Splurge Monday’s TPS Report: Pompom-Trim Drawstring Jacket

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

THE ROW Pompom-Trim Drawstring Jacket This jacket certainly won’t be everyone’s cup of tea — even if spending almost $6000 on a jacket were a non issue! But I love it.  It reminds me of Kate Hepburn and old Hollywood glamour, but done in a way that, I think, is acceptable for the office. Love that dark “Purssian” blue (which I think makes our third major misspelling in a few weeks) and the pompom trim seems fun but subdued. The jacket is, yes, $5890 at Bergdorf Goodman. THE ROW Pompom-Trim Drawstring Jacket

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  1. I am not at all fashion forward but this looks like a $6000 bathrobe to me……very posh.

  2. I adore the jacket. But man, the pants they have it with are just awful! And styling it with flat sandals is just too weird.

    • Agree. The jacket’s such a statement on it’s own and looks great in the picture Kat posted. But the pants and sandals… yikes.

      • The jacket is kind of neat but concur that the pants are terrible – when an article of clothing looks bad on a model us mere mortals should run far, far away from the item in question.

        • This is my life philosophy, if a 5’11, 130 lb 18 year old can’t pull it off, neither can my late 20s, size 10 self.

    • AnonInfinity :

      Couldn’t agree more. And I want the jacket like woah.

      • I could see this jacket working with a nice pair of wide-leg trousers adn heels. But the pants and sandals they have it paired with makes the whole thing look like pajamas.

    • Alanna of Trebond :

      I love this whole outfit. But I could only wear the jacket to work. Gorgeous. It’s a good thing it’s so expensive, I think if it were $500 or cheaper, I would have bought it.

    • Egads that’s horrible styling.

    • Speaking of bad styling on an overpriced item: http://www.neimanmarcus.com/p/Donna-Karan-Stretch-Leggings-Midday-Dash/prod155420093_cat21000740_cat8900735_/?isEditorial=false&index=29&cmCat=cat000000cat8900735cat21000740

  3. Threadjack–I keep hearing about the greatness of Retin-A. I’m 26 and am just starting to get some fine lines around my eyes and mouth. Would Retin-A work as a preventative measure at a super early stage, or is it better to wait until I’m a little older? I also have mild acne, so maybe it would help with that too, but it’s not really bad enough that I’d want to get a prescription just for that.

    Relatedly, does anyone have a recommendation for a good dermatologist in Chicago (in the city, on the burbs)??

    • Earlier probably *is* better, but be careful with Retin-A. If your skin is dry or sensitive — and yes, these things can co-exist with acne-prone skin. Ask me how I know — Retin-A may do more harm than good. I never got glowy, perfect-looking skin in the years that I was on Retin-A (my mid-twenties, sigh). My dermatologist finally took me off of it, explaining that the peeling and dryness it caused were worse than the mild case of acne it was supposed to be treating. YMMV, of course, and it’s the sort of thing best discussed with a dermatologist. I’m not in Chicago, so I can’t help with recs.

      • I have dry, sensitive, acne-prone skin. I’m just past 30 and I’ve been using Retin-A for about two weeks. I started using it once every three days, then every other day, and now I’m two days on, one day off. I apply a pea-size amount (or smaller) before bed, wait a few minutes, and then moisturize. I have not had the famous redness or peeling, and I think it’s because many people (not trying to single you out January) don’t give their skin enough time to adjust to it. You have to start realllllly slowly and go reallllly easy. So far my pores are much smaller and I have no new breakouts. Time will tell, but I am a fan so far, and I am excited about the fine line-disappearing benefits too!

        • Oh, and I had been using a retinol cream that actually made my skin worse before I tried Retin A. My insurance covered the tube, which at my current rate will probably last 6+ months.

    • AttiredAttorney :

      It’s been my experience that even mild acne can merit an insurance-covered Retin-A prescription, so it might still be worth a shot. However, after several years on Retin-A, I saw no prevention or improvement in either my acne or very fine lines (was on it from ages 24-25). That’s personal experience only though.

    • Seattle Freeze :

      Why not try a night cream with Retinol for a month or so and see if you like it?

    • S in Chicago :

      Not sure if you are in the city or the burbs, but I can’t say enough great things about Dr. Westpahl at the Dermatology Partners of the North Shore in Northbrook (http://www.dpns.net/ ). I have seen a ton of different derms through the years and she is by far my favorite. She has gotten my acne under control like no one else ever could and seems to really be good about telling you when to try something and when a cheap over-the-counter product will do. She also seems to stay very current with the latest research and findings.

      I also have seen the aesthetician there, Kathy Walsh, for hair removal and IPLs (eliminates facial veins) and was hugely impressed with her knowledge. I’m usually able to get in and always feel like they are taking the time to listen to me. Just an incredible office.

      As for usefulness of retin A, I think it really depends on your particular skin and how it responds. I’m late 30s and have no wrinkles, but I don’t think that’s to years of retinoid use. I’ve always been a sunscreen freak (a lot of that because of retinoid use and the increased sun sensitivity that results) and my mom has minimal wrinkles as well so genetically probably have a good hand there as well.

  4. momentsofabsurdity :

    Reposting from the weekend thread, since I posted late in the weekend.

    I know there have been a lot of threads on weight/health/self-esteem lately. I ran across this blog post, which really moved me and I thought many This-Site readers would like it as well.


    • Ok, that actually made me get all teary.

    • This is incredible – and so true. And I’ve probably been guilty of it.

      Not exactly the same, but I have an entire photo album of great pictures of my family from 1968-1970 and my mother isn’t in any of them because she took them all. I would love to have had some of those cute pictures of me with my mom rather than with my dad or my aunt. I’m sure it never occurred to her at the time.

      • I know how you feel. After my mom had me she slowly put on weight over the years. By the time I was in my early adolescence, she was obese. I have very few pictures of her once I got past about the age of 5. She died almost 7 years ago and after she passed, I put together a photo album/scrapbook about her life. It kind of broke my heart a little we I realized that we had so few pictures from that time period (that, and the fact that there isn’t a single known picture of her when she was pregnant with me). She was such a beautiful woman and it hurts me still a little to think that maybe she couldn’t see that.

    • Houston Attny :

      Oh wow. A great post – I love it. Thank you!

    • Holy cow, this hit me right in the gut:

      “Accept this reality . . . YOU GAINED WEIGHT. The truth is you’ve gained a lot of other things too (a career, a family, some kids, a house, a love for travel, the ability to coordinate your separates . . . )”

  5. SuperAnon :

    Reposting from late Sunday night on the weekend thread.

    It’s late so I may repost this tomorrow, but I wanted to thank everyone for their really kind and thoughtful responses to my post about my relationship with nutrition /diet / etc. I really had nothing to be nervous about. I got some great resources and ideas from everyone’s posts, as well as some food for thought to help me with my next steps. Thank you for being so supportive.

    • Houston Attny :

      I read your post and the great responses and I agree with you – what kind, thoughtful responses. Thank you for posting this weekend. I’m so glad I’m not alone. :)

    • Liz in the City :

      I’d like to thank everyone too. I read all of the comments, and I’ve got some ideas going forward (OA, getting counseling…again). I know the weight I’ve put on in the past few years (a wonderful combo of stress, steroids, illness, and poor eating from the stress) wasn’t done in a day. The working on it, and (hopefully) being successful won’t be either.

  6. I am surprised and confused over and over again by The Row’s pricing. Why do Mary Kate and Ashley price over the heads of Lanvin et. alia?

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      It costs a lot to look that homeless, you know.

      • Derelicte!

      • +1

        I call it the sucker factor. They want to see if anyone is stupid/desperate enough to spend that much for a label on some ugly clothes. If it’s not for the label, it’s for the associated celebrity cachet. P.T. Barnum would approve of the Olsen Twins!

  7. I need some input from the wise ladies of the hive:

    I just put in an application for a job that I’m very interested in and think would be a good fit. I have several contacts at this company and know that a very similar position was open for a few months but they couldn’t find anyone to fill it (I believe b/c it’s a fairly unique skill set and this company often isn’t super competitive salary-wise for experienced positions). The old position was taken down and changed slightly into the position for which I applied.

    While I’m very interested in this position, I would prefer to a reduced schedule (say 80% – I have a 2 yr old and my husband started a new position recently himself that has less flexibility) rather than FT. Given the difficulty they had in filling the previous open position and reluctance to compete salary-wise, I feel the reduced schedule request wouldn’t be out of line. So my question is at what point during the interview or negotiation process do I bring it the reduced schedule? Waiting until they have made me an offer seems kind of late in this case. TIA.

    • I actually think it would be best to wait until they make you the offier. That way they’ve already got it in their heads that they want you for the job and have mentally rejected the other candidates. Also, if they don’t agree to a reduced schedule, you still have the option of accepting the job at full schedule, if you decide you want it. It seems like waiting gives you more power.

    • Wait. Interviews are not the place for negotiations. Learn as much about the position and the company’s needs during the interview, get their intial offer and then counter back with your reduced schedule proposal. At tha point, you will have enough information as to how/if this can work in their structure.

  8. Susanna Hoffs :

    The color is pretty, but the style . . . not so much.

    Early TJ – (I’m a longtime lurker, new poster!)

    Any recs for drugstore moisturizer? I was using Dermalogica, found that it irritated my skin, went to Cetaphil face wash and Trader Joe’s Oil of Olay knock-off moisturizer, and am now running out.

    I’m early thirties, “normal” skin (dry cheeks occasionally, pimple every now and then).

    Planning on ordering through Amazon, and hoping to find an inexpensive moisturizer – I’m also trying to watch my spending.

    I’m also combing through the reviews on amazon and at makeup alley – just thought I’d ask here as well. Thanks!

    • I like Eucerin Daily Protection Face Moisturizer as daytime product. It has mineral based SPF and not much else in the way of fancy ingredients. You may want something else for nighttime use.

    • Boots moisterizer, which is available at Target. It’s a British brand trying to spread. I got it after seeing the brand reviewed next to $50-$70 moisterizerizing masks in the WSJ and been very happy with it.

    • I use Kiss My Face Chinese Botanicals lotion at night (no sun protection). Some drug stores may have it, otherwise Whole Foods does. Amazon has it, but it’s a multi-pack of large bottles, so might not be the best place to buy at first.

    • Neutraderm – it’s AWESOME. Light, not irritating, does not cause breakouts. Is cheap, although not always the easiest to find. I buy mine at a local supermarket. Doesn’t have SPF, though. It was recommended to me by a dermatologist when I had a mole removed from my face in jr high, and it has been my go-to ever since. Any time I try something new it never lasts – I always go back. I’ve been happily using it for 20+years.

    • darjeeling :

      L’Oreal Futur E is the best, super-light, fragrant and SPF 15

    • I actually like Kiehls Panthenol (PPP?) cream for winter/night or under BB cream (since it has no spf) and at $26 for a giantic jar, it’s affordable. It’s uber moisturizing without causing breakouts.

      Also, Oil of Olay is great, and you can get it with spf, in the lotion or the cream (I prefer the cream).

      • I love Oil of Olay sensitive skin SPF 15. My skin just drinks it in and it doesn’t feel greasy at all. They changed the formula a few years ago so make sure you get the ingredients you want – they brought back the old formula after many complaints as “classic.”

    • espresso bean :

      My skin is like yours — prone to dryness on the cheeks, usually clear with occasional acne in the T-zone. I like Oil of Olay SPF 15 for sensitive skin for daily use, but when it’s really cold, I use Pond’s cream all over, and it’s amazing.

    • I like the Neutrogena moisturizer – very light, not oil-based. It’s not the strongest richest cocoa butteriest moisturizer around, but it does the job. I use the one for sensitive skin just because it’s the lightest, my skin is pretty normal and just occasionally dry around my nose and lips.

    • I’ve had really good experience with Jergen’s…yup $3 Jergen’s (although I usually splurge for the $5 with shea butter). I also have pretty normal skin without any real problems, so I don’t usually need any special powers from my moisturizer. The Jergen’s stuff seems to hold off any dry patches and feels “moist” without being oily for quite a long time.

      I do think that moisturizer and pretty much all skin products are specific to different people though, so what works for me may not work at all for you. I really wanted to like Cetaphil, for example, but it actually dries my skin out too much. I use this seaweed wash from Body Shop now which seems to have the right balance for my skin.

    • AttiredAttorney :

      Plain coconut oil or jojoba oil are also good picks.

    • I like the Cetaphil spf 15 day moisturizer or whatever it’s called. I’m majorly allergic to everything and it hasn’t set my skin off – I’ve been using it for 2 months now. Good stuff.

    • Try CeraVe (the stuff that comes in the large pump bottle NOT the stuff labled as facial moisturizer). It is fragrance and dye free and costs only $15 for 12 oz.

    • I love the Burt’s Bees Intense Hydration. The other ones stink (literally and figuratively), but the Intense Hydration is great. It goes on really thick and creamy, but it blends in quite light. Its made a huge difference this winter.

  9. http://www.slate.com/articles/double_x/doublex/2013/01/work_life_crunch_why_you_shouldn_t_spend_fewer_hours_at_work.html

    Interesting from an economics-based perspective, specifically about marginal utility.

    • Diana Barry :

      I read this. I would ALWAYS choose to spend the next hour at home, except for maybe the first 10 hours of work.

      • Yes, but would you spend it at home doing stuff with your kids or reading a good book or some other activity (not kid-related)?

        I think a lot of folks do experience that diminishing utility – the first 10 minutes of that hour might be fun, until the kid throws a tantrum, and then the folks who chose that hour at home want to go hide in the bathroom or have 3 vodka martinis already.

        • Diana Barry :

          Eh…I had an ENTIRE DAY of tantrums yesterday. I still didn’t want to go to work today. :)

          • Research, Not Law :

            I’d always spend the extra hour with my kids, too. Work wouldn’t even be in the top three.

          • Meg Murry :

            I’d spend the extra hour with my kids too, if I had to choose between my kids and work. But if I had a totally free-choice hour, I probably wouldn’t spend it at work or with my kids – I’d take an hour long nap or quiet shower with no one barging in. But thats coming from someone who hasn’t had more than a couple of good nights of sleep or an uninterupted shower in more than a year.

            Also, I think a big part of the work/kids equation for me is your definition of “good day” vs “bad day”. Yesterday, my older son was throwing tantrums and being generally annoying and a PITA for the majority of the day. But we had 2 good hours at the end of the day cooking & eating dinner and snuggling at bedtime. Overall 1 bad meeting at work plus a whole day of good or same old same old = “bad day at work”, whereas hours of frustration/tantrums/cleaning up after my kids + 1-2 good hour = “good day with my family”

          • Anon for this :

            As I read these comments, I think: a good hour with people you love (e.g. your kids) > 10 good hours with people you generally tolerate but don’t love (coworkers). On the other hand, it’s amazing how much crap people tolerate from their kids. If it weren’t for Stockholm Syndrome, nobody would ever have children.

    • Anon for this :

      the truth is that I would often rather spend another hour at work, but this analysis doesn’t take into account the preferences of others in the family. My husband would rather not be dealing with the kids alone for that hour!

      • http://www.dailyprincetonian.com/2005/01/14/11812/

        There’s that 2004 Daniel Kahneman study – participants showed that based on “pure enjoyment,” I think being with one’s kids ranked 16th out of 19 possible activities. (1= most enjoyable, 19 = least enjoyable). It doesn’t mean that in the long run, having kids sucks. It just says something about how the daily grind is not that pleasurable for some people.

        • I actually think having kids does suck a lot of the time (yes, I have them) we just refuse to admit it because it makes us sound bad. No, it doesn’t suck in the long run, just for the first, oh, 18 years or so.

          Everyone denies it when asked directly, but study after study, like the one anon 11:20 posted, show that when they answer anonymously, people aren’t actually that delighted with having kids. Another study ranked who was happiest, married people without kids, married people with kids, single people without kids or single people with kids.
          Married people WITHOUT kids were significantly happier than married people with kids. The only people more miserable than married people with kids was single people with kids.

          • This is why some people who have kids seem so determined to evangelize people without kids to “go have kids already.” I think half the time, they’re trying to convince themselves that it doesn’t suck so much, so the best way to allay one’s own insecurities is to proselytize someone else aggressively (NOT!)

          • Whenever I get anxious about not having kids yet, when everyone in my facebook feed seems to be breeding at every minute, I remind myself how great my life it. I spend a lot of my free time doing things I love doing. I can go out to eat whenever and wherever I want. I can buy things for myself without feeling guilty. I sleep in on the weekends.

            I still have anxiety about it, but I try to remember that someday I will treasure and long for this uninterrupted free time I have.

          • I don’t have a moment to track it down right now, but one of my APS psych journals this past month had an article with data reflecting something a little more promising about the happiness of those who parent. I didn’t have a chance to read it yet, but was interested to see it. It’s in full-text here if anyone wants to look through it: http://pss.sagepub.com/content/current

            The abstract: “Recent scholarly and media accounts paint a portrait of unhappy parents who find remarkably little joy in taking care of their children, but the scientific basis for these claims remains inconclusive. In the three studies reported here, we used a strategy of converging evidence to test whether parents evaluate their lives more positively than do nonparents (Study 1), feel relatively better than do nonparents on a day-to-day basis (Study 2), and derive more positive feelings from caring for their children than from other daily activities (Study 3). The results indicate that, contrary to previous reports, parents (and especially fathers) report relatively higher levels of happiness, positive emotion, and meaning in life than do nonparents. “

          • Forgive the rewrite from the earlier version of my post — I obviously did track the article down! :)

        • I think this is a little misleading, though. Spending time with my kid is my default. I have to spend every minute with her, unless I explicitly arrange for someone else to care for her. I love spending time with her and it makes me happy, but if I were choosing between getting a pedicure and an ordinary hour with my kid, the pedicure would clearly make me happier. But long-term, I love the hours I spend with my kid. It just doesn’t feel special because it’s my default.

          • I think this is an important point– that your long-term happiness is greater because your kid is in your life. But equally important is the idea that the default day-to-day stuff is not the pink unicorn-magical experience that rabid “women must be SAHMs” and helicopter parents say it is.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      I haven’t read the article yet, but I love the sweater the woman in the picture is wearing. Has anyone seen anything similar recently?

  10. I wanted to report back on the Nordstrom’s MOH shopping. Thank you ladies so much for your recommendation to use the Personal Stylist (Laurie). She was fantastic, and had 8 dresses for my maid of honor lined up and ready. She also arranged for a lingerie consultant to recommend the proper foundation pieces, and the final result was beautiful, and a real confidence booster.

    After an hour of trying on lovely dresses, and playing with accessories, my MOH picked her dress (see here), which was the hands down winner for her. (http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/adrianna-papell-soutache-illusion-bodice-dress-plus/3427055?origin=category&contextualcategoryid=0&fashionColor=&resultback=0)

    My other ‘maid commented that how much she liked the dress, and Laurie told us that dress came in Misses sizes as well! Due to dwindling stock, they didn’t have the Misses dresses in store, but Laurie worked throughout the day to find the right sizes for the rest of the ladies, and is having them shipped out this week.

    Honestly, it was the most pleasant experience, and left plenty of time for a two-margarita lunch!

    TL:DR version – Found the dress, and highly recommend using the Nordstrom Personal Stylist for all your shopping needs!

    • East Coaster :

      So happy it worked out. Plus, I love that dress. I have another one in my cart already, but I think this one may get added too.

    • Wow, that is a gorgeous dress. So glad u had great success at my boo Nordstrom.

    • Sydney Bristow :

      That’s fantastic! I love the dress and I’m so glad it worked out to be such a good experience for you both. I said it before and I’ll say it again, but you are such a great friend

    • Yay! I my Nordie’s personal stylist too.

    • I just wanted to say that dress is gorgeous! Props to you for thoughtfully and carefully picking out dresses for your wedding party.

    • Research, Not Law :

      Wow, beautiful dress! Glad it was such a good experience for everyone.

  11. Anon For This :

    I think my boyfriend and I almost broke up… and if things aren’t actually over, they probably will be soon unless he can show me he’s willing to do what it takes to make it work. I know I should just walk away because as things stand, it’s less than I deserve.

    But I’m so sad and feel so lonely and helpless today…

    • Hey there, if it helps, know that many of us have probably been in a similar situation.

      Good luck. What is your bf not doing that he should be doing? Did you articulate it clearly enough for him to make a clear choice as to whether he will try to do it or not?

    • Anon For This :

      We’ve been going through a rough patch lately and we’re long distance so that makes it even more difficult. I think we need to think things through and come up with solutions to make communication easier. He seems to think that there’s no way to make this work so I don’t even know if he’s going to try. I’m supposed to go visit in a few days but not sure if there’s any point if I’m going for an in-person breakup. If he’s already made up his mind, things are over.

      He said he would think about things again and see if he thought it would still be worth it for me to come. I think I need the closure and we need a chance to see how good we can be together so we can recommit but I’m scared and I don’t know what to do now.

      I don’t want to beg him for scraps of attention or fight to make this work when I’m the only one fighting but I see a real future with him and I’m just sad and feel defeated this morning.

      • Gaah. This sounds very hard, and I’m sorry you’re going through this.

        I hope he’s willing to give it a shot, and to try to work on concrete stuff to make communication better (which would help during rough patches.) Good luck with all. Hugs, wine, and cookies.

      • I am really sorry you are going through this difficult situation.

        I was in a similar spot last year, he had to move away for a job and our relationship turned long distance. We kept visiting but after a while i was the one making most of the trips and trying to keep the communication going. As time went by I became more and more resentful when he would not make much effort on his part. But the relationship seemed to have lot of future potential and I was very reluctant to let it go. Well this kept going for another 7-8 months, lots of plane tickets/red-eye flights/vacation days in between. But eventually we just drifted apart. When I visited him the last time I just did not enjoy it as much as before. Finally we broke it off over phone, it just happened like that one day.

        Only advice I could give is not let the resentment on your part keep growing, it really chips away at an otherwise good relationship. Talk to him, set expectations, tell him what you would like and agree on it and make sure he follows on his part. I never had this conversation, we will just buy plane tickets for a long weekend or when we missed each other and never really discuss the hard stuff when we were together. If I could go back, I would attack the problem head on rather than let the relationship slowly drag on. Breaking up is hard to do, but I really miss those 7-8 months when I was not really happy but still continued on over on what now appears false hope.

    • Dont feel bad b/c there are OTHER fish in the sea. Yes it is VERY tough at first, but if it ISNT meant to be then isnt it better that you figure it out NOW rather than waste alot of time and then get rid of him when he turns out NOT to be the one?

      I had this issue with Alan, and it was HARD without him around, even tho he was drinkeing, but NOW I feel better haveing MOVED ON.

      It does not mean it is easy. There are OTHER LOOSERS OUT THERE TOO. In fact my latest Looser is GONZALO. I met him for a walk in Central Park, and he seemed nice, but when we went to a coffee shop afterward’s on Madison, he kept stareing at my breast’s–then when we got done (I paid for the coffee and danish), when he was helpeing me to get my new DOWN coat back on, he (suposedly inadveretentely) rubbed his hand against my breast, and did NOT even say anything. I do NOT think I was imageining it b/c he was stareing at me the whole time I was sitteing there, and it was to much of a coinceidence for him to rub his hand exactely where he had been stareing at when he was eating his danish.

      I did NOT make a big deal of it, but know that he is NOT the one for me. Takeing advantage of me like this is NOT the way to woo a respectful girl like me. Mabye that work’s in South America, but NOT with me. FOOEY!

      So wait and you will catch a better fish. Just watch out that his name is NOT Gonzalo. FOOEY!

  12. I’ve been pretty glum lately (as my handle might suggest) but every time I see my therapist, I manage to talk myself out of it, blaming a few specific “negative interactions” for my “bad week.” I realized this has been a trend for nearly the past six months, so I’m considering starting some sort of meds. I know thissite readers are very therapy+meds positive, so just wanted to get some advice for where to start. I believe my therapist can recommend a psychiatrist, but what type of costs am I looking at? Are the doctor visits/drugs typically expensive? (I have very bare-bones health insurance.) Also, I understand it takes a while to kick in — I’m nervous about messing with my bodily chemistry as I’m in law school (2L). Finally, I’m nervous about weaning myself off of the drugs if/when I have kids, or if there’s a time at which I’ll be ready to come off them (I think law school is the primary contributing factor to my mood). So I guess my question is… what has your experience been like with therapy and meds? I intend to stay in weekly individual therapy. TIA.

    • i had to go out-of-network for my psychiatrist so i pay $75 a session, which kinda sucks. i pay $10 for each prescription.

      side effects i experienced included insomnia and digestive issues, but friends have had ringing in ears and other annoying problems. ultimately, i think you have to weigh feeling like you are feeling now versus the side effects. they will start you on the smallest dose and gradually work your way up, so hopefully side effects will be limited. you can always stop taking it if it’s debilitating.

      i once weaned off cold turkey by just stopping one day (this is a terrible choice, do not make it) but with the help of your dr you can gradually reduce the amount and frequency of what you are taking if you want to stop. my dr also prescribed me a ‘just in case’ med for the future, in case i had any particular days where i needed help.

      i highly recommend combination of therapy and meds. i started for the same reasons it sounds like you have and it was the best decision of my life.

    • A lot of the medications have generic equivalents so you can save some money there. I think you are getting ahead of yourself a bit (unless you are TTC right now). Get the help you need for now, see how that works, then worry about how/when to taper off the medications. Some people need medication for years, some people only have rough patch of a few months.

    • Questions / thoughts:

      1) Does your law school have a counseling center with a psychiatrist? I saw one at my law school’s counseling center to get started on antidepressants and it was free.

      2) Have you checked whether there are psychiatrists within your health insurance plan and/or if they’re covered? My current psych is in mine (which admittedly is a good biglaw plan) and I only have to pay a $30 copay every month when I see her. If this is the case, make sure your counselor recommends a psych WITHIN the plan.

      3) There could be low-cost psychiatric clinics affiliated with a medical school in your town.

      4) Primary care doctors can and do prescribe basic antidepressants and anxiety drugs, especially if you’re working with a counselor. The drawback of this is that they may not be as comfortable tweaking dosages and mixing and matching different drugs.

      5) Yes, they typically take up to 6 weeks to kick in, but you may be a placebo effect from knowing that you are doing something to help yourself, and that you should see results soon. I personally have not had any negative effects from “messing with my bodily” chemistry when I’ve tried / switched drugs (and I’ve done it 3 times). Is the risk that this might happen worth continuing to feel like this?

      6) Don’t worry about weaning off now. Now you need to get better. Weaning off is done under close supervision; if you feel like you’re going off the rails, jump into your counselor’s / doctor’s office and they’ll work on it. With pregnancy, you can taper down before you get pregnant, and then get off the drugs pretty quickly once you are pregnant. Doctors think the pregnancy hormones (while making you irrational in other ways) tend to be great for depression.

      Hope this all helps!

      • Having a counselor at the law school sounds AMAZING.

        Also, I found that 2L glumness does eventually pass.

        • Not to minimize depression, but 2L was my worst law school year from an emotional standpoint. I don’t think I was ever depressed, but it was just a rough year for me–I really did feel “worked to death” and it just sapped all my reserves. So, I can definitely see how it could be a contributing factor. But, like Kitty said, it does pass so hopefully all you need is a little help getting through this bumpy time. My law school also had access to therapists, I think through the graduate counseling program at the university. Not sure how much it cost, but that might be an option for you. Good luck on getting healthy and kudos to making your mental health a priority by taking these first baby steps.

          • +1. I had a really rough time my second year of law school, which lasted through the first semester of my third year, and I think the overall effects lingered beyond that (2010 graduate). Talk to someone – there are almost definitely resources available to you that can make things easier for you.

    • Side effects vary depending on what you’re taking. I lost 20 pounds, am constantly thirsty, and have shaky hands for an hour or so after taking my meds.
      I feel much, much better though. I suspect the weight loss was because I’m no longer eating my feelings; I’d put on ~40 over the last few years.

  13. To mamma leaving litigation :

    I left you a reply in the weekend thread this morning re part time lawyer jobs.

  14. This time just C :

    I’ve been dating a guy for about four months. And I like him a lot and things are going ver well. But I think he’s getting more attached to me than I am to him. Based on a couple of things he said this weekend, I’m afraid that he’s about ready to say “I love you,” and I’m not there yet. I’m not saying I won’t get to that point, I hope I do if things continue as they have, but I’m not there yet.

    I have no idea what my question here is. I’m just conerned that he’s getting attached faster than I am, although I realize people don’t get attached at exactly the same pace.

    • springtime :

      That happens to me quite often- I need more time to understand my feelings, and a lot of guys I’ve dated become insta-attached.

      Maybe before he says those three words you can try to have an honest conversation with him?

    • This was me four years ago. I was a nervous wreck and convinced we were doomed. We’re now giddily getting married. I’m convinced this is more about individual personalities than a sign of where the relationship will ultimately end up. Just my two cents.

  15. lingerie anon :

    The DH and I had a really frustrating experience shopping for lingerie this weekend. I’m small – a 32B in most brands and a 32A in some European brands. I have narrow shoulders. We went to boutiques and department stores. Almost everything didn’t come in my size. If it did come in my size, the straps were almost always set too wide so that they were off my narrow shoulders. My DH loves lingerie and was both supportive and baffled by how frustrated and sad the experience made me, the same way men don’t get it when we can’t find jeans that fit. “it’s just the stupid manufacturers, hun. There’s nothing wrong with your body. Why would you think that their stupidity means that there’s something wrong with you???” “The manufacturers don’t make clothes for me because I’m not worth making lingerie for! Wahhhhh!” – which I realize is ridiculous, but still.

    What he doesn’t know is that I’m doing a boudoir photo shoot next month as a surprise anniversary gift. I am already pissed at myself for not going to the gym more (what can I do for visible results in 4 weeks? Is there a crazy boot camp recommendation??), and now I’m really starting to stress about not having enough lingerie for the photos. Does anyone petite have recommendations for truly fabulous fancy lingerie for the nearly flat and very slim boned? I feel like I’m beating my head against a wall.

    • In a lot of photo shoots, the clothes don’t fit the models and they are pinned.

      It might be harder to do with lingerie, but I’m wondering if you could bring a friend who’s good at sewing and quick fixes and maybe jerry-rig something for you. You might have binder clips all up the back of say, a lace teddy, but the photographer will photograph you from the front for that shot, etc. I’m thinking some MacGyvering can make this work.

      • Sit-down comic :

        What if DH likes the look of the outfit-secretly-styled-with-binder-clips so much that he asks you to recreate it in person? Does the logical extension of this idea (DH is surprised, then amused, then removes the binder clips one by one) mean that the rest of us will be typing b*nder cl!ps for all eternity to avoid moderation? Will the covers of romance novels start showing damsels fainting amidst scads of binder clips? Will “binder unclipper” become the more politically correct successor to “bodice ripper”?

    • Anne Shirley :

      Little Bra Company. Wacoal does a petites line. And you don’t need to do anything special to photo-shoot prep- he obvi already likes what he’s seeing :)

    • Kaori’s Closet. Look for Asian brands.

    • Have you looked at H&M? I am not petite, but I think there stuff could work for you. I’ve found that the stores in more urban areas have a bigger lingerie selection than the more suburban stores, FWIW.

    • If you have 4 weeks, and know what brands fit you, order online.
      Cosabella should work great for your body type. I also love Felina, but it caters more to well-endowed women.

    • They make petite bras! Look into them, they are a life saver for me and make me look so much more put together. Her Room has a bunch of them — just search for “petite bras.” I am a 34-C, so not so petite in the actual size, but petite in terms of how far apart the girls are and the distance from shoulder to band, which petite bras take care of!!

    • fitstep.com metabolic surge program is 30 days, I think. Shapeshifters is about that long too.

      • For the workout, you can try Insanity. Yes, it is an infomercial. Yes, you will gain the weight back if you don’t keep up the diet/exercise after you stop. Yes, it is probably unhealthy. But it will definitely give you results in four weeks if you follow it to a T. I know all of these things because I have followed the “do-it-for-60-days-then-eat-everything-in-sight-and-sleep-in” trend for the past two years. :)

        Ps. I just finished my latest round of Insanity about two months ago and actually followed up with less crazy exercise and a moderated diet, and that seems to have worked – most of the weight is staying off and I still feel strong and healthy.

    • mintberrycrunch :

      This won’t help if you’re set on lingerie…I am decidedly NOT narrow or small, so I’m no help there… but I did a boudoir shoot for DH as an anniversary gift, and I didn’t use any lingerie other than some pretty, lacy undies… think man’s dress shirt and tie, college t-shirt, things like that… and they turned out great. So if you aren’t able to find lingerie you like, all hope is not lost! You can get creative :)

    • I’m narrow (slim boned), but have a bit more in the cup than you and I order lingerie online. Agent Provocateur, Journelle (great website for bra/panty sets), etc. I find that I mostly have to stick to bra/panties/garter because of my slim frame, but I’ve had lots of luck with Chantalle and Elle McPherson.

  16. Uniqlo sizing? :

    Can anyone comment on the sizing of Uniqlo clothing? Especially sweaters / knits? Thanks!

    • darjeeling :

      I find the sweaters to run just slightly small, and proportioned for the tall and slim

    • I find them pretty true to size. I am 5’3, 130 lbs, a S/4 in tops at Banana, Ann Taylor, J.Crew and I am a S at uniqlo. I haven’t purchased pants there before though.

    • I find it pretty TTS for women and a slim fit for men. Fits my DH well but sometimes he sizes up.

    • For women’s sweaters, TTS imo. I’m XS or XS petite in BR and AT (XXS – S at J. Crew, ha, as if that’s helpful). My Uniqlo sweaters are all XS and fit similarly.

  17. springtime :

    HR monitors- are they necessary for proper training?

    I’m trying to train for a 45 min 10 k…and thinking once I get to those types of paces I might need to monitor my workouts better. Any thoughts? Some of them look so expensive! I don’t know which to choose!

    PS- I posted awhile ago about my achilles- and yay it is now pretty much healed! For anyone who is curious, I did a lot of spinning over the last month and it was fine.

    • AnonInfinity :

      I’ve never gotten the hang of training with a HRM. I tried to love mine for a couple of years but it was just never my thing. I like simplicity and don’t derive pleasure from analyzing every aspect of my runs; looking at my HR was making me feel a little like I was doing stats homework. So I ditched the strap and just went with timed workouts. Now I’m much happier.

      However, lots of my training friends love the HRM and find it to be really helpful. These people tend to be obsessive about workout details or data geeks (and I don’t use either of those descriptions in a derogatory way!).

      If you do decide to go for it, get one with a chest strap instead of the wrist one because the chest strap is much more accurate.

    • No advice on using a HR monitor, but I wanted to strongly recommend running a 10K in a race that has Pacers running in it. I know a lot of running groups will have designated pacers that carry flags or wear special shirts, and the ones I’ve run with have been very accurate at keeping a particular pace. I successfully ran a half marathon at exactly a 10 min/ mile pace following the pacing group.

      • I’ve never seen official pace groups in a 10K race. Its generally a short enough race that the pace is pretty close to as hard as you can for that distance. That being said, I have a fast training partner and he’s paced me in some 5Ks and it is nice not to have to worry about it. I just sit on his heels and run. I don’t have to do that screwy runner math that gets in my head.

        I have no advice on a HR monitor and don’t use one, but I think it could be interesting. There are some workouts that feel so much harder than others when pace is pretty much the same. A HR monitor would tell you when you are actually working harder. Although it doesn’t tell you why some workouts are harder than others.

        Good luck — when is the race?

        • springtime :

          Yah I was going to say- the only 10k s I have ran didn’t seem to have a pace bunny. It is def much more of a ‘go until you drop’ race.

          The race isn’t until early May- lots of time. I am such an inexperienced racer- I ran 2 10ks in spring 2012 and got in the high 48s with 12 days of training so I’m hoping a 3 min time drop isn’t too much of an insane goal.

    • A friend of mine is a trainer, and recently posted this on her website… (She says yes, they are necessary).


    • Anonymous :

      I have exercise-induced asthma, so I can exercise for a long period of time where my heart rate is very elevated, but not at my VO2 max. I say proceed with caution – I haven’t found the traditional metrics to be applicable across the board.

  18. http://www.slate.com/blogs/moneybox/2013/02/01/women_prefer_divorce_to_neotraditional_housewife_arrangements.html?wpisrc=obinsite

    Provocative title aside, I don’t think that many actually do (due to inertia, misguided ideas about how it’s better for the kids, inertia, fear of the unknown, fear of having to selling the house, inertia, and more inertia). I think of a piece that made waves several years ago, Google “Ellen Tien” and “Dreaming of Divorce.” There’s what people gripe about vs what they actually do. (Talk vs action.) And I’m thinking the stats in that graph are talk (preferences) not action, right?

    • But this graph doesn’t have “neotraditional with genders flipped” as an option. Why on earth would we be comparing data between two groups who weren’t asked the same question? The men were asked “if not egalitarian, would you prefer to be on your own or have a spouse at home taking care of the house” while the women were asked “if not egalitarian, would you prefer to be on your own or keeping house while being supported financially.”

    • Anecdotally, the women in my life actually do prefer divorce to being with a husband who isn’t pulling his weight at home, with the kids, or financially. My friends see it as “one less thing to do” to not have to take care of and support their man-child.

      Of course, anecdotes are not data. But still, this didn’t surprise me.

      • I’m not sure that “not pulling his weight at home” is the same as neotraditional.

        • True,yes. Maybe I should said have not “not helping with cleaning and cooking.” Traditionally, men have done “heavy” household tasks like home repair, car repair, landscaping, etc. But most of my women-friends live in apartments or houses with a gardener, take their cars to a mechanic, and call a handyman/landlord to do anything more advanced than replacing a light bulb. So their husbands get off easy, and don’t help with the traditionally feminine tasks as much as they probably should now that “their chores” are outsourced.

      • Anonymous :

        +1 to the women in your life.

        I’d rather unhappily married people either do the work to fix the problems, or if someone’s unwilling, then divorce already. It’s never been clear that staying while miserable benefits anybody, and the complaining about it on this site is tedious.

  19. OHMAHGAH you guys! We bought a house! Possession date is May 1. Mortgage payment is less than current rent. And we love it.

    Also, assuming everything goes right with the doctor’s referral, my mom is moving into her retirement facility on March 14th.

    This has been an insane and eventful roller-coaster of a year so far!!

    • Congratulations on all fronts!

    • Yay! We put in an offer this time last year and moved in May 1, too. Moving is a pain but a new house is so much fun! And so glad to hear about your mom. I bet that’s a huge weight off your mind.

    • Wow! You have enough going on in the past few months to last for years. Congratulations on moving things ahead on multiple fronts!

    • Diana Barry :


  20. Kitten Heeled :

    Is there a male-equivalent of a single red rose for Valentine’s day? My husband and I are on a very tight budget and there will be no gifts this year and he’ll be making me dinner. I want to give him a very small surprise to show that I’ve been thinking of him. He is not really into cards, poetry, or chocolates. Would appreciate any ideas!

    • Anon for this! :

      I don’t mean to be crude, but what about a particularly special lady garden activity?

      • Also anon! :

        After dinner you could also just let him find that you’re not wearing a particular undergarment you’d usually have on. Totally free!

        • Correction: just before dinner, you tell him that you are not wearing the said undergarment.

    • How small of a budget? In the $20 and under range, I’m thinking about…
      -books, magazine subscriptions, or something like a book of crosswords
      -on demand movies or month of netflix, if you don’t normally do so
      -scoping out the sale section of j.crew or similar – there’s often cute tees or boxers
      -sports accessories (one year I got my runner hubby a pair of specially designed socks that he uses for long runs and races – at $15 they were obviously a lot for one pair of socks, but a good gift for that reason)
      -small bottle of nice liquor (or those “whiskey stones” that you freeze to substitute for ice, or an ice cube tray that makes the super big ice cubes)

      • Dead Quote Olympics :

        In the same vein as Cat’s suggestions, if he likes music, make a special playlist on iTunes or similar site and then provide the $10 gift card for him to buy the music? Or if you share your music account, just download the music and create an “I love you” playlist. It can be shorter or longer, depending on your budget.

        For the last couple of years in my role as “stocking stuffer Santa”, I’ve been going to a well-supplied news stand or bookstore and buying everyone in the house 3 or 4 magazines on topics that they are interested in, but don’t normally subscribe to or read — things like Mojo for music, obscure literary magazines, travel mags, etc. I concentrate on magazines that they wouldn’t normally think to buy, so there is an experimental “who knew Train Wrecks: Derailments that Changed History” could be so interesting!?” character to everyone’s reading material. Everyone loves it, and if your husband likes to browse magazines, it might work here, too, instead of a subscription. It’s fun because you can think about people’s interests and try to respond to them in a very individual, quirky way.

    • photos of favorite times together?

    • Make dessert or a special surprise “dessert.”

    • I think splurging on candy or fancy ice cream or even a nice bottle of wine is nice for Valentine’s day because you get to enjoy something decadent without breaking the bank. Of course, my husband would be thrilled with new moisture-wicking socks too. I just like the edibles because we can both enjoy them and it adds an air of festivity.

      • Or if he’s making dinner, could you make or buy something fun for breakfast? His favorite coffee, if he has a splurge coffee, or some kind of indulgent breakfast food like cinnamon rolls or chocolate croissants? Heart shaped pancakes or omelets, etc? It could even be the start of a fun tradition.

    • Research, Not Law :

      The best hits for my husband are sexy panties, a 6-pack of his favorite beer, or a pound of his favorite coffee.

  21. Ouch, my back :

    I’ve been having some back pain in my lower back and am looking for tips to ameliorate it while at work or in the car when I’m sitting. Has anyone had to deal with lower back pain and what did you find helped?

    • Yes. Sit in a good position. Stand up regularly. Make sure your core is strong. If it doesn’t get better see a PT.

    • After a brutal plane flight, my massage therapist worked on my piriform muscles. It hurt so bad and felt so good.

      • Second the suggestion to find a massage therapist to work out those muscles. In my case, the therapist had her elbow basically on my upper b*tt and had all her body weight into it to release the knots in those muscles. It hurts until the knots release, and then it feels amazing.

        Also, google stretches for lower back pain. Do those every day (I do them in bed in the morning when I have pain). Strengthen your core muscles, a strong core is critical to a healthy back.

        For very short-term relief, I like to drive with my car-seat heater on at full blast.

    • Coach Laura :

      To: Ouch, my back – When I have low back pain, I wear a “Heatwrap” stick-on pad under my clothes. They make small ones that are marketed for use on one’s neck, but I think that they are good size for my low back. (They make huge ones for low back/hips that never work for me and would show under clothes – the neck one never shows and no one would know it was there.) I wear them for the recommended eight -ten hours and that gets me through work, sometimes even pain-free by the end. I especially like it because it soothes my back musles and is comforting.

    • If you have privacy at work, do a variation on what Denise Austen calls an “active back stretch.” The way I do it, you start on your hands and knees with your back straight. Then arch your back and hold it for 10 sec, relax to a straight back, repeat. If I only have a minute, I still find it helps.

    • strengthening exercises for lower back. will be sore at first, but will help you for years to come.

    • I find that when my lower back is stiff and sore, I usually need to stretch my hamstrings and gluteus medius. Also, side stretches help a lot.

    • Architect :

      Do you know the problem? If it’s muscles, then heat and massages are good suggestions. If the problem is a disc issue, then those are the worst suggestions. I have had back surgeries on herniated discs twice. Heat increases blood flow and therefore inflammation. In my case, ice is best. Also I stand a lot. Exercise also helps. Good luck!

    • foam roller !

  22. Give him a massage! You can buy all kinds of massage oil pretty cheaply, and do it up right – light candles, play soft music, etc, but really take your time and pamper him. And then maybe a special LGP activity, too ;)

  23. Quincy Question :

    Does anyone know if Quincy Apparel is closed permanently, or just in a hiatus until the next season of clothing is released?

    • Yup. Looks like it’s done:

    • http://betabeat.com/2013/01/series-not-awesome-quincy-apparel-closes-up-shop/

      So sad! Loved a dress I got for Xmas.

  24. I posted last week about applying for a job at a great employer, but my husband was a little bummed because he wants to work there someday, too. Well, had an interview on Friday and it went REALLY well! (They told me to think over the weekend if there were any other questions at all that I needed resolved before I could accept the job. I didn’t actually get an offer, but it was about as close as it could be.) They wanted me to do a little writing assignment as part of the application process (what is it with employers and all their “extras” these days?). Over the weekend, my husband helped me work through about ten drafts, plus ran errands so I could stay home and work. Can you say amazing husband? And the job actually would pay less than my current job for more hours (I feel like prestigious jobs are so often like that). So my husband was taking his weekend to help me get a job he would like himself, that would result in less money for the household and less of my time, just because he knows that the job would make me happy. Anyway, now just trying to PUT IT OUT OF MY MIND because I’m not expecting an answer for another week. So, so, so hard to concentrate!

    • Good going, you! Good luck with the process.

      And +1000 to your amazing husband.

    • Congratulations! I’m glad it went so well, and I hope it all works out for you.

      And ditto on your amazing husband. He sounds like a really great guy.

    • Good for your husband to be so supportive and good luck for the position. By the way, not sure if it’s been a while since you interviewed for a job but the “extras” you mention are now the norm among many employers. Writing samples, mock projects – all of that. Perhaps it’s because there’s a glut of candidates so they need more tests to separate the truly stellar ones. Or it’s because hiring and training someone is quite a time and money sink so employers try to see how a potential candidate would do this specific job (through projects etc) rather than just rely on their track record in previous jobs. Just a HR perspective :-)

  25. Aloha ladies! I am back from my week in Hawaii and had a fantastic time. Thank you all so much for your Big Island tips. I was surprised at how much there is to do there – we were out and about all day, every day, and still could have used about another week. And SO difficult to come back to 6 degrees C this weekend.

    I can’t possibly envision going back through all of last week’s posts to catch up….did anything particular happen that I should know about?

    It’s great to be back…but time to plan another vacation already.

    • I would love to hear about what you loved and the things you did! I’m headed to the Big Island Feb. 23 for my birthday! So far we’ve rented a 4WD so we can drive to the the top of Mauna Kea, scheduled a horse ride with Paniolo Adventures, and made reservations at that Mauna Kea Clambake thing. I think there is a surf lesson in there somewhere too.

      • OK, here is my summary.

        1. You need to rent a car if you want to see anything. We had a car all week and used it every day. The Big Island is not walkable and taxis are few and far between.
        2. Divide up the island by day – for instance, Volcanoes National Park one day, the SW part of the island another day, the NW part of the island a third day. Unfortunately, we never made it to Hilo or the Waipi’o Valley.
        3. If you have a 4WD, do use it to go to the Waipi’o Valley. It was described to us as being the 1920s, whereas the rest of the island is the 1960s. My sister has been there and loved it. It is supposed to be spectacular.
        4. The Place of Refuge (near Captain Cook) is amazing. Give yourself at least an hour there.
        5. We snorkelled at Kahalu’u Beach Park (near Kona) and at Two Step Bay (near the Place of Refuge). Kahalu’u is great for beginners, lots of fish. Two Step is for people who are comfortable with deeper water – fewer fish but beautiful coral gardens. Also, go bodysurfing at Honalu Bay. So.Much.Fun.
        6. The day that you go to the SW part of the island, go to the Kona Coffee Living History Farm. It is only open from 10 to 2 and the last tour starts at 1, so you will have to time it, but it was one of the best things that we did. The interpretive guides are really excellent.
        7. We went to a luau at King Kamehameha Resort. It was really good and includes various fun activities and historical elements that the other luau on the island does not.
        8. One thing that we didn’t manage to do but that I would really have liked to do was go to the Seahorse Farm. Apparently you need to book tickets in advance, so you may want to look into that.
        9. A word on spam musubi. Try it (unless you are vegetarian). I loved the spicy spam musubi at Queen K Tesoro. Yum yum. :-)

        Have fun! You will love it.

        • PS We chanced upon a local market in Captain Cook that apparently only happens on Sundays. It is on the grounds of the Amy B. Greenwell Botanical Garden and really is local – not the touristy stuff you get in Kona. Highly recommended.

        • Big Island :

          There are so many amazing things to do on the Big Island! You will love it.

          The Place of Refuge is beautiful and really interesting, I highly recommend spending a couple hours walking around there.

          If you do a day trip to the south end of the island/Volcano, go to the Punaluu Bake Shop on the way and buy a loaf of one of their fruit flavored sweetbreads. All of their baked goods are delicious but the sweetbread is amazing!

        • +1 on Kahulu’u Beach Park. I’ve snorkeled all over the place and its some of the best snorkeling I’ve ever had. There are tons of fish and because its shallow they’re right there in your face instead of 20 feet below you. Lots of turtles too, both sunning themselves on rocks and in the water. We went there every day on a short Big Island trip a few years ago.

  26. Cookies and Wine :

    Any thoughts on what color shoes to wear with a navy suit? I just bought my first navy suit from Banana Republic. It’s kind of a textured fabric. I know I’ve read on here that you can wear black shoes with navy, but I’ve always been taught that black and blue don’t go together. What do you wear with navy?

    • midwest anon :

      I wear gray shoes with navy and love the look. I have also worn suede, deep raspberry colored shoes, with the proper shirt underneath the jacket and felt pretty put together that day as well.

    • mintberrycrunch :

      I wear nude-for-me shoes with navy, although if I were wearing it to an interview, I might pick chocolate brown instead. I also don’t like navy with black, even though I realize it’s perfectly acceptable. Just not my jam.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      I wear nude or gray.

    • I wear gray or greige.

    • I wear black, grey, and sometimes purple. Brown is also acceptable if you don’t like black/navy, but think about men’s suiting – navy can be worn with black (more formal) or brown (less formal). Whatever makes you feel good, I say.

    • I love leopard with navy! ;)

    • I will chime in with my usual recommendation: navy.

      I understand that there are some weird navy shoes out there that are “too blue”, etc., but it’s really not that hard to find good navy shoes. My current pair are Cole Haans and they are a very dark navy that looks great with a navy suit (much better than black IMO).

      I wear my navy shoes much more than you might think – they look great with a lot of different clothing combinations. So I wouldn’t worry about them being a one trick pony.

    • Cookies and Wine :

      Love these ideas, thanks.

    • If you just bought their lightweight wool navy suit, (which I did…it’s at the tailor now…squeee!) note that the weave has black in it. My tailor pointed this out to me (because I didn’t love the silver buttons) and I had black patent shoes on when I tried it on. And the black looked fine. I actually polled the audience at my super-busy tailor and like 5 women agreed that black was the way to go.

      BTW, this comes from someone who is VIOLENTLY anti-black with navy. I always do chocolate brown or burgundy (I am so pale pale that there is no nude-for-me that doesn’t look silly, and I don’t need nude heels to lengthen my line because I am already built like a giraffe).

      If it’s not that suit, I stand by my chocolate brown advice. Keep in mind which purse you’ll be wearing your suit with too–I find navy is pretty formal so you need to look pulled together when you rock it!

  27. How is everyone doing on the eating out ban? We did pretty well last week, only eating out on the night I signed my official offer letter from the new company.

    I actually went grocery shopping on Sunday, so hopefully this week will be good as well. The extra money didn’t actually end up in a savings account, it ended up being used for clothes / things to spruce up my work closet. White House Black Market had a 60% sale going on, so I ended up with 2 dresses, 4 tops, 2 pairs of slacks, and 1 pair of dressy jeans for $380! I was happy. I also ordered a pair of Frye tall boots that look like they will fit and that garment bag I was talking about. I went with one with wheels that is carry on sized. So even without eating out, we ended up spending about the same amount of money last week! Bad.

    At least now I’m good for at least the next 3-5 months for work clothes!

    • I saw your post late on the weekend thread and just wanted to say that those Frye boots are fantastic! I wish they came in “extended calf” like some of Frye’s other styles!

      • SoCalAtty :

        Thanks! They are a 15″ circumference, so they SHOULD fit. I’m right between regular / wide calves, around 14.5-15″ depending, so it will be close. The other thing I liked was the shorter shaft height – from floor to the back of my knee is only 16″, so almost everything is too tall on me. Looks like they’ll be here today (YAY Zappos!) so we’ll see!

        Good ideas on the eating out, and keep up the good work!

    • I was wondering how you were doing on takeout. I did pretty well, too, except for two work lunches. But they were work-related, so they don’t count, right?

      Honestly, it was so easy scooping out chili into a small container every morning and bringing it to work. Way easier than wandering the pitiful food selection here.

    • I just read that thread and wanted to add that the single most useful thing I’ve done to eat home-cooked meals is to have a little whiteboard on my fridge where I write out what I plan to eat during the week. It makes it easier for me to figure out what to defrost when and helps me plan when to use leftovers. Also, it really takes the anxiety of out of it for me because I’ll know what I’m planning to eat/have prepared for that night. I rarely do more than heat up food during the week and it makes it super easy.

      Some things I routinely turn to: chicken fajitas (I make the chicken/pepper combo one night, eat it for two more meals), turkey chili (easy to bring to work for lunch and very filling), lentil soup (same), pasta with chicken sausage (takes 20 min tops), and turkey burgers (so fast!). All of these are usually paired with a salad (pre-washed spinach from the store with some baby carrots and dried cranberries on it). I tend to do most of my lunch cooking on Sunday so the beginning of the week is easiest. I have a crockpot and will use that from time to time (make a vat of pulled pork or steak) and then freeze what I make–so quick to just throw it on some rice and add a veggie. That said, daily crockpot meals aren’t for me–so don’t get discouraged if they’re not for you all the time either!

      I honestly don’t spend all that much time on it, but it did take some time to get into a good routine–now it’s second nature and I save SO much money. I also think that I’ve reset my expectations–sure, food out tastes awesome, but it’s meant as more of a special thing than an everyday treat.

  28. Does anyone want a Kate Spade surprise sale code? I don’t need anything and looking through the sale will just tempt me to buy something I don’t need, and then on top of that spend extra for shipping to Canada and customs, and fighting with UPS. The code is one-time use and can only be used today.

    The email says, up to 75% off surprise sale, plus the code at checkout gives you another 20% off plus free ground shipping in the US. Link http://www.katespade.com/discount-designer-clothing/sale,default,sc.html and code: SSPREVIEW-FEWY-L3DE-QN5B-QXX5

    • darjeeling :

      Aw, you’re so nice! Someone beat me to the punch, but it’s probably just as well since I don’t know where I would wear that beautiful Olsen dress.

    • Just FYI – the link doesn’t go to the surprise sale items, just the regular sale items.

      • Oh whoops — try this one? http://click.em.katespade.com/?qs=c884857562817310e4dee6c50e56067b1bb63edfd1a4dc017bd87286ed34d313

      • Or this (which I think is the same as the one NOLA posted).. http://www.katespade.com/SampleshopHome-Landing-Page/SampleshopHome-landing,default,pg.html?cm_mmc=ExactTarget-_-0242013_15_febsurprise1-_-0242013_15_febsurprise1

    • Someone can use mine, as well. Luckily, nothing in really speaking to me this sale: SSPREVIEW-NO4T-PNTD-H2OG-HFRC

      • Me, too. Some pretty things but nothing I’m dying for: SSPREVIEW-PWOC-7FSX-MKZF-7MIB

        Not sure how you get to the surprise sale, other than with the email, but here’s where mine went: http://www.katespade.com/SampleshopHome-Landing-Page/SampleshopHome-landing,default,pg.html?cm_mmc=ExactTarget-_-0242013_15_febsurprise1-_-0242013_15_febsurprise1

  29. Anon for this :

    Anyone here ever work for the Blackstone Group either in the Investment Management or Asset Management divisions? If so, any comments you share about the work culture and career trajectory for research people and traders/PMs would be much appreciated. TIA!

    • BrendaPatimkin :

      I cannot speak about Blackstone, but I am in that industry.

      Can you elaborate on your question? Research, PM and trading are each very different roles.

      I will say this- as I understand it about them, you work your tuchas off. It is all business, and there isn’t much room for “Oh I play volleyball on Thursdays, my kid has a softball game, etc”. Again, this is just from what I have heard.

      • Anon for this :

        Yup, they are different roles, but depending on the shop and on the culture, there’s some overlap.

        Am trying to assess how much overlap, as in:

        Some places treat traders as mere trigger-pullers, some places the traders have responsibilities that overlap with portfolio management. In other places, research merely provides ideas, and research analysts never run a pool of money of their own – their responsibilities do not have anything to do with trading or portfolio management. In other places, like The Capital Group, research analysts do have that responsibility. What’s Blackstone’s asset management structure like when it comes to delineating between these three roles?

        • Just a heads up that Blackstone has PE, real estate, fund of funds and a bunch of credit hedge funds acquired as GSO Capital – but no traditional business in long-only publicly-traded equities as per Capital, Fidelity etc (or only very small).

          The concept of ‘asset management’ and the roles of PMs/ analysts/ traders differ significantly from those of traditional long-only asset managers eg. ‘asset management’ encompasses participating on boards and maybe management committees of investee companies, asset transactions are just as often private or auctions so ‘research’ and ‘trading’ aren’t divorced from the business of executing transactions, and the idea of ‘research’ taking responsibility for investment decision-making in isolation from investment committees and partners doesn’t really exist. As I understand it, even GSO has a large component of self-sourced assets.

          Apologies if I’ve completely misunderstood your question.

      • “You work your tuchas off” is right.

        I can’t say more than this: I am close friend with someone who is very high up in the company. I don’t think I’ve ever met someone who works harder/longer hours.

    • Likewise, I have never worked for Blackstone, but I have worked in that industry. I second Brenda’s comments. There is very little concept of an “outside life” in that industry. Just a warning.

      • BrendaPatimkin :

        Well, my company is known for being a very, very good place to work. However, Blackstone specifically, as I understand it, has a bad reputation. However, this is all hearsay.

        Have you tried your school’s alumni directory? Glassdoor dot com?

  30. Book review :

    My DH is reading the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People for work and is completely drinking the Kool-aid. He wants me to read along with him. I tend to be suspicious about self-help books that are hugely popular for executive types, but I’m willing to give it a shot, if for no other reason than I’d like to know what DH is thinking. I’d love the r e t t e s’ take on whether this book is useful (particularly for women).

    • Like many self-help books, there’s some vague general stuff there.

      But, it does a good job in teaching prioritization and triage. It’s an OK book, but not anything earthshattering. Part of the problem is that plenty of well-educated people have terrible priotization skills, and, on top of that, really poor judgment, so they don’t know what is a priority. The book pre-supposes that your judgment isn’t utter crap and that you can figure out what’s important and what’s not. It gives one permission to push aside the less important stuff to focus on the important items.

      • Agree with all of this! I had to read this at my first job fresh out of college as a new hire discussion group with upper management. I’ll openly admit I most likely wouldn’t have read it on my own, but I did find it interesting and it has some good ideas for prioritization. There’s also an audiobook version (I went back and forth between reading at home and listening on my drive to work).

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