Gift Ideas: Hydro Flask & Yeti

Here’s a serious question for the readers that’s very appropriate for a “Coffee Break” post: Hydro Flask or Yeti? I know people have some strong opinions on the best tumbler for carrying coffee to work. Hydro Flash has some serious accolades at Nordstrom, while the Yeti has the same over at Amazon. If you’re looking for a gift for someone who really wants to keep their coffee hot on their commute or travels, these are both good, affordable options that come in fun colors. So I’m curious to hear which is your preferred coffee transport method! Hydro Flask ($25) or Yeti ($30)

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  1. Contigo.

    • This is the correct answer. Contigo, specifically in the 2-pack from Costco. They are THE BEST.

    • I use a tall, narrow starbucks coffee bottle because it fits my car’s small cup holders. I also like my $15 40 oz Takeya stainless steel water bottle from Costco for cold water.

    • AnonInfinity :

      Yes. Yes exactly.

    • +1000 to Contigo

      Klutzy Coffee Drinker

    • Lana Del Raygun :

      I have a hot/cold bottle from them with a spout that screws into the neck, and then the cap screws onto the spout. It drives me crazy because when I try to take the cap off the spout comes off with it. But it does keep my milk cold.

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve had the Contigo, but you can’t get it clean the way you can a Zorushi (sp?) coffee thermos, which breaks down into various parts, has a lock, etc.

      I love my hydroflask (the screw lid is the most watertight, the flip lid and straw lids are not as much) ; also love my takeya (very similar).

      I haven’t tried the yeti, but have tried the corksicle insulated cup, which is fine, but their lid is not travel-friendly so I just keep it at my desk.

    • I use hydroflask. It keeps my tea hot all day (if you keep the opening on the lid closed). It does it’s job so we’ll that I have to be careful drinking from it lest i get burnt with the hot tea!

    • Zojirushi is the best. I think Sweethome does a comparison of the Zoji versus Contigo — never going back to Contigo.

  2. forehead wrinkles :

    I’m starting to get forehead lines and am looking for creams/products to deal with that. Budget is up to $50 but cheaper suggestions would be appreciated given our family budget.

    • You want to start with a retinol, try the ordinary or differen (marketed as anti-acne, but used as a retinol)

    • Botox. No cream can fix that. Save your cream money and get Botox.

      • shamlet96 :

        i think this is correct. I tried retinols (specifically tazorac) and they seemed to help delay faint lines, but now that the lines have appeared, it seems like they don’t work anymore.

    • Yup, Botox. The lines are from crinkling your forehead, and the only way to get rid of them is to stop crinkling.

  3. I’m personally good with a good ‘ol-nothing-fancy Thermos travel mug. That said, I am SUPER EXCITED about the Yeti koozie that I’m giving DH for Christmas! When I saw that it worked for cans and bottles, I was sold!

  4. Anonymous :

    Hydro Flask because I am more “crunchy granola” and Yeti seems more “drinking beer and fishing.”

  5. I have a Zojirushi 16 oz mug and it’s amazing at retaining heat, as in, I have to let my coffee cool down before I cap it otherwise it keeps it burning hot (literally) for hours. I’d say I get at least 8 hours of hot hot coffee from it before it cools down to tepid.

    • +1 for Zojirushi. I have their 10oz stainless vacuum mug and love it. I ordered it because it was one of the few I could find that had a smaller sized option, but it’s amazing at temperature control and I’m now brand loyal! I am always surprised at how hot my coffee is hours and hours later.

      • And another commuter-friendly feature: it has a nice locking mechanism at the cap. I can throw it in my purse and I’ve never had any problems with spills.

        • Constant Reader :

          Second this — I throw it all kinds of places and don’t worry. The only time it leaked was “user error” and even then it didn’t leak badly. Now I tip it upside down quickly before I put it in my bag to make sure I’ve locked it.

    • Baconpancakes :

      Thirded. Best. Hands down. I’ve tried them all.

    • FOURTHED. I buy these for everyone. Two more people are getting them for Christmas this year.

    • Yep. This is the clear winner.

    • So, my problem with travel mugs that go through the dishwasher is that the plastic mouth piece always tastes mildly of soap-y detergent. Is this an issue with the Zojirushi?

      • Baconpancakes :

        It does not go through the dishwasher.

        The mouthpieces do, and taste fine, but the amazing vacuum in the zojirushi body that keeps the heat would be ruined in the dishwasher!

      • I don’t put mine in the dishwasher, I just rinse off the mouthpiece and use a bottle brush on the inside. I don’t even take the mouthpiece all the way apart every time. I’m one of those gross people with really good immune systems though.

    • AssocAtty :

      +1! Only annoyance is that I can’t drink it on my commute. But I do have burning hot coffee when I get to the office!

  6. I have the Yeti tumbler you linked to and a Hydroflask standard mouth bottle. 90% of my bottle usage is for cold drinks and I switch between these two. The Hydroflask is more versatile because it has a screw top and you can just toss it into a bag. A Yeti tumbler is a bit harder to juggle. The Yeti is better at keeping drinks at temperature so I use it when I am going to be stationary for the most part- like at the pool. My complaint with the Yeti is that the ice freezes in one big chunk whereas with a Hydroflask, it tends to stay in smaller cubes.
    For hot drinks, I use my Yeti or a Tervis Tumbler.

    • Multitasker :

      I would like to take hot soup to work and for it to be quite hot when I hope it. Does anyone use their coffee tumblers to achieve this or do you have a thermos rec?

  7. I’m thinking of starting to write children’s picture books on the side as a hobby/way to exercise my creative side. Does anyone else do this/know someone who does? Any tips for getting started?

    I’m thinking of self-publishing a few and idk make an Etsy shop? It’s still early days but I’ll do better if I have a goal in mind.

    • Veronica Mars :

      Would you do the art yourself our outsource it?

      • Do it myself. I majored in my field (accounting) but minored in creative writing and fine arts.

        • Don’t write with a goal of publishing. Write with a goal of writing. Enjoy the process. Take your time.

          Read Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird. It’s excellent.

    • Anonymous :

      I have a relative who’s done this. If you want to sell even a small number, you’ll need to do a fair bit of marketing – think weekend arts fairs, entering contests, etc.

    • Childrens' book! :

      Hope that’s not too late for you to see, but I’d love it if you would like to reach out to me. I am in the process of finalizing a drawn children’s book and would love to have someone to bounce ideas with! You can contact me via my website:

  8. I am in a corporate management role (non-lawyer). I have been applying to other jobs for several months now, but haven’t gotten a single interview. I thought the issue might be with my resume or cover letter, but I had some trusted mentors plus an external resume writing service take a look and they had no issues with them. Where do I look next? How can I get to the interview stage? Is there a service that will help me work through this? Or someone I can hire? It’s getting so frustrating to throw my resume into the void and never hear anything back (or get a standard rejection email months later). I’ll admit my network is fairly weak for my specific role, but how do I fix that? It’s not really a role with external speaking opportunities or conferences, or other ways to build a professional network. Any and all suggestions are appreciated!!!

    • Sounds like you need to get in touch with a recruiter, who will put you in front of the right potential employers. I’d start there. There are a lot of recruiter agencies, and the effectiveness does vary by agency and region, but I think this is where to start.

    • Can you join some associations? What about the local Chamber of Commerce? The local chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth? Junior League (ymmv on this in your area – mine has lots of professional women)? College alumni association? Get on the board of a non-profit, if you have any type of HR experience, non-profits often need this experience on their board. These are just my thoughts/these are the ways that I’m trying to build my own network.

    • Anonymous :

      1. What job are you looking for?
      2. Develop expertise in the area where you want to work and raise your profile in that space–speak at conferences, attend conferences, submit an op-ed, post articles on Linkedin, conduct trainings for organizations–become a looked to expert. Even though you may be in a niche–if you want change–you have to create opportunities to break out of it.
      3. Network, network, network with folks in the jobs you are seeking–become familiar. There is still no replacement for “So and so recommended that I contact you.”

    • A few suggestions:

      – just because friends or former colleagues said your resume looks good–don’t trust them. You need your most brutal, honest, friend or colleague to rip your resume apart. Ask yourself whether your resume is “laundry list” or STAR (situation, task, action, result). Is it tailored? Does it raise any questions or red flags? Is it easy to follow? Is there enough white space? Does it have outdated things on it, like a yahoo or hotmail email?, etc.

      – it might simply be the wrong time of year, where the types of jobs you are applying to are really “on hold” until next year. So you should keep applying. The postings may be stale.

      GOOD LUCK.

  9. social skills for girls :

    I have a 9-year-old daughter who is bright. She goes to an after-school program that the girls she was friends with have dropped one by one (they each have nanny arrangements that vary with the moms work schedules and kid activities that don’t overlap with us). She is socially awkward and I know that this would be helped by just being around other friends more. I work, so I’m happy to facilitate on weekends. What can I do to help her? I almost want to get some sort of pageant coach to help her decode how to better interact with people (make eye contact! kind words (not being blunt)!).

    She’s got ADHD and takes meds for that, but doesn’t have aspergers or anything on the spectrum. She’s bright (but not so bright that she shouldn’t be able to relate to others generally). She is so very engaged and happy around her friends and it makes me so sad that to see her obviously unhappy and ill-at-ease when I get to watch her on the playground or otherwise observe. I think she just has trouble decoding how to interact with people (and I think that this can be learnable — yes? no?).

    • some kind of behavioral therapist could be helpful for her. they would likely do role playing and teach other techniques. but before you do that – have you spoken with her teachers at all about this? how is she at school? is this mostly a problem at the after school program? if it is, then perhaps she just doesn’t click with the kids there. i wouldn’t necessarily rush into any kind of therapist/help because you don’t want to create a problem and unintentionally damage or kid’s self confidence, when there isn’t one. does she participate in any structured after school activities? a sport, dance, art class, etc.? maybe she needs an environment with more of a purposeful activity to help her.

      • social skills for girls :

        I notice it and her teachers do as well. She just doesn’t have much unstructured time with others that she clicks with, which I think is not just good for her but also good for this issue. She’s not my only child and it is a very noticeable difference between the two of them.

        I get that she doesn’t need to be an overly social person and I’m trying not to force her to be social, but you can still be lonely for social interaction. And she should have better social skills just for navigating life and an opportunity to practice using them.

    • i’d also post on the mom’s site tomorrow morning

    • Honestly, I think the best thing you can do for her is let her be herself. Everything you’re describing sounds pretty normal, and not anything that requires parental correction of the behavior. Her friends dropped the after school program, so now she doesn’t know anyone. It will take time for her to get to know the other kids. That’s normal and doesn’t make her a friendless weirdo.

      Fwiw, I was nerdy and awkward (more than your daughter it sounds like) and pretty friendless from about 5th grade on (I did make one close friend in 10th grade that I’m still very close to as an adult), but I never really felt sad about it or had low self-esteem. Between my school, activities, and my close relationship with my family I always felt pretty happy and fulfilled and I think a huge part of that is because my parents were the opposite of “pageant coaches” and just accepted me the way I was. There is a time in life to learn specific social skills like eye contact that will be important for things like interviewing, but I don’t think that time is elementary school. I’ve had a lot of professional success and no issues making friends in college and beyond.

      • Senior Attorney :

        And conversely, my mom was always trying to improve me in one way or another “for my own good” and what I internalized was that I am fundamentally flawed as a human being. So please tread carefully, no matter what you decide to do.

      • Cosign. I was a very shy, awkward kid who was always uncomfortable when my (one or two) friends weren’t at summer camp or day care or wherever. I would spend entire days not talking to anyone, but also being lonely at times. Other times, like when I was engaged in something I liked (reading, music), I was totally fine. I think that her situation is totally normal and she’ll likely grow out of it with the passage of time. (I’m super social and super good at social interaction now– yes, interacting with people is totally learnable.) To a certain extent, social skills just need to be learned along with all other age-appropriate development that’s going on. “Ask meaningful follow up questions” isn’t really going to translate to a 9 year old.

        But I would suggest talking with her about it. (Or at least, just letting her know you’re there to talk about it if she wants.) I can look back and realize that part of the reason I struggled to make friends when I was little was because I was horribly, horribly anxious (to the point where I pulled out my hair rather than talk to people). I believed that no one would really like me and no one wanted to be my friend. I’m not the first kid in the world to think that, but I feel like if an adult had helped me out of that thought pattern (before I met my therapist when I was 28…..), it might have helped. Or taught me some age-appropriate basics like “try to be positive and limit the complaining,” or “that acrid sarcasm that we love at home and you picked up from your northeastern family isn’t working for you in Texas.” Turns out those are age appropriate tips at all ages.

      • biglawanon :

        Yeah, this. I don’t think there is anything for you to “facilitate.” Please don’t get a pageant coach.

        Also, aren’t all 9 y/o’s awkward at least some of the time? It is an awkward age.

      • Otheranon :

        I was a very shy, self conscious child, teen, and adult. As an adult I started therapy and working through why I feel like I don’t do the “right” things or am not “good enough.” I wish my mother had put me in therapy, public speaking classes, or anything to help me gain self confidence in interactions with others and comfort with my body when I was a child. I would hopefully have worked through many of my issues instead of now having these deeply ingrained thought patterns. If my mom had talked to me about these things I probably would have felt even worse initially–everyone including my mom sees my flaws too–but that underscores my need for therapy in my view.

    • Flats Only :

      I was an awkward 9 year old, comfortable around my friends by not intuitive in certain social situations. I really enjoyed Girl Scouts. It was a place to interact with other girls in a relatively structured environment (so they couldn’t just ostracize me) and learn/do interesting stuff. Girl Scouts don’t compete against each other which was also really nice. As I learned / did things my confidence grew.

      • Forcing eye contact can be painful for a child who doesn’t want to do it. She’s still pretty young and you might want to consider letting her enjoy herself at her age instead of worrying about how she will navigate social situations 10-15 years from now, especially since you are confident she isn’t on the spectrum.

      • Former Retail :

        I’ll second Scouts. Your description sounds a lot like my son (who is now 11.) In Scouts, he found friends with common interests and personalities. Based on my own experience – since I see a lot of myself in my son – music and theater are other good places to find friends who are also nerdy-awesome.

      • Scouts absolutely!
        Both of my daughters also enjoyed a Girl’s Choir which had lots of girls from many schools. I think its important to have more than one group of friends to allow venting!!

    • Anonymous :

      Can you work on overlapping the extra-circular activities more? I switched my kid’s gymnastics class so she could be with her friends.

    • i wasn’t necessarily a super awkward kid, but in middle school i had a falling out with some girls and I attended a smaller private high school, which was amazing academically, but not the best place to be to reinvent yourself/make a whole new group of friends. During high school i had a few (think 3-4) close friends, which i think i could’ve been ok with but my parents made me feel bad about it all the time and were constantly nagging me as to why i didn’t have plans on a Saturday night, etc. I know they meant well, but it caused me a lot of unnecessary anxiety and hurt my self confidence significantly bc i genuinely felt like there was something wrong with me. My younger sister was also much more social than i was so they used to compare us all the time. Not to sound cliche, but I really came into my own in college, had lots of friends, a serious bf (who i ended up marrying), etc. Ironically, my sister had a harder time in college and did not have as many friends. I know it is easier said than done, but try not to compare your two kids too much.

    • social skills :

      I absolutely believe that social skills are learned. I also believe that it is human nature to want friends. If you can find someone to help coach this, I would do so as soon as possible. Your daughter does not have to *use* these skills but surely it would make her feel more comfortable to know how to modify interactions if she desires to do so. I am very shy by nature but people are absolutely shocked when I share this. I owe it all to my extroverted mother who pinched the back of arm in social situations and hissed, “People do not KNOW that you are shy when you do not speak. They just think you are RUDE.” To this day, I sometimes feel panic when I see someone I know in public (i.e. someone from work in a grocery store, a friend’s husband at the drycleaners, etc.) but force myself to say hello. The moment I engage, the panic melts away and I actually enjoy interacting. It’s possible that your daughter needs to be less aggressive while I need to be more aggressive, but the point is that we can control how we interact with others. My own daughter had a hard time transitioning from the Midwest to the Southeast in middle school. Basically, her old school was all business/no chit chat while teachers in the new school expected more in the way of conversations and social niceties. It was a fun two years of “coaching”! Good luck. Parenting is a tough gig.

      • Agreed. I so wish that my mother enforced better manners and social skills. I’m talking no-brainers like saying Hello and Thank you to company/ hosts and bringing birthdays presents to birthdays parties and not taking the last piece of cake and asking simple small talk questions like “what are you doing this summer”. I had to learn all of this myself and it was a very tough road riddled with intense awkwardness the memories of which truthfully still make me blush when they appear in my mind. For some reason I was very slow at learning social skills from watching others (like my mother who can do all of these things) and some point-by-point directions would have made the years between 11 and 22 much, much easier and I would likely have more old friends now in adulthood. I’m ashamed to admit it but Dale Carnegie is probably responsible for all my current friendships as it was only after reading that book that I got significantly better at this whole social thing. I was also “bright”, by the way. My ability to do complex math and write a compelling essay did not translate into social realm at all.

    • Anonymous :

      I can’t tell from your post whether your daughter is simply in a transition and struggling, or is seriously behind in her social skills. But overall, I disagree with the other posters here. If she is seriously behind on her social skills (which it sounds like she may be, perhaps I would ask what her teachers or other professionals in her life observe), you should absolutely work on it the same way you would help her if she was seriously behind in an academic subject. It’s not about turning your daughter into a new, totally different, “normal” super popular kid – it’s about giving her the tools she needs to be herself but also find friends like her and to thrive as she gets older.

      I have a cousin who was similar to your daughter growing up. They were essentially friendless until they graduated high school after their only two friends moved away within months of each other in middle school. When my cousin was a junior, a teacher recognized my cousin’s potential connected them with a behavioral therapist. It made a noticeable difference in a matter of weeks and honestly changed my cousin’s life. They would have really struggled in college and at work without these social skills, which they acknowledge. The therapist was a safe place to learn basic social rules they had just somehow missed growing up. My cousin is still delightfully offbeat, but now they have a delightfully offbeat significant other and delightfully offbeat friends and a great job with others who are similarly offbeat where they really excel.

      My cousin, aunt and uncle all wish they had realized there was something to do sooner (when my cousin was young, teachers and doctors told them that since my cousin was not on the autism spectrum there was no point in doing anything).

  10. I have a $20 coupon from Talbots! What pants would you recommend? I’m short, hourglass shape if that helps.

  11. The insulated Klean Kanteen wide-mouth travel mugs are great – with the lid closed, I can toss it into my bag without worrying about spills, and you can put them into the dishwasher. The travel lids come apart for thorough cleaning, too.

  12. I take a tumbler of iced tea or coffee in my car every morning. I have a cheapie plastic cup with a straw right now. I’ve purchased those Starbucks cups before but I find they tip over too easily, and I have a hard time screwing on the kid securely.

    This seems like a great thing to put on my amazon wish list. Any specific recommendations for this type of cup? 20 ounce minimum, straw, insulated, fits in car cup holder.

  13. Anonymous :

    I’m going to hear about a potential job offer at 4:30 today. I’m so nervous I can barely type. They were checking all my references this week. Please cross all fingers and toes for me!

    I’m trying not to get my hopes up and I’m grateful I currently have a job if this doesn’t work out.

    • Never too many shoes... :

      My fingers are crossed for you!!!

    • Good luck!!

    • If there’s any possibility we were applying the same job (they would have been checking my references last week), there were only two of us, and I didn’t get it. (I mean, I kind of hope that you did get the job and we weren’t applying for the same thing because I am SUPER disappointed right now, but.. um, anyway, you’ve probably heard by now and if it’s what I think it is, congrats!)

  14. I made Christmas cards on Shutterfly and felt very smug about it. I took great pictures of the kids! I made a great card! I’m on top of this! I AM SUPER MOM!!! My husband was freaking out about getting Chinese buffet and rushed me to wrap it up and get out the door, so I put on the finishing touches and hit order.

    The next day, as I was admiring the really great pictures, I realized there’s a TYPO on it. I have 50 cards that say, on the back, “Merry Christmas! Have a have a happy 2018!” And you only have 30 minutes after you order to cancel. The stupid cards are already on their way.


    • Eh, I would send them anyway. I bet a lot of people won’t notice and even if they do, it’s an innocuous typo. It’s not like you’ve misspelled your relatives’ names or something like that.

    • Ha if I received that card I would probably not even notice that typo. Send them anyway?

    • aghhh that sucks! I am so sorry!

      …tiny stickers that say “very” or “super” or something? Salvage the loss?!

      • I’m considering buying a couple sheets of large address labels and sticking them over top the typo on the back and handwriting, “WITH LOVE, W X Y AND Z!!!” but I’m afraid the label will be too thin and everyone is going to be like, “Mmmmhmmm. I see what you’re trying to cover up!”

    • Anonymous :

      Do you know I stared at this for a solid 5 minutes before I found the typo? It’s not a waste at all! Send them anyway! YOU ARE SUPER MOM.

      • +1 did not even notice. This is

      • Same!

      • Anonymous :

        Agree. I had to read it about 10 times before I saw the typo. You are super mom!

      • Anonymous :

        I had to read it several times to find it.

      • Yes, re-read it 3 times only because you said there was a typo and I was looking for it. I only glance at the Christmas cards I get to see who they are from then look at the photo, so I likely wouldn’t notice this. I would totally send these.

      • +1. I also read it 3 or 4 times, and I was looking for a typo because you said there was one.

        Send the cards. It’s just personal contacts anyways, right? If anyone says anything (they won’t), laugh it off by saying you were in a rush because everyone was excited to hit up the Chinese buffet.

      • Pretty Primadonna :

        I’m still looking for the typo…

    • Senior Attorney :

      This happened to me last year and I sent them anyway. Just do it!

    • My mom sent out “merry chistmas” cards and the only person who noticed was my then elementary school aged daughter. We teased her mercilessly (in a loving way of course) but honestly my daughter was the only one who caught it.

    • we got a save the date for a wedding with the wrong year on it. it was on our fridge for months without either of us noticing and i’m usually super detail oriented.

      granted, if it was my own cards and i noticed my mistake in advance, i probably wouldn’t send them out.

    • xmas cards :

      Plus, it’s on the back. I think if you feel really, really mad then get stickers but I would just let it go.

    • Plus, it’s on the back. I think if you feel really, really mad then get stickers but I would just let it go.

    • It took me three reads to figure out what the problem was. Send it!

    • MidwestLady :

      Add a little sticker bubble and have it say: Super Duper or something like that. no one will notice and if they do they will say, I would have done that too. no biggie. at least you made the card!

    • Send them anyway. I have never read the Christmas cards other than to see who signed it (because I never remember my relatives’ kids’ names). I look at the picture and put it up with the other cards. If anyone notices, it’s innocuous.

    • My husband, a graphic designer, misspelled my last name on our Save the Dates. We didn’t even notice! Sent it out. My mother lost her mind but we didn’t hear a peep from anyone else. It doesn’t matter! And anyway now it’s a funny story.

      • Never too many shoes... :

        I once received a Save the Date…with no date. So you are in good company!

        • Hilarious!

        • We got a birth announcement with just a picture of the baby. No name. No date of birth. Granted the parents were probably very sleep deprived when they were making this birth announcement so it was impressive it got in the mail but I had to message them to be like “Hey! Cute photo…so what’s the kiddos name? and when were they born so I can write that down” Thanks!

    • I had to read twice to see the mistake – send them! or reorder but please use your GREAT card.

    • Uh, I thought 2018 was the typo. Wow. Definitely send!

      • That was my thought the first time I read it–“It’s not 2018… oh, wait, that makes sense.”

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Oh is this where I share that I finally made a scrapbook for my kid well into her second year, so on the first page it says, “On [DATE], Kiddo was born.” …wrong YEAR.

      • My son’s birthday is the day after mine, and I write down that he was born in 1984 all. the. time.

    • lawsuited :

      I think I’d make a joke about it by signing the cards “All our all our love, X, Y and Z”

    • Anonymous :

      Bookmarking this thread to read anytime I need a laugh and a reminder that there are always supportive women out there who understand that we’re all just human. Thank you!

    • what about altering it by hand to

      have a, have a happy 2018! & a couple music notes?

    • Anonymous :

      I would not send them out.

  15. Fun question – What are some DH/spouse “hacks” that you fierce ladies have found over the years?

    I know DH can’t read my mind so I’ve learnt to say when I need him to do things. I do want to take away the mental labor of keeping the house in order. Yesterday I told him I needed him to take over household tasks other than dinner because I have to start studying after work and his response was “what else is there?”

    • Read “Drop the Ball” or “How to Not Hate your Husband After Kids”

      • Read a short preview of the Drop the Ball and I think i’m going to buy it. Thanks for the recommendation

    • Puddlejumper :

      Earlier today on the first post of today there was a thread about sharing to dos. You might benefit from reading that to figure out how to communicate to do lists.

      A good place having both of you make a list of everything you do in a week that is a reoccurring task. Swap lists and then highlight which ones you both consider to be crucial to have done. IE you might make the bed every day. He might not consider that to be crucial to survival.

      Come up with lists that you both agree to be fair divisions of labor including deadlines when they must be completed. Don’t nag about these items. Do not do his items. Have a weekly check in time to review how the week went for making any changes. If for some reason he didn’t do something like laundry. Point out “You not having the laundry done by Monday meant that I had no clean clothes to wear to my meeting which caused this problem.”

      • Second dividing things up, but I wouldn’t do the weekly check-in thing. If it doesn’t get done it doesn’t get done. If it causes you problems, point out the problem, but point it out immediately not at a status-report meeting.

        • Puddlejumper :

          yah i guess it depends on your partner’s ability to take in info. Immediate feedback is always best but my husband if I just say something in passing it goes in one ear and out the other because he isn’t thinking about it and writing it down. During our check ins he is 100% concentrating and focused and can really think about whatever action he wants to change in the future. Also doing it later allows me to not react as annoyed as I might in the moment. Because in the moment it always feels like the biggest tragedy ever which it never really is.

      • I enjoyed that discussion earlier today but I can’t imagine DH lasting through a weekly check-in for “mundane” tasks like who will take out the garbage on what date. I’ll suggest it and see what happens

        • Rainbow Hair :

          How long have you been together? I wonder if this is the kind of thing that eventually just settles into place?

          For us, there are tasks I basically never do unless for some reason he can’t (taking out the trash, buying groceries), ones that he never does unless I can’t (paying bills online, anything daycare related), ones we divvy up without discussing (laundry – he does his and Kiddos, I do mine because I get mad when he effs up my delicates; coffee – whoever is conscious first), and ones we discuss as they come up (“whatcha thinking for dinner tonight?” “sheets just got done in the dryer, can you make up the beds?”)… all of which makes a check in on “who is taking out the trash this week?” unnecessary.

          • We have been living on and off for about 3 years. I say “on and off” because he travels a lot for work so he would be home for a bit and then out again. His travelling job is turning into a local one so hopefully once he is home regularly we could figure out a better routine. In between that time, I also transitioned from Law school to a full-time job and we dealt with him settling into a new job etc.

            I initially asked the question looking for fun responses like yours below and perhaps get some ideas on things I can do to set the mood for a “shared-mental labor” home. DH is generally helpful and I have to learn to let him do things in his time and not absolutely within 24-hours of me asking him. I also need to remember that sometimes he needs reminders.

    • I solved this problem by making a list of the stuff that needed to be done around the house, having a meeting with him to divvy it up, and then just not. doing. his. stuff. ever. We ended up hiring a cleaning service for a while to get over the hump (he HATES spending money so this was an incentive to figure it out and get the job done ourselves).

      This isn’t something for you to “hack,” he just needs to step up and contribute.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      (I mean, generally I’ve had to hack myself — like, “Rainbow Hair! Talk! To! Him!!!” because that solves like a huge amount of my problems. But!)

      I’ve hacked a particular personality trait for my husband. He hates it when people tell him, “oh, you’ll love this” about a band or a book or movie or whatever. Inside his head it’s like “eff you! how do you presume to know how i’ll feel about something i’ve never experienced?!” so you can’t tell him you’re mentioning something because you think he’ll like it — you just have to sort of put it in front of him and see if he does like it. My dad loooves to tell people, “oh, you’ll love this!!!” so I had to tell him to cut it out with my dude. Now I can see my dad consciously being like, “well, anyway, here’s a band i just got hip to. just FYI.” It’s hilarious to me.

      • Lol Rainbow hair, that’s what I have to do a lot of as well but I am worried this isn’t going to work too well in the long run.

        Love your DH hack though, thanks for sharing!

      • Four Tendencies :

        He’s a rebel! Are you familiar with Gretchen Rubin’s four tendencies? She categorizes people as upholders, obligers, rebels and questioners. Worth a read.

    • I’m sorry friend. I don’t have any hacks! Everything with my husband and household management requires excessive hair pulling by me and me pulling teeth on him!! The best hack I have come up with involves me sipping a glass of wine in the evening and leaving the house unkempt (look up the video, “Because, priorities”) and just not caring as much anymore. We also have a dry erase board where I put a honey-do list. It works about as well as S.3x Panther.

    • Lana Del Raygun :

      I think the key here is that household tasks naturally cluster together, and that’s the most efficient way to divide them. When my husband did the cooking, and I did the shopping, there was a lot of wasted mental effort on both our parts to coordinate. Now he shops *and* cooks, and it goes much more smoothly. On our last chore chart, he was supposed to tidy and I was supposed to sweep, but I couldn’t really sweep until he had already tidied, but with our different schedules we want to be doing those tasks on different cadences. So I’m going to propose switching to a system where we have each have full charge of different rooms.

      And then whoever’s in charge of a task cluster also has to in charge of the management overhead of that task cluster. Household project management is something that I spent years learning in childhood! And he didn’t. So he needs some time to catch up. I think it’s important for both spouses to be clear that that’s a real important skill they both need to have, but for the more-skilled spouse (okay, almost always the wife) to be patient and offer coaching as necessary.

      • Love this…Will try the batching hack.

        It’s so important to remember that he didn’t have all the household project management training I did. I’ve never thought of it this way and hope it helps me be kinder and more patient

  16. I live in the desert so a hydroflask is a must if you don’t want your bottled water to boil as soon as you leave the house in the summer. Never used it for hot beverages but I suppose you could.

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