Friday, July 17, 2009

The Grass is Always Greener...

We've heard it before, and we'll hear it again: July and August are typically very slow for law firms. Green Street is no exception, even though the color green evokes prosperity and growth (right?). Lately, we've felt like an under-watered lawn. We're busy with little things, but the little things require other people to engage, and you know how that goes when you're trying to juggle 5-10 other people.

I tell you, Portland starts to look better and better sometimes. Yeah, I know it rains, but it's just not as inundated with attorneys as down here. Yeah, I know it's sunny here just about all the time, but it's difficult not to get Environmental Fatigue, our new phrase to describe the constant traffic, crowds, garbage, lack of fresh air, etc.

Pity party for one?

Tip the world over on its side and everything
loose will land in Los Angeles.

~Frank Lloyd Wright

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Luck of the Irish

We've got a lot of things on our plates lately. Elizabeth is super busy and so am I. But, we've never considered maybe it's our individual and combined Super Irish Power that just landed us at the proverbial pot 'o gold.

When we first landed in LA, we met with an estate planning lawyer. We had a nice chat, wrote a Thank You card, promised to keep in touch, and didn't think much of it. Well, he must have liked us, because a few weeks ago, he contacted us to let us know he's winding down his practice and wants to give us some of the work. Um, this guy has been in practice for 40+ years. That means he has about a gazillion files.

So we wrote up a contract, faxed it back and forth a few times, and BAM! the first file came through today, an update to a trust. As of now, we're getting a third of the fee. But his fees are way higher than ours. So, it's a pretty sweet Irish deal.

May love and laughter light your days,
and warm your heart and home.
May good and faithful friends be yours,
wherever you may roam.
May peace and plenty bless your world
with joy that long endures.
May all life's passing seasons
bring the best to you and yours!

~ Old Irish Blessing

Monday, June 29, 2009

Hello, Law Firm? Oh, Plumbing? Yes, We Handle That Too!

Sometimes you gotta do what pays. Right now what's paying is a major plumbing issue at my aunt's house. Paul, of course, Renaissance Man Extraordinaire came to the rescue and we got a little money out of the deal.

Add the plumbing check to the $15 we won in Vegas, and we've got a serious contribution to Google Ad Words.

Not only is there no God, but try

finding a plumber on Sunday.

- Woody Allen

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Rest In Peace Mr. Jackson

What a guy. Aside from all the molestation allegations and a strange lifestyle, I'll always remember Michael Jackson as an absolutely fabulous entertainer. In college Colleen, Cristina and I would rock out to Billy Jean on the record player (yes, my roommate had a record player in 2004). Love MJ.

Paul has been a victim to more than one of my crazy dancing sessions it the car when Rock with You (alllll nighhhttt!!!!), and Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough.

What's your favorite Michael Jackson song? I dare you to sing it without dancing!

I would believe only in a God that knows how to dance.
~Friedrich Nietzche

Friday, June 19, 2009

What Happens in Vegas Goes into the Firm

That's right, we're hitting the road and visiting Las Vegas for two nights. We got married in August of 2008, and have not taken one measly vacation since our honeymoon. I am already clawing at the door to get out of LA and off to Sin City!

Of course, we'll post about our big winnings from the penny slots, and how we're transferring all of it into our Google Ad Words Account.

Las Vegas looks the way you'd imagine heaven must look at night.
~Chuck Palahniuk

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Money In = Money Out

Things are going great. However, it seems the minute we get our hot little hands on some cold hard cash, it burns a hole through our pockets (see post below re: Google Adwords).

Take the fact that my laptop computer just up and died a few days ago. I've had it for four years, since right before law school, and it's served me well. So off we went to Fry's, Wal-Mart, and Best Buy. We ended up purchasing a replacement at Costco.

It's gorgeous. A Hewlitt Packard G60-243CL.

What I really like about it is that it has a bigger keyboard. My old laptop was tiny. I wanted it that way because I had to haul it around campus most days. The new laptop won't need to be dragged from room to room, so I got a wider keyboard (and screen) and it has an additional number keypad to the right of the main keyboard. Sweet.

Speaking of the number keypad, it was easy to cook up a monthly budget for our law firm. We're slidding in at about $550/month in fixed expenses.

That amount covers:
  • Rotary (two clubs, we each belong to a seperate Rotary. Our motto is divide and conquer. Rotary is, by far, the largest chunk of our monthly budget).
  • Utilities
  • University Club (our "office" for meeting prospective clients).
  • Internet
  • MyFax monthly fee
  • Monthly website hosting fee
Adding a few extra fixed expenses such as health insurance and undergraduate loan payment (the mega law school loan is still on deferral) brings it to about $900/month. I did not include our ridiculous obsession with Google Adwords either. I'll have to gird up my loins for that one.

It's good to know the numbers up front and now they're on the office wall. It's certainly motivation to keep on truckin'.

A nickle ain't worth a dime anymore.
~Yogi Berra

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Eight is Great

I was working on our database today, organizing our electronic files categories according to their legal need. We have eight beautiful little client files, all categorized to perfection. So pretty! I feel as though they are my children--I am so proud of them.

Anyone use Google Adwords? We started using it and it is addictive. It's incredible to see how many impressions you get, then how many people click through.

We pay per click, however, and the clicks can get pricey. For example, if you wanted to be at the top of the list when people search for "Los Angeles Personal Injury Lawyer" you'd have to pay about $15 per click. Fortunatley we're not in that area (haha..yet) but it can get crazy.

For example, our loan modification ad is hot. We get about 10 clicks per day, but they cost us approximately $5 per click. And we've only gotten about 7-8 inquires, with two people signing on for assistance. Every morning I check the balance and have to throw about $50 in the proverbial Adwords Fire. But, it is interesting to study the traffic to our site and see where people are coming from, as the analytics are very good.

Although I'm thrilled with of our eight files, everytime someone writes a check, it goes straight to advertising! It'll be a blog-worthy event when we get ahead of this prediciment. Will keep you posted. If anyone has tips on Google Adwords, please share!

For a business not to advertise is like winking at a girl in the dark.
You know what you are doing but no one else does.

~Stuart H. Britt