Coffee Break: Alexa Quilted Slouchy Leather Tote

This tote is one of the bestsellers at Bloomingdale’s, and a few other stores have some options, too, like Zappos, Amazon, and Nordstrom (although Nordstrom doesn’t have the slouchy tote). No one seems to have as many as Bloomingdale’s, though. I like the stitched, quilted look, and the great chain detail, and the tote has a magnetic snap closure as well. It’s $595, although the “Aged Vachetta” version is 30% off at Bloomingdale’s, which brings it down to $416. Alexa Quilted Slouchy Leather Tote

Here’s a more affordable option at Zappos.

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  1. gift ideas please? :

    I loooooove this bag.

    Please, wise women, what should I buy my husband for his 40th birthday? He’s a casual guy, arty, great dad, dresses basically like he is in college. I am stuck and considering everything from a sweatshirt to a car. (kidding but barely.) please help!

    • If he’s arty, what about a piece of art for your home? Or a commissioned portrait of your family?

      I have a hard-to-shop for guy and planned a surprise night out at an Escape Room with all our friends. It was a hit. (I am fortunate that he does not care if a gift is tangible.)

    • Senior Attorney :

      For my husbsnd’s big birthday last week I got him the personalized birthday book from the New York Times and he loved it.

    • Dirty weekend escape incl lingerie for you! He will love it!

    • An experience? E.g., my guy is a pilot and I got him a ride in a WWII aircraft.

    • If you’re seriously considering a sweatshirt, may I recommend American Giant? Best ever.

      Another idea: 40 little presents? They can run the gamut from small and silly to big and meaningful. Kids could join in and so much to unwrap!

    • Anonymous :

      Something from SaddleBack Leather

    • My very similar sounding husband just was telling me about how awesome a “Mafia Bag” would be. I guess they are made out of recycled sails and are very lightweight? I haven’t researched it at all yet, but he is very very enthusiastic about them.

  2. Need a Makeover in Chicago :

    I just found out I am getting a major promotion that will have me relocating internationally in 3-4 months. It comes with a pay raise now and a big bump after a year. I am thrilled. But . . . I need to up my game.

    I presented at a conference for my company — part of why I got the promotion — in early September and the photos from it really surprised me. I had no idea my tummy was so visible in profile photos, my neck so large and my chin so weak.

    The cherry on top is that I thought I was doing a better job on my facial hair than I seem to be. It was like seeing myself for the first time, and it wasn’t good. I first saw the photos a few weeks ago and they’re still bothering me.

    I have 3-4 months before I move out of Chicago. If this panic doesn’t blow over, any recommendations for hair removal, chin lift, and clothes styling in Chicago? (I don’t want to buy a full new wardrobe here, but I know the clothes will be cheaper here so I’d like to start rebuilding my wardrobe before I pack it all up.) I have a lot of sick leave so I think it would be better to have any procedures done here, before I go, especially because if my visa paperwork doesn’t come through, I may be here even longer than 3-4 months.

    Also, the less extreme route — suggestions for a make up person who can help me or image consultant who could do clothes and make up?


    • Never too many shoes... :


      Laser hair removal is so easy and effective these days and in four months it will pretty much all be gone, so go for it if it bothers you.

    • Don’t get plastic surgery because you got one bad picture taken.

      • Senior Attorney :

        On the other hand, I had a chin lift some years ago after a major weight loss left me with a turkey neck in place of the old double chin. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

    • Anonymous :

      You do not need a chin lift. Stop it. You got a promotion because you are good at your job. Get a great hair cut, a wax, and buy some new power clothes. Then, remind yourself that you are confident competent and killing it and move on from nit picking your appearance.

    • anonagogo :

      I know this doesn’t answer your actual question, but I really want to tell you — Congratulations on your promotion and your successful presentation!

    • Anonymous :

      just another option: get a photographer to take professional headshots and business portraits. They know how to make you look good and it should be cheaper than surgery.

      • pugsnbourbon :

        +1. If this was a photo taken while you were on stage by someone who was seated below you – nobody looks good from that angle.

        Congratulations on kicking butt at your job!

    • Anon in NYC :

      Congratulations! Have you used one of the personal stylists from Nordstrom? I have good experiences with them for more casual clothing.

      • I used Jessica Spencer at the Nordstrom on Michigan for a similar professional makeover awhile back, and had the best experience – she helped with with all of my clothing purchases from that point on. I recently relocated and she is legit one of the things I miss most about Chicago, ha! She is very honest (but kind) about what works and what doesn’t, and is low-no pressure in terms of sales tactics. She was so responsive to feedback and it took her no time at all to hone in on my ideal “look.”

    • Never wax/worry about hair removal again.

      Get the Twinkle dry razors on Amazon. For facial hair removal. Amazing. So simple. Life changing. Makes your skin feel great too.

      Make sure you watch a video to do it correctly.

      You will be able to have a perfectly hair-free face with like…. a minute of work a week. Painless. Cheap. Easy.

      Learned about it here.

      • Senior Attorney :


        Game changing.

      • Anonymous :


        My guess is that you have dark hair and pale skin if you are having your facial hair show in pictures. I have tried laser, which made existing hairs finer and reduced them somewhat. New hairs came anyway and nothing but electrolysis stops them. Start going now and find a person when you relocate. I’m in my 40s and it’s just a periodic maintenance thing for the new ones (and I have them on my face, upper lip, lower lip, under my chin, and even on my neck).


        • Formally Hirsute :

          Had electrolysis done at 30 north Michigan suite 1122 by Amy Rosofsky. She’s great. (312) 641-2766

        • Never too many shoes... :

          Really? I am really pale with dark hair (Greek with pcos) and laser totally got rid of it all.

          • Anonymous :

            I didn’t have PCOS.

            Laser thinned out a lot of upper lip and chin. But I had almost a fine fur on my cheeks and some sideburns trying to grow. Late 40s thing maybe? But I’ve been grappling since my 30s.

        • But why? Twinkle razors are SO MUCH easier/cheaper/painless.

          Just try it. Order on Amazon.

          Get rid of your dark hairs, your fine fur, your side burns… anything!

          I am vary wary around the eyebrows though. I tweeze those.

      • Mrs. Jones :

        LOVE this little razor. I use it about every 5-6 days on chin/upper lip.

  3. Vicarious shopping help? :

    I’m a guest at a wedding in the LA area (Disney) in mid-March. Ceremony and reception will be outside, so it will likely be chilly. I need a dress, either to rent or buy.

    Ideally, I’d like something with 3/4 sleeves (I prefer the look to having to have a sweater or wrap). I will definitely be wearing heels. I’d like to avoid:

    – Anything very short, as I’ll be picking up a toddler regularly (ideally no shorter than above-the-knee; I’m 5’3″)
    – Crew neck (boat, scoop, or V-neck is OK)
    – Sheath shape (I wear this all the time for work, and would prefer something a little more flowy/modern than my normal slightly preppy look)


    • How formal is the wedding? If not too formal, this one looks nice, though maybe a little summery for mid-March?

    • Look at Sezane or Reformation.

    • This might be close to knee length on a non-model:

      This is fun, if you like green

    • Rental options:

  4. Office culture quirks :

    Just for fun, does anyone else’s office have harmless but inexplicable rules or cultural norms?

    Mine, for example, in rural America, has a strict “don’t talk about Wales” policy. Not vacation plans, fictional representations…I’m working on an exception for my Pembroke corgi.

  5. Where do you find sweaters these days? I am in serious need of warm, business to business casual sweaters for work (not cardigans). I’d like something with a little interest as well as a few high-quality staples. Everlane seems to be a good candidate? Other ideas? I see Uniqlo cashmere and merino wool mentioned here a lot. Where can I look for some patterned options?

    I feel like a lot of my sweater purchases in recent years have worn or pilled quickly.

    • Anonymous :

      I was just saying this yesterday – I guess it’s blends that pill, so was wondering the best fabrics for mild weather where wool isn’t appropriate.

      • Fabrics pill when the fibers are shorter, I don’t think it has to do with blends, just quality.

        • Anonymous :

          So that explains the AT and BR ones!

          • Anonymous :

            All of my fuzzy cashmere pills (mostly Halogen). The nicer one I have from Lands End Canvas line (still soft, just not as fuzzy), doesn’t do it as badly.

            I don’t recall ever having issues with merino wool sweaters (regardless of make, I have mostly BR), since merino wool sweaters don’t tend to be as fuzzy.

        • Pilling has to do with fibers escaping from yarn. That can happen because of the way the yard is constructed (e.g., single ply yarn doesn’t hold fibers as well as multiple plies, tightly twisted yarn holds them better), the length of the fibers its comprised of, or a combination of both. (Interestingly, construction techniques that yield more durable yarn are often more firm/less soft than less durable ones). Cashmere is a very short fiber from goats; it is always going to be more prone to loose fibers than sheep’s wool, no matter how high quality it is.

          Cottons and synthetics, and blends that include them, tend to be shorter fibers and therefore pill more than pure wool, although I have had some pretty durable 100% cotton sweaters. Merino wool is not that long compared to other kinds of wool but it is soft due to how fine it is and the shape of the fiber.

          I think Boden tends to have lovely sweaters and their quality is generally great.

    • Anonymous :

      I’m a fan of Uniqlo too. My Everlane purchases have been okay, but their cuts tend to be short and don’t cover my tummy when I lift up my arms.

  6. anon a mouse :

    Hive, help me buy a down comforter? Must be all natural fibers (no polyester anywhere). I want it to be fluffy like the ones in hotels but not super hot. Ideally less than $300 for a king.

    • Ikea! They have different weights and the filling is down with a cotton exterior

    • LL Bean or Lands End. We went back and forth on these but ended up with LL Bean and love it.

    • Anony Mouse :

      I had an Ikea down comforter in my early ’20s, and bought a Cuddldown several years ago. The Ikea one was perfectly adequate; the Cuddledown is definitely higher quality (and made in the US). A king-sized 600 Fill Power Primary Down Comforter at Level 1 is $399.

    • comforters :

      Company Store

    • Get “down to basics” – they are the supplier or buy from the same supplier as Miraval Spa (and they are amazing)

  7. Anon for this :

    My ILs are foreign and live overseas. DH is now a US citizen. FIL asked us about what happens if he passes away and leaves us money – does the executor wire the money from overseas to us? If FIL wants to give us a cash gift before he passes. should he just wire us the money?

    ILs spend several months out of the year here with us, so FIL was also wondering if he should just open a joint US account with DH. I have no idea if that would be a problem for any reason.

    Anyone with overseas family encountered these issues?

    • Anonymous :

      Yeah it’s just a wire transfer. If it’s significant money it’s worth it to talk to a tax pro now.

    • If you receive an inheritance, its taxable same as it would be here (depending on amount).
      Wiring money is easier from some countries than others and some banks vs. others.
      If you have a joint account that is opened here, your husband can access all the money in it whenever, before or after. No issues as far as I know. FIL can give cash gifts but same tax rules apply as if he was here. I think it’s ~$14K each/per year (so, e.g., he and MIL can give each of you up to the tax limit once a year without incurring any taxes); above the amount, is technically fine too as it just counts against the total estate amount but can raise some red flags and require explanations. I don’t recall who has to file the tax forms.

      • Not legal advice BUT, note that if FIL isn’t a US person, he generally isn’t subject to US tax laws, except to assets located here. It’s usually easier to make the gift offshore and have your H bring it on shore to avoid FIL from owning assets here. A CPA or atty familiar with cross border issues can give you good advice.

    • Anonymous :

      If your FIL is not a resident and doesn’t have a SSN, most banks will not want to give him an account. If your husband is main account holder it might be different though.

  8. Anonymous :

    I’m having a miserable day. I had a minor pregnancy complication that resulted in my doctor recommending I not travel for an important work event. Work was understanding, but they’re sending a (young, childless) colleague in my place who is very ambitious and has made it clear she has designs on my job.
    I know the health of me and my baby is paramount and I know anyone can get ill or injured and have to miss important things at work unexpectedly, but this s-cks and I feel like that cliche leaning out pregnant woman. And I’m worried I won’t have a job (or at least the same job) to come back to after maternity leave, since the same colleague will probably be covering for me then too.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Hugs. I’m sorry about this. If they don’t give your job back to you after your protected leave, please sue their pants off.

      • Your job is not protected, a job is. The job has to be substantially similar (you can’t have an attorney come back to a secretary job) but it doesn’t have to be the same.

        • Rainbow Hair :

          Fair point. If coworker is gunning to ~take~ her job though, how many substantially similar spots are there at the company? (My company employs two lawyers. If someone ‘stole’ my job there would be no ‘substantially similar’ place to put me, so that colored my view.)

    • Anonymous :

      Sorry but by taking 3-4 months off to be home, you will be leaning out and your colleague will be working – so go colleague. Now if you can come back and show them up by working and traveling as you used to – great – you’ll be back to your deserved spot. But let’s be real – you’ll be pumping and not wanting to travel as much and/or not wanting to work too late bc you’ll want to be home, right? So why shouldn’t your colleague pull ahead in the race??

      • There’s a difference between her colleague working hard in her absence and her colleague working to steal the job that is protected during the months of leave. Her colleague should work hard and be rewarded. But not by taking OP’s job.
        Wanting to have kids does not mean you don’t want to continue to do well at work.

        • maternity question :

          But the OP’s specific job responsibilities are not protected, only that a job be available for her. And I do know of people legally laid off while on maternity leave, as part of a larger layoff, so maternity leave is not a magic protection (though there’s no indication from the OP that layoffs are in the offing).

      • Anonymous :

        You’re making a lot of assumptions, many of which are false. I’ll be out for a little over 2 months, most of which will be spent recovering from major abdominal surgery (scheduled C-section) not having fun with my baby. I’m not planning to pump at work and I have no reservations about resuming work travel immediately (not that travel is a large part of my job, this is an important event but only takes place every two years).
        But thanks for kicking me when I’m down.

      • I smell the same troll that frequently pops up on these/lgbt issues. Just saying.

      • I hope you fall off a cliff onto sharp rocks.

        • Anonymous :

          First of all, genuine conversation is being compromised because of the constant sending of posts to moderation.
          Secondly, no one is a b for mentioning that a co-worker who is hard-working, ambitious, willing to step up and cover an important meeting on short notice should be rewarded. Your co-worker is letting people know that she is a contributor. That doesn’t make her a b, and it doesn’t make anyone on this site a b for acknowledging that the co-worker deserves recognition and rewards for doing what she is doing. It is weird that the OP can’t recognize that a successful co-worker doesn’t make her any less so.

    • this is very frustrating, but as i know someone who just went into labor early while on a work trip and is stuck now in this other city with their baby in the nicu, this is probably best for you and your health. one thing to remember is that these things can happen even for health issues unrelated to pregnancy. I had a friend who had to have back surgery and wasn’t allowed to fly for three months and so missed a big work conference for that. It is totally illegal for you not to have a job to come back to after maternity leave. it is hard not to get frustrated in these situations, but try to focus on the here and now. hang in there!

    • It really rubs me the wrong way when I see ambitious used as an insult or negative descriptor, especially about women. Ambition is a good thing.

      • Anonymous :

        I’m sorry if it came across that way. I would describe myself as ambitious too and I didnt intend it as an insult. I also like my colleague on a personal level. But it is still a scary position to be in when someone ambitious wants your job, because ambitious people normally get what they want (myself included!) and as someone who loves my job and has poured my heart and soul into it for years and now can’t perform an important job function for medical reasons and this go-getter is being given the opportunity… it’s not a good feeling.

        • Anonymous :

          My direct report has been gunning for my job (neither of us has kids and he’s a man, so I can avoid the inner conflict you may be feeling about the gender piece of this). My solution was I enlisted two coworkers at my level. They routinely interrupt him when he talks over me in meetings, etc. I don’t know if it’s helping my career, but it’s helping me feel less alone and less exhausted by the whole thing. Hang in there!

        • Anonymous :

          this isn’t your co-worker’s problem. she is allowed to be ambitious. if she isn’t at a point in her life where kids are in the picture, then she probably can be more committed to work at this moment, than someone who is pregnant. presumably, you were her once. you can feel unstable at work and worried about your pregnancy and mad that you are missing this work trip. none of those things are your co-workers fault. she is working hard and ready to step up and step in. there is nothing wrong with that. it is up to your company to create policies that support people who need to take time off for family reasons, and it is up to your direct boss to recognize your value. Either you are creating the zero sum game mentality or your direct boss is, but nothing about your post leads me to believe that your ambitious co-worker is. And on a side note, Go Ambition! What a great thing to see.

          • OP here. I’d didn’t say my coworker did anything wrong (and I didn’t call her or anyone else a “b”, that was someone else). I just had a miserable day – all in the space of about 6 hours, finding out I can’t go to this event I’ve worked hard to plan for for a really long time, having to break that bad news to multiple bosses (who took it well but it was still not a fun series of conversations), etc., – and then finding out that the coworker who has openly expressed her desire to replace me is going instead and seeing her thrill at getting to go was salt in the wound.
            Don’t get me wrong, I’d feel the same way in my coworkers shoes and I don’t blame her for seizing the opportunity. But I’m in *my* shoes and it’s frustrating and sad and I just wanted some virtual hugs, not lectures about how great it is that my coworker is ambitious. I can be sad about the objectively sad situation without thinking my coworker is a bad person.

        • I know it’s scary, but (although a bit counterintuitive), I think this can be a good thing for you. Get that colleague 100% prepped to cover for you (now and during your leave), and make sure your superiors know that, to the extent she does a great job covering for you, it was because you did such an awesome job setting it up. If she does well while you’re gone, I suspect people’s take-away will be “wow, things went perfectly during OP’s leave,” *not* “colleague is better than OP.” If your job wasn’t well-c0vered, it might make people more grumpy about your absence. I think you can leverage this colleague’s ambition to benefit you – and maybe end up making her an ally to your career, rather than a threat.

    • Never too many shoes... :

      I am so sorry, OP. I was placed on emergency bed rest with no notice for three months and it sucked. Just continue to be as awesome as you can until the minute you go on leave and then kick ass when you come back. That is all you can do…apart from maybe keeping in touch with someone you trust while you are out just to keep an eye on things.

    • Anonymous :

      I can very very much appreciate how you feel. Hugs and sending love to you and your little one.

      My head is still spinning from a similar situation. I was actually put on bedrest for 2 months. I came back from mat leave and said colleague has in fact been promoted. I burst into angry tears when I heard the news. When I see her in the halls now, I can barely look at her or the person who did the promotion. It’s not her fault, it’s not my fault, it’s no one’s fault. In fact, I tried analyzing the situation from our supervisor’s point of view, and probably would have done the exact same thing. And while pregnant or a new mom, it’s unreasonable to try to continue with a heavy workload and lots of stress. In my good moments, I tell myself, that there is a season for everything, and this is my season to have space and time to love my babies. HOWEVER, these emotions about what happened are STRONG. I think mine are a combination of jealousy and resentment. Powerful stuff. Hard to shake off. I don’t have any advice, but I can speak from someone on the other side to say that I’m here, and I hear you.

  9. Just received an email from the mail order wine distributor I use (Lot18) announcing they have a full collection of Outlander wines. It’s adorable. With so many Outlander fans on this board, thought a few folks might be interested. I have a referral code if anyone wants it.

  10. Inheritance :

    If I had $50K to leave someone in a will, I’d just leave it outright unless it would go to minor children.

    If someone left me any amount, outright or in trust, I’d be fine with that. I’d prefer outright, but whatever.

    I’m massively overinsured at work (like 5M or some amount that I find shocking). If I die, there will be a ton of $, which I don’t want to leave to my husband outright but want to put into a trust b/c we have minor children. I think I have valid reasons for not leaving it all to him outright (squandering on his part, $ not making it to the kids, etc.). He just absolutely doesn’t see any part of my side of things. As a result, I don’t even have a will (just my state intestacy statute, which gives him a 1/3 share in all non-joint assets, with the rest divided among our children).

    We both come from backgrounds where you don’t have big $ money, but likley just your house. Both of our parents started with nothing, so will leave each other everything. [FWIW, he stands to inhert a share of a paid-off house easily worth $1M and I am OK if he leaves it in any way he sees fit as I guess I totally buy into things being separate property under our state’s law.]

    Advice for discussing? We’re generally on the same page financially, which makes this very upsetting. With minor children, I really feel strongly that I get things for their benefit with certainty and would up and die today if I thought anything I’d worked so hard for would go to my inlaws, some floozy, or otherwise.

    • Anonymous :

      It sounds like you don’t trust him to care for your children if you aren’t there.

      • Inheritance :

        I think he’d actually be good at that. But I have seen people blow through $ and people make all sorts of bad decisions that why would I leave that optionality on the table? It’s like not getting renters insurance. It’s an easy problem to fix (actaully, unilaterally getting renters insurance is easy; this is proving not to be).

        It’s not that I don’t trust him now, it’s that I don’t trust human nature of other bad people. And it only takes one (recent example: guy in nursing home “married” his caregiver even though he is mentally dodgy; adult children are livid; now “wife” is blocking children from seeing him and as a spouse she is within her rights to do so).

      • Inheritance :

        And by statute he has to get 1/3 of the $ anyway, so if you get say $1M outright, how is not getting the rest outright (but in trust) really a problem???

    • Anonymous :

      I think the bigger problem is that you don’t trust your husband to manage money. I’d be incredibly hurt if my husband wanted to leave everything directly to the kids and not to me. But we trust each other to use the money appropriately and leave the remainder to the mutually agreed people (I.e., our kids, not in-laws or new spouses).
      And a “floozy” really?? Do you hate your husband that much? The thought of my husband remarrying after my death obviously doesn’t give me warm fuzzies but I want him to be happy and trust him to marry a suitable partner and step-parent if he remarries. I don’t think you can resolve the estate planning issues without resolving the trust (emotional trust, not legal trust) issues.

      • Inheritance :

        I don’t want to bypass him – I was thinking that what people did was have a trust where the spouse gets income for the spouse’s lifetime (and for some good reasons / within a standard) can invade the corpus but it goes to the kids when the spouse dies (and then in trust until they are 35 or so) (and before then: can use for education / medical / etc.). Maybe this isn’t quite how it works, but it sounded good on paper.

        [Again, if we got to the talking to a lawyer phase, I’d be clearer.]

        • Anonymous :

          Yeah that’s when you have a lot of money. You don’t. One million is a standard life insurance policy.

    • Anonymous :

      I hate to say this…but you don’t trust your husband. That being said, the answer is in thirds…if you have 5M and leave your husband 1.5, and create trusts funded by 1.5 each–then mischief managed. If I recall, with an insurance policy, you name the beneficiaries and you don’t need your husband to sign a will. In a worst case scenario, your husband would get 1/2 but the kids would still each receive 1.25 million. (2.5 for husband, 2.5 for kids). But if you honestly think that your husband is going to blow 5 million dollars to the detriment of your children–you unfortunately have bigger problems than a future inheritance problem…

      • Anonymous :

        Wait — so anyone who sets up a will and trust = a person who doesn’t trust their spouse? Law firms have whole departments devoted to this — are there that many nontrusting people? And only nontrusting people going to them? I can’t believe that it’s that simple, especially when people have minor children.

        • Setting up a will is normal. Setting up a will to bypass your adult spouse and leave money directly to your minor children is not normal. Even if you provide for the spouse during his life, it indicates a huge lack of trust in him to say – in effect – that you trust your children more.

          • *To leave ALL your money directly to your minor children is not normal, I mean. It’s relatively common to bequeath something directly to children, but to not give your spouse any money outright is very odd.

        • Anonymous :

          Setting up a will: normal. Trying to avoid leaving your spouse your life insurance because you don’t trust them to spend it well: insane.

      • Anonymous :

        I consider $5M to be in the attractive nuisance category, so if someone were getting that, for their benefit, I’d put it into a trust. Drugs, baby mommas, alleged baby mommas, someone gets into a car accident and wants to sue you, litigious family members. There’s a lot of crazy out there in the world and with $5M, it sometimes finds you.

        Plus, if you die in the same car accident without a trust, your minor kids will go off the rails a lot faster if the split $5M when they turn 18.

        • Anonymous :

          that’s the angle I would choose for discussion with your partner. What if someone tries to sue him or destroy his life somehow, things he can’t control? If a portion of the money goes to your kids, they are provided for in these circumstances.

    • I did something like this. 1/3 went in trust to DH and 2/3 went in trust to children. There were two arguments I made. First, I would want DH to remarry. If he remarried someone with children I would want the $ to go the children we had together, not a stranger’s children. A trust means it’s out of his hands – he could honestly tell his second wife he can’t do anything about it. Second, because of the amount of money involved, there were estate tax reasons to leave it to the kids. For example, if I die next year, DH could live another 30 years. Better to pay estate taxes on the current value and not the value in 30 years.

      TBH, though, one factor was that I’m the primary earner and DH doesn’t have a lot of experience dealing with this amount of money, nor does he have a great history with money. If a will, in some way, forced me to become a plumber I would horribly botch every job and probably flood a few houses. DH is amazing, and I trust him to *want* to do the right thing, but he shouldn’t be forced to take on a task he has no aptitude or experience with.

      • Anonymous :

        My husband is . . . good at some things and a worrier about even the things he’s good at. It’s like a varsity sport with him — worry, worry, worry.

        Plus, if I died first, he’d have the whole emotional labor thing to deal with (OMG the kids would never RSVP for birthday parties b/c he never does those sorts of things). I hope he’d move closer to his family b/c he’s going to need a lot of help. [If he died first, I’d probably get a PT nanny to help out, but would beg my parents to move closer.]

        I think he would think he’d like the illusion of control over $ and would initially chafe at not having it outright, but would be secretly relieved if managing it and dealing with accounting etc. was done for him and out of his hands. Plus, he gets nervous about things of all sorts and tends to blurt out what he’s most nervous / worried about. It’s a good thing he doesn’t play poker b/c everything’s a tell with him.

    • Anonymous :

      A thought I had is that if my husband dies first and my sister raises the kids, she has a lot of expenses related to them b/c she works FT and so does her husband. I don’t want to leave my $ directly to her though (in case I die when my kids are >18), so I’d dump the $ in a trust that instructs use for her needs (related to my children — like she might need to move to a larger house and maybe the trust pays a % of the increased mortgage payment???).

      But if my cousin’s husband was in an at-fault wreck and I left them the $ directly, all of my $ could be wiped out; it a trust, it just seems safer.

      It’s so complicated to provide for contingencies.

      • I just want to clarify, that if you’re dead, it’s not “your” money anymore.

        • Anonymous :

          No kidding. I think the point is that is now belongs to someone who is potentially a stranger to you and at odds with the people you know and love. If you wanted to leave it to something like a charitable remainder trust, the charity doesn’t get it, either.

    • Anonymous :

      You don’t trust your husband to use the money responsibly to raise your children? That’s what the life insurance is for. So you dying doesn’t leave him devastated and broke. I think you’re making a decision that is strange and abnormal and I see why he is offended. Life insurance is so he can hire a nanny and pay for camp and retire without the benefit of two incomes. It is not supposed to be an inheritance. If I were him I’d wonder why exactly you don’t trust me to take care of our children and when you exited our marriage as a team player.

    • I know you’re getting a lot of contrary comments, and I know I’m posting late, but what you are describing is TOTALLY normal. You leave it in trust for his benefit, with restrictions on how he can use it (ie, he can’t leave it to new wife). Whatever is left over goes to kids. It provides creditor protections for him and the kids. And, let’s be honest, some people just aren’t good with money. I love my husband and he 100% would take good care of the kids. Would he also use the $$ to finish restoring the project car in the garage? Yup, and that’s not what life insurance is for. Not to use let my situation color yours…

  11. k-beauty beginner :

    My first products have arrived! I’m planning to just swap one product every 1-2 weeks, but I’m a bit concerned that products might not work as well with my current routine, particularly since I don’t know the pH of my current line. I was planning to start with the Kose oil cleanser (thanks for the rec here!), but I’m not completely sure that my existing face wash will do what it should after the oil cleanser, the way the next step in the k-beauty routine would. Same thing with my moisturizer. It seems like the pH matters a lot, and the order matters a lot, so it seems weird to just start swapping products out. I think that as long as I don’t have irritated skin or a breakout, it’s fine. But it feels like I won’t know if a k-beauty product is drying me out or making me too oily if I don’t know how it’s reacting with my current skincare products. Like, maybe my current mild toner dries me out too much when used in combination with the new k-beauty face wash, but I don’t really know that until I remove the current toner.

    Anyone have experience with swapping things out for testing? In the past, I’ve just switched to a new line that’s all in the same brand, and I was able to isolate one product in that brand that didn’t agree with me, so I stopped using it and had fine results. But it looks like k-beauty is much more amenable to intermixing brands because it’s based more around the specific thing you’re trying to do with a single product. Or maybe I’m just stuck in my Western ways?

    • You should give yourself longer than 1-2 weeks to swap in products. Ideally, you want 6 weeks with one product before introducing the next, primarily due to cell turnover issues. But I would say give something a try for 3-4 weeks before introducing something new. Don’t worry too much about the ph – just see how your face reacts slowly overtime.

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