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Published in: on October 6, 2011 at 2:28 PM  Leave a Comment  

Juris Doctor Graduate – Brandon Gray

The day that we have waited three long YEARS for finally came and went. My husband graduated from Law School and is now one step closer to becoming an attorney 🙂 The ceremony took place at Copley Symphony Hall in downtown San Diego – and it was a gorgeous venue. Watching Brandon graduate was more emotional than I thought it would be. I am continually amazed by Brandon’s dedication to school – and the amount of hours he can spend locked up in his room with all of his text books. I also continually fall in love with him for that brain of his. *WARNING: Bragging ahead* In addition to receiving his Juris Doctorate, he was 1 of 5 students who received an award for graduating Summa Cum Laude – which is the highest honors you can receive (generally awarded to the top 2%). He was also the Executive Editor of the Law Review and a member of the Moot Court. Take a peek at the Law School program – if I didn’t love him so much – I would be annoyed by him 😉

(Love the last part) After the ceremony we couldn’t wait to hug the new grad and take a ton a few pictures with him.

My Dad has always wanted me to go to Law School and although I didn’t – I did the next best thing…I married someone that did. My Dad couldn’t be more proud.

After pictures, we went to lunch at C-Level at the harbor. It’s a gorgeous restaurant right on the water. And who came by on their sail boat? Larry Richards – a really close family friend of Brandon’s parents.

After lunch, Brandon took us for a tour of his campus. Here is a picture of my mom and myself in the Moot Court Room 🙂

After that, it was back to the house for coffee and cupcakes and family 🙂 And yes, I had to throw up a few cheesy decorations.

A celebration without cupcakes, isn’t a celebration at all. (As usual, I ordered these cupcakes from Alicia at

Andddd, of course we each wanted our photo with the graduate 🙂

Kandi said hugging Brandon is the closest she’ll ever be to a Law Degree.

Brandon’s parents raised an amazing man!!

Way to go Shushi! You did it! I love you more than anything on earth.

























NEXT: That little three day quiz called the California Bar exam. Bar prep classes started two days after graduation and will continue for the next two months. I have a feeling that this summer won’t be our favorite.

Published in: on May 28, 2011 at 11:30 AM  Leave a Comment  

Law School Law School Law School

I feel like lately we’ve had one Law School function after another to go to…(well at least 3 weekends in a row). And although I complain, it’s actually always a great time – and Brandon and I get to go to places that we wouldn’t have normally. A few weeks ago we had dinner at Hotel Del in Coronado for an NCLR (National Conference of Law Review) dinner. The food was amazing, the hotel was beautiful, and the speaker was Jack Ford (who I’m sure you’ve seen on MSNBC, FOX etc. a few times in your lifetime).

These 3 below make up the Managing Board of the Law Review (On the left is Dea – the Editor-in-Chief, Brandon – the Executive Editor, and Stephanie – the Managing Editor) They probably spend more time with my husband than I do!

The next weekend was Casino Night which is another event sponsored by Brandon’s school. It was held at the San Diego Rowing Club – which is a beautiful venue right on Mission Bay. My friend Stephanie came with us because Brandon and I are determined to set her up with a great guy. Unfortunately, there weren’t any great candidates at this particular event 😉 BUT we still had an amazing time!

Brandon had two dates 🙂 Myself & Steph.

Then finally, we had the Law Review Banquet brunch this past weekend at The Star of the Sea which is downtown in the harbor. The views from the restaurant were amazing – floor to ceiling windows overlooking the water. Everyone enjoyed mimosas, great good and an AWESOME speaker. Brandon, Dea & Stephanie have worked really, really hard this year to ensure that the journal ran smoothly (writing, editing, organizing, delegating) – so I’m sure they’re about ready to pass on the torch to the incoming managing board 🙂

Next stop: GRADUATION – May 21, 2011!

Published in: on April 18, 2011 at 7:14 PM  Leave a Comment  

Valentines Day?

Well, well it’s that time of year again and I’m as girly as the best of ’em so I truly enjoy Cupid’s holiday 🙂 I love celebrating love (even if Valentine’s day is nothing more than a commercialized holiday).

The Plan:

A few weeks ago, Brandon and I made reservations at The Cowboy Star – a steakhouse downtown with modern-glam cowboy decor.

Isn’t it pretty? I was going to pick up Brandon from school downtown at 6:15 and then we were going to head over for our 6:30 reservation.

I knew a bouquet of flowers wasn’t going to be part of the deal since Brandon thinks buying flowers on Valentine’s day is stupid because, “They jack up the prices,” Yes, ladies — I married a romantic. I have never minded that much since he brings me flowers so many other times during the year for no reason — which almost means more. But yes, there is that tiny part of me that sees other girls getting roses or flowers and wishes for it.


At 10:00 am I get an email from the receptionist asking me to come and pick up my flowers. A part of me thought they might be from my dad — but sure enough — they were from my new husband 🙂

Cute right? He absolutely made my day! *Tip for men: sending flowers to your girl’s work place can really brighten her day!

So I speed home from work, pick up the house, do the dishes and then get all dolled up. I got a new leopard print dress, new black heels, flat ironed hair, his favorite perfume etc etc.

I’m just putting on my jewelry when I hear my phone go off. There are two texts and two missed calls from Brandon.Ugh.oh. He calls while I’m reading the texts to tell me that he feels really sick and he’s not sure that he can make it to dinner…

…but he still needs me to head downtown to pick him up (since he takes the train from Encinitas to SD every day).

So, of course I get in my car and speed as fast as I can — the whole time feeling terrible for him because he’s usually pretty tough and if he feels sick enough to cancel dinner on Valentine’s day he must really be feeling awful. (Wow, that was the longest run-on sentence.)

45 minutes later, I pull up to his school and see him standing outside of the building, in his suit — looking pretty pale. He gets in and looks miserable. Within the first 5 minutes of our drive, he pulls a plastic baggy out of his pocket and begins to throw up. For those of you that know me well, I despise throw up. It borders on a phobia. I don’t like to throw up. I don’t want to hear it, smell it, or think about the misery it brings.

So I have a slight moment of panic and roll both of the windows down. I’m frantically trying to get OUT of downtown and hating all of the “one way only” signs. I’m rubbing his back with one hand, while holding my head halfway out the window — Ace Ventura style. I spot a Jack in the Box, peel into the parking lot and run inside to get a new baggy and lots of napkins.

I come back out and he’s leaning outside of the car throwing up even more. He leaves his baggy of vomit there in the parking lot (which will be a real gem for whoever stumbles upon it) and we get back in the car. He is so sad that he got some on his suit and on my car seat. In between throwing up he tells me that it’s imperative that I use the carpet cleaner vacuum thingy immediately when we get home or my car will smell forever. Another slight moment of panic.

We pull into the driveway, he realizes that his car is still at the train station down the street but it’s a stick shift and I can’t drive it! I tell him I’ll take care of it, and he makes a beeline inside.

So, I get out of my new dress and heels, put on my sweats and drag out the vacuum cleaner. I clean the seat of my car, call Holland (his best friend who happens to live right down the road) and see if he’ll go and pick up Brandon’s car at the train station and bring it back. He comes right over (which is so appreciated considering it’s Valentine’s day and he’s a newlywed). Once Brandon’s car is back safe and sound, it’s time to make a trip to 7-11. I walk in, in my big baggy sweats (I’m sure I looked like a depressed girl sans a valentine) — get a couple of bottles of Gatorade, some saltine crackers and an US Magazine.

I spent the rest of the evening reading my magazine, watching the Bachelor, and stressing out about the amount of vomiting taking place in our bathroom. Definitely a memorable Valentine’s Day. (Not to mention that I ended up throwing up that night as well — still don’t know why!)

Neither of us went into work today, we spent the day drinking Gatorade, eating crackers in our pajamas and taking naps. The only time I left the house was to take his puke stained pants to the dry cleaner. So after all is said and done, Valentine’s day is about expressing your love to the people you care about the most, right?  And that’s what I did — took care of a sicky all night.

He’s so lucky he sent flowers.

Published in: on February 15, 2011 at 8:17 PM  Leave a Comment  

It’s the most wonderful time of the year

We got back from our honeymoon a few days before Christmas, so we had to make sure that we had all of our shopping and decorating done at the beginning of December. It was a lot of fun decorating the house for the first time as a married couple 🙂 I went shopping with Brandon’s mom and she bought us some garland and quite a few decorations! I also bought a handmade stocking hanger with our last name on it (from Etsy of course) and some Christmas blocks. I love, love this house at Christmas time. The fireplace might just be my favorite part about it!

We spent Christmas Eve and Christmas day at my parent’s house in Tenaja. We had a really great time!

I loved my mom’s table settings! The little mittens as silverware holders were too cute!

mmmmm, El Gordito for Christmas Eve dinner — our favorite!!

My dad had a good time passing out presents 🙂

After dinner and presents, we hung out by the fire and watched movies and ate way too many Christmas cookies. The next morning (Christmas morning) we went to my aunt and uncle’s house for our traditional pajama pancake breakfast. They cook breakfast and we open presents over there. Afterwards, we went and saw True Grit with my mom and dad, and aunt and uncle. We all LOVED it! Then it was time for Brandon and I to make our way back home. We started a fire at home, and watched It’s a Wonderful Life. I forgot to mention that Brandon bought me a new lens for our camera and an engraved silver ornament with our names and the date and “Our First Christmas.” I think that’s my favorite present so far 🙂 I got him an electric shaver, some clothes and a movie. We had a great first Christmas as a married couple!

Published in: on January 3, 2011 at 9:01 PM  Leave a Comment  


Well, after patiently waiting two long months, it was finally time to leave on our honeymoon! When you marry a law student mid-semester you realize you’re going to have to wait until winter break to take your honeymoon 🙂

We spent a week in Riviera Maya – which is about 20 miles outside of Cancun. It was hard to stop grinning when we pulled up in front of the adult-only, all-inclusive resort. We were greeted by a bell man who took our suitcases and handed us a cool towel to wipe our hands with. As he escorted us into the lobby, he stopped to pour us some champagne while we got checked in. We then followed the bell man to our room. We got quite the tour of the different restaurants and bars (8 restaurants, 10 bars) on our way  to the room. It was cute to see a honeymoon banner outside of our door, and even more cute to see two swans made of towels on the bed with rose petals. We were so excited about the jacuzzi tub in the middle of the room, the view of one of the amazing pools, the champagne chilling on ice next to the bowl of fresh fruit. We were starving and wasted no time ordering room service!

Instead of a play by play of the entire trip, I thought I’d share some highlights and some pictures 🙂

1. I tried my first lobster — and liked it.

2. I learned to play chess, and still haven’t beat Brandon.

3. I had plenty of drinks aside from Diet Coke! Margaritas, pina coladas, mojitos, martinis. Brandon was impressed and so was I.

4. We got a massage and facial at the amazing spa.

5. We took a bike ride to Puerto Morales – a little fishing town a few miles from the resort. We had to wear orange vests and helmets — which made it that much more romantic.

6. We visited Tulum – an ancient site of Mayan ruins. The site is on a cliff, over-looking the ocean and it was absolutely beautiful.

7. We each read several books and layed in the sun 75 percent of the time we were there.

Lunch in the tree house overlooking one of the pools

View from our room

Brandon taking a shot

In Puerto Morales – a small fishing town

A game of chess

At the Mexican celebration dinner

The first book he has read for pleasure in a long time

Right after our massages 🙂

More reading and laying 🙂

After taking a dip in the ocean

A romantic dinner at the Italian Restaurant

In Tulum

Beautiful Tulum

In Tulum

My first lobster!

Published in: on January 3, 2011 at 8:37 PM  Leave a Comment  

Trying out Suzie Homemaker…

I have been loving every minute of the fall weather!! When the air is slightly chilly but the sun is out…perfect. I have my pumpkin spice candles lit every night, fire in the fireplace, our plug-in pumpkin (yes — we were very lazy this year), blankets and hot chocolate!

Could that photo be any cheesier? HAHA.

This weather also makes me feel a bit homey, and I’ve been baking pumpkin bread and trying different recipes. Last Friday, we invited my brother and his girlfriend over for dinner. I decided to attempt chili one more time (last year was a huge flop). I got a recipe from my friend Shavonda and threw it all in the crockpot on Friday morning. It is SO nice to walk in the door after work and have the house smelling delicious and dinner made! I whipped up some Jiffy cornbread muffins to go with dinner and we topped the chili with sourcream, avocado slices, onions and cheese. Mmmm, this year was much better! Unfortunately for this new hostess, I totally didn’t make enough…so the hubby got the shaft. He made a turkey dog, and I gave him a tiny scoop of chili to put on top. Lesson learned, make more.

Yes, I figured I would add some festive spirit to the cornbread muffins 🙂

Published in: on October 28, 2010 at 6:31 PM  Comments (1)  

Our good friends — The Obamas

Yes, I sent the Obamas a wedding invitation. No, I didn’t really think they were going to come. But I wanted this congratulatory note with the official white house seal (which you can’t see in the picture but is at the very top of the note in the 3rd picture).

Want your own? Send your wedding invite to:

The Honorable Barack Obama and Mrs. Obama
The White House
Greetings Office Rm. 39
1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
Washington, DC 20500

Published in: on October 24, 2010 at 4:39 PM  Comments (1)  

Subtle hint?

So I haven’t mentioned this, but a few weeks ago all of my make-up was lost or stolen (I’m now leaning towards stolen).

I mean

It’s my fault for keeping everything I own in one makeup bag but it’s how I roll. Quite often I would take my makeup bag to work with me and sit and do it at my desk — since I get in so much earlier than everyone else. Well one morning, I came in and it wasn’t sitting there like it always is.  Hmm, I think, it must be at the house. I tore the house apart that night looking for it.


Okay, it must be somewhere on my desk and I didn’t look hard enough for it. NOPE. It’s not in my car, it’s not at my house, it’s not at my office. I am now convinced that someone snatched it off of my desk when I left for the day. Hundreds and hundreds of dollars worth of MAC makeup. I’ve had some of the eyeshadows since I was 17. All of my brushes. My favorite lip glosses.

So needless to say, I’ve been makeup-less for a few weeks. I did go and buy mascara from the drug store, and finally caved and bought my two favorite eyeshadows from the MAC counter (Print and Electra)…but it’s expensive and is going to take time to rebuild.

Well 2 nights ago, I was making spaghetti for dinner and waiting for Brandon to come home and I was getting kinda worried since it was raining so hard outside and he was later than he said he was going to be. 45 minutes later he comes through the door wearing my favorite argyle sweater (that has nothing to do with this story, but I love when he wears it) and holding a little silver, wrapped gift with a bow.

“Here, this is for you.”

Well, it’s  not everyday he comes home with a gift so I was thrilled. I can’t open it fast enough. It’s a Nordstrom’s gift card 🙂

“The lady said they have MAC counters at almost every Nordstroms.”

I couldn’t believe how thoughtful this was. 100 dollars to spend — my mind was racing with which shades of eyeshadow I would get first. And then, I start laughing and he looks so confused. I hug him and tell him that I’m so happy, and it’s so thoughtful, and then I say through a smile, “you must be ready for me to start wearing makeup again hah? Getting tired of the au naturale look?”

He thought that was pretty funny but swears he can’t really tell the difference and just knew I was bummed about my loss.

Either way, I’m swinging by the MAC counter after work today 🙂

Published in: on October 21, 2010 at 9:38 AM  Leave a Comment  


Can you call two days a honeymoon? Since Brandon is still in Law School, we won’t be taking our honeymoon until December. We were both kind of bummed at the thought of coming home on Sunday and going back to work/school on Tuesday morning, but what are ya gonna do? As a “wedding gift” Brandon reserved a hotel room at the Hilton downtown for Sunday night 🙂 So we came home, packed a small bag and headed downtown. We were both pretty exhausted and enjoyed laying in the big, comfy bed, watching the Charger game — and spending time together. For dinner we walked a few blocks to Royal India, the food was delicious! Like I said, I can’t stop admiring Brandon’s wedding ring (which used to be his grandpa’s wedding ring)

Then it was back to the Hilton where we watched a few movies and fell fast asleep. ..

 Oh December, you can’t get here quick enough!

Published in: on October 18, 2010 at 5:58 PM  Leave a Comment