Hello, my name is Patricia Bredlau. I am originally from Virginia but moved to Washington from Alabama. I studied at James Madison University in Virginia majoring in history and secondary education. After graduating I married my amazing husband, Jason. We then moved to Fort Rucker, Alabama so he could pursue his Army Aviation career by attending flight school. I always knew I wanted to be a lawyer but the timing to attend law school never seemed quite right until being stationed here at Joint Base Lewis McChord. I hope to pursue a career as a JAG officer and serve the military community that I love. When I'm not studying I enjoy crafting, exploring the outdoors, and playing with my Siberian Husky, Kojo.
It seems like only yesterday we were unpacking our moving truck on a warm summer day excited for the adventures Washington would bring us but alas the fall weather and lurking midterms are quickly approaching. I have hung on to my sundresses and cowboy boots the first few weeks of class like a toddler with their blankie. I am just not ready to give them up! It has been a little bit of an adjustment moving to the city from small town Enterprise, Alabama but I have almost mastered the never stop attitude of the city with the help of my classmates.
Like every other 1L I am taking: Criminal Law, Legal Writing I, Torts, Contracts, and Civil Procedure. I have been surprised with my interest in Contracts; it was one of the classes I was dreading but my professor has made it clear and easy to understand. It also helps that he plays music before class to get us in the mood. Torts also has been pleasantly surprising because of the enthusiasm and fun power points my professor, Professor Kass, uses every class. She makes Friday afternoon class actually fun to go to, as nerdy as that sounds. I mean how many professors use costumes to help explain cases?! I am also trying to maintain some involvement with organizations on campus and a home life.
So far I have been actively pursuing involvement in three different activities and I am looking to get involved more. My involvement in Seattle Youth Traffic Court has been the most rewarding so far. The opportunity to work with high school students, which I have missed since my student teaching in undergrad, has been the highlight of my weeks. They bring so much energy which helps everyone perk up a little bit. I am definitely looking forward to our first trial in a few weeks.
The only downside of school so far is my guiltiness of leaving my family all day. I know my dog will forgive me but it's a little harder to bribe my husband, Jason. He has been super supportive so far and even vacuumed the house for me the other day!! I just hope my superwoman mode can continue until December. By then maybe my Christmas cookies will erase all the time I have been away.
Midterms are coming, ahhhhh!!! At least that is what the majority of people in my class are thinking, but I am excited in a slightly nerdish way for the challenge they bring. All of my classes have a midterm and for once I am grateful for that, it gives me a chance to see how my professors format exams and a sneak peek into what the final will be like. Plus, only one of my classes has a graded midterm so it is the perfect opportunity to find out where I need to improve.
Since I have never written anything in the IRAQ format that most of my professors prefer, I have been doing a ton of practice essays. My TA's have been really good about looking over my practice questions and have had some good feedback for me to improve. I think as long as I continue to work on my structure and making sure I have all of my elements I should do ok. I'm trying to stay confident and positive!
I recently tried a different Vietnamese restaurant close to campus and their curry was the bomb.com Slowly I have been trying all the different restaurants around campus and this one has been my favorite by far.
I think it is fair to say that I am quickly becoming a commuter extraordinaire. With the download of my One Bus Away app I have been able to track my buses pretty effectively. Commuting such a far distance, from JBLM, has been trying at times but I think I am managing it pretty well. I am able to get a cat nap in on my way into school and study my notes on the way home. Commuting has also enabled me to explore downtown Seattle a little bit more. I found a cute little bakery that has awesome cookies that I treat myself to on Friday's. I think they will become very handy once finals arrive...
Officially done with one semester of law school and man does it feel good!! I think after doing finals once, it will become much easier the second, third, and fourth time around. I tried to keep myself level headed and not let the pressure get to me. My biggest problem was stressing out because I was not stressing out as much as everyone else. It took a few deep breaths and maybe a few pints of Ben and Jerry's but it all worked out fine in the end. I was pretty happy with my grades at the end of it all.
Coming back to school this semester I was a mix of emotions. I was excited to see my friends again and catch up with everyone but also a little sad to be starting back up so soon. Don't get me wrong, I like a scheduled and organized day but was not ready to dive back into my readings. After finishing the first semester I felt like I needed more time to relax and enjoy being done before starting all over again. I think the summer break with be nice especially if I am able to land one of the awesome internships I have applied for. Now if only I can finish writing this last cover letter. Until next time.
Why did I think I was superwoman and join so many clubs? That has been a constant question in my mind this last month. Don't get me wrong, I love being a member of so many diverse groups on campus but I miss being able to indulge in my trashy television. I heard that this month would be really busy and everyone was right. This month has seemed to be full of lunches, networking, and seminars for every club or group on campus. The upside to so many events is free food. When I have so much going on the last thing I want to think about is packing a lunch or making dinner!
I was able to apply to a variety of internships this summer and had a few interviews recently. I am still waiting to hear back from one in particular that I have my heart set on. The Center for Professional Development helped me out so much getting my resume together as well as doing mock interviews with me. They also helped relieve some of the pre interview jitters that I was feeling. Hopefully by my next update I can firmly let you know where I will be this summer.
Normally I am excited for the summer because it brings warm weather, sunshine, and long relaxing days. This year I am excited because I got the JAG externship I was desperately hoping for!!! Last week I went to their office to smooth out all the details and I am beyond excited to work there this summer. Even though I am a little intimidated, I am ready to put into action all the law I have been cramming into my head the past several months.
Speaking of cramming, there are only six weeks left in the semester before finals take over my life. I thought I would be super productive on spring break and outline but that just didn't happen. I will definitely be allocating hours each weekend to get my notes in order. It is just so hard to stay inside and do homework when we have had such nice weather the past week. I know I will have to buckle down and make it happen. The best part about having a little time off of school during spring break was being able to spend some time with Jason and Kojo. We went on two hikes to places we haven't been before and were able to spend some quality time with one another. Kojo even wore his backpack without whining which was a huge improvement from previous times! I am going to try to be more conscious about setting aside time the rest of the semester to enjoy just being with my family, even if it is just a walk around the neighborhood.
Only a few more weeks until finals! I can not believe I am almost finished with my ENTIRE 1L year. It seems like yesterday I was nervously sitting with my classmates at orientation anticipating the long year ahead. While it has been a fun journey as a 1L, I am very excited to be a 2L soon.
Finals do not seem nearly as scary as they did in the Fall. I think going through the process once has reassured me that you can sleep, have a tiny bit of a life, and still do well. Although I am not interested in most of my classes this semester, I have been able to keep up with my readings and make a decent outline to study with. As long as I stick to my study schedule and outlines I should make it to the summer.
The next time I write I should be in the JAG office this summer. I can't wait to update you on what I will be doing! The excitement of working there has kept me going. I know I will be doing a lot of researching and busy work since I have little experience but working on real cases and issues will be a great change of pace.
Until sweet summertime...