Splurge Monday’s Workwear Report: Macey Velvet Tuxedo Jacket

Our daily workwear reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: A velvet blazer is great for everything from the staff holiday party to a topper as it gets more into fall, and you can also wear it on a regular day at work to have some fun with texture. This jacket from Alice + Olivia looks lovely and it’s part of The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale — it was $485 and is now $323. Macey Velvet Tuxedo Jacket

Update: Unfortunately, this has sold out!

Here are two more affordable options: one in regular sizes and one that comes in sizes XXS-4X.

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Comments

  1. Any lawyers have thoughts on this article?

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/15/business/lawyers-addiction-mental-health.html?mc=adintl&mcid=keywee&mccr=intdesk&ad-keywords=IntlAudDev&kwp_0=465730&kwp_4=1697329&kwp_1=727712

    • Anonattorney :

      Brutal, but sound scarily true. I think the anxiety is the kicker. I think their stats on lawyers with anxiety and depression are low.

      • Anonymous :

        I agree. In my network there is a meth addict (yes, meth) and an alcoholic and many pill poppers. I think there are many who suffer anxiety and depression but mask it through other types of addictions.

    • Sounds about right, particularly for the men I went to law school with. I’d say 80% who went into litigation have or have had issues with alcohol, drugs, mental illness, or some combination. But they make so much money that it takes a long time to hit rock bottom.

    • Anonymous :

      I came here to post the same thing. I’m an associate in biglaw. I don’t have much insightful to add. It was an incredibly depressing read. I agree that the pressure is real, but I just don’t have any visibility into the world of addiction and drugs. I personally have a hard time imagining the leap from “this deal is getting to be hard to handle” to “let me take a bump of cocaine to get through the night”, so I’d be curious to hear from others. Same in law school — I was incredulous that people took adderal (um, I don’t even know how to spell it) to get through studying, but obviously many did.

      • Rainbow Hair :

        I remember classmates making that leap during exams: “Doing a take home exam — oh no I’m tired — boom, cocaine.” I try not to be judgmental, but it was pretty shocking to me.

        • Former 22204 :

          Just wondering — I thought that cocaine (in cocaine form) died in the late 1980s. I always use “cocaine budget” as shorthand for bad habits I cannot afford. But my law school days were store-brand bread and cheap tuna (now it’s albacore in spring water, yo).

          This is terrifying in so many ways.

          • Rainbow Hair :

            No this was like, classic cocaine-looking cocaine, like white powder that you put in your nose. This goody-two-shoes was pretty shocked.

        • Anon for this :

          Cocaine was prevalent in my law school around 2007-09.

          • I knew people who did it, around the same time, but it wasn’t common. I haven’t heard about it since I graduated.

          • Anon for this :

            I haven’t seen it since I graduated, either.

    • Anonymous :

      It’s not my experience as a lawyer nor one I’m familiar with.

      • Anon in-house :

        Same, but with the caveat that i left BigLaw for in-house ~ 8 years ago, and none of my closest friends are lawyers.

      • With the caveat that I may simply not be aware of my colleagues’ struggles… I don’t have many lawyer friends or colleagues who struggle with drug addiction. More flirt with alcoholism. That said, the portions of the article about mental health issues (which are the root cause of most addiction) really rang true. I wish the profession could take a deeper, more serious look at how its practices lead to these issues. A seminar on drug abuse or playing suicide prevention videos before CLEs (that’s what my state bar does) aren’t going to solve the systemic issues that include a culture of silence and denial. The biglaw firm I worked at was chocked full of people struggling with mental heath issues/alcoholism, but no one acknowledged it- any sign of “weakness” (ie, not being available 24/7 and/or able to turn back time or having a human body with physical limitations) was met with threats of firing. Hmm. I bet those things were related.

        • Take care of yo self :

          Agree on this. If you don’t make self-care a priority, the legal business absolutely won’t.

          I have co-workers just flame out — one had some sort of psychic break that led to bizarre e-mails to clients (the dark side of 24/7 devices) where some IT person had to do an emergency e-mail cutoff and look up emergency contacts and then have some one awkwardly deal with clients.

          • I’ve never seen anything remotely like this happen (luckily) but 100% agree that law firms are not doing anything to make this situation any better, and I don’t see them deciding to suddenly become kinder and gentler all of a sudden. I have to remind myself constantly to put up my own limits, because there is nobody looking out for me and my health at my job.

        • Yes. The ABA’s response on this is terrible. That they think CLE credit every 3 years makes any difference at all is probably part of the reason our mental health/addiction numbers are as bad as they are.

          This problem is systemic. I spent around 4 years in big law before going in house, and I saw multiple attorneys so hungover that they 1) vomited in the bathroom repeatedly during work hours and 2) hair of the dogged it. And that was what was outwardly visible/not well hidden. Not everyone, but definitely a few on just my floor .

      • Yay Kat! Pricey Monday’s!!!! I love pricey Monday’s and this velvet jacket, but for $323 @ Nordstrom’s, ROSA will get it and loan it to me when I need to be formal!

        As for the OP, I have NOT seen this kind of addction in Big Law, but I am kind of removed from it, being in a Boutique law firm that specializes in WC issues. For a while, when I was dateing these guys in Investement Banking, they ALWAYS had access to drug’s, primarily P’ot and Cocaine, but was NOT unheard of for someone to know someone who was doeing Herioin. FOOEY! I would NEVER let that stuff in me. Dad says that women get old lookeing right away after doeing that stuff, so why would I want to do that? I said I would NOT and have never done that stuff. DOUBEL FOOEY!

        I think that in BigLaw, which I did NOT ever get the chance to participate in, b/c my grades were NOT good enough in law school (even tho I went to a VERY prestigus law school), men in particular are ALPHA MALES, meaning that they MUST do thing’s there way, and we women are subjugated to them. In law school, when I was a 1L, I was pursued by a 3L, who simply had to date me, which in his book meant he had to have me in bed. I did not find him attractive, so he told me he had an offer to work in a VERY big firm in DC (which I shall NOT name), and that if I slept with him, he would be makeing over $150,000 per year to start. He thought I would be so impressed with that amount that I would immediately pull my panties off for him. But guess what, I did NOT and was very happy I did not, b/c that guy was an alcholoic and thought that women would do ANYTHING b/c he was goieng to be an attorney at a VERY big firm in DC. Big deal I thought. I do NOT want that schmoe coming home at night and expect me to have s-x with him on demand just b/c he was an attorney. I was also, so why would I be impressed with that? As it turned out, that guy wound up getting fired from that big firm b/c he was caught in a conference room haveing s-x with some paralegal. Can you imagine if I had dated and MARRIED that schlub? I would be divorced by now from him and would probably not even be a partner at a NYC Firm! So to the ladie’s, be wary of men like this. They are big loosers! TRIPEL FOOEY!

    • Anon for Now :

      Accurate, but perhaps low on the stats of use and mental health issues. I saw it first hand in my prior big law firm. A partner who was a known user, but he was sent to rehab and pushed to get clean by the leadership. Associates who were so exhausted that they passed out in their offices or homes from “exhaustion.” Alcoholism was par for the course and excessive drinking was viewed as a perfectly acceptable way to blow off steam.

    • After growing up around addicted family members I feel like I have addiction radar. I notice the subtle stuff. Several partners at my last job were definitely alcoholics or drug addicts. Yeah, no one talks about it. When I made an off-hand comment to another associate about one of the partners slurring his words I was met with a look of shocked denial, so I never said anything again. I went in-house and never looked back. I don’t want that to be my life.

    • anon for this :

      I haven’t seen the drug piece, but I think there’s a ton of problematic drinking among associates and my fellow partners. I tend to see it more as binge drinking than anything else. That said, the piece that resonated, horribly, to me was the bit about how her ex-husband dialed into a conference call while he was literally dying. It reminded me of the suicide of a DC of-counsel a few years ago, where the lawyer was careful to set up his out of office email before killing himself.

      • Anon in-house :

        The part that hit me hard and made me angry was the funeral attendees checking email/reviewing documents.

      • I was in biglaw and woke up screaming in pain one night with what turned out was appendicitis. My now husband sprang to action and said, “We need to go to the emergency room.” My response? “I can’t! I have a motion due tomorrow!” To which he responded, “Are you f*ing kidding me right now? This is not a choice, either I take you or an ambulance does.” (He *never* swears.) That was a wake-up call that I needed to get out of such a toxic environment. Further wake-up call? When I emailed my team at 4am to re-assign the motion because I was in the ER and wouldn’t be coming in that day… and they didn’t so I spent the next day writing it from home despite doctor’s orders. That weekend I started applying for jobs. Life is short and there was no way I was going to allow my health to deteriorate at such a young age. My current setup is great. I tore my ACL six months in and was worried I didn’t have PTO and how I should handle the days off and instead was treated like a human and encouraged to take as much time as I needed.

        This article does not surprise me one bit. Excessive drinking was totally condoned and, in fact, somewhat encouraged as the only ‘time off’ were drinking events. I don’t want to drink; I just want to go home and wrap myself up in a blanket. I was not aware of drug issues at my firm but judging by the number in law school with a problem, it can’t just stop once you take the bar exam! Surely it has translated into functioning drug and alcohol abusers. I also agree that the way to address this is not with videos during CLEs. Investment banking has had these same issues and while it isn’t perfect, I have noticed a big cultural shift in balance in trying to address these issues. (My husband is an investment banker.)

        • Good point about the investment bankers. Can’t say I would have thought before law school that ibankers actually are *better* about this than anyone, but here we are. I just don’t know what it takes to get our firms to start making these kinds of changes. It probably doesn’t help the legal world doesn’t have the equivalent of the few really big ibanks that can change the market by themselves. Also the silly fact that all law firms are managed by lawyers (thanks, bar!) who don’t have time to think about things outside the billable hour and aren’t trained leaders in the way the execs of ibanks are. Perhaps this article a helpful start — I hope partners around the country are reading it and taking it seriously.

    • I came here to post this article.

      The bit about being a surgeon and having another surgeon across the table trying to undo your surgery resonated with me. I hated living in a world where there was someone always telling me I was wrong and doing my job wrong. Of course, that is a personality type thing so not all lawyers feel that way, but for me it was a big reason in my decision to leave practice and I never looked back. I can’t imagine the long-term effects of that kind of pressure and stress.

      I also think they allude to this but I would guess that their stats on alcohol abuse, depression, and anxiety in the profession are low.

    • This made me so incredibly sad. I agree that in my experience in Biglaw, I predominately saw alcoholism and depression among attorneys. But there was also widespread abuse of Adderall to fuel all-nighters. I’m not aware of anyone who abused other drugs, but I was in Biglaw before the height of the opiod epidemic, so it could be worse now.

      • I feel like Adderall is wide-spread in every professional role. I’m in Fortune 500 Corporate America and at every company I’ve worked, the “rising stars” all depend on Adderall. I think it starts when they get sponsored to get their MBA, then do consulting, then move corporate. It’s a lot of pressure and stress and a lot of late nights followed by early mornings. I’m not at all familiar with BigLaw, but it’s definitely a similar culture for those who want to get to President/CEO levels.

        • I guess I should have expected this given how widespread it was during my college years. I hate that it is seen as not only no big deal, but even necessary for achievement. It’s not at all safe when not used as prescribed.

    • I can relate to the mental health parts, as I have dealt with anxiety my whole life. I think anxiety is common among people with very type A personalities, and many attorneys tend to have type A personalities. Ritalin, as well as a host of party drugs, were fairly prevalent in law school among a certain subset of my class, but I was lucky enough (I guess) to be able to make top grades without using it, so I never considered it. I have seen a lot of alcoholism among colleagues, including working for an attorney who has slowly been running himself into the ground over the past decade due to extreme alcoholism and depression. I left after he couldn’t make payroll one week. I also worked in a large law firm that literally had a bar in the firm (the reasoning for this was tongue-in-cheek referenced as “so the attorneys would never have a reason to leave the office”) and it was common for one of the partners to stay at work all night drinking bottles of wine and leaving half empty wine glasses all over the office.

    • New Tampanian :

      I’ve never worked in big-law but I have seen this since I was in law school. It is unsurprising that the numbers seem low, mostly because it is based on self-reporting and in our industry that isn’t something most people are willing to self-report. The silence and stigma surrounding mental health issues and addiction create a very difficult situation when someone wants to get help. The solution is also really difficult as it will take other attorneys and people of high stature to be open and honest about their struggles so as to show that it happens and seeking help is OK. Law schools need to be involved from the start looking for signs and also creating an atmosphere that it is acceptable to seek help. Those that think this is over-bearing or that people are somehow weaker than they used to be forget how intertwined work has become with our private lives. With the mobile technology and constant connectedness, people are unable to take the necessary breaks that used to be commonplace. Weekends are no longer sacred. Vacations are no longer sacred. There is no time of day when a phone call or email is unacceptable. This wears people down. People are no longer people, they are lawyers. Their entire identity is wrapped into their job and comparing themselves to others. Women are more likely to seek help than men. It’s just a fact of life. The outside world deems it more acceptable for women to have the feelings. It’s a toxic culture. All around.

      I do my part by being open about my struggles with mental health issues. It’s a quick little line in my speaker bio and I welcome questions from anyone. Students have reached out to me after seeing me speak or participate in an “Ask me anything” type event. I’m obviously not a psychologist or expert but sharing my own experiences and pointing them towards resources is extremely satisfying and helpful to those that do ask.

    • I don’t understand why the law has to be so psychotic. Seriously…the whole profession seems to be a bunch of weirdos (I am an atty) who are willing to kill themselves and waste their lives doing unnecessary things just to impress other people they don’t like and have a 90% chance of not working for in 3-5 years.

      Literally no one is acting reasonably.

      ABA,forget about the class requirement. stop accrediting sham law schools. Make the third year of law school like a residency where students rotate in actual experience.

      Government: cap the unlimited grad plus loans and stop distorting the market and driving up education costs.

      Boomer partners: chill tf out. Take some time to mentor and actually train your young people. You werent available 24/7 as an associate. Your billable minimum was laughable. 2 houses and 1 boat is enough. If you want to make $800k, create something, or go to the other side of the “v” and hustle.

      The terrible millennials would probably prefer a 50 hr/week and managable loans and a reasonable salary. No need to start at $160k. You could hire 3 ppl at 320k instead of 2 and treat them humanely.

      Almost nothing aside from the emergency tro is a true overnight emergency when you *really* think about it.

      Learn to price outside of the billable hour.

      Clients/in house: almost nothing is truly an overnight emergency. “I’m having my legal team review, I’ll get back to you by EOD Wednesday.” Is an acceptable answer.

      • hear hear

      • Cornellian :

        +1 to all of this.

      • AnonSrAssoc :

        yep, but that will never be. So here we are, trying to figure out how to get what we need without it killing us.

        That said, I’m glad I resisted the Adderall temptation in law school and still resist the quick and easy fix to meet a deadline or feel like I slept last night. Glad pregnancy gave me a reason to stop drinking for awhile, and glad my DH watches my drinking.

        • Realizing the ‘system’ will not change for me, I opted out to the degree that I could. I found a boutique that defected from a big firm. They did it on purpose- to create a good culture, and they have. I’ve interviewed/spoken with a number of other smaller firms that did the same thing. It’s funny how everyone at firms like this tells the same type of stories and gets a similar look on their face when describing how fed up they were with the BS.

          PSA to associates: work for partners (the ones who will control your work/have power in the firm) who have values and work styles that are similar to yours. That’s how it’s tolerable (and sometimes even great!) and how you can live a healthy life.

      • +1000

    • Cornellian :

      This article was so spot on. I stuck around the office too long a few weeks ago because i thought I absolutely needed to be on a call, then went outside and passed out on the street before being taken to the ER. This can’t be our normal.

    • anon for this :

      I’ve definitely suspected coworkers of alcoholism. At my previous firm (regional large firm), I also noticed that all of the high billing attorneys abused various stimulants–anything from 5-hour Energy to nicotine to unprescribed Adderall. I never saw or knew about cocaine or meth or other drugs, but I have no doubt they were around.

    • This article hits so close to home. I could easily be the woman in this article in 20 ish years. I’m a lawyer and been in an on/off relationship with another lawyer for a few years. He’s addicted to cocaine and dabbles in other drugs, and drinks too much. He has some depression and other mental issues too. And he’s not the only one of our law school friends to have addiction issues. The people that know him would never have any idea of his addiction and depression. I don’t think I know the full extent of it either. I struggle all the time wondering what he is getting into each night. We share location with each other on our phones (honestly I don’t think he still knows it’s turned on) and when I see that he has gone into the city or is in a sketchy area of town, I get so nervous. This article though really just hits.

    • ibanking lady :

      If the freaks in investment banking are starting to change the recruitment, and junior work cycle… why cant biglaw follow suit?

      • Cornellian :

        I think BigLaw has the same profit-driven/intense pace culture of ibanking, but is also full of conservative, risk-averse people. I’m not saying it can’t be done, but I think there’s that additional hurdle.

        I think BigLaw on the transactional side is also often one step further removed from the business decisions, so lawyers are constantly in a reactive move.

  2. SF recommendations :

    Looking for a good therapist for anxiety in the Bay Area, with a strong preference for San Francisco proper. I’d prefer that he or she take insurance but am more concerned with finding the right person. Thanks for any suggestions!

    • Not in the Bay Area so I can’t help, but I wanted to say great for you for getting help! I have managed anxiety and life is sooooo much better now.

    • Vanessa Tate – I found her a bit woowoo at first but really ended up connecting and making progress.

  3. Immoral to be rich :

    I just came across this article from last month (link to follow). Thoughts?
    I don’t think I agree with “But if you earn $250,000 or 1 million, it’s quite clear that the bulk of your income should be given away. You can live very comfortably on $100,000 or so and have luxury and indulgence, so anything beyond is almost indisputably indefensible.”

    All it takes is one medical disaster or older family member needing full-time dementia care to completely wipe out your savings and make it very hard to live, much less live well, on a $250,000 salary. It is also very difficult to raise a family and have any “luxuries” if you make the low six figures in a HCOL area, like the Bay Area where I live. There is a huge difference in my mind between making $600K a year and $600 million a year. What do others think?

    https://www.currentaffairs.org/2017/03/its-basically-just-immoral-to-be-rich

    • I don’t entirely disagree. $100K in NYC and in $100K Someplace, MN is not going to equal to the same lifestyle or comfort level. That said, I think there is also a tendency to overstate needs and necessities by people making a very comfortable living, myself included probably. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve encountered in NY who probably make a combined $300-400K/year who are outraged every time someone suggests raising taxes on families making $250K+. These are mostly liberal people who support all the programs those taxes would fund but who will argue that $250K in NY is “basically middle class” – which if you look at statistics is obviously very much not the case. (I don’t enjoy paying my taxes either but I try to recognize the disconnect at least).

      • I should add that I think there is a difference between morality and sound fiscal advice. I didn’t read the article but I don’t think that morality has that much to do with whether or not you are prepared for a financial emergency like a medical disaster. In a perfect world, I’d much rather everyone have free quality medical care, low cost access to quality care for those who can’t care for themselves and a relatively small range of income distribution.

      • Anonymous :

        We’ve progressed to actually naming our towns in MN! Imagine that.

        • Oh my goodness, I am aware. I apologize if my morning shorthand has caused offense. Not my intent.

          • Anonymous :

            Sorry for the early morning snark. I must admit I get a little cranky at the sometimes very casual and condescending references to the midwest here…and yours was not really either of those.

          • Anonymous :

            It is offensive, though. Some of us who live in the middle of the country get tired of people from the coasts assuming that we’re all backward and uneducated and culturally-deprived. Some of us actually live here by choice, because we don’t want to deal with excessively-HCOLs or because we want to be close to family or for any other of many possible reasons.

          • Anonymous :

            In fact, when taking cost-of-living into consideration, I actually make more in my line of work in my small, central US city than I could if I were in an equivalent position on either coast.

          • Anonymous @9:40 – that was exactly my point though. I was using a place in the Midwest as an example of LCOL! That’s it. Nothing about this thread even discusses education or culture.

          • Anonymous :

            There was nothing condescending in AIMS’s post. It only stated that NYC is more expensive than MN. ‘Someplace’ was clearly a generalization for non-HCOL non-urban area. Sometimes people are condescending about living in smaller places (I’m from one and moved back to one after years in big city, so I notice) but this comment was not condescending at all.

          • Anonymous :

            So why not pick an actual example, like Madison or Omaha or Dallas?

          • You weren’t being offensive or condescending. I agree that people sometimes can be on these issues, but you absolutely weren’t.

          • You could have just said Minnesota :) 100K will be pretty decent anywhere in the state, though the statement also ignores the difference in how far 100K will go in the Metro area vs outstate. Though you’re more likely to be making that 100k in the Metro than elsewhere. Yes, Minnesota in general will be a lower COL than NYC (most places are), but wouldn’t be a slam dunk on 100k, depending on family size – because remember, we tend to have bigger families out here in the Midwest, in part because of the lower COL.

          • Anonymous @9:48 – the reason I didn’t pick a place is because I don’t know enough about MN to know how far $100K will take you in a given town and wanted to avoid more discussion on what a house cost in place I erroneously listed as being low cost of living. That obviously backfired, but my intent was to cause less offense, precisely for the reasons MPLS explains :)

      • Cornellian :

        Slight OT, but I absolutely adore MN and after reading this article last night, staying up until 4 AM on a deal the client told me to go pencils down on at 10 AM, and spending 80 minutes commuting to work (within Manhattan), I am about ready to start looking at houses.

        • Good luck:) – the market’s really tight in the Mpls/St. Paul area (particularly downtown) as people are actually now able to afford to buy, but stock is low. The winters aren’t that bad! They do eventually end.

          But i know there are definitely jobs available! But maybe not in law firms – we’ve got got 3 law schools in the area, but if you are willing to branch outside of the law, we’ve got multiple corporate/regional headquarters in the area.

          • Cornellian :

            My first Christmas in MN I was terrified, but it turns out -15 in upstate NY is not that different from -25 in MN. Plus it’s sunnier there! Of course I’ve only spent time in metro Twin Cities area… I had a roommate from Bemidji who referred to the Twin Cities as the tropics, so I suppose it’s all relative.

          • Oof – yes. Metro is the tropics compared to Bemidji – which is going to be better than anything in North Dakota. Unless you’re really into ice-fishing or snowmobiling, there’s not a lot of reason to be in outstate MN during the winter (IMO). More people do the cabin thing (on the weekends) during the summer. Cabin traffic (like rush hour traffic) is a real thing in the summer. Metro is really good at snow plowing (despite how much all the locals complain about it), so winter driving is really manageable.

            And freaking cold is just freaking cold at some point – the benefit is that really cold in the winter does mean sunny – no cloud cover to keep the (meager) heat in. Jan to early Feb is the worst for the deep freeze, though there is typically a thaw (mid 30s!) at some point there.

        • I grew up in a Mpls suburb, and I absolutely adore MN! Great quality of life, and yes, lower COL. Stock up on cold weather clothes and you’ll be fine.

        • Anonymous :

          I am afraid some of the craziness of staying up til 4 a.m. only to be told pencils down hours later may follow you to MN – just hopefully less often. What I love most is quality of life, which for me is made up of a) how bad is my commute (at 30 mins, at upper end of norm for here, although that is changing and traffic definitely on upswing); b) how many nasty interactions do I have per day – other than with my kids :) ( not too many) and c) schools, housing stock, restaurants, libraries, etc – all outstanding here. Come! It’s awesome. I am a transplant, but consider this home.

          • Anonymous :

            Ditto to “I am a transplant, but consider this home.” I miss the East Coast, and if it made sense for our careers would consider moving back… but truthfully, I love it here and am happy to have a good reason to stay.

    • “There is a huge difference in my mind between making $600K a year and $600 million a year. What do others think?”

      There’s a difference, I guess, but it’s a small difference. Both of those amounts are insane, jaw dropping wealth. And to think otherwise means you are out of touch with the reality of the way the other 99.99% of the country live. Including other people who live in the Bay Area making way less than 250k.

      https://www.ted.com/talks/nick_hanauer_beware_fellow_plutocrats_the_pitchforks_are_coming

      Thought this was a good TED talk on the topic.

      Elder care and health insurance are huge societal issues that other countries have managed to solve in ways that don’t involve vast income inequality with the mega rich hording all their money and saying “screw you” to everyone else.

      • Yeah, but how do you propose handling elder care and medical emergencies when you DO live in the U.S. in the here and now? I would never, ever give away my savings (about $50K) when I don’t live in a country with an adequate safety net for social problems, even though there are many people who have far less than I do.

        • The only real “solution” I can think of is broad societal change, like voting for people who want to put a safety net in place.

          And I never said you should give up your savings account. We all gotta do what we can to try to be responsible.

          The problem is that no matter how responsible we are are, the vast majority of the country could be bankrupted by a single medical emergency or choosing to pay for eldercare. If it takes a 600k a year income to feel “safe” from financial ruin, our problems are so much bigger than I can solve here on a fashion webs i t e.

        • Your elder goes on Medicaid, or they move in with you and you paste together services that they qualify for with help from family/friends. That is how our country does it. You do not require your children to make $600,000 to support their 24 hour care in the best private facility.

          That is how it is done in the US now. I agree that we need better options, but in this country while people have the freedom to make 600k a year with relatively modest taxes, society will not be able to support our elderly better.

          I realize you are struggling, and I commend you for your dedication to your parent.

          You do understand that only a minuscule proportion of the population can provide catastrophic care for their elderly, right? And suggesting that you should be able to make 600k to provide this for your loved one, while 99.9% of the population will not ever be in your salary range is…. out of touch.

          FYI – I left my job to care for my severely disabled parent for many years. He is so severely affected that a personal nurse 24 hours a day wouldn’t be enough (would need homemaker/PCT too) or he would die quickly in a nursing home (not enough attention or knowledge to care for his many problems). Everyone makes their own choice. Yes, my personal savings is devastated, and my career is shattered. For my family, this is the choice I made. My excellent education is such that I will survive. I think you will too. This will not last forever, you know?

          • Right, but I also don’t think it’s a moral thing to willingly give away any cushion you have (my $50K emergency fund, same as the poster above), or to not save for my own medical emergencies and expect my family to make those sacrifices if they don’t have to.

            I’m also not making $600K/yr. My husband and I make just over 1/3 of that, and are aggressively paying down our student loans. I wouldn’t be comfortable giving literally every extra cent away, because I believe it’s my moral imperative to save for my own retirement and medical costs, and to not plan to have my family or society support me in my old age. I get that things happen, but it’s not like I’m socking away $10K/mo to pay for my mom’s medical care, some day, and not donating to charity.

            I’m meeting my legal obligations for debt service and trying to provide for a retirement that won’t involve me knocking on my niece’s door to support me at 75.

      • Never too many shoes... :

        Anon, I ask this seriously, you think there is only a small difference between $600K and $600M? That just does not make sense to me at all. $600M is insane, jaw dropping wealth for sure. $600K? It is rich, but I don’t think those are in the same league at all.

        • Yeah, there is a difference, of course. I’m just comparing both of those amounts to the average U.S. household income of ~$75k. Comparing 600k or 600m to $75k? Might as well be the same thing as far as so far out of touch, so vastly vastly wealthy.

          I suppose if you are “only” making 600k you’d feel poor next to a 600m person. At a certain point though, what does 600m per year even mean? I feel like I could do a really good job blowing through a few million dollars, but beyond that it’s meaningless.

          • I’m not sure I agree with that. Lower-income households could end up with $600K net worth in home equity over a long period of time. It’s a much more attainable and easier-to-understand number than $600 million. I don’t even know what people who have $600 million do with it all, whereas it’s easier to picture a family making $600K putting money aside for college for 2-3 kids, etc.

          • Oh, I was not talking about net worth. I was talking about annual income. I don’t think 600k net worth gathered over a life time is vast wealth the way I think making 600k per year is.

          • $600 million is larger than the GDP of some small nations. Of course theres a difference between that and 600k…

          • Anon for this :

            Hmm, but there isn’t really. I grew up with parents who made around $600k. We had everything. No concerns about shelter, heathcare, food, savings, etc. They paid for college for three kids out of pocket. We took extravagant vacations every year. We went to private schools from daycare all the way through senior year. They saved for retirement aggressively and are now able to retire with plenty of money to travel and handle catastrophic health expenses. We got cars, trendy clothes, etc.

            The difference between $600k and $600M is just a difference in fanciness of all those things. Did you stay in the hotel that was $300 per night, or the presidential suite that was $5000 per night on your vacation to Europe? Did you fly commercial or private? Did your parents buy you a cool apartment in NYC that you lived in while you went to Columbia, or did you live in the dorms? None of those things really matter in the scheme of things, especially when you’re talking to people who are worried about putting food on the table.

          • Yes to all of this.

      • Right, but they have solved them through taxation and provision of social programs using that money. I am fine with those solutions. I welcome an increase in my taxes, if it means we all get more services.

        What I am not OK with is not meeting my obligations to pay my student loans and to save for my retirement so that I do not become a burden on my brother/niece/society in the present environment.

        If the social contract in the US changes (I am all for it), then we will re-evaulate.

        I’m also not, by the by, spending my $230K household income on boats, fancy vacations, fancy clothes, or even eating out all that regularly. It goes into the older, the mortgage and slow renovations to the small home we bought, to our student loans, to our retirement accounts, to taxes (a shocking amount, since we don’t have kids), and, yes, various amounts each month/year to charities after those obligations are met.

        I’m not saying that I’m not rich. I am, absolutely. I am very fortunate, and comfortable and not worried in a real sense, about money, despite paying $3K in student loans every month, plus a mortgage. I just don’t know that it’s actually moral to not save for my own retirement because I’m giving that money away.

        If the choice were between a boat sending money to charity? I’d take charity every time. Once our student loans are gone we want to donate more, and plan, because we don’t have kids, to leave any assets we have upon our deaths, to charities.

        What else, truly, should I do? Sell my house and pay more in rent than my mortgage? Not save for retirement? Not pay my student loans? Not eat nutritious food? Never do anything fun?

        • We aren’t yelling at you.

          Obviously student loans are a modifier.

          And you are still living very well.

          And you are still out of touch.

          • I never said you were yelling at me.

            Nothing was obvious in this conversation, so you know, I asked.

            I am definitely living very well, and said so.

            I also think you are very out of touch, if you think there is literally a moral failing for saving for one’s own retirement and the support of one’s own family, but not for the system that set that up as the norm.

            If the idea is that anyone who is not giving anything over $100K away is a terrible person, I’m not on board. If the idea is that we should all be thinking about how our spending and saving choices affect everyone, then I’m definitely on board. I dislike the idea of bright line determinations of what makes someone a good and bad person, but I suppose that makes me “out of touch.”

            Signed,
            The lower earner in the household who works with the other half, thanks.

    • I think about this question a lot. I would be more sympathetic to the argument if certain “basics” in our society were assured- namely, medical care and access to education.

      It’s hard for me to argue that people shouldn’t have the right to save up for their children’s’ education or for medical care/elder care costs. Part of the incentive for hard work is security, and that’s reasonable. The worst part is that medical care is such a wildcard. I’d be a lot more inclined to agree that there’s not much more that I need, materially, at my ~100,000 salary (MCOL city) except for a) student debt and saving for retirement/medical/elder care.

      I’d rather have a greater tax burden in exchange for universal health care and access to good education for all, not only because I believe it’s better for society but also because I’d feel a greater measure of freedom and security than I do now, even though I’m a relatively high earner.

      • Immoral to be rich :

        I agree with this completely. I actually resent that I pay fairly high taxes and see essentially no social services that are evenly distributed/universal/high-quality. I’d rather pay more and get a lot more in return like Denmark or France or any other high-income country, and then I’d find it a lot easier to give away money and not feel like I’m one disaster away from hardship myself.

        • Yes

        • I moved this year from Canada to Massachusetts. I make a similar amount of money, but with the high state taxes in Mass I actually pay more tax here than I did in Ontario. And I don’t get free health care any more.

      • anon for this :

        Yeah, I read that article when it came out and thought, this argument is fine in a world with universal healthcare, no need to save for retirement, and free or low-cost higher education. I would be happy on a much lower salary in, say, the UK, because I wouldn’t be sweating bullets thinking about how to save up $40K to cover childcare until my kid is old enough for public school, plus hundreds of thousands of dollars for said kid’s eventual college expenses.

        • Anony Mouse :

          The UK has more of a safety net than the US, but many aspects (e.g. NHS benefits, university tuition fees) are up for debate right now.

        • Agreed. My household makes between $200K and $250K in a MCOL area. We give away money at a pretty good clip (I have a monthly line item, help support friends and family, etc), but the vast majority of our take-home income goes to three places: our mortgage (which is modest), our student loans (not modest) and retirement savings (in addition to tax-advantaged savings).

          Given the fact that we do not plan to have children and we don’t think social security will be around for us, we feel we need to save aggressively for retirement. We do not object to the amount of taxes we pay, nor to tax increases in our bracket. We have substantial student loan obligations to meet that would make giving away $150K a year impossible.

          If we didn’t have student loans in excess of our mortgage between us, yes, things would be easier. If we weren’t concerned about making sure we’re able to support ourselves in our retirement, sure, we’d give away more money than we do.

          I am very fortunate to have the “problems” I have. I live a nice life, and don’t feel poor at all. I live comfortably, and below my means. But I do think $250K and $1M are very different income levels. I don’t disagree that I have more in common with someone making $1M than someone making $40K, when it comes to planning, etc.

          I also don’t think I’m immoral for not giving away over half our take home every month and instead building a retirement fund, emergency fund, and “my niece needs to go to college” fund.

          • You don’t have to justify yourself or your level of savings. It sounds like you’re doing fine. Keep in mind that one option is to designate a charity in your will. Save for retirement so you can support yourself through the end of your life, and then if your needs are less than anticipated, leave a legacy gift.

          • Yep. This is where we have landed, in the scheme of things. Right now we are still a big ball of debt, but once we climb out of that, our plan is for our wills to leave a small amount to my niece (and any other children our siblings have), and a much larger amount to various charities that we support now, in smaller amounts.

            I’m comfortable with this moral choice, given everything else in my life, and the uncertainty of the future.

    • Anonymous :

      Jesus was abundantly clear on this. As a Christian, I feel accumulating wealth is a sin. And still I sin.

      • Take care of yo self :

        I look at it that I give away a little (not tithing but like 5%) a year and expect to donate all that’s left over when I die. The full accounting is at the end of my life but I’m not spendy now, more like a cautious saver. If I give it all away every paycheck and then need dental work, no one’s going to give charity care to me based on my W-2.

      • Hm… as a Christian, I don’t think accumulating wealth is a sin. However, there is a lot of other stuff related to money that is a moral issue: greed, pride, clamoring for status, selfishness, grasping fear of never having enough, clutching onto money and refusing to give it away, oppressing others, basing personal worth on amount of money one has, using the number in a bank account to try to overcome anxiety and feel safe … the list could go on and on. Trouble is … these problems can show up in someone who makes very little money just as much as in someone who makes a lot. If you’re free from this stuff, then you’re free to have money or not have it.

      • +1 completely agree, especially with the “still I sin.”

    • Anonattorney :

      I don’t know your individual circumstances, but I agree with a lot if the points in this article, with slight adjustments to the numbers for cost of living in very expensive markets.

    • Anonymous :

      There’s a pretty big difference in lifestyle between $100,000 and $250,000 in a HCOL area. There is no way to own a house in a safe area in the DC metro area on $100,000 unless a) You lived at home for a long time and socked away your salary b) you qualify for a low-income housing grant that allows you to buy an expensive home at a much lower price/interest rate or c) someone gifts you a very large downpayment. And that doesn’t even factor in if you have any student loans, car payments, etc….

      • I was earning $83k when I purchased my house in a safe neighborhood in Fairfax County. I saved for two years for a down payment, while paying rent on my own apartment. I received no outside help.

        • Who wants to commute from Fairfax county to DC if they don’t have to?? Good for you if you have a suburban job in the Fairfax area but otherwise everyone in their right mind wants to live closer.

          • Fairfax county is also big. Like the cost of a home in centreville is pretty different from Vienna or Mclean (which are much closer to the city).

          • Exactly. You can get an older TH in a safe area of Centreville for what is considered very reasonable in the grand scheme in Fairfax Co.

          • Anonymous :

            Plenty of people in their right minds live in the suburbs.

        • Key phrase: in Fairfax county – would not consider that DC proper. That’s pretty far out.

          • The person said in the D.C. Metro area…Fairfax County is in the D.C. Metro area.

    • I eyerolled hard at the first part of the quote – “if you make $250k or $1 million”. There’s a big difference between those two numbers. Also the phrase “almost indisputably indefensible” is facially idiotic. Hard to take the article seriously when it doesn’t appear to be very well thought out.

      That aside, it’s problematic to ascribe “immorality” to run of the mill lifestyle choices. Why would anyone ever take a high-stress job with grueling hours if they didn’t get appropriately compensated? So, what, I should work myself to death so I can give more to my charities of choice? In that case, isn’t it immoral to choose a job with a great work/life balance but lower salary, rather than working as hard as possible to make lots of cash to give away?

      • This article is so far outside my normal thought process that I’m having a hard time even relating. I work hard to achieve a level above simply “comfortable” so I can enjoy the nice things in life to make the hours and stress of my job worth it. I will continue to work harder and harder to achieve more, so in turn, I can enjoy the fun parts of life more. I think it’s admirable when individuals choose to donate to charitable causes, but the idea that it’s immoral not to is mind boggling for me. No one would want my job with all its stress, long hours, and mental tax if it were worth only the “moral cap” contemplated in this article…

    • Immoral to be rich :

      It can also get muddled pretty quickly. What if you are rich, but you’re a venture capitalist funding new businesses that employ thousands? What if your expensive hobby (let’s say sailing for the sake of argument) puts money into the pockets of everyone who helps maintain and improve your sailboat? What if you already give away a substantial portion of your income to charity – does it make you a “bad” person to not give all of it? What if you give a lot of money to local families in poverty, but not one of them is lifted out of poverty in the long-term? What if you give all your money to a well-regarded charity, but it fails to produce results?

      Posting this article is by no means a judgment of anyone’s lifestyle, by the way – I just find it truly interesting.

      • Anonymous :

        So don’t donate because it ‘might not’ work out? I don’t think there’s a need to live like a pauper by choice but a lot of people think of themselves as middle class when they earn $250K and that’s delusional.

        • Immoral to be rich :

          I’m not saying “don’t donate ever” – I’m saying that it’s not right to act as though giving away all of your money means you’re definitely making a huge difference in other people’s lives, and that anything less is immoral. It may well not work out and it’s definitely not black and white.

          • Anonymous :

            Most of the time giving away a lot of money helps people. Does it help *enough* people that it makes it worthwhile for someone to buy a $20 000 boat or horse instead of a $200 000 one? Probably. But a lot of people who want the fancier boat buy it.

        • Never too many shoes... :

          I am not sure it is delusional exactly. In Toronto, an average (like semi detached, 1300 square foot in a decent neighbourhood) house costs $1M. A household earing $250K is very middle class.

          • In Toronto the median family income was $78,280 in 2015.

            http://www.statcan.gc.ca/tables-tableaux/sum-som/l01/cst01/famil107a-eng.htm

    • A rich life today is not rich :

      My grandparents had a lovely house on acreage in Long Island’s horse country and a cabin on the beach in the Hamptons. They were able to save for a comfortable retirement and finance 3 kids’ college. Plenty of vacation time.

      I saved diligently to buy a 1 bedroom house and will not be having children because I cannot afford them. I worry about retirement and/or being wiped out by medical expenses (family history).

      I am a lawyer. My grandparents were a cop and a part-time librarian. Which life is richer?

      • Anonymous :

        um, so don’t live in NYC. Pretty sure NYC was a little smaller when they could afford that.

        • A rich life today is not rich :

          I don’t live in NYC. I can’t afford that lifestyle in basically any U.S. city.

          And I am NOT complaining about it – my point is how can you call people “immoral” for living a life that is usually LESS THAN what is historically defined as middle class?

  4. Alexandria Reccs :

    I’m looking for recommendations for a hair stylist (cut and complicated color) and a nail technician in Alexandria. Old Town preferred, and need to be flexible on hours. Thanks so much.

    • Check out the Lorraine Aprile salon in Old Town. Love. I’ve been in the DMV for 3 years now and have had such a hard time finding a good stylist – I’m finally sticking with Lorraine Aprile. (Had two absolutely terrible experiences at Aquilano Salon, which I know is popular on this board.)

      I cannot for the life of me find a good nail salon. I go to Pen Nails in Eastern Market whenever I’m over there. Otherwise, my nails simply stay undone because I’m not paying for lackluster service.

    • Both Jocelyn and Ruby at Frizzles in Carlyle are fantastic with color.

      • I see someone else there, and don’t color my hair, but have been super happy with Frizzles (after being disappointed by a lot of other places).

    • Samantha at Salon 46 (a little north of Old Town) is amazing. Highly recommend!

    • Alexandria Reccs :

      Thanks, everyone!

  5. Book recommendations :

    I’m looking for some decent chick lit and/or romance novels, preferably ones with international storylines (I love a good story set in Paris). I read The Royal We based on a recommendation here and liked that, so anything similar would be appreciated! I also like books set in ultra-privileged lifestyles; it’s so amusing and different.

    • LondonLeisureYear :

      Rosamund Pilcher Books ( Coming Home, The Shell Seekers, September)
      Kevin Kwan Series (there are 3 and are being made into a movie next year)
      The Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson
      The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes
      Lian Moriarty Books (Three Wishes for example)
      Eligible
      Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand

    • Anonymous :

      Try Penny Vincenzi.

    • Crazy Rich Asians! (and the sequels, China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems)

    • I just finished “The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets” by Eva Rice (??) and it sounds exactly like your style – set in 1950s London and all about society girls.

    • Macademia :

      You might enjoy Jennifer Robson’s books. And for some madcap cozy mystery fun, definitely check out Rhys Bowen’s Lady Georgie mysteries. The first one is Her Royal Spyness.

    • Anonymous :

      Check out the websites Dear Author and Smart B!tches, Trashy Books. They’ll have lots of recommendations (and point out deals).

    • The Underwriting.

    • Sophie Kinsella writes good chick lit.

      • I don’t like Sophie Kinsella’s Shopaholic series, but I just finished My Not So Perfect Life and I loved it.

    • Beatriz Williams and JoJo Moyes.

    • Jennie Colgan. I got turned on to her books by someone here (who posts her latest books on Fb). They can be a little formulaic but she writes great characters.

    • I’m a big fan of British chick-lit (though not a huge Sophie Kinsella fan). Check out Hester Browne, Katie Fforde, and Jill Mansell.

  6. I think this is a gorgeous jacket but it’s too dressy to me for everyday office wear. Holiday party, sure; with jeans for going out, yes; but it’s basically a tuxedo jacket and I wouldn’t wear that to work on most occasions whether it’s satin or velvet or whatever.

  7. Anonymous :

    Please tell me if I’m being unreasonable. I’m recently single and doing the online dating thing. I’m just having fun right now. I live/work in the burbs and a nearby city seems to have a pretty good dating pool. Sometimes I’ll go to the city for a date but sometimes I don’t have time and I need the guy to come to me. I get a lot of pushback with this. Usually I’ll leave it at, this is my availability, if that doesn’t work for you then I’ll let you know when work slows down enough for me to come to you. But then I never contact the guy again because it’s a huge turnoff that he expects me to go to the trouble of coming to him but he won’t reciprocate.

    Recently a guy was giving me pushback about coming to me. As a “compromise” he asked me to give him a ride from and to a train station about 10 minutes from me. Uber/Lyft are readily available. I was pretty annoyed. Like are you going to send a car to come get me from the train station when I come into the city? No, I’d get a cab. So should you. I will take care of my transportation and you should take care of yours. Why are these guys acting like it’s some huge imposition to reciprocate travel?

    • You’re being unreasonable.

      I live in the DC metro area and the area is huge and traffic is horrendous. Everyone I know compromises for dates. You meet in the middle/balance the travel headache (which sometimes may not mean necessarily the geographic middle).

      You’re a total stranger to the guy. What you’re saying is that you’re so wonderful that he automatically needs to recognize that and go way out of his way to meet you. It makes you sound demanding and high maintenance.

      • Anonymous :

        This. I live in the middle of DC, and I would never go to Rockville or Fairfax for a date. There are too many other options that live much closer.

        • Anonymous :

          So I live in Fairfax, and i’m married so it’s not applicable, but I agree with you! I think I’d also expect myself to be traveling into DC for dates because there’s more restaurants/bars close to metro stations.

    • Anonymous :

      To be fair, how far away is the city? How long of a train ride? How long of a drive? Do most people in said city own cars? I mean if its a 40 minute train ride plus a 10 minute car ride I’d probably be like “eh…that’s kind of far” for a first date too.

    • Anonymous :

      If you’re in the suburbs nope no city dweller is going to take the train and then a 10 minute uber. Up to you whether you want to make the effort to go into the city, demand guys come to you even though they prob won’t and that will mean not dating them, or give up on the city as a dating pool.

    • Anonymous :

      When you think about it from their perspective, these guys are probably really busy too. And they likely chose to live in the city because they prefer the different lifestyle there — ample public transportation, walkable bars/restaurants, highly concentrated dating pool. It probably seems like a huge hassle to them to not only give up their time, but to hike out to the burbs (where they chose not to live) to meet someone they’ve never met.

      • +1 No way would I travel to the burbs for a date unless I was getting a ride from that person, or we were in a serious relationship. Not for a casual date.

    • Maybe a little unreasonable? Not sure where you are but I’m picturing NYC and say NJ/Westchester/Long Island. In that case I think if you’re including the nearby city in your search, it’s not unreasonable to expect to go there for a first date (I have a friend who lives on LI and she won’t go out with people who are more than 10 miles from her b/c she has no interest in going to Manhattan on a regular basis). I would totally push back if this was someone you’re seeing, however casually, and they only wanted you to go to them, but for a first date I think it’s somewhat reasonable to assume that in most cases, the more central area wins if for no other reason that it’s easier to navigate/meet/etc. But keep in mind this is all coming from a very specific context for me – in NYC, no one needs to take a cab from the train station unless they want to and you can easily pick a place that would be within walking distance, whereas going out to the ‘burbs generally requires a car or a random car service from train station and is just a giant pain if you’re unfamiliar with the area whereas most people in the ‘burbs are still familiar with NYC. And – most important – you can set whatever rules you want, it’s your life and if you want the kind of guy that will make the trip to see you where you live, by all means.

    • You’re being ridiculous. If you’re not willing to travel to meet these people, why would you expect them to travel to you? Stick to people closer to you.

      • I do travel to them. Sometimes I can’t because of work. That’s why I used the term “reciprocate” multiple times.

        • Are these all first dates that you’re having this issue with? Because with first dates, there’s no ‘reciprocation’ – maybe you traveled into the city for the last first date, but new guy doesn’t know/care about that, nor should he.

          • Anonymous :

            This is a good point — if you’re on date four or five with someone, it’s a lot more reasonable to ask them to come out to see you. The first three dates or so, it’s going to be a lot more of an ask because the person doesn’t know you as well.

    • I dated when I lived in a suburb- honestly people in the city look down on going out of the city for a date and yes, you have to do more of the legwork. I actually would keep quiet about where I lived until asked because I knew it was a turnoff for a lot of men- unfortunate but true.

    • Anonymous :

      Actually, I disagree with everyone else who’s posted. I live in the burbs as well (to use an example above, similar to Rockville – DC analogy), and if a guy was truly interested in me, I would expect him to make an effort to come out to my suburb at least a time or two. I don’t want to be the one who’s always shouldering the travel and time cost.

    • Former 22204 :

      I think weekday / weeknight matters.

      I dated a guy who lived west of Glebe for a while (not near Metro) but worked in Tysons or somewhere also not on the metro. M-F, city or nothing. Weekends, city or suburbs would work. I needed to be in my seat at work until 6:30 and couldn’t get home, get my car, and meet before 8:30 ish due to metro/HOV/traffic and by then I’d be surly and hangry — who wants that on a date? On a weekend, when I’m at home with my car, lots better options and I’d be itching to try something NOT in the city, esp. for brunch.

    • When I was dating, I lived in the suburbs and dated some guys in the city. Often we’d meet at a closer in suburb, one that was kind of hip.

      • This is a nice way to compromise the distance. (Probably) public transit accessible/not too far for him, but still easier for you.

    • Linda from HR :

      City person here, about to move to the suburbs temporarily and continue a relationship with a guy who’s still in the city.

      Thing with city dwellers is that many of them don’t have cars, which makes getting out of the city tough. Unless you have a Zipcar or Enterprise Carshare membership, you do have to take a train out there and then either take a Lyft or Uber if it’s available, or ask for a ride. Now, getting a carshare membership is something someone would totally do if they were serious about dating you specifically, but they’re not gonna do it for the first date, or to make dating suburbanites easier in general.

      Even with a car, it’s not always great driving out of the city and back at certain times. When I didn’t have my own parking spot, driving home at night meant parking a mile away and walking uphill to my apartment.

      I wouldn’t expect a whole lot of compromise or reciprocation in the early stages of dating. Do what you can to meet up, and then once you’ve been on a few dates, say “I like you, but if we’re gonna keep doing this, I need you to come to me sometimes.”

      Is there some way you could meet in the middle? Find a train station with a restaurant or movie theater nearby?

    • Shopaholic :

      I am probably biased because I live in a city but I honestly refuse to go too far out of my way for most dates. So if someone asked me to go to the suburbs, I would say no. I would be more agreeable if we had been dating for a while but if someone I had only been seeing a couple times asked me to take a train/uber in an area I was unfamiliar with, I would probably push back.

      • BabyAssociate :

        Agreed on all of this. And it’s compounded by the fact that I also don’t have a car.

    • I think if you have expectations that dating activities are going to happen in your suburb, then you need to be crystal clear about that in your profile and let people self-select out of meeting you. I understand your position but dating is a two-way street, and it’s reasonable for guys to think you will come to them.

      Either make it clear that travel is expected or narrow your geographic search so that you’re only looking at people in the nearby burbs, not in the city.

      • I agree. If you’re expanding your search to include the city I think the expectation would be that you are then willing to travel to that city to meet.

    • What day of the week was this? In Houston, heading out to the burbs on Saturday takes 30ish minutes, and on Friday after work it takes an hour and a half. If you had asked me to come meet you on a Friday for a second date, even if you had come meet me in the center of the city the previous Friday, I’d’ve balked _hard_. Saturday I would do, but Friday? No. I live in the center of the city so I don’t have to do that because I hate it.

      I’m also not getting why the compromise isn’t meeting the person halfway? Are there really _no_ bars or restaurants or other activities halfway between you?

      • JuniorMinion :

        I’m a hard no on driving to Katy / Cypress / Pearland in rush hour traffic. I have only done it if someone is in the hospital / having a babyshower / some other event / milestone.

    • I was the city-dweller who didn’t want to go out to the suburbs (although I did for the right opportunities). Despite the geographic proximity of a major city and its suburbs, I found logistics to limit my budding relationships. It becomes even more difficult once you get serious with someone. Maybe consider changing your filters to match with people who live closer to you?

      • Anonymous :

        Totally agree. It’s really hard to date someone seriously if, for example, its hugely inconvenient to spend the occasional night at their place because of geographic limitations. If it’s this hard to go on just one date with someone because they live in the city and you live in the suburbs, you’re probably better off dating guys in your suburbs because it will be too hard to actually date them in the long term.

  8. Outlander :

    I happened across an Outlander rerun on tv over the weekend. It was the wedding episode and I loved the characters. Is it worth it to read the books/watch the series for or am I going to find it cheesy? Fantasy writing like Game of Thrones, Dr. Who etc etc is not usually my scene but I do like historical stuff like Jane Austen or Dickens but I don’t have the energy for a heavier read with a crazy busy life.

    • Macademia :

      I’d recommend giving the books a try. The writing and plotting are good. I find the violence easier to take on the page than on tv. I enjoyed the series so much I have all the books on my kindle so I can re-read them any time (or in anticipation of the next book).

    • Anonymous :

      Absolutely! At least try reading the first book. The woo woo time travel stuff tends to be at the beginning and ends of the books, the rest is just really fun historical fiction.

      • Totally agreed. The books aren’t cheesy at all.

        • And I can’t be bothered to find a link, but I remember reading an interview with Diana Gabaldon that she actually set out to write straight historical fiction–but then the Claire character kept popping up with all of these period-inappropriate statements and mannerisms (“I’m Claire Randall, and who the hell are you?” is the line she mentioned, for those who’ve read the first book), and then she extrapolated the time travel element to make the character make sense.

      • Agreed. Start with the first book and then watch the first season. I read the next couple of books, but didn’t like them as much as the first. They were very long. I think they’ve done a good job with the TV adaptation.

    • I’m in the minority, but I like fantasy and historical and I just couldn’t get into Outlander. I’ve started it twice but just can’t summon the interest to get more than halfway through. I really wish I liked it because on paper (ha) it’s right up my alley.

      • Was not a fan of the books, personally.

      • The first novel is slow to start, basically almost until you get to the wedding IIRC. If you get past the wedding and don’t like it, then you probably won’t like it later.

        To the OP – I like the books a lot, although they are a bit rapey and the plots get kind of preposterous in parts. The Wedding is probably the best episode of the first season, and the highlight of the series to date IMO, but I think the books are generally very worthwhile.

        • This was my experience too. I made it through the first book but didn’t enjoy it, so didn’t continue the series. Too rapey for me. I haven’t tried watching the tv series, but have heard good things.

      • Were you reading the first book? It took me several tries to get into it, but after that I was totally hooked.

      • Anonattorney :

        Same. I also got sick of rape ALWAYS being the thing that created fear/tension/drama in the books.

    • Baconpancakes :

      Books are better than the show, but if you liked the wedding episode, that’s pretty indicative of the books. It’s refreshingly not cheesy.

    • Dang that wedding scene….ha cha chaaa

    • The Outlander series are my favourite books of all time. I do not classify them as fantasy whatsoever. There is the time travel element, but if anything that is a super minor part of the book! They are historical fiction. The first book is the lightest and the most like a traditional romance novel. The later books delve deeply into the history of Scotland and later the United States. Very meaty stuff. They are extremely well-researched, well-written and not cheesy at all.

  9. Anony-mouse :

    My SO’s birthday is Wednesday and I have no idea what to do. We have plans to go out with friends that night, but I’d like to do something special just from me. I’m on a shoestring budget and he makes about 4x what I do, so trying to buy him something seems silly. My cooking abilities range from ramen to box mac and cheese. I’ve been thinking about this for weeks hoping to have a stroke of inspiration and and now it’s 2 days away and I’m still stuck!

    • LondonLeisureYear :

      How long have you been together? What type of stuff does he like?

      • Anony-mouse :

        We’ve only been together a couple of months. He’s pretty tech-y and is super into having the latest gadgets, but buys them for himself. Enjoys good food, but we’re both trying to lose a little weight. We both love being outdoors, but we’re in the SEUS and highs in the 90s with 70% humidity make hiking etc. pretty miserable this time of year.

        • LondonLeisureYear :

          What about a State Park’s Pass with a “For a next year of Adventures!” – a standard pass is about 50-75 dollars depending on your state, don’t know what your budget is.

          If he likes boardgames you could find a few to buy for the ipad to bring on camping trips. Pandemic is a good one.

          Go to your REI and see if there is a tech gadget you could bring on hikes.

          Ready Player One would be a good book for tech-y people if he likes to read

          Does he have a favorite childhood activity that you could do together? Laser tag? Paint Ball? bowling? Trampoline place?

    • A picnic in a park? Salami, cheese, crackers and wine?

      Are there any free or low-cost events in your area that you could pair with a picnic in a park for a fun date? Movies on the lawn, museums, historic spots?

      • Anonymous :

        movie on the lawn (or similar event in your city) plus picnic basket packed with his fav treats would be my go-to. If you want zero food prep, you could even get take out from a local place he loves but struggles to find time to go to.

    • Without getting graphic, I feel like you don’t need money or even a tangible gift to make a bday special for your SO. That said, for something tangible, you could pick up his favorite dessert to have back home after you go out with friends.

    • Make some chocolate covered strawberries. It’s really easy, but decadent. Or buy them if you’d rather.

    • Cooking is just following instructions. You may not have cooked much before, but if you want to bake something or make something fancy I think you’d succeed.

    • What about a movie in the hot, yucky afternoon but smuggle in a bunch of good snacks? Or, maybe a trip to a local hotel pool that allows guests? Afternoon at a lake with a grocery store picnic? (Bring floaties and a pump).

    • anon a mouse :

      Are there any hotels nearby that have fabulous pools or outdoor space? You could see about buying day passes, pack a picnic dinner (and cocktails) and hang out at the pool for the evening (or for one day this weekend). Bonus points if it’s some sort of luxury property with cabanas to rent or something like that.

    • My husband had a birthday 2 months after we started dating and I had a cookie cake made with something he liked on it for his birthday. It cost like $10 and he really got a kick out of it.

    • This might be more lovey-dovey than is appropriate for a newish relationship, but I was dating someone who celebrated a milestone birthday and was super broke so i left them a heart with a reason why i loved them written on it for their pillow every day for 30 days.

      I think took them for a romantic walk, got takeout from our favorite spot, poured a bottle of wine into a water bottle, and then picnicked with them at a local (safe) park at night.

      It went over well and cost less than $50 total.

  10. Anonymous :

    Any corporette runners ever deal with hip bursitis? It is not debilitating but so, so annoying. I went through the whole PT thing, strengthened the hip flexor, and am working on strengthening abs, core, etc. I got a cortisone shot. Nothing seems to work! It’s been since February. So frustrating, because running is my stress relief. Any tips on how to kick it for good?

    • Could you get a standing desk and pad to stand on? Sitting at work does a number on your hamstrings and hip flexors, some reprieve from sitting may help.

      Have you thought about adding lateral movements to your runs too? Side shuffles and skater lunges may help too. Try having your strides assessed too, maybe a running coach can help tweak your form.

      I’m a former ballet dancer, and my hip flexors are a source of pain/annoyance too. I’ve found doing Pilates, strength training, and adding lateral motion to my training help me. It’s hard for me not to sit at work, but I take breaks every hour to stretch a little behind my closed door and walk around.

      • I’ve had other hip issues than bursitis, but found for me the combo of standing more at work and adding lateral motion and more core work has been very very helpful with that issue. I added lunges to my strength day where I step back and open my hips out to the side instead of straight back, as well as lots of yoga, and have found it really helpful.

        This next part isn’t going to be what you want to hear OP but: 5 months may not be long enough rest from running. I had some foot issues a few years back and had to quit running for over a year. I’m back to it now, after lots of effort at fixing the issue, including PT, but that year sucked.

    • Ugh! That is frustrating. I have not dealt with hip bursitis (although I just got a cortisone shot for shoulder bursitis a week ago), but I have dealt with ITB issues. Have you had your gait analyzed? My goal has always been to find the root cause of the problem – what is causing the bursa to be pinched, is it the way you are running, the shoes, etc.?

      Is there a legit running coach in your area who can do a video gait analysis? That is how I solved my ITB issues – I changed my gait.

      Good luck!

    • I have a different chronic hip issue (snapping hip syndrome) so YMMV. I did PT and steroids and thought I was going to need the cortisone shot, but while on my running layoff I started barre classes. Barre has a lot of focused core and glute work, and it was what got me to the point where I could run regularly again.

    • YES. I developed it when I trained for and ran a half-marathon three years ago, and promptly reactivated it when I started trying to train for a half in September this summer. I’m in PT now and not cleared to start running again yet (and it hasn’t been possible for me to run at all until fairly recently). No real advice, I’m afraid, but I’ll be following this thread.

    • Thanks all – OP here. Sounds like adding different exercises and core work is key. I actually have trained for and ran a bunch of half marathons and 2 full marathons before without an issue – I think this injury may be related to a strenuous track workout I did in February where the track was quite small and I didn’t switch directions. It’s loads better since then but I can’t seem to get rid of the final annoying pain (though some days I don’t feel it at all). Not helpful as I’m currently signed up for the NYC marathon and training starts today.

    • Anonymous :

      I had it for a while, and honestly, the only thing that helped was not running for a while. I cycled, swam, hiked, etc, and then came back after it was full healed. Probably 6 months off.

  11. NY travel - brokentoe :

    I need travel recommendations from ‘r e t t e s familiar with places and interesting sights in central or upstate New York. DH and I will be in NYC for the Classic East concert (YAY!!!) 7/28-30. We need to be in Toronto the following Thursday evening, 8/3. I need help creating an interesting and fun (and not ridiculously expensive) itinerary and getting us from here to there in between. A couple things that looked interesting: the Corning Glass Museum, National Soaring Museum, Hyde Park, Niagara Falls (DH has never been there). But anything can look cool online, so I’d appreciate any feedback or specific suggestions of don’t miss things to see/do as well as places to eat or stay, favoring B & B’s or other interesting lodging. TIA!!

    • ALX emily :

      The Corning Glass Museum really is fantastic. And there is good wine tasting in the Finger Lakes if that’s something that interests you.

      • NY travel - brokentoe :

        Wine tasting would be great – any specific recommendations? There seem to be so many, I have no idea where to start!

        • ALX emily :

          I was there last summer and chose partly based on convenience to where we were going to be, but also did a bunch of research to try to find “good” places b/c I am a huge wine snob. Favorites were Ravines (which has won a bunch of awards/is really popular with Wine Spectator for what that is worth…), Heron Hill, and Red Newt. We also liked Dr Konstantin Frank because it is the original Finger Lakes winery so there was a good bit of interesting backstory – wines were hit or miss but some were quite good and I think the tasting was free so that doesn’t hurt.

        • Seneca Lake has the most wineries on it. Keuka Lake has fewer but is a little fancier — they have a wine passport that lets you taste at maybe 7 wineries for only something like $12. Dr Frank’s is also on that lake and is free. On Seneca, my favorite place is probably Leidenfrost. On either lake, you can drive in a loop and stop at various tasting rooms along the route. You should also check out Watkins Glen State Park, which is right at the bottom of Lake Seneca.

        • I love the view at Atwater- it’s a tiny place on lake Senaca. Also I recently stayed in an a frame tiny house where you could probably walk there and to a restaurant brewery that had live music. I think the town is called burdett.

    • Hi! I have lots of advice about Rochester, which would be a great place to stop on the way to Toronto — it’s about 3.5 hrs. away (depending on traffic and the border crossing of course). Feel free to email me at katea (at) corporette (dot) com for advice on things to do, places to eat, etc.!

    • Agree on Corning Glass Museum and Finger Lakes for wine tasting. (It’s best for whites and sweeter wines I think. We enjoyed the distillery that is there. There are also lots of farms/cheese producers/etc.) Ithaca is really beautiful and there are a lot of state parks in the area with great day hikes.

      Depending on where you want to start heading west, visiting the springs at Saratoga is also fun (probably out of your way) and there are lots of interesting little towns in the Catskills. In the hudson valley, there are a ton of historic mansions – visit Historic Hudson Valley.org for more info.

      You could also go the southern route through PA and see Poconos attractions. There are also things like coal mines and scenic railroads in NE PA. The Delaware water gap has nice biking, hiking, and tubing. Sorry I don’t remember more specifics!

    • Walkway over the Hudson

    • Albright-Knox Art Museum in Buffalo – really a first rate collection if you like modern art. You can go to The Anchor Bar, where Buffalo wings allegedly were invented, and partake (although I like Duff’s better; the Transit Road location is my preferred when I am in town). Follow with custard at Anderson’s in Amherst for the full Buffalo experience.

      Niagara-on-the-Lake always makes a good stop on the drive up to Toronto, if only to stop for lunch and a nice walk along the main street. If you have time, the theater offerings are quality.

      Also, pro tip, Niagara Falls is a lot prettier from the Canadian side.

      • Never too many shoes... :

        Also, there are tons of lovely wineries between Niagara on the Lake and Toronto to stop for tastings and food.

    • Corning Museum is great, then drive through Watkins Glen and go to the state park there. Dinner at FLX table in Geneva (maybe plus drinks at Microclimate or Linden Social Club).

  12. Scared Mama :

    Ok, need a little help here. College daughter, summer internship half a country away. She “lost” a tampon for 2+ days until she was finally able to retrieve it yesterday. No regular doc or gyn there to call; should I have her go to urgent care just in case? would they give her a course of antiobiotics to be on safe side? I’m old enough to remember TSS cases and remember it came on suddenly and by the time it was diagnosed, could be too late.

    • She is probably okay but it doesn’t hurt to get it checked out. If she’s doing her internship on a college campus, it’s easy enough for her to go to the nurse’s office.

    • http://helloflo.com/happens-leave-tampon-way-long/

    • Does your health insurance have a nurses’ advice line to call? I would do that. Also, if she has trouble with tampons, maybe she’d prefer the Diva Cup. You can wear it for much longer with no TSS risk.

      • Scared Mama :

        Excellent thought – they do have one and I’ll have her call right away.

        Thanks all!

    • Anonymous :

      If she doesn’t have any weird discharge she should be fine. If she has weird discharge then she should go to urgent care. Definitely tell her the symptoms of TSS, and to just keep an eye out. Most “severe” cases of TSS are after people ignored symptoms for days.

    • I don’t think they’d give her an antibiotic. If it were me, I wouldn’t bother seeing a doctor.

      • She’s fine. No, don’t go to urgent care and they will not give her antibiotics if she does not have a symptommatic infection.

        If she starts having pain/discharge, or certainly fevers she should be seen.

    • If she hadn’t already retrieved it, then I’d say she should go to urgent care. Since she found it, it seems like the risk would’ve ended and there’s not really any point in going to a doctor now. Is she feeling unwell at all? Otherwise I can’t see why they’d give her an antibiotic.

      • Scared Mama :

        No, not feeling unwell at all, except for the panic attack she is about to have after reading up on TSS. I’ve taken hive’s advice and told her to call nurse line; I’m certain they will say to monitor for fever, discharge, etc., but that otherwise, not to worry. I do remember most of the TSS cases seemed to be associated with use of a particular brand of tampon (way back in the day) – super absorbent and I don’t think on the market anymore. In any case, thank you all for your suggestions – am very grateful.

    • I used to do that all the time, but I sometimes forget one for up to a month. (I know!) Never had any adverse symptoms or problems from it.

    • Anonymous :

      1. She’s probably just fine. Have her get checked if she feels like she is getting the flu in the next couple of days.
      2. Where is this misinformation about discharge coming from? That is not a symptom of TSS.

  13. Anonymous :

    Thank you to the poster who recommended Great Clips for a blowout!! I was inspired by the post to I try a different little chain salon in my neighborhood. The blowout was $18, and my hair is super smooth. I feel like a million bucks. Thanks again!

    • Good to know – I take my son to Great Clips for a haircut but never thought of getting myself a blowout there! Thanks.

  14. Anonymous :

    What is a good bag to carry a breast pump? I have previously used a canvas tote but think that it might be too casual for my office. I have the Medela Pump In Style (did not come with a tote). Ideally I’d just like to get a nice tote that I can also use for work. I have the Cuyana leather tote for work right now and it’s nice but too floppy to carry the pump.

    • Tumi has a nice nylon bag that works.

    • anon a mouse :

      Sarah Wells makes lovely bags that can double as work bags.

      • +1 I splurged on a sarah wells bag for going back to work from maternity leave and I love it. We also went on vacation and I didn’t bring the pump (just a hand pump), and it was a great large carry-on bag (fits under plane seat still).

    • AnonSrAssoc :

      I used a Longchamp la pliage nylon tote. Whatever you go with, I’d recommend nylon or other man made material b/c there’s inevitably a spill or two.

  15. What's for Dinner? :

    Help me cook something other than scrambled eggs…
    DH, DS (1 yo) and I have our main meal of the day at lunch. Dinner for all of us should be
    – low carb, filling and vegetarian (fish is ok) for DH
    – soy-free and quick & easy to prepare for me
    – kid-friendly and mild for DS
    We live in a country where pre-made meals are not readily available. Freezer space is limited.
    Please end my dinner desperation!

    • Anonymous :

      tacos or wraps?

      Because of allergies, we often have to give our daughter a variation on what we are having. So maybe sometimes you have chicken pesto pasta and just add the chicken after DH’s plate is served up with just plain pesto. Or you make fish + rice + salad and DH doesn’t eat the rice if he wants to be low-carb.

      • What's for Dinner? :

        Tacos sound great for everyone, especially DS. Fantastic to take apart & eat as fingerfood!

    • I make vegetable and bean soups year-round.

      • I was going to say soup, too. And you can make different cold/room temp soups for the summer.
        If your main meal is at lunch, you could also do a nice composed salad that you just leave in pieces for kiddo; or do a frittata (eggs, but “more dinner”), or sautee some beans and greens (and add an egg on top for protein if you like). We usually tend to do a veggie fried rice at least once during the work week to use up leftover takeout rice and have a quick, easy meal. You can get all the veggies pre-chopped at trader joe. Also – veggie burgers? Your son can just get the patty and if you want to avoid carbs you can do lettuce wraps.

      • What's for Dinner? :

        Oh, I hadn’t thought of soups! Creamy vegetable soups plus roasted bread for DS and me sounds like a plan.
        How long do they keep in the fridge?

        • 3-5 days easily, but the better bet is to make a double batch and freeze some (you can freeze purchased ones too :)). And if you ever need a more substantial dinner for some reason, you can add some frozen tortellini to tomato soup – sooooooooo good!

        • try “African Curried Coconut Soup with Chickpeas” from the Epicurious website. It’s not spicy if you leave out the jalapenos. I make it 3-5 days ahead, but I pre-cook the rice and keep it separate from the soup part. Add the rice back when you heat it to eat.

    • What's for Dinner? :

      Oh, and maybe I should add that I have zero kitchen skills…

      • Anonymous :

        Your husband’s choices are is what makes this difficult, so he cooks. Problem solved.

        I’d just go with a routine. Stop by store, buy a piece of fish and a vegetable, cook them simply.

    • LondonLeisureYear :

      Homemade Veggie Burgers! There are so many types with a million different ingredients so I am sure you can find one that fits with your needs.

      Sweet Potato Bar

      Lettuce Wraps

    • Sheet pan dinner. Season a chicken breast or boneless thigh and throw it and a veggie on a baking sheet lined with tinfoil. Drizzle olive oil over the whole thing and bake.
      For the veggie I like broccoli, zucchini, squash, and asparagus, but this works with most anything.
      Seasoning shouldn’t be complicated. I make some basic seasoning blends and keep them in old bulk seasoning containers. My favorites are basil, oregano, thyme (herby, vaguely Italian) and paprika, garlic powder, cayenne (spicy to taste, vaguely Mexican). Add salt and a squeeze of lemon if you have it before baking.

      • Just re-read the vegetarian part- sorry I missed that earlier! You can sub the chicken for fish or shrimp, or use chicken for you and DS and have DH heat up some beans to eat with the roasted veggies (should probably roast on a separate pan if you want to keep it fully vegetarian).

        • What's for Dinner? :

          I’m intrigued! How do you roast the beans? I’ve roasted green string beans before, but have never heard of roasting any other type (they are not a common ingredient in my country). Do you just open a can and throw the content in the oven???

          • I wouldn’t roast the beans on the pan with everything else, I’d just open a can and heat them up on the stove while the rest of the stuff baked. You could also microwave the beans.
            I have done roasted chickpeas though, and they’re a decent source of protein, if kind of carb-y. Just drain them and dry them, then toss with oil and salt or whatever seasoning you’re using and add to the sheet pan.

    • Cauliflower fried rice. Put cauliflower in food processor (although I guess you could mash it up with a potato masher really well if you don’t have access to a food processor) to “rice” it. Add any veggies that you like (you can even use frozen) and saute in a bit of oil. Dump in cauliflower rice and splash of soy sauce; stir. Crack two eggs over everything and scramble. Done.

    • Lazy vegetarian :

      Disagree to the poster who said husband is difficult, my household is also low-carb and low-meat (not 100% vegetarian).

      Would husband eat lentils or chickpeas? There are a million Middle Eastern / North African / South Asian (Indian) recipes for lentil or chickpea based meals that are flavorful and quick. If you’re willing to commit a bit of time up front to stocking your kitchen with the right spices, I love Indian food for quick low carb, low meat dinners. Tikka masala, saag paneer, and gobi aloo are all good bases and you can put more vegetables or protein of your choice in. Shakshuka is good if you already like eggs. Tagines are relatively easy to prepare, but take a bit of time in the oven.

      Hope this can serve as a good starting point! I love 660 Curries for most of my Indian food recipes, FYI, and it’s divided into meat, eggs, fish, legume, and vegetable dishes. There is upfront time to make your own spice blends but it’s worth the effort, and once you get established there are a lot of quick (30 minutes) recipes.

      • Lentils and chickpeas are high carb, though I guess it would depend on what the op means by low carb.

        • What's for Dinner? :

          Too high carb as the main ingredient, but ok to make a vegetable-based dish more satisfactory.

    • Foil packet fish is my life right now. If you can slice vegetables, turn on an oven, and fold tinfoil, you can make it: http://www.foodnetwork.com/magazine/articles/mix-and-match-foil-packet-fish

      • We ate this at least once a week in law school. Often more.

        I made it again recently after several years away, and it’s SO GOOD.

    • Rice/quinoa/couscous bowls.

      Rice, egg, avocado, chili sauce, green onions, sliced cucumbers in sesame oil.

      Quinoa, roasted, sauteed, or grilled veggies, egg, goat cheese.

      Couscous, sauteed peppers, onions, chick peas, spices.

      Whoever is low carb can skip the grain or sub cauliflower rice. Thrown an egg on top of anything. Maybe some canned/boxed tomatoes.

      When it’s hot outside I make a protein and then serve sliced tomatoes or cucumbers as a side. Oil and salt.

    • Spaghetti squash or zoodles as a pasta substitute. Salmon and shrimp go really well with either.

      Bean & soyrizo burrito bowls. I use barley or farro instead of rice.

      Cauliflower pizza. Making the “dough” is a bit time consuming but you can make a big batch at once.

    • I like cooking various veggies on the skillet. My current go to is: sweet potatoes, onion, bell pepper, zuccini, black beans, sausage (which you could absolutely leave out). You can add sauces and/or cheese if you want and use whatever veggies you want. I like adding fresh avocado and cilantro on top.

    • We do salmon almost every week: Bake salmon for 20 min at 450, make “pesto” in the ratio of 1c parsley, 1/4c olive oil, 2T lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste (put it all in a food processor or blender). Serve with instant brown rice or cauliflower rice. My kids love this and eat about twice as much when we have this as any other day. You can also substitute spinach for parsley if you don’t have parsley. It’s OK with cilantro, too, just cut the lemon juice in half. I usually throw in some veggies (squash or cauliflower) to roast at the same time as the fish. I use foil to make two separate sections on the baking sheet. Making this tonight in fact. Yum.

  16. Pressure cooker :

    Recs for blogs that have interesting pressure cooker recipes? I already read Serious Eats which is awesome. I feel like when I just google things like “Instant Pot recipes” I get the same 6-8 things with slight variations (seriously, I could list them off…oatmeal, pulled pork, chili, whole chicken, black bean soup).

    • I browsed this while debating whether to get an instant pot on prime day – looked good.

      http://www.thekitchn.com/50-recipes-that-you-can-make-in-your-instant-pot-233637

    • I sometimes get good ideas from the Kitchn or Our Best Bites. I can’t promise you won’t get the same list of foods to cook.

    • Skinnytaste

    • ponte python's flying circus :

      There’s a list of Chinese recipes here (these tend towards the rich side – classic Cantonese/ colonial Hong Kong style dishes). https://www.pressurecookrecipes.com/pressure-cooker-chinese-recipes/

      I haven’t tried them all, but their congee and soy sauce eggs were pretty decent, so I think they’re trustworthy. I’ve found the Instant Pot to be especially useful for things that would be inedibly tough when braised on a stovetop.

    • Anon in NYC :

      Nom Nom Paleo – http://nomnompaleo.com/post/125878339293/my-top-paleo-pressure-cookerinstant-pot-recipes

  17. Anonymous :

    Looking to move a roth ira, money, and investments to a new financial institution. (open to doing a combination of 2 financial institutions) Anyone have experience with capital one? I don’t want a company that selects investments for me.

    • Are you buying new investments or just parking existing ones? Why wouldn’t you do Fidelity or Vanguard – lowest expense ratios out there and a ton of no fee mutual funds/ETFs; banks like Capital One that purport to have an investment arm tend to fleece you on investments. If it’s bc you need to park savings in a savings account – do that at a bank; and then roll your IRA and investments to Vanguard or Fidelity.

    • Schwab. They have _amazing_ customer service and you can get a broker, bank, savings, IRA, Roth (and they have ALL the low cost options, including prices just as low as Vanguard). They are seriously the best. And if you do want help with your account, it’s FREE…if you want it, but they will never pressure you.

      • Anonymous :

        FWIW, just as a point of experience – I had Schwab for an employer’s SIMPLE IRA. I HATED the website interface and thought it was hard to figure out what I was supposed to be doing with money that was put into the account. All my stuff is with Vanguard now.

    • TDAmeritrade. Rolled a 401k into a traditional Roth and pick my own stocks (to hold for the long term).

      I figure I’m invested enough in FB, Amazon and Google through my employer 401k where I don’t have many options besides mutual funds with low fees over-invested in the S&P top 50. I pick stocks to balance that reality through my TDAmeritrade account.

  18. Baconpancakes :

    How do you all handle dividing chores that one person sees as necessary and the other person just doesn’t? Not things like decorating the house or writing thank you notes, but things like meal planning, not eating out 7 times a week, and cleaning out the fridge?

    My SO is better than I am about cleaning up after dinner, and will cook if I plan the meal and make sure we have all the ingredients, but sees eating at home as something that I want to do, and thus not his responsibility. When he does cook, he’s doing it as a favor to me. He never complains when I ask him to cook, but won’t take initiative to make it happen, either. Same thing with stuff like organizing our closet, the (tiny) pantry, cleaning out the fridge, and basically organizing anything. His solution is “have less stuff.” I’ve culled a ton of our possessions, but unless we got rid of all but four bath towels, our linen closet is too small to not be organized. He’ll wash the towels and sheets, but ignores the organization and throws them in wherever, and I have to pull out every single item to find a pillowcase.

    This feels like a nitpicky “but he won’t do it my way” argument, which I hate, but I’m not sure how to compromise on things like not eating out/getting takeout every meal and being able to find things without devoting a ton of time to being the household manager. He gets angry when I try to talk about this because he thinks he is doing his fair share, and the “extra” things I want him to do shouldn’t be his responsibility.

    Does anyone have suggestions for this impasse? This argument took up a lot of my weekend.

    • Stop making dinner for both of you and each be responsible for feeding yourselves? I think you can do this so you still eat together.

      “Hey, SO, I’d like to eat dinner together around 7:00 p.m. I’m making XYZ for myself, but I would like to eat together.”

      Then let SO figure out how he is going to get food to join you?

      • Baconpancakes :

        I’ve considered this, but basically waving food in front of someone’s face and not letting them eat it seems pretty vindictive, and cooking for one is a PIA.

        I still might try it for a bit, but it still seems not long-term sustainable.

        • So is viewing cooking as a favor he does for you. He sounds petty and kinda the worst.

          • Baconpancakes :

            Lol, he’s possibly the least petty person I’ve ever met. His home life growing up was just a place where things got done magically (by his mom) with no expectation of anyone else taking responsibility, and there was no discussion of organizing or meal planning, so it never sunk in that that was necessary for a household to run. Through his 20’s, he just did without organization or meal planning, and was fine with it. It’s really a responsibility mindset.

          • Linda from HR :

            I brought this up a few weeks back, asking what parents should do to make sure their kids (especially boys, let’s face it) grow up to be responsible adults both able and willing to share not just the physical labor but the mental load as well. This is what happens when you don’t involve your kids in the work.

            Of course, this doesn’t help you right now, does it? The fact is, trying to get a grown person to be more responsible around the house takes a ton of emotional labor, and it’s an investment you may be willing to make if you really love someone, but it could be a lost cause if he’s convinced all that stuff isn’t necessary.

          • You’re so kind to call a person’s partner “the worst” based on knowing one snippet about one aspect of their relationship. Also it makes you sound ridiculous because we all know that differences in dinner prep preferences is hardly what makes a partner “the worst.”

            Seems like Anonymous is in a really bad mood today. Come on. This sort of thing is what makes this s i t e necessarily mean.

        • What about having him help you batch cook on Sunday? You plan out two big meals (maybe one crockpot and one casserole dish), you both cook and then just eat that throughout the week? If he complains about this approach, then he gets to be on his own for food and you eat your batch meals.

          I think you are either going to have to take on the cooking completely, cook for yourself and force him to feed himself, or split cooking duties and accept that you will have to plan when he cooks and that he thinks he is doing you a favor.

    • Can you split them by what you each can do well – e.g., he cooks all the meals but you plan them and either give him a grocery list or get the groceries, and he does all the laundry but you put it away? I don’t think it matters if he thinks he’s doing you a favor or you care more about this than he does.

      We have a similar dynamic and this is basically what we’ve resorted to. With respect to cleaning, we’ve divided the chores according to ability too – so I do the living room area because arranging the pillows on the couch and stuff on the shelves just so is not something that will ever get done well and Mr. AIMS cleans the bathrooms/kitchen because there is less room for error with how that goes. It tends to even out.

      Also – an aside, but getting a towel rack/shelf in the bathroom (above tub) really helps with towel storage.

      • This is how we have dealt with it. I do the shopping and planning, and we divide the cooking based upon who is home (and often try to batch cook so we’re not scrambling for dinner/to pack a lunch every day of the week).

        Mr. ELS does the pet maintenance, mostly, because it’s a chore he likes. He is responsible for the basement, because it’s his man-cave. I handle the top two floors, most of the kitchen cleaning (unless I cooked, then he does dishes) and bathrooms (again, unless I’ve had the week from heck and he’s the one around to do it, which he will do without complaint).

        We also tried to make things routine as much as possible, especially because Mr. ELS is a shiftworker, and we’re not home at the same times. He has a list of things he does each week on particular days, as do I. If things go off the rails, that’s OK, but having a schedule and an explicit division of labor has been really helpful.

    • I try to outsource things that lead to this level of conflict but am a little stumped on this one. Maybe get Blue Apron or something for him to cook 2x per week? I don’t know how to sell him on the merits of eating at home. If you have a housecleaner maybe that person could organize the linen closet or clean the fridge once in a while. Mine does occasionally. I am sorry I can’t be more helpful.

      • Senior Attorney :

        Blue Apron is great. Meals are tasty and it eliminates the need to shop for them. We’ve been doing it for two years and love it. And yes, outsourcing cleaning out the fridge and organizing the linen closet.

        And don’t have kids with this guy because it will be so much worse with kids.

    • Assuming you’re both fully adults and not 22 and still growing up, I don’t think there is any way to fix this. These are take it or leave it lifestyle issues. I personally would have to leave it.

      The eating out is a health and money issue, not just a kitchen issue. Will you be fighting about how much it costs to eat out someday down the line? What about when his cholesterol and blood pressure go through the roof? Will you have enough money to save for retirement and kids’ college and eat out at every meal?

      How neat a person is falls on a spectrum, but if you’re not somewhat close to where your partner is, you are literally going to spend The Rest Of Your Life cleaning up after this man. Is that what you want?

      Life is so much easier when you accept people as they are and accept yourself as you are. If you’re not similar enough, don’t force things.

      • +1

      • Linda from HR :

        “What about when his cholesterol and blood pressure go through the roof? ”

        That’s another issue to think about. If the takeout starts to have a noticeable impact on his health, is he going to manage that himself? Will he make his own doctors appointments, and proactively start exercising and eating better, or will you need to manage that and start nagging him about his health?

    • Don’t date people who don’t share your values. I value having a nice home and eating at home. I’ll work with someone who isn’t as good at it as me, but someone who just doesn’t care and would rather eat out and barely humors me? Bye.

    • This is annoying and frustrating. I’m dealing with this with my husband, who thinks eating frozen Trader Joe’s entrees (packed with preservatives and sodium in many cases) is acceptable “cooking” nightly. He’ll half-heartedly agree that we should eat more fresh food, but he simply does not cook it. He won’t think of it, he won’t buy ingredients for it, or do anything to facilitate it unless I give him a list and direct him to go to the store (and then I’ll still be cooking). He does SO much other stuff around the house and is a good partner in so many ways, but I totally hear you on this cooking thing and am not sure of any good ideas…

      • Ugh, so judgy. I’m not saying TJ’s entrees are “cooking”, but they actually DON”T have any preservatives and do quite well on sodium. This is not the worst diet you can have.

        • Yeah, and sodium is a normal part of a healthy diet. So what if one meal has 30% of your daily sodium?

        • Baconpancakes :

          The calorie/fat counts are pretty consistently high, though.

          • As an aside, I lost 40 lbs and my diet mostly revolved around shopping at Trader Joe’s! It’s not unhealthy unless you’re eating the frozen croissants or something every night. They have lots of healthy stuff.

        • You’ll notice I said “in many cases.” Have you read the label on their lasagna? Packed with all kinds of unpronounceable crap that I don’t want to be eating nightly, but my husband gladly would. I don’t like eating meals high in sodium at dinnertime because then I have to drink a lot of water and pee all night. Do whatever works for you!

          • https://jameskennedymonash.wordpress.com/2014/01/05/ingredients-of-an-all-natural-egg/

            Just because a word is long and unfamiliar doesn’t mean the ingredient is sinister. If you looked at the ingredients of an egg you would probably declare them “unpronounceable crap” too.

          • No, I wouldn’t, because an egg is a natural food item found in nature whereas Trader Joe’s frozen meals are not. Again, you do you. Knock yourself out with Trader Joe’s entrees. I’m saying that they are not appropriate in my diet nightly.

          • Ok, but they seem to be fine for your husband. Hope you aren’t trying to change him.

          • Anonymous :

            I dunno – I looked up the label and it looks like all the same things that would be in lasagna if you made it from scratch. If you problem is pasta dishes, that’s one thing, but I don’t think this is a very good example of frozen foods being worse than fresh.

    • My husband and I definitely have different tolerance levels for neatness, but I do feel that we compromise. It is on my radar to be cleaner and neater than I normally would, and if I notice something that in my single life I would have let go, I take care of it. He has basically asked me one thing, which is that he doesn’t like when I put things on the bed (a habit that is hard to break, but I really, really watch out for it). He puts up with more clutter than he would if he was living alone, and I’m grateful for it. I feel like compromise because you love the other person is what helps us a lot. I’m not saying your SO doesn’t love you (obviously!) but compromise isn’t always just finding something that is great for both of you but finding something that you can each reach towards the other a little bit more.

    • His response is the most concerning part of your post. Dividing household chores is something that EVERY couple has to navigate. It’s a lot of trial and error, a lot of each person feeling like they’re doing 110% of the work, and a LOT of communication. Being dismissive and angry is not constructive. Even if nothing changes about chores, you’ll need to address the communication problem.

      On the chore front, I know it’s not what you want to hear but I don’t think you’re going to change it. You’re asking him to spend a lot of time (cumulatively) doing stuff he doesn’t want to do. You’d be better off if you make some other shared chore that he values 100% his responsibility. Cleaning? Keeping toiletries/paper products in stock? Sorting through the mail? Getting rid of all the cardboard boxes that seem to accumulate?

    • My husband is a little bit like this, in that he can’t cook and I love cooking. What I do is that on the days I feel like cooking and have the ingredients on hand, I’ll cook enough for both of us plus leftovers. On the days when cooking feels like a chore/drag, I’ll have something like a sandwich. He’s welcome to also have a sandwich, but on those days, the ingredients are out and he can make whatever he wants. I’m not going to make him a sandwich – he’s not a child. But in my mind, not every night has to be a cooking night. Plus I like cooking a lot more when it’s not a daily chore!

    • Linda from HR :

      Few things:

      1) You’re taking on the mental load of the household. He’s putting in what he feels is enough physical labor, but no mental labor. Not sure how old y’all are so I can’t tell if he’s refusing to care or if he just doesn’t know better, but that brings me to my next thing:

      2) You clearly have different values when it comes to household management, and there may be a difference in maturity that goes with that. Caring about things being organized, wanting most meals to be produced in the home, and not wanting a fridge full of rotten food are all signs that you’re a mature, well-functioning adult. Maybe he’s not there yet, maybe he’ll never care about the home being clean.

      Could you “reach” him by spelling out how expensive it is to get takeout for every meal, and how much money you’d save by eating in? Could talking about health help him come around? Could you explain how much easier it is to keep a space clean if things are generally organized and easy to find, and how much time you both save by knowing where everything is? Isn’t he frustrated when he has to go looking for what he needs?

      Someone who’s a good match you for would be someone who either legitimately cares as much about this stuff as you do, or someone who puts in the extra work, even when he thinks it’s unnecessary, because he cares about you.

      • Baconpancakes :

        That’s just it – he’s taken on a lot because he cares about me, to the extent that it makes me roll my eyes at the posters above who want to write off the relationship. He makes the bed every day because he’s the last out of bed and I like to come home to a made bed. He wipes down the sink after he trims his beard because I’ve complained about it. He humors my mother because he cares about me, which is even more than I do most of the time. And as stated above, he will cook when I ask, without grumbling, but just doesn’t see it as his responsibility to make happen.

        The health/money issue seems to be a good avenue, and I might pull in his sister (who does the majority of the emotional labor for their family) as support for the “this is not how mature adults live” argument.

        Overall, these responses have been really helpful, so thanks everyone.

        • Look Idk what you want us to say. If it matters so much to you that you spent all weekend fighting about it, break up. If he’s an amazing guy in all the other ways, get over it.

          Don’t pull in his sister. That’s ridiculous. Speaking on behalf of sisters everywhere I’m not my brother’s keeper.

          • Baconpancakes :

            There’s a lot of “break up” sentiment on this board – and on some things, it makes sense, but I think in general people are too eager to jump to that advice. And SO doesn’t necessarily mean “boyfriend/girlfriend” – would you be giving the same advice to divorce?

            People argue. It happens. Over the course of a 30+ year relationship, you really think you’re not going to spend 48 hours straight upset with someone? Ridiculous. We argued about this twice in a weekend, which feels like way too much of a weekend, but in between those arguments, we snuggled, went to dinner with friends, drank margaritas on our front porch, watched our favorite show, and went swimming.

            But saying “get over it” is ridiculous. This is a problem I want to fix. I asked for suggestions. Thanks for weighing in – but I won’t be taking your advice.

          • That’s nice. But maybe just maybe if you ask the internet for advice you should quit being so defensive when you get it. I don’t care at all if you take my advice. No need to smugly explain why I’m wrong wrong wrong. Just trying to help sorry to have utterly failed you. And if you want to use SO for husbandgo right ahead but it’s weird and also I think he’s just your boyfriend actually.

          • “When people show you who they are, believe them.” You may want to fix this problem, but he doesn’t think it is one. Your only locus of control here is you.

          • Linda from HR :

            Anonymous, you’re being rude and unhelpful. If you can’t be kind, don’t bother commenting.

            BP, I’m glad things are generally going well, but having vastly different attitudes towards housekeeping is a pretty common reason for breaking up or getting divorced, even when everything else is going fine.

          • Senior Attorney :

            Thing is, you can’t fix another person. People are not improvement projects.

            You’ve heard me say there are three kinds of problems in relationships: (1) Dealbreakers, (2) Things you don’t like but can tolerate as the price of admission to the relationship, and (3) things that drive you totally insane but that you know you can get the other person to change if you just explain often enough, and loudly enough, and in enough detail, why you are right and they are wrong about whatever it is.

            Only there is no Number Three. (See also Gottman, “most problems never get solved” https://www.gottman.com/blog/managing-conflict-solvable-vs-perpetual-problems/)

            You are most likely not going to solve this problem so you need to either declare it a dealbreaker or figure out how to manage it as the price of admission.

        • Okay, then just ask him! He is not going to change his mind set on the responsibility part of it. Either you ask him and he does it or you don’t and he doesn’t. You need to get over the favor part of it IMO.

          • Oh yes, and please for the love do not get his sister involved. This a you and him issue!! Either you accept that this is who he is and that you have to ask him to do it or you do it yourself. I really don’t see the problem if he does it without complaint when you ask him.

          • Linda from HR :

            Please read the “you should have asked” comic. I used to think this way too, that if you want something done you should ask, but the comic explains that women shouldn’t be responsible for delegating tasks and essentially project managing the house while the men let their brains relax when it comes to housekeeping. The mental load needs to be shared just as much as the physical one.

          • I have seen the comic. We have suggested she stop doing the planning and feed herself only. She pushed back on that. If she doesn’t want to do the planning for both of them, then she should stop and only feed herself and let him figure it out for himself.

            Otherwise, you suck it up and ask or you break up because you’re not compatible.

          • Linda though what do you think is going to happen? Someone who is clear that they know this is work, they don’t think it matters, and has an alternate less work option they are happy with us just magically going to change without even being asked?

        • Linda from HR :

          Fair enough, it wasn’t clear what he did do around the home, just what he was refusing to do, which made me think he just didn’t do stuff in general. It’s great that he is going out of his way in some ways, and maybe he sees some of the things you initially mentioned as too much for him.

          My concern now is that you’re still managing the household, and the fact everything is done because you do it or you ask him to do it isn’t good. Even when he does some housekeeping, you’ve been managing it, and it doesn’t sound like any of this is his idea, and at his age, it should be.

          Are there any chores he does care about, and either doesn’t mind doing or does even though he doesn’t like them because having that done matters? Or do you feel like he’d be a lazy, unproductive, messy slob if you weren’t there? How did he live before?

          • Baconpancakes :

            Before, he had roommates and his personal space was neat, but had almost nothing in it. The kitchen was dirty, but he’s quite good about cleaning up, so I attribute that to his roommates. I complicated things by having more things than he does, like stationary, curling irons, baking pans, and more than 6 pairs of underwear. I think I really just need to sit down when we’re not tired or already annoyed and explain how much time I’m putting in managing the house, and why those things do need to be done. Then we might be able to talk about a reasonable division of responsibility. For some reason, we easily successfully communicate about LGPs, family, finances, religion, and children, but not housework. Shrug.

        • You’re going to get his sister to lecture him about being messy? lol no.

        • Slightly different perspective than all those who are telling you to just break up (which I don’t think is necessary, unless there are other systemic problems, because again: sounds like he’s willing to make compromises).

          I have a husband who is absent minded and just seriously, despite efforts on his part which I believe are genuine, has issues with the planning part of the week. I am naturally good at these things. He also has no problem eating out for literally every meal, and the thought makes my skin crawl. He cares less about clutter than I do, and said the same thing about “having less stuff.”

          So this is what we have worked out, and how we got there:

          1) I do the meal planning for the next week, and make a grocery list, usually on Thursday because that’s a day that works for me/us. If he has input on things he wants, he gives me input by then (and he often does, now).
          2) we have a cooking schedule. We batch cook on the weekend, and do limited cooking/sandwich making through the week. He happily cooks according to this schedule, which we developed together.
          3) We both take responsibility for shopping, but not together. We usually hit the farm market early Saturday together, and I run to Costco after my yoga class on Saturday. He handles any other shopping on Saturday, and any through the week “we ran out of X” trips.
          4) We have a literal cleaning and organization schedule. I do most of the organizing, but once we have mutually determined where the place for something is, he will put it back there. For the first six months or so, we had the schedule of what each of us would do on each day on the fridge.

          We’re pretty analytical people, so this worked for us. YMMV.

          • Baconpancakes :

            …are we married to the same person? Our lives sound eerily similar, down to the Saturday market outing together.

            I actually love this analytical plan – I may propose this to my SO. Especially the Costco/grocery store divide. He HATES Costco.

          • Very similar boat. I also have a meal schedule on the fridge that we agree to on Sunday morning before the grocery run. We actually schedule a ‘take out’ night so that we both know it’s coming and that helps us commit to eating our batch-cooked meals or burger/dogs (yay summer!) the other nights.

          • This sounds like my relationship except my husband is really neat and does LOTs of emotional labor and plans out meals as well. I certainly plan my share as well, but I am not as neat or detail oriented as my husband. Our place is really neat, but we have different styles of approaching household chores.
            He does everything right away. I let it build, and then have a super culling session. (I have spent the last week purging kondo style– I now have emptish drawers and every tiny to large item has been put away). He deals with receipts and papers right away, while I just threw out receipts for an ikea pax system we bough over twelve years ago. I tend to stuff things in drawers or folders, then go through it much later. I guess what I am trying to say is that this may be an issue of personal style and how you approach things. We have been married for 22 years and have had arguments very similar to what you outline here. We got through it by just acknowledging that we have different styles. I thank him for dealing with things right away, while he appreciates that I will get things done, though not at his speed. Things to bubble up from time to time, but we just have lightened up a out it over time.

          • AnonForThis :

            I’m surprised at the wild responses on what seemed to be a straightforward question at first sight.
            1) If it matters more to one person than the other – yes, the one person may have to lean a little more towards getting it done.
            >If DH wants to remodel the house – I could take it or leave it, in fact I’m dreading the thought of living through the noisy dusty remodel – it’s on DH to do the emotional labor and drive it forward once we’ve agreed to do it.
            >I care more about home cooked food and eating meals that remind me of food I ate growing up in another country, so I cook more.
            >DH is big on math, so he spends a lot of time with kiddo doing math.

            2) As a loving spouse, the person who isn’t all that keen on it will bend a little, compromise a little.
            > DH doesn’t cook, but does a weekly Trader Joe’s trip.
            >I don’t love remodels, but I made a few calls and got bids since DH was busy at work.
            > I’m not as mathy as DH (and wont do mental math for fun with kiddo) but I signed up kiddo for math camp and did dropoffs because it was important for DH.

            3) As long as the labor is somewhat fairly divided i.e. each person cares about some things and it’s not one person caring about everything (and remember this is over the course of many years of a relationship so things do even out) it’s fine. That’s what give and take is. If one person is doing it all then it’s time to have a talk – in Baconpancakes situation, this doesnt seem to be the case.

        • Please, please, please do not bring in a grown man’s sister to support you in an argument against her brother. Just don’t.

          I’m a long time poster, sans regular handle, so I appreciate you, BP, for all of your contributions over the years. I say this kindly: he won’t change. It’s just not important to him. Price of admission. Insert other Senior Attorney advice here.

          It’s not break-up material in my book because I think it’s something that you just have to move past. Cook for yourself only. Make a statement. If it matters, then he’ll pivot. But, it very well may not so set yourself up for that potential outcome, too.

          • Baconpancakes :

            This is both helpful and kind, and I really appreciate it. Thank you.

    • Probably not helpful, but I just do what makes me happy and outsource the rest (see housekeeper because my husband would vacuum maybe once a year) because I love my husband for so many other reasons besides his terrible housekeeping and the fighting just isn’t worth it to me. On food, I am the picky eater, my husband thinks a piece of meat is a balanced meal, and with pregnancy I eat practically nothing these days. We usually eat at the same time but he eats leftovers from something we made, leftovers from going out, or “freezer food” – chicken fingers, frozen pizza, lean pockets, etc. and I eat some fruit and cheese or a glass of milk or cook up some frozen cheese tortellini. I love to cook but pregnancy has killed that for me (the standing, the being careful not to burn the bump, the smells….). Like CHJ above, when I do feel like cooking, I make extra leftovers, which my husband deems safe until there are visible signs of mold (3+ weeks, whereas I would pitch/not eat at about 5 days).

      Something to consider trying – Peapod (or another grocery delivery service). My husband is way more into cooking and meal planning if he can put the grocery order together on an app. I nearly fell over when he started ordering meal kits, because he doesn’t really cook (other than roasting a piece of meat or fish (which I don’t eat) – and I have abdicated all grilling and steak broiling to him – that’s identified as “his job”). Shockingly though, my husband has been getting into the meal kits offered by Peapod. He didn’t want to sign up for a Blue Apron/Plated type service because it was “too often”, but he takes the lead when we order meal kits – doing the cooking, asking if there are any ingredients I want to substitute in/out, etc. Really remarkable.

      I don’t think my husband will ever organize a single thing in our house other than “organizing” the fridge – which consists of dumping anything he doesn’t like in the back and putting all the stuff he eats/uses in front. I swear every time he is home for a day I come back and can’t find anything in the fridge. But he does wipe up any smears or spills when he does it, so I guess that is helpful? Oh, and he LOVES to self-clean the oven. Like at least once a month. Usually on super hot days. Other than that, I do the housework or outsource it, and it’s not worth the mental energy to me to fight it. My standards are higher than his, so I just need to keep myself happy.

      • I died at your husband’s enthusiasm for self-cleaning the oven. Hilarious. Thank you for sharing!

    • It sounds like the “fix” you want is for your SO to agree with you about whether cooking dinner, organizing the closet, etc., is an important part of household management. That’s not going to happen because you want it to. All you can do is communicate why it’s important to you and listen to why he prefers takeout or to throw stuff back in the closet. Maybe the two of you can come up with some creative solutions based on what you learn in that conversation (batched meals, quick meals, Blue Apron, trading off who’s responsible for dinner and not complaining about the other person’s choices).

      I appreciate that your SO is doing all these things to make you happy. Obviously, being considerate and trying to meet a SO’s needs is a great sign. On the other hand, mismatched perceptions of what needs to be done is a big issue, and not one that’s easily fixed. If you stay together, it’s likely that you’ll argue about this for the rest of your lives. Even if your SO is great in other ways, it’ll get tedious if you’re putting in the emotional and mental labor on things that are important to you, and he sees his contributions to those things as “extra” work.

      I’m not saying break up with your SO. But there is no easy solution here. This is an area where you may have to decide if it’s worth the so-called “price of admission.”

      Also, don’t get his sister involved.

    • My SO and I have a similar dynamic and I just don’t see it as a problem? If I let him plan our food, we’d alternate between eating boxed mac n’ cheese with spinach and sausage and tofu scramble cooked into the consistency of rubber for every meal. It’s just not possible for me to re-program him into being a person who enjoys experimenting with cooking or cares that much about food and I’m way (way, way, I cannot use enough ways) better at it than he is so I just do it. He does basically all the dishes, and I’m fine with this division of labor. Sure, it’s more thinking and planning to cook and make grocery lists than it is to wash a pile of dishes when it appears, but, like I said, people can’t be re-programmed.

      On the laundry folding front, SO will do laundry (and does more of it than I do) but just will not fold. Solution: put the laundry basket with the clean sheets and towels next to the cabinet and I’ll fold it. Again, it takes more time to fold the laundry than it does to actually do it (since the washing machine does all of the actual work), but, we’re talking about 5 minutes or so? Versus me being irritated that nothing is organized in our extremely full linen cabinet and I can’t find my pillowcase. It’s just easier to do it this way and 5 minutes of my time is not too much to ask.

    • I think you need to let go a little. I don’t think relationships will be totally equal because each person truly does have a different viewpoint about what needs to be done when and how. Sure, try to talk about it and work something out. But there needs to be some compromise on your end too. I don’t think you can expect to program him to change habits and do things the way you like routinely. Instead, think about what small change would be reasonable to expect and ask him to do it. You may have to keep asking him to do it, because change is hard and takes time and he might just not care about it as much as you do.

      • My husband is fine eating peanut butter sandwiches every night. I want and need a healthy home-cooked meal, so I cook most of the time. I don’t think of it as unequal, because I’m doing it for myself. I want it that way, so I put the work into it. I used to get annoyed by this stuff, and I still do sometimes, but if you nit pick and keep score all the time, you will make a good relationship turn sour.

    • Devil's Advocate :

      Sorry if this is somewhere in the comments, BUT I don’t hear you telling us what he values instead. What does he want to do with his time instead, what does he care about. In his world how does he show that he wants to contribute to the family, its financial position, its social position, its impact on society, etc. B/c he’s either lazy, or he just doesn’t value cooking the way you do. He doesn’t necessarily have to. It can be refreshing to have a man say “that FEMALE stuff” is a waste of time b/c often it is. Now, it could be an important value for your, but it sounds to me like the two of you aren’t communicating correctly on this, and you’re taking the value of those activities for granted.

    • Miz Swizz :

      He sounds a lot like my husband, who is usually pretty helpful if I explicitly ask him to do something, but rarely takes initiative to do housework. In his case, I think he doesn’t notice that all the kitchen towels are in the same drawer, not “wherever there’s room”. Honestly? It’s not that big of a deal and if I get super annoyed, I make him come find them for me.

      Also, making room for a couple of takeout/eat out dinners isn’t that much more expensive than buying groceries and cooking meals if you’re not going too crazy and then no one has to cook or clean up.

    • Pile of kids :

      I’ve been married almost 20 years. FWIW, I handle all chores that I care about (organization of cupboards, meal planning, etc), and he handles all the ones he cares about (car maintenance, managing 401K, etc). The remainder of the chores we outsource. Maybe you can divvie them up that way?

  19. Anony Mouse :

    Headed to Denver for a long weekend. Restaurant recommendations? Vegetarian-friendly a plus, but not essential. I used to live in the metro, but it’s been 15 years, so it’s basically a new city to me!

    • Cholon! Love!

    • Watercourse Foods is vegetarian, as is City O’City.

      • Also, Next Door (medium prices) and The Mercantile (fancy) at Union Station are both popular.

    • Denver Trip :

      Since Vegeterian-friendly is only a plus but not essential, I’ll offer that Rioja, Euclid Hall, and Work & Class were all spots I enjoyed on a recent trip. I don’t recall how vegetarian-friendly any of their menus were, though Work & Class had several amazing meat dishes…

    • Anony Mouse :

      Thanks, everyone! These all look great.

  20. Travel Rewards :

    I’m looking at getting a travel rewards credit card and I’m kind of daunted by all the choices. Any recommendations, or recommended reading?

    • BabyAssociate :

      I’m a big fan of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can accumulate miles really quickly and I think it’s an especially good option if you aren’t loyal to one airline in particular.

      • Blonde Lawyer :

        And if you don’t travel that often, the Chase Sapphire Preferred. No fee for the first year. You can get the bonus every 2 years so I get the card one year, my husband the next, then back to me, so we get a bonus every year.

      • +1 love it and already have enough points to pay for flights to give my parents the honeymoon they never got thanks to the 100,000 point bonus (though I think it’s down to 50,000 now)

    • I like the NerdWallet reviews for this. I ended up with the Capitol One Venture One (I think? their naming conventions have me confused), and I’ve been pretty happy.

    • France in September :

      We had been using the Capital One Venture Rewards and had been pretty happy, but since all the airline mergers have left us traveling on American 80% of the time and we fly 5-6 times per year (thus enabling us to actually use earned miles and perks regularly), are switching to an AAdvantage card. Deciding whether the expensive one ($450 a year) is worth it compared to the cheaper one (something like $75 a year, which we would recoup in 1-2 trips of checked bags).

      Check out the Points Guy for more info than you knew existed.

      • We upgraded to the expensive card mostly for access to the airport clubs. We have traveled as a family and between the free checked bags and the breakfast/snacks at the airport, it has paid for itself. And, of course, there is the advantage of waiting for the flight in a pleasant room. If you haven’t gotten pre-check yet, it will also reimburse you for that cost.

        • France in September :

          In case you’re still reading, thanks for this — we recently talked our way in to our home airport’s Admirals Club (how do we know what we might be willing to pay for, if we’ve never been in one before?) and had some wine and heavy apps before an 8pm flight — definitely saved us about $60-70 that we would have otherwise spent on the same thing elsewhere in the airport! And the super calm environment (as opposed to noisy, people-running-into-you general airport scene) made for a very pleasant flight experience…

  21. Deckled Edges :

    A few months ago, Kat posted a sponsored post for ThreadUp. I finally cleaned out my closet and now they aren’t accepting any more bags. Any ideas for alternative ways to sell? I have a huge pile of nearly new, name brand stuff and very little time to do anything about it.

    • I gave mine to a friend who is active on Poshmark. We split the proceeds 70/30 so she got paid for her time and effort to list my stuff. It was worth it to me because, like you, I would never have done it and thus made no money.

      Do any of your friends use Poshmark?

    • Anony Mouse :

      If you don’t have much time, what about a local consignment shop? You probably won’t make as much as with Poshmark, but then you wouldn’t have to worry about making a trip to the post office every time something sells.

    • Didn’t they say they just aren’t accepting new bags for the month of July? I was just going to wait a couple of weeks and then order a bag then.

    • I’ve been using thredup for awhile now to sell clothes, and while I am less than enamored with them, I think it’s the easiest way to consign clothes. The website says they aren’t accepting new bags for the month of July, which I interpret as they aren’t sending new clean out kits but they are still accepting bags that have already been sent. So if your items are in the thredup bags I’d go ahead and send them in, but it’s worth checking with customer service (via chat).

    • I’ve had good luck selling things on Tradesy, but it does take a while to list everything out and photograph it. You could check to see if there’s a consignment sale coming up? In my area, there are a few high end ones that happen a few times a year, and you can pay for VIP service (aka: they price and tag everything and take a higher percentage as opposed to you pricing and tagging everything).

    • Whoops! I didn’t realize that and sent a bag in a week or so ago…late last week I got my confirmation email they received it and it would be processed by early September. So I guess they are accepting bags they’ve already sent out!

    • Veronica Mars :

      If everything is around the same size, you can make lot auctions on ebay and set the price low (.99 cents with the flat rate shipping for the USPS box it’ll all fit in). May only make $20-$30 or so, but it’s an easy way to clear out a whole bunch of stuff at once. (I’d group by type too–so 2-4 blouses, 2-3 pairs of jeans that are all similar, maybe 3-4 handbags, etc).

  22. Any medical research types here? Is there a way to view posters that are presented at major conferences if you’re a member of the general public? This would be an ASCO poster.

    • Some meetings have a digital poster site that I think anyone can access. I’ve never bothered submitting to one, though. Is this a meeting that already happened? You could try just emailing the presenting author and see if they’ll send you a copy. They may or may not respond- poster presentations usually contain preliminary data and they might be afraid that conclusions could change or that they could get scooped.

    • Email the author? I’m not in medical research but I’ll get the occasional request for a copy of a conference paper from a member of the public who is interested and am always happy to oblige (if I’ve written the paper and not just done a PowerPoint…)

    • Are you talking about the ASCO meeting in Chicago that occurred in June? Or next year’s?

      • The one that just happened. It’s a poster from a major pharmaceutical company so I don’t know that they’ll just send it out on request.

        • Do you mean the pharma company funded the research that was made into a poster? Or do you mean the info was part of the pharma company display? You probably have all the advice you need already, but anything the pharma company was displaying/handing out will be easier to obtain.

        • Yes they likely will. Call their medical information line and they will nearly always send out copies of company-sponsored posters.

          • Call the Med Info line and request it. If that doesn’t work, if they wrote a press release about the poster, email the media or investor contact listed on the press release.

    • Email the author is likely your only chance. Posters typically aren’t available online, even if you attend the conference. (Not sure specifically about ASCO, but that’s generally true).

      • (You’ll have a better chance of success with the author if you explain why you are interested, and promise to keep all information in the poster confidential and not distribute it in any fashion).

  23. Does anyone have a referral link to Rothy’s? I’m ready to try the shoes!

  24. MML Atwood :

    Has anyone tried the Atwood top from MM Lafleur? Thoughts on fit? Specifically, can I wear it during second trimester but also like it when I’m back to my regular size?

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