An update.

by graceelena on March 13, 2014

This space has been a bit neglected. The last few months have been challenging. Studying for the bar exam is not fun. It’s even worse the second time. The stress and worry was a million times greater. A dear friend of mine told me that my regular crying this time means I will pass. Let’s hope she’s right.

My writing during that time was tortured and melodramatic. It’s the kind of writing best left for my journal; to be read again at a much later date. Nothing suitable for publication.

Now I am back in DC after a whirlwind trip to California for the exam and an impromptu trip to Arizona. I’m feeling very cold and missing the Southwest something fierce. The novelty of sweating in February while simply standing outside never wears off.

Luckily the sun is shining in DC. My toes are still cold from when I was outside five hours ago, but at least there is sun streaming through the window.

I hope to get back to writing here soon. I want to share funny stories, advice, recipes, and California girl in DC moments. I also want to talk politics and news. I love the idea of this space being one that engages people in conversation.

In the next few weeks I’ll do my best to be present here, even if in short form. You can expect tidbits about moving into the city. I’m taking my few belongings from Maryland and moving into a gorgeous one bedroom apartment in the Bloomingdale neighborhood of DC. Back in December I laughed at the possibility of this move. No way would I have the resources for that. Yet here I am…

There is magic in this city. I have never felt more sure of my path than I am now. As silly as it sounds, everything feels right. From the moment I decided to move to DC last September things have worked out. That is until I received bar results. But, my mom was quick to point out that I didn’t study for the bar in DC. I laughed. That is true.

What’s even more true is that this city is magic because I let myself see the magic. I allow myself to be part of it. I embrace it and when things don’t turn out quite right, that’s ok too. Every day I walk around this city and can’t stop smiling. I am still in awe that I am here. Even when things are hard I can’t help but be thankful for this opportunity and everyone that continues to support me on this journey.

Thank you for reading, listening, offering guidance, and keeping me motivated. I’m just getting started!




Security Blankets

by graceelena on January 17, 2014

When I studied for the bar last summer I wore a jean jacket every day. Every single day. I even wore it to the exam. It was my security blanket.

This time around it’s winter and I am in DC. It’s too cold for a jean jacket. Instead I am begrudgingly bundled in tights, scarves, sweaters, gloves, and coats. I hate the cold but I love this city.

Last week I tossed my study materials into a backpack covered with slices of multicolored citrus. An ode to home, to Palm Springs where the trees in my parents backyard are covered in the juiciest grapefruit, lemons, and oranges.

I bought the backpack the last time I lived in DC, for the same reason. It was winter. I was craving home and sunshine. It is the most juvenile and unfashionable thing I own. It would be adorable if I were ten, maybe even fifteen, but I’m twenty-eight and since last week I have been walking around with the damn thing every day.

My new security blanket.

Today I put on a patterned black dress, red wedges, and a lovely red coat with gold buttons. I admired the ensemble in the mirror and then picked up my citrus backpack and walked out the door.

It’s a fashion faux pas in a massive way.

But I don’t care. It fits all of my materials and at this point I do nothing but study anyway.

If you see a woman dressed impeccably but also carrying a hideous citrus backpack, stop and say hi. I can use all the positive vibes I can get.

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January 8, 2014

Last November a dear friend called me moments before I was to receive bar results. We tend to miss each other so I answered intending to tell her I’d call her back. But before I could say a word she began talking. “Grace. I love you. You are amazing. No matter what happens with the […]

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“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill

December 6, 2013

No one wants to write about failing the bar exam. This is supposed to be a photo of my name and the words “this name appears on the pass list.” It is supposed to be a long list of thanks. It is supposed to be a video of me crying and laughing as I see […]

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Kitchen Disasters: Why Messes are Important

November 19, 2013

Have I ever told you about my love of food disasters? Like the time I was making frosting for a friends birthday cake. I tossed the butter and cocoa into the kitchen aid mixer and turned it on high. A cloud of cocoa powder immediately erupted all over me, the counter, and the guy standing […]

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The Greatest Love of All

November 15, 2013

I love this season of How I Met Your Mother. Sure, some of the jokes are tired and I roll my eyes every time Lily says, “Thanks, Linus” while still being able to function, but I still love it. For one, we have met Ted’s future wife. She is adorable, quirky, and exactly what I […]

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“You Make My Heart Beat Faster”

October 25, 2013

Here’s the thing. I spend a lot of time telling people I am not a romantic. I actually waste my breath sharing my absolute hatred of romantic comedies (true) and roll my eyes and groan when someone talks about romance. I am a romantic curmudgeon and I want everyone to know about it. Except… I’m […]

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“I wanna call you mine, and never let you down I wanna feel it’s right, over and over”

October 22, 2013

I arrived in DC on Sunday, September 29th at 01:00 after a five day adventure across the United States complete with buffalo burgers, a speeding ticket in Arizona, several Dairy Queen stops, Coor’s Light in Colorado, a dinner party beneath dozens of mounted animal heads, Steak ‘n Shake in Missouri, and lots of hugs and […]

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When it’s right

September 23, 2013

“You keep being you–everything else will take care of itself.” Adios, California. See you soon, DC. 

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A long time ago

September 19, 2013

New friend:Has Grace always been this way? Old friend: she has always been beautiful and smart. New friend: so yes. Old friend: wait. I know something that’s different. She used to wear overalls. It’s true and my friends are incredibly sweet.

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