Weekend Open Thread

Miz Mooz - Panthea (Pink) - FootwearSomething on your mind? Chat about it here.

These look like the perfect running-around-town sandals for weekend shopping or whatnot. Ankle strap so you can actually run? Check. Nude-for-me color so they’re flattering? Check. Slight bit of height to the heel? Check. And there’s even a zipper in the back so you can get them on and off quickly. Lovely. They’re $99 at Zappos (available in pink, pictured, a darker brown “cognac,” black, and a fun kelly green). Miz Mooz – Panthea (Pink) – Footwear


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  1. momentsofabsurdity :

    Reposting here from the news roundup (since those comments never get read) so the original poster (dancinglonghorn?) can see it:

    Thanks so much for the commenter who recommended the heartmycloset seller on Etsy. I had a custom dress made (this one: http://www.etsy.com/listing/59110896/cindy-custom-made-pencil-dress-all-sizes in navy with a white belt) and it fits great!

    The measurements are slightly off in some places but I measured myself and I can see where she’s off because of the weirdness of my shape — so now I know better for next time I order. I got it lined for a very reasonable fee, the fabric is nice, the dress is impeccably made and generally — I adore it. I’ve already decided on the next dress I’ll order from them.

    Thanks again!

    • Thanks for reminding me how much I want the bow-fronted dress.

      • momentsofabsurdity :

        For what it’s worth – there are even more of her dresses available at her non-etsy store.

        This is the next one I’m buying:

        • Curse you. That is STUNNING, and I’m not even particularly a Duchess-copyist.

          • momentsofabsurdity :

            I am a total Duchess copyist (except for today’s Emilia Wickstead which I didn’t particularly like), so it’s perfect for me!

            Also seems like an excellent and versatile dress. It’s my next “splurge” purchase for myself after I find an apartment.

          • That may very well be my congrats-you-found-a-job! present to myself. (Once I, you know, find a job. God. July and my last paychecks are looming.)

        • D*mn you and your pretty dresses too.

          (Obviously my feeling on the Duchess have been well established.)

          • @TCFKAG: Have you been able to find anything about the Duchess’ diet (other than that silly Dukan nonsense), exercise (other than that Wills had an in-palace gym built for her) or beauty (especially that shiny hair) routines? I should be embarrassed by how much time I’ve spent looking, and I still have found nothing.

          • haha. No. But I haven’t tried, genetically I could never be her shape. Though, the shiny hair…that IS a secret I’d like to know. I bet it’s keratin treatments or some equivalent.

        • momentsofabsurdity :

          Finding this store with even more designs, btw, was a terrible life decision on my part, btw. My wishlist grew exponentially.

        • BTW, who was looking for the tie-neck shirt from Gossip Girls the other day (I can’t remember).

          This might be nice instead — though its not Alexander McQueen of course.)


          • And this is going to become mine someday. I don’t know when, but not too far in the future.


        • Wow. I must have this dress. http://heartmycloset.myshopify.com/collections/dress/products/belinda

          That is all.

    • Kontraktor :

      Thanks for the review! I desperately want a dress from there so it’s good to know it’s worth it.

    • just Karen :

      That dress is lovely – did the seller line it for you for an extra charge, or did you pay someone locally to do it?

      • momentsofabsurdity :

        The seller lined it for an additional $8 which felt fair.

        • just Karen :

          Wow – that seems so worth it, and I wouldn’t have thought to ask. That dress is now on my wishlist! Thanks!

    • I’m glad you mentioned it – I’ve bookmarked her page for when I’m finally ready to make the jump and order something!

    • Divaliscious11 :

      Someone else ordered a custom dress from etsy – a jersey from someone in Isreal – did we ever get a follow-up?

      • Legally Brunette :

        Yes, the seller is Lirola from Etsy. I can’t remember who posted the review, but she said that it was a fabulous fit and quality. Still like heartmycloset better, but Lirola’s clothes are lovely.


        • Divaliscious11 :

          Yes, I love her stuff! Have to check out heart my closet, but I see some Lirola in my future…..

    • Thanks for posting the review — I also put the shop as a favorite on etsy and having been thinking about going for it but wondered how others had fared. What fabric did you get? I noticed that some of the fabrics she uses have a bit of stretch, which would be great.

      • momentsofabsurdity :

        I got the navy fabric which definitely has a bit of stretch to it and is quite nice feeling. If you order, she sends you swatches of all her fabric for future orders!

        • Thanks. And a nice bit of marketing on her part, to entice you into the next dress purcahse.

    • I got one from her too from that recommendation, and I love it. It’s very slightly off, but I think I measured myself a bit wrong. It’s still great, just be really careful when you measure.

    • I read some of the customer feedback from the site and it looks great. One thing – I got the impression that all the dresses are made in Vietnam. I don’t have a problem with this, but realize that some corporettes may. (Certainly, the etsy shop website makes it look like a one-woman company.)

    • River Song :

      Has anyone ordered–from this shop or another–a custom dress, inspired by a photograph? This shop says they do that, and I’m tempted.

      My only prior experience with custom clothes didn’t work out so well, though I think it was my fault. I had just had a baby, my measurements were confusing to me and I measured wrong.

    • Mountain Girl :

      I am blown away by her dresses and the super affordable prices. I like that there are options provided. Many of the dresses are show with pencil skirts but I love a lines and full swingy skirts and now I am plotting my next purchases.

      My favorites in no particular order:



    • migraine Sufferer :

      Oh man. I want them all!

    • Two cents :

      Ooh, that was my recommendation! Never bought anything from her before but find her dresses so, so lovely. You’re tempting me to pull the trigger. :) So glad that it worked out!

      Any tips for measuring yourself properly?

    • You know, if you’re getting custom clothing it’s perfectly OK to get something which works with the uniqueness of your shape :-). (nobody’s weird in custom..). First, I’d just tell the person (hey! my upper arms are really large! my shoulders are really square! whatever). And then you can take a few quick pictures to illustrate your point – not flattering poses mind you, but mug-shot quality phone pictures that show your nonstandard traits clearly. You’ll get a much better fit that way.
      And if you get a couple really nice pictures from you in the dress for the event, the seamstress will much appreciate them, with or without explicit authorization to use them in her portfolio :-).

  2. Any tips for someone dealing with the extreme self-destruction of an alcoholic in the family (FIL)? I have been told to try Al-Anon but they do not have meetings I can get to in my area and their website seems sparse. Any online resources or books you can recommend? Or stories of how you made it through? It’s been about two months of crisis-type events and I’m really burning out…

    • SoCalAtty :

      Oops. Your reply went down below. It’s down there! [points down the page]

    • ChocCityB&R :

      Hugs to you for dealing with this. My (unhelpful to you) solution was to cut the person out of my life. It was a heart-wrenching and impossible decision, but their toxic behavior was starting to really weigh on my mental health. I wish I could give you better advice, but your struggle is in my thoughts.

    • There is a book called Intervention: How to Help Someone Who Doesn’t Want Help, that my family members have found enlightening. They also decided to seek counseling with someone that specialized in substance abuse issues so they could learn how to cope. Due to distance and disinterest (I took ChocCity B&R’s route instead) I didn’t attend, but those that did now feel much more at peace with the situation. Hugs to you and your family. You’ll get through this, but you need a plan. And each other.

    • I have not yet read this book myself — plan to! — but it is apparently the Al-Anon theory and practice in book form:
      “How Al-Anon Works for Families & Friends of Alcoholics” by Al-Anon Family Groups.

    • Definitely recommend seeing if you can find a substance abuse counselor near you.

      Otherwise, the biggest advice I can give is to just keep reminding yourself that addiction is a disease and it requires treatment and if the person who is addicted won’t acknowledge the problem or refuses treatment, there is nothing you can do and it’s okay to do nothing–you are not responsible for fixing the problem. I come from an extended family of alcoholics and I think the only reason everyone else has survived is that we’ve reached a point of saying “when you want help, call me.” If they seek treatment, we assist with anything we can. If not (or if they deny a problem), then any issues that arise because of their addiction are their problem.

      (I realize this seems incredibly harsh but it’s been decades, not months, and at some point you have to realize you’re not responsible and they have to WANT help to fix anything).

    • It’s hard to give advice without knowing more. I went through a really terrible few years with a family member, a few times actually because of relapses, and it was rough. The situation ended in a mental facility, though now the person seems to be doing better (knock on wood; you never really stop expecting it). Honestly, it’s just a horrible thing and it does not get better unless the person 100% gives up on all alcohol. There’s no ‘just a little is okay,’ or ‘it’s okay if it’s white wine and not something harder.’ In my situation, as sip of beer would be too much; you could just see the eyes narrow and change ever so slightly and it was trouble thereafter. The thing that helped me cope with it is understanding how it works – alcoholism literally changes your internal chemistry. Reading on the specifics of how it all works made it a little easier to at least understand what was happening.

      Also, not sure how your situation is, but mine involved a LOT of crazy behavior and verbal abuse. Just delusional craziness. At some point, this someone explained it to me as a light switch – sometimes it’s on, sometimes it’s off. That helped with not taking it personally.

      I never went to al-anon or any of that stuff because I felt it was a bit cult-y, but it does work for some people. Perhaps there are online support communities, too. Good luck. I wish you strength in coping with this. Know that whatever it is, it is not about you.

      • Moonstone :

        Really good advice here, but I just have to say: Al-Anon is about as cult-y as Weight Watchers. I’ve been to both; they work because attendees feel less isolated and because the stories reinforce positive behavior.

    • Does Co-Dependents Anonymous have meetings near you? That might work, too.

    • You have my sincere sympathy. I had an ALMOST family member (my ex fiance Alan) who I ALMOST married, but I (mabye thru divine intevention) decided that I would NOT be abel to MARRY him after he got abuseive, even tho he had a good job as an accountent and even tho my parents both wanted me to MARRY him and have a FAMILY.

      You are better then that, I was told, and I finaly learned this for myself. You need to take care of yourself and NOT worry about the source of evil (the bottle). If you can get him to leave, that is what I did. If not, you should NOT do anything to inable him.

      If you can NOT go to alanon, you should read the 12 step book b/c that focuses on you, not the drunk who is getting you exheausted. I had to throw Alan out once and for all, even tho I had feelings for him –and occasionelly still do, especialy when I see all the other jerk’s out there that just want me for sex. You should know you are worth alot more and not to short – change yourself with any man. Now I do NOT have a man, but I do NOT cry over it. I will find a decent man who will treat me well and will marry me and will buy a nice house for us and we will have a family. That is SO much better then having a drunk (or even a dry drunk) around to baby-sit. FOOEY on that.

      You are in my prayer’s. Go with God. Best of everything to you.

    • Anon for this :

      My mom was an alcoholic from about the time I was in high school until she passed away in 2009 from complications related to her alcoholism. She was a “functional” alcoholic for most of it, so I had less crisis-type events. While it was all happening my coping strategy was to push her away after my efforts to help her were completely useless. I tried to mentally and emotionally distance myself and when I had to be around her for holidays and such I would just remind myself that I had to just get through that day and I could return to my life.

      I never went to Al-Anon, but I did go to a therapist to talk about some of my anger after she passed away– the feelings that they don’t care enough about you/life/other people to change, that they’re “doing this to themself,” etc. It really helped me.

      I’m so sorry you’re dealing with this. It can feel so lonely and embarrassing… but trust that there are millions of people out there that have dealt with this, and you can get through it!

    • CPA to be :

      My dad has been an alcoholic/rx pill addict since I was a small child. Finally, 10 years after moving out of my parents house, am I okay on an everyday basis. This is such a horrible, awful, crushing problem, and I am SO sorry you have to deal with it. Eight months of therapy helped me way more than al-anon. I talked about my dad’s alcoholism and thought about it so much for so many years that al-anon just made me focus on it more than it let me move on from it. Some sort of “anonymous” meeting might help you if you are just beginning to deal with this, though. Something that my therapist recommended that actually helped me a lot was to become friends with a long-time sober alcoholic (part of the “culture” is to not call themselves former alcoholics, but sober alcoholics). They can give you perspective like nobody’s business. For some reason, when I was wracked with guilt about letting my father face the consequences to his actions, hearing from my sober alcoholic friend that I was making the right decision helped immensely.

      My dad is still alive, but we (awkwardly) talk maybe once or twice a year. He went to rehab my senior year of college, but started drinking again afterwards. I only feel guilty about not having a relationship every once in a while. Mostly when some idiot who has no clue what I went through says “but he’s your faaather!”

      No. He is not my father. My father = all the adult male mentors who have helped me through life, have been there for me, etc.

      I am so sorry you have to deal with this. It is truly awful.

      / end soapbox.

      • There are online AlAnon groups such as key to harmony (a yahoo group). I strongly recommend both AlAnon and finding a therapist for yourself. This tough is too tough to address all by yourself.

        Coming to understand that alcoholism is a disease over which I have absolutely not the slightest bit of control was very freeing for me. I could give up trying to fix things, manage feelings, etc.

        Hugs to you! It can get better, whether the alcoholic finds sobriety or not.

    • Further reading: http://www.amazon.com/Why-Does-He-That-Controlling/dp/0425191656/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&coliid=I2NQNHOBTFL0F&colid=23RD95WYEIXA

      I my experience, dealing with alcoholic self-destructive behavior is nearly as bad as being an alcoholic yourself, just as exhausting. And alas, I’ve never seen anything work besides leaving. Cutting them off, whatever corresponds to your situation.
      Courage! You’ll feel better once it’s over, promise.

    • SMART recovery has a lot of online resources, including an online support group for family members. http://www.smartrecovery.org/resources/family.htm

      Al-Anon does have some online support groups. http://www.ola-is.org/

      And, take care of yourself — don’t feel you have to burn yourself out to fix everything. Get support, set boundaries, and keep them. Good luck to you.

  3. Cute shoes! I somehow just recently realized that 1″ to 1 1/2″ heels are comfy-er than flats. It was a true revelation, and now I am restocking my casual shoe wardrobe. (Husband is so sad.) These are very likely candidates.

    • I like these a lot, and I am looking for something like this. I think I’ll walk through DSW this weekend, and if I cannot find anything, I’ll be ordering these.

      • PSA: Madewell has a bunch of cute options in that heel height range. My favorites are the whistlestop sandal, but there’s also the station sandal and a couple of other ones.

    • Oh absolutely! With my bad knees, I cannot wear completely flat shoes unless they are seriously padded. My one problem with ankle straps (but more with heels) is that when my foot goes down into the shoe, the ankle strap isn’t long enough. And my ankles aren’t big!

    • My orthopedist told me to wear moderate heels to help a problem with my ankle. Apparently flats, even those with good cushioning and support, are tougher on ankles and knees that moderate heels. He “prescribed” heels under 2 inches.

    • Not a lawyer :

      I think I read somewhere that podiatrists recommend a low heel over totally flat shoes.

    • I don’t know that podiatrists recommend high heels, though–I think they have the more clunky heels in mind–they’re certainly more comfortable for my insane feet.

  4. A while back I asked for feedback about hiring a housekeeper every two weeks, and I just want to say thanks for the validation, because I finally did it! It was so wonderful to come home to a spotless house (especially a few days before 6 family members arrive for vacation). Absolutely wonderful, and worth every penny.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      Ours came this week, too. Best money ever spent on our marriage, even if she did give me a heart attack by putting our All Clad (ebay!) in the dishwasher and running it. New rule: please don’t run the dishwasher.

      • Last week was our cleaning week, but our dishwasher had been broken for a couple of days (it didn’t complete the cycle, so it was full of dirty stuff that had been partially cleaned that we needed to deal with). The housekeepers did not notice/ignored the note I left about the broken dishwasher and the fact that the bottom of the dishwasher was full of gross water, and they unloaded the dishwasher into our cabinets, resulting in lots more gross dishes. New rule: please do not deal with dishes at all.

        • sickness.

        • If your cleaning ladies demographic is similar to the cleaning ladies demographic in my city, you need to leave notes in Spanish. Otherwise they may just be picking out the word or two they know and guessing at the meaning of the note – “oh, dishwasher? She must want us to empty it. ”

          And I’m a native Spanish speaker, not being snarky at all.

          • Mousekeeper :

            I insisted on hiring a cleaning lady when my first child was 4 and I had just paid off my student loan (back when you could pay a law school loan off in 10 years). I was working full time, cleaning my house on the weekends, and trying to find time to spend with my son, and running myself ragged. After I wrote the last loan check, I said, “Enough!” and insisted on a cleaning lady every two weeks (couldn’t afford every week). We have had the same C/L since my 17 year-old daughter was a baby. She is Polish and because she does 2 houses a day, she just does the basics, which is fine with me. I don’t mind running the vacuum or doing a quick bathroom swipe on the off week. The only downside is that on “Teresa days”, I run myself ragged picking up in the morning before I leave for work so that she can vacuum the entire floor and wipe down entire counters. If you find one you like, treat her well – a day’s pay on Christmas and her birthday, and something on Easter or other significant holiday.

  5. SoCalAtty :

    Ugh. Big giant hugs to you. I lost my mom to this just over 2 years ago…she was 51. She started when she was 20…so I got to deal starting basically when I was born until just recently. The biggest thing is resisting the urge to try to “save” them. You will totally destroy yourself in the process. All you can do is point out what they are doing, offer to help them get into a program, but bottom line is they have to want it for themselves. I also just went through this with my Aunt’s husband, and we had one of my husband’s Uncles do the same thing about 5 years ago, leaving 3 teenagers behind with their mom.

    I am not a big therapy person, but in this case I would reccomend it. That way you can go in and say “how the bleep do I react to this?” – and they can help keep you objective.

    If you want to email or need a pen pal just to vent, email me at meyerlemony at gmail. Big hugs!

    • I’m so sorry you lost your mom. Thank you so much for sharing your experience and your email.

    • Whoops read this after I posted but I’m so sorry about your mom and that you had to deal with everything that entails.

      • Anon for this :

        We have a lot in common!

        • SoCalAtty :

          Anon for this – we sure do! What a roller coaster. No idea how I made it through law school and my 2nd year associate year with all that going on. I have a feeling it is one of the reasons I lost my job in a “layoff” – I missed a day because my mom drank herself into a coma and I get the feeling they thought, internally, “oh this is going to be an issue let’s get rid of her.” 1 day…the week after xmas. I was “layed off” 2 weeks later, with 2 weeks remaining of my vacation time that they paid me. Clearly, I was taking too much time off while billing 200+ a month.

  6. Any thoughts on when it makes sense to spend the time & money to go get re-fitted for a bra post-baby? I stopped br**st feeding 6 weeks ago and I am pretty sure my pre-baby bra’s aren’t right anymore. But don’t want to have to re-invest all over again if things are still in changing mode.

    • Diana Barry :

      Ugh, no idea. I have bras in every size from 34A to 38G, which represents skinny wedding day to immediately post-partum. I shudder to think how much $$$ I have spent on bras!

      Maybe wait another month to see if anything changes and then go?

    • new york associate :

      I would give it a little more time. I felt like it took my body a full three months to go back to normal post-breast-feeding.

    • If you’re back at your pre-baby size on the whole (or at a size that you think will be your new normal, on the whole), then I would say go ahead. But if you’re not, I would wait until you get to that point, because your rib measurement and cup size may still change a little bit more. I’d say I was back to normal about 2-3 months after I stopped breastfeeding, and while my rib measurement was the same as pre-baby, my cup size was one size smaller.

    • migraine Sufferer :

      I bought 3 sets of bras, in stages, since I stopped nursing about 1 year ago. If you don’t want to do this, I would suggest just buying one in beige (or some neutral) and then getting some sports bras that will accommodate the continuing changes. I just bought my last set this week and am pretty sure this is where I’ll stay (unless I lose weight…)

      Total amount spend on bras post nursing: well over $500

    • Anonymous :

      I just went to Target and bought some Gillian & O’Malley (Target brand) bras to get me through the in-between periods (no fitting, obvs). They were about $15 each and surprisingly well-made. My Target also took bra returns in case you don’t want to try on in store.

      • Blonde Lawyer :

        I wear my Target bra more than my fancy Nordstroms ones. I found a 34DD in store that must have been a return b/c normally they only sell their dd’s online. I’ve been hooked since.

    • You don’t need a lot of bras, they dry quickly – two will do for a while, one in a pinch (use the hair dryer in a humid-morning emergency). But bras that don’t fit are horrible, feel very bad, make all your clothes look bad. Try to get at least one decent one, and adjust later as necessary :-).

  7. karenpadi :

    Bay Area Women,

    Any ideas for an East Bay gathering? I am thinking June (but not Father’s Day weekend) in Berkeley, Lake Merritt, or somewhere BART-friendly in the East Bay.

    Suggestions please!

    • SF Bay Associate :

      I know almost nothing about the East Bay, but am excited for the meetup. So bummed I had to miss the last one.

    • ChocCityB&R :

      Karenpadi, I’m so lazy that I know I need to get on the listserv and you’ve told me how to several times and I have yet to do it. Many apologies for my insubordination.

      Is this meetup going to be a brunch? If so, I’d suggest Cafe M in Berkeley. If it’s for drinks, I like Jupiter for a casual beer and college students vibe, and Hotel Shattuck for a fancier vibe.

      Lake Merritt – Rudy’s Cant Fail Cafe (more casual/punk rock vibe) Terrace Room or Lake Chalet for fancier vibe. Drinks, the Layover, Era, the Den, Dogwood, Van Kleef’s, 19th St. bar, Luka’s, Trappiste, Beer Revolution.

      • karenpadi :

        Thanks! We’ve been doing early afternoons on Saturday. I don’t know how people feel about an evening meet-up for drinks but I’m open to it.

        The list is my hotmail account. Just email me at karenpadi at hotmail if you want email messages about the meet-ups.

        • Relatviely new to corporette and would be very excited to meet up! I’ll be e-mailing you…

    • Kontraktor :

      I’m so excited! Yay I like all these places (well… from what little I know of them). I have zero preference as to time, but perhaps earlyish afternoonish would be better for people with families.

    • Can we do somewhere a bit further south than Berkeley – is Fremont too far? I know Berkeley has great restaurants but it’s a little far for me.
      Either lunch or afternoon tea/drinks would work for me!

  8. ChocCityB&R :

    Yay Open Weekend Thread! I am so out of it that I thought yesterday was Friday and kept refreshing and waiting for this thread. I have a randomish shopping question that only you ladies can answer:

    My husband is for some reason obsessed with jumpsuits. He thinks they are super sexy (whether it’s the tight leather Rihanna video version, or long flowy beach vacation style). His birthday is coming up and I want to buy one to wear, but I have no idea (a) if I will look ridiculous because jumpsuits are now horribly out of fashion and (b) where to find one. Ladies, please help!

    • Anthropologie has had a couple of really cute ones lately (not the tight leather Rihanna video versions).

    • ChocCityB&R :

      Oh, and to make things more specific, I’m not looking for a formal jumpsuit for his birthday dinner, but something cute/semi casual I can wear during the day while we do fun stuff. Also I’m tall and busty, so I need something that won’t be flood wear and not backless/sleeveless so I can wear a bra. My budget is under $100 and styling options are greatly appreciated!

      • New poster :

        I recently bought a cute black pants one at Forever 21. It has a long, tassel-y beige tie belt. Super cute and well under $100 (I think I paid about $35). You might be able to find it online.

        • New poster :

          PS, it’s really cute that your husband is obsessed with jumpsuits. He’s so fashion forward! Generally I think of jumpsuits as being in the category of things that women like but men are like, I don’t get it.

          • ChocCityB&R :

            New poster, I think it’s my husband’s superhero fetish coming through. He always had a thing for catwoman ;-)

      • This one is cute – maybe to “formal”, though?


        • ChocCityB&R :

          Ohhh this might be perfect and the price is right. Thank you Selia!

    • So, if I had to wear a jumpsuit (like if a gun were literally pointed at my head, because they would make me look so short and round) I would get one like this that could almost be a maxi-dress:


      I’d then wear it with a shrunken blazer or jean jacket or leather jacket or something funky over it and with bright chunky jewelry. Then I’d walk to the police station to report the man still holding the gun to my head. But, since you’re tall — this might actually work okay on you.

      • ChocCityB&R :

        TCFKAG, how did I know you’d come through with something gorgeous? You really need to start charging for your services. Alas, my boobs won’t let me wear this, (unless there is some magical thing an H cup can do to wear halter tops?

        • Okay, this one won’t work for you for a variety of reasons, but I have to share it…because its kind of fun. And its the closest I’ve ever come to looking at a jumpsuit and thinking…hmmm…I might wear that (actually this one and the one above both did that to me.)


    • new york associate :

      If you happen to be close to an 18W, I actually think this one is cute: http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/sejour-knit-jumpsuit-plus/3246870?origin=keywordsearch&fashionColor=&resultback=0

    • How about this one?


    • This one is cute and casual and it’s only $30: http://www1.macys.com/shop/product/agb-jumpsuit-sleeveless-belted-wide-leg?ID=661602&PartnerID=LINKSHARE&cm_mmc=LINKSHARE-_-4-_-31-_-MP431&LinkshareID=J84DHJLQkR4-7ireHp40yffAEjxFgGLYjw

      • New poster :

        This is basically identical to the one from F21.

        • ChocCityB&R :

          I like them both! I’ll try Forever 21 first though, cheaper and on my way home from work.

  9. How do Boden dresses run? I’m a petite between a 2 and 4 (usually a 2 on top and 4 on bottom) and considering this dress in the blue: http://www.bodenusa.com/en-US/Womens-Petite-collection/WH343/Womens-Regatta-Dress.html

    I’m guessing a 2 will work because the skirt is sort of a-line, but I’ve never ordered from here before.

    • I am all over this thread, but Boden dresses run small, especially though the hips and bust.

      • Ditto! I love their dresses online, but haven’t bought yet due to sizing concerns and my healthy thighs.

    • I find them to be big all over, but especially big in the chest and waist. And most I’ve bought end up being more empire waisted than I expect from their photos.

    • Agreed on their clothes running big in the waist and the chest. I think their stuff is adorable, but I’ve given up on trying to buy it. I’m pear-shaped, and I think maybe Boden clothes are just better suited to apple-shapes.

    • Rose in Bloom :

      I am the exact same size as you. I buy 4s from Boden if the dress is at all fitted in the hip area and a 2 only if it is fairly loose or flowing. I would be on the edge with this one since you are right that it does look somewhat a-line, but I would click to see the garment measurements for the 2P and the 4P and compare to your hip and waist measurements and decide from there.

    • I’d go 4 — I find their tops are sometimes boxy, but the bottoms are generally narrow through the hips. The stuff at Boden that works tends to work really well, but I think their fits are less consistent than other brands.

    • I also find Boden dresses run kind of narrow through the hips (I’m a pear who is also 2 on top and 4 on the bottom, as it happens). This dress actually looks less a-line on the model than it does in the other pictures. I would be inclined to go with a 4 because of that, but it could go either way.

    • You can click through the tabs and get the exact measurements by size for each garment. I am a 12 to 14 usually, and Boden’s 12’s fit me. I am pear/8 shaped, FWIW. So, in my opinion they run BIG…but it might be different at the other end of the size range, way down in petite-land–that’s not where I am!

    • I find Boden unpredictable, so I only buy things fron them with a healthy number of reviews. Regular Boden customers know that their sizing can be wonky, so people tend to be extra-helpful about fit in the reviews. This weekend I wore a totally amazing maxidress that (thanks to other reviewers) I ordered in a “tall” size and it fit perfectly. I never need tall szes, as I’m only 5’5″ – so that should give you some idea how oddly Boden can fit.

    • So I think Boden used to have “UK sizes” (read not vanity sized), but they recently switched to “US sizes” – you will see a note to that effect on their website.
      This may be the reason for the varying experiences on their sizing. Their current sizing I would guess to be more generous, but I’ve bought dresses prior to the switch, and have had to size up then.

  10. These are hideous.

    • no!!! i love them!!! I guess this is payback for when I dissed Kat’s shoe pick last weekend…

  11. Robbing peter to pay paul? :

    Wondering if I could get some thoughts on this… like most recent grads I have a ton of debt. Some of it is credit card debt, some student loans, and one private bar loan.

    Over the past couple weeks, due to a cash flow issue, I added roughly $400 to my lowest-interest CC (I also always charge gas because I get a rebate). Today, I was paid and would be able to pay off all the charges from the last 2 weeks.

    However, I could instead put the $400 towards (a) my bar laon, which although it has a lower interest rate actually earns more interst than either of my CC’s every month, due to the higher balance; or (b) my higher interest rate CC (which still earns less interest every month than my bar loan).

    So how do I decide which is the best option? What factors should I consider aside from the total amount of interest I will pay? emotionally I like the idea of paying off the recent charges just because I am making a point to try to really live on what I earn but practically I would like to cut down my interest rates. I am also trying to improve my credit score.

    • I would put any extra money to the highest interest rate first. Then when that is paid off, switch over that payment to the next highest interest rate. I hear what you are saying about overall interest, but I still think this is the way to go (others can correct me if I’m wrong). And have a celebration every time you pay off a loan.

      • Some people pay off the highest interest rate loan first, some people start with the smallest balance loans (while making minimum balances on all debt), and then snowball the payments to the larger balances as the smaller balances are paid off. Bonus if the highest interest rate is also the smallest balance. Starting with the smallest balance gives you the psychological victories early on. Either way is a valid choice.

        Bottom line – do what is going to give you peace of mind. Personally I would always try to pay off my credit cards every month, since those represent ongoing expenses and will only get bigger. You aren’t going to stop using your credit cards, are you? Loans are the kind of debt that only get smaller as you make payments – maybe you end up paying more than you might otherwise (because of the additional interest), but it’s not going to grow like credit card debt can.

      • I believe this is the advice that I read in one of Suze Orman’s books. Makes sense to me.

        Financially savvy ‘rettes, feel free to correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe that as long as your credit card is not maxed out, carrying a balance shouldn’t have a negative impact on your credit score. My understanding is that you should aim to keep a low ratio of credit being used / available credit.

        I don’t know anything about the impact of loan debt on credit scores (possibly should have looked into this before taking out loans for grad school, but too late now!), but would be interested to hear from someone who does!

    • RussiaRepeat :

      My rule is always highest rate paid off first (except on my mortgage because paid-down principal comes off the back end). I think it’s not how much interest is accruing every month because if you have $400 off the principal on the higher interest credit card, you’re saving more in future interest costs than if you applied it to the bar loan.

    • We always always pay highest interest rate first. We look at it as rate of return on investment. :-)

    • The total balance you’re carrying in each of the types of debt you describe is irrelevant to your analysis. Either way, you are paying off only $400 of whatever the total is. Thus, your $400 is best spent paying off whichever debt carries the highest interest rate, regardless of the principal balance.

    • If your balance on the credit card you pay gas on isn’t very high, then I would pay that off ASAP. It’s good to pay off the credit card you use for regular expenses paid off every month so you can take advantage of the grace period.

      After that, pay all extra cash to your highest interest rate debt and minimums on the rest. As far as your credit score, keep your utilization low on revolving credit and always pay on time.

    • Anonforthis :

      Mint-dot-com has a great little goal-setting feature that will give you a payment plan for your credit card debt by ranking them according to interest rate. It recommends paying the minimums on all your cards and then putting any extra toward the highest rate card until it’s completely paid off. Then do the same thing with the remaining cards until they’re gone. I’ve been working on paying my credit cards down since I graduated two years ago, and I have to say the Mint plan helped. I finally got my credit score to the point where I could snag a 0% interest balance transfer deal and expect to kill the rest of my credit card debt off in the next two years!

  12. I need to vent for a sec.

    I just cannot even with my secretary today, you guise.



  13. Palo Alto? :

    I’ve been invited to be a guest in a wedding in Palo Alto and will probably make a mini-vacation out of it. I’ve been to San Francisco and Napa/Sonoma before so I am looking to try something a little different. Is it worth it to spend a few days in Palo Alto? Should I try something else – like Carmel/Monterey/Santa Cruz?

    Also – what is the etiquette on what I pay for? I will be attending with a guy friend (not boy friend). I know I pay for my plane ticket. How about car rental and hotel costs?

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      Palo Alto is fun but you don’t need to spend more than a day there, I think. Besides seeing Stanford and maybe going walking up in the foothills (which are beautiful and I definitely recommend doing), there isn’t a *ton* to do unless you’ve got friends in the area. I’d take the extra days and go to Santa Cruz – beach, boardwalk amusement park, lots of fun things.

      If the guy is just a friend, not a date, I would offer to split all of it. He may or may not take you up on it, but I’d treat it the same as going with a girl friend.

      • momentsofabsurdity :

        Oh! Second the suggestion for Half Moon Bay, below. If you can afford it, the Ritz Carlton in Half Moon Bay is literally my favorite hotel… ever. It is right on the water and completely beautiful. Definitely try and check it out for dinner (the restaurant inside is quite good).

        • SF Bay Associate :

          I totally agree that the only thing worth seeing in Palo Alto is the Cantor center’s Rodin sculptures, and only if you’re into that. (Thanks to karenpadi for showing it to me!). I agree with everyone else that you should go to the coast.

          I love the Ritz in HMB. I go there sometimes just to walk the grounds and enjoy afternoon tea with a book in the lounge. It also has a spectacular golf course if you or guy friend are into that. There’s really not much else in HMB though.

          Monterey and Carmel is 2 hours from PA. Note that highway 17 is gorgeous but is often a total clusterf, so take 101-S to 156-W to get to Monterey instead. Or take Highway 1 from HMB and allow for plenty of time (stop at Swanton Berry Farm along the way). Yes to the aquarium, yes to Point Lobos, yes to Passionfish or its sibling Turtle Bay, I’d vote Monterey Fish Market over The Fish House though the Market has no ambiance or views. Drive 17 Mile Drive, which is a private road ($10 fee) which takes you past spectacular estates and stunning views, including the famous Lone Cypress of Pebble Beach. Walk around adorable Carmel-by-the-Sea (use 17 Mile’s Carmel gate). Santa Cruz is also fun and there are some good wineries in the mountains, like Bonny Doon.

        • SoCalAtty :

          I LOVE Half Moon Bay!! Not far from “downtown” in Pescadero is a place called Costanoa. No phone/tv but super pretty property with amazing hiking/mtn biking.

          A word of warning – their beds are HARD! I solved this by asking for a couple extra comforters and putting them under the bottom sheet.

    • karenpadi :

      Palo Alto isn’t all that interesting unless you are a tech-geek (then it’s fascinating and wonderful). I would check out Carmel/Monterey/Santa Cruz.

      In Palo Alto, my favorite (free!) spot is the Cantor Arts Center on the Stanford Campus. It has a huge collection of Rodin sculptures.

      In Monterey, definitely go to the aquarium and Point Lobos State Park. There’s a great fish restaurant (cooked, not sushi) just off the highway called The Fish House. They don’t take reservations and fill up fast.

      In Carmel, check out Pebble Beach. It’s gorgeous.

    • I second palo alto not having enough to keep you busy (unless you just want to be lazy and hang out at a park or something- lots of pretty parks) but instead of santa cruz, I’d do carmel. it’s so beautiful there- just gorgeous. Another idea is half moon bay or pescadero, both very easy (less than an hour) drives from palo alto, and both on the coast. Have fun!

    • What would you do regarding costs if you were traveling with a female friend? Do that.

    • Also in Monterey is another fish restaurant called Passionfish (actually just outside Monterrey) which was also awesome.

      The drives along the coast between Monterey and Carmel are beautiful and that’s worth it alone.

      • Second Passionfish. I think it is in Pacific Grove. Also, be aware that it will take about 90 minutes to 2 hours to drive to Monterey/Carmel. As someone mentioned, Half Moon Bay or Santa Cruz would be much closer.

    • The Stanford campus is beautiful and they have the nicest museum/collection of Rodin outside of Paris, thanks to Mr. and Mrs. Cantor.

    • i sixth/seventh, etc. all the don’t bother w/ PA unless you have some real reason to check it out. if you’ve been to the bay area before, i’d branch out to santa cruz/monterey/HMB as others have suggested, but if you haven’t, i’d do SF/napa/sonoma, myself.

    • Santa Cruz! (I’m biased because I’m a local, but hey….) We’re also only about an hour from Palo Alto.

      Food and drinks:
      (a) Poet and Patriot Pub (nice Irish bar, very friendly and low-key)
      (b) 515 (cocktails and food)
      (c) Penny Ice Creamery
      (d) Marini’s (delicious candy)
      (e) tons of taquerias
      (f) Lots of good little brewpubs—I recommend Santa Cruz Mountain Brewery all the time, and Seabright Brewery for $7.50 special pitchers on Thursdays.

      (a) Go to Natural Bridges or Wilder Ranch. They’re on the north end of Santa Cruz; both are beautiful. Wilder has tons of hiking trails, and the beach at Natural Bridges isn’t so bad.
      (b) For the beach, go to Seabright Beach; stay away from the boardwalk. And, in fact, Ocean St. in general if you can manage it.
      (c) The boardwalk is good if you want to do boardwalk-type things. If you don’t like boardwalk-ish things or little kids, stay far, far away.
      (d) There’s a tourist train that runs between SC and Felton—I’ve not gone, but it looks pretty fun, actually.

      There’s also, of course, tons of hiking/biking in the area.

  14. Hi, my name is: ANON :

    Does anyone have a recommendation for a book about how to deal with an SO who is unemployed and possibly depressed?

    Back story– last year, I finished law school and began working at a big law firm. My husband had hated his job for a number of years, so now that I have a salary that doubles what he made, I told him he should quit his job and take some time off to figure out what he’d like to do instead.
    More than six months have passed since he quit his job, and he has, to my knowledge, not made a serious attempt to look for work or update his skills or anything. Most of his time is spent going to the gym or playing computer games while I am at work. I am growing increasingly pissed off about this, and I don’t have the kind of personality that lets me express my concerns in a non-sarcastic/bitchy manner. I love him very much and want to approach this in a way that doesn’t make him feel anxious and depressed or emasculated, because he is prone to anxiety and depression. He is not lazy, he is just very passive and prone to inertia, so I feel like if I could just somehow get him started looking for work, he would get into it and find a job.

    We aren’t wanting for money because we are used to living on half of what I make now, but I am getting increasingly freaked out about student loan debt and savings for a house and a family, and I am also getting worried that the longer he waits, the more difficult it will be for him to find work even though he has very in-demand skills from a prestigious college and a decent work-history before this 6 month sabbatical. I am so stressed about our financial future and I am worried about him personally. I told him he should start seeing a therapist again, but he has not set up an appointment to do so. I really need some outside help with figuring out how to deal with this because what I have said to him so far or the way in which I have said it is obviously unhelpful and likely counter-productive. Please help.

    • Can you set up an appointment to see a therapist together? That would accomplish two things: 1) Getting him to a therapist and 2) Perhaps allowing you to express your feelings/ learn to express your feelings in a way that isn’t b*tchy or sarcastic.

      I really feel for you. My H just quit his job because it was completely awful and the hours were harmful to our relationship. He is in the throes of starting his own business and it’s been really tough for me not to just take over. And, when I converse with him about it, I don’t come off as nice and supportive as I should. I can envision us being in your exact situation if his venture doesn’t work out or doesn’t result in enough of a paycheck to be continued.

      You’ve been more than supportive for the last 6 months, so now maybe it’s time for being proactive. Hugs to you.

    • I can relate to your situation, my husband is in the process of withdrawing from grad school and figuring out what he wants to do instead, and it’s hard to know how to help in this process without coming across as pushy and annoying. In my experience, what doesn’t work is 1) asking him if he did X or Y today, or when he’ll do it, and 2) suggesting things that I think would be helpful (take an interests inventory! volunteer here!). What has worked a lot better is telling him what I’m worried about (money, his happiness) and then letting him figure out solutions to these problems. I’d just try talking to your SO about things that relate to you (you’re stressed out about your long term financial future, you’re worried that the length of his employment gap will start damaging his work history). It sounds like a lame therapy tactic, but it really does work to keep the focus on what you’re experiencing and not on him and what he’s doing wrong, it makes the conversation much less defensive.

    • I second setting up an appointment for therapy for both of you. If he’s depressed I know it seems ridiculous but he is probably unable to make an appointment for himself.

      Also, any chance you can write him a letter and ask him to read it while you’re at work one day? I, too, am not always at my best when I am really upset about something and am much better able to express myself in writing.

    • Anonymous :

      I might suggest that you start with a therapist. (said gently, not sarcastically)

      It sounds like you are stressed and you have identified the fact that your personality isn’t such that you know how to approach this with your husband without being bitchy/sarcastic. Both of these issues could be helped by a therapist. This might also help segue into your husband going back to therapy as well.

      If you can’t do that, I would suggest writing out what your concerns are. Be specific, what are your goals that you feel are being unmet, what are your expectations of your husband (and what are the sources of those expectations — fairness? concern for his wellbeing? anger?). After you have done that, then try talking to him. Person-first language can help with the bitchy/sarcastic tendancy (“I am feeling stressed.” “When I see X behavior from you, I feel Y.” Rather than “You are . . . ” “You make me feel . . .”)

      Also try to discuss the issue as a team exercise. Is it possible that as you have become more stressed you aren’t spending as much time as a couple? That you are working more for fear of being the sole bread winner? If so, that might be part of a plan — as he starts making efforts to get back into the working world, you both can start planning more couple time to make sure you are connecting.

      Good luck!

    • My husband and I both graduated law school in 2011– me with a job and him without. He looked for something for about 6 months and went through periods of trying to find something and being too down on himself to try. Although sometimes I’d get annoyed at him, I tried to deal with the annoyance on my own by venting to my Dad or sister about it, or by running it out at the gym. My husband doesn’t do good with tough love, so I knew that being sarcastic/pushy in any way would hurt rather than help. I suspect yours may be the same if he suffers with depression/anxiety. I just tried to be as supportive and positive as possible, taking any and every opportunity to build up his self esteem, and eventually it worked out.

    • My husband and I went through something a bit similar a few years back. He moved cities (which is how we started dating), and was practicing law at the time. He’d been out of law school for a few years and HATED being an attorney. He was unemployed for about four months, looking for something he might hate less, then gave up and started doing legal contract work (which was even worse), then joined the firm where I was a legal assistant (which was by far the worst work environment!). I wanted very badly to help, but just didn’t know what to do or say. When he was unemployed, he was supposed to be looking for his “dream job” but instead spent all of his time playing video games and hanging out. We bought every career changing book you could name, and he at least thumbed through most of them to no avail. Luckily, I decided to go to law school out of state shortly thereafter. The prospect of taking another bar exam was too much, so he looked for a job as a teacher — something he’d always kind of wanted to do, but that people kept saying an attorney was too overqualified to do. He loves his new career.

      I know my story isn’t terribly helpful in that it took a major external event to give my husband the push that he needed, and you guys are obviously settled where you are now. One thing I thought was interesting, though, was that he always knew deep down what he wanted to try next — it just took something big to allow him to say: “hey, I can’t practice law at least for a little bit, since I don’t have the bar in this new state, so I HAVE to try something new!” Once he could say that, he no longer felt like he was “wasting” his law degree by becoming an elementary and secondary school teacher (how I feel about people who think being a schoolteacher is “less” than being an attorney is a totally separate post). He claimed during the months of unemployment that he had no idea what he wanted to do — but teaching was the only thing he kept coming back to, and when push came to shove, the thing he did. Maybe it’s important to find that one thing in the back of your husband’s mind and encourage him to pursue it. You guys also have the luxury of not needing a second salary immediately — so your husband could do unpaid or part time work in an industry he’s curious about, or even think of pursuing a new degree. Maybe if it’s presented in these terms — not that it has to be a full-time permanent job right now, but more that he needs to find something to explore within the next couple of weeks — he will be more motivated, since the pressure will be a little less intense.

      Above all: talk about it. Sit down and tell him you haven’t wanted to be confrontational, but that you’re scared and worried. Cuz sooner or later, it will all come out. Better for it to come out in a conversation that you’ve initiated and orchestrated, and that you begin with the intention staying non-sarcastic and judgmental (and believe me, I sympathize with your frustration and fears!).

      Good luck!

    • I’ll second previous suggestions of counseling and dealing with annoyance through another trusted person. (Say nice things about your husband before venting about him to your family though. If your family only hears complaints, they may get a negative impression of your husband and marriage.)

      I am in a similar situation, except my husband has a horrible, low-paying, part-time job. One thing that seems to have really helped us is that we have talked about what my husband will be doing while at home. He cooks, cleans, takes care of the pets, meets repairmen etc, maintains the cars. He has also been immensely helpful on some large projects, including buying our first house.

      I think giving him responsibility for other things has really helped my husband feel like he is valued/ an equal partner/ accomplishing things. That has made him less prone to anxiety and depression and “getting stuck.” I think it’s also given him a kind of “permission” to be unemployed, which has taken off some of the pressure (which in his case was counter-productive) but also really led him to want to go back to work in his industry. And, when I come home to a clean house and a husband who’s cooking dinner, I really don’t feel the need to badger him about a job search :)

      End result – husband is actually moving forward with the job search and has three solid leads this week! Also, marriage is in-tact.

      • By the way, if your husband is currently depressed, and not just prone to depression/ anxiety, then I recommend seeing a counselor. I’ve suffered from depression myself, and I realize that you can’t just give depressed people something to do and expect them to do it, let alone to feel better about it. I was just sharing my personal experience in my relationship. My husband is also prone to depression and anxiety as well, and he was seeing a therapist and on medication for anxiety before we discussed how he’d spend his time while unemployed.

    • anon reply :

      Regarding “HI my name is anon” it’s too late for you but FYI to others from painful personal experience: If a spouse is going to quit to look for a job, be a Stay-at-home-dad or go back to school, setting ground-rules ahead of time is important. If you just say – ok, you can quit to chase your dream job – there is no game plan. And make it a shared plan – in writing is good.

      Say “Ok, we’re agreed that you are going to quit your job. We expect that this will be a temporary thing of 3/6/9/12 months to enable you to look for a new job/attend grad school/take care of baby and will get a new job lined up by X date. While this should enable Spouse to relax and decompress, the idea is to return to work at a job s/he loves by X date. Job hunting will start on Y date, career counselor will be employed, school will be complete by Z.” Otherwise you run the risk that what happened to anon will happen to you(it may still happen -who knows). A wife could even have to pay spousal maintenance permenently later if stay-at-home spouse decides to leave and wants to continue to live “at the standard of living to which s/he has become accustomed.” It has happened and could happen to you.

    • I can chime in on this thread, only from a slightly older person’s (47) perspective. My husband got layed off three years ago from a job he had for 15 years that he always said he loved and thought he was going to retire from (not a lawyer). I am a lawyer, and at the same time he got layed off, I got a job that paid extremely well and was more than enough for our family of four to live off of. My husband decided he was going to take the long vacation he never had and used his severence and his unemployment to justify this while he made a slow effort to find a new job. I think he was unmotivated, and his job search emails were full of typos, and none of the jobs available or that he applied to seemed good enough for him. I finally persuaded him to take a commission sales job thinking the flexibility would be good for our family with me working full time and two kids. He worked at the commission sales job for two years and never made any money, but wouldn’t look for other work, and claimed he was still learning the business after two years. I became extremely resentful of this situation and all of my friends and family thought I was crazy for allowing this to continue, but I had and have no control over him, and still don’t to this day. My last hope is that a friend of mine also happens to be a life coach. She is aware of the situation and I have persuaded him to have a free session with her and after that, if he wants, I will pay for four more sessions. She thinks she can turn him around. This is my last hope. I think that a life coach will be better for him than a therapist (no offense to the therapists out there). I don’t think he would see a therapist, as it implies that there is something wrong. I think a life coach will be better because itsounds more positive and is forward-looking, which is what I think he needs. I have posted before about my resentment over this situation, and pretty much got beat up over it, although I notice lately others are allowed to resent their husbands without getting beat up, so I hope this is now considered o.k. Anyway, to the original poster, you may want to check out a life coach, and I will update the hive as to whether this last-ditch effort helps my husband.

    • Hi, my name is: _______ :

      I really appreciate the advice given. I showed my husband this thread and talked a bit with him about it. I feel optimistic that things will get better, and I already feel better just by knowing that he now understands how I feel.

      • Yeah, much as I’m not usually very therapy-oriented :-), I think it could be a good thing here..
        Let me suggest another angle to it though: we had a talk here recently about someone who had to move back in with her parents, and they were driving each other crazy. Lots of good talks about whether some of the problem came from not participating enough in the household, ie doing housework. Is your husband playing on the computer -and- doing the dishes? I’ve had a decent time with my partner alternating periods of (voluntary or not) unemployment, because whoever is not working does most of the housework. Not that bringing home the bacon means you get to throw your dirty socks on the floor or anything :-), but someone being supported not working needs to pull their weight in the house to make it fair. So if that’s not happening, you really should put your foot down somehow, it’s not OK.
        PS: if he adamently refuses to come see a joint therapist with you, or just doesn’t show up, then let me gently suggest that you go alone..

    • Anonymous :

      I would suggest couples counseling. My husband adjusted badly to a move across the country, which left him working at home full time. I love to move and enjoy the thrill of a new city. He on the other hand fell apart. Working at home was boring, he didn’t want to go out and meet people, he started putting on weight and was angry about being ‘less fit’. As his depression worsened, I had more trouble getting him out of the house to do things. The couples counseling was not about his “depression”, but by talking about what we want and what we have and where we are going, he just started taking more initiative and taking better care of himself. I never said it, but somehow the counselor was able to get him to take better care of himself.

  15. these are cute, they look perfect for an outdoor event when you want to look a little hipster chic

  16. would you say anything (TTC related)? :

    So I just had to inform my boss that I need to be out for a couple days next week. I knew the timing is bad b/c many ppl are already out. When he told me this I said I know, and then basically explained that I’m losing my pregnancy and need surgery (its a couple of weeks before I would have told had things gone differently). Obviously I didn’t have to provide details, but generally we have a good relationship and since the timing really isn’t great for the group I was okay sharing. He’s not the touchy feely type, so I didn’t expect verbose condolences, but I also didn’t expect a rather irritated reiteration of how inconvenient it is but, well, you gotta do what you need to do I guess. I resisted the urge to mention how inconvenient it is for me to have a fetus without a heartbeat in my womb and apologize that my baby didn’t have the courtesy to check the leave calendar before deciding to stop developing.

    But now that I’m out of the moment, I’m wondering if I should say something. Like I said I didn’t expect him to really say anything, I also did not expect the level of insensitivity that I did receive. By contrast, when my grandfather passed last summer, he, same boss, was the one who insisted I let him give me advanced sick/personal leave so I could take a week and a half off without having to use my vacation (my grandfather lived in another country so it had to be a long trip if I went). I just really feel differently about my boss now and about working here.

    • I don’t have any advice to you but I just wanted to say how sorry I am for your loss. Hugs, thoughts, prayers, good vibes, all going your way.

    • So sorry for your loss and for this added emotional burden. I can only imagine how painful that conversation must have been. I would focus on myself right now, and would not say anything, since saying something would just make me more sad/frustrated/angry. In a few weeks or a month, when you have recovered from your surgery, I would have a private conversation and mention how difficult a time it was for you, and how you would have really appreciated more support. PS: generally, I would not say anything at all-that’s why owners/managers get paid the big bucks-to deal with such inconvenience, so I would go do what I had to do and not really think twice about whether it was difficult for him. But that’s just me. I tend to feel that if well compensated people feel the need to vent about their problems, they can, but that doesn’t mean I have to give a sh!t about their feelings. Hugs.

    • Anon in ATX :

      no advice to give, except maybe he’s having a bad day too? I’m so sorry you have to go through this. *hugs*

      • Anon in ATX :

        To add to my comment above, it sounds like this was a one-time thing that is sort of out of character for him, since he has been supportive in the past. If so, I would probably just try to get past it without saying anything. *more hugs*

    • 1. so sorry you are going through this. I’m torn- I get the desire for personal satisfaction from telling him he behaved wrong, but i don’t know if that will help you or help you feel better about him. Chances are slim you will confront him and he will say “How could I have been so insensitive! how awful for you, I feel terrible) My other thought- did you explain it with the same words you explained here? Cuz I could see him think you were telling him you were getting an abortion and maybe he felt really unconfortable you were telling him? Or in general, maybe he just felt really uncomfortable hearing about something going on in your womb? No excuses for him but I can picture some great guys I know being told that and feeling uncomfotable and panic-y and not fully realize what they are being told. For instance, I don’t think my boyfriend has any idea what happend during a miscarriage. I don’t think he knows that women often have them even, he has just never been told/spoke to someone dealing with it. to be honest he might not even realize (since weve never tried) that it can be an emotional thing for women, and he is a very sensitive, caring, guy. He would know if for instance the person announced that they are pregnant, and then said they lost the pregnancy, but if someone just told them they were losing it before it was announced, he might not realize the emotional implications of that.

      My end advice is to say again how sorry I am to hear that you are going through that, and ask yourself what you want to gain by saying something to him.

      • Agreed. Given his previous sensitivity over your grandfather, I would wonder (1) did he hear you correctly or (2) did he understand what you were telling him. My senior partner has always been a bit hard of hearing and I have learned over the years that if he does not hear me, he often just has very little reaction and continues the conversation since he gets embarassed to ask me to repeat myself. Or he may have heard, but did not really quite understand that you were losing your baby. Losing a pregnancy may not have quite hit home with him.

    • No advice except to say that sometimes people, especially men, when faced with an emotional situation they don’t understand kind of shut down. So grandfather dying — they get it — but losing a pregnancy, they freak out and go with putting their head inside their shell.

      Just ignore it, take a deep breath, and take care of yourself over the next week. Your firm/company won’t go out of business and everything will still be there when you get back.

      • ChocCityB&R :

        This. I so feel for your situation, and honestly I would not know how to properly react if you told me about it. When it comes to showing sensitivity for these kinds of things, I’m all thumbs. Since he is the type of person who has shown he has a heart in the past, I’d surmise that he just didn’t know how to respond to your news and let verbal poo come out instead of the appropriate supportive and sensitive comment. Once, when faced with a friend whose mother had just died, I blurted out “oh, my cousin’s roommate’s mom died this week too.” I was mortified, and high tailed it out of there before I jammed my foot even further down my throat. Later I rectified the situation as best I could, but in the moment, I was a total ass and didn’t mean to be. This is a fragile time for you, but I still think you should try to give boss the benefit of the doubt pending further evidence of evilness.

      • This to infinity. A few years ago, my grandfather who had alzeheimers was having some health-related issues. I spoke to my male boss about the fact that I needed some time off to assist my mother in dealing with the situation. We had always had a fantastic relationship and he responded in a rather insensitive way. It pissed me off BIG TIME but I later found out that he simply didn’t know how to respond and was caught off guard.

        I am very sorry for your loss.

      • Yeah. He could be having a bad day, it could be truly terribly inconvenient, or he could be flipped out about how to deal with this. Hopefully he’ll behave better when you get back, it doesn’t sound like he’s generally inhuman. Try not to think about it, taking care of yourself is much more important. So sorry you have to go through this :-(…

    • First off, I’m so sorry for your loss and for how hurt you must feel. To feel awful about something and then have it compounded with someone else’s insensitive comment is really painful.

      A couple things ran through my mind when I read this though. One, is it possible he didn’t understand exactly what you were saying? The way you explained it above, I could see someone (like, an older man who doesn’t know much about “lady stuff”) thinking you meant you were voluntarily terminating, and being cranky that you didn’t schedule it for a better time. (Note, in NO WAY is this comment meant to express or start anything political, moral, or otherwise hot button!!!) Could he not know what really happened?

      Second, could it be that he’s just in a cranky mood and reacted inappropriately and later today or next week will apologize or say something more sensitive to you? Not that this is an excuse or makes it OK, but I’ve had it happen to me before where I’m nice about the, like, first 2 people asking for deadline extensions, but when the 3rd person asks, I get short and snappy, even though that 3rd person’s is the most legitimate.

      If you feel you need to say something, I might send an email saying something to the effect of “Dear Boss, Thank you again for approving my personal days on short notice. I appreciate your understanding and flexibility during this difficult time.” Something that makes clear the seriousness and sadness of what you’re going through without being too emotional.

      Once again, I am so sorry for your loss.

    • How horrible. I’d probably only say something if I thought he misunderstood your situation. Otherwise, he’s just a jerk. I hope you have a better support network outside of work. Hugs to you.

    • I’m so sorry. That sucks on so many levels.

    • I was relatively new to a law firm when I had to take four days leave because my terminally ill father, who had been living with me, had passed away. The firm gives three days bereavement leave, but I also needed the extra day to clean out his house, which was not local. (Note, I had been with the firm for about four months, but had not taken any vacation even to take a rest from taking a new state bar exam.)

      I did not expect anyone to really do or say anything since I was relatively new to the firm. I made sure I e-mailed all the partners I was working with about the status of my projects very early in the morning on the first day that I was out, and so, I figured that I should be able to have the time off. One partner wrote to another partner disparging things about me- like how I had dropped the ball on a project and was disappointed that I took 12 hours to respond to an e-mail. Needless to say, I found out.

      I just cannot let it go (now about 6 months later). I think the guy is a complete jerk, and from all accounts, my opinion of him is not inaccurate. It has tainted the way that I feel about the firm as a whole. However, I do not really think that there is anything that could be said or done. I do not understand why people cannot sometimes act like humans- with emotion and compassion…

      All this is to say, I think that your feelings are valid… or least they are valid to me. I am very sorry for your loss.

    • I’m sorry for your loss. As for your boss, he is either a normal person who misunderstood your condition and therefore responded inappropriately, or a person with some personality disorder that he’s not good at keeping in check: sometime he responds appropriately to mournful situations (your grandfather’s passing) and sometimes he doesn’t (miscarriage requiring surgery). If you’ve worked with him for awhile, I would think that you could tell which one he is. If you think he’s the former, then perhaps it’s worth bringing up to clear the air and change your attitude towards the place. If you think he’s the latter, there’s probably less use in bringing it up. You’ll just have to add that as a con to your list of pros and cons if you’re seriously thinking about moving on to a new job.

    • So sorry to hear this. No advice, but regardless of how bad of a day he is having, your “news” should have hit him enough to show a little kindness.

      • Based on the way you phrased his reply, if he’s not normally an as*, I kind of do think he may have misunderstood and thought you were voluntarily ending a pregnancy.
        Otherwise, he’s an insensitive arse.

        I agree with several others in that:
        If you think it’s the latter, I probably wouldn’t say anything because I don’t know how much good it would do. But if in hindsight, you think it could be the former, I might say something to make it really clear. I don’t think a ‘thank you for your support in this difficult time’ statement is going to clarify anything. Since you’ve already broached the subject, I would find a time to say something like “Thanks again for your understanding about the time I have to miss, I wish things had worked out differently. Of course, we were waiting until X to announce the pregnancy, so I know the complications from this miscarriage are out of the blue” or something like that.

        I’m not sure ‘losing a pregnancy’ is as clear to some men as it is to us, so actually saying miscarriage might clarify the issue for him, although I know it’s got to be very hard for you.

        • Agree that “losing a pregnancy” is probably not clear to a man. (I have not heard this expression either.) It sucks that you even have to explain with such detail, but that’s Biglaw. So sorry for your loss, OP.

    • Diana Barry :

      So sorry for your loss.

      Also, your boss is a DOOSH.


    • what a jerk.

    • Hugs & prayers.

      I had similar experiences with colleagues when my daughter was seriously ill and in hospital. She was in intensive care and they were angry I had not given a clear date of return while the child was in hospital. I took emergency leave, and said I’d be in touch when I had some idea of when I could be back.
      I was called and asked to take over an assignment if sorts.
      I was at the end of my tether and was horribly upset.

      I still don’t know how to come to grips with it.

      Maybe he was stressed. If it was an out of character unusual thing to happen, I might let it go if everything else is going well and you’re happy with how you’re treated.

      Lastly, I suggest waiting a week or two before responding. You’ve been through a really hard time, and don’t need to add TK that in any way.

    • I’m so sorry for your loss and for the way you were treated. I have no advice to share except that I think he is an absolute jerk.

  17. You guys, the ad on the side of my screen right now is for Brooks Brothers and has a ~10yo girl wearing what appears to be a madras dress with a madras blazer over it. I really dislike this look, especially for kids, and it’s bringing back bad memories of pretentious kids I went to college with (sorry to those of you who like madras). As an anti-prepster, THIS is what makes it hard for me to shop at BB. I hear what y’all are saying about the quality, but the ads… oh, the ads.

    • so anonymous :

      That’s funny. I do not like the ultra-preppy look, but for some reason it doesn’t bother me on little kids, just adults.

    • WestCoast Lawyer :

      Funny, if I didn’t think BB was terribly overpriced for kids clothing (especially given how rough they are on their clothes and how quickly they outgrow them) I’d shop there all the time. I’m so tired of all the kids stores that think the only options for toddler boys clothes are skater punk/camo/licensed Disney characters!

      • Word.

      • Anonymous :

        Ditto. I’m waiting for the Nordie’s sale so I can pick up some MiniBoden for boys there.

      • Right there with you. I’d much rather my son wear a polo shirt than some ugly licensed screenprint t-shirt. And don’t get me started on the stuff in Justice . . . .

        • PharmaGirl :

          My stomach turns every time I walk by the Justice in our local mall.

    • SpaceMountain :

      But you should see the clothes my pre-teen daughter wants to wear. It’s all short-shorts, skin-tight, and/or completely revealing in the pre-teen section these days. I wish she’d let me dress her in madras.

      • Of course, when I was a pre-teen and a young teenager, all I wanted to do is wear all-black baggy clothes and skater sneakers and the like. It annoyed my mother almost as much. All she wanted in the world was to get me into a pastel. lol.

      • Divaliscious11 :

        Does your pre-teen have a job? Where is she getting money to buy these short shorts, skin tight or completely revealing clothes? There are lots of cute, non revealing teen clothes. If I make the money (or dad), I get final say on how its spent…..

        • SpaceMountain :

          Yes — key on “wants to wear.” I won’t buy her that stuff.

          • I’m with you SpaceMountain. I won’t buy my tween stepdaughter that stuff either but her mom does. Which means I am the “B” who makes her change before school sometimes…

    • So what y’all are saying is that I won’t be so judge-y of kids’ clothes once I have a kid of my own I’m struggling to dress? :)

      I just wish BB didn’t do all their ads so very “stodgy prep-school American” so I could relate to them and want to go into the store. I hear their non-iron shirts are a miracle to behold.

  18. Just picked up this bm dress which I really, really like – but am concerned about finding the undergarments to go with such a low back! I’m a 38DD so something is necessary… thoughts? (In Cda alas so no Macys/Bloomies, but style suggestions appreciated).

    • No advise, but that dress is lovely!

    • karenpadi :

      You could get a 3-in-1 bra and wear the halter attachment and the extra wrap-around low back straps.

      Kind of like this one (and the model is even wearing it this way!):

    • A quick Google search tells me that braallure dot com is “Canada’s online lingerie store” – not sure if this is true, but I would recommend some kind of online retailer because you will find so many more options than in-person shopping. Since bras are the kind of thing that you have to try on, you can always order multiple sizes and then return what doesn’t fit.

    • Littlest Attorney :

      Realize you don’t have Macy’s but I recently bought this bra for a similar sort of dress and it works well. I wear it with the straps set “wide” and the low back attachment. Hopefully you can find something similar or a retailer that sells this in Canada!


    • Forget the convertables. Long line bras are the way to go for low backs or strapless. I like ones that reach below the natural waist. I’m a 30DD, so not quite as generous up top, but still need serious anti-gravity help.

      • I agree with this. If it comes in your size, a Felina Long Line Bra (bustier, really) would be the way to go. And that’s a pretty dress!

    • Equity's Darling :

      Go to a local speciality store. Holts doesn’t carry my size in my city (seriously, the biggest is like a 34DD, so that’s not happening). And shopping online is a risky move that I tried for a while, and eventually realized it wasn’t working.

      I finally went to a bra only store in my city, and lo and behold they not only had my size, but measured me by having me try on dozens and seeing how they fit, as in, they wouldn’t let me leave the store with a bra that I hadn’t tried on and been confirmed for fit by one of their ladies- it seems kind of odd in retrospect, but they fit SOO well, I am a converted shopper. (If you’re in Calgary, it’s SHE Apparel that I like, FYI, though I also hear good things about Cat’s Pyjamas)

      As an aside, I’m a 36DDD, and I got a Freya 3-in-1, and it’s so amazing. Expensive, but worth it. I’ve also been very happy with the Empreinte ones that I’ve purchased, though they are t-shirt bras.

  19. I will be networking while unemployed over the next few months and am planning to buy some business cards. What information should I include? Do I need to put my full address or is city sufficient? Should I list where I am barred, pending and where I have sat for the bar but. Have no results? Email and phone number obviously, but what else? My LinkedIn profile link?

    Somewhat related, I have to decide whether to go inactive in my current state before I will know whether I have been waived into DC or have passed VA. I feel like I should stay active in at least one jurisdiction, but since the money is coming out of my unemployment pot I am hesitant. Thoughts?

    • Totes McGotes :

      I wouldn’t order *real* business cards yet considering that your bar status is so up in the air. You can buy sheets of pop-out cards that you can print on using your printer at home, but it would be unpleasant to have 250 or more cards that are going to have outdated information very shortly. I would put where you are admitted and that VA is pending (I wouldn’t put anything about DC if you didn’t actually sit for its exam).

      • Thanks! I will get the pop out ones for an easy way to exchange basic contact information with people I meet. Since I won’t even be sitting for VA until July, as you pointed out (and I didn’t think about), they easily become outdated.

    • I agree with Totes McGotes re: the biz cards. I got interim cards and most of them went to waste.

      Secondly, re: the admission issues: It seems you’re asking whether any of us would pay dues in the state you’re currently licensed in, given your unemployment and pending bar/waiver results? If that’s the case, I’d ask whether you are planning looking for employment in the state where you’re currently licensed. Would you be willing to take a job there? Would you be willing to do legal work there while looking for jobs in other jurisdictions where your results are pending?

      If the answer to these two questions is no, I don’t know that I personally would pay for another year of dues in the first jurisdiction. Others may disagree and have excellent reasons for doing so.

      Finally: hope you hear good news regarding VA/DC soon!

      • ELS -I should have been more specific! I currently live in PA, however, I am moving to VA on June 14th. I have no plans to seek employment in PA. I am sitting for the VA bar in July. I would like to do doc review for a bit until I he something more permanent, but so far have seen many opportunities that only require DC bar. It seems as though my PA status is not useful for anything once I move. I just get inexplicably uneasy at not being active anywhere, but at this point I think saving money is the more practical way to go.

        • My understanding is that you can’t waive into DC unless you are currently active in another jurisdiction, correct? So I would wait until you are in DC and then drop PA

          • This is my understanding, too.

            If you used your prior MBE score in PA to waive into DC, it’s probably best to keep the PA license. However, I think you could call the DC bar to A) ask if that is necessary or B) when you could expect your request to be processed (I think the current wait is around 9 mo?)

            In any case: very good thoughts to you for your search and your bar study.

    • On the other hand… I just got 250 free Vistaprint cards and, including shipping and a fee to have no vistaprint ad on the back, the total was ~$10. You can just throw extras away in a few months.

      • This. honestly, I think the pop out ones look a little cheap…and through vista print you can get pretty nice ones for very low cost. Since your bar status is in flux, and I’m saying this as a non- lawyer so take with a grain of salt, maybe leave off the specific state details and just make it clear that you are barred since that’s not going to change. Especially if you’re looking in DC, I think ppl here are used to having out of state applicants and will assume you’re figuring out how to waive into DC. Not having state specifics wool allow the cards to last longer.

  20. A friend asked me to help her find a suit featured on this site that had a “cool double fold in the hem of the jacket.” I can’t find it. Anyone remember what this might be?

    • Could she mean the Anne Klein Pleated Skirt Suit? (I’ll post the link in a separate post to avoid moderation.)

      • http://corporette.com/2010/12/01/suit-of-the-week-anne-klein-pleated-skirt-suit/

    • Seattleite :

      This is all I’ve got: http://corporette.com/2012/04/18/suit-of-the-week-donna-karan-3/


    • Seattleite :

      Or maybe this one:


      Gah. No time for tinyurl, sorry.

  21. Kontraktor :

    I’m so excited. I have 2 interviews coming up in the next weeks with jobs that could actually provide me real growth and opportunity. I have a second round (~5 candidates) early next week for a job I feel might be a bit of a stretch (but I made it past the many-candidate first round!), but I am so excited for and would kill to have. Competing for a final round interview that will be 2 candidates. The other interview is a final round for something different, but I would still be very interested to do it and think it would give me marketable skills for the future.

    Going to Macy’s this weekend and hoping I can find a suit I love that lives online. And maybe an extra one or two. This might prove to be difficult since I can’t remember the last suit I successfully bought off the rack, but fingers crossed.

    I am hoping for good outcomes. I feel like I need a bone so much, although I’m trying desperately not to gnaw too much on these mini-bones of opportunity that have been given so far, lest I fall into huge despair if the bones get taken away.

    • Well…you know we’ll be rooting for you. And I hope they’re close by!! :-)

      • Kontraktor :

        Oh yes… both are in the city on the subway line! Makes them even better. ;-)

    • Good luck! We’ll all be pulling for you. And agreed on the perils of gnawing mini-bones. I had a second-round interview last week and an only-round interview on Monday; it’s so, so hard not to get too attached to the idea of working either of them.

    • fingers crossed!!

    • Good luck with the shopping, and it all sounds very very exciting :-)!

  22. collegiette :

    In my last-minute quest for an internship (i.e. working for free for six weeks before fall semester – anywhere really) a friend mentioned that his uncle would be willing to help out. Uncle had seen a profile picture and complimented my appearance, then asked him about my work ambitions. Background – he’s huge in HR, formerly high up in *big* government agency, now in a swanky HR firm. I was initially creeped that he mentioned my appearance and *then* offered the help. I’ve sent him my resume and he’s agreed to call next week. In this situation, Uncle is a great contact to have. The Question: Do I take the kind help and just tread lightly? I’m trusting my gut to be careful here.

    • My first instinct was, “That is super creepy!” but on further reflection – unless you say otherwise – it sounds innocent enough.

      I think you need to consider:

      1. what specifically was his comment about your appearance? There’s a big difference between “She’s a really pretty young lady” and anything that goes into detail about body parts, for example.

      2. what does he mean by “help out”? Is he offering to pass your name along to his colleagues/friends, or is he offering to take you on as an intern at his company? And if it’s the latter, what kind of contact would you have with him?

      3. did your friend mention you to him, or did he come across your information on his own? If the latter, what were the circumstances? If he was looking at his niece’s contacts on LinkedIn looking for potential interns or new hires, that’s one thing … if he was stalking his niece’s friends on Facebook looking for Spring Break pics, that’s a whole other ball of wax.

      • and by “niece,” I meant “nephew” – sometimes I read too quickly for my own good!

    • Anonymous :

      Take the kind help and tread lightly.

    • I agree — accept, but tread lightly. It may have been completely innocent — if your friend showed a picture of you to his uncle and the uncle said “what a lovely young lady” or “wow, she’s quite pretty,” that might be a perfectly harmless remark that people make all the time when a family member shows them a picture of a friend. It might have been more automatic than anything else. I know that my parents are very much like that — if I show them a picture of a friend, there’s a 95% chance the first thing they will say is: “oh, she is so pretty! How did you become friends?” It’s just their way of complimenting my friend to be polite to me when they have nothing else to go on.

      That said, if the picture was, say, of you in a bathing suit or, as someone said above, the uncle mentioned a specific body part other than your eyes or smile, that might be very creepy indeed.

      • collegiette :

        My friend told me that his uncle had seen my twitter profile and “kept saying how you were gorgeous” and in another conversation about it again, “told me you were beautiful” and noticed the capitol was in the background. Thus prompting the conversation between them that I was looking for summer work. He then offered his help and we swapped contact information through the friend. About the hierarchy here – it’s unknown at this point. I’m assuming he would be willing to hire me at the firm. I was sure to ask for “any leads” instead of work specifically at his firm. My friend said an internship is “guaranteed.” It’s possible that I’m overthinking it, but a simple compliment isn’t so… gushy? Still weird to me.

    • I don’t know. I’m on the fence here. I think you’re saying that your friend didn’t show the uncle your profile, but that the uncle stumbled across you and then made a point, on two occasions, to say something to his nephew about your appearance. If so, 1) Uncle is a well-connected creeper or 2) Friend is flirting with you by telling you that (friend agrees with uncle). Also, I don’t know anything more about your friend/friendship, so I’m making a leap with that conclusion.

      I would trust your gut and tread ever so lightly. If it’s #3 as Coalea stated, he’s likely into you for social reasons. Alarms are going off in my head for you.

      • collegiette :

        @eek, that’s correct. And 1 and 2 are both possibilities, but the first is more likely. I’ll follow up next week.

    • Take the help, but be a sensible girl. No meeting alone, unless you’re in a public place. Coffe in a restaurant, not interview in a closed office. Just walk out immediately if there’s anything the slightest bit off in person, like reiterated remarks about your appearance (if he’s a creep, he’s not going to help you unless you put out).

  23. CleveAnon :

    Just a vent….I work with a wonderful, kind, warm, competent woman who is nonetheless a loud person. She speaks loudly. She sighs loudly. She eats loudly. She plays the radio in her space loudly. If there is gum in her mouth, she is popping it. If there is a pen handy, she is clicking or tapping it. And I feel rotten because I like and respect her so much, but the constant column of noise rising from her desk is so irritating!

    • Ruthy Sue :

      I can completely relate! There are only a couple of us in the office today, me and Loud Lady (LL). LL is senior and very knowledgeable, but she’s got to be losing her hearing. In a sea of cubicles, you can clearly hear LL’s phone conversation with her mother at least 8 cubes away. I’m so distracted by her noise I can’t stay focused! Hang in there!

      • Her mother is probably the one losing her hearing. Not that it’s an excuse…

        • Ruthy Sue :

          For anyone else I would that and give her a pass, but she does it with all phone calls. Her voice is just extremely loud all. the. time.

    • I Think Your Colleague Is My Next-Door Office Mate :

      wwwDOTsimplynoiseDOTcom is my friend.

      • Anonymous :

        THANK YOU THANK YOU. Now I can ignore the people who chat all day long at the cul-de-sac at the end of my hall.

      • Wow! I just went to check that site out of curiosity and couldn’t believe how irritating I found it. Even worse than the Fran Drescher clone who sits 3 cubes away (got to listen to her on the phone this morning talking to her father’s doctor about his upcoming colonoscopy and the problems with his “vertebras.”) Glad that you found something that works for you, though!

      • My friend too! And we have the same next-door office mate. How odd.

      • Oh, thank you!! Soooo good!
        And more discreet than ear plugs :-).

    • layered bob :

      yep, I also love Ambience on my iPhone. If you can wear earbuds at work, it’s beautiful. I wear one earbud so I can still pay attention to what’s going on around me, but it’s enough white noise to minimize my irritation at noises around me.

  24. Defining Decade As Gift? :

    Is a copy of Defining Decade an appropriate gift for:

    1. 21 year old male. Creepily brilliant (perfect SAT math score). Should be a junior in college. Refused to apply to college. Until last month living with his mother. Until January, not working. Now working a “not real” job (e.g., customer service retail no diploma required, minimum wage, grandma owns company).

    2. 23 year old male. Also brilliant. Graduated from Top 20 university with degree in Business and Statistics last June (June 2011). Moved back home to live with mom. Looking for “real” job.

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      Definitely appropriate for them read but depends on your relationship to them and how passive aggressive you will come across in giving it. I have a friend who would benefit greatly from its advice (26 and still sporadically taking classes for a bachelors/working occasionally) but I feel like it would be rude to give it so I have stuck to singing its praises at all available opportunities.

      • On the surface, it sounds that #1 has some sort of autism-spectrum disorder. I’d tread carefully.

        • Divaliscious11 :

          What makes you say this? Other than very bright, nothing else screams or evens suggests ASD. Sounds like lazy, unmotivated and not required to be responsible for himself.

          • @Lurker and Divaliscious11: welcome to the debate between his mom, his dad and me. We never know and we oscillate between the two. It is a mystery.

          • Divaliscious11 :

            ASDs can be diagnosed, laziness etc… is cultivated or permitted…..

            As a mom of a kid with autism we should be careful not to confuse social impairment with triflingness. It’s insulting to people with autism…..

    • re: #1, why are you sending a gift to my nephew? :) (re, yesterday’s thread)

      • Actually, I was thinking about my gift recipient when I read about your nephew yesterday. But I know his aunts, and I know they would never be on this blog.

        • Just know he won’t send you a thank-you note. :)

          • Curiously, neither do either of these two (stepson and (very) younger brother). Hmm.

          • PharmaGirl :

            None of my 4 nieces and nephews have EVER sent me a thank you note. They range in age from 6 to 18.

          • My nephews don’t send thank you notes but I always get a call or text from them as soon as they get something from me. In fact, when I sent a surprise silly gift to the 14 year old, they both texted me pictures of it. We mostly communicate via text with the occasional Google chat thrown in. They’re 14 and almost 16.

          • @NOLA, I’d be so happy to get a call or text. I’m not hung up on a physical note.

          • Yeah I know I’m lucky. My nephews think I’m fun so they keep in touch really well. Who knows where they got that idea! Even funnier is the fact that my brother is completely puzzled by the fact that his kids want to hang out with me. The two of us get along fine, but we’re so different.

    • On the fence as to whether it is “appropriate,” but I think it’s probably likely to stoke shame and/or resentment either way. I’m sure #1 has heard all about his decision not to go to college yet (if he’s anything like my cousin who could almost exactly fit that description…), and #2 probably already feels shame about living at home and not yet having a “real” job. And even if the book gave him a kick in the pants, there aren’t enough “real” jobs in this economy yet for recent graduates to all have them, even from top schools, so it may just add to the sense of humiliation without making it easier for him to get a job. I graduated from a top 20 college in 2010 and many of my friends are still working service jobs or internships. I don’t think any of them would particularly enjoy being reminded that their current employment situation may well affect them for the rest of their lives, as true as it might be.

  25. Ok, yay weekend. Going anon on this one.

    I am not normally an anxious person. A few years ago I developed a very unusual food allergy to a certain fruit. If I eat it, myface swells up, I get itchy and red all over, throat has not closed, thank g-d, but that’s always the fear because doctors say that allergic reactions tend to get worse with each incident. Usually taking antihistamines helps, so I almost always keep some on hand. For the most part, it hasn’t been a huge problem.

    Last year, I ate some “raw” nuts and had a similar reaction as with the fruit. It was very unexpected because as with the fruit, this is something I used to eat frequently. Not “raw” but roasted, cooked, ground, whatever. Since then, in the past year, I keep freaking out that I am going to develop more weird allergies. I think especially the whole nut thing is just making me really panicked because I know nut allergies can be deadly. This has basically resulted in me panicking on a frequent basis that something is happening, even if it isn’t – I have imagined allergic reactions to everything from shrimp to red peppers to sunflower seeds. I am cutting foods I love out left and right based on these perceived potential “reactions.” Recently, I had a major episode at a show where I felt like I couldn’t breathe when the lights went out and I thought what if there was almond flour in my fruit tart that I just had and my throat closes up and I die. It only lasted a few seconds but I have never experienced anything like that. I found a claritin in my purse and swallowed it and felt instantly better, but it was scary!

    More often, it manifests itself in just stupid little episodes where I start to wonder if I am going to “react” and then I look in the mirror a 1000 times to check if anything is happening and I pop antihistamines and drink tons of water. Obviously, this is not healthy and is affecting my productivity. I also worry about it getting worse if left unchecked. I’m going to see my GP for a referral to go get tested for all food allergies and see if that helps, but part of the anxiety is just that this happens to me with foods I have previously been okay in eating so not sure if that will help.

    Any other advice? Coping strategies? I’ve never experienced anything like this and frankly do not know how to deal.

    • Allergies :

      Getting tested for allergies absolutely will help. It’s not uncommon for people to develop new food allergies to foods they used to eat without trouble. It’s only if the tests come back negative for the foods you’ve reacted to that you should have any anxiety. Until you get those tests (shouldn’t be more than 1-2 weeks; your GP should refer you immediately and you should go to the allergist on the first available appointment), just stick with the foods you’ve been eating for the last few weeks without reaction. Also, if your insurance doesn’t require a GP referral, just go straight to the allergist.

      • Allergies :

        Oh, you should also take a daily allergy pill, like Claritin or Zyrtec, until you get those tests (you may need to be off of them for 24-48 hours before the tests, so be sure to ask that when you make the appointment). I had a friend who developed all kinds of food allergies in his 20s and his allergist had him start taking Zyrtec daily as a sort of “insurance” to reduce potential reactions. I would tell you to just take Benadryl but that would probably make you too sleepy! This might also help assuage your anxiety because you’ll know you have some allergy meds in your system at all times.

    • I’d definitely see an allergist (if nothing else but to get some peace of mind). It is both (a) common to develop allergies later in life and (b) possible to be allergic and/or sensitive to the oils in raw nuts and fruits that get cooked out of the cooked or roasted versions — which might explain why you hadn’t had these reactions before.

      Finally, this is where I”m a bit out of my depth since I’ve never had an extreme reaction, but if its really making you anxious perhaps you could get a prescription for an epi-pen? You might never need it, but it might prevent some of the anxiety.

    • I, too, developed a fruit allergy (apples and cherries, mainly) as an adult (only fresh fruit, though, cooked and dried are fine). I get itchiness in my mouth and throat and some nausea, but no breathing difficulties. Dr. Google tells me this is Oral Allergy Syndrome and rarely results in anaphylaxis. I wouldn’t diagnose anyone over the Internet, but take a look and talk to your doctor about this.

      As far as developing other allergies, Dr. Google also provides a handy list of the different types of OAS, related to pollen type. Given my problems with apples and cherries, I think I have birch and/or alder pollen sensitivity, so may react to other foods on that list, although I haven’t so far.

      Definitely do talk to your doctor about this, but if this is indeed what you do have, maybe learning a bit more about it will make you feel better. I figured if the apple allergy developed gradually, a similar allergy to other fruits also will. It’s a pain, but I’m not particularly worried about it being life-threatening, especially because I could tell within a couple of bites, or one cherry, that I was reacting. You could ask your doctor to prescribe you an EpiPen and keep that with you. I also swell up like a balloon from bee/wasp stings and did have an EpiPen for a while, just in case that got worse.

      Oh, and everyone is different, but I have a friend with nut allergies and although she tries to make sure to avoid them, if she accidentally eats something that has nuts, she knows within moments and stops eating it and does not have a severe reaction.

      • LOL – Dr. Google is actually part of my problem. Every time I read up on weird food allergies, I develop a new sensitivity. What’s that? Sunflower seeds made an anonymous interneter allergic, maybe it will happen to me! Apples are a frequent source? Why, yes, now they are for me, too! I like your attitude about it. I think I need to channel this myself and not assume that a bit of peach is going to kill me even if I am sensitive to it.

    • Anon for This Too :

      I agree to get tested for allergies ASAP. This will not only help to calm your overall fears about allergies, but it will actually identify what you are allergic to and you can work with your doctor to develop a treatment plan.

      I do think part of the issue is psychological, however. If you felt ‘instantly’ better after popping a Claritin, that to me says the effect was much more psychosematic, as the medicine in Claritin actually takes a few hours to work/build up in your system (unlike the medicine in Benedryl which works almost instantly). I was having some bizarre allergic asthmatic reactions to some dust/mold in your vaccum cleaner for awhile after a bad lung infection, and Claritin didn’t do much to relieve my immediate symptoms, although I did start taking it daily. Benedryl worked much better for the immediate relief. This was also the case when I had two extremely severe reactions to artificial sweetener. I had to take a large dose of Benedryl to get the reactions down quickly.

      Perhaps as a mental coping strategy before you see the doctor, could you limit yourself to food you feel mentally comfortable eating? Don’t even think about touching the anxiety inducing foods. Just eat what makes you feel comfortable for a week or so. It can’t hurt. If you continue to experience the food anxiety even after getting reated for allergies, I would probably look into some therapy, as you could be having anxiety about other issues or about a lack of control (I had that for awhile too and it was manifesting itself in sleep patterns for me), so therapy could be helpful in working to reduce that anxiety.

    • Do you carry an Epi-Pen? I have food allergies too, and mine cropped up as an adult, but have remained stable with no new allergies for years now. So not everyone get new allergies. I have never needed an Epi-Pen, but always carry one with me. You will not die from an allergy if you have an Epi-Pen; you may still need to go to the hospital, but it will save your life. If you don’t have an allergist already, find one, and I’m sure she will prescribe you an Epi-Pen right away. Keep in mind that Epi-Pens expire and actually lose effectiveness at their expiration date (it’s not a sell by date, but rather a use by date), so you have to note the expiration date and make sure you replace it promptly.

      I find that Benadryl is the best way to deal with minor allergic reactions. I take a daily antihistamine for my allergies (I have environmental allergies too), and a Benadryl at the first sign of a food allergy reaction. So maybe carry Benadryl in your purse. It may help.

      I used to have the “stupid little episodes” you describe too. After a while, you become accustomed to your allergy and more familiar with the types of foods you can eat, and you also become familiar with your reactions and can recognize them instantly. Then the false alarm panic stops. You’ll be ok – everything you describe is normal. But you definitely need to see an allergist, and not just your GP.

    • Also, carry liquid benadryl with you. That way if you do have a reaction to something new and aren’t prescribed an epi-pen you can actually get something down. allergy testing will make you feel much more confident. They literally test you for a million things. You will be sore the next day.

      Traumatic experiences come in all shapes and sizes. Due to a unfortunate scenario I know correlate being very stressed to being itchy and catch myself scratching until there are bumps and then I freak out about the bumps. Therapy can help. Once you rule out the medical causes consider talking to a counselor.

      One trick I use when I panic and feel like I can’t breathe is to hum. Finally, logically I know if I can hum, my throat isn’t closing and somehow it feels easier than talking.

      • Thanks all, this is very helpful to hear. Keep it coming, please!
        I think my biggest fear is that something terrible will happen. I am allergic to cats and environmental factors, too, but that doesn’t phase me much because I know that I’ll be miserable with itchy eyes, runny nose and sneezing, but I know I will get through it just fine. With this on the other hand, because the symptoms are so unexpected and physical – swollen lips, swollen eyes – it’s easy to freak out. I think going to get tested will probably help. Left a message with my GP for a referral just now!

        • Anxiety, do see an allergy specialist, get tested, consider shots etc etc.
          But don’t overlook handling the anxiety.
          Remember it’s normal to feel anxiety when you may die :-). But it’s not good when the anxiety is affecting your life as much as what you’re being anxious about.
          You probably need to do something specific about it, like make sure you’re not doing something that may be making the anxiety worse (smoking?) and that you learn some good methods to handle it (yoga breathing leaps to mind, or kava kava herb extract). Then you can think more clearly about the allergies.
          Also, for me acupuncture really helps bring down allergic reactivity, plus it’s excellent for anxiety. Just a suggestion, whatever works for you is what works for you.

    • Stone fruit :

      I developed an allergy to cherries, then peaches, in my early 20s. Then I added a couple of tree nuts in my later 20s. These were all things I ate regularly and without incident until the reaction. From what I can tell, they are cousins of each other, so I try to avoid all stone fruits and most tree nuts (except pistachios, which might be a hill I’m willing to die on).

      I agree with carrying liquid Benadryl (and pills too) as a quick first line of defense, but I’d also get checked by an allergist and ask for a prescription for an Epi-Pen. Food allergies can sneak up on you. I also avoid eating things that might have tree nuts or stone fruits as a hidden ingredient. Also, I have gotten comfortable asking about ingredients and making very pointed remarks that I am actually allergic to the item in question, not that it’s an aversion. It might seem like you’re being a pain, but the establishment having to deal with your reaction will probably be more of a pain to them in the long run.

      Good luck!

    • Mountain Girl :

      Just curious if your fruit allergy was tropical? My sister developed a very serious allergy to tropical fruit in her 30’s. Pineapple is the main culprit but kiwi, mango, pomegranate, figs and soy are also on the do not eat list.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      Not to make you more anxious but there are lots of foods that you can be allergic to that you can’t really be tested for. You have to trust your body. I get that yours is tricking you and you realize you can’t just trust it right now. I’m allergic to Red Dye 40 and strawberries. I was allergy tested for strawberries and told I’m not allergic. Yet, every single time I eat them I break out in hives and get itchy. I’m not going to eat them anymore. I was also told that I couldn’t be officially tested for the red dye allergy. But, if I have a large enough amount of it, not only do I get itchy but my tongue and lips swell up. Good luck! I know this is tough.

    • You need to see an allergist; a good one who will deal with allergies and check on why your allergies are now getting worse.

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