Wednesday’s Workwear Report: Keyhole Stretch Sheath Dress

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

I said there were a lot of cute navy dresses, and I wasn’t lying! This sheath dress with a black self-belt and lovely face-framing pleats looks fabulous. I like the keyhole detail as well, and the hidden back zip. I think it just looks like a classically stylish, beautiful dress and it would make a great investment piece for your wardrobe. It’s $140 at Nordstrom, available in regular sizes 0-16, and lucky sizes left for petites. Keyhole Stretch Sheath Dress

Here’s a plus-size alternative.

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  1. Am I the only one who sweats profusely in these fabrics? The worst offender is neoprene, so no Ted Baker for me…

  2. Sloan Sabbith :

    If you had $150 to spend in DC, what would you do? One person. I’ll be there this weekend and my aunt gave me $150 with the direction to spend it on something memorable.

    Also: What are can’t miss museums? I’ve got the American Indian museum on my list for looking around and lunch, the Holocaust museum, American History museum, and Arlington National Cemetery on my list. Been to the National Gallery, do not care about planes or nature; waiting on Newseum for a later trip.

    Any other weekend must-dos?

    • Anonymous :

      I would buy one or two pieces of home decor from one or two of the museums. You could browse the museum shops online before you go to see what they have. I find museum shops often have unique and good quality pieces that make for a nice reminder of the trip at home.

    • It really depends upon your interests. I would suggest glancing at the cherry blossoms, even if you don’t care about nature, because they are a sight to behold. Also suggest bringing some sort of allergy medicine as the allergies are beginning to kick in, big time.

      It’s hard to suggest what to spend money on, as many things in DC are free. If you like architecture, try to see the historic Decatur House, Dumberton Oaks, or the Octagon House. The Hillwood Estate has a lovely collection of Russian art & artifacts that is rare to see in one country outside of Russia.

      These days, I stop by the Jefferson Memorial to ask for guidance and advice….

      You might want to stop by the National Archives to see the Declaration of Independence & the Constitution. Oh, and the Library of Congress is glorious inside.

    • I’d have a leisurely meal at the Source then walk around the museums. I love the gift shop at the natural history museum – lots of great stone jewelry.

      • Anonymous :

        +1 I’d spend it on a nice meal. Rose’s Luxury, probably, and then stroll the Capitol/Supreme Court/Eastern Market, maybe even walk all the way up to Union Market.

    • Gail the Goldfish :

      Not technically a museum, but if you haven’t been before, the Capitol Building is definitely worth a visit because 1) it’s an absolutely gorgeous building inside with some impressive art and 2) I think the statues from all the different states are cool:-) (each state gets 2 statues of someone from their state. My personal favorites are Hawaii’s and Nevada’s of Sarah Winnemucca. Colorado’s of the astronaut is cool too.). If the tours are totally booked through the online booking system (google Capitol Visitor’s Center), try calling your congressional offices and see if someone there will give you a tour–probably not if you’re only there on a weekend, but worth a shot. I think the visitor’s center also keeps some same-day tickets on reserve you could try to get.

      • Anonymous :

        I live here — my favorite hidden treasure is the Library of Congress walking tours. Free and surprisingly fun and informative.

    • pugsnbourbon :

      The Portrait Gallery!

  3. Mejuri experiences? :

    Has anyone ordered jewelry from Mejuri? I love their styles but can’t find any reviews online other than ones that were clearly sponsored. Mostly concerned about the quality and whether it holds up for long enough to be worth the price.

    • As someone obsessed with gold and not familiar with Mejuri, it looks overpriced to me. It’s thin and delicate jewelry – doesn’t matter how much you pay for it, it’s not going to last you forever. You should be able to find comparable pieces on etsy or flea markets for half the price. But if you like what you see, buy it. It’s your money, spend it on what makes you happy.

  4. Decor update :

    Our home’s decor is a relic of the early 2000s and I am getting really sick of it. We have dark wood mission-style furniture and all warm colors–cream walls, terracotta tile, honey-colored hardwood floors, tan carpet, red curtains, etc. I am loving the look of pale walls in cool tones such as pearl gray and misty blue, with black, white, and gray accents, geometric prints, and a mixture of traditional and modern furniture styles. This is the exact opposite of everything in our house, and a total redo is not possible because a) it would cost a fortune and b) my husband loves all of our stuff. I’d like to figure out a way to bring things into the current decade without ripping out the carpets, replacing all the furniture, and repainting the entire house. I have started by getting rid of curtains on some windows and recovering the throw pillows in geometric prints. Any other suggestions to freshen things up a bit?

    • Changing art and curtains can update the walls without painting. Add throw rugs to update the floors. For smaller pieces of furniture like coffee tables, it’s fairly easy to refresh them with paint.

    • Anonymous :

      Sticking with your warm floors, wood furniture, and cream walls, what about transitioning to warm blue curtains and pillows?

      • Yes, aqua tones would look great with the earth tones you mention.

        • Decor update :

          Love the idea of incorporating blues and aquas. Especially with the terracotta in the kitchen. It is one of the most dated rooms in the house and could be repainted fairly easily. We have blue as a minor accent in a couple of rooms but I had not thought of using it more widely.

          • SFAttorney :

            Yes, bring in blues. Painting is relatively cheap but it is a pain to repaint an entire house. Be cautious about mixing warm and cool. This blog has lots of helpful advice about color and having a cohesive look throughout.

      • Yes. When DH and I got married I hated his furniture because he had paired it with lots of warm tones (which I hate in decorating). Once we paired it with new rugs and new throw pillows in blue tones, it completely changed the look of the furniture. I was really amazed!

    • Anonymous :

      A pale blue can actually look really lovely with terracotta floors. I would incorporate pale blue walls or even white walls in some areas and white patterned curtains. You could also have your hardwood refinished and use a water based stain to keep the floors light (we did this with our oak floors before we moved in). Changing out curtains and paint colors will make a huge difference for a minimal cost.

    • Anonymous :

      Revere Pewter (it’s a Benjamin Moore color) on the walls. I lightened it with 10% white, but the color is lovely. My street is getting coverted to it.

    • This sounds exactly like what we are going through! We got all new furniture in about 2005. Beautiful long lasting cherry wood stuff, but nothing like the painted farmhouse looking stuff that’s in style now.

      I repainted my “Tobacco Road” walls with Behr “Wheat Bread” it looks gray but still nice with my beige carpet and furniture. I accented this with Threshold Gray Bold Stripe curtains, new lighting, and blue accent pillows and nicnacs.

      Now I need a new buffet and I’m struggling with getting one that matches the old style or new style.

    • Ugh, me too. I have a rug that is only a few years old, was very expensive (I bought it because it is a “classic” braided rug) and I hate it. It doesn’t go with anything. I’m thinking about selling stuff and buying new over the 4th of July holiday so that I can take advantage of sales.

    • If painting is an option, I used Sherwin Williams’ “agreeable gray” in our rental apartment. It’s a warm gray that plays pretty well with both warm and cool colors. I’ll admit that it’s not an exciting color, but it might freshen up the cream-colored walls, particularly in combination with some of the other suggestions here.

    • I would just paint the house and get rid of all of the curtains. Keep your furniture and the carpet. If the carpet is tan, the rest of the floor is wood and the furniture is all wood you can really go with almost any color on the walls. I consider wood a neutral when it comes to home decor.

    • Oh man – do you live in my house? :-) That’s our decor, exactly and I am also super-sick of it. I told my husband the other day, this is how our parents and friends’ parents ended up having houses in the 1990s that still looked like the 1970s. You get complacent, time passes and all of a sudden you’re living with shag carpeting and mustard-yellow appliances. I’ll be watching this conversation for ideas. We can’t afford to buy all-new furniture, but I feel like the mission-style armoire and big club chairs have to go, along with changing some paint colors. I love a lot of the warmer grays that have gotten popular and want to try to integrate that paint color with decor pieces we already have.

    • A little off topic, but does anyone else feel that the white kitchens with subway tile, and all the gray and steel blue is getting a bit played out? Is anyone else wondering when the trend is going to swing back to creams and earthy tones? Because I feel like the minute I actually update some of that stuff, it’s going to swing.

      • Oh yeah. I love how those kitchens look, but every time I watch Fixer Upper (for e.g.) I can’t help thinking that in 15 years people are going to be looking at those same design features howling about how dated it all is.

        • I think that’s just inevitable with kitchens and bathrooms. My MIL owns (and rents out) a house that was built in the 1910s and has subway tile and black and white checked floors. She said that over the years they’ve discussed renovations (including the 50s pink or blue 4×4 tiles), and now, 100 years after the house was built, it couldn’t look more modern.

      • Yeah, honestly, my kitchen is exactly that, and I think it’s looking a little dated. A lot of newer kitchen designs I see still have lots of white but incorporate warmer tones in the counters (quartz with creamy colors, butcher block) and back splashes. And the home goods stores are trying to convince us that copper and gold are back in a big way, whether that’s true or not.

      • I have wood-colored wood cabinets and no subway tile; kitchen dates from a late 90s remodel (so marble or granit countertops, but it’s black). Pretty soon, that will be “retro.” Only if I rip out and replace will styles change.

      • Did you see that pottery barn is now claiming that brass (yellow gold tone) is back in? Maybe I won’t have to reno our 1980s bathroom after all!

        • I haaaate our 80s/90s bathroom and I’ve had to talk myself out of using gold accents (gold framed mirrors/chandeliers) in our upcoming bathroom reno because I just do not trust that they aren’t a flash in the pan trend.

      • That’s exactly why you have to love what you’re doing and not necessarily decorate based on trends. I personally love whites and grays and won’t ever go back to earth tones.

        • Agreed. Decorate with what you love, not what’s in style. And touching back on our parents ending up with outdated furnishings…

          We hear about how destructive Fast Fashion is to our world; I can’t imagine how much worse things would be if we added Fast Interior Design into the mix. If couches and appliances are going to switch styles as fast and frequently as jeans go from skinny to wide leg, I can’t even imagine the waste.

    • marketingchic :

      My boring suburban house is stuck in the 90’s. We repainted our LR/DR from “mocha” to pale grey (we have beige carpets.) Do it! I’m so glad we did. It’s a lot of work but makes a big impact and is cheaper than new furniture. From there you can update your accessories to the colors you like.

  5. Non-dairy Breakfast :

    Ideas for non-dairy breakfasts? I would like to cut out dairy for a little while to see if it’s contributing to my hormonal acne (lovely!) but I always have the same thing for breakfast – yogurt and granola. It’s quick and I can eat it at my desk. What are some other healthy substitutes?

    • Anonymous :

      Waffle or bagel with peanut butter or almond butter. Apple or banana with peanut butter. Granola with non-dairy milk.

      The Shalane Flanagan superhero muffin recipe is soooo good and freezes well. They contain butter, but you might be able to substitute coconut oil.

      • I tried that muffin recipe per recommendations here and it was only so so, IMO.

      • Wouldn’t a waffle or bagel have dairy in it though? It’s for sure not the same as yogurt or a glass of milk but I would still think if you are going completely dairy-free you need to cut foods that are made with milk.

        • Veronica Mars :

          Bread doesn’t have to have any dairy in it. So by extension, there can be dairy-free and dairy bread products available.

        • Yep, bagels are usually made with milk. A lot of bread products have milk in them. English muffins might be safer, but you just have to read the labels carefully.

          • Not in my experience as a baker. Bagels are usually water, yeast, salt, sugar, flour, maybe malt.

    • Anonymous :

      Oatmeal is quick and easy to eat at your desk. Not the sugary packets, but plain oatmeal with cinnamon, fruit, and nuts. It has a low glycemic index, which is good for acne.

      • Overnight oats or chia pudding with almond or coconut milk and your toppings of choice, PB&J, Cookie and Kate’s healthy banana muffins (google for recipe). I basically eat those four things in rotation every weekday. Other than the PB&J, I prep everything in batches for the week.

        • Anon in NYC :

          Second oatmeal or chia pudding. My current fave chia pudding is 2 tbsp chia seeds, 1 tbsp maple syrup, 1 tbsp cocoa powder, 3/4 cup almond milk, a pinch of salt, and topped with banana and blackberries (although I think some almond butter or PB would be a great addition). It literally feels like I’m eating chocolate pudding for breakfast.

          • OMG it never occurred to me to put cocoa powder in it…this could be a game changer.

    • Overnight oats or egg and veggie muffins. I often make egg muffins on Sundays to use up veggies.

    • Anonymous :

      Just use soy yoghurt or coconut yoghurt instead of cow’s milk yoghurt.

    • Avocado toast. You can vary it easily by adding stuff like sliced cucumbers or radish, sprinkling herbs, different seasoning, etc. Toast & hummus works too. I like Ezekiel bread for this kind of thing if I’m trying to be healthful.

      • Legally Brunette :

        Love avocado toast! I’ll often eat that for dinner if I’m not up for cooking.

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve been wanting to up my breakfast game so I’ll be following this thread. I’m a big fan of make ahead meals. Some of my mainstays:

      Overnight oats with almond milk and chia seeds for extra protein. Lots of flavor combinations to play with.

      Quiche. Or mini quiches made in muffin tins. You can put pretty much anything in them. I like to line the bottom with hash browns, throw in some veggies and/or meat, cover with egg mixture.

      Breakfast sandwiches or eggs benedict (without the sauce). I bake the eggs in muffin tins to make a big batch.

      Breakfast casserole. Line the bottom of the dish with cubes of bread (2-3 slices), cover with browned breakfast sausage/veggies/whatever you want (should be heavy enough to keep the bread down), mix 9 eggs + 3 cups almond milk and ~1 tsp mustard powder and pour over everything, let set overnight and bake for ~45 mins.

    • I’m transitioning to veganism and no longer buy dairy/meat products (although I occasionally eat fish when I’m out). Some of my favorite breakfast meals include:
      – Silk yogurt: its is my favorite soy yogurt brand out there. They have pineapple, peach/mango, and other flavors. – i tend to eat this with granola chunks
      – avocado toast with olive/coconut oil, red pepper flakes and squeeze of lemon
      – a couple of granola bars and a naked/odwalla juice if im on the go
      – potato pancakes from Trader joes and some fruit
      – hash browns and fruit (ive been loving purple potatoes at the moment – i roast it in the oven with bell peppers and onions and add italian herb seasoning, pepper, and pink Himalayan salt)

    • I eat 2 hardboiled eggs, a non-sugar Larabar, and a banana just about every day. I boil 12 eggs all at once on Monday morning or Sunday and eat them all week. I throw it all in my bag and eat it at my desk.

      • +1

        2 Eggs and fruit every morning. I got tired of peeling hard-boiled eggs, so now I bake them in a cupcake pan (425′ for 15 minutes). It probably adds some calories from the PAM (nonstick spray), but it’s worth it to me.

    • Having had gestational diabetes and getting slightly obsessed with blood sugar levels, I’ve been having two hard-boiled eggs and a slice of avocado most mornings. Add a slice of whole grain toast if you’d like.

    • I also just cut out dairy and I have been LOVING almond milk. The one I bought actually claims to have more calcium than dairy milk (haven’t really fact-checked this claim but definitely has calcium). The vanilla flavor is just the perfect amount of sweet for me, but I’ve also seen unsweetened and I think plain flavors.

      • Just noticed you want to eat it at your desk. Almond milk needs to be refrigerated but just after opening. If you buy the very small individual portion sizes you can have it at your desk.

      • It has more calcium because it’s added.

        • Also, your body doesn’t absorb the form of calcium that’s added to the almond (or soy) milk as well as the calcium found in dairy. It’s best to drink it with food so as to promote optimum absorption of the calcium. I think it needs the acid that released in your stomach during digestion.

          Signed, mom of formerly dairy allergic toddler

          Also, I totally get the allure of veganism, but as a parent of a multiple food allergy kid (out grown dairy but not others), I’m a little resentful/jealous of people who get to decide that they don’t want to eat a food and rearrange their lives accordingly. I have to rely on other people not to contaminate the food my daughter eats so as to avoid killing her. Also, I do understand that OP has an actual medical issue. I’m just sharing my feelings, not trying devalue other people’s paths.

          • Anon at 10:30 am :

            Hey, I’m in the same boat…I have celiac and I have all the same concerns over food contamination. I too am a bit resentful of people who just decide to cut out a food. I cut out dairy because I suspect I am also lactose intolerant. Not that I need to defend myself here but feel kind of weird for being called out as just going dairy free to be vegan or whatever when that’s far from the truth…

            Appreciate the advice on calcium absorption though. Since I can’t tolerate dairy at all right now though, I’ll take whatever I can get.

          • Absorption of calcium is actually most efficient if it’s paired with vitamin D. This is why cow milk is vitamin D fortified. Stomach acid levels do have an impact on on nutrient absorption generally, but dairy vs not dairy sources of calcium won’t affect your stomach’s acidity levels I don’t think.

    • Maddie Ross :

      I love almond milk yogurt and coconut milk yogurt. I actually like them better than dairy.

    • I cut out dairy because every.single.time I eat it, I break out. It’s absolutely cause and effect for me. So I have a piece of fruit and a 100 calorie pack of almonds for breakfast. I love almond milk for cereal (recently grabbed the almond-coconut by mistake and it’s delicious!).

      If you need an ice cream substitute, Arctic Zero is delicious. You need to microwave it for 15 seconds before eating though. (The label tells you to.)

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      Watch out for whey and casein too. They are dairy proteins.

  6. breakfast ideas :

    Oatmeal with almond milk, hard-boiled eggs, chummus or avocado with whole wheat toast.

  7. Does anyone else get seasonal depression in the Summer? I find that I sleep very badly in Summer, due to it being light outside into the evening. My internal clock insists on going to sleep 2.5 hours after the sun goes down. In the winter I have no trouble being asleep by 9:00 PM, which is very helpful for waking up at 5:30 AM to get to work on time. In the Summer I am awake until 11:00 PM or so no matter what I try, but I still have to get up at 5:30AM. My schedule is not flexible. By the end of the summer the low-grade sleep deprivation has me horribly depressed. My doctor prescribed a tiny dose of prozac last summer, which helped a bit, but I can already feel the problem kicking in again this year, and wondered if anyone else experiences this and has suggestions.

    • Anonymous :

      Melatonin? Blackout curtains/shades on all the west facing windows? Blackout curtains in your bedroom to block the light?

      • Yup. I have to be at work by 8:00 AM. Traffic is variable. And if I don’t have breakfast at home soon after waking I start to gain weight. Ugh.

    • Anonymous :

      Wow 5:30?!? What time do you need to be at work? That’s rough.

      Do you work out? In summer I often have a very light dinner, just a salad and a bit of fruit, go for either a jog or a swim, and then take a cool shower. Makes it easy to fall asleep at 10 for me.

    • Anonymous :

      Blackout curtains + eye mask/ear plugs in bedroom. Pull curtains throughout the house about an hour before you want to go to bed so you have less daylight exposure. Relaxation yoga/mediate then warm bath before bed.

    • Anonymous :

      Blackout curtains + eye mask/ear plugs in bedroom. Pull curtains throughout the house about an hour before you want to go to bed so you have less daylight exposure. Relaxation yoga/meditate then warm bath before bed.

    • Frozen Peach :

      I deal with this every year. My hacks are mostly psychological. As soon as the sun goes down, so does our AC. Having the house cooler makes it easier to transition and fall asleep. We frequently light candles and/ or watch scary movies together. Turning down the temp to a few degrees below comfortable has been game-changing.

      • Thanks – I will try this! We already have blackout curtains due to a streetlight across from our house. Melatonin makes me terribly cranky the next day. I generally exercise after work, and in the winter it puts me right to sleep, but in summer it doesn’t.

    • I’m chuckling too. I have two small children. I am sleep deprived all year round. Sleeping late is my dream…

    • Anonymous :

      If you have a hot summer try turning the A/C down more at night. I don’t keep it that cold when I’m not in bed (like 78) but at night I put it down to 72 and I think it puts my body into some sort of deep sleep hibernation.

  8. Job depression :

    Need advice for my friend (she asked, but I am not sure what advice to give anymore). Her fiance is between jobs again and trying to break into a very hard field where few positions open up each year. It’s naturally competitive and stressful, especially because he often has to try for temp positions that pay very low salaries, but the problem is that every time he doesn’t get a job, he completely shuts down for days. He mopes around and won’t be proactive about finding out what went wrong or asking for feedback. The one time he rallied and did ask for feedback, the interviewer said “it didn’t seem like you wanted the job enough” because he hadn’t called or schmoozed at all, which is evidently very important in this field. My friend is being driven slowly crazy by his 3-5 day moping sessions after each disappointment in which he refuses to find out what went wrong, make any phone calls, send out any other applications, or do anything at all, really. Then when he comes out of it, he says it’s “too late to ask for feedback now.” She’s at her wit’s end with being supportive during those times and I’ve been listening and being supportive to her, but now she’s asked for advice because she’s starting to get to a very bitter place (thinking he is a loser, losing some respect for him). I’m personally very worried that losing respect for someone could mean the death knell for the relationship, but I also really want to try to help them get through what may be only a temporary setback. Any advice on what she can say or do to help him during those depression cloud periods without losing her own sanity? When she asked for advice last night, I said to give him space and sleep on it, but it turned into a fight, apparently….

    • Anonymous :

      I guess I don’t get the problem. Asking for feedback after getting rejected for a job seems pointless to me. 3 days moping not that bad.

      I’d be more concerned about the length of time he’s putting into a fruitless search.

    • Job depression :

      Oh, and forgot to add, he absolutely refuses to see a doctor of any kind (not even a PCP) and has no health insurance anyway, so it’s unclear if he would ever investigate the source of these depression spells.

    • Is asking for feedback after you get turned down for a job a thing that people normally do? It seems incredibly awkward for the interviewer and I don’t think you would get a lot of useful feedback. Maybe he didn’t want the job enough compared to a competing candidate who wanted to work 24/7 or had been working a network for 18 months. I’d be annoyed if someone was pressuring me to do that. Seems like it would be more proactive to build his network and contacts in the field and have them give pointers on how shine in interviews. Maybe this isn’t the best field for him at this time. Regardless, I’m not sure that this is your problem to solve.

      • Completely agree. Asking for feedback is really strange.

      • +1 I do not know of an industry where it is a super idea to ask for feedback after an interview. I am also pretty sure AskAManager says do not do this. Also, I don’t think there is a way for you to give advice here that won’t end up being awkward. Sounds like she could use a session or two with a therapist to work through her feelings, learn how to communicate them to him in a way that helps her feel like the message is getting across, and develop coping strategies/make a decision about what she wants to do.

        • AAM says you can ask, but you shouldn’t expect to get anything in most cases.

          • Thanks for the clarification!

          • I went through three rounds of interviews recently for an in-house role I would have loved but didn’t get. After thanking them again for their time, I politely asked for feedback and was told by the recruiter that they liked me but went with a person who also had significant experience in their industry. I would have graciously accepted them saying they couldn’t tell me anything, of course. It made me feel a lot better about not getting the offer because I completely understood their decision from a business perspective.

      • Job depression :

        Got some weird error when I tried to post this the first time – sorry if it double posts!

        That’s what I thought as well, but apparently (at least for this one office where he has applied for three jobs recently), the interviewer wants him to be “banging down his door” and “staying in touch” frequently. The fiance did have a 30-minute conversation with the interviewer after one of the interviews, but that has been the ONLY proactive step he’s taken in three years. It’s a very niche field in a rural area, so maybe the norms are different, but it did seem weird to me as well at first.

        Unfortunately, my friend and I are a few states away or I would take her out to a movie, but we’re planning a meet-up soon and I think we will both really be looking forward to the break.

    • Maybe help your friend not focus on her fiance during this time? What about going out to dinner together or seeing a movie together w/o him? If he’s no fun, she should make sure that she can still enjoy her week.

      • Yes, but honestly, needing to do this routinely would make me rethink marriage to that person.

        • Senior Attorney :

          Same here. I don’t have any opinion about asking for feedback after interviews, but it seems like your friend and her fiance are not a very good match!

    • Sounds like the “asking for feedback” is her idea – bc she wants him to do something? I wouldn’t. It’s strange. And reality is if someone called/emailed me and asked for feedback post interview — I wouldn’t return that call or email or if I picked up the phone I’d go with an innocuous – oh it just came down to numbers – reason. He’s gotten feedback once already – he’s not networking/schmoozing enough. He needs to go with THAT advice as I imagine that’s a huge part of what the problem is (besides the numbers game). He also needs to find a way to NOT shut down for 5 days at a time post decision bc that grinds the process to a halt every time and then I bet it takes a lot of energy for him to “start over.”

      What industry is this? Is it something like entertainment where it really is a shot in the dark? In any event he needs to have a plan – if he doesn’t get a job in x industry in y months, then he’ll pursue z. If he doesn’t come up with/want to come up with this plan, I’d encourage your friend to figure out (in her head) how much longer she’ll give him and then walk away if it doesn’t work. Does she really want to be engaged/married and be in this limbo forever?

    • Anonymous :

      This is probably harsh but I would be thinking about getting out. I’m not interested in emotionally or financially supporting my partner for one, but also this guys sounds like someone who plays the victim, which is not a great trait either.

  9. Pregnancy vent :

    I’m 29 weeks pregnant and so over it. I’m exhausted, swollen, constantly hungry, and grumpy, my back hurts, and I dont remember the last time I slept through the night without waking up each time I need to roll over or needing to go to the bathroom several times. The thought of dealing with this for 8-13 more weeks is depressing.

    • Anonymous :

      Think of it as prep for when you actually have a newborn . . .

      I know, not the best comment. I have a Winston Churchill “when you’re going through hell, keep on going” in one of my children’s baby book. But you can do it!!!

      Bacon helps with the constant hunger and is not overly filling, space-wise. Bacon for the win!

      • Anonymous :

        I am seeing your first line play out with a close friend. She is miserable. Her month-old baby had bad gas for the last several days and slept about 4 hrs total in each 24 hour period. She loves her son, but hates being a mom (so far). She hated being pregnant, but she hates the lack of sleep and all that goes along with many newborns more. I feel so badly, so I always am available to listen to her and always offer any assistance or help that I can (although usually there is nothing I can do).

        • Lol. Off to a great start

          • Right? I can’t even tell her it will get better with a straight face, because teenagers? Terrible twos? Threenagers?

          • I had a terrible pregnancy, and we got off to a rough start with a premature baby. My son is now going through the “terrible twos,” and to me, it is so much better. The biggest thing is that he sleeps through the night. But also, even though there are dramatic tantrums, I usually understand the reason for them and can empathize with him to a degree and can often snap him out of it. And if he’s in pain/uncomfortable, there’s more I can do–they can take a larger variety of medicines when they’re older, and they are more easily distracted by TV, etc. Our good friends have a newborn, and it seems like she’s either sleeping, eating, or crying.

        • Ten years ago, I was your friend. My baby had colic and cried nonstop from about 4 pm to 10 pm every day, and hardly ever slept. This lasted until he was 4 months old and then it all stopped, like someone had flipped a switch. So tell her it does get better; there’s light at the end of the tunnel. No one with a fussy baby should judge motherhood by the way they feel those first few months, for sure. :-)

          • Will do, thanks!! I know she loves her son to death and I think it’s normal to be miserable when your baby is miserable and you are on zero sleep and your husband is back and work and gets a “break” and you can’t make him feel better. :)

      • Yeah, I don’t get why everyone says that. I have a newborn and sleep SO much better now than while pregnant. My body doesn’t ache. I’m shaped like a normal person again. I can sleep on my stomach or in any other position. And being woken up to deal with a cute little squishy baby who only wants and needs you is so much better than being woken up to pee when all you’ve had is a sip of water after 7pm. I find that to be the most trite and untrue statement people make about pregnancy.

        Here’s the truth – pregnancy sleep sucks.

        • Yep – I’d take those comments with a grain of salt. For me, pregnancy exhaustion was worse than baby exhaustion. I think it depends on you, your pregnancy, and your baby. You may not have that experience at all, don’t live in fear :)

    • 8-13 weeks PLUS 18 more years! :)

      • Everyone said this to me and it really scared me. I had a horrible pregnancy with constant discomfort and terrible sleep problems. I am someone who needs a lot of sleep and figured that if I couldn’t deal with it in pregnancy, my life would be ruined when there were babies to care for while I wasn’t sleeping.

        The difference is, once the babies came, there were actual babies that much of the time made sleep deprivation worth it. Yes, babies are hard for many reasons, and one of those is the exhaustion they bring, but there are moments of magic with them that have only increased over time. Even when they were little, I wouldn’t want to get out of bed, but once I held them against me, it was kind of okay being up during the night. Then they start sleeping so much better and it’s lots of magic and you return to being better rested and higher functioning. This will be so worth it! And you’re pretty close!

        Can you focus on nice things for yourself (some pampering?), get into fun novels? Do some fun, easy planning for baby (whatever part of it is more fun than stressful for you)?

      • That’s a really helpful comment. I’m sure OP has never thought about that before.

    • Can you spend some time in a pool? That helped my soreness and swelling. Also, increased protein and watermelon were my friends.

      • +1 – swimming makes everything better. Well, not everything, but it helps with the swelling, aching, and general feeling of gross hugeness! You can do it!

      • Yes – pools are your friend! We had a pool when I was pregnant and it was a lifesaver. If you can swing a visit to your gym’s pool a couple of times a week, you will feel do much better.

      • Agreed! Swimming helped my back immensely. Also, my baby is now a month old and even though we’ve had some challenges with breastfeeding and fussiness, I like being a mom so much more than being pregnant. In addition to the physical relief, it helps so much that my husband can now take on at least some of the burden so I can get a break – obviously not an option during pregnancy. Also being able to have a glass of wine helps :)

    • Anonymous :

      You are doing great, and you’re so close! Remember how your first trimester seemed like it was going on forever?! You got through it and you’ll get through this. So, so soon you’ll have a warm, snuggly baby to cuddle and love on and it will be oh so worth it. <3

    • I’m about 27 weeks pregnant and Tylenol PM is my friend. I’ve also upped my daily snack count to include grapes and cubed cheese in the afternoon, which has helped keep the hangry at bay. An evening walk has also helped me stretch my legs and feel better after all day behind a desk.

    • So all I wanted to do when I got home from work was sleep or rest. But I found it REALLY helpful to take a short walk after dinner – it makes your muscles a little looser and makes your brain happy too. If you can force yourself to do it, try. Just 5 or 10 minutes, not long…. for me, this helped. A lot.

    • Ooh yeah, sorry but I have more backpain with hoisting a six month old around than I did while pregnant, I haven’t slept through the night in two years, and I am exhausted. This is training!

      It’s still way better on the other side. You have your kid!

    • +1 I share your misery. Only 20.5 weeks, just started taking diclegis to hopefully put an end to this terrible, constant morning sickness and counting down the days. Pregnancy is terrible. I can’t say it’s better on the other side yet since this is #1, but I am convinced it has to be. Lack of sleep is one thing, feeling physically terrible/uncomfortable on top of sleep deprivation is another. Also, I am blessed with 20 weeks of maternity leave – caring for a newborn is bound to be less stressful/exhausting than trying to keep up with growing a human, feeling terrible, and dealing with cranky, demanding partners and clients who also don’t sleep. At least the baby and I can nap/go for walks at the same time.

      I’ve found if I stay hydrated I feel better, but drinking for two is so. much. liquid. Can’t help with the hangry – the morning sickness has made all food terribly unappealing and I only eat because I have to. I find putting my feet up (either at work or at home) for 30 minutes every few hours significantly helps with the swelling and the soreness. My normal 110% energy level is somewhere around 70% + frequent breaks. Maybe by the time the kid is born I will have figured out how far I can go without pushing myself too far.

    • I am spending thousands of dollars and dozens of hours at doctor visits for the chance of someday being where you are. Trying not to be bitter.

      • Anonymous :

        Me too.

      • Pregnancy vent :

        I’m sorry you are going through that. It took us a long time to conceive, and (complaints aside) I am grateful be in this position. Wishing you success on your journey – I know it’s tough.

      • Me too. Hugs to us both. Seems like everywhere I turn the topic is kids or pregnancy. It’s just too much sometimes.

        • Lurker II :

          I post on the mom’s page as Lurker sometimes. I’ve been trying for 15 months or so now. Haven’t started nor do I want to do interventions. I completely agree. I had to teach a class today and there was a 90+ (no joke) man that was there for the fun of it. He started to grill me on my personal life. I said I didn’t have kids and he said “you know, they are the most important things in the world.” I said, yes I know and moved on with the conversation. He interrupted to ask “whose going to care for you when you are in a nursing home? You are going to die alone and lonely.” Yup. Had to just move right along . What an @$$. He had no idea of knowing I had been trying for over a year. I started to tell him but he just wasn’t listening. Glad I saved my breath.

      • So are pregnant women never supposed to express anything but unbridled joy?

      • Anonymous :

        That’s a choice, too…

  10. Closet auditions :

    I know capsule wardrobes are trendy. But I’ve spent about the past 2 years on a buying bender (for me, anyway) and have way more than my tiny old closet can hold. SO: time for closet auditions how that our seasons are in flux and we have everything out for 50 degree days (cold to me) to 80 (perfection). Every d*mn thing is going to get worn, with no repeats, to see if it in fact sparks joy. Some thing: I honestly don’t remember. Tried on a pair jeans I recalled being MEH about and they were just lovely. I will post back: how long can I go with no repeats? What weird combos will I try just to see what happens? I think this will be fun — mental exercising of the fashion muscle (and if I am pressed for time, I can just throw on a suit or a dress and go). My work is business-casual and I’m really senior, so I can get a way with a TON of fashion mischief if I want.

    • Shopaholic :

      This sounds fun! I love the idea of closet auditions. My closet is overflowing, partly because I’ve gained a bit of weight over the last year and a half, and don’t want to get rid of my clothes that are too small but I’m trying to lose weight now, so I need all the in-between sizes. I need to do a purge though.

      Maybe I’ll also try closet auditions!

    • Legally Brunette :

      I like this idea too! I wouldn’t be able to go that long without repeats (at least for pants anyway) but could definitely go for a few weeks if I wore dresses/skirts mostly.

      • In-House in Houston :

        Love this idea. Wonder if we could create a FB page or something to post photos? To hold ourselves accountable?I wouldn’t want to share them with the world, but for me, the accountability is key.

    • This is great! I have found in the past that if I play “dress-up” with my clothes on the weekends, I come up with lots of fun and interesting combinations that are way better than what I come up with in the mornings when I’m in a hurry.

      My favorite discovery: a silky orange top that I used to wear out to bars, which I discovered actually looked completely appropriate under a suit jacket and made my boring navy suit look much cooler. I would never have tried that combo while getting dressed for work but discovered it during a weekend session of putting together new outfits rather than buying more clothes.

  11. Off-key Valkyrie :

    How steeply do you cut back spending when you need to refill the emergency fund after a big bill (in this case, vetrinary surgery)? Where would you cut?

    Places I have cut the budget: virtually no new clothes or housewares, returned an expensive phone. Places I don’t want to cut:yoga classes, car maintenance.

    Should we postpone moving to a better rental house? DH birthday is coming up, and I had an expensive present in mind-should I skip it?

    • It depends what’s in there now. If you have, say, $10-15k, but you’d be more comfortable with $25k, I think you can rebuild it at a slower pace. I’d cut the big present and the new rental house, but probably not yoga or car maintenance. If it’s really completely drained that I would cut all non-essential items, including yoga, until you’ve got $10k or so in there (but car maintenance sounds like it might be essential? or at least essential if you want to avoid an expensive new car purchase?)

    • Is the emergency fund completely gone or has it just dipped below your ideal? If it’s completely gone, I would cut back but I wouldn’t sacrifice my mental/physical health (yoga, therapy) or safe and convenient transportation to do it. Hold off on moving to a more expensive rental. Nix expensive gifts, vacations, upgrading electronics, and other non-essentials.

      Otoh, if the emergency fund has fallen below where you’d like it to be I’d do… almost nothing different? I’d stop contributing to an investment account or other non-emergency savings and redirect to the emergency fund. If you’re not saving at a decent rate as it is, then you need to rework your budget regardless of the emergency fund issue.

    • For a little more cash savings, start eating through your pantry and freezer. Go meatless for a few more meals or only use half of the usual meat. Add beans where appropriate to replace the meat. Do you enjoy brunch out? Sub it for pancakes and eggs at home. Meal plan/evaluate the grocery list to prevent food waste.

      When you say “virtually no clothes or housewares” replace it with “Absolutely no clothes or housewares.” Put yourself on a Target ban until your EF is full. Your only source of shopping is now the grocery store. Do you have lawn service or pay for spring clean up? Elbow grease those tasks until the EF is full.

      Chat with DH and skip birthday gifts this year. Keep the idea in mind for another gift giving occasion. I would DEFINITELY postpone moving, since we all know a move is a great way rack up spending on things like trash cans and other random housewares.

      • Off-key Valkyrie :

        Yeah, I guess I know the move will be expensive, and it will increase rent by about 400 bucks a month. But our current place has bad wiring and hardly any hot water, so I’m really torn.

        • Sounds like you have knob and tube wiring and galvanized steel plumbing that has corroded. Knob and tube can be managed by ensuring you are not overloading the system. My house is half and half, so we don’t run much on the old system that is constantly drawing power (right down to getting rid of the DVR) and switching everything to LEDs. Talk to your landlord about the galvanized steel plumbing. It’s a pain to replace, but hot water is something that should come with the rental. The difference for us was night and day when the galvanized was replaced with copper.

      • Off-key Valkyrie :

        On the other hand, a pack of tube socks for DH and a 10 dollar pair of sunglasses because I couldn’t safely commute seems like close enough to nothing on clothes.

        • KateMiddletown :

          Yeah, the only other advice I’d give is make sure your partner is on board with the austerity measures. It really sucks when only one of you is in sacrifice mode and the other thinks it’s business as usual, just a little tighter.

    • KateMiddletown :

      I don’t buy clothes and might dial back on retirement contributions, and maybe just double what I was previously putting away in my small emergency account. I have a slush fund for mini-mergencies so it’s not a big deal to build up $4,000 again, but I don’t know what I’ll do when my “roof repair” account gets depleted – I guess just keep your head down and hope you don’t have another massive emergency again soon. Don’t beat yourself up, though!

      • Off-key Valkyrie :

        Thanks for the encouragement, I guess I’ve been judging myself pretty harshly. The real problem is that this is the second leg the dog needs surgery on in 4 months. Poor little guy!

  12. Moving abroad? :

    I have a potential job opportunity In a different country (US to Australia and different company – not an expat assignment). Mid-thirties, no SO or kids (except dog child) and don’t own a home. For those of you that have moved countries for work, what factors did you consider when deciding whether it was a good move or not? Any tips you can share?

    • Look into quarantine requirements for the dog. It’s very involved.

      Think about how you’ll return home if that’s your ultimate goal. Does newcompany have a US presence? Will they pay for travel? Tax prep? Housing allowance? Immigration formalities? Moving? It all adds up very quickly so I’d be hesitant to take a true local hire role.

      Be prepared for culture shock. Australians speak English obvi but that doesn’t mean the country is America with better animals and weather.

      Are you looking for love? What if you fall for an Australian and wind up staying there is that okay?

      Just things to ponder.

      • +1 to all of this. A friend of mine did the US to Aus move years ago. She ended up rehoming her dog with a friend in the US. She also ended up marrying an Aussie (and having a baby) and is there for good, which means she doesn’t see her family anywhere near as often as she did when she lived in the states and they all were local to each other. She loves it, but it was an adjustment and she had to make some concessions.

  13. I know the Azores have been mentioned several times on here. Any recommendations for things to do/restaurants/general advice?

    • TorontoNewbie :

      Pico – climb the mountain if you’re athletic and go whale watching. Those were the top two experiences of essentially my entire year.
      Just driving around is wonderful.
      Check out the pineapple plantain, it’s wonderfully weird
      There are some fun tea plantations, and some fun vineyards/distilleries.
      The food is honestly pretty dreadful if you want anything other than pan-cooked fresh fish (just ask for it without sauces, they put really heavy cream sauces on EVERYTHING. Including steak.).

    • TorontoNewbie :

      Oh and it’s worth it to spend some time learning basic Portuguese. Very few people spoke any English.

    • We only spent 3 days there in November but I don’t know if I agree with TorontoNewbie (hi fellow Torontonian!).

      Definitely agree that renting a car and driving is the best way to experience things. We only did the island of Sao Miguel but were able to cover most of it in 3 days with a paper map and a willingness to drive and stop when we found something interesting. Beautiful vistas, amazingly friendly people. Saw the tea plantation, and enjoyed beautiful thermal pools at night in Furnas. Stopped in tile-making studios and dropping into little towns for coffee and custard tarts. Yum!

      We didn’t have too many issues with the food actually, my SO doesn’t eat fish so we tended to stick with charceuterie-type meals and really enjoyed that. Delicious fresh sausage! Would be very hard as a vegetarian (after 10 days in Portugal I was miserable due to the complete lack of salads).

      Favourite places to eat in Ponta Delgada:
      Cais Da Sardinha
      Reserva Bar
      A Tasca (came highly recommended but you definitely need reservations – we actually weren’t able to eat there)

      We found everyone under the age of 40 had at least some English. We don’t speak Portuguese at all. It helped having a host (we stayed in a guest house) who was fluent and gave us great directions. Can pass on the name of the guest house and car rental agency if you like.

      • TorontoNewbie :

        I forgot about the pool in Furnas!! Definitely go there.

        I speak decent Portuguese so we also weren’t looking too hard for English-speakers, but I’m very happy you found them :) We love driving and ended up lost in a lot of very rural spots. It was delightful, but the only people under 40 were the cows.

        We weren’t doing high end dining but now I look at those restaurants and want to go back…

    • Awesome, thank you both!

  14. For those of you without kids, how do you connect with your coworkers that always talk about their kids? This morning at the end of a meeting, I was awkwardly trapped for 15 min of a conversation about planning camps, and Disney trips. I always feel a bit alienated by those conversations.

    • Ask questions?

      What activities do they offer at the camps? Have they been to these camps before? Do they have any friends from last year? What are the rides the kids are most looking forward to at Disney? Do you have any restaurants picked out for Disney?

      Or the easiest question of all, “That sounds fun/interesting, tell me more about the camp/your trip!”

      • +1 to asking questions, which is pretty much the solution to feeling awkward in any conversation, IMO. I am in sort of the opposite situation, where most of my coworkers don’t have kids, so I try to keep from blabbing about my fascinating children, but when someone asks, I probably go overboard! Remember that kids are what parents spend almost all their time on when they’re not at work, so you may forgive them if that’s all they can think to talk about sometimes :)

        • As a childless coworker who doesn’t want kids, I like hearing about people’s kids and other fun stuff (so long as I am not swamped, which I would nicely tell you). But then again, I like people, soooooo :)

    • Pretty much the same tactic I take when people talk about sports or outdoorsy stuff or other topics I’m not interested in or knowledgeable about – just ask questions. You can’t commiserate about camp logistics, but you can ask your coworkers where their kids are going to camp, whether they’re excited, whether it’s the first time at that particular camp, etc.

    • I don’t. I’m not interested and I don’t want to give them the appearance of being interested or else I’ll hear about it all the time. And then I secretly plot how to get out of DC which is way toooo family centric to me and back to NYC where there are far fewer people with kids (in the city – relatively speaking).

      • You sound like a peach.

        • Why – everyone MUST be interested in your fascinating children? Sorry I’m not.

          • Anon at 10:19 :

            I don’t have kids, fwiw. I just think making a blanket declaration that you’re not interested in hearing about anyone’s kids is super rude. They’re an important part of many people’s lives. Obviously there are people who yammer on about their kids way too much, but you didn’t say “some of my coworkers won’t talk about anything except their kids and that’s annoying” – you said you do’nt want to talk to people about their kids at all, which is crazy and incredibly rude.

          • Do you like anything about your coworkers?

          • I’m not really interested in children, so I get it, but I think it’s more your attitude and vast generalizations that are rubbing people the wrong way.

      • IDK — I am really surprised at the # of breeders in NYC particularly Brooklyn. They tend to migrate out when the kids get closer to kindergarten, but you can’t escape them. Move to The Villages in Florida or a “55 and better” community if you truly are annoyed at people with young children.

      • Seriously. I don’t care about your environmentally detrimental sh*t monsters. Im very happy with my quiet minimalist lifestyle

        • until you need someone to wipe your b*tt in a nursing home and younger workers to pay into the medicare / social security that you’re hoovering $ out of

          • This is not a valid reason to have kids.

            (Not that I cosign the weird hostility to them from anon at 10:54)

          • I don’t that’s what they were trying to say, more that we need additional humans so that the world continues as the rest of us age out of being useful.

          • You don’t need to have kids to take care of you in your old age, as long as someone else has. Childless people have a bit of a free-rider problem as old needy people (or just as social security / medicare recipients) and really rely on other people having had children.

          • I don’t think she was saying that people should have kids for this reason, but that even people who hate kids will end up relying on the younger generation eventually, so maybe cool it with the judgment of those who do want to have kids. If way fewer people reproduced, it might be good for the planet, but it would definitely be bad for the economy/society. Lots of countries with low birth rates are actively trying to change that and get more people to have kids.

      • Anonymous :

        +1 Much as I don’t talk about the guys I’m dating to my coworkers, I don’t want to hear about their kids. With the hardcore mommies, I just avoid them and never, ever, ever, agree to have lunch with them.

    • For camps – I don’t say anything. For Disney – I treat it like someone telling me they’re going to Hawaii or Europe or something. I ask about where they’re staying/hotels – since that’s my area of interest; Disney always has new “developments” like with fast passes, apps etc. so I can talk about those. It’s not like I’m going to ask about whether their 3 yr old is obsessed with some princess.

    • Just because you don’t have kids doesn’t mean that you cannot contribute. Wondering if you were ever a kid and contribute your experiences? Or, if you just don’t feel like participating, you can gracefully duck out. There are options.

    • I do not have children and am not particularly interested in kid-stuff. However, as long as it isn’t someone droning on and on and on about their kids (or, frankly, any other topic), then I find the same tactics I use when talking to someone about other topics I’m not interested in, work in that situation too. Either asking follow-up questions or polite “ohs” at the relevant time intervals, and then trying to steer the conversation into something more interesting. Or you may have something to add even though you didn’t realize it. If Coworker A is sending kids to camp and you recently heard that Coworker B is also, perhaps you can make that connection or mention that Coworker B’s kids really enjoyed Camp Swim at the Lake last summer and plan to return—has Coworker A heard about that? Same thing you would do if you knew one person went to Paris last year and now someone else has planned a trip; the skills are the same, but the theme changes.

      I also find it’s a lot easier with coworkers who I see daily and I learn about who their kids are. That helps take them out of the generalized kid population and into finding out what Jane and Joe are good at, interested in, struggling with, etc. So some upfront work to learn who these little people are has helped me then have more interesting conversations, including more about child development and psychology rather than just soccer games and birthday parties, with their parents.

      It’s very good of you to try to make this one more interesting. Clearly children are a very important piece of their parents’ lives and so they want to share that. The conversations often will not be interesting, just as they aren’t when adult topics you aren’t interested in are on the table, but I think you probably have the conversational skills to make it work.

  15. I ordered something on Etsy and the next day I realized that I had the wrong address in there (my Etsy account has the correct address, but this seller requires the use of PayPal and I had a very old address saved in there, since I don’t normally use PayPal). I realized it the next day and sent her a message asking her to correct the address but a few hours later I got a notification from Etsy that the item had shipped to the old address. I haven’t lived there in years so I don’t expect it to get forwarded by the post office. Assuming I want to order the item again, do you think I should have to pay the full cost of item and shipping or should the seller re-send it if I cover the shipping charges? If it matters, the item was a print of a work of art that I paid $20 for, so there would be very little out of pocket cost for creating a second one (especially relative to the price paid).

    • You messed this up, not the seller, so you should pay again.

      • Agreed. It was your mistake. I can’t see a reason why the seller would help you eat part of that cost.

      • Because I paid $20 for a print that probably costs a dollar or less to make, I guess I saw my original purchase as paying primarily for the artist’s design/creativity and I feel like I now own that (or own some rights to it) and shouldn’t have to pay the full $20 again. I’d expect to pay the actual costs of reprinting and of course the new shipping charges.

        • You don’t own that. You bought a print. You didn’t buy any right to the artist’s IP. Just buy another one or don’t, you messed up.

        • That is not the way this works. Nice try, though!

          • pugsnbourbon :

            I had a long reply typed out that got eaten, but anyway – I don’t even own the IP for my tattoos:

            Also Etsy sellers are likely operating on much thinner profit margins.

    • Are you nearby, can you just knock on the door and ask for the item?

      • My sleep deprived brain read this as asking if she lived near the Etsy seller and I was just so confused. “Hello Etsy seller! I live near you, can I save on shipping and just walk to your house?” Ha!

        • I (OP) read it this way too and was so confused! But I figured out what you meant. Sadly, I moved cross-country so can’t go over to my old apartment and ask for it. I suppose there is a possible it will get returned to the seller and presumably then she’ll send it to me for just the cost of shipping it again.

          • Maddie Ross :

            Since it’s Etsy, and not a big commercial place, I think you could ask them that – essentially, if it gets returned, can she send to you for just the new shipping. My guess would be yes, since it would just be a relabeling and new shipping issue. But if it doesn’t get returned or it’s not a timely return, you probably will just need to buy it again.

            If it helps, I’ve done that before too. So frustrating!

          • So 1) I did this one time, got a response from the seller that they would send it to the correct address, and then got the shipping notification that still had the old address. they sent me a message that said that is automatic- no matter where they actually send it to, the etsy notification will say the one you put in. maybe she saw your message in time? 2) you would pay for it. Your mistake, not the sellers. Your comment about the “little out of pocket cost” is wrong – it is a print she could sell for $20. you would be asking for that $20 to come out of her pocket because of your mistake.

    • I think it would be nice if the seller gave you a discount, but I would definitely not expect it.

      Can you send a short note to the old address explaining what happened and providing your email address to see if the current resident might be willing to send it to you (at your expense)? Not guaranteed to work, but seems like it could be worth a shot before you order a new one?

    • The seller gets some protection through Paypal but only if they send it to address in the Paypal account. That’s why many sellers (especially those who sell a lot and have had bad experiences with shipping or a buyers) will only send to the Paypal address.

    • Oh, the entitlement. You made the mistake, you eat the cost. Good grief.

  16. Noise cancelling headphones :

    Any specific recommendations for noise cancelling headphones? Or more generally, what are some things to consider before purchasing? TIA!

    • Bose over-ear… but consider if you have room in your bag/tote/purse depending on where you’ll use it. The case is kind of bulky if space is a premium.

    • My Bose headphones broke within 3 times of using them, so I can’t recommend. The jack broke off in the armrest of the plane when I brushed against it.

    • I just bought the Plantronics over-ear noise cancelling headphones and love them. Used them on a flight to and from Hawaii and they were perfect and were still going strong after 9+ hours of use. My husband has the Bose ones, and mine were $100 cheaper and sound just as good.

    • Tech Comm Geek :

      I really recommend the reviews on The Wirecutter. They do a good job of saying what they liked and didn’t like about the various options, so you can choose what matters to you.

  17. Did anyone buy the nylon laptop purse from amazon posted last week?

    I did…. I hate the logo, I think it looks cheap, good thing its small and black-on-black.

    Overall since the bag is black it looks pretty good. But the bag is the same front/back so I just wear that side against my body. Overall I love all the pockets/organizations, it is quite roomy. Even if this doesnt hold up beyond a year it was only $30.

    • I did and sent it back. Although it was wonderfully light, I thought it looked too cheap.

    • In-House in Houston :

      I posted this a few weeks ago. Love the bag!!! If this is the same bag, I didn’t even notice the logo until I just read your posted and looked at the bag.

      • Senior Attorney :

        Same here — didn’t even notice the logo. I bought it in purple and am super happy with it.

  18. JuniorMinion :

    Any recommendations for an infuser bottle? Was eyeing the contigo one that puts the fruit at the bottom but figured I would ping the hive first to see if anyone had any cute / awesome recs. Thanks

  19. Recent grad :

    Just graduated college last May, began working at an investment bank in July. My current plan is to stay 1-2 years. My contract is 2 years but of course could leave before that (culture is a lot of people leaving at my level). I don’t really like it here but I know it’s good experience and I’m hesitant to leave too soon because it seems once you leave finance it’s hard to come back.

    Of course I accidentally stumbled across my dream job online. I have the relevant experience and even have contacts at the company. So tempted to apply and so worried I’ll regret it if I don’t. But I just wish I stumbled across this opportunity after I had been here at least a year. I assume there will be more opportunities like this but who knows.

    • TorontoNewbie :

      Apply and decide if you get the job. What’s the harm?

    • Will the experience and street cred of having worked at an i bank help you in a future dream job? A lot of my sort of ideal jobs coming right out of school would not have given me the same kind of training or opened up the same kind of doors as my experience at a big consulting firm. But, if the i banking job was sort of a placeholder, then definitely apply — can’t hurt!

      • Yeah that’s exactly what I’m trying to figure out. I think I also just want to keep my options open and being at an i bank does that a lot more. From here, I can always move over to my idea of dream job but not vice versa (kinda like going in house from what I understand.)

    • I dont work in banking but my best friend does and she went through a similar situation you did. I agree that staying somewhere at least a year looks good but if this is your dream job then I’d definitely say go for it. If you apply now then you likely wouldnt start until May/June. So this is the difference between staying 10, 11, and 12 months, which really isnt much, trust me.

      I think what it comes down to is what your goals are. Do you not really like finance or is it just your particular bank? Will this dream job lead you further towards that goal or is your current job a necessary evil to get you to where you want to be?

    • JuniorMinion :

      I spent 3 years in capital markets and then a subsequent 2 years in IBD. I found most real corporate development / PE jobs (guessing that is what you are looking for) want at least 2 years of IBD experience however some smaller companies on the corp dev side will definitely take you with 1 year of experience depending on what your 1st year deal sheet looks like. If you want to continue in a transactions related role you likely are going to want to have done at least one M&A process (buy or sellside) and some real modeling (I know some groups give the first years all the pitchwork / salesforce memos / crap no one else wants to do)

      I imagine some of this could vary by industry (I am in a pretty competitive one despite the downturn). You might want to check out wallstreetoasis for some industry specific feedback. Also I am in corp dev now, feel free to ping me at juniorminion87 at the mail of the g or respond back here. It is hard to give better advice without knowing more of the specifics of where you are hoping to land.

      • Thank you for this. Really appreciate the perspective. My dream role is working on the financial team of a company, perhaps even a startup. Rather than the accounting side, I’m more interested in analyzing the numbers / pipeline / budget (I.e. What happens if we launch a new product?) Not really transactions based so not sure how long I should be sticking it out in a transactions based role.

        On the other hand, who knows if I would actually like this job and I think once I move over my options to move back would be more limited. Additionally I do see the value is staying at an I bank a little longer to get the full excel / PowerPoint / financial modeling training.

        • JuniorMinion :

          So when you say “financial team” it sounds like you mean strategy / planning or FP&A. It is worth noting that the larger the company the more opportunity to do this kind of work. Small / Mid cap companies in my experience have finance roles (ex corp dev) largely around blocking and tackling (think comptroller / treasury / and an FP&A team that is largely focused on correctly tracking current #s because at a small company there aren’t embedded systems doing this often ask me how i know :). You also might like something around forecasting, which a lot of very large companies might have a team doing (think determining assumptions / inputs for projections utilized by the company).

          Of these roles strategy is likely to be the only one that would want to see 2 years of consulting / IBD. The others you should be able to lateral to after a year depending on what industry you would like to be in and how competitive / big of a firm you want to work for.

          One thing to be wary of – on the corporate finance side (broadly) F500 experience or at the least public company experience is very prized as the bar is higher. It is much easier to start at F500 / well reputed public company and move to a smaller firm in a high level role down the line than it is to go the reverse (I did it, I got lucky combined with working entirely too hard for a year and a half and I wouldn’t recommend it as a strategy in general).

          You are correct that your options to move back to banking (unless you go to corp dev and continue to do transactions) would be limited, however if you are at an F500 or other large enough company unlike banking, which pays a lot of lip service to moving people around but rarely actually does this in practice with the attractive easy to fill groups, you are likely to have significant internal mobility if you do a good job (I’ve got a colleague on my team that has been in both finance and planning at our company prior to moving over to corp dev).

          • Thank you so much! This is really helpful and very eye-opening. Thinking this over, my follow up questions / considerations are

            1. My original thought with going to a start up was that even though it would likely be smaller, it would also be experiencing high-growth and perhaps have more opportunities for me to get involved / move up more quickly than a F500 company. But I see what you mean. I’m just wondering does it take awhile to move up the ladder at F500 companies?

            2. Wondering if this would be a salary cut for me. Money isn’t everything and I’m interested in these roles regardless but it’s still helpful to compare.

        • JuniorMinion :

          I’m in moderation probably because my response to this was too lengthy :)

        • My reaction is that you’ll be better served getting the i-bank training. I think there will be more opportunities like this that you will be better suited for once you’ve gotten that under your belt.

        • I’m in Corp Finance (FP&A) at an F500 and cosign pretty much all of JuniorMinion’s post. Ibank just isn’t really needed for FP&A, esp if you’re coming in at the analyst or sr analyst level.

          If your long term goal is something like CFO, then you might want to stick it out for a year or two of Ibank so you can say you did it. That might also buy you a pass from getting either your CPA or MBA, depending on your skills at that point. But I don’t think that’s a dealbreaker if you leave, it just means you follow a different path.

          I say apply and take the job if you get it. There are many paths up in Finance, very rarely do you NEED Ibank or Big 4 to get to where you’re going, it just takes longer if you don’t.

          • Thank you Anon! Just wondering in these roles does almost everyone have a CPA or MBA?

          • Excel Geek :

            I’ve been in FP&A for about 15 years now. Started in Big 4 then did a little accounting before I got an FP&A role. I find that most people have either a CPA or an MBA but not all. I have a CPA but not an MBA and I’m at a director level role. And it would almost definitely be a paycut from I-Banking.

    • Obviously you should apply. You can’t make any decision unless you do that.

  20. Is it prudent to get a supplemental disability insurance policy? I have about 60% coverage through work. Is it worth the (what seem to me like) hefty premium ($150/month) to bring that up to 90% coverage? I’m a 4th year big law associate, married with no kids (yet). TIA!

    • Will the experience and street cred of having worked at an i bank help you in a future dream job? A lot of my sort of ideal jobs coming right out of school would not have given me the same kind of training or opened up the same kind of doors as my experience at a big consulting firm. But, if the i banking job was sort of a placeholder, then definitely apply — can’t hurt!

    • I think you’re fine. The 60% should be tax free, so at your salary level, it should be more or less equivalent to your take-home-pay. (I’m a 5th year associate who recently looked into this at my firm in a moment of panic.)

      • It is only tax-free if you yourself pay the premiums. If the Company is paying the premiums for you, it is taxable.

        • It actually depends whether the premiums are considered taxable pay or not, as opposed to who pays them. If they are added to your W-2 as income, then the payments are tax free.

      • Yes, but make sure it is tax free. My firm gave us the option. My understanding is that to get the tax-free payout, you pay taxes on the benefit/policy. If you don’t pay taxes on the benefit/policy, you pay taxes on any payout.

    • Disability Anon :

      A few things to consider: If you get the supplemental and leave biglaw, can you take it with you? Ask if you can port the coverage, and if so, how much. Premiums become more expensive with age. Is SSDI an offset to your current disability policy? If so, the additional percentage may be worth it if you plan on having kids and are the primary bread winner. If SSDI is not an offset (ask to see the cert), then with SSDI your percentage would be higher than 60%. FWIW: I work in disability insurance, my employer offers 60% and I did not buy-up.

  21. Endometriosis :

    I posted this a little late yesterday – thank you for the responses and would like to hear more:

    I started taking a progesterone-only pill under the guidance of a specialty gynecologist while I mull over the decision to have my endometriosis surgically removed. I’m taking it everyday, no placebo week. I started after my last period ended and when I reached my next “period”, the spotting started. It’s the 10th day of spotting. Hooray for no blood and tolerable cramps for a day or two but does the spotting ever stop? Also, recs for favorite panty-liners?


    As a follow-up, I’m taking this time taking the progesterone to do research on surgeons who can perform excision surgery. Dealing with the disease and worrying about future fertility is just overwhelming.

    • Tech Comm Geek :

      I’m in love with the Always Extra Long pantiliners. The adhesive is just right – it doesn’t come off, but I don’t have destroy my underwear to remove it. No scent, so it doesn’t irritate things.

    • alexisfaye :

      I have endo and adenomyosis. I ran pills back to back and saw a HUGE improvement (spotting stopped, anemia got a lot better, etc.). After the first two packs I only spotted if I forgot a pill or two, but then Watch Out! I switched to an IUD about six weeks ago, and I’ve been spotting ever since *sigh* So hopefully that stops.

    • I commented yesterday but wanted to continue when I saw this today… when considering surgeons who truly specialize, the group is so small that they tend to know each other. You might do well to call the Center for Endo. Care or email them and ask for recommendations in your area (if they’re not in your area themselves). Their lead docs are some of the top in the world and would likely be able to help you to know who the good ones are and what to ask to find out whether someone is the right fit for you.

      In some cases, an IUD like mirena might be helpful after your surgery, in other cases, it’ll depend on your medical history and fertility goals. If you decide to have the surgery, please feel free to post a way to reach you, I’m happy to share tips/tricks for surviving the process and skipping much of the stressful parts of pre-op and recovery!

  22. FrankieCat :

    Rainjacket PSA: I just received my Uniqlo blocktech rain jacket and am pleasantly surprised that it is a ‘dupe’ for yesterday’s Girl on the Go rain jacket. There’s no liner for the uniqlo piece but the minimalist style and lines make it very similar at a fraction of the price.

    • Disappointed that they seem to not be selling this anymore! Only light grey available online and I didn’t see it in stores this weekend. Seemed like it came and went really fast.

  23. How do you tell your mom to cut back on gifts? Is there a way to enforce it? My mother is very wasteful with her spending and she cannot afford it. For example, before email existed, she would overnight me random articles from the paper. Multiple times a week. I got her to stop doing that. Then she would send these huge expensive gift baskets of candy and such. I’d tell her I don’t want them, they will go to waste, she’d get mad that I wouldn’t take them into work. No, I don’t want to be the girl who’s always bringing Harry & David stuff into the office.

    Now she’s off the Harry & David kick and she’s moved onto some sort of food ordering company. I just got a delivery last night. Everything is perishable and needs to be used within a couple of days; I’m not even going to be home. A catalog was included with the order. She spent over $150 on chicken soup. I can’t even. I haven’t reached out to her because I don’t even know what to say. Thank you and please stop?

    • Is there a mental illness component to this? Sounds like a hoarding situation as applied to gifts (which is pretty common among hoarders). If that’s the case, the illness needs treatment; asking is unlikely to stop these.

      • Probably? She’s not diagnosed and refuses to seek therapy. She put me in therapy when I was a teenager because I was too willful and she was stressed about it. I did horrible things like leaving the movie (that she gave me permission to see) when it ended, as opposed to leaving during the movie as soon as the clock struck 9:45 so I could be home before 10. Or coming home right at 10 on the dot, because a curfew means you have to be home BEFORE 10 not AT 10. I tried to get the therapist to talk to her about her anxiety but I have no idea if he did. And I’ve been trying to get her into therapy ever since with no luck.

    • That sounds really tough. Cosigning Anonymous’ thoughts on mental illness/hoarding. Is it possible that you can redirect her to something cheap? I don’t know if that would be helpful.

      • Thanks, I’ve been trying to do this and I thought I’d made progress. With the Harry & David stuff – I like their pears! Can you just send me pears, mom, not a tower of sugar? Somehow that’s how I ended up with $150 chicken soup.

    • “Mom, I appreciate the gifts, but they are unnecessary and many go to waste. I will start returning what I can, when I can, so please don’t send me any more.” Probably a bit harsh with the last sentence, but . . .

    • Maybe try to set her up with a financial counselor to discuss finances generally?

    • Can she afford it? If she can, I’d just quietly take things to a local food bank or food pantry. They’d love the contributions, and she doesn’t need to know. Obviously if she can’t afford it, that’s a whole ‘nother conversation. But if this is how she shows you she loves you and it’s not harming her, put it to good use, even if it’s not in your house. (You could tell her you took latest contributions to a food bank or pantry, and thank her for her contribution.)

  24. Why does everything happen all at the same time????

    I am a CPA and today is 4/15/17 – enough said.
    Our 9 year old dog is actively dying of cancer.
    I have a nanny that watches my 2 year old twins who has chronically been unreliable and late. I have to have a discussion with her about that tonight.
    My mom has relapsed on her pain pill addiction after being clean for a few years. Her husband is staging an intervention for her this weekend.
    I’m being short with my husband because of my stress level and a lot of the childcare has been falling on him due to my business at work. He is not happy with me because I am being a b.i.t.c.h. which I feel bad about.

    That is all. Someone please tell me that all will be okay.

    • Oof, that’s a lot :(
      Can you get all takeout all the time for the next two weeks? Be firm with the nanny. Also tell her what you’re going through if she doesn’t already know — she needs to step up to the plate. In situations where my world is overwhelming and I unfairly take it out on my husband, I think recognizing I’m being unfair with him and apologizing goes a long way — he ought to understand. I’m sorry about your mom and your dog, that’s tough. In any case, given all this stuff, I bet you’ve kept your head above water in similarly stressful situations before, and I bet you can do it again! Hang in there!

    • You’ll get through this. There’s only 10 days left in your busy season, right? Can you plan to take a little time off starting on the 16th so you can recharge and/or give your husband a break from doing all the child and house work? I’m so sorry about your mom and your dog.

    • You’ll get through it all, even if it doesn’t feel like it now. Don’t know if you’re looking for advice (and please ignore if not), but… find 20 minutes (even if it’s impossible, even if it screws up something else in your life) and apologize to your husband, tell him you love him and appreciate what he’s been taking on, and ask him for even more help (whether that be moral support, taking on even more childcare for a few days, whatever). Have a good cry on his shoulder. I always find that in my worst & most stressful moments, making sure my relationship is rock-solid and letting myself lean on him for a week or so can help so, so much. Something about knowing we’re a team and I’m not facing this alone. And then of course I make an effort to do the same for him when he needs it, but that’s for the future.

    • At least you’ve figured out how to time travel! ;) Just kidding, I know that was at typo. I’m so sorry you’ve got all that to deal with. It will get better, and hopefully soon. I hope you can find a way to do something for yourself.

  25. Paging All the Nasty Anons :

    Comments and posts have been particularly nasty the past few days. Can we not?

    • Such as?

      • How about Solo above who basically told someone to STFU? That’s hardly civil discourse.

        • Anonymous :

          I think that was the name of a blog…

          • I thought she used the name of the blog as a way to say to stfu to the commenter.

        • That’s not what she did. She referred to a blog and that’s actually what it’s called. But I agree that civil discourse should be the goal here. I just don’t want someone to get called out without reason.

        • OMG, that was the name of a blog. Don’t get your undies in a bundle.

      • OfCounsel :

        Or referring to people with children as “breeders” and their kids as environmentally detrimental sh*t monsters”. I have zero judgment for people who don’t want to have kids. In fact, if you do not want to have children, I 100% think you should not have them. Having said that, those are not incredibly rude terms that anyone would (I hope) use to someone’s face and they therefore should not use them on-line.

        • Anonymous :

          My thoughts on those types of posts are that they are meant to get everyone all riled up, so why let them bother you? I mean not everyone is nice in the world. We have a pretty supportive community here, but there will always be anon posters who are going to say things in ways we don’t like. I have been the target of nasty posts by anons, but so what? They don’t know me, I don’t know them, so I don’t care what they say.

      • The snacking comments yesterday went a bit off the rails of civility.

    • Anonymous :

      There have also been plenty of very thoughtful and eloquent comments left by anonymous users and lots of nasty ones left by the so-called regulars.

  26. Wintery Bridal Shower Looks :

    Saturday I am attending a cousin’s baby shower in PA. Sunday the same group is hosting a bridal brunch for me after church services. What do I wear? (It’s going to be high of 50s-60s.) Conservative crowd.

  27. Spilledgreenjuice :

    Does anyone have a Lo and Sons promo code, I see them sometimes but not today. Thank you.

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