Coffee Break: Multi Huggie Earrings

rose gold huggie earringsAs I’ve noted before, I’ve always thought huggie earrings were the most comfortable to wear at work — they’re so close to the ear (hence the name) that you sidestep the “is it appropriate for work” issues you sometimes get with dangly earrings, but with more of an interesting look than you often find in stud earrings. These rose gold earrings (with a post closure, alas) look gorgeous, with just a bit of an edge to them. They’re on a great sale, too — they were $495, but are now marked to $346. (Nice! There’s also an almost-sold-out diamond version of this earring for $795.) Pictured: EF Collection Multi Huggie Earrings

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  1. Hostess gift :

    I will be spending two months in Rwanda for work and will be living at the home of a colleague (whom I have never met). She has a husband and two young daughters (I think about 2 and 5). I’d like to bring a gift for the hostess and kids and am wondering if anyone has any ideas. I was thinking books might be good for the girls – anyone have any age-appropriate recommendations or any small, super fun toys that would be universally liked? How about ideas for the hostess? It’s a bit tricky without knowing much about her or whether there are typical hostess gifts in the country…

    • Cookbooks :

      As far as books for kids, maybe a Richard Scary pop-up book and a Dr. Seuss? Or maybe a game like Spot it Alphabet for the older one that she can also play with her sister as she gets older.

      For a hostess gift, I think that something special from your state would be nice, like maple syrup or candy from Vermont.

      • The Spot It games are great! I’ve played with kids and adults and everyone seems to have fun.

        • But be careful with food gifts – you may run into problems bringing some kinds of items into the country. Check before you buy & pack.

    • Mo Willems! Olivia books, Dragons Love Tacos, Rosie Revere Engineer… My daughter is 4 and 1/2 and there are just so many fantastic books for that age group… My almost two year old likes Sandra Boynton books. Or I like reading them to her…

      • I might be the only person who thinks the Mo Willems books are…kind of dumb. I guess the bus one may elicit a laugh, but for the amount I’ve seen his books recommended, I was underwhelmed.

        • Amanda and her Alligator! I’m not a fan of the Knufflebunny ones myself. But seriously, if we all liked the same books, that’d be pretty boring. And my DH is of the same opinion as you.

        • Wildkitten :

          I love them.

    • Stomp rockets. All kids under age 7 love them. They are really compact. Buy an extra set of “Rocket Refills”

      • Stomp Rockets are excellent! Could be a challenge for the 2 year old, so an Elephant & Piggy book with a small plush – OR they have a very workbook – to balance this out, and with English as one of their official languages – could be a fun boost. They can help you with Kinyarwanda.

        For the Hostess gift, a picture-heavy cookbook for your local/favorite cuisine. Pioneer Woman has great visuals, but you do you. Chances are they use metric measurements, so a measuring cup with cup 1/2 c, etc measurements, if you find one that is fun/pretty/gifty.

    • In House Lobbyist :

      Manga tiles are a great gift. My kids have played with them almost every day for years now. They are 3 and 6 now. They also like Candyland but the 2 year old would need help. De Seuss and Bernstein Bears are always big hits at my house. My kids also like the Mix It Up book and Press Here book. Art supplies like construction paper, stickers and new crayons are also good gifts.

  2. Any recommendations for a therapist in Palo Alto/Menlo Park?

    • Anon for this :

      Adina Klein is in Menlo Park and is great. I think most of her clients are high (over?) achievers and I really appreciated that she did not equate high functioning with “no problems.”

  3. Weighty Matters :

    Partly inspired by threads I’ve read on this site, I signed for my first weights / strength-training class yesterday! I did 50 minutes of bicep curls, tricep curls, and some other exercise I don’t know the name of with free weights, angled push-ups, rowing machine, and squats. I’d like to make this at least a once a week and ideally a twice a week habit.

    I used 7.5 pound weight for my upper body work and this was the first time I’ve ever handled something that’s over 2 pounds (those were the weights I’d use in barre class). I feel pretty proud of myself.

    Would love to hear more about your experience with weights. I don’t foresee myself doing dead lifts or jerks or anything like that, but I’m glad I’m incorporating weights into my routine.

    • Anonymous :

      I’ve been considering doing the same. Can you say why you got into this? I feel like you hear a lot that weight bearing exercise is good for women – but I don’t recall why; is it just to maintain/develop core strength or something else?

      • Bookwork Turned Weightlifter :

        It’s good for bone density. Bone mass decreases with age and weight lifting/strength training helps with this. As well as some positive cognitive improvements.

        I’m excited for you, OP! I hope you consider deadlifting and doing jerks (with proper training/coaching). I couldn’t put a barbell over my head three years ago and now I do Olympic weightlifting as a sport and I’m totally obsessed with it!

        P.S. Weightlifting (the sport) is one of the safest sports. Just gets a bar reputation through other sports that may lack more experience, like Crossfit. Though I’ve also done the latter and it’s great and fun (and safe) with proper coaching/scaling safely to what you can do.

        • Bookworm Turned Weightlifter :

          *My username should be “bookworm.” Should probably lift some more to make up for that afternoon brain, ha.

    • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

      Congrats on getting started! I have been into weight lifting for decades. I wouldn’t discount doing things like bench press or dead lifts in the future though! These are great compound movement exercises for building strength. It takes a while to build up to be able to do heavier and heavier weights, but consistently is probably the most important thing.

      I like weight lifting for a numbers of reasons. Combined with a proper diet and adequate hydration, it is a great way to get visible results pretty quickly. It also impacts my daily life in that I can actually lift things without struggling even though I am very small framed-i.e., no problem lifting a 50 pound suitcase. And it feels great when you meet goals you set like benching or squatting a certain amount.

      • Yep, I like weight lifting, too, because it is so practical – you can lift heavy things in real life!

        Also, I always wonder why women think they have to stick to light weights in the gym but haul around squirmy 30-lb. toddlers in real life.

        • I love how powerful I feel when I lift. It’s a nice side effect that it makes me look hot :)

    • I did and loved BodyPump classes for about a year and a half. It’s a fun way to lift that’s set to music and isn’t at all intimidating. A great intro. Many gyms have it – check the ones near you.

    • Anonymous :

      I started Strong Curves (Bootyful Beginnings), which is a 12 week program starting off with ~bodyweight exercises for good form, and I eventually also moved onto the second 12-week program, Gorgeous Glutes. Although it’s specifically targeting lower body (hence the name), I found great success with my upper body as well – went from doing assisted and negative chin-ups to 3!!! pull-ups by myself.

      You’ll do squats, deadlifts, rows, etc. There’s a book and prescribed workouts (A, B, and C) that you do a total of 4x/week for 3 weeks before moving onto the next section (so weeks 1-4, 5-8, 9-12 have similar, but different A, B, and C workouts). I really liked the variety, that there was a book to show me good form, and the workouts were written for me.

      I just read you only want to do 1-2x/week. I would say the MOST important thing I got out of the program is to increase weights! If you can successfully complete a set using 7.5# weights, bump it up to 10#. Done that? Try 12.5#! You’ll be surprised how quickly you progress in some of your exercises, and how that affects your body.

    • Cool! I just finished up my third week of Stronglifts 5×5. I’m pretty athletic, but I’ve never lifted weights regularly before. I’m hoping the strength I gain will help my performance in the sport I do.

      I’ve really liked lifting so far and I wish I’d started sooner. I’ve been tossing around the idea for about four years now, but I was always too intimidated. To be honest, I still am a little bit. I like to go off in a quiet corner of the gym that has just one power rack and where I’m usually alone. My next goal is to join the gym bros in the weight room.

      • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

        Contrary to stereotypes, the gym bros in the free weight room at gyms I have been to are generally not bothersome. A lot of the dudes there are pretty serious about their lifting and workout, want to get their workout in, wear headphones, and don’t bug people. I actually find the gym bros at my go to gym have great gym etiquette (putting stuff back, not trying to talk to you, etc.). I am often the only lady in the room, or close to it.

        Also, gloves. You want them. If for no other reason to prevent/minimize callous.

        • Amberwitch :

          Agreed – both on the gym bros and the gloves. I forget them every other time, and my hands are a mess for days afterwards – and deadlifting 60 kg without gloves is difficult.

        • pugsnbourbon :

          +1 on the gymbros, most are just there for the same reasons you are. But a quiet power rack in the corner sounds like paradise.

          I’ve been lifting for ~6 years and though I used them when I started, I don’t use gloves anymore. I get gnarly calluses, but between dry skin and peely nails, my hands are a mess anyway. You can use a pumice stone or a file to shave them down when they start interfering with your grip.

        • Do not use gloves, it makes grip even more of an issue. Make sure you’re gripping the barbell appropriately (Mark Rippetoe is a good resource for this info) and calluses will be minimal.

    • In House Lobbyist :

      I love weightlifting and it has made such a bigger impact on changing how my body looks than just cardio. My kids are 6 and 3 and weight about 90 pounds together and I can easily carry them both up the stairs at night so I am much stronger. My husband is my trainer and I do so much more with his help – so I think a trainer would be good for you. I loved the book – the Weightlifting Guide for Women and I lift heavy now. I feel great so I hope you like it.

  4. anon for this :

    For those of you who were diagnosed (or self-diagnosed) with adult ADHD, how did you get started? I have no idea where to start and I don’t really want to ask anyone in person about it. It sounds silly but I feel as though people’s response will be “but you always did great in school” when in reality I am wondering why I find it so incredibly hard to concentrate and actually complete tasks at work. I don’t know if I’m looking in the right directly at ADHD but I am feeling really frustrated with myself and my work.

    • Oh so anon :

      I would start by talking with your primary care physician in the event you don’t already see a psychiatrist. I was already being treated by a psychiatrist for depression when I realized it was an issue so I brought it up with him at an appointment. He didn’t really take it too seriously and after one medicine didn’t work he just suggested I not take anything. Several years later… I spoke to my primary care physician about it and she prescribed something. (And I stopped seeing him altogether.) It is really like night and day. My billable hours had plunged dangerously low before and the first month on and I was up nearly 50% in billables. It is a really low dose but it has been life changing.

      • Oh so anon :

        And I also got the “you always did great in school” comments when I tried to ask for help for it in law school. I can’t imagine how much better I would have done if I’d realized the issue earlier.

    • Also Anon :

      I am glad you asked this. Every time I have asked my PCP about it, she blows it off and tells me it is probably depression/anxiety. She has suggested Prozac and Wellbutrin, which have not helped. I will be following the responses.

    • D. Meagle :

      Try finding a therapist who diagnoses and treats ADHD. When I was looking for one, a psychologist friend recommended starting my search at Psychology Today dot Com, which allows you to search by location, specialty, and treatment type. For various reasons, I’ve suspected I have ADHD, but since I have generally succeeded academically and professionally, I never did anything about it. When I started discussing my anxiety and depression with my therapist, she was the one who brought up exploring the possibility of me having ADHD, which was reassuring (in that my anxiety is often caused by my poor performance at work, which is poor because I can’t seem to focus on tasks). We’ve only just started the process though, so while I am excited to see how it ends up, no real concrete advice. Will be following this thread.

    • My great student daughter was diagnosed at 16. It presents differently in females than the “hyper little boy” stereotype. There are pretty straightforward and standard in-office tests to flag ADHD, and they’ll refer you to a specialist if you show the signs. I suggest not reading about the in office test ahead of time so that you can get a real result not influenced by thinking about it before. Just call your PCP and ask if they’ll evaluate you. No shame. Seriously.

    • extra anon :

      It’s always possible to run into a health care provider who has sort of “taken a side” against ADHD diagnosis and prescription. (It’s overdiagnosed, some people just want performance enhancers, really people should just exercise more, etc.)

      But there is agreement, as far as I have seen, that ADHD was generationally underdiagnosed in women vs. men when we (=women who are employed adults) were young, partly because women with ADHD did well in school anyway. That’s recognized. I don’t think you’ll get the “but you did well in school” response.

      I did well in school, but I was still diagnosed as an adult (it was partly about HOW I managed to do well in school, where I struggled or put in more effort than should have been needed, and under what circumstances I don’t perform as well).

      Now, the childhood history may have came up partly because I got the big elaborate set of tests (took a whole day, cost a lot of money). It was my therapist who sent me down this road (based on observing me and hearing me describe my difficulty). But my psychiatrist didn’t wait for the test to prescribe a med to just see if it helped or not, and I think she would have been happy to keep prescribing based on her clinical impression that it was helping.

      The role of my PCP was mostly to help rule out, before going down this road, that the difficulty wasn’t due to a medical condition. Thyroid issues (still often underdiagnosed) and some blood sugar issues can cause cognitive symptoms, and those are fairly common problems to have.

      So if you have a clean bill of health, I may begin by looking for a psychiatrist with relevant experience?

    • I was really struggling at work, and after multiple coaching meetings with my supervisor, I finally told her just how anxious everything was making me and the toll that it was taking on my mental health. She gave me the name of a therapist she had gone to, and I scheduled an appointment. The therapist stopped me about halfway through our first appointment and said “you know, it may be anxiety – you have a family history of it and some of what you describe sounds like anxiety – but I want to get you on the schedule with our nurse practitioner who specializes in ADHD.” I did that, got meds, and have been doing better at work. I have since started on meds for anxiety as well because I was still having some issues in that regard. The combination has been great though, and I feel so much better. I will say that I kind of expected it to be a sudden 180 degree change. Like, I thought I would start meds for ADHD and all of a sudden I would be really productive and focused and whatnot. The meds do help a lot, but you also have to break old/bad habits, build new/good habits, and deal with the residual effects of living with undiagnosed ADHD for years.

      One thing to know is that ADHD has historically been massively under-recognized in girls and women (I’m assuming most commenters on here are women). There has been a big increase in diagnosis of adult women who finally hit a point in life where the coping strategies that got them through school, etc. are no longer enough. ADHD is often assumed to be a diagnosis of hyperactive little boys, and teachers and parents are more likely to identify it in hyperactive little boys because they are disruptive or struggling in school or bouncing off the walls at home. Girls tend to have inattentive type ADHD more than hyperactive type, so in girls it manifests more as daydreaming, talking too much in class, spaciness, forgetfulness, etc. But girls with ADHD may still be good students. I was smart and my teachers loved me. But I also forgot assignments, couldn’t figure out how to use a planner, took way too long to finish homework, was easily distracted, talked too much in class, and survived largely due to intense perfectionism, fear of failure, and a mother who said “Jaydee, how’s your homework coming?” roughly 8x a night. So “but you always did great in school” should be responded to with “yes, and that’s probably why I wasn’t diagnosed until I was 34 with a job and a family and I could no longer rely on large amounts of caffeine and a fondness for all-nighters to get done the same amount of work that everyone else can get done between 8 and 6.”

    • I would also mention the possibility of Asperger’s. I was always an excellent student who skipped a grade, but concentrating on an assigned task is very hard for me. I can concentrate for hours on stuff that I choose, but work is much tougher. My therapist then opened my eyes on the topic of autism/Asperger’s. I was very reluctant at first, as I am an extroverted person who reads people well, but the female version of autism can present itself very differently from what the general public refers to as autism.

  5. Is ponte one of those fabrics that develops pills or fuzz eventually? I am starting to ballpark $ per wear and now thinking that I should expect no more than 2 years for a ponte dress (sometimes just one).

    • Depends on the item. I have some ponte that’s worn like iron and some that’s pilled, with not much rhyme or reason.

      FWIW, you can use a sweater shaver on them.

    • cat socks :

      I have some pants that have pilled where my legs rub together when I’m walking. It’s not really noticeable since it’s on the inside of the thigh. The rest of the fabric has held up fine. I was them in cold water on the gentle cycle.

    • Senior Attorney :

      I got a battery operated fabric shaver and it saved a ponte garment that had pilled really badly. Totally worth the small expense!

  6. Any recs for an inexpensive but effective detangling conditioner (rinse out, not leave-in)? Preferably protein-free. I have 3a curls that are badly in need of a good detangling, but my current conditioner is a little too expensive for me to use a whole palm full and really work through the knots.

    • Try Mane ‘N Tail conditioner!

    • I use Organix Brazilian Keratin Therapy- though it does claim “ever straight” on the bottle, whatever that means. So it might not be the best for your curls but I think it would definitely slick up your hair enough to get knots out.

    • Anonymous :

      Olive Oil? Just something to grease up the hair enough to make it slippery enough for the knots to come out, right?

    • I really like the aussie 3 minute miracle deep conditioner. I use it a couple times a week and it’s really helped my coarse curly hair. It’s also about $4 a tube, so I can be really liberal with my application.

    • I know I’m late so you may not see this but have you tried the DevaCurl brand? I SWEAR by it. I used to hate my curly hair but now it’s so nice and bouncy and shiny and the curls defined. I also dont have a problem with tangles anymore — I can literally run my fingers through as soon as I put the shampoo in. I know I sound like an advertisement, but seriously: life-changing for me!

      • I have tried it! I use mostly Curl Junkie products, and I love them. My hair usually doesn’t get this tangled (maybe I’ve been sleeping on it funny?), which is why I wanted something cheaper than what I already used. Just something to get it back to normal and maybe have on hand if it ever happens again.

        • Boilage conditioner…I think it says de tangling conditioner, but name may I changed. I cannot. Travel. Without this.

    • Anonymous :

      Try applying a vegetable oil to your hair before shampooing, and then conditioning as usual. The oil really helps your hair not dry out.

  7. This is just too good not to share. I’ll link below as I’m not sure how links work in moderation. Was browsing on Shop Spring and saw this blouse. It is so ridiculous. I can’t imagine who would actually buy this thing!

  8. Anonymous :

    Any one else dislike the work from home culture that’s emerging everywhere? Don’t get me wrong – a flexible workplace is nice and it’s nice to have an option not to commute on a snowy day or when you have to wait for a cable guy. But in my fed agency people have taken working from home to the max – you’re allowed to regularly work from home two days a week and most of our attorneys do. You can’t work from home until you’ve been w the office for 2 yrs and people count the minutes until that anniversary – and think you’re crazy if 3 yrs into the job you come to the office 5 days a week. Maybe I’m old school but I prefer professionals in the office – not throwing in a load of laundry and a pot roast during the day; and that’s stating it generously – there’s many who do a lot more personal tasks than that. Am I the only one and is this a sign that this job doesn’t fit me? (Bc this won’t change – if anything the days of work from home allowed will increase.)

    • Anonymous :

      Count me in – I don’t want to work from home on a regular basis. I just don’t get as much done. I prefer going to meetings in person, rather than over the phone. I like leaving work at work (even though I do bring my laptop home every night – I just don’t get it out of my work bag).

      And I would go stir crazy not interacting with people – I live by myself. I do wish my commute was better (I’m working on that), but it’s definitely not a DC-level commute (I’ve done that).

    • As someone who works from home about half of the week (this is a formal, personalized arrangement, not just liberal use of a general policy), I obviously think the benefits outweigh the cons (at least on a personal level), but I do think that it can make certain things more complicated in an office. For example, yes, it can be frustrating to not pop into someone’s office if you have a question or to have the casual conversations that make working in an office worthwhile. That said, I think it’s something that offices can learn to adapt to and that flexibility generally benefits working parents and others with home needs that make commuting into an office five days a week difficult.

      That isn’t to say you should spend a lot of time addressing those personal needs during your work day, but I think it’s a welcome change that businesses are starting to use technology to enable us to lead more balanced lives. I work just as much (if not more so on some days) as people who are in the office, but it helps me enormously that I don’t have to add a 120-150 min of commuting time to my day five days a week. And for every load of laundry or pot roast thrown in the oven, I’m sure you could find the same amount of time wasted in the office (going to get coffee, going out of the office to pick up lunch, chatting at the proverbial water cooler).

      • Anonymous :

        Yes but when you go get coffee or lunch with coworkers you are furthering your relationships with them as colleagues and as professionals in your field – even if you aren’t discussing work specifically. When you throw in your husbands laundry or pot roast, you are furthering your relationship with him and I don’t see why that should happen on company time.

        • Sorry, but that’s total crap. First of all, there’s a lot of implied sexism in your comment. Nowhere in my comment did I say I was doing any of that for my husband. You might want to consider why you thought that in the first place. Second of all, it is very generous (and laughable) to pretend that every trip to grab a salad at Chopped or whatever is some sort of professional experience. When I go into the office (which, like I said is 2-3x a week), I usually run out to get food on my own or, if with a colleague, discuss stuff that has nothing to do with work. The idea of “company time” is also ridiculous in this day and age. Are you telling me you never work outside of the hours of 9-5? Or, conversely, that you never stop by the ATM on the way back from lunch? Hell, what about lunch breaks in the first place? The idea that we are all expected to be sitting at our desks from 8-7pm everyday, not handling even the smallest of personal items during business hours is a joke. Frankly, as someone who splits her time evenly working from home and in our office, I go into the office on days I want to foster those relationships and work from home on the days I need to get a lot of work done.

        • Uh what? I am going to eat the pot roast. Me. And I’m doing my own laundry. Single people work from home too. We aren’t “furthering (our) relationship” with anyone by working from home. Good for them, not for you– don’t work from home if you don’t want to. But your organization/company is obviously fine with it. If you don’t like it, don’t do it.

        • I had a longer reply but disappeared (and may reappear so I’ll spare everyone) but this comment is drenched in sexism. The fact that I work from home (as an attorney, thank you very much) doesn’t mean I spend my days doing my husband’s laundry or cooking him dinner. Your comment speaks volumes to how you see professional women who work from home. My comment also echoed what others said below: your trips to Cosi and Starbucks are not as business oriented as you likely think. And let’s be real, the 3 minutes it takes me to throw my laundry in the wash (typically while on an endless conference call) is just smart multitasking — more defensible than the time we’re spending on this s1te midday, one would argue.

          • Anonymous :

            I absolutely think less of women who work from home. Let’s be honest they are multi tasking with home and kid tasks. No where near the same % of male attys in my office work from home on the regular as women.

          • I call tro11 but will also point out that my husband (an attorney) works from home 3 days a week like almost everyone else in his office. I enjoy his pot roast and would constantly run out of underwear if he didn’t do the laundry. He can sign in and out when he needs to pick up the kids or go to the grocery store. He also kicks ass at his job and is regularly called on by the highest levels in his agency for advice. Women can also do all of the above. I just count myself lucky that I don’t have to.

          • Ugh, you suck. First of all, women work from home more than men because they tend to bear a disproportionate amount of the childcare responsibilities. My child is in daycare from 7:30-5:30 every day but it makes my life a lot easier to not have to worry about train delays making me miss pick-up. And yes, I share those responsibilities equally with my husband.

            And yes, I do multitask constantly — but that includes with work. I am constantly answering work emails and logging on in the evenings/weekends to get additional work done. The idea that taking 5 min during the workday to handle a personal task is somehow cheating the system is ridiculous. Most of the time, I don’t even get up from my desk except to use the restroom and get lunch from my fridge (usually while on a work call). But go ahead, feel superior. Sounds like your “don’t take a minute to breath” work life is really enviable.

        • Edie Murphy :

          You sound like a real joy to be around. Let me guess, you love going to the office because you have no family and no friends, and if you didn’t have an office to go to, you would never see anyone but your cat or dog. You sit home alone on the weekends counting down the minutes till the office opens, because that means now you can go to work and distract yourself from your crushing loneliness.

          In the words of Eddie Murphy, get the f — out of my face with that bull s —. Just because you have no life and live for your work, that doesn’t mean other people are as unfortunate. I love working from home and get tons more done when I don’t have people like you breathing down my neck, or coming into my office all the time desperate for human interaction that you can’t get anywhere else. If you didn’t know this already: people talk to you at work because they have to. Not because they want to. They are not your friends and having people you talk to at work, about work is not a substitute for having an actual personal life. People like you and who think like you are a huge problem and part of the reason why people give up on working, or lean out of important jobs. Because the folks who have no life and no personal work-life balance are ruining workplaces for the rest of us.

          • YES. Love you, Eddie Murphy.

          • Anonymous :

            Op here – wow nice assumptions. Sorry to disappoint but I do have friends and family and am not counting the minutes until the office opens; nor do I hang out in coworkers offices all day bc I think we’re BFFs. But I’ll be glad when people like you lean out and just make a full time life out of grocery shopping and cooking.

          • I think it’s hilarious that you’re accusing other people of making assumptions. Pot: kettle.

          • “People like you” is who, exactly? Anyone who works from home?

            I work from home full-time now because we relocated for my husband’s job to a city where my company has no office. I was able to sell this to my boss bc i work hard, i’m dependable, and he trusts me to accomplish my tasks from the office, airplane, hotel room, home, or wherever i happen to be. I was given new responsibilities before moving, but after it was known that i’d be moving, and i’m rocking it. I leaned in, not out, and the fact that my office is the room next to my bedroom doesn’t matter.

            Also FWIW, i make 6x what my husband does, and if i don’t cook, he doesn’t starve bc he is a grown a$$ man capable of figuring out the food situation on his own.

          • OP, if working from home doesn’t work for you because you get distracted by tasks around the house & prefer to have in-person interactions in the office, that is totally fine, you do you. But no reason to assume that others would have the same experiences.

        • Wow that’s a completely inappropriate response. What a miserable snob you are. You must be fun to be around. Maybe your office mates are surprised you don’t take advantage of working from home because they’d really like to see less of you. A lot less of you.

          • No dog in the fight here as I like work from home but come on — EM is being inappropriate too. Never thought it was ok to make fun of people who may be lonely and count work friends as friends. Don’t know if that’s OP’s deal but it is for some people and to look down on them isn’t particularly open minded.

          • I get it. But if OP had said something like “I don’t know how you WFHers do it. I get so lonely” rather than starting in with the sexist crap about laundry and pot roasts, she would have found a far more sympathetic audience.

            I personally rarely work from home. I used to do it a lot in a previous job and I found myself hating it because I’d find myself still in pajamas with bad breath and bad hair at 4 pm after a solid 10 hours of no-break conference calls (west coaster working east coast hours.) Laundry and pot roasts, my a55. I was lucky to get a bathroom break. At least if I were in the office I’d be part of those side conversations instead of trying to figure out what they were talking about, and we’d probably all grab a drink afterward.

    • I am a regular work from homer (part of it is that my work comes in a lot in the evening and I’d rather knock it out then after the kids are asleeep). But I’m WORKING. I wish I could take a sick day myself when my kids are sick b/c it’s not realistic to get as much work done, but I do work from home for that.

      I have co-workers who “work” from and it is obvious from dealing with them that I’m interrupting them (from what, I don’t know; getting another load of darks done?).

      • Anonymous :

        I think those coworkers – and there a lots of them in my work place – make all the others who actually do work look bad. I know people know who works or not but I’ve seen higher ups scoff at working from home bc they assume everyone is using their time to do a Target run at 10 am when it’s empty – even though at some level they realize it isn’t true.

      • I do NOT want to get in the middle of this, b/c I work from home every night from 6 pm, when I get home until mabye 9:00 pm when I turn on my TV. That, however is over and above the time I am at work (from 9:30 to 5:00, includeing lunch). I do enjoy workeing from home, b/c I can check e-mail, surf the web, do laundry, and call mom and Rosa, all while continueing to bill my cleints thru multitaskeing! YAY!!!

        But on the other hand, I also enjoy being at work, where I can interreact with the manageing partner, Frank, Madeline, Lynn and the other partners, where we keep up with current events, watch TV, and do work stuff also. I guess it is a balanceing act.

        I do NOT think it was nice for Eddie Murphy to lash out at the OP, and take sides with Bat Girl. I understand where they are comeing from, but think that mabye Eddie Murphy is interested in Bat Girl on a personal level somehow. I think it is NOT a good idea for peeople to date at work, though, so if you are workeing from home, there is less chance of haveing s-x with your coworkers. Kat, can you straighten these peeople out? Thanks very much . YAY!!!

    • cat socks :

      My company has a very liberal WFH policy. Many people WFH home full time and there aren’t really any limits or rules for people who have offices in the building and want to WFH for whatever reason.

      Even if I’m sitting at my desk in the office, I’m on conference calls with people in India and other time zones in the US. However, some jobs do require more in person communication and interaction.

      Taking 10 or 15 minutes during the day to throw in a load of laundry isn’t that different from taking a short break from your desk while you’re at the office. As long as a person is getting their work done and not having performance issues, then working from home should not be a problem.

      • Anonymous :

        It just doesn’t feel like work when no one is around in person bc everyone is off doing their work alone and tending to their laundry in their downtime. Even if half your colleagues are in India – it makes more sense in my mind to have a full office of people in Chicago and another one in India – with everyone being in whichever office is closest to their home.

        • What’s with the laundry vendetta?

        • Honestly, I think this is probably a fit issue for you with your job. There are some jobs where the culture is butts in seats from 9-6 and there’s a clear divide between work-time and non-work-time, and I’m guessing that culture is a comfortable one for you. There are other jobs where the culture is more output-oriented (so you work how you need to work to get your projects done) and less process-oriented.

          So when you say that someone shouldn’t be doing the laundry on “company time,” that suggests that you think the company owns that time because they’re paying for that time. People who like to WFH would say the company isn’t paying for the time, they’re paying for the work to be done. It’s just a different view of what it means to actually do your job.

          I agree with you that there are some downsides to heavy WFH offices in terms of the reduced interaction between co-workers, but it seems like you’re viewing WFH as getting away with something. If your co-workers aren’t getting their work done, that’s one thing, but if they’re meeting their obligations then they aren’t getting away with anything.

          • OG Monday :

            The concept of “company time” is also complicated for employees who are exempt and especially those with no vacation time policies, like myself. 100% of my life could be considered “company time,” and sure enough I do work on weekends and on vacation sometimes. I prefer that they are not going to quibble about my doing laundry during a weekday and in exchange I do not quibble about taking urgent calls on time that is supposed to be “off.”

            I have had butt-in-seat, limited vacation jobs before, and personally this works better for me.

          • OG Monday :

            One more thing! This whole controversy really highlights how hard it is for management to measure productivity across all job functions. I think a lot of the anxiety around people WFH would be eliminated if everyone had a concrete way to demonstrate whether they were getting enough done. But that’s not a simple thing for a lot of roles.

        • Anonymous :

          OG Monday – agreed – it is measurable in billable hour environments; so for biglaw associates/partners, consultants etc. working from home — they’re either making their hours or not. But for jobs without an outward facing billable culture, it becomes harder to measure who works just as hard from home vs. who does work for a few hrs and then does whatever they want all day while keeping an eye on emails.

          • OG Monday :

            I have also worked with a billable hours structure before, and it’s harder to fudge that but not impossible….

        • cat socks :

          I work in IT and it’s not really feasible to have everyone located in one office. With technology and the cost of doing business, a lot of companies don’t support the traditional model of everyone being in one office.

    • I’m an attorney who works for a governmental entity and I use our work at home policy as much as possible. My job does not require me to attend any meetings and the only person I need to talk to to get my work done is my boss. As long as he and I coordinate when we will both be in the office or when we need to speak on the phone, whether I’m in the office should not matter to any other person.

      As an introvert who lives alone, I do not miss the office chit chat on days I work at home (I get plenty of that on days I go in). I enjoy not having to get dressed for work, drive my short commute, working while wearing yoga pants, as well as the quiet of my own home. Working at home is more efficient, even if I am doing some laundry, because I don’t have to spend time with office chit chat throughout the day (doing laundry takes far less time than does talking to people who pop by because they want a break from their own work). Also, while recognizing my employer cannot raise my salary indefinitely, and I am paid well below what I could make and used to make as a lawyer, the work-at-home option is a huge job perk that costs my employer nothing and provides a benefit to me.

      I cannot say whether everyone who works at home is more efficient than when they’re in the office. But I know that I am and I consistently get top tier performance reviews so my work product isn’t suffering. By writing this, I’m just trying to provide some perspective of people who work at home, do it well, and find it to be a huge job perk.

    • I’m with you – I like the flexibility, but I also like a divide between home and work. I don’t worry about whether my co-workers are “working” at home – we can all easily waste just as much time in the office.

      But what I don’t like is that everyone wants to telework on Mondays and Fridays, so all meetings get squashed into Tuesday-Thursday, which I guess is okay, as it leaves your Mondays and Fridays free, but can make for some very meeting-filled days.

      I also don’t love that I’m essentially supposed to give my employer free space. I live in a 1-bedroom apartment, if I was required to work from home, I’d probably want a better set up than I have now, which consists of basically working on my couch with my laptop, which is okay from time to time, but not for every day. But I would resent having to set aside space in my smallish apartment for work gear and a desk and what have you.

      I think the work-from-home thing is being championed by people who have long commutes (fair enough) and also people who are fortunate enough to afford a house large enough to have dedicated office space. Not all of us have that.

      • Anonymous :

        +1 – I have a setup with extra monitors, the print-outs I want and faster connections to company servers at work. If I worked from home, I’d need to acquire an axuiliary monitor (my laptop screen is tiny) a mouse/keyboard, space to put it, and then remember which printouts I want to bring home and use.

        Basically, I’m lazy, so I prefer just to have all that at work. I’m also in a job where the project managers may just drop by to ask questions – sure they could IM me if I wasn’t in the office, but sometime it’s easier for them to figure out the question they are trying to ask if they do it in person vs over the phone/IM.

      • I did not have a car for several years despite living in a Midwestern city with less-than-ideal public transit. Working from home was a nice alternative to riding a bicycle or waiting for the bus in inclement weather. Also, the work office had no windows, and my studio did. As a fan of natural light, that was a bonus.

        One coworker who has a long commute and 3 children works from home the maximum number of days allowed, four, and she has not fired her nanny. She enjoys eating lunch with the 4 of them.

    • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

      Every situation is different. Not all work from homers are “throwing in a load of laundry and a pot roast during the day.” Although I don’t see what is wrong with starting my slow cooker in the morning before I begin working since that is what I would do if I was leaving home for work….but I digress.

      I work from home nearly every day since my firm does not have an office in my city. It works completely fine for me, my co-workers, and my firm. Numerous others in my firm work from home either permanently or a couple days of week. If you are available like you would be if in office, doing your work, and come to the office when needed for your job functions, I fail to see the problem.

    • So I work from home a fair amount, although typically not for full days. For example, if I have a run of calls that starts early, I may take those from home and not come in until the afternoon. I generally try to be in the office part of every day, because I think it’s very important to see your colleagues face to face on a regular basis and to create space for those random interactions to happen. But I generally work about a 10-hour day during the week, and only maybe 7 hours of that will be in the office.

    • Count me in. My work environment isn’t heading in that direction quickly (private law practice..remote access just means they can get you anywhere any time YAY) so it doesn’t really effect me that much, but something about the increasing call/demand for work from home arrangements irks me a bit. That may be colored by the fact that I have a friend whose raison d’etre is to find a job where she can work from home because she *does* want to slack off- she insists that she is entitled to wear her pjs and walk her dog and do yoga “in between work breaks” and that she’ll be a better employee for it and she deserves her company’s trust immediately. Obviously most people aren’t like that, but the attitude irks me. It is inconvenient for coworkers, especially subordinates who need feedback and approval or your working closely together on a matter. I’d rather see meaningful flexibility in different ways rather than just excessive (2x/week) work from home- no face time requirements (for real, not just on paper), truly functional and easy remote access, let me leave early if I need to, let me set my hours, manage my work so that deadlines aren’t arbitrarily made unreasonable and be cognizant of staffing issues. That’s what increases work life balance in my view… agency and trust….not simply getting to deal with the same ish in my pjs on my couch.

      I wish that instead of just sending people home, we didn’t have to contend with 2 hour plus commutes per day. But I know that’s a complex issue with no easy solutions.

      • Anonymous :

        Yes. I’m all for flexibility – esp when you’ve established trust; if you need to leave for an hr to go to a doctors appointment go — that time is more than made up for by the hours you spend working late or on a weekend or whatever. I think that meaningful flexibility enhances the workplace much more than 2-3x a week work from home that people treat as gospel bc they MUST wear yoga pants or do yoga or whatever and the company MUST be ok with that.

        • That kind of flexibility is more valuable *for you* than WFH. But there are other people for whom WFH is more valuable, and as you can see in the comments (and apparently in your workplace), those people are not few in number. If a performer is highly valuable to her team and WFH is what she wants, then many companies will give it to her. They’ve done that because they decided it’s worth it to offer that to keep her. This is just market dynamics, in the end – it’s all part of the comp/perks package, and the market determines what you have to offer to keep the employees you want.

        • I’m anon at 4:28- I really don’t have that big of a dog in this fight. Private law practice = billable hour = measurable productivity = not progressive anyways. The friend I referenced really hasn’t (and doesn’t want to) actually make herself super valuable to an employer unless it’s on her terms, so that’s part of her issue. Again, I know she’s not representative of the whole.

          The type of flexibility I described works well for me. I just disagree with the notion that WFH should be the default “work life balance” option or the default choice for increased flexibility, which it seems like it’s becoming. It doesn’t always mean that for WFHers or their colleagues who are forced to adapt. And the more employees that are “remote,” the more difficult it gets. It’s not that I think WFH doesn’t have a role in creating a flexible work place, but I would like for companies to think outside the WFH box.

    • I don’t get to work from home often, since my boss is a fan of face time, but I can do it if there’s a good reason (like working around an appointment). I don’t know if it helps or hurts productivity, but I really love the occasional liberation from my (public transit, long) commute!
      I absolutely use breaks to throw in laundry.

    • It doesn’t bother me. I am a person who likes to go to a specific place to do a specific thing, so I don’t think I’d take advantage of a program like that, but I like that it’s an option. People like my husband actually work much more efficiently at home. He’s a huge introvert who does computer coding and the perfect quiet lets him get completely in the groove. He hated working in an office with all the distractions.

      FWIW, my work moved buildings from a building where most people had offices to an “open concept” (barf) cube farm with glass-walled offices around the perimeter. It became clear really quickly which people were goofing off on the internet all day and who was taking a ton of personal calls, etc. It’s not just working from home that makes people slack. Some people are just slackers.

    • It’s not for me. I know I’m less focused when I try to work at home. I need to be in an office to really do my best work. But I don’t feel too strongly one way or another about other people who do it.

    • I supervise an awesome employee who works from home 2 days a week. She is great and I don’t have issues with her performance … but yeah, it’s a pain to work around that schedule. I can only schedule meetings for her to attend 3 days a week (calling in doesn’t work well for the kind of meetings that we need to have).

  9. Cosign the above. I’ve worked from home two days a week for the past five years and it would be hard to adjust to not having that flexibility. I am incredibly productive and prioritize my writing work and calls for those days. My in office days are typically very meeting heavy
    I would go stir crazy without human interaction which is why I think 2 days WFH/3 days in office is a great balance for me.
    But it is very personal to individual work habits and roles
    Maybe some do abuse the policy, but I’m sure there are slackers in your office too.

    • cat socks :

      Same. I like having the ability to WFH a couple of days a week, but I would go stir crazy doing it full time. I’m introverted, but I like getting dressed up and coming to the office. I also like that once I get home from the office it helps me disconnect from my work day.

    • Yes, this is my ideal.

  10. Shrugs—We’ve been wrong all along, everyone. Sarah Sanders wore a shrug for the official White House briefing today.

    • Shopaholic :

      That makes me think we’re in the right…

    • If Sarah sanders is right, I prefer to be wrong.

    • And it’s cold in DC today. Seriously. Put in a blazer. Maybe Trump will weigh in on her attire overnight like he did for Spicey.

      • So I was wondering why White House women looked so business casual – dresses, leggings, shrugs etc. Turns out DJT has put it out there that he doesn’t want women wearing suits bc he thinks “women should look like women.” I can’t imagine working in the WH and not wearing a suit or at least a jacket on camera — I can’t believe these women are listening to his attire edict – I surely wouldn’t.

        • But that’s the loop isn’t it? The type of woman who wouldn’t listen to his fashion edict wouldn’t work for Donald trump. And if you were that person you wouldn’t work for him for long.

    • Anon prof :

      I saw Caroline Kennedy being interviewed on the Today show last Friday, and she had on a black shrug over a black and white striped dress. It looked surprisingly good on TV.

  11. Trapper Keeper? :

    I’d love to buy a simple 3-ring binder with some kind of closure, similar to my Lisa Frank Trapper Keeper from the third grade. Maybe without the unicorns. But all I’m finding is these big, ugly nylon things and various leather portfolios. Any ideas?

  12. Anonymous :

    I know Penzey spices has been recommended a few times on here. They just posted an incredible Facebook post about women’s rights if anyone is interested

  13. Old golden loafers :

    I feel like a failure… I spent half if my morning negotitating a proposal for some subcontract work and I am not happy about how I did.

    Nothing terrible, but I ended giving explanations to my customer which I don’t think he was entitled to. And when I reported to my boss over the phone, I have this feeling he wishes I was more astute than I am.

    Internet hugs might help. Thank you.

    • Senior Attorney :

      Here’s a hug!! Shake it off — it happens to all of us!

    • +1 to shake it off – and remember that no one is harder you than yourself.

    • I also had a very awkward interaction with a customer today because I kept talking when I should have stopped. It was one-on-one, so might not go anywhere, but then again, this customer has been known to be very harsh and I may get thrown under the bus.
      Hugs to you, OP, and we’ll learn our lesson for the next time.

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