Frugal Friday’s Workwear Report: Flutter Top

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

Flutter TopLoft always has cute, affordable tops for work, and if you’re looking for easy wear and easy care tops for layering in the spring weather, they have a ton of cute options right now. This gray top (also in pink) stood out because the fluttered cap sleeves are on trend, but unlike the more voluminous sleeves out there right now, these would layer nicely under a blazer, sweater, or cardigan. The gray feels very purpley to me; I’d pair it with a light blue, white, or paaaaaale gray to make it feel more springy. It’s $44 full price at Loft, available in regular, petite, and plus sizes (new at Loft!). Flutter Top

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Comments

  1. Anonymous :

    PSA that the Sephora Rouge sale starts today! What’s on everyone’s list? I’m going to stock up on my usuals, maybe pick up a couple of sheet masks, but I’d like to get a fun but practical treat too and I’m overwhelmed by options!

    • Minnie Beebe :

      Crap! I *just* spent a ton of $$ at Sephora yesterday. Grr.

      • Lana Del Raygun :

        Return and re-buy!

      • I called them today because I just got a bunch of stuff like 2 weeks ago. They wouldn’t give me the discount for a purchase so long ago, but they said they would have if it had only been like a day.

    • How do you access the sale? I’m rouge, but I’m not seeing anything special when I sign in. I need to stock up on my Drunk Elephant and Drybar!

    • I just spent too much $$ but my skincare purchases have been tied to the Sephora sales for the last few years so I’m basically out of everything so I bought day/night serums and a new moisturizer, replaced an eye shadow that my mom “borrowed”, a new summer lipstick (if spring/summer ever decides to grace us with its presence). And then when I was scouting sephora earlier in the week, I got talked into buying this spray exfoliator by juice beauty which based on the same I got, seems extremely effective.

    • I don’t spend that much at Sephora so I doubt I would qualify for them, so I’m going to use Lord & Taylor’s 15% off on beauty to replenish my Nars stuff.

    • I bought the Amore Pacific tea tree set and the Amore Pacific treatment toner. Splurgy but less so at 15% off, and the tea tree set is full sizes so the set already has a built in discount.

    • Sephora Flunkie :

      Can someone give me a very basic explanation of the various VIP statuses at Sephora? What benefits do they offer? I buy more at Ulta, but I would focus on accruing Sephora points if I could figure out what good it would do me. I have searched online for a clear explanation but can’t figure out the basics.

      • I thought there was a chart online somewhere but I’m too lazy to look for it. Rouge gives you free two day shipping year round and early access to its sales. I think you also get an extra 5% off at the sales… like I think maybe the current sale is 15% for Rouge and 10% for everyone else. Idk if there’s an appreciable difference between regular VIB that you get from just signing up for emails vs. the next level up.

        I mostly just like the free shipping. It’s been a big help to my wallet… I appreciate being able to buy 1 thing and still get shipping; before I was Rouge I would just buy more stuff to hit $50. Terrible, I know. But I really hate paying $5 to ship like one lipstick.

      • You have to spend like $1000+ a year to get 15% off on those sales.

        • Guilty! But in my defense, I do a lot of my gift shopping there (well not “there” as in the physical stores, but online)

          The fast free shipping is very handy.

          • Anonymous :

            For people who don’t meet the VIB/Rouge threshold, you can get free 2 day shipping on any item, no minimum, for a year if you pay $10 for their “Flash shipping” subscription.

      • If you are a VIB ($350 spend/year) or Rouge ($1000 spend/year), you get 20% off in November/December and 15% off in April every year. Plus there’s usually a bonus spend card that comes in the summer, where you get $25 off a $50 purchase if you’re a rouge I think, and $15 or $20 if you’re a VIB I think?

        There are more perks with Rouge but you do get great benefits if you spend $350/year.

      • I’m in moderation but I have a more detailed answered for you.

  2. pugsnbourbon :

    Is it just me or is this purple, not gray?

    My monitor could also be a POS.

    • Anonymous :

      “The gray feels very purpley to me”

      Because it is purple. This is not a grey top.

    • Loft calls the color “coastal gray” on their site. Go figure.

    • anon a mouse :

      It’s grurple.

    • Anonymous :

      Purple.

    • This is a really cute top. Trying to stay away from it, as I’ve vowed to not shop at Loft anymore. I get sale goggles in that store and end up buying too many things that are just a smidge off, either in terms of fit or style.

      • Amen. I’m not in love with their style lately anyway. Very flowy and sheer. Not really me. I always get the stuff home and decide I hate it. After I’ve washed it, of course. I do still gravitate toward their shorts, though.

        • Yes. Their shorts are great. But I can’t do the tops anymore, and I agree on the flowy/sheer issue. It’s not my personal style at all, even if that’s the current trend.

      • That’s such an accurate description of everything from Loft.

      • Yup. My return rate is about 80%. On the other hand, I have two tops from there that are in heavy, heavy rotation.

      • The way they cut tops is so stupid. I’m a pear shape with bird arms, yet every shirt or sweater from Loft has butt-sucking tight sleeves.

    • I feel like Loft has trouble with the color grey generally. Their grey skinny ankle pants are a really weird bluey purpley shade.

    • Pen and Pencil :

      I bought this top, it’s a very purply grey, but it is definitely grey in person. I did end up returning the top because the arm holes were so big they showed my bra band, which drives me insane. I am plus size, so could be different in straight sizes.

  3. Anonymous :

    Nice pick today.

    I just started a new job this week and have my own office for the first time ever. Any tips for making it more comfortable? Some ideas I already have: put up some command hooks so I can hang my coat, maybe get a monitor stand, a foot stool (I’m 5 feet tall), a nice hand lotion. My L shaped desk oddly lacks drawers so maybe getting some plastic drawers for personal items.

    • Oh very nice! Do you have a whiteboard? I’m a big fan of my whiteboard. I also use a SAD lamp in the winter but I live in grey north.

    • I adored decorating my first office recently as well! Since I spend so much time in it, I really wanted to make it beautiful and comfortable, and as a bonus, it’s really impressed my coworkers (that wasn’t the point, but it doesn’t hurt). I added a nice blue area rug (yes, over the brown carpet), a big blue lamp, and printed out some inexpensive canvas photos from a vacation (landscapes) and hung them on the wall with command picture framing strips.

      I also have a big bulletin board with a nice big calendar, more printed photos, and a random assortment of certificates/notices. Fake flowers, a couple vases with dried lavender, a small statue of a feather (I’m a writer), a small potted plant, and some of my favorite books round it out.

      Enjoy!

      • This sounds lovely! I’ve been clueless about what to do with mine, and I love your suggestions.

    • Landscape prints (preferably on canvas so you don’t have to worry about frames) work well in an office setting. Also blooming office plants really wake up a place (bromeliad and African violet do well in low light and under fluorescents)

    • Follow up question- is it a faux pas to have scents in one’s own office? I would love a Le Labo candle but do not want to offend. My office is in a hallway of other offices, no cubes nearby.

      • That’s not okay.

        • +1 There are probably rules in your office building about open flames, too.

        • +1

          No scents, even if it’s not a candle. They carry surprisingly far and those of us with asthma will absolutely not repeat not appreciate it.

          • stinky colleague :

            piggybacking; my colleague has a really strong scented candle and I hate it. How do I ask him to get rid of it? And if I didn’t intervene in the first week, is it too late?

          • No, it isn’t too late. In fact, posing it like “I tried to see if I could tolerate it, but now I am getting migraines at work….” makes it seem like you are really trying to be accommodating.

            Do you know if your workplace already has rules? You could talk to HR.

      • Yeah… no obvious scents. I made this mistake as a first year. I got one of those reed diffusers in a neutral scent, like citrus or something. An older (think bow tie wearing) partner walked in my office and was immediately confounded and flustered. On the bright side he forgot to give me the assignment?

        I wonder if there’s anything really really subtle that would work? My office has that old office building smell – smells like burning dust in the winter and like mold in the (humid) summer. Surely there’s some way to combat these kinds of offensive odors that don’t just compound the problem???

        • Some kind of air filter / purifier? I don’t think adding more scent is the right answer, especially in an office.

      • I think it’s a know your office thing. A lot of people in my office have glade plug-in type air fresheners, which I hate. I sometimes use an essential oil diffuser in my own office. People in the offices near me often remark that it smells good, and I always tell them to let me know if it bugs them. But I wouldn’t burn a candle for safety reasons.

      • Anonymous :

        I have a reed diffuser where I only stick in 1 or 2 reeds so the scent doesn’t overwhelm but masks the office musty smell.

        i also have a charcoal air filter thing

      • No scents is a good rule-of-thumb. There’s a woman down the hall from me who has one of those oil diffusers, I peddles that Young Living brand or something. Anyway, it smells like hippie or witch all the time. She also wears long flowy skirts and homemade jewelry made of Friendly Plastic.

  4. We had a great thread a week or so ago on little lifehacks and I was wondering if people had ‘green’ hacks they could share? Big or small, what are you doing to reduce your impact on the environment?

    – We use the city food waste disposal system
    – Soap nuts for laundry detergent (compostable)
    – Cloth diapers 80% of the time
    – Glass rather than plastic storage containers – also often repurposed (those bonne maman jam jars are the best)

    • I use a metal Yeti cup for water, we buy milk in glass jars (that is produced locally) and return the jars to the grocery store to be reused, we recycle regularly, we try really hard not to waste food, we also use primarily glass storage containers and always try to use storage container over plastic Ziploc bags, and we bring reusable bags to the grocery store.

    • Anonymous :

      We reuse ziploc bags in the freezer until they fall apart (not everything fits well in containers). I feel like my grandmother.

      • I’ll totally wash and reuse. I am basically my grandmother.

        I also use the reuseable zip seal bags. They work really well for snacks and I’m sure they’d be good in the freezer as well.

    • The smaller ones: Wax paper bags instead of plastic, glass storage containers instead of plastic, avoid single-use straws, take shorter showers (working on that one), use less natural personal grooming and cleaning products, avoid pouring medicines down the drain, recycle, hang dry clothes when possible.

      The bigger ones: only drive when required (walk to buy groceries, errands, etc.). This is better for the environment, my health, and my safety, so win-win. I also avoid buying new clothing and only buy what I truly need, so I have less than ten pairs of shoes, about 10 tops, 3 pairs of pants, etc. I’m not even truly a minimalist, but curbing my spending is better for my wallet and the environment.

      • Oh, plus reusable bags for the grocery store, including reusable mesh bags for produce. Single-use plastic produce bags drive me crazy!

        • Can you provide a link to reusable mesh bags for produce that you recommend? That sounds great!!

          • https://www.amazon.com/Original-Friendly-Through-Washable-Reusable/dp/B014955KB0/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1523628866&sr=8-5&keywords=mesh+produce+bags&dpID=51kaCQjmjjL&preST=_SX300_QL70_&dpSrc=srch

            These work well enough – no complaints!

          • Consider mesh laundry delicate bags, too. Usually cheaper than something branded specifically for food, but the same product!

        • +1 we finally made the switch to mesh produce bags both for the environmental impact and because I hate them (our grocery store was always out, they are hard to use, and produce a giant pile of waste when we get home) and I LOVE them.

        • No Problem :

          Thanks! I just added some to my Amazon wish list to include with my next order (as someone else said…combined into as few packages as possible!).

        • Although the single-use produce bags work really well for cleaning up after the dog!

          • But are still plastic vs reusable. There are more eco friendly dog waste bags out there.

          • Anonymous :

            Plastic vs compostable, you mean, right? Because I don’t want to reuse my dog poop bags…

          • Anon at 12:48 :

            Anon at 1:32, yes, I mean something like compostable. My vs. was meant to be a comparison between reusable mesh veggie bags vs. the plastic veggie bags, not to imply I wanted people to reuse the dog waste bags!

    • Minnie Beebe :

      I use a composting service (I’m in a major city with no city-wide program)
      I do not buy plastic wrap. What I use instead:
      – stretchy silicone sheets
      – bees wrap
      – pyrex/other containers
      – stasher silicone ziplock-style bags
      – compostable parchment
      I also wash/reuse ziplocks, but trying to wean myself off buying them.
      Walk/bus/train instead of drive as much as is possible.
      Keep the heat relatively low in winter, AC set relatively high in summer, programmable thermostats

    • Cloth not paper napkins, and saying yes to whatever our families want to hand down to us so most of our household goods like wood furniture, tablecloths, etc. are not bought new. Buying preowned rugs and wood furniture to fill some of the gaps. ( No preowned couches, though, learned my lesson after one of those came with a mouse.)

    • Glass storage containers? :

      Any recommendations for glass storage containers? I need more containers, would like to buy glass, but amazon reviews are a huge rabbit hole.

      • Glass storage containers? :

        And I have a 5 yr old and a 2 year old. So something is going to break.

        • Anon in NYC :

          That’s how I feel too. I’d like to use more glass but with a 2 year old, it’s inevitable that stuff will break. But, I’d still like recommendations!

          • Elegant Giraffe :

            pyrex! I’ve shattered one in the last decade, but they’re pretty hard to break. I drop stuff a lot.

          • +1 Pyrex can take a beating. Name brand matters here

        • Pyrex. Even my maniacs have not destroyed them.

        • We use the Ween Green pyrex food storage containers for my kid’s daycare lunch every day and haven’t had one broken yet. They are very sturdy and the lids don’t leak.

      • We own pyrex and have been happy with it. They have a ton of options on Amazon that make it easy to buy just lids, just bowls, more lids and bowls, etc. based on what you need.

      • The pyrex ones have worked well for us. 5 year and still going strong. I like them because there are only 5 sizes and colourful lids so I don’t have to play the lid/container match game every single day.

      • I have these and like them. The lids stay on and no leaking.

        https://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/product/oxo-good-grips-reg-smart-seal-12-piece-container-set-in-clear-blue/1062309844?categoryId=12606

      • Can you freeze in the glass storage? That’s the biggest use of ziplock bags for us.

        • I do it all the time with pyrex containers with snap-on lids. You can also freeze wide-mouth mason jars if you leave an inch or so of head room at the top.

    • Anon in NYC :

      – We take mass transit or walk almost everywhere. Cabs/driving are infrequent.
      – We recycle as much as we possibly can – this is supported by city programs and also through Terracycle, which can seemingly recycle almost anything.
      – We’ve recently started composting. Again, this is supported by a city program that encourages this. I like to think that the compost is being used at least in part to support green spaces in the city. I really thought this would be smelly and gross, but our container is full before it gets a chance to smell.
      – I often bring all of my meals to work, which I think cuts down on food waste/plastic waste.

      Things that I could improve on: reducing the use of stuff like ziploc bags, saran wrap, aluminum foil, and paper towels.

    • This article is important reading for dog owners who care about the environment: https://www.outsideonline.com/2292736/its-time-talk-about-dog-poop

      • In this vein, compostable dog poop bags.

        I use these: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LWFF6V0/ref=sxr_rr_xsim_1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_p=3513574162&pd_rd_wg=b4HrA&pf_rd_r=H2BJJKBSSY4Q8912CRMH&pf_rd_s=desktop-rhs-carousels&pf_rd_t=301&pd_rd_i=B00LWFF6V0&pd_rd_w=Ertnt&pf_rd_i=compostable+dog+poop+bags&pd_rd_r=5e7a5dfd-311b-4753-9290-9cafe38e839e&ie=UTF8&qid=1523630396&sr=1

      • I was hoping this would touch on eco friendly dog waste bags. I am forever picking up other people’s dog waste – it’s so gross. I can’t add much to what others have said so far, except that I use poop bags which decompose AND dispose of them in the most environmentally friendly way available (usually not the landfill bound trash can).

        This is a good link for more info https://www.rover.com/blog/truth-about-biodegradable-poop-bags-in/

        I also mix my own hand soap and cleaner either with Dr. Bronner’s and water or vinegar and water. This way, I am refilling existing containers instead of new ones!

    • I think there is a lot of green value in being more deliberate with purchases, too. We’re in the process of purging a lot of cheap, dated, household items I purchased when I first got my own place 14 years ago but have had in storage for like 10 years. I’m vowing never again to get such trendy, cheap pieces. I feel the same way about clothes, furniture, etc., etc. Timeless purchases.

      • I hear you. I also think it can be hard to know what look will stand the test of time (become a new classic, if you will), and what is going to look cheap/dated in 10 years.

    • – cleaning washcloths rather than paper towels for everything other than cat puke and the like
      – silicone straws rather than disposable ones
      – fabric machine washable zip bags instead of plastic ziplocs (these have their limits, but they’re good for dry snacks, sandwiches, etc.)
      – glass storage containers
      – rarely eat red meat

      • pugsnbourbon :

        Same on the paper towels – it’s so easy to just speed through a roll of those!

        I bought a bunch of microfiber cloths from Amazon and I just throw them in the wash with the rest of the towels. They work on my Swiffer mop as well.

      • Oh, recycling obviously. And I throw old produce and flowers out into the woods behind our house. So it’s not officially composting, but it’s composting.

        Also we bought a lot of antique furniture when we had the time to look for it. I buy most of my clothes from thred up.

      • am I the only one who still uses cleaning rags? Any worn out cotton t-shirt gets cut into rags in my house.

        • Yes we switched away from paper towels a long time ago. Rags clean souch better. Uses energy to wash them, but I still prefer it.

        • Me too. I make my cleaning lady use all of the clotheing I can NOT donate to wash down my bathroom and dust with. This way, I know she is NOT spending money on stuff that I already have. The last cleaneing lady took alot of my clotheing home with her to give to her daughter, and I was NOT even goeing to give those to good will. FOOEY on her. She was a good cleaner, but cleaned me out of things that she had NO BUSNESS takeing! DOUBEL FOOEY!

    • Brita filter jar instead of buying bottled water.
      Sort waste and recycle as per city recommendations.
      Public transportation or walk instead of individual car whenever possible.
      Buy almost everything in glass jars instead of plastic.
      Buy some dry groceries in bulk instead of individual packaging.
      Take my own bags to the grocery shop or any other shop. Most are fine with giving me just the tissue paper to protect the garment instead of the whole carton.
      Group my online orders whenever possible (lower frequency, higher amount).

    • Tap water instead of bottled; old cloth diapers (that were previously bleached to within an inch of their lives) for floor spills; go-cup and metal straws for cold drinks; using my electronic gadgets to the very end of their lifespan; and this year I’m trying not to purchase any clothing that isn’t pre-owned, except underwear.

    • Not having kids ;)

      • Seriously. Aside from putting another human on the planet to leave a footprint, I had no idea babies make so much garbage until I had one. And trying to minimize it by cloth diapering and reusable everything is gross (I’m talking about flipping that dukey out of the diaper into the toilet, or realizing my forgotten-in-a-hurry snack boxes have developed a civilization of their own) and time intensive. No wonder back in the day when reusable was the default instead of an enlightened option mothers stayed home at least for the first few years.

      • Same here!

    • Eat a (mostly) plant based diet. I saw a documentary on Netflix recently about how the biggest impact an individual can have to benefit the environment is to not consume animal products, it was pretty convincing.

    • Not that Anne, the other Anne :

      None of mine are particularly out of the ordinary.

      – Compost food waste and use on the veggie beds
      – Recycle everything we can – most weeks the recycling bin is full and the trash bin is not.
      – Reuse what we can’t recycle
      – Bring my lunch to work as much as possible
      – Cloth napkins and cleaning cloths
      – Glass leftover containers rather than plastic.
      – Reusable water bottles
      – Plastic dryer balls rather than dryer sheets
      – Pay more for good clothes and shoes so I don’t throw them away so often.
      – Hang the clothes out (on my neighbor’s line – we have an agreement that we fix their computer and they let us use their clothes line)

      That’s what comes to mind, although I know we do more.

    • We do all the usual like reusable shopping bags at the grocery store, Pyrex storage containers, metal straws rather than plastic, everyone has a bunch of water bottles so we don’t buy bottled water etc

      But the really big thing is reducing our waste. We have three bins from the city – green waste (yard and food compost), recycling (both paper and cans and bottles) and then actual trash. We went down to the smallest size trash can and we stick to it. We absolutely have to compost and recycle to the max or we won’t be able to get everything into the trash can. It works really well for us – built in discipline.

    • Everyone already said some great things. I actually just finished ready the Zero Waste Project, so this is all at the front of my mind. I encourage everyone to read it.

      – Reusable grocery and produce bags
      – cloth napkins and microfiber cloths for cleaning
      – compost
      – mostly plant based diet
      – only get to-go coffee in a reusable tumbler
      – don’t buy bottled water
      – collect #4 plastic to recycle at the grocery store (grocery bags, bread bags, saran wrap)
      – skip free samples
      – properly dispose of electronics at county dump, and send my neighbors a note offering to take some of their stuff
      – recycle worn out clothes at H&M or Goodwill (both accept clothes recycling)

      • “and send my neighbors a note offering to take some of their stuff”

        Love this idea! Simple, helpful and minimal extra work.

    • New Tampanian :

      Does anyone have specific reusable straws that they like?

      • I bought this set for my kids for smoothies.

        Housavvy Pack of 12, Kids Reusable Silicone Straws Colorful with Cleaning Brush

        https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01ISPLHE6/

      • I ordered a couple of sets of these:

        Set of 8 Stainless Steel Straws FDA-Approved Ultra Long 10.5” Drinking Metal Straws For 20 30oz Stainless Tumblers Rumblers Cold Beverage (4 Straight + 4 Bent + 2 Brushes) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01L1YXQEU/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_WXn0Ab17WYJ06

        Bonus, the fat stratify ones can go into my dishwasher silverware thingy and not fall through. The skinnier bent ones can too, if the dishwasher loader can remember to put them in too-down, but they never do. (So I mostly use the fat ones)

        • Anonymous :

          FWIW, the straws probably aren’t “FDA Approved” since I doubt the FDA reviewed a submission regarding the design and manufacture of the straws, though they likely use materials the FDA has identified to be food-grade.

          #regulatorynerd

    • I think the most important thing is to just buy less stuff.

    • Linda from HR :

      – Collecting food scraps for compost. We can’t really process our own food scraps into compost for plants, but lots of cities and towns have municipal compost programs, and there are 3rd party companies that will pick up your scraps.

      – mesh bags for produce

      – Having a reusable shopping bag in the car (with said mesh bags inside) so I actually use them on last-minute, post-work shopping trips.

      – Growing some herbs and veggies at home

    • two wheels :

      Bike to work pretty much daily, year-round. Bike to any place if it is within 5-10 miles. Take public transit–bus or train. Drive a prius, only when needed (long trips or hauling lots of stuff that won’t fit in a backpack). Bring my own grocery bags to the grocery store. Try to only buy what I will eat. Donate to local, state, and national parks. Buy clothes on Poshmark. Donate used clothes to Goodwill or to my friend’s ebay reseller business. Acquire and dispose of furniture using my local buy nothing site or Craigslist. Live in a 1-BR apartment that is close to my job rather than a bigger place. Turn off the heat and use extra blankets. Try to buy clothes that will last a long time. Keep my electronics until they break; only buy replacements, not additions. Try to eat/drink local options and generally try to support local businesses. Try to eat less meat. Try to avoid shopping at Amazon and online generally to avoid the environmental impact of packaging/shipping (not to mention the environmental waste of returns that could have been avoided if I had seen the item in person first).

    • Love this thread. Some things we do that I don’t think have been mentioned yet:
      – washing clothes a less – if they aren’t gross, I get a few wears out of things and it extends the life of the garment
      – very, very infrequent dry cleaning (almost never)
      – bulk purchases – bring containers, they will tare them for you.
      – bringing my own utensils – in addition to a reusable straw, a spare fork and spoon in your desk or purse are awesome.
      – prepping snacks into reusable containers for myself and kids – prevents impulse purchases with lots of packaging
      – in addition to cloth diapers, cloth wipes for baby
      – bulk meal prep
      – joining a local free stuff group – keeps things out of landfill

    • Buy less stuff–we keep things (cars, furniture, clothes) as long as they work. We live in smaller home, which holds less stuff, so we buy less stuff overall. We buy and accept hand-me-downs for Kiddo and pass on as much as we can.

  5. random thoughts on clutter :

    Ugh — I have a big house (MCOL city and I’m older). It seems just to be a giant junk drawer. All. The. Stuff. It accumulates and maybe reproduces when we’re away at work.

    We haven’t moved in ~10 years ago. And when my husband sold his house and moved his stuff into our new house, he didn’t purge b/c he was moving into a much larger space (I had purged a bit when I did a big move a couple of years before getting married). He’s more of a hoarder; I’m a purger, but short on time.

    Moving into a Big Girl house seems to have cursed us. And having then had children has left me with not enough time to go through it all.

    This morning’s dead mouse in the basement (which fortunately I found; could easily have died somewhere hidden away; was getting very ripe though) may have been the last straw.

    Help me not get out the matches . . .

    • Anonymous :

      I’m definitely a cluttered person. What helps me is just doing it. Pick a single drawer of cupboard and just clean that one thing out. I get very overwhelmed thinking big picture. But one drawer or corner or pile at a Time is doable.

      • This, and don’t be afraid to just throw things out. Some people get all hung up on how they must garage sale / recycle / upcycle / donate / compost / green / clean / save the world when they just need to put those old, stained T-shirts in a cardboard box in the trash. Yes, you could recycle them, but if you’re fighting a near-hoarding situation obsessing about the “correct” way to dispose of each item will defeat the purpose.

        • +1. Do what you can to be green for obvious stuff like old clothes in good condition, but don’t be afraid to go nuclear on the rest if you’re getting close to a hoarding situation.

      • anon a mouse :

        Put a bin in your house (on each floor if there’s room) for things to go while they are waiting to be purged/donated. And be thinking about it even if you are not officially “organizing.” Like I was going through my closet the other day and saw three shirts I haven’t worn in several years. I don’t really like them anymore. It took 10 seconds to put them in the purge bin on that floor. If I change my mind before our quarterly charity donation, fine, but I don’t expect to.

    • My solution is task rabbit – I have storage in my garage that gets out of control, and when it does, I hire someone to come and sort it out. I have a vague idea of what’s there and if I’m not missing it, I probably don’t need it. I have them sort things into trash, sell/donate, keep (and they usually come ask questions along the way), hen I tend to move most of the keep things to trash or sell/donate. 1-800 junk will usually come same day, so as soon as they’re done, I have them come and get all the trash. It works well if your clutter is in the same-ish place (attic, garage, basement).

    • I’ve found the easiest way to declutter a space (and like person above said), is to get rid of what you feel “doesn’t belong” in that space. Like literally heap it into a big pile and only leave what goes into the space. ONLY THEN do you sort through those items to determine if they are a must keep v. nice to have v. trash/don’t need. For the must keeps, put them in the area you think it belongs (which will get this treatment eventually). Going from room to room doing this, you eventually will have a decluttered space. The key is to do small projects that you can complete in the allotted time frame. Don’t purge your closet without time to sort through the items that don’t belong just to leave a pile of clothes on the floor.

    • Paper is a big one for us. Unsubscribe from credit card offers (open one up and there is info to unsubscribe to the network of that crap). Have a shredder and paper recycle box by the entry to your home (such as the garage). We try to avoid letting it into our house.

      Here is some motivation – if you get rid of the stuff, it will be so much easier to keep your house clean.

      • Also, don’t feel bad about the mouse. It does not mean anything about how you keep your home. We live on the edge of our town and had mice last year. I freaked out, but literally everyone in our neighborhood has this issue. They get in through very small cracks and holes. It says nothing about you. We have an exterminator now and bait boxes outside in the winter. Everyone in our neighborhood does it.

        • We also have mice. New insulation last year, sealing of all the cracks and a bait box and so far we’ve found 1 in the garage and I just found another in the basement yesterday. Gives me the heebie jeebies, but we live right next to a large tract of wooded parkland.

        • We had a HUGE mouse problem this winter. I was at first embarrassed because OMG I’m dirty. But the exterminators were really clear that it was just a bad winter (Midwest) and that everything was bad, including mice. I found exterminators that focused on the physical barriers too, so it was more expensive, but they sealed all the cracks and guarantee the work for a year. They found the entry point, it was a spot I would have never looked on my own. And the did more preventative measures, dug trench, places wire mesh, covered it on the side of my house with lots of vines. I started talking about our problem with neighbors and it seems like it just rotated around the block, and when one house would solve the problem the mice would move on.

    • What has been a (pretty successful) New Year’s resolution of mine for the past couple of years — I try to clean out one area in my house each week. It can be big or small–one week it’s my bedside table (shelves and drawer), one week it’s a shelf in my clothes closet, one week it’s under the bathroom sink. I pick a big or small area depending on how much time I have that weekend.

      What’s helped me be successful is writing it down each week after I do it, so I have a little boost/momentum knowing that I get to add to my list.

      Doing it in really small steps is a much more reasonable goal for me than trying to take it on all at once!

    • random thoughts on clutter :

      Here are some more thoughts:

      Kids are in school. Got an xbox for Christmas and are obsessed with minecraft. So that they don’t play it 24/7, I frequently haul them outside or have friends over. Guess what they never do any more: play with toys. Especially educational-stuff (kids swing kits, making bracelets kits, all that “kit” and craft stuff that people get girls for presents).

      I have a GIANT rubbermaid tub of unopened presents (that go un-asked for; on rainy days I will bring up a Shiny New Thing but I swear they don’t care about stuff like this anymore). I gave it all to Toys for Tots last fall and . . . it promptly refilled itself b/w holidays and the latest round of birthdays. I am hanging on in case we ever have them home sick (at which point, anything to break the boredom). Post-mouse though, maybe it’s time to pitch again (and suggest for any relative to ask: they want clothes and/or money to make their own good/bad spending decisions with (turns out: they like pedicures. I can get on board with that)). But what is a good outlet for this stuff this time of year? At the risk of a mouse chewing in to the bin, it may not be worth waiting (plus: the smell, if anything dies nearby) until the next Toys for Tots season.

      • Good will. And teach them that asking for money is tacky.

        • Ditto. See if any local shelters take families and need brand-new toys.

          DO NOT let this mouse freak you out. Sure, go ahead and declutter the house, but don’t obsess over a mouse chewing through tubs or smelling up the place. Mice happen.

        • random thoughts on clutter :

          Obviously.

          The relatives will periodically ask. One set just send me a check. Others . . . show up for visits with giant stuffies and then bring all sorts of what I call Amish toys (geared around sewing / crafting; I loved that stuff and have attempted to use it to show my kids how you do things . . . they will watch me but otherwise won’t touch). One SIL uses an Amazon gift list and I may try something like that. I think some people are “gifts of stuff” people and it makes them happy to make a big production.

          Luckily, one kid has aged out of large birthday parties and gets excited for experiential gifts (concerts, riding horses) and the other is almost there.

      • Anonshmanon :

        I’m sure the relatives would appreciate knowing how to make your kids happy instead of giving them gifts that don’t get looked at once. Sharing specific wish lists, including “money for x purchase” is my family’s MO.

        • Whenever the grandparents ask my daughter what she wants for Christmas/birthday, she replies “A special time with YOU.” They usually end up taking her out to dinner and a show and they all have a wonderful time. When there is a big family gift-opening event, they will make a little “gift certificate” and wrap it up so she has something to open.

          • THIS exactly. My son’s favorite birthday present is a baseball or college football game by himself with grandpa and grandma (Sister and Parents not invited.) They usually buy him a new jersey so he will have something to open – one of the few items of clothing an 8 year old can get excited about. My parents and my in-laws might have a better time than he does!

          • What age did you start training her to say that… ;)

          • 6 or 7?

    • Clutter is just belongings that don’t have a home. Make your first goal to clear all your surfaces by finding homes for everything or else getting rid of them.

      Then go through junk drawers and odds-and-ends cupboards one by one.

      Do you still have stuff in boxes from your moves? If you haven’t used it by now, you’re not going to use it ever.

      I like to do big goodwill runs or leave things by the curb for free (they always get taken) My sister likes to put things on Craigslist for $5 or so on the honor system – they’re on her front porch and people can leave the $5 in her mailbox. She’s done surprisingly well this way.

    • Senior Attorney :

      FlyLady is an oldie but she still has good ideas: http://www.flylady.net/d/getting-started/flying-lessons/decluttering-15-minutes/

      I love the 27 Fling Boogie.

    • Minnie Beebe :

      Rent a dumpster, take a few days off work (DH, too, if you can both spare it.) Fill it.

      It’s AWESOME to watch it get loaded onto the truck and head down the street, out of your life forever.

    • Hire a professional organizer! My husband and I finally did as our Christmas gift to ourselves and she was worth her weight in gold. Great not only for QUICK purging (she brought a team and they were so much faster than we would have been on our own), plus she really sat down and talked through our lifestyles and what was causing the clutter and helped us come up with some long-term solutions. It was the greatest thing ever, I highly recommend it.

  6. Can we talk sunglasses? I desperately need a new pair, but why are they all so goofy-looking? (It’s possible that I need to upgrade beyond pairs that cost $15 to find the right thing.)

    I’m not petite or even thin, but my facial structure is more delicate than the rest of me. Most frames look absolutely ridiculous on me, even if they’re supposed to be somewhat oversized for sun protection. If anybody has brilliant suggestions for a fair-skinned, dark-haired woman who also rocks a pixie cut, I’m all ears. I’m not really a cool girl, so I’m going for ‘effortlessly chic.’

    • Ray ban aviators tend to look good on everyone- I love mine, they’re light weight and not crazy expensive. I get mine on Amazon so easy returns – there’s different sizes and options, so you might need to play to get the right one for your face.

    • Flats Only :

      They will cost more, but can you go to a glasses store and pick the frames that suit your face and get them made into sunglasses?

    • sunglasses :

      Have you looked at Madewell? I got some cute ones there recently. I have a similar face shape and coloring and also struggle with most frames seeming way too big, almost costume-y. I gravitate toward a very subtle cat eye, nothing too crazy, but the shape seems to work on me.

      Otherwise, I’d say just go to Nordstrom Rack or Target and try on tons of pairs. You’ll start to get a sense of what details to look for and what shapes complement your face. Good luck!

    • Classic Ray-Bans or aviators are your friend. Don’t deviate from the traditional silhouette and you’ll be fine.

      • This. Also, Ray-Ban makes smaller wayfarers now. Same classic shape, just a little smaller.

        • In-house in Houston :

          Costco has a very nice selection of Ray Bans….cheapest I’ve ever seen. In the optical section.

      • I love how classic Ray-Bans look…. on other people. I’m a fair-skinned, dark haired woman with pretty small/delicate facial structure, and I’ve tried on the aviators and the wayfarers and my face is just totally overwhelmed. I have a pair of Maui Jim Mavericks that I am OBSESSED with though. Plus the Maui Jim lenses are honestly nicer than the Ray-Ban ones (my eyes are blue and fairly sensitive to light, so that’s important to me). But yeah, nowhere near that $15 price point – though I think it’s so worth it for something you’re going to wear almost every day.

        • Try Maui Jim’s aviators. They have a slightly different shape than that of Ray-Bans, not quite as buggy.

      • I’m petite with a small face. Ray Bans round metals are a favorite, i wear them in sunglasses and in clear prescription glasses.

    • pugsnbourbon :

      Hello fellow fair-skinned, dark-pixie-cut woman!

      I bought a pair of simple black wayfarers from the brand ZeroUV (found on Amazon). They were about $12 and I’ve been really happy with how they’ve held up. They also have a half-rim style and aviators.

      • Oh my gosh, great rec – thanks!

      • Oh, yes! My DH bought a pair of that brand this summer as his “pool glasses” to avoid bringing his $200+ prescription sunnies into the pool/around the concrete patio, and he loves them. Looking for a pair myself…

    • Veronica Mars :

      If you can find a local (non Luxottica) glasses shop, definitely go there and ask for help. At my local shop, I walked right in, told them I was looking for a pair of flattering glassing and the owner literally just plucked a pair off the shelf and handed it to me. It was perfect! For you, if you can’t find assistance locally, what the owner told me is that I do have a very narrow nose bridge (you likely do too if you have delicate features), so I need to look for glasses that have a bridge (that’s the middle number on the side of the glasses) between 14 and 17. If it’s 20, it’s going to slide down my nose. He also said to look for lens widths (that’s the first number around 45-55) for my face (less than 45 and you’re getting more into 90s small lens look). Again, if it’s 60+, it’s going to be too big (width-wise) for my face. For reference, the glasses I’m wearing now are 47-17-140 and my sunglasses are I think around 55-15-120 No idea on the last one, I think that’s the temple length. ANYWAY, is it easy to find glasses by the measurement? No, it’s not. I like Maui Jim because they provide these measurements easily or you can sometimes zoom in on the temple of the glasses in the pictures to read the measurements for other brands. Barton Perriera (secondhand from the Real Real since they retail like $400 and are secondhand like $70) also is made in Japan (not luxotica) and fit a really really wide range of face shapes.

      • Whoa, this is super helpful. Thank you!

        • Veronica Mars :

          You’re welcome. He was super knowledgable and I learned a lot. In addition, this is just a personal preference, but he said for my skin tone (NW-10 in MAC), he doesn’t recommend black frames. He said it’s a very harsh look against light skin tones and it rarely looks as good as a lighter color. He said something from honey to amber color will look best (but I’m a blonde, so I don’t know if that matters). I tried on my same glasses with a black frame and I totally saw his point–I felt very Taylor Swift in “You Belong With Me.”

      • The 3rd number is the length of the arm of the frame (from the hinge to the ear)

    • I also have delicate features that get dominated by sunglasses, and I found a cool pair at Fossil, at a price point somewhere between “vendor with a table on the street” and Rayban.

    • Warby Parker makes sunglasses too. You could order a box of styles to try on and then decide which one you would like to get made into sunglasses.

      • A lot of their sunglasses styles aren’t available for home try on, though, which is a real bummer. I really want some new prescription sunglasses.

    • biglawanon :

      Have you tried youth/kids sunglasses? I am tall, but am sort of small framed and have a small face. I wear Ray-Ban Junior (i.e., kids) aviators and Wayfarers. They actually fit my face, the styles are the same and don’t look like they are meant for children, and are less than half the price of adult sizes. I also am dark-haired and have a pixie cut (not fair-skinned), if it matters.

      I also wear youth prescription eye glasses for similar reasons.

    • I’m a firm believer in quality sunglasses. I swear by Maui Jim, which will set you back a couple hundred bucks, but if you take care of them will last for years. Compared to other fancy brands I have worn, the colors are brighter and clearer, and they have nose grips so they aren’t constantly sliding down if you are sweaty. Worth every penny in my estimation.

      You only get one pair of eyes, so protect them as much as possible.

  7. Vicarious shopping help?

    Looking for a sheath for an upcoming (spring/summer) wedding. Preferably floral, jewel tone-based, something that shows off the collarbones; $200 or less. TIA!

    • Asos is great for this
      http://us.asos.com/asos/asos-floral-ruffle-bardot-off-shoulder-midi-dress/prd/8330364?
      http://us.asos.com/asos/asos-floral-fold-detail-bardot-scuba-pencil-dress/prd/8573104

      Not a sheath but to fun not to include: http://us.asos.com/asos/asos-bonded-mesh-bandeau-floral-midi-prom-dress/prd/8670282

      • Ooh another two interesting ones:
        http://us.asos.com/asos/asos-design-slinky-floral-cami-drape-midi-dress/prd/9504882

        Not a sheath again but checks the other boxes!
        http://us.asos.com/oasis/oasis-occasion-floral-print-v-neck-skater-prom-dress/prd/9073125

  8. #metoo departure party update from Wednesday thread –

    I figured out that I don’t know the female associate who was targeted that well, and she likely was not invited to my departure party (I still don’t know exactly who she is), so decided not to say anything to the male associate. He ended up coming to the party, basically no one acknowledged him, it was super awkward and he left after having half a beer. Success? It’s at least clear that there are social consequences for what he did. Phew.

    Rainbow Hair and others – thanks for your thoughtful advice.

  9. LOFT shrinkage :

    I generally like the tops and sweaters at LOFT, but I find they always shrink! Even though I use cold water and low heat dryer.

    • Elegant Giraffe :

      Don’t put them in the dryer.

      • pugsnbourbon :

        +1. I’ve managed to preserve a couple of their cotton cardigans by air-drying. I just tumble for five minutes to loosen wrinkles.

      • Ditto. Do not put stuff in the dryer. Also look at fabric content — rayon often shrinks like crazy. Cotton shrinks. Polyester doesn’t.

      • +1

        Honestly, I never dry anything in the dryer except towels/sheets and oversized pj’s. All of my clothing is washed on delicate and hung dry.

        Hang dry everything, especially inexpensive tops from Loft!

  10. Lana Del Raygun :

    Is Sperry an obnoxious brand? I associate the men’s shoes with entitled jerks, but I know I developed that association because of a few specific people I went to school with, so it might just be a personal hangup. What do you all think?

    • I think you’re reading too much into this.

    • I think of them as private school uniform shoes, New England style frat boys (but I went to a very preppy college), and then just a functional pair of boat shoes. Their boots and non boat shoes are cute, but mostly not my style. The classic “Authentic Original” boat shoes are awesome for actually boating – they’re basically indestructible.

      • Anonymous :

        Yes, I spent a lot of time in Mass. and I think of the classic original boat shoes like I think of LL Bean Maine hunting boots — lots of prep school types wear them and then they became super fashionable, but so do average New Englander types who just want a durable classic shoe.

    • It’s the confirmed shoe of choice for those obnoxious males suffering from “affluenza.”

      • +1. But ditto other commenters that they’re also just classic shoes. My grandfather and uncles have worn them longer than I’ve been alive. They’re just regular men who grew up on the east coast and like a comfortable weekend shoe. My rugged husband really likes their dressy-casual sneakers for the summer.

      • Lana Del Raygun :

        But does that not apply to women? I’d getting one of the more ballet-flat-like styles, FWIW.

    • I think you can draw a pretty direct line from Sperrys –> traditionally preppy –> some entitled jerks, but the brand itself is totally fine. They don’t market or present themselves in an obnoxious way; they just have a subset of their clientele who have a fratty aesthetic. I have Sperrys and I like them as a casual alternative to ballet-type flats. I don’t think I’m entitled jerk, hopefully.

    • IDK, I am older and old-school and if they were in the original Preppy handbook, they are so established that you shouldn’t hold it against the Bros. My dad has a pair. He is just an old guy and his pair may be 30 years old. He is not J. Thurston Howell III and is an engineer who never had a bro phase. I used to have a pair in high school.

    • Sounds like more of a personal hang up. Sure a lot of of annoying frat boy types wear them, but so do millions of other people. My husband wears his almost daily in the summer and he is the furthest thing from entitled jerk you will ever meet.

    • I don’t know, I personally like Sperry shoes because they fit me well and match my overall aesthetic. I have a gold pair that still gets compliments every time I wear them. (Honestly, I think they’re a bit flashy, but that says more about me than the shoe.) I definitely see preppy frat boys wearing Sperrys, but they’re classic enough that I don’t worry about it.

    • If you want boat shoes that are not Sperry, you could go for Dubarry, it’s an Irish brand and very popular in England too.

  11. Does anyone know the psychology behind those annoying “I bet I won’t get even one share” or “99% of people won’t do this” posts on FB? Just…why?

    • pugsnbourbon :

      Virtue-signaling? I don’t know. I just keep scrolling. No likes for Jesus.

    • I have the same question!

    • This falls under the category I like to call Attention Dollars aka just posting for attention (likes/comments) purposes.

    • Also “99% if people can’t name a city without the letter A in it” or other stupid BS that everyone can do. Or at least everyone in Fresno can do, which is really saying something.

      They’re collecting likes for whatever purpose – probably to monetize the account, but I’m not totally sure how that works.

      • I see a lot of this on people who sell MLM products. I think they try to get people to interact with them so they can sell more garbage. They also post things like “what’s your favorite [whatever]?”

    • It’s some form of (unconscious?) negging. They’re trying to make you prove that you aren’t that person.

  12. Ladies, what are your thoughts about the professionalism of blue or purple or pink hair ? I love the trend and want to do a few streaks of purple or maybe a dip dye, nothing too shocking. Am I opening myself up to ridicule? For what it is worth, I am 45 and a lawyer in an academic setting.

    • I think some people can pull it off, if it’s professionally done, flattering, and coordinated with the rest of a thoughtful personal style.

    • I think purple is the easiest non-natural color to get away with. Maybe because it can look reddish, which is a natural color. In an academic setting, I think you can go for it. It’s becoming fairly mainstream.

    • I think this highly depends on if you’re a professor or work as an administrator. Professors are given way more leeway in things like crazy cuts and colors. As a lawyer working in administration, way unprofessional to have crayon colored hair. Have you thought about an undercolor (color applied under your hair so it only peeks out when you want it to)?

      • Same. I’m in administration, and crazy hair would not go over well in my office, to say the least. Which bums me out, but perhaps the undercolor would work. A few months ago, I saw a beautiful burgundy haircolor on Pinterest that I coveted immediately. I had my stylist tone it down with brown so that I still get a ‘fun’ color that doesn’t stand out in a negative way.

        • This is what I did. I’m an in-house attorney and got burgundy highlights that almost skew purple in places. It’s not “natural” but is close enough to a natural color that it still passes as professional.

    • I recently put some purple lowlights in my hair. I had a conversation about what I specifically wanted with my stylist, which is something that would blend in and could be easily hidable with my dark red hair. We find a nice, violet that worked well. She also didn’t put any color on the very top layer of my hair, which meant if I straightened it, it wasn’t right on top and it would also grow out more naturally.

    • We had an EA who had blue purple and pink hair on her full head. She was never client facing but when she left (as a temp) everyone talked about how amazing and professional she was, no one mentioned the hair.
      I am a bit more traditional (read boring) so must admit I did stare a bit the first 2 weeks.

    • Le sigh. Every time I read these I get sad and think everyone needs to move to the Bay Area where these things aren’t a big deal. Sure, for some jobs, but mostly if it’s your personal style, it’s just fine. Come here and get a job at Cal ;)

    • I had violet hair in grad school, I loved it. I expect in an academic setting it would be no problem for you to get the color!

      I’m considering going with a lilac color this summer, a la Vice Admiral Holdo, when my city council is in recess and I won’t be on camera for a while.

    • I just talked to my hairdresser and we are on for tomorrow! Going with dyeing underneath so it peaks out a little bit. I am otherwise fairly traditional in my clothing but this trend is really calling to my inner teenager.
      Thank you.

      • Sounds awesome! I have black hair and did a purple balayage (that eventually faded out to pink between touch-ups) for a while. No one batted an eyelash and those who noticed thought it looked great.

    • I also think that people who are more senior and have proven themselves with their work can often get away with a bit more uniqueness in personal style.

    • KateMiddletown :

      Paging @RainbowHair?

  13. Boston retirement/financial advisor? :

    A close relative in Boston just decided to take early retirement. I know she does not have much savings, and intends to rely on a public pension, among other fixed sources of income. I would like to recommend that she consult with a financial advisor to really figure out if she can afford to retire at this point. I think she would appreciate it and follow up, if I can provide her with a direct contact. The idea is for a professional to review all her expected sources of income and advise her about timing, not investments or the like. Does anyone have any recommendations? Thanks!

    • Unless she asked you, you should not provide unsolicited advice.

      • That’s why I’m trying to offload to a professional. Because I don’t want to get in the nitty-gritty. But I believe this is an emotional decision for her and I’d like someone else to be able to check that it’s also a rational one.

        • It’s still not clear whether your relative asked you for advice on her financial situation. It sounds like you are concerned and want to be proactive. If she asks you for the name of a professional, fine. Otherwise, don’t just offer one up. She has made her decision already based on whatever information she thought was relevant.

    • I sense some anxiety on your end. Is this a relative that you are worried about needing to support?

      Isn’t it a little too late, if she has already done it?

      • Yes, if it came to it, I would be the safety net providing financial support. She has privately decided, but hasn’t put in the paperwork yet. So it’s not too late.

        • Have you discussed the financial safety net issue with your relative? Personally, I feel it’s pretty presumptuous of someone to expect to rely on another’s financial support without a discussion of what that looks like and how you get to that point.

          If it were me, I would have that discussion so that everyone is clear on the boundaries and the limits. IMO, a rational person will be able to take the boundaries and limits and then assess their decision to retire early based on that additional information.

          I fully understand that family relationships are not rational all the time, nor are decisions about money unfortunately. I am a scrooge who doesn’t plan to support anyone but myself and any future life partner I end up with!

          • KateMiddletown :

            Lol @ Rational Person. Sorry, but most People are not Rational, especially when it comes to money.

            OP, sadly, if you haven’t been asked for your input, your role is limited.

        • How early is early?

          If I had the option of a public pension PLUS other fixed sources of income, I would retire in a heartbeat. ESPECIALLY if my early retirement included health care. Especially with emotional issues involved. Most people retire on less, you know?

          My mother died the year she “retired”. Cancer. Life is short.

          And I would be really, really, really bummed if my close relative waited until the moment I told her I had decided to retire to start making me feel guilty and re-assess.

          You do know that any pricey “financial advisor” will likely tell her she can’t retire, right….? The amount of $ these guys tell you that you need is out of reach for most normal people.

          Maybe you should just talk with her about how she is looking forward to retirement? How does she see herself spending her time? Many people look at it as a stepping back, but often work part time later, or downsize, or cut back in many ways to simplify life and save money.

          I suspect she has thought about this more than you realize. Or is she generally irresponsible with money?

    • How early is early?

      If I had the option of a public pension PLUS other fixed sources of income, I would retire in a heartbeat. ESPECIALLY if my early retirement included health care. Especially with emotional issues involved. Most people retire on less, you know?

      My mother died the year she “retired”. Cancer. Life is short.

      And I would be really, really, really bummed if my close relative waited until the moment I told her I had decided to retire to start making me feel guilty and re-assess.

      You do know that any pricey “financial advisor” will likely tell her she can’t retire, right….? The amount of $ these guys tell you that you need is out of reach for most normal people.

      Maybe you should just talk with her about how she is looking forward to retirement? How does she see herself spending her time? Many people look at it as a stepping back, but often work part time later, or downsize, or cut back in many ways to simplify life and save money.

      I suspect she has thought about this more than you realize. Or is she generally irresponsible with money?

    • Dear Lord, can someone just answer the question that was asked? I swear, the question-shaming on this site gets to epic proportions sometimes.

      I am sorry; not from Boston, so cannot answer your very legitimate question, and were you my relative, I would be grateful.

      • Anonymous :

        Welcome to the internet. *Shrug*

      • I think it can be helpful to not answer the question directly when a different set of questions or a different solution achieves the desired result. But it’s kind of crazy that we treat professional women like they are stupid children. I really wish we also would just respect the idea that this is a public forum that is read by a huge number of people, and some people very understandably don’t want to explain enough so that the questions go away, because doing so would “out” them.

    • Anon for this :

      I highly recommend Goldfinch Financial in Manchester, NH. They can do Massachusetts work too. They assisted one of my divorce clients on a pro-bono basis. I asked my alma mater for a referral to someone ethical because this woman could be convinced to buy anything. They have treated her like their mother or grandmother and I am extremely impressed.

      http://www.goldfinchfinancial.com/

      • Thank you! I will suggest that she reach out to make a financial plan for retirement with a professional and offer to pay for a consultation if she wants to do it. That will give me peace of mind.

    • Anonymous :

      By any chance is her pension/retirement involved with TIAA/CREF? One of my relatives who worked in a government position had this. They are non-profit and have financial advisors and would give financial advice for free when you hold accounts with them.

  14. Litigators – how do you deal when you’re taking a position in a case (per client directive) that you think is wrong? I’m not talking about a position without factual/legal merit, but just an argument that you personally don’t agree with.

    • Advance the argument the best you can. You never know which argument will succeed. Two cases that I have worked on come to mind where the client’s hang-up that the lawyers really didn’t have confidence in ended up winning the day.

    • I just do it? That’s the job. I advise them, if they want to go a different direction that’s fine.

      • +1 It’s not my life, not my consequences that I’ll have to live with. It’s their decision. I have given the advice, they’ve chosen how to proceed. It’s not personal.

      • Senior Attorney :

        Yeah, this.

        My husband is a family lawyer and half his business is advocating positions he thinks are misguided.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      Sometimes, when the circumstances call for it, I make clear that it’s my client’s decision. For example, if we are in a mediation and the opposing counsel is blustering that we can’t make any progress unless I drop X, I’ll say something like I see where you are coming from but I can’t do that as my client insists that X remain part of this negotiation.

      I’ll also do that if a judge is treating me like I’m stupid for something. I’ll say I completely understand but this is ultimately my client’s decision and I am here to honor his wishes so long as they comply with the law.

      • Senior Attorney :

        In criminal court it’s quite usual for defense counsel to say something like, “Your Honor, defendant states XYZ…” and it’s understood that it’s not coming from counsel.

  15. The rug in my front hallway consistently moves. My guess is from my cats running across it, but am not sure. I tried a rug mat, but that didn’t really stop the movement. Any ideas of other things I can try?

    • Rehome your cats.

      Just kidding.

    • get an underpad, they help keep rugs in place

    • A different, stickier rug mat?

    • Same. Sometimes I get a clue, like the rug is all crumpled at one edge and the beloved catnip frog is peeking out from under, but other times I’d swear I have a goblin because the rug that was east-west when I left the house is now north-south.

      I have given up on perfection with my two cat bros in my life. I’m happy to straighten the rug and think about what they got up to in order to move it so far. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

      • Same, my cat uses the entry rug as a launchpad, and is very pleased with how he rearranges his house.

    • Carpet tape. I use just an inch or two of it at the corners.

    • CorporateInCarhartt :

      There is rug tape out there. It’s strong and double-sided. Test it first to make sure it’s ok on your floors, but I’ve used it with good results on hardwood floors.

  16. 11 weeks pregnant and torn about my job. My boss knows about the pregnancy. On the one hand, I’m exceedingly lucky as my work is very flexible. I’ve been working from home twice a week (very common in my company for everyone) and have missed work for quite a few doctors’ appointments – no issues or questions asked. I am still delivering on my projects without performance issues.

    On the other hand, my female boss (w two kids, who left a consulting job for more work/life balance), keeps hinting that we should keep my workload light. It’s too light at the moment – I’m so bored with little to do! When I raised this with her yesterday she said not to worry and to just relax right now. There’s a big project I should be involved with, and when I suggested I could help out, she said that it involved weekly 7am meetings, which would be too much because of my “health.” Additionally, she keeps saying I need to train a co-worker up so he can take over one of my major deliverables, because it will take place after I’m out. But that’s incorrect and I’ve corrected her several times – the event is in early October and my leave won’t start until November.

    I don’t want to jeapordize the flexibility I have or seem ungrateful for it. Part of me thinks I should just take her advice and enjoy this quieter time. I just got a significant promotion in January, so it’s also a good opportunity to “lean out.” But I feel irritated and like I’m being “mommy-tracked.” What would you do?

    • I’d push back hard. “My health is fine. I want to be staffed on this project.”

      • +1 Sounds like she’s not trying to hurt you, but this could be very professionally harmful anyway.

      • Lana Del Raygun :

        I agree. Making it clear that this is something you *want* to do, not just something you feel like you ought to do, might help. And as obnoxious as it is, maybe she’s taking your recent WFH as a sign you’re under the weather, so maybe dial that back, depending on how it compares to your pre-pregnancy habits? Ugh, I’m sorry she’s being this way.

    • I’d push back on the bulk of it, but I think it’s reasonable for someone to be familiar with a major event you have a month before you’re intending to be out. I’m not saying let him take over, but you don’t want to leave work in the lurch if you’re unexpectedly out early. I think you push back now, but you might appreciate the flexibility later on.

      • +1. Push back on not being busy enough now, and don’t let co-worker take over until you go out on leave! But training someone else so they can step in is a good idea. I got put on bed rest about 2 months before my due date, and then baby was born one month early. There was no way to predict the issues that led to bed rest (pre-term contractions) until they began–I was working and traveling up until I started having contractions, and I was even a bridesmaid in a family member’s wedding a week before being put on bed rest.

    • You have several months before your leave, most of the year! There is no reason he needs to know anything more about this project until around a month before your leave (in case of early birth, it happens).

      Don’t leave before you leave, and don’t let this woman (!) try to push you out or make you seem less necessary in your role, especially for a standard pregnancy with a leave you’re coming back from. You aren’t sick you’re pregnant!

    • Display Signs? :

      THis is a know-yourself kind of thing. I only tell someone, “Relax a little” when they are the kind of people who, even if they were to relax, would still be achieving above expectations. I would never tell a mediocre performer or a slacker to “relax.” Are you an incredibly high achiever, who works long hours (asked to or not), and is on GO all the time? If so …maybe a little relaxing isn’t a bad thing! If not (and you know yourself), ask for more work.

    • In a similar boat :

      “I’m really interested in this project and don’t really understand what your concern is. Are you pushing me to the sidelines because you think you can’t rely on me? My doctor doesn’t expect me to have any unusual medical issues. If you just think I won’t feel up to it, I appreciate you thinking of me, but that’s my decision.” At least, that’s what I’m planning to say to a co-worker next week.

  17. Hemes Scarf Tying? :

    I just picked up an Hermes scarf from The Real Real. I’ve never had one before – I don’t want to ruin it. It’s made of a bazillion little pleats. How in the world do I wear/tie it? TIA.

    link to follow for item

    • Anonymous :

      Got my first (likely only) Hermes scarf in Paris recently, and am waiting to get it back from the framers. I finally decided wearing it would only bring me intermittent joy, but having it the wall of my living room would make me happy ever day. They called yesterday and are coming to install later this month. Cannot wait.

  18. Hemes Scarf Tying? :

    https://www.therealreal.com/products/women/accessories/scarves-and-shawls/hermes-trompes-de-chasse-silk-plisse-scarf

    • I feel like the only way to tie this style is the way they show in the photo. You won’t ruin it, just don’t tie the knot like you’re trying to prevent your horse from running off – just a loose knot and you’ll be fine.

      • biglawanon :

        this and good pick!

        • Hermes Scarf Tying? :

          Thank you! I have to pinch myself actually …. felt the large square ones would be too shawl like on my frame, so I took a chance on this one. Thank you!

          • Another anonymous judge :

            I love my plisse scarf. There are tons of ways to wear it – also useful a scarf ring – both regular and two-sided. See, for example: http://www.maitaispicturebook.com/2014/06/plisse-scarves-knot-look-sheet.html

            Congratulations on your lovely scarf.

    • if its long enough, fold it in half and pull the tail ends through the loop.

    • I wonder if you could wear it as a headband. Or if you’d want to.

    • Another anonymous judge :

      I love my plisse scarf. There are tons of ways to wear it – also useful a scarf ring – both regular and two-sided. See, for example: http://www.maitaispicturebook.com/2014/06/plisse-scarves-knot-look-sheet.html

      Congratulations on your lovely scarf.

    • Hermes Scarf Tying? :

      Thank you everyone, you’re so helpful. Now I think I will wear it often! Knew I could rely on the hive.

  19. Negotiating advice :

    I am gearing up for a Negotiation Talk around position, raise, title, responsibilities, etc. with a boss in a few weeks. I’d like to be extremely well prepared for this conversation, and expect it to take place over several different meetings. What are your best tips for nailing a negotiation over salary in a current job, etc? I’ve got Getting to Yes in my cart but am open to all other recs for books, articles, webinars, etc.

    • The book Difficult Conversations could be helpful and is often used hand-in-hand with Getting to Yes. Good luck!

    • This is a little silly but I love this video; you should watch it and take negotiation tips from Sherri: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7-eoiY4bOo

  20. standing desk mat :

    I’m in a new office, when sit-to-stand desks. I would like to spend more time standing in my office, but my feet start to hurt after a while. Any recommendations for a mat to stand on?

    • Could it be that you need better shoes?

    • I got the one they recommend here, it’s great. https://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-standing-desk-mat/

      • Yeah, I have the Ergodriven Topo and I really like it. It’s like I get to fidget with my feet!

    • anon a mouse :

      I got a thick kitchen mat from amazon to start with. I found that I really had to work up to standing most of the day — and even then, I usually kick my shoes off and stand on the mat in my stocking feet.

      A couple of colleagues have the Topo mat that is supposed to be better for anti-fatigue (the one with lots of hills and valleys in it) but I wanted to start off small before dropping $100 on a mat.

    • Mrs. Jones :

      I remove my shoes when I’m standing at my desk.

  21. Display Signs? :

    Does anyone have an online source for getting smallish signs or graphics printed up? I’m looking for something printed on a lightweight, sturdy backing, the kind of thing I can prop on an easel. I’m just a one-person operation (think shoestring side gig), so I don’t need the kind of company that would handle trade-show displays or big quantities.

    Thanks!

  22. Breast cancer and alcohol :

    I thought this article was really interesting and might be eye-opening: https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2018/04/did-drinking-give-me-breast-cancer/

  23. Do we think the block heel trend is going to be around for a while? I need to replace some work shoes and I’m tempted to get a couple pairs of block heel pumps but I don’t want to drop the $$ if this trend is already on its way out.

    • biglawanon :

      I don’t know, but I am sticking with classic pumps. Mainly because block heels look terrible on me. My feet are giant (11.5) and I have bird legs. It looks like I have bricks on my feet.

    • Depends on the block heel, but some of them can be classic enough I think they’ll withstand the test of time, even if they look a little retro. I just swapped out my court pumps for some Isola block heels and I’m never going back.

      https://www.bluefly.com/isola-isola-eleni-iii-patent-pump/p/492588001?cm_mmc=Feeds-_-Google-_-187-_-492588001&cx_pro=PLA&gclid=Cj0KCQjwqsHWBRDsARIsALPWMEPotf5bPuU_7sF_UZUf915OtSUDWa3EvtxAylJh3eCD2FUdXlrBY3YaAqYBEALw_wcB&kwid=productads-adid%5E252287109065-device%5Ec-plaid%5E339182198866-sku%[email protected]%5EPLA

  24. Chicago insurance defense :

    Does anyone know what a 1st year associate generally earns doing insurance defense in Chicago?

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