A Day in the Life of a Bar Candidate…

(…according to Instagram.)
It’s tuesday (in Texas), which means this time next week I’ll be sitting in a room full of psychotic, high-strung recent law school grads taking the most important test of our lives. Some will be re-taking (I’ll die if that’s me next February). As much as I’ve studied, I’m worried that I haven’t studied enough. I mean- are any other bar candidates writing a blog post right now? Probably not, but whatever… I’ve been on the not-burning-myself-out method. I just hope it works.
Now that I’m in my last week and it’s crunch time, I thought I’d share the schedule I’ve kept for the past 2-3 months.
This is a typical day during my summer of studying for the bar exam:

5 am – 6 am

1. This is where I drive, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at 5am- the UFC gym. I only have time for cardio, so I run. I don’t eat breakfast first, because that would require me waking up even earlier.

2. I remember when iPads came out, I was like “Who seriously needs to carry something like that around with them all the time? Disconnect yourself.” Yeah, well, that person is now me. During my morning runs, I take the time to check e-mail, catch up on my blogs, etc. This seriously decreases my speed but it’s only temporary so whatever.

3. FUN FACT: my feet are humongous. I wear size 11, which makes shopping for shoes a whole ordeal. And I like to try my running shoes on before I buy them, which usually places online shopping out of the question. These shoes are ooooold….. with prolly over 500 miles on them.

4. When I leave the gym around 6, the sun is pretty much up. That’s a picture of the wall outside the gym. It is located in the “urban art district,” which is pretty cool. I hope to photograph and share it on this blog in my post-bar exam life.

6 am – 8 am

 

5. When I get home from the gym, I walk in the door to a smiley, just-fed baby. I shower up while my iPad is playing Bar Review lectures.

6. When I get out of the shower, I put a fresh gym outfit on. Then, I scoop up Eva from her nap nanny and put her on her baby gym for some tummy time.

7. I wash the dishes and sterilize the bottles in boiling water. My mother instilled a healthy distrust of microwaves in me (with all the waves and what not). To this day she does not own a microwave . I still use one, but not when I don’t have to.

8. While I’m boiling the bottles I make breakfast. Normally I eat eggs with some oatmeal or fruit. If I’m lucky I’ll enjoy some fresh strawberries (although not likely because they are usually SO expensive in Hawaii and not as delicious as Cali or TX.)

8 am – 10 am

 

*The following only takes place 3-4 times a week. On days I don’t do this, I spend those extra couple of hours studying. Those are my long, 10-12 hour days.
9. Around 7:45 I load Eva up in the truck for the 10-15 minute drive to Pearl Harbor, where I lift weights. They have childcare for children under 6 months, but charge $4/hr (which is why I don’t want to do both cardio and weights there).
10. First I have to drop Eva off at the “Kid’s Club.” It’s attached to the old gym, so I have to park my car, drop her off, drive to the new gym, and then return for her. If I over the 1hr mark, even by just a little, they’ll charge me for a-whole-nother hour, so I can’t piddle-paddle at the gym. Eva absolutely loves the Kid’s Club. She’s been going there since she was 6 weeks old. Her face lights up as soon as we walk in the door and she sees Ms. Connie (the elderly asian lady that looks after the babies) and all the other kids. It’s crazy how babies recognize other babies. Ms. Connie loves her and always tells me what a happy baby she is.
11. The new gym at Pearl Harbor opened the same week as the UFC gym (a few months ago). It’s pretty nice, with all new equipment and a treadmill rock-wall.
12. There are my raggedy shoes again on a back & biceps day.

10 am – 6 pm

 

13. When I get home, I shower again, then head straight for the books (after a protein shake and a piece of fruit or some oatmeal). I try to start by 10am. The first three-four hours of my study day usually consist of a lecture on a particular subject. Eva and I watch the lecture as I take notes. I often have to pause it so that I can make some food, change Eva, give her baby gym time, or whatever. So this normally takes 4-5 hours.
14. After watching the lectures I take a study break and take Eva for a 10-15 minute walk around our backyard. She loves being outside.
15. When we come back inside, I review and make flashcards. I always read out loud to Eva what I’m reading and writing. I give myself about an hour for this. After reviewing, I usually have to take a “checkpoint” quiz to assess whether I learned anything that day. I’m assigned more work based on how many questions I get wrong, but I save that for when I have extra time. After the checkpoint quiz, I take a practice Texas Evidence & Procedure test or a couple of essays. I conclude most days with 33 MBE questions. 
 
16. I try and finish studying between 5-6pm each day.Unless you count the bar review lectures I’m listening to while cooking dinner.
 

6 pm – 9 pm

17. After studying I spend some time playing with Eva. I can’t wait til I have all day to play with her and teach her things (other than the law). I’m going to take her in the water every day.
18. After playtime comes Eva’s favorite time of day, bath time! Then bottle & bedtime.
19. Once Eva is sleeping, I do some blogging. (This right here!)
20. After that, I go through my nightly personal hygiene routine and it’s off to bed, where I dream about the rules of evidence and the elements of adverse possession.
_____________________________
So if any bar candidates stumble upon this little blog, that was my schedule. As you can see, I didn’t spend 15 hours a day studying like I know some people do. I always found time to exercise and I took most of the weekends off (except for the last couple of weeks). I won’t know whether I passed for months, so if you’re reading this in January preparing for the February exam, feel free to lurk around my blog to see if I passed. If I didn’t, this post might be a good idea of what not to do. If I did pass, take comfort in knowing that you can do a little skating.

Comments

  1. You are super woman!
    Seriously.
    I’m amazed at all you can do in one day.
    And yes you should do the outlets in Texas for sure. I just snagged up some Asics at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale for $59 (vs $89 after the sale) and they have Nike’s too, if that’s your style.
    Texas is anxiously waiting for you!
    Don’t forget to text if y’all are up for some time in Austin after the bar!

  2. Wow, so excited I found your blog!! I just finished law school and the bar with a newborn and your blog is so inspiring! I used to run marathons and be a gym rat before having my son and struggling to get back on track. I started reading this post and i’m addicted to your blog already!

  3. YOU. ARE. MY. HERO! I am a law student struggling to exercise daily and I don’t have a newborn, so no excuses for me. I’m going to read this post every time I’m feeling lazy, unmotivated, or too busy for a quick sweat. We are pretty much meant to be friends because 1) you live in one of my favorite places in the world–a place my husband and I escaped to for the 9 weeks before our 1L year, and 2) we share a general distrust and avoidance of microwaves. And not only do I need to get my butt into gear and hit the gym tomorrow morn, I also need to update my bloggity blog. Thanks for the inspiration, and I hope you passed!!!

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