Coffee Break – Chevron Striped Linen Scarf

Chevron Striped Linen ScarfOoh: ShopBop is having its big end of summer sale, and I’m loving this bright, happy scarf from Juicy Couture. The linen/cotton combo is always a winner with scarves (super soft but durable), and I just love the fresh colors. The scarf was $68, but is now marked to $47.60 at ShopBop. Juicy Couture Chevron Striped Linen Scarf



  1. lawsuited :

    Can anyone recommend stores for businesswear SIZE 16 AND UP? Although I could buy this OS scarf, a lot of the beautiful clothes recommended on this site are not available in my size.


    • karenpadi :

      Check the weekend thread–there was a convo on this there.

      • lawsuited :

        Thanks, karenpadi! I thought I had posted the question there, but went back and couldn’t find it. (A product of 500 comments on the weekend thread, I’m sure.) Sorry for cluttering this thread too!

    • Blonde lawyer :

      I recently started getting a catalog that sells sizes 10-24. Not sure how I got on the mailing list since I usually order a size 6. It had REALLY cute stuff in it and a lot of it was business appropriate. If I think of the name or find the catalog I will post it here. I think I got on the mailing list after buying something from Boden.

      • That would be great, Blonde Lawyer! For me, finding work appropriate clothes in plus sizes is the hardest. It’s like the few retailers who do offer plus size options think that all we need is weekend wear. Not so!

    • Merabella :

      Wardrobe Oxygen wrote about a company that rents out clothes to women in those sizes, and she has listed several work appropriate plus size retailers as well.

    • I’m a 16 and usually do really well with suits from Ann Taylor (some stores have much better selection than others) or the Ann Taylor Factory store. They carry up to 18 but fit can vary a bit by cut. I like that you can purchase as separates because I’m usually a 14 on top.

    • Macy’s plus size section is usually pretty good with lots of professional clothing. Talbots’ quality seems to have gone down the crapper but I used to shop there.

  2. Love this color!

    • Hey, how are you doing since finishing the dissertation?

      • Aww, thanks for asking. Submitted on Friday and have a few weeks off before starting a new term (I’m in a 1+3 so I just finished my MSc and will start my PhD shortly). Wasn’t super thrilled with the final product but you never are, right?

        Getting my life back together, dentist, haircut, annoying to dos that were neglected in the madness.

  3. anon for this :

    Piggy backing on this morning’s discussions, for those of you in biglaw or who used to be in biglaw, how much do/did you save each year while there? By savings, I’m including 401ks, other investments, and savings accounts.

    • cornellian :

      in my first year in NYC. I’m pulling 12% out of each paycheck post-tax and putting it in a savings account, but (BAD!) pulling it for unexpected expenses. Trying to stop that! Right now that money is just cushion.

      I’m also pulling 12% for my 401(k), as I didn’t start in January, so this will get me close to maxing out. I contributed to a roth IRA through law school, so that’s hanging out there, too.

      • Well so long as the unexpected expenses are necessary ones (home repairs, car repairs, medical bills, etc), I don’t think that’s bad. That’s what savings are for.

    • After 3 1/2 years, I had saved about $90,000, not including my 401(k) (that had about $70,000 in it). But I didn’t start out with much debt (about $50,000) so that didn’t take me long to pay off.

      • How did your 401(k) have that much after such a short time period? Was it a match?

        • No. I’m not sure. Maybe I’m thinking of what it was worth after a few years — it was doing quite well for awhile.

        • cornellian :

          what is it with law firms and not matching? It’s sort of an anomaly.

          • Apparently, my firm used to match. It was a casualty of belt-tightening after the tech bubble burst.

          • My firm matches an itty bitty bit that only becomes yours if you stay for years. But I guess it’s better than nothing.

          • I’ve read it has something to do with income levels of people who participate, taxes, and penalities. Yeah, that was really helpful, I know. But I dont’ remember the details (obviously) or really any information. I was surprised when I started at a firm and discovered there was no match.

    • It’s hard for me to break out what I could individually save (I’m a second year in NYC, married, no kids). My husband and I each max out our 401ks (so 17k/pp), and we put roughly 3700/mo into savings (so approximately 44k/year). But, we don’t have that much in savings right now because we were paying off some debts. And, we do have a fair bit of credit card debt, so we put a lot of money towards those cards, as well as my enormous student loan payments every month. Basically, I feel like I’m never saving enough because our monthly expenditures are so high, so it seems like it will take us forever to get an emergency fund that I’m comfortable with.

    • karenpadi :

      Maxed out the 401k ($16500/year), $2.3k/month to loans (just as important as saving with 6-figure debt), and $1k/month to savings. Bonuses to loans. “Found money” and extra money in checking at the end of the month to savings.

      • I did something pretty similar at a large regional firm (so bonuses nowhere near as eye-popping as some of you lucky ladies in other markets, more salary compression, etc.). Max out 401k. About $25K/yr to savings through weekly automatic transfers from checking account to savings account at another bank. Sweep extra $$ left in checking at the end of every pay period into savings or write a check to a lender. Monthly automatic transfers from checking to brokerage acct (I’m not doing it right now, but at some point in the future, I’ll set up the brokerage acct again to make automatic share purchases once or twice a month) . Bonuses straight to loan repayment (minus a few hundred bucks for me to go do something fun with).

    • 3rd year in CA. I max out my 401(k) (17k/year) and put $6k per month in my savings account.

      • dang, anon, you go girl. That’s awesome!

        • another anon :

          Wow! Anon, if by math skillz are up to par, you save 17 + (6X12) = 89k a year? If you wouldn’t mind, would love to hear how you do that (especially living in CA!).

          • I honestly don’t see how that’s possible, assuming your salary is around $175k. Is that right?

      • I paid off my $160k in loans in my first 2 years after graduation by basically throwing my entire take-home pay plus bonuses (except for 401k contributions) towards my loans. As a result, I got used to living very frugally. We live on my husband’s respectable (but well under $100k) salary and save mine (and occasionally some of his). We are very frugal– we cook everything from scratch and grow some of our own food (both of which we enjoy doing, so it’s not a chore), don’t have cable, very rarely climate control our house (we’re in SoCal, so it’s possible to do so without being really uncomfortable, though, to be honest, it sucks sometimes, like now when it’s 90 degrees in our house), plan our vacations around business travel so that one person’s airfare is paid for, drive old (but reliable) cars, etc. We always budget before making a major financial decision. We want to save enough for a 20% down payment in CA in two years, and that motivates us.

        • Okay, that makes more sense that it’s $6,000 from two salaries. That’s still really impressive!

    • Former Partner, Now In-House :

      I have said this consistently since leaving BigLaw:

      Figure out how much money you need in your retirement account as of the age you will be when you stop working in BigLaw in order for it to stay invested and be enough to retire on when you retire. Do not leave BigLaw until you have that amount in your retirement account. Once you leave BigLaw, you won’t be able to add to your account at nearly the same rate every year. If you haven’t talked to a financial advisor yet, do it now (and do this with him/her) before you leave BigLaw.

      • Love this advice :

        What is a good estimate of “how much money you need in your retirement account as of the age you will be when you stop working in BigLaw in order for it to stay invested and be enough to retire on when you retire”? I’d love to implement this, but as a 25-yr old, it’s hard for me to imagine how much I’ll need in 30-40+ years.

    • Public Servant :

      This conversation is really depressing for this modestly paid government employee.

      • Likewise. I put $1000/mo toward loans and 14% (including employer match) in my 401K and have no other savings other than my health savings account.

      • TurtleWexler :

        Yep. I’m not even close to maxing out my TSP (though I do get a match, so at least that’s something). I guess the price for having a decent workload now is working forever/hoping to retire somewhere cheap…

      • Want to be really depressed? I worked for AmeriCorps for the last two years. I saved 20%+ per paycheck, between my savings account and my IRA, and I have less in those accounts combined than the majority of people in this thread save in a month.

        • Jenna Rink :

          You should still be incredibly proud to have saved 20% while in AmeriCorps! I can’t imagine living on that stipend at all, let alone on 80% of that stipend. Good for you!

          • Thanks. It definitely wasn’t easy, but I was in an area with a very low cost of living, which helped a ton.

      • Indeed. Especially since the latest contract talk is a 12–25% pay cut for my job.

  4. Honey Pillows :

    Sorry for the early TJ, but…

    I missed the thread this morning due to an incredibly busy Monday, but earlier, K…in transition posted about the Defining Decade, which I finished this morning on the metro.

    Did anyone else find the last chapter absolutely terrifying? I know I want kids, but I also want at least one more degree, a career path that actually looks like it’s going somewhere, and at least SOME time between a wedding and getting preggers. I’m coupled, but the wonderful Dear Young Buck can barely see himself getting married, let alone having kids. We’re two years in, and I’m in my late twenties, and now I’m panicking that I need to stop wasting my time with someone who doesn’t want to “settle down,” regardless of how happy we make each other. I don’t want to have to undergo tens of thousands of dollars of fertility treatments!

    This last chapter comes right after watching “Friends with Kids” yesterday, and it feels far too convenient to be coincidental.

    • kerrycontrary :

      Honestly, at any age, if you want to get married soon and you are with someone who can’t see themselves getting married soon, then you are wasting your time. I’m only 25 and I won’t date anyone I couldn’t see myself getting married to, and who wants to get married and have kids as well. And the kids things is a BIG deal in a relationship. Like a grounds-for-a-divorce big deal. Because a lot of times when people don’t want kids they aren’t going to suddenly want kids just because you wish them too. So unfortunately you may need to find someone that you are in love with, who wants to get married, and who wants to have kids if those three things are important to you and your life plan.

      • Honey Pillows :

        Should have clarified -I’m at least three years out from wanting to get married, and I can’t see kids on the horizon for another six or seven. The DYB doesn’t NOT want kids, but he’s certainly not sure he does want them -and I’m trying to figure out whether to stick it in a healthy, loving, respectful, satisfying relationship and see if he makes up his mind, or find someone who also wants to get married in threeish years and have kids in another six or sevenish.

        • Honestly, I’d say stick it out another year and see how things progress. And honestly timelines are nice to have, but you never know what life will throw your way. I know plenty of people who were on a path, broke up, and within a two year window were married with kids on the way. Life is funny sometimes. If you don’t see a future with the guy, cut your losses. If you think you’d like to marry him one day, see where it goes?

        • I’ve always been ambivalent about children and my DH has generally felt the same. But, kids have been more on my mind lately, so we’ve been talking about it. One of the things that my husband would always say is “kids freak me out,” so I finally had ask him, “is that just because you’re scared/not ready, or because you actually don’t want children?” He was (is) just scared. So, maybe it’s similar.

          But I agree that you don’t want to waste time on a relationship (regardless of how great it may be) if the other person doesn’t have the same long-term goals in terms of kids. I think a 2-yr long relationship is serious enough that you can (and should) sit down and have a “where are we going” conversation. And tell him that you’re not pressuring him to decide right now, but that kids are a dealbreaker for you, and you need to know that he is open to the possibility of children down the line.

        • Late twenties and no kids for six or seven years? So, you are hoping that you can get pregnant and have a healthy baby at around age 33? What is it you are waiting for exactly? I had my first at 33 and then my body wouldn’t produce another one. I think as a society, this idea that we take birth control up until the time our eggs are dried out is a little crazy.

          • orchidlady :

            I know lots of people who wait until 33 or even older; I don’t think it’s that uncommon anymore, especially in urban areas. You never know until you try, and as someone else said below, you could have fertility problems in your 20s or no trouble at all when you’re 39.

          • In secondary infertility hell :

            Cosigned. Conceived my first at 28 with no problems. I turned 32 last week and have been trying almost a year for No. 2. And I am terrified that the problems I’m having now would’ve been preventable if I’d started sooner.

    • haven’t read it, but breathe.

      There are plenty of sound resources that say motherhood at 35+ is safe and doable. Can it be more risky, sure. But if you’re relatively healthy and willing to take extra great care of yourself before conceiving you will more than likely be fine. Pregnancy is a risk no matter what age you are and there is a value to waiting if you want/need to.

      • What is the value?

        • As a 24-year-old who read that book today (and needed a rather generous glass of wine to get through the last two sections), I still think I can take a stab at it. Values would include finding a baby daddy who you actually want to spend your life with, as opposed to a sperm donor; establishing a stable relationship with said baby daddy; becoming more affluent; doing things like buying a house, paying down student loans, and/or starting to save for college before incurring other costs related to bearing a human child; and banking more capital in a career. I’m sure ladies who are closer to crunch time, as it were, have more thoughts.

          • The value of finding the perfect mate is spot on but I disagree that you must be affluent and a homeowner before having kids. That kind of thinking is why so many women wait until it is too late.

    • Diana Barry :

      You could have the kids conversation and see where it goes. You can also back out of the age when you want to START having kids to the time that you would want to get married, and see what age that is and how far out it is from where you are now.

      I got married at 26 and had my first kid at 29, so am probably not the best data point.

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      Yes, I found the last chapter very scary! I am 24 and when I think about my family life in 10 years, I hope I’ll be married, own a home or condo, and have a kid or two. But then I think – OK, I’m going to grad school next year (I’ll be 25), the program is two years, then I’ll want to get established before having kids and do I want to have kids with six figures of loan debt still hanging over my head? And how will I qualify for a mortgage with that much debt?

      Not to mention there is no groom in sight. So really, good luck to me.

      I had to remind myself that it’s time to breathe, that things will happen as they happen, and that the idea of marriage (and the adulthood it connotes) will be less scary in 3-4 years (hopefully). But it did clarify for me that when I think of who I’m dating seriously, I want to think about how I don’t actually have unlimited time to “figure it out,” which caused me to reevaluate a casual relationship I was in at the time and realize it was holding me back from meeting someone where it would turn into something more serious. I think now I’m more conscious when I date someone of whether it has longterm potential and if not, I’m more likely to cut things out early than just dilly dally along because it’s going “okay.”

    • I am a planner and a thinker and Type A, but give yourself some room to have things happen organically. At 26, when I finished med school, my ten year plan included finishing residency, securing a high powered academic fellowship and establishing myself as an academic surgeon. I thought I’d get married after residency and (maybe) have kids after fellowship.

      Literally, within 6 months of that plan, I met my now DH and once I found him, was ready to marry him. After we go engaged, we had a birth control malfunction and realized how fertile we were. Within 5 years of the original plan, I was married, had a kid, and was practicing general surgery. My life is great. But the plans I had were not the plans I acted on. Let yourself be spontaneous enough that things are allowed to progress in a way. Nora Ephron’s commencement speech from Wellesley is a great inspiration in this area.

      That being said, but my husband and I were in the “kids, someday” camp, not the “no kids” camp. I never regret that our hand forced a little bit, because our life is so so good.

      • That’s a lovely story. :)

        +1 for having a plan in mind, and working towards it, but never being so committed to the plan that you can’t let the world move you.

    • Maddie Ross :

      And just another thought (althought it’s like beating a dead horse at this point) — please don’t think that the minute you turn 35 you’re doomed to fertility treatments… or that you won’t need them in your 20s. Definitely do not take your fertility and that nature-mandated timetable lightly. But you just never, ever know. I feel as though I’m reminded of that on a daily basis anymore. Both on this board and in real life.

      • Honey Pillows :

        That’s actually a really good point, Maddie Ross, and very steadying. I’m not worried about having kids RIGHT NOW, so I don’t have to start freaking out and have kids in exactly X years.

        Thanks for the input, ladies. Most of the opinions confirm what I’d been thinking, but I needed to hear it from someone else to stop the little panic attack I had going on there.

    • transition :

      I will say that I’m on the opposite side… never going to have kids. However I find it helps to make it super clear on my online dating profile and such to note this as I don’t want to waste my time or a guy’s time since that’s non-negotiable on both sides. I also won’t continue to date someone whom I couldn’t see myself marrying. I see no point, short of if I happen to be looking for someone to tiptoe through the tulips in my lady garden.

      It sounds like it’s time to chat with your beau about your timelines?

  5. Kindle threadjack — I’m trying to decide whether I should get a Kindle, and if so, which one. I already have a laptop and an iPhone, so I don’t really need the functionality of an iPad or the more advanced Kindles. But I’m debating getting one of the low end models just to read at home and while traveling, and to check books out of the local library’s e-book lending program. I could do all of this with my laptop, but I get tired of being in front of a computer all the time. Any opinions on Kindles? Do I need anything other than the most basic model? I’m also open to suggestions for alternate readers if anyone has one that they love.

    • I bought an iPad and then bought the $79 Kindle, which turned out to be a great investment. The Kindle is so so so much lighter than an iPad or a laptop — not just for comfort in holding it, but also in throwing it in your purse without a second thought. The e-ink is also a lot easier on your eyes than a computer screen or an iPad screen. Also, I bought a water-resistant case for my Kindle, so I now use it to read in the pool, on boats, outside, etc., none of which I would recommend doing with a laptop or iPad. That $79 is the best money I spent all summer!

      • I have the basic 3G and Wifi Kindle and love, love, love it. It’s wonderfully small and convenient and I love not having to find a place to put books after I’ve read them. I bought the Amazon case with the built-in book light and use it almost every night. Can’t recommend it highly enough.

      • Aria is exactly right. Reading on my iPad is like work since it’s a computer screen, whereas reading on the Kindle is more like reading a book, and it’s much lighter weight. Plus you don’t have to worry about glare on the screen, so you can read it anywhere.

      • hellskitchen :

        Can you download free ebooks on your Kindle? On all models or just some? Not talking about downloading from libraries but sites like Project Gutenberg… essentially, can you go online on a Kindle and download PDF or Word versions of books from Project Gutenberg?

        • Double Hoo :

          Yes. Look up the free Calibre ebook management software to put anything that doesn’t come directly from Amazon on the Kindle. You can get ready-converted Kindle files (.mobi extension) from Project Gutenberg, and Calibre will convert other formats to Kindle for you too if you acquire something in a different format.

          The Kindle will not read Word, and although it claims to read PDF, I find it sub-optimal because it doesn’t quite get the text size/white spacing right to read comfortably, and you can’t adjust that like on normal Kindle files. I think there are PDF-to-Kindle conversion programs out there but I’ve never had to do this. For Word, just save it as a .rtf file and then Calibre will convert it for you.

          My other tip is to use a combo of Readability (strips web formatting away from text) and the “Kindle It” browser extension (sends any webpage to Kindle, with a bit of setting up of approved email addresses) to very quickly send articles, fan fiction, or anything else text-heavy that you don’t want to read on your computer to the Kindle. I have little links to both services in my bookmarks bar and it takes me 30 seconds to do this.

          I have the Kindle Touch with wi-fi. I would say the touch-screen/buttons debate is a personal choice, wi-fi is essential, and I’ve never felt the need for 3G or anything else fancy. The weeks-long battery life is another major selling point over the iPad, not to mention the more pleasant screen to read from. I can’t speak to comparisons with the Kindle Fire/Nook/Kobo, etc., but I’m happy with the Kindle + Amazon + Calibre combo I use.

          The Kindle pays for itself pretty quickly, though it depends somewhat on what you read. You can get into the “cheap printer, expensive ink” concept if you buy a lot of best-sellers where the Kindle price is close to a regular book price, but if you read a lot of public domain or more obscure titles that are heavily discounted for the Kindle, you’ll save.

          • hellskitchen :

            Thanks Double Hoo – this is detailed and super helpful. I think I am going to buy a Kindle asap

          • Double Hoo :

            You are welcome!

            One other pro to the Kindle I just thought of compared to Nook/others (though maybe the iBooks system also works this way): I just moved internationally and it was very easy to transfer my US Amazon account to my new country. I now buy Kindle books in my new currency, and so far there is like-for-like availability. (I am still in a western, English-speaking country, so this may vary.) I’d recommend against getting locked into something US-centric such as the B&N Nook if you’re buying a lot of books and might someday live or travel extensively elsewhere. You still keep all your old books, but for example I can no longer buy US books because it knows my location is outside the US.

      • anon in SF :

        I really like my kindle. I have the somewhat older model that has the keyboard (which is useless). It is much smaller and lighter than either an ipad or a laptop, and the reading experience is much much better. I love taking it with me to read outside, which you can’t really do with the other devices. (I’d also avoid the Kindle Fire for this reason). The downside is that it is really a single use device, not good for web surfing, etc.

        I especially love taking it on vacation. I stock up on books before I leave, and read the whole trip. A single charge lasts for about 12 hours of reading time. My husband and I used to fight over who got to use the kindle and who got stuck with the ipad on vacation, so I broke down and bought a second inexpensive one so we can both have one.

    • I have a basic model. I like it because I can get books out of the library very easily, and because many (older) books are free. My reading has a lot more variety because it’s convenient to access these books. The downside is that many books are more expensive electronically than in print and, if you buy books, you’re tying yourself to the kindle format. Also, the screens are not replacable and many people end up damaging their kindle within a few years.

      • Should mention – I live in Chicago and therefore have access to the huge CPL ebook collection. Not sure if it would be worth it if your library system is smaller.

        • Some libraries let out of state/locality users buy memberships. I know Philly does this for $35, but I haven’t tried it yet. My piddly library ebook collection is pretty limited to self-help books. gah.

      • just sayin' :

        You can strip the protection from ebook files quite easily if you spend a few minutes Googling. I’ve done this for a file my mom bought on her iPad that she wanted to share with me but I couldn’t read on my Kindle, so there are good-faith uses for it beyond book piracy. So if you wanted to, say, switch from Kindle to Nook in three years, you could convert your Kindle purchases and retain the ability to read them.

    • I have the Kindle Touch and I love it. At first, I thought it would be hard to let go of reading out of an actual book, but that hasn’t bothered me too much. I have a laptop and an iPhone, so for the same reasons you described, didn’t feel the need to get a more sophisticated model. My dad has the regular Kindle and I think that the buttons (mostly just using the keyboard) is a huge PITA. I like the touch version much better, and highly recommend it.

    • I don’t remember which model number it is, but I have the touch Kindle with ads. The ads are totally unobtrusive (show up as the screensaver). I love being able to touch a word and get the definition (mostly a feature I have my kids use, but I have found it helpful too). I believe the cost was $99.

      • I also have the Kindle Touch with ads. We had a laptop at home, an iPad, and I’m an iPhone owner — yet the Kindle fills a totally unique niche. As a bonus, you can sync your reading material to the cloud and/or your phone. I’m an avid reader with many full bookshelves in my home and still love my Kindle Touch. Great investment!

      • Research, Not Law :

        Also have the kindle touch with ads. Love it! I stare at a computer screen *all day*, so my eyes really can’t handle any more screen time, but the e-ink really is just like reading a book. Husband has the non-touch version. There are aspects I prefer of both. Sometimes the touch isn’t precise enough and I have problems turning the page rather than looking up a definition or highlighting instead of following a footnote, but it is nice when you just want to scroll through.

        Also have the leather cover with light. It’s perfect.

    • karenpadi :

      Love mine. It’s 3G and wifi and about 2.5 years old. I check books out of my local library and Amazon has some free books too for checking out. I also use it to play audio books (headphone jack).

      I have a case with a built-in light–wonderful!

    • I have the basic kindle with 3G and LOVE it!!! I read a lot and have found that the kindle doesn’t strain my eyes like the ipad, or computer does. A huge plus for the kindle is that I can read it on the beach, by the pool, or at the park with polarized sunglasses on and do not have a problem seeing the page at all. Additionally, the 3G is really helpful when traveling because it allows me to instantly download a new book when I am finished with my old one (like Terry, I use my public library’s ebook program for this and it has been great!).

      Also, get the case with the built in light – it’s really handy!

    • I paid $49 for the $79 Kindle through some Amazon deal. I love my Kindle so, so much. I haven’t bought a ton of books because I am cheap and haven’t investigated my library system’s ebooks much, but I still find plenty to read. I read all the Hunger Games through the Kindle lending library. I also have “bought” for 95 cents all the Wizard of Oz books and 4 Louisa May Alcott books for about the same price. I think the Kindle will be a great way to read a lot of the classics that everyone but me has read, many are available for free or for about $1.

      I also may be taking a trip to Europe soon (and perhaps tomorrow will post where I am going to get some travel tips, people on this site are so awesome for that!) and may “splurge” on a few Kindle books. I love the portability – it’s so light I throw it in my workbag every day just in case I find myself stuck waiting somewhere and needing something to read. I also find it so easy to read. I especially love being able to increase the font size, since my old-age farsightedness is really kicking in.

      I have an iPad as well, am contemplating taking it on said European adventure, but I am reluctant to because in my mind it is still a pricey piece of equipment, whereas the Kindle wouldn’t be quite so financially devastating to replace. I may feel differently once I get it loaded up with books.

    • I have the Nook Glowlight (~$150). I love it. We already had an iPad but I didn’t like reading on it because it’s heavier, there’s the whole glare problem outside, plus my eyes would hurt after more than 45 min or so. Also, I don’t like taking it on the subway because a) it’s heavier/takes up more space and b) I would hate to have it stolen/lost. Hence, the Nook. It weighs nothing, it’s super small even with a case, and I don’t think anyone wants to steal it and if they did, it would suck, but would hardly be as devastating as with an iPad.

      Now as to why I went with Nook over Kindle: in a word — glowlight, which lets you read in the dark. Highly useful if you live with someone, go on planes, or like staying past dusk to read outside. The glowlight is awesome! Also, while both have good reviews, most of the tech mags picked Nook over Kindle (if that sort of thing matters). And there’s never ads (unlike the Kindle) and it’s just as easy to borrow library books on it, which I do a LOT.

      Anyway, to sum up: I highly recommend it.

      • Never ads depends on your definition of ads, right? I have the nook simple touch w/o glowlight, which I also love. But, on the “Home” page the bottom half if full of “books you might like” (to buy from us). Not that I’m really at that screen for long at any point.

    • Don’t rule out the Nook… I’ve had Nooks all along, and the new Nook Glow is the bomb-diggity… I like the e-ink better than a tablet, and with the Nook glow you get the added advantage of being able to back-light the page when needed. I love love love being able to read in bed without disturbing my partner, or out on the patio on a cool summer night without bothering with another light source. Using the light discharges the battery a little faster, but it’ll still go over a week with heavy usage without a charge… almost a month if not using the light. Plus, on a Nook you can read PDFs and EPubs if needed (I think Kindles still only read Kindle format?) and some of the books you can even share (but only once, and only some books). I also borrow Ebooks online from both my small local library, as well as the Free Philadelphia Library for $35/year.

    • I have both the first Kindle version (now $79) and the Kindle Fire. I much prefer the cheaper one for everyday reading, for all the reasons cited by others. It’s also smaller and fits into my purse better. I rarely end up typing on the Kindle, so don’t care much about the keyboard interface. You can look up words on the basic model just by scrolling with the arrow buttons down to the word you want defined — up they pop!

    • I have a Kindle Touch and I love it. I got the 3G and it’s been totally worth it for travel or anywhere I don’t have access to other wi-fi. I have a leather cover and throw it in my carry on bag or put it on the treadmill. I don’t have a light, but might use it on a plane or in bed.

    • After carrying heavy hard cover novels on my commute for too long, I switched to the Nook Touch. You can purchase returned versions for about $20 off, and the only difference is that the box has been opened. I’m not a face of the Amazon complex, but if you have Prime it would probably be better to go Kindle. Otherwise, I went Nook because it was easier to borrow library books.

  6. I’ll be traveling to Poland and Lithuania in the middle of October and I’m not sure what weight jacket I need. It looks like weather will be ranging from about 35-60, which isn’t particularly helpful. I went to Eastern Europe last December and had a heavy, waterproof coat made out of thinsulate, but I think it’s a bit too warm for October weather. I was thinking perhaps a heavy leather jacket. Does anyone have experience in this area? Do I need to worry about a lot of rain (and get something more waterproof than leather)? And, aside from the 30 degree spread for highs and lows I can find online, does anyone have a more realistic suggestion on what I should expect for weather? TIA!

    • cornellian :

      Poland is a huge area. I’ve spent time in a few Baltic and Scandinavian countries, Russia, and Germany, and I have to say 30-65 is about the best you’ll be able to pin down. If you’re near the water, you can expect it to be warmer, of course, but also unpredictable and very wet. I would worry about rain more than cold, to be honest, also in shoe planning.

      • Thanks! I’ll be in Krakow, Warsaw and then Vilnius (getting progressively colder as I go), if that helps.

    • Unfortunately there is no clear cut answer. You might get a golden week in fall with lots of sunshine and exceptionally nice temperatures. But it is just as likely to expect chilly temperatures. Especially mid-late October Rain, fog and even early frost/snow are all possibilities. I’d always rather go warmer than being too cold. I’d take a light wool coat, a scarf and gloves. Scarf and Gloves are small to pack but can make you feel a lot warmer even with a lighter coat. A heavy (!) leather coat also sounds fine to me.

    • You’re right, the weather is super variable. It’s been beautiful in October, it’s also snowed. I lived in Poland and refused to breakout my heavy winter coat until December so I got by with a cropped peacoat and a trench. Leather is a good idea. Layers are definitely the way to go, maybe thin cashmere, tanks as a base layer, and a scarf. I don’t really wear sports jackets but one of those lined windbreaker thing-ys (seriously, I know nothing sporty) would work as well. If you want to wear skirts, fleece lined tights are always great.

      So exciting. Are you going for work or fun? I lived in KRK so let me know if you’d like recs.

      • Also, if you need anything, just shoot me an email at politics rette @ GMAIL dot com.

      • Thank you! My mom and I are going on sort of a Jewish heritage tour that I’m planning (I don’t have the patience for large tour groups) and so far, apart from a rough itinerary, all we’ve done is book plane tickets. So I’d love any recs you might have on hotels, restaurants, anything we can’t miss and might not otherwise find in a tourguide (I’ve scoured the tourguides, so we’ve got all the obvious stuff covered like Auschwitz and the Salt Mines).

        And thanks for the weather recommendation. Last winter apparently Eastern Europe had a freakishly warm December and I have pictures of me walking around Budapest in nothing but a t-shirt (and carrying my three other layers), so I definitely get the importance of layering!

        • Very cool! My recs are mostly for restaurants as I lived there as a student.

          – Kazimierz- the Jewish quarter of Krakow has amazing cafes, I love Cafe Singer (tables are sewing machines)
          – Babcia Malina is in a basement and looks like a peasant hut, a bit touristy but cheap and real Poles eat there because it’s delicious. You want the placki po wiegersku if you’re ok with veal and the nalisniki if you like sweets.
          – Chimera on Swieta Ania, veggie, you can sit outdoors or inside a cave-like restaurant if it is cold. It’s a salad bar, the crumble is delish.
          – Vodka Bar is nice for drinks
          – Muzeum Naradowe is cool, definitely worth it for the 19th C art.
          – Botanical Gardens are pretty if it is nice.
          – If you don’t already have a hotel, Hotel Amadeus is gorgeous and small with a really lovely breakfast. My parents also stayed in an apartment in the main square which was a nice way to do it as they could make breakfast and coffee and do laundry. Let me know if this is of interest and I’ll dig up the name.
          – Definitely try to stay within the Planty (City Centre) or just outside. The hotels are smaller but more charming. It’s not unsafe but the train station isn’t super pictarasque.
          – For work clothes, there is this Dutch store called Tatuum that has really nice stuff, beautiful wool skirts and dresses.

    • I just got back from Krakow this spring and absolutely loved it. Highly recommend biking to Tzniec (monastary about 6 mi outside of town). Gorgeous! The town itself was lovely too…could not spend enough time navel-gazing on the town square and biking around the Planty. Have a great time! I used a Lonely Planet “city guide” that was great.

      PS–I went to Auschwitz too and highly recommend. It was so incredibly important to see, and I am so glad I did…I wasn’t sure if it would be too depressing for a pleasure vacation, but it was the opposite–really life-affirming to hear what heroes people were in the face of savagery. Do not miss!!!

      • dancinglonghorn :

        I went to Tzniec too – me and my husband rode our bikes and as we left the monastery is was absolutely pouring rain – never been so wet in my life. We still laugh because when we got back to the town we went to a pub for a bit before commuting out to our cheapo hostel and remember all the conversations with poles who thought we were crazy for cycling out in the rain!

      • I also highly recommend Auschwitz. It was an amazing experience and really one of the most memorable and important parts of my trip. If you are going there, I’d suggest also checking out some nearby UNESCO World Heritage Sites, such as the Church of Peace and the Wieliczka Salt Mines. There are lists of them online, but those are around Krakow (closer than Auschwitz), if I recall correctly. They are all worth a trip, but if you have time issues, I’d say do Auschwitz and the salt mines. I loved Warsaw and Krakow; hope you do, too!

    • I’d bring something the weight of a warm fleece, but waterproof. Like a mid-weight anorak or something similar.

  7. TJ: Hello ladies! I was hoping you guys could point me to some resources. I have on-going issues with my mom. She is highly critical about everything but disguises her comments as helpful advice when confronted. I’ve tried calmly talking to her multiple times, but since the problem clearly is the fact that I can’t handle advice, I’m the one who needs to get help and modify my behavior. If I push further she dissolves into tears because I’m attacking her, no matter how calm I am in talking to her. I’m reaching a breaking point with her, I just can’t handle the stress anymore. Can anyone recommend any books about dealing with difficult mothers? Thanks in advance!


    • I don’t have a book or anything to recommend, but my mom can be like that (brother and I joke that we should never suggest a restuarant that we like to her, because she would immediately tell us why she hates it), but the fact is, the best thing I’ve found is to simply ignore it and change the subject.

      It kind of sucks because it does impact my ability to have the sort of close, girlfriend-y relationship with my mom that a lot of women seem to have (we get along fine, and I love her, but I’ve never seen myself as being able to have, say, deep and meaningful conversations about important issues with her), but I’ve pretty much accepted that that’s just the way it is.

      I don’t know anything about your relationship with your mom, though, so that’s just my two cents for it. Feel free to ignore. :)

      • To this day, I cannot have a significant discussion with my mother without having it become some kind of lecture, disguised as advice. I’ve learned to chalk it up to our particular mother/daughter dynamic, swallow any replies, smile and nod, and avoid weighty conversations. Like Lyssa, I’ve long since given up any idea of having a girlfriend type relationship with my mom, but I know she loves me, and I love her, and it is what it is.

        • Thanks for the responses! I could handle nodding and smiling, she is relentless though and it quickly accelerates to her screaming about what a failure you are if you don’t do exactly what she wants. Maybe I need more than a book…

          • Seattleite :

            Boundaries, by Cloud and Thompson. And, from the bottom of my heart: Tell her one time that you are not interested in any negative comments or “helpful” critiques. If she does, and you’re on the phone, hang up. “I’ve asked you not to do this, Mom. Gotta go, love you, bye!” If you’re with her, leave. Obviously this will require separate transportation at all times, but it’s worth it. Don’t worry about embarrassing her. Be polite, but do not let her hold you hostage to her toxic comments.

          • Ugh. I’m sorry, that sounds really difficult. I agree with the suggestions about boundaries, but that is so hard to do when it is family. I know I found space a good buffer… and I mean miles and miles of space, as I live in a different state than my parents. I’m also very fortunate that my parents are computer literate. Is your mother technologically savvy? Its hard to scream over email, maybe make more of your conversations through electronic means, at least for a little while, to give yourself a break?

    • I had different mother problems, but here’s a technique that I found useful. I mostly used it on the phone, rather than in person.

      “OK, well, I’ve got to go now.” Whenever she started doing the annoying thing. “Talk to you later, Bye” and hang up. In person, you have to either change the subject or walk away/ leave which is more difficult. Obviously, this doesn’t improve your relationship with your mom. Basically, it limits it. However, in the long run it turned out better for me.

  8. PSA: I had my first mamogram on Friday, which I had been putting off in light of numerous “horror stories” that I had heard about them. Just wanted to say that it was completely not a big deal other than mildly awkward (but not too much more so than a regular gyn visit). So, if you have had any misgivings about them, I just wanted to share that it does not take long, and I did not find it paiful at all.

    • Another Zumba Fan :

      I’ll be getting my first one early next year, so thanks for sharing this.

    • Just had my first one too, after putting it off and putting it off. It was so easy that I now can’t figure out why I waited for five yars to do it! Didn’t even find it awkward, much less painful.

      • Ugh… now you remind me.

        My breasts are very small, and my first mammogram was AWFUL. They literally tore the tissue under my breast trying to pull my breast off my chest so it would get into the vice. I was bright red after the test finished, and bruised the next day. I hurt for weeks. Jeez….

        I’m not sure I could handle another. The sad thing is that I’m a doctor. I had absolutely no idea…. I may beg for an MRI scan…

        • That’s really interesting. For me, it’s no big deal but I have large breasts and I always thought that was the difference (they don’t have to pull the tissue). When I had mine a couple of weeks ago, the technician said that I was “easy” so I asked her if size made a difference and she said that actually shape and placement also make a difference. I guess I’m lucky!

        • I wonder if it was just the person/place where you went? I am a 32A and had also heard that it would be more painful for smaller chested women, but as I said, it was not at all painful for me, and I was really ready for it to be!

    • Anonymous :

      When I had a mammo for the first time, the technician said “Well, you are a woman now!” after we were done.

  9. I bought a pretty expensive purse from Tory Burch in February. The leather is now rubbing off, and the company says they can’t repair it but they’ll give me a gift card for the last selling price, which I’m sure is less than the $500 price I paid. I have my credit card statement that shows how much I paid at the Tory Burch boutique (not somewhere like Nordstrom where the purchase could have been anything). I’m sure they can verify that I bought it when I say I did and how much I paid for it, as shown on the credit card statement.

    Do you think I have grounds to demand the full amount that I paid? I certainly think I do. It’s a defective product. The leather has all rubbed off on the handle and in some other places, and I certainly haven’t done anything unusual with my purse.

    Anybody have experience with this or tips?

    • No experience or tips, but give them hell. That is absolutely unacceptable. They are giving you a gift card, thus guaranteeing your money will still be spent at their store so really they aren’t losing anything. Depending on what kind of card you used, you should consider seeing if you credit card company would be able to file a dispute for the difference to have in your back pocket.

      • Ooh, that’s a thought. I paid with an Amex. Do you think they’d be willing to do that? I’ve heard they generally are but have never tried it.

        • From what I understand, Amex tends to be better on disputes than some of the other cards. Potentially disputing may even be worth just mentioning to the store and then going to the credit card company.

        • Amex is famous for being the most pro-consumer credit card in terms of chargebacks and things like that. That’s one reason (along with higher fees) that many stores won’t accept Amex. I’m certain Amex would be willing help.

        • hellskitchen :

          Amex is awesome for things like this. I have also successfully used BBB and Small Courts in the past for merchants who sold defective products but had a no-refund policy. I filed complaints with both and sent copies to the merchant… they refunded the entire amount although it took me almost a year. This was not even a reputable merchant like Tory Burch so I would hope the latter would give you a full refund to maintain their brand’s reputation

      • SF Bay Associate :

        Give them hell. Ladies here seem to have had success tweeting and Facebooking the company after getting crap customer service from the store/phone. The social media powers that be seem to have additional abilities. See if that works for you. Good luck!

      • Oh, and as much effort as Tory Burch expends in defending her brand’s name, she should spend an equal amount guaranteeing the quality and longevity of her items (given their cost).

    • Dude, that sucks. There was a thread on Tory Burch a few weeks ago and I mentioned I had a purse where the leather rubbed off on the handles and trim. Very disappointing since I’m not hard on my purses at all and it wasn’t used full time. Another reader commented that she had a similar experience. I’ve since sworn off Tory Burch.

      • Anonymous :

        Please tell me it wasn’t a Robinson tote… I just bought one for a 30th birthday splurge. :(

        • Nope it wasn’t. I probably should’ve gotten that instead. It was a pretty gold straw tote that was just as ridic expensive.

      • Did you try to get them to fix it or replace it?

        • No, I bought it from a boutique shop where I live 18 mos ago and I honestly didn’t think to ask, but I will now. I wish I’d have bought it from Nordstrom.

  10. SF Bay Associate :

    PSA – I wear skirts every day, and prefer to wear something under my skirt so I feel less “exposed,” less thigh touching, and warmer. In the winter, tights are great. In the summer, I’ve been making do with Spanx in a size or two bigger than my size chart size, but they aren’t comfortable or breathable, and are expensive. I’m not looking for compression; I’m looking for coverage and body heat retention. We’ve talked about the Jockeys slipshorts, but you all know I’m a Nordie’s addict, so that’s where I went to look… and discovered Yummie Tummie Shaping Shorts (558929). They are so. freaking. comfortable. and 2 for $30. I am in loooooove.

    • Did you see the new Nordstrom iPad app? Not the Nordstrom catalogs app, but the shopping one. It’s pretty sweet.

    • how do they fit size-wise? i like the jockeys, but find them a little long sometimes.

      • SF Bay Associate :

        The sizing goes S/M, M/L, L/XL. I’m wearing S/M. I wear a 2 or 4 in Classiques Entier, JCrew, etc. There’s a lot of stretch here, so I can definitely see a size 6 wearing these, no problem. They are not that long at all. I could wear a miniskirt and the hems wouldn’t show. As for the rise, they hit right below my bellybutton. In. love.

        • oh awesome! sounds like they solved all my jockey issues. ordering now!! thanks for the psa.

    • I need to check these out, as I feel the same way you do regarding wanting coverage under skirts but finding Spanx, or the Target version ([email protected]@ets) a bit warm in the summer, not to mention pricey. Now that I have been inducted into the magic that is online ordering from Nordstrom, perhaps I’ll check these out. Do you find that they come down far enough? I have a pair of squeezy shorts from Kohls, but as they come only a couple of inches down on my thighs, they tend to roll up.

  11. In the process of cleaning out my twenty-something single girl closet with the goal of dressing like the thirty-something happily coupled person I am now. I am hesitating on getting rid of some old favorites, even though they either don’t fit, don’t look good, or don’t fit my lifestyle. Anyone else struggled with the dreaded closet re-capitalization lately?

    • karenpadi :

      Yes. Wait for a day when you feel the need to throw things away. Some triggers: new clothes, helping a pack-rat move out of her house, needing to buy more hangers.

      Otherwise, put the old clothes in storage (e.g. under the bed) for the foreseeable future. If you don’t miss them, you’ll eventually get around to donating/tossing them.

      • Honey Pillows :

        My method is actually to leave the clothes I’m having trouble getting rid of in a pile on the floor. Eventually, I get so sick of tripping over them, I throw them in a bag and drive to the donation dropoff like a madwoman, and good riddance!

      • Moving a pack rat will do it every time. I was ready to be one of those 100 things minimalists after moving 1200 completely packed square feet of stuff that should have been thrown away.

    • Me! I just got rid of a lot of items I’ve had since high school – I’m 31. They technically still fit, in that I can zip them / button them / put them on, and they were not worn out, but they are dated, not stylish, and don’t look the same way on my 31yo desk worker body that they did on my 18yo body (think 4″ inseam cargo shorts). It made me sad to get rid of these items, as they carry good memories of high school and college, but I couldn’t justify their taking up closet space, and they made room for their replacements since I try to operate under a “one in one out” shopping rule.

    • Yes!
      I am in dire need of closet purge. I keep delaying due to general procrastination though it is close to critical mass by now.

    • I have what I call the “triage drawer” – anything I want to get rid of but am feeling a bit hesitant about goes in there. If I don’t think about said item after a few months, I put it in the donate pile. I find that this helps me avoid endless dithering over to keep or not to keep. I throw it in the drawer and think (or not think!) about it later.

    • I gave my sequin tank-top to the college-aged sister of a friend. (Hope she has as much fun with it in her 20s as I did.)

    • transition :

      what about sending them to a place that makes tshirt quilts or pillows or whatever out of old clothes? you get to keep them but in a more useful way?

    • I did this in my mid-20s, when moving home after law school. I remember I put a status update up somewhere, which said something like Gigi’s Closet: Where out of date rhinestone club shirts come to die. . . =) Definitely took moving to part with them!

  12. I bombed an interview today. Ugh.

    • Honey Pillows :

      Gah, I hate that feeling. Hugs.

      • I hope it’s not as bad as you think and that with a little time you’ll feel better. Also hope it’s not for a job you really wanted.

      • lawsuited :

        Boo, that sucks. But you can’t be perfect every time, and there will be other interviews.
        (}) (}) (}) (Who remembers MSN hugs??)

    • I’m sorry, that sucks. Later (and not after a glass of wine) try to figure out a few areas where it went wrong and how to improve, so for your next interview you just blow people away. :)

    • Do NOT worry. You will be fine on the next one.

      I remember when I was lookeing for my first law job, I said a few thing’s that the attorney’s at the law firm (a big DC one) did NOT understand. After I tried a SECOND time to get them to understand, I said “oh, forget it, it is NOT that important.”

      I did NOT get that job, but when I came to visit @ HOME, I met the manageing partner at PENN Station and he said that I could start workeing for him if I wanted to when I gradueated from law school. So there WAS a sliver lining! YAY!!!!!

      Jim called me 2x today about the fileing, and I told him I needed alot more information to fill it in. He wanted to go out for dinner, but I said NO, I have plan’s. He should stick to the work stuff, and NOT try to take me out for corn beef. I do like corn beef, but Jim gets meat stuck in his teeth, and it is gross! FOOEY!

    • I’m sorry, that’s a horrible feeling, but remember it happens to even the most charming and brilliant from time to time. Cookies and wine tonight?

    • Is it possible you didn’t bomb and the other person just has zero social skills? Awkward people can make you feel like you’re the one causing the awkwardness. (Yes, I live in DC. Social awkwardness is a way of life.)

      • I feel like there should be mandatory training for people who live here bc you are unfortunately absolutely right. I find it amazing that some of the people I work with are actually incapable of small talk/normal pleasantries.

      • “Social awkwardness is a way of life.” Ding, ding! You’re completely right, I just never thought of it quite that way before!

      • So true. I can generally carry on a reasonably lively conversation with a tree stump or a street lamp or an old can of beans, so it always shocks me how many people I encounter here with whom I can’t get into a conversational rhythm at all.

    • Sugar Magnolia :

      I hate it when that happens. Especially since we all beat ourselves up to a degree that’s unwarranted based on our actual performance. I am sure it wasn’t as bad as you think, but I agree that you should be gentle with yourself for a few days and give yourself a break on this one.

    • Mousekeeper :

      I’m sure you didn’t but I would be interested to hear what happened and why you think you bombed it. Sometimes doing a “post mortem” on an event like that helps to put it into better perspective.

      • On the off chance that my interviewers read this site, I will keep the details to myself. But, thanks to all for the internet lovin’.

    • As someone who is hearing about all the callbacks classmates are getting at the firms I most wanted to work for… I completely understand! Good luck on your next one!

  13. So Facebook just listed Gerber as a company I should “Like”. We are TTC, but no luck yet. Maybe they know something I don’t? Or maybe I have a bunch of new mommy friends. I have not told anyone close to me that we are TTC, let alone announce it on Facebook. Is this creepy, or am I just being overly sensitive?

    • I started getting formula ads in the mail the moment we started thinking about TTC (and hadn’t bought any products I could think of that were related). Worse, they mailed formula samples to my parents’ house! Where I haven’t lived in years and years! We concluded finally that they must buy the names from wedding registries and then wait a year or two.

      • Genius. I started getting formula samples a few years after getting married, and we were not TTC (then or ever). I really wondered why I was getting them — your explanation sounds suspiciously plausible.

      • e_pontellier :

        Thank you for this brilliant explanation!

    • Anonymous :

      If you’ve searched for baby-related things on Google, it might be coming from there (similar to how if I look at an item on Nordstrom’s website, I will see Nordstrom ads featuring that item on other websites). Facebook also targets (or at least used to target) ads based on age, gender, marital status, etc listed in your profile. So it may just be that facebook shows that ad to every married female of X age.

    • It’s probably creepy. Google the NYT article about the way Target tracks its customer’s behavior. My guess is Facebook is like that but on steroids.

    • Blonde lawyer :

      I stopped running my bc through my health insurance and got an ad from them about being a “new mommy” and also got a few baby related circulars. I’m pretty sure my health insurance sold info about me “stopping by bc” even though I actually didn’t stop it, just started paying for it w/o insurance.

    • I buy lots of baby gifts for showers on Amazon and the like. So of course, they all think I’m a mommy, even though I am just the greatest friend ever. Ugh!

    • I am single, have no desire to have kids, and yet I still get mail fairly frequently about insuring my baby or preschools/daycare for my baby.

    • Double Hoo :

      There was a recent article in the NYTimes about how Target, ahem, targets potential new mothers in their advertising… it did fall a little on the creepy side. They know, for example, that if you buy certain types of lotion, there’s a reasonable probability that you are pregnant (X% of women buying the lotion also purchase baby supplies within three-six months) and they start sending you coupons for diapers and things. The idea is to hook you while you’re pregnant, a time when your purchasing preferences are likely to change and then stay the same for many years after. The Gerber thing could be related, perhaps. Maybe you have liked a few products that signal TTC to the advertisers, or maybe FB picks up what your friends like as something you might like too.

    • Thanks for your comments. I was talking about it with my husband last night, and I think it’s just because many of my friends have “Liked” Gerber, not because they’re assuming I’m a mom. My husband is from a red state, and they’re always suggesting that he should Like Mitt Romney, even though he’s a pretty staunch Democrat (he has many FB friends from his home state).

      But still.

      I am looking for a Facebook alternative because I am so sick of all the marketing. I get it. 80 of my friends “Like” Target. Yes I am a frequent Target shopper. No I will not “Like” Target.

      But I don’t want to quit checking FB because I will miss all the pictures of my friends’ babies!

  14. How does one go about finding a therapist? I have been kicking around the idea of seeing someone for a while, and did call one therapist I found through Angie’s List, but she was booked solid for 2 months. (Not that my issues are hugely pressing. I just worried about scheduling issues.)

    Any ideas on how to start?

    • Anon For This :

      Does your employer have an EAP? Calls and visits are typically free and they’re very experienced in referring people appropriately, including to people who take your insurance if necessary. If you’re not sure what the right type of therapy is for you, they may be able to help you figure that out too.

    • Where are you located? Some people might be able to give you a recommendation.

    • You can use the listings on PsychologyToday’s website to find one in your area. They have a Find a Therapist function makes it easy to find one in your area with a philosophy or style you feel may work best for you. You can also see roughly how much a session would cost, where they went to school, etc.

    • karenpadi :

      I looked through my EAP’s website. They had a picture, short profile and blurb written by the therapist. I chose the therapist who had the same sense of humor as me.

  15. Is it possible? :

    Is there anyone on this site who does not know how to access her personal email account when she is traveling away from home?

    My SD’s mother just returned from a week’s vacation with SD across the country and says that she did not receive my husband’s email asking where they were staying, and also could not tell him where they were staying, because “I do not have access to my personal email while I am on the road.”

    For what it’s worth: (1) my email is with the same provider and I access it through webmail regularly, and (2) she also has a Blackberry.

    This is just a big fat lie, right?

    • Blonde lawyer :

      Could be a lie or it could be she just doesn’t check email on vacation. Pre-lawyer days I would leave the computer and cell phone at home when I went on vacation.

    • Anne Shirley :

      Of course it’s a lie. Could he have called her? Does SD have a cellphone? sounds like she should.

      • Is it possible? :

        SD does have a cell phone, with a GPS locator thing on it, which indicated that they spent the weekend on the same block (most detailed resolution available) where mom’s boyfriend across the country lives.

        • Anne Shirley :

          So, you did know where she was? And there’s no reason you couldnt have called her and asked? I know you have a whole host of issues with her mom, but this seems like manufactured drama.

          • Is it possible? :

            It is interesting because mom also shared with SD something that my husband wrote to mom on mom’s personal email, while they were traveling, and that mom had no other way to know. I think that demonstrates that she is lying.

            On the other hand, she is not particularly tech-savvy (due respect to Sunny D, below :) ).

            So we are just trying to determine whether she is dishonest or incompetent.

            Although you’re right, it doesn’t really matter. She still violated a court order.

        • karenpadi :

          “the same block (most detailed resolution available) where mom’s boyfriend across the country lives”

          Maybe mom didn’t want SD (what does that mean, anyway?) crashing in on her love-fest? Moms need lady garden parties too!

          JSFAMO. Even though mom could have handled the situation better…

          • SF Bay Associate :

            I think the geolocation implies not only did the mother violate the custody order, but she took OP’s step-daughter (SD) across the country (which sounds super-violaty of a custody order due to distance) so mom could hang out with mom’s boyfriend, and then she lied about it, and probably told SD to lie about it, too. Who knows if that guy is a savory character, or if SD’s dad and stepmom are comfortable with SD being around mom’s boyfriend. Mom is welcome to have ladygarden parties when she doesn’t have custody of SD, but this “me no know how check email on phone,” especially if she demonstrates knowledge of information in emails is a flaming bag of b.s.

          • karenpadi :

            Thanks SF Bay Associate! Now this whole post makes way more sense. I agree, this is not a good situation.

            I’m sorry to be so clueless about the meaning of “SD”–my mom is married to someone who isn’t my father so I should have known. I was working from the assumption that SD was an adult relative who happened to be in the same town.

    • She could be telling the truth. Until a year ago, I did not get my personal email on my work-issued Blackberry, did not have my own smartphone, and did not own a laptop/iPad/other portable computing device so I did not receive personal email while traveling. Of course I also don’t have any children whose welfare I might want to get news about…..

      And, yes, despite my tech status, I’m too young to collect social security (but apparently not too old to pay social security).

    • “I do not have access to my personal email while I am on the road” is not the same as “I do not know how to access my personal email while I am on the road.” Even at home, I rarely check my personal email on the weekends, and then I usually just skim the subjects for anything urgent. DH turned the data connection off on his smartphone during our last vacation so that he wouldn’t be tempted to check emails.

      • Is it possible? :

        I might believe this if her kids didn’t tell us that she never sits through a meal without her Blackberry on the table and constant texting and emailing that is not work related (she doesn’t have that kind of job). I have seen it with my own eyes, at a formal dinner party for SS’s birthday; she was the only one with her phone literally on the table (next to her forks) or in her hands and actively typing and laughing the entire time.

        • I’m not so sure. If DH was like this, I’d be much more likely to insist that he give it up while traveling.

    • The fact that she apparently took the daughter somewhere she wasn’t allowed to take her per the custody agreement (if I understand your comment about the court order correctly) and coincidentally wasn’t able to check email makes me strongly suspect she was lying.

    • I use a password manager which generates passwords and saves them, so all I remember is the master password. It is a pain to check my email from any computer other than my own. That said, my email also goes to my phone, so I don’t usually miss emails.

  16. My day has been a totally unproductive waste. My fault. I hate that. I especially hate it on Mondays, because it sets a tone for the week. I have already delivered a stern lecture to myself for putting myself farther in the hole work-wise.
    Now, anyone want to make me feel better?

    • Former Partner, Now In-House :

      I had that last week. And today I started something that I had been dreading doing and, thus putting off. I started with the simplest component: collecting the documents I would need to do the task. And four hours later, the task was done.

      So, what I am saying it, there is hope :)

    • Blonde lawyer :

      You and me both Nellie.

    • TO lawyer :

      This was my day. Thinking of calling it a night and starting fresh tomorrow…

    • Honey Pillows :

      That was me, on Thursday. Well, it wasn’t totally unproductive. I spend the day searching for apartments on Craigslist, Livelovely, etc.

      Don’t try to do the work you didn’t do today, but do something productive with your time.

      It helps if you go home, pour yourself a glass of wine, and clean or cook something. I made brownies and vacuumed, and I felt so much better about myself!

    • Maddie Ross :

      I’ve been productive, but it was all in an attempt to avoid that ONE thing that I should be doing, that has an actual due date, which is technically tomorrow, and that I really really do not want to do. Productivity disguised as procrasination is actually worse in some ways I think. I feel like I’ve worked hard all day, but still have completed the darn brief that needs to be done.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      Is there anything in particular you do on Mondays that make it clear it’s Monday? When I used to have a bad morning, I would actually stop what I was doing and recreate part of my morning routine and “start the day” over again as a productive one. It sounds ridiculous, but it helped prevent setting the tone for the rest of the day. Maybe if there is something you typically do Sunday night or Mnday mornings, you could do that and then pretend the rest of the week starts from that point and not let the unproductive tone carry through.

    • SoCalAtty :

      Me too, and I can’t even escape by just going home and starting fresh tomorrow because my husband is picking me up and is running way behind. My car is in the shop getting the radio fixed because the amp went out (right before I had to drive 1.5 hours each way to cour last week) so we’re down to the 1 car.

  17. Hello ladies, I know there have been MANY comments on this before, but for the sake of me not having to sift through every post with the words “intern” “advice” and/or “help”, I’m hoping you all could entertain me with this request.

    I’m in charge of hiring an intern for my firm. The applicants so far have been… less than stellar. I’m talking spelling errors (don’t misspell the name of the firm you’re applying to!!!), grammatical errors, and all other ridiculous resume mistakes; you name it, I have it in my inbox. I had to deal with finding a legal job post-2008, and I know how frustrating it is to send out numerous resumes and not receive any word back from potential employers, thus, I definitely want to generate some sort of form rejection letter. My question here is whether I should put in some “helpful advice” to the applicants (ie “put your former employer’s name on your resume”, “make sure the firm’s name/hiring coordinator’s name is not in a different font from the rest of your cover letter”, etc.)? I want these students to succeed – it’s hard out there, but I don’t want the letter to come across as mean spirited or snotty. Advice, please?

    • Wow, I think this is a really generous idea. I’d just want to be careful that it doesn’t sound like the thing you point out is the *only* reason they’ve been rejected. You might try prefacing the advice with something like, “Although it did not affect our decision on your application, I would like to offer you some advice for your future job hunts. It is a good idea to ______ [review your cover letter carefully and be sure that it is uniform in appearance. For example, double check that the firm’s name is not in a different font than the rest of the letter.] [put your former employer’s name on your resume.] [etc]”

      I worry a little that this kind of feedback may lead to folks contacting you to apologize for the error or something similar. But I really do think it is kind of you to consider doing it!

    • karenpadi :

      Don’t bother. Just don’t. It’s an excruciating waste of time and energy.

      I help review resumes for law students at my alma mater. They don’t take the advice. They don’t change their resumes. I know this because they drop my name in an interview, my friends follow-up, I don’t recognize the name but I sure do recognize the (uncorrected) resume. This has happened 5 times. Once with someone who I actually interviewed five weeks later.

      • As a former student and job hunter, I’d say it depends on the advice. I’ve had people review my resume and give me conflicting advice. I mean, if it’s an error that’s one thing. But do or don’t put this job/volunteer activity on, do or don’t put hobbies on, do or don’t make it clear you are a female, do or don’t put your GPA higher and bigger, do or don’t change the font, or size, or layout. People get all kinds of advice like that and it’s hard to decide who to listen to.

        Though, I agree, I expect that potential employers shouldn’t bother.

      • Ugh. This is disheartening to hear. I normally wouldn’t care, but some of these applicants are from my law school, which, doesn’t always have the greatest reputation depending on who you ask. I would really love to see them approaching other employers with their best foot forward, and not playing into any preexisting biases.

        CJ, my comments would be based solely on egregious errors – nothing based on my personal idiosyncrasies as to style or formatting.

        What if it were something along the lines of “thank you for submitting your application blah blah blah, unfortunately we have found another applicant who fits our firm’s needs (something like this, whatever). If you would like to discuss your application, please do not hesitate to contact me…..” ?

        • karenpadi :

          I do make hard edits when it’s a typo or something that has to be corrected. Mistakes I’ve pointed out that aren’t changed: confidential/privileged/trade secret information, inconsistently formatted citations to articles written by applicant (I think they should be Bluebooked in a legal resume but I will give leeway for other citation formats–as long as it’s done correctly), and unexplained gaps or confusing timelines (school, work, and consulting gig at the same time?! Going to school in Texas while working in Kansas?!), and massively horrible formatting and styling. These are the things I expect to be changed.

          Other things that I mention but don’t ding an actual applicant for when the resume gets back to me: including hobbies (unless you are an Olympic athlete or something equally cool and accomplished) and papers/speeches written more than 5 years ago (unless it was cited by the Supreme Court or by someone equally awesome), styling and formatting, not including a mailing address, and objective statement for a law firm position (“Talented law student seeking summer clerkship at a nationally recognized intellectual property law firm.”–nothing new or original there).

          • Just a note on the hobbies – many hiring managers, schools, etc. suggest adding this section. I find it odd (like a combination with a CV), but I added it to my resume, as I was told that it was a necessary section.

          • I’ve never seen an objective statement on any legal resume. Is this a thing elsewhere?

      • As a person who made mistakes when applying for my first out of college jobs, yowch. It would have been really nice if someone at the first jobs I applied to (granted, this was in my senior year of college, so a while ago) had told me basic things like “You’re doing cover letters wrong,” or “Your resume is not formatted correctly.” It’s really, really hard to know these things if you’re new to the workforce and haven’t, for example, had parents with white-collar jobs, or if you graduated from a university with a less-than-helpful career services office.

        So, EK, I’d say what you’re proposing to do is incredibly generous. I think JessBee offered a good template. Thanks for thinking of the fact that the people applying for your internship are, in fact, people, not the five (five!! what an ungodly high number) cretins who did not take your resume correction suggestions.

        • I agree. Before it was easy to convert things to PDF, I used OpenOffice and found out from a friend that my resume’s formatting was ridiculous when she opened it in Word. That is not something I would have found out on my own.

          I also think Turtle’s suggestion of contacting Career Services when there are many errors from one school could also be a good idea. If a firm is finding that almost all students from one school are sending worthless cover letters, it may be that the CSO could do more training in that area or that the people in the CSO are clueless and gave bad advice.

        • I believe the “five” number was made in reference to the number of times karenpadi has had former-applicants throw her name around with colleagues of hers, despite receiving negative feedback re: their resumes. It was certainly not in reference to the total number of applications I (or karenpadi, I assume) have received – believe me, I received 3 applications within the first 5 minutes of the post going live.

          What’s really amazing to me is that it’s evident that these students haven’t even stopped by career services to say hello.

    • TurtleWexler :

      Were there several from a single school? We had some really awful applications and writing samples once, and since a lot of them came from one or two specific schools, we contacted their career services office to let them know. We didn’t single anyone out but just gave them a list of problems we saw that led to none of their students being interviewed. They usually have a pretty good idea of who is applying to what, and can stress these issues when they talk to students. It looks bad for them when their students make stupid mistakes like that (and consequently don’t get jobs) so I think they usually take feedback seriously.

      • Anonymous :

        This is what I was going to suggest–contact the career services office and give them a list of the errros that you are seeing. Much less time-consuming than emailing each individual student.

        • karenpadi :

          I do this informally with the career services at one of our schools. We do a lot of recruiting there and see a lot of their resumes. It’s more of a quick “why do so many law students include ‘cooking’ as a hobby?” or “I wish more students would add the topic of their law review paper to their resumes if they have room.” or “oooh, did you see her resume? Beautiful!” or “can we exclude the ‘table of contents’ and ‘index of cases’ from the writing samples?”

          • Anne Shirley :

            Because “cooking” is a popular hobby? I can see a difference of opinion on whether to include hobbies at all, but between school and work, I didn’t have time for Olympic-level stand-up paddle boarding or marathon running. At least a legit cooking hobby gives you something to talk about.

      • This idea occurred to me on my way home this evening. I advertised the job at three schools, one quite prestigious, and all of the applications except one* had ridiculous mistakes that should have been rectified before career services even let these students log into symplicity. I’ve received a fair number of applications within the first few days of the position being up, and if I continue to notice these discrepancies, I won’t hesitate to contact the school.

        *It belonged to a wayward 1L from my law school – not sure how he got access to a posting limited only to 2Ls and 3Ls, but he may get an interview just yet!

    • As a law student and someone who has searched for a job, I have to say that I would greatly appreciate this. While some may find it harsh and be hurt by it, they (we) need it. It’s difficult to get good recommendations on application materials, particularly when each person in career services tells you to do it differently. Hearing from someone who has rejected my application one or some errors with it would help greatly. To the person who said they don’t think people listen, at least some of us do. It’s difficult when you get different directions, but it’s great to get the advice, particularly from who actually matters. (Not to say you don’t matter, but as an extension of career services, it probably melds with the rest. I’ve had experiences of bringing materials to two members of career services with entirely different remarks – the second one’s corrections undid many of the first’s edits. I have also had career services (and others) review the same materials twice, telling me to change things back (though they didn’t realize they were just undoing earlier edits) and basically go in a whole different way (keep in mind that this has happened when the only edits were by this person).

      Please don’t let a few people not taking your advice turn you against helping people – particularly when you likely won’t see the ones that do take your advice!

      • Thanks for the positive comment! I’m sorry to hear that your experience with career services has been less than stellar (though, am I surprised to hear it? not really). My concerns with these application packets isn’t so much formatting, or whether to include hobbies (most do), rather, it’s poor editing and/or logic behind some of the choices made when submitting the application (to be specific, WHY would you, a law student, submit a pdf of an attorney’s published appellate brief as your writing sample? At the very least, send me the doc version without the guy’s name on it…)

  18. Such a beautiful scarf! I love casual scarfs but never knew how to wear nicer ones with professional attire without the look being dated.

  19. Maya Culpa :

    Threadjack: what are some good educational apps for children between the ages five and eight years? A friend bought her kids a tablet and cannot seem to find age appropriate games.

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