Coffee Break: Sweet Pea File Folders

Container Store Sweet Pea File FoldersI’m always a fan of colorful, happy folders — maybe not for submitting things to your supervisor, but they’re great for your own purposes. These navy/yellow/pink folders from The Container Store pretty much ring all of my bells — and they’re only $5.99 for a pack of six. Hooray! Container Store Sweet Pea File Folders



  1. PSA - poor quality of GAP pants :

    I bought two pairs of Gap’s Perfect Trouser and one pair of Modern Boot “premium” pants recently. I had purchased both styles before and generally thought they were decent for the price as well as flattering on my body type. Unfortunately, both of the Perfect Trousers are pilling after only 5-10 wears and 2-4 washes each and the Modern Boot pants are making a weird crinkly-type sound when I fold the legs. I have no idea what could be causing that sound, but the fabric feels cheap and almost looks shiny in one spot despite the fact that I’ve only worn them twice. I’m pretty disappointed that I shelled out the money for new pants in styles I’d liked before only to find that the quality has slipped so dramatically. Can anyone recommend better-quality pants at that price point that are machine-washable?

    • Maybe try Limited? I’ve had pretty good luck with them. I also feel like Loft has stepped up their game somewhat – last fall I got some (synthetic, to be sure, but a nice blend) pants that were fully lined and seem very nice, although I haven’t washed/worn them a lot. Both places always have coupons.

      I’ve never done this, but maybe consider contacting Gap and telling them how poorly your pants held up? I have one gray and one black pair of their Curvy Fit trousers (I don’t think they make these any more) that I bought close to 4 years ago and they are still in pretty decent shape (I machine-wash in cold water, but hang dry).

    • No recommendation but just wanted to join in the gripe. Mine aren’t pilling so much but I don’t think I can wear them anymore unless I gain some weight or become pregnant. They stretched out at least a full size, but more like two. I haven’t lost weight and I have worn them about 10-12 times. I actually just said to my SO that I should just save them for when I need maternity pants because right now they are falling off if not belted. I was so impressed when I first got them, too, but even at 40% off the $60 reg. price, they’re too expensive to be worn 12 times and thrown away. Not to mention the ethical issues with that sort of thing. Ugh.

      • Maddie Ross :

        Frankly, the GAP perfect trousers were really great early maternity pants for me. I wore non-maternity ones through about 25 weeks or so. They just generally seem to bag out with wear and they do not shrink back with washing/drying.

    • Oh no this is concerning, I just bought two pairs of jeans and a pair of jeggings from Gap. Anyone have any experience with them? I just returned two pairs to a different store because they stretched horribly after one wear.

      • I have a pair of GAP jeans I only wear when I have no clean clothes. They stretch out and look terrible after an hour. The routine is always the same:
        1. Try on freshly washed Gap jeans.
        2. Think, “these look cute! why don’t I ever wear these?”
        3. (hour later) “Oh, ya, these suck!”

        • TO Lawyer :

          This is why I keep a bag at the bottom of my closet to keep the clothes that I don’t love – that way I never forget why I don’t wear them and they don’t make it back into the rotation…

      • I have a pair of gap jeans that are one of my favorites from last spring so ymmv.

        • I feel like their quality (and sizing) changes drastically from year to year.

    • I actually just bought 2 more of the Perfect Trouser, and I actually like the stretch they have in them because I am a bit heavier than I would like to be, so they fit comfortably with a little extra weight on me.

    • maybe try Loft? I’ve been very happy with the modern fits there.

  2. Feeling stabby :

    I just got back from a business lunch where the waitstaff and cook royally screwed up a very simple food allergy issue. I even made it easy for them. I told them some ingredients to check for that also contain my allergy. They weren’t at all busy so they had plenty of time to get it right. After confirming that my salad dressing did not contain offending ingredient that contains allergen I took a few bites (luckily just dipping my fork in). Cook comes back and says, “see, here is recipe.” Right on it is offending ingredient. So I stop eating and ask him to check offending ingredient for allergen. Sure enough, it contained it. They did not appear even remotely sorry that just minutes earlier they had been exclaiming it to be allergy free. They still charged for the meal too!

    We couldn’t make a big issue out of it because the place is a client of my boss (who was there) and the waitress is also a former client of mine for other reasons. My boss is going to address their carelessness with the owner since it is a liability issue . I just hate not being able to express how serious a deal this was to the actual staff and would love to leave a yelp review or something but can’t. Hands tied.

    Luckily my allergy is more of the get sick kind than the die kind but still a huge pain. Godzilla, I need a rawr.

    • Wildkitten :

      I assure you that having your boss talk to the owner will change behavior more & faster than a yelp review would have.

      • Agreed. If you talk directly to the staff, you might feel some satisfaction, but I doubt anything would change. They would probably just smile and nod and write you off as high maintenance (which you’re not). Your boss talking to the owner will be much more effective.

      • Feeling stabby :

        You are 100% correct. Thank you.

        So long as my boss actually does it. I hope he wasn’t just saying that.

    • That is just awful! So sorry that happened. And it would sure be great if your boss talks to the owner. I agree with rosie that it will have a greater effect. You shouldn’t have to be afraid to eat lunch!

    • Hugs and RAWR for you (coming from a celiac). I’ve been in your shoes and it’s not fun.

    • Not excusing bad behavior, but if you have an allergy you should be very proactive about asking for a list of ingredients and/or make up a printed card that has a list of allergens on it, so you can hand it to people who can take it in the back and double check against a bottle or whatever.

      • She was proactive though. She told them what she couldn’t have, provided common forms/names of the ingredients that contain the allergen and the staff didn’t take her concerns seriously. I’m not sure what else she really could have done without being completely overbearing.

        • Wildkitten :

          I actually really like the index card idea – especially when going to a restaurant that you anticipate being more difficult than this one initially appeared.

        • I’m not saying she was at fault. I’m just saying what is generally helpful to restaurant staff. Plus, it conveys an extra sense of medical necessity and people tend to take it more seriously.

    • Yes, you have to remember that peeople who work in a restrunt are NOT generally dietician’s and they then have to relay things to the cook, who is also not alway’s the sharpest KNIFE in the drawer. So do NOT be suprized if they mess up your order’s b/c there are alot of peeople with different allergie’s and some do not like GLUTEN and others do (personaly, I LOVE GLUTEN! YAY!).

      I know that Gonzalo often has to deal with peeople with special need’s in the food departement, and he compleained to me that there were so many request’s he could NOT keep them straight. Also, Myrna’s friend who works on the food line–do we realy trust that guy to do anything other than grab tuchus? I wouldn’t. FOOEY on him! Imagine me trusteing him with a complex food order? No way HOZE!!!

      I do NOT have access to my email’s today b/c I was in court, but am tryieng to get a new IPAD that has more then WIFI. If I had wireless, I could acess the Internet and my case file’s from anywhere. That’s alot better than goieng into Starbuck’s to get a signal or back home, where I have my OWN wireless ROOTER! YAY!!!! I will see if I can get the manageing partner to buy me a new IPAD and I will give the firm the old one. I think Mason can use it, and I do NOT want him useing it at Lynn’s house b/c who know’s what they would be lookeing at on the INTERNET. DOUBEL FOOEY! ALL I need is for them to be lookeing at questionable websights, b/c I would be the one to get into troubel. TRIPLE FOOEY!

    • kjoirishlastname :

      So sorry you’re dealing with that. As a mama of an allergic kid, this is the sort of thing that scares the pants off of me. So, that’s why we eschew most restaurants entirely. Hugs, girl. You’re totally right to be upset.

  3. The folders are really cute! They even have some cute printed hanging file folders, but unfortunately only in letter size. I set up my home file cabinet with legal size to accommodate larger documents and bills.

    • I can’t wait till I have an office that I actually feel like decorating and making cute again! I’m a nester. ;o)

    • I’m in love with these folders! So cute!

    • Small Town Attorney :

      It is one of my pet peeves that all the cute/pretty organizers are only available in letter size.

    • Wildkitten :

      This would be a lot of work, so ymmv, but you could put pretty contact paper on legal folders and they’d be pretty (and reinforced). You obviously don’t want that for all of your folders, but might be worth it for a few most commonly used ones.

  4. Has anyone made the switch from plastic to glass water bottles? Is there really a difference that’s worth lugging around the extra weight?

    • Why not switch to stainless steel? It’s much lighter, durable, safe, etc. Klean Kanteen has been okay for me – just don’t get the sports cap that leaks and makes chirping sounds.

    • Yes! I just got a Life Factory glass water bottle and love it. My boss has used one for years and sold me on it.

    • Anonymous :

      I use a Life Factory water bottle. It’s heavier, but I find that the volume of a water bottle is a bigger annoyance than the weight, and that is the same for a glass or plastic bottle. I commute by car, so I might have a different answer if I was walking long distances.

      As to whether there is a difference, I switched because I started drinking protein shakes and figured glass wouldn’t absorb the protein powder taste the way plastic does.

    • Orangerie :

      I prefer not to use the communal office cups, so I’ve had a glass LifeFactory bottle at my desk for years and I love it. Stainless steel bottles always impart a funny taste to the water inside.

      Haven’t been able to make the switch away from plastic for my gym water bottle (my camelbak is way too convenient for grabbing a sip mid-workout), so I’m interested in hearing if anyone has experience with the sport/flip-top lid LifeFactory offers.

    • Diana Barry :

      I’ve tried stainless steel and nalgene and they are both just too heavy and/or HARD (I would bonk myself with the stainless one all the time) plus I hate washing them and getting new tops when the tops get gunky. So I just use the plastic ones…I reuse our seltzer bottles and replace every week or so.

    • Wildkitten :

      I did but was always afraid of it dropping and breaking. I’m back to plastic.

    • I don’t use glass, but I have a stainless steel bottle that I love (EcoVessel). It’s huge and so well insulated. It does have a few dents from being dropped, and I had to buy a new top (my toddler bit through the old one – no fault of the bottle itself). It’s also pretty heavy. I have always hated the taste that plastic water bottles seem to infuse into water, though, so I am never going back to plastic! An except is travel – I buy a bottle of water inside security and refill that for the rest of my trip. My stainless steel bottle is too heavy to lug around in a carryon.

    • I have Bkr glass water bottles – I switched because of safety concerns about plastic (and I don’t like the taste of stainless steel). I love them. These bottles come in a silicone sleeve so they’re very durable. I’ve dropped mine on all sorts of surfaces and not had any issues with the bottle, although the handle on the cap snapped once (but I can still use it, I just can’t carry it as conveniently – they also sell replacement caps for $5). They are dishwasher safe, so I just run them through the dishwasher once a week to clean (I only use them for water). They are a little pricey ($30 for a 1/2 liter bottle) but I think they’re worth it!

  5. My parents recently moved from a big house to a small apartment. They sent me a pod with some furniture and other items that I asked for. They also sent me a desk that my grandfather made for me when I was a child. He was a carpenter and made us many lovely pieces of furniture over the years (he passed away in 2012). It’s a nice, simple desk, but it’s too big and has too many sharp corners for my child (now 2). It will be at least 3 more years before she could reasonably use it. In the meantime, we are planning to move to a smaller house and we’re trying to pare down our possessions. I don’t know what the heck to do with this desk. I feel guilty getting rid of it, but it doesn’t seem reasonable to keep it. I assume I should be a big girl, donate it and tell my parents, but if you can think of a creative alternative I’m all ears!

    • Orangerie :

      Rent a small storage unit?

    • Put it in storage? Arrange to temporarily house it with another relative? My SO inherited a very lovely grandfather clock from a great uncle he was very close with but we have no space for it in our apartment so we have another relative keep it in their much larger house until we can take it.

      Alternatively, if you don’t mind the cost, have it remade into something that you can better use for your life now?

      • Meg Murry :

        Yes, do you have cousins or aunts & uncles that might appreciate another piece of furniture from your Grandfather? In my family tree there was a carpenter who made lovely furniture a few generations back and many pieces have traveled from one part of the family to another as the need/space for the pieces was available. I wouldn’t put strings on getting it back, other tan saying that if the family ever decided to get rid of it to offer it back to you.

        Other repurposing options: have it cut down to just the drawers to use as a nightstand, end table or filing cabinet ? Cut it down to be a coffee table or TV stand? Keep just the desktop slab to someday use as a different table top/counter?

    • Famouscait :

      I never received anything as space-consuming as furniture, but when my great-grandmother passed away several years ago, we all had a chance to pick out what we wanted from her home. Even so, afterwards my mother sent both my sister and I several more items of hers…. and we didn’t quite know what to do with them. I just reminded my mom, and myself, that I had what I wanted to remember her by, and was going to be donating anything else. My mom was fine with it – I think she sent some of the stuff to us because she didn’t know what to do with it herself. The memories can easily live on without all the stuff.

      • Agreed. I once saw a blog in which a woman described photographing sentimental but space-consuming items (like children’s sports uniforms) and keeping the photos, rather than the items. I don’t know how useful a photo of the desk would be, though. IMO, a nice thing to do would be to give it to a friend, rather than a stranger, if you have a friend who could use it.

    • Thanks to you all! I am going to investigate the cost of a tiny storage unit, housing it with a relative and possibly giving it to a friend with older kids. I knew you would have great ideas.

    • Maddie Ross :

      Can you use not as a desk for now? Is it something that could be used as a table in a family room or a sideboard in the dining room? I have my grandparents dining room pieces (which includes a buffet and sideboard, as well as seating for 8) and while it’s a squeeze in my current house, I love owning the pieces. We use the buffet as a table in the family room and have a lamp and family photos set up on it. Board games, baby toys and other random things are stored inside.

    • BankrAtty :

      Loan it to a friend?

  6. tired of salad :

    Help. We bought too much salad mix this weekend. It’s on Monday and I am not looking forward to a week of salads. Other ideas for using it up? We have a pack of arugula, some baby spinach mix, and a big pack of baby mixed greens. My initial thought is to to make some pesto with the arugula and spinach. Any other ideas?

    • Diana Barry :

      Arugula and spinach are both good when cooked…I might throw them in with pasta, bacon etc.

      • Yep. I throw them into my morning eggs, into soups (just wilt the greens as you reheat or add-in last minute), add to pasta, sauté as a side to chicken or fish… the possibilities are endless.

      • I always add them to pasta, it bulks it up a bit and gives you some extra greens.

      • Yup, saute those greens in some olive oil and chopped garlic, sprinkle with salt and pepper and a squirt of lemon juice and you have my favorite side dish.

        I keep sauteed greens and onions in my fridge during the week and throw some into whatever I’m cooking: quesadillas, eggs, pasta, etc.

    • Famouscait :

      This recipe for your spinach:

      • Famouscait :

        Should have said above that it freezes extremely well, too. I always make a big batch to eat immediately and freeze for later.

    • Throw some bacon or good cheese on this week’s salads! I eat salad for lunch nearly every day and I actually look forward to it when it’s more than just lettuce/soinach and vegetables. Something about blue or goat cheese makes it feel more like a treat.

    • Quiche, use the spinach in smoothies, make spinach artichoke dip, use the mixed greens in sandwiches, omlettes.

    • I also toss spinach in my morning smoothies and on sandwiches. The mixed greens are a little challenging to get creative with though.

      • Anon in NYC :

        I make a really easy chicken caesar salad with romaine, grilled chicken, caesar dressing, hot pasta, and parmesan cheese. You could totally do that with the mixed greens. The warm pasta sounds like it would be weird, but it’s awesome.

        • Huh! I like Caesar salads and never would have thought to do that. One could grill the romaine, too.

    • I make scrambled eggs with sauteed spinach and cheese mixed in for dinner sometimes – kind of weird but I like eggs and I don’t have time to cook at home in the mornings so I like having breakfast for dinner :)

  7. Ciao, pues :

    What is the convention on Thank You notes for a first round interview (in law, if that matters)? I want to express (1) gratitude for the interview, (2) continued interest in the position, and (3) offer to respond to any additional questions that have come up, if any. I plan to send by email and am debating whether to email all five interviewers together or send individual emails. I’m leaning toward a group email because I would not vary the content of the email as between interviewers. If you received a group thank you by email, would you think poorly of it?

    • I’d send individual emails. You already have the message in electronic format, so duplicating it will not be hard. Extra points if you can personalize it even a little bit to each recipient.

    • Do individual emails for sure. They don’t have to vary much, its fine to just change the wording a little bit and if you have anything you connected with a person about say something about that. People do look a little askance at group thank-yous when you met each person one-on-one.

      • +1. Do not send a group email. It is not typical for attorney interviews. I would be very surprised to receive a group email from a candidate — not in a good way — and I think it signals that you view your time as more valuable than theirs.

        There might be a little wiggle room if you had a group interview (e.g., if you emailed the two associates who took you to lunch together), but even then I’d say email separately.

  8. White Dress at Work? :

    Would you wear this white ponte dress to work in the spring and summer, with a nude heel? Bus cas (most of the time) attorney here.

    • It looks too much like a T-shirt in the picture.

      • I tried the same dress in black and it definitely wouldn’t seem like a t-shirt in person. The fabric is rather thick, giving structure. However, I hope it fits you better than me. The sides hit lower than they should have or something, so instead of reading “hour glass” it looked like I was sporting fabric love handles.

    • I think a nude heel would be boring, but I don’t think there’s any problem with the dress. I’d just want more interesting shoes.

    • Orangerie :

      No, but only because I would destroy a white dress in about 3 minutes. I’d love it in a different color, though.

    • If I looked better in white, absolutely. I love the pleating at the waist!

    • I would not, but only because I would be sure to spill coffee on it.

    • Wildkitten :

      No, but I would spill all over it. Olivia Pope could pull it off.

    • Woods-comma-Elle :

      Funnily enough I wore something very similar (slightly more structured) to work today – paired with a red blazer and snakeskin heels. I like it in the summer with coloured heels.

      (Full disclosure: I’m generally good with white, but I did get olive oil on the hem at lunch!)

  9. Did you see this slate article re how women lawyers dress?

  10. Possible ELLEN sighting below… could it be?

  11. I’m beginning to think that perhaps Grandma Leyeh may be related to Andy Kaufman. The level of verisimilitude one gets when finding Ellen’s comments outside the sphere of this site is fascinating and a little scary.

  12. kjoirishlastname :

    So, along the same lines of cute folders, someone, somewhere, way back when (like a month ago) suggested different zipper pouches from The Container Store as a way to organize a purse.

    I couldn’t find what I was looking for, until I went to Walmart of all places. I found a cute floral print nylon/cordura zip pencil pouch that is intended for a 3-ring binder. It’s just the right size to hold bills, envelopes, etc (not big enough for a full sheet of paper), and has 2 extra little pockets that I stuff rewards cards & coupons in.

    I find myself staying on top of my mail & bills a lot more now that it is basically on display in my purse. All of that stuff used to be shoved behind a dark zipper IN the purse, and would get lost in the shuffle. This pouch is flat, it’s kind of tall, so it stands on its own, and I think it was about $2.

    So, if you’re looking for some in-purse organization, this certainly fit the bill for me. And, it’s easier to rifle through and find what I need quickly, rather than pulling out the entire rubber-banded stack of papers to get the right piece.