Coffee Break – ‘Quilting Tribeca’ Satchel

MARC JACOBS 'Quilting Tribeca' SatchelLove this “quilting Tribeca” satchel from Marc Jacobs. It’s simple, elegant, and big enough to actually fit a ton of stuff (15.5″Wx11″Hx6″D). I do wish it were lined in a lighter fabric (so much easier to see inside the bag!) but maybe that’s just me. It’s $1,395 at Nordstrom. MARC JACOBS ‘Quilting Tribeca’ Satchel



  1. TJ: What are some fun ideas for gifts for people in the hospital? My 91 year old grandmother is in it yet again (headed for an assisted living/rehab center, most likely, after this) and I’m trying to come up with ideas. She hates cut flowers, has enough plants, and doesn’t need anymore stuffed animals/magazines. And her diet is strongly in the “no fun allowed” camp at this stage of things, sadly.

    • Equity's Darling :

      My grandmother was all over those crossword books towards the end of her cancer battle. Seriously, my mom would bring a book of them everyday, because she just got so bored in the hospital. So, anything that will keep her mind occupied and busy. Maybe some audiobooks too?

      • Anonymous :

        Ditto to puzzles, crosswords, etc. Perhaps also some yarn and knitting/crochet items or paints? Crafts you can do in bed, basically.

      • My grandmother was in the hospital quite a bit over the past couple of years, sadly. Things she really liked and used and kept nearby:
        – third the suggestion of crossword puzzles
        – romance and mystery novels with big type (when her eyes were tired, she’d have us read to her)
        – silk/cashmere robe I’d given her and which she thought was so luxurious and warm
        – slippers
        – no-skid socks
        – lots of lotion and lip balm – her skin would get really dry in the hospital
        – dry hair shampoo (it was hard for her to get around, and the hospital didn’t wash her hair enough for her to feel like it was clean every day)
        – every now and then, she’d use my noise-cancelling headphones – the hospital has to much ambient noise. They weren’t comfortable enough for her to sleep in, but I think she liked having them on now and then just for some quiet.
        – music (I picked up a little radio for her, but we ended up listening to music on my laptop mainly – I have some interesting variety in my itunes albums now!)
        – snacks permitted on her strict dialysis diet. We talked to the doctors about that – who finally relented and let us bring in chocolate and vanilla pudding cups and better varieties of applesauce. The hospital food gets so. old.

        I love that you jacked your own thread, right off the bat no less. :-)

        • Get her an IPAD. It is alot of fun, especialy if she play’s angry birds!

          • wow, a surprisingly good idea from Ellen!

          • Angry Birds are indeed addictive. And on Ipad she can zoom on things and use it like a big font reader.. not bad ELLEN not bad at all :)

    • AnonInfinity :

      What about more practical things like lotions or soaps that she likes? The hospital stuff is no fun.

      My grandmother once got a silk pillowcase while she was in the hospital, and she loved that because it gave her a little bit of luxury in a very non-luxurious situation.

    • How about nice pajamas or lounge clothes?

    • SF Bay Associate :

      I imagine that at her stage of life, she doesn’t care much about STUFF. She wants family, including mementos from her great grandson. How about a picture of you and your husband and the baby? Or something with the baby’s handprints or footprints on it? A big thing on pinterest right now is baby feet butterflies – it looks like the parents painted the baby’s feet with (surely nontoxic) paint, and then stamped the right foot on the left side of the butterfly and the left foot on the right, so it makes the butterfly wing shape, and then painted two fingers to stamp as antennae. Also, I hear that old people love when someone makes a throwback recipe from their childhood, one of those forgotten recipes they haven’t tasted in decades. Even though it’s not “fun” food, it brings back warm memories of family time. Are there any old family recipes from 80 years ago you could bust out, or grab an old cookbook to make something popular in the ’30s or ’40s.

      • Along this line, what about things she can hang on her walls? I.e. handprints of the baby, homemade drawings, family pictures, etc.

      • Yes! I forgot, the family photos were HUGE with my grandma. We looked through lots of old ones.

    • (1) Some nice gowns — hospital-style but nice fabric and ample coverage.
      (2) For her generation, a bed jacket is probably acceptable.
      (3) Socks or slippers with non-skid soles can be helpful.
      (4) Someone to come in and do her hair.
      (5) Would she read a Kindle / Nook?
      (6) Brightly colored (no mistaking them as hers) eyeglass case, hearing aid case, etc.
      (7) A journal to record either what she’s going through now, or some family history to be handed down.
      (8) A photo album, showing the family through the years, so she can share memories with her fellow patients (this is more for assisted living than hospital)
      (9) If she’s ambulatory but needs help, either a jazzy walker or a fancy cane, or if she has a walker, some accessories (pocket, bell, etc.)

      Hope that helps.

    • If she’s going into assisted living — I’d call over there. If its like where my DH’s grandmother was, they had a little hair salon where all the ladies could get their hair done, and we got her a gift certificate for hair does there (since many older women get their hair done a lot).

      I also like the idea of nice pajamas and a robe. Another idea is a comfortable pillow (with neck support) and nice pillow-case, because the pillows in hospitals are horrible. Or a nice sham or throw blanket or some pillows to just brighten up her assisted living room.

      Another idea might be a photo album or photo of the baby and her in a nice frame to put up in the room. But the best present of all, if she’s near-by, is visitors. Those places can get dreary and depressing.

    • AppealingLawyer :

      I second the votes for nice clothes (robe or sleeping jacket) or slippers.

      A nice throw blanket is good too so that if she is sitting up she can have something other than the flimsy hospital blanket on.

      Also, I bought my dad a CD player when he was in the hospital a lot and some CDs. We also kept playing cards at his bedside all the time so he could play with visitors.

      Funny story:

      My dad has now passed away. When he was sick, I was playing some peaceful, instrumental music on the player one night while I thought he was asleep. It was late at night in the hospital and all was very quiet. Then I hear him say: “Will you turn off that g**d**** music–I’m not dead yet!”

      That was my dad.

    • Books, magazines, maybe a kindle, and definitely crosswords or sudoku or anything she likes solving.

      Sorry to hear your grammy is in the hospital and hope she feels better soon.

      • When my grandad started failing, the only things that really cheered him up were books on tape and John Wayne movies. Perhaps find out your grandma’s film idol and do a movie marathon? Or get some of her favorite type of books on tape?

    • All great ideas. I particularly like the audio books, nice robe/pillow(s), or music suggestions. If your grandma is anything like mine was, creams and lotions would be a hit. Until her very last day, she never went to bed without night cream.

      If she has tv/dvd access, maybe get her a dvd of her favorite show? I know someone who really loved getting a box set of Anne of Green Gables during a particularly rough, extended hospital stay.

      And agree with the others – what she’d probably like most, is for you to just visit.

    • Second (or third or whatever), the suggestions for soft throw blankets and music. My grandma loved having something softer to lay on or to put up by her shoulders and loved listening to CDs we bought or made or old music and having singalongs with us during her better hours (even if she couldn’t sing she would “conduct” us with one finger)

      • All great ideas. Unfortunately, she isn’t close enough to visit. Re: crosswords, books, CDs, and audiobooks — unfortunately she’s always been one of those people who can’t sit still long enough to read a book or watch a movie; my mother always said she talked through every movie my mother ever tried to show her. You’d think she’d like socializing but she can’t stand to be with all the “old” “sick” people in the hospital. She’s a bit of a character.

        • Blonde Lawyer :

          My grandmother is 99 and the exact same way. She thinks she is better than everyone at her facility and all she does is complain about all of them. She won’t socialize with anyone there and she is too blind to read. She will listen to TV and that is about it. I always get her money for the hair account and bar. Yes bar. Once a week they are allowed an alcoholic drink if their meds allow it. She has an account for her hi-ball.

          • Excellent! I wish I had a bar account.

          • my grandma was in the hospital last year, at age 95, and whenever I visited she begged me to go get her a beer. Which I did! No way I am turning down her wishes – and if she has lived that long, a little beer will do no harm, but make her happy.

        • Hi Kat – I am so sorry your grandmother is in the hospital. I don’t know if this has already been mentioned but my friend’s grandmother loves this electronic picture frame my friend gave her – it’s loaded with 50 (or maybe a 100?) pictures of my friend’s toddler.

        • My husband’s grandmother just moved into a rehab center, and she can’t stand it. It’s tough. I second the recommendations for a warm blanket (his grandma is always cold), and the electronic picture frame. If she likes getting her hair done, and the rehab/assisted living facility has a salon, I think that sounds like a great idea too.

        • Is she willing to learn new technology? you could actually get her an ipad/iphone/etc and set up skype for her so she can chat with you and others through the day. This may not work in the hospital, but definitely in assisted living. You could also get her a very fun tote bag, so she can keep all her person effects together while she’s in the hospital. I wish her the best!!

        • Tired Squared :

          How about a TV show? There’s a British one called Waiting for God that is about a hysterically sarcastic old woman in a nursing home (Diana) and the friend she meets (Tom). They spend their time screwing up things for the nursing home owners. Good times.

    • I got my grandma a big cashmere pashmina thing for the hospital. It was super soft and a really pretty peacock color, she could use it for all the ways that have been previously described on corporette, and it’s easy to cast aside if a doctor or nurse needed to examine her, or draw blood or whatever. She is the same age as your grandma (well, a year younger) and definitely felt as though cashmere was an indulgence that she didn’t “deserve” but definitely enjoyed. I think I got it at Nordstroms. She loved getting compliments from the nurses and doctors over it.

    • Maine Associate :

      When my mother in law was in the hospital, I made her the Biscuit Basket by Aunties Two (it is 6″x10″x6″)-I’ll attempt to post the link in a reply. I used bright, cheery colors. When I gave it to her, I put in a couple of books and some chocolates. It was good to help keep things near her that might slip off a table, such as handcream, chapstick, pens, etc. and she liked that she could brag about what her daughter-in-law made her.

    • What about a poster-size enlargement of a photo of a place that she loves? A reminder of things she enjoys and life “outside.”

    • he Melitta :

      Nice sheets? Would the hospital let you do that? I just know that there’s nothing worse than polyester blend or low TC sheets, IMHO. Of course, the problem would be getting them laundered.

      Beautiful purse, BTW. Kinda pricey though.

    • Anonymous :

      It is so lame to use the word “schizophrenic” inappropriately.

    • I’m late to the party but my husband’s grandparents just went to a rehab facility together and they love family photos and videos. If you have a portable DVD player, a walk down memory lane could be like gold for her.

    • I got my grandmother some cute birdseed ornaments in different shapes from an etsy seller. She really enjoyed looking out the window at the birds. This won’t work if she’s on the 8th floor, true, but depending on her room location or assisted living set up, those are fun.

  2. It’s not just you, I love bright lining… and tons of pockets.

  3. Yay! I’ve been waiting for Coffee Break all day. I realized this morning that my suits are a pretty sad sight and in dire need of updating. Hoping that the Corporettes can help direct my search!

    For reference: I generally wear Banana or J. Crew but at this point in my career it’s probably time to invest in a few nicer suits. Is Theory my only option? I’m looking mostly for skirt suits (or sheath dresses, which I LOVE and wouldn’t mind making that my “signature”).

    I’d love a little direction before starting my search. Any advice?

    • Brooks Brothers. You can find great deals at the BB factory store. Also take a look back through Kat’s Suit of the Week posts to get a sense of brands you like.

    • Do you live near an outlet mall? I got a Tahari (the original line, not ASL) suit at their outlet for about $200 that normally ran $750ish.

    • Esquirette :

      I have several Ann Taylor suits. They hold up well, look very well tailored, and I always get complimented on them. Also, AT has frequent sales.

  4. Lovely, but not more-than-a-month’s-rent lovely.

    I could use some advice from the hive on brushing up my litigation skills. I’m a government attorney doing administrative-type work, but this summer I will be starting a 6 month assignment that will be all litigation, all the time in federal district court. There will be no formal training in the new position, and I will be handed a slate of 12-15 active cases on my first day. I am familiar with the substantive areas of law that I will be covering, but I have done very little litigation-type work, and none of it was in federal court. I’m a little panicked because I feel like I know or remember from law school next to nothing about the federal rules of civil procedure and evidence.

    So my question is: How can I best brush up on these topics before I start the new position? Are there any good hornbooks I should read? Are there certain topics on which I should focus my efforts? Any other tips for jumping into litigation work? I only have 6 months in the new position, so I want to be able to hit the ground running and maybe even impress some people.

    • AppealingLawyer :

      Read every rule you can get your hands on. The rules of civil (or criminal) procedure, the rules of evidence, your court’s local rules, and, if you know which judges you will be before, their standing orders. You can avoid a lot of rookie mistakes just by reading the rules, such as how much notice you need to give for a motion or whether you have to file your discovery requests with the court. It doesn’t hurt to read the notes to the rules either, especially for the federal rules of civil procedure (there have been some big changes in discovery in the past few years and the notes will help get you up to speed).

      For more substantive questions, I refer to Wright and Miller ALL the time for civil litigation questions. I would not advise sitting down and trying to read it cover-to-cover, but it’s an essential practice aid once you start working. If you’re going to be doing civil litigation, discovery is going to crop up so you may want to review the chapters of W&M on discovery first even before you start working.

      • Former MidLevel :

        Seconded. And on the evidence side, I like Mueller & Kirkpatrick.

        • AnotherLadyLawyer :

          Ditto this. I’d also contemplate making a cheat sheet. If you know what substantive areas you’re going to be involved in, you can probably put together a list of issues/scenarios likely to pop up — keep a list of all rules, deadlines, etc. that could be applicable (to keep yourself from having to re-read the rules over and over again).

    • I second the suggestion to just read the Federal and Local rules. If you’re familiar with the substantive areas, brushing up on the procedural aspects will make you a lot more confident. It’s boring reading but SO very helpful.

    • D. Ct. Clerk :

      Also, don’t forget to check if the judge you’re going before has any standing orders. My law librarian used to call these the “local local rules.”

      • Sorry if this is a painfully dumb question, but how do you find out about standing orders for a particular judge?

        • AnotherLadyLawyer :

          Not dumb — each Court hides them in sneaky, separate places. I just Google “X Judge Local Rules.” There may also be rules or procedures he/she uses, but doesn’t publish. Whenever you get an assignment, pop onto PACER to see if you can find a case somewhat like yours (same subject matter) before that Judge that is ongoing/recent. That’ll give you a good idea of what is coming your way from the Court.

        • I find that most federal court judges’ orders can be found on the court’s website under the link for that judge’s name.

    • Also, Schwarzer on Fed. Civ Pro. Part of the rudder guide series. On the west coast, this is way more popular that wright and miller.

      • When I was doing civil litigation, I found both Schwarzer and Wright & Miller very valuable. Schwarzer is also known (in my exp.) as “The Red Book” — it’s a three-volume treatise published by The Rutter Group (“TRG”). Official title is “Federal Civil Procedure Before Trial.” The authors are three federal judges — Schwarzer, Tashima and Wagstaffe. I’d usually start with Schwarzer (because it’s shorter) and then if I couldn’t get an answer from there I’d turn to Wright & Miller. Wright & Miller has many, many volumes (60, maybe?) and goes into much greater detail about *everything.*

        The Rutter Group also publishes a multi-volume treatise called “Federal Civil Trials and Evidence.”

        You can usually find a particular federal judge’s standing orders on the District Court’s website.

    • Anonymous :

      I know this is a law school tool, but I find Glannon on Civil Procedure to be a very good guide when I am hit with a procedural issue I haven’t seen in a while. Wright & Miller is great, too, but you actually could sit down and read major portions of Glannon.

    • Maine Associate :

      I really like Trial Techiniques by Thomas A. Mauet. The best part for me when I first started litigating was the list of general objections. For my first couple of contested hearings I kept that list close. He also has a book called Pretrial which is helpful.

      • + 1 on Mauet

      • +2 on Mauet. It’s my trial practice bible.

        Also, I suggest you go watch the kinds of hearings you’ll be asked to do. If you can it before your assignment starts, great. Just go watch whoever has that position now.

        One of the main things that will be different is the pace of your work.

    • This is all fantastic; keep it coming! It sounds like I should plan on spending a few days in my old law school library going through these hornbooks and reviewing the rules before I start. Thanks so much.

    • AppealingLawyer :

      It also would not hurt for you to go over to court and watch hearings just to get a feel for how a motion call looks, what the protocol is, etc.

    • SpaceMountain :

      Jim McElhaney’s work is great for basic litigation (like how to organize your case). He has columns available on the internet, ABA magazine, and a book called The Trial Notebook. It’s great. I also used Mauet’s outlines in the Trial Techniques book when I was first starting.

      Oh, and congratulations. I know people who did 6-month tours at both the Rocket Docket (ED Va) and at the US Atty Office in DC, and learned a lot and got some great litigation experience. Try to clear some space from the rest of your life to make the most of the experience.

      • SpaceMountain :

        Oh, one more thing — cheat sheets. Print a list of objections that you can bring to court, and a list of the rules of evidence short enough that you can refer to it. I have a laminated card of the rules of evidence, and it’s come in surprisingly handy when I’m at the podium and the judge asks if I’m seeking to admit a business record or something and I can’t remember all the steps. I have literally read rules from that card out loud to make my record.

      • You guessed it!

        Don’t worry, I’ve told boyfriend, friends, and family that I’ll be in a cave for 6 months. No one can really complain when it’s such a short amount of time.

    • FWIW, most District Court cases are not resolved in 6 months. I’d be surprised if you had to do that much on the spot legal analysis over one summer. Most District Court judges prefer to handle legal arguments in written form.

      • EmpLawyer :

        Agreed. I suspect you’ll be on your feet-in court a lot less than you might expect – especially over the summer!

    • Anon for this :

      Another great resource for federal civil work is O’Connor’s Federal Rules * Civil Trials. It covers all of the essentials of civil practice in a really readable format.

      (Full disclosure: I work for the company that publishes this book, so I’m “Anon for this” to keep my usual handle a little bit anonymous! But I truly would recommend the book regardless–the reason I came to work for the company is that I used their books nearly every day in my litigation practice.)

      • anon for this question :

        How did you transition your career from litigator to publishing? It’s something I’d love to hear more about please (if you don’t mind sharing).

        • Anon for this :

          Sure, happy to. I realized after just a few years in Biglaw that I wanted out. Initially I was looking to go to a smaller firm or in-house, but realized during the search and interview process for those types of jobs that in addition to not being excited about Biglaw, I really wasn’t excited about trial work in general. But I didn’t feel drawn to a different practice area, and there were things about the practice of law that I did enjoy–primarily the research, writing, and managerial side of things, plus the general subject matter–so I wasn’t quite ready to throw in the towel.

          I started looking around for “non-traditional” legal jobs. Lots (lots!) of poring over job postings online (since non-traditional jobs can take many forms), talking with folks who had left the firm to do other things, etc. By happenstance, I had dinner with an acquaintance who happened to be working part-time at my current company. Even though I was using the company’s books all the time and loved them, it had never occurred to me that the company might be based in my current city. I called the head of HR the next day, and even though they didn’t have any openings at the time, he encouraged me to send my cover letter and resume. A couple months later, they had an entry-level opening, and I took it.

          I think there are a couple things to be aware of if you are looking to transition from legal practice to legal publishing. One, in many cases you are going to have to start from the ground up and take an entry-level position, even if you are no longer an “entry-level” lawyer. Two, even though it’s “legal publishing,” the salary scale is based on publishing-type jobs, not legal jobs– it is a significant difference if you’re making a move from a big firm. Three, I think it’s easier (relatively) to move to legal publishing than it is to move to publishing in general– a law degree is required for my current position, and my practice experience was a plus, whereas those things wouldn’t be particularly sought after at a traditional publishing house. Oh, and finally, many legal publishing jobs involve much more editing than they do research and writing, so you really need to love editing!

          Making the move was one of the best decisions that I have ever made. If you have any other questions, let me know.

          • Thanks for the thoughtful reply! Other than the pay cut, what are the drawbacks of your job? What does a career path look like if you’re starting from scratch? And exactly how big (gulp) of a paycut are we talking from big law?

            Also, did you give any thought to becoming a career clerk for a judge? It is something I have considered.

          • Anon for this :

            Honestly, the cut in pay is by far the biggest drawback. The majority of legal publishing jobs pay in the $40k-$60k range (this seems to be true nationwide, as I’ve researched salaries in various cities for my own information– although perhaps others here know differently!). It is a very different environment from a big firm and can seem slow at times if you’re used to the breakneck speed fire-drills and general intensity of Biglaw. From my perspective, though, it is nice to work hard and care a lot about the product that you’re working on without Biglaw-induced bouts of panic.

            The career path is somewhat dependent on the particular company and how flat the organization is. Speaking generally, entry-level jobs are titled editorial assistant or some equivalent, then lower level editors (basic editing), higher level editors (with some components of management), and specialized editors. Titles obviously vary by company. The path also depends on whether the company is publishing books or news or both (for example, I believe ALM was recently or is currently looking for essentially full-time reporters for some of their magazines, though the positions described did not seem quite entry-level).

            I think there are a lot of attractive things about being a career clerk–many similar perks to publishing, such as a better-than-Biglaw schedule. Frankly, I think the biggest challenge is finding an open position (especially if you are not looking to relocate). I think you also have to have an interest in both the civil and criminal sides, since in nearly all cases you’ll be handling both types of cases.

      • I do not work for the company that publishes the book, and I would second the recommendation. Also check out Evidentiary Foundations by Imwinkelried. (Yes, I spelled that correctly.) Second/third/tenth the recommendations to read the Federal Rules, the local rules, and any standing orders for judges you appear in front of. Doing so will get you a long way toward knowing what you are doing.

        • Professor Imwinkelreid spoke at a conference I attended last year. He’s brilliant… but wow, I’m glad I’m not still in law school.

      • I’m an O’Connor’s junkie too — but be careful citing cases from there (especially the Federal Rules * Civil Trials one) without looking them up to confirm they actually say what they’re cited for.

    • If you’ll be practicing in the same area you’re in now, check your local bar association to see if there are any events with the judges you’ll be appearing before. I’ve been to a CLE where a federal judge lectured on his top 10 list of pet peeves in federal procedure. Also, my local federal bar association has a monthly “lunch with the judges,” which is just an informal Q&A. There are also networking events, etc. where you can get to know the judges, their staffs, and the people you’ll be appearing with.

  5. I would like this bag more if it had a longer drop length. MJ bags tend to be heavy and I hate them being so short.

    TJ! Any suggestions for applying self-tanner on your legs without looking all splotchy? Any brands you recommend? This pale girl is terrible at doing this apparently and needs all the help she can get.

    UPDATE: I’m finally over that dumb guy I was dating (the one who just wouldn’t step up) and have now moved on to trying to seduce two different guys from my trivia group. Btw, trivia nights at bars are teeming with cute, nerdy men!

    • I have no idea how to apply self-tanner — it is a mystery to me — akin to the ability some women have to blow-dry the back of their hair straight. I say outsource it and spring for a spray-tan. :-P

      Also, You Go Girl (z-shaped snap). :-)

      • Merabella :

        I’m there with you girl. I have never been able to do either of these things. I would suggest springing for an airbrush spray tan applied by someone else, those cubicle spray tan things always end terribly for me.

        • Third-ed. I have the brazillian keratin treatment and I still spring for blow-outs when I want my hair to look hot-date nice. I tried self tanner once when I was like 18, and ever since then, it’s been airbrush all the way.

          And I MISS the fun of being single, unattached, and pursuing multiple men at once – enjoy! :-) :-) :-)

    • Always a NYer :

      I second the suggestion to get a spray tan. But if you want to do it at home, exfoliate before so you have a smoother application and use rubber gloves so your hands don’t turn orange ;)

      And have fun seducing the cute nerds!

    • I’ve had better luck with the ones that build up over a few days — I feel like it gives me a chance to hit missed spots later. And it’s good to first put regular lotion on your knees and ankles to prevent the build-up they tend to attract.

      Neutrogena had one I liked, but I just searched & can’t find it, so maybe it’s discontinued. They still have one, but it looks different, and doesn’t come in the “light” shade that worked best for me (I don’t want to look actually tan, I just want to take the edge off the bright white glow).

    • I have really good luck with the gradual tanning lotions, like Jergens or Aveeno. It takes two to three days but they’re never splotchy on me. Shave legs before applying the first day to exfoliate. Apply lotion as soon as you dry your legs. Make sure you rub in in both vertical and horizontal patterns. Don’t get too much on knees or ankles, but do run it down the length of the top of your foot.

      If you are naturally light-skinned, I find the “fair to light” varieties give a more natural and less orangey color.

      I only like a slight, slight amount of color on my legs, so I apply them once or twice a week at most during warm weather months.

      Make sure you wash your hands with soap right after applying.

      • PS
        1) Tuesday and I posted basically the same thing at the same time. Twinsies!

        2) So many of my nerdy male actuary friends do trivia nights, I’m kind of excited to see if you end up with one of them!!! (they need the lovin’, believe me)

        • I always wanted a twin!

        • um, trivia nights in the east bay? are these guys cute and/or sweet? cuz, um, i could be into that… ;o)

        • I met my husband at trivia! We were acquaintances, and were on the same team, but got together after seeing each other every week.

          Love trivia.

    • I gave up on the self-tanning lotions because I hated the smell and I didn’t like wondering how it would look since I couldn’t tell right away. What I did last summer instead was use Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs. I’m really pale but I could never find it in the lightest tone, so what I would do is put lotion in my palm, then spray the Airbrush Legs into the lotion and put it on. It worked well for me and didn’t rub off on my clothes.

    • Echoing the advice to use a tanner that builds up over a few days. I’ve used Jergens, Neutrogena, and most recently, one called QuickTan (not sure if that’s the actual brand name, but I bought it at Sally’s Beauty Supply for around $10). I used it for 3 days in a row to build the base, and now I just apply it after a shower once a week. I recommend shaving/exfoliating prior to application. I usually apply it in a circular manner to avoid any streaks, let it dry before you get dressed, and wash your hands with soap after application. I don’t put it on my face, so I have to use my “summer” foundation once I start using the self-tanner.

    • This is a really dumb question, but do you apply self-tanner to just your arms and legs or torso as well? And in the latter case, how do you do your back?????

      • I do my torso and just get my back as best as I can. I’m usually able to get upper shoulders/lower back with no problem, and middle back…. weeeeelllll, we’ll just assume the swim suit band will cover that :)

      • Magdeline :

        I like the airbrush mist type of tanning sprays for this reason. I just bend over (as close to 90 degrees as possible, so as to get my entire back), raise my arm back above my shoulder, and spray. I then repeat with the other arm in hopes that it will be even. It has always worked really well. It helps to raise your arm sort of high so that the mist will fall somewhat evenly from above, rather than being sprayed in streaky lines.

        They also make sponge applicators for backs for this purpose. (They look similar to back scrub brushes, but with sponges instead of bristles.)

    • MaggieLizer :

      I’m very fair and I like Clarins. I use the self tanning instant gel on my legs and the liquid bronze self tanning on my arms and chest. I find the gel is too intense for my arms. Ditto the above recommendations to exfoliate, use a regular unscented lotion, and then apply the self tanner. Make sure to rub it in pretty well.

      Also, congrats on ditching the loser and focusing on other, better prospects. Keep us updated!

    • Barrister in the Bayou :

      I also use the gradual build up lotions. I’ve never gotten streaks or blotches or anything. I think I used the Jergens Express.

    • YAY you! Good luck in your quest :)

      I have no advice on self-tanner, sadly – I’m too afraid to take the plunge myself. I do have a friend with porcelain skin who gets spray tans, and they look good (and not orange) on her.

    • St. Tropez has a self tanning foam and a mitt that you can use. Hands down the best/easiest self tanner to apply. Plus you can use the mitt to help buff out areas that you’ve over applied.

    • S in Chicago :

      Sephora carries Kate Sommerville tan towels. Super easy to apply, no weird streaking, and no scent. They are the best things ever. They also make a version for face that has a little peel off mitt, which makes application really easy. I’ve got super sensitive skin and was happily surprised when my face didn’t break out the least bit after several applications while on vacation. I can’t say enough great things .

    • Thanks, all! You guys are awesome!

    • Totes McGotes :

      Hooray – finally!

      And because I have a soft, protective spot for the nerdy guys, don’t forget the campfire rule: have fun, but leave them as good as or better than you found them!

      • Oh totally. I’m all talk–I’ll probably end up wanting to marry all of them and be left heartbroken!

    • I usually mix self-tanner 50/50 with my normal lotion. Takes longer to get the color I’m looking for, but for whatever reason it seems to eliminate the tiger streaks I’d get without doing so.

  6. Magdeline :

    Co-worker faux pas that I recently witnessed:

    Two women, apparently co-workers (not mine), were buying sodas at CVS. Co-worker 1 checks out without incident. Coworker 2 has her soda scanned and pulls out a debit card to pay. Coworker 1 sees that Coworker 2 has pulled out a card to pay for the soda and loudly exclaims, “Oh my god! You can’t use your card for that! It is a DOLLAR! Here, I have a dollar…” [Coworker 1 rummages through her wallet, apparently looking for a dollar.] Coworker 2 says, “No, it is fine, I have a dollar too. I’m just going to use my card.” Coworker 1 says, “You’re going to put a soda on a CREDIT CARD? Here, just take my dollar; I will pay for it. You can’t use a credit card for that!” Coworker 1 looks as if she is annoyed, but trying to remain polite. She says, “It is a debit card, and I want the points from it…” then swipes her card. As they are walking out, Coworker 2 continues to obnoxiously exclaim her disbelief that Coworker 1 used her card for a small amount.

    (I never carry cash, and I would be extremely irritated by Coworker 1. I proceeded to pay for my $1.50 soda with my debit card as they were leaving.)

    • My DH pays for almost everything on the Amex. I’ve recently started using cash because I just felt weird with him knowing where I had lunch every day (he does the finances) — though he gave me a funny look when I told him that (something akin to…”I don’t give a cr*p where you have lunch everyday.”)

      Anyway, other than that, I put everything on the Amex. And we pay it off every month! But we get cash back. So Coworker 2 can stuff it. I’m also still flummoxed but the idea of people who don’t understand debit cards — but that’s another ball of wax entirely.

      • Sorry, coworker 1 can stuff it. Obviously, if that wasn’t clear in context. :-)

      • Always a NYer :

        I’ll admit, I think it’s weird when I see all my coworkers charging their lunch. That said, I would never, ever say anything to them! Personally, I find it easier to track how much I spend when I use cash for everyday expenses. It’s too easy to go spend crazy when I use plastic.

        • Ha! I find it much easier to track what I’m spending when I charge everything (in fact, my DH then can make a chart that says “we spent exactly this percentage of our monthly money on lunch”) whereas when I spend cash, I don’t know what I spent each dollar amount on.

          • Our DHs are twinsies! The only things we use cash for are (1) cash-only restaurants and (2) tips at salons, etc.

          • manomanon :

            hair salons!
            for my entire life my mother has paid cash to have her hair done- because “there are some things your husband just doesn’t need to know- the cost of a trip to the salon is one of them” courtesy of my grandmother
            (there are many other things on that list most of which makes me laugh)

          • Haha, same here. I am admittedly bad with money so we worked out a system where I have a weekly “allowance” on a separate debit card for lunch, Starbucks, etc. because otherwise I would just blow through cash and not know what I spent it on. He feels bad that I have an “allowance” but I absolutely love it because I never worry about spending more than what we agreed on and having a record of what I generally spend on has helped us decide what an appropriate allowance is through some job/salary changes!

          • Add my husband and you’ve got triplets! He loves his charts and graphs of the lunch spending, let me tell you :) It was a helpful and somewhat shameful awakening to realize how much I was spending on lattes though…. :(

    • Wow, that is ridiculous of CW #1. It’s a pet peeve of mine, too (snark about using credit, that is) – I ALWAYS use my credit card, even for grabbing the $1 oatmeal from the firm cafeteria. Faster and I get points. Unless you’re not paying off your balance each month, no contest!

      • Equity's Darling :

        Plus, you don’t get any change! I don’t know about you all, but I really hate coinage (and in Canada, with the loonie and toonie, we get a lot of coins for change, the worrrstt).

        I pretty much always use cards.

        • so anonymous :

          I’ve actually been using more cash recently because I feel bad for the merchants in my small town that get killed by the fees. Anything less than $20, I pay cash.

          • There’s a cost associated with handling cash, too. Runs to the bank, time spent reconciling each drawer of each register, etc. It’s not as explicit as the credit card fees, but it’s real. Whether it’s more or less than merchant fees, I don’t know. And all of this is the cost of doing business, just like rent and payroll.

          • Agreed. I usually pay with a card since I rarely have cash on me, but in smaller shops I always try to pay with cash – the fees do take a toll on smaller businesses. But would probably pay with a card at CVS!

    • SF Bay Associate :

      I also pay for everything with a credit card. I like the points, but more importantly, Mint tracks every dime I spend. Cash seems to mysteriously evaporate from my wallet so I don’t even know what happened to it. I never have more than $10 on me, often less. I’m also training my DH to charge everything too. In a few months, I will use Mint to show him just how much money he has been spending on lunch out every day – busted :)!

      • THIS IS WHY I SWITCHED TO CASH!!! Lol. You and my DH could bond.

        • SF Bay Associate :

          Heh. Well, his lunch habit is one of the various leaks in our funds which is delaying our ability to purchase a home. $8-10 a day on lunch really adds up quickly, and for what? a sandwich? Some of those leaks are mine, but we can hardly address any of the leaks (or consciously choose to continue in our habits if they are worth it to us) if we don’t even know about them!

          • I know, I know — I’m just messing with you. :-P

          • i am trying to have this talk with my DH. his lunch habit is also our financial leak. i struggle with bringing it up frequently though, because he doesnt spend much money elsewhere. it just bothers me because he uses cash and is unaware of how quickly it can add up and because there is change all over the house.

    • Makeup Junkie :

      I use my credit card for absolutely everything. I’ve got about 250k miles stashed away for when I eventually pack in this job. And like the others have posted, I can track it on that way.

    • Gail the Goldfish :

      I’m in the “pay for everything with a credit card” camp. I like my 1% back, and as long as I pay it back every month (which I do), I see no problem. My mother hates it because of credit card fees (my parents own a small business), but I point out you can always have a threshold for credit card charges (which a lot of small NYC restaurants where I eat lunch and bodegas seem to do)

    • long time lurker :

      Twice in the last year someone has duplicated my American Express card and made a copy of it and used it fraudulently. And I never lost the card. Amex suggested that a restaurant or bar employee put it through a skimmer and copied the details and then created a “new” card. The charges have been reversed, but I have been more careful about where I use credit cards. Therefore I’ve been paying with cash at restaurants or bars (anywhere someone could “take” my card to swipe it). I also wonder about the credit card readers in taxi’s. Seems it would be easy to install a device on one of those, and I had used my credit card frequently in taxis around the times of the fraudulent charges.

      • I agree. This is why I don’t use my cc card for small purchases and I never use my debit card except to get cash out of an ATM. There are ways to steal that info too. Michaels had that problem last year in several of its stores.

  7. Anon bag lover :

    I actually just bought this for myself in the tan color as a splurge to reward a recent achievement. It is a stunning bag, it holds its shape and you can indeed fit a a lot of stuff. I know its a ton of money, but I think it is destined to be a classic. I have had a couple of other Marc Jacobs bags over the years, and they have held up extremely well. (Not true of my Marc by Marc Jacobs bags, which seem to only last a season or two.) And, while not cheap, Marc Jacobs bags are substantially less than Chloe or YSL, which I find to be similar quality.

    So, if you are in the market for an investment bag, I heartily recommend this one. Also, I looked at the Marc Jacobs “wellington” style bags, which are also really nice.

    • Anon bag lover :

      also, for anyone considering it, they are doing a triple points promotion at Nordstrom right now, so at least this would get you some serious rewards points (convertible to gift cards).

      here is the tan one I got:

      and the wellington bag, which I was seriously considering:

      • Lovely bag, and I like the Wellington, too. Good for you for treating yourself :)

  8. I would like to complain that Kat finally posted a bag I am lusting over, and it is totally and completely out of my price range.


    • 72.1% of all problems posted about on corporette would fall into the class “first world problems” (though probably more correctly — first world/first class problems). :-P

    • Ditto. I usually have relatively mild feelings about the stuff she posts but I am IN LOVE with this bag! Too bad I just spent $ at the Kate Spade sample sale. And that this is $500 shy of a mortgage payment for us. WANT.

  9. Got asked to repost this here from the previous thread…

    Just wanted to thank those of you who emailed me extra birthday love… thank you for remembering and for thinking of me. Super hoping that the really tough stuff has washed away with the old year and that this new year will bring a reprieve or maybe even a good thing or two. I am so so grateful to have you all in my life :)

    Being that I’m 29 (oh god, haven’t said that til just now), what are some things you either wish you’d done before turning 30 or that you want to do before you turn 30? Or what was the best thing you did before you turned 30?

    • Anonymous :

      Travel. A lot. Backpack. Because seriously, once you have kids, you’re grounded for a while.

      • no kids for this girl… other than the 4 legged kind but good idea, I’m probably just about out of time for sleeping on air mattresses and such lol

    • goirishkj :

      Happy Birthday! 29 was rough for me, 30 was better and 31 has been even better so far! The rough patch really made me take stock of what I wanted out of life (as opposed to what I thought I should want) and forced me to make major changes that made me much happier. The best is yet to come, and I wish I’d accepted that and learned to let go of old ideas about what I should do.

      • thank you for this… 28 was the roughest year I’ve ever had and I just have to keep hoping it’ll go up somehow lol will work on the acceptance part though :)

        • Oh, K, 28 was the roughest year for me, too! Have you heard of Saturn Return, yeah, that happened to me SO HARD. But really, 30 and 31 were the best!! So much better than 28, and i felt so much more awesome about everything. I think i grew into myself much more in my 30s, i had no idea what was going on in my 20s. you’ll be good! ;o)

        • goirishkj :

          Oh I’m still working on the accepting things part–I’m a stereotypical Type A lawyer. It’s hard for me to let go and let [insert whatever you believe in here]. It gets better though, really truly it does.

      • Someone I know did a blog about turning 30, but it could easily apply to 29:

        Also, the main thing I remember about 29 is that my sex drive was crazy. Like an 18yo boy. Now, at 31, it’s calmed down.

    • Just want to say this to you, although I have nothing for your list (yeesh, I can hardly remember what I was thinking in my 20’s). My 30’s were better than my 20’s but honestly, my 40’s have been better than ever. Don’t fret about passing those milestones. Life just gets better! Well, other than the aches and pains, but…

    • From your fellow corporette with first initial “K” – I also just turned 29 and have been thinking about a “30 before 30” list ever since. For me, that means a mix of things that get me out of my comfort zone (like going to a movie by myself or taking a class in something that I don’t know how to do), big and small splurges (that trip I’ve been wanting to take, finally finding the perfect lipstick shade), and just things I’ve been meaning to do but never fully dedicated time for (keeping in better touch with a sibling, perfecting a three-course meal and throwing a dinner party). For me, I wanted to have positive and realistic things to accomplish to make me feel good about entering into my next decade! Plus, just thinking about it was a nice exercise, and I think it helped me realize all the things I had already accomplished and crystallize what I wanted for myself in the future (both large and small). Good luck!

  10. Can anybody give the approximate weekly cost of an on-the-books nanny? I’ve heard that paying one off the books is about $550/week in my area. How much higher can we expect it to be to do it legally? Also, are you usually responsible for health insurance?

    • We paid our nanny approximately 800/week on the books for a 45 hour work week (8:30-5:30) We also gave her a stipend for health insurance and reimbursed her at the IRS rate for mileage. We definitely paid at the higher end, but we had been burned once and were willing to pay for experience. This was for a nanny that had 10 years experience and ran our household in addition to taking (awesome!) care of our kid.

      • How much was the stipend for health insurance?

        • I think it was 150/month. It covered super basic, high deductible managed care crap-o insurance for her. She opted to pay for a slightly better plan

    • AppealingLawyer :

      In the Chicago suburbs, I think the hourly rate for a good nanny is around $14 to $16 per hour (little more if more kids). If you do it legally, you will have to pay FICA and Social Security taxes. I think this is about 15% combined. You have the option of splitting that with your employee (just like you pay your share of FICA). We pay our employee’s share, as does the other couple that I know (our payment of that tax ends up to be reportable income for the nanny though, but she’s still way ahead by our paying it for her). Then you’ll also have to plan on paying unemployment tax, which is about 3% (the rate varies on several factors in IL). And you’ll have to buy a homeowner’s rider for workers compensation insurance, which I think is about $300 or $400 per year (not all states require this though).

      All in, I would guess that it adds about 20-22% to the cost of the nanny after you figure in miscellaneous stuff like needing an accountant to figure out your taxes and file forms. Also, unless you are going to strictly adhere to a schedule (as I do), you almost need to hire a payroll service to figure out how much you owe her each week. If her hours vary, so are all the other things like withholding, etc. and it’s an administrative nightmare.

      When hiring a nanny, be very clear about what your intentions are as for taxes. I found very few women who thought I was going to pay them in anything other than cash. As a result, I had to figure out what hourly rate they wanted to go home with and then back into that number by estimating how much they’d have to pay in income tax, etc. (which is why I pay her share of FICA…I’d just end up having to increase her hourly rate if she paid it herself).

      I did not want to go the au pair route, but it’s much cheaper in the long run because you don’t have to pay a lot of these taxes and much of their income is considered the room and board you provide, which is not a taxable transaction. Something to consider.

      • AppealingLawyer :

        Oh, and you are not “responsible” for healthcare…that’s a perk you can provide if you want. It’s an expensive one and I don’t do it. No one I interviewed expected it frankly. But we do offer 2 weeks paid vacation and all holidays paid.

    • Diana Barry :

      We pay on the books, 550/gross for 33 hrs/week, 2 kids. ($16.66/hr gross) We take out all the taxes required, so the net pay is lower. We may underpay (??), but our nanny seems happy. We give her all the time off we get per year (usually 3 weeks) and all holidays off. Also, she has Fridays off like I do. We don’t give a stipend for health insurance.

      Note – we interviewed 19 people and she was the only person willing to be paid on the books.

    • So, I may be paranoid, but for you lawyers who pay your nannies off the books, do you worry about the professional implications of getting caught committing some sort of tax crime? We’ve been thinking about switching from daycare to a nanny but can’t find one who will agree to be paid on the books, and this keeps me up at night.

      • a passion for fashion :

        if you use a nanny service, they will send people who will be paid on the books. some of them will even do the books for you. it usually coest about 1500 bucks up front, but if youre worried about it, its probably worth it.

        • I wish I could afford to go through a service, but I was quoted $25 an hour by the services in my area, which is way outside of my budget.

      • Explain to the nanny the benefits of having you pay into their social security. And if you are willing to pay the enough that they still take home their hourly rate, it shouldn’t matter that you are doing it legally.

  11. Want to thank everyone so so much for the love and support yesterday. Things are going just fine today. Of course I talked to my husband last night. I think I was engaging in a little magical thinking prior to yesterday — as in, if I don’t talk about it, it’s not real, and telling you guys (cause I knew you’d be so great and knock me upside the head about telling my husband) was the first step. He was totally awesome, including asking me “how are you feeling about this? How can I best support you?” He rocks. Sorry guys, his brother is married too.

    So thanks. I really mean it. I’m focusing on things that are great in my life, and they are many. Like you guys, and my new Kate Spade bag. You all won’t call me shallow, will you? ;)

    • NEVER! Unless and until you wear yoga pants before mid-night in the emergency room (kidding!)

      Love you too ECMD! :-)

      • And your husband does sound like quite the mentsch.

        • Yiddish fail, TCFKAG

        • Did I spell it wrong? I think I’m using it properly — but maybe I’m wrong.

          • canadian anon :

            I think you’re using it correctly too! However, my ancestors are not from Eastern Europe, so I could be wrong..

          • Equity's Darling :

            Its mensch, no t, but I think you got the usage right.


            Alternate spelling! Alternate spelling!

            But since I’m an Irish-scottish-french canadian Northeastern catholic…I’m not sure why I care. :-P

          • My country (not-quite redneck) BF is dying to call my jewish uncle a mensch… but he is scared to mispronounce/ misuse the yiddish word and be offensive. I don’t know the appropriateness of word use in this situation but am secretly thrilled that my favorite guy has this much respect for my favorite male relative…

            My dog has no qualms about licking either of them, yiddish be damned. Also a good sign :)

    • I’m so glad to hear that. It sounds like you’re married to a great guy. Now get cracking on that second baby! :)

    • I’m glad you reached out to him EC MD.

    • Yay. Glad you’re feeling better =)

    • I’m so glad you’re feeling better. And yay, Mr. EC MD is every bit as lovely as our own lovely EC MD. :-)

  12. Does anyone have a problem with tiny hairs along your hairline? I’ve always wanted to pin my real bangs back, but those tiny ones stick out everywhere! Hairspray only holds them for so long, and they never grow out. I think they make me look frizzy/unpolished.

    I remember seeing on ANTM that someone had her hairline threaded. Do you think this could help? Anyone tried it before?

    • Those hairs are the plague of my existence. No real “advice” but commiseration.

    • I read that the Kardashians had those hairs lasered off. Make of that what you will.

      • Anonymous :

        I understand that was quite common in Old Hollywood. Those fabulouse hairlines every single 1940s/1950s actress had were not all nature’s doing. I don’t know if they had lasers back then, but there was a “procedure” of some kind.

        • I think it was electrolysis. Marilyn Monroe had her hairline raised that way.

    • Ooh, I would be interested to hear about the threading. I don’t have the tiny hairs problem, but I have a super low hairline that I really don’t like.

    • I get my whole face threaded about every 6 weeks and it neatens up my hairline. I do it more for the peachfuzz but you know, unintentional benefits = awesome.

      • This is the first I’ve heard of “face threading,” and the mental image was horrifying. Google tells me that I overreacted.

    • At the little hair salon I go to I saw a couple of ladies getting those little hairs waxed off. I think it was in preparation for a wedding, but it would definitely work.

      Those little hairs are definitely a factor in why I rarely wear my hair back.

    • I have those little hairs and hair on the back of my neck and sideburns that are longer than I would like. I have thought about waxing, but I am nervous about the upkeep. I rarely wear my hair up for this reason, and it is getting very annoying.

      • Tired Squared :

        I don’t have the little hairs problem, but I DO have the sideburn problem (black hair, lighter skin). I get the sideburns waxed, and every time the hair grows back MUCH thinner. Now it’s far less noticeable, and I only have to get it done once every few months, as opposed to monthly. So the upkeep isn’t terrible!

  13. Biglawyers: How busy do you have to be before you start turning down work or negotiating deadlines? Due to a very lean associate pool, my group has 2.5 partners per associate. I currently have projects ongoing with 6 partners, plus direct assignments from a few clients. One partner continually asks for non-crucial things on short notice for his review; I’ve tried to nicely explain to him that I have assignments with several people and can’t drop everything to review 10 contracts this afternoon, and he seems to get huffy and questions whether his project is that time-consuming. I’m not worried about my reviews (they’ve been good from everyone else, and as far as I know his has been good as well) and my hours are consistently 2200+.

    Thoughts on how to handle? Should I bring it up to other partners, or just continue to push back? If this particular partner never gave me work again, I could still make my hours.

    • AppealingLawyer :

      If you’re at 2200 hours, you’re more than pulling your weight. If you don’t manage your workload you’re going to start running the risk that you’re doing sub-par work or letting deadlines slip. So, yes, you should do something.

      That said, no one likes to be told “no” and every partner wants to feel like he’s the most important. I also find that the longer I practice, the less lead time people seem to give young associates. The “google” mentality seems to be creeping in where we expect an immediate answer/response. Not good or fair for the junior associates.

      If you don’t like working with this guy and can’t get away from him (or should not because he is very powerful in the firm), then treat him like a client, which is how you should treat all partners you want/have to keep working with. When he gives you an assignment, thank him for the opportunity. Then ask him when he needs a response. If you cannot meet the deadline he gives you, say something like this:

      I would really like to do this project, but I have committed to finishing Project X (hopefully for more important partner) by this afternoon. Would it be okay if I got this to you by [realistic time]?

      • Woods-comma-Elle :

        Yes, this. The instant gratification generation is taking over and everyone wants everything right now and always assumes that you can do it right now. If it is important to them, it must be important to you, also, and everyone else you are working for.

        Agree, though, that the you are dealing with it the right way. I rarely give an outright ‘no’, but instead a ‘I can do it by x time’ and often you find that (i) it isn’t actually that urgent because they can wait or (ii) they will just go and ask someone else.

      • AnotherLadyLawyer :

        Confession – sometimes I say no. Real no. “I’m so sorry, but I just don’t have the time to handle that, in addition to blah blah blah and blah blah blah, for so and so and so and so.” Comes out a bit more often when it’s a partner I don’t like. In an ideal world, that would condition partner I don’t like to cease harassing me, but it doesn’t often work that way. But sometimes it does! I managed to wholly avoid one partner for about four months because I was always too busy for his last minute panic requests. Now he gives his work to someone else and I’m a-okay with that.

  14. Fun afternoon threadjack: do you have celebrities that you adore, despite the fact that you have never met them, and you are now a grown *ss woman? I’ll go first:

    1) Beyonce. I think her music is great and I love how she conducts herself in the world. Plus, I am hot for Jay-Z, and love how they conduct their relationship. I like him more for landing Beyonce.

    2) Pink: okay, I have met her, and she was so awesome and genuine and real that I will love her forever.

    3) Victoria Beckham. She is totally ridiculous, but there is something about the way she conducts herself that makes me think she has a lot of self awareness. Plus, married to Becks.

    Your turn (can you tell I have a big break between patients this afternoon…this is what your surgeon thinks about in her free time.)

    • Well…I think I’ve confessed to some of these before…but…

      (1) The Duchess of Cambridge. Girlfriend can dress and seems genuinely happy and nice.

      (2) Gwyneth Paltrow — despite Goop — because of Sliding Doors and the C.Lo cover for ever.

      (3) Tina Fey — despite the fact that she’s on my husband’s “list” (or really because of it) — because she’s funny and I want to be her when I grow up. Same goes for several other of the SNL alums.

      (4) Heidi Klum — because of her gams and they way she says auf wiedersehen.

      • Concur on the Duchess! I heart her so much.

      • Oh hey, your list is pretty much my list! Well, I’m sort of indifferent to Heidi (sorry Heidi!)… but I’m totally with you on (1) through (3).

      • Tina Fey is my personal hero. No matter how many awesome clothes I buy because of Corporette, inside I will always be Liz Lemon.

    • so anonymous :

      People who write their own music and play an instrument and make music as opposed to pop.

      • Ah, you’re one of THOSE. I bet when something gets “popular”you don’t like it either. (I’m just messing with you, some of my best friends are indie-music people. :-)

        Oh…and my favorite musical artist is Alison Kraus, but I don’t think that fits the category because its people we liked “despite” being grown-*ss women!

    • Colin Firth will forever be the Real Mr. Darcy in my heart. And Mr. Darcy is, of course, the perfect man for me, despite the fact that I completely love my husband.

      So, more embarrassing than your celebrity crushes, I crush on a celebrity as a fictional character.

      • You are not alone! Though Colin Firth himself is also on my list.

      • You’re not alone! My BFF is in lust with Hugh Jackman, but only as Wolverine.

        • Apparently I am your best friend’s twin, seeing as today is c*rporette twin day.

      • Mr. Darcy is on my list (not necessarily Colin himself, just mr. darcy).

      • I figured out a few years ago that David Addison has ruined every other man for me.

      • Mamabear, 1000x yes. I have told my husband that while I love him dearly, I have an unending crush on BOTH Mr. Darcy and Colin Firth. I don’t care how weird it is. He’ll be hot and adorable until he’s a million.

      • Me too!! Lots of Darcy love here…

    • I like Beyonce a lot too. And it seems like she and Jay-Z really keep their relationship out of the spotlight to the extent possible, which I really like. I hope they make it. I’ll have a better chance of keeping my husband if Beyonce is not on the market. :)

    • Jennifer Garner. I want to be real life BFFs. Love her casual, I’m with my kids so I’m in jeans and tennis shoes style. Love her dressed up glam. Alias rocks. Love her.

      • Oh yeah. And I want to steal J. Garner’s children!!!

      • Diana Barry :

        I forgot her. I think she and Ben should move back to Boston and then we can all be besties forever and our kids can hang out all the time. :)

    • Always a NYer :

      1. Angelina Jolie – despite all the crazy that surrounded her before Maddox, I find her awesome! She’s a humanitarian, an amazing actress, flies planes, has tattoos and can rock leather for just about any setting. There’s also the fact that she gets to sleep with Brad Pitt every night. And her kids are adorable =)

      2. David Becham – that man is seriously the perfect man in my book =) He’s gorgeous, athletic, and seems like the world’s best dad. I love how soft-spoken he is and would have no qualms asking for a hug and a picture if I were to ever see him in person ;)

      3. Queen Rania of Jordan – that woman is not only queen and stunning, she’s such an activist for women’s rights and education for girls. I read somewhere that she always makes it a point to tuck her kids in each night and that she and her husband put a real value on family and making sure their children have as normal an upbringing as possible.

    • My #1 guilty pleasure celebrity is Darren Criss. Also, I love Taylor Swift. Clearly, I am secretly a thirteen-year-old girl.

      • I have a huge crush on Darren Criss too. And Zack Efron. I am also secretly a thirteen-year-old girl. You’re not alone!

      • Two of my top tv-celebrity crushes right now are Darren Criss and Matt Bomer (from White Collar) and someone pointed out to me that they are basically the same character/person. And that Matt Bomer is apparently going to be playing Darren Criss’ brother on Glee…oh the hotness co-efficient will be SO high that day.

    • Diana Barry :

      I like Victoria Beckham too, despite the fact that she is a stick insect and her dresses are so expensive.

      I would loooooove to hang out with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

      I would like to go to Martha Stewart’s house, or Ina Garten’s house, to be entertained. But no way am I letting them see the inside of my house!

      I would like to jam with the Indigo Girls or Florence Welch (although if I hung out with Florence I would have to tell her that SOME OF HER RECORDINGS ARE OFF KEY!).

      And can we share celebrity crushes too like mamabear? :) Clive Owen, Daniel Craig, and of course Mr. Darcy-era Colin Firth (I do like the Brits and do sometimes wish I had married one in real life, shhhhhh).

      • Awful Lawful :

        This is fun. Gotta share in the Colin Firth love. I also have a thing for The Rock (Dwayne Johnson), which my DH thinks is hilarious. Recently, I also had a discussion with a girlfriend about Jason Segal. Most people wouldn’t consider him conventionally handsome, but I just think is hilarious, which is always attractive and he seems like such a teddy bear!

        Anyone else out there have love for Bill Clinton? I’m talking White House years, not present time. There’s just something about him….

    • Angelina Jolie and Reese Witherspoon. They put their money where their mouth is in terms of charity. They seem to be good mothers and they also seem intelligent. And Bradley Cooper, who also seems really smart. He went to Georgetown!

      My male crushes are usually characters from fiction. I’m right there with the rest of you about Mr. Darcy.

      My “5 celebrities I’m allowed to sleep with” if I ever meet them list is – for the moment – Bradley Cooper, Ryan Reynolds, Josh Lucas, Jon Stewart, and Wilson Bethel (Hot Neighbor Wade).

      • Bradley Cooper also speaks fluent french, which adds major hotness points in my book.

        Also, for a second I thought your list included Burt Reynolds, not Ryan. That made me laugh. I used to have a thing for Burt as a little girl. I think it was his mustache. I used to want to marry a man who looked just like him … or Knightrider .. or Michael Jackson. In retrospect, I think Burt was the best choice of those three. At least until Zack Morris and Dylan McCay entered my life. For anyone confused by all the decade spanning, I watched a lot of reruns as a child. The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas was one of my favorite movies.

    • Ryan Gosling :

      Hey girl,

      How am I not anywhere on this thread yet? You know you love me.

    • 1. Jennifer Garner – smart, lovely, athletic. Tons of “Alias” love here. Comes across as a real sweetheart.

      2. Rachael Ray – Her recipes have saved me lots of time, and lots of $$. I like Rachael Ray’s cheerful attitude, too, because the idea of following a judgy, disapproving TV chef would really bug me. I love that she’s the anti-Martha Stewart. As a busy person who must fly a desk 10-12hrs a day, I don’t have time to grow the berries in my perfect garden myself and make preserves from them, while putting them in a jar whose perfect blue ribbon was hand-woven (sorry, Martha!) The “lifestyle” that Martha Stewart sells is addictive to female overachievers who like the DIY approach, but I’m not buying because it’d be crazymaking at this point in my life.

      3. Angelina Jolie — the ultimate cool-mom ki[email protected] Girlcrush!

      4. Liv Tyler – love that she happily jumped, skipped, and hopped away from the Hollywood rat-race and does her own thing at her own pace. Glad that she got the best features of both parents.

      5. Sarah McLachlan — she is one of the few musicians who really helped pave the way for a lot more women artists who are singer-songwriters, rather than teen pop-tartlets churned out by the recording labels.

      • How did I forget Rachael Ray??? I love her! I’ve been cooking out of her cookbooks almost at least 5 nights a week since I got married. She’s the best. Her recipes are truly delicious and easy.

    • I seem to like the married ones. Especially Hugh Jackman and Taye Diggs. Sigh.

      As for the ladies, I’ve always really liked Gwyneth Paltrow (and I refuse to read GOOP because I want to keep liking her).

    • Woods-comma-Elle :

      Ivanka Trump. All the weird family members/politics aside, there is something so impressive about the way she speaks, so calmly and articulately and with confidence. I wish I could channel her more (or maybe I should just take elocution lessons). And she designs awesome shoes.

      • I have an irrational like for Ivanka too! She totally cemented my love for her (not that she was trying to) when she wore a wedding dress with sleeves! I chose to wear a more “modest” wedding dress for my marriage in a synagogue too, and I felt like this was a sign that it was actually okay to like her. I think her parents are both total nut balls, but the seem to have raised a lovely young woman.

      • I have a little girl crush on Sandra Bullock, Liz Phair and Zooey Deschanel. They’re all badass in their own way, fairly non-blonde and I think they would be cool to hang out with. Also Joey Lauren Adams, because she is my sometimes blonde twin.

        My list includes Jason Lee, Ed Burns, Anderson Cooper, Denzel Washington and LL Cool J. Okay, I am only cleared to MAKE OUT with LL Cool J, but doesn’t everyone want to make out with LL Cool J?

        • Yes. To LL Cool J. I was 12. He rapped Mama Said Knock You Out. Sigh. That is all

    • I would have Jon Stewart’s babies, even though I had my tubes tied 20 years ago.

      So funny. So hot.

  15. My comment seems to be stuck in moderation so I’m trying again…

    Yay! I’ve been waiting for Coffee Break all day. I realized this morning that my suits are a pretty sad sight and in dire need of updating. Hoping that the Corporettes can help direct my search!

    For reference: I generally wear Banana or J. Crew but at this point in my career it’s probably time to invest in a few nicer suits. Is Theory my only option? I’m looking mostly for skirt suits (or sheath dresses, which I LOVE and wouldn’t mind making that my “signature”).

    I’d love a little direction before starting my search. Any advice?

    • Former MidLevel :

      Theory is lovely, but I don’t think it’s your only option. My favorite brand for suits in approximately that price range is Classiques Entier at Nordstrom.

    • anon for this question :

      I second Classiques. I also really like Lafayette. I haven’t been in a Brooks Brothers in years, but I would guess it’s a step up in quality. Talbots clothing is also getting a little hipper than it used to be.

      • MissJackson :

        +1 for Lafayette 148. I think it’s better quality than Theory for roughly the same price — and actually pretty easy to find on sale. They have a clearance and sale section on the Lafayette148ny (dot) com website and I’ve gotten some great suits there. But, if you can try some pieces on in-store I highly recommend doing so because the sizing runs quite big.

    • For classic “interview” style suits, I think Brooks Brothers or Classiques Entierre are probably good bets. I’ve never bought anything Theory so can’t comment.

      For things that are a little more trendy/different, I’d check out the other lines at Nordstroms as well as at Niemen’s and Bloomingdales (I only know this because I jokingly was searching for suits in yesterday’s suit thread and posted a link to a few and saw lots more from those stores that I liked). But those can be expensive if you’re not an every-day suit wearer, I think.

    • Classiques fan here too. I understand that Theory generally has a straighter cut, and if you’re on the mid-to-curvy side, Classiques will probably fit better.

  16. Anon for this :

    I totally just had a serious faux pax moment. I think my coworker may be pregnant, not at all confirmed, just a feeling. She also has a 1 year old. So I asked something like “How is the baby?” She made a face, I made a face, and then I awkwardly moved the convo along. ACK! I will now attempt to remove foot from mouth.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      I, childless, would characterize the 1 year old as a “baby,” and that’s what I would have meant if I asked her about the “baby.” I’m not sure where the baby/toddler line is, but I guess my logic is if they sell onsies at babygap for 12 months, the kid is still a baby.

      • Magdeline :

        Yes, I agree! I don’t see what your faux pas was here. I would characterize the 1 year old as a baby too. I don’t know why she made a face…. she should have just told you about the 1 year old.

    • I think what happened is you meant to ask about the 1-year-old baby, and she assumed you were asking about the not-yet-announced pregnancy. I wouldn’t worry about it; it’ll probably dawn on her what you meant. Maybe next time you ask, ask about the baby by name so there’s no confusion (or if you don’t know the name, ask “how’s your daughter” or son).

      (By the way, it’s faux pas, pas with an S. French for false step.)

    • You’re fine, unless you said, “How’s the baby… .in your belly?”

      My daughter is 11 and my son is 9, and they’re still my babies, so I certainly would not think calling a 1 year old a baby would be a faux pas.

      • I’m in my late 20s, and I’m fairly certain I’m still my mother (and grandmother’s) “baby”. =)

      • I call my dog baby — and if someone asked me how “the baby” was, that’s who I’d assume they were talking about! But you know, that’s my issue.

        • I do love you.

          Every day when I get home I go straight to my room to ask my babies (cats) how their day was. They usually say, “um, you’re home? Dinner time!” You know, in cat.

  17. HIIT and calories :

    I’ve been doing high intensity interval training for the last several months, and I can’t seem to get enough calories. I’m STARVING all the time! I even started eating something for breakfast, I have a snack of almonds mid-morning, but by 11 am I need a huge meal. Then I’m starving again at 2pm and 4pm, and by the time I get home at 6pm, I need dinner, even after the afternoon snacks. Maybe my snacks just aren’t hearty enough? Maybe my body really has re-calibrated to burn more while sitting, so I need to up my calories? I feel like I’m eating enough, but unless I have some insanely huge meal, I can’t seem to shake the feeling that I’m really hungry. Tips?

    • Merabella :

      What kind of snacks are you eating? Do they have enough protein? Complex carbs? Something that fuels your body a little longer. My trainer warned me that high intensity workouts would eventually make me hungrier. I would try to make some different snack choices and see if that helps. I have also found that when I eat a good breakfast – not just cereal – I tend to eat better all day.

    • Okay — I think you need to make sure you’re getting some lean protein, some healthy fat, and some carbs in every meal/snack as best you can (because you need all these burning blocks to build muscle and recover from exercise — it will also prevent hunger). I would re-calibrate your snacks to have more calories and I would front-load more calories into your breakfast (which you just started eating! breakfast is key to successful training).

      Maybe instead of just almonds for a snack, try a piece of whole grain toast with almond butter or something like a full-on trail mix with some fruit and chocolate.

    • HIIT and calories :

      OP here, I agree that my snacks are probably lacking in well-rounded nutritional value. As I mentioned, I eat a lot of almonds for snack, sometimes yogurt or string cheese. These don’t have a lot of calories or variety of calories, so the toast/nut butter, trail mix, higher fat content snacks are a good suggestion. My big morning meal lately has been eggs, turkey bacon, whole grain bagel or pancakes and a latte with 2% milk, probably around 600-750 calories with a lot of protein and simple carbs.

      • I find hummus to be very satisfying, snack wise. Also those greek yogurts (I like the Chobani brand ones). Make sure you are eating normal versions of cheese, yogurt, etc. The fat free stuff is not filling and not doing you any favors nutritionally, imho. Try real full fat or at least low fat yogurt (if not already) I think it’s much more satisfying.

      • I’d second the nut butter — with either an apple or a whole grain bread. I’ve also found tofu to be VERY filling. I buy the kind that has laready been marinated and baked at Whole Foods, which I think tastes great. It doesn’t feel satisfying immediately, but 20 minutes later I feel like I over ate. Just a suggestion.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      My marathon training husband started eating these organic bars that you follow with a glass of water that supposedly expand and make you feel full. I thought they would be loaded w/ crap but they ingredients list looked natural and he said they tasted good. I don’t remember what they are called though.

    • About a year ago I started doing a lot of P90X and Insanity and I was also starving all the time. What has helped me:

      – Protein shakes right after working out. I get the Myoplex powder (in chocolate) from GNC, and there’s a recipe on the box for a shake with the powder, a banana, peanut butter, and water/ice. It’s so good and will keep you full for a while.

      – Protein at lunch. I used to be able to get by with a slice of pizza or a salad for lunch, but now I make a point of eating enough protein. Turkey sandwiches, curries with chicken, Chipotle steak burritos, Trader Joe’s rice bowls, etc — as long as there’s a good amount of protein in it.

      – Mindful snacking in the afternoon. If I just have a yogurt or a string cheese here and there, I’m starving by 4 p.m. Bring in some good snacks (apple & peanut butter, cheese & whole wheat crackers, cereal like Kashi Go Lean with protein) and stop what you’re doing mid-afternoon and actually sit down and enjoy your snack. And make sure to eat enough snack – a few almonds won’t dent the hunger.

      – I have an emergency stash of protein bars in my desk drawer for the days when I’m just really hungry or I have a late dinner planned. I don’t like to eat them all the time because I’m already getting a lot of fake food in the protein shakes, but they will really take the edge off hunger for a good few hours.

      – Eat enough food at dinner. If I have a small dinner, I’ll be extra starving the next day. I try to eat protein at dinner too, although sometimes I just want a big bowl of pasta and that’s fine too. Just no dinners consisting of 10 baby carrots and hummus — you need stick-to-your-ribs food or you’ll be hungry tomorrow.

      • You must try the Barilla Pasta. It’s whole wheat, enriched pasta, meaning it has a ton of protein in it. It’s actually really healthy, and it tastes great! I eat it a lot with a healthy sauce or just veggies in it.

        • Barilla Plus is what I meant, by the way.

        • HIIT and calories :

          Second the whole wheat pasta rec. Also, chopping some mushrooms and adding it to regular spaghetti sauce has been a great way to boost up some of my traditional favorites. It sounds like I really need to eat more during the day, because I eat a ton at dinner, but that’s usually after the workout, so I’m probably on deficit calories by that point.

          • Not to beat a dead horse, but Barilla Plus isn’t just whole wheat. It’s protein-enriched, so it has way more protein than other whole wheat pasta. It’s very filling. You should try it instead of your regular whole wheat pasta.

        • You can also try Ronzoni Healthy Harvest for whole wheat pasta. To my knowledge, it has the same nutritional benefits of Barilla Plus but you get more choices on pasta shape/size.

      • Something about protein shakes scares me.. I don’t know why I always feel this is something for the hardcore body builders with biceps large as my thighs.

    • Could also be that you’re a woman. A lot of recent studies that put men and women through the same HIIT show that women get a LOT hungrier than men do.

      *mutter*mutter*estrogen*making women more resistant to weight loss*more likely to gain*mutter*mutter.

      A guy I know recently said, in this very contemptuous, disdainful voice, “what is it with women and salads? What’s so wrong with them that they have to eat so little but still seem to always struggle with weight?” I was so incensed that he was basically saying that women are defective cray-crays that I couldn’t resist but tell him that even with the help of testosterone, he was kind of flabby, so that made him the true defective.

      • HIIT and calories :

        Haha, that’s true. It’s particularly odd, because I’ve been fit and busy my whole life, so my body should be used to burning a lot of calories. I ran cross country in high school and did musicals, and I still don’t think I was THIS hungry, THIS often! Then again, I ate a lot of pizza, fries, and cookies back then, so maybe I just tricked my body accidentally into living off fat and sugar :) (I know that’s not really something to joke about, such a poor diet, but I have to laugh at my terrible eating habits when I was in HS).

        • My husband was like that up until I met him. He lived off of Skittles and Mountain Dew and was totally fit. He was/is an uber athlete though. I secretly (not so secretly) hate him for this because I have never been this way. He has gotten into better eating habits now, but it has been a process.

  18. Associate :

    I’ve been looking for a new brown bag, and the brown version of this is exactly what I had in mind. Too bad it’s twice my budget. Can anyone recommend something similar in the $700 under range?

  19. Argh. The discussion above about the cost of nannies on versus off the books made me throw up a little. I’m just starting to research this stuff now. In general, how much do people pay for childcare of any kind (nanny, daycare, mix)? I’m suddenly worried that we’re going to have to do some way more serious cutting back than we initially thought…

    • Anonymous :

      NYC area (Jersey City), 2 kids, part-time nanny at $18/hr. 25 hrs/wk is $450/wk off the books.

      I believe this is at the top end of pay for my neighborhood, but (1) PT nannies are hard to keep, everyone wants a FT job to pay the rent, so I pay well, and (2) my theory is, don’t cheap out on the people who take care of your kids. I also pay sick days, and as for vacation, we’re on the “if I take it, I pay you, but if nanny takes it while I’m working, then no pay.” I give our nanny as much advance notice of any days off/vacation as possible, so she can plan too. (Its amazing to learn how many people do not tell their nanny that, say, they can have Presidents’ Day off.)

    • I am willing myself to ignore that thread. When I think about how much real estate costs in NY and how much I would have to pay for a nanny, I start to think that I will never be able to afford to have children and if I do they’re bedroom will either be shared with mine or will have to be in a closet. Meanwhile, my semi-employed yoga instructor/hollistic counselor/painter bestie from childhood and her dj bf are having a baby – they’re just going “figure it out as they go along.” I would have a heart attack flying by the seat of my pants like that and yet…

      Sorry, no helpful advice, just wanted to commiserate.

      • Anonymous :

        “and if I do they’re bedroom will either be shared with mine or will have to be in a closet”

        Errr… this is New York. ALL children live in closets. :) That’s how we roll.

        • Egads, I made a terrible typo!

          And yes, I know that most children live in closets here, it builds character but shouldn’t it at least be a nice walk in closet?! ;)
          Right now my closet’s not even big enough for all my clothes. Any baby would have to either go under the bed or share the basket with my cat, both of which are probably frowned upon.

          • They make these little bassinets that attach to the side of your bed and don’t take up much room. I’m sure the cat would be willing to share one of those with the baby.

            (seriously though, I’ve always wondered how the heck people keep their cats out of the crib.)

    • There was a thread about this maybe a month ago. I pay $1680 a month for 55 hours of daycare a week at a childcare center for an infant. I’m in a large West Coast city.

    • I think it depends a lot on where you live and the type of child care. I’m in the midwest and for my daughter’s in home day care we pay $135/week. My friend’s mom is our day care provider and she is AMAZING (sorry for the Ellen-like caps, but she really is amazing). She has quite a few of her own (grown) children and numerous grandchildren. She doesn’t watch very many kids at a time – I think 6 is the most she has at one time – and several of them are her own grandkids. She treats my daughter like family. We definitely lucked out. Before finding her we looked into a national “chain” daycare that’s affiliated with DH’s work, and it was around $205/week.

    • PharmaGirl :

      NJ suburbs of NYC (Essex County), 1 child (16 months), $375/week for a small daycare center.

      Prices in my town are all in that same range and most of them are awful. The problem where I live is that most people commute into NY and need up to 11 hours of care per day. Good luck finding a nanny who will watch your kid for that long.

    • Midwest, midsize suburban town. We pay $47/day for toddler daycare (in a room of other 2-3 year olds) and it was $52/day when she was under 2. Our daughter only goes three days a week with the occasional drop-in day; my MIL watches her on Mondays and I have Fridays off.

      • Midatlantic city — pay approximately $800 on the books per week for 45 hour week, plus $20-$30 a week gas money.

    • Midwestern city, 2-year old. $300 per week cash for up to 32 hours (includes picking her up from preschool). When baby #2 comes in the fall, it will go up to $550 per week for up to 50 hours for baby; toddler will still go to preschool in the mornings so she will only be with nanny in afternoons.
      Nanny is awesome and brings her 1-year old with her to our house.

  20. Blonde Lawyer :

    Lots of people have posted lately trying to be better about tracking their hours. I’m forcing myself to get off this site and enter mine right now. You should too!

    • Woods-comma-Elle :

      I have actually just done it and felt very good about myself. I’m either really good about it, or awful. If I’m busy, I am good at using my timers, but less so when I’m not so busy and then sometimes even though I use the timers, I don’t write the narrative.

      Good nudge!

    • Happy 3/15 to any of my fellow tax preparers! We just had a little party at work and now I’m thinking of sneaking out early today.

  21. Amelia Pond :

    Quick TJ: Is this a I need to get to a Dr or I am ok waiting it out? My left foot and ankle are swollen but it doesn’t really hurt. I had some mild soreness in my heel the past week but I chalked it up to wearing 4in heels for a 5 hour event and I have bumped up my running milage in the past week. So since there is not any pain do I ice and advil or do I need to see someone?

    • Ice and Advil and no running or high heels until it’s better. If it persists more than a day or two go to the dr.

    • Awful Lawful :

      On a somewhat related, but not really related note – I have been having A LOT of swelling in my feet recently. It’s not really painful, just uncomfortable and, well, squishy for lack of a better word. Does anyone have any thoughts about why this is happening and/or things I can do to prevent it?

      • momentsofabsurdity :

        Have you had your blood pressure checked recently? This could be a symptom of high blood pressure.

      • It could be a sign of high blood pressure, diabetes, organ failure, a blood clot, pregnancy, or any number of things. Probably it’s something innocuous but it’s definitely something I’d see the doctor about ASAP because it has the potential to be a sign of something serious. Seriously, call your doctor.

        • Awful Lawful :

          Thanks for the responses. I was thinking it was just from sitting at my desk too long, but I guess I should call the doctor.

  22. The post on being put together this morning, plus all the talks about makeup making women look older (23 year old often mistake for a high school student!) and more confident has me thinking I should really stop being lazy/resigned to looking like a teenager, and get on this makeup=professional thing.

    I’ve got eye stuff and concealer/foundation covered, but I cannot find a good lip stick or gloss or tinted chap stick or whatever that doesn’t completely dry my lips by the end of the day. Anyone have a favorite brand that won’t make me long for plain chap stick after a few hours?

    • Laura Mercier sheer lipstick. My favorite color is Healthy Lips, but she has lighter, natural lip colors too.

      A lot of people swear by Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey, but for me, it’s not as comfortable on the lips as the Laura Mercier.

      • Thanks mamabear, I’ll look into Laura Mercier–I’ve never heard of that brand!

    • Yves St Laurent works for me. Laura Mercier was still a little drying for me.

      • Oh, I love some of the colors Yves St Laurent has! Not that I know what colors work on me…

    • I like the Fresh brand Sugar tinted lip treatments (for color) and Aveda lip balm (no color).

    • Smashbox O Gloss – its like mood lipstick but in super awesome ways only. No sticky feeling. You can apply it sans mirror so its also great for touching up.

    • Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm and Lip Sheer are great. I’ve been using them for years, and they’re around $5 a stick.

    • Clinique Chubby Stick. Adds just enough color and makes the lips look healthy. Needs to be reapplied after eating.

    • I am on some anti-acne treatment that is very harsh on lips.
      I put a lip balm first (Ictyane by Ducray) and if I feel like wearing lipstick, I’d add a coat of Lancôme red. Very moisturizing even for my very very dry lips.

    • Thanks everyone, looks like I need to hit up Sephora this weekend–I’ve never actually been there before, so this should be fun!

  23. Taking a trip to SF with the boyfriend in a few weeks. Suggestions re: fun things to do in the city? I summered in SF, so I know the area fairly well, and I’ve been taking the lead on the planning. I made restaurant resos at NOPA, Foreign Cinema, and Nectar. So to balance out my love of pricey-er food, what are some fun, cheap-ish daytime activities? I was thinking the Exploratorium (oversized kid here), maybe Golden Gate Park, a trip to that new farmer’s market over by the Embarcadero. A tour of Alcatraz just isn’t calling to me… =)

    Any fun day spots? Or suggestions generally? Thanks!

    • Sorry if this reads like a stream of consciousness post – one of those days =)

      • I think you mean the ferry building (new farmers market) but if not, definitely check out their hours and stop by- it’s really fun! Other ideas: rent bikes and bike along embarcadero, cross the golden gate on foot, take the ferry to marin and stroll around, walk through china town. I really love japan town- it’s adorable and great food. If he’s never been before, a lot of people love muir woods. I’ve seen so many redwoods that I’m kind of blasé about it (I’m so spoiled, haha) but some of my east coast friends have just loved it. Have fun!

        • Woods-comma-Elle :

          A friend took me to Muir Beach during a visit because we couldn’t find anywhere to park near Muir Woods – I was so upset that I didn’t get to see the big redwoods, but the beach had great views, too.

        • Yup. Ferry building. Couldn’t remember the name!

      • One of my favorite free things to do (and bonus points because it counts as exercise) is to climb either the Filbert Steps up to the Coit Tower or the Lyon Street Steps in Pacific Heights. The views from the tops of both are phenomenal, and allow you to explore neighborhoods by foot. The street at the top of the Lyon Street Steps happens to be where the priciest homes in San Francisco are, so it’s fun to get up there and walk around, mouths agape, at the magnificent ostentatiousness of it all. The entrance to the Presidio is also up there and you could go on a little nature hike through there.

    • California Academy of Science in the park

    • Loved bi-rite creamery – delicious ice cream. Zazie was really tasty for brunch. Definitely the farmers market. My husband and I went to SF for our honeymoon, and did mostly walking around checking things out – we spent most of our money on food, but balanced it out with less expensive places during the day.

    • Hangar One vodka distillery out on Alameda — you can take the ferry from SF, and walk (maybe 10-15 mins?).

  24. Hi all,

    I realize this is late in the day and I may have to re-post, but I was hoping you could help me with some advice for what to give as a house warming gift. My best friend and her husband just bought their first house (and had their first baby). She lives several states away and I don’t get to see her often, but we talk several times a week. I know she’s thrilled about the house, but it’s been a stressful moving/closing process with the new baby especially, plus they had some home emergencies that were not fun at all the first week they moved in. I’d like to get her a nice gift but I’m stumped as to what. Any ideas? I feel like I always go with Harry and David and I’d like to get something more original . Would love suggestions!

    On another note, my mother in law is graduating next month from graduate school. I won’t be able to make it to the graduation, but would like to acknowledge. Ideas? She sent me lovely flowers when I graduated law school and would like to reciprocate (she lives about 5 hours away from me, so I don’t see her all that often and would be mailing the gift). TIA!!

    • Anonymous :

      When I had my first baby, the book Baby 411 was awesome. My sister in law also sent me some chicken soup and french bread (grandmaschickensoup dot com and spoonfulofcomfort dot com), which was great because with the first baby, you’re just rather overwhelmed a lot.

      As for your mother in law, who doesn’t love flowers? Since she sent some to you, I’m guessing she wouldn’t mind receiving them too.

    • Housewarming: how about a gorgeous throw blanket? Something she can throw on her couch that’s cozy — good for grownups and the baby.

      For mother in law: I like flowers, but I think you could also do something like a spa day gift certificate – perfect for someone who has probably been stressed out. I also think a card with a heartfelt message is a pretty unbeatable gift.

    • Belated response — but for the housewarming — maybe a nice bottle of wine (or two) and one of those cool wine openers that’s like gas-powered or whatever. You know the kind that opens the wine really easily?

      For the mother in law — flowers or edible arrangements would both be nice. Another nice idea would be a gift card to a restaurant she likes for a celebratory dinner. :-)

      • The best gifts are the gifts that keep on giving. Sign her up for a wine of the month, steak of the month or something else “of the month” that she/ hubby would enjoy…

        This is my standard wedding/ housewarming gift and I get the most effusive thank you notes. Gushy, as a matter of fact

  25. Re-posting from yesterday –

    I am a first time commenter here with a work situation to ask about. I have a co-worker who just recently announced he and his wife are expecting their third child in July. They have two healthy daughters already, so they have experienced two healthy pregnancies. This third child has been diagnosed with a heart defect – the baby is missing its left atrium. From what he told us, the baby has to be carried to term. When he/she is born, the baby will require surgery almost immediately but is not expected to survive the heart defect. I started my position in January, so I don’t really know this co-worker very well. We do, however, have cubicles right next to each other so we talk fairly frequently.

    Does anyone have advice on what to say to him? Do I ask him how things are going with his wife/the pregnancy? I want to be sensitive to his emotinons/feelings, but I also want him to know that I care and am thinking about and praying for he and his family.

    • Gary the Grouper :

      This is a tough one. I would think asking about it with any regularity would be inappropriate. When he’s at work, he gets to get away from the impending problem, because at home when he sees his wife, this problem is what he thinks about. Bringing it up at work, however, just reminds him of this issue. I think it would be appropriate to express your concern once, maybe, but let it go after that. After the baby is born, regardless of how things turn out, consider getting a card or something (possibly with other staff members), to express your joy, sorrow, or concern.

    • I’m late to this, but think about concrete things you could actually do. Can you and your co-workers donate sick time to him, so he can be present as much as possible? Are you willing to cover for him in a substantive way, when his mind isn’t on his job (not sure how your work roles interact…)? Would you set up a food train for him and his family? How about offering gifts or ideas for the two children who are also there (not really sure how close you are).

      This sounds a little cheesy, but with the amount of time I spend at work, I’ve developed lasting connections with my co-workers. This is one time when I think blurring the boundaries of professional and personal are appropriate. This man and his family are facing a crisis, and I think we as a community can step up. The fact that you care enough to ponder this is wonderful, and I think being outwardly compassionate is appropriate.

  26. Migraine Sufferer :

    2 questions (both threadjacks)
    1. What kind of moisturizer/skin lotions do ya’ll use? I’m sprouting the crows feet and never used any kind of lotions before so want advice. A trip to the store was overwhelming.

    2. Anyone have thoughts/information on all white tattoos?

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      All white tattoos – not all artists do them and depending on your skin tone, they may/may not show up. They are purported to fade faster than color/black & grey tattoo so they may not last as long. I think they’re really cool – they look like scars, to me!

      They are much harder to remove than colored tattoos so make sure it’s something you REALLY want.

    • How old are you? Crows feet might just be a normal, and beautiful, part of aging.

      I use Neutrogena facial moisturizer with SPF 15. You should use SPF on your face, even if it’s winter, and even if you don’t live in a sunny climate. And big, glamorous sunglasses when you go out. I use it with Neutrogena face wash in the shower, and put the moisturizer on after my shower.

    • Clinique Solar Smart with SPF 30. It has antioxidants, which help stop wrinkles and other signs of aging.

      I suggest you check out Beautypedia dot com – lots of info on skincare products.

      No clue about all white tattoos. :)

    • Clinique All About the Eyes Rich around my eyes. I use it at night by itself and dab some on in the morning before I put on under-eye concealer and color corrector on my eyelids.

      Moisturizer generally, which I put on after washing my face a.m./p.m.– Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizer during the fall / winter and Philosophy Hope in a Jar spring / summer (the Clinique Moisturizer tends to be too heavy when it gets humid and hot).

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