Sunday, June 29, 2008

Still counting the days I've been without you... 1-2-3-4

For those of you counting down the days until our arrival back in the Twin Cities, you'll be happy to know that we just secured our movers who will pick up our stuff on Saturday, August 16th. We will high-tail it out of Boston and home as quickly as possible after that. Expect us home within a couple days from then!

(PS: I will still need to fit into my wedding dress for a few more weeks, so when we get home, if you could all invite us to coffee dates instead of dinner dates, that would be awesome. Seriously. Not joking here people -- I do not need to gain 10lbs as soon as I get home!!!)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Go Freedom Train, Go!

A couple of weekends ago Jill, one of my wonderful bridesmaids, found herself with four days off and made the pilgrimage out to Boston to see us and the city! If I didn't know that she made it home in one piece, I would have thought she would burst from the pressure on the plane after everything we had to eat during her visit -- Italian, Jill's first real taste of Indian, Finale desserts, Mike's Pastry, Soundbites breakfast, Dunkin' Donuts, beer, champagne, beer...

We did more than eat, I assure you. ...But not much.

Some of the highlights include touring Harvard's campus and taking photos in front of John Harvard, the "statue of three lies,"

walking the freedom trail (including sitting/leaning on the DFL Donkey and seeing the "Make Way for Ducklings" ducklings!),

and "touring" Harpoon Brewery.

I say "tour" in quotation marks because the "tour" is really just a roped off area in their brewing room that you can stand in to look at the boilers. Like the ones behind Jill and me in the photo above. To be fair to the Harpoon people, they don't advertise it as a tour -- they call it a tasting, which is really what it was. We got to try all of the fine brewed beverages you see on the draught pulls above. They have beers, hefeweizen, and seasonal offerings, in addition to their 100 Barrel Series. We really liked the raspberry UFO hefeweizen -- it's a good, easy-drinking summer beer. However, sad as it might be, I think our favorite was their Cream Soda. Really, REALLY good cream soda.

We rounded out Jill's visit with a trip to Finale for a champagne flight and some delicious dessert,

and then headed down to People's Republik in Central Square -- this pseudo-commie bar with old propaganda on the walls and tasty beer on tap.

It was sooo fun having Jill in town! There's still time! YOU could be the next visitor to Sara and Eric's place!!!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Harvard Morning Commencement Exercises

Here is the website with media from my commencement:

On the right, if you look in the video section, there is a stream from the morning exercises with the entire university. During the exercises, the president of Harvard conferred degrees on the entire law school class starting at the 43 minute mark of the stream. There is also other stuff to see in case you are interested. I think video of the law school ceremony, where individual diplomas were passed out, will be up shortly, and I'll send a link once it becomes available. Anyway, I thought you might be interested in seeing the ceremony.


Monday, June 16, 2008

Like son, like father; or, How I finally beat Eric at Monopoly!

After Eric's graduation, our time with Jim was pretty low-key: lots of eating, lots of lying around, and a little bit more tourism. To pass the time, we played a couple games of Monopoly. Eric won the first game (and fairly quickly too). Of course. Eric NEVER loses at Monopoly.

However, at long last -- ten years of going against the titan and losing -- I won. I won I won I won I won!!!

These are pictures of my victoriousness -- the board with Eric's properties liquidated, and all of his deeds turning over to ME. All hail the new champion, Sara!

While we did spend the better part of a day on campus for Eric's graduation, there wasn't time (or space) for a tour, so we made a return trip to show Jim some of the buildings at the law school.
This is inside Langdell, the law library.
Jim is just so studious, isn't he? I mean, making time to catch up on Missouri case law while on vacation? -- that's dedication to one's craft. ;)

One of our favorite things to do in Boston is go out for dinner in the North End for scrumptious Italian. Although there are some 85+ family-owned Italian restaurants in the 1.5 square miles that make up the North End, we go to the same spot time after time -- L'Osteria

The food there is just fantastic. It won't blow your mind, and it probably can't give Emeril a run for his money, but we love it... and tend to get the same thing every time. Here's us enjoying our meals.

Yummmm... spaghetti and meatballs!

Besides playing Monopoly and eating (really, is there anything else in life?), we also took Jim on a duck tour.

Although you can't see it, we rode on Arborway Alex, a modified duck. We love the duck tours because you get to see everything from Boston Common and the Garden, to back bay and Newbury Street, to Charlestown and the U.S.S. Constitution, and then you go down into the Charles River to see both Boston and Cambridge from the water. It's a fun way to see a ton of stuff in a short amount of time and pick up some handy city trivia.

All in all, it was wonderful having Eric's dad stay with us. We have a wonderfully comfortable couch and a few more weeks still before we move home. Although plane tickets are prohibitively expensive, you always have a free place to stay while we're here, so please come visit if you can!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

"...Aid in the shaping and application of those wise restraints that make us free"

After three arduous years of much studying, sleepless nights spent in the library poring over the nuance of the law, and the stress of finding a job after his time there was done {coughcoughsnicker}, Eric graduated from Harvard Law School on Thursday, June 5, 2008.

OK, Eric may have done his fair share of work, and I, like the rest of you reading this, am very proud. For those of you who couldn't be with us to celebrate, here's a run-down of the day's festivities.

6:00a.m.: Rise and shine, it's graduation time! Robe on, hair coiffed -- let's do this thing.

7:00a.m.: Breakfast in Jarvis Field (outside The Hark) with the rest of the law school and their families

7:15a.m.: Make the (excessively long because we have to walk all the way around the yard) trek over to Tercentenary Theatre (which I'm pretty sure is the same as Harvard Yard). Wait.
7:45-9:45a.m.: Procession of graduates, alumni, and faculty (Note to Sara: don't pass out from mixing Sudafed with champagne...)
9:45a.m.: Festivities begin. Finally. An undergrad speaks for TEN MINUTES. In LATIN. Like whoa. Where are we again? Oh yeah -- Harvard. In addition to your requisite student speakers waxing poetic about the future, the "rewards and responsibilities" of a degree, and other cliche but no less inspiring and optimistic anecdotes, they bring up this girl who won -- which means she competed for -- the chance to speak at graduation. In Latin. By memorization. No script, no teleprompter, no notecards. She didn't even have crib sheets hidden in her hands. "Cursus Marathonensis apud Universitatem Harvardianam" ("The Harvard Marathon"). I kid you not. I didn't know Harvard could up the ante, and yet, I was even more impressed than I thought I could be at this point.

Sometime around 10:30a.m.: Dean Kagen presented her recommendation to President Drew Faust that the candidates for law degrees be conferred.

Seconds later: President Faust confers the degrees, bidding them to "...Aid in the shaping and application of those wise restraints that make us free"

...And the Harvard Law School Class of 2008 goes wild

10:30a.m.-11:30a.m.: Some other people speak and their degrees get conferred. Who cares! Eric's official! Our little Ericle graduated from Harvard Law School!!!

11:45 a.m.: Lunch at Holmes Field on the Law School campus, with the Law School Diploma Ceremony. Dean Elena Kagen spoke simply and (mostly) briefly on three points. ...of which I can't remember right now. I think the gist of it was to be happy, be good to each other, and to know that even if they fail, they always have Harvard to fall back on, because no one there would let them fall too far. It was very sweet, I assure you.

Then, Tajinder Singh bade us to tip well (for such a talented orator, his speech was a little belabored, but basically he encouraged the graduates to represent Harvard well because it has a good reputation now, so don't mess it up, gosh darn it!)

And the moment was upon us -- dun dahdah dahhnnn -- diplomas!

1:30p.m.: Cold, damp, tired, and maybe too inspired, we cut our day of festivities short to warm up back at the apartment where we watched -- on TV! -- Miss J.K. Rowling deliver her commencement speech to the Alumni Association and the entire graduating class via television.

To sum it up, Harvard's graduation definitely delivered on the gravitas. There certainly were light-hearted moments -- plastic toys and all -- but these kids knew they had undertaken and achieved something remarkable and were very pleased with themselves this Thursday in June. Deservedly, too, I might say.

Go Crimson!