Tuesday, June 12, 2012


I love interior decorating. I don't really know where it comes from, but I was obsessed with Domino Magazine when it was in circulation and wanted to cry when they stopped (they really shouldn't have, I think that was an awful call by Conde Nast). I think it has to do with my never ending need to nest. I lived a large part of my post 17 years old life not really feeling like I had a home, or a place to call my own, and now, when I get the chance I try to make my space my sanctuary (sort of). I used to live in a room at my dad's friend's apartment during my college summers and I just hated that unsettled feeling. Like, huh? I'm living out of your friend's family's apartment? So I literally tore down everything on the walls, plastered any holes, bought new shelves and curtains and just went to town.

Needless to say, after moving in with my wonderful husband, the itch is back, full on. We put the redecorating off for a few months since we didn't really know where we were going to end up, but life is too short to keep waiting, and it literally affects my insides. Here are some of our recent purchases.

Petrie Sofa from Crate and Barrel in super large. My 5'11 husband can lay down flat on it and still have room!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial Day!

How was everyone's weekend? Mine felt surprisingly productive. Call me crazy, but I appreciate productive weekends a lot more than I do relaxing ones. The type A in me (which I stubbornly deny exists) was very proud. Worked late in the office on Friday, did some work on Sunday and today, did the laundry, re-did a part of our living room (namely curtains) cooked some food in bulk for the week, went grocery shopping and bleached the crap out of our vents and windowsill. Whew! Also took a trip to the lower east side and visited the Tenement Museum. I've been wanting to go for over 4 years and it was nice to finally make it. Warning to anyone who takes the tour inside the apartments - it gets really cramped really fast. I almost had several heart attacks because it was so hot and muggy and a woman literally ran out because she was going to pass out!

I made some cous cous today using Paula Deen's recipe. Since I only had about 50% of the ingredients, I improvised. It came out so yummy, even the husband loved it! This says a lot because he is an extremely picky eater and does not like to eat any meal without meat involved. This is definitely a summer-must dish and great served cold. It cools down a hot summer day and is perfect for lunch for tomorrow, or even a picnic dinner at night. Next on the menu of summer dishes, chick peas salad!

Here's this weekend in snapshots:

Dinner with my brother in soho.

The Tenement Museum gift shop.

Whole Wheat Cous Cous from Trader Joe's. I highly recommend!

Final product! Olives, cucumbers and tomatoes (missing feta cheese and parsley but it's fine without).

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Lovin' My Blogroll

I have a morning ritual which starts with a hot cup of coffee in one of our many mugs (my husband loves to collect mugs from every city we visit) and reading through my favorite blogs. This is the perfect way to start everyday and inspires my many likes. Here are a few that I came across this past week. Color me obsessed!

The photos in this blog are so beautiful - whimsical, vintage and romantic. Plus, I love following Bethany on her  new journey with her new husband! Click here.
I follow Michael on Pinterest and love all of his pins! As an innkeeper and lover of all things charming, I will take lead from this guy any day! Click here.
Love this girl's sense of style. This is a great lifestyle blog to follow, filled with beautiful and inspiring photos. Click here
I love the idea behind this site (and the site itself)! It provides amazing career/life/finance/personal/travel advice for the every girl. I wish I had a site like this in my early 20s, but it's still helpful now! Click here.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Building your "Somebody"

As a woman in the workforce, I believe that it's very important to find ways to build your "somebody" profile. By "somebody", I mean yourself. I'm a dreamer and somewhat of an idealist by nature, but I'm also very much a realist by experience. I have my lofty goals of helping people using my lawyerly skills while becoming an arts and crafts/baking queen, loving and doting wife, and one day, super cool mom. I also have dreams of becoming "somebody" - building a name for myself based on my characteristics, wisdom and values, the person I want to be, someday. The reality is, all the people I respect and admire became "somebody", one step at a time, and one struggle at a time. Building your "somebody" begins now. Instead of just dreaming of becoming this amazing person (which we probably already are) it's high time we started taking great measures to be our "somebody", now. Women often have a tendency to put their personal goals, and definitely professional goals, on the back burner. There is a sense of wanting to sacrifice for your family so we often end up in dead end jobs because it's comfortable and allows us to get home on time, or not have to travel, etc. That's a respectable life choice and gives all the more reason to start building your "somebody" profile now so that you can fall back on it later if you do decide to make those decisions. There are a few steps I've identified as key first steps (or second, or third and so on) necessary to build your "somebody" profile. By no means do I think this is an exhaustive, or even accurate, list. But they are steps that I believe have helped me, and at the very least, they can only help you. Make it a goal to try at least a few of these over the next few weeks, and stay committed. I'll do the same, and let's see where we end up! FYI-these do not have to be in order.

1) Identify an everyday role model - This is somebody that you interact with or see on a daily basis. I recommend somebody at work, since that's where you spend a majority of your week. Choose carefully and make sure this person has the characteristics you would like to emulate or expand upon (reputation, image, intelligence, work ethics, personality, attitude, perception, balance, etc). This serves as a daily reminder of who you strive to be, your goals and your values.

2) Identify a not-so-everyday role model - This is helpful if you really can't think of anyone for step 1. Try and think of someone that you don't necessarily interact with daily on a personal level, but somebody you strive to be like. Think of what they have accomplished in their lives, their "success" stories or the reputation they have built. This can be a fictional character, a celebrity, perhaps a partner or an executive that you haven't really spoken to, even a blogger! This is helpful because it's more of a far-reaching goal so you know where you want to end up. Obviously, I'm not saying try to be this person exactly, and even if this person doesn't really DO the things you strive to do, it's helpful to have someone as a guide.

3) Network - During and after law school, everyone kept telling me to network. I kind of hate it. It's awkward, it's unnatural and it doesn't really feel like it changes anything in my life. But it really does, if you do it right and if you do it well. You don't have to attend a bunch of events, but it does mean reaching out to somebody that is not already in your network and getting to know them. For every 20-30 people you meet, you will likely make at least 1 person who sticks with you and will come in handy one day. For me, I met one random dude at an event who is a client. Two years later, we are still in touch and try to catch up once in a while. If anything, hanging out with him shows others that I am trying to develop myself on my own, and that says a lot about you. Another example is, I've been keeping in touch with some younger professionals who I work alongside often. They've provided me with some valuable resources and vice versa.

4) Join something - Find some sort of community that you can become a part of where you share a common interest. By having a common purpose/interest, you decrease the awkwardness and you build a good circle of friends. It's a good place to be open and unwind and share your thoughts. Everyone needs an outlet of some sort, and it's great to share it with people who can help you expand your interests. I joined a young professionals network of people who care about microfinance and investing in women in third world countries. I've been really bad about attending events or helping out, but I hope to change that this year. I also aim to join a book club this year! Know of any?

5) Find a mentor - This is really hard. Probably the hardest one of all. If you can use the person in step 1, that's perfect. If not, find someone else whose judgement you trust and who won't blab your conversations. If you find a good mentor, it's absolutely priceless. I encourage you to try any one, if not all, of these regardless of your profession. I think they apply in almost every scenario! I encourage you to try and build your "somebody" now, and make that somebody the person you are.

Friday, April 27, 2012

What's for Dinner Tonight? Double Crunch Honey Garlic Chicken Breasts

Yum. It's Friday afternoon, the weekend is so close yet so far due to the unbearable amount of research and writing I have to do for the next few days. But it's ok. Who cares. The weekend is near! It's been a rough few weeks (few months, rather). Tonight is dinner plans with some girls from law school. I haven't seen them in a while so it's exciting to see what everyone has been up to for the last 3 years! Dinner, drinks and then a small show later on tonight. On another note, I was perusing Pinterest, like I usually do, and came across a recipe for Double Crunch Honey Garlic Chicken Breasts. Uh...drool? I want these immediately. I've been trying to "diet" because I've gained 10 pounds since my wedding. For a woman of my height, 10 pounds is not nothing. It's some serious packing and now I really need to lose some of the excess weight. This only makes me want to eat that chicken more. I think the original recipe is with pork, but chicken is an easy and healthier substitute. Happy eating! Maybe I'll try this on Saturday night when the bestie comes over and cuts my hair. Wine, chicken and hair cutting could be a bad combo. Or a really fun one! Have a great weekend!
You can find the recipe here: Double Crunch Honey Garlic Chicken Breasts

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Bring Something to the Table - and We're Not Talking Desserts

"Bring something to the table". Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, gave a great lecture a few years back about women leaders in the workplace, and her advice about bringing something to the table really stuck with me. As a woman in a profession dominated by male leaders, I can attest to the many frustrations and struggles women face every day at work. Of the infinite number of challenges present, trying to "fit in" and have a voice are the top two on my list. Fortunately, the number of women in the legal field has greatly increased during this generation and the number of women in law schools are at about 50%, give or take. In fact, my summer associate class had more women than men, and my entering class had a LOT more women than men. However, I think the issue lies in who our leaders are. Not many women last - it's the reality. And of the women who have "made it", I can't say that there are many that I have met that I actually admire. I really don't want to look like I'm 20 years older than I am, frumped out, stressed out, or with no children. And I especially do not want to become one of those hard ass women who have spent years trying to be "one of the guys" and have lost any sense of femininity along the way. No thanks. In comes Sheryl Sandberg. Her advice was, if you want to be valued for your work and recognized for your abilities, always bring something to the table. If there is a meeting or a conference call, or even just a quick chat in the hallway, say something that contributes to your work. There are tons of people who are good workers. But there aren't many folks who really contribute to a case and bring new perspective. There are many ways to do this, even if it's just posing a question or pointing out something you worked on that may help. The point is that you show that you are bringing something, or trying to bring something, that others may not have thought about.

As a junior attorney, it's hard to do this because for a majority of the time I'm still trying to figure out what is going on. Junior attorneys are not always included in all of the meetings or phone conversations and so there are always missing pieces. But another piece of advice a senior (male) associate gave to me was, reduce things to what you know, and then try to think of what's important. For example, oftentimes I'm given an agreement to review and I have no idea what the heck all of the terms mean or what the effects of them are. But then I think, ok...this is an asset sale. I am trying to buy something from you. Like buying a vintage gucci messenger bag from ebay (which I did). I want to make damn sure that what I'm buying is real and that it's everything you told me it is. If it's not, I want something in writing saying that I can return it upon a material misrepresentation! Another way to contribute is by working on your client/business development. I may not know a lot about what I'm doing, but I know we can't do any of this if we didn't have clients. So if I'm at all able to reach out to someone who may one day be a client, or can direct me to a client, I'm going to take you out for drinks. On the firm. Hey, if you can't find a way to add to the case, you mine as well get a good meal. A girl's gotta eat!

Try it out. You'll be surprised at the positive results.
I leave you with a pretty hard core picture of Hillary Clinton at work. Now this, looks cool.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Pinterest My Interests

I'm obsessed with Pinterest. Maybe not obsessed, but I can't help logging on a few times a day, scoping out and repinning new finds. For those of you who aren't familiar with the world of "pinning", Pinterest is a website where you create your own categories, or "boards", and you pin/thumbtack the images you like onto your boards. I'm not doing a good job of explaining this, but you're basically taking pictures you see on the internet and storing them into neat little virtual boxes. I mostly like it because I can scope out designs and decorations and keep them in one place to look back on. You can see what everyone else is pinning and their styles and get new ideas! Follow me on Pinterest - Sharon Lee!

Here are a few of my pins:

Look at these gorgeous cakes!

I wish I could add these to my closet: