Fully right. 100% right God damn it. See? I had a frustrating day! I am tired. I want to go to bed now. And so it is. Friday can not get here soon enough. I do hope my readers have a spectacular day.

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Wednesday is done

Posted by newlawmom on September 10, 2008

Now its on to Thursday. But not until I take a half hour to myself before I go to bed. I am exhausted and realize that there is certainly more work I could do tonight. But I have done alot. All day. The big accomplishment was meeting with the legal skills prof, reviewing my draft of tomorrows assigment, and then completing all the edits I discovered I needed to make. I am really hoping this paper brings me up to the level I want to be at. Next on the list, outside of the careful reading and preparation that must be completed on an ongoing basis from here on out? A sample exam question which we will discuss in class tomorrow. I wish I had gotten to it. I didn’t. I will probably try to write at least an outline of my response to the “sample sample question” before my 10:30 class tomorrow. The actual sample exam will take place on Tuesday. Criminal preparation will consume the remainder of my day tomorrow. Tonight on the homefront I managed to do one load of wash, cook dinner and clean up, and see my mother. Oh yes…I also stopped at the grocery store on my way home today to pick up a few needed items. The boys are taking this very well. They helped with dinner, did their chores, and spent their evening doing their homework and playing quietly in the room where I was studying. They get it. And they don’t hate me yet. Tomorrow night I have a meeting at the middle school. I hope to take them out for an ice cream before I leave for that meeting. But…that will mean staying up later tomorrow night, because I am not planning on studying any less. Thats ok. I can sleep on Saturday.  Such is life. And despite the challenges, I am loving it.

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Need to do better

Posted by newlawmom on September 9, 2008

Well, my legal skills grade improved. But less than I would have hoped. I have a meeting with the Prof. tomorrow to discuss ways to improve. As I mentioned to my man-friend tonight, this is going to require more time and more effort than I have thus far applied. If I am to succeed on the level I am capable of, I must apply myself wholeheartedly. This is not going to be an easy task. Today looked like this: Leave home at 7 to arrive at law school at 8:15, first class scheduled for 10:30. Spent time in library reviewing today’s cases, walked to bookstore to buy page flags, and checked email and online assignments. Went to Civ Pro class and felt relatively well prepared. We will get a sample exam opportunity next week. This pleases me. Between classes, had lunch while reviewing Crim for afternoon session. Went to legal skills class; hope I got what I need for the written assignment due Thursday. Went to Crim class and felt less than adequately prepared. Drove home 1 1/2 hour commute in the PM. Arrived home 5PM. Studied until 6 while dinner was in the oven. 20 minute dinner break, back to working on legal skills paper until 9. Online now for a break, will return to studying by 10, study until 11, go to bed and get up tomorrow at 6 to leave home for 7. Children were relatively ignored today although they did have dinner with me and do their homework in the same room as me. They also played quietly in the same room as me.  While unpleasant, I will proceed with this schedule for the remainder of the week. This coming weekend I will spend at least six hours studying on Saturday, taking Sunday off. Last weekend I did very little studying until Sunday night. Hopefully this will prove to be enough. If not, I will reevaluate as needed.

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Monday week 4

Posted by newlawmom on September 8, 2008

So…I’m a full time law student. Reality has set in, but so has my sense of adjustment and well-being. The routine feels a bit normal now. The kids are into their third week of school and things are going well. That leaves the course work. I have a legal writing assignment due Thursday, but tomorrow I will get last week’s assignment back. I am really hoping for a decent grade on that. If nothing else, this week’s assignment is similar so I can make adjustments if necessary. I was browsing the ABA website today and found a cool writing challenge for health law. I wonder if it stupid for a 1L to even attempt such a feat? I will be make sure to at least look at the journal. If it looks manageable I will ask the legal skills instructor his opinion on the matter. I might like to attempt it, just because I love to write and love the subject matter. Health law. In order of preference I l like: Contracts, Torts, Criminal Law, with Civil Procedure falling at the very bottom of the list. Legal skills doesn’t rate. I simply intend to master the material.  Despite liking contracts I figure I need to get better at close analysis of the cases. I am misreading and it is hurting my class participation. The first step towards correcting a problem is knowing it exists, right? So….tomorrow calls. I need to do a bit more work and call it a day. Have a splendid day.

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Friday week 3

Posted by newlawmom on September 4, 2008

I have made it through the week in fair condition. I was up until after 2AM last night writing my legal skills assignment that was due this morning. But I am proud of the paper. It should earn me a decent grade. Definately a different feeling than the first assignment I turned in. I am up to speed on all my reading and started my outlines last weekend. I have selected a study partner for Contracts, where we will work on an outline together. The prof will review outlines but only if we work with at least one other person.  So that is helpful. I am set to receive a copy of prior criminal law exams from a 2L. And I will return to my LEEWS system this weekend. Even so, it is now 9:30 and I am just getting to tonights reading. I will be up at least a few hours. l am going to need to learn to manage my afternoon and evening hours better. The two hour round trip commute doesn’t help either. My time is severely limited and sleep is what I have chosen to sacrifice thus far. I will need to make a different choice or I won’t be able to keep up for long. Let’s not forget the 20 hours a week of work I am trying to do in addition. Money troubles won’t help me.  So…it is going to be a long year. I love law school. Absolutely love it. I need to manage everything without sacrificing my own health. Wish me luck on that. I hope my readers have a lovely day. I will be happy all day – because it’s Friday.

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