Suit of the Week: Ann Taylor

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.

We’ve talked before about winter tweed vs. tweed in summer, and this suit from Ann Taylor looks like a perfect summer tweed suit. I like the sleek, collarless jacket; the shorter length for the pants; and the fact that the pants have functional pockets (although if you’re like me and feel a little hippy sometimes, you may prefer to have the pockets sewn closed). The suit comes in regular sizes 00-18, petite sizes 00-16, and tall sizes 0-18. The jacket (Tweed Collarless Jacket) was $169 but is now $139 (with an additional 40% off at checkout to bring it to $83), the pants (available in two fits) were $98 but are now $69 (with an additional 40% off at checkout to bring them to $41), and there’s also a matching skirt and vest (not pictured; also on sale with an extra 40% off).

Here’s a plus-size option that’s also good for summer.

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  1. I’m having a hard time telling what the difference between the two pants is.

    • Devin is for straight hips, Kate is for a curvier fit.

    • These are Ann Taylor’s typical options. Kate = curvy fit. Devin = straight fit. Basically the Kate is available for people (like me) with bigger thighs/hips compared to their waist.

      • turtletorney :

        can you (or anyone) tell me how they run? i want to try the Kate. I am 5’9″ and slim but have thighs and booty. anyone know if I should get tall or regular, and if they run big/small?

    • Anony Mouse :

      Same pant, two different cuts. The Devin fit is a slightly slimmer cut than the Kate, which is meant for curvier women.

    • The pants don't match the jacket :

      Note, though, that the pants are labeled as “black” tweed and the jacket as “navy tweed.” Also the Kate fit is a different tweed pattern from the other pieces. Sigh. I thought this would be a win.

    • Marshmallow :

      The Devin ankle pants are also a little longer than the Kate ankle pants for some reason.

    • Anonymous :

      PSA, the pants linked above are not the tweed ones that actually match the jacket. Search for “ankle pant tweed” on the AT website and it will take you to the right ones.

  2. Not Interview :

    I just need some commiseration for a very strange “interview” I had with another district’s workgroup and HR. We have been cloak & dagger-ing a position opening back and forth for two months, and today I thought we were going to have a real interview for the position, but toward the end, they mentioned I still had to apply internally and the same people would follow up with an official interview – IF I was selected.

    I’m acquaintances with someone else in their workgroup, who says they are currently only looking at one candidate (me) for this position, so this whole Not Interview felt both strange and unnecessary, if what they were offering at the end of the day was a “chance” at a position.

    Maybe they just want to lowball me, or make me work for it, but today did not go as planned!

    • Anony Mouse :

      I’m sorry, that’s really frustrating!

    • My company does this all the time. Its the official policy that they have to publish all job openings, and if there are enough applicants to interview at least 5 people. Its pretty common knowledge that management will have one certain person in mind, so its more frustrating for the other 4 who are hoping to get lucky.

  3. Carrying Two Cell Phones :

    What are people’s experiences carrying around a business phone and a personal phone? I’m about to get a corporate cell phone and have my choice of devices. My personal phone is iPhone 6s. Should I stick with the same (or SE) for business use? Go with an Android to make keeping track easier? Business phone will be mainly for emails and calls only. Are there other considerations I should think about? I would love to hear the Hive’s advice on this.

    • Sloan Sabbith :

      My mentor has two and he just has the same phone with different cases. He likes it because he doesn’t have to figure out how to use a new phone.

      • This was my immediate thought. I don’t have two phones but this would absolutely be my preference.

      • I do this. Both iphones.

        My work phone is in a black case and my personal phone has a bright/fun case.

        I work somewhere subject to freedom of information act rules so I am meticulous about keeping my personal and professional uses separate.

    • Anonymous :

      I carry two. Work is iPhone 6+ and home is iPhone 6. I like having the two different sizes so I can easily grab the one I want from my purse. I’m solidly on team Apple so getting an android didn’t ever cross my mind. I did get two different service providers (Verizon and att) which has been nice in the odd place that doesn’t have reception for one of the two (e.g. DC metro is better set up for Verizon).

      Another plus of having same brand is the chargers and accessories are interchangeable.

    • Migraineur :

      I did it and I really hated it. It was OK when my work phone was a blackberry because I really liked the physical keyboard for emails. But then my work switched to the iphone so I had a personal iphone and a business iphone to juggle. I eventually stopped using my personal iphone and people would text me there and I wouldn’t see it for days. I finally got rid of it.

      • I would kill for a blackberry! I loved that keyboard with all my heart.

        I have an iphone as my personal phone and crappy android as my work phone. I don’t want work emails on my personal phone, because even though I’m in finance, I get emails with patient information, so everything has to be encrypted. The crappy android was the smartphone they were giving out when I got one, so I’m not complaining.

    • I have two iPhones. My work phone is a black iPhone 6S and my personal phone is a white iPhone 7. I didn’t have any choice over which phone I was assigned for work, but I like that they are both the same size so when I carry them they fit nicely together and I like that they are different colors so I can tell them apart.

      My firm installs software on the phone you use for work that can monitor everything, so I didn’t want to use the same phone for work/personal purposes. It turns out that I like having two phones. Like someone above me mentioned, it is helpful that I have two in case one dies or doesn’t have service.

    • Anonymous :

      I have an Android (home) and currently an iPhone (work), although it used to be a Blackberry. Learning a whole new OS for a new phone is rough. I do not recommend it. Stick with what you know – I would have preferred another Android phone for ease of use! (I do appreciate the battery life on my iPhone, though…)

      Also, having the same charger for both is great when you’re traveling, in the car, etc.

    • Timely. I have a personal iPhone 6SE and am about to get a work phone. I’m planning on getting the same phone in a different color (or same color but different case). I refuse to have a phone that won’t fit in my back jeans pocket or blazer pocket, so this fits the bill. I’ve held out on having a work device for a decade, but alas, that streak is finally over.

    • Anonymous :

      iPhone for home and blackberry for work. I hate the blackberry! I’m so over the physical keyboard thing – I can type faster and better on the iPhone, and the rest of the blackberry is completely useless. That said, I do not mind having two phones at all – it’s really helpful for ignoring parts of my life for a while when necessary.

    • Anonymous :

      As someone who just had communications on a work device used in an investigation (not of me, thankfully), I will never have one phone for both. I realize personal device records can still be obtained if there is a legal reason to obtain them, but it was super unsettling to see it even though I did nothing wrong.

      I have an iPhone for both, different sizes and I wish I had also gone with different colors. I like only having to learn one OS and having one charger work for both.

      • Do you have a different apple id for the work phone? I use the same apple id, so I get my imessages on both phones. This is making me reconsider that…

        • Anonymous :

          You can turn this off. Settings, message, then click that you can only be reached by iMessage by your phone number and not your your Apple ID. I use the same Apple ID for work and home phones, but only when it’s convenient (e.g. Yes for photo sharing and contacts , no for messages).

        • Anonymous :

          Investigation anon here . . .

          No, I have two different Apple IDs. One is tied to my work email and the other my pwrsonal email. Totally separate. FWIW, the messages grabbed for the investigation were sent using iMessage and received on a Mac laptop so keep that in mind with the Apple Id stuff. I am not at all a tech wizard, but I guess if you have all Mac stuff you can sync it all and your iMessages go to your laptop as well?

    • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

      I have had two phones, but as soon as it was possible with our IT, I switched to one. Never looked back. Carrying two is inconvenient.

    • Get 2. You do not want to mix your personal life up with your job. I have my own of my choice (I’m an iphone/apple fan) & then I carry whatever work gives me. If your work doesn’t supply it, I’d just get whatever they’ll reimburse & I wouldn’t worry about features beyond email/text/calling because you aren’t going to want to leave your personal history on that phone. Take it from a litigator. Get your own stuff.

      • I’ve always just used one for convenience but this thread is making re-think. I feel dense for asking, but can someone please explain the risks to me?

        • Blonde Lawyer :

          Basically, if there is any litigation, everything can get turned over to your lawyers, personal and private. Your phone could also be seized for a litigation hold but usually they just copy the contents and let you have it back to keep using. I only use one but have distinctly separate email accounts and don’t use my phone for anything work related but emails. I use google voice on the rare occasion I need to make a work call from my cell.

          In bigger corporations there may be more snooping/copying and the risk of having stuff wiped when you leave the company. You have to analyze your own risk. I’m at a small firm and comfortable with my risk level with one phone. That said, I also don’t take any nude selfies or anything that would be truly mortifying to produce.

          • Why would you use google voice to make a non-work call from your cell?

          • Blonde Lawyer :

            I use Google Voice to make work calls, not non-work calls, from my personal cell. One, it gives me a number other than my personal one that I can give out and have show up on caller ID. Two, if there was ever litigation and my phone records were relevant, it wouldn’t be my personal phone records but the google voice records, if there are any.

        • Anonymous BigLaw Associate :

          I am actually surprised to see most people here carry two devices. I can’t think of a single attorney I work with that does that.

          I think the only real “security” risk is your employer seeing your personal email/texts. That is not a concern of mine. Or I guess you could say it makes it easier to accidentally forward emails with sensitive information to contacts in your other email accounts, but that seems a little far-fetched.

          I guess if you got subpoenaed that could complicate things if you had relevant texts or voicemails, but not to the point that an IT department couldn’t parse what should be collected from what shouldn’t.

          Source: Former encryption security software developer

          • Anonymous :

            Typically if there’s some type of security incident related to your phone, you have agreed that your company can seize what is your personal phone, which would be somewhat awful.

            What type of data your company collects on your usage would probably depend on what type of MDM software they have you install on it. If they don’t have you install anything, that would be somewhat shocking and a risk to the company – for example, if you haven’t updated your phone in years, browsing around the internet could result in someone exploiting your phone. That wouldn’t be nice for them and it would be embarrassing for you.

    • I have two. I almost always have a purse, so it’s not really inconvenient. Formerly blackberry (touchscreen – the Z10 I think) and now iPhone for work. Samsung Galaxy (not sure which one) for personal. I like having two – sometimes I *gasp* leave my work phone at home, or at least tucked away for hours at a time. I like being able to do that – I also like being able to have a separate cell phone number for use with clients (see time before I had a voice plan on the work phone – which I pay for; firm only reimburses for data – and a client with the same name as my mother’s friend called my cell while I was with my mother in the hospital, major confusion!). They are also on separate networks – work is AT&T and personal is Verizon, so between the two I almost never have dead spots.

      On the iPhone for work – my biggest pet peeve is that there is no where to “save” documents or download attachments without going through the cloud (which is a no-no for my firm). So, if there is an email attachment in one chain, and the client asks me to resend them the attachment in another chain, I can’t download and reattach it without going through the cloud; I have to reforward the old email). The flip side is that this rarely happens because my firm archives emails after 2 weeks and the attachments can no longer be retrieved from my phone at that point, so I couldn’t download it if I wanted to (but that’s an issue for another time).

      Second work iPhone pet peeve is that track changes in word don’t always show for me on email attachments in apple’s viewer. Because of that I always send redlines as PDF, and I solved the problem for me personally by signing up for Office 365 so I get full word capability on my phone (and personal iPad – the real reason because sometimes I just travel with that rather than a full laptop). I think now you can just download the word app for free and view in a read-only capacity, but at the time that wasn’t an option.

    • Govt Anon :

      I have two, a 6s for personal use and some sort of 5 for work (it’s whatever they issue us). I am subject to FOIA, so I am borderline paranoid about not mixing the two. My work phone only has apps that come with the phone or apps needed for work. No one but my coworkers/work connections has my work number (much to the chagrin of my mother), I only do work related internet browsing on my work phone etc. I am just as strict with myself when it comes to my work computer/work wifi too.

  4. Migraineur :

    I posted a couple of weeks ago a long story about having migraine come on during a business lunch.

    I have had low grade headaches just about every day since then. This is not my first migraine, so I know your head can be “sore” for a couple of days after, but I don’t remember it lasting this long… does this happen to any of you?

    I’m seeing my regular doc tomorrow to get a referral to a new neurologist, and hope to find someone who isn’t utterly uninterested in my headaches.

    • Pen and Pencil :

      I get this. I can feel a migraine coming on for 1-2 weeks usually, and I typically have a headache afterwards for months. It is *super fun*. Usually the migraine itself only lasts 2-3 days and I am only throwing up and sick from work 1-2 of those days. I haven’t ever had it checked out, so let me know what your neurologist has to say!

    • This is not a direct answer to your question, but if you use imitrex/sumatriptan, there is something that changed my life. My neurologist prescribed shots for sudden onset headaches, which I sometimes wake up with (and imitrex pills are basically useless at that point). I typically do need to lay down or rest for a few minutes after taking it, but it works within ten minutes. The relief tends to be about equal to one 100 mg pill. It is called Sumavel Dosepro and I use the needle-less injection. This may help in situations where you have a headache suddenly come on.

    • Migrainesssssssss :

      Yeah, I’ve had migraines for months continuously. Don’t suffer. The longer the pain lasts, the harder it is to break the pain cycle.

  5. Sloan Sabbith :

    I ADORE this suit. I don’t wear suits ever and I don’t have the $ to spend on even the blazer right now, but I adore it.

    • Anonymous :

      Same. Love it, don’t need it but kind of wish I did.

    • Marshmallow :

      I do kind of need a suit but I’m realllllly trying not to buy any more work clothes until the fall. But I want it.

    • Anonymous :

      It is so pretty for summer! I really wish the skirt was either longer than 22 inches or came in tall lengths so I could buy it.

  6. Any tips for not drinking on weeknights? I’m finding it surprisingly difficult to pass up my post-work, post-toddler-bedtime drink, to take the edge off the busy day. But for numerous reasons I need to and want to). I’m not a big tv person, but when I do watch, it would be with wine in hand. I can’t exercise because we eat after toddler goes down, and I can’t work out on a full stomach. Meditation has helped some. Mostly I just want to stop the itch. Is it just something that will subside with time as I break the habit?

    • I switched to LaCroix or tea. Hot cocoa if it’s really cold and I’m feeling indulgent. You could also replace it with a relaxing beauty ritual, like a mask.

      • Anonymous :

        +1 to sparkling water and tea!

      • I love sparkling water, tea, and fancy sodas. But they dont scratch the itch, unfortunately. Instead I think it would be good with a splash of vodka!

        • Anonymous :

          You probably just need time, then. Nothing is going to make you feel the same way the alcohol did, but the point of changing the content of the nightly ritual is to help reset the brain about what to expect. And that, as will all habits, takes time.

    • pugsnbourbon :

      Found myself doing the same thing (minus the kid) a couple years ago. It’s not even that I was actually getting buzzed, it was the habit/ritual aspect. Can you substitute a fancy water or soda? Poured over ice, for me it has the same effect.

    • I am also trying to cut down and I have realized that my weekend cocktail or nightly glass of wine was really about the ritual. It’s a signal I give myself that it’s fun time now, not work time, not mothering time, it’s my time.

      I am coming to realize that I can have me time without booze. My substitution has been a glass of sparkling water, a small square of chocolate, or just telling myself, you can have me time now. It’s still fun. It’s still relaxing. You’ll be OK without a glass of sauvignon blanc.

    • Tea!

    • Kombucha works for me! It may be aquired taste but it is something I really enjoy after dinner. It does have trace amounts of alcohol but I don’t get the effect of wine, just a little relaxation.

    • Depends on your taste buds, but I read somewhere that the best non-alcoholic drink to replace alcohol is bitters + club soda/seltzer. I drink tea and seltzer regularly but it really doesn’t do much for me when I want a glass of wine.

    • Shopaholic :

      This is not a tip for non-drinking at all but I’ve found that sometimes, when I want a glass of wine at home (I don’t think tea or sparkling water scratches that specific itch), I’ll just pour a couple ounces. The first couple sips are always my favourite anyways and it’s enough to satisfy my urge for the ritual without all of the extra calories.

    • Anonymous :

      I cut out the weeknight drinks cold turkey not long ago, and the itch to drink was pretty much gone after a week. Just hang in there!

    • anonymiTEA :

      fancy tea for me! I agree with others that addictions (even low-grade hankerings for weeknight glass of red) can be broken by re-training your brain. In my case, going through the ritual of a fancy glass of tea does it. Take some time to find your replacement ritual

      … at least most nights it works :)

      I just recently splurged at David’s Tea again…. expensive jasmine/green tea. Combo Rooibos and lavender. A fancy ginger spicy tea.

    • JuniorMinion :

      I make spa water with a different combination of fruit every week (I used to do la croix, but it seemed to be irritating my digestive system)! I also am a halotop addict so I will have a half pint of that.

    • Get yourself to Costco and buy a case of Spindrift. Also available, more expensively, at Target and TJs.

    • No helpful suggestion for cutting it out completely, but this: I am throwing it back to the 1980’s and almost exclusively drinking spritzers at home. Two ounces of a light white or rose, plus ice, plus half a can of la croix (usually pamplemousse). Stretches out that tiny amount of wine into something very enjoyable and refreshing. I extend the ritual piece by drinking from a fun glass.

    • Fancy sparkling water is my go-to replacement.

    • Anonymous :

      I gave up drinking alone for Lent, which in my life basically meant weeknight drinking.

      In large part, yes, I just had to stop. I had to sit there knowing I wanted a glass of wine, knowing life would be better with that wine, and not drink it. Tea helped a lot to have something to sip. Also not having alcohol in the house- I didn’t get rid of everything, but I did make sure to not have anything tempting in the fridge.

      I went back to drinking post Lent but do drink less now and feel good about it.

    • I sometimes call myself an alcoholic without a drinking problem, because I’m completely addicted to my one glass of wine per day.

      Tea is not going to replace wine, ever for me. I don’t want a “healthy” substitution.

      My friend gave me this recipe that we call “unicorn water”. It gives you the feeling of making something (like you’d make a cocktail), it is not healthy, so it doesn’t feel puritanical, and you can add a lime wedge if you’re feeling fancy:

      -1 smallish bottle of club soda (8 oz? idk, whatever the glass ones are)
      -1.5 tbls countrytime pink lemonade powder

      This is mainly what I drank when I was cutting back my wine consumption a few months ago. Once you do it, it’s fine. I alternated nights. Wine, unicorn water, wine, unicorn water.

    • Anonymous :

      I drink diet tonic mixed with seltzer and a lime wedge. It turns out the tonic was my favorite part of a gin and tonic. Who knew?

    • If you possibly can, just go to bed. I am not at all tempted to drink with my free time in the morning. Instead, I am motivated to work out, get to work early, or do chores. This may be harder for you since it sounds like you are married/partnered, but then again, maybe that will make it easier to figure out what to do in bed if you are not tired at 9 . . .

    • Senior Attorney :

      Also, drink whatever substitute you choose out of a wine glass. When I did Whole 30 I drank soda water out of a champagne flute when I went out with people who were drinking. It was at least fun to hold and sip.

    • Well, I don’t drink but.. I floss and brush my teeth after eating dinner to prevent myself from drinking or eating anything, except water, before I go to bed. After I brush my teeth, it’s me time – so I can watch tv, or browse the internet, etc.

    • You sound like my ex, Alan. He also needed drinks at night to wind down, or so he says. That was a probelem b/c he also wanted to take the “edge off” before we went out to eat, and sometimes b/f we went to bed. Dad said he was a classic alcholic and he thought that other members of the Sheketovits family might have a weakness for the bottle. Dad once met with Mrs. Sheketovits when he thought that I might become Mrs. Alan Sheketovits, and left that meeting unconvinced that there was not more alcoholism in the family. That is why he was thrilled when I decided I would NOT marry Alan and have children with him. So, OP, make sure you are onley drinking at night for the designated “edge”, and not as an entree down the road to disaster. If you are married, make sure your spouse counsels you, and if you are single, like me, be careful NOT to scare away your boyfreind by drinking to excess. You might also mix whatever you are drinking with Cranberry Juice. That way, you will NOT get as buzzed as my Alan did. He was a total mess. FOOEY!

  7. Cornellian :

    Does anyone else have issues with vertigo? I’ve been having spells of pretty severe vertigo that come on over a period of a few days, often accompanied by severe, “I will lie on my dirty office floor with no pillow” fatigue.

    I’m not even sure what doctor to start with for this. A neurologist?

    • I typically start with my GP even though my insurance does not require referrals. I feel like the GP can do a better diagnosis and suggest which type of specialist to see than the Internet can. It does usually mean two appointments though, one for the GP and one for the specialist.

      My husband has vertigo induced by seasonal allergies. Its a pretty uncommon allergic reaction, but not unheard of.

      • Yes! This. I get vertigo every few years if I’ve gotten really stuffy from sinus issues due to allergies. It was so bad in college that I was unable to ride a bike or do flip turns!

        I realize how unsettling it is and hope you get better soon!

    • I had this reaction to an antibiotic I took for one week. I couldn’t even go to work or drive it was so bad at first. It took weeks to finally go away. My doctor had no advice but to just wait and see.

      • Sloan Sabbith :

        I also had an issue with an antibiotic. For me, there was a concern it had hurt my inner ear in such a way my hearing and balance would be affected long-term. Luckily only my hearing is a bit affected at high frequencies. But yeah, GP.

    • Neurologist here!! Yes, start with one of us :) In my experience–and no disrespect intended–GPs are not usually comfortable working up vertigo because there are so many different causes and not all of them stem from the inner ear. If you’re in a big city, there are typically even neurologists that specialize in vertigo. In the meantime, g o o g l e “Johns Hopkins home Epley maneuver” and that may provide some temporary relief, particularly if you have BPPV. I’ve personally been there and vertigo stinks–I hope you feel better.

    • I’ve had issues with vertigo off and on. If it’s new for you, you should absolutely get checked out. I started with my GP. Having done that, I’ve had decent luck doing the epley maneuver at home. There are a ton of youtube videos that walk you through how to do it, and it’s really worked for me.

    • SuziStockbroker :

      I had vertigo/balance issues, and after I was diagnosed with celiac disease (where I also had debilitating fatigue due to incredibly low iron, cause by lack of nutrient absorption) and went gluten free, it abated. There is something (it is called attaxia, I think) which some people with celiac experience.
      For what it is worth, I didn’t have the classic gastro symptoms, AT ALL.

    • My mother has issues on and off. Dehydration can be a cause for her. She also does the epley thing and that helps too.

    • Anonymous :

      The epley maneuver and staying very hydrated have helped keep vertigo at bay for me… Interesting that someoone in the comments related celiac to vertigo. 3 of my immediate fam members have celiac, I was tested and did not appear to have it, but I have low iron and vertigo. yikes.

    • I would also look into P.O.T.S. if you have chronic dizziness. Hard to diagnose but pretty common illness that can have a sudden on-set.

  8. Where to honeymoon :

    Hi guys,

    I need help on figuring out where to honeymoon. DF and I literally have no idea where we want to go or what we want to do. DF is from and island so doesn’t really want a beach vacay, and neither of us are particularly outdoorsy (we’ll do outdoor activities but don’t want an outdoor focused honeymoon). Our wedding is in November and we’d like to go right after or soon after the wedding. Any ideas? Pretty much anywhere in the world is fair game, as I can take two weeks off.

    • Italy! Scenic. Pasta.

    • Anonymous :

      I’d go to Hawaii (or Tahiti, if you’re a Mutiny on the Bounty / young Marlon Brando fan). You get mountains and a beach, so you can be as outdoorsy or not as you like. If it weren’t November, I’d say Banff (or if cold works for, Banff in November). PITA to get to places are perfect for honeymoons and it won’t be like “Tahiti, but we just did that” for the rest of your lives.

    • Morocco, Turkey, and Dubrovnik are each high on my list, as are Brazil and Argentina. You could also see a fair amount of Western Europe in 2 weeks, or see a lot of one country (e.g. Rome/Tuscany/Florence/Venice or Paris/Provence/Normandy/favorite wine region).

    • November sounds like a good time to head to the southern hemisphere. Is there a particular city or region that interests both of you? Australia, New Zealand, Buenos Aires, Mendoza or Santiago would make my short list. I’ve never researched many African locations, but I bet there are some awesome places to go there also.

      • Where to honeymoon :

        A hard to get to place sounds ideal. There is a particular city or region that we’re interested in, although there are many places DF is pretty meh about, those being Australia (too many creatures that can kill you) and, although I’ve recommended some more developed African countries he seems to think we’ll get kidnapped or trapped in the middle of a revolution (despite the fact that we are both of African descent and could pass as African or mixed if we don’t talk too much, and yes I rolled my eyes too but he’s very picky).

        • Anonymous :

          What in Australia can kill you? Genuinely curious. All I know is the dingo-ate-by-baby lady.

          In the US, we have too many bears, the deer can kill you when they run onto the highway, never mind the non-exurb / suburban mammals and venomous snakes / scorpions.

          • Anonymous :

            Lots of things! Scorpions, sharks, jellyfish, spiders. Bill Bryson’s book about Australia dwelled on this point quite a bit. Highly recommend.

          • Anonymous :

            OK — sounds like the same things that can kill me at home. Forgot about the sharks. And getting thrown from horses.

          • Anonymous :

            Australia has way more varieties of poisonous snakes and spiders than any other country. Yes, we have some poisonous spiders and snakes in the US but the bites are rarely fatal and they tend to live in sparsely populated areas and not bother people who don’t bother them. So it’s a risk if you choose to do certain activities (e.g., hiking in Arizona/rattlesnakes) but you can avoid them by avoiding those activities. In Australia, they live in urban areas and there’s no getting away from them. And there are way more of them, from what I hear. I have visited Australia and loved it but I have a friend of a friend who lived there and from his stories I could never, ever live there.

          • Anonymous :

            @3:18 – well of course your friend is telling you the stories about the time he almost died, those are the exciting ones. You don’t hear about the days when he didn’t encounter any animal life that could kill him.

            I mean, the US has Yellowstone Park, which is basically a giant volcano that could blow at any time and kill us with the initial dust output. But just because it could happen doesn’t mean its likely to happen.

            And just because it’s more likely to get bitten in Australia than in the US doesn’t mean it has a high probability of happening in Australia.

          • I’m an Aussie , in Sydney.
            I do not know anyone who has been bitten or stung by any creature except a mosquito or a garden bug. If you go into the bush or outside at night use bug-off spray ( we also can get cool plastic bangles with bug-off on them) . In the bush or in rough ground wear shoes. The spiders etc are more frightened of you.
            And…it would be stupid to swim in a crocodile river anywhere right?

        • Never too many shoes... :

          What about Bali or Fiji?

        • Anonymous :

          Seconding New Zealand. It’s spectacularly beautiful, with a ton of cool outdoor things to do if you want to (tubing in a glow worm cave, hiking on a glacier…), but also lots of cute towns to wander around in, fun music to listen to, great craft breweries and vineyards to tour, and more. And almost nothing can kill you! They don’t have any snakes at all; I watched a really cute TV show on working dogs when I was in Christchurch, and they spent just as much time on the sniffer dog who was looking for reptiles as they did on the police dog who chased robbers, because they try so hard to keep snakes out.

          • Anonymous :

            New Zealander here. It sure is spectacularly beautiful, but (especially for outdoor activities) I wouldn’t go in November. Unlike Australia the weather is unreliable — if you’ll go only once in your life, go (some other year) in January-April when it’s at its best!

          • I actually went to NZ in November. If that isn’t New Zealand at its best, I can’t even imagine what it will be like if I go at an optimal time. Of all the places I’ve been in the world (a lot!) it is far and away my favorite.

        • Anonymous :

          Eye roll. Australia is safer than the US.

          • Anonymous :

            Yes – millions of people manage to live there without dying. It’s amazing.

      • How about a luxury safari in South Africa or Botswana?

    • – Europe seems like the obvious answer here. Plenty to do there that is not outdoorsy. You can choose a specific location based on food or cultural attractions or weather (do you want somewhere that will be cool and cozy for Fall or somewhere that will still be on the warmer side?)

      – Argentina would be another good option. November is Spring in Buenos Aires.

      – November is also a good time of year to visit Southeast Asia. I did a trip to Thailand and Vietnam a couple of years ago that was great and could make for a very nice honeymoon :)

      • Where to honeymoon :

        Preferably some place on the warmer side. I think Argentina could be nice, that’s a good recommendation. Chilly but not freezing or warm are fine.

        Has anyone done an Italy and Morocco trip combined? Is that feasible, get some Europe and some Africa?

        • Morocco and Spain is more common, and would fit the bill for cool scenery, beach and mountains, outdoorsy if you want it, and great food!

          • Moroccan here, it’s much closer to go to Spain then Morocco as you just cross with a ferry

      • Senior Attorney :

        +1 to Southeast Asia. I’ve been to Vietnam and Cambodia and they were fantastic.

    • Paris or London or Tokyo? You could visit museums, see some shows, eat a lot of exotic food, rent a car and drive out to the countryside, etc.

      It will be summer down in Australia and New Zealand in November.

    • my DH and I went to Egypt for our honeymoon back in April — we struck a great balance between touring (the pyramids, temples, and other historical sites are incredible) and relaxing at the beach in Alexandria (a great city, with lots to do other than the beach). The weather in November would be perfect for being outside during the day during tours but not so hot that its unbearable.

      • my SO refuses to go to Egypt and cites safety concerns. Did y’all take that into account when planning?

        • We did. We intentionally chose not to visit places that did not have a high tourist population (such as Sharm el Sheikh) . Coincidentally (and unfortunately), we were scheduled to visit Alexandria a few days after there was a bombing. We continued with our plans to visit Alexandria and honestly never felt unsafe.

    • Anonymous :

      Cartagena, Colombia

    • We went to New Zealand in November last year and it was wonderful! The weather was spring like, so a little bit of rain, a lot of 60-70 degree weather, and a couple really warm days. It was a really cool combination of seeing a completely new country, seeing volcanoes, and relaxing.

    • Anonymous :

      Has anyone had an hCG blood test to date a pregnancy? I just got a positive home pregnancy test last week. My cycle ranges from 26-30 days, which I didn’t think was hugely irregular, but the nurse at my OBGYN said it’s irregular enough that the traditional due date calculator (based on my last period) won’t work and I need the hCG test to determine when I’m far enough along to have my 10 week appointment/ultrasound (which is the first appointment for all normal pregnancies at my doctor’s office). But everything I’ve found online says blood tests can’t be used to date a pregnancy, since hCG levels can vary widely even across healthy pregnancies and there’s huge overlap in the normal ranges for each week of pregnancy. So I’m thoroughly confused. Anyone have any insight?

      • Anonymous :

        Oops, wrong place! Sorry, honeymoon OP!!

      • I just had one and it didn’t narrow down a date (which we were also somewhat confused about so…)

      • I had a dating ultrasound because I had irregular cycles and “felt small” for the traditional period calculation. I wasn’t offered a blood test.

      • You can’t really tell how far along you are on the basis of hCG — there’s a wide variety of “normal” possibilities at different times for a viable pregnancy. However, it would be normal to do a test to make sure it is “high enough” before doing a dating ultrasound, as you can’t see anything on an ultrasound in a very early pregnancy.

    • I spent half my honeymoon in Paris and it was so fantastic. It was June, so totally different time of year and I don’t know what November weather is like there (probably chilly). But my goodness do I love Paris. The food, the museums, the cathedrals, the cafes, did I mention the croissants? Sigh…Paris.

      • ALX emily :

        I went to Paris in late November 2015 and the weather was chilly but tolerable – it pretty much alternated between cloudy and 50 degrees (with a bit of rain) and sunny and 45 degrees (sometimes windy). There is not a lot of daylight then, but that was kind of fine/nice with all the Christmas lights and other things to see.

      • I went to Paris on my honeymoon (in early December) and it was fantastic! The Christmas decorations are wonderful.

  9. We’re got quite a large down payment saved to buy a place, but won’t be buying for the next 1-2 years – is there really nothing to do with this money aside from park it in a high interest savings account (I found one at 1.3% for up to $500,000)??? I know interest rates are low, and we don’t really want to risk the money, but I’d love even a slightly better option given the amount!

    • what about a CD?

      • I haven’t found any with appreciably higher interest rates for that time period, unfortunately.

    • Anonymous :

      Are you paying interest on anything? If smaller-dollar, I’d pay that off. That will increase your IRR and you can rebuild with the the former P&I payments on what you paid off before you buy.
      student loans?
      car loans?

      • Interesting, and slightly better option, my husband does have a couple student loans left – the interest rate on them is a ridiculously low 2% (the reason we haven’t paid off previously), but we don’t get a tax deduction for it and 2% is higher than 1.3%! Thanks for the suggestion, that could work for a bit of it!

      • Cornellian :

        +1. Just adjust if the interest-carrying debt carries a tax deduction and you itemize.

        • Anonymous :

          What interest-carrying debt can you itemize as a deduction that is not also a home mortgage? You don’t need to itemize to get the student loan interest, right?

          I thought mortgage interest was the only remain consumer interest you could still deduct.

    • CD or Bond :

      Look into actual bonds with a maturity of 1-2 years (not a bond fund), and look into longer-term CDs. For bonds, for example, see if you can find a 10 or 20 year bond that matures in 2019. The market for bonds may not be great for buyers, though, so CDs may be simpler. Lots of CDs that say they are 5+ years have terms actually permit you to take your money out early, in return for forfeiting 1-2 periods of interest. So, you get a 2.5% rate, instead of 1.5% on a 1-2 year CD, but lose a month or a quarter of interest when you pull your funds early. You might still end up making more in interest than you would have otherwise.

      • I’d never thought about just accepting the penalty, this is such a good idea – I’ll see what I can find!

    • We are in the same situation, and we have ours invested in some conservative bond funds that pay out pretty significant monthly and quarterly dividends (DH is in fixed income, so we probably wouldn’t attempt this strategy without his background). The funds do fluctuate in value, but they’ve generally done pretty well and the cash flow from the dividends more than makes up for any “down” months.

  10. Writing my own Annual Review :

    I’m writing highlights of my year’s work, to submit as my annual review. Most of my projects involve creative design or data visualization, so each bullet point has a little screen-captured illustration. But the top item on the list is training other people, which I can’t figure out how to illustrate.

    I have several highly complimentary emails stashed away. Would I be out of line to use snippets from them as screen shots? I’m flip-flopping between thinking that would be a disgustingly arrogant thing to do, and thinking that is exactly the sort of think I should put in my HR file. Help me decide!

    • I think that’s a great idea! But why not quote them instead of screen shots? Unless that fits into the design. Otherwise it seems a little clunky.

    • Use them! It’s not arrogance – it’s evidence of the impact of your work. Your annual review is exactly when you should be pulling out that stuff, your boss won’t be able to take into account your excellent feedback from colleagues if you don’t tell them about it.

  11. That’s what you should do, although I would just quote them and then attach the email.

  12. Paging Wildkitten :

    It’s Sloan.

    Saw your post last night re: outfits. My chronic illness means that since I was little, I’ve had a very distended stomach. Some days I look 5-6 months pregnant. Sometimes more. Sometimes less. I’m super self-conscious about it and have been as long as I can remember. So I have a lot of practice with what hides it.

    1. Skirts with tucked in shirts, set at my natural waistline; the skirt has to fall over my stomach loosely. So, not pencil skirts. Never pencil skirts. They make me look like an elephant. Today I’m wearing a Loft skirt that’s a tiny a-line but floats away from my stomach. I also like the Amanda and Chelsea skirts from the Rack, but you have to size up by kind of a lot (3 sizes for me).
    2. Shirts that are looser over the stomach- I like Pleione for this a lot, as well as Target Merona scoop-neck tees (work appropriate!). Tight tees end up being too short. Not a good look.
    3. Dresses that tie over my natural waist are great, as are fit and flare and t-shirt dresses I can loosely belt.
    4. Pants suck. No real tips there except that high waist has to be a very particular fit to work. I don’t tuck stuff in to pants, ever.
    5. Patterns can hide a lot of issues.

  13. work whiplash :

    Looking for insight in handling a weird work situation. I direct a graduate program at a university, and have an assistant (50% FTE staff person, in the job for ~1.5 years) who’s also a doctoral student in the program. As far as I know, we get along well. She does excellent work. She was away on vacation last week; expected back in the office on Friday. No responses to multiple emails on Friday and Monday, until I sent an email asking if she was ok, or was stuck at her vacation destination.

    Then received an email from her conveying her resignation, effective immediately, and indicating that she had accepted another job! I was flabbergasted. Didn’t see that one coming at all. I was frustrated by the short notice with a number of time sensitive projects going on. Also irritated that I have been working extremely hard over the past few weeks to write grants to fund & expand her staff position (including writing one on my family vacation!) that she was no longer interested in. After an evening of fuming and venting to my spouse, I began dealing with the logistics the next day – informing HR, and the department head, considering how to replace her, etc.

    Here’s where it gets weird: yesterday evening, I received another email from her informing me that she had NOT resigned and that she would be in the office today! Flabbergasted again. I’m really disinterested in this chaos and drama, not to mention the lack of professionalism. I work from home in the summer to avoid the hour+ commute, so we haven’t seen each other face to face. I let HR know to stop the resignation procedures… but what to do now??? If she does’t want the job, I don’t want her to continue in it half-heartedly. I’m disappointed in the uncharacteristic lack of professionalism. She will be difficult to replace as she has specialized expertise, but she shouldn’t continue in the job if her heart is not into it. I suggested she take the week to think about what she really wants and let me know her final decision on Friday. Any other suggestions?

    • Assuming she comes back to work, I would search for her replacement and then fire her.

      • Anonymous :

        Disagree with SC. Talk to her and find out exactly what is going on. You can make the decision about whether to keep her once you hear it.

    • Marshmallow :

      What? I would have told her not to come back, period. Is she really that irreplaceable that it makes sense to give her yet a third chance to decide what she wants? Not only did she quit, but she no-showed for two days of work before quitting without notice. All the nope.

      • Right, like even the most entry level jobs – waiting tables, retail clerk, scooping ice cream – generally have a “no call, no show, no job” policy.

    • I would actually give this a moment and speak with her directly. Is this out of character for her? How old is she? Honestly it sounds like this could be something else entirely – like she was high on vacation or had some kind of episode. It does not sound normal.

    • You could fire her and be done with it.

    • Anonymous :

      Is there any chance she didn’t send the resignation email in the first place?

      I’d probably have a conversation with her about workplace norms and notice periods, if you haven’t already. I mean, she didn’t owe you any explanation about looking, even if you were looking to expand her role, but should at least have give you a notice period. It’s possible she doesn’t have experience with these kind of norms, if she’s come straight thru school, so this would be a good time to emphasize the enormity of the problem she created. She also had a no-phone/no-show situation for 2 days (Friday and Monday), so I’d let her know she’s on notice that if that happens again, it will result in whatever the employee handbook says the consequences are (previous jobs that would have been termination after 3 or more no phone/no shows).

      I’d also want a clear explanation about the resignation/take-back situation. Because generally, you can’t un-quit a job, and she has now damaged her professional reputation with you and needs to do what she can to fix that if she expect to stay. I would expect an explicit explanation about her expectation on staying and working.

      • Anon in NYC :

        I agree that you need to talk to her. Honestly, my first thought was that someone (i.e., an abuser) had accessed her email and sent that to you.

        Barring that, though, I agree that you need to have a conversation with her about workplace norms.

    • lost academic :

      Any chance her email was hacked?

    • Anonymous :

      I agree this is terribly unprofessional on her part and you’d be well within your rights to fire her via email (or wait until you replace her and then fire her, if that’s easier for you). That said, if she’s otherwise been a good employee, you might ask her directly what’s going on, just to see if there’s any kind of explanation for what happened. Because it seems like such a bizarre thing to go AWOL, quit with no notice and then immediately un-quit. Was her “vacation” an ayahuasca retreat in Peru?

    • Anonymous :

      Is there anyone else in the office to supervise her when you’re working from home? I agree with the comments that maybe she was hacked or high, but another thing that popped into my head is that maybe she really is furious for whatever reason and really intended to quit ASAP and without notice but almost immediately realized she could probably milk a few more weeks of salary out of your employer if you’re working at home and wouldn’t immediately notice her absence.

    • Okay, so this is obviously not the norm, but a similar thing happened to a friend of mine (at a law firm, so that’s different as well). He was looking around for a new job (he was staff attorney at the law firm, wanted either an associate position or to go in house). He interviewed (multiple rounds) and was verbally offered a great job in house at a well established company. HOWEVER, apparently the person who verbally offered him the job didn’t actually have authority to offer him a job (despite being associate GC). He gave notice at the law firm, and then was waiting on the written job offer that never came. It was very humbling and embarrassing for him to have to go back to the partner and ask for his job back.

      Maybe this is what happened to your person. Maybe it’s not, but it if it is, just know that it’s happened before. Always, always get it in writing.

      • Anonymous :

        The difference is she quit without notice after a two day no-show. There is nothing unprofessional about having to ask for a job back after something like you describe happened, even if he should have waited until he had confirmation.

    • Perhaps she had been hacked or something similar. I would suggest a conversation to figure out what happened there before going forward.

    • Coach Laura :

      Even though you have a long commute I’d suggest meeting her face to face in the office. Maybe go in at 10 to avoid traffic. Not to twist her arm into staying if that’s what she decides but to perhaps reach a better resolution.

  14. Anyone have a breast reduction and then feel like your stomach looks huge? I have a good amount of visceral fat, right under my bra band. I’m working on losing weight before the reduction, but I anticipate still being somewhat overweight when surgery rolls around (my breasts are ginormous, no matter what). I recognize I’m going to be losing my “shelf” that hides my pooch. Am I going to regret this?

    • Anonymous :

      Might you be more active if you were smaller? One fix may help solve the new problem as well.

      • That’s the plan! But I’m at that age when weight loss is really difficult. While I work toward goal I’m worried about looking pot bellied.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      I have not had one, but two friends who have had them both reported that feeling — though they both said they had never considered it before the surgery, so maybe you’re way ahead of them?

    • Senior Attorney :

      I can’t say whether you will or won’t. I’ve had a couple of cosmetic procedures including a tummy tuck, and my experience is there are inevitably some kind of unintended consequences. Like your tummy gets perfectly flat so all of a sudden that little jiggle on your inner thighs, which was of no consequence before, seems like a much bigger deal. On the other hand, I hated my tummy so much, so fiercely, for so many years, and I’m so happy that it’s now flat. And try as I might I just can’t drum up nearly that much hate for my thighs at this late date! YMMV, of course. Maybe talk to your surgeon and see what he/she has to say about it.

    • Anonymous :

      I was super worried about this exact thing, but for me it ended up not being a problem. Overall, after my BR, I found that it was much easier to dress in a flattering way with a bit of a pot belly than it had been with that AND a large bust.

  15. For anyone struggling with fertility/miscarriages, check out the IVFML podcast.

  16. Anonymous :

    Has there been any update from the poster who’s husband was violent? I don’t want to pry but have been thinking about her and her children every day. worried for them.

  17. Kat I’m getting malware pop ups when I visit the site on mobile FYI

  18. Ugh. I thought seriously about buying this suit and went through the checkout – Taxes, duties and shipping to Canada = $131.
    Nevermind then!

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