Thursday’s Workwear Report: World’s Comfiest Button-Down

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

If you’re on the constant hunt for dress shirts that don’t gape open, Betabrand has this one, which they’re also calling the world’s comfiest button-down. It’s interesting because it’s a fake button front with two functional buttons that make the shirt easy to put on and take off. It’s 100% cotton and machine washable, and it just looks like it’s going to be comfortable and easy to wear and will look nice tucked in. It’s $78 — only available in pink at the moment, but many of the 150+ comments on the page are asking for additional colors, so stay tuned. It comes in XS-XXL, but not all sizes are in stock — you can sign up to be emailed when they’re available again. World’s Comfiest Button-Down

PS 1: Banana Republic Factory just went on sale at flash sample sale site Zulily. Lots of blazers, blouses, pants, dresses, accessories and more, with the vast majority priced between $29-$55. Here’s my referral link if you need an invite to the site.

-------Sponsored Links--------

PS 2: Thanks so much to the reader who recommended the Carlisle outlet in our post on NYC shopping for workwear — I was in the neighborhood yesterday and checked it out and was excited to see the crazy good sale prices. (Example: $595 blazer marked on sale to $275, then take 80% off of that price. I got a $375 blazer for $32.) Lots of stuff that wasn’t quite my cup of tea, but lots of good basics for trousers, skirts, dresses, coats, and accessories at crazy prices.

Seen a great piece you’d like to recommend? Please e-mail [email protected]

Comments

  1. A classic button down is so necessary for the office. And it’s even better to have them in multiple colors in order to have plentiful options. I love this pink one!

    • Eh – a collared button-front can be useful, but hardly necessary – especially since it’s so hard for many women to get a good fit on it.

      For me, it’s not so much the problem with the gaping bust-buttons, but the wimpy collar, since manufacturers don’t put as much interfacing in the collars of women’s shirts as they do men’s.

      • Agreed. I haven’t worn a button down in approximately 10 years and I manage just fine in offices!

        • +1 – I don’t think I even own a button down aside from my court clothes (Canadian) and I can’t think of the last time I saw a woman at our firm wear one. They read as dated to me.

          • Never too many shoes... :

            Me too. Every time I button the wing collar I curse our British roots.

        • I really like popovers (with just a few buttons) or button downs that have a cute pattern like gingham or a small print. They read less fussy and stuffy to me.

      • I agree, Kat, I love the colors, but find the guy who is pulling her shirt to be gross. Women should NOT be objectived like this or by having her take her top of for the camera. FOOEY! I am sure she was compensated, but I find it demeaning that ONLEY women take their clothes off in these ads, while the men stay fully clothed! DOUBEL FOOEY!

      • I agree with the collar issue. My fit issues are I have broad shoulders, a narrow waist and long arms. And I don’t wear them enough to bother getting that much tailoring done. Especially with so many other options these days.

    • Honestly, the button-front can be a fairly juvenile look on many women. It’s possible to pull it off, but (for example) I never wear a standard button-front with suits, because it just looks very…law student on a callback interview to me. (NB: If you are a law student on a callback interview, a button-front is A-OK.)

      • Frozen Peach :

        +1 I think it’s one of the hardest looks to pull off if you aren’t in a full suit a la callback.

      • ++1 – any law students reading here, a button down is a safe choice for your callbacks.

        • …but not required! If they don’t work for you, find a conservative alternative!

          • Agreed. If you’re big busted, don’t wear one that gapes at the chest, just to wear a button down! They are not required, but default because they are the definition of covered up. Another office appropriate shell with an appropriate neckline will do just fine.

          • Sloan Sabbith :

            Wear the Calvin Klein top featured! I’m wearing mine today, but I wore it to a super important interview and my interviewer (much) later told me privately I looked the nicest of all the interviewees.

    • I don’t wear button downs at all, and haven’t in maybe 8 years? If they work as part of your wardrobe, great, but definitely not necessary.

    • (btw I clicked through to your blog and it looks fantastic! That orange asos dress!)

      • Same. I don’t usually click over to people’s blogs, but on seeing this comment I did and really like your site.

    • Nah, they look awful on me (I have a large chest). I manage to look just fine.

    • a millenial :

      nope i hate collared shirts. so hard to get them to fit exactly right and i think its more and more unnecessary.

  2. What’s one question you wish you could ask a relative thats no longer living?

    • Both my grandmothers lived long lives through some major historical events; I would love to ask them about what their experience with that was like. There’s also a ton of family history I just don’t know and that would be fascinating for me too now.

    • To my great great great great uncle: “Why’d you have to hook up with your cousin? For real, dude. Weren’t there other gals in the swamp for you to marry? Now I’m stuck admitting there’s a little family wreath on our tree.”

      • Two Cents :

        Lol. My GRANDMOTHER and grandpa were niece and uncle. But, that was extremely common in India back then.

      • jumpingjack :

        My great-great grandparents were first cousins. And to make it more confusing, two sisters married their first cousins, two brothers. Eh, it was a small town in Russia. That’s what you did back then. It’s never bothered me. I’m just grateful that they quickly got the heck out of there and immigrated to America.

    • LondonLeisureYear :

      I wish I could have a totally open conversation about what it was like to give birth back then and what gardening education they had gotten and just general women’s health (like BC options!) with my grandmothers, great grandmothers etc.

      • Anonymous :

        This. My grandmothers passed away before I could ask them what it was like to be a woman when they were young. I know one grandmother only quit work when she got married instead of when she got engaged which was apparently considered revolutionary in her time/town.

      • Anonymous :

        I recently found out my grandmother was pregnant when she got married (at 18). I had never done the math before and I was floored. I would also love to know more about being a woman back then.

        • My grandma had 12 kids (Catholic) with 3 different men and she was not married to the first two!! She had her fist kid in the late 1930s. By the time she got married, she had 5 kids. She had 7 more with her husband. When asked about it, she used to shrug and say “I liked to have a good time” and then would laugh.

        • One of my grandmothers was a single mother in the late 30s. She died when I was sixteen so I wasn’t old enough to ask her about that experience but I can’t even imagine how hard it must have been; and then they were evacuated because of WWII when my father was very little… So much information I’ll never find out. I always try to remember this sort of thing when I visit with older relatives that I still have, although sadly not many of those these days.

        • My grandmother was pregnant with my dad when she married my grandfather (they were married in late August and he was born in early January, so she was pretty far along). I tried asking her about it, but she did.not.want. to talk about it, and I figured, well, we all have our secrets. I would love to know that story, especially because after my grandfather died, she told us that her marriage had not been happy and that we shouldn’t expect to see her grieving too much. Which was a shock, as they had always seemed happy to us.

          • Anonymous :

            One of the things I’m realizing as I get older (yikes!) is that our stories aren’t always so much secrets as they are … personal. When I was younger, I was curious about a lot of things regarding my grandparents, as if it was my right to know their stories just to satisfy my curiosity. Now I’m realizing that there are things I’ve experienced that still go deep with me, for various reasons, and I wouldn’t talk about them lightly simply because someone was curious or wanted to know what my life was like — no matter how much I loved the young person quizzing me. It’s not because I’m ashamed or feel secretive. It’s that the “me” who had those experiences needs care and honor. Sometimes hearts stay tender or raw for decades longer than those of asking for the real story might realize.

        • I learned that about my grandmother after she passed as well – she was pregnant with my dad and uncle (twins) when she married my grandpa AND moved across country to live with him. Plus she was Mormon. I’m not sure I would have ever actually broached the topic; we had a great relationship but I respected her and I’m afraid she would have seen the topic as shameful (she was a devoted Mormon through adulthood), but it would’ve been so interesting to really hear the true story.

          • Anonymous :

            That’s so interesting, thanks for sharing. That must have been a struggle for her being Mormon.

      • Re: giving birth, both of my grandmothers had their kids in the era where they were still knocking women out during labor. My dad’s mom described going to the hospital with “stomach pains;” they put her in a bed and put a mask on her face, “and when I woke up, there was the baby next to me.” Can you imagine? Especially because there was so little gardening ed back in those days.

        My mom’s mom told me, after I had my son, that when my uncle was born, she insisted on breastfeeding him and the nurses at the hospital were scandalized and shamed her. But she had grown up on a small-town farm in a place where everyone nursed their babies, and couldn’t imagine doing it any other way. She breastfed all 5 of her kids.

        • This was my grandmother’s birth experience. She said for her first baby, she started having contractions and the hospital told her not to come in until…I can’t remember if it was a timing thing, or her water broke. Anyway, she said my grandfather was nervous so he drove sooo sloooowly to the hospital. Then she had to walk down several hallways for what felt like forever before she finally made it to the maternity ward. The nurses laughed and said my grandpa parked on the wrong side of the building. Then they knocked my grandma out, and when she woke up she had a baby.

          My grandmother ended up having 5 children, and nursed all of them. She never mentioned getting any flack because of it, but she said she’s happy that breastfeeding is encouraged again these days.

    • Anonymous :

      I want to ask my great grandfather about coming to Canada from Ireland via Ellis Island!

    • My mom used to tell me she planned on writing a book about her life. Apparently she experienced some crazy and interesting things in the 1960s and 1970s. She told me that she’d tell me about it eventually. But, she never did, and she passed away unexpectedly last year. She kept extensive journals but my dad decided to throw them all away without reading them (or letting me read them) because he read something online that you should not read the deceased’s journals unless they gave you permission to do so. So, I’d ask her to tell me whatever it was she planned on telling me.

    • I wish I could ask my sister what she thinks of DH. But then again, I know she’d like him.

    • I’d love to hear my great-grandmother tell the story of why she chose to immigrate to the US from Germany before WWI. There’s a family legend about it, but it’s very sketchy on details, and I want the details! The family legend is that she got in a fight with her fiance and decided, on impulse, to join her brother who had already booked passage on a ship leaving the next week. But it’s such a huge life decision – I want to know more, and how she thought about it after the fact.

    • On my mother’s side of the family, there’s been this story about a sibling of my grandfather’s who died when she was accidentally hit by a truck in the family’s driveway. In some versions of the story she was about 3 when this happened, and in others she was older. This would have been in the 1940s. My grandfather wouldn’t talk about it other than to say “yes, that happened.” We all think he was either there and saw it, or possibly was driving the truck (he grew up on a rural farm where kids would start driving early, around 9 or 10). My uncle searched the records in the county where my grandfather’s family lived, but there has been a flood at some point and they lost a bunch of records. We’ve never found a birth or death certificate for the little girl, who would have been my great-aunt. It’s the big mystery of our family and I wish we could have gotten more answers about it before everyone who was around during that time passed on.

    • My 3rd great grandmother was a Mormon polygamous wife to the president of that church. I have many questions I’d love to ask her about her experiences.

    • New Tampanian :

      I would ask my dad who passed when I was too young to think of this – Why did you want me to have this name? I have a very unique name for where I’m from and no one seems to remember why he wanted me to have it.

  3. Anon to DC :

    Good morning! I’m moving back to DC after over a decade away (very excited!). For those of you living in the area, what are your favorite social/career/networking/etc. groups that I should keep an eye out for? I’m in my 30s, single, biglaw mid-level associate, Jewish/Israeli, love outdoor activities, foodie, reading. Thanks!

    • BabyAssociate :

      Networking wise, the Bar Association of DC has a pretty active young lawyer’s section. If you do any sort of international work, there are a few chambers of commerce that are really active (French, British, Swedish) I’ve actually made two good friends through the chamber.

      There is sooooo much good food in DC these days. It seems like there’s a hot new restaurant opening in Shaw and Petworth every week. There’s also a really lovely JCC on 16th St!

    • Cornellian :

      go to this! https://www.eventbrite.com/e/eat-well-do-justice-2017-celebrity-chef-kugel-cookoff-tickets-36328160506 :)

      • If you were part of any sorority or service organizations in college, I’ve made some excellent friends through my sorority’s local alumnae chapter. I’ve also made great friends playing social sports (you can absolutely sign up as a free agent and it’s not weird at all), which may or may not be compatible with a life in big-law, but it’s a little exercise and time spent outdoors.

    • 6th In The City at the 6th and I synagogue. It’s the second Friday of the month, aimed at people in their 20s and 30s, and there’s a happy hour before and a dinner after. It’s a great way to meet people! Addas Israel synagogue does something similar, maybe on the 4th Friday? Also, most colleges/universities/law schools have alumni chapters here. Some are more active than others, but there’s a good chance there will be at least the occasional happy hour. Several also have book clubs, and most will organize a community service event or nature walk or something a few times a year. It’s usually pretty easy to get on the email newsletter.

      • I’ve been in DC for 9 years and have never gone to a 6th in the City event (though I have gone to high holiday services at 6th and I). I suppose I’m a bit intimidated about the idea of going alone, as most of my friends in DC are not Jewish. I’m 31 – does the crowd tend to skew much younger? How many people show up alone to these things? Thanks :)

        • I have been twice to 6th In the City, and I found it to be a real singles-mixer type atmosphere (I’m married, but I went both times with a friend). Lots of men chatted me up – not what I was into, but may be what you’re looking for! I liked the services themselves.

        • Anonymous :

          I’m 28 and have gone alone at least five or six times. Some people treat it as a singles mixer, but I usually end up chatting with a group of friends, or a couple, and generally everyone is very welcoming. I will generally pick a group of people that look nice and stand on the edge of the circle, and usually they welcome me in and introduce themselves. The average age of the crowd varies a little based on time of year; it will probably be a bit older now than it was in June when there were tons of interns, but there are often lots of people in their late 20s and in their 30s. I also really like the services themselves, Rabbi Shira is great.

          • anon for this :

            She’s the BEST.

            Also I’ve heard good things about the shabbat cluster program (not sure who runs that – gather the jews, ma ybe?) though I haven’t been myself. It may skew a little more toward mid-twenties than earl-thirties, though, if I were to guess. I hope to sign up for the future, since a lot of other Jewish events I go to lead to nice but short-lived single-serving friendships and those clusters are designed as more ongoing groups.

            Moishe house programs definitely skew more 20s (I’m 24, it works for me!) but I’ve met early-30s people there as well.

            Oh also! You can sign up for (or even host) random private or public shabbat dinners on onetable. They get funding through the onetable organization so they’re usually cheap-to-free. I went to one with a friend and we had a fantastic time.

            I don’t do that much Jewish stuff (was raised pretty much areligiously and without the normal hallmarks of American Jewish life; my Jewish family is Israeli), but when I do, I really appreciate all the infrastructure around Jewish life near here. Makes it easy to meet up with strangers and find pre-planned things if you’re not as well integrated.

  4. Anonymous :

    Any tips for curing a minor yeast infection without medical treatment? Dos and don’ts? This is not worth a trip to the drug store, much less the dr, but I don’t know what to do about it for myself.

    • Monistat and probiotics.

      Good luck. Yeast infections can be miserable.

    • anon4this :

      I would just go to the drugstore and get some monistat/something similar. Better to just nip it in the bud then drag out a mild version or have it get worse. But if you really don’t want to go, I’ve heard rumor of the benefits of a tampon soaked in plain yogurt.

      • Anonymous :

        I’m sorry, what? No. Don’t put yogurt in your vag!na. Even Dr. Oz (not a paragon of sound medical advice) thinks that’s a bad idea. The bacteria that’s good for your gut is not necessarily the same bacteria that’s good for your lady parts.

        • Anonymous :

          Seriously, just spend the 10 bucks or whatever on Monistat.

          • Y to the East :

            No, skip the monistat. I tried this several times and it made symptoms worse before getting better. Truly uncomfortable.

            Boric acid (mentioned downthread), cut down on sugar, take probiotics (the kind that needs to be refridgerated) and if things get bad and/or recurring, go diflucan route.

      • Related to the above thread, if I had to go back and ask a great great great grandmother about her life, she’d probably talk about how she wishes she had access to real medicine for her yeast infections so that he could stop gooping yogurt into her genitals.

        • I’ve had amazing conversations like that with my living grandmother, who is very prudish till you get her started on the miracle of modern medicine for women.

          I’m not opposed to those options, I just really don’t need them yet.

          • I mean, you either have a yeast infection or you don’t. It’s just going to get worse if you don’t treat it properly.

    • I would avoid monistat! It really messes up my system.

      I would get boric acid capsules (available on amazon) and use one each night v*ginally (make sure you don’t eat them – they are very harmful if eaten, so keep away from pets and children) for 10 days.

      • wow — we kill roaches with boric acid

        • Yeah, that was my original reaction (it’s also used in laundry detergent), but…WebMD had it listed as a treatment, so apparently it’s not as wacky as it sounds. It did note that it will also kill/hurt people who swallow it, but it’s a legit skin/anti-fungal treatment.

          • Yep, it’s actually my gyn who recommends it as a safe long term options for me – I have recurring cycles of yeast and BV and once a week boric acid works wonders for me, no side effects. Just keep it locked up in your home.

        • Well, yeah dosage matters obviously. The fluoride in your toothpaste would kill you in a higher dose — doesn’t mean it’s not helpful in small amounts.

      • My gyn just prescribed boric acid for my recurrent yeast infections, and they are working so well. They’re totally safe when used this way.

        • Same here (I’m the poster at 9.34), it was a gyn recommendation. I find them very easy to tolerate. The first time I got them she sent a prescription to a compounding pharmacy where they made them, which was fine but then i realized you can get the same strength off amazon without having to wait for the compounding pharmacy to make them (they took maybe 4-5 days).

          Having said that, if you are having a severe yeast infection, you may need a diflucan to knock it out. I find that works much better (and is much less disruptive) than monistat. It’s a pill you only take once (ideally) to kill off the yeast, then you can follow up with regular boric acid to keep it at bay. If you have a good primary care provider they can likely call a prescription in without seeing you, if you are fairly certain you have yeast. (This won’t work on BV though.)

    • Probiotics! I like drinking kefir. Activia or other yogurts are good, too. The best is probiotic supplements, but if you don’t want to go to the drugstore…

    • See if your doctor’s office has an online consultation option. I was able to obtain antibiotics recently for a yeast infection without actually going in – I just filled out a form online describing my symptoms and the doctor send my prescription to the pharmacy. Granted, I have had many before so maybe that’s why they were so quick to give me a prescription without seeing me. I really would just suck it up and get a prescription somehow, you don’t want to deal with it getting worse. My doctor has also warned against Monistat.

      • +1 – I tried to treat a mild infection with Monistat, was unsuccessful, and got an Rx on my next visit. If I hadn’t had a visit scheduled, it would have been worth it to call in. An untreated infection just gets worse.

      • Do you mean an anti-fungal? A yeast infection is a fungal infection, not a bacterial infection. Antibiotics treat bacterial infections not yeast infections, and antibiotics frequently cause yeast infections due to disrupting the natural bacteria in the body. If your doctor prescribed you an antibiotic for a yeast infection that is not a good thing.

        • Yes, I meant anti-fungal, I’ve had recurring UTI’s recently too which have been causing the yeast infections so it was all just jumbled in my head

      • +1 I don’t mess with anything going on in the g e n i t a l area – why wouldn’t you just get it taken care of properly with medicine in the first place?

    • alexisfaye :

      Cut your sugar and carbs down/out.

    • Cranberry pills can help ease the symptoms, you can find them in the vitamin section most places.

    • if you don’t want to go to the drugstore, amazon has all these product available for you. minor yeast infections can quickly turn into a full blown one…. better to be safe then annoyed

    • How do you know it’s a yeast infection? You should go to the Dr. and get swabbed. It could be a bacterial infection that requires an antibiotic. This is why doctors hate google.

      • Eh, after you’ve had one, you pretty much know what it is. That’s why they sell the cure (Monistat) in drugstores.

        To answer the question, pay the $10 for Monistat, and then up your probiotics. I like drinking kombucha – there’s a million different brands/flavors, just try until you find one you like.

    • Coach Laura :

      Boric acid capsules was the advice given to me by a Planned Parenthood doctor when I was in my 20s. Was a life saver. I also agree with reducing sugar and simple carbs if you get recurring infections.

  5. Is it Friday yet? :

    This week has been rough. Returned from a trip with a bladder infection, then came down with a different infection that sent me running to urgent care and made me miss a day and a half of work. Then, I found a million ants in my car (there is no food in my car!!!) so I sprayed it and had to drive to work this morning with the windows down because of the smell even though it was raining. Still feeling sick today, but I’m out of PTO. Naturally, as soon as I got to work today a coworker made a snide comment about “how nice and relaxing” it must be to take so much time off lately. Yup, I’m real relaxed here. Please come closer so I can cough on you.

    • I’m sorry you’ve had such a miserable week!

      My car once had a ton of ants who were attracted to the glue in the door! IIRC, after spraying for ants, I had to have the door repaired because the part with the door pull, window controls, etc was coming away from the door. Hopefully that’s not the case, but it really may not be food related.

    • Oh my gosh, are you me? Literally had the same thing happen to me recently – bladder infection AND the crazy ant thing! There were hundreds of them crawling all over the inside of my car, I vacuumed it and then hundreds more still came pouring in from inside the door. Literally nuked then with Ortho bug spray and that did the trick. I hope you feel better! It’s almost the weekend!

    • Sloan Sabbith :

      I haven’t known what day it is all day. I’ve been working from home for a week, which mostly sucks because it’s due to the da*n smoke in Seattle. I can’t breathe. And I am sick of my apartment, I’ve been cooped up inside. Yeah. This week sucks.

      • The air sucks this week. Sorry to hear that :(. I hope you can get out soon.

        I saw your comment (yesterday?) that you were hoping for rain and laughed because I have been, too. Such a turnaround from 2 months ago when I was desperate for sun.

  6. Tax preparers :

    Any recommendations for large, national tax preparation firms? My parents are nearing retirement and, after a lifetime of self-preparation, want to start outsourcing. They live in X state now and will relocate to Y or Z in retirement, and so they are hoping to find a solid firm with a presence in all places so they don’t have to restart from scratch when they move. I think they’re also hoping to get advise re: tax advantages of Y vs Z.

    Any recommendations? We use a local, shingle-hanging guy, so that’s no use to them.

    • Most of the tax preparers at a place like H&R Block are very minimally trained. For simple tax returns that are mainly data entry, that’s fine.

      But I would NEVER EVER recommend people go to H&R Block and attempt to get any kind of nuanced tax advice. They will be much better off finding another local shingle-hanging guy. There is nothing to “restart” when you move from one tax accountant to another. Just bring in the last couple of years of returns so the CPA can look at them and get a general sense of their situation.

      • To add onto that– if they have a complicated situation, own their own business, have trusts, multiple rental properties, etc, they could look into a regional accounting firm, but generally I think that’s kind of expensive for people with “normal” taxes– a handful of brokerage statements, some bank interest, etc.

      • +1 my dad is a CPA and frequently does taxes for people who file returns in multiple states due to moving, working in multiple states, etc. Have them find a reputable CPA.

    • My parents had a firm help them with retirement planning and with coming up with will etc. That firm was able to recommend someone to do their taxes. Maybe try that route and see if someone they liked in the past can recommend someone for them?

    • But if they’re not going to be talking to the same person when they move, aren’t they basically going to be starting from scratch anyway?

    • Depending on their income level, most of major accounting firms have private clients groups that handle what you are talking about. I would reach out to someone in those groups and if it is too small for them, they can probably refer you elsewhere.

  7. Ekaterin Nile :

    I’m late to the party, but wanted to say that I have the Tahari bi-stretch dress from yesterday and I absolutely love it. Love the sleeves, love the neckline, love the stretch. Also, I’m 5’5″ with slight apple tendencies and the detail at the waist makes me look as if I had a waist (ha!). FYI, it falls about mid-knee on me.

  8. givemyregards :

    Anybody have an experience with, or recommendations for, long distance movers? We’re moving about five hours away, and I’m not sure I have it in me to load/unload the moving truck myself. I feel like I’ve heard about so many scams related to movers, so I want to go with a reputable company but I have no idea where to start. Would also love to hear any hilarious moving horror stories!

    • Movers are 100% worth it. You will not regret it one bit. You will wonder why you didn’t start doing this sooner!

      • I am glad to hear this as our (paid) packers and movers are coming Monday. We have two kids and both work full time so I know this is an investment in our sanity, but my Mennonite upbringing is still making me feel extremely guilty about not packing myself or moving more beforehand in our cars to save money.

        • They are so much faster and smarter at it than you would be. They know the weight of what can fit in a box, they know the shape of what can fit in that box, they know how much to wrap it so it doesn’t break. This is their job and with a reputable company – they do it really well!

        • Packers are amazing. It will be much faster to unpack if you go ahead and make sure that things are in the proper room since they pack where they find it, not where the item is supposed to live.
          I also designate a spot in a room or closet as a roped off “do not pack” area. You can put your first night box and change of clothes there along with anything that you aren’t putting on the truck. I’ve not had an issue with packers packing kitchen trash or dishes, but I guess you could stash those there as well

          • Thanks – good tips! I was thinking about just packing a bag with a few outfits and toiletries just in case.

      • Anonymous :

        +1

        If you’re an adult with a job, you hire movers. You’re not 20 and loading the back of your friend’s van anymore.

        • givemyregards :

          Hi! This is not helpful! But I’m realizing from this thread of responses that it wasn’t clear that I am specifically asking for advice re: distance movers. I’ve used movers for intra-city moves several times. Also, maybe I am 20? And maybe my friends LOVE loading things in their vans?

          • They don’t.

          • Also, geographical region would be helpful if you want mover recommendations. I have a rec, but it’s specific to an area of the country.

          • Another Anonymous :

            “I have a rec, but it’s specific to an area of the country. ”

            Therefore it’s absolutely necessary that OP confirms she is in that location before this precious recommendation sees the light of the internet? You could have just thrown it out there and specified which area it’s for just in case anyone in that area might be reading this thread, OP or not.

          • “Hi, this is not helpful, as I don’t live there, thanks!!”

            When one asks for recommendations, more versus less information about what that person is looking for will get them more useful recommendations. Sorry for not being one of those posters who tracks everyone’s lives and would know who this person is and where they are moving to!

      • Anonymous :

        +1,000 I have used movers for in-town, in-state, and interstate moves. I refuse to ask my friends to help me move now that we are in our 30s. I make a decent salary and there is no reason I cannot pay movers. It has always been worth it.

    • Shopaholic :

      I crowd-sourced recommendations for movers in my city (but it was only a move within the city) and then checked them out on yelp. I then ignored all the recommendations and went with the top rated mover on yelp which had the best reviews. All of the other movers had mixed reviews and I was doing it on my own so I wanted the least stressful option.

      Turns out I actually spent the same amount as a friend who tried to cheap out and ended up with a terrible moving experience so I guess my advice is yelp…

    • For our past two moves–one about 8 hours, one about 5–we rented the truck ourselves (DH drove it), but had labor on either end. Best thing ever. UHaul has a portal for booking labor with your truck (my moving help dot com I think), and we’ve been pleased. Just remember to have cash for tips on hand and bottled water for the movers.

      • Also, don’t forget to rent the dollies, furniture pads, whatever, that they’ll need with the truck. They literally just show up, no equipment, and haul.

        I will likely never have movers who pack for me. I totally get why it appeals to folks, but not to me, so no experience there. I like packing everything myself so there’s only me to blame if something goes wrong/I know where everything is, but I get that it’s an option that people seem to love.

        If I recall correctly, you were considering a Triangle move…still the case? If so, I had great luck with whatever labor-only team I found on Uhaul’s sister site…can’t find the name! Based out of Durham I think.

        • Found it! Best name ever?
          Big Men Moving Triangle Area (919) 238-1064 qua l i t y movers35 at the mail of ya hoo

        • givemyregards :

          Yes we are and thank you!! I think we are going to drive the truck ourselves, but hiring labor on either end sounds exactly like what we need. And I’m with you on packing my own stuff – I’ve moved every two -three years my entire life so packing doesn’t bother me. I just don’t feel like hauling a couch up the stairs.

    • I haven’t hired movers myself yet, but my mom, who has done several moves in her life, has always liked Mayflower moving company for interstate or long distance moves.

      • givemyregards :

        Good to know, I will check them out – thank you!

        • Gail the Goldfish :

          I used Mayflower moving company–bear in mind they use different local companies on each end. So my company that loaded me up was terrible (as in some of my jewelry went missing terrible), but the one that unloaded me was great (and in the Triangle area–it’s all-american relocation.)

    • I was really, really happy with Hopkins & Sons when I moved (essentially down the street). It was much faster and more efficient than my previous DIY moves, and they were able to solve a problem with getting large items into my new house that I would not have been able to solve on my own, or at least not as quickly.

      • I overlooked your request for hilarious moving stories, so I’ll be less vague (although I’m not sure this qualifies as hilarious). My (1920s) house has a turned staircase. I have a non-split box spring. The box spring would not go up the stairs (think the “Pivot!” episode from Friends). My very helpful movers removed a window frame from an upstairs room, got a ladder, and pushed the box spring through the window! It was worth the cost of the movers.

        • givemyregards :

          Oh my gosh, that’s amazing. Moving is so stressful – I think if I’d been in that situation without movers I would have just left the box spring in the yard, haha.

          • Our 100 year old house has some similar issues, and I moved our currently boxspring to the master bedroom by having my husband and dad lift it over their heads outside while I stood on the balcony and pulled it up the rest of the way.

            Another reason why I’m psyched to hire movers…we are moving from a 1914 house to a 1905 house. I’ll let them tackle all the narrow hallways and minuscule basement doors.

        • pugsnbourbon :

          We moved with the help of friends about six years ago – they took our couch out the balcony window and down 2.5 stories with straps and a winch.

          They didn’t really have to – the couch had come thru the front door, assembled – but I think they just wanted to take it out the window.

    • 5 hours is more of a local move. Just go on yelp and find a well reviewed company in your area and hire them. Personally, I like packing myself because it forces me to clean out, but I would never haul it/lift it, etc.

    • No hilarious moving stories but the movie, Moving (Richard Pryor, late 80s) is hilarious.

    • Gentle Giant! They loaded my stuff up in Boston, stored it for two months (for only $120), and delivered it to DC precisely on time. Not a single item was lost or damaged, and the movers were all super friendly. They even pick up the boxes once you’re done unpacking!

      • givemyregards :

        Thank you! Will check them out. I must admit I’m really partial to the name of the company.

      • Seconding the recommendation for Gentle Giant. They are fantastic.

        • We used Gentle Giant. They were pricey, but very very good and reliable with a lot of “best of” awards.

      • Gentle Giant is wonderful. We used them for one of our moves (within state, cities about 3 hours apart) and it was by far our best (of many) moving experiences.

    • We moved 15 minutes away and still got movers!

    • North Star Movers! We’ve moved xCountry 3x with them over the span of a decade. One time my husband tried to cheap out and hire another mover- they changed the time on us at the last minute and tried to hike the price (because they felt like they had us trapped- this was BEFORE they had our stuff, wasn’t going to let them take our stuff & potentially hold our stuff hostage at that point). I said, take a hike & called NorthStar and they saved us at the last minute (literally 24 hrs before we needed to be out of our home). During one of the moves, a small part of the leg of a pretty old desk chipped and when I called them, they gave me the full current price of the desk no questions asked- it was impressively easy. They have yelp coupons and also give a discount for reviewing them.

  9. LondonLeisureYear :

    Part of our move includes a sea shipment. So I have been hearing a lot o sea shipment horror stories. One where the whole sea container fell into the sea (youtube has some great videos of this happening). Another one that went “missing”. Over a year later it showed up in a dockyard in India. They opened it up and realized that it was not what it was supposed to be and instead was this families belongings.

    Horror stories with people packing you: They often pack the trash if you are not careful to hide it. Nothing like unwrapping stinky trash after 3 months of being shipped. This has happened to many many families I know. Or another family ate breakfast, got up from the table for a second and the crew packed their dirty dishes. Just wrapped them up in cling wrap and then packed them with food on them. Ewww.

    • Anonymous :

      put anything you don’t want them to pack in your vehicle – this will also tell you how much will fit in your suitcases. Considering paying for extra suitcases to fly with you so you can bring everything you need. use paper plates/forks/cups.

    • alexisfaye :

      I was packed over an overseas move with the Navy. I never thought about it (ha!), but I guess it probably went by sea.

      I will say in the US the packers I’ve met aren’t that efficient (compared to the Japanese <3 ) but the more you do to 'prep' the happier you'll be when you unpack. And make yourself an "open this first" box or something with your more important stuff.

      • LondonLeisureYear :

        Oh yes I agree 100% on the need to pre prep. My flat is all in piles of pre sorted out. All the books in one pile, all the linens in another etc. One room is labeled DO NOT PACK ANYTHING IN HERE for stuff we are flying with. One room is only air shipment, the rest is sea. Fingers crossed we find that 4th chair that apparently got put in storage by mistake in CA 3 years ago when we end up in New York!

    • Flats Only :

      My family made regular intercontinental moves when I was growing up. Nothing was more exciting than the day the sea freight arrived, usually a couple of months after we arrived at a new post! I now live near a large military installation, and I get nostalgic any time I see a family’s van packs (the big wooden crates) arriving or leaving on a truck.

      That said, my mother’s wedding dress did get dyed green when a crate got soaked in the rain on the dock and the dye ran out of the green silk dress packed next to it. Our packers never did anything silly with the trash, but I know my mother did supervise the whole operation very carefully!

      • LondonLeisureYear :

        I think I kissed my cast iron pan when we got our last sea shipment! The months of having a non functional kitchen were finally over!!!

    • givemyregards :

      We were expats when I was a kid and I definitely remember shipment container horror stories. I remember when we moved overseas when I was in the 6th grade that my CD binder (!!!) got packed in the shipment on accident and I had one CD for the month or so it too to get there, and it was EVERCLEAR. This was 1998 so I kind of loved it, but, even for a brooding pre-teen, that was a lot of Everclear.

      • This made me chuckle so much. Ah the CD binder!

      • I don’t know if I can ever get rid of my cd binder from the late 90s/early 2000s. And I don’t even have a cd player anymore.

        • givemyregards :

          And to think, the youth of today will never get to experience the joy of making a mixed cd and writing the names of all the songs in a spiral with sharpie…

    • We did the packing ourselves, but used Seven Seas Worldwide on the recommendation of multiple friends, and it all worked out great! The only snafu was that one of the boxes reached my ILs’ town when they were away, the pickup slip was snagged in the side of their mailbox, and the box was returned to sender…aka my parents’ house, halfway around the world. Oops. It wasn’t really urgent, but I had to buy an entire new winter wardrobe to tide me over until we visited my parents and retrieved it the following year.

  10. Accounting Career Change :

    I’m wondering about making a career change into accounting. I’d be hoping to start working in a regional or local firm. Is this a crazy career change to make if I plan to start TTC within 1 to 2 years? Do I need a master’s degree to be taken seriously or will I be able to get by with taking enough classes to reach 150 credits? My undergrad was in business with a concentration in accounting, but I graduated 10 years ago and have worked in education ever since. Any accountants willing to share what they like and hate about their jobs and career paths?

    • I am an accountant with approximately 6 years experience. Got my CPA license around 3.5 years ago. I am at a smaller firm with approximately 50 employees, 3 offices all within 45 minutes of each other. My job has really great work/life balance (married, no kids). This time of year, I work 40 hour weeks (sometimes less!) and tax season, I work approximately 60 hour weeks. I am in a hybrid tax/audit position, so I handle audit/accounting/attest work as well as tax clients (most small businesses and individuals). I do like the A&A work much better, but at a smaller firm, I’m not quite in the experience level to specialize or oversee the A&A team/department. Being that you will likely be older than many of the staff level accountants, you will likely have the ‘common sense’ part of the job well handled immediately! And if you have the technical knowledge (debits/credits!), you will be fine making a career change. Studying for the CPA exam while working FT is very difficult, so adding a newborn/infant to the mix of that will be much harder. I studied while working FT and being single, and I can’t imagine having to split time nourishing a relationship & baby, but I have successfully seen a few colleagues pass with a young child. I love that the accounting career path provides many different avenues (public, private, consulting) as well as multiple levels of responsibility and leadership. My current public firm has a staff, senior, manager, partner track and everyone from rookies to partners are on different “teams” together to handle different tax/audit/firm tasks. Accounting is really the best place for me and I see it being able to fulfill me from now until retirement in one aspect or another!

    • Don’t do it. My Fortune 500 corporate accounting department is being outsourced to India shortly. Public is so much pure grunt work and not respected. I should have listened to my grandmother who wisely told me “Nobody ever got anywhere by watching someone else’s money.”

    • baseballfan :

      I’ve been a CPA for 20+ years. Most of it has been in Big 4. I had a short stint in a regional firm and a couple of in-house positions, but in-house/corporate tax department is really not for me. I like client service and I like the challenge and the variety of public. And I work with some amazing, smart, dedicated people who are really inspiring.

      I passed the CPA right after graduation – I think it’s much more difficult to do later down the road. However, when I took the exam, you had to take it all at once and now people take it part by part. You’ll definitely need the CPA to work in a firm. If you’ve been in education all this time, it will take a lot of studying to be ready for the CPA.

      Master’s degree is not as critical, but pretty important, and realistically if you have to get the required hours anyway to be eligible to sit for the exam, there’s little downside to getting the additional degree.

      I don’t think timing of TTC is all that significant, but this could vary.

      I really like what I do. There are busy periods that are tough, but I have a lot of flexibility. Ironically I feel that I have more flexibility now than when I was in a corporate tax department working 40 hours a week.

    • I love it and am very glad I did it. I majored in something completely unrelated in college and actually was a teacher for a bit too, so just taking the business and accounting classes required by my state board put me over the 150 hours. I did most of them as a non-degree seeking student and most of them online through State Tech while working full time. I dropped down to working part time as a bookkeeper at the very end when I needed to take a handful of classes in person. As soon as I had passed a couple sections of the CPA exam (would recommend Becker test prep– its expensive but worth it), I had multiple job offers– would really recommend joining Beta Alpha Psi and doing on campus recruiting. A masters degree does not matter, at least not in public accounting. If you want to be a CFO or something maybe get an MBA? But I wouldn’t waste money on it right now. Just take whatever you need to get to 150 and start studying for the exam.

      As far as having kids and working as an accountant, if you work for a small to midsize accounting firm, it should be fine. Do not go work for the big 4 if you wanna have kids soon. I’d recommend tax over audit, as you don’t have to travel. One thing I loooooove about tax is how flexible it is. You can leave and come back. You can work only during busy season (end of Jan-mid April, back again for extensions Aug-Oct), you can work an 80% schedule. You can work full time and beyond. You can go to industry if you get tired of public and then go back to public. You might not make partner if you do that, but there is plenty of room to have a great career and make decent money doing interesting work.

    • I’ve been in accounting 15 years and love it. I have a ton of friends in the industry as well, so between us we cover nearly every potential accounting career – small public, large public, industry of nearly every type, at a myriad of levels. No clue what anon at 10:25 based her comment on, but there is a huge demand for accountants, and its a field where you can make very good money, be quite well-respected, and have a flexible career. In all of my jobs, the work has been very interesting and challenging – no “grunt work” beyond maybe the first year (meaning data entry, less strategic work).

      I agree with CPALady’s comments about working, career path options, and using on-campus recruiting, though I didn’t do any of the accounting fraternities offered and still have multiple prestigious job offers. Eligibility to sit for the exam and then passing are far more important than a Master’s or MBA – do that an soon as possible, ideally before you start a family. It’s just such a time eater that it is really hard to study sufficiently if you are dealing with anything other than working.

      • Yes to the exam being a time eater. I didn’t really take the exam seriously at first, since I’ve always been a good test taker. After bombing the first two sections, I realized I needed to really buckle down. That’s when I got Becker. Over the course of an 8 month period, I passed all four sections. I studied 3 hours per day, rain or shine, no matter what. The weekend before each section, I would hole up in the library and study all day long 9-5 for two straight days.

        If at all possible, pass the entire thing before you have a kid.

    • Coach Laura :

      If you need some classes and are rusty I’d recommend a MAT program. There are many designed to get one ready for the exam so you’d get professor support and commeraderie from peers. That might be the most effective way to do it.

      There are some reputable online programs too. But be careful with online classes because some states (e.g.Texas) may not allow online credits.

    • Anonymous :

      I made the switch after working for 4 years in an unrelated industry. I’m at the Big4 more and absolutely love my job. I ended up going back for my masters to get my 150 hours and believe, anecdotally, that it is much easier to find a Big4 with a non-traditional background when you have a masters.

    • Accounting Career Change :

      Thank you all for sharing! Reading these replies has been really encouraging!

  11. I’m looking for a fun birthday gift idea for a quirky male friend in his early thirties. When I say quirky, I mean QUIRKY. Nothing is too weird for him. He really likes baking, cooking, home decor, plants, comedy, and his cats. Looking to spend about $30-$50.

    • givemyregards :

      My friend is getting married and he and his fiance pretty much exclusively registered for items for their cat, so I got them this cat DJ scratch pad. Totally ridiculous, but might fit the bill for your friend as well.

    • Quirky baking pans or cookie cutters? Quirky pots for plants? They have some really cute ones — I think I’ve seen some on Cup of Jo. I bet you can find all kinds of this stuff on Etsy.

      • anon a mouse :

        amazon has some pretty hilarious cookie cutters. I gave a friend some zombie-themed ones.

      • Anonymous :

        This! I think Etsy has cookie cutters shaped like states somewhere on it, I got those for a friend one time for every state she had lived in and she loved it.

    • Search Etsy for some wacky planters that align with his interests. For instance, they have a bunch of Mario-themed ones: https://www.etsy.com/search?q=mario%20planters

    • Maddie Ross :

      No specific ideas, but Uncommon Goods is great for these kinds of gifts.

    • Bonsai starter kit?

    • Thinkgeek

    • I don’t know if this is super quirky, but we got these as a gift and loved them, Mr. AIMS, particularly, and people always love them when they see them. https://www.amazon.com/Sagaform-Rocking-Whiskey-Glasses-4-Ounces/dp/B001JANQRY

      For other ideas, check out fishs eddy.

    • Former Retail :

      Amy Sedaris books? She is the queen of quirky bakers.

      • Minnie Beebe :

        Yes, I was going to make this suggestion! I like the idea of a book and a funny-shaped cake pan. This is a british link, but I know that at least some of these are available in the US (I actually own the LEGO minifig pan…)

        https://www.brit.co/cake-pans/

    • pugsnbourbon :

      Not sure how it happened, but I have a bar at the top of my Amazon landing page called “New and Interesting Finds.” There’s some weird/awesome stuff in there. I think they’re lists compiled by Amazon shoppers?

      Also Fab.com has nice weird stuff. Online museum stores can have great finds. And bakers always appreciate high-quality vanilla!

    • Depending on how much you want to spend- an instapot & a cat-food recipe cook book. :)

    • anonypotamus :

      Poke around Uncommon Goods – lots of quirky stuff there and you can sort by price range.

  12. Good morning! I posted yesterday seeking advice for talking to my Dr about my low drive. Well my appointment was actually yesterday afternoon so here is an update. I think it was successful and I’m on the right track. Dr thinks the cause is BC pills that I’ve been taking continuously for 5 years (for migraine treatment), which messes with hormones a lot. We decided I’m going to stop taking the pill completely for now (first time in 11 years!) and see if that helps. If not, she’ll refer me to a therapist who specializes in this sort of issue. I feel hopeful!

    • Very excited and hopeful for you.

    • just some anecdata, but I noticed a major increase in drive pretty much as soon as I came off of the hormonal BC I’d been taking for 7 years.

    • I hope this is the answer you were looking for!

      Anecdata: I have hormonal migraines also. Not sure your age, but now that I have hit 40, they are much less frequent and also much less severe, when they do happen. Mine were always triggered by my progesterone dropping, so now that the swings aren’t as drastic, the migraines aren’t as bad. I also got a Mirena IUD, which helped me.

      I would get on COQ10, 300mgs a day, if you aren’t already – that’s helped my migraines a ton.

      • I don’t actually think mine are hormonal, the continuous BC is just an added measure to fight my awful migraines. I take topamax, noratryptaline, and propanolol daily as preventatives and recently started Botox treatment (the Botox is a gamechanger). Hopefully discontinuing BC doesn’t exacerbate things.

        • Anonymous :

          Good luck with the topamax withdrawal – it really s*cks. I’ve done that cocktail – the only thing that helps is botox. I take no other migraine prophylactics, only abortives as necessary.

        • As a migraine sufferer, you should not be on any BC that contains oestrogen, whether your migraines are hormonal or not. You should notice a difference now that you are off BC.

      • I had that same issue (headaches when the progesterone dropped). I’m on a progesterone only pill that you take continuously and it has made all the difference.

  13. Picnic food- no cooking necessary :

    I have this yen to go on a picnic before the weather changes into Fall. What are your go-to picnic foods that do not require a lot of prep? I love a good chopped salad, but my ideal picnic experience right now involves breezing through Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and my local grocery (Kroger) and picking up premade things (including deli) that I don’t have to prepare myself.

    • We do a lot of Friday night picnics at the local beach. I usually grab something to make sandwiches – nicer bread and fillings than I’d usually bother with for work – whatever prepared salad looks good, and a really good cheese with crackers. Sometimes if I have leftovers that travel well I’ll pack those too, like cold grilled vegetables. And some melon or berries, sparkling water, and wine. Half the time I just end up eating the cheese and crackers and fruit, but my daughter likes the sandwiches.
      A good cooler and lots of ice packs are key. Also, I have a tendency to forget serving utensils and napkins.

      • Frozen Peach :

        Oh I love the idea of cold grilled vegetables! And sparkling water! I know myself well enough to know that I need a clear focused menu before I start wandering and buying things. Thanks!!

      • For sandwiches, my favorite picnic hack is to get one of those giant round King’s Hawaiian Bread loafs that come in a tin. Remove from tin, cut in half, make delicious sandwich, place back in tin, cut into pie wedges, and place back into the bag. Voila.

    • I love the idea of a good picnic, complete with hampers and alcohol. But that has never happened. I so enjoy the outdoors that I don’t care. Some day I would like one straight out of a Merchant / Ivory film.

      • Frozen Peach :

        Yes! We were actually gifted a beautiful picnic hamper as a wedding present. I want to use it! But I have a toddler and no time to cook.

    • Grocery store fried chicken. Meat and cheese plate. Crusty bread. Mustard. Watermelon.

      • Senior Attorney :

        This. Plus wine and macarons. Substitute grapes for the watermelon if you want to be less messy. Add some fancy olives if you want to be fancier.

    • Flats Only :

      Fried chicken! Stop at KFC on your way to the picnic venue, and enjoy the chicken at “room temperature”. I once dragged a bucket of fried chicken around all day on the National Mall for July 4th, and it was delicious all day and didn’t spoil.

      • Senior Attorney :

        Funny story: We have a box at the Hollywood Bowl that seats four. Some years ago the couple we had invited to be our guests canceled at the last minute so my then-husband and I decided to just go by ourselves and instead of a fancy show-offy picnic, we stopped at KFC and got a dinner to go.

        The couple in the next box was apparently expecting Very Important Guests, and they had knocked themselves out preparing a Very Fancy Picnic including pate and All The Cheeses, and I don’t know what-all. It was a veritable feast. And at one point the wife peeked over at what we were eating and exclaimed wistfully, “Oh my gosh! I LOVE KFC!”

        • Anony-Mouse :

          My favorite “celebration” dinner ever was KFC. After my college graduation all my friends had their parents take them out to the fanciest restaurants they could find (before us grads went out and partied). My parents picked up a bucket of chicken and we had a picnic by the lake on my college campus. Not only did I avoid the crazy restaurant scene with all the graduates clamoring for reservations, but it was a great way to appreciate the beautiful campus scenery one last time.

      • Baconpancakes :

        That was the original point of fried chicken! The frying process keeps it good longer!

    • Meat, cheese, good bread, olives, condiments of your choice, and wine. Pack a wine opener and a small cutting board/ cheese board.

      • givemyregards :

        +1 to this suggestion! My SO and I are vegetarians, so I forgo the meat, but just bring a loaf of french/italian bread (extra points if you get the parbake from the grocery store, then wrap it in foil out of the oven before the picnic so it’s still warm!), delicious cheese, olives, wine, and a big salad. I leave a wine key, some plastic cups, and cutlery in our picnic bag (a cooler bag from harris teeter) b/c I otherwise I’ll forgot them 100% of the time.

    • Pasta salad, quinoa salad, or cold sesame noodles. I would imagine that such things are available on the prepared foods bar at Whole Foods.

    • We usually get croissants from the bakery and then either deli meat, cheese, and a few toppings, or prepared chicken salad and make sandwiches. I usually get whatever fruit looks good like grapes or strawberries. Sometimes chips and dip too. And something yummy for dessert. Our bakery has little strawberry cheesecake that is so good. Or sometimes I just pick up sushi haha.

    • Veggies, hummus, crackers, Babybel cheese, pasta salad with lots of veggies, and a tetra pack of wine. Some chocolates or caramel stroopwaffels for dessert.

    • A good baguette, brie and prosciutto. Cut up some fruit and veggies. Maybe add a ready salad or dip.

    • Our Whole Foods has a whole array of predone pasta, quinoa, etc. salads, as well as prepared green salads. Grab two or three of those, a chilled bottle of wine, some nice bread and a bar of good dark chocolate, and you’re good to go.

    • It is for this exact reason–wanting to fancy picnic–that my travel stash includes two collapsible silicone cups, a TSA-friendly corkscrew, and a tiny wooden cheese paddle. They all fit in a small sandwich bag-sized pouch, and they get tossed into any suitcase/tote bag when we go somewhere, so that we can always have a bottle of wine, some cheese and bread, and enjoy the good life.

  14. Anon for this :

    I have a rash on my inner thigh, near my v*gina. I get these from time to time particularly in the summer. It is wet to the touch. Is this a heat rash? How do you treat this?

    • Could it be chafing? Try some of the anti-chafing products and/or wear slipshorts under dresses and skirts.

      • AttiredAttorney :

        Sounds like a chafing rash. Get some Jockey Skimmies or Span x shorts.

        • Anon for this :

          Thank you. So I actually wear Spanx shorts pretty much every day, so I don’t think it’s chafing.

          • Possibly a fungal infection. Like babies with diaper rash, if an area is moist (like getting sweaty in summer) and then tightly covered (from the spanx) you can get a fungal skin infection. I treat mine with OTC anti fungal cream but I’ve already confirmed what it is with the doctor, who can also prescribe a more potent treatment.

          • If you are wearing spanx everyday it might be from too much moisture in that area from sweat. Try taking a break from the shorts and keeping the area as dry as possible

          • …and if you can, sleep commando for a few nights.

          • Hmm, then it could be akin to diaper rash. Go bare as often as possible and use diaper rash cream. We used a mixture of Lotrimin and Desitin for suspected fungal infections. A+D diaper cream works well too.

    • Might be. I get heat rash periodically on my ribs. Why always my ribs? Who knows. I treat with cortisone cream. It goes away after a couple days, then flares up again in a different spot a month later. All summer long. And I’m in Houston, so summer is always.

      For a rash in that location, slipshorts might also be helpful, as suggested above.

    • Baconpancakes :

      I find the Monistat Anti-Chafing gel helps with that, and soothes it once it’s started so that it can heal.

    • Marshmallow :

      If you wear slip shorts and it isn’t chafing– it might be eczema. Some types of eczema can break open and may have kind of a clear pus. (fun!) Try an OTC cortisone cream, but don’t use it for more than two weeks at a time. If it’s not better by then, might be worth going to the doctor.

  15. Christmas in New Orleans :

    I just bought plane tickets for our family (mom, dad, tween girl) to spend several days in New Orleans over Christmas. What special holiday experiences should we look for? We would especially like to hear some great jazz music in all-ages venues, to eat some great food on Christmas Day, and to do a lot of walking/hiking. Also possibly a little shopping, especially in boutiques that carry interesting stuff you can’t find at the mall.

    • Go to Bourbon Street, but look out for pickpockets and flim-flammers. It can be fun, but if you have money and appear to be at all drunk, watch out– you are fair game for the locals.

      • Senior Attorney :

        I found Bourbon Street the worst part of New Orleans. Too many people, most of whom were drunk, too noisy, to spring-breakish-in-a-bad-way. Especially not kid-friendly.

        • I think Mary is a friend or cousin of our friend whose first initial is E.

          • Senior Attorney :

            Yeah realized too late. D’oh!

          • Never too many shoes... :

            I am not sure that is quite fair. Bourbon Street is definitely an experience, and at night it is definitely not for everyone. But I have lots of friends who have taken their kids for a stroll along it during the day when it is calmer.

    • Delta Dawn :

      The Roosevelt Hotel is beautiful at Christmas. They have a restaurant that is lovely and is open on Christmas (more of a white tablecloth vibe than a NOLA cajun cooking vibe, so it depends what you are looking for). Most of the nice hotel restaurants are open on Christmas– Monteleone, etc. Also, the Monteleone has the Carousel bar, which is really neat. Your daughter may be able to go to Carousel in the daytime, but at night it’s definitely a bar.

    • My favorite topic! From a New Orleanian (well, at least from the near suburbs):

      I’d make reservations at Domenica. It’s a great Italian restaurant, and they do a several-course menu for the holiday, at least on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. The restaurant also happens to be situated in the Roosevelt Hotel, which is amazingly decorated for the holidays. If you decide to do that, make a reservation early–my family used to go every year on Christmas Eve, but we couldn’t get a reservation last year. (Note that the Sazerac Bar is located in the hotel, but minors aren’t allowed in the bar area. We got kicked out two years ago because we had a couple of 6-month-olds with us (seriously). You can get a drink to go and enjoy it in the hotel lobby.)

      My favorite restaurants right now are probably Cochon and Shaya. Meril and Peche might also be good options–fun atmosphere and great food. If you’re feeling spendy, Commander’s Palace and Restaurant August are both excellent and worth the money. Brunch at Commander’s Palace is a classic experience, but DH and I had dinner there for our anniversary and birthdays (combined) this spring, and dinner was ridiculously good.

      On food generally, one of the big Christmas events is Celebration in the Oaks, which is located in City Park. It runs every night until sometime close to New Years. You have to buy tickets, but the park is decorated with Christmas lights, there are tents with hot chocolate etc, and you can take a train ride around the park to see all the lights. You could combine that outing with a meal at Cafe Degas (mmmm…French onion soup) and have an awesome night. Note, buy tickets to Celebration in the Oaks in advance to avoid waiting in line.

      On Christmas Eve, there are bonfires along the river, but a little ways out from New Orleans. To view them, you’d have to drive about an hour or take a tour. I’ve never done it, in part because we always have family obligations, but it’s a possibility.

      If this is something your daughter would be into, there’s a lovely Holiday Tea at the Windsor Court. I went as a special treat when I was pregnant and couldn’t drink alcohol. The lobby of the Windsor Court is decorated beautifully for Christmas, and the tea service is very good. I’m not sure I’d go so far as to say it’s worth the money, but it’s a good experience if money is no object.

      The only all-ages jazz club I know of is Preservation Hall. You can also hear live music, usually zydeco or blues or similar, at Rock N Bowl (located in mid-city), which is open to all ages at least up to a certain time. And the House of Blues does a gospel brunch that’s open to all ages. There are also concerts in December at St. Louis Cathedral, but I believe they end several days before Christmas.

      • Christmas in New Orleans :

        This is a wealth of information–thank you!

      • SC, my friends go to the bonfires on Christmas eve and they go on a bus. We call it “the drunk bus to the bonfires.” It’s apparently a blast. I can’t ever go because I have to sing…

        • Oops that was me

        • Good to know! If I ever go, I’d like the “drunk bus to the bonfires.” DH’s parents are divorced, so Side A gets Christmas Eve Part 1, Side B gets Christmas Eve Part 2, Side A gets Christmas morning, Side B gets Christmas Lunch, Side A gets Christmas dinner. I wish I were kidding. To be fair, there are different groups of people each time we switch sides. And since we had a kid, we’ve started opting out of some events. Last year, I didn’t go to Christmas Eve Part 1, and we hosted people for Christmas dinner so Kiddo could be in his own bed after a busy day.

    • I wrote a novel, but it’s in moderation :-/

  16. A recruiter I’ve been working with from a company I love called me back while I was driving. She said they liked me during my interview, and that they could move me forward in the process after I gave her input on another job they were interested in having me interview for. Once I finally was able to sit down and respond, I got a reply that she’ll be out of the office until Monday, and that will be the soonest I’ll hear from her. By moving forward, I don’t know if that means “hired” or “more interviews”. I should’ve asked before I got off the phone.

    Ugh. I just feel so unmotivated today at work. I feel like the anxiety of waiting to hear back is eating at me. Any tips to get through a four day slump?

    • What fun thing can you do after work?

      Is there a museum open late? Maybe an art gallery? Have you gone to the library recently to check out some good movies? Maybe take a yoga class? Buy a swimming pass for a nice hotel and go swim or go to the movies! Finding something to switch up your routine is a good way to end a slump!

    • Historically, weekends when I’ve been waiting to hear back about a job are times when my house gets incredibly clean. Find something, be it fun or productive, to channel that nervous energy into!

  17. Looking for Labor Day trip suggestions! Not going to see family. Taking 4 days for some R&R and fun. The only place I can think of is Vegas (love the food, hotels & shows). Not a huge partier or into raves etc. any ideas?!?

    • More parameters would be helpful — budget? Climate? Tons of cities are fun to visit for 4 days but if you want a mix of relaxing at the beach or pool with sightseeing and dining, Miami? San Diego? Chicago (lakefront beach, but still)?

      • Labor Day :

        No budget specified – open to something new. Not FL, NYC, Hawaii, TX, GA, CA, Vegas, AZ. Wanting something new and exciting. Live 15 min from a beach now and have a pool so neither or those are appealing. Looking for something domestic with good food, things to do, scenic.

    • Where are you coming from?

    • New York City?

    • Are you outdoorsy? I like going hiking on long weekends. We’ve done the NC mountains, GA mountains, and a few areas in Colorado. On the city note, I vote Denver. We went in September last year and had a great time. It gets really chilly at night though, even when it is warm during the day. The drop was dramatic.

      • Labor Day :

        Been to GA Mountains, not really outdoorsy. Live in Cali so hiking is kind of redundant.

    • Senior Attorney :

      We’re going bike riding/wine tasting in the California Central Coast. Great scenery and food and it’s beautifully relaxing.

    • Hilton Head has been my Labor Day go to for the last few years. Always fun and relaxing!

    • Anonymous :

      New Mexico?

  18. Have any of you tried Trunk Club? I thought stitchfix was overpriced but I’ve liked Birchbox and other subscriptions where the brands are recogniable. I already shop at Nordstrom a lot and could use a boost to get out of my comfort zone. Any reviews or guidance?

    • I used Trunk Club in the past and really liked it. I think a lot depends on how you get on with your stylist, and I loved mine. She was great at sending me things that I specifically wanted but was also somehow able to zero in on stuff that I wouldn’t have said that I wanted but that I ended up loving.

      That said, if you found Stitchfix overpriced, I’m not sure Trunk Club is the way to go. Since it is all Nordstrom stuff, it isn’t exactly inexpensive. Also, a lot of what my stylist sent me was just outside of what I would comfortably pay under normal circumstances, but because it was so perfect and I fell in love, I’d end up keeping it anyway. So … wasn’t great for the budget.

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve heard mixed things from Trunk Club. Favorable reviews from people who felt like they were stuck in a style rut and needed help thinking outside the box, less favorable reviews from people who liked to shop sales and/or had a pretty defined sense of personal style already.

      • Anonymous :

        I did it and liked my stylist’s suggestions, but it was just not worth the price (and this was before they had a styling fee). It’s all Nordstrom pieces, but they won’t price match other stores (unless Nordstrom is expressly price matching it on their website–if Nordstrom is only price matching by request, TC won’t match that). TC also won’t do price adjustments. I love brands like Joie, Paige and Vince, but I tend to buy them on sale or close to sale and then get price adjustments, so having to pay full price for every piece was just not doable for my budget (especially since I really did like her styling and wanted to buy all the things, but $200 for every shirt…). I’d rather just do a personal shopper at Nordstrom.

    • Anonymous :

      I got one Trunk Club box and kept nothing. It taught me a LOT about my personal style: I am much more conservative than I thought! They had like no good suit options.

  19. Penny Pedant :

    Just to note, this is technically a “button-up” or “button-front” shirt, but not a button-down. Button down shirts refer to the two small buttons on the collar that allows the collar to literally be buttoned down.

    I’m sure this is one of those words that will eventually come to have a different meaning through continual incorrect use, but just thought I would toss this out here as a point of interest.

    • We’ve already moved on.

      • Clearly, we haven’t all moved on as anonymous still felt enough of an emotional pull to make a snarky comment.

        I actually had this communication failure with my grandmother, who was trying to help me get my work wardrobe started when I graduated from law school. I kept saying I wanted button downs and she couldn’t find them for women- then we realized I was talking about button fronts.

      • Anonymous :

        I found it interesting.

  20. Anyone here have experiences using Instacart, especially for Costco shopping? They recently expanded to our area and I’m interested in trying the service. I love Costco’s food options but the experience of shopping at Costco, I could do without.

    • Hate buying produce through them (bruised tomatoes, tiny soft zucchinis, like they’d never purchased produce before), besides that I’ve had good experiences. I didn’t find it as hands-off as I would’ve liked because there is a fair amount of “they were out of XYZ brand, what else would you prefer?” For the weeks that I just cannot make it to the grocery store, it is a really nice luxury.

      • I use Instacart maybe once a week at the budget big supermarket near me for the can’t-screw-it-up stuff like la croix, dog food, yogurt, paper goods, condiments, frozen stuff, milk, etc. I usually avoid ordering meat and produce thru them, but that’s more because of the store I use than the service itself (I just go to the market myself for those things when I need them). No Costco experience, but I’ll tune in for responses because I’ve thought about it.

        Once I became consistent about using the notes feature for each item, the “hands off” value started showing. For example, I hate big firm zucchini and prefer smaller ones, but my shoppers all thought bigger was better for produce (we must have opposite shoppers! too funny); once I started specifying, and including options or descriptions for acceptable replacements, it was instantly better.

    • I have two kids and I love the option to use Instacart for both Whole Foods and Costco. Just be aware that Costco Instacart prices are about 25% higher (in Bay Area) than in store. Still cheaper than Amazon for some products.

    • Mrs. Jones :

      I use Instacart for groceries from Kroger or Publix and like it. I HATE grocery shopping.

    • We use Google Express for a lot of the non-perishable Costco items (think toilet paper, garbage bags, dish soap), there is no markup just a monthly or annual fee.

  21. too much bro :

    there’s a guy that is very bro-ey at work… today he had an outburst saying su-ck my d*** (not to anyone specifically but loud enough for us all to hear). would you talk to him directly or speak to his superior?

  22. NYC residents! Any suggestions for cleaning services?

    DH and I just moved here, are not responsible adults, and need some HALP!

    • The Wizard of Homes. http://wizardofhomes.com/

    • Anon in NYC :

      Where in NYC are you? I have a Brooklyn recommendation.

    • Meg March :

      We had good experiences with Si Se Puede (http://www.wecandoit.coop/) which is an all-female, worker-owned cooperative. All of the members are immigrants and they use eco-friendly products. You can schedule to get the same person every time, or ask for whoever’s available if you do irregular cleaning. We found them efficient, reasonably-priced and very friendly.

  23. Kind of proud of myself for politely but firmly calling a coworker out on something he did that he shouldn’t have on a project we’re both working on but that I’m the lead on. He totally agreed that he was out of line and said he wouldn’t do it again. I’m not that good at standing up for myself in a professional context but I’m working on it and proud of myself for doing it today.

  24. long-wearing lipstick :

    How do I get lipstick off the shared office dishwashing brush I used to scrub my coffee cup? I tried soaping it in the sink already. This is so embarrassing because I’m pretty sure I’m one of the only people who wears lipstick on the regular and they will know it is me.

    On the upside I only need to reapply lipstick once a day after eating lunch.

    • Anonymous :

      Maybe oil to break down the wax/material of the lipstick? Going forward, might be easier too to just wipe it off with a paper towel before scrubbing.

      • long-wearing lipstick :

        I typically do, but there must have been some residue I missed. The only oil product around is a tub of margarine in the fridge and I don’t know who it belongs to. Maybe I can scrape a bit out without anyone knowing…

  25. OT: People- please give me advice or talk me down from the ledge. I am so angry I am seeing red at this point.
    I am SO angry– I have been working hard towards a promotion for 3 years now– I should have gotten it months ago, but due to several organizational changes, I kept having to rework my goals and the path to those goals (because each new bosses had a different idea about what being at the next level entailed). For the last 9 months, my boss has been saying this is a sure thing- and for various office politics reasons it kept getting delayed (more re-orgs, lay offs, and other things happening). This week, my boss said he put in the paperwork and that as part of this promotion I would need to take on a re-occurring assignment that everyone on my team hates to do– you don’t have warning when it will be needed, the turnaround time is a few hours, and it’s a lot of grunt work and waiting around and you get zero recognition for it. I agreed to take it on if 2 things occurred (one would allow me to do the work without a delay, and the other was my getting promoted). So today, the co-worker who is doing the work currently emails me to set up a time to offload the work on me. I respond, ‘oh I’d love to learn more about this, but we are delaying the transition until X & X happens.’ I also emailed my boss and said, thanks for the talk earlier this week- how can we make sure X & X happens, so that I can start the work. His response was basically ‘you misunderstood me, this is not a long term transition, you will be taking this on now.’ I am so frustrated. I feel if the promotion were imminent, it would not be an issue to wait– and if I take this on, I lose a decent amount of leverage and also will be taking on a project that I do not currently have the tools for (I’ll need the higher level of authority to actually process it- currently I’ll be doing the work and waiting for someone else with the higher level of authority to approve it, which will add on hours to each work day for me). I like my job & my boss, my situation is such that this job/setup is not easily replaceable, but I have also turned down other (good paying but less desirable for non $ reasons) interviews and jobs recently– I have hinted about this to my boss but haven’t told him directly. Has anyone else navigated their way around something like this? I am tired of doing work for a promotion that is promised but never materializes. Help me with sage advice wise ladies!

    • Anonymous :

      You need to start looking for a new job. You are not going to get this promotion, and even if you do you’ll probably feel (justifiably) resentful that it took so long.

      • I tend to agree.

        SO has been promised a raise 4 times in 2 years, and none of them have materialized. He’s looking for a new job. At this point they don’t think they have to give him one to keep him around and they’ve proven they won’t keep their promises anyway.

        • I know you guys are right about this- is there a way to say no to the extra work or is that a lost cause too?

          • I don’t think you can say no to it because it sounds like he is being pretty firm here, but I think you can adjust his expectations about it. Go talk to him in person and explain that because of your current level of authority, you need X approvals when this type of assignment comes up, which requires Y time to get, and that will extend your deliverable time to Z. Explain what’s possible given the parameters you have to work within.

          • Unfortunately there isn’t wiggle room with the assignment (which is a large reason why everyone hates doing it). Both the approval level & the deadline are set by regulation and compromising either will result in multi-million dollar fines). The requirement is that we need to get it in before midnight the same day we receive the request, even if I have to wait all night for the other approver. The person approving, will get it to me before midnight, but generally not much earlier than that. This effectively means I will lose several evenings a week.

          • If he knows this and is still handing you this assignment, all the more reason to quit ASAP. This is seriously bad management.

      • Yes, you need a new job.

        It really sucks but I think you have to come to terms with the fact that this place is not going to become what you want it to be.

    • Anonymous :

      You need to have an in person conversation with the boss about expectations, both yours and his, and then go from there. Reference the earlier conversation you had and try to understand his thinking. Don’t do this over email. It might be from his perspective that you need already be doing this and will continue to do it if/when you get promoted. Also agree that you simultaneously need to start job hunting so that you have the option of leaving when you want or so that you have leverage to get more at your current job. Good luck.

      • We do this once a month, we have a one on one where I am very direct with my goals and expectations and asking for how to get there. That’s one reason I’m so frustrated. I have also gotten other offers, but every time I hint at that, he says that I am getting promoted– but it has been months now that this has been going on (and on and on and on).

        • Anonymous :

          Then it’s time to go, esp since, if you have other offers. :) It sounds like you are receiving empty promises, partly because you are willing to put up with a lot and partly because, for whatever reason, they are unwilling to promote you, due to economics or whatever. The other alternative is to approach your boss with your offer in hand and threaten to walk unless they grant you what you are asking for. This has consequences too but it’s a possible option.

          • Yes, I am ALMOST willing to try this, but am worried it will burn bridges– I hinted at it with my last offer. I had a few days to respond and felt that I had enough assurances with my boss that the promotion was happening so declined the job. Ugh.

          • Anonymous :

            Yes, burning bridges is a real risk but there is a way to do it to soften that. And you have to explicitly disclose that you have another offer that you are prepared to take and then demand something that gives you certainty, such as an immediate pay raise. Again, good luck. I know what it’s like to be undervalued and it’s really demoralizing.

          • Anonymous :

            Depending on how long ago that job offer was, I would be inclined to call them up and let them know that you have reconsidered about would be interested if the position is still available.

  26. This does look comfy!
    -gabby
    www.orcuttfamilydentistry.com

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