Coffee Break – Air Tali Ballet Flat

Cole Haan Women's Air Tali Ballet Flat,Greige Suede/Dark Gull Grey Patent,11 B US - Womens Shoes Endless has a number of Cole Haan Air ballet flats marked down, including this brownish “greige” color. I like the lace-up details, as well as the mixture of patent and suede — I’d wear them with neutrals (brown, gray, beige, black, navy) as well as with some of the brighter “pops” of colors we’re seeing this season, such as royal blue or fuschia pants (if I were daring enough to wear them to the office in the first place!). The shoes were $147.50, but are now marked to $97.85. Cole Haan Air Tali Ballet Flat

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Comments

  1. I bought a pair of Cole Haan Air flats about a year ago and was pretty disappointed in them. I found the “Air” part almost unnoticeable and the sole thin enough to feel rough parts of the sidewalk through. Not what I was expecting. Too bad, because they look nice. Has anyone had better luck?

    Also, quick threadjack: can anyone recommend a pale pink nail polish for everyday wear to work? (Relatively conservative workplace.) I’ve been using Sally Hansen complete manicure in Shall We Dance?, but I’d like something with a little more coverage (ie less sheer). I have not had good luck with the durability of Essie.

    • For everyday I use a pale pink from Chanel (sorry, can’t remember the name). Two coats give a good, dense (but pale) color.

      • Amelia Pond :

        I really like the OPI It’s a Girl. It looks like the color they use for the nail base in a french manicure. The OPI breast cancer color is a bit more pink but still neutral. My absolute favorite is Essie Ballet Slippers but it can chip without a good top coat.

        • Thanks for both recs. Great name, Amelia Pond. ;)

          • Sally Hansens Complete Salon Manicure “Nude Now” or “Now nude” (i forget) – we’ve discussed this here before, but this nail polish (all the SH Complete salon man) is the greatest.

          • I have Sally Hansen Salon Manicure Nude Now, but like Cafe au Lait better from that line- wear it almost all year.

    • I had great luck with Cole Haan Air a couple years ago, but there was a definite lifespan for the “air” part. Initially (and for about a year), the shoes were very cushy and lovely to walk in. I don’t know what happened (maybe they sprang a leak?), but eventually I had to give the shoes up because not only were they no longer cushy, but they gave me shin splints every time I wore them.

      • I think the cushioning wears out with about a year of use. The same thing happens with running shoes as well. For me, Cole Haans are still much more comfortable than other flats though and worth the extra cost.

      • Shin splints? Maybe it was wearing flats after wearing heels repeatedly? I felt like I got shin splints once from wearing tall boots all night, but i think it was the extra running mileage that week.

    • Sephora Double Soy Half Caff. Obnoxious name, but I really like it.

    • Snarky In House :

      I have a TON of Zoya nail polish. You can find them online. They have over 300 colors in all sorts of shades and you can even order a color “spoon” which will show you how the color dries. Great nail polish!

      • I have gotten Zoya polishes 3 times from Birchbox and none of them have worked for me. They are too thick, chip easily, and often end up with bubbly. The testure is just all off for me.

        I am always surprised to hear people have good experiences with them and I keep giving them a chance, but I guess it’s just not for everybody.

        Oddly, Essie nail polish works great for me – no chips, no issues. I like ballet slippers for a pale pink.

        • MissJackson :

          I’m convinced that the staying power of polish depends on your personal nail bed chemistry or something. I have several friends who swear by Essie, but it chips easily for me. I have much better luck with OPI. I’ve had good luck with Butter London, too.

          Basically, I try to look for recommendations from other people who don’t love Essie on the completely unscientific assumption that we must have similar “nail chemistry”!

          • MissJackson, I’m positive you’re right. I get chips within days for any Essie polish, but have had OPI pedicures last for four weeks. These are pedicures by the same exact nail technician! Sad, because my favorite color right now is an Essie polish. I love their shades, but I’ve now sworn I won’t buy any more . . . .

        • I gave up on nail polish until I found a top coat that actually worked. (Otherwise, polish usually chips by day 2 for me.) But I really like Orly Won’t Chip, and Seche Vite makes a good one, too (although I can’t remember the name at the moment). Seriously, 7-10 days.

    • Essie does not stay on my nails either! I like Orly, OPI and China Glaze, probably in that order.

      Light pink looks terrible on my skin, but for a neutral I like Orly Toast the Couple (which is kind of a warm peachy beigey pink) or OPI Sand in my Suit.

    • Try Jennifer by Julep (can order online) – bonus of being paraben (and other nasties)-free.

    • Big fan of OPI’s “Samoan Sand.”

    • 2L Intern :

      OPI Bubble Bath!! It is fantastic.

  2. Please, can someone make the word “greige” go away? Forever?

  3. Roommate Trouble :

    Friendship/roommate-related threadjack: A few months ago, my lease on my own place ended. I was really torn on what to do, because even though I spent 7 nights a week at my boyfriend’s house and was only using my apartment as the world’s most expensive closet, I wasn’t quite ready to move in with him yet. Yet signing another lease by myself seemed like a commitment I wasn’t ready for either, because I did want to move in with him at some point. My good friend, who was living alone in a 2 bedroom, kindly offered me her second bedroom (with no lease, I just pay her rent every month I stay) in the meantime.

    Things were fantastic the first few months we lived together. Then she got a new boyfriend in November, and suddenly she’s become a major slob (or he is and she just doesn’t care). Our kitchen is regularly unuseable because of their dirty dishes and pots and pans on the stove, in the sink, and all over the counters. There’s currently empty food wrappers all over the family room. Our kitchen table is now the permanent residence of his work bag, his gym clothes/extra sweatshirts, and whatever he finds in his pockets that he no longer wants. He’s also become the unofficial third roommate, but that doesn’t bother me nearly as much as the mess and feeling there’s no room for me to live in a place that I pay rent for.

    Now, I’m only at our place for an hour or two after work everyday, and I will be officially moving in with my boyfriend this summer, but this is driving me crazy. Part of me wants to ask her to start cleaning up because this place is so messy it’s literally causing me stress. However, part of me doesn’t want to because a) we’re good friends and I’d like to stay that way after I move out and b) this is technically her place that I moved in to. I will only be here for about 9 months total or so, so I almost feel like I don’t have the right to speak up.

    Also, for those who will ask, she’s in her mid-to-late twenties. I’m a few years younger.

    What would you do in this situation?

    • To be honest, I’d be thankful she helped me out and not mention it.

      Before I answer further, are you paying half the rent or less than she is paying

      • Roommate Trouble :

        I pay 40% of the rent, she pays the other 60%.

        • I just reread that you are only there 1-2 hours a day. To be honest if I was your roommate and you asked me to clean even though I am the one who is there 23 hours a day and you just pop in once a day, especially when we made that arrangement specifically with that in mind, I’d be a little PO’d. She is def getting a good deal since you pay 40 but dont live there, but she would have the place anyway right? So its her space and you are really just renting the room. That said if you spend so much time at your bfs place anyway, maybe just move the move in date up

    • It’s possible that this is her (admittedly not very mature) way of nudging you out. If you two did not discuss how long you would be staying, and still aren’t, she may want her place back and/or be planning to invite her boyfriend to move in, but be unwilling to tell you directly. If you’re not there much, I imagine that makes it harder to talk and also makes her think that all of this matters less.

      I’m sorry, but I think you probably start thinking through your plans now so that you can stay close friends and make a smooth transition. (I think very few of us would recommend moving in with your BF immediately for logistical reasons, but then again many people who advise against this are the same people who did it themselves, and learned firsthand!) Good luck.

    • Why can’t you move in with your boyfriend now instead of waiting until summer?

      • Roommate Trouble :

        For both of us, living with your SO is a huge deal and is pretty significant. It’s a “this is the person I plan on being with forever” kind of thing, and it’s not something either of us are 100% ready to do right at this moment. While we’re very much in love and I am fairly confident that we will move in together within the coming months, we’ve only been dating for about 9 months. It’s not something I want to rush just because my roommate is driving me nuts.

        • Yep, that’s what I was getting at. I think then your options are to get your own temporary housing elsewhere, or just accept that you are more or less a guest, and as such have to live with the home as your friend chooses to maintain it.

          • Roommate Trouble :

            Looks like I’ll be sucking this one up and not saying anything (the thought of moving twice in 6 months outweighs the annoyance of an extremely messy apartment). Thanks for the perspective!

          • Research, Not Law :

            Ditto.

            I’ve been in this position myself. I’ve also been in your roommate’s position. I chose to be friendly and ignore. In my case, I moved in sooner because we were ready.

          • i’m 35 married… this makes me appreciate how much i like this stage of life.. roomate trouble ugh been through too much of that
            rarely easy way around it from what i recall

        • I’ll preface this with the caveat that you know your situation best.

          But – Find a cheap studio to stash your stuff if the current situation isn’t working. It takes the pressure off of you to rush your decision to move in together (to get away from current roommate), and provides a backstop in case the living together thing doesn’t work out.

        • But you spend 7 nights a week at the SO’s place?

          I mean this with kindness – this friend helped you out. This friend has the veto power to kick you out whenever she wants, her life has changed a great deal since she offered you the room, and she’s still allowing you to stay there. You agreed to an informal arrangement that saved you money and commitment to a lease. You got a great deal that plenty of people wish they could have. If you’re only there 1-2 hours a day, and you value this friendship, then you need to realize that you don’t really have much of a foundation regarding how the rest of the apartment is kept, and that this is only lasting a few more months at most.

          Honey, in the nicest way possible – you might want to re-read what you’ve written here. It sounds like you want to have your cake and eat it too – both with this apartment and in your relationship with the SO, and without commitment on your part to either. That is perfectly okay for you to feel, but I think you need to recognize it for what it is.

          • Roommate Trouble :

            No, you have a valid point. That’s why I posted here asking if I could/should even consider addressing it with her, because I recognize that she’s helping me out a lot. I’m a little bit nuts about courtesy/personal space (which I recognize), which is why I also asked the community here.

            Most importantly, she is a friend to me, and a good friend at that, and I’d hate to cause problems between us, so I’m not going to say anything.

          • MissJackson :

            Yep. You don’t have a leg to stand on here, I’m afraid.

            One suggestion: if you can afford it, could you offer to pay to get the apartment cleaned? Twice a month? Or even once a week? If you decide to try this, you have to be careful to bring it up in a way that your roommate does not feel judged. But it might be a way to keep things tider without creating tension. Obviously this is not going to remove the roommate’s boyfriend’s stuff — but it could get you a clean kitchen/bathroom/etc.

          • momentsofabsurdity :

            Great minds think alike MissJackson!

          • MissJackson :

            Ha! I love that we posted at almost exactly the same time, momentsofabsurdity!

    • It sounds like you’re planning to move into your boyfriend’s place, but if not, could you get your own apartment now that would be suitable for both of you if/when you decide to move in together? And yet affordable enough for you to swing on your own? Either that, or find a place to go month-to-month? You don’t want things like dirty dishes forcing your hand on a big decision like when to move in together.

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      I would not say anything in this sitch. Your friend is doing you a big favor and I think you either need to a) move out to your own apartment; b) move in with your BF earlier than planned or c) suck it up.

      HOWEVER, if the situation was totally unlivable and I felt I had to do somethign and couldn’t find another living situation, what I might offer to do is “gift” roomie with a once a week or every other week cleaning service for the lovely favor (that she really is doing for you!) of letting you live month to month there for below market rent.

      It’s passive aggressive, but less passive aggressive than doing all the cleaning yourself or leaving perky notes. I might phrase it something like “Friend, your life has gotten so busy and I love so much living here and getting to spend time with you. As a thank you for everything you’ve done, I’m getting you a maid service for a year so you don’t even have to worry about this apartment.”

      (I’d also make sure the cleaning service goes on for longer than you plan to stay so it’s clear it’s not “just” for you!)

      • Roommate Trouble :

        That’s actually not a bad idea! I like the idea of a cleaning service coming once in awhile. I’ve actually commented that BF and I will be getting a maid when we move in together (to prevent us from killing each other), so maybe I could hire someone under the pretense of finding a service that I like for future use?

        Oh, and I don’t know if it’s how I worded my original post, but I want to clarify that I cover 40% of the rent for our 2-bedroom (and I have the smaller bedroom, no parking spot, etc). It’s obviously cheaper than me living alone again, but I pay what I would if I lived with any other roommate (which I did consider). The obvious benefits of living with her are me not having a committed year-long lease and not living with a random stranger, both of which I am really grateful to her for. I just don’t want people to think I’m getting a steal on rent and saving all of this money while whining about her being messy.

        • Anonymous :

          I’d be seriously annoyed if her living style dramatically changed just due to a boy. Yes, she helped you out when you were in a bind, and yes, this is a month-to-month situation, but you are forking over a substantial amount of the rent each month and should therefore should be granted habitable conditions. If you’re a neat freak, maybe try to review things with a grain of salt (this is coming from a neat freak), but it sounds as though she is really being disrespectful of you and your space no mater how few hours you spend there. Given that you are friends, and friends should be able to have a rational conversation with one another, I would just be honest with her. First, tell her how grateful you are that she agreed to take you in and tell her how much you care about your friendship. Then say that you hope things are working out in her perspective and give her a timeline on how long you hope to stay and make sure this works for her. Then I would carefully mention that while you truly value your arrangement, you’ve noticed things have been slipping in terms of cleanliness, and it’s stressing you out a little. Ask her if she’s noticed it too, and what she thinks of the situation. You can say that you recognize she may think you didn’t notice/don’t care since you’re rarely there, but that you do notice it and don’t want to feel like you have to stay locked in your room to avoid the clutter or constantly eat out/avoid cooking to avoid the kitchen mess. See if she and her bf would be willing to pitch in. I wouldn’t bring up the fact that he’s the de facto 3rd roommate, but I would ask her to see if he can’t pitch in too since he’s always around. That’s only fair.

          • Notalawyer :

            Could the boyfriend passive-agressively be trying to get you to move out earlier? Possibly with intent to take over that ‘extra’ bedroom himself?

            If he’s not just a plain old slob, of course.

            I’m wondering if that is why their is such a mess consistently left in the ‘shared’ area.

        • I think being honest and respectful with your roommate is a lot easier than harboring resentment and staying silent.

          “Hey Mary, I know I’m only here a few hours a day, but I’d really like to use the kitchen table during that time. Do you think you could ask Jack to move his stuff?”

          She may say, “He’s here more than you, so suck it up,” but at least you’re giving her the opportunity to make you feel better. And if she wants to stay your friend, she’ll at least acknowledge your feelings about it.

      • I used to be reallllyyy messy (still somewhat but husband trained me a lot)… I would get really annoyed with roomates’ expectations. if they wanted it so clean they could clean themselves. maybe that was a wrong attitude, but i remember thinking ‘i’m tired/busy/drunk whatever and want to go to bed, not vacuum/do dishes right now. who cares.’

        • You’re right, that really is a bad attitude.

        • How long did the training take? Thank you for reminding me that many of my perceived barriers to a relationship can be dealt with, but they take work.

          • I understand how someone can think it’s a bad attitude, but honestly if you were raised in a messier environment and don’t know any different, it doesn’t make sense to you. Kind of like people who save all their money vs. people who spend it all fearing it’ll be gone if they don’t, or such.

            My ‘training’… some years. My husband’s parents keep their house like a museum. Seriously, there is no clutter, it hardly looks like people live there. They eat, they wash the dish before they are done. So when he saw my ‘cozy’ style, he would just go bonkers. It’s funny because he STILL thinks I am messy, but I am 95% cleaner than I used to be 10 years later! There are certain things that he hates the most-balled up tissues laying around for example. So I try to focus on those things most. But generally, I put stuff away, and have a ‘messy room’ where I get dressed and pack etc and he doesn’t like to go in there. He has to live with sub-par perfection, but he is also funny because he is messy in his own ways and doesn’t realize it. Clutter piles are okay and he never wipes down surfaces. It’s the random things setting about that are his touch points. Had I not been willing to try, it would have been a major strain. Now I’m used to it and like things being more tidy- can’t imagine making the nests that I use to dwell in. Clothes covering the floor, a week of dishes, etc.

            But- I do think it’s unreasonable for others to demand a certain particular standard of cleanliness beyond what’s basic. Some people like to make a house schedule. I like hiring a person to come every two weeks. Who I do a big straigtening-up for the night before.

          • Also we do have a very clear division of labor on who does what- which helps a lot. there’s no ‘why won’t she do this sooner’. it’s ‘that’s my job’ or ‘when do you think you can get to abc xyz, dear?’

          • Also, we do have a very clear division of labor on who does what- which helps a lot. there’s no ‘why won’t she do this sooner’. it’s ‘that’s my job’ or ‘when do you think you can get to abc xyz, dear?’

    • Community Mediator :

      If you can’t have a heart-to-heart with her – and hear her side, too – are you worried? That her behavior indicates this haven isn’t stable? Is this what she signed up for?

      Does that 40% cover everything and you’re in a smaller room? If so, and you’re putting out the trash a few times a week I wouldn’t be so quick to to stoke resentment by not saying anything.

      Community mediation might be a way to have a more balanced conversation about it and maybe remain friends.

      Maryland community mediation is one program, and it’s low/no cost – most use a facilitative model, so participants determine their solutions. There are other county programs

      Just a thought.

      • Anonymous :

        Any chance she’s lonely? Feeling financial stress?

        Have you been solid on “I will be here until X date?”

        You don’t have to spell out cleanliness, but if she can have BF over, but you are reluctant to have yours/your family over…you might need a plan.

    • I’d mention something since it’s bad enough that you’re so bugged by it, but not make it a huge issue… for example, bring home some cleaning supplies or bust out what’s already there and some 80s music and invite her to a cleaning/dance party. maybe say something after about how you’re super stressed at work and are finding that coming home to a clean, serene space for a couple hrs before leaving is all that’s saving your sanity.

      Hopefully she’ll get the hint, keep it clean, and you can bond over the process

  4. Threadjack, based on this morning’s discussion:

    Does anyone have advice on dealing with mortgage brokers/getting pre-qualified/getting a mortgage?

    I’d also love recommendations for specific people in NYC/Brooklyn…

    Thanks!

    • Check out brownstoner.com for threads on this. Also, Adam Dahill (who posts regularly on brownstoner) is a mortgage broker in Brooklyn who comes highly recommended by those who have used him.

    • Research, Not Law :

      The extent of my advice is to (a) get one, (b) get recommendations, and (c) no matter the recommendation, go with your gut.

      We’ve done it with and without a broker, and we’ll definitely never go without again. We started with one broker based on a string of recommendations, but we didn’t have a good feeling about the offers and switched to a broker who literally cold called. He was great to work with and got us a good loan. Later, people who had recommended the first broker became very dissatisfied.

      • Hmm- I feel the opposite. Bought in Brooklyn years ago, broker charged extra fees and screwed us on a loan we didn’t understand- and he was through my employer well-trusted. (we are both lawyers not dumb- it was sneaky behavior). You DO NOT need a broker- you can research mortgage rates and call banks/credit unions easily yourself. And save lots of money. I do not understand why people use them. I did because I didn’t know any better at the time.

        I have bought another place since then and refinanced twice- so easy to do online yourself.

    • MaggieLizer :

      Ditto the above. I found the broker I posted about yesterday through two recommendations – my firm and my realtor. Even given the glowing recommendations we just don’t communicate very well (obviously). If he’s not communicating with me now, I really don’t trust that he will communicate with me when it’s time to sign a mortgage, so I’m going to be looking for someone else. Just be aware that they have to check your credit to give you a pre-approval, and too many inquiries can negatively impact your credit score.

    • When we began searching, we just wanted to have a pre-approval in hand to bolster any offers so we went to Citibank and just worked with the guy whose name they gave us. He was really responsive, answered all of my questions, even the neurotic ones that the lawyer in me would come up with in the middle of the night, and basically helped guide us through the process. He stayed in touch through a year-long search. We finally found an apartment, and my lawyer said we needed to shop around for a mortgage. I felt bad like I was cheating on him, but I called a few brokers and a few other banks for quotes. A few just rubbed me the wrong way, and a few others seemed fine but the terms weren’t as good as Citibank’s. So we’re going with them, and it’s been smooth sailing so far – the application is in underwriting at the moment, so no word on how they are with closings. But everything is moving quickly. You just need to find someone that you feel comfortable with and who is responsive.

  5. Children's Book :

    I am looking for the title of a children’s book, and I would love it if someone could help, since my memory is failing. (I am coming up with a list of books to get my niece.)

    This book is about a girl who lives on a farm, and then a beast comes, and her family is scared and hides, but she ventures into the barn and finds the beast, who it turns out is scared and trapped, and she lets the beast go off into the night.

    Anyone else remember this book?

    • If nobody comes up with anything, this website looks like it might be able to help.

      http://logan dot com/harriett/stump dot html

    • Anne Shirley :

      Yesssssssssssss I loved this one! The name of the book is “The Beast” and I have a copy of it in my parent’s basement. My mother is going to check the author for you tomorrow, so try and check back here late tomorrow night if you haven’t turned it up.

      • Children's Book :

        Thanks so much! I am looking online and I wonder if it is out of print (or maybe there are just too many books with “the beast” in the title)….

  6. Pointless vent/whine: Someone stole my coat. Yes, I left it in a restaurant – for about 20 minutes at lunch today. Gone. Further whining: I gained weight last year and it was the ONLY coat I own that fits. More whining: I live in the sticks and new coat buying is going to involve an expedition to a city. That is all. Oh, except for the fact that I really, really hate thieves anyway and today especially. Now, that is all.

    • That’s terrible. I’m so sorry. I would be so frustrated too.

    • Can't wait to quit :

      Could it be that someone took it by accident? Years ago, a friend of mine hung up her long, navy blue wool overcoat in a bar. When she looked for it at the end of the night she found that her coat was gone, but a similar, but much newer, coat was hanging very close by. She took the stranger’s coat, but told the bartender, figuring that the person who took the wrong coat would come back in looking for the new coat and they would exchange. That never happened, and she just kept the other coat. Make sure to let the lunch place know so that if someone brings your coat back they know how to get in touch with you.

      • haha this happened with my college roommate with a denim jacket in nyc! everyone stored their coats behind the DJ booth! My roommate was also in the process of losing weight so the replacement jacket was a few sizes smaller but worked for her, so the person who took hers was probably swimming in it!

    • another anon :

      (1) If you really liked the coat, check nearby dumpsters. It could be that someone snatched it hoping that there was a wallet or something else valuable in the pocket, and they will discard it once they realize there’s nothing of real value.

      (2) If you don’t find it, yeah, that’s annoying. But it’s pretty late in the season, so you should be able to get a good deal on a new one. I think I saw some emails from Lands’ End recently about all their outerwear being marked down–and if you order online and get expedited shipping, no trip to the city will be necessary.

    • That sucks!

      If you have homeowner’s or renters’ insurance, check to see if it’s covered. They may cover thefts away from the home. (Or if you have a receipt, it’s possible that your credit card company may refund you if it was a recent purchase.)

      • Though this is generally a good idea, I would bet that the deductible on any insurance policy would cost more than most coats (not to mention the risk of a increase in your annual charge next year…)

        But it is true that people frequently don’t think about this as an option when something is stolen. :-)

  7. Research, Not Law :

    How frustrating! I used to live where shopping was not an option, so I feel for you!

    Thankfully it sounds like nothing of value was in the coat.

    • :( that sucks. you might find a good coat second hand, I have found several that way .

      My wallet and husband’s hat were stolen WHILE we were eating at a restaurant in Montreal last fall while I was on business travel and pregrant. It was awful. What’s with these inside thieves?

  8. Hey NYC Corporettes,

    Our school is doing a trip to New York City next weekend and I haven’t been there in years. Aside from the shopping and sights, are there any interesting things a law student should check out?

    Also, I know this is a long shot, but if any lawyers would be willing to meet me for lunch and talk about the prospective legal market in New York, let me know :-) I don’t have any connections in NYC and it would be great to meet up with some of you.

    • MeliaraofTlanth :

      Are you going to be here on the friday or monday, or just the weekend? If it’s a weekday: While I’ve never thought of it as a tourist thing, since you’re a law student, if you’ve got time and are downtown, you should pop in 60 Center. It’s New York Supreme Court-Civil Division (“Supreme” in New York being the trial level court.) The front is what you always see in Law and Order (or basically any legal show that needs a courthouse), and the Rotunda of the building has really awesome art. It wouldn’t take long at all to see and is worth it if you’re nearby. (I’m assuming the court is completely closed on the weekends. Maybe they do pre-arranged tours?)

    • here’s a group for NYC corporetters http://www.facebook.com/groups/269707296396538/

  9. Charitable Giving :

    What percentage of your income do you donate to charity? I have just started a relatively high-paying job, and I have pretty low expenses (although I am trying to save a lot). I am thinking of donating a fixed amount at every pay period that will come out to 2.5% or 3% of my total salary (pre-tax). Am I being overly cheap or generous? I am just wondering what others do, and I think it might be easier to compare online and anonymously than to go around asking my coworkers (some of whom have kids, loans, etc.).

    • I tithe (meaning 10% pre-tax) to my church and then do some charitable giving on top of that. It probably comes out to about 12% pre-tax or so. It’s hard to compare, really, because of religious differences. Some of my tithe goes to support the church (pastoral staff’s salary, air conditioning, etc.), which you may or may not agree with, but a lot of it (hopefully most of it) goes to the soup kitchen we support, mission trips building wells in third world countries, etc.

      • Mine is about 12% as well, for the same reasons.

      • I basically do what b23 does, but distributed differently. So, I aim to give 5% to my church and 5% to other charities in an organized fashion, but I sometimes do spur-of-the-moment things. So, total it works out to about 12%. I also do this for religious reasons.

        I don’t think there’s a specific right amount to give, though. What can you afford? What causes are you passionate about? Do you know people who genuiniely need help? (I think this creates a greater obligation.) Are there things you spend money on that you don’t really need, or that don’t improve your life, that you could cut out and donate that extra money to charity?

        Whatever you decide, I think it’s great that you’re thinking about this. I often wonder if I’m doing this the right way, too.

    • Give what you are comfortable with. A lot of people don’t give anything, and a lot of people tithe 10% or more. So don’t look at what other people are doing. Just do something that is a meaningful amount for you and give it to a well-run charity that supports a cause you believe in.

      If you truly feel like you need to find the “right” amount, look into a charity where certain amounts supposedly fund a particular item. (E.g., heifer.org says $500 will fund a cow for a poor family in another country, which can be used to provide milk for the family and their neighbors).

    • Right now I’m taking charitable giving out of my “fun money” (5% of every paycheck that I can spend on absolutely anything with no guilt) and it adds up to roughly 20% of the fun money. Compared to my total salary it’s a small percentage, but I feel good knowing I’m doing something to help my community.

      I just started giving to charity (it was a New Year’s resolution, along with paying off 2 of my student loans!), and based my amounts on what funds certain things like Homestar suggests. So if the local food bank says $15 = 40 meals, you can base your donation off that. Also consider that many charities already have set amounts you can choose from if you set up a monthly deposit to them.

    • My goal is to give 10%, not as a tithe, but as charitable donations to a mix of local, national, and international groups. I usually don’t make it, although it sure seems like I’m giving a ton away. :)

      I also volunteer a significant amount of my time to pro bono legal clinics, etc.

    • I have a moderate income and high debt, and proportionately high living expenses because I’m in an expensive city. I give about 1% of my income. I give a fixed amount to my church and as an alumni donation to my university, and the rest ad-hoc to local charities.

      • I’m more in this camp- I gave and volunteered a lot during earlier years; now although we are doing well, I am more focused on paying down my own debts and building some savings- lessons learned about what happens when you don’t have that. There isn’t a right or wrong here objectively speaking. Nice if you can/want to do it but it’s also okay, and often good, to care for your own family.

    • I don’t work in law (I make about 50k/yr before taxes at best) and have divided it as such: 5k to max my ROTH IRA, 5k to charities of my choosing, then last year I put 10k in to pay off credit card debts accrued while in school (In other words, I probably took home about 35k and 20k was spoken for that way, leaving me just over 1k/month to live on… which is why it’s not so bad while I’m on unemployment, except that I don’t have as much for my ROTH, I am simply donating more time to the charities this year.)

      In terms of charities, I chose to do it a few ways; 1 big charity (Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS), one smaller non-profit that works with low-income youth (Royal Family Productions), and then holiday gifts or birthday gifts are donations made in the person’s name to a charity representing something about that person (feeding the hungry for the friend who’s a chef, etc.). Not only am I giving, it’s all tax-deductible!

      Hope it helps!

    • After tax, 5% to the Catholic Church, 5% to Planned Parenthood Fund specific to offset birth control costs and yearlys, and 2% to local legal aid. Then probably less than one percent for people raising money for various things such as running a marathon for St. Jude’s Children’s hospital or cancer research. I used to give specifically to the Komen, but they actually have a lot of money. Then I volunteer my time with legal aid and with a local animal shelter. I know that those first two conflict, but at very different times in my life those organizations really helped me. So, I live the oxymoron. Don’t tell the pope.

      • I love that you donate to both the church and planned parenthood. And I won’t tell the Pope on you.

      • Just wanted to say – I love the combination of charities to which you donate, and my charitable contributions portfolio looks very, very similar. And for similar reasons! We will keep it a secret from the Pope.

      • I’m conflicted about the Catholic Church. I’m not Catholic, but there are a lot of services in my community that wouldn’t exist without Catholic Social Services. Same for Salvation Army.

        So, as an attorney that represents people whose lives are much improved by Catholic Social Services, thanks for your contribution. :)

    • Oh.so.tired :

      I give 10% pre-tax income. I think this is pretty common – 10% of income (christian tithe) or 2.5% of capital (muslim zakat). That being said, give whatever you can comfortably give and feel good about. I’m a law student, so my pre-tax income is really low, wish I could give more, but I make up what I can’t donate in money with volunteering.

  10. Just wanted to come on the hive and share some good news. We had an offer accepted on a house today! We’ve been looking for almost a year, so it was great to finally find something priced right, with most of our wish list. Even better, we used only 70% of our budget, which means I get to decorate the hell out of the house with all new furniture. And, I finally get to live with my husband again and pay only one house payment. A great, great day.

  11. Snarky In House :

    I have great news that I need to SQUEAL about…

    I was offered the position at the other company I’ve mentioned before!! It’s a “soft” offer so far – I haven’t had anything in writing – but it’s because we’re discussing salary (which is so awkward to do!)…

    The plan is to have everything wrapped neatly and offer in writing, in hand tomorrow!!
    YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I cannot tell you how happy it makes me to know that I’ll only have a small amount of time left where I am!!!

    EEEEEEEEEEEE! (sorry)

  12. Any UES Corporettes in the market for an evening running partner? I much prefer to run after work, but have been struggling with motivation since it’s so dark and gloomy by the time I leave. It’d be lovely to have some company! If you’re interested, shoot me an email and I’d be happy to give you a few more details (time, distance, all that goodness).

  13. hellskitchen :

    Need advice about Clinique’s Almost Lipstick in Black Honey. I got one thanks to the generous corporette who shared a free shipping code last week. I like the texture and the color but on my dark skin, it looks more sheer than I want. Are there other colors in this line that are darker than Black Honey? Or should I switch to a different formula instead of Almost Lipstick?

    • Formerly Preggo Angie :

      I believe Clinique just came out with new colors in the “Black Honey” line. You could also try coloring your lips in with a darker lipliner and then put the Black Honey over it.

    • When I heard clinique was coming out with more almost lipstick shades I was super excited too (I currently have black honey and wanted something more pigmented.) Then I saw the colors, and it looked like black honey was the darkest one, so I didn’t try any other colors. And by the way I’m straight up white (or so I’m told) with mediumish skin and pretty pigmented lips. I have a covergirl luxe balm in cabernet or merlot, and their lipslicks in a dark bronze color, which are nice colors, but the I like the clinique almost lipstick formula more.

      so if you find a better pigmented balm please pass it along! I also used that code (to get toner) and got the sample of the long last lipstick and liked the way that felt on my lips, so I might explore those colors more at a counter.

      • hellskitchen :

        I hear you on the clinique formula… I have a bunch of other pigmented lip balms and lipsticks but AL is by far the best feel/texture I have tried. Good to hear about the long last lipstick – I’ll check it out. Am also going to try their butter shine line… I read an online review that said it feels like almost lipstick but with less sheer. If I can find the right colors it in, it might just be the perfect thing. Will keep you posted, Red.

      • Revlon lip butter is insanely pigmented and has great reviews.
        I have darkish lips and usually lipstick color looks less intense on me… not this one! I needed a cool pink and got the Lollipop shade. When I tried it, it was the most crazy bright, neon, Barbie pink, so I washed it off in a hurry.
        But – it felt great on the lips, and there are more office-appropriate shades. Just bear in mind that it may be brighter on your lips than what you see in the tube.

  14. I have an interview tomorrow with another division of the State agency I work for. I’ve been in my division for 5 years (since I became a lawyer) and am really burned out. I really want this position but don’t have any relevant experience. How do I downplay my lack of experience and play up my enthusiasm?

    • don’t downplay it. play up what you do have to offer: inside knowledge of the org and its people, workings, culture; skills that transfer; demonstrated track record etc. it isn’t often about the relevant subject matter experience but rather the fit and comfort level with you. good luck!

      can’t hurt as a back up though to show some demonstrated research or interest in the new field, even if intended (eg i plan to do xyz to get up to speed…)

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