Coffee Break: Avie Heels

blue stripey heelsWhat fun heels! I’m loving these gorgeous striped heels from L.K. Bennett, also available in a red version, as well as flats. This is the perfect kind of shoe to wear with a really neutral outfit, like a black dress or a simple suit. On the converse, if you wanted to turn it up a notch, it’s always fun to mix patterns. Try the shoe with a polka-dotted blouse, or even perhaps a long scarf with a big floral pattern. The pictured heels are $425, just over 3″, and selling out fast. L.K. Bennett Avie Color Block Suede Heels

It’s hard to find a similar but more affordable option, but: here’s an $89 stripey heel (sizes 4.5-11!), and this $69 heel has some fun patterns. If you need/prefer wide sizes, this affordable slingback looks kind of awesome.

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(L-all)

Comments

  1. Wild Chicken :

    Oh! Those shoes are really . . . interesting.

    • This is one pair that I could NOT wear in the office. They are way to fashioney for me. If I worked for a cosmetic company or mabye a fashion department, then I could, but as an attorney at law, duly admitted and in good standeing under the laws of the state of New York, I am BOUND to excercise my fiducieary responsibilities in good order, and that mean’s dressing in a way that uphold’s my position. YAY!!!

      • Shopaholic :

        Lol I love the idea that Ellen can’t wear fun shoes because they violate her fiduciary responsibilities but she can overbill.

    • hoola hoopa :

      I really love them!

    • Senior Attorney :

      OMG love!

      I wouldn’t spend that much for pumps but those are mighty tempting..

  2. Anonymous :

    I want a pair of LK Bennetts sooooo bad (totally influenced by Kate Middleton). Out of my budget though.

    Can anyone recommend inexpensive, comfortable earbuds? I use them for listening to music at work and the Apple earbuds hurt my ears after an hour.

    • Mrs. Jones :

      Yurbuds.

    • I feel like I post these weekly on here haha. They’re great for exercising because they fit snugly and they come with three different size tips for a custom fit.

      Panasonic ErgoFit In-Ear Earbud Headphones RP-HJE120-K (Black) Dynamic Crystal Clear Sound, Ergonomic Comfort-Fit https://www.amazon.com/dp/B003EM8008/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_awd_bOx.wbVF9XR1Q

      • Anonymous :

        $6!! Thanks!

      • Yes, these!!

      • Coach Laura :

        Yep I got them at your suggestion on 3/4/16 and love them! For some reason, the material in the cord doesn’t catch on my coat (using headphones on commute either walking or on bus/train and old ones would catch and pull out of my ear) so no more trying to keep them in while walking or turning my head.

    • I asked a similar question a couple of weeks ago and bought the Yurbuds based on recommendations. I really like them, and they’re the first earbuds I’ve used that actually stay in my ears.

  3. Miz Swizz :

    Graduation gift help needed! Our student worker is graduating with his bachelors degree in May and going to law school. I’m in charge of our office gift and I’d really like to get him something with the school logo that would be practical. Would a leather portfolio be useful in law school? If it were just me, I’d probably give money or a giftcard but because it’s an office gift I’m having a hard time finding options.

    • Maybe it’s just personal, but I feel like school logo stuff is for parents and alumni. Not very cool if you’re a current student. I’m sure it varies by region though.

    • Anon in NYC :

      Are people in your office opposed to a money/giftcard gift? Because that’s what I wanted/needed in law school. You could get one to the school’s bookstore, if that makes it more palatable to your coworkers.

      • lawsuited :

        +1 A giftcard for the school bookstore would be helpful to him/her to offset the considerable cost of textbooks, and assuage concerns that your cash will be spent on beer or cellphone bills.

        If you really want to give an item rather than cash or cash equivalent, an external hard drive was very useful to me in law school for backing up my notes/outlines. (Include a gift receipt so he/she can exchange it for another tech item if he/she already has an external hard drive.) A friend of mine didn’t back anything up during our first and was majorly freaking out when 3 dropped a can of diet coke on her laptop 3 weeks before our 100% final exams.

      • Miz Swizz :

        This student has worked in our office for 3 years and done a great job and I want to make sure we get him something nice to remember us by if we aren’t giving cash or card. I’m not 100% clear on the finances but I think we have a budget line for “staff appreciation” that we can use for his gift and I think cash/giftcard would get us in some trouble since it’s office money. There’s also a culture of giving something with our logo to graduating students and he’s the first one in my time here that has plans to go to straight to school.

        • lawsuited :

          I didn’t realize that your office is at the undergraduate school and that’s the school logo you were referring to. I have a leather portfolio with my law school logo on it that someone gave me that I use very infrequently (maybe 5 times in the last 5 years) if the leather portfolio with my firm logo portfolio is MIA, but I wouldn’t use one with my undergraduate school logo. He won’t use a leather portfolio at all in law school – he’ll take notes on his laptop – so they’re really only useful for carrying an extra resume when he’s interviewing or taking notes in court or at a meeting once he’s working, and he’ll more likely use a law school or firm branded one for that.

      • Anonymous :

        My coworkers did this when I went to law school and it was the BEST THING EVER. Ended up with like $350 to my school’s bookstore. Was super helpful.

    • Maddie Ross :

      I got a leather portfolio as a graduation gift before I went to law school and I know it was super nice and super expensive, but I never used it. Even on the rare occasion I thought I needed a padfolio for something I usually just carried a cheap (non-leather) one that I got at staples. I would definitely do a gift card or money. Maybe with something that is reminiscent of your organization or group as a memento?

    • Anonymous :

      I bought a leather portfolio/padfolio for myself when I was interviewing and used it to carry my resume etc in. I think it’s a good gift.

    • purplesneakers :

      As someone in grad school, I would recommend (depending on your budget) a small token gift and the rest in cash/a GC. A Pilot Metropolitan fountain pen (around 20 bucks on Amazon) is a good ‘classy’ gift for not much money.

      • Anonymous :

        I feel like a fountain pen is way less useful than a portfolio.

        • Anonymous :

          I would second a leather portfolio, but not with a logo on it. It’s not professional enough to bring to interviews and such. I would have much preferred a gift card to Amazon or the bookstore.

    • I would go with a gift certificate to the bookstore and a really nice travel mug. I personally didn’t like (still don’t) using School Logo Stuff b/c it just felt pretentious.

    • In the Pink :

      Levenger has nice glass paperweights with University pictures on them. They also have other collegiate items.

    • When I graduated, my work study gave me a school frame for my diploma (they also wanted or had to get something from the bookstore). It was pretty expensive and I really appreciated it since I either would have not bought anything or got a really cheap one. 15 years later, it still hangs in my (personal) office.

      • When I graduated med school, someone had my diploma framed by the campus bookstore for me (they did framing there) and it was a lovely gift, expensive, and something I wouldn’t have done for myself. Its been a few years and I still think of it and smile when I see it hanging on the wall. Maybe you could pre-pay for a frame and framing?

    • AttiredAttorney :

      My law school gives all new students a leather padfolio with the school logo on it on the first day of new student orientation, so I would avoid this. I think a giftcard to the school bookstore (or to amazon) would be more useful. If you want something cute to wrap up with it, a law school survival kit with lots of highlighters, travel mug, coffee, etc would be fun.

      • lawsuited :

        +1 to highlighters! I spent so much money on my “favourite” highlighters in law school it was embarrassing.

    • hoola hoopa :

      I did find a gifted leather portfolio helpful (and actually still use it occasionally ~20 years out of school), but a GC to the next school’s bookstore would have meant a lot to me. It’s practical and thoughtful.

      If you do get a leather portfolio, I’d skip the school logo. I’m proud of my undergrad school and my affiliation is helpful for networking, but it’s definitely not my style to walk around with it front and center. I also think a more generic portfolio works best over time (interviewing post-graduate school, conferences as a professional, etc), when I’m less associated with the school.

    • Miz Swizz :

      I work in higher ed and it’s very normal to see people at meetings with leather portfolios from their previous institutions (alma mater or prior work) but I had a feeling that’s less the case in the law world. Looks like my gut was right and I really appreciate the input!

      • Anonymous :

        Maybe his initials instead of the alma mater?
        I’m a big fan of my two leather portfolios. I got one in high school and still use it. I carried it to every law school interview and used it in moot court, too.

      • If you want to give something with the school logo on it, maybe a coffee tumbler or a laptop bag/sleeve might be used more than a padfolio. Possibly a diploma frame with the school logo on it would also be good to hold the ug diploma.

  4. Anon for sure :

    Looking to spice up my and FH’s happy but vanilla sex life. Any suggestions would be much appreciated and happily put to use during our honeymoon next month.

    Particularly interested in couple-friendly vibes. 50% off at jimmyjane today!

  5. So anon for this :

    So I married my ex-husband a couple of years out of college, then we had 3 kids in pretty rapid succession. He went off to law school when our youngest was 2 and I worked/supported him during that time (when he wasn’t pulling in a salary). He graduated high in his class and went into biglaw. Things were bad between us when he was in law school, got worse when he was working, even though I stopped working (for a while) and became a SAHM. I think much of what made our marriage implode was just the years of constant struggle we went through when we were raising our three young kids on my very low income (our children had some health issues when they were young too, which definitely didn’t help things).

    Fast forward to today. We’ve been divorced for 3 ish years, our kids are almost all grown (youngest is in HS), he’s about to be made partner at his firm and he recently got remarried. I’ve had some dates, nothing serious. Divorce was not awful, but not great either. But recently, I’ve been seeing photos of him with his new wife where he writes things like, “finally spending the holidays with the love of my life.” I’m not facebook friends with him, but he tags our daughters, and I see these pictures through them. He and his new wife also taking fabulous vacations that we could only dream of when we were married.

    I’m just stewing with anger? jealousy? about this. There’s still a part of me that still thinks of him as (a) love of my life, and I can’t help be bitter that of course his new life is so much better since he doesn’t have the burden of money worries and baby worries that we did. Talk me off the ledge?

    • Anonymous :

      He’s your EX for a reason. And I’m sure there are MANY reasons he is (his talent for being generally inconsiderate, perhaps?). I feel anger at these kinds of posts too. You may be have to temporarily block the kids until you can see a picture of him (and whatever douchey thing he’s written) without wanting to smash your computer with rage. That day will come — it’s just not today.

    • I think it’s good to accept these feelings within yourself. Acknowledge them, sit with them for a few minutes, then talk back to them and tell them they’re dismissed.

      Case in point: Yesterday my FB was covered with that copy & paste “ok ladies, if you have a wonderful man who stands by you and supports you and lifts you up, post him now! Copy & paste so everyone knows how wonderful your man is to you!” I very nearly hurled my phone across the room. Instead, I sat quietly and I acknowledged that I’m divorced and single and don’t want to be, and that my marriage was never even good enough to merit that glowing description when I was married. I let myself feel pity and anger for a minute or two. And then I told myself that my current situation is temporary, that I am a wonderful woman and my status is no reflection on that, and I moved on.

      There, I figure that’s at least 3 sessions of therapy I’ve saved you ;)

      On a related topic, have you considered therapy? It helps SO MUCH. The ladies here basically talked me into it and it’s changed my life. I thought I was fine before, and I was, but this makes it great.

      • Anonymous :

        I’m happily married but I really think most people who post “OMG my marriage is sooooooooooooo amazing!” are trying to convince themselves of that fact. It’s anecdata to be sure, but the people I know who seem the happiest in real life rarely post on social media about their spouse, except for maybe the occasional anniversary post, and MANY of those people who post “my hubby is the best!!!! <3<3<3" every single day have gotten divorced. I really just hate social media in general. It's so artificial. Everything is filtered and curated, and you give off whatever image you want to give off. But looking through other's feeds inevitably makes normal people feel bad because nobody has a life that is as perfect as it appears on Instagram and Facebook.

        • I’ve heard that before. But this was posted by close friends whose marriages I have a front row seat to, and I know they’re rock solid. I really was jealous and angry and full of self-pity.

          But to counter your anecdata, the people I know with great marriages really do talk about how wonderful their spouses are. It’s never in the juvenile “my marriage is soooo wonderful!!!” way, but in a “Jim is super dad! Took Junior to practice and made dinner and helped Susan with her homework and got the big presentation done at work while I had the flu! Thanks, honey!” way. It may be in person and not on social media, but the strongest marriages I know involve public praise. Silence is a warning sign, at least in my circle.

          • Anonymous :

            I think in person praise is totally different, and I agree if your friends aren’t enthusiastic about their spouses when you hang out, it’s probably a sign the marriage is not in great shape. But I just don’t feel the need to tell my 600 facebook “friends” (some of whom are professional contacts and many of whom I barely know) about every nice thing my husband does for me. The social media bragging just seems incredibly juvenile to me, and fortunately many of my close friends seem to agree. I “unfollow” the worst offenders, because I really don’t want to hear that kind of persistent gushing about “hubby” from anyone except my best friends and my best friends don’t do stuff like that.

        • Agreed, the best marriages in my friends (& myself?) are not posted about on facebook. Whenever I see the “So blessed” and “my husband is my best friend!” posts I assume things are bad. Surely your ex knows you’ll see those updates through your kids? I’d accept your feelings, don’t try to unfeel them. They aren’t bad. But use them to inform how you act next.

    • Anonymous :

      Your feelings seem totally normal. I’d deactivate your facebook account if I were you. I think there might also be a way to block him so that you don’t see anything he posts, even if he tags one of your kids. I’m sorry. I think a social media detox will help, as will time. 3 years divorced is pretty short in the big scheme of things.

      • Anonymous :

        Yes, right click the post and select the “Hide all from EX-HUSBAND” option. Then you should never have to see anything from him again.

      • Baconpancakes :

        I know it’s too late for you, but PSA for everyone else, Facebook has a new Breakup feature for when you change your status to “single.” It gives you the option to “Take a Break” from seeing anything connected to your ex for a specific amount of time.

    • Anonymous :

      I think you know the answer to this: we aren’t ever happy by comparing what we have to what we’d prefer and what we might have hoped for once.

      Envy is the killer of joy. It is a thief. Look forward, put your blinders on, and go on.

      Maybe with a pedicure and a trashy magazine.

    • lawsuited :

      You should be really proud of what you did to support your husband and your children so early in your life. I’m sure your children are/will be. Money worries, baby worries and divorce worries are all tough, and I’m impressed that you made it through all that and still seem to have a very balanced approach to life. I’d focus on living the very best life you can – and block his posts on facebook (which you can do even if you’re not friends with him) so that they’re not a distraction.

      • Anonymous :

        Definitely block his posts on Facebook. His life may be great now but babies/low income are just one of life’s challenges. He and his new wife will have challenges associated with aging and loss either through disease/disability or death.

        Focus on your own life, family and friends and block/forget about him.

        You are wishing your life was different and still being married to him might be different but it wouldn’t necessarily have made you happy.

    • Hugs to you. What you are feeling is totally normal. Just recognize them, accept them and let them go. Please don’t resist and tell yourself that you are not feeling those feelings. If you resist them, they will persist. I have found that, once you recognize these kind of feelings (especially jealousy) and accept that you are feeling jealous, it some how loses its power. Some times when I am jealous about something, I just tell it to my closest non-judgmental friends that I am jealous about something. It totally works and before I know it I am no longer jealous of that thing.

    • Anonymous :

      Block his selfish little face from your Facebook page!

    • Anonymous :

      This is super late, but this is something I think about. We have been through lots of struggles in marriage and sometimes I think it would be easier to separate but then I think about all the work and sacrifice I put in to get our family ahead and now that my husband finally has the big job we worked so hard for maybe I should stick around to appreciate the fruits of my labor…

  6. Accidentally posted this on the answer-emails-at-3am thread…

    I’ve been looking for a professional, fashionable backpack (bonus points if it can convert to a crossbody). My inspiration is the Henri Bendel Jetsetter, which I love but can’t afford. Any ideas?

    • I really like my Victorinox nylon one. Also, I thought about getting the Tumi nylon one. Both are very similar to the Jetsetter (which I considered but it didnt fit my laptop).

    • In-House Europe :

      The jetsetter has now been added to my list of dream bags…Thanks (I think!) :)

      And it is currently 25% off on the HB website…

  7. Who wants to do some shopping for me? I need a dress to wear to a “beach formal” wedding in Mexico. Maxi or knee length, please. Side cut-outs, plunge neckline, interesting back are all okay for this crowd, so I would love to seize the opportunity to wear something fun. :) Ready, set, go!

    • Anonymous :

      Oh, fun — this is like the mullet of dresses: trashy on the top, but of a modest length. I dare someone to walk into a Bebe or F21 store, spin around blindfolded, and pick something out.

    • lawsuited :

      I just wore this dress in the taupe/pink colour to a beach wedding in Mexico. It was perfect for the occasion except that I was the best-dressed person there, which shouldn’t be a problem if the dress code is “beach formal”.

      http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/adrianna-papell-sequin-mesh-blouson-dress-regular-petite/3340856?origin=category-personalizedsort&fashioncolor=CHAMPAGNE%2F%20GOLD

    • Please get this dress, wear it, and tell me about it.
      http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/chetta-b-metallic-jacquard-maxi-dress/4278816?origin=category-personalizedsort&fashioncolor=AQUA%20MIST%2F%20GOLD

      • I like this too. Actually, if you look up ‘maxi’ dresses at Nordstrom there are a ton of good options.
        http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/ophelia-dress/4254054?origin=category-personalizedsort&fashioncolor=PINK%20ROSE

    • Anonymous :

      I love this one: https://www.renttherunway.com/shop/designers/marchesa_voyage/spices_of_morocco_maxi

    • Please get this so I can live vicariously through you!

      https://www.thereformation.com/products/julieta-dress-rosebud

  8. thank you notes :

    Do you send thank you notes for gifts when you were able to say thank you in person?

    How old are you (roughly – 20’s, 30’s, etc)?

    I was raised with the rule that you always sent a thank you note for a gift, even if you received it in person, but I am increasingly hearing the rule that you only need to send a thank you note if you were unable to thank in person. I’m wondering if it’s a societal shift or a matter of age.

    • thank you notes :

      Oh, and I’m in my 30’s.

    • As a kid, I was required to send written thank-you’s even if I’d received the gift in person. As an adult, I don’t know anyone who sends a second thank-you.

    • For my side of the family, no. For my husband’s side of the family, yes. Different norms. Not sure if familial or geographical.

    • Anon in NYC :

      I’m mid-30s and always send thank you notes. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t, but then again, I don’t know too many people in their early 20s. I just think it’s polite, and I’ll be teaching my daughter to send them.

    • I always send thank you notes. I kick it old school. I can’t tell you how many times people have complimented me on it though.

    • In the Pink :

      Late 50’s. I always send a note. People often comment upon it positively. I think it is the “right thing” to do. That being said, I also send positive letters to companies, praising their employees, when someone has done a good job. Far too many people only contact others with complaints. YMMV

    • I send a thank-you note for everything other than an in-person gift exchange. So if I receive a gift at a shower, I send a thank-you note even if I was there to thank the giver in person. If I exchange packages by mail for the holidays, I send a thank-you note for what I received. If we exchange Christmas gifts in person, no thank-you note.

      • Anonymous :

        +1 – if you are exchanging gifts in person, you open the gift in front of the other person and express your thanks then, then I’m not going to follow-up with a thank-you card.

        I’m in my mid-30s.

    • I always do–it’s what I was taught and I love it when other people do it for me because mail is fun! I’m 26.

    • Not usually and 30s.

      It would have to have been an event where I received the gift like a shower or something – not a birthday. Or, the gift would be very very thoughtful and I would send a card then. But otherwise no.

  9. Mr. Money Mustache Ruined My Life :

    I’ve been considering taking a job that would mean a pretty substantial pay cut (from around $100K/year to around $65K/year), but a dramatic increase in personal happiness (and a vastly more family-friendly schedule). I was trying to figure out (a) whether we could afford for me to do this at all; and (b) whether it made financial sense to do it, and I stumbled across the Mr. Money Mustache blog (saw it recommended here and decided to check it out).

    Oh. My. G-d.

    My life is apparently a financial disaster zone (student loan debt, credit card debt, car loan, mortgage), and I have no business taking a pay cut – in fact, I probably (by MMM standards) need a second and possibly third job. I just… I’m kind of speechless. I sort of vaguely knew we had some debt, and we should probably deal with it, but after reading his blog, I find I feel like I’m about to crawl out of my skin just thinking about how much we owe and how long it will take us to pay it off. I mean, if we (me and H, we’re married with no kids) got serious right now, we could have everything – credit cards, car, student loans, mortgage – paid off in ten years, but that’s assuming we don’t have any children and neither of us loses our job or has a decrease in income. My job’s fairly stable and I’m an attorney, so even if I lost this particular job for some reason I don’t expect my pay to go down, but H’s field is a good bit more volatile, so it’s not really safe to assume we’ll stay at this combined income level for a decade. And it’ll take a decade JUST TO PAY OFF OUR DEBTS, never mind save for retirement.

    I can’t believe I’ve never done this math before, and that I so blindly bought into the whole “this is what people do in suburbia” myth that our families and friends have spun for us. What is wrong with me? And now that I know what an epic mess we’ve created, what the heck do I do now? Wait until I’m 41 to try to have a child once we’re debt-free? Get clear of everything but the mortgage (that’ll take three years) and hope my fertility holds out until 34? I was really hoping we would start trying for a child this year since I’m about to turn 31 (and the new job with pay-cut would’ve been very family-friendly, while my current job is not), but I am absolutely panicked over our financial situation now and don’t see how we can afford to bring a child into this financial disaster zone. I feel like I unwittingly sacrificed my potential future child for a fancy law degree and a mid-priced sedan, and all I want to do is cry.

    • Do you have an emergency fund and retirement savings? If so, you don’t need to completely panic, and if you don’t, you can make a plan to build those funds up ASAP. Use the advice from MMM to slim down going forward, but I wouldn’t delay having children for student loan and car debt. You can make some changes, but you never know what it will take to get pregnant.

      • Mr. Money Mustache Ruined My Life :

        Right now H and I have mostly separate finances – personally, after paying for half the household expenses plus “my” debts (H classes all of our debt except the mortgage as mine, even though everything except the student loans was accumulated during our marriage), I have absolutely nothing left over each month (and at times have to borrow money from my H to make ends meet). I know H makes the same amount as I do and that he contributes to his 401K, but beyond that I have no idea where his money goes or what his personal debt situation is, other than knowing that he has no student loans and his car is fully paid off. He’s five years older than I am and did not go to graduate school, so he’s had nearly 10 extra years in the working world, and he can be very territorial about “his” money being used to pay for “my” stuff. So that’s part of why I’m freaking out – unless we start treating this as more of a shared endeavor, I don’t see how I will ever get out from under all of the debt, never mind have enough to have an emergency fund or retirement savings.

        • Anonymous :

          “I know H makes the same amount as I do and that he contributes to his 401K, but beyond that I have no idea where his money goes or what his personal debt situation is”. I’d start here. This is an issue for the two of you to figure out, and that starts with understanding what the baseline is.

        • It sounds like the problem is your husband, not necessarily the financials. I would consider couples counseling to figure out a way to have a real joint marriage, not him being protective about “his” stuff when you’re struggling to make ends meet. I would be very, very wary of having a child with someone who appears to be doing fine with “their” financials, but would let me struggle each month.

          • Mr. Money Mustache Ruined My Life :

            This is another concern I realize I’m now having. H claims to be “broke” fairly often when I/the dog/the house need something, but gets defensive and never answers me when I try to ask what “broke” means to him. Mathematically, he should have several thousand dollars a month left over (like I said, as far as I know our salaries are identical, and a significant portion of mine is going to debt that I know he doesn’t have), so I just don’t understand what’s going on.

          • +1 my friend and her husband are like this and it blows my mind. Your lives are intertwined and your finances are heavily influenced by the other person’s decisions. If you couldn’t pay your half of the mortgage, would he kick you out? I hope not. You are a team. What will happen when you take maternity leave? You will be earning less. Will you need to “borrow” money from him then?

        • Diana Barry :

          This sounds at least equally like a marriage issue vs. a money issue. Have you talked about your financial goals? Shouldn’t those goals be joint between you? Shouldn’t your husband care that you have credit card debt, etc.? (And depending on what state you’re in, those debts may be his debts too despite what your finances say.)

          On the money side – take a look at your income and expenses. What are you spending money on that leaves you so close to the line every month? But really I would do this second, after you talk with your H about finances more generally.

        • I think you have a more pressing issue in getting on the same page as your spouse about how you treat finances. If you take a pay cut, are you still paying for “your” debt at the same level? How will you allocate child expenses?

        • Little Red :

          This description of what constitutes “your” debt is a load of bs. You and your husband don’t sound like much of a team from what you’ve posted. I’d work on making sure you two are on the same page financially before bringing a kid into this.

        • Anonymous :

          I am more concerned about whether you are actually married and really want a baby in this situation. You are either married, or you aren’t. And when you marry, it is all in one pot.

    • Boston Legal Eagle :

      Take a deep breath. I am sure that you are doing a lot better than you think you are. Mr. MM is for hard-core early retiree people (as in, in their 30s retired), which I am guessing is not most of us. You are in a better financial position than the majority of people who have kids, and even if you weren’t, it’s ok. I wouldn’t wait until you’re debt free to start trying if you have a good solid relationship with your spouse now, although I would suggest therapy for anxiety if this truly does cause you concern. B/c planning for and having a kid will just lead to more unknowns you can’t predict, as I am learning!

    • Calm down, take a deep breath, and start to actually make priorities based on what you want. It that involves a kid in a year or two, make that a priority and focus on whatever you need cash-flow wise to make that happen. If that involves a better job with less pay, decide what you are willing to give up in exchange for it.
      I like MMM, but he is one point of view and one path to happiness. You get to choose your own path to happiness, which may or may not look like his or incorporate his ideas.

    • Anonymous :

      I was in your shoes two years ago. It took some drastic measures, but we are now credit card debt-free, and only have my student loans left (about $30K, super low interest rate). One of our credit cards was $27,000. Another was $16K. Five cards in total for about $75K worth of debt. We owned a money-pit house, which we sold, and are now renting a small apartment in a cheaper part of town. In 1 year, we paid off the $27K and $16K just from not having a mortgage and no property tax (thanks, NY!). In the past 6 months, we’ve paid down the other cards. And now, everything we used to pay to the cards is getting thrown into a downpayment savings account. You CAN do this! Assessing what you owe is the first step. Creating a plan is the second.

      FWIW, I’d start trying for a kid now. You don’t know if it’s going to take 1 month, 1 year or longer to conceive and it’s hard to plan these things. As long as you’re on a money plan and both of you are committed, you CAN do this!

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve found a lot of MMM to be people prioritizing retiring early/ASAP.

      That isn’t to say you should get your finances in order–but being debt free in 10 years may or may not be a goal you want for yourself.

      I don’t know your numbers, but I’d say I’m in camp “tough it out in current job and pay your debts” a bit longer. Student loans and mortgage may last a while, but a car loan and cc debt should be easy to knock out. Actually having a kid will probably take >12 months (9 months + conception), so keep that in mind. You’ll want a solid emergency fund before the kid though so perhaps prioritize that over the debt.

      FWIW I have a car loan, but it’s at .5%. We could have paid cash but left it in the market and have had a 3.5% return. Not all debt is bad if you’re smart about it.

      • Mr. Money Mustache Ruined My Life :

        I feel like I need to clarify a few things:

        1. H and I both hate our jobs and neither of us can see ourselves having a 20+ year career doing what we do. It’s part of why I started looking at MMM in the first place – I think if our lives still look the way they look now in 10 years, we will both be extremely depressed.
        2. Basically none of our debt is “smart” – even the student loans are between 6% and 7% interest rates (law school loans from the late 2000s). Only our mortgage rate is “low,” but we have some of the highest property taxes in the country, so I’m pretty sure our house was still not a financially smart decision.
        3. While I’m open to pretty much anything to bail out our obviously sinking ship, I do not think my H would sign off on any major life changes (like selling the house or becoming a one-car family, for example) to get us there, although obviously I have not asked yet.

        • Anonymous :

          You aren’t married. You might be on paper, but your finances say you are living as stingy roommates. I don’t think you need to panic about your mortgage or student loan debt, you need to panic about the absurdity of borrowing money from a husband who thinks of all debt as a you problem.

          Personally, I don’t think you should consider such a dramatic pay cut until you have your financial house in order, meaning you have paid off your credit card debt, figured out how to pay for your loans, and started saving for retirement. But more fundamentally, you need to understand how you are running out of money and have no savings on 100k a year, and what you are doing in this marriage.

          • hoola hoopa :

            THIS.

          • Instead of typing out a longer comment, I agree 100% with this.

          • Anon person on Internet who says you are worth more! :

            THIS
            The lack of a full partner in marriage–the fact that you are married to someone who would treat you like this–concerns me more than any financial concerns.

            Please consider:
            If you had a son, would you want him to treat his wife like this?
            If you had a daughter, would you want her to accept being treated like this?
            Because if this is the way things stay, regardless of how much debt is paid off, that is the example that will be set for your child(ren).

            YOU don’t deserve to be treated this way.
            Yes, you have debt.
            Yes, you are feeling overwhelmed by it.
            It does not mean you are a bad person.
            It does not mean you deserve the sole responsibility for paying it down: You are married, and what you describe is just not how marriage is supposed to work. I mean, there are many options for how it can work: a lot of variety. But this doesn’t sound like a partnership.
            You deserve better.

        • Consider trying to refinance those student loans too.

    • What if you compromised and put off the pay cut and trying to have a kid for a year and spent that year being extremely bare bones & laser focused? You could probably make a tremendous amount of progress.

      FWIW, daycare where I live costs about the same as my mortgage payment for one child. So it’s hard to make a lot of financial progress in that situation.

      • Mr. Money Mustache Ruined My Life :

        If my math is right (meaning, my H hasn’t been exaggerating his salary and doesn’t have some deep dark secret debt I don’t know about or a hidden second family or something), we could pay off the credit cards and the car in a year without too much impact on our day-to-day expenses, so something like this might make sense. Daycare STARTS at $1200/month here, so until we get rid of the car and credit card debt, I think we actually don’t make enough money to even afford daycare, so it’s looking like we’ll have to wait at least a year.

        The thought of passing on the new job opportunity is also making me feel utterly bereft, but I can’t justify taking it anymore.

        Ugh. I feel like I’m losing my mind.

        • What is the interest rate on your car? If it is near zero, then put more money towards credit cards and other higher interest debts and pay your monthly installment on the car. If you have two cars and if you can manage with one, then sell the second car and pay the credit card with the money you get from the sale.

        • Anon in NYC :

          I think you really need to have some discussions with your husband about money, perhaps with a third-party like a counselor if necessary. You are bearing a disproportionate burden of joint debt and that is just unfair.

          This doesn’t have to mean that you and he suddenly have all joint bank accounts (there are a few people on here who have separate finances from their spouse), but you need to work towards something more equitable, have plans for future joint financial goals, and discussions related to having and paying for a baby. And these are probably going to be very uncomfortable discussions because it seems like your husband has a lot of money issues and hang-ups. Good luck.

        • Anonymous :

          I’m sorry, what? You don’t know what your H makes? Do you not file taxes together?

          • Mr. Money Mustache Ruined My Life :

            Typing too quickly when I wrote that – I know his gross salary, what I don’t know is what his take-home check looks like. I expect it’s similar to mine (because, same salary), but our health insurance is through his workplace and he’s also doing automatic 401K contributions, so I don’t know what his take-home pay is on a check-to-check basis. I guess I could pull out our tax return and do the math using his W-2, but it never really occurred to me to look that deeply into it until now.

          • Anonymous :

            This is so insane. My H and I aren’t 100% joint but they idea that you guys are married and you have no idea what his check is, where his money goes, or what he has in savings is insane. Newsflash- you don’t have a real or good partnership

        • Anonymous :

          How in the world do you not know what your husband makes in salary? Are you filing separate tax returns?With so little information and trust in your marriage, maybe try fixing that first before worrying about money (since your situation will change anyway if you split up over his radical unfairness). And PLEASE don’t bring a child into this.

    • I shaved my moustache :

      Yeah, I had a plan to retire by 45, then by 40, all according to MMM on my BigLaw earnings. That didn’t happen. Turns out, my body can not physically handle the stress of BigLaw for more than 7 years. I was told I would be on permanent physical disability by the time I was 40 if I didn’t make major changes. When all you do is sleep when you aren’t working, work has to give.

      So I downsized to midlaw and have a more 9 to 5 schedule. I have time for yoga and cooking food. I’m even thinking of making friends!

      You have to do what makes sense for you. Not everyone can be that frugal or have no debt. If your job is making you unhappy, you gotta make a change. I think MMM has value in that it forces me to consider my expenses (yay! rooommates!) and what I really can afford. But there is nothing wrong with taking a more traditional pace to retirement at 65- especially if you have a job that affords you more happiness.

    • MMM is interesting but a little bit insane. Check out Dave Ramsey instead; I think he’s a little more measured. I’m almost certain that he would tell you:
      1) Unless you’re in an actual emergency financial situation, have kids when you’re ready to have kids. Don’t put it off just to pay off debt.
      2) Make a budget. Since it sounds like you and your husband have separate finances, you need to involve him in this and account for both of you, even if you decide to keep things separate going forward, your planning needs to be combined and understood. Consider cutting back where you can (i.e., cable bills, dining out, etc.) and make sure that you’re planning ahead for big things (i.e., trips).
      3) Make sure that you have a small emergency fund. (He says $1000 last I checked, but I would do more, personally.)
      4) Make a list of all of your debts, smallest to largest, except for the house. Ignore interest rates unless they’re insane (like, payday loan insane). Pay minimum payments on all but the smallest loan, which you will pay all that you can budget on until it’s gone. When that one’s gone, you move on to the next one. (Snowball effect.) Then you can worry more about long term savings and getting your mortgage paid off.

      That’s a pretty measured, but very effective approach in my experience. You can definitely do that and be just fine.

      • Anonymous :

        I find MMM a bit judgy, personally. My recommendation is the frugalwoods blog, it leaves me less emotionally stressed about the decadence that is my lifestyle of not milking my own cows.

        • Aunt Jamesina :

          I LOVE their blog! It’s MMM, but with a dose of kindness. I read MMM when I need an a$$ kicking, but reading Frugalwoods makes me feel inspired rather than defeated.

    • If your husband is unwilling to spend money on the dog, I shudder to think how all the negotiations will go over every baby-related expense (there will be many, believe me!). Will he be too “broke” to help pay for his own child’s needs? This is sending all sorts of red flags to me. You shouldn’t start a family unless he gets his weird territorial issues resolved. It could be that he is too selfish to have a family, and you should figure that out before you start procreating with him.

    • Hi! I’m really into MMM despite no personal plans to quit paid work in the next decade – my husband and I just want the financial freedom to do what we want and never feel pressured to keep jobs we hate. So first, don’t feel like MMM is just for people who want to homestead in the middle of nowhere starting at 35, or whatever. Second, I really want to encourage you to post your situation on the MMM forums under Ask a Mustachian! There are many people far worse off than you who have been able to use advice on the forums to turn around their financial picture. You haven’t ruined your life! You’ve realized that you can do better, and that is awesome! Don’t feel like you have to do everything at once – small changes over time make a huge difference. You can do it!

      • Mr. Money Mustache Ruined My Life :

        Thanks for the recommendation to check out the MMM forums – I am always hesitant to try new forums because, well, the internet, but it sounds like it may be worth a try.

        And I appreciate your perspective – I think what has me so, for lack of a better word, fear-struck, right now is realizing that we basically cannot afford to make one dollar less (or have one dollar’s worth of mandatory expense more) than we have right now – that’s crazy! How did we get here? Long term, we’re definitely not “retire to a homestead in the middles of nowhere” people, but I think we’d both like to pursue lower-paid, more part-time-ish work, and I’m finding it deeply upsetting to realize that, if we don’t get our act together, we may never have that option.

        • How much is your car payment?

          How much is your car worth?

          How much do you still owe on your car?

          Depending on your answers to these questions, I’d say sell it, buy a beater, and pay off some debt to relieve some of the anxiety. And your H doesn’t get a vote in any of this since he apparently doesn’t think that your car debt is his car debt, despite it being acquired during your marriage…

          Then – counseling. Marital first, then financial.

    • Anonymous :

      I’m pretty sure this is why people drink. :)

    • Anonymous :

      I still am trying to figure out how this is your family and friends fault. You have a household income of 200k. If they have similar of course they are comfortable in the suburbs- it is a good salary. The problem here is that for some reason you have no idea where half your household income is.

  10. Anonymous :

    Do you feel secure in your job? Realistically, I do good work, get good reviews, and I’m busy. But I’m still always worried that the axe might fall at any point in time. I’ve been laid off before, which probably makes me skittish and the economy is not great in my city, but it’s hard to make big life purchases while feeling uncertain all the time.

    • This seems to be a common theme among women. I absolutely do.

    • Yes, all the time, despite good reviews and good credentials and busyness. I’ll spend months and months deciding whether to buy a nice rug, or a new tv, or whatever for fear I’ll get fired. Maybe just a product of graduating in the crash? Maybe it’s a woman thing? I think a lot of young men don’t feel this way- really not trying to spark a thread on gender differences but men are socialized to be more confident in their professional roles.

    • Yes. I was laid off from my last job and it was a total shock and surprise, so now I have no faith in any employer to have my back. But in a way, this de-personalizes the whole situation. I know from experience that I can do good work and go above and beyond and still get terminated, so there’s no point in driving myself crazy over it. Some things are out of my hands. It’s kind of like having a medical emergency – it’s terrible and tragic, but it’s not always your fault, so there’s no point in fixating on it beyond what is constructive. I’ve always had a big emergency fund for stuff like that. I think part of what makes lay-offs so devastating is the shame associated with it. I try to let that go so it’s less scary.

  11. After the cold call/networking discussion yesterday, would you more established ladies be willing to meet a much younger person for coffee to talk about your field if you were part of a women’s alumni dinner group which had met twice, and you didn’t hit it off but had a pleasant enough interaction? Sometimes I feel like I’m never supposed to ask to meet someone, or I can but they’ll be annoyed at me. Ugh.

    • I would never be annoyed at someone merely for politely asking for a phone call or coffee meeting. I may or may not accept, depending on my availability, but I think it’s almost always fine to ask (especially with a connection like you mentioned above). Behaviors that are likely to annoy include: not taking “no” for an answer, expecting more than just that one meeting, showing up late even by 1 minute, looking at your phone during our chat, not coming prepared with a specific list of questions, being difficult about scheduling, not following up a meeting with a thank-you note, etc.

      • would you be up for follow up questions via email or maybe even phone after the meeting? And like, over the course of several months, not all at once.

        • Well, first of all, you need to use your judgement based on how the meeting went. Secondly, do your best to ask all your questions during the initial meeting. It doesn’t look great to follow up with questions that you could as easily have asked the first time around. And also, too many questions spread over time can come across as insecure or unable to make independent decisions. But for a very specific question about a new situation that has arisen – it could be fine, if the person showed enthusiasm in the first meeting.

      • hoola hoopa :

        +1

        Regarding follow-up, yes, but specific questions: Can you remind me the name of the company we discussed? or I’m debating between Certification A and Certification B, which do you think would be more useful for Future Position?

    • Anonymous :

      My dad always told me “The worst they can do is say no.” It never hurts to ask politely, just be gracious if they say no and don’t try to press the issue.

    • Miz Swizz :

      I would be open to meeting someone to talk about my field. My ideal scenario is someone asking to meet for coffee and suggesting a few times, rather than expecting me to suggest them. She’d also need to show up prepared with some questions, definitely not checking the phone and seem overall interested in what I have to say. If I got the sense that it was some sort of perfunctory step she’s taking before asking me to recommend her for a job, I’d feel like I’d wasted my time.

      • hoola hoopa :

        Yes, good points. Don’t expect me to run the meeting. You bring the agenda. I’m only expected to answer questions.

        Related: Don’t send me your resume asking me to review it or let you know what I think if you are really asking me to pass it around for you. It’s a pet peeve when people do that when really they should be asking “I’m ready to apply for positions and have prepared my resume. If you happen to know someone hiring that looks like a good fit for my skills and experience, I would appreciate it if you would pass their contact info onto me or share my resume with them.” (Frankly, I may or may not – but I won’t be nearly as annoyed by someone actually asking for what they want, politely).

        • anonymous :

          Can a person genuinely ask for feedback on a resume, or is that not done? If someone came right out and said what you’re proposing here, is that considered appropriate and not annoying, or would it still annoy you, just less?

          • I think you can ask for feedback- from the right person at the right time.

            Reviewing resumes/CVs is kind of annoying, but I will do it for students I’ve taught, people I’ve mentored, people who have a connection to a colleague of mine, etc. It shouldn’t be the first thing they ask me for- if that’s all they want from me, there are professional services for resume review. I would expect it more from someone I was already mentoring.

            I wouldn’t pass around a resume for someone unless I knew them pretty well, so again that would be something I might do for someone I was already mentoring, not as a first intro. I would need to feel I could vouch for them before I would be willing to do this. I’d probably just say no. But then, this isn’t really done in my field.

            This probably sounds frustrating and leaves you wondering how you are supposed to START the mentoring process. I would say meeting for a brief coffee is a reasonable first ask. As mentioned above, bring questions, know about my field and what I do before we meet, don’t ask me for a job, don’t look at your phone and don’t be late! In general if the person I meet with is being reasonable, seems interesting and hardworking, I’ll give them a follow-up opportunity, i.e.: “let me know how that interview works out,” or “let me know if you need more advise as you move forward on X.”

            I very rarely say no to a coffee meeting, because I am so grateful for all the (busy!) mentors who have helped me to build my career and I try to pay it forward.

          • *seem interested and *more advice. Editing fail. Another reason I should not be the go to for resume review:)

    • Absolutely I would. And I have zero free time but I would have coffee or a drink. Sure.

  12. Anonymous :

    Speaking of social media causing the sads, I’m facebook friends with a former bestie’s mom (I’m no longer close with her daughter but we never had a big falling out or anything, just drifted apart). The daughter is pregnant and the mom just made a gushing post on FB about how much she can’t wait to be a grandma and how this is something she’s been waiting for her whole life and her daughter has just given her the greatest gift possible (baby’s not even here yet, so perhaps it’s a bit premature, but anyway…) My mom is really hands off and doesn’t pressure me about this at all but I know she would really enjoy being a grandma too and would be the most amazing one. I’m 31 and have been married for quite a while, but my husband and I have talked about not TTC for another year or two – mostly because I just don’t feel ready to give up our carefree, travel-heavy lifestyle. Now I’ve been hit with this huge wave of guilt like I’m doing this awful, selfish thing to my mom. It seems crazy to have kids now just to make my mom a grandma, when both my husband and I would be happier doing it in a year or two, but arggghh I suddenly feel like the most selfish human being alive. And I hate social media. Just a vent I guess but if anyone has words of wisdom I’ll take ’em.

    • lawsuited :

      My mom is the same as your mom. I’ve been married for 7 years and she’s never once hinted about grandchildren although I know she is very excited to be a grandma because some of her friends have recently welcomed their first grandchildren and she has been so excited. I’ve decided the assume that my mom is not pressuring me because she wants me to enjoy my career and my husband and the life I have for the moment. It makes me love and appreciate her so much more, and we have a very close and happy relationship because she doesn’t put pressure on me about this or anything else. My advice is to be glad that you have the mom you do and get her an extra special gift for Mother’s Day this year. And in a year or two, your mom will be just as thrilled to be a grandma as she would be today.

    • Anon in NYC :

      My two cents: there’s nothing healthy in guilting yourself over something that you don’t want right now.

      I have to say, I love my daughter so much that I honestly get sad that I wasn’t ready earlier than I actually was – it would mean a few more years of my life that I would get to enjoy her (and my parents and my husband’s parents) and vice versa. But I wasn’t “ready” before then. And I don’t say “ready” in the sense of a biological clock (because I never had baby fever), but ready in the sense that I was able and willing to make room in my life to take on the responsibility of raising a human. So, until you’re ready to do that, don’t have one!

    • Senior Attorney :

      I’m old enough to be your mom, and if you were my daughter I would laugh merrily and say “Don’t be silly! I want you to do what YOU want to do! I will be delighted to be a grandma when and if the time comes, but if you are feeling like you should have a baby ahead of schedule on my account, you are delusional!”

      Srsly. This is not an issue.

    • Anon4This :

      My mom is the same as your mom – she would LOVE to be a grandma but she never pressures me at all. My mom is also older; she had me when she was 38. My husband and I have been together for five years and married for one. We’re going to start TTC at the end of this year, and WAY down on my list of reasons for wanting to have a kid relatively soon is to make my mom a grandma. She’s so awesome and would be the best grandmother (even my husband remarks, completely unprompted, that she’d kill it in the grandparent department). I want my kids to be old enough to remember her and my mom to be still “young enough” (relatively speaking) to get to do things and enjoy her time with them. She’d tell me not to be ridiculous if I ever admitted this to her out loud, but it’s true. My mom is one of the great gifts of my life and it’s incredibly important to me that I get to give something so meaningful back to her and give my kids such a wonderful person to love them.

    • Baconpancakes :

      I would’ve said I thought that too- my mom is a nurturing, loving woman who adores babies and children, and she’s said that if she’d had her pick of lives, she would’ve been a farm wife with a loving husband and a half dozen kids. But she truly doesn’t think she’s “old enough” to have kids, despite her younger brother having 10-year-old grandkids and her older sister having a grandchild almost my age. She’s perfectly happy having had her offspring late in life, and is perfectly happy having me wait to have my offspring until I’m ready and eager for them. Your mom might not desperately crave grandkids as much as you think!

  13. Help! After a year filled with skiing and running, my two second toenails have just popped off. Thankfully it didnt hurt, but the baby nail underneath sure looks strange, especially given that my second toe is longer than my big toe on both feet. As a bridesmaid, I’m supposed to be wearing the j renee chrissy shoe in an upcoming wedding – can anybody think of a medium wedge pump, closed toe, thats equivalent in fomrality/style? I’m leaning towards some of the cole haan options. Or would you just paint the skin where that toenail would be?

    • I’ve had toenails fall off. This is what a very discreet band-aid is for, day of. Get a great pedicure, rock it all, but wear a bandaid on that toe. It’ll be fine.

    • In the Pink :

      I lost my big toe’s nail about a year ago… I hit the toe with a heavy thing. After the toenail eventually came off, yes the new nail underneath was odd. Lumpy and so forth. Behind it is growing out a regular smooth nail. I would NOT cover the toe part that has no nail with nail polish. You really shouldn’t. I’ve put a bandaid on the toe to cover up how it looks and to protect the naked toe part and the lumpy nail part from shoes rubbing on it. Any time now, the lumpy nail will start being at the tip of my toe. I can’t wait to start cutting it off, little by little.

      It’s a long growth process.

      I would wear a closed toe nice shoe if you can find one.

      If not, consider a skin tone bandaid with open-toe shoes. I was in a formal wedding and wore closed toe heels.
      Frankly, with a long dress, no one was looking at feet! I wore the J Renee Fizzle, but it’s a high heel.

      Good luck.

    • I wouldn’t paint the toe where the nail used to be, and I’d just wear the original shoe.

    • Anonymous :

      Just paint the skin. No one will be looking closely enough at your feet to notice.

    • Anonymous :

      I would not paint the skin. Nail polish has a lot of toxic crap in it and although I know you often accidentally get some on your skin when painting your nail, that seems different than intentionally painting directly on the skin. I would just wear close-toed shoes.

    • hoola hoopa :

      In a similar situation, I painted all my toes a nude color.

    • I had a few toenails surgically removed. If I need a pedicure for a special occasion, I just have them paint the skin. Yeah, it’s toxic, but the paint comes off within 2 days anyway–usually before I get around to removing it myself. I do this maybe once every 1 or 2 years.

  14. Any advice on standing desks? Should I get a gel mat? What shoes do you wear (business casual office)? Thanks!

    • hoola hoopa :

      Yes, get a gel mat! With the mat, I can wear my usual shoes (which are comfortable flats).

    • Yes, get a thick mat. I like the skymat from the world’s largest online retailer. two colleagues got cheaper mats and are regretting it. I wear any shoes to the office and have a pair of black ballerina flats I keep in the office, but going barefoot feels the best.

  15. Another finance question :

    Our mortgage rate is really low (2.5%). My husband and I both psychologically want to prioritize it and pay it off as fast as possible, which we can probably do in <3 years (while funding retirement and maintaining an emergency fund). I know in theory you can earn a lot more than 2.5% in the stock market (although neither of us knows anything about investing), but we both hate being in debt and would really love to just be rid of it. Is it really that bad an idea to just pay the mortgage off ASAP and save the investing for once it's gone? We're 30-ish, if it matters.

    • Anonymous :

      Yes, and you know it. Financially this is dumb. Emotionally it might make sense, but do it knowing you are spending money on peace of mind for no good reason.

      • WestCoast Lawyer :

        This is only financially dumb if you subscribe to the theory that you must be actively working to maximize the return on every dollar you make. Buying a house you can’t afford is dumb. Paying off a mortgage while still funding retirement and maintaining an emergency fund is awesome. There is no rule that says you must be leveraged to the maximum extent you can bear. Yes, you could invest the money in an index fund and likely make more than 2.5% over the long term, but in the short term you could also lose money while still paying 2.5% in mortgage interest.

        OP, if paying off your mortgage gives you peace of mind go for it. My only caveat would be that once you do so you take what you were paying on the mortgage and think about investing it in a low-cost index fund (assuming you are already maxing out your retirement contributions) rather than suddenly increasing your spending. It sounds like you are in great shape – so congratulate yourself!

        • Anonymous :

          +1 – if it’s a choice that makes you comfortable and doesn’t make you house-rich and cash-poor, then do it.

          You don’t have to optimize every financial decision, as long as you can fund your life.

      • A paid off house is an asset, but not a very liquid one. I’d keep working on the emergency fund.

    • This is a risk tolerance question. There are no absolutes in finance because emotion is involved. If it’d make you feel better to pay it off, do it. Just make sure you’re not shortchanging other things that can compound. You do you. Sounds like you’re on top of things!

    • hoola hoopa :

      In your shoes, I’d do it. Yes, mathematically it isn’t the right thing to do, but emotionally you’ll feel better and practically you’re playing to your current skills.

  16. Anonymous :

    Wow, anybody see this?

    http://abovethelaw.com/2016/03/george-mason-law-changing-name-to-antonin-scalia-school-of-law/

  17. hey macaroni :

    What do you do when someone is being less than honest about contacting you, and insists that you aren’t responding to them, when they haven’t contacted you? This is a recruiter doing it.

    • Not sure I understand–are you being shamed for not responding in front of a third party? This just seems crazy. Either continue not to respond, or respond and say, “Please stop contacting me.” This is not hard. Some recruiters are just outta control.

      • hey macaroni :

        Not quite. Let me try rephrasing. In this story, I’m Becky. Sarah is someone I would have worked with directly, and Erin is Cool Company’s HR person. Recruiter’s Company does all the outside hiring for contracts for Cool Company that Erin and Sarah work for. Everything has to go through Recruiter’s Company

        I got this message from Sarah: “Becky, Here’s a message from Erin that says that per Recruiter, you are not responding to Recruiter about this job at Cool Company. Recruiter told Erin that Recruiter has left you several messages/emails.”

        I have never gotten a message from Recruiter through any medium.

        • If you want the job and you have to go through the recruiter.. I would just call Recruiter and ask what’s going on. Maybe they have an outdated email address or the wrong phone number? I would just try to get to the bottom of it and figure out whats happening. In the meantime, I would get back to Sarah and say “I’m not sure what’s going on- I didn’t receive any messages from Recruiter. I’m definitely very interested in the opportunity and I’m glad you contacted me. I would love to move forward on this and am contacting Recruiter right now to set up and interview (or whatever).”

          And then be prepared that you may have to take the initiative in following up with Recruiter moving forward.

        • Respond graciously and act like it must be some misunderstanding (even though it may become clear that Recruiter is lying).

          “Sarah, thank you for contacting me. This job at Cool Company sounds wonderful and right in my wheelhouse, I am very interested in it. But there must be some wires crossed somewhere; as far as I can tell I have had no calls or e-mails from Recruiter. I will contact her immediately, but in the meantime here’s my resume and I would love to schedule a time to discuss this with Erin and anyone else at Cool Company who should be involved.” Or something to this effect better written by someone who hasn’t been at her desk for 11 hours . . .

          • hey macaroni :

            I like yours and Dahlia’s ideas.

            Unfortunately it looks like Recruiter’s doubling down. Now Recruiter says he actually only left one message. Hmm. What happened to the several voicemails and/or emails? Oh, and Recruiter’s expectation is constant calls begging for work. Which is not what “you’re free to call and see what’s available” sounds like to me, but… what do I know?

            I’m so tired of working on a contract basis. And I would have hated this job. But hey, a pay check! Maybe one of my actual applications will come through somewhere. Ugh.

    • You ignore them because they are being pushy and rude.

  18. Just need to post this for the grammar Nazis. it’s pretty hilarious

    http://gawker.com/our-lawmakers-are-idiots-just-like-us-1768208765

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