Calendar Girl!

My $1 two-year calendar!  (Yes, those are pattern numbers)
My $1 two-year calendar!
(Yes, those are pattern numbers)

Many people have asked me “How do you keep track of everything going on?” Quite simply – I use calendars. Yes, plural. I love calendars! Presently, I maintain seven calendars, four at work and three at home. I have a lot going on, deadlines, birthday parties, doctor appointments, blog posts, consultations, and there is no way for me to remember everything. Now, keep in mind, while there are seven calendars, many contain duplicate information. And, being in the legal field, keeping a back up for the back up is always sound advice when dealing with calendars! Read more

To The Moon!

“But why, some say, the Moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask, why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? …We choose to go to the Moon! … We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard; because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one we intend to win …”
(“Address at Rice University on the Nation’s Space Effort” 9/12/62)

– President John F. Kennedy –

This year, I am going to the moon. Not literally, of course, though maybe in my lifetime. Rather, I heard this excerpt in an episode of  Cosmos and it really resonated with me. In making my decision to take the Certified Paralegal exam, and throughout the studying process, I have been asked time and again – why? What do I stand to gain by taking this voluntary exam? My response is not simple. I often find that I am at a loss as to how to adequately describe to others (whether in the legal field or not) my desire to take an exam.

These words, spoken 53 years ago, say it all. I am doing it because it is hard. Because I want to measure my skills and energies. Because I need a challenge and am not willing to postpone it any longer. I intend to pass. 

We did make it to the moon and back before the end of the decade. And we have been to space many times since. There have been set backs. We have experienced awe and devastation. We have continued to move forward.

I implore you now, to go to the moon; and wheresoever your moon journey takes you, I hope you reach your goal. May you not allow discouragement to persuade you to cut your journey short. May you, like me, continue onward and upward.

Litigation, You Tricked Me!

So here we are, the last chapter of the review manual – litigation. I was very intimidated. Prepare a trial plan,  what? Ain’t no body got time for that! But I started reading through anyway (I still have to take the test after all) and discovered that this chapter is old news. Then I started thinking chapter 10 should have been chapter 1 so it doesn’t seem so daunting. Honestly though, chapter 1 was likely easier for someone else than chapter 10. To each their own. Read more

Interesting Facts About Divorce

I saw this article/slide show “10 Surprising Divorce Facts” on the other day and thought I would share it with all of you. Many people believe that California is one of the states with the highest divorce rates and are surprised to find that it is not even in the top five. Furthermore, it goes on to state that the “seven-year itch” is actually true and that most divorces occur at the eight year mark.

Now, I have been around enough to know enough that the information contained is pretty darn correct. I have had the immense pleasure of meeting couples who have been married longer than I have been alive. Unfortunately, I have met more who divorce around 10 years.

There have been times that I have been asked why divorce rates in California do not make the top five. Personally, I believe there are two important factors: the first, is that fewer couples are getting married (evidenced by the large amount of paternity actions filed); and the second, that couples are getting married at an older age (they are more likely to stay married due to being more stable as individuals). Also, in California, we offer legal separation which many couples choose in lieu of divorce.

If anything, this slide show is an interesting read. I hope that you enjoy!


Fancy Legal Terms = Arduous English Words

So maybe this post is less about fancy legal terms and more about arduous English words. Or, perhaps how to feel confident in using different vocabulary in your next project. Either way, we use quite a lot of difficult words and terms in the legal field. Primarily, these words are used for two purposes: (1) get the point across using the simplest way/least amount of words; and (2) to confuse the opposing party. Below are some of my favorite terms to use and my tips on using uncommon words in your letters and pleadings.

My trusty copy
My trusty copy

One day I want to use the term unconscionably. Just once, I think it would be wonderful to stumble across something that is so unreasonable, it would offend the conscience of all reasonable people. Perhaps it won’t happen in family law; but we do see some crazy things sometimes. So maybe, just maybe, I will get to use it after all. Or perhaps, I have come across such a situation but am so jaded that I did not recognize it as being unconscionable. Read more