Coffee Break – Bea Shoulder Bag

MZ Wallace Bea Womens Shoulder HandbagOoh: included in the Piperlime sale is this tweed version of the MZ Wallace shoulder bag. I’d call this bag a modern classic — I’ve seen it (and heard amazing things about it) for probably 5 years, and admired it on the subway many a time. I like the gray tweed with the leather accents, as well as the included “inner detachable market purse” — cute. It was $395, but is now marked to $236.99 at Piperlime. MZ Wallace Bea Womens Shoulder Handbag

(P.S. While you’re there check out the sales at Piperlime’s sister sites, including Athleta — lots of great deals to be had.)

(L-2)

Comments

  1. Apologies in advance because I know this has been talked about before, but I couldn’t find the thread. I’ve heard that it’s a good idea to start using an eye cream for fine lines around age 25…any suggestions? I am about to turn 25 and I was looking in the mirror today and for the first time ever I noticed what I think could be classified as very, very faint fine lines (or maybe I’m just imagining things, but I swear they’re there). It kind of freaked me out because this is not something that I have ever thought twice about before. It’s definitely not a problem yet, I’d be willing to start using a good eye cream if there will be noticeable benefits in the future. I don’t want something insanely expensive, but I’d be willing to go above drugstore stuff if it’s worth it.

    And relatedly, any other tips for skincare-type stuff that I should start doing now that I am apparently finally hitting that magic grown-up age?

    • Kiehl’s abysinne eye cream. Little maroon pot that lasts a few months. Not expensive at all.

    • I like the L’Oreal stuff that comes in a little pot, can’t think of the name. It’s around $13-$15 and there are always coupons for it in the paper. Been using it for a while and have no crow’s feet (I’m 44). Of course, sunscreen and sunglasses also are essential – less squinting = less wrinkling.

    • Stay out of the sun, don’t smoke, and drink lots of water. So much of it is just a genetic crapshoot, though.

      For eye cream, I think you’d be fine with any decent eye cream from the drugstore, but if you want something a bit fancier, Clinique All About Eyes is good for general preventative care and if you wait for a “bonus” time, you can get a bunch of useful extras with your purchase (Clinique has one of the more consistently useable gifts w/purchase of all those brands).

      • I agree with the genetics crapshoot line of thinking, and wear sunglasses as often as possible, especially when driving. Prescription sunglasses are the best thing ever.

    • after reading about raw shea butter on numerous beauty blogs, I took the plunge and ordered some. I use it around my eyes at night (I use an eye cream from Avon in the morning) and I swear it even has helped the dark circles around my eyes. I’ve been putting it on my feet, on my hair, on my elbows…everywhere that needs a little extra moisture. This stuff is miraculous.

    • I’ve been using RoC Deep Correxion ever since I noticed the first hint of crow’s feet. They went away fairly quickly (maybe 6-12 months) and now I have nary a hint of lines outside my eyes. Doesn’t help for my genetically-induced under-eye creases, but c’est la vie.

  2. Formerly Preggo Angie :

    VENT: It’s closing in on 11 months since baby arrived, and all my clothes are still too tight. I’ve been plateaued for about 6 months now. It’s so very frustrating. Thanks for listening.

    • You created another human life and then pushed it out of your body and nurtured it for 11 months–don’t be so hard on yourself!

    • I can’t remember if this was your first? If so, realize that it’s not just your weight that went up & down, but that your “shape” has changed — hips widen, and sometimes don’t go back to the original shape.

      But I’ve been there (and am still there to some extent!), so HUGS to you. :) And buy some new clothes –if the baby’s almost a year, then those clothes are at least two years old and they’re probably out of style…. (again, I tell myself this….) ;)

    • Research, Not Law :

      Hugs. I’m sorry.

      Is it actual extra weight… or shape change? I’ve noticed few people return fully to their pre-pregnancy figure, even if they lose the weight. I had to give up on about a quarter of my wardrobe even when I got back to my previous weight. A friend who is even thinner than before can barely use anything because she went from being straight up and down to curvy. (And looks incredibly hot now, btw. Sigh)

      Did you recently wean? I was doing okay after my first (actually did return to pre-pregnancy weight – but not shape – about 10 months post partum) but ballooned up 10 lbs after weaning.

      Have you been able to return to pre-child exercise routine? I never managed that, so I know that was part of my problem. It’s not shocking that I wasn’t able to stay at the weight I was with an extensive exercise routine. I needed the 6+ hours/week of workouts to keep it off pre-baby, too.

    • Diana Barry :

      Sorry, I know what a PITA that is. Are you nursing? If baby is eating less milk and more solids now, you may need to eat less to make up for it (I had to do this last time).

      Also, after #1, my shape changed so everything was redistributed and my pre-preg clothes didn’t fit any more. A good excuse to buy new stuff! :)

    • So sorry. I actually lost some weight when I weaned at 13 months, so you may too. Also, I am under my pre-pregnancy weight but cannot wear most of my pre-pregnancy clothes. My b.r.e.a.s.t.s and ribcage are permanently bigger, and my hips are slightly bigger, plus I have the c-section pouch. I would like to try and lose more, but even if I did, it would probably still be a stretch to get into my old clothes. Time to buy a few things.

    • Formerly Preggo Angie :

      Thanks for the comments! This is my second baby, but just have not had the time or energy to commit to a lot of exercise. And yes, everything stopped after I weaned my baby. I am really trying to commit to WW – I lost 30 lbs right before my wedding with it and I know it works.

      • spacegeek :

        I “let it all go” after one of my twins was diagnosed with cancer just before she turned 3 years old. That was 2.5 years ago, and I added about 40 lbs to my frame. Just kept buying bigger sizes, because something had to fall off my plate and it was exercise and diet!

        My child was declared cancer-free this past October (YES!! HAPPY DANCE), and I’ve been working to regain my former svelte self since Nov 1. I’ve been using the Medifast meal replacement plan, and boy it is working!!! I’ve lost 26 lbs since Nov, and yes, the first week was tough, but now I’m cruising and made it through Thanksgiving, Christmas parties and New Years without gaining weight! Wooohoo–it has been really amazing and gratifying to have the weight come off, which keeps me going.

        Anyway, in the past I’ve always been a good exerciser and a slim person, so this is just a way to kick start my weight loss. In general I agree that meal replacement programs don’t teach you how to eat properly like Weight Watchers does, but for me this is working very well!

        Just something to think about. :-)

        • Congratualtions that your daughter is cancer free!

        • Congrats on the weight loss and I’m very happy to hear that about your child! also, this post has totally enlightened me as to post childbirth shape change, I’ve never heard people talk about that before, except my mom saying her chest got bigger after breastfeeding, but was was an A cup before kids.

        • Love you, Spacegeek.

    • Hugs. Been there, and I know how much it sucks. Can you buy a few filler items to tide you over & make you feel better until your weight/shape stabilizes a bit?

      • Anonymous :

        My second was a terrible sleeper. Frankly, my body was operating on empty for so long, weight loss just wasnt gonna happen. It wasnt until he started sleeping well – ok better- at 2 1/2 that I started being able to lose the weight. I really think sleep and stress can be a huge factor. Good luck.

    • The manageing partner says I should exercise more. When I ate alot, I gained weight and now I have to loose it to. You should try the Jenifer Hudsen Diet. That is what I am doing.

    • I ditched most of my pre-pregnancy clothes just a few months after baby was born. It was making me anxious, the whole “will I fit back into my old jeans” thing. I have an eating disorder background so have to be careful about triggers for weight obssession etc. Eight months on I am back to pre-preg weight but still a little unsure what size I am now. I recommend starting from scratch if possible. Like others have said, your old clothes are now a couple of years old so get some new stuff that fits your new body. That will give you more confidence.

    • You’re definitely not alone. While I rapidly lost all my pregnancy weight after my first, I found it much harder to lose weight after my second. Weight came off more slowly and I still wasn’t at my pre-preg. weight after a year. And like you, everything stopped after I weaned. Part of my problem was lack of regular exercise and irregular eating. It was all I could to feed the kids and I found myself skipping meals, then making up for it later, or not at all. I think my body went into semi-starvation mode for awhile. Now, it’s taken about 8 months to lose 7 lbs but I tried eating and exercising more regularly. I try to hop on the exercise bike at night for at least 30 min after kids are asleep. HTH!

  3. Sweater alterations? :

    Has anyone ever had a sweater altered? I have a grey cashmere cardigan that I loved so much that I got an enormous (i.e., too big for an elbow patch) hole in the elbow. I am trying to figure out if it is possible to turn it into a short-sleeve cardigan. My head says no – wouldn’t it just unravel if the arms were cut off? – but my heart hopes that the hive tells me a tailor can do this for me. Bonus points for a suggestion for such a tailor in SoCal.

    • One of my co-workers once had a sweater turned into a shorter-sleeve, ending just above the elbow, by having a wide, thick ribbon at the end of the sleeve that the sweater was essentially sewn to. The sweater was a dark, dark grey and the ribbon was black. I never saw the sweater in it’s old life, but I learned the story after complimenting her on it. It looked really professional, and I think if you could find a tailor and explain that your look is professional and not “girly”, this is definitely possible.

      • I hate that moment when you realize that you’ve placed an inappropriate apostrophe two seconds after you’ve hit the ‘publish’ button on a comment.

        “its old life”

    • Sure, you can alter a sweater, with a few caveats: 1) if it’s a chunky/open weave, the results are not going to be as good as if it’s a fine knit, and 2) the shortened sleeves will probably end up being less stretchy around the arm opening, so if it’s close fitting you should watch out for this or it may end up being uncomfortably tight.

    • Sweater alterations? :

      Thanks for giving me hope! Now to find a tailor . . .

      • i had a cashmere bathrobe with a hole in the sleeve and my tailor was somehow able to re-weave the hole – you can see where it was patched, but only if you look closely.

    • You might be able to find a re-weaver. I highly recommend Lamb’s Reweaving on Wilshire in Hancock Park/Koreatown. (323) 931-4249 · 4221 Wilshire Blvd Ste 290-2

    • Montalvo’s on Montana in Santa Monica does excellent work, but it’s pricey.

    • Montalvo’s on Montana in Santa Monica does excellent tailoring, but it’s pricey.

      Read more: http://corporette.com/2012/01/05/coffee-break-bea-shoulder-bag/#ixzz1igngvPjw

  4. Quick survey – if a job posting says you can either email or snail mail your application materials, what would you do? Also, thoughts on using FedEx to make the snail mail option faster and more secure?

    Thanks!

    • Maybe I’m paranoid cuz I’d recommend doing both. If I had to pick one, I’d choose email. I’ve misplaced many a resume print-out to be discovered months later, so having the electronic copy meant I could print out as many as my declining memory forced me to.

      • You know, I think I will do both. I was afraid it would be overkill, but I like using email for the reason you mentioned, and I like snail mail because I know everything will be printed and presented the way I want. Think I should mention in the email that I’ve mailed a hard copy but also wanted them to have everything in electronic format for their convenience? Maybe it would make me seem thoughtful and considerate instead of paranoid and anxious? :)

        • Sounds good to me =). Ditto to what Research said below.

        • As for “printed the way I want”, I always email my resume but print it into PDF first. That way, no layout misshap.
          If HR still ask for an alterable resume, Word or something, it’s fishy because it means they want to use it behind my back before any interview (not being paranoid – been there, done that).

      • Salit-a-gator :

        I’d email the person in charge of making a decision. Snail mail usually gets opened by a secretary and so the decision maker may or may not ever see your resume, depending on how good their secretary is.

      • I would also do both, put the resume in PDF, and in the e-mail inform them that you will also be mailing a copy so they don’t get confused/annoyed when they have two of the same resume.

    • Research, Not Law :

      I’d do email. If you do, make sure that your resume/CV is a pdf (to assure that nothing funky happens with the text formatting and it will be compatible with whatever software they have) and that your name (at least last) is in the file name.

      • Thanks! I actually learned a lesson about that today. I had emailed my resume to myself so I could tweak it on my lunch break. But I use Open Office at home, and my work computer just turned the file into a bunch of little boxes and symbols.

        • Salit-a-gator :

          Did you pdf it first? I always pdf my resume when sending my email to make sure nothing funky happens with the formating on thier end.

          • Salit-a-gator :

            *by not my *their not thier

            Loooong day over here, sorry for the typos.

    • I’d do both email and snail mail.

    • Seattleite :

      I’d email them. They can always search their inbox for the package later, whereas if you snail mail them you run the risk of it being lost.

      FedEx seems a little self-important to me, but I’ve never been a hiring manager for professionals, just clerical staff. As the power level increases, my aversion decreases.

    • Former MidLevel :

      I would snail mail. Fewer people do it and I think it makes you stand out. FedEx is fine. If you really want to, you can send a follow-up/confirmation email version.

    • karenpadi :

      e-mail only. It’s easy to send, and makes it easy for the secretary/HR professional to add to the system (we use a web-based recruitment program so everything is electronic).

      Sending something snail-mail almost guarantees it gets there but doesn’t guarantee that the secretary/overworked HR person will remember to add it to the system. I’ve had law students email me to follow-up on their application packet, and sure enough, someone received it weeks ago but hadn’t gotten it into the system yet.

  5. Question for the travelers out there: I’m heading to South America in a few weeks (Buenos Aires, Patagonia, Iguazu, Punta del Este, hooray!). Have you been there? If so, what is a must-see in those areas? Any secrets I should know about before I go? Thanks in advance! I know very little about these areas so I’d appreciate any insider info.

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve never been but I used to love watching Samantha Brown’s Passport to Latin America on the Travel Channel. My favorite was Buenos Aires, she was able to have a leather jacket custom made in 5 hours and I’ve wanted to go for that reason alone ;)

      I’ll post the links separately to avoid moderation.

    • Oooh jealous! I have nothing to add, other than my jealousy, since I’ve never been to South America but want to go sooooo badly :)

    • I lived in Buenos Aires for a while a few years back. Some quick tips: 1) people don’t eat dinner until at least 8 or 9–sometimes 10 or 11–and restaurants won’t be open; 2) bars don’t really get going until after midnight, but they’ll be open earlier than that (they’re open till 6am!); 3) breakfasts are generally pretty lame and not filling there.

      In BA, go to the cemetary (it’s cool but creepy), the market around it, San Telmo on Sat for the flea market, La Boca is pretty but not really worth your time if it’s a short trip (and dangerous at night — only go during the day). Puerto Madero has some good restaurants and is scenic but is not that much of a must see.

      In Iguazu, you can stay on either side of the border, but you may need a Brazilian visa, which could be a PITA. It was back when I went. Visit on both sides if you can b/c they’re lovely and different. WEAR SUNBLOCK! i got the worst burn of my life there.

      Have fun! LOVE Argentina!

      • Second all of Batgirl’s recommendations. I stayed in La Recoleta (cemetery neighborhood) and it’s a very safe area and an inexpensive cab ride away from most places you’ll want to go. I’d ride the subway at least once though because it’s a really cool system.

        BA was one of the most fun vacations I’ve ever had for shopping. I got riding boots there that I get endless compliments on. Shop Palermo for trendy clothes and San Telmo for antiques, and La Recoleta if you’re wanting to splurge on high-end stuff. I can’t remember the name of it, but in San Telmo there’s a fantastic bar right off the square. The waiters wear bow ties, but the bar is a total dive.

        MALBA is a great museum if you’re into modern art at all.

        The steak is so good and so is the Italian food. I would say the quality of wine for the price in Argentina is among the best in the world.

        Have fun…. you’re making me want to go on vacation!

    • I’ve been to Buenos Aires and Iguazu and loved them both. A few random tips. Do not exchange money at the airport as their rates are horrible. Hotels and banks offfer much better rates. The taxi service booth in the airport takes USD (roughly $35 to downtown). Brazil charges a hefty visa fee (about $250). You can buy beautiful leather goods in B.A. and will get better deals away from Calle Florida. There’s a leather goods store I really like near Reconquista and Alvear. In most stores, you will get a discount for paying with cash instead of credit. Many stores also offer tax free shopping if you ask for it. Remember that it’s summer in Argentina now so it will be hot and humid in Iguazu. Have fun!

    • I was in BA and Iguazu a few years ago and had the best time. BA is a great walking city, and the BA Free Tour was really well done (just pay tips). It’s touristy, but it was fun to go to a tango show. In Iguazu, if you can stay at the Sheraton in the park (we were only on the Argentinian side) it is so convenient. You can walk to the files in a minute and they have a great pool. The outside of the hotel is hideous, though. Do the boat tour that goes under the falls, but otherwise you can probably just spend the day walking on your own, and taking the train to visit Devil’s Throat. Have fun!

    • Was just in BA and Iguazu a year ago and loved both! I only did the Argentina side of Iguazu and it was fantastic! Definitely do the train to Devil’s Throat and a boat ride under the falls… you really only need a day (we flew in night before, stayed over, then flew out the next evening).

      In BA, I loved the Palermo Hollywood and Palermo SoHo neighborhoods… low key and chic with great boutiques and restaurants, didn’t seem touristy. And we missed the opera house tour, but friends went and said it was gorgeous! Have so much fun!

    • I loved Patagonia, although I am more of an outdoorsy person than a city-shopping person. I recommend El Chalten over El Calafate. El Calafate is much prettier, with much better amenities (restaurants, hotels, shopping), but I found it generic and overly touristy. El Chalten is the end of the road, zero charm, but you can walk right out of town and be hiking through some of the prettiest country I’ve ever seen.

  6. Visit both the Argentinian and Brazilian sides of Iguazu (views are quite different) and hike one of the trails in the rainforest on the Argentinian side – we saw tons of wildlife in just a short walk! Oh, and plan on getting drenched near the falls – make sure you take something waterproof to protect your camera and wallet, and don’t take any kind of handbag that will be ruined if it gets wet. Enjoy! It’s spectacular!

    • Sorry, that was meant to be in reply to M in CA above.

      By the way, I LOVE the handbag in this post! Still more than I want to spend on it though!

  7. Can anyone recommend a good mp3 player for podcasts on Android? I’m completely ADD in the car and listen to them while I drive whenever the radio’s not entertaining enough. I used to use my old GPS device, which allowed me to sync with I-tunes on the computer every now and then and saved my place on whatever podcast I was on, so I could easily listen in short bursts. But it finally crapped out on me, and the new GPS’s don’t have players.

    I’m trying to use the “music player” on my phone, but it’s really irritating to navigate to, and doesn’t hold my place if I navigate away from it. I tried GoogleListen, but couldn’t seem to get every podcast that I want on it, and Stitcher doesn’t carry all of the ones I like either. I don’t mind syncing to the computer if I have to. There’s got to be something better in this wonderful new super-smart phone technology world.

  8. I got this bag in a charcoal color for christmas. Loving it.

  9. Love this bag and looking for something similar, but this matches my winter coat too closely. The other colors aren’t on sale, so can anyone recommend a basic black satchel in the $200-300 range that isn’t Coach?

  10. A roommate-relations threadjack. Is there an accepted amount of residence, over which a significant other can reasonably be expected to contribute towards utilities? I have no personal problems with my roommate or her BF, other than the fact that he appears to have moved in. As in, sleeps here at least five (but typically more like seven) nights a week, has clothing hung in my roommate’s closet, occupies fridge real estate, etc.

    Part of me doesn’t want to rock the boat, since while the roomie and I aren’t friends by any stretch of the imagination, we share a kitchen convivially enough. And I wouldn’t be willing to do the “I go or he goes,” thing, since the house is the right price, adequate to my needs, and located a whopping three minutes away from my office, especially as I’ll be moving in June anyway.

    And yet–I have a tight enough budget without paying for half of utilities, when I’m using 1/3 of them. So quite frankly, it’s starting to grate on my nerves every time he walks through the door.

    Thoughts? This has never happened to me before, in all of my years of roommate-wrangling.

    • Diana Barry :

      Check out splittherent.com. A friend of mine developed it, and it can tell you when your roommate’s SO is using the apt enough to contribute to the utilities. :)

    • found a peanut :

      just food for thought, but do you have a concept of how much the utilities actually go up with the addition of a third person? I’m thinking the big electricity sucks are the fridge and climate control, but it’s not clear that adding an additional person to the mix actually increases either of those costs (unless he is standing in front of the fridge with the door open for hours a day). And utilities like cable and internet and fixed costs.

      That said, I would be super annoyed if I had a roommate who basically let her boyfriend move in rent-free. I don’t think you are unnecessarily rocking the boat by mentioning that to her, especially because presumably you thought you’d be living with one other person, not two, and suggesting that the rent be re-apportioned to reflect that (maybe 60/40, to reflect that they share a room).

      • True about the major appliances. Our water bill has definitely gone up, though, which even the roommate noticed–her BF showers twice a day.

        But yeah. The rent-free thing is kind of annoying, and I hadn’t even really thought about that aspect. Which is funny, because the BF was trying to move out of his parents’ house when they first started dating, so he was looking at a lot of places–and now that I think about it, he appears to have settled on my house. Rrrgh.

        • a. – I would say that when roommate saw the utility bill, that would have been a good time to bring it up. When the next one comes, can you bring it up then and make it retroactive? He’s not paying rent anywhere else and he has a job, right? (The fact that he pays no other rent – or not- doesn’t really have any bearing on whether he should contribute to your variable expenses, but my point is that if he’s not paying rent, he presumably has disposable income.)

          June isn’t that far off, so if mentioning it makes life uncomfortable you don’t have long to endure it. Good luck.

      • Anonymous :

        I have a smartmeter in my apartment, so I can see usage at exact times of day. My usage spikes dramatically when I shower and blow dry my hair, and when I do laundry. The basic costs that you mentioned can run less than $1/day (based on days I wasn’t home at all). On days I shower, it’s at least $2.50. Same on laundry days. So if the BF showers twice a day, I’d say that’s probably having a considerable impact on your monthly bill unless he showers in ice water. Not sure if you have laundry in-unit, but if you do and he does his laundry there, that’s another major area he’s driving up the cost.

        Also, I think (but don’t have data to back this up like I do for the above) that a full fridge costs more to keep cold than a less full fridge. If you would otherwise use the space he’s currently hogging, probably not a big deal energy-wise. But if without him your fridge would be two bottles of white wine and a box of leftovers, he’s probably costing more there too.

        • Anon in the Midwest :

          The smart meter sounds interesting. Is that something you bought, or something from the utility company.

          However – Regarding the fridge, I always have heard that a refrigerator operates more efficiently when full.

          • Anonymous :

            I think the smartmeter is installed either by my utility company or the utility wholesaler. We’re deregulated down here, so there’s dozens of companies to choose from and they all get their energy from the same source (I’m calling them a wholesaler, tho I’m not sure if that’s the correct term) but different companies offer different rate plans and features, like the ability to monitor. To be honest, I’m just not sure who puts it in, it was just something the utility company advertised as a feature that they supported when I was shopping plans.

            There’s about a 2-3 day delay for them to show the data on my online account, so it’s not something where you could try turning off lights or other devices and see how it affects usage real-time. But they send me a weekly e-mail that I try to review right away when my schedule from the last week is still fresh in my memory and I can figure out what caused spikes.

            Thanks for the fridge correction! Haha I guess that means I need to buy more bread and cheese to fill mine up and be green :)

          • I can’t be positive about this, but I think that it’s better to have a full freezer and less full fridge – energy-wise anyway

    • I was also wondering about how much the utilities actually increase. Do you pay water and sewer? On top of paying for utilities, though, I’d be annoyed if the boyfriend was eating communal (or my) food or not helping with cleaning, eventhough he was contributing to the mess.

      Is your roommate committed to staying for a certain amount of time? I would just be hesitant to be too pushy about it if she could move out (maybe they’ll find a place together) before you’re leaving in June–not sure it’s worth having to find someone new.

    • MeliaraofTlanth :

      My roommate’s mother came to visit and stayed for two months. I debated asking her to pay utilities, but in the end, water/gas/electric only went up about $10 a month, so I figured it wasn’t worth rocking the boat, so to speak, over $2. (our utilities are already split 4 ways). But if they go up any significant amount, I’d definitely bring it up.

      (One other super annoying thing about having another person around for that long was it really slowed down the internet because it was too many people for our poor, already probably overloaded wireless router because she was always on skype)

    • This happened to me my senior year of college, actually. I moved into the house of a friend-of a friend and soon after she started dating some guy who was there all.the.time. Him and his yappy dog who howled at random times. Worse, the two of them were very….noisy. I just put up with it because it was her house and I had a definite move-out date.
      Since you’ll be moving soon anyway, I think you should just live with it and make sure to have this discussion next time you get a roommate. Maybe advance your moving-out date?

      • Ha, at least they aren’t *noisy* most of the time.

        I wish I could advance the moving-out date, more because I hate this soulless h*llhole of a town than because of the BF, but my job runs through mid-June so I have to stay here until then :\

    • I agree with some of the other posters regarding whether or not the utilities have actually gone up. If there has been a corresponding increase in the variable bills (not fixed, like internet or cable, which you’d be paying if he was there or not), I think it’s reasonable to ask her (or him) to contribute a little bit more.

      I think you also have to be sensitive in your phrasing though: “Suzy, Jim’s a really nice guy and I’m happy things are going so well for you both, but I noticed that he’s been spending a lot more time here over the past two months, and as a result our utility bills have been higher for the same time period. My budget is pretty tight, and I was hoping we could work something out where Jim contributes some money to the water and electric bills.”

      • I like your phrasing, thanks!

        • Anonymous :

          Speaking from experience, I agree with some other posters – the BF should contribute to utilities. I have mixed feelings about rent. If the BF is living there free and not maintaining a place of his own, he should have to pay. But if he is paying rent elsewhere, and just chooses to stay with your roommate, then I wouldn’t bring up the rent part. It’s more inconvenient for you, sure, but somehow it seems more fair that way in my mind.

          • I also would be hesitant to expect rent. With paying rent, comes an expectation of having the same rights. It’s easier to ask your roomie for an odd night of privacy or to not share X, Y, or Z if he isn’t “officially” moved in.

          • Nope, he lives at home, so he’s not paying rent anywhere else. And as I mentioned above, when they first started dating, he was actively looking for a new place, but I haven’t heard anything about how his apartment search is coming recently.

    • You know what’s annoying about this overall? The fact that you are the one who has to initiate this conversation (if there is going to be one). I’m sure any roommate I ever had could tell you I was not perfect, but there’s absolutely no way my BF would be staying over 5-7 nights per week without my coming to you, early on, and saying, “so…I recognize that this isn’t what you signed on for. Here are some issues I imagine you might have–but over to you. How do you feel about this? Financial and other issues?”

      You’ve gotten some useful thoughts about the tangibles involving costs. But I have a feeling “it’s starting to grate on my nerves every time he walks through the door” is partly–and this is totally understandable–a reaction to the fact that your home has fundamentally changed without your roommate even acknowledging it.

      • Thanks for saying this. When they first started dating she asked “Is it okay if BF stays over tonight?” but I um, did not know that would mean that he was taking up residence.

      • This is spot on. Happened to me a few years back. My roommate’s bf had his own place but he was a hoarder so they only ever stayed at our place. Every. Darn. Day. My roommate never brought it up, and got very offended when I tried to (as delicately as I could think how to do) bring up feeling uncomfortable finding myself unexpectedly having another person practically moved in. After 4+ months of this (and no $ contribution from him or even acknowledgment of the significant change in the home), I decided to move out. Was definitely the right call for me…and roommate did apologize later on and we’re good friends (again). Our friendship would not have survived many more months of me continuing to live with her and the always-present bf, though.

        • I had the exact same situation. BF also de facto moved in without roommate’s and my discussing it first, I initiated a discussion after about 6 weeks more about how things were working than about $ (and even so, it didn’t change anything), and about 2 months after that I moved out. It was also the right call for me, and I definitely think it helped my relationship with both of them.

          I realize that’s not helpful — but just wanted to say good luck working this out. It sucks, and it’s stressful.

  11. Etiquette question :

    Do I need to send someone a thank you note if someone sent me a card congratulating me on my graduation? No gift or money, just the card. It’s a friend of my parents that I never see in person, so I won’t have an opportunity to thank them unless I send a card, but it seems kind of corny to send a card just for a card.

    • I would do it, but maybe I am weird because I like to send thank you cards.

    • I never do because I’m scared of an endless loop of thank you cards. Thank you for the card, thank you for the thank you card, thank you for your thank you card. And then you die of thank you card induced paper cuts

    • I don’t think you do. But you could mention to your parents how much you appreciated the friend remembering you and ask them to pass your thanks onto the friend the next time they see him/her.

    • No, you don’t need to send a thank you note in response to a card (think of the endless cycle it could create).

      If you wanted to acknowledge the card and thank them for their well wishes, I would send a new years card and mention how kind it was for them to think of you and your graduation.

      • Research, Not Law :

        This or anon’s suggestion above. No to a formal thank you card, but if you will have any contact with them at some point or have another reason to contact them, I would mention it. This also falls into my facebook-acceptable realm, if you both are on.

    • Ditto to the no’s, but it would be nice if you called to thank them and had a short conversation catching up.

    • I don’t think so. I’ve recently received several thank you cards for bereavement cards I sent out, and while I certainly appreciated getting them it was a bit odd. Certainly, neither one was expected.
      [I would say it may be a different story if someone wrote something extensive and you want to thank them for their thoughts/wishes, etc. But if it's a relatively generic card and salutation, to send a generic thank you back seems sort of silly to me.... ]

  12. I am waiting for a bag to arrive from Kate Spade that I got on super sale…

    http://tinyurl.com/8ytmolf

    I had been eyeing it for awhile, and with the additional 25% off it was under 200. I’m in love with croco, and have been wanting a cross body with a flap for awhile. Plus my husband encouraged me, so then I was done. It’ll fit my work calendar and my macbook air. So excited it’s coming!!

    • found a peanut :

      ooooh I really like that bag!

    • GORGEOUS

    • So pretty! And, how much do you LOVE your macbook air? I just got one for travel this past November, and have been using it constantly ever since. I am about to sell my ipad since I never ever ever use it now. At least, I would sell my ipad if I knew how to go about doing that.

      • eBay?

        • Seems hard. And, no idea how to wipe my data from it. It will probably just sit on my coffee table until it’s obsolete, then go to join my old laptops and treo in the electronics graveyard in the coat closet…

          • Take it to the apple store, they will delete all your data. Selling on ebay is not hard at all. Just create (if you don’t have one) a paypall account and an ebay account. Make sure to factor in your shipping costs.

            I have a friend who does this with her iphone everytime a new one comes out and someone in, like, Omsk or Moldova, always turns up to snap up her old phones.

          • You could also just “restore” the ipad and it will delete everything for you.

          • Okay, you’ve inspired me. I’m going to take it to the apple store (like 5 minutes from my house). I really have no excuse other than laziness!

          • How much are you thinking of selling for? I might be in the market for a 2nd hand ipad. Email me at loadedkady at gmail dot com

          • I don’t know about iPads, but I know you can sell back old model iPods to Best Buy or Amazon. It’s probably not the best price you could get (vs. eBay or Craigslist) but it’s less hassle, so that may be worth it to some people. I keep meaning to send in an old ipod touch I got free with my Macbook a few years ago and never used (currently it’s doing what you described, except under the bed instead of coat closet).

      • I went from macbook to macbook air and am totally in lurve. I just toss it into my bag for work in the morning and barely notice it. Then I don’t have to deal with the crap computers at work with stuff blocked and the janky internet explorer that they never update. Its the best!

        • I use it at home now instead of my macbook pro! it’s so light and SO fast. Love, love love. The only point of keeping the pro now is for music/picture storage.

  13. I know earlier we talked about the CPA exam. Can we discuss the CFA exam and the amount of preparation needed? I’m planning on taking level 1 this June and would like some advice on how to pace myself, studying wise. Has anyone use Schweser notes or analystnotes? Or should I be solely focusing on the CFA books? Thanks in advance!

    • I can’t speak from personal experience, but my boyfriend passed Level 1 last year using both the CFA books and the Kaplan books. He seemed to cram in all of his studying in in April & May, which I wouldn’t recommend, but he’s one of those obnoxious “never studied and got an A in Calculus without really trying” kinda people.

      He’s doing Level 2 this June and is using the same methods (minus the cramming – he’s already started reviewing!), so I guess he liked them enough to use again.

      Good luck!

  14. Fashion emergency! :

    Ugh. So in addition to the rip in my dress (see the morning thread), the heel on one of my YSL pumps just snapped. And I’m on the West Coast so I’m at work for hours. And I got 3.5 hours of sleep last night since I apparently have an insomniac for a baby. /end whiny rant/

  15. I LOVE that bag! Agh, I don’t need another bag though. Or maybe I do! I’ve been carrying the same bag to work every day for over a year now! But I bought that bag based on the premise that it would be the perfect classic everyday bag for years to come … agh.

  16. Dear gmail- I still don’t like the new look. I filled out the survey initially and it doesn’t seem like much has changed. What does everyone else think? I am really annoyed that I can see fewer emails now. It just doesn’t make sense to expand everything when more people are using laptops, netbooks, iPads, and other small devices.

    • Research, Not Law :

      Have you tried changing the sizing and layout/color options? I have my display density (look for the gear in the upper right hand corner) set to “compact” and use the plain slate blue layout. It makes a huge difference. I’m pretty comfortable now.

      I did notice a few tweaks in the first couple of months, but I couldn’t list them. Nothing dramatic.

      But the initial, default layout is terrible. I don’t know what made them think it was an improvement. I know they were going to a minimalist design, but it went too far. Everything just kind of floated aimlessly on the page. Oh well, free service.

    • I don’t really like the new look, either. I keep my inbox pretty spare–under 20 emails, preferably under 15–so I don’t mind seeing fewer emails. But I am an OCD organizational freak about email, so I have a lot of folders, and the new folder/chat sidebar is kind of wonky and cluttered. I’m also a gchat addict, so it irks me that there’s such an itty-bitty window for the chat list, so I have to scroll down to see who’s online, as opposed to just glancing over. Meh.

      • Ruby in Seattle :

        I hate the new look drastically and keep re-un-doing it. then it comes back. I too have filled out the survey. It is hard to maneuver and looks like something for tweens. Why, why?

  17. Ladies, have any of you tried Crossfit? I really need to incorporate some strength training (I run so much that I’ve definitely got some pronounced imbalances in my body), but I hate working out alone and I’m not super-fond of Cybex/Nautilus machines. However, I’m a bit leery of the culture of Crossfit, which seems a bit macho, and it also seems like maybe there’s lots of bootcamp-style-yelling. I had a lot of sports coaches who yelled as a kid, and will react badly* to having a gym trainer screaming at me. I would love to hear that this is just sort of a media distortion and that at least some Crossfit gyms are not like this, but I don’t personally know anyone who does it and so I don’t have much to go by.

    *When I was a kid, lots of coaches made me cry; as an adult, I get angry/aggressive when a person in that sort of position yells at me – the whole experience gave me a bit of a problem with authority.

    • Going anon for this b/c lots of my friends know my handle on this and I’m talking about them so want plausible deniability.

      Observations about most of my friends who do crossfit (not limited to one location, but peppered throughout the US): (1) super macho culture (2) doesn’t focus on what’s best for you but rather seeks to push you as far as you can go, sometimes to your detriment, (3) lots of yelling (but they say it’s totally worth it because they can now lift xxx lbs and before it was lower. i’m with you – not effective for me), (4) in some cases it becomes sort of cultish – some of my friends are applying crossfit to their whole lives, preaching it as the *only* good way to get [fit/disciplined/centered/you name it].

      Have you tried martial arts or boxing?

      • Ive found it very cultish… but my friend who has fully joined the cult loves it. so the cult is working for her i guess?

      • karenpadi :

        I’m a crossfit burnout–did it for 2.5 years and quit after Thanksgiving. Yes, the culture is macho. But there are gyms where the macho is not there. I think the key is to find a good gym with well qualified coaches–not just someone with only a crossfit level 1 or level 2 cert). If you are in San Jose, I highly recommend Crossfit Moxie.

        I am the kind of person where if someone yells at me to do something I don’t want to do, I stop. But with Crossfit, I wanted to finish the workout and lift the heavy weights so it wasn’t the yelling drill sargent, it was me pushing myself. It is a great workout for getting fit.

        I would say this: 1) only do the paleo diet if it works for you. 2) Never ever be afraid to scale the weight, the number of reps, or the number of rounds. 3) Allow yourself plenty of time to recover. The workouts are tough and I honestly got to the point where I refused to do any more “Hero WODs” (the really tough ones) because I thought they were just too crazy and too risky in terms of injury.

        Yes, the guys get into it and get all cult-y. But most of those guys are former couch potatoes who’ve never exercised before and this is the first time they’ve had a body with visible muscles.

        I say try it. But don’t be afraid to say “No” or “I’m done” or “I’m going to do 3 rounds instead of 5″. I had a few guidelines for myself after the first year: I wouldn’t do rope climbs; I wouldn’t do anything where someone lifted me up; I wouldn’t do more than 60 pull-ups for any given workout; I wouldn’t do sumo-deadlift highpulls over 65lbs; I wouldn’t do more than 20 GHDs or back extensions in a single round; I’d cap all workouts at 30-35 minutes and take a DNF with pride. If a coach won’t respect your boundaries, walk away. Crossfit gyms need money and don’t want to lose clients or risk bad yelp reviews.

        I did Muay Thai before crossfit. It has many of the same macho issues and “push yourself” issues.

        Now, I’m doing running and yoga. I already miss lifting weights but I like the calm pace of the class better.

        • This is really helpful. I’m not in San Jose, unfortunately, but there are a bunch of Crossfit gyms in Seattle, so I can look around.

          One of my concerns is that although I’m a super-experienced runner and know my limits on the road (I’ve been running for 21 years, and have self-trained through six marathons), I don’t have that kind of background in the gym. I am attracted to a coached environment because I need someone to tell me what’s reasonable for me. The problem is that I’m more likely to push myself too hard rather than not hard enough, and so an environment that encourages that might be problematic for me.

          If only I had a friend here who was interested in trying it with me!

        • Hee. Crossfit Moxie. Love the name. My niece is named Moxie.

          I’ve never done Crossfit, but I have friends who run a Crossfit. It does seem to be cultish. They got married recently and 90% of the guests were Crossfit devotees. It was weird.

          • Who the heck names their child moxie?

          • Is your niece Moxie Crimefighter, the daughter of Penn & Teller’s Penn Gillette?

            Aside – it appears that all the valuable information I worked so hard to learn in school and at work is being slowly but surely replaced by an ever-growing list of celebrity baby names. Soon I won’t remember things like my own name or SSN, but I’ll always be able to tell you that Gwenyth Paltrow has a daughter named Apple. Sigh.

          • @Govvie, don’t you think that’s a little bit of a nasty comment? You don’t know me or my family.

            And Moxie might be an odd name, but it suits her completely.

            No, her parents aren’t famous.

      • Yeah, so this is exactly what I’m worried about. The yelling. I was a bit of a sports prodigy, and there were far too many bullying coaches in my life. I react incredibly badly to it now (as some partners at my firm have learned to their regret).

        I studied martial arts for a couple of years, and they’re not really to my taste, unfortunately. And I think they probably wouldn’t do the kind of targeted work that I need right now, either.

    • Anonymous :

      Have you considered yoga? I know it doesn’t immediately hit you as strength-training, but it certainly is. And it might suit you better as a runner as more of an injury preventer, where CrossFit can lead to injury if you are overdoing it. I’ve done CrossFit, and think it is very effective, but perhaps not the best fit for you. I did not experience a lot of yelling, but it is certainly macho, unnecessarily competitive, and cult-like in many CrossFit gyms.

      • Second yoga. I’m primarily a runner, but doing a decent yoga workout gets my arms and back as sore as straight lifting, with the added bonuses of flexibility and (I hear, although I haven’t noticed much difference when I’m doing yoga regularly vs. when I’m not) injury prevention. Pilates could be good, too.

        I have no experience with Crossfit myself, and most of my friends run or do yoga or pilates, so I can’t speak to it specifically.

      • I love yoga, and it’s great for strengthening my core, but it hasn’t helped with the specific kinds of stuff I need (upper body, hamstrings/quads, etc.). I think that it’s not targeted/intense enough to work those muscle groups in the way that works for me, given my overdeveloped running muscles, which pull everything out of alignment.

        • Really? Huh. It’s always interesting to see how different forms of exercise work for different people :) I almost never feel yoga in my core, but my upper body is usually sore the next day.

    • Are you still in Seattle (please correct me if I’m wrong)?

      • Yes! I am. Ballard/Fremont area, but I work downtown.

        • I have alternative upper body workout: Trapeze at Emerald City. So fun, good workout.

        • i heart ballard :

          I wish I still lived in Seattle (Greenwood/Phinney)!! Ballard Health Club is awesome. There are tons of yoga classes that I used as cross-training to keep up core/arm strength & flexibility when I was running and biking a lot. MJ and I think Heather were outstanding for the classes (power of the interwebs — just checked, and both of them are still teaching there).

          And for another fun workout option, how about rock climbing? Stone Gardens is where I used to go in Seattle.

        • Sandy McSouthers :

          Oh my gosh, you’re my neighbor :)

    • Ex-Crossfit Member :

      I would attend some sample workouts at the Crossfit location you are close to, because I think it totally depends on the trainers at each location. I am not a very athletic person, but had some done organized sports and light weightlifting on machines before. I found the environment totally supportive, and there were a group of people like me, who did it just to get in shape, and a group of people who treated it like a cult and were professional weightlifters and followed the Paleo diet. Sometimes it did feel like the hardcore members resented us more laid back folks, but not to the point that I felt uncomfortable being there. There was no yelling (there was encouragement to finish the workouts and push yourself both from the trainers and other participants but more in a “cheering you on” kind of way), and there was a huge range of ability/age in the workouts.

      That being said, the lifts they have you do are very challenging and are the kind you would normally see only big hulky workout junkies do at traditional gyms. I ultimately left because I have lower back issues and the type of lifting wasn’t healthy for me, but think it is at least worth a trial run to get a feel for the environment and mentality at the Crossfit closest to you.

      • AnonInfinity :

        I agree on all accounts. I did Crossfit for a while (also a runner), but I found that I did not have time to run as many miles as I wanted while also going to Crossfit a few times per week. I loved the workouts because they were very challenging and I kind of felt like a bad-a because I could do “real lifting.” My gym had a huge variety of people. None of the instructors ever yelled at me and they were all very supportive. I am still friends with some of the people I met at the gym, even though I don’t go there any more. I think the cultish personality depends on the gym. Mine was really great.

        • Yeah, the timing is something I worry about as well. I’m running 45-50 mpw right now, so obviously I spend a lot of time doing that.

          • AnonInfinity :

            That what I was at, too. I’d spend a solid hour in the Crossfit gym at least 3 times per week — Warm up, WOD, cool down and stretch. I had to stretch very thoroughly because I was running so much and doing the weight lifting. So, add that to your running and workouts end up taking a lot of time out of your day.

            I want to get back into it one day. I’m just starting my career, though, and I want to establish myself as a complete work bad-a before adding the 2-hour workout routine back into my day.

      • This is really helpful, thanks. That’s the kind of environment that would work for me, so hopefully there is one in Seattle that’s like that.

    • I’m debating trying crossfit too. Running is my main thing, but I’m a former competitive gymnast so I literally grew up lifting weights, and the rope climbs etc don’t bother me. do you already belong to a gym? do you know anything about weightlifting? If you already belong to a gym I’d get a few sessions with a trainer, and tell her/him you’re interested in cross-fit type workouts (if you want). If weights at the gym is challenging enough for you then try cross fit.

      Also kickboxing is fun, I find it really just works shoulder (from holding your arms up for an hour) and obliques. But different gyms have different classes that incorporate weights and stuff.

      • Yeah, I belong to a gym and I worked with a trainer before I ran the Boston Marathon. I definitely like the more functional-exercise type stuff we did (kettlebells, for example) more than the machines, which is part of why I thought Crossfit might appeal to me. If I could afford to keep paying my trainer for one-on-one…but it’s hard to justify.

        • I just do 1-2 session with a trainer a year to freshen things up. If you have some base knowledge of weights/fitness you should be fine with a few session. Unless the group session things is what you’re looking for, crossfits definitely worth a try.

          I like kettlebells too, and I definitely prefer free weights to machines. If you express all this to a trainer, a competent one should be able to put together a good routine for you. I also constantly modify my “routine” or bounce between a few I kind of made for myself.

          • Yeah, I just get bored doing strength training alone. That’s why I was looking for a class setting. The group fitness classes at my gym aren’t strength-training classes (my gym kind of sucks, actually, but I have been too lazy to cancel and it’s really cheap).

          • I don’t know where to put this reply, but my gym has something called TNT Fitness. It’s basically a group personal training class. We do about 15 minutes of abs, then 30 minutes of various weight training activities – machines, free weights, bands, and also lunges, squats, etc. My trainer is very mellow, which I like. The classes add a sort of social aspect, which is nice and motivates me to go. You do have to be willing to sort of push yourself a bit – the trainer helps and tells you what to do, but isn’t hovering over you the entire time (I like this, actually). I’ve found it very effective for building strength and getting some nice muscle definition!

    • I can’t recommend Pilates enough for strength training that doesn’t bulk you up. It also works all the tiny muscles that stabilize you, which helps prevent injury during any other physical activity. I like the mat classes but love the equipment. Most studios offer group classes, so you have that element, but they keep them small enough to pay attention to your individual goals and issues.

      I have been back at it and have never been so strong or so flexible. And it’s a great compliment to any cardio workout that you choose.

      I have no patience for yelling either.

      • Re: Bulking up :

        Weight lifting doesn’t bulk women up either, unless they use steroids. Women do not have the testosterone to look like professional bodybuilders (not to mention that type of look takes years of heavy lifting & bulking/cutting cycles).

        Weight lifting makes women lean and sleek to prevent the “skinny fat” look. In other words, lifting tightens you up & increases your metabolism. If someone gets bulky while weight lifting, and this is not a desired effect, then he/she ought to lower their caloric intake. In other words, fat makes someone bulky, not muscle.

        • To a certain extent this is true, but genetics also affect where you bulk up. I can squat more than my body weight, but my legs and butt remain small for my body. When I’m more into lifting my shoulders/back get wider (this making my waist look smaller!). Also, my arms get a little bigger making some sleeves tight, but I don’t look like a body builder or anything. I currently eat about 1500-1600 calories a day and weight about 120.

  18. Hypothetical :

    Paralegal A looks at company records and finds out how much Employee B is making. Paralegal A is upset and goes home “sick”. Attorney A is promptly notified that Paralegal A is going home sick. Attorney A then learns through Attorney B, in confidence, that Paralegal A is not really sick, just upset over how much Employee B is making. Should Attorney A notify firm owner Attorney C?

    • karenpadi :

      No. Paralegal A can notify Attorney C his/her-self.

      If notifying Atty C would get Paralegal A disciplined, and that is why Atty A wants to notify Atty C, Atty A should mind his/her own business and STFU.

      • AnonInfinity :

        YES.

        Also, I don’t see anyone mentioning that Attorney A would be betraying Attorney B’s trust. Not something that typically reflects well at a law firm, where part of the point of an attorney’s job is to keep others’ confidences. (I acknowledge it was also wrong for Attorney B to say anything, but two wrongs don’t make a right.)

    • No, in my opinion- unless Paralegal A has a history of abusing sick leave. If Paralegal A was trying to make a passive aggressive statement, there’s no good in letting them succeed. If not, it’s none of anyone’s business unless there is a history of abusing sick leave. You don’t want to encourage a work culture of “snitching” and second guessing employees’ reasons for time off. Bad for morale.

      • I agree with that, though I might make an exception if this somehow really impacted the work that needed to be done right then (i.e., there was some sort of massive emergency project going on that paralegal A’s abscence caused a lot of problems with). Let it be a sick day, and don’t worry about it unless it keeps happening.

        That said, I think that this is ridiculous behavior and (assuming that we know for sure that this story is true) it might impact my ability to put my faith in Paralegal A in the future.

    • Attorney A just needs to mind her own business, as nothing good can possibly come from alerting the owner. At best, Paralegal A gets disciplined and ends up feeling betrayed by Attorney B and hating Attorney A, and at worst firm owner ends up questioning the character of a tattler who doesn’t even have first-hand knowledge of said events. If Paralegal A is that upset, it’s not like she’s going to be productively working at her desk for the rest of the day.

      Everyone is entitled to a mental health day or hours from time to time. It is not at all uncommon in my office for people to go into a meeting and come down with mysterious symptoms immediately thereafter or call in sick the next day. That’s not to say people don’t comment, but usually the comments are directed to repeat offenders who end up increasing the workload for others because they can no longer keep up.

    • Have you really never called in sick because of an emotional or personal issue?

      • This doesn’t sound like a personal issue. It is a work-related issue. Being upset that you don’t make as much as a colleague is not reason enough to go home “sick”. Plus, perhaps the higher paid paralegal has a paralegal certificate, more education or a different benefits package. I would probably just mention it to Paralegal A when she returns.

    • What is the concern here? The interpersonal dynamics just don’t seem to rise to a level that one person has to tell the owner about the drama.

      My only thought is that the way Paralegal A obtained this information is through reviewing confidential files to which s/he should not have had access. The security of personnel information is a big deal, and if that is the issue, the owner should be notified if the system has been compromised or Paralegal A has violated company policy.

  19. This is a interesteing question that I do NOT know the ansewer. I am going to bring this to the manageing partner and asek him.

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