Top Posts of 2016

According to Google Analytics, these are some of our top posts from 2016:

  1. 30 Workwear Brands You Probably Haven’t Tried
  2. Professional Tote Bags for Work
  3. Style Tips for Busty Women
  4. Plus Size Suits, Petite Suits, and Tall Suits
  5. “Dry Clean Only” Clothes and How to Wash Them
  6. Going Out Clothes After 25
  7. Suits for Women: An Overview
  8. Sleeved Dresses with Pockets: The Workwear Unicorn (And Perfect Conference Attire)
  9. Stylish Work Sneakers for Women
  10. The Best Work Clothes for Different Body Types

Of course, every year I have my own favorites, either because I thought they were great discussions, a story I hadn’t seen elsewhere/thought we did a good job with, or just because I really like them (like the post on cultivating style).  These are some of my darlings from the past year…

Any favorites of yours that we missed? Care to revisit any of these discussions today? 

 

Comments

  1. I love these “BEST OF” Article’s! It bring’s back great memorie’s for me to REREAD these articles. NOW I know why I LOVE CORPORETE so much. B/c Kat and Kate and I share SO many of the same memorie’s! As profesional workeing girls, all of us must share our stories to make sure we ALL learn from each other’s expereinces and move forward as profesionals in a world that unfortunately is STILL dominated by men.

    This will SOON be 2017, mom says, which is almost 100 year’s after we, as WOMEN, got the right to vote in the USA. We must celebrate our victories, and move forward even more in the next 100 year’s, balanceing our working lives with important child care and family issues for the NEXT Generation!

    Happy new year to the entire HIVE YAY!!!!

  2. SmallKitchenProbs :

    A food processor was on my Christmas list, and I got two – a “mini” from a friend (4 cup Cuisinart plus) and a “regular” from my dad (10 cup Hamilton Beach w/ scraper). Both are equally well reviewed on Amazon. But I live alone and have a small kitchen with limited storage, and it doesn’t seem practical to keep both. So, which should I return? What size food processor do you have, and do you love it?

    I feel like the 4 cup would get used more often for little things – hummus, pesto, etc. But I wanted to try my hand at making pie crust in the food processor, and the mini is probably too small for that.

    • I would find a way to keep both, honestly. I have a large one and find it frustrating sometimes for the smaller things that you mentioned. If you don’t have enough ingredients in the large food processor, things don’t get moving around and you don’t get the consistency you want. I wish I had a small one for those items. I use the big one for large batch stuff, including the dog’s food so it would be a PITA for me to only have a small one.

      Sorry, that’s probably not helpful!

    • lost academic :

      We’ve now got that problem and we have TONS of gadgets even though we don’t acquire new ones and we don’t get single use ones anymore (and when we moved we did cull a lot of stuff). So I have a rule for what stays in the kitchen and not in the basement/some other storage space: did it get used once in the last month and will it get used at least that often going forward? So there’s heavy stuff I don’t like lugging up and down the stairs but I like even less having it take up precious rack space in the kitchen. So I’d keep both and keep the less used one elsewhere.

    • I got a mini, mainly for chopping onions and similar. It has not worked well – everything goes from unchopped directly to mush. It did work well for making a simple flour/butter/sugar/nut crust, but the ingredients barely fit.

      • berkeleyan :

        Yes, I have room for lots of gadgets (old house, big pantry) but my mini food processor got culled because it just didn’t do a good job. It didn’t chop evenly and it missed big chunks of whatever was in there.

        Honestly, I don’t use a food processor for chopping at all. I use it for grinding nuts, occasionally making biscuits or pie crusts, or making pesto.

    • You might be able to make pie crust in the smaller one. Another suggestion, trade them both in and get one that has a big bowl and a little bowl.

    • The Cuisinart will hold up better and do a better job than the Hamilton Beach. I’m not comparing the specific models, but rather the overall brand quality. I know because I’ve had both. If you decide to go with the full size, maybe you can return both and get a full-size Cuisinart.

      • JuniorMinion :

        Seconding this. I’ve had the 10 cup cuisinart food processor for almost 5 years. Without that and my kitchenaid mixer I would be lost. I have an old mini chop as well and while it is helpful for chopping small amounts of herbs, etc. I don’t find it has the horsepower / space to do things that are either a) large or b) something like pesto which reduces tremendously in volumne

        • I have always had tiny kitchens and I move a lot and hate, HATE appliances. I really thought that everyone else just used a blender for pesto (which is the one appliance I tolerate, but it is small and goes in the dishwasher.

          • JuniorMinion :

            The Cuisinart 10 cup parts, at least the ones I have (other than the base) can go in the dishwasher.

            I have found that blenders, while excellent, are a bit harder to control consistency and lack some of the cheese grating / vegetable chopping options that my cuisinart has (It will essentially mandoline potatoes for a gratin or something in a flash). Personally when I make pesto I like to add everything except the olive oil, turn on the cuisinart, and then add the oil slowly through the top input vent with it running, that way I can just keep adding oil and eyeball when it gets to the right consistency.

            The below seems to be the modern iteration of what I have:
            http://www.kohls.com/product/prd-2820366/cuisinart-prep-9-9-cup-food-processor.jsp?pfm=rrrecs-pdp-gtab1

            I also might just be old school.

          • I use mine as JuniorMinion does. I put everything but the blade in the dishwasher. I won’t splurge for one of the fancy blenders, so I have never been happy with how that treats anything other than varieties on frozen drinks/smoothies.

    • Either keep both or only keep the larger one. The larger one can do everything that the smaller one can do but the reverse isn’t true. Making salsa, for example, is a pretty big PITA in a mini chop. Imo, if I have to pre-chop everything to death to get it to fit in the food processor then I might as well just hand chop it all and save myself the trouble of cleanup.

      That said, I really love the mini chop for things like chopping spices or making small batches or sauces. It’s less cleanup and it’s faster. It’s also nice to be able to use two food processors at once.

    • Another small kitchen :

      Jumping on this. Is there a small 4 cup chopper with the power/motor of the 10 cup ones? I have a ten cup and love the power but not the size. I dont care about price. Willing to pay top dollar for something both small and powerful

    • I would return both and get a large KitchenAid food processor with the bowl in bowl thing

    • I have both a large and a small, and I’ve found that the small get much more use. Because I use the small one on a semi-regular basis for dinners and day-to-day cooking, that one gets stored in an accessible place. I tend to use the large one only for ‘special’/not-regular to my routine cooking (i.e. the maybe 2x a year pie crusts), the large one is stored in much less convenient place. For me, that’s a large cabinet in the basement. Because out of sight usually means out of mind for me, I keep a note in the small one to remind me where the large one is stored.

    • I use my mini all the time but rarely use the large one.

      • Same. I keep my big one in a storage area that isn’t in the kitchen and pull it out maybe once or twice a year. I use my mini about once a month. I have a standalone mini processor and an attachment (part of the cuisinart immersion blender set that I absolutely love).

    • How often do you actually make pie crust? I have a large food processor and I still usually cut in the fat by hand on the rare (1 or 2x per year) occasions that I make pie. It just doesn’t take that long.

      • Anonymous :

        This task is the bane of my existence! I’d kill for a food processor to do it for me, but my apartment is just too small. I can’t believe it doesn’t bother you or take very long!

      • Anonymous :

        Same. I’ve never used my food processors to make pie crust. I don’t really see the benefit. I use a pastry cutter sometimes but usually I just use my fingers. For people who seriously detest cutting in the fat, there are good recipes for oil-based crusts. Or buy pillsbury dough or puff pastry.

    • Anonattorney :

      Keep the 10-cup cuisinart (seriously, they are amazing, especially the CHEESE GRATER!!!) Trade in the mini and get the Cuisinart Smart Stick immersion blender – it also comes with a really small mixing bowl with chopper, that I use for salad dressing, sauces, hummus, etc.

    • Make sure the Cuisinart one isn’t part of their recall https://www.cnet.com/how-to/cuisinart-recall-how-to-return-your-food-processor/

      • Thanks for this. Mine is actually recalled and I didn’t realize it! Will be getting a new blade in the mail soon.

        The website to register is cuisinart.com/recall

    • Anonymous :

      I have a Kitchenaid 7 cup which includes a mini-bowl. It is large enough for dough but the mini bowl can be used when I need to chop smaller items.

    • Never too many shoes... :

      There is a massive recall on Cuisinart food processors – you may want to just check that yours is not among them… https://recall.cuisinart.com/

      • Anonymous :

        Yes, most version will need a blade replaced! Good news is the replacement arrived in 2 days

  3. anonymous :

    Looking at the workwear brands post. Can anyone comment on Of Mercer? How do they compare to MM LaFleur? Would you recommend them?

  4. We are hosting a small pregame before heading out to the bars NYE. It could be for between 5 & 15 people. Originally I was going to make dinner (when it was only 5) but now that it has grown, I’d like to do just some fancy looking (but easy) appetizers. What are your favorite recipes ‘r e t t e s?

    So far I have:
    Bacon wrapped scallops
    Twice baked potatoes
    Meatballs
    Steak Crostinis

    • AttiredAttorney :

      Caprese skewers – baby mozzarella ball, fresh basil leaf, grape tomato threaded on a small skewer, drizzled with balsamic and EVOO.

      Endive leaves spread with a little boursin and topped with pine nuts or crasisns are easy and healthy-ish. These can be made ahead and are okay being left at room temperature

      I also sometimes do a big crock pot of baked potato soup with disposable small cups for serving, along with some fun toppings -shredded cheese, bacon, diced jalapenos, etc. Sort of an easier mashed potato bar like they have at weddings.

    • Barefoot Contessa’s sausage stuffed mushrooms

      https://barefootcontessa.com/recipes/sausage-stuffed-mushrooms

      or you can cheat and check out the frozen app section in Trader Joes (I’ve done this and have no regrets)

    • Not easy because of chopping, but easy to eat and store. Actually, you could make it all by the time the quinoa is done on the stovetop. I like to do butter lettuce with quinoa, soy sauce, edamame, shaved carrots and thin sliced red pepper as a veggie wrap. Add a tiny bit of ginger or a little heat to it and it’ll be a good option for any veg/lactose-intolerant/gluten-free folks (use gluten-free soy sauce). I bring it a lot as a hearty, but safe dish (unless they have a soy allergy!)

    • Crackers spread with goat cheese and fig jam. I like to use the crackers made from nuts.

    • I guess I should specify that these are early 20s people who like buff dip and things wrapped in bacon :)

    • Anonymous :

      It might actually be easier to make a main, depending on what it is! Like a beef stew, or chili. Waaaaay less work than individually wrapping a bunch of things with bacon, and will also keep you sated while you drink away the rest of the night. I’d probably make a giant pot of chili and set out a spread of toppings so people can customize (cheese, cilantro, olives, sour cream or greek yogurt, jalapenos)

  5. Whine alert. I want to tell the whole world to F* off this week. I am stuck in a courthouse waiting for a jury verdict in a week when daycare is closed while my usually patient lawyer husband stays home with our toddler and misses both work and relax-time because I can’t be home. His patience has worn thin and he’s rapidly becoming more annoyed and resentful that his week has been shot. We’re sniping at each other and overall becoming unpleasant and I just want it to stop. I feel guilty enough and I am so tired of conflict, especially when our toddler has suddenly started waking at 4:30 / 5 and robbing us of sleep…
    Happy freakin’ holidays!!!

    • Frozen Peach :

      Oh mama, I totally get it. I think most toddlers get a holiday behavior “hangover” for a few days. It’s been rough at our house too. I will send that jury SO much decision-making mojo.

      The way I’m coping with the sniping and unpleasant is to treat myself in lots of little ways– starbucks, short internet breaks, exactly what I want for lunch. I may gain ten pounds this week but if I can prevent myself from flipping my lid, it will be worth it.

      • KateMiddletown :

        My six year old had a two-year old meltdown two days ago at bed time. It was probably due to the messed up bedtimes she’s been having (but somehow still waking up at 6:15 every FREAKIN’ morning) and the excessive ipad/screentime she’s been getting w/ her teenage babysitting sisters. Stay calm, stay cool, and have that glass of wine.

      • Toddlers, preschoolers, elem. kids and their parents all go through the holiday hangover. My little darlings decided to shred Styrofoam packaging all over our living room yesterday afternoon while my husband was cleaning another room. I simply received a text with a picture of the scene and advising me to take my time coming home.

        Agree on the little treats for yourself, and hoping for a verdict soon!

      • It was only yesterday that I asked an investigator to pick up my toddler from daycare because I was waiting for a verdict way past closing time. He will be going to college next year. This, too, shall pass.

    • That is the worst….our 2 year old has decided this is the week to SERIOUSLY regress. He went from waving good night in his crib and sleeping like 11 hrs, to needing someone (usually me) in his room for upwards of 2 hours at bedtime, and last night, woke at 1, 3, 5:30….WTF, kid?!

      My husband and I were in a similar rut just before Christmas, and my advice is to troll a local parent’s message board for college kids or nannies looking to pick up extra hours. Your husband can go to a movie, go to a work space, work-out, etc. etc. Usually when we can’t get out of a hole of unhappy sniping, a real day off helps.

      Or, over the weekend or next Monday, hire a sitter to come from like 3 until 8 (basically, just after nap until just after bedtime). With that time, get a couples massage at a local hotel or spa or go to a movie, finish off with a boozy early dinner, then come home just after kid is in bed, and YOU go to bed at like 9PM. This is my and my husband’s most favorite “trick” when we are overwhelmed and exhausted by our kids.

    • I would be so freaking annoyed in your position. You just went through a jury trial! Over the holidays! You’re exhausted! You want nothing more than to be at home cuddling on the couch watching inane nonsense on TV, but instead your stuck in a courthouse just… waiting. And in the face of all of this, your husband has the gall to complain that HE isn’t getting his relaxing time because he has to take care of the toddler? Which really means that he expected YOU to take care of cranky toddler this week even though you clearly need the rest. Just no.

      • I’m guessing this is a troll – but on the small chance it isnt – they’re both their children – and I think the expectation is they BOTH would help w the kids this week… Don’t place malice where its not appropriate.

      • Aunt Jamesina :

        I think the more charitable interpretation of this is that they expected to trade off toddler duty so that they could both have time to relax.

    • You have all my sympathy. 250%.

      My tip: after some calling around, we found that several local daycares stay open through the holidays and will take in kids during that time that they would not normally take on in order to pick up extra revenue. They have spaces during breaks because some of their regular kids are out for family vacations, etc., but they still need to pay staff and want to have kids there to keep everyone busy. We did have to do some advance prep (provide immunization records, etc.) and book about a month ahead, but it really has worked out.

      The other option that has worked for us has been hiring a high school kid who also is off school to babysit or even having a middle schooler come in to be a “parent’s helper” for at least part of the day. Even you have to stay home to supervise and you only get coverage from, say, 7 or 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., that is a lot easier to deal with (especially if you have a toddler that still naps) than full days at home. I did this with a middle school girl in our neighborhood on snow days last year. Not only was I able to bill 4 or 5 hours a day at home (plus sometimes an hour or two at night, making those days at least close to full working days), but also I was able to train her so that she now has turned into an excellent evening babysitter now that she is in high school.

    • Advise irritable husband to either hire a sitter or give in and snuggle the toddler, who is probably acting out in response to all of the disruptions in routine. Even happy times can be exhausting and more so when you’re too young to have learned how to self-calm despite all the extra hubbub.

      • Srsly.

        I’d always come to find H and toddler sleeping together on the Lazy Boy under a ton of blankets with something of questionable merit on the TV.

      • It’s good advice, I know. But Toddler is happy & behaving just fine apart from the early morning torture (he started with Big Boy Bed last week and is exploring his freedom, I think, plus, yes, lots of holiday excitement and disruption of his routine).
        I did look into sitters / temp nannies but my husband didn’t want a “stranger” in the house.

        I get that he’s being unreasonable in terms of blaming me and not embracing some options for help.
        But I also think he has been a total champ throughout this long trial, doing lots more daycare pickups (usually my job) and toddler dinners and all-around work like cooking and keeping our lives running— at the expense of his own demanding job (he’s at a big firm). So I have to stick up for him in that regard. But supportive partner mode is descending into resentful, tired, annoyed partner mode, and I am frankly too worn down myself to respond productively and avoid conflict.

        • It’s hard. It’s hard being in a demanding job, it’s hard trying to multi-task for work while caring fulltime for a toddler, it’s hard feeling guilty for being completely unavailable to your family because of work situations. It’s hard when you add sleep deprivation and work stress on top of all of this. And even if both people logically understand this and are fully supportive of each other, that doesn’t magically cure everything when you are in the trenches going through it. The best thing that we have found we can do in a similar situation is to acknowledge that the situation is incredibly challenging and (hopefully) temporary. Give each other grace on that, table any arguments for later discussions, and let go of any expectations other than basic survival. You will get through this.

          • I agree completely. My husband and I have both been in each of these positions. The best thing you can do is give each other grace, respect each other’s feelings, and get through it. Don’t make any big decisions and triage everything else. It’s hard.

          • Thank you. This is good advice and a good reminder to check my own attitude.

          • +1 to all of this. Nonstop kid duty is stressful even without other demands hanging over your head, and being at work when you expected to be home is frustrating. I’m sure in calmer moments you understand that you’re both justified… the trick is always not to take it out on each other. Easier said than done, I know. I need to vent when I’m annoyed and angry, but this makes my husband upset because he feels like I’m directing it at him (and then two-way sniping and anger ensues). I’m not. I’m not trying to lay blame, half the time I don’t even want a solution, I just need to grumble. Maybe it would help to listen to your husband from the mindset that he just needs to grumble? Just listen to his frustration. Don’t try to fix it, don’t compare it to yours, just echo that you know he’s frustrated because this week sucks, kids are hard, and nothing turned out as planned. Whenever my husband does this for me, it goes a long way toward deescalating. And then maybe he’ll shut his piehole! :)

          • I’m sorry if this is crass but I’m in a slightly similar situation (I’m working most of this week, husband is home with hyper energetic older kid, with part time nanny help for younger kid) and what helps my husband when he is grouchy is: s*x. Even when I’m not feeling like it.
            One would think solving the problem is what’s needed but no, this is what magically makes him feel all better and takes like 20-30 mins of my time.

    • I suggest bringing takeout pizza and a pack of beer/bottle of wine home tonight and lamenting about how much suck you’re both going through.

      • This is a lovely suggestion. Every time I manage to reorient things, remind myself and my husband that we are on the same team fighting against [whatever crappy annoyance] it really helps.

    • Waiting for a jury verdict is the hardest. As much as it sucks for your husband, he should understand that it is completely out of your hands and incredibly stressful and yes, it sucks for both of you.

      Good luck!

    • Annony Mousse :

      His week has been shot? His week of special one-on-one bonding with his child?

      Seriously, what was he planning on doing this week that was more important than taking care of his child?

      Would he have sympathy for you if the situation was reversed?

      You are getting all work time and no relax time. Your husband is getting invaluable bonding time with your toddler. He needs to stop complaining and be a parent.

      • It sounds like OP’s husband was planning to work this week, which is not *more* important than caring for his child but probably still important.

        • I hear you both. If you are working this week, it’s likely b/c you have to and have year end deadlines that aren’t negotiable. And WFH with a toddler is something I could only do during naps, so 50% daytime efficiency, lots of late nights, stress from not not meeting expectations.

          I never feel bad about take-out when it gets like this. Something have to give.

      • OK, last defense of my husband, who is, in fact, driving me nuts with his crankiness (toward me, not the kid or anything)— He loves time with our kid! But, as someone said upthread, we had planned to be doing things together this week, like the aquarium, which is SO much easier with two adults, or to be trading off so each of us could work / relax as needed. This was an unexpected change of plans. So perhaps “shot” isn’t the right word (it’s mine, not his) but he has things to do that cannot be done while minding a toddler. Which is why some occasional babysitting would have been helpful.
        Also—I think others feel as I do that to “be a parent” well you also have to mind your own personal sanity, which can be difficult in stressful times, and adding an adorable active boy who wants to wrestle you or throw himself off a high surface for most of the day is fun, and also exhausting. Childcare isn’t his problem. It’s the inability to do anything else or spend any time with me.

        And now I go back to thinking he needs to shut his piehole until this is over!

        • Dude, if he needs to get things done that can’t be done with a toddler, he either needs to hire a babysitter or stop complaining. He’s made a choice not to, which is fine, but he needs to stop whining now.

        • Manhattanite :

          Totally get you. My DH is also lovely and supportive and most of the time we pull the same weight on childcare and happily and gracefully back each other up on work obligations, but sometimes… He just gets pissy about it when he has to do it by himself because I have work obligations that I can’t work around while he can work around his. Children are tough on a marriage.

        • Grinchy, I’m late responding, but I just want you to know it gets so, so much easier. These 2 weeks at Christmas times with school and day care closings used to be such a juggle and piecemeal of work schedules, vacation time, exhaustion – and inevitably someone would get sick. But now mine are 9 and 12 and I can’t tell you what a genuine break these 2 weeks are now. They are old enough to entertain themselves, we can work from home (and truly work uninterrupted) when needed, they can be by themselves – especially the older one – for stretches of time…it’s a whole different world. And a wonderful one at that. Hang in there for the next few years, the rewards are worth it!

          And yes, sounds like your husband is whining a bit, but toddlers can bring out the worst in all of us sometimes :) so dig deep and cut him some slack. I know I’ve needed to be on the receiving end of the slack myself sometimes…

    • If this keeps up, all the college kids are still home. Pay $15/Hr for some peace. It’s fine if you’ve never used them before because you or DH will be home. Just go upstairs and read a book or take a bath or nap or organize or whatever you need to do while someone else deals with the whining. Sitters make my kids behave; it’s magical.

  6. Anon for this :

    I secretly love palazzo pants and bought myself a pair of flowy black ones on a whim. I can’t return them and I’m wondering– are they a fashion faux pas? I’m by no means a style guru and just have always liked the look of a tight fitted top with them. (really I love them because they’re pj pants I can wear to church…)

    • Marshmallow :

      I’m wearing exactly what you described today– gray wide-leg pants on bottom, navy tight sweater on top, black belt. How wide are we talking here? I think it’s a nice look.

    • I think they can look great with a fitted top and heels.

    • Lost Girl :

      Keep them! I have some – 90’s pair that I inherited from my mom. I think they look great. Saw a woman in my office with a pair not to long ago and they caught my eye in a good way.

    • anon anon armani :

      where can these be found?

      • I snagged mine on Zulily, but I’ve also seen some on Amazon. The beauty is that you WANT the cheapy fabric– it’s how they don’t wrinkle and why they are such a magical wardrobe item. I had some in the 90s that I regret ever giving away.

  7. Morning! I bought the cole haan acadia tote in April it is the perfect size for an every day bag but the handles are already fraying badly. Cole haan said I could send it in and they would send me a gift card for its last selling price but wont say how much it is and I would really just rather have the bag repaired. Anyone know a good place in Boston that could handle it?

  8. Sephora q :

    Hoping someone knows the answer to this – I got an email from Sephora telling me that I need to spend something like $20 by the end of the year in order to get Rouge status for all of 2017. I believe Rouge status would give me free shipping on all orders, which would be a pretty big benefit for me because I’m constantly ordering like $10 worth of product. I don’t need anything at Sephora right now though. Do I really need to spend the $20 by the end of the year, or will my points roll over so I can get Rouge status with my next order (or two)?

    • Can you buy yourself a $20 Sephora gift card? I’m not a rewards member, idk if that will work.

    • KateMiddletown :

      I’m a regular VIB member, but I know from all my obsessed friends that this is an actual deadline. Splurge on a few face masks?

    • You have two options:

      – spend $20 now to get the status

      – spend $10 on that free 2-day shipping plan (no minimum purchase) for a year, which is what I do. If you only want Rouge for the free shipping, this is probably the better deal, especially since you can buy it any time.

    • Marshmallow :

      Yeah it’s a real deadline. Just buy a backup of something you would need to refill soonish anyway. You will get free two-day shipping on all orders and free unlimited makeup application appointments in the store.

      • I have a VIB rouge card (I think it’s good through next year). I don’t use the free shipping because there is a Sephora 2 blocks from my office. How do I use the “unlimited makeup application”? Just go in and ask for makeup? I feel awkward doing that. Do I say that I’m a VIB rouge?

        • Marshmallow :

          Call or stop in ahead or make an appointment online for what they call a “custom makeover.” Then when you arrive, just tell them you’re a VIB Rouge. They won’t make you purchase anything and if you have an appointment, the artist is probably happier to be putting makeup on you than trolling the aisles.

        • Marshmallow :

          Looks like my previous comment got lost in moderation. You can make an appointment ahead of time (call or go online). Then when you get there, just tell them you are a VIB Rouge and they will not ask you to buy anything. I’ve done this a few times and the makeup artists are always lovely and happy to help.

    • Yes, the VIB/VIB Rouge status runs with the calendar year. I find VIB Rouge to be so worth it for the free shipping, so I’d check out the sale section or pick up a value kit left over from the holidays or get a replacement Beauty Blender.

    • I’d spend the $20 to get the free shipping (and qualifying for VIB Rouge comes with a little NARS blush gift set, which isn’t worth it on it’s own but is a nice freebie).

      Sephora has tons of marked down gift sets, which can be a fun way to try new products, or stock up on your favorite eyeliner/face cream/blush so you have an extra one on hand.

    • Look at your daily use items and see what is likely to get over in the next month or so (primer/lipstick/CC cream etc.) and buy those. Or buy a couple of birthday gift items for your friends who have birthdays in Jan or Feb.

    • I would do it. The Rouge status is worth it for the shipping. Just order a backup of something you use regularly.

  9. Wanderlust :

    Has anyone successfully worked with a career coach to transition from “an ok job” to a job you love? My job is easy and pays well, but just seems so boring and pointless. Trying to find my happiness outside of work is not enough.

  10. Is the outlet orpy hills in Nashville worth a trip? Thanks

  11. On the hunt for good books for the new year. What is everyone reading?

    • I just finished Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter. It’s very good but also really intense – story of a family whose daughter goes missing and how it all plays out 20+ years later. If you like supernatural/postapocalyptic stuff, The Passage trilogy by Justin Cronin is a really good read. It’s older, but I recently read Devil in the White City by Erik Larson, and I’m about to start another by him, In the Garden of Beasts. This year I finally got a library card and am downloading books like crazy.

      • I had NO IDEA The Passage was a trilogy. I read The Passage and loved it. You have vastly improved my next month!

        • FYI, I loved the Passage and started reading the second book, the Twelve, and it wasn’t very good at all. I stopped reading about 1/2 way through.

    • KateMiddletown :

      In the middle of Hillbilly Elegy. The author grew up closeby my current city, and it’s a fascinating read.

      • Sydney Bristow :

        I just finished it. I was struck by how similar some of his experiences were to mine with one side of my family that had come directly from Europe to the PNW 2 generations ago. I’ve been thinking it over along with all the other discussion of the bubbles that we all live in and I think that while there definitely are bubbles, many of us from separate bubbles are more similar than we realize. Still processing it all in my head.

    • Feminist Fight Club by Jessica Bennett

      Shrill by Lindy West

      Rereading everything Lucy Maud Montgomery to get a break from our current world.

    • Nylon n girl :

      Just finished 2 WWII historical fiction novels that I enjoyed… The Velvet Hors and The Secrets of Charmed Life.

      • Nylon n girl :

        Hours not Hors.

      • If WWII historical fiction is also your thing, I just finished a translation of “Every Man Dies Alone” by Hans Fallada that was interesting. I saw a lot of similarities about the talk about small fights they were making to fight Hitler to what has been discussed on this board since the election.

        • More WW2 historical fiction that I enjoyed– The Nightengale by Kristin Hannah and The Things We Cherished by Pam Jenoff. General: The Girl on the Train, How to Party With an Infant, and City of Promise.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      I finished my reading challenge goal over the weekend and wound up reading a lot of fiction that I really liked.

      The Hopefuls by Jennifer Close was recommended here and was great. I liked it so much that I also read her books Girls in White Dresses and The Smart One. The Hopefuls was my favorite but the others were really good too.

      The Unseen World by Liz Moore was really interesting. I could see it being a movie. It was a sort of slow build book and unlike things that I normally read.

      I got an advance copy of The Cutaway by Christina Kovac. I think that one comes out in April. Highly recommend! After finishing it, I couldn’t believe that it was her first novel.

      Megan Abbott was also a new author to me this year. I haven’t read her historical fiction yet but highly recommend her more recent books. You Will Know Me is great if you are interested in gymnastics or just the idea of a family focused on an athlete child. The Fever and Dare Me were both great as well.

      On the non-fiction side, I liked Settle for More by Megyn Kelly. I didn’t actually know that much about her. Shoe Dog by Phil Knight about the founding of Nike was one of my favorite non-fiction reads of the year. I’m also doing my yearly re-read of The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin before NYE.

    • I’m currently reading Behave by Andromeda Romano-Lax. I’m halfway through, and I’m enjoying it much more than I thought I would.

      Other recent fiction reads I enjoyed are The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah, Girl Waits With Gun by Amy Stewart, and Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy.

      In terms of nonfiction, I liked Working Stiff by Julie Melinek, 10% Happier by Dan Harris, and Now I See You by Nicole Kear.

    • A friend gave me Hidden Figures for Christmas. I haven’t gotten into it yet but I’m looking forward to it.

      • I’m reading it now. It’s a bit confusing at first, trying to get a handle on who is who. And she spends a lot of time on the history of segregation and Virginia – which is really context, but very interesting. All in all, really good.

      • Anonymous :

        I saw the movie on Christmas and loved it!!

  12. I got a mailer for spendy summer trips for “service learning” for older kids (like $6K for eco-tourism and volunteering (fixing trails) in Costa Rica for two weeks).

    I am a bit sad b/c I will likely never have the time to spend with my children on any sort of trip or activity like this (or even being slothful / mere tourism for two weeks). And also stabby b/c in our neighborhod there is 1) a hospital, 2) a fire station, and 3) a nursing home, all of which they could walk to and volunteer at FOR FREE all summer if they don’t get a paying job (and even if they did, if they kept the hours I do, they’d still have time left over).

    • JuniorMinion :

      If it makes you feel any better – these types of trips are often referred to as “voluntourism” and people who work in international development / articles on this subject talk about their only use being to make the volunteers feel good and in some cases how they can actually be detrimental to local populations as they distract focus / can reinforce abandonment issues. Your kids could make much more of a real difference working with a local organization on a regular basis than doing one of those feel good trips.

      In terms of the travel itself, try to think about the things you are adding to your children’s lives on a regular basis / values you are modeling. My mom was stay at home and thus we spent many lazy days / long (cheap) trips together. I would trade all of it for more financial security / not spending my childhood and young adulthood under the gun financially and manically working multiple jobs every summer / holiday break in order to make more money.

      • Also, the fixing trails is not even for the locals. I imagine that it is for fancy foreign tourists. It’s not like they’re changing bedpans or providing respite care for caregivers of Zika babies or something.

        Our Whiskeypalian church does pilgrimage trips that I’d likely do instead (we know the people and kids, we like the “g-d wants you to take care of your world” message a bit better). Or they could even do the Camino de Santiago. But high-dollar voluntourism . . . just no (maybe it’s some sort of college admissions arms race — reading to kids at your local library’s summer camp < building trails in the rain forest — OMG maybe this is how I'm supposed to buy their college degree???).

        • JuniorMinion :

          So I know the college admissions arms race is pressured, and the plural of anecdote is not data, but my personal experience is stuff like this doesn’t matter a whole lot. Unless you are 1) an athlete good enough to play at the college 2) In some desirable elected position (editor of large school paper, student council president) 3) Doing some sort of widely recognized / difficult to complete volunteer program (think, becoming an eagle scout, volunteer firefighter / EMT – seriously had friends who did this).

          My college counselor told me what colleges liked about my application were 1) Good grades in the most challenging classes 2) High SAT / SAT II scores 3) The fact that I had held full time summer jobs / been working since I was 14 (The whole scholarship / financial uncertainty thing paid off apparently). It really is a crap shoot though. I ended up at an Ivy, but I have to say I think I would have been fine at most of the schools on my list. Also now that I am in Texas, I have friends who have gotten great jobs from all the major public colleges in Texas (although people are telling me its becoming its own arms race to get into UT)

          • Eagle Scout equivalent for girls :

            Is there an Eagle Scout equivalent for girls?

            I feel like Eagle Scout is such a good brand, but there isn’t anything I can think of like that for girls (like passing the lifeguard test is good, but not the same). My girls aren’t in scouting (yet), so I also don’t know whether there is an optimal time for joining (Daisy, Brownie, regular Girl Scout).

            We also have Y Guides — is that better? My husband really loves scouting and would be the primary grownup parental volunteer, so I *really* want to help this happen :)

          • Newbie Associate :

            The Gold Award from the Girl Scouts.

          • Away Game :

            What Newbie said. And while the Gold Award isn’t as well known as Eagle Scout, I’m told most college admissions officers do recognize it..and how much work/dedication/planning it requires. ts

          • Mrs. Jones :

            The Gold Award is MUCH harder to earn than Eagle Scout, which is part of the reason many people haven’t heard of it. I think most college admission officers know about it.

        • This stuff makes me angry. Spend $6,000 on a vacation, or send $6,000 to MSF or UNHCR. But spending $6,000 to volunteer is the worst of both worlds. I thought this article was terrific: https://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2016/12/ending-extracurricular-privilege/511307/

        • FWIW, college admissions essays about this kind of trip are a dime a dozen, to the point that they are a running joke among admission staff. They don’t give you an edge, unless you are able to write about it critically, in which case it’s the critical thinking not the trip that’s giving you the edge.

          • YES — there is a 2-weeker on “leadership.” I am betting 100% of the kids on that trip are leaders (and are clearly the children of leaders). I’d like to people watch that.

            But it makes me sad — I’d love to have the time to do this. I worked since I was 14 and only had the time to travel when I had no money (and now have money but no time). I’m glad that *someone* will take my children out to see the world b/c I’ll be lucky to ever have even 4 days unplugged with them at a clip.

            I am trying to figure some BigLaw exit plan. If I am still here in 5 years, someone come and either fire me or hire me. It will be time to go by then.

        • What is Whiskeypalian? That sounds like the church for me.

        • That kind of stuff doesn’t matter for college – it’s like how there’s is (or was) that Who’s Who book that parents could pay to have their kid featured in. An ego boost that doesn’t really matter.

    • This makes me sad too, but I do feel the need to point out that not all volun-tourism programs are scams. When I was in high school I did one of these programs, but it was for US National Parks. I helped build trails alongside long-time park volunteers, slept on the floor of a high school gym nearby, and cooked meals with my 11 other program co-participants and group leader. My family could never have afforded to take an actual vacation to a national park that wasn’t within driving distance, so the program (which cost more like 1K, not 6K) was really a unique opportunity for me. I don’t think the program is around anymore, which is a shame because I think it’s a little more defensible that the “save the world” types of international programs I see now.

      • Agreed. DH spent a summer in high school digging irrigation ditches in a non-tourist village in Central America.

    • On the other hand, my 15yo is considering one of these trips. I have no delusions that this will be real service. But it will be a great adventure in a foreign country. I did a cross country bus trip one summer and a program abroad another summer when I was in high school. With no pretension of volunteerism but both were great experiences.

      As for volunteering nearer to home, most of the things I have found have a minimum age of 16, just like real jobs. She can have this experience now and then next summer, when she is old enough to drive she will have her choice of volunteer and job opportunities in the community.

      • or she could just go on an actual foreign vacation for a lot less money and pretentiousness.

      • Do schools do trips anymore?

        When I was in high school, the French language students went to Paris, etc. On these trips, you could often go along if you paid, even if you weren’t in the class or hadn’t taken it as long as others.

        I’d be less likely to use commercial providers vs a group (school, church, etc.) where my child/ren already knew other kids and adults going.

        FWIW, I live in a walk-to-things neighborhood in part b/c I wanted my kids to do stuff before they are old enough to drive. Perhaps they could walk to babysitting gigs? A girl can dream, no?

      • I think there are just as good (better?) trips that don’t have the volunteerism problems. When I was in high school, I did a People to People program. It was the first time I ever traveled abroad and was great.

        • Anonymous :

          +1 to People to People. First time to fly alone, and first experience of a city. Going from a small town of ~2,500 to D.C. for a week was a wonderful experience, as was meeting other kids my age that were from the Bronx, California, and other non-rural, non-Bible Belt areas.

      • Don’t let your kid do a “volunteering” trip if you’re treating it like a vacation. Almost all of them do more harm than good to their host communities; check out the Barbie Savior insta for a tongue-in-cheek overview, with links to real resources on their website. Instead, either let your kid travel with a group (most high schools run something most years) or do a short-term student exchange. I’ve heard good things about People to People; CIEE is also a reputable provider for high school exchanges. And then is is my professional opinion as someone whose literal job is to get American youth to use their passports

    • Is this for real?

    • Anonymous :

      My son spent two summers volunteering at legal aid. He learned that there are poor people living in squalor right in our community. The end.

  13. East Coast National Parks :

    I know that the big ticket national parks seem to be out west. I’d love to visit, but am always short of time. What are some good east coast national parks (easily accessible — I think I’d have to fly into most and rent a car)?

    I’ve got the Great Smoky Mountain on my list for late spring. What else?

    Acadia? (I know next to nothing about Maine, except that it is likely: fly to Boston, fly to Maine, start driving)

    • Yes, Acadia!! I drove up from PA in early fall and it was lovely. It’s not hard to get to by car at all and I think your Boston -> drive up plan is the most reasonable (although I will let Boston/NE ‘r e t t e s chime in there).

    • Shenandoah is lovely, and even a day driving through is time well spent. I would love to spend a week or longer there. And there are so many lovely towns to stay in just outside of the park.

      I loved Acadia but we went in the middle of the summer and the crowds were really tough on some of the more popular trails. It’s probably easily avoided if you go at the right times, but given the relative remoteness takes a bit more planning and strategizing.

    • Diana Barry :

      Fly to Boston or Manchester, rent a car. Acadia is about a 5 hour drive. If you go not during July and August, the crowds are less. I wouldn’t go in August. My favorite time to be there is October – the foliage! Fewer people! Not hot! No bugs! It is also nice (but muddy) in the spring, but you have to catch it before black fly season hits in May.

      • Yes!! Acadia is gorgeous and there are so many beautiful spots along the drive from Boston/Manchester to Acadia, especially if you veer off of 95 (Portland, Damariscotta, Camden). Beware that fall foliage season is actually becoming equally as popular as summer, and there have been discussions about limiting admission to Acadia like they do some of the parks out west. June can be a great time to visit because it isn’t the height of tourist season but is at least moderately warm.

    • We loved the Everglades. Absolutely fascinating, and, sadly, very fragile and endangered. Wish we could have done an eco tour from the north west corner or a long canoe expedition. We were there in the spring — there are definitely times of the year that you do not want to visit, due to bugs.

  14. Solo Traveler :

    I always travel solo, but generally do adventure travel or go to countries where there are lots of other solo travelers. I really want to book a relaxing beach vacation and love the idea of an all-inclusive resort – beach volleyball, margaritas by the pool, a little luxury. The only problem is that I don’t want to be surrounded by honeymooners or families. Does anyone have any recommendations for a resort or something similar that would be good for a single traveler (and I’ve already looked at Club Med, my dates don’t work) where I wouldn’t feel lonely all week?

    • Mrs. Jones :

      It’s not a beach, but many single/solo women go to Rancho la Puerta in Mexico.

    • IDK — if not families and/or couples, don’t you run the risk of spring-breaker-type places? Maybe not if it’s pricey?

    • Try looking up yoga retreats – lots of single travelers on those.

      • YES — my girlfriends do these (often with some sort of vegan / cleansing / detox / “beach” diet). It may scare away a lot of guys, but is definitely not families and/or honeymooners in the mix.

    • Check out Miraval in Arizona – it’s almost all women, a spa/yoga/other similar types of activities (or just lie by the pool) resort. I’ve gone with girlfriends and often met other solo women there. People tend to be friendly & it’s definitely not family or honeymoon friendly.

  15. Discouraged job hunter :

    I’ve been searching for an in-house position for over several months. Out of the dozens of applications I’ve sent, I’ve only landed three interviews. In those three instances, the interview invite came within a week of submitting the application. Most of the time, however, I don’t get any response to my application. Occasionally, I get a form rejection (thank you but we don’t think you’re the best match kind of email).

    For those of you who have worked as recruiters, or closely with recruiters, can you provide some visibility into what happens on the employer side? How do companies filter through the dozens and maybe hundreds of applications received for an opening? If I don’t hear back within a week, should I assume there will be no invite? Does the fact that I received a rejection response suggest that someone actually laid eyes on my resume? Lastly, sometimes a see a job posting that is a few weeks old or more. Realistically, is there any chance that an application received 30+ days into the process is likely o succeed? TIA!

    • Not a recruiter, but in a position involved in hiring for my group. If a posting is sitting out there thirty or more days, it’s because I haven’t received many applications that have excited me and I’m waiting for more to come in. Also, my group moves sloooooow. Your resume could easily sit in a pile for 30 days until we have bandwidth to look at any of them.

      • +1 We have had a posting out for over a month and none of the applicants have been contacted for a variety of reasons. It doesn’t mean that they won’t get interviews though. I would not take lack of response within a week to mean anything.

    • While I’m in a similar position (searching for many months, getting some interviews but no offers yet, and several applications going into the black hole), here’s my two cents:
      – Try to apply early — set automatic searches on indeed, Linked In, ACC, etc. so you’re alerted when new stuff pops up.
      – If you find a position posted, even if the post is a bit older, go ahead and apply. It may be that no one has fit the bill yet, it may be that the recruiters have to keep the posting up for a certain amount of time — but who knows.
      – Do try to work your network as best you can. I find that I’m much more likely to get an interview when I have someone put in a good word for me. Make sure that your contacts outside your firm/business (or those within who can be trusted) know that you’re looking so they can keep an eye out for you.
      – Auto rejections seem to be totally a [email protected] — I think it’s mostly to do with the HR software being used, and rarely has much significance.

      Best of luck in your search… unfortunately the supply/demand balance of applicants and positions is way out of whack.

      • Anonymous :

        Yes to all of the above. I’ve been in recruiting, though not for legal roles. You don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes- there are all sorts of reasons you can get ignored or rejected, including people just not getting to your resume, or glancing at it quickly and glossing over, or they get conflicting information about who exactly they’re looking for or what the timeline is. The one thing that bypasses all of this is a personal referral, which strongly increases the odds your resume will get at very least fully considered. There is also no reason not to reapply and follow up, especially if the position is still open a couple of months later.

    • Patience.

      Every in-house environment runs differently. I am in-house now, which I was connected to through a recruiter. I applied, interviewed, and got an offer all in about 10 days. At the same time, I was balancing two other opportunities: both of which I found on my own but were organizations that move a lot slower. For one of them, 7 weeks had passed from application to interview request – I had totally forgotten about it! Holidays happen, other priorities happen, etc.

    • My previous company had absolutely wretched HR. The only time “cold applicants” got any real look was when I got frustrated enough to walk into HR’s office and demand they open up my file *right then* and we reviewed some candidates together.

      Outside of that, I hired through resumes emailed to me through my contacts, or by responses to my desparate pleas on LinkedIN.

      I managing overall team of about 30 people, including some for more lawyers that did compliance type work, as well as those focus more on things like marketing and strategy. If you work with a company that uses a recruiter/agency and not an in-house HR department you might have more luck in terms of responsiveness because then you’re working with somebody who has a direct incentive to fill the role. In theory in-house HR does as well, but not this specific role just roles in general for the company.

      • Anonymous :

        I’m not OP, but if you have ANY insight into breaking into compliance work (from nonprofit policy analyst/legal counsel work), I’d read it!!

        • I hire people to keep tabs on comlocance issues for a software company in the healthcare industry. For me, a J.D is a nice to have, not a must-have. I mainly want somebody that knows the industry, and can distill what they read and keep tabs on from a compliance perspective into something digestible for the non-legal/non-compliance folks within the organization. Of the compliance people on the team that reports into me, three are lawyers by trade and two are industry people with a very deep knowledge. I’ve found that typically, but not always, people coming from a legal background have a hard time translating down to “business speak “and really figuring out what it is that the business cares about. If you manage to get yourself an interview I would stress that as one of your most attractive qualities, particularly if the role would interface with the business as opposed to just one of a giant team of compliance types . As far as getting on the radar for these type of role, I look for people that know the industry first and foremost so whatever you your industry is, participate in the forums/work groups/go to conferences that address issues that are pertinent to the industry and network there .

    • FWIW, I used to be in house with a F100 company. I applied after seeing an ad in the local legal newspaper (it was the 1990s, after all).

      I sent in a resume in early March and got a response and did a phone screening interview with HR in late April. I had an in-person interview in late May with the decisionmaker who told me in the room that I would be getting the offer and we negotiated compensation and review points in the room . . . but it took until some time in July for the actual offer letter to come, at which point the job had a flexible start date contingent on when I located office space for the (newly created) team that I would be running. I ended up starting the first week of October in temporary space for one of the local business units and then moving into “my” space in early March of the following year.

      TL;DR takeaway: things move slowly for in-house retention, especially late in the year when everyone has use or lose time to take. Send a follow up to anyone you have not heard from and be prepared to go full speed in January!

  16. No name for this one :

    I’m a regular poster, but want to go anon for this. NYE is my birthday. I’m turning 34. I have no plans. Not in a relationship, friends are all away or doing something with their SOs. This isn’t how I I’d hoped my life would be at this age. I’m trying not to get in a depression spiral. So, if you were me, how would you spend your birthday to avoid feeling super down and pick yourself up a little? Spa day is probably out (financially), but I may try to swing a massage. Would love any ideas!

    • Try to think of it as a celebration of you! Get a massage, then watch your favorite childhood movie, eat your favorite childhood candy, drink whatever your teenage self would have used fake id to buy, and order your favorite take out to eat while listening to your favorite music. You might be on your own but that just means you can make it all about you!

    • I would take myself out to lunch or an early dinner and people watch/read a magazine. I’d follow that up with a trip to my favorite boutique/coffee shop/bookstore/place I always intend to check out but never get around to. A movie in the evening might be a good option.

    • Yes, i’d get your favorite take out, a nice bottle of something, a delicious treat, your favorite book.

      The next morning, I would head to your fav brunch place and then load up your fave podcasts/music and go for a long walk somewhere enjoyable.

      And hang in there. Focus on the good parts of your life and think about how to further improve those in the coming year rather than fixating on what you would like to change.

    • Annony Mousse :

      I would spend a bit of time thinking of what would make my perfect day. And then I would plan to do as much of that as possible.

      For me, this would probably involve some combination of: visiting a couple of bookstores and buying some new books (with a budget limit). Taking myself out to lunch somewhere I really like. A phone call or Skyping with my BFF (pre-arranged time, if necessary). A walk outdoors if the weather allows. A visit to an art museum and/or my favorite craft collective. A take-out dinner at home in comfy clothes watching a favorite movie.

      Think of things you like to do. Think of all your favorite foods. Think of one or two favorite people you really want to talk to that day. Then do as much as you can. Make the day special for you. Have cake if you like it, pie or ice cream if you don’t.

      I once had to spend Christmas by myself on a different continent from pretty much everyone I knew, in the days before the internet and inexpensive long-distance calls. I planned out what I was going to do/eat a week in advance. Everyone I knew was worried about me, but I had a fine time spoiling myself silly. It is one of the Christmases I look back on most fondly.

      In short, be selfish. Do exactly what you want to do that day.

    • Take a day and do all your favourite things! Eat at your fave restaurant, do a little shopping, go for a walk with your favourite podcast or tunes, etc.

      Do something that you have wanted to do but haven’t had the time- drive somewhere, read a book, get that manicure, try that new yoga/barre/stripping pole class etc.

      For me, my birthday is the 30th and I am going to have brunch solo, walk around some of the vintage stores in a cool neighbourhood I never get to, then off to the local Korean Spa for a nice relaxing splash in the hot/cold pools.

      Happy Birthday! You are a year wiser, stronger and beautiful.

    • S in Chicago :

      Agree with everyone else. I had a vacation day to take and no one to take it with and treated it the same. For me, the day involved getting up late, going to my local gym and swimming and relaxing in the hot tub after (almost never do either), lunch of all the nachos, driving the dog to a park I’d never been to and enjoying watching him have a blast, chatting with a good friend on the long drive home and then having my favorite dinner before guilt-free zombie movie watching. This is the day to do all the things that make you happy and not think about NYE or anything else going on out there.

    • Senior Attorney :

      Are your parents around? Can you spend the evening with them? (I realize this may be a non-starter but I thought I’d mention it.)

      You’ve gotten good advice already so I’m just sending hugs and commiseration. I was in your shoes a few years ago and it’s hard!

      • This is great advice (for some people)! I spent a Valentine’s Day right after a particularly horrid break up going out to dinner with my dad at a low-key restaurant and it is my best Valentine’s Day memory.

        • Anonymous :

          One of my favourite memories is when I spent V Day with my dad a few years ago. He had plans with my mom the day after, so we went for a steak dinner together.

    • Can you swing a spa treatment at a resort/spa? You can pick an inexpensive treatment but then spend the day there and have access to the other amenities, like the steam room, sauna, pool, hot tub, exercise classes, comfy quiet rooms to relax and read. Sometimes I will pick the least expensive treatment (like a manicure) but then I am able to spend the day at the spa, using the free amenities. Sometimes I treat myself to lunch there. I love a day like this.

    • I always take the day off for my birthday and spend the day on my own. I’ll get a haircut or a massage or a mani-pedi – something pampering; then take myself out for a nice lunch; then go to a museum or a botanical garden or the beach or something, whatever seems fun and relaxing that day. I love having a day where I do just what I want when I want without considering anybody else’s opinions.

      You can always schedule a celebration with your friends when they get back!

    • Happy birthday! I would probably work about 1/2 day, take myself to a nice lunch, then shopping, then get a spa mani/pedi and either go to a nice restaurant, or go home and get in my jammies and watch some of my favorite movies with a really nice take-out dinner. Birthdays are about celebrating you!

    • AttiredAttorney :

      I love to cook/bake, so a “me” day would also involve trying out a new, long or complicated recipe, or something impossibly cheesey or chocolatey that I saw on pinterest. I would probably “splurge” and buy all the groceries for such a dish at Whole Foods.

      I would also work out, but the kind of workout that makes me feel good and may not be particularly calorie-burning, like yin or restorative yoga.

      I would probably take a bubble bath or an impossibly long shower, and do all the at home beauty treatments I never seem to have time to do, using up all the samples I’ve gotten from Sephora and Birchbox – masks, home manicure, body sugar scrub, deep condition hair, etc.

  17. Salary Negotiator :

    I just received my first job offer after graduating law school in May. During the interview the partner said the salary range for the position was between $50k-70k, based on experience. The offer was then for $50k. I have no debt and really low COL, so this number is livable, but of course more would help. Should I negotiate? and How? Relevant info: The firm is offering to pay premiums for employees enrolled in their health insurance plan, but I’m covered by DH’s plan already. There’s no other real benefits (no 401k employer match, for example).

    • Do you have any experience relevant to the position? Is your undergrad in something relevant? You can ask for more but whether you should be asking for 55/60/65/70 depends on how strong your hand is.

      • Salary Negotiator :

        I have relevant law clerk experience, but this is my first attorney job so it’s not quite the same. I’m essentially entry level. 55 is what I would like to ask for, but I don’t want to sound greedy or entitled. They could offer me 35 and I’d probably still take it- I really need this job.

        • If you were told the range is 50-70 and you have relevant experience even as a clerk, I’d ask for more.

          Reference the fact that the range for the position was indicated to be 50-70, and given that you have relevant law clerk experience, you hope they would be able to offer 60. Ask for 60 and settle for 55.

    • Get your bar and CLEs paid for.

      • Ask to go to a national CLE every other year if that is a thing in your practice area. Also, run the numbers and see if it is cheaper for you and your husband to have separate insurance, especially since your premiums are zero. Ask for the $55k. The worst they can say is no. They don’t know your financial situation.

    • You should apply for their insurance. If anything ever happened, you’d be more covered. Especially if it costs you nothing.

      • Salary Negotiator :

        “if anything ever happened”, meaning if DH lost his job or we got divorced?

        • Not Anon above, but I assume she means like if you got sick (eg cancer) and the costs of your care exceeded the lifetime max or whatever. Or if DH’s insurance wouldn’t pay for a certain procedure, the other might.

        • Also keep in mind that many companies are moving toward tacking on a convenience charge to carry a partner/spouse who is eligible for their own health insurance through their own employer. While you may be on DH’s policy right now, next year he may need to pay extra for that.

          In my own situation, the surcharge to put my husband on my employer’s insurance was going to be $150 a month. No thanks!

    • If they are offering to pay premiums, and the plans are of approx equal coverage (network/benefits etc) you should consider switching you and DH to the firms plan- assume it’s cheaper unless DH’s company also pays 100% of premiums?

      If that isn’t an option, ask for the value of the insurance. They aren’t paying it,l and it’s not a benefit to you, so try to get it was salary. I would ask for a few thousand and not the total value.

  18. I need help finding a coat. Something like this https://www.etsy.com/listing/203976722/coatred-coat-hooded-coat-womens-coats?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=wool%20coat&ref=sr_gallery_2

    Required:
    1. Wool
    2. Knee-length or longer
    3. Hood
    4. Pockets
    5. A-line/dress skirt/pleated waist
    6. Under $300 if possible

    Not Required but Nice to Have
    1. Zippered pockets
    2. Military style
    3. Turtleneck-type collar
    4. Do not want faux fur if possible (definitely do not want real fur)

    Help. I am terrible with the google.

    • This style seems like something like Modcloth would do. And they are probably having a sale :)

    • I bought this coat in charcoal and am pretty happy with it. I wish it were a little more fitted in the back, but it’s very warm and flattering. http://www1.macys.com/shop/product/anne-klein-hooded-wool-cashmere-double-breasted-maxi-coat?ID=2788957&CategoryID=269#fn=sp%3D1%26spc%3D45%26ruleId%3D78%26slotId%3D5%26kws%3DAnne%20Klein%20Coats

      • I bought the previous iteration of this coat ten years ago and still wear it to this day. I love it. I bought it again this year in black and my entire family was like, why did you buy the SAME EXACT coat again? I had to return it because the horizontal seam across the back was the only difference. Sigh.

        • Well, clearly I’m picking up what you’re laying down. But I agree that the back strip thing does not do what it was intended to do (i.e., define the waist in the back).

    • Buy a hat: http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/eliza-j-wool-blend-long-military-coat-regular-petite/4146263 / http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/eliza-j-wool-blend-long-military-coat-regular-petite/4542506 or http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/vera-wang-isabella-skirted-wool-blend-coat/4435112

      Or if you must have a hood: http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/skirted-wool/4126105

      Also, you may want to check Modcloth.

      • That Eliza J coat is sitting in my cart. But I’m not sure. BAH

        • Godzilla, do either of these have room for your tail? Because that is a consideration.

          You should order the Eliza coat. It’s gorgeous.

          I like the etsy coat too but it’s borderline costumey/little red riding hood. Maybe if it weren’t red.

          • That’s why I *need* a frock coat, for my tail! I agree that the red is too costumey, I have to look like a [email protected]$$ lady in the winter, not a cutesy lady. I have no particular desire re: color of coat except not white/cream because I will destroy it.

  19. I’m the poster who was on here yesterday talking about her husband’s depression. First, thanks for all the support. Sometimes you just need an outlet and people to listen. Second, last night he told me he’d made an appointment with his psychiatrist for this morning. Hooray! I told him thank you and that I was so glad. That still touched a nerve with him and this morning he barely spoke to me and the one time he looked in my direction, he literally glowered at me. But whatever. He made the appointment. After he’s back to himself again (hopefully in a day or two — at least enough for us to have a conversation) we can talk about strategies for next time and what is and isn’t okay (okay: needing space and alone time, needing help coping with household chores, needing someone who’ll just listen; not okay: lashing out, going “dark” without communication about what’s going on or what he needs, being angry when I don’t intuit his needs, being irritable with the kids).

    • I think you mentioned a couples counselling appointment as well? That seems like a great opportunity to “talk about strategies for next time”

    • Senior Attorney :

      I hope things improve soon! Hang in there!

    • Hang in there!! I have been in your shoes for a long time. My biggest advice is to take care of yourself as your husband gets a handle on his depression. Unfortunately, depression is terribly “contagious” (not actually but it seriously affects all around and it is easy to get pulled down), so do what you can to keep yourself well physically, mentally, emotionally, etc. Check out the blog “The Storied Mind” and Depression Fallout.

  20. Not that Anne, the other Anne :

    Today my hair is in Leia Buns. It seemed like a fitting tribute. So far the reaction has been universally appreciative and positive.

  21. Winter Blues :

    Has anyone with seasonal depression ever tried a Vitamin D lamp? Any recommendations?

  22. One of my 2017 goals will be to bring lunch to work more often. I do pretty well with leftovers, but we don’t always have leftovers. What things are on your weekly grocery list that you use for lunches? What special things do you add? (I’m even thinking La Croix, little trail mix packets from TJ’s, etc). Any other tips for sticking to this goal? I lack motivation and have lots of good options for buying lunch around my office. But I spend a fortune, and don’t want to any longer. Thanks!

    • Senior Attorney :

      I have some things in the TJ’s frozen section that I like to bring: Reduced Guilt Mac n Cheese, Chicken Tikka Masala, Wonton soup. I like to add a cup of their Greek yogurt, which comes in a variety of yummy flavors. I don’t mind eating the same thing frequently, so I will happily eat mac n cheese and yogurt several times a week if there are no leftovers.

      • The tikka masala is SO GOOD. It’s easily my favorite frozen meal. Otherwise I take chicken salad with greens, rice/bean/meat bowls, soups, standard lunch fare. Often something I’ll prepare on Sundays and take a few days during the week.

    • mmm, lunch :

      I hate packing lunch in the morning, but know that I won’t always do it the night before. I do better if I keep frozen options at my office or in the freezer for days that there aren’t leftovers or I was too lazy to pack ahead. I like a lot of the Evol frozen meals and burritos. I also like eggs at any time of the day so frozen breakfast sandwiches or hard boiled eggs are good options. There have been lots of discussions on here about weekend make ahead meals.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      This is totally boring, but I try to buy chicken breasts (either fresh or frozen) and bake up a bunch on Sundays. Then I throw one of those, some canned veggies (normally green beans), and a little thing of sauce (BBQ or sweet and sour) into a plastic container to heat up at work. I try to set up 4 of these on Sundays and then figure I’ll still buy my lunch once a week.

      If I’ve been to Ikea, I swap out the chicken for the Ikea meatballs and lingonberry sauce.

      • pugsnbourbon :

        +1. I get a couple packs of the split bone-in, skin-on breasts because they’re cheaper. I’ll roast them and then remove the skin and shred.

      • Aunt Jamesina :

        Trader Joe’s turkey meatballs aren’t quite the same as IKEA’s, but they’re a good quick meal.

        • Sydney Bristow :

          Every time that TJs comes up in the comments I wish I would haven taken proximity into account when apartment hunting! My place is super convenient to a lot of things but sadly Trader Joe’s is not one of them. I miss it!

    • What do you usually buy for lunch when you go out, and can you replicate any of that in the lunches you bring?

      Was there anything you loved getting in your lunch as a kid? For me, fruit snacks were mostly forbidden in our house but every once in a great while, my mom would buy a box and we’d get them in our lunches. It was so exciting! Now fruit snacks are my “special treat” even though it feels a little childish.

      I also like individual servings of hummus and chips from Whole Foods, pieces of fresh whole fruit (Cuties!), homemade trail mix, small pieces of nice cheese bought from the “Under $5” basket, and Ghiradelli chocolate squares.

    • Marshmallow :

      Amy’s quinoa and butternut squash bowl
      Salad with cheese or chickpeas if I don’t have leftover meat from dinner
      Dr. Prager’s black bean soup bowls
      Some combination of the following, which I keep in my desk drawer/ work fridge: green juice, yogurt, brown rice crackers, Laughing Cow cheese, individual serving packets of olives, clementines or other fruit

    • Bring a set amount of cash to the office each week and buy lunch in cash. Cash gone = must bring lunch. Leftover cash= roll to next week (or save for a treat). Make it a bit of a game.

      • AttiredAttorney :

        This is a great idea! I almost always bring my lunch, but it’s running out to grab an afternoon coffee or a snack from the vending machine that are my cash drainers. This technique would work well to curb those too.

    • I really vary in how well I do with bringing lunch, but you really have to know yourself and your tolerance for eating the same thing. For me, leftovers or prepping everything on Sunday works the best. Definitely figure out if you don’t like eating cold things for lunch, because then salads and sandwiches will never work (I fall into this category most of the year, unfortunately, and for some reason it took me a long time to figure out because I normally like salads and sandwiches—it’s just too cold in my office 90% of the time). My sister loves leftovers for lunch and she plans for this, so she makes extra for dinner and packs it up to bring for lunch for the next day or two. I usually make a soup or something on the weekend and pack it into smaller containers to bring for lunch. I keep frozen wontons and edamame (both from Costco) for times when I have nothing ready. For snacks, I like fruit, small cheeses, hummus and baby carrots, and snap peas. I bring sparkling water or tea bags for a drink.

      Also, having a good lunch bag and lunch containers really helps. I bought nice cloth napkins after seeing a coworker using them and I love them. They actually cover my lap so I don’t get anything on my clothes if I spill.

    • Anon in NYC :

      In a normal week I bring breakfast, lunch, and a snack to the office. My snack is usually fruit or nuts + dried fruit or (rarely) a granola bar. TJ’s has truffle salted marcona almonds and I love them beyond all reason. I don’t even live very close to a TJ’s and I go out of my way to buy them.

      For lunches, I have the best success with leftovers and rarely eat frozen meals (no real reason why not – I just don’t really eat them). If I know my meal plan for the week will include some days where I won’t have leftovers I try to do some easy work on Sunday to account for that. Like, roast a few sweet potatoes and a veggie (broccoli, mushrooms – whatever), and chicken breasts, and buy some pesto (a delicious topping for that combo!). A lot of it is unattended time so I don’t feel like it’s too onerous.

    • Grape/cherry tomatoes, Persian cucumbers, and baby carrots from TJ. Chobani yogurt and single serving guacamole (+chips or carrot sticks) from Costco. Sometimes I get 4-pack of pre-made salad bowls from Costco for ~$10 – not freshest tasting but convenient.

    • Anonymous :

      I went from buying lunch every day to packing my lunch everyday and this is what worked for me: mason jar salads. Every Sunday for about an hour I make 5 salads in mason jars, with ranch dressing in the bottom of the jar followed by sliced carrots, broccoli, beets, cucumber, sweet potato, bell pepper, baby kale. They stay fresh for about 6-7 days. I just shake it up before I’m going to eat it. I also pack some fruit (usually kiwi, raspberries, sometimes a banana), a larabar, a little container of farro or quinua,almonds. I pack everything on Sunday so its no work at all to just grab and go in the morning.

    • On Sundays, I roast veggies and make a pot of a grain and make a few bowls (veggies + grain + vinaigrette). Sometimes I just feel like snacking is also bring in individual hummus packs, cut up veggies, fruit, almonds, cheese (TJ has indivual Brie and other types). I think convenience is key. I know that I will not get around to prepping fresh veggie so just buy them precut at TJs. It’s still cheaper than going out.

    • Anonymous :

      Any food that can be eaten with little to no preparation are my go-to for lunches because I DESPISE packing lunches or spending ages prepping and chopping stuff up – yogurt, raw veggies, nuts, fruit.

      I also cook in big batches and freeze individual portions in small tupperware containers, so I just toss one of those plus a yogurt/apple/small pack of baby carrots into my bag and I’m good to go.

      I keep a jar of peanut butter at work too.

  23. I’ve noticed that my PMS (particularly the mood swings and acne) is more intense when I’m in a newish relationship. I know it can be related to stress, but usually when I’m stressed my PMS is actually less intense.

    Does this happen to anyone else? I’m likely going on birth control soon so I realize that may (hopefully) change things.

    • I think new relationships can cause a lot of hormone changes. Are you already intimate? Even when I was on the pill, the first month or two after I had a new partner my period would be a day late, when normally I was like clockwork. Which was slightly terrifying the first couple times until I realized it was a pattern.

    • Anonymous :

      I don’t know re: new relationship, but when I went on the pill my PMS and cramps totally disappeared. It’s life changing.

    • Do you eat differently when you’re in a newish relationship? I think having more meat and dairy would be more likely to affect your PMS as opposed to dude times.

  24. I love their frozen meals, good idea and easy – never tried the wonton soup, will add that one. and never tried their house greek yogurt, but will pick a couple up too.

  25. Sleeping Beauty :

    Does anyone have a mattress pad/foam pad/topper that they really love? I think it’s time to replace mine.

    • Anonymous :

      I like the novaform one from costco. it is pretty thick though (depends on if you like that) – i love how cushy it is on top of a verrrry firm bed.

  26. My sister broke up with her fiancé recently. It was the right thing to do and she’s said so herself, but she’s still heartbroken and grieving for the life that she wanted/thought she was going to have.

    For anyone who has been through something like this – what helped/didn’t during this early phase? We are very close, but I’ve never had this kind of horrible breakup, so I’m not totally sure what kind of support she needs.

    • She probably needs two different kinds of support – listening and distraction. Listening would be what you imagine, sitting on the couch with a fuzzy blanket and a box of kleenex and trying not to tell her what to do with her life (this is difficult for me, I’m a “fixer”) and just listening.

      Distracting is going to happy hour, going shopping, going to wine country for an overnight etc. She will not want to talk about the breakup 24/7. Sometimes she will want to think about literally anything else so don’t bring it up! Let her lead.

      Thanks for being a great and supportive sister.

      • Anonymous :

        100% agree with the mix of listening and distraction.

        If you’re local, call her up often and invite her to do things outside her house with you. In particular, things that she wasn’t able to do with the ex-fiancé but loves to do. Did she love being outside but he hated the outdoors? Take her hiking. Did she love dancing but he didn’t? Take her to salsa night. I needed to be reminded of who *I* was, in addition to getting out so that I didn’t mope and fester.

        If you’re not local, call often to chat, send her funny cat videos, etc. Watch a movie ‘together’ and text back and forth. Bonus points for A&E’s Pride and Prejudice ;)

        FYI, I stopped eating. I do not remotely have a history of eating disorders, but I just completely stopped taking care of myself, including preparing food. So it was good when people brought food.

  27. Oh man, my shop style notifications are driving me nuts. Everything I’ve bookmarked all fall is suddenly on sale. How to choose?

    Let me ask this – are wedge heels out of style or on the way out? What about 3/4 sleeves? They feel dated to me and I don’t want to buy something this year that is going to look ridiculously dated by next year.

    • Anonymous :

      I hope wedge heels aren’t on the way out! That’s about 90% of my high heels. I’ve been wearing wedges for at least 15 years and have always been able to find lots of new options every season, so I’ve assumed this is a classic that doesn’t really go in and out of style.

    • 3/4 sleeves and wedges aren’t trends – they’re style options! If you said “bell sleeves” or “shooties” I would discourage the purchase, but not either of those!

    • Wedge heels and 3/4 sleeves will never be out. They are a necessity for some of us based on our body’s needs and lifestyle.

      For example, I am tall and short waisted. I have to wear 3/4 sleeves or my proportions look off. Even when I wear long sleeves, I roll up cuffs or push up sweaters.

      And wedges are a necessity for those of us that want a heel but are on our feet a lot more during the day. They may not be fashion choices for all, but they serve a purpose. In fact, I don’t think wedge heels have ever been “in” style per se. Not trendy. A necessity.

      • Anonymous :

        For city walking, wedges last longer and keep you from falling through grates or looking crazy in avoiding grates.

    • Block heels are “in” so if you’re concerned with looking trendy then you should go for those. But wedges will never be “out” in the way that a basic black pair of almond-toed pumps will never be “out.” They’re a staple. If you need a replacement or have a hole in your wardrobe and something high quality went on sale, then pick it up.

      Re sleeves: longer bell sleeves tend to be in right now but idk how long that trend will last. Elbow-length sleeves read more current to me than 3/4, but I don’t think 3/4 sleeves are particularly dated.

  28. anonymous :

    Does anyone have the Morrison shirt from MM LaFleur? Is it worth it? Would it be too voluminous on a petite hourglass frame?

  29. A Christmas Miracle! :

    Just posting to say I’m shocked but excited to receive my order from The Limited, and I’m keeping all 3 items! NO WAY! I got the classic ankle skinnies in dark wash, curvy fit black skinnies, and a pair of opaque black tights. The jeans are only slightly too big in the waist (this might be holiday weight helping me out, but I’ll take it!), and the material is so soft and stretchy. So, if you’re a lucky size in their clothes, go snag some super cheap denim while you still can. I HATE that they’re going out of business, and I’m kicking myself for not purchasing a dress that was a good fit but not amazing last time I was in a brick-and-mortar store. I’m super picky about fit, and I’m lazy about tailoring. This generally serves to keep my clothing purchases to a minimum, but trips me up when a dress that’s 85% good can’t be purchased in the future. I own several of the collection sheaths and pencil skirts, so I’m sad I won’t be able to replace those in the future when they’re worn out. WHHHY are you going out of business? WHHHHHY???

    • Sleeping Beauty :

      Am I the only person that hates the Limited? Everything is made out of cheap polyester and when you go into the store, the woven fabrics are already pilly from hanging on the racks.

  30. Quick linguistics poll. At Christmas, my Southern MIL mentioned that when she first met me (a New Englander) she was often confused when I answered questions with “thanks, I’m all set.” But that when she visited my family in Boston, she heard “all set” all over the place and started to understand what it meant. My husband, raised in NoVA, said that it’s not a NE thing at all since he uses it. My MIL suggested that he’s picked it up from me. I do know that I’ve confused non-Americans, even non-Americans who speak excellent English, when I’ve said “all set” whether meaning “thanks, I don’t want any” or “yes, I’m ready to leave.” But what about Americans from other parts of the country? And what about Canadians? Anyone from outside NE use “all set”? Is it a regional thing? Or is it a generational thing?

    • Aunt Jamesina :

      I hear it in the Chicago area FWIW.

    • Anonymous :

      It’s said in PNW.

    • I use it the ways that you do – Philly but from the Midwest.

      • pugsnbourbon :

        Midwesterner here (southern OH) and I say this all the time. Particularly when out at restaurants and I’m ready for the check – when the waitperson asks if we want anything else, we’ll say “no, I think we’re all set.”

    • Sloan Sabbith :

      I hear it in Seattle.

    • Anonymous :

      I grew up in the Midwest (Northeast Ohio) and while I’m not sure I used this construction as much in my youth, I definitely understood it. I have family in TX and upstate NY and the only linguistic things we ever culture-clashed over are pop/soda/Coke.

    • I’m in the SE. I’ve heard and used most of my life “Thanks, but I’m good” or “No [thanks], I’m good” or even “Thanks, I’m good” (which is a little confusing if you think about it). I’m sure that “all set” gets swapped in there too. I think the MIL’s confusion may come more from your phrasing as the third option, and not the use of “all set” as a synonym for “good” or “don’t want any”

    • Anonymous :

      East coast canadian – I would say it’s a fairly common expression here

    • I’m from the Boston area and grew up with “all set”, I married a man from PNW and moved to the South, we laugh about it every time I go home … I very much associate that phrase with New England.

    • anonymous :

      I’m from Texas and I say it. But I went to college and grad school in New England, and I don’t remember when I started saying it.

  31. Anonymous :

    Long story short I have a telephone conference with a partner at a small firm that I am interested in moving to this afternoon in about two hours. I have been at the same medium firm since my clerkship about five years ago and for lots of reasons, this would be a great opportunity right now.
    I would LOVE any advice you might have on what I should and should not say. I know the specifics of the situation so I’m really looking for generic advice from those who have been there on both sides. They are in a position where they are not actively hiring but would be able to hire for the right fit, and I’m in a position where for a lot of reasons that are actually more related to my personal life, this would be the most excellent fit for me. Thanks!

  32. Post-Clerkship :

    I may be too late for today’s thread but thought it was worthwhile to ask anyway. Does anyone have experience with the post-clerkship job search? Here’s my rough situation:

    I’m clerking for a federal judge now. The clerkship was arranged through connections at my former firm. I received glowing performance feedback and billed extremely high hours during the year before my clerkship (on pace for 3000+, thanks trial) but of course did not receive any bonus because I left at the tail end of the year to clerk. I want to go back to my same firm, but I really want to leverage them to bump up the typical clerkship bonus. The Biglaw pay raise was announced just before I left my firm.

    Is it worth it to interview with some other firms and be able to leverage Old Firm with other options? Or is it better to just lay out my case for a bonus bump as a combination of my performance last year with the salary bump– i.e., I missed out on a significantly higher salary this year than I thought I would when the firm asked me to do this clerkship. Should I do all of those things?

    It’s also, I suppose, not ENTIRELY out of the question that I could find a better fit at some other firm. But I genuinely like the work and the people at my old firm, and I don’t want to waste time (my own, a recruiter’s, the other firm’s) if it’s not going to change anything.

    And one more bottom-line question: is it even realistic to think I might negotiate a bump in my clerkship bonus? Does anyone know whether firms are raising the standard bonus to reflect last year’s salary increase?

    • What firm? What city? And what year are you/will you be? Maybe it’s different across the board at my firm in NYC — ranked in the high 20s/low 30s in Vault — this would NEVER happen. Wouldn’t matter to them that you were a star performer and/or fed law clerk. They would simply say no and if you pushed it, they WOULD say — well maybe you should consider other firms — which isn’t a way of taking away the existing offer but if you go in despite that you go in in a rough position right off the bat. They very much have the attitude of — you are lucky to be here — and this has been the attitude since 08-09 onwards even though the legal market now isn’t as bad as it was then. So be careful with these kinds of demands — law simply isn’t like the rest of the business world — they don’t have the same flexibility bc they don’t “fear” losing an associate bc there’s another one where that one came from as far as partners are concerned.

      • Post-Clerkship :

        NYC, similar ranking to your firm if not slightly higher. I’ll be re-entering at the end of my third year/ beginning fourth. FWIW I received an above-market bonus in 2015, although not extremely so.

      • +1. Proceed with caution. You knew you wouldn’t get the end of year bonus when you started your clerkship and you assumed the risk that salary fortunes would change during the clerkship. Yes, you missed out on the salary increase while clerking, but this is part of what the clerkship bonus evens out. Are you still getting to keep your class year and market salary when you go back? The fancy clerkship still stays on resume if you go somewhere else. But remember that the year that you were clerking was a year that the firm wasn’t getting to bill out your 3000 hours and they were essentially holding a spot open for you.

      • Post-Clerkship :

        Thanks, both. So does “proceed with caution” mean “don’t even bother asking?” Or would it be appropriate to ask once and then let it go?

        I have heard rumors from associate friends at other firms that the bonus may be getting raised across the board anyway, which would be great and eliminate awkward negotiating anyway.

        • Do you still have friends at your old firm that you can ask what’s the deal with bonuses? Isn’t there a particular tabloid law blog that keeps track of the bonus memos and such for the big firms? This may provide you with some indication of what’s to come.
          I see more risk than reward in asking.

          • Post-Clerkship :

            I do have friends who are still there, but as none of them have recently come back from a clerkship, I don’t think they have any reason to know about the bonus. I will ask though.

    • Late to this, but if you’re still reading. FWIW two of my (male) friends mentioned to me they were going to ask the firm for a bump in their clerkship bonuses (one a bump in the bonus, the other what you are asking for – a bit of the bonus they gave up when they left to clerk at the end of the year). I thought this was crazy (I assumed these things were very lockstep, and we are paid generously anyway) but the way they both treated asking like nbd, I chalked it up to a gender thing of men not thinking twice about negotiating for a higher salary. Now I wish I had asked for a bump when I came back. At the very least I doubt you will be the first to ask.

  33. Anon for this :

    Thanks all for the advice about how to bring up that I needed more work on coping skills with my therapist. It took me two or three weeks to bring it up but I told her this morning and she was totally on board.
    We also changed my diagnosis to complex, chronic PTSD though. So that’s got me feeling some kind of way. :(

  34. Marshmallow :

    I am not familiar with your previous thread but as a fellow PTSD sufferer, I remember that exact feeling when I got my diagnosis. “Textbook PTSD,” will never forget those words. Naming and identifying what’s going on is a really great step forward, though. It’s going to get better!

    • Anon for this :

      Thanks, Marshmallow. I’d kind of known it was a thing for a few months and suspected for about a year, but having a name to it is pretty “Oh….Huh….” Still not sure how I feel about it that now it’s OFFICIAL. It doesn’t change anything, but it does, you know?

  35. Is this something I could carry to an actual fancy event, or is it just for play and wearing with jeans in a slightly ironic/humorous way? I’m not sure why I like it so much.

    http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/bp-jeweled-flap-clutch/4432670?cm_mmc=email_tran-_-122916-_-dtc_ship_confirm-_-productimg1

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