Thursday’s TPS Report: Slim Ankle Pant

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

Sloan Fit Ankle PantsI have mentioned this before, and I’ll say it again: olive pants are a surprise workhorse for wardrobes. Wear the color with neutrals like black, navy, or white, but — as shown — olive also looks great with a pop of cobalt; YouLookFab has done capsules with olive and light pink, and I’ve always been a fan of olive and purple (both light and dark). These slim ankle pants look lovely, and they’re part of Banana Republic’s 40% off sale today. They were $89, but with the sale come down to $53. They’re available in sizes 00-16, in petite, regular, and tall lengths.  Huzzah. Sloan-Fit Slim Ankle Pant

As usual, the sister sites are having sales as well — Gap is 25% off (code HURRY) and Old Navy is 25% off your order (no code needed); Athleta is offering free 2-day shipping.

Here are two plus-sized options.  If you’re on the hunt for similar cobalt shoes, here’s a link to the BR ones; M.Gemi also has a number of heels and flats in that color.

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(L-all)

Comments

  1. I am trying to find a camel cardigan that Jane Fonda is wearing in early episodes of the new show Grace & Frankie. Has anyone seen this or something similar? Link to follow

    • I’m no help, but I know exactly which one you are talking about and LOVE it. Hoping to see some helpful hints!

    • What about sending your question to Possessionista?

    • It looks like this ralph lauren one http://www.shopstyle.com/action/loadRetailerProductPage?id=454275179&device=desktop&project=JetWhite&exit=ProductCell-Image&ctr=5&ctc=2&ctnc=5&searchId=87df28cb-31ee-4547-9232-607e93c345c7&bq=%2Fbrowse%3Fcat%3Dcardigan-sweaters%26fts%3Dcamel%2520cardigan%26offset%3D40%26limit%3D40 but it is sold out.

      This one is similar though. http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/caslon-open-front-cotton-blend-cardigan-regular-petite/3871051?cm_cat=partner&cm_ite=1&cm_pla=10&cm_ven=Linkshare&siteId=J84DHJLQkR4-M8yMsBvZ2drKXsOYwb_A3Q

  2. http://www.usmagazine.com/celebrity-news/news/jane-fonda-carries-ryan-gosling-chair-on-tv-show-set-photos-201488

    http://splitsider.com/2015/05/grace-frankie-and-the-difference-between-hijinks-and-jokes/

    • Have you tried Eileen Fisher?

    • Baconpancakes :

      Love the second article:

      “All these movies have vague nonsense titles and only incidental plots — instead they’re really about the luxurious natural fibers that money can buy; the cashmere in their cardigans, the marble of their countertops, the ocean in their ocean views, the oak-y aroma of their Napa Valley reds. “

    • Close, but not exact…

      https://www.jcrew.com/womens_category/sweaters/cardigans/PRD~C2915/C2915.jsp?srcCode=AFFI00001&siteId=J84DHJLQkR4-avpALNxT0yL6lszbIXiDww

  3. Veronica Mars :

    TJ–How long is too long for a commute?

    I’m looking for an apartment close to my new job, and I’m considering a complex that’s 18 miles from my workplace. The pros: it’s in a fabulous location downtown, I can afford to live there alone, it’s so popular that it has a 6 month waitlist (which I’m on). The cons: 16 miles, which is about 25 minutes w/o traffic or off-times, 35 minutes with typical traffic and 45+ with heavy. Part of me thinks that now is the time to have a fabulous, cheap apartment downtown, while the other part of me dreads setting myself up for a “long” commute. I could live closer to work if I got roommates/shared a room in a house. (In my low cost of living state, studio apartments are rare). Possible complicating factors: my new workplace is famous for its flexibility in working from home 1x/week, but that would depend on my individual manager (and I’d know that before I signed the lease because of my waitlist position). Thoughts?

    • It’s hard to compare, but in the northeast that commute would be average or better than average.

    • Anonymous :

      Yeah, this is my commute, and it’s pretty average/good where I am – DC metro area.

    • Wildkitten :

      Commuting is the worst part of people’s days and is directly correlated to the likelihood of divorce. It makes people miserable. That said – 30 minutes seems like a perfectly reasonable commute to me. Would your office be fine with you being 15 minutes late on the days that traffic is bad or would you have to leave early every day just in case (and do you care about having an extra quiet 15 minutes before the hoards show up to work?).

      How much cheaper is downtown? Do you go out a lot – would you use the downtown location every day, or would it be cheaper to live not-downtown and take a taxi in on the weekends?

      • Baconpancakes :

        It’s hard to predict how much you’d go out/use the convenience of the city unless you’ve done it. I love being able to run home, change, and still have time to hit a happy hour, having lovely coffee shops walking distance from my house, and only ever buying groceries on my way home. (I both live and work in DC proper.) My roommate, on the other hand, likes being able to meet a friend for dinner in the city once every two weeks, but still drives to Target on the weekends, drives to the grocery store after work, and drives to get her nails done at the particular place she prefers outside of the city every Sunday afternoon.

        To the OP: have you ever lived in a walkable area, and was it something you loved, or something you could absolutely live without?

        Also, if you’re only on the wait list, you might need an apartment before you get the place.

        • Veronica Mars :

          I lived right of McKinney Ave. in Dallas. That apartment definitely wasn’t worth the premium because a) I had 2 roommates and b) I was working late and traveling every single weekend, so I wasn’t there often enough to enjoy it. I did like living right next to the trail and used that all the time, but after work I was dead. If I’d stayed there, I definitely would’ve moved to a cheaper place.

      • Veronica Mars :

        I’m fine with leaving early–I’m very punctual so I prefer to give myself a buffer and then just grab coffee with any extra time.The company is really casual, very flexible and pro-working from home/telecommuting, but again, I could end up with a particularly rigid manager and that might not be the case.

        The downtown place is so far the only complex I’ve found that fits in my budget (well, there’s one other complex but apparently it’s infested with roaches). It’s inexpensive because it’s super small (400 sq feet) and doesn’t have a dishwasher (I can deal). If I did move in with a roommate, it would probably be about $100-$200 cheaper in rent and I’d save $150ish in gas/commuting. So, not that big of a difference in the grand scheme.

        I don’t go out for bars/clubs often, but I would be within walking distance of 2 grocery stores, a library, a bunch of small boutiques, my favorite second hand store, etc. I think I’d really enjoy being able to walk to everything.

        • Is the new job also in DFW or are you moving to a new metro area? If still DFW, I say take the downtown apartment. It sounds like you’re single/no kids, and if so, living outside downtown/uptown/LG/BA would be really isolating and boring.

          • Veronica Mars :

            Not DFW; I’m actually back in my hometown (small southern city). I am single with no kids though, so I kind of feel like now is the time to be close to everything, have fun, etc.

          • Another vote in favor of going for it:
            I am not familiar with your city, but in my major metropolitan area living downtown and working in a suburb would mean a reverse commute, which is at lower risk for heavy traffic.

          • Wildkitten :

            You sound excited about the downtown apartment. Live downtown. Enjoy!

        • Faced with a similar dilemma, I chose to live in the city. For me, it was about lifestyle not money. I knew I would force myself to go to work every day, but that I wouldn’t necessarily make myself get out of my apartment to have fun! (I had visions of myself sitting in my suburban apartment all evening, every evening, after a 5 minute commute.) I’m very happy with my decision, and believe it was instrumental in developing a good social life. (As a caveat, I was also making an 800 mile move for the new job and needed to put myself in situations where I’d meet people.)

          • Veronica Mars :

            This is a great point! I am a homebody and I think if I lived closer to work (and therefore closer to the middle of nowhere), I wouldn’t want to make the effort to drive downtown for dinner, hanging out, etc.

          • I think this is a brilliant point, and one I will keep in mind myself when I look to buy a place. It is much easier to motivate yourself to go out if it’s not a huge slog.

            I have about a 30 minute commute now, and it’s really not bad. I do belong to a gym near my office, so a couple of nights a week I go there and that way I miss the worst of rush hour.

          • Yes. I do a long commute for this reason (55 min each way, but only 2-3 days/week). I tried living in the tiny town where I work, telling myself that we would drive into the big city on weekends for fun. It never happened. Now we live in the big city and actually take advantage of all the stuff here.

          • Live downtown. You can always move to the city when/if you get married, have kids and/or grow old.

      • I disagree, I enjoy my hour with my radio singing my heart out in my car! Its not perfect, I’d rather be home, but it’s not the worst part if my day. Talking to idiots is the worst part.

        • +1 to this: “Talk to idiots is the worst part [of my day].” Every. single. day.

    • Meg March :

      That sounds great, and I’d jump on the apartment in a heartbeat, but I’m also used to living in NYC and LA, where anything under an hour is a reasonable commute. How much closer could you get to work? If the closer places shave the commute down to only 15 minutes, that might not be worth it. To me, the struggle to find roommates that you get along with has so much more potential to make your daily life miserable than an extra 20-30 minutes in the car.

      • Veronica Mars :

        There’s a number of complexes that are 1-3 miles from my work, but they’re all luxury complexes, so I’d be paying about the same nominally (rent and commuting costs), but with one roommate. I think I agree with you though, roommates can be so much of a headache that it may be worth it to live alone and suck it up for the commute.

    • In the Northeast. Before I moved closer to my work, my daily commute was 35 minutes in the morning and 45 at night (worse when there was a special event or accident, obvs.). I think that’s reasonable. Plus, you might learn backways to avoid traffic jams once you move.

    • My secretary commutes 2.5 hours each way. “Too long” is a personal preference.

      • Wow. I hope your workplace provides unicorns and mountain views. There is literally no job I would take for 5 hours of commuting per day.

    • Does the apartment have amenities nearby like a decent grocery store, dry cleaner, gym, etc, or would you be spending a lot of time in your car driving far to run basic errands as well?

      In my LCOL area, my 45 min each way (at a minimum) commute was horrid, because the smallest traffic snarl made it 1 hour plus, and snow could make it 2 hours. Most of my co-workers had 15-30 minute commutes and were much happier for it. I now commute 30 minutes into an area that is before most of the congestion, so only snow or a very major (and rare) accident mess it up. The year I had a job 5-10 minutes from home was so amazing – I felt like I gained an extra day in my week.

      Would you have the flexibility to start early or late in order to avoid the worst of the traffic? A 7-4 or 9:30-6:30 schedule would help keep your commute to a minimum.

      Other things to consider is seasonality – are there going to be times of the year that make the commute much worse (for instance, snow or being stuck in the traffic flow for baseball or other sports games on your way home, or an area that has the highway under construction every summer)? A one-off isn’t bad, but when the commute gets ugly 3-4 days a week for a month or 2 it is exhausting.

    • I would have loved this commute when I was living in NoVA. My commute was 2+ hrs one way each day. Now my commute is 20 mins on a terrible day. So much happier, but I also live in a much, much smaller market.

    • Do you live in Narnia? 30 minutes is a great commute. Go for it.

    • Killer Kitten Heels :

      Where I live (Northeast), 30-45 minutes would be considered a “good” commute, so I don’t think it’s too long at all, but if it’s very out-of-step with the norm in your area, I guess it’s worth thinking about.

      With that said, I’ve lived both close to work and far from work (commuted two hours each way last year, and can tell you, definitively, that two hours each way 5 days/week is way, way too long), and ultimately the biggest factor in my level of happiness/contentedness is determined not so much by how far I am from work, and more by how far I am from my social life. I will get up and go to work even if it’s going to take me 45 minutes to get there because it’s work and I have to, but I’m a lot less likely to travel 45 minutes after work on a Thursday to meet my friends for dinner, so I’ve found that when I live further from friends/family, I tend to be less happy because I’m less social.

      If the downtown apartment is closer to the places you go to have fun, that is definitely worth taking slightly longer to get to work, IMO.

    • That timing doesn’t sound bad.

      All of the (good) advice above notwithstanding, you’re leasing an apartment, not buying a house. Go for the downtown location for a year. If it turns out to be a commuting nightmare, then use the time to find a good roommate to move closer to the office.

    • In Los Angeles, that counts as an easy commute. That’s about what mine is and it has made my life so much better than when my commute was 1 hour on a good day, 1.5 or 2 on a bad one. I see no downsides to this plan.

    • Senior Attorney :

      That sounds like a very reasonable commute to me (I’m in LA). I would definitely much prefer it to sharing space, that’s for sure!

    • Ha ha ha ha — 35 min = “long” commute.

  4. Meg March :

    I’ve been in the interview process for this job for 4 months. Two weeks ago, I had a second interview, where I was told I was the top candidate, and that I would hear from them early last week (strongly implied that an offer was coming). Still haven’t heard anything. At what point, if at all, can I reach out? And what do I say? Part of me feels that they’ve just been taking their time all along, and I need to just go with their schedule, but part of me is very very impatient and anxious. I think the correct answer is just wait, don’t do anything, but I needed a rant (and if you disagree, let me know!)

    • Don’t do anything. They’ve shown you that they take their time in past 4 months, so what’s another week?

      Where’s our friend shots, shots, shots when we need her?

    • Roman Holiday :

      I think your instinct to just wait is correct but I fully understand your frustration with the process. When job candidates hear “next week”, they starting counting down the days, but it seems like hiring managers are very comfortable stretching that out.

      I don’t think it would be inappropriate to drop ONE quick follow-up email after two weeks, but the fact is that if they want you, they will certainly reach out to you.

    • Thanks all for the reminder! Deep breaths. And yes, shots.

    • No advice, just sympathy. I think even when it moves fast it still feels like an eternity. I’m in a job discussion right now that is moving rapidly, but even knowing that doesn’t stop my mental pacing waiting for the next step.

    • Double all estimates from hiring managers and go up to the next unit of time. If they say 1 week, it will be more like 2 months. 2 days, 4 weeks. a month, 2 years.

  5. Wildkitten :

    I am 5’9″ and often wear “long” pants. I need at least a 34 inch inseam for standard length pants. Can I wear BR Sloan in regular length or do I need to find a long? I’d rather get a solid but the long is available for 40% off in a dot pattern, or the solids at 50% off in regular length.

    • marketingchic :

      We’re about the same height/inseam. I buy the long in the Sloan pant because I like ankle pants to really be just above my ankle. The regular is more of a capri length on me.

      • Yes, I find that any ankle pant shorter than 31″ looks weird on me (I’m a 33-34″ inseam for pants with flat shoes).

  6. Struggling :

    After a string of substantial breakups I am on my own and finding it hard to cope. Sometimes I think life isn’t worth living. I’m doing everything I should — reaching out to friends, seeing a therapist and also a psychiatrist for medication — but I’m so scared it’s not going to get better. My underlying problem is that I feel panic being single. I feel like I don’t matter to anyone in that significant way, and therefore I hardly exist, at least in the important ways. As a result I have panic attacks, really negative thoughts, and periods where I can’t stop crying. I realize that’s not a healthy way to feel and I’ve been working on it with a therapist and through meditation. It just isn’t getting better.

    Not sure what I’m looking for except hugs and maybe some positive reinforcement. If you went through this, did it get better? It would be great to hear I’m not alone. None of my friends seem to have had reactions this extreme to anything, although they of course know what it is to feel sad and experience heartbreak. I feel so alone.

    • Anonymous :

      I don’t have these emotions about being single (I’m married), but I do about another element of my life that isn’t going well and will only get worse (advanced/LT family health issue). Not much advice about what to do, outside of being very gentle with yourself, letting yourself cry (helps me anyway), and maybe journaling each day.

    • So, I can’t really relate to what you’re going through, but I’m so concerned by your post that I just wanted you to know that you’re not alone, at all. Just because you don’t currently have romantic love in your life doesn’t mean you aren’t loved.

      Also, it will get better. The human body is just not made to sustain extreme emotion for a long period of time. Deep breaths, and hugs, and tea, and whatever else helps you get through the day. This too shall pass.

      • I agree with January. Big Hug’s to you, and know that you are NOT alone. All of us in the HIVE support you and care about you, even tho often we are concerned with our OWN issue’s. But being single is a part of all of our lives, and we all have to figure out way’s to make sure that we know we are valueable member’s of society even if some dopey boyfreind’s did NOT want to marry us. That is why society today is so strange.

        Year’s ago, our grand parent’s got married and stayed married, even if they hated each other b/c society said you did NOT divorce. Now, thing’s are changing and women can leave b/c they can support themselves. Because we do NOT have to rely on some schlub to pay the bills, we no longer have to submit to men and their sexueal demands just to keep a roof over our head’s. We can say “sayonara, dooshmeister” and be on our way. Unfortunately, the pool of other decent men is very shallow, and there will often be many dooshe’s pointing their winkies your way, but want little more then cheap sex out of it from you. But that is NOT a reason to worry. You too are valuable and can tell those dooshes to hold their own b/c you are an INDEPENDENT woman and do NOT have to get validation from some schlub with a winkie. FOOEY on that!

        So hold your head high, knowing that you have the full power of the HIVE behind you! YAY!!!!

      • Yes to all of this! Sending love and virtual hugs your way! <3

      • Yes! You do matter. Is it an option to get involved in some things to help remind yourself of that – it can help to see that you are making a concrete difference in this world (volunteering) or to make some new friends (join a club, church, class, meetup group, etc.) so you feel less alone. Please know, though, that you are important and that people care regardless of your relationship status. This too shall pass – it will get better!

    • I’m sorry you are going through this. Do you know intellectually that people who aren’t in romantic relationships are valuable, significant people who can and do live happy, fulfilling lives with loving relationships of different kinds? Do you see that in the single people around you?

      • Struggling :

        I do know that intellectually. One of the most frustrating things about this is that logically, I know my fears are irrational and life is meaningful regardless of romantic relationships. It adds to my frustration with myself that even though I “know” these things, I can’t “feel” them in my heart of hearts, if that makes sense. There’s a disconnect between my mind and my emotions.

        • I totally understand that frustration and it really adds to the ‘uncontrolled’ feeling when your emotions get the better of you. Have you expressed this to your therapist and prescribing doctor? You don’t say how long you’ve been on meds, but it may be time to try and adjust.

          One of the biggest tips my therapist taught me is to take steps that I can control to work towards my goal. So, while you may not be able to change the end result (single to married) you can make a list of things you will do that will help advance your goal. Sign up for a club. Go to an event. Focus on the process, not the end result.

          • This. I haven’t felt this way in regard to being single, but I have felt the massive depression generally. As mentioned, depending on how long you have been working on this it may be time for a medication change or a therapist change – one at a time though. I have been on many different types of anti-depressants and it often takes a couple tries to get it right.

            Also, you do matter. You are loved. You are significant. Lots of hugs (or if that’s not your thing, lots of positive thoughts for you). I have dealt with depression for 20 years, if you want to talk offline at all, please do not hesitate to reach out to me $hitmensaytowomen at gmail dot com with the first $ really being the letter s.

        • In that case, I’d spend some time thinking about and discussing with a therapist why you have such different standards for yourself than for other people. I dealt with these feelings with regard to other issues, and it’s tough to get past that hurdle of X is OK for other people but if I do/have/am X than I am worthless, but it is possible. For me, it involved inherent feelings of worthlessness stemming from an abusive childhood and really had nothing to do with X at all. Also, if there’s anyone in your life who is reinforcing the partnership = everything message, can you limit your interactions with them?

          • Diana Barry :

            +1. Hugs! You are not alone! You are WORTHY. I also agree with others above that it may be time for a medication adjustment if the ones you’re on don’t seem to be helping.

    • Wildkitten :

      My brain breaks under stress too. It’s just how my neurotransmitters work – like how you your friends might sunburn worse than you if you’re outside for the same amount of time. It’s not a personal flaw, it’s just different biology. When that happens to me I can’t do any of the normal things I enjoy and I just cry ALL THE TIME which is extra depressing on top of the depression, but with the right meds I’m back to normal. Talk to your doc and get your meds adjusted. (1/2 due to moderation)

      • Wildkitten :

        And, FYI, you matter to me in a very significant way. Can you talk to one friend about how you are feeling and that you are working with a doc but ask them to keep an eye on you to make sure you are okay? It’s good to have an external person keeping tabs since it can be hard to tell how you are doing yourself. What city are you? I’m happy to talk to you via the internet Wildkittenr3tt3 at gmail but I’m sure if you are in a city with other re t t es we can talk to you in real life too.

        • Struggling :

          Thanks, Wildkitten, that means a lot. I have friends I can lean on but I worry about leaning too much. As part of this process I need to learn how to find fulfillment in non-romantic relationships, like friends. I don’t naturally do that — I see myself as a burden of I’m not upbeat and fun most of the time. I guess I have a lot of habitual ways of thinking I need to unlearn, but I don’t know how and it feels overwhelming.

          • First of all, you DO matter. You ARE significant. And you DO have people in your life who love and care for you!

            I feel like I’ve been in your place (many times). Panic attacks, feelings of worthlessness, feeling like the struggle will never let up, major depression. What’s helped (in part): sticking with therapy (with a therapist I really like), finding the RIGHT meds, being brutally honest with my psychiatrist about my feelings (even if I found them horrible or shameful, like impulses for self-harm, bc then he could tell if the meds were working or not), and letting my closest friends know that I was struggling, so to keep an eye out / be patient. I felt like I was asking a lot from my friends, but one said to me, “If I had broken leg, you’d help me til I got better.”

            When you said, “I guess I have a lot of habitual ways of thinking I need to unlearn, but I don’t know how and it feels overwhelming.” — Have you talked with your therapist about this? If so, has s/he come up with any methods for coping / dealing with this? When I realized that I had so many ingrained ways of thinking, the process of lessening those automatic conclusions was really slow going. Each day, I’d pick something very small to work on, like “no negative self-talk at work,” or “smile at everyone you see today.”

            Honestly, if you don’t feel yourself getting any better, even with regular therapy sessions and taking your meds on schedule, you might be on the wrong meds. There’s so much choice. If your psychiatrist doesn’t want you to change (and offers no real reason why), search out a second opinion. You DESERVE to feel good about yourself and needing medication to HELP you feel that way doesn’t mean you’re incapable of happiness or a failure at life. Please believe me.

            Along with WildKitten, I’d be more than happy to email with you, if you’d like someone to talk to. PersonalFOF at gmail.

          • You should definitely lean on your friends. I get a huge sense of satisfaction from being there for those I truly care about when they’re having a rough time (and in good times). If you’re feeling so down, I’d want to do whatever I could to help you through it; I’m sure your friends feel the same way.

          • Oh boy do I understand the “burden” on my friends feeling. It is something I still struggle with, but I’ve learned that pulling away like that makes depressive episodes so much worse. For me, I felt too guilty (guilty isn’t exactly the right word, but its the closest I can think of) to jump into confiding or leaning on friends when my less-than-perfect presence felt like such a burden. I started instead by just showing up to hang out with my friends even when I wasn’t feeling upbeat, charming or interesting. I found out that people still enjoyed my company, and gradually I got to the point where I could confide in friends that I was struggling. And it 100% gets better with time, therapy, and the right medication.

          • Wildkitten :

            You aren’t leaning too much. This is exactly what friends are for.

    • Yes, I have been there and have gotten through the other side. Build strong relationships with friends and family, especially family. Maybe get a pet. Develop a lot of hobbies, ones you love and are excited about. Get regular massages. And yeah, maybe you are sad sometimes, but it’s ok. I feel like I went through a mourning process almost. I was a huge mess after a breakup for a year or two and I could just not get over it for the longest time, randomly crying, etc, and it’s so frustrating to feel that way and not be able to help it. I knew it was ridiculous and me being alone was best and yet.

      Another thing that helped me was going out on first dates with a lot of people that I didn’t really like and choosing to be alone, but if you’re really lonely you want to be careful not to cling to someone just to fill that need. You have to know your personality before trying something like that.

      • Struggling :

        Yeah, at this point first dates depress me because they remind me how far I am from what I want. I haven’t found anyone I’m interested in, and it makes me think I might never find that again. If a friend said that, I’d tell her that was silly, but right now it’s how I feel. So dating for now makes me sadder. Hopefully that will change.

        I’m really glad to hear you got through it. A year or two years is a long time! That must have been very hard. Retroactive hugs.

      • I’d like to second both getting a pet and the massages. During a rough patch in my 20s, I used to schedule a massage for immediately after a therapist appointment as often as I could afford it. It was really important to feel a comforting touch after doing the hard work of therapy. I remember feeling very isolated and needing to have that human connection.

        • I have nothing but compassion for the OP, and I struggle with many similar feelings about being single, but PLEASE do not get a pet just to make yourself feel better. Animals are living creatures that demand a lot of time, money, and attention, and you should only bring one into your life for the right reasons, which include helping the animal and not just yourself.

          • Wildkitten :

            I give my puppy all of my time money and attention because she makes myself feel better. That’s not a conflict. I am not “helping” my dog, I do take care of her because that is my responsibility. She is not a pity cause, she is my best friend who can’t open cans of dog food without me. And I think dogs are great for depression because they force you to think outside of your own head. Cats are good too but don’t force you to do as much (you can stay inside all week with your cat, you HAVE to go outside with your dog.) Smart educated responsible women on this website aren’t suggesting she get a puppy drunk and then throw it away. Give her some benefit of the doubt here.

          • Agreed, but there is nothing in her post that leads me to believe she would not have the time, money and attention to be a good pet owner. Unless she doesn’t like animals, in which case I withdraw the suggestion!

      • Anon for this :

        Just coming in to say, been there, made it through to the other side. 5 years later, I can tell you that the only thing that kept me going from one day to the next was that I had (in my mind) no one to take care of my dog if I wasn’t around. Which is a ridiculous reason to not kill yourself in retrospect, but when you are already in a deep depression about your life, ridiculous reasons for anything are par for the course. I highly recommend writing therapy. I wrote books of just stream of conscious that I didn’t feel comfortable unloading on friends in that time working through my feelings. It helped. If you can find one, I also highly recommend a therapist to talk through the underlying issues with.

        Virtual Hugs, you matter, there are so many amazing people in the world who have been single their whole life. They still matter, to everyone they touch in their day to day life.

        • Wildkitten :

          I love this article about dogs and depression: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/26/fashion/dog-anchors-man-facing-setbacks.html

    • Roman Holiday :

      Hugs to you! I’m so sorry you’re feeling this way! Being in a relationship should not be the only thing that defines us – even though it seems like that’s the message we’re fed by society. It’s completely legitimate to feel pressured that way, but please don’t think that no one cares about you because of it. I second Wildkitten’s suggestions to see about an adjustment in meds and I hope you’re able to find some peace!

    • Does your therapist/psychiatrist know that the current treatments aren’t working for you? If you can, keep in mind that depression lies. Your inner monologue may be saying that you are insignificant, but that isn’t the reality.

      • “Depression lies” – I just got a tear in my eye. This is so true to my experience. Hang on to that, repeat if necessary!

    • I’ll just share my own story here. I went through a period where I had your exact same reaction to being fat. Seriously, I’d get up in the morning and break down over pants. I felt like I couldn’t talk to my friends about it because there was something wrong with *me* and didn’t want to burden them, blah, blah, blah.

      I finally, through therapy and meds, figured out a way of addressing it. Sometimes your chemistry just fights against you and it really sucks. But I also realized I had to stop devoting every second of my life to worrying about it. I took the steps I needed to (see other post for suggestions) and then I forced myself to do other stuff.

      It will get better. You aren’t worthless because your single. Hell, I occasionally feel this same way and I’m married! Not a slam on my partner, but my chemistry sometimes acts in a way that messes with me. Go out with friends! Go out by yourself. Buy a ton of stuff off groupon and make yourself do it. Keep talking to your therapist and your doctor until you get to a place the panic stops.

      • + 1 to feeling that way sometimes even though you’re married. Me too. My partner is awesome. The chemicals in my brain occasionally make me think of myself otherwise.

    • Hi friend. I’d be happy to talk too! largestuddedwolf at gmail. <3!

    • Tell your therapist that your medication is not working for you and you need an urgent apt to fix this.

      Depression lies. It tells you that these feelings are your rational response to being upset about being single. They’re not normal at all. They’re depression. Don’t waste time trying to tinker at the margins of dating and timing and friends. Get drugs that work for you now and everything else will work.

      • Yes to this. Getting on the right meds for my anxiety changed my life. I was seeing a therapist for a year before I started medication and while it helped, nothing made as instantaneous or as big a difference as the drugs did. It’s like a diabetic taking the right dose of insulin. Your brain is a body part, it’s malfunctioning and it needs medicine to get better.

    • I, in no way, want to delegitimize your feelings, but I have a friend who felt EXACTLY the same way as you. She had nearly daily panic attacks, crying jags a few times a day, the whole works. She switched her birth control and that has made all the difference in the world. She still gets sad about being single, but every bad date is no longer a sign from above that she’s supposed to die alone — it’s just another bad date. Just something to consider.

      • Yes, BCPs did that to me in my 20s and early 30s. I was a new person once I changed to a different form of pill.

        Struggling, I hope that all the advice here helps and something clicks for you soon.

      • Such an important point!

        When I was on hormonal birth control, and then broke up with that boyfriend – at 30, just the time all my friends were getting married! – I totally lost it, and like Struggling, felt worthless, destined to die alone, undesirable, and unlovable. I had a lot of stuff to work through for sure… but when I quit bc a few months later because I wasn’t seeing anyone, it became a lot easier to deal with the emotional stuff.

        Struggling: you are important so many people! Like others have said, depression lies and blinds you to this fact. Please be brutally, ruthlessly honest with your therapist and psychiatrist so they can help. Admitting that I felt like throwing myself in front of a commuter train when I had postpartum depression was one of the hardest things I ever did, but that admission allowed my therapist to truly understand the depths of my struggle.

        Sending hugs! You are not alone! And asking this community for help is very courageous!

    • Oof, I am so sorry you’re going through this. I went through something like this–I was just seized with panic over failure/mortality/wasting my life/being unhappy forever and I knew it was irrational– meds have truly been life-changing for me. It sounds like you know these thoughts aren’t true but can’t do anything about them, which sounds a lot like depression. Continue to talk to your doctors–maybe you haven’t found the right medication or dose, or maybe you just need to work out some kind of treatment plan.

      And please know that you matter so much to so many people, often in ways you don’t even realize! I’m glad you reached out and shared with us. Lots of hugs.

      Something I’ve been doing this year (after about a year on medication and going through a significant breakup as well) is figuring out what makes me happy and committing to doing it on a regular basis. For example, I know that having friends and good relationships makes me feel good about myself, and I’ve been neglecting a lot of them over the past few years, so I told myself I had to do at least one extracurricular thing a month with a friend. (Set the bar low so you can definitely meet your goal!) And I’ve been doing it. It’s fun, it makes me feel good, it makes my friends feel good, and it ensures that I will not be spending every single night alone in bed watching Netflix. So maybe you can figure out something like this for yourself!

    • Just a thought that helped me – instead of trying to force yourself to be happy being single (which is a perfectly legitimate way to feel but you just don’t) let yourself want what you want. It’s perfectly reasonable and normal to want romantic love and it’s not just because society is “selling you something.” Let yourself accept that you want it and that its okay to want it. I think there’s too much pressure to fake being happy being single and that can cause its own kind of pain. Once you get comfortable with what you want, it may become easier for you to be comfortable and forgiving of yourself. And depression is rough, so glad you’re treating and so sorry you’re feeling this way.

      • I would agree that one should not fake being happy single, but do put some work being happy/content with who you are. Focus on being a complete person by yourself – your own wants, dreams, goals and desires, as opposed to needing someone else to define you via a relationship. We all (usually) want relationships and contact with other human beings (romantic, platonic, friends, etc.), and that is fine! We are social animals – but you need to be comfortable with who YOU are, individually, before you can find a fit to work long term.

        • And I’d say there’s a second part of this: we will all experience intense grief over losing someone or something, concrete or hypothetical, but it doesn’t have to define our lives. That doesn’t make the feeling less real – you may never find a partner* and you may always be sad about that, truly and honestly sad, but that doesn’t need to be the defining feature of your life either.

          * That’s worst case scenario; statistically, you probably will, so I’m not trying to be pessimistic!

    • Senior Attorney :

      I’m just chiming in to give you some cyber hugs and support!

      And YES!! It does get better! A little over two years ago I was recently separated from my second husband (Two Time Loser, you have a call on Line 1!) and every morning I woke up disoriented and weeping because I literally didn’t know where I was and thought I would be alone forever. It was very very bad for much longer than seemed reasonable, but you know what? It got better.

      For me the thing that helped me turn the corner was when I joined my local Rotary Club. It gave me some place to be once a week, I made several good woman friends, I got involved with a lot of committees, and lo and behold I even met a lovely man with whom I have been keeping company for the past six months or so. But really, even if I hadn’t met Rotary Guy, I’d still be so much happier than I was in that bad marriage and the immediate aftermath. Things. do. get. better.

      Please do not give up hope. Get your meds adjusted, go out there and live your life. It will get better. I promise.

    • I think everyone feels something like this about some part of their lives. I had two bouts of long-term unemployment in the last four years. I spent a lot of my adult life single and was okay with that, so for me it’s not romantic relationships, but instead it’s work. I even disappeared from here because I didn’t want random internet people to know I was having trouble finding work (I’m working on showing more vulnerability these days, so hi everyone). I felt like I was worthless even though I was at home caring for my new twins, cooking homemade meals every night, and keeping house (poorly — I keep house very poorly we learned). I had times when I thought it would be better if I just died, even though I had two little guys who needed their mother and a husband who loved me. I now feel so sad and guilty that I ever felt that way, especially now my mind is clear and I realize how much I mean to my sons (and my husband). I echo everyone else’s suggestions to be honest with your therapist and to try different meds and/or therapists/doctors until you find what works for you. It’s okay if you are never really happy being single. Lots of people feel that way (me included). But that doesn’t mean you have to feel worthless unless you’re paired up. Good luck and keep us posted — we all care about you.

      • We missed you! Glad you’re back.

      • Thinking about you TBK, and wishing you all good things.

      • Glad you’re back, TBK. I wish everyone could be more open about this kind of stuff. It would make the rest of us feel not so alone.

      • Thanks, guys. That was hard to write under my own (fake Internet) name so I appreciate the support.

    • anon for this 123 :

      I know exactly how you feel. It can and will get better. Don’t be afraid to reach out to loved ones and tell them how you feel. The shame and hiding your feelings only makes it worse because then you feel bad about feeling bad and it causes an endless cycle.

      Definitely agree with some of the posters above about meds. I’ve posted about this before. I resisted going on meds for ten YEARS. I thought therapy alone would be enough. But I could never stop crying, and everything turned into a huge, terrible deal, and every bad date meant I would be alone forever.

      ..and then, one day, I decided I had nothing to lose, so I tried meds. 25 mg of sertraline (which is virtually nothing) made such a difference. I do not feel happy all the time, and I’m still single and I wish I had a partner. But I have perspective and I recognize that I am no weirder than anyone else in the same situation. That all or nothing thinking is indicative of depression. You can find wonder, joy, and great happiness in other aspects of life until you find the partner you deserve. I promise. Please don’t give up on yourself. We’re rooting for you!

    • I Was Here :

      A few years ago, I was very much where you are now. I was going through a very rough time both relationship-wise and with my family, and I remember feeling like this period of my life would NEVER end, like I would be this sad and alone and weepy forever. It remains, hands down, the most challenging period of my life thus far, and I so feel for you in what you’re going through right now.

      What helped? Time, honestly. It took two years, but things did finally turn around for me. The one constant in life is that things change, so try to keep in mind that your current situation isn’t forever (even though it may seem that way). Also, therapy and meds (though it took a few tries for me to find the correct medication and dosage, so keep trying if what you’re currently on isn’t working for you). Exercise helped a lot. I also picked up old hobbies I had dropped (ballet class) and started volunteering (doing something good makes you feel good). Also, I leaned on my friends (despite feeling terribly guilty about how sad and awful I was to be around and how much of a burden I was) and guess what? They’re still my friends – they loved me through that rough time and they still love me now. It still makes me a little teary to think about the time my best friend ditched her new boyfriend (now husband) on a Friday night to take me out for pizza because she knew I was alone in my apartment and struggling. If you’d help them through a rough time, odds are they’d happily do it for you.

      Good luck and take care of yourself. We care about you.

    • I’ve been there. It was a whole long year of being super depressed after a breakup.

      Then my best friend who lives in a different city and I went on a week long vacation packed with activities. We had such a great time, and in the evenings we both kind of unloaded all our stuff to each other. Coming back, I felt refreshed and actually so much better. It was a week of shopping, great food, and amazing conversation. It was like hitting a restart button.

      I felt so great and then I went on my first date with my now husband a month later.

    • I’m so sorry to hear you are going through such a hard time.

      Such great suggestions on this thread, that there is little I can add. The rough place you are in is one too familiar to many of us. Sometimes knowing you aren’t the only one helps….

      And getting the meds optimized helps more. Counseling, exercise – even just a walk each day in the sun (2 natural mood stabilizers!) may help even more. And time….

      You can do this.

      It will get better.

    • la vie en bleu :

      Hey Struggling, I’m right there with you. I have a really hard time being single and feeling alone and like I’ll never have the things I want.

      I don’t have any magic solutions, but I just want to tell you you are not alone, and I am sending many virtual hugs, and I hope you do talk to your friends, because I think they would want to be there for you. I know it’s so hard.

      And if you want another internet friend to talk about these things with and commiserate, drop me an email zoradances at the gmail. (((((((Hugs)))))))

    • I know this may seem like an over the top response, and someone else may have already mentioned this, but I just want to leave the number for a suicide prevention hotline in case you need it: 1 (800) 273-8255. I know that may seem like an overreaction, but suicidal thoughts can sneak up on you, and you should know that you’re not alone and that there are people there who can help. Good luck. Your life is certainly worth living and you are certainly not insignificant.

    • Anonymous :

      Thanks for all the responses. I am in the middle of a bunch of meetings at work so I haven’t had time to respond, but I have been reading all the messages and I really, really appreciate them. It helps to know others have gone through this too and come out of it ok. Thanks all.

    • SuziStockbroker :

      Sweetheart, I am glad you came here and opened up, it’s a great step! You ARE worthy and wonderful. I agree that soemtimes we don’t realize how much we mean to others.

      Even coming here and writing what you wrote helps others, because they too can see that they are not alone. And for those who are not (currently) struggling, it is a good reminder to check in with our friends and loved ones that might be.

      When I’ve been struggling, with anything, I find (as others have suggested) that taking baby steps that I know I can do really helps to get out of the initial inertia.

      I love a naan says’ idea of committing to do one extracurricular thing a month with a friend. Then, you can build on that, after a few months, add another activity that may enable you to meet new people.

    • New Tampanian :

      I know I’m newish to commenting on here but I wanted to quickly give you some hugs and PROMISE you that you are not alone.

      I went through a very hard breakup about two years ago and one of the things I made sure to do because of my own history with depression/anxiety was lean on certain friends. Not all of them. But there were a handful who knew my issues and could keep an eye on me from time to time. I was never in danger of harming myself physically but very much in danger of just going down the rabbit hole and staying there. Your self talk is quite similar to what I have thought in the past. Luckily I had been going to therapy for a few years so when this happened I was able to get in with my therapist and I made some changes to meds to help even me out. My biggest problem was not acting reckless. It’s not like I meant to harm myself (no suicidal thoughts) but I would, how do you say, act out… drink way in excess, wander away from friends, put myself in potentially dangerous situations. This is where my friends came in big time for me. We figured out that maybe we should do some healthy activities as opposed to going out drinking.

      Listen to “The One You Feed” podcast. It’s pretty amazing. It’s about mindfulness but not in a cult-ish way. It also talks about depression and anxiety. One thought from it that helped me was that the story in our heads isn’t always the trust. As said above, depression lies.

      Final thought: The end of a major relationship is similar to a death. While you logically know the person still exists, they no longer exist in your life. The little pieces of that relationship that meant a lot are no longer. It is a full on grief process. That took me a long time to realize. I think I still grieve it at times but it’s gotten much better.

      Please feel free to reach out to me or anyone else on here if you need. Be kind and gentle with yourself. Start slow. Get out of bed, shower, eat. Give yourself praise for that. A couple days later, add something to that routine. Thoughts and love with you!

  7. I hate my lint brush..... :

    My new apartment has a front loader washer. My clothes love it (much less traumatic). I hang up everything to dry. But the washer doesn’t catch lint well. All my clothes exit with a fine layer of lint…. Especially darks, cords, etc…

    Anything I can put in with the clothes to catch lint, that won’t damage the clothes? Anyone try vinegar? Or find a soft mesh cloth that works, without making a mess?

    • Before hanging, put the clothes in the dryer on low for 5 minutes. This will shake off a lot of the lint (and shake out wrinkles too).

      • Great idea. Unfortunately the washer is also the dryer… One of those all-in-one units and it works horribly as a dryer de-linter as well.

        So I’m forced to look for something that works during the washer cycle.

        • Would it work better if you ran them through the dryer cycle for a few minutes before washing? It seems like it would be easier to get lint off dry clothes than wet, so maybe the dryer could at least handle that. I have no experience with that type of machine, but seems worth a shot.

          • Interesting thought…. But the dryer is so poor… It doesn’t even fluff/move clothes well enough to dislodge fine lint, and the filter mechanism is so poor that it can’t catch/remove it anyway. The plastic built in filter is essentially empty, unless it catches some of my long hair.

            I tried stretching a piece of pantyhose around the built in filter to catch lint better, but then the filter mechanism didn’t seal well and I flooded my kitchen with the next load of wash.

            So I am at the point where I just give up and use lint brushes all the time, or find something that can float freely in the wash to catch lint. There are these little lint balls you can buy for something like this, but I worry they will damage clothes. I may try sealing them up in a small delicates bag….

          • I hang most of my clothes to dry and then will toss them in the dryer for a few minutes (when they’re already dry) before putting them in the way. So basically the same idea, different order.

            And I have a hairy dog, so I still use lint brushes all the time.

    • I don’t know how well it works to de-lint, but I use vinegar in the fabric softener slot on my front loader and find it works pretty well.

      Does the machine have a “clean washer” cycle? I’d run that a few times to see if it will flush out any residual lint. If it doesn’t, then run an empty cycle with hot water and bleach, then follow up with something you don’t care too much about getting bleach spots on if there is any residual bleach (like white sheets).

      Apparently lint collection is a problem in some all-in-one machines – have you told your landlord? They might have a procedure for servicing them or otherwise cleaning out residual lint.

      • Thanks for these great suggestions.

        I will clean the washer. Great idea. And I was curious about the vinegar…. Thank you!

    • I’m not familiar with combo washer/dryer units but if it’s not drying clothes properly, then make sure the vents are clear. They can be filled with lint FOR YEARS and start fires and other business. Service the dryer and proceed with caution.

      • Thanks Godzilla. I will double check again to make sure there isn’t a hidden lint trap that wasn’t shown to me. But I think BB may be right…

    • My washing machine is terrible about lint too. I wash most stuff inside out so that the lint is at least on the inside of the clothes.

      • That’s funny… usually I do this. But this washer uses so little water, part of me was wondering if the lint was getting ?trapped when I turned them inside out. So I started leaving them right side out to see if it helped. But no of course…

    • I have one of these – LG, right? I generally hate it, but have not had really bad lint problems. Do you clean the rubber ring inside the door before washes? That’s its lint trap. Make sure to get under the “lip” of the ring too.

      • Thanks so much BB. Yes, this is the LG one. I didn’t realize the rubber ring was **supposed** to be a lint trap. I discovered it on my own and started cleaning it, but I will become more meticulous about it.

  8. I like the pants, but dry clean only….

    Which BR pant/line is the curvy fit?

  9. KateMiddletown :

    Back on topic:
    Ya’ll be warned these pants are thick leggings with the trappings of real pants. I own 3 pairs of the ankle length and 1 pair of the trouser/bootcut style. They are comfy as hell but better for a very casual work environment. If you have substantial butt/thighs they are super tight. (165#, 5.9#, athletic/hourglass shape) The calf width on the ankle-length pant is great compared to J.Crew’s Minnie pant which is too tight for me. (My calf size is somewhere between not big enough for Hunter Huntress/wide-calf to too big for many non-leather boots.)

    They also… retain smell… so you can’t wear them more than 1x without dry-cleaning. (I’ve tried Dryel and Febreeze to no avail with these puppies.) The trouser length shrunk substantially when dry-cleaned. (Could be my cleaners fault but it’s an issue.)

    • Thanks for this. Very helpful.

    • I am wearing these pants in navy today. I have 7 pairs. Love them. They’re appropriate for my business (not business casual) office environment, but I realize every office is different. Many of my friends (and office mates) own these pants. They’re affordable, comfortable, and flattering on many different body types.

      I’ve never had the problem with them retaining a smell, though they did shrink a tiny bit after dry cleaning. They stretched back out, though, after a few wears.

      • Yeah I have worn a pair of Sloans every day this week. I routinely wear them 5+ times without having them dry cleaned and there is no smell…

      • Agree on all points. They are definitely form-fitting, but still appropriate for my office, at least. Never noticed a smell issue.

        I have had some pairs dry-cleaned with no issue, but a couple of pairs, they got kind of shiny. I’m inclined to blame the dry cleaner more than the pants. I’ve thought about trying to wash them (I think maybe Extra Petite did?) and see if that works. Guess I should check out The Laundress and see what she says.

      • I think these pants look great! I wish they were actually olive though. On the BR page they appear more kelly green.

    • These are in no way trousers, y’all. This: “thick leggings with the trappings of real pants.” And so tight on my hips I wouldn’t set foot in even a casual office in them, yet gaping at the waist. I am surprised these are touted as workwear.

      • Senior Attorney :

        I wear a size up from my regular size and find them just fine for my business-semi-formal office. No problems with odors. I will definitely be jumping on the olive ones!

      • I think it depends on your body shape. If you’re not very curvy, they won’t hug the curves that aren’t there and, as a result, aren’t that tight. Mine actually tend to feel a bit frumpy after a few wears because they stretch out so much. But I carry most of my weight in my tummy so I appreciate the stretch!

    • Asideralis :

      This may sound fairly kookie, but try spraying with vinegar. I spray my jackets and clean my smelly shoes with vinegar and it does a very good job of eliminating odor.

      • Yes! Or vodka.

      • Seattle Freeze :

        But do they not then smell like a salad? I use vinegar for some household cleaning tasks but just hate, hate the lingering smell.

  10. Pants question. I usually wear skirts but have been trying to wear more pants to work lately. My issue is that they all seem to stretch very quickly so that after a few initial wears, they really only look good the first day after the cleaners and then feel a little sloppy for the 2 or 3 wears thereafter. This has happened with 3 different pairs from 3 different brands. 2 of those are mostly wool and one is the gap perfect trouser (synthetic). The last pair I bought I even thought might be a bit too tight but sure enough after 2 or 3 weeks they feel sloppy at the end of every day I wear them now. My weight fluctuates a bit but not so much that this should be an issue (and the pants always get bigger, not smaller). I feel 2 of the 3 could definitely be maternity pants at this point, at least through the 5th month. Is this inevitable with all pants? Is it just me? Is it my imagination? Does anyone else find this to be a problem?

    • I do have this problem which is why I pretty much exclusively wear skirts and dresses. I haven’t found a way to solve it and I hate feeling frumpy which is how I feel when my pants don’t fit me right so I’ve given up. I feel like there are probably brands that won’t do this but I haven’t put in the effort to figure out which ones those are so I stick to skirts and dresses.

      Sorry that’s probably not super helpful

    • I wear pants exclusively, ( well, pretty much) and I find 100 percent wool, esp. with a lining, works best. I hang them by the cuffs so the weight of the waistband, zipper, pockets pulls the legs straight and preserves the crease. I probably dry clean every ten wearings or so? It may help that I stand/ walk a lot in my job. They do get more bagged out/ wrinkled if you are sitting.

    • Is it the waist? That happens on my jeans and some work pants, and so sometimes I’ll wear one of those plastic “invisible” belts (Isabelt). I don’t tuck my shirts, so you can’t see the belt.

      • I think waist is the biggest problem, but its really the whole thing.

        I also do sit a lot for a living. Maybe pants are just not meant for me. Thanks guys.

  11. I totally get this, and so much. I am single, I have been for what feels like forever, and I really want to not be single. My attempts at dating have been unsuccessful, and also disheartening, to the point that I am really unmotivated to try again. What helped me last year was to plan I trip I always wanted to take, instead of waiting until I found a boyfriend to go with me. This year, I am changing some things in my professional life, instead of being worrying that I will too busy to meet someone. I know I am happier when I am busy (even if I overdo it sometimes) with things I choose to do (instead of just work). I decided that even if not everything I add is designed to meet guys, it *is* designed to make me happier, so what can be wrong with that? Also, I totally agree with Roman Holiday that society is very focused on being in a romantic relationship and every rom-com, “can you believe they hooked up,” so-and-so is engaged/married/having babies can feel like a punch in the face. Keep in mind that those couplings don’t detract from your happiness or and don’t mean there is less happiness available for your use. Hugs, hon, this is hard stuff.

  12. Emily Oster is a very brave woman. I think that her research is very important and wanted to share this article. http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/everybody-calm-down-about-breastfeeding/

  13. I’m starting a new job in two weeks that will increase my commute from about 15 minutes to about an hour. Any tips? I’m already thinking of moving but that will probably be a few months away

    • I spent a significant amount of time communting in college. It always helped to have some good CDs, a playlist, or radio station. I know some people who also use audiobooks or language learning CDs.

    • If you drive, get some e-books. If you join a library you get access to a ton of them for free. They make me excited to drive places.

      • Baconpancakes :

        Also, totally worth it to join Audible if your library system isn’t robust on mp3/CD books (I assume that’s what you meant), and you particularly get your money’s worth if you pick long books and take advantage of the 3 for 2 sales. To get you started, I really enjoyed the Outlander series (great narrator, and each book is 35-50 hours), The Pillars of the Earth (40 hours), The Golem and the Jinni (only 20 hours, but fantastic story), and I’m just now getting into Shadow Country (great narrator for the accents, 40 hours).

    • I have a 30-minute driving commute (and drive a lot for work otherwise) and I can’t do without NPR and audio books. I get CDs, which work great because my car has a 6-CD player. I find downloaded audio books on my ipod or iphone a little trickier to manage.

      I also keep a tote bag in the back seat with reasonably healthy, non-perishable road snacks (whole wheat crackers, popcorn, pumpkin seeds, edamame, dried fruit, etc.) and a couple of basic medicines (advil and tums, e.g.) and also try to have at least one bottle of water in the car at all times.

      I keep meaning to install a holder for my I-phone on the dashboard and I’d recommend getting one. I’ve got sync for hands-free talking and dialing but if you don’t, or for seeing directions and the like more easily, it’s good to have the phone stable and higher up so you don’t have to look away from the road.

      And I put on my — very minimal — make-up at red lights. :)

    • podcasts. I listen to them while on the road (road trips, longer commutes), and at the gym. It’s free, easy and makes me laugh/smile.

    • Rogue Banker :

      My commute for my first job out of college was an hour and a half each way. Been there done that got the teeshirt. -.-
      Audiobooks, especially something funny. Podcasts. Awesome music – that list of “Hm, I’ll listen to this one of these days” albums is about to get whittled down. Basically, the idea is to get some kind of auditory stimulation that will make you happy.
      Always always ALWAYS have a water bottle with you. Have a spare one in the back seat. Have a case in the trunk! Nothing made me grumpier faster than being halfway through that trip, getting thirsty, and realizing I’d left my filled bottle on the kitchen counter. Corollary: non-perishable, non-melting snacks.
      Random as all hell, but I keep a tiny portable sewing kit in my glove compartment. It’s basically just half a dozen bitty spools of thread, a packet of pins and needles, and a teeny pair of scissors, all in a clear plastic box. Can’t tell you how many times that’s saved mine or a coworker’s rear (literally, in the case of split seams).

      • Anonymous :

        Re: the water bottle: Until you are stuck in traffic and have to pee! And definitely know yourself on audiobooks. I love too read, but I totally drift when listening to audiobooks, podcasts etc.

    • Wildkitten :

      Podcasts!

    • I love NPR Podcasts, so that is my thing for staying busy.

      If I am doing public transportation, I love having the Bluetooth headphones. They are so much easier to handle.

      My other random thing is that I keep a spare dress and shoes in the car (or the office if I’m not driving). Not one of my favorites, but a flattering one that does not wrinkle easily. No joke, I’ve needed it. When you live an hour away, you cannot just pop home to get a new outfit before a big meeting if your kid spits up on you, or you spill coffee, or it rains so much that it ruins your pants, etc. I’ve used it about once every year and a half and am always thankful for it.

      I also +1 on the sewing kit and water bottle.

    • Thanks! I was thinking audio books but the spare clothes and snacks are great ideas

      • Coach Laura :

        To prepare for hurricanes/tornados/earthquakes/snow/zombie apocalypse, I suggest an emergency kit of heavy-duty boots or shoes you could walk 10+ miles in, sweatshirt w/hood, winter coat, raincoat/poncho, gloves, hat and emergency food/water.

    • I highly, highly, highly recommend taking public transportation if possible. I used to drive (25-ish minutes without traffic but up to 80-90 minutes on a busy weekday, ugh), and I recently finally started taking the train. I am in Atlanta, so I still have to drive to the station, but that’s chump change compared to the awfulness I previously experienced.

      I am SO much happier. I don’t feel stressed at all any more about my commute, and I get home zipping through the traffic in 20-ish minutes. I read on the train and love it so much. So, this is what I highly recommend for making it easier – public transportation and reading time!

      • Anonymous :

        It depends on the the reliability of your public transportation. The commuter train I used to take had delays all the time, and too many cancellations for me. Gimme an hour in my car that I can control over that any day!

  14. Diana Barry :

    LOL. Just had 2 separate people this week tell me “I like your haircut!” when all I did was break out the blowdryer since I had a meeting.

    Also, wanted to share in case any of the other moms don’t frequent the C-moms site: http://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/7791.html

    • Ugh, my sympathies — this happens to me all the time! Them: “I love your hair today! Did you do something different?” Me: “Yes, I blow-dried it.”

      • Haha, one morning someone at my office said, “You blew out your hair today, it looks good,” and I thought, “But I blow dry my hair every day…?”

    • Baconpancakes :

      I had two people tell me, “I like your braid!” when my thought this morning was, “I hope no one notices how messy and greasy my braid is.”

    • I have a friend who really needed to see that article today. Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks for this article! I posted it to FB because I am so sick of seeing these SAHM posts there. It’s nice to see some good news for the working mom.

  15. Copenhagen Recommendations? :

    I’ll be visiting Copenhagen for the first time in late June and I’m really excited! Does anyone have any advice or tips on places to go/see/things to eat? I have an AirBnB booked in what seems to be a pretty central location so accommodations are taken care of.

    TIA!

    • espresso bean :

      You’re going to love Copenhagen! A few ideas:

      Tivoli is the best! I loved it even more than I expected. Be sure to reserve at least half a day, between rides, food, concerts, and entertainment.

      The Lego store is cute, too. They even have the Nyhavn canal built in Legos!

      The changing of the guard is fun to watch. Nothing groundbreaking, but you can get a lot closer than you can in, say, London.

      The hipster enclave, Norrebro, is like Park Slope, Silver Lake, or Wicker Park — definitely more neighborhood-y, with fewer tourists. We LOVED this adorable modern Danish restaurant in Norrebro:
      http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/30/travel/restaurant-report-manfreds-vin-in-copenhagen.html?_r=0
      It’s on the same block as the famed Coffee Collective.

      The commune Christiania is worth a visit even if you just pop in and out to see the counterculture (and it’s fun to take a pic by the sign that says “You are now entering the EU”).

      Christianshavn is really fun to explore. Great shopping! I liked Munk Design and many of the surrounding stores. The easiest landmark to spot is the Church of Our Saviour, a Baroque tower. We loved picking up pastries and sandwiches in one of the many bakeries there and then taking them to eat along the canal.

      Make sure you stop by one of the gardens to soak up sun or have a snack! The people-watching is great.
      http://www.visitcopenhagen.com/copenhagen/kings-garden-gdk420899

    • OCAssociate :

      Bike Copenhagen with Mike! It turns out that I hate riding a bike, but it was an awesome tour of a city, traveling the way its inhabitants do.
      http://bikecopenhagenwithmike.dk/

      Tivoli is fun, and especially pretty at night. IIRC, there are 1 or 2 Michelin starred restaurants inside the park.

      There are great views of the city from the top of the Round Tower & Our Savior church.

      I was there 5 years ago, so can’t recommend specific places to eat.

      • Anonymous :

        I did a Bike Tour with Mike in Amsterdam- very well done, one of the highlights of my trip, I’d totally recommend their tours

  16. espresso bean :

    You’re going to love Copenhagen! A few ideas:

    Tivoli is the best! I loved it even more than I expected. Be sure to reserve at least half a day, between rides, food, concerts, and entertainment.

    The Lego store is cute, too. They even have the Nyhavn canal built in Legos!

    The changing of the guard is fun to watch. Nothing groundbreaking, but you can get a lot closer than you can in, say, London.

    The hipster enclave, Norrebro, is like Park Slope, Silver Lake, or Wicker Park — definitely more neighborhood-y, with fewer tourists. We LOVED this adorable modern Danish restaurant in Norrebro:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/30/travel/restaurant-report-manfreds-vin-in-copenhagen.html?_r=0
    It’s on the same block as the famed Coffee Collective.

    The commune Christiania is worth a visit even if you just pop in and out to see the counterculture (and it’s fun to take a pic by the sign that says “You are now entering the EU”).

    Christianshavn is really fun to explore. Great shopping! I liked Munk Design and many of the surrounding stores. The easiest landmark to spot is the Church of Our Saviour, a Baroque tower. We loved picking up pastries and sandwiches in one of the many bakeries there and then taking them to eat along the canal.

    Make sure you stop by one of the gardens to soak up sun or have a snack! The people-watching is great.
    http://www.visitcopenhagen.com/copenhagen/kings-garden-gdk420899

  17. Kat, I’m getting Verizon auto play ads at the top of this page.

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