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Exploring, creating, & reflecting one day at a time

It’s been a good week/weekend. On top of getting into my first top 10 law school–Michigan–my company hit its stretch revenue goal two weeks early. Not too much to complain about; it’s always nice to see the results of your hard work pay off.
I’m sure you’ve also noticed that the holidays are quickly approaching. It’s been a little different for me this year, what with working at a Christmas company and all. The holidays have been sort of running my life since August, so it’s been hard to notice when Christmas songs first started playing on the radio or when the malls started putting up their huge Christmas trees. Nonetheless, I love the holidays and was extremely happy when I found out I get to go home for Christmas. Well, Christmas Eve at least.In celebration of the most wonderful time of year, I went to Jill’s holiday party on Friday and had to miss out on some of Vicki’s birthday festivities. My house also planned another holiday party for Sunday, which was partially just an excuse for me to bake a lot (as if I haven’t already been doing that).
It’s quite a conundrum. I have some really nice friends. I mean really nice. I don’t think I’ve done much to deserve them but I enjoy keeping them around. Okay so maybe it’s not a mistake, I take pride in the fact that I choose good friends. Vicki is one of the loyalest, and I knew I had to make something extra special for her.  Who else could inspire a full 2 minute back-and-forth conversation between me and Gina just repeating “she’s SO nice,” “ya, but like, she’s SO NICE” via Skype? Vicki loves the finer things in life, like glitter and salted caramel (she’s a smart gal), so I prowled the internet for a bit to find a decadent treat that would include rich chocolate ganache and salted dulce de leche. The result? This recipe.I swapped macadamia nuts out with hazelnuts, and it was a great decision.  I also got in touch with my inner nerd (maybe it’s not so “inner”) by making the dulce de leche via the boiling-a-can-of-condensed-milk method for the first time.  It’s like magic.  I encourage anyone with a spare 3 hours and a can of condensed milk on their hands to try it. Just put a can of condensed milk (paper label removed) in a big pot and completely submerge it in water.  Bring to a boil and then simmer for 3 hours, making sure the can is always covered by water.  Remove from the heat after 3 hours but let the can sit in the water until everything has cooled (overnight works well).  In the morning you’ll wake up to find that your can of condensed milk has transformed into a creamy, beautifully brown dulce de leche.


A can full of MAGIC!

Here’s how you assemble the tarts with all the components:

The tarts came out just like I wanted, rich and delicious, but in bite sized form, so you could eat more than one at a time and not feel bad about yourself. Unfortunately, I completely forgot to give Vicki her bottle of champagne (ugh), but we agreed afterward that I would hold on to it until New Years. Did I mention that Vicki’s a smart gal?

I suppose it was a bit misleading for me to title my post the way I did, since you might be able to tell that not much is changing at the moment. With the reality of law school setting in, though, and the idea that within the next two years I will be relocating to a different city (unless I get into Berkeley or Stanford, ha!) I’ve been realizing that I should be looking at the rest of my time left in the bay area differently. I’m weighing my decisions more heavily, and realizing the impact of my choices. With Michigan a current front runner for me, moving out of the state (finally) is becoming a reality. I’ve been ready to do it for what seems like my whole life, but now that it’s approaching and I have ample time to anticipate it, the whole situation feels a little bit discombobulating. In many ways, it’s more alarming than my impending graduation from undergrad was, since I already knew I was just moving over to the other side of the Bay.  This time, I have no idea what awaits me on the other side of law school, especially with all these naysayers constantly reminding me how bad the job market is.  It also seems crazy that I’ll have to make a new group of friends after finding such great ones in undergrad. Luckily, based on the fact that I currently live with two high school friends and a college buddy, I’m not too worried about hanging onto my ties. Just not totally sure my friends would be sold on visiting me in a place like Ann Arbor or Ithaca. Those don’t quite have the ring San Francisco or Berkeley have to them.

But that’s life, huh? We make choices, we feel the consequences, whether negative or positive. We make friends, we get jobs, we move on. So this Christmas, I’m just going to savor the 70 degree southern California December weather because god only knows my options right now are a little chilly.


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