{a day in the life} The Law Student’s Wife

by Rachel Gurk on May 28, 2013 · 32 comments

in A day in the life

Today’s “a day in the life”  is the adorable Erin of The Law Student’s Wife. Erin more than won me over when she sent me a lengthy email telling me that she “ would lovelovelove/be honored/love to be a part of your day-in-the-life series.” Uhhh–okay! You could have left it there and you still would have heard a resounding yes, Erin!  

But she didn’t stop there! She went on to tell me why she would be a great feature (anyone that stops by your blog could see that in a heartbeat) and she even gave me a teaser of what her interview would look like. Oh…and she had some super nice things to say about my site too.

Flattery will get you everywhere. Seriously.

Anyways. Featuring Erin was a no-brainer. I hope you love her as much as I do!

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TheLawStudentsWife-Banner

Tell me about yourself and how you started food blogging.

I’m a spunky, (late) 20-something wife to a diligent University of Wisconsin law student. I started blogging in Spring 2012 right after Ben (the aforementioned law student) and I were married as a fun way to keep myself occupied while he spent time in the library and to keep my family updated on our lives Up North (the upper Midwest is a one large blank space in their minds). I have long loved writing and cooking, and blogging seemed like a natural way to combine those two passions. Plus, my grandma gets a huge kick out of it.

Take me through your day. Erin&Ben-LawStudentsWife&LawStudent

7:00 a.m. Smack alarm button. Lie in bed and contemplate the universe/what I want to eat for breakfast.

7:04 a.m. Brew large pot of coffee. Start getting ready for work, pack lunch, fumble around on Twitter via my iPhone and ask myself why I’m not doing this on my laptop.

7:27 a.m. Sit down for breakfast (oatmeal loaded with fruit and nuts; one of the 17 different muffins I have lurking in the freezer from a prior post; granola) and scope my daily blog roll. If I have a post that day, promote it on social media and share my blog-friends’ fabulous posts as well. Wonder aloud what I used to do in at this hour, prior to being a blogger.

7:35 a.m. Ben wakes up and asks how my “Twittering” is going.

7:55 a.m. Leave for work. Drop Ben off at school (doesn’t it sound like I’m talking about my son?)

8:10 a.m. {Insert day job here.} I’m a consultant at a large insurance company, which I can’t explain in detail without a) droning on or b) putting you to bed. Mostly, I handle a lot of communication and documentation..while thinking about food.

4:30 p.m. Leave work and catch the end of The Pioneer Woman. (Don’t you just want to hang out at the ranch with her, then have a giant plate of cheesy chicken casserole, followed by apple crumble with her kids? Just me? OK.)

5:15 p.m. Work out. If it’s sunny, I’m on a run with my bad ‘90s playlist. And by “bad,” I mean “amazing.”

6:45 p.m. Start dinner. Pick Ben up from school. Frequently leave the oven on and hope our apartment isn’t on fire when I return.

7:45 p.m. Dinner and dishes with Ben. Thank Ben for being patient if this is a dish that I want to feature on my blog, and he has to wait for me to take photos.

9:00 p.m. Dessert time! Big bowls of ice cream or whatever treat I’ve made that week. Watch rerun episode of The West Wing (we have all 7 seasons) or Breaking Bad(HOOKED.)

10:00 p.m. Blog stuff: Write; edit photos; respond to comments and emails; recipe plan; try to keep up on all the technical stuff that I had no idea would be involved with running a blog.

12:15 a.m. Wonder what the heck I’ve been doing online for the past two hours. Pledge to go to bed by 9:30 p.m. tomorrow. Sweet slumber.

What is your one must-have kitchen tool or gadget?

So cliché, but I am in a serious relationship with my Kitchen Aid standing mixer. With the proper attachments, I could save the world. Or at least whip up a killer soufflé trying.

What is your favorite part of your day? Why?

See 9:00 p.m.: Right after dinner when the dishes are done. Since Ben is so busy with law school, our time together during the day is limited to dinner and the short time after before he goes back to studying. We’ve developed this tradition of finishing dinner, then having dessert while watching a West Wing

What is your favorite day of the week? Why?

Sweet Saturday. I usually get up a little before Ben, and I love that moment of quiet in the morning. The entire weekend is unfolding, and anything seems possible. This is also farmers market day. Madison has the largest market in the Midwest, it is 2 minutes from our front door, and is my heaven on earth. I can wander around for hours and return home loaded with cheese (staple for a WI diet), whatever fresh produce strikes my fancy, and an impulse-buy tulip bouquet.

If you had to choose one place to travel to every year over and over, where would it be? Why? Have you been there before?

Paris. I studied abroad in a small town France, and there isn’t a day I don’t miss the country, the language, and (of course) the food! I have a not-so-secret plot to travel there with Ben after he graduates.

If you could travel anywhere in the world for free, where would you go and how long would you stay?

Thailand. I’m dying to spend a few weeks exploring the jungles and beaches, cuddling with baby tigers (yes, it’s a thing!), and eating copious quantities of Thai food. Anyone with a winning lotto ticket looking for a travel buddy?

What is your favorite cookbook?

Simply in Season. It’s a collection of fantastic recipes from cooks all over the U.S. and is entirely organized by the season of the year. When I use fresh produce, I want it to be in its prime (both for flavor and for price), and this cookbook makes it so easy. Many of the recipes are very budget-friendly too—important when supporting a hungry student :-)

What recipe on your blog are you most proud of?

For the recipe, my Strawberry Lemonade Shortbread Bars. With nearly all of my recipes (especially my baked goods), I strive for stealthy-healthy ingredient swaps. My goal is to shock my friends when I tell them that the dessert they are eating is actually “light.” The Strawberry Lemonade bars are a shortbread crust made with whole-wheat pastry flour, topped with all-fruit strawberry jam, topped with a lemon cheesecake that I made with mostly non-fat Greek yogurt. HOLY MOLEY. Those babies are one of the best desserts I’ve ever made, and never in a million-skillion years would you guess they had “good-for-you” ingredients.

Strawberry-Lemonade-Shortcake-Bars-The-Law-Students-Wife

For the writing (and yes, for the recipes too), I love my Thai Spice Crispy Edamame and my Chocolate Beet Cake, because I feel like I hit a perfect analogy and points to which my readers can truly relate in both. Red velvet cake is seriously a sleazy ex-boyfriend and appetizers definitely come with a subtext. Read the posts. You’ll feel me.

Thai-Spice-Crispy-Edamame-&-Choc-Beet-Cake-The-Law-Students-Wife

What recipe on your blog do your readers seem to love most?

My Boyfriend Brownies, otherwise known as caramel-stuffed, knock-you-naked brownies. They are so deadly—sweet enough to be outrageously addictive, but not so rich that you can only finish one. I usually reach a point where I make Ben hide them from me, and my readers adore them too. It’s a fun story as to how they earned the name “Boyfriend” brownies, but I’ll let you refer to the post for that.

Boyfriend-Brownies-{Caramel-Brownies}-The-Law-Students-Wife

What is your guilty food pleasure that you’re embarrassed to fess up to? Kraft Mac & Cheese? Spagetti-o’s? Canned cheese? We promise not to judge!

Cool Whip. I know it’s not exactly “guilty” inherently, but I keep an entire tub in the fridge at all times and eat it directly from container with a spoon. I blame my parents. They fed me whipped cream as a baby to stop my crying, and I’ve never quit the stuff.

Do you have any advice for someone who is interested in cooking or food blogging?

Be you; don’t play the comparison game; remember why you started blogging. When I first began, I could have cared less if my photos stunk (which they did), if I had 10 hits or 10K hits (hint: it was closer to the first one), and if anyone besides Ben’s Aunt read my work. Then you start to look at other blogs, not to read them but to compare them to yours. You start to wonder why a post you worked so hard on didn’t take off. You feel like if a brand isn’t returning your emails, you did something wrong.

At the end of the day, there will always be someone who is a better photographer than I am, who can more perfectly describe the aroma of freshly cinnamon rolls than I can, who has more hits than I do; but, there is only one person who can overuse alliteration, compare salad ingredients to members of a rock band, and confess to knowing an obscene amount of Disney trivia like I can, and that person is me, The Law Student’s Wife.

You can’t be the best by trying to be the best. Your blog shines brightest when you are at your most authentic. Give yourself a high-five, go bake yourself a big batch of your favorite cookies or chili cheese fries. Snap a photo with your iPhone, slap it on your homepage, and profess your love of Kelly Clarkson. If that is you, then you can love yourself for it. And your readers will love you too.

Is there anything else you would like to tell the world about yourself?

Thank you all! It’s been a pleasure to be featured here. I’m so grateful for your time, and I hope to catch you around The Law Student’s Wife sometime soon.

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 Thanks Erin! Love these words:

“You can’t be the best by trying to be the best. Your blog shines brightest when you are at your most authentic. Give yourself a high-five, go bake yourself a big batch of your favorite cookies or chili cheese fries. Snap a photo with your iPhone, slap it on your homepage, and profess your love of Kelly Clarkson. If that is you, then you can love yourself for it. And your readers will love you too.”

So true! Thanks for sharing your day with us!

You can find more of Erin on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.

{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

1 DessertForTwo May 28, 2013 at 8:22 am

I loved reading this! What a great feature :)

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2 Erika-Southern Souffle May 28, 2013 at 8:29 am

Love this.. She is such a super sweetheart!!

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3 Jamie | Thrifty Veggie Mama May 28, 2013 at 8:39 am

Love this! Erin seems like such a sweet and fun girl. I love her words about being authentic and letting your readers get to know the real you.

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4 Tieghan May 28, 2013 at 9:01 am

I love Erin and I love reading this! Great post ladies!

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5 Dixya May 28, 2013 at 9:07 am

I enjoyed this alot. Heading to get blog now for boyfriend brownies.

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6 Liz @ The Lemon Bowl May 28, 2013 at 9:18 am

Love this interview Erin!!! Rachel also knows (and teases me) for ONLY using my iPhone for photos so I’m with you on that amazing bit of advice!!! Also love your thoughts on not comparing yourself to other bloggers. It gets you absolutely no where and is the very furthest thing from cooking delicious food which is why we all started this crazy blogging thing to begin with. :) Well done Erin!!

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7 Ali | Gimme Some Oven May 28, 2013 at 9:25 am

Love this, and love Erin!!! Cheers to 90s playlists, freezer muffins, and being confident in who your unique voice as a blogger. She is so great! :)

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8 Caitlin Regner May 28, 2013 at 9:28 am

Well, Erin. What can I say? I’m truly addicted. ;)

I’m so glad I got more insight into your life as a food blogger!I think I’ll listen to my 90′s music whenever I make a new recipe of yours… Not that that’s much different than other times. My goal this week: Boyfriend Brownies. No, it’s not Valentine’s Day, but there’s really never a bad time for brownies.

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9 Tracey May 28, 2013 at 9:40 am

What a great interview! I only recently discovered Erin’s blog, and she’s so awesome :)

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10 Erin | The Law Student's Wife May 28, 2013 at 9:46 am

Thanks again for letting me be a part of this series Rachel! And thank you to all the other commenters for your kind words. You all are so supportive and remind me why I started blogging in the first place :)

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11 Sue May 28, 2013 at 9:46 am

Erin is “authentic”, she is the real deal! Love her writing skills,I laugh out loud at many of her comments!
Continued success!

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12 Amy @Very Culinary May 28, 2013 at 9:50 am

I love Erin! And *high five* on the Cool Whip.

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13 Dalila G. May 28, 2013 at 10:02 am

Wonderful post Rachel!
Thank you for introducing me to another fun and entertaining lady!
I will have to check out Erin’s blog.

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14 Denise @ Creative Kitchen May 28, 2013 at 12:09 pm

So cool!! I just bumped into Erin on Instagram this past week so was excited to see that you featured her. I was drawn to the title of her blog because I too was also a Law Student’s Wife oh about….13,14 and 15 years ago. I was also a “study for the Bar widow” the summer of 2000 when our oldest was only a baby. Those years seem so far away, and we didn’t have blogging to get into (unfortunately!) Now I’m an Attorney’s Wife, former school teacher, homeschool mom to 3 girls, office administrator at our own practice and food blogger (in my little bit of spare time) ;)

Excited to start following you Erin, and I’m looking forward to checking out more of your blog!

Denise

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15 Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts May 28, 2013 at 1:07 pm

I didn’t know Erin was from Madison – that is where I grew up! Great feature!

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16 PapaLos - The Man, The Chef, The Dad May 28, 2013 at 2:38 pm

Great interview! Love seeing how fellow bloggers handle day to day schedules. I follow Erin’s blog already, but thanks to this I’ll be following Rachel’s now too!

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17 Lauren @ Climbing Grier Mountain May 28, 2013 at 2:47 pm

I adore, Erin! This interview was fantastic!

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18 Anne [A Squared] May 28, 2013 at 3:14 pm

What a great post series– and such great advice from Erin on staying authentic!

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19 Megan May 28, 2013 at 3:20 pm

Yes!!! So glad you featured Erin….I LOVE her blog! (She basically mirrors me in every aspect of her days!)

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20 Danae (The Recipe Runner) May 28, 2013 at 4:24 pm

I loved reading this and finding out more about Erin. I really enjoy her website, especially her desserts with healthy substitutions, it’s one of my favorite things to do with desserts as well!

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21 cassie May 28, 2013 at 4:48 pm

I loved learning more about Erin! she is such a sweetheart and just lover her personality!

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22 angela @ another bite please May 28, 2013 at 6:58 pm

i love this feature…and love Erin…her blog seriously always makes me laugh. ALWAYS.

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23 ashley - baker by nature May 28, 2013 at 7:33 pm

Such a great read! I love Erin, and her blog, and this was such a fun way to get to know her more.

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24 Stephanie @ Girl Versus Dough May 28, 2013 at 9:55 pm

LOVE this, and love that girl! So fun to get a peek into her daily life (and I’m totally jealous of that farmers market!) :)

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25 Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef May 28, 2013 at 10:47 pm

love this :) so fun to read these every week, rachel!

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26 sheila May 28, 2013 at 11:03 pm

Yet another great food blog I was not familiar with! Thanks Rachel. xoxox

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27 laurasmess May 29, 2013 at 2:53 am

Aw, it’s been a pleasure reading this! I’ve been following Erin’s blog for a while now but this is my first visit to yours Rachel… so nice to have found you and this wonderful feature that allows us to get to know some brilliantly talented people around the blogosphere! Thanks Erin, for giving us an insight into your life and your blogging experience. Thanks Rachel, can’t wait to read some of your archives! x

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28 Luv What You Do May 29, 2013 at 11:07 pm

I love Erin’s blog and it was so fun to learn more about her! As a young 3o something law student girlfriend I totally get it!!!
Those brownies look so amazing that I might be making them this weekend : )

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29 stephie @ Eat Your Heart Out May 30, 2013 at 12:18 am

“My Boyfriend Brownies, otherwise known as caramel-stuffed, knock-you-naked brownies” <– omg dying. You KNOW I'm heading over to see how they got this moniker ASAP.

{Loved seeing Erin on here! xoxo}

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30 Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli May 30, 2013 at 2:41 am

Aww, I love this! So nice to “meet” you, Erin! I could not agree more with your sentiments on comparing ourselves to other bloggers…you worded it perfectly! Love what you’re all about…I will definitely be checking out those shortbread bars!

And girl, I totally get you on the Cool Whip thing…I could (and have!) eat a whole container in one sitting! Shhhh! ;)

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