Tuesday’s TPS Report: Cap-Sleeve Animal Print Dress

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

 Derek Lam Cap-Sleeve Animal Print Dress Neiman Marcus, like its sister site CUSP, is offering an additional 25% off on all sale items, which can result in some crazy deals — such as this gorgeous Derek Lam dress. For some people (myself included), animal print is a classic — and in the right print and the right design, it’s almost a neutral. I think this giraffe print, with its flattering ombre effect, looks like just that kind of neutral. I love the round neckline, the ladylike length, and the cap sleeves. It was originally $990 (!), was then marked to $346, and — with the discount that ends today — it comes down to $259.50. Derek Lam Cap-Sleeve Animal Print Dress

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  1. Love the dress, though in my late twenties I’m still not fully on board with wearing that much animal print to the office.

    • lawsuited :

      I never thought I was the top of person to go in for animal print. But I realized that 3 of my 5 favourite work blouses are animal print, so go figure. I think it’s an easy foray into prints because it’s organic and a little less bold.

      • type* of person. Gah!

      • Aritzia has these beautiful animal print silk blouses (and they’re on sale right now) but I’m always too scared to try them… maybe this is the push I need!

        • I wear those all the time to work and get a ton of compliments! I have a long-sleeved snakeskin one that’s one of my absolute staples – adds some interest underneath a suit.

    • The Fighter :

      To me, this looks more like “animal floral” in the way that I like — smaller diameter pattern. It is almost like abstract blotches. I like it, but I can’t wear orange / whatever the non-black color is. But if it were something like black/gray/white snake-y pattern, I think I’d be game. I used to have a shirtdress that was something like snow leopard and I loved it.

    • I think it depends on the garment and rest of the outfit. Short, tight animal print and crazy accessories = no go. Looser, more structured animal print = okay when paired with conservative accessories.

      • bananagram :

        co-signed. A sharp looking woman in a cheetah print cardigan just walked by my office. She was wearing tan trousers and a light colored shirt so the cardigan added a lot of visual interest. Plus, how sexy can a cardigan be? (Not sure if I want an answer to that.)

    • I also like to add animal print accessories to an otherwise simple outfit, e.g. leopard print shoes or a zebra belt.

    • I agree, animal prints always make me feel like a wh*re, even though I don’t think that about other women when they wear animal prints, so I know its all in my mind. I just can’t get over the animal print hump.

  2. Anonymous :

    Immediate TJ: My SO and I are thinking of planning a trip to the 2014 winter Olympics in Sochi. Does anyone have any recommendations for a Russian travel agency or travel company? My SO speaks Russian, so it could be either an English or Russian speaking compnay. Thanks!

    • As a Russian, I believe the Sochi games should be boycotted in protest against the Putin régime’s human rights violations. Plus, with Chechnya right next door, the risk of terrorism is high. Don’t go.

    • No recommendations (I’ve never been to Russia), but I am excited for you (and a little jealous). I hope it works out – good luck!

    • I know a very good company that handles group tours in Russia, and I’m sure they’d be able to hook you up with an agent to plan a trip for just the two of you. If you’re interested, post an email address and I’ll send you their contact information.

      • Anonymous :

        You can email me at anonr e t t e24 at gmail (without spaces)


  3. goldribbons :

    SUPER excited about the pink boxes around the first comments. Does everyone else see this?! I’m using Internet Explorer on my work Windows computer.

  4. Engagement ring guidance :

    Ladies, I could use your collective wisdom. My boyfriend and I have been discussing marriage for some time now. He recently admitted that he is paralyzed by fear of picking out an engagement ring that I will hate. We looked briefly at stone shapes and pointed out my favorites and told him my preference would be white gold or platinum – I don’t like yellow gold against my skin. But beyond that…I am totally stumped. I’ve never tried on engagement rings so I have no idea what will look good on my hand. How did you ladies handle this? Shop together? Did you find it took some of the fun out of the proposal? I don’t need some fairytale here…we are both pretty practical people, but he has a romantic/traditional streak and I think would like to surprise me with a “moment”. We also talked a bit too about buying a stone, and then we could go together to pick a setting. I’d also be interested in diamond alternatives – I have seen a lot of ladies rave about moissanite here. TIA!

    • DH picked mine out, but he has better taste in jewelry than I do ;). In your case, why not try on some various settings as let him know what you like, then let HIM pick the stone?

      Or, let him take you shopping and give you stuff to try on– let him react to it vs telling him what you like/don’t like (unless you have clear preferences, ef. Not yellow gold).

      You never know what you’ll end up with… I ha some
      Kind of thought of a traditional princess cut yellow gold ring..not that I was pining for it, just that’s what my brain had always associated with “engagement ring”. DH picked something far more fancy/expensive/gorgeous and I couldn’t be happier. But I had no earthly idea how to guide him.

    • Diana Barry :

      I told my then-BF that it was OK to ask me without a ring. :) He did that, and then we went shopping together in the jewelry district to pick out something. We ended up designing it ourselves – low setting so it wouldn’t get caught, diamond with rubies around it, and then we had them make it, which took about 2 weeks. The surprise was after they had made it – he had it sent to his parents’ house and surprised me with it there when we were out on a walk. Not the most romantic, I guess, but I still love my ring and how it looks now. :)

      • +1. The proposal is the important part, not the ring. He is totally allowed to ask you without a ring. You can always shop for a wedding set later.

    • You will wear this ring every day for the duration of your marriage (unless you trade up the ring later on a special occasion). You need to love it! Go try some rings on – together or separately. At least so you see what you like on your hand. Like a wedding dress, you may be surprised at what looks good and doesn’t and what you like and don’t. Honestly, if it were me, I’d prefer to have a ring I love than a romantic story to tell about a proposal. That said, you could pick out the ring then he could choose how to present it.

      • Totally agreed – finding a ring that you love ensures that you’re happy and takes the pressure off him. We chose the setting together (white gold, thin band, three small diamonds on each side), then he had it made with a family diamond. He still completely surprised me with the proposal, and delighted me with the “dream” ring that he already knew that I’d love.

    • We got engaged without a ring (we’d been talking marriage for a little while, but it was sort of a spur of the moment decision for him to officially ask me and me to officially agree). Then I poked through some sites online to find styles I liked. We went to a few jewelers where I tried on rings. I finally settled on maybe three or four photos of different rings that I would be happy with. He picked his favorite of those, went to our jeweler, and said “can you make her this ring in the picture?” The jeweler could and a couple months later, the ring was ready. I guess that’s not terribly romantic in the whole suprise-the-girl-with-a-ring-and-elaborate-evening vein, but it was definitely romantic in the whole I’m-so-overcome-with-the-moment-I’m-just-going-to-propose-now vein.

      • We did something similar, except didn’t have a ring specially made. SO proposed without a ring (well, actually with a dollar-store ring!) and a couple of weeks later we went shopping together. I knew that conflict-free diamonds were important to me, and I wanted yellow gold rather than white. I had a good idea of which store would offer the best selection/quality, so we went there and tried on a variety of rings in different settings. I chose my top two and left the final decision to SO. A few weeks later he picked up his ring of choice, which had been sized for me and was gorgeous. I agree with TBK that maybe it’s not terribly romantic, but it suited us and, to give him credit, SO knew I was Type A enough to want to be involved in the ring selection process. :-)

      • This is kind of how it went for us. Dh’s proposal was spur of the moment, and we went ring shopping together the next day. It was 19 years ago, so no online browsing for us. We knew we found the right ring when we both saw the same one at the same time & loved it. It was a “ooh, I like that one!” And a “me too!” Without either of us pointing it out, but we were both talking about the same ring. Don’t know if I explained it well, but it was romantic. Way more romantic than if he had the ring before the proposal, for us anyway.

    • marketingchic :

      He can buy a stone in a “presentation setting” (very simple solitaire style ring) that the jeweler should include at no charge. Then you both go back later and pick out the permanent setting.

      Of course, my husband proposed without a ring at all. He (correctly) assumed I’d want to choose everything. The proposal was romantic nonetheless – the ring was secondary.

    • goldribbons :

      DH decided how much he wanted to spend (i.e., size of the center stone) and what type of metal (like you, I said white gold or platinum; he chose platinum). He purchased a “placeholder” ring that I could wear for ~2 weeks right at our engagement, and then we went back to the store and I could pick out whatever I wanted! It was perfect — got to have a ring to wear right away, AND got to pick the ring I wanted. Ironically, I ended up loving what he originally chose and kept it (just got it properly sized), but it was so much fun getting to try on a bunch of rings after he proposed.

      • My grandparents did something like this back in the day. My grandfather called the jeweler (Shreve Crump & Lowe for you Boston folks) and told him the price. Then my grandfather brought my grandmother in and the salesman had a selection of rings, all in my grandfather’s price range, which he presented to my grandmother. So my grandmother got to pick her ring, but my grandfather was comfortable knowing it would be afforadable for him.

    • Maybe divorce the ring from the proposal? I am not a big ring person or even a big jewelry person. I have a few sentimental pieces of silver jewelry. My husband proposed with a ring charm for a family charm bracelet and I love it.

      We looked at rings separately a few times after he proposed, but nothing ever blew me away (so my blew-me-away v. cost metric was always off). I joked about getting a CZ (but had trouble finding something in a small enough size), but eventually a friend of mine who really gets my taste found something perfect.

      So, maybe a way to do this is with a trinket-type proposal memento and to have fun looking with no time pressure?

      FWIW, I often go band-only on weekends, so I’m glad we didn’t feel any pressure to either spend a fortune or buy something asap so as not to delay proposal / wedding.

    • Grandma Leyeh offered to give me her engagement ring if I find a QUALIFIED HUSBAND to give it back to me. It is an OLD Style ring, but it is about 2 carrots in size, and is suposedly of top clarity so it’s worth mabye $25,000 she say’s b/c it is in a platinum setteing. I have mixed feeling’s. On the one hand, I would LIKE to be traditional, and wear Grandma Leyeh’s ring, but on the OTHER HAND, I love new thing’s and want for my HUBBY to buy me a NEW RING of MY CHOICE, even if it is onley worth $5-10,000, at least it is NEW!

      I like Tiffany’s and DeBeer’s and I like the new, LOWER diamond setteings, and her’s is the OLD style, HIGHER setting. I also do NOT want to have to pay for $25,000 of insureance on that ring, and have to wear it in the smelley subway where it can get lost.

      I hope I do NOT sound to pushy, but Sam has alot of money so if I do decide to marry him, I would like for HIM to give me a nice ring when we get ENGAGED. YAY! The onley issue I know that make’s me worry is that he is a NOSE PICKER, and I am NOT sure I can live with a guy who does that. FOOEY!

    • I’ve never gotten engaged but I have gone ring shopping quite a bit. Don’t be afraid to go by yourself or with a girlfriend to try on rings. Jewelers are more than happy roll out the red carpet for women who plan to get engaged.

      If you find a ring you like, take a picture of it and ask the jeweler for a business card. It’s standard practice for them to write down the description of the ring you like and the price. After a few stores, go back through your pictures or wait and see of one particular ring haunts your dreams.

      Don’t be afraid to look at rings you don’t think you will like. Don’t be afraid to look at rings you love but, when you try them on, be honest about whether it’s “you”. Don’t be afraid to leave a jewelry store not liking any of the rings.

      FWIW, there is huge mark-up on traditional engagement rings. To save money, you can go for a less traditional style or colored stone. Also, negotiate. I can usually get at least 25%-40% off just by asking if they have a better price. Then ask for another 10% off. If they don’t give it to you, walk away.

      • Agree about the importance of trying on lots of styles. Think of your jewelry as miniature site-specific sculptures – something which looks good on paper or as a object passed around for admiration isn’t necessarily something that will look good on your hand.

        A particular shape of stone is only a starting point. I’ve seen regular round diamonds acquire startlingly different looks – deco, vintage-y, minimalist/ modernist – with fairly simple setting changes.

    • MaggieLizer :

      I see nothing wrong with picking out the ring together. The proposal itself can still be a surprise. Plus, if you pick out the setting by itself and he gets the stone separately, the proposal will be the first time you get to see YOUR ACTUAL ring. Alternatively, you could pick out about 3 rings that you like and he could choose one from those.

    • If you like the idea of a surprise, maybe just empower him by assuring him you’ll love what he picks. My now husband surprised me with a ring, with little input from me. I’m not picky, and he had already proved to have really really good taste. I love my ring partly because I really love what he picked, but also because I know all the effort and thought that he put in to picking the perfect ring.

      • This. Except I am picky about jewelry. Nevertheless, I loved that he picked my ring himself. After we got engaged, he was so excited to tell me the whole saga he went through to get it.

      • I also have friends who have gone after the engagement (with their fiance) to pick a different, though similar, ring. That way, the surprise of the engagement was not ruined and they ended up with a ring that both parties love. (Plus, this kept them within the range of what the ring buyer was comfortable spending, since most of the couples only looked at rings in the same collection and/or range.)

        I suppose this depends on the people, but I like the idea!

    • My husband and I went to look at stones together. Working with the jeweler and my husband, I decided the following (1) what cut stone I wanted; (2) the size range of the stone I preferred; and (3) what stone qualities were a priority for me (e.g., size, color, clarity, etc). Using that, my husband could (by himself) decide on the stone that met his price range using that guidance.

      From there, I tried on a few different styles to figure out some other key parameters. I did this step without him. For example, I decided I only wanted one major stone as opposed to several medium stones. But, I also liked Pave settings, if done a certain way. I think I gave my husband a list of 3-4 likes and dislikes. And then he used that information to pick out a setting that met my major style preferences.

      Basically, I gave him the big picture, and he got to pick the details to find something that he thought I would like. It meant a lot to him, that he would be able to pick something out for me that I would love and wear for forever as opposed to me telling him what to buy. But that’s just my husband – he’s a bit traditional in that sense.

      • Anon in NYC :

        This is essentially what me and my DH did. We went together, I tried on every shape, figured out a size range that I preferred, and I gave him a few different band styles that I liked. He picked out the final ring.

    • I had so much fun ring shopping with my spouse. We found a setting we both loved and then picked out a stone–I wanted a colored gem, not a diamond, so there were a lot of choices! Once all that was worked out, the stone needed to be set and the ring needed to be sized. So there was still an element of surprise when I finally got to put the ring on my finger. Spouse now really enjoys shopping for (women’s) jewelry, and probably spends more time browsing it online than I do!

    • lucy stone :

      I picked out a few rings at a local jeweler and she noted what I liked, then my husband picked from those and surprised me with a proposal. I have a moissanite e-ring that I’ve been wearing for two years now and I love it. I didn’t want a diamond and my husband preferred a traditional stone, so this was a good choice for us. I’m pleased with how it has held up. Selfishly, I also like the size and know that my moissanite is much larger than a diamond would have been given what my husband wanted to spend.

      • Did you have any trouble finding moissanite rings at brick and mortar jewelry stores? I do not want a diamond, but am willing to consider similar looking substitutes (moissanite, white sapphire, etc.). I wasn’t sure how hard it would be to find them when the time comes!

    • I’m not super traditional, so take this as it’s offered. I didn’t get an engagement ring, just one big ring for the wedding. We picked it out together and I only wore it once we were married. If DH had been expected to go ring shopping on his own as a surprise, he’d probably still be DBF…

    • My fiance and I had discussed getting engaged, and he had indicated that he wanted all of the specs from me, because he wanted to make sure I loved it. I had tried on rings before (alone), so I had an idea of what looked good on my hand. In the end, I found an antique ring on Etsy that I fell in love with, and just sent him the link! He asked what I would want if it wasn’t that specific ring, and took it all under advisement. The proposal itself was months later, and a complete surprise, and of course with the ring I had fallen for! While the picking out was more practical than romantic, I wouldn’t trade our engagement story for the world. So, this is a longwinded way of agreeing with the posters above – separate the two ideas, unless it is important to you to be surprised by the ring itself as well as the proposal. I wanted to make sure I loved the ring, so this was perfect for me.

    • SoCalAtty :

      We shopped together, and had a ton of fun doing it (some ring salesman are very silly). Once we finally found it, he took it and it went away…it was pretty funny knowing he had it, but waiting for him to find some clever way to give it to me.

    • OG Lawyer :

      I proposed to my husband. We’d been living together for several years, and we each had been married previously. One night I just rolled over in bed and said, Why don’t we get married? You need medial insurance anyway. He smiled and said he’d been just about to ask me (absent the medical insurance issue). I later bought myself a plain gold ring, heavily influenced by Nina Simone’s song.

      And I have life-long issues with diamonds, for the usual blood-issues, and because DeBeers controls the price of all diamonds, even those from other companies and other countries. And relax, I’m not judg-y if you have one –as do 99% of all American women (but I did just got appointed per diem judge!).

      Anyway, we’ve been happy for 25 years.

      Good luck to you!

  5. Everyone is always talking about The Skirt – what is it? Sorry for my ignorance!

    • Here you go http://corporette.com/2012/07/27/frugal-fridays-tps-report-seamed-pencil-skirt/

    • It is a skirt that posters on here rave about. If you look at the recent post about the Annual Sale, I believe there is a link to it on there.

    • It's Just Me :

      This is the current version of The Skirt: http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/halogen-seamed-skirt/3167843

      There have been two (I believe only 2) previous versions, one which had seaming on the front that curved at the hip line, no definite waist band and ran large and then a second version with straight front seams running from the waist to the hem, but again no waist band.

      I own 2 of the first version and 2 of the second, but probably won’t try this version since waist bands tend to make me look like a sausage.

  6. Anon for this :

    Hello. Regular poster going anon for a moment.

    Has anyone in BigLaw transferred offices within the firm of their own volition? How did you approach it? When in your career did you make the move? I think I’d like to move to another office, mostly for personal reasons, but also partially because my practice area may be easier to excel in there. I don’t want to burn any bridges, and I don’t want to stunt my career by leaving behind mentors, but I really would be happier there. I’m a transactional attorney looking to transfer away from NYC, if it matters, and I am finishing my second year now, would be interested in going next year (~2.5 years in to my career).

    • I am not in BigLaw, but I would imagine if you approached it as having another reason to move (SO moving, family there, etc.), it might be easier. Of course, one of these would actually have to be true to make this work!

      • Right. I lived in this city before and went to school there, and if I were to pursue a transfer in the next year, it would be to be with SO, who hasn’t been in the same city for a while.

        • Anon in NYC :

          I’ve looked into this at my firm (haven’t wound up making the move, but I haven’t pushed the issue). The mantra at my firm is typically that a transfer like this is based on need – if the other office needs someone at your level or with your skill set, then it is okay to switch offices. You might have to interview with the hiring partner in the other office. You will most likely be responsible for all moving expenses, since you are initiating the move.

          My recommendation would be to ask a recruiting person in your office who they recommend you speak to. My sense is that you would have to talk to your office’s managing partner, but you might want to first raise this with a partner that you work closely with (if they are not one and the same). Based on what you’ve said, you have close ties to the other area. You could simply say that you have close ties to this other area, you would like to move back there, but that you really enjoy working at the firm and you were hoping that you would be able to stay with the firm and transfer offices.

    • Have you ever done a working vacation to the new city (so you are there for a few days and get a visiting atty office and get to meet with some of the people there)? If you haven’t, I’d start visiting that city / SO on long weekends and go into the office a bunch while you’re there (so people will get used to you and you to them and the story will have established itself). That will make the eventual ask make a lot more sense and have everyone on board with this as how things are (and not a change into the unknown). If you sense that it won’t be welcomed either by the old or new office, this will give you time to scount out a new firm in the new city and be truly able to sell it as that changing offices wouldn’t have worked b/c you’d tried it for a while.

      A key thing I’d wonder about is if you will work for Old Team in New City or New Team in New City. I’ve seen people here (biglaw) get tripped up when it is unclear where the work comes from and the person has too many masters and doesn’t please any of them (and has no one in their corner for when reviews / promotions / layoffs come). I’ve also seen it work, but often it is that person moves cities but stays working for Old Team (so hard to integrate socially into New Office, but the person has other things that matter more to them — family usually).

      • Working vacation is an idea I hadn’t really thought of. Both my group and the target are pretty small, and both could use some associates in terms of head count, I think. I work with one influential partner there, but will start reaching out to others.

    • I don’t know what it’s called but many big firms have a someone who kind of works the backdoor of recruiting/associate satisfaction/mentoring/etc. It is usually a person that you can speak with confidentially and they will nose around inconspicuously to help you out. You might want to see if such a person exists – they will be able to help you determine whether there is a demand in the new office and help you navigate office dynamics/politics to see if an internal move is possible.

    • Anon for this 2 :

      Hi – I’m a recruiting and development director at a big firm and have brokered office transfers for numerous associates. As someone mentioned below, it is typically based on need of the acquiring office. Are you already working with partners and senior associates in the office you are looking to transfer to? My advice is to seek out your office’s recruiting/development director/manager and start a conversation about it without asking to transfer. If you are not already working with partners (particularly decision makers) in the target office, start; continue to do good work. Also, consider logistics like another bar exam (if necessary) and your plan for getting admitted in the new jurisdiction.

    • yes, I moved as a third year. My husband ended up taking a job in a city 3 hours away from my office and we couldn’t stand the commuting any more, so I asked to transfer. I am the only person in my practice in my office, but it has worked out well because I have been able to develop business. As far as the actual logistics, I approached the partner I worked with most closely. He said it was fine with him, and contacted the head of my section. I had offers from other firms in hand, so if my firm hadn’t agreed, I would have walked.

      • Oh, and I also successfully negotiated for moving expenses. I didn’t need to take another bar exam because I stayed in the same state.

        I should also say that I don’t feel that I’ve burned any bridges. My post-move reviews are the same as my pre-move reviews, I still have good mentoring relationships, and my hours are up.

        Sorry this has been disjointed. It’s early here.

    • I moved from one of the firm’s smaller offices to one of it’s larger office (but not home office) when I was a third year. I wanted the move mainly for personal reasons (to be closer to family, particularly because my mother’s health was poor at the time), but also for professional reasons (I thought I’d have more career options with the move).

      I approached the situation by talking to my section head in the office I was already working in. I told him I’d like to return to my home city and transfer within the firm. He asked me if the move needed to be done ASAP or if I had flexibility; I had flexibility. As couple other associates had recently left that office and left the firm and my lease on my apartment did not expire for several more months, he asked me to stay until my lease expired, which I did. During those months, however, I started getting work from my new office so I was doing work for partners in both offices. I continued doing work for partners in both offices for some period of time after I moved as well.

      I continued to keep up with partners in the old office and maintained good relationships with them. No one seemed to mind that I decided to return to my home city and continue practicing.

    • Partially echoing some of the previous comments, but offer to help people in other offices with projects and do spend time in those offices. I happen to be in a practice area that services all offices, so I try to periodically visit other locations. Just this morning, I was asked “Wait, what office do you work in again?” which happens with some regularity. If that’s not characteristic of your practice, you’ll have to try a bit harder to seek out work in other locations. In other words, do what you can to spend time in and make connections in other offices so it will seem like a natural move to switch.

      Fortunately, since you’re looking to move a little ways down the road, you’ll have some time to lay the groundwork. Look for opportunities to do so, e.g., if you have firm-wide events coming up, meet partners from your “target office,” find out when they are visiting in your office and do the same.

      Finally, do a little digging on firm policies on your intranet site, they may have some info on this issue to give you support and guidance. Hope that helps a little, best of luck!

    • I asked for a transfer to one of my firm’s other offices when my husband’s job was moved to a new state when I was a third year, and was shocked when it wasn’t granted. It basically came down to the potential new office’s needs, and I was told they didn’t have capacity for another litigation associate at my level. They kind of half-heartedly told me I could maybe try to work something out where I continued to work for the partners in the old office while being physically located in the new office, but that didn’t make sense given that I was only a third year and would need to really develop my career in the new office if I wanted to succeed long-term. I ended up interviewing with other firms in the new city and found a great opportunity to make the switch to a boutique where I have since gotten great experience and had a much better lifestyle than in Biglaw. I recommend an approach combining both asking for a transfer and interviewing elsewhere if you’re committed to going. Good luck !

    • I transferred from the NY to DC office of my big firm right before my wedding (to someone who lived in dc). Basically asked the partner I worked for and he pushed it through. I continued to work for him from DC, so this probably would not have been permitted otherwise–he wanted to keep me as an associate and knew I’d probably bail if it didn’t work out. It most likely will largely depend on whether the office you’d like to move to has enough work to keep someone at your level busy; if they have a bunch of assocs sitting around with nothing to do, they would prob be less open to the idea. Id try to get another offer in that city before making any request. Good luck.

  7. I’ve been using Laura Mercier’s tinted moisturizer (with LM oil-free primer) for a couple of years but have never been in love with it and am thinking of moving on and trying a BB or CC cream. I have my eye on the Clinique CC cream – anyone love (or hate!) that one, or have another they’d recommend instead? (Oily skin, prone to breakouts, looking for something on the sheer/light coverage end but at the same time I need enough coverage to even out my complexion.)

    • Cornellian :

      I have Dr Jart’s beauty balm that works well. It only comes in one shade, which looks too dark for my blue-eyed strawberry-haired self, but it actually works quite well. It feels almost waterproof, like I have to really wash my hands hard after applying it, but contains sunscreen, has slightly more coverage than a tinted moisturizer, stays longer, and apparently has antioxidants for my skin.

      • +1 to dr. jart. I never thought it would “go” with my skintone, but it’s perfect.

      • I’m also fair and love Dr. Jart’s. It is really easy to blend, provides good coverage, but doesn’t feel like I’m wearing a ton of makeup.

      • Brooklyn Paralegal :

        + a million to Dr. Jart’s

        I’m also a fair-skinned, blue-eyed strawberry blonde and it’s my absolute favorite. I temporarily switched to a drugstore brand because Dr. Jart’s is a little pricey, but there is really no comparison. I switched back immediately.

    • I switched from Laura Mercier to a actual foundation (YSL Touch Eclat) earlier this year and I couldn’t be happier. The foundation is light and with a primer, it stays perfectly all day long. It evens out my skin so nicely and is a great “foundation” for blush. I’m really happy with the switch. And, to be honest, it actually feels lighter than the tinted moisturizer and the Smashbox BB cream (which I don’t recommend because its too heavy and thick).

    • Your description could have been me two weeks ago – using LM tinted moisturizer, oily, prone to breakouts. I asked my dermatologist about recommendations and she said to move to a mineral foundation or a powder foundation, both of which give the same amount of coverage as the tinted moisturizer. I’m now using Lancome powder foundation, dry with a blush brush. She said any primer would work (so I’m still using LM oil free but I do like the Lancome oil free gel, which will be my next purchase).

    • Love the clinique one!

    • I love my bobbi brown bb cream. Fair, oilýskin prone to breakouts and needs coverage for my blotchy red skin tone. This bb cream is my fave. Dr. Jart is also good, but I am loving the skin benefits and texture of the bobbi brown. Also, my jawline matches my neck, meaning the color mstch is really good.

    • I like Tarte’s BB cream. I looked at Clinique’s but ruled it out because it has a chemical sunscreen.

    • Thanks everyone! Will have to get over to Sephora and have a look at your suggestions. I hate the trial and error that comes with finding a new foundation, which is why I’ve stuck with the LM for so long even though it isn’t the greatest fit for me.

    • I used Laura Mercier too but the coverage wasn’t quite enough. I switched this summer to smashbox CC cream after experimenting with other BB creams. I love it, and it has a fading cream for sun spots that I think is working.

      Definitely worth the money

  8. Rising 2L (Boston) :

    Heading into OCI season, I am hoping some lovely ‘rettes might have some suggestions for OCI (or general interview or 2L job search advice).

    Just to give you an idea of my position: I received more OCI interviews than I expected (don’t have stellar grades), which is exciting. I am also sending mailings to firms (BigLaw as well as mid-sized and potentially small, though I’ve heard those mailings should go out later) in addition to the networking I’ve been doing (events, follow ups, informational interviews, contacting alumni from my undergrad and law school, etc.). I am also planning to send mailings in-house (but that will be later, since my understanding is that most of them hire later). I am very interested in a few areas of law (transactional side) and so am, of course, focusing on firms that practice in those areas. I’ve also been practicing interviews, because I know I need to improve!

    • Check yesterday’s afternoon post for my name…I had similar OCI questions and got some great advice.

      • Rising 2L (Boston) :

        Thanks, I will!

        Best of luck to you in OCI (and beyond)!

      • Rising 2L (Boston) :

        I read this now (sorry I missed it!) and appreciate the advice you all gave Hannita – I think I’ll use the folders or notecards, personally (though I might bring my laptop since I have so much time between interviews). I tried to give myself some time between interviews to review information and hopefully avoid mixing up firms!

        I’d be interested in more interview advice as well. I am planning on wearing mostly my black pant suit, sometimes with the skirt (same suit) and then my gray suit (pant, suit, dress) for callbacks, and I have some button downs and nice tops that work well.

        Thus, I am less concerned with my wardrobe than the overall job search (OCI, mailings, etc.) and interviews.

        Unlike Hannita, I did not get 20 interviews/my school’s max (congratulations on that!! it’s amazing!), so with my grades (between top third and half, but just slightly under top third) and chances, I feel like I really need to go all out for this job search (including focusing on other avenues). I did sign up for an off campus program, but it is in a market that I don’t really want to work in (and others definitely do), so I feel rather guilty taking the interview slots others could have. Of course, I only have a couple of interviews through that (waiting to hear on alternates still), so I probably shouldn’t worry about that too much!

        Thanks in advance for any further advice! I might repost this later when more people can see it (I know my original was in moderation for a little bit, so people might have missed it).

  9. The discussion about engagement rings above made me wonder – does anyone have experience getting a new setting for an e-ring? I love my ring (round center stone and pear-shaped stones on the sides) but it’s not a low-profile setting. I rarely wear it because I feel like it’s constantly scratching my toddler. Will a low-profile setting help with this? Does it depend on the setting? Any advice on where to turn for ideas on something like this?

    • You could always take it to a jeweler and ask…

    • Definitely! Pick a local jeweler that makes their own settings or can order in whatever you need, and explain that you want a low profile setting that doesn’t catch on things. A bezel setting might work well, as there would be no prongs to cause scratches.

  10. Toe walking :

    Do any of you have children who walk on their toes (or were any of you toe-walkers as children)? I have a pre-school aged child who does this and her dr and I haven’t identified any cause (and we’ve spent some time watching and encouraging normal walking and seeing if she’s just grow out of it, which it looks like isn’t happening). Rather than put casts on her, we’re going to try some physical therapy and see how that goes. Any advice or experience to share?

    • Miss Behaved :

      I walked on my toes as a child and I’m fine now. The only lasting effect is that the toes of my shoes often stick up a bit, kind of like a leprechaun.

      • Toe walking :

        Thanks! Could you share a little bit more? Do you remember walking on your toes? Did you do anything special to get back on your (whole) feet or did it just happen gradually over time? I am noticing my daughter really struggling with balance sometimes (think of slippery pool decks — it is so hard for her b/c she has even less surface to balance on and it looks like the toe walking throws off her gait / balance generally) and her knees are even more torn up than usual this summer. :(

        • Miss Behaved :

          Huh. Interesting. I’m definitely a little clumsy and my balance is not great. I definitely remember walking on my toes. I continued to do it into my teens. I think now I come down a little harder on my heels than I might normally.

    • My little brother did this for quite a while when he was maybe 2. I think my parents had him wear shoes with hard soles, so he couldn’t really stand on his toes, though that might be difficult with a preschooler. I’m not sure when he grew out of it, but he is now 26 and has walked normally for as long as I can remember.

      Is it a problem if your daughter keeps doing it for a while? Preschool aged means she still has lots of time to grow out of it, and it seems unlikely she’ll still be walking that way when she’s 30.

    • I read that this happens when a child is overly sensitive to touch, called sensory processing disorder. It seems very easy to correct. I read about it here: http://www.mamaandbabylove.com/2013/07/18/my-kid-has-sensory-processing-disorder-2/

      • Toe walking :

        I have a friend with a child with that, so it’s something I did think of, but we (me, ped, ped ortho) are pretty convinced that it’s just the vanilla idiopathic toe walking.

      • Toe walking is very often idiopathic, having no known cause and not being indicative any underlying issues. It also often resolves on its own before any shortening of the muscle occurs.

        My daughter was a toe walking toddler, but outgrew it by age 4. We had evaluations to check for underlying issues and had a timeline for when we would do casting. She self resolved before that point.

        • Toe walking :

          Thanks! I had thought that the window for self-resolving may have passed (@4.5), but perhaps it is fluid. We’ll see!

    • locomotive :

      My younger brother and I were both toe-walkers (maybe ‘toes’ isn’t that precise, it’s more like we wouldn’t have our heels on the ground but would walk on the front pads of our feet) up til we were in middle school and just grew out of it. We both have no lasting problems with posture or walking and I don’t recall us seeing anyone about it.

      • Toe walking :

        That’s great to read. I am hoping that that will be our case, perhaps with some deliberate attention to stretching. But when I put my biglaw hat on, I remind myself that hope is not a strategy. Thanks, everyone!

        • Parenting is not the same as the practice of law though; sometimes it calls for the exact opposite of decisive action.

    • I was a toe walker (still am sorta– heels are way more comfortable for me than flats) and my daughter is a major almost-all-the-time toe walker. talk to your pedi about it. there are some conditions where it is a sign of concern (some genetic abnormalities) but in most cases–like mine– it is just toe walking and that’s it. our pedi noted it as something to follow and gave us an info sheet on what to watch for and do (even though there was a family history and i turned out “fine”) and just said as long as she puts her heels down some of the time, it’s ok. there can be mechanical issues (ie, if she never puts her heels down the achilles tendon can foreshorten, etc), but most are a non-issue. i would recommend just checking in with your pedi about it and following the instructions they give.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      My husband pointed out to me that when I run up stairs I do it just on my toes or balls of my feet. My heels don’t touch the ground. I’m also a distance runner and the toes of my shoes wear out way before my heels. I don’t walk on my toes on a regular basis but I do sometimes default to what I will call walking funky.

      I have two issues that could have partly caused it. One is a condition that just started being documented 10 years ago. Basically, my hips have too much flexibility and rotation. This can cause issues w/ knees, ankles, shoulders, anything that relies on the hips’ resistance to stay in place. I might run differently to try to keep my hips where they should be, subconsciously.

      The second, which was diagnosed way before the hips but could have been from the hips, is in order to keep my knees facing straight, I have to point my feet to the sides a bit when I stand “straight.” Everyone does this normally to some extent but I do it significantly more than most. If I stand with my feet perfectly straight forward, my right knee cap looks totally out of line.

      I have had to consciously try to run with my feet straighter otherwise I build up too much muscle on one side of my knee cap and it pulls my knee cap out of line.

      When I was in preschool, my teacher told my mom that something seemed wrong with my legs and they didn’t look like they lined up right. She thought I looked funny running and playing. My pediatrician said my teacher was crazy and that I was just a lanky clumsy kid. Turns out the teacher was kind of right.

      There is nothing to “fix” about me, just things for me to be aware of when treating or trying to prevent other injuries. My chiro also needs to know about my loose hips b/c he can’t use them for resistance when doing adjustments on my back/neck.

      • Blonde Lawyer :

        I also laugh every time a doc mentions my “loose hips” b/c it sounds like he is calling me a floozy.

      • Woods-comma-Elle :

        “when I run up stairs I do it just on my toes or balls of my feet”

        I thought everyone does this? Maybe I am one of these toe-walkers, too!

        • Ditto – how else would you run up stairs? Also, when I run in general, I tend to run on the balls of my feet, instead of placing my heel on the ground at all. Shrug.

        • I do this, too.

    • I don’t have any direct experience with this, but have you thought about enrolling your daughter in pre-ballet classes? They do a lot of exercises with different kinds of walking and running movements, skipping, happy toes and sad toes, princess walks, etc. It might get her used to moving in different ways as an alternative to actual physiotherapy, and would help her with her balance.

      • SoCalAtty :

        Second ballet – or any sport! I was always up on my toes, but was in ballet (or maybe pre-ballet?) at 4, then figure skating at 5, and that makes you consciously position your foot and stretch the achilles / calf down.

    • Frugal doc.. :

      I walked on my toes – grew out of it. I was a high performing athlete and no health issues.

      My niece did it for years, and always preferred bare feet (still does). She’s 7 now. Still does it some, but less over time. No issues.

    • Architect :

      Both of my kids toe walked. The 10 year old grew out of it. But the now 13 year old did not. She only had 50% range of motion in one foot as a result.

      So when she was 5 years we started to do something about it. First she had an MRI to rule out spinal cord issues. Then we did serial casting. The orthopedic said our daughter was one of the more extreme cases they had seen in awhile. The casting was not fun. The original estimate was for 12 weeks. In the end it was 8 weeks of casting and probably 6 months of PT. The casts went from her knees to the toes. Nothing was broken per se. So, she could do anything as long as there was no water involved. The casts were taken off every week and modified. Basically it’s PT 24/7.

      Once the casts were off, she was fitted for custom braces. At night she was supposed to wear braces for another year. The whole goal was to stretch her muscles out enough to give her the proper range of motion.

      It was worth it in the end. She does occasionly still toe walk when bare footed. She will ALWAYS have tight leg muscles. The doctor did warn that it might need to be done again as she grew up. We thought about it, but decided that it did not make sense. That would be a lot for a teenager to go through. Plus it was a lot of time and money for us.

      Good luck!

      • Toe walking :

        Thanks! Right now, our sport is swimming, so not so helpful with this (but good in an area where many people have pools and each year features the sad unattended child wandering into them). We’re trying to just have a good active lifestyle (roller skates, bicycle, hiking) while waiting to start the PT. I thought of ballet, but was wary because it might encourage being on her toes, so was leaning towards tumbling. I just don’t want this to become something that limits her as a grownup and am trying to learn all I can (even learning via annecdotes).

        Thanks to all!

    • a passion for fashion :

      my son did this until very recently. he is 6 now and stopped probably less than a year ago. we were really worried about it but the dr did nto seem to be too concerned. we didnt do PT. instead, we just constantly reminded to walk on “flat feet.” We also realized at some point that he did it most often when he ran (which was seriously all. the. time) but when he walked and thought about what he was doing, he walked with flat feet. so we also had to remind him a lot to “slow down”or “walk.”

    • toe-walking :

      I did this and my parents & doctors all said it was meaningless. It wasn’t a huge deal but not meaningless either – I have very very poor ankle mobility as a result. (It’s a cyclical thing – I walked on my toes b/c it was more comfortable than putting my heels down, my ankles got stiffer, etc.) This doesn’t affect normal life now as an adult, but it means that running, squatting, etc are all off or nearly off the menu. I’m a few years into trying to fix the problem and it’s really slow going.

  11. What did you write your law school personal statement about? Why does everything I write sound terrible??

    • I think I wrote about ten different ones before creating one that I felt was good enough (topic, writing, length, etc.).

      My advice would be to keep on writing. Remember that your personal statement doesn’t have to say everything about you (if you have other stories or details that you want the admission committees to know, you may be able to include them in the diversity statement, explanation of downward grades, etc.). Write a few different ones and then decide which you find to be the most compelling. Then work to make that one an excellent piece of writing. If you are at a loss, ask some people you trust to be honest (including professors and/or anyone you know who has been involved in college or graduate admissions) to review the different ones and give their opinions. I found those comments tremendously helpful to crafting mine.

      • Thanks for this. Applying to law school is something I have wanted to do for a long time frankly because I am extremely interested in the work and, well, I think I would be good at it. I am having a very hard time getting my excitement down on paper without it coming across as cheesy and because I am an older applicant I think it is important to address why I want to change careers. I really don’t think I could get away with writing an introspective essay on pie crust, for example.

        What resources did you use to help you identify and pull together a compelling story?

    • Why Star Trek made me want to go to law school. Seriously. I got a handwritten note back from one of the admissions people about being a fellow Trekkie.

      • I hope you wrote about Star Fleet’s ludicrous lack of procedure for officers embroiled in legal difficulties of any kind. Like, every time a Star Fleet officer is involved in a civil or criminal proceeding of any time, they appear to just appoint a random officer with no actual legal knowledge (but who is good at making speeches) to represent him. Come on, Star Fleet; it’s the 24th Century. I expect better. Why don’t you have JAG?

        • Sydney Bristow :

          To be fair, in The Measure of a Man, the reason officers had to be used was because the star base was new and the JAG officer didn’t have any staff yet. :-)

        • But apparently they DO have a JAG corp, as referenced in the Voyager episode I just watched.

          No, it was more about the generalities of how science fiction (with Star Trek as the example) is really about human beings and how they interact with the world around them. Or something like that. I don’t really remember anymore.

          • About as bad as BSG when Apollo (who is supposed to be one of the defense attorneys) is allowed to testify re the defendant/situation.

      • Sydney Bristow :

        You are my hero!

        On the recommendation of someone representing a school I really wanted to attend, I wrote about the differences between places I lived focusing on the protest culture and how the differences shaped who I am.

    • Equity's Darling :

      Oh gosh, in retrospect, I have no idea how I got in with my personal statement.

      I’m pretty sure my prof in my legal theory class said that there was only one person in my year who got into law school with a legal positivist view in their personal statement- it was mine, which was basically about how all the things I enjoy doing (my undergraduate degree, all my hobbies, etc.) are about working within the rules to acheive the desired outcome, and how I’d be a good lawyer because of that? Honestly, terrible, and not very personal, and very light on substance- I would not recommend.

      I’m lucky I scored well on the LSAT, that’s all I know. Writing the personal statements was the hardest part of my applications though (other than the waiting), so I know where you’re coming from.

      • Wannabe Runner :

        Yes. I tried writing about all kinds of things, and then said, “Eff this. I’m just going to write about why I want to go to law school and why I want to go to their school specifically. The end.”

        Done. And it got me accepted.

        Don’t over think it.

      • @Equity’s Darling wait that’s what mine was about. should i not have done that? ps: i love your username

    • I was an arts major in college because my family are all artists. So I wrote about how I felt I had to live up to my family’s expectations and become an artist, but that didn’t make me happy at all, and then I started working at a law firm (as a paralegal) and it was like I finally found where I belonged.

      • Can you elaborate on this? How did you craft this into a compelling story without sounding like someone who had one experience and wants to make a life decision based off it? I don’t mean that to be snarky.

        • I don’t understand. What’s wrong with having one experience and wanting to make a life decision based off it?

    • Gosh, I can’t even remember this. I think I’ve deliberately blanked it out.

    • I only applied to one law school (the one in the state where I grew up). This school had a particular program that it was well-known for and I wrote about how the time I spent in a small, rural city in my state with my grandparents as a child really made me interested in this particular area of law because I saw how practical it was.

    • Can’t speak to law school specifically, but I wrote a great piece to get into (and get funded) by my graduate school. It started out: I want to work in (insert field here). I have always wanted to work in (insert field here). When I was a child, I (examples at how I dorkily pretended to work in said field). And so on…It was the last of 20+ attempts all of which didn’t sound like they were written in my “voice” until the last one. When I was real was when it was good.

    • Anonymous :

      I wrote about what made me want to change career paths and go to law school, using a story about a pivotal experience to tell it. People always say not to write about why you want to go to law school, but I think that prohibition is exaggerated. Obviously it’s boring if you just write “I want to go to law school because . . . .” But if you use a personal story to explain it, you are telling the admissions officers something about yourself in an interesting way. Honestly, I think the personal statement will only take you so far, just like writing samples for job applications. You’re going to get in mainly because of your GPA and LSAT.

      • goldribbons :

        “Honestly, I think the personal statement will only take you so far, just like writing samples for job applications. You’re going to get in mainly because of your GPA and LSAT.” This.

        • Well, but if you’re applying to a school where they have 500 people with your GPA/LSAT and can only take 100 of you, the personal statement will do a lot. It won’t fix bad numbers, but it can help you once you’re over the threshold.

    • Anonymous :

      I wrote about high stakes testing and how hard it is for kids with disabilities to pass and receive an actual, real diploma. My sister was just graduating high school and facing the situation. I felt it was unfair that she wasn’t going to be able to get an actual high school diploma after working hard for many years. I tied it in (obviously) to my interest in public policy and law.

    • Anonymous :

      I had an admissions counselor tell me I should ask others (friends/family) what they thought was most interesting about me, and then figure out how to tell a story about how it relates to wanting to be a lawyer. The “interesting thing” that came up most frequently was that I was queen of the part-time job – I’d had something like 15 different jobs (many concurrently, I wasn’t getting fired left right and center, I just often ended up working 10 hours a week at 3 different places at the same time instead of having 1 30 hour/week job) – so I wrote about three of my most interesting (and seemingly-unrelated-to-law) jobs and explained how they’d helped me build skills that would make me a good lawyer (problem solving, working with people, being persuasive, etc.).

    • Highly recommend you check out Montauk’s “How to Get Into Top Law Schools” He goes through the whole process and gives a lot of samples, worksheets so you can think about your strengths, etc. Worth the $20, grand scheme.

  12. Miss Behaved :

    Ladies, I heard on the morning news a couple of weeks about findmassmoney.com for unclaimed property. I logged in and put in a claim, which was rejected because my name was spelled wrong. But then I logged into missingmoney.com to locate money in other states I lived. I promptly forgot about it after I logged a claim. Yesterday I received a check from the state of RI for $600.

    That truly is found money!

    • I’ve done that for clients and estates that I’ve worked on in the past. If you have any in MA, I highly recommend calling the Division of Unclaimed Property (something like that). They are the best division I’ve worked with in the MA government – helpful and really work to get you your property! Their website is very easy to use and submit claims through.

    • Wannabe Runner :

      Wow, what was it for?

    • Thanks for posting this!! I found money for my brother, mom, BFF, and boyfriend. None for me, however.

      You can just search your state and unclaimed property. I think every state has a website.

  13. Shopping Advice Needed :

    Could this jacket be worn as a blazer? Or is it too much for indoor wear?


  14. I really appreciate all the OCI advice everyone gave yesterday. Hopefully it all goes well!

    So, one more question. I have a tiny nose piercing, that I honestly forget about the majority of the time (it’s just a small “diamond” stud). Nobody at school, during mock interviews, at my internship interview or during my summer internship have commented on it. But, I’m now all worried that maybe I should take it out for interviews.

    Thoughts? I’m in the LA area, so maybe less conservative than other parts of the country.

    • I would take it out. Why not, you know?

    • Take it out. Not worth the risk of getting a ding for something that is easy to control.

    • Take it out. It could be fine, but why risk a no-call back just because of something that small?

    • I would take it out. Sure, maybe no one will notice it – but wouldn’t you hate for that to be the deciding factor? It’s such an easy fix that it’s almost silly not to. I also have a nose ring, and it comes out for interviews and while I’m at work. Just remember to pop it back in at the end of the day so the hole doesn’t close up. If you haven’t had the piercing long, you might want to go to a reputable piercer and get a clear plastic retainer to hold the hole open.

  15. Going Anon :

    Relationship TJ – For those of you ladies in long-distance relationships (I’m talking far enough that visits typically involve a flight), how did you start taking steps toward closing that distance?

    For the SO and me, we both moved away from the city in which we met. It was absolutely the right move for our career paths, but it’s scary to think that one (or both) of us will have to quit our jobs in order to be together, when it was our jobs that took us apart in the first place.

    We’ve been doing the flying back and forth for a little over two years. Financially it’s OK, but I can really sense the toll it’s taking on my personal happiness. Not sure if I’m looking for advice or commiseration, but both are appreciated!

    • We didn’t have to fly, but it was a 3.5 hr drive so we saw each other every other weekend. I think in LDRs it’s best to have an end date if you are someone who is looking for marriage. At 2 yrs you should probably know whether you can see yourself possibly ending up with this person. If you can, one of you will have to move eventually. Look at who has the highest earning potential or see who has more job flexibility and make the decision on that. We knew that one of us would have to move or we’d have to break up. After about 2.5 yrs of long-distance my boyfriend moved to my city with his company. BUT his jobs move around a lot. I know I’ll have to quit my job at some point for him because he has higher earning potential. It’s a choice I’ve had to accept.

      • DH and I were long distance for 2 years. 5 hour flight for 1 year (although he was a student that year so he had a lot of breaks), then 1 hour flight for 1 year. Then, we got engaged and he moved to my city – in part because my city was bigger and more likely the place we would settle long-term. BUT, after a couple of years in my city and being a married couple, he hated it and we moved to a third city where we knew no one, but where I landed a good job that paid for relocation benefits. I agree with Anonymous – it’s better if you have an end date in mind. Have you broached the topic at all? Are you thinking about marriage? For me, I didn’t mind the flying around because I knew we were going to be together and jobs and everything else were secondary.

    • I’m in a similar situation (LDR of ~500 miles – so typically requires flying). I was the one that moved away from the city where we met because of a great job opportunity. We’ve talked a lot in general about ending up in the same place, but there’s not a concrete plan. In all honesty, I’ll probably be the one to move back because he’s in the city with lots of our mutual friends/support network and my job is more flexible (higher earning potential, but less location dependent).

      I imagine closing the gap will coincide with a major life change (one of us leaving a job for grad school or marriage), but that time table isn’t established yet, so things are very much in flux. I’m also interested to hear from those who have already gone through this and what the catalysts were. For now, OP, I can commiserate!

    • I think having a rough timeline and committing to moving back together is very important. I had ridiculously long distance (me in Asia, him on U.S. East Coast). I had a job offer out there before I met him. Our plan was always for me to move back for grad school (which I did), at which point we had a shorter LD relationship, and then we really committed to living together after grad school, which we are finally doing. It was a very difficult and stressful time for both of us in the last stretch, but it can work. I think the commitment and rough timeline is important because otherwise getting back together won’t be in the back of your head in the same way when you’re making big and small decisions. It’s also important to make sure that you are both on the same page on what you want long-term.

  16. Annoying Coworker :

    My cube neighbor is driving me up the walls. When gets to work, I hear a chorus of massive loud yawning throughout the entire day (distracting and contagious), followed by her munching constantly on her chip of choice for the day. I can tell when she actually finally gets to her work because then the humming starts.

    While it really isn’t any of my business, all of it (particularly the yawning) is really quite obnoxious and distracting. I already have headphones, but can hear her through whatever noise I’m playing and don’t want to go deaf trying to drown out someone. I’ve made gentle comments like “you sound tired, do you want to grab some coffee” to point out that yes, in fact I can hear you. I am trying to be sensitive here, but I’m at my wits end. Is there anything I can say politely to her or do I have to just let this one go?

    • Oh my god, I feel your pain. The woman who sits in the cube behind me makes the weirdest (and very loud) sighing sounds very frequently throughout the day. That plus the incessant munching on crackers/cheez-its/chips drives me batty. No advice, just commiseration. I’ve resigned myself to letting it go because really, what can you say?

    • No advice, but I totally get it. My old officemate used to sing to herself all day long. Who does that? And did she really think I wanted to hear her? Because I didn’t. At all.

    • Have you considered some kind of sound masking device? Either a fan turned on all day to create “white noise” (even if it doesn’t blow on your) or an actual speaker that produces “white noise”? Something like this:
      http://www.cambridgesoundmanagement.com/products_landing.html (the Sonet QT).

      The noise would drive me nuts.

      • Annoying Coworker :

        Should have added, I also have a fan. I’m not sure I’m aloud to actually have speakers going with white noise, but its worth a shot. Other people here put on radio stations (like actual radios without headphones), but I try to err on the side of being professional.

    • Likewise around here! I think that it’s just basic etiquette to make an effort to yawn without noise if you can help it. . . although since I don’t feel comfortable pointing that out, it’s just earplugs for me. . .

    • Nordies Lover :

      Ugh, this sounds so annoying. Maybe ear plugs? I used the cheap foam-y ones from the drug store during exams, and they drowned out the noise enough so that I could focus. Or noise-canceling headphones?

    • Sad Runner :

      I shared an office with a girl who spoke (and fought) with her boyfriend several times a day. It just blew my mind that she didn’t realize it was rude to not leave the room when he called.

      One day I asked her if she wouldn’t mind leaving for her personal phone calls and she said, “Oh, does it bother you?”, I said yes, and problem solved. (At least in that regard.) I am not sure your situation is exactly the same though, but you might consider just letting her know you notice. It would be an uncomfortable conversation, but she’d likely be cognizant of her noise in the future, and then you’d be happier.

  17. nursing bras :

    Does anyone have a recommendation for a good wire-free nursing bra for busty ladies? I need something that I can wear under work clothes. I am probably a 34 G or H right now. TIA

    • Diana Barry :

      Anita makes nice ones:


      I always wear nursing pads with them (because leakage/headlights), but they are very soft and go nicely under work clothes.

      Anita also makes “soft cup” kinds that are better for headlights, but I found that they ran slightly small and weren’t quite as comfortable as the one linked.

    • I am currently nursing and am between a 36G and 34H, depending on the day. I could NOT find a single wireless nursing bra that actually supported anything, even those supposedly made for busty women. I think the underwire worries haven’t been proven and are more anecdotal than anything else, or at least that’s what I tell myself. I have two wired bras, from Anita and Bravado, and I love both of them. I ordered from BareNecessities.com.

      I nurse 3x a day at work and really work on massaging each time to try to clear out each duct as much as possible. So far, no clogged ducts. And my supply has been fairly steady, knock on wood. Good luck!

    • chellersm :

      Ugh, no, I wish I did (I’m just wrapping up nursing/pumping after 10 months, and I never found a nursing bra I actually liked.) I had an anita bra that was okay, and I wore that almost non-stop for work until I just gave up and wore regular bras to work (my old ones from pregnancy).

      Anyway, my best nursing tank was by Ripe maternity, I got it from Amazon. I wore that under my work (and weekend clothes) whenever I wanted to get mostly dressed before LO woke up.

    • Thanks ladies. I have been eyeing the Anita bras but wasn’t sure how supportive they were. R, I also looked at some underwire bras but every site out there advises against it so was hesitant… sounds like you have had a good experience. I think I’ll order one wireless Anita and one underwire bra and see if they work.

  18. Fatherhood :

    My DH and I are talking about having kids. He wants kids, but is really nervous because he was raised by a single mom until he was 10, when his mom married his stepdad (who is a little standoff-ish). So he says he doesn’t really know what a dad of young kids is supposed to do.

    He is just a really nice, sweet guy, so I think he’ll be a fine dad, but I’m looking for something to allay his worries. I looked into parenting classes, but my local ones seem to be mostly aimed toward like incarcerated fathers or people who neglect their kids, etc. For instance, we know to feed our kids 3 times a day and provide a bedroom for them, etc.

    He recently went to B&N and browsed the parenthood books. But does anyone have any other resources, like online message boards or something, on how to be a Dad if you’ve never had one? Or advice?

    • The Hax (at the WPost) often recommends “How to Talk so your kids will listen, and listen so your kids will talk” and “Nuture Shock” by Bronson and Merryman. I’ve also seen “Protecting the Gift” by deBecker (Gift of Fear guy).

      Do you have friends/relatives with kids that you can talk to? To talk about parenting in general and how they developed their approaches? I think a lot of parenting relates on the parents being on the same page regarding discpline, recognizing what activities/conversations are appropriate at what stages of development, and realizing that kids are their own unique person and that the best thing you can do is love them and prepare them for the world.

    • He may not have had a dad in his life, but he still had a parent. Most of those skills are the same for both sexes. The approaches may differ just a bit. Parents of young kids need lots of patience, a sense of humor, a love for their child, love and respect for their partner, a little bit of common sense, and some confidence that they can get through this adventure. It’s not like a test that you can study for and learn all the tricks. That is why there are so many books out there. There are so many right ways to parent, and very few really wrong ones. I think you should do a little bit of reading before bringing the baby home to understand child safety issues and maybe childcare if you’ve never done it, but the rest you pick up on the job. Then you can read a little bit for each stage as needed, like help with sleep issues.

    • Do you have friends with young children? Elementary school age or younger. Offer to babysit for extended periods of time so that your DH can feel comfortable with children.

    • Anonymous :

      DH said that he was very apprehensive about being a father, based on his lack of a father and his interactions with his nephews. He said that reading My Father Before Me helped him greatly — so I’d recommend it to your DH.

  19. I have come to realize that I have a very sarcastic sense of humor and I often unintentionally hurt feelings with my comments. I feel really bad about it but I can’t always predict when it will happen because I am genuinely try to get a laugh out of someone and I guess I have pretty thick skin. How do I stop doing this? I usually don’t realize I said something hurtful until it’s too late.

    • Anonymous :

      Stop trying to get a cheap laugh and start trying to include people in the conversation.

      • Senior Attorney :


        My STBX is like this, and I think it stems from his utter lack of empathy.

        Honestly, I would suggest you put a moratorium on “trying to get a laugh out of someone” indefinitely and really work on your empathy skills.

        • I don’t know if this is really helpful. What does it mean to “work on your empathy skills”? OP, I don’t have quite the same problem, but I have often said things my husband found to be (in a particularly angry/hurt moment) “acting like an imperious b—-ch”. Honestly what I said never seemed bad to me, and wouldn’t bother me if I’d been in his shoes. So I felt completely blindsided when he got upset. It sounds like you’re having the same experience, and it is so frustrating. I think what has helped me recalibrate some of this was to ask questions about why it bothered him. Did it make him happy in the moment. Noooo. (I believe he said “Don’t take my deposition — you’re not opposing counsel!” Yes, he’s also a lawyer.) But it gave me information that helped me next time. “Oh, so saying ‘I don’t want to talk about this’ is imperious to you, but saying ‘honey, this is upsetting to me right now — can we change the subject?’ is good and elicits a response of ‘of course, honey, I’m happy to.'” When your inner gauges aren’t working the same as everyone else’s, sometimes you just need to get more info and take a more scientific approach to getting back into alignment.

          • Senior Attorney :

            What I mean by “work on your empathy skills” is to give some regard to the feelings of others. The undeniable fact that although the things you do and say wouldn’t bother you if the roles were reversed, the things you do and say DO bother the people to whom you do and say them. And whether or not you believe those people are wrong to be bothered, it is in your interest to acknowledge that fact, to give some thought to exactly what part of your behavior is bothersome, and consider modifying your behavior so that it doesn’t bother people as much.

            It’s not about doing unto others as you’d like them to do unto you. It’s about doing unto others as they would like YOU to do unto THEM. And that requires actually thinking about them and their feelings, rather than yours only.

            Not that this is a hot button issue for me or anything…

    • Moonstone :

      It’s always OK to think a funny, sarcastic remark but it should come out of your mouth only about 20 percent of the time. Take a beat before speaking and consciously try to assess the reaction you’ll get.

    • Senior Attorney:

      It sounds like your response came out of frustration you have for someone else. I really don’t have an empathy problem and actually getting my team members to laugh once in a while as overwhelming helped me more than it has hurt me. It is also helped me to move into other teams that were already well established as well as diffuse a few tense situations. So thank you for your insight but I don’t think I will be putting a moratorium on joking around with my teammates. BTW your cutting response to my post shows your lack of empathy.

      • Wannabe Runner :

        I also have humiliated and alienated lots of people by what I have said to them. I always told my friends’ secrets when I was little, and things blurt out of me pretty regularly. People that like me tell me I’m honest, and the people that don’t like me tell me I’m way too blunt.

        I didn’t realize that was a bad thing until like, law school.

        One thing that has helped me is what kids are sometimes taught now – Before you say something, think, “Is it helpful? Will it help someone feel better? Is it kind?” If not, don’t say it. In the work context, I’d also add, “Will this move the meeting/project forward? Does it make me look competent? Does it make me seem like I’m focused on the work?” If not, it probably doesn’t need to be said.

        It’s kind of like the old adage about keeping your mouth shut if you have nothing nice/helpful to say.

        Think about it – would you rather be known as the funny/sarcastic boss, or the kind, smart mentor? I know which one I’d pick.

        I’d also highly recommend reading Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office. You want to be the one who succeeds, not the one whose lame attempts at jokes hold you back.

      • Senior Attorney :

        I replied further above, but honestly I wasn’t trying to be cutting; I was trying to be helpful. I’m sorry it missed the mark.

        And yes, as I’ve acknowledged I have suffered mightily at the sharp tongue of my STBX. And I don’t think anybody ever made any enemies by toning down a sarcastic tongue.

    • Going Anon :

      This is going to be hard to hear but it’s the truth: YOU ARE NOT FUNNY. Let it sink in. You are not funny. I have a friend like this who basically says offensive things on command. Over time, I’ve realized that it’s exactly this. Trying to get a cheap laugh, trying to be funny. It’s so annoying. Also, all the time you spend trying to perform is the time you spend not listening to people or engaging with them. You are not funny. Funny people are people for whom this comes naturally. Funny people are people whom other people enjoy. Disjointed non sequiturs don’t make you funny. You are not funny. Stop trying to be a funny person because you are not funny. I’m repeating this in the hope that by the time you get to the fifth time, the denial will have lifted slightly.

      For my friend, he really likes this version of himself in which he is a wisecracking guy with an easy humor. He wants to be able to dispense wisdom with a dash of humor. He can’t. I can’t climb Everest. I also can’t eat cake every day and look like Kate Moss. That’s life. Accept your limitations and move on.
      He has loads of amazing qualities which people don’t see because of the jokes/insults. I’m telling you what I can’t tell him. Every time you think about doing this, remember that people don’t like people who make them feel bad (unless they birthed you and then you’re stuck). Repeat that every day. If you are mean to people, they won’t like you. At first it will be agony, you’ll want to burst with your “observations”. But if you bite your tongue, you’ll get through it and eventually just listen and actually start finding conversations interesting anyway. You can do this!

      • Going Anon :

        Just read your reply to Senior Attorney: good luck in life, you’ll need it. Btw, your “team” is made of people who probably grit their teeth behind your back and call you names. I’ve had bosses who are the same. Good people but inappropriate and immature. Bosses who give it but can’t take it. Oh well, your choice.

  20. Rising 2L :

    Oooh Banana Republic has 50% off sale items and 40% off full price items today! Just got a black pantsuit for $109!

    • viclawstudent :

      Yes, soooo good, got two lightweight wool skirt suits for $110 each! (They should have been more than $400, since they were reduced 50% before the special 50% reduction).

  21. For those of you who work out at lunch, do you shower? If so, how long do you spend working out vs. showering? And if you don’t shower, do you do anything before throwing your clothes back on? I just worked out for my first time over lunch and didn’t feel like I sweated enough to require a shower, but now I just feel kind of gross after putting my clothes back on. And totally ravenous since I didn’t wind up eating lunch (at my desk) until 1 pm, so I’m not totally sure that working out over lunch is going to work out (no pun intended) for me.

    • I try to have a snack about 30-45 minutes before working out so I am not starving when I am done and can eat again a little later. I don’t shower after working out, but I do sometimes use baby wipes to clean off and I also make sure I am completly dry before getting dressed again. (Otherwise, I feel like I just put my work clothes on over all my sweat!) I also reapply deoderant and brush my hair. I don’t feel as clean as if I showered, but it is important to me to get a good workout in, so I just deal with it.

  22. Purchasing a gift for a five year old girl. Is jewellery okay?

    So much of what is for kids is so outgrowable… I would like to get her a single charm and an empty charm bracelet so she can keep it for several years and build on it.

    Was just wondering if it was an appropriate thing, the young lady is a very dear relative.