Suit of the Week: Boss

For busy working women, the suit is often the easiest outfit to throw on in the morning. In general, this feature is not about interview suits for women, which should be as classic and basic as you get — instead, this feature is about the slightly different suit that is fashionable, yet professional.

I want to call this suit tweed, but instead it’s a really interesting, textured fabric “made from Italian jacquard richly textured with a check plaid and diagonal ribbing” — if you zoom in you can see little raised black squares on a black check plaid pattern. I think mixing textures is a really sophisticated but easy way to bring a lot of contrast into an otherwise sedate wardrobe, so I love fabrics like this — try pairing it with a fluffy cashmere or a matte silk blouse, for example. Love. The jacket (Kanelli Jacquard Jacket) is $445, and the skirt (Manelli Jacquard Pencil Skirt) is $265. (There’s also a matching dress.)

For plus sizes, this long jacket + dress has a similar vibe but is almost sold out (and probably a bit too fancy for work); this $53 jacquard dress is lovely.

This post contains affiliate links and Corporette® may earn commissions for purchases made through links in this post. For more details see here. Thank you so much for your support!black jacquard skirtsuit

Love this black jacquard skirtsuit -- the pieces are versatile enough to wear as separates or together, and a great way to get into mixing textures for a sophisticated work outfit.


  1. Preconception testing :

    Bouncing off a post from earlier this week. I met my insurance max out of pocket for the year and have my OBG annual in December. We’re going to start TTC in January. Is it worth asking for genetic testing? Not in any particular risk group, although we both have some Jewish heritage. It seems like most insurance covers this, I think? So I presume it would be free if I got it this year. My nephew was recently born with a genetic abnormality causing a significant developmental disorder (though not one that is inherited), so my awareness around this is heightened.

    • My insurance covered this, minus a nominal co-pay. I guess if you got it this year you wouldn’t have the co-pay?

    • I think you should ask your OBGYN to order the test. Tell her you are currently TTC if that helps, and definitely tell about the nephew and that you want to ask whether his condition is possibly inherited – because genetic counseling is included in genetic testing.

      I found out that a condition my nephew has IS inherited, after my sister, his mother, told me it wasn’t. So I’m really glad I left the question open. (and my kids fortunately do not have it)

      • Yes, they can sometimes to do it and get insurance to cover it as part of a “pre-conception appointment”

    • Anonymous :

      I would, particularly if you both have some Jewish heritage. The way the mutations work is that you can inherit them from either parent, so even if you are only a small fraction Jewish (say one Jewish grandparent or great-grandparent), there is still a decent chance it could be passed down.

    • look into the organization JScreen. Even out of pocket it is $149. You can do it for one of you, see if you test positive for anything and then do it for the other one if needed. I was not a carrier for anything so my DH did not get tested.

    • 1. Just to be clear, there aren’t more defects in Jewish genetic backgrounds. The risk is where you both might have common heritage where you’d inherent the same recessive disorder gene. So you’ll probably need both the ashkenazic Jewish panel and the Caucasian panel (to the extent they differ).

      2. There are an ever increasing number of genetic defects that can be tested for.

      3. This is one of those instances where more information is helpful! Just do it!

      • Anonymous :

        There’s definitely a higher risk for many genetic diseases in Jewish populations. Tay-Sachs and cystic fibrosis are a couple of the more well-known ones. I’m 100% Jewish, my husband has no known Jewish heritage. If your reasoning was right, we’d have lower risk than a completely non-Jewish couple because our backgrounds don’t match up. But a genetic counselor told me we were still at a significantly higher risk than a completely non-Jewish couple (though not as high as a couple where both partners are Jewish) and we needed the testing.

      • Sloan Sabbith :

        As a note, neither of my parents have any Jewish background that we know of and I got CF, so I would say screen. That being said, I have concerns about what the result of that screening is- if it’s to ab*rt if you find out you have a kiddo with a lifelong chronic illness, but one that is manageable, pretty unhappy about that. Absolutely someone’s right to do so, but some genetic illnesses are so manageable now and meds are developing so quickly. Of course, if you find out you’ll have a kiddo with a serious condition that will only live for a short time or be in constant pain, that’s different.

        • Anonymous :

          Since the screening is of the parents, not the fetus, and normally done pre-conception, it’s not a decision to terminate or not. Usually people who find out both parents are carriers would do IVF to avoid passing on the disease to the child.
          I did read a really interesting article recently about a woman who had a child with CF and is suing the doctor for wrongful birth (she had genetic testing done which came back positive but the results were somehow overlooked). I absolutely understand where she’s coming from and don’t question her love for her son, but I also understand how her son might have some complicated feelings about it when he’s old enough to understand what’s going on.

          • Sloan Sabbith :

            I also read that article. Don’t get me started.

            Also, duh, I’m dumb, sorry.

    • So there is pre-conception genetic for parents, which is typically only covered if you have risks to be carriers for select diseases (tay Sachs/ashkenazi is an example).

      There is also fetal genetic testing, which flags fetal abnormalities/risks. This is typically offered to women over 35 AND any other high risk for genetic disease women. I had it covered for free because we have family history of a few things (spinal bifida is one).

      • Anonymous :

        Fetal genetic testing (Harmony) was covered by my insurance for all women regardless of age or family history.

    • I replied to the other commenter from yesterday, but Counsyl testing was fully covered by our insurance and we have no known genetic risk factors (though we turned out to both be genetic disorder carriers – go figure).

  2. Where would you go with senior, aging parents? :

    Hoping for some advice from the smart ladies here. Quick background:

    – I am in my late 30s and single.
    – I have two aging parents with severe medical issues. One parent with Alzheimer’s and another with kidney failure on dialysis. The ALZ parent is likely to live a loooooong time.
    – Both parents will need nursing home care at some point, especially the ALZ parent sooner rather than later.
    – I am completely burned out at my corporate job. I have accepted that I need to give up my job and leave my HCOL area.
    – I have saved around $1M. Plan is to take a year or two off, buy a modest house for cash that I can live in with my parents.
    – After a year or two not working, after I am settled with parents, find any 40 hour per week job with medical benefits so I can still spend significant time caring for them.

    Where would you go? Where are the cheap areas with excellent medical care for seniors?

    It seems like all the cities nationally are so expensive. I know that I am lucky to have this savings, but it doesn’t seem to go far in most places. Need help thinking outside the box.

    • Anonymous :

      I would seriously look at the Southwest. I’m from New Mexico, so that is what I am familiar with. Housing is cheap, the weather is perfect, UNM Hospital is a legitimate research hospital. One major downside is that the job market is not great, so depending on what kind of 40 hr per week job you want, it might be hard to find. Another area I would consider would be the Phoenix metro area. Again, housing is more reasonable and the Mayo clinic is there.

      • The quality of medical care in NM really depends on the area. I have a friend who works as a flight nurse in New Mexico. They fly people out of rural areas all the time because local hospitals do not have the ability to perform even simple surgeries like a burst appendix. Do your research first. Some areas are fine, others not at all.

        • Well, you obviously wouldn’t move to a rural area with no access to the kinds of healthcare OP’s parents are going to need on a regular basis. Duh.

    • BeenThatGuy :

      How about Charlotte or the Atlanta metro area?

    • How about Charlotte or the Atlanta metro area?

      • Cat Lady In Training :

        I cosign Atlanta. There are still parts of the cities and inner-suburbs that are reasonable, and we have great hospitals/healthcare and a good job market.

        • Atlanta would be good, but probably not as much bang for your buck as other locations. The housing market here is on a steady upward creep, especially in desirable suburb locations with easy access to groceries, hospitals, etc. Single-story homes especially are becoming increasingly expensive as new construction pushes apartments and townhomes even out in the suburbs where traditionally you’d have more affordable freestanding houses.

        • Frozen Peach :

          There’s still TONS of bang for your buck to be had in ATL housing if you’re willing to go outside the perimeter. I have friends who’ve bought 4-bedroom houses in nice neighborhoods for under 200K. Granted, they are in third-ring suburbs, but if you don’t work in downtown, you’d be amazed at how far housing $$ can stretch here.

          As a data point, I live about thirty minutes from downtown in a nice middle-class suburban area and our rent for our 3-bedroom freestanding house with a yard is under $1500.

      • Gail the Goldfish :

        Depending on your field, I’d add Raleigh/the Triangle area to this list. Our hospitals are great and job market is good for certain fields.

    • Two Cents :

      You are a really good person and daughter.

      This is cliche but isn’t Florida ideal in this situation ? Huge aging population so presumably they have great medical care (?), great weather, not that expensive, and several major cities so employment prospects might be decent.

      • Florida does not have great medical care. What they do have is a ton of seniors and a corresponding ton of Medicare fraud. Don’t move to Florida.

    • Columbus, OH? Ohio State Medical Center is good for kidney dialysis, and the COL isn’t bad.

      • cat socks :

        I was going to suggest this also. Ohio State has excellent medical facilities. COL is not bad. The only thing is that winters can be bad. Although the past couple of years have been mild.

    • How about Columbus? Low cost of living, work available if you decided to stay, and the hospital there has tons of specialties, plus there are care facilities everywhere?

    • Omaha, NE (apparently they have a very very low unemployment rate)? Minneapolis? (i have a friend there who just bought a huge house for pretty cheap) Pittsburgh? Madison, WI? Charlotte? Cleveland?

      Sounds like you are an amazing daughter, but this is also a lot to take on. Are there any cities where you have any kind of connections? Do you have any siblings? I’m worried for you dealing with all of this, while not working, and then trying to re-enter the workforce without a support system in place.

      • I vote Minneapolis. Great quality of life, with large corporations in the area for when you want to get back in the labor force.

      • +1 Omaha, NE. We own a 2500 sq ft house with nice details (granite throughout, huge yard, good schools and neighborhoods) for $230k and COL is low. It is unlikely your commute anywhere in the metro would be longer than 30 minutes, regardless of where you live. Unemployment is very low and there are tons of great assisted living facilities with memory wings.

      • Anonymous :

        Cosign Omaha. It’s a fantastic city.

      • I travel to Omaha regularly (work for Uncle Warren….) I don’t live there so can’t comment on the cultural aspect, just housing. I think you can get great deals on large houses, but then you live in a place where it’s cold and snowy and hard to get around a great deal of the year, and when not that, incredibly hot and humid. Maybe I’m a spoiled Californian but I’ve never been there and thought, “What great weather!”

        More than that, I’m worried you’re trying to act on your escape fantasy. Mine is alternatively to live in a cabin in the redwoods or to sell ice cream at the beach, but I guess I’d try each of them for even a week before deciding to make them permanent. I think moving to a cheap location and caring for your parents 24/7 sounds incredibly isolating and lonely. Just like they say, you have to put on your own oxygen mask first….

        Maybe take halfway or even quarter-way steps before jumping in with both feet and giving up everything about you and your life.

      • Anonymous :

        Winters in Omaha are much more mild than, say, Minnesota or even Chicago. Summers aren’t as unpleasant as the south in terms of heat/humidity, although it’s not delightful weather by any means.

        The University of Nebraska Medical Center is very good, there’s a big arena for concerts, it’s a very college football obsessed state if that’s your thing, some nice, smallish museums and a pretty botanical garden. The zoo is great. Unemployment is low and COL is low. IME lots of social network happens in and around religious organizations, which range from super conservative (the neighboring Catholic diocese in Lincoln is one example) to relatively progressive (there’s a very active big UU congregation and a small Metropolitan Community Church congregation), and a great Trifaith community with a newly built mosque that shares a campus (but not worship space) with a Reform synagogue; there’s a church going in next year nearby.

        It is a very red state, so if that’s your perspective or if it’s not but you play well with others, you’ll likely find it welcoming enough. If you envision wanting a host of blue-state organizations, neighbors, and activities, you might get lonely.

    • My mother has Alzheimer’s and lives in a assisted living, but I am still her caregiver. It’s an all consuming job. My advice to you is to pick a place YOU want to live and a place where you have some support or friends, or could see yourself finding some. The burnout is real. If you pick a part of the country you don’t know or like just because it’s affordable, you could be setting yourself up for some extremely difficult years. Set yourself up to succeed with this giant, kind-hearted endeavor.

      • This was actually the same advice my mom gave to me when I came to her and presented this problem to her, in the form of an actual-factual friend IRL going through this same situation. And I asked my mom who used to be a social worker for elderly what to do. And she said the same thing — your parents are old and will need what they need. YOU need emotional support to get them that, and to be there for them. So YOU go to where it is best for YOU – job, relationships, etc. etc. The old folks’ll be as ok as possible. YOU take care of YOU too.

    • Pittsburgh is a great option. Lots of excellent options for healthcare, and housing is cheap.

    • In House in Houston :

      You’re a good daughter. Have you thought about Houston? Housing is very affordable and we have the best medical care in the world. Jobs are plentiful, especially in oil/gas and healthcare…depending on what you do. Weather is good too….I mean summers are brutal but winter is very mild.

      • Another vote for Houston. Most of the hospitals have expanded to have outposts in the suburbs so there are plenty of options for medical care. Austin is also a good option and there are several senior communities designed to let people more up to more care without a big move (e.g., apartments to assisted living to residential care on the same property).

    • queen city :

      Consider Greenville NC. Super low COL and ECU’s medical school is excellent. Local medical care is top notch.

    • Baltimore’s housing is very affordable and you’d be down the street from Johns Hopkins.

      • This is a good point, and of places that I’d want to move to as a single person in my 40s, Baltimore seems like it would be much easier to find community and social life than a lot of the other options.

    • Look into different senior care options (esp. for ALZ parent who may need substantial care for a long time).
      I like the PACE program. We have it in parts of MA (I know, high cost of living and winter, but Worcester County has PACE as do parts of Western MA and the North Shore). National PACE Association has a map showing where its offered. There are other care options to consider of course, but that one’s my favorite.
      You’re a good daughter, make sure you settle into a place you can be happy in, because caregiver strain is no joke.
      Make sure you have a good elder law/life care planning team in place. Best of luck!

      • Frozen Peach :

        Yes, if you are not accustomed to Midwestern winters, moving to Omaha or Minneapolis could be very tough for you.

    • If you are still following, Rochester NY is super cheap and has an excellent medical school/system. Winter is for real, but buy a house with an attached garage and you’ll be fine. In some ways its great for mobility limitations, because there is so much indoor stuff to help people get through the winter. Economy is mixed, but there are several significant corporations with a presence and big university/engineering sector. Lots of professionals to form a social network with, although skewed towards families with kids. But seriously, you can buy a really great house for 200-300k, depending on where in the city/suburbs you want to be.

  3. For an alternate (and finer quality?) plus size pick, I’d suggest this, which is a dark gray, but I think more similar. The jacket is available in misses, petites, plus, and plus petites; the skirt is available in misses up to a 20 and petite up to 16P.

  4. Anonymous :

    Did Rainbow Hair go to litigation thing?

    • Triangle Pose :

      I want to know this too! Paging Rainbow Hair. I hope you stood up for yourself in the face of your boss/outside counsel.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Aw thanks guys! I did tell Boss I thought I should go, and he didn’t say no. So I think that at this point, outside counsel would have to explicitly uninvite me again to undermine my going. I’m just plowing forward as though I’m going, until someone gives me a darn good reason why I shouldn’t.

  5. Gift ideas!

    Has anyone ordered a citrus tree 0nline for a gift? I am thinking of gifting a lemon tree to my mom for Christmas. Any good retailers you have used from experience?

    Can anyone recommend a really sleek, modern, beautiful chess set (both to actually play and as a home decor piece)?

    Other gift ideas would be appreciated. My parents, siblings/spouses are incredibly well off and buy everything they want, so it’s a hard gift list! Likely to spend up to $500/each but will go more for the perfect gift or could split with someone or sometimes it’s the perfect gift for way less! I saw on Oprah’s favorite things a pizza oven and some other good ideas, but would like to have a few options, so any ideas would be helpful! Interests include cooking, beauty stuff, techy gadgets, sports, other cool or luxurious things you might be into if you had a lot of money very young, but they already have a lot of that kind of stuff that they bought themselves or I have bought them over the years (i.e. cool sneakers, all the apple products, cashmere everything, drones, sports memorabilia, etc.) I have also done the personal route of inexpensive but meaningful with scrapbooks of old family photos and ‘date nights’ in the form of gift certificates to a favorite local restaurant or a concert. They appreciate anything I give them, but I try to get them things they would like!

    • For #3, at that price point, would they appreciate a really meaningful donation to something they care about instead? If they have everything, maybe a not insignificant donation could do some serious good! Now, I know that’s not everyone’s thing–I respect that–but worth thinking about?

      • This is a good idea – we already do it, though! We also do volunteering as a family with a lot of the same organizations. Thanks!

        • I like your family! You sound like fun, and like you all like each other as people. Your gift giving is admirable!

    • Yes! I sent my mom a Meyer lemon tree from lemoncitrustree dot com two years ago and it is still going strong. She loves it! It smells great and they have gotten fruit from it.

      • Thanks! Did she keep it in a planter pot or plant it in the ground?

        • We’ve got a cocktail tree planted in the ground (Hardiness Zone 8B) and only have to cover it during frost. The Meyer lemons, grapefruit and tangelo grafts all produce fruit. The lime never did- I think it’s too cold. It took about 2 years and planting it before production really ramped up. It’s probably 6 ft tall now?
          The advantage of the pot is that they can move it if the weather is bad- just make sure you get a small enough tree and a big enough pot.

        • She keeps it in the pot and moves it around based on the seasons.

    • Professional Gifter :

      For #3, how about a family experience gift you can do together over the holidays, like a hot air balloon ride or a helicopter tour? Or how about a family vacation?

      • We already do family vacations, but I will think about other experience things to do. She is afraid of heights, so the balloon ride and helicopter tour won’t go over so well, but it’s a good starting point, thanks!

    • For the cooks, you could give a sous vide, if they don’t already have one, + the Food Lab cookbook + Modernist Cuisine at Home (or the full box set if you’re really spending money). The Modernist Cuisine at Home cookbook has an equipment list that could generate years of gift ideas.

      • They already have a sous vide and the Food Lab one, not sure about the Modernist Cuisine. Over Thanksgiving I noted 7 shelves of cookbooks – that’s the hard part about my family! Some years I have had to specifically tell them NOT to buy a cookbook coming out because I need to get it for them as a gift, ha! I may ask for some spying on the cookbook collection to check on that one.

        • They might like the Modernist Cuisine box set if they don’t have it. It’s crazy expensive but under your budget, and the photography is beautiful. I only have the “For Home” book, but I hear that the full set is pretty incredible. DH works in the hospitality/culinary industry, and all his co-workers covet it.

    • anonymous :

      What about a cleaning or cooking/meal delivery service for a year? Or a deep clean or detail of their vehicle? How about looking into a personalized tour of their local zoo or some other area attraction that might have a VIP option?

    • Anonymous :

      My friends have a similar demographic profile and they have a tradition y’all might consider adopting! Every X number of years, they make each other Christmas gifts. They do a grab bag for family members well in advance. It is a tradition that has served them well over the years to avoid just the situation you describe – what to buy for the person who has it all or could have it all? – and fosters thoughtful, creative, personal gifting.

      But yes, you do sound like a lovely family!

      • Hmm I will look into this!

        Thank you for the ideas and for the kind words on my family. We do love each other and I think ‘gifts’ ranks high on the love languages for all of us, we just really love giving each other gifts they would like. I know they can buy whatever they could possibly want, but it kind of makes me sad if that meant they never got a meaningful gift from someone who loves them, so we always try to get something that is like “I thought you might like this because…” not to mention that they are so incredibly generous to me and my husband!

    • Frozen Peach :

      My best unique gift idea–

      Raw Spice Bar sells a subscription of curated, very high-end global spice blends that are sent to you monthly with recipes from the chefs that created the blends. Gave as a wedding present to a friend in similar circumstances. No idea if she actually liked it, but she pretended to and I thought it was very unique!

    • 23andMe genetic testing/ancestry kit, for a techie one?

      Bread of the month

      Season tickets to a local theater company

  6. Looking for recs for plus size, high waisted (not mid rise) black jeans in a skinny or straight fit. I bought the wit and wisdom from Nordstrom but the waist isn’t quite high enough and I feel like I need to yank them up all day.

    Thanks in advance, intrepid vicarious shoppers!

  7. Flats Only :

    Has anyone in the DC area used a cleaning service for a 1 time deep cleaning of their home? DH and I have both had awful colds this fall, and he is convinced it’s because of “mold” in our house. I think it’s because we run ourselves ragged and were unlucky enough to encounter some germs. He has suggested an air duct cleaning. (I know they are sort of a rip off, but we’ve been in the house for 18 years, so who knows what’s up there). We keep the place reasonably clean, but I wonder if after the air duct cleaning a good deep clean of the whole house would refresh the place. I do not feel like doing it myself. Have you done something like this? How much did it cost?

    • For our 2 bed/1.5 bath, we paid $130 for an initial deep clean from a service. We then continued the service for $90 every three weeks. The deep clean is amazing. They clean my window blinds, which is a pet peeve but something I hate hate hate doing myself.

      • Would you mind saying what service you use. I’m looking for one (in DC proper) and am a bit overwhelmed.

    • Frozen Peach :

      Duct cleaning is amazing and will make an immediate difference in how you feel in your home, if you haven’t done it for 18 years.

  8. anon for this :

    Broke up with a narcissistic ex earlier this year. With the holidays and so many commercials/shows/movies about family time and me not having a close one at all (for good reason), it’s making me miss my ex’s mother so much. She’s one of the kindest people ever and we became very close in the years I was with the ex. I haven’t reached out in the 6-12 months since the breakup but now I’m wondering if there is any way to keep a relationship with her without it causing the ex to think it’s an open-door to contact me. She’s too sweet and frail to try to speak honestly with about the situation and she adores her son, I guess it just seems awful to think that this is one more thing that the ex’s toxicity has taken away from me.

    Advice? Ideas?

    • Sorry, I think you need to move on. You miss her, but she must has other friends in the world than her son’s ex. Think forward to how awkward it would be with your ex’s future partner if you’re still in his mom’s life. It would put her in an awkward spot too. Do her the kindness of not burdening her with this, or even your current feelings about her son.

      • another anon :

        The frail wording makes me wonder if she’s homebound or in a facility where she might not have company. I can’t imagine how tough that would make it to distance from someone lovely and lonely, but not sure there’s a way to maintain contact without the ex getting involved.

      • I agree she needs to move on because the ex is a narcissist and no good can come from this. But, I disagree that a mom staying in touch with an ex has to be uncomfortable for the son or new partner. I just never understood the scorched earth split all the friends / split all the family most people take. Unless, there was abuse or serious maltreatment/cheating. Most adults that split split because they find they aren’t compatible anymore. I think it’s really immature to say that person has to be erased from your life 100%. You don’t own a person or their family. I know some people that hate hearing anything about an ex or acknowledging that the ex has a past and I just don’t get it. That past shaped him/her into who they are today and it’s okay for friends/family to still like that person. It doesn’t mean you are going to back together.

    • I’m sorry but my advice is don’t contact her. In my view when you break up with someone, that includes their family unless their family affirmatively decides otherwise.

    • I agree, don’t do it. I was super close with an ex’s mom and it was really tough to “break up” with her when I broke up with him. I ended up seeing her a few years later when a big issue came up with an ex and we briefly reconnected, but it only highlighted the inherent difficulties of maintaining contact in that situation.

    • I’m with the others. Consider this to be a great time to volunteer. Many nursing homes are looking for companions for older residents and that might be a good way to spend some quality time.

    • Senior Attorney :

      Agreed. Alas, this is indeed another thing you will have to lose because of the horrible ex.

      And it’s worth it to be rid of him.

    • I have been on both sides of this. I think you have to let it go but if your paths ever cross to be sincere and genuine with her. She likely understands why you can’t reach out like you used to.

      I had an ex-bf whose mom I adore(d). She is also a lawyer and just generally kicking bu++ and an incredible woman. This particular ex was a heartbreaking one- it was the kind of bf that after we broke up he strung me along (for years, gulp!) of are we back on or not and all together too much drama and heartache for me. It was really hard to let that relationship go especially because of his mom, but I knew that I couldn’t separate it. On the times I have seen her professionally or out and about, she is the most darling thing. She understands we can’t have the same friendship we did before but she is heartfelt and sweet whenever I do randomly bump into her and I appreciate it greatly. (I also adored his grandparents!)

      Another was a boyfriend that stayed in touch with my mom for a while because they worked for the same company. It didn’t really bother me, perhaps because I broke up with him. I broke up because I just didn’t feel the chemistry was still there, not because of anything bad so my mom didn’t need to really ‘take sides’ although I always knew my mom was 100% on my side. She did find it amusing and rolled her eyes a little that he would specifically ask about everyone in the family *except me* but generally they would mostly talk about career stuff as she acted as a mentor of sorts to him at work.

  9. I’m heading to NYC next week- no clue what to pack. I’m from somewhere cold, so I have lots of winter stuff, I’m more worried about dinners/drinks, etc.

    What does someone in their mid 30s wear to a club these days? Travelling with a friend who will definitely want to take advantage of the nightlife.

    • All black is always safe. When I go out lately, I’m wearing a faux fur leopard print cost and glitter vans/gucci slides (and a t shirt and jeans underneath). Stylish shoes you can walk in and a good coat/bag should be your focal points. Have fun!

    • Marshmallow :

      I am 30 and live in NYC but have only been to a club like twice in my life–in my circle our nightlife tends to be loungey bar-type places rather than true clubs with DJs and dance floors. When going out I usually wear skinny black jeans, booties with a high block heel, and a cute top. The visible bra or midriff tops are definitely a Thing here, but I’ve also done a silk cami or wrap top. For dressier nights out like bach parties or an actual club, I’d wear a short dress and booties with a leather jacket if it’s cold. Maybe sheer black or shimmery tights if REALLY cold.

      Basically, it’s cliche but if you wear black you’ll be fine. Make sure you can walk in your shoes.

  10. Taking a Poll :

    If you found out that your friend’s/sister’s/colleague’s/etc.’s recent ex was someone busted publicly for being one of the men in Hollywood caught for inappropriate behavior, would you judge her? If so, is there anything she could do to not have the backlash cause judgment to her too?

    • Anonymous :

      I wouldn’t judge her unless there was some fairly compelling evidence that she knew the full extent of his behavior and was complicit. Even in the case of Georgina Chapman, who I think surely must have known that Harvey was running around on her (because his reputation as a skeevy philanderer was SO well-established, even to people like myself who are very far removed from Hollywood), I don’t think there’s evidence she knew he was doing anything non-consensual. And choosing to stay with a man who’s cheating on you is a personal choice and not really something I’m interested in judging. Staying with a man you know is harassing/assaulting/raping is very different in my opinion.

    • biglawanon :

      No. I am confused about what I would even judge her for.

    • No unless I had concrete reason to believe she knew about his behavior. I’m not sure what one can do about judgmental people but I would just say something like, “yes, I’m as shocked about it as everyone else” if it comes up.

    • Anonymous :

      No. I’m not in the business of blaming women for things men do.

      • Anonymous :


        Also, he’s an ex. What does the OP want out of her friend – to dump him again? Maybe he seemed great at first and she chucked him after finding out what a skeeze he is.

      • fist bump

        I don’t even get why OP had to ask this question

        we have GOT to stop trying to figure out how to pin at least some of the blame on women (ie the discussion on here of Georgina Chapman after the Weinstein scandal broke). Let’s just not do it. please

      • +500 Unless she witnessed these actions and did nothing or was told first-hand by him about it and was complicit, why in god’s name would you judge her?

    • nasty woman :

      “If so, is there anything she could do to not have the backlash cause judgment to her too?”

      Ya know, just continue to help society plod along to its collective realization that women are not responsible for men’s bad behavior. In part by not asking questions like this.

      • anonymous :

        You’re assuming this person posted due to being judgmental, but she could be the person with the ex and is fearing being judged.

        • nasty woman :

          I didn’t. I actually figured she was just asking hypothetically, not that she was being a jerk and trying to judge. OP, if you’re talking about yourself, make it your mantra that women are not responsible for men’s bad behavior.

      • +100000

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Just to add to the chorus — unless it was like, “and she helped cover up all his misdeeds!” — I would not judge the woman at ALL. I would maybe high five her for DTMFA-ing him.

  11. For Parents during Holiday time... :

    For those teaching kid to write, to spell, or to properly talk on the phone, consider enlisting your solo friends. Someone might love to be a penpal or receive a note or letter from your child or even a short phone call while your child practices manners and dialing a phone!

    Also, if you’re sick of all the artwork covering and recovering your fridge, consider suggesting they make something for your friend who has no kids, especially if she is single. Regardless of why she is childfree or why she is single, sometimes it’s nice to have something homemade to hang on your fridge by the child of a beloved friend.

    Lastly, if you’re doing fun things with the kids during break, consider inviting such friend(s) along as well. Sometimes we too like to go to the zoo or to see holiday lights or whatnot. Just because it makes you bored and you’re forced into it doesn’t mean we wouldn’t love to join once in a while or to keep you company to make it more fun for you too!

    • Will you be my friend?

      • Would love to be! Even if I don’t live near, I could be a penpal or a phone call friend! Anyone interested can totally leave me your email address and I’ll reach out! :)

        • Can you share where you are? My kid cant penpal but if you are in the Bay Area, I will happily invite you to the playground or park or zoo on weekends! I particularly look for friends to hang with me and the kids on sunday evenings coz everything is closed at that time.

    • Two Cents :

      You’re awesome. Before I had kids I felt really really left out by some of my friends who had kids — I wouldn’t get invited to birthday parties or joint vacations with other families because we were the couple with no kids and the assumption is that we wouldn’t enjoy it. not true!

      • this. as someone in a new city, who has been ttc for a long time and struggling it has been so hard to make friends because everyone our age has kids and assumes we don’t want to do anything with their kid. i realize this isn’t necessarily for everyone, but i’d be happy to go out to dinner with your toddler or to the zoo or wherever. i mean i get that some ppl wouldn’t want to feel obligated to hang out with someone else’s kid, but if you give someone an open invitation and encourage them to be honest, there should be no hard feelings either way.

    • Let me ask this – how would you feel about being invited along to kids’ sport practices and/or tournaments? I miss my childless friends a lot, but this is my life on weekends. Earnest question.

      • If I was asked to go to something either short and focused on the kid(s) or maybe not as short but where the parent/friend could sit and talk with me (like a kid’s soccer game), I’d love it, especially if the parent didn’t get mad if I couldn’t attend to due to work. Not everyone can or wants to go to something every single time, but if it lets the person see their friend or get to participate in the fun parts of family life that isn’t their own life, why not?!

      • Anonymous :

        if it’s time to hang out with my friend, then yessssssssssssssssssss!

        omg I don’t know why mom-friends retreat into a shell. I get that it’s hard to raise a kid, but call me! I will sit in your living room and fold laundry while catching up. please reach out for your friendships. I am so sad waiting in the kid wings.

      • Anonymous :

        I don’t invite my childless friends to my kid’s sporting events because they are torture even for the parents. Did you know that the awards alone for a kids’ gymnastics meet can last an hour? And that the lower levels all have the same horrible music for their floor routines, which will be played approximately 100 times during the average session? And that they do not serve adult beverages?

        A soccer game at the park, maybe.

        • Two hilarious moms used to bring mimosas to my brother’s weekend lacrosse games. Around Mother’s Day, they brought enough for all the moms. A moderate amount of adult beverage can (and dare I say, should) be enjoyed during all-day tournaments.

      • OMG I would go in a hot minute. And I’d bring cocoa in thermoses for us.

      • I would totally go to a soccer game or something. Definitely not every weekend, but I’d attend one or here and there with bells on.

      • Anonymous :

        I would try to make it maybe every month. Especially as I live far away from my family, I feel my friends are my everyday family which makes their kids my substitute nieces and nephews which means I dote on them.

    • London Junior :

      a close friend invited me to Holiday in the Zoo with her and her kids when I’m back in town next month and I think I’m looking forward to it more than I am looking forward to any other Christmas thing. They give all the animals big ice cubes (the ones who it would be appropriate for at least) and make them treats that are carved to look like presents or gingerbread houses or whatever.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Aw! A friend of mine who doesn’t have kids was (until she moved away) one of my kiddo’s besties. This friend would come to Kiddo’s birthday party, meet me at my house for a girl’s night bearing donuts for Kiddo, etc. She helped me plan and execute Kiddo’s First Time On A Train (which was amazing and perfect and memorableAF). Kiddo even had her first ‘sleepover’ (I was there too) at my friend’s house. I understand that some adults aren’t eager to hang out with a kid all the time (heck, I’m not always eager to hang out with MY kid) but it was so great to have a friend who wanted to do those things with us. <3

  12. Secret Santa :

    Wondering if anyone else is doing a secret santa outside of work/fam stuff… I participate in the reddit one. Wish we had one here since so many wonderful people are part of this website family, though I’d guess the income disparities might make that really difficult to do!

    • anonshmanon :

      I am curious how the reddit one works. Do you mail each other physical gifts?

      • I do it too… you sign up and get matched with someone, then you’re given their preferences and physical address so you do mail them a gift and you are matched with someone else who sends you something (though some ask for electronic gifts or cards instead).

    • I would totally do a c–poret-e secret santa! What would we send each other? The Skirt? Fleece tights? Monistat Anti Chafing Gel? (what are the other holy grail/cult secret things around here?)

    • I am doing one through Instagram though the doodle community (there are a lot of us). Just sent my penpal his gifts.

      I am also doing a doodle Christmas card exchange.

      And I’m excited about both of them!!!

    • cat socks :

      I do Secret Santa Claws through Instagram with other people that have IG accounts for their cats. It’s really fun.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      I’m doing one with my #squad and one with an online fashion club I’m in, and then one with my ladies’ beer club (well it’s more of a white elephant/in person thing). And one with my siblings, too. I’m pretty pumped about most of them!

  13. Does anyone know of a checklist of some sort for house hunting that takes into account the age of a house? Like, for a 30 year old house check the date of the roof, for a 15 year old house check the state of the water heater, etc. (I have no idea if those are right, hence the need for a list!)

    • I think your best bet is a good real estate agent. Ours did all these things – she checked things I would never have thought to check.

    • You could re-engineer this question, and instead search for checklists for maintenance by home age. That should tell you what to look at while house hunting.

    • JuniorMinion :

      Your inspector (if they are any good) should guide you here. Just be sure whichever house you are buying you get an inspector that works on like – aged / situated homes. The inspector may recommend additional inspections on anything (roof / ac / foundation) that looks suspect. Make sure your real estate agent has these sorts of connections to the right sort of inspectors. You can also set up your inspection such that you can go at the end and ask the inspector questions.

      This is also very geographically related. For example, I used to live in Houston where foundation issues are a major concern and occur fairly frequently due to the topography. Now, in California, it is dry wood termites that are a big issue.

      • JuniorMinion :

        General key items though:
        Roof – age and condition. Ensure if newer shingles they did a good job and didn’t just put the new shingles on top of the old
        AC – age and condition
        Siding – what type and any additional concerns around that type (Hardee / composite siding is pretty low maintenance, for really old homes with wood check for rot etc)
        Heat / hot water – check that central heater and hot water heater are working
        Drainage / piping – can have additional check to the major outlets to the street to be sure pipe integrity is good
        Cement outdoor work – be sure cement is in good condition and if cracked at all that those cracks are not actively moving
        Floors – if you aren’t on a slab make sure at the very least your sub floor has good integrity
        Ducting / insulation – make sure in good condition
        Appliances – make sure they work
        Foundation – Look at homes with an eye to making sure nothing is visibly slanted
        Trees – If anything is touching powerlines / up against a structure be aware your inspector will recommend tree trimming / removal of the tree
        Fences – Make sure good structural integrity
        Fireplaces – make sure nothing illegal about them and they are either up to modern code or grandfathered in. On really old masonry you can have a separate chimney inspection (ask me how I know ;)
        Pools- Make sure on any pools you have an inspection done inclusive of a leak test (where they measure and then measure again 24 hours later)

        • JuniorMinion :

          Sorry one more – be aware if you buy and old home that there may be more hidden issues and will be more maintenance that crops up / stuff that isn’t as standard today to fix and work with and be prepared for that

          – Signed, home built in 1937

          • BeenThatGuy :

            Co-signed, home built in 1922

          • Hahaha, your lovely old house is your new unemployed, alcoholic spouse. Get used to lots of spending and tough love.

            Signed, home built in 1909

          • And check the plumbing!! It can be a huge problem in older houses, but even in newer ones, turn all the faucets full blast to see if you have pressure issues.

        • Senior Attorney :

          Electrical!! Every house I’ve ever had has had hidden/surprise major electrical work to be done. It’s like on those HGTV shows where the contractor is going “Wow! I’m surprised the house hasn’t burned down by now!”

          • Blonde Lawyer :

            This! I have a newish house but my electrician found some awful DIY wiring in my basement that the former owners finished themselves. We only found it because we were replacing our hardwired smoke detectors. Those need to be done every 10 years or so. If you find one faulty, it’s usually worth doing all of them.

        • Thank you! This is a very helpful list.

    • A good home inspector should look at all of this during the due diligence period once you get serious about a house.

    • A home inspection isn’t too expensive – $500 give or take? Could be worthwhile if you want a meaningful assessment of the actual state of your systems and not some internet checklist/slideshow that tells you how frequently things should or should not be addressed.

      • Doh. Misread that you’re actually house hunting now. So, leave all of that up to the inspector. If something is really messed up, you can try to negotiate the price down to account for it or walk away.

        • Oh I will definitely get an inspector before I buy. I just wanted a general list of things to look for when I’m viewing houses before getting to the inspector stage. Like, if the water heater, roof and HVAC are all about to go, I’d rather know on the first or second visit. There’s a fair amount of house-flipping in my area that I know just puts lipstick on these things.

          • Honestly, though, I still wouldn’t trust my own judgment to know if a roof or other systems are ok. Sometimes the age isn’t sufficient to determine this. We had an offer accepted on a house with a 2-year old roof. Turns out the new roof was totally messed up (installed by BIL of seller on the cheap, evidently) – we were stoked because the roof was new, but the inspector corrected us quickly. The house we ended up buying and are in now has an ‘old’ water heater by most standards, but the prior owner maintained it meticulously. It’s a very high-end brand (how would I know that? Never heard of the brand in my life…) and inspector said it was in better condition than 99% of the ones he sees that are a heck of a lot newer.

            It’s good to be an informed buyer, but I’d strongly suggest leaving the opinion forming on things like structural integrity and systems to the professionals. If anything looks really funky to the untrained eye, that’s one thing. But I wouldn’t be going through checklists as they relate to anything that would be covered in a home inspection while seeing houses for the first time. A broker isn’t going to tell you something’s “about to go”, and you (and the majority of us) are not educated in making that informed determination.

          • brokentoe :

            Don’t rule something out because of aging mechanicals. Home warranties are available – paid for by either buyer or seller – that can cover you for quite a lot for that first year or more. If you think the overall cost of the home is high, this is another place to negotiate price.

          • I think having a good realtor is key. My realtor wouldn’t even let me go look at certain houses because she knew the amount of work they’d need would put them way out of my price range.

  14. With so many posts about people gaining/losing weight, forgetting to donate items, decluttering, etc. I wonder if we could ever coordinate some type of Secret Santa but with items we already own and want to get rid of. I’d bet that it could end up being a fun thing to do where many would end up with new/like new stuff and decluttering what they no longer use or want. Just not sure how to do it without people posting real names/addresses. Is there a website or app for this? Or maybe it becomes a fb group? Ideas? Would anyone be open to doing this?

    • Anonymous :

      I kinda love this! Would Elfster have any way of doing such a thing, or is that just “secret Santa” type stuff?

    • I participate in a Buy Nothing group for my neighborhood which basically is this. Its amazing! Look for one in your area!

    • I’m surprised this place hasn’t become a slack group yet tbh. I’m assuming Kat is happy that we haven’t though.

  15. Anonymous :

    Any recommendations from the hive on a good all-inclusive resort? Looking to travel in Jan or Feb. Thanks in advance!

    • Pueblo Bonito Pacifica, Cabo San Lucas. Drool.

    • Anonymous :

      We loved Live Aqua Cancun – adults only, very quiet and peaceful, beautiful pools and beach and surprisingly good food (not Michelin Star quality or anything, but a big step up from cruises and other AIs I’ve been to, with a lot of emphasis on fresh, local ingredients).

    • Beach, ski or spa? Anywhere in the world?

    • cat socks :

      We liked the Paradius Cancun. We upgraded to the higher end tier. I think it’s called Royal Service? There’s a separate building with it’s own pool area and lobby. It is adults only, though. But the rest of the resort seemed kid friendly.

    • Anonymous :

      Excellence Playa Mujeres! Amazing

    • Iberostar Grand Bavaro in Punta Cana. Great food, great service, beautiful pool, private beach, clean, and plenty to do on property!

  16. Barf!!!

    I’m reading about exactly what Matt Lauer’s misconduct included… excerpt of Variety article on Slate.

    Not questionable judgment stuff. Extremely in your face inappropriate. Gross.

  17. Family Law Fun :

    Just got the distinct pleasure and joy of explaining to a client that no, science has not evolved to the point that men (And I know it’s non-transgendered men, but that was too hard to explain) cannot have children. He literally thought that science has made it so that men can carry children. He slept with a woman who got pregnant and still didn’t figure out that her parts didn’t match his. Also, he calls all women “females,” and told me in an awkwardly seductive voice that “no female has ever turned me down, I’m irresistible, I’m pretty special, yeah?” That ended that meeting pretty fast.

    I…..went to law school to explain this, and also, I don’t get paid enough for this ish.

    • Oh man. Is it time for happy hour?

      • Family Law Fun :

        I wish. Non-alcoholic only for me, but I’m taking myself out to dinner tonight. I also had a client scream at me for so long that my attempts to shut down the conversation weren’t even successful, until he told me I was racist and hung up on me.

        I have not had the best day in the world. Also, I hate my job.

  18. Anonymous :

    Is it unethical to take financial aid if you don’t really need it? My older daughter’s school offers generous scholarships for low income families. Technically, we are under the income threshold as my husband took a couple of years off for graduate school, and I am on a sabbatical for this year as we just had our 2nd child in June. However, we left high paying jobs and have a healthy chunk of retirement savings, plus we have been planning for this break in income for a while and are still well within our budget. The issue of whether to apply for financial aid came up as one of my husband’s classmates’ kids in the same school is currently getting financial aid. Am I silly to not apply? I feel like we don’t need it, and wouldn’t want to deprive another child in real need of aid. But at the same time, I don’t want to shortchange ourselves in the long term. Total amount we are talking about here is about $5k for the year.

    • Family Law Fun :

      Is it going to make a difference in how much in loans your daughter has to take out? If it doesn’t make a difference, and you can financially swing it, turn down the finaid. But if it’s going to be $5K more in loans for her, do it.

      • I don’t think the OP is talking about student loans for higher ed? I think she might be referring to financial aid for private elementary school?

        I would probably apply. If you meet the requirements you meet the requirements.

    • I wouldn’t do it if the $5k is nbd to you. It’s probably not the best personal decision, but I would feel guilty.

    • Anonymous :

      I wouldn’t hold back from applying because of a higher income in the past or because you have a lot in savings. Your income is your income and if you meet the threshold for aid now, I would do it. The school could ask about savings if they wanted to know (colleges do).
      But if you only qualify now because of your sabbatical and a resulting temporary drop in income, and will be above the threshold once you return to work (in a year?) then I think you should at least note that on the application forms.

    • Senior Attorney :

      What would you think about someone else doing this? How would you feel about telling all your friends you were doing it?

      I guess if the school is rolling in so much dough that it hands out the scholarships to every single family below the income threshold, that’s fine. But I agree with your instinct that it would be disgusting to take a scholarship you don’t need if it means a truly needy family wouldn’t get it.

    • You are lovely for the thought :

      Thanks for this.

      – A former financial aid officer who was once screamed at over the phone by a former Enron C-suite parent, spouting rage at me that his spawn didn’t qualify for FULL need-based aid since daddy was unemployed (but still had plenty of disclosed assets).

  19. Secret Santa Help? :

    I’m in a distance friend group Secret Santa and for whatever reason, my brain is broken and I cannot come up with a good gift for my friend I’ve drawn. She likes her dogs, is a huge runner, is into tech stuff…our budget is $10, which is where I’m getting stuck.

    I’ve thought about making a batch of chocolate chip cookies and popping them in the mail, but that seems kinda lame. Any other ideas?

    • Lululemon headband and some cookies

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Cookies + bluetooth headphones (like cheap-y ones she could use while running)?

      Cookies + one of those armband things for your phone while you run?

      Cookies + cool socks… with dogs on them?

      • givemyregards :

        Running socks! Honestly, the best ones are a little more than $10 but I love getting running socks as gifts because it really makes a difference to have nice ones but feels dumb to spend $10 (or $15 or $20) on a single pair.

    • Does she run with her dogs early/late? Amazon has LED dog collars, and one seller has them for $10.09.

    • Professional Gifter :

      One month of Spotify or Audible so she can download running music/books?

  20. Sloan Sabbith :

    Had a bad day. Topped it off by not one but two of the printers in the office malfunctioning, and having to scan a 100 page document 4 times, with none of them working. Our printers are so slow it took 20 minutes total. Embarrassingly, this was the thing that completely tipped me over the edge from “Handling it” to “Trying not to cry while whispering curse words at the printer.” Finally a legal assistant (not mine….) took pity on me when she walked by and dealt with it.

    • Hugs to you, Sloane. We have bad days, but I feel for you especialy b/c you have been in and out of hospital lateley. You do have the POWER of the hive behind you, so know that your freinds here support you, for better or worse. YAY!!!!

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