Tuesday’s Workwear Report: Tropical Wool Short Sleeve Scoop Neck Dress

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

I forgot how I first noticed this, but: there are several colors of this tropical wool dress, by Zac Posen, on fairly steep discount at Zappos Luxury. They’re a little on the “desk to dinner” side of things, sure, but I love wide scoopneck and midi length, along with the half sleeves — the whole look feels like it could be Roland Mouret … but for less. The dresses were $1,190 but are now $476-$595, available in sizes 2-12 (but for a mysteriously missing size 10).  Tropical Wool Short Sleeve Scoop Neck Dress

If you like this slightly vintage vibe, do check out this brand (generally under $100, with regular and plus size options); this $29 dress also has a similar vibe and thousands of good ratings.

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Comments

  1. Based on the Ask a Manager question today about a boss giving flowers to all the women in the office on Mother’s Day, it made me wonder about a similar gesture outside work. Many of the grocery stores in my area hand out single stem flowers to all women on Mother’s Day. I’ve never been asked if I was a mother – they just offer them to all women seemingly older than high school age, as far as I’ve seen. Doesn’t bother me in the least, and I think it’s sweet. For anyone struggling with issues related to motherhood (being intentionally broad here), does that kind of gesture bother you? Just curious. I’m only asking about non-work environments, fwiw.

    • Anonymous :

      I loathe it. I’m not trying to get pregnant I’m not struggling but also I’m not a mom so just stop it. It is hurtful and unnecessary.

    • Yea, I can’t stand it. I loathe Mother’s Day as it’s totally pronatalist and perpetuates the idea that the highest, best use for a woman is having kids or caring for kids. I have kids and still find the whole thing repugnant.

      • Anonymous :

        What about Father’s Day?

        • Hate it too, same thing. Having kids isn’t something that people need to be excessively congratulated for. (I’m the same anon as above)

          • lawsuited :

            LOL at the concept that celebrating mothers or fathers one day in every 365 is “excessively congratulating” them.

        • As Ask A Manager pointed out, it’s highly unlikely that all men at the grocery store will be getting a rose on Father’s Day. The reasons for that are all helpful in understanding why this is inappropriate to do for women.

      • Anonymous :

        Wow hostile much?

      • Loathing Mother’s Day because it “perpetuates the idea that the highest, best use for a woman is having kids or caring for kids” is a gross misunderstanding of the day. It’s just a day to appreciate moms. That’s it. It’s not saying being a mom is the most important thing any woman does. It is saying thank you for the hard work that goes into being a mom.

        Mothers don’t “need to be excessively congratulated for” having kids, but the kids and their dad/other parent absolutely owe her some thanks. (Not necessarily confined to one day, but that’s a separate issue.) We can all agree that being a mother is not the highest and best use for a woman. But we should also be able to agree that for those who choose to/are able to be mothers, it is A LOT OF WORK and it won’t kill anyone to spend a day saying thank you.

        • Anonymous :

          That’s how I look at it.

          I cringe a little to think back on how much work my mother did… raising 3 kids, cooking every meal, cleaning the house doing all the shopping, doing all the details for running our lives, while making sure we kids got the best education and opportunities we could manage, all while working a full time job at a Big Law firm for decades. She never complained once. She got very little thanks…. you know?

          I so took her for granted, and wish I had been mature enough before she passed to tell her how much I admire her now.

        • Pretty Primadonna :

          Yes. Thank you.

      • Yep ditto on the loathing appreciating all women above childbearing age on mother’s day. I’ve spent a lot of time and effort controlling my fertility because I have never wanted kids and the assumption that I am a mother in training is gross.

        • Anonymous :

          LOL. If you didn’t have some internal rawness about your choice getting a free flower wouldn’t bother you at all, just saying.

    • Anonymous :

      I think it’s sexist garbage. It’s a nice gesture in theory but it’s just demeaning.

      • I assume good intentions with this sort of thing, but inside I hate it. I believe I would feel the same way if I were a mother, since the holiday, such as it is, should be for family celebrating mothers, not randos celebrating the patriarchy.

        • Anonymous :

          Yes, this. I’m not against Mother’s Day. I love my mom and appreciate the reminder to celebrate all she’s done for me. I’m pregnant with my first now and look forward to being given love and attention by my future kid on Mother’s Day. But I really don’t expect/want/appreciate attention from outsiders.

    • Yes. It’s assuming that all women are mothers. Putting aside the hurt feelings that can cause for women who are struggling to become mothers, the assumption bothers me on principle.

    • At the restaurant on Sunday, waiting for my mom to arrive, I was asked by the waiter “are you a mother?” (I said an emphatic no because firmly child free) But when my mom arrived she was given free champagne. I mean, if you’re going to hand out flowers to all women how about free mimosas for all women! If I was struggling with my child free status this probably would have been hurtful.

    • I don’t love it, but it’s low on my list of concerns re; the way society treats all women as if they are or should be mothers. It also just seems dumb. Like, you know all women aren’t mothers, you know some women have issues re; motherhood, and you know that you shouldn’t ask. So the solution shouldn’t be to give everyone who presents as female a flower, it should be to give no one flowers. I don’t really think it’s sweet, because a considerate gesture is one that’s well thought out.

    • Anonymous :

      Mother’s Day is best celebrated by children and spouses, not by the general public. The problem is that random strangers feel the need to celebrate all moms, not just their own.

      • +1 agree

        It’s fine if you want to do something nice for your own mother on that day, but there’s no need for all of society to be all, “thanks to all the great moms out there!”

      • agree with this completely. I’m 11 weeks pregnant and have wanted to be pregnant/be a mom for the past decade but it just didn’t happen. every mother’s day the past few years I’d get asked if I were a mom and it really hurt, to the point I just stopped going out on that day at all. Mother’s Day is a tough, tough day for many women (for many reasons, including for those who have lost their mothers) and it would really be best if the above rule were followed.

    • Anonymous :

      I think it’s stupid. Mother’s day and father’s day should be days to recognize how your parents, grandparents, and other parent-like adults have supported/helped/taught you. It shouldn’t be a day about recognizing the abstract role of mother or father.

      • Yes this. You celebrate anyone who filled those parental roles for you, personally, and help any children that you’re in charge of celebrate their parental figures until they’re old enough to do it themselves.

        I do not need random strangers, coworkers, friends, aunts, cousins, etc all wishing me happy mothers day. I’m not your mom, I don’t fill that role for you, so please focus your efforts on those people in your life. I’m not a generic pan-mother to all humanity, nor am I only worthy of celebration because I’m a mom.

        Also if you want to celebrate all moms, how about you advocate for national paid parental leave and universal healthcare for moms and babies and any other things that would actually help make a mother’s life easier. A flower doesn’t do jack.

      • Lana Del Raygun :

        Yes, this is what bothers me about it!

      • This is a good perspective I hadn’t thought of – thanks.

    • Linda from HR :

      I love flowers, but a man giving me any flowers on Mother’s Day just because I’m a woman would absolutely rub me the wrong way. I am not a mother now, I don’t plan on being a mother any time soon, I’m not even sure I will be ever, and I really hate when men justify their sexism by saying “oh no no I love women, they’re beautiful, and they give life!” Like no, I don’t want my supposed fertility to be the thing people value, least of all men who don’t even know me. And sometimes I’m not beautiful either, that shouldn’t determine my worth.

      • Anonymous :

        Yes you touched on exactly what bothers me about this – that doing something “nice” can’t be wrong. Like holding doors or not cursing in front of her or standing up when she leaves the table or telling her she looks so pretty when she smiles. You can’t be offended by someone being NICE! Women are supposed to be grateful for men making any effort to recognize their existence at all!

        Just because a man intends something to be nice doesn’t mean it is. People are criticized all the time for their unwitting social missteps. The socially appropriate response in every other scenario is, I’m so sorry I offended you, it truly was not my intention, please accept my apology for putting my foot in my mouth. But when it’s a man doing something nice for a woman, and the woman says she doesn’t like it, suddenly she’s awful.

        • Linda from HR :

          When I was younger, maybe like 14 or so and just starting to identify as a feminist, I’d hear men say it was hypocritical for women to demand equality and still expect men to open doors for them, and I thought “yeah, good point! if we can’t have both, I pick equality!” but it seems like that trade was never on the table, they were hoping we’d shut up if they reminded us all the good the patriarchy does for us. We tried to give it up, we tried to tell men they were excused from their chivalrous duties, we even insisted “no really, we’d prefer that you didn’t” but it turns out, they can’t stop, they can’t readjust, it was how they were raised, it’s their way of respecting women and this new-fangled “treating women like mature, intelligent, competent, important people just like men” thing is too damn hard for them to figure out.

          So yeah, that’s why I’m not a fan of having to walk past a man to exist the elevator first, especially where I work. I’m not upset or offended or clutching my pearls, but it makes me feel weird, I don’t want it, I hate having to smile and thank someone for a gesture I don’t actually appreciate and never asked for, and I wish I could tell men to stop without them acting all put off by it.

          • nasty woman :

            Yes, exactly. It’s just one way to weasel out of the moral obligation to help dismantle the patriarchy. I think about this a lot when dating–my letting a guy pick up the check on a date *he* asked me on does not invalidate his independent obligation to reject systemic s*xism. Moreover, it’s not like I’m not still living with the impacts of such s*xism. So you’re telling me that I can’t accept any of the benefits from it? Women *must* relinquish all claims to the benefits of such a system before you’ll be an active participant in dismantling the parts that harm women? (Also, we all know that men paying on dates is just a vestige of patriarchy… not some cool special benefit that women get for being special.)

          • Blonde Lawyer :

            This!

            Plus, I always cringe at “ladies first” ever since I was doing a home visit (social work type) as part of my first post-college job, on Christmas Eve, to deliver a turkey to a family and the drunk uncle did a “ladies first” as we both exited the apartment at the same time and promptly grabbed my ass.

          • Linda from HR :

            Nasty Woman, you are correct, if a man asks me on a date I will usually expect him to pay, especially if he picked a fancy restaurant, but I’ll also be prepared to split, and I may also offer to pay for a second part of the date, like a comedy show or dessert, so we’re on even footing. I’ve heard too many stories of men throwing “but I bought you dinner!” in a woman’s face when he didn’t get the outcome he wanted, I’d rather not take any chances.

            I’m just generally sick of men claiming they’re doing something nice just to be nice, because it was how they were raised and they’d feel weird doing it any other way, but the second their gallant gestures don’t produce the desired outcome, they get agitated and suddenly it’s “no fair! I played my part! I did what I was supposed to, and now you won’t play your part and be a lady! you’re a worthless [gendered slur]!” Gender roles are lame.

          • OMG, all of this. ALL OF THIS.

      • Preach!

    • Anonymous :

      I’m single, no kids, 40’s. I don’t mind it. It makes me a tad uncomfortable, but I can handle it and not be offended. My personal situation re: kids is …… Complex.

      But I have a mother. Sh died way too young. I think she would love knowing I think about and cry for her on Mother’s Day.

      There are bigger fish to fry, no?

      Did anyone read the opinion piece in the NYT this weekend about why liberal deems are so alienating to Trumpers and that will push Trump’s re-election? I really worry about this. Much truth there, and discussions like this thread …

      • Anonymous :

        Oh die in a fire. I get to be hurt by Mother’s Day when I desperately want to be a mother and am not. It has nothing to do with Trump.

        • Yes, you get to be hurt. No, you don’t get to tell people who disagree with you to “die in a fire.”

          • Senior Attorney :

            This. Good grief that is such a horrible thing I can’t imagine wishing it on anybody, even as a rhetorical device.

          • Anonymous :

            J F C come off it. Your tone policing is BS and we all know it.

          • Anonymous :

            You mean… I misread the tone of “die in a fire”? Perhaps, yes…. it could be lighthearted. Of course.

            Aren’t we all policing each other here?

          • Anonymous :

            To the commenter who always points out “tone policing” – what you call “tone policing” is actually just normal people asking commenters who post horrible, inflammatory things to not be so horrible and inflammatory. I am sorry you have such a difficult time being a normal human being and communicating in a non-hostile way. I will absolutely continue to “tone police” you and everyone else here who has decided that this is an appropriate place to take out your aggressions on innocent, anonymous people. Could you try a kickboxing class or something? That would probably make you feel better, in the long run, than insulting people on the internet. In any case, if you genuinely cannot handle being “tone policed” – maybe try Reddit. They’ve got subreddits full of awkward, socially-inept young men who also don’t like being “tone-policed.” You can hang out with them.

      • Anonymous :

        LOL. Yes, it’s surely all the fault of us horrible liberals who want to be valued for more than our uterus on Mother’s Day.

      • The one about liberals aren’t as smart as they think? I couldn’t believe that was written by a professor.

        I THINK the point was that liberals are alienating “people”, because they’re too far ahead of most people, so stop criticizing the people that have yet to catch up. Like, now that you realize blacks and gays are people, give the rest of us some time to catch up with that idea and don’t pick so many fights about it.

        Also, maybe a point about don’t call people racist just because they do things that severely penalize people of different races and support racist candidates. You’re hurting those people’s feelings and just mobilizing them to keep voting for those racist candidates.

        I think? It sounds like maybe you got something different from it…

      • nasty woman :

        “I really worry about this. Much truth there, and discussions like this thread …”

        Please. That BS think piece was the same type of garbage that mods/cons have been vomiting all over op ed pages since the election. Basically your entire last paragraph is telling us to just sit down and shut up. All it is is an attempt to invalidate everyone’s opinions and stir the pot. You can F right on out of here with that.

        • Is that really necessary?

          • Yeah, reminds me of my lefty peers living in Brooklyn complaining about similar issues, but when I try to bring up the big issues like inequity of education, reparations etc…. They fall silent.

            It is absolutely wrong that our schools are funded by local property taxes, for example. But none of my liberal peers are eager to have their tax dollars go to improve schools on the South side of Chicago if it means cutting back on their child’s opportunities.

          • nasty woman :

            Yep. Anonymous shows up and tosses out a general insult supported by nothing, blaming women on a message board (???) for handing the country over to a noted psychopath because all of our asking to be treated like equal citizens got some republican panties in a wad.

          • Yeah, I thought you’d say that.

            Depressing.

            Yeah, I’m pretty sure we’ll lose again.

      • Lana Del Raygun :

        I am not a liberal and I still think it’s weird. Do not give me stuff for Mother’s Day unless you are (a) my child, or (b) the father of my child, when they are too young to come up with something on their own.

        • +1 I’m a conservative and find public Mother’s Day recognitions bizarre.

        • My child is plenty old enough to come up with her own Mother’s Day gift, but I still expect some recognition from her father on Mother’s Day.

      • +1

        Seriously.

      • Could someone please find me the article about “Trumpers” trying to understand liberals and regretting that they are so hostile and close-minded about things liberals want, like living wages, better childcare, equal rights for women and nonwhite people? Yes, we are such a terrible, terrible oppressive group.

        I’ll check back later for that article.

        • I think it was Sun NYT.

          I think it was less issue focused, but more general. More about backlash due to name calling rather than disagreements on issues. I think both sides are sometimes guilty of that.

          • Well, my point actually was that I’ve seen a lot articles by liberal commentators lamenting how we just don’t understand those poor rural folks, but I’ve never seen an article by a conservative commentator saying that maybe the rural folks should reconsider some of their distrust and fear of the “other” and also stop sneering at the latte-sipping, city-living liberals who actually want things that will make rural folks’ lives better, too.

          • Anonymama :

            To me, the name-calling pisses me off because it is so hypocritical. One of the things I despise about Donald Trump and much of the current iteration of the Republican Party is the total lack of basic civility in their discourse. I want us to be better, I think we can be better, and if we want to be better we can’t fall back on ridiculous “he started it” insult contests. If someone is calling names or relying on stereotypes about liberals, upend the stereotypes, don’t reinforce them. Turn it around so they are forced to acknowledge the common ground you stand on. Or, you know, go vent anonymously on the internet.

    • nasty woman :

      I’d rather see something to the effect of, “Happy mother’s day! We implemented reasonable maternity leave policies and here’s how we plan to use our out sized influence as a corporation to support implementing mandatory maternity leave on a national level!”

      • Anonymous :

        Meanwhile, everyone else without an active uterus can get back to work and then pick up the slack.

        • Linda from HR :

          lolwut?

        • nasty woman :

          I expect this is our resident tr0ll who hate “mommies,” and br3ast milk in particular.

          Look, you sad lady/man who tr0lls comment boards picking at women who have kids instead of spending her time in therapy like she clearly needs to, I never want kids. But I respect and value the tremendous service that women, collectively, provide by having kids. Society should value this work as a contribution, not look at childbearing as one individual woman’s decision to indulge in because she wants a mommy vacay or whatever degrading thing you’re thinking of to call it. Their careers should not be imploded. Women should not be forced to choose between coming back to work when they’re still healing from birth or lose their jobs. 3 months really isn’t that much time in the grand scheme of things. FTR, there should also be paternity leave and more generous family leave.

        • This right here is misogyny. Parental leave is important because our society should recognize the importance of caring for infants, the same way that we should recognize the importance of caring for the elderly (i.e. through social security, Medicare, etc). The fact that you seem to think that the burden of caring for infants should fall entirely on the mother of the infant rather than spread out among our country as a whole (as is the case with many of the things our society cares about – child healthcare (CHIP), again, Social Security, Medicaid/Medicare , etc) smacks of misogyny. Particularly in a country that goes out of its way to control women’s reproductive choices.

        • The person you’re responding to was talking specifically about Mother’s Day, but imo the same applies to Father’s Day.

          Paternity leave is just as important as maternity leave. Without paternity leave, mom becomes the default parent from jump. She’s the one figuring s h i t out while dad has to go back to work. Plus, women are the only ones taking a hit to their career to welcome a new child. If men take time off too, you normalize it for everyone. And with more people out, companies will have to do more to lessen the burden on all the other employees.

          • My one concern about that is it trivialises the physical burden or pregnancy and childbirth. Women would need time off after birth, even with a slew of full-time nannies, because it wrecks havoc on the body. Most women b-feed, at least at first, so we also give women special privileges for being the sole source of food for her baby. (It’s also easier to just mandate that all moms get time off rather than only b-feeding moms, because it’s otherwise onerous to track and companies might pressure women to return earlier.)

            That doesn’t mean no paternity leave, but the idea that the leaves should be equal implies that not having a baby is just as hard as having a baby.

          • Delta Dawn :

            That’s a big hell no. Providing paternity leave IN NO WAY trivializes the physical burden on women. You say women need time off “even with a slew of full time nannies.” Know who is also helpful like a nanny? THE BABY’S DAD. He needs paternity leave BECAUSE mom’s body is wrecked, not in spite of it.

            (Some things in this post may read heteronormative because of the maternity/paternity leave discussion, but of course same sex couples face the issue of leave for both parents, too.)

            In absolutely no way does anyone receive “special privileges” for b-feeding, and that is maybe the most blatantly wrong thing I’ve ever read. Do you even know anything about b-feeding? You know babies b-feed for like a year, right? So this “time off” differentiation you’re hinting at for b-feeding moms would need to be about four times longer than the three months we’re often talking about.

            And what “mandate” on earth are you talking about? I missed the “mandate” that says I don’t have to burn all my PTO because my employer doesn’t have maternity leave. You know most daycares won’t take an infant until at least 6 weeks, right? But you want to put all that on mom because you don’t like the idea that “leaves should be equal.”

            Bottom line– your view is that dads are “not having a baby,” which is not “as hard as having a baby,” like moms do. WRONG. WRONG WRONG WRONG. They BOTH had a baby. Both. And your perspective is exactly what makes moms the default parents from the outset. It’s sexist and unacceptable.

          • First, maternity leave is distinct from disability leave. Disability is because you’re physically unable to be at work. Which also means shouldn’t be tasked with providing fulltime infant care which leads me to…

            Second, the non-birthing parent should be able to take FMLA to care for a recovering birthmom and baby while birthmom is on disability. No clue why that’s not done or if it can be done but it seems like a no brainer.

            Third, equal maternity/paternity recognizes that all parents are equally important in welcoming a new child without regard to which parent (or either parent) birthed the child.

          • Delta Dawn, have a nice cup of tea and take a walk.

            Most women do not b-feed for a year. Most people (you excepted) believe that part of maternity leave is because of how difficult childbirth is. (In fact, many women go on mat leave before the baby is born, because the discomfort is too much.)

            I am not against paternity leave (of sorts) or equality in parenting. Unloading on me makes you look like a deranged nut job with an axe to grind.

          • Delta Dawn :

            I’d love to take a walk… but I don’t have time, because I didn’t have paid maternity leave. But in seriousness:

            Yes, most women do not b-feed for a year (many choose not to, or are unable to, both of which are fine), but that’s not what I said. I said babies b-feed for a year. I said that because the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that cow’s milk be introduced at one year or later. So babies are on formula or b-milk for a year. The “special privileges” you mentioned for b-feeding mothers 1) do not exist and 2) don’t do much good for a few weeks when a baby needs b-milk (or formula) for a year.

            As Anonymous at 12:34 explained to you, maternity leave is distinct from disability leave. “How difficult childbirth is” is a component of disability leave, separate and distinct from fulltime newborn infant care. “Paternity leave (of sorts)” is not “equality in parenting.” EQUAL paternity leave is equality in parenting.

            I absolutely have an axe to grind, and I’ll stop grinding it when this country gets parental leave figured out. Calling anyone who disagrees with you a “deranged nut job” is trivializing and sexist. (Hey, if you don’t like what she’s saying, just call her crazy!)

            “Women will have achieved true equality when men share with them the responsibility of bringing up the next generation.” – RGB That means equal parental leave for both parents.

        • I know a ton of only children. When those kids’ parents age, how on earth is that going to work (maybe see what China does b/c they are heading that way faster than we are)? Are we all likely going to be working PT b/c of eldercaregiving once we hit 50 or so?

          • Blonde Lawyer :

            There are going to be more elderly living facilities that offer a variety of different care levels. They can’t build them fast enough around where I live.

          • Caregiver here… for the elderly, which gets zero societal support.

            These elderly care facilities cost a bloody fortune, which I cannot afford… Maybe rich lawyers can. And the Medicaid accepting facilities are quite poor where I live. Where do you think the funds will come from?

          • Blonde Lawyer :

            I think you and I are responding to different things. My response wasn’t about what societal safety nets we should have. I was responding to what I see currently happening where there is less of a family social safety net.

            I don’t know where the money is going to come from. I do know there must be enough people buying into these facilities for them to keep building them. My nana was lucky to get a Medicaid bed in a nice facility. They had a limited number of beds for medicaid patients. Being a caregiver wasn’t an option because she needed a level of skilled care greater than I or my parents could provide.

            For my own parents, I’m looking into retirement continuing care communities. There are some great not-profit ones where I am that have reasonable buy in and monthly rates. They anticipate that you will spend down all your assets while you are there but they will not kick you out when you do.

            Lastly, I don’t know if the “rich lawyer” remark was at me or just generally but please don’t make assumptions. I am not from a rich family (see nana on Medicaid). I am certainly doing quite well for myself now but I make far from big law money. There are a ton of lawyers, even those in private practice that make under $100k.

        • Correct.

          Corporations frequently “provide” maternity leave by simply requiring everyone else to work extra. That is maternity leave paid for by your co-workers, not the company or society at large.

          • That’s on the corporation, not the mother and not the government. If they wanted to hire outside help to cover the leave, they could (remember, FMLA doesn’t even cover companies smaller than 50 people) and there’s also — gasp — cutting back the work that gets done. If you want to pick a bone with someone, pick a bone with your company.

          • nasty woman :

            +1 to Batgirl. Plus, shouldn’t the workers “who pick up the slack” be compensated in the form of overtime or bonuses? So it’s not really fair to pretend that coworkers are paying for leave. The company either needs to comp them for working above their requirements, or hire a temp to replace the woman on leave.

          • But that doesn’t mean that the people picking up the extra work aren’t allowed to complain. In fact, I would argue that complaining about it is a necessary step in getting it fixed.

          • From above: “That is maternity leave paid for by your co-workers, not the company or society at large.”

            I feel like I should get a mothers day card from everyone else’s kid then. B/c I was away at work so you could have family time. I sacrificed. Where is my card / flowers?

          • Lana Del Raygun :

            Yes, but complain to the company, not the mother.

          • Ladies, please understand the difference between “should” and “is.”

            We have a system wherein those who don’t bear children are the ones picking up the slack at work. That’s reality. Squawking at me for explaining (explaining, not justifying) reality is laughable.

          • Anonymama :

            Yeah, but you don’t systematically blame coworkers who quit, or get cancer, for increasing your burden, just because management is slow to hire replacements. Blame the company for not planning ahead, not the coworker who is using the benefits/compensation that they earned for working at that job.

            But also, people sure are in a mood to argue today.

        • Pretty Primadonna :

          **rolls eyes**

    • I prefer how other countries do this on International Women’s Day rather than Mother’s Day, especially since many of the countries where this is big have actually made strides to help women.

      • Lana Del Raygun :

        I actually hate that even more. IWD was originally a day of protest (at the time, mostly for suffrage). I want an end to misogyny, not a stupid carnation.

        • Linda from HR :

          Carnations no. Blood red, thorny roses maybe.

        • I want an end to misogyny too (I’m the one who has been posting about the SF Public Library display – which is still up btw), but if there’s going to be a day to honor any women, I prefer a holiday with socialist underpinnings to Mother’s Day. It is definitely flower-focused now, but it made my MIL who lives in the former USSR so happy when we sent her flowers last time.

      • Rainbow Hair :

        OH MY GOD my favorite international women’s day acknowledgment was when they arranged for the male dean of the school i worked at to HUG ALL THE WOMEN who worked for him. i politely declined.

    • I think it’s problematic in the workplace, but in the grocery store I would just interpret it as a sweet gesture and not get up in arms about it.

    • I am a cranky FT working church-going republican mother and I loathe this stuff. It’s like Christmas and Valentine’s Day and everything else — just a play on emotion to sell more (@#(*$ that we don’t need and that clutters up the house. Also, bad times to go out to eat.

      It’s like the marital industrial complex has figured out how to hose us several times a year.

    • lawsuited :

      I find this kind of thing weird. I was at a doctor’s office and they handed me a rose for Mother’s Day. I was with my kid so they knew I was a mother, but I find it weird because I really don’t expect the public at large to thank me for for the mothering I do, just my kid and my husband.

    • biglawanon :

      Like some others here, even though I am a motion of 4, I am not really a fan of mother’s day in general. A few things rub me the wrong way.

      Shouldn’t we appreciate and respect our parents every day? I don’t see why we need a special day for that.

      I have gotten more “recognition” and gifts for being a mother than for educational and professional milestones. That seems really backwards.

      The idea of the public recognizing and being like “yay, thanks for being a mom” is downright weird. It is not like it is something that very few people do. And of course this has to feel weird to those struggling with conception, adoption, etc.

    • Pretty Primadonna :

      I am a mother. I like being recognized and shown appreciation on Mother’s Day. Before I became a mother, I enjoyed recognizing and showing appreciation to mothers (in general, not just my own).

      On Mother’s Day, I am now more sensitive about those who want to be mothers who are not just yet, or who have lost children, or who have lost their mothers. But, I support the celebration of mommies.

  2. I need advice. My mother was a pretty bad mother, and she knows it and feels bad about the things she did wrong. She wasn’t abusive (although by today’s definitions she and my stepdad would both be considered verbally and emotionally abusive) and I understand that some people just have poor life skills and low EQ, and are just kind of self-involved, and that’s really what’s at the root of her problem. It’s also at the root of her always favoring her kid with him and being willing to believe whatever my stepdad says about me (and he’s made some pretty terrible, baseless accusations) and whatever he tells her to do (e.g., refusing to let her help me pay for college and trying to talk me out of going to an ivy league school because it threatened him).

    Anyway, it’s a long story, but basically she’s sort of coming around now- realizes her mistakes, was nice enough to be up front about taking responsibility, and I do think she has a lot of regrets. I should feel good, but it’s dragging up a lot of old anger for me. Anger about the same old things that I don’t really ever feel unless there’s an immediate catalyst like this. So I feel like I have 2 choices. I can avoid catalysts of that anger, which means mostly avoiding her except for superficial interactions. Or I can try to build a better relationship with her, which could be good in the end, but it could also fail and leave me having gone through all the emotional stuff for nothing. I generally feel at peace, which is something I’ve worked hard for. So I’m not really sure I want to reenter the bad parts.

    any advice? I’m 30, married, no kids, and really close to my dad if that’s important. I have good relationships and don’t really feel like I’m in need of more, if any of those things change anything.

    • Oh gosh, this is tough. In 10 or 20 years time, what do you want your life/family/relationships to look like? We talk about the holiday table when we talk about having children but maybe that can usefully be applied to family as well. Do you want your mom there around the table? Or do you feel a burden of obligation? Is the fact that your stepdad is still around forever going to be a hindrance to that relationship?

      • I don’t know, and I guess that’s the problem. Like, I think I want her to be around, and my stepdad isn’t really a factor these days. Like, I see her by herself most of the time (but we don’t do holidays or anything together that would change that) I think most of his meddling was in like parenting-related things that had a meaningful impact on me at the time but wouldn’t now.

        I have a half sister who’s 10 years younger that I’ve actually gotten to know and like a lot. She feels warmth toward her parents but still has a lot of issues with them. I don’t discuss my issues much, but I know she kind of gets things on a super high level and is empathetic. I want to continue to have a good relationship with her, but I don’t think anything in particular is necessary on that front.

        In 10-20 years time, I want to have people in my life who love me and whose company I really enjoy. I want to be around people I can invest in. I have that now and it’s the best part of my life. I don’t need her to have it, but I’m also concerned that after she’s gone I’ll wish I had tried harder. If it works, I think it’ll be worth it. But it’s a risk and I’m not sure how big of a risk it is or if I want to take it.

    • Anonymous :

      Why should you feel good? Her apologies fix nothing. Stick with what hurts you least.

      • I guess it was nice to feel like me and my experiences and feelings were acknowledged. It felt nice in the moment, but now I’m thinking about those experinences again and I’m mad. I don’t want to be mad, though. I just want to let go.

        • Lana Del Raygun :

          Based on my experience of childhood bullying: letting yourself be properly mad makes it easier to let go. If the wrong done to you isn’t acknowledged (by others or by part of you), there’s an impulse to hang on to the anger as a way of insisting that the wrong was real. But once you really accept it as real, you can forgive and move on.

    • Anonymous :

      Is she still with stepdad? Has he apologized?

      Ymmv obviously but I would feel that if she truly realizes that he’s as horrible as he is and actively damaged our relationship, and he’s not sorry for that, then she would not be with him.

      • She is still with stepdad, we don’t really talk about him much. To clarify, she was horrible too and that’s my issue with her. Like, so was he, but it’s not like she just let him do it. She was really nasty to me my entire childhood, and I really think from what I can tell is that was driven by things other than him. I think his lack of interest in me and tendency to use me as a scapegoat contributed. But the core of the issue is her being terrible, not that she married a jerk and tolerated it. She’s not a very able person, so she feels like she needs him for financial (and other) security in life and I don’t think that’s going to change. I think he also generally treats her well and they have a decent relationship. I guess I don’t expect her to leave him and don’t think that’s my concern. I do expect her to own up to being terrible, which she has. previously I thought that’s what I wanted and that would open the door to better things. I think it probably will, but now I find myself not sure if I really want it.

        At this point she respects my wishes to avoid him so when we see each other it’s just us.

    • Anonymous :

      Is she apologizing to make YOU feel better or to make herself feel better? Like, she got the apology out of the way and now she doesn’t have to feel any pesky guilt?

      I think the natural consequences of being a terrible mom are that your kids drift away. You trying to hold on and making excuses for their terrible actions only hurts you. Go find your happiness wherever that is.

      • No I think she feels a terrible amount of guilt and no amount of her apologizing is going to make her feel better. She does love me and it is genuine. I’m virtually certain of that. She’s not a bad or uncaring person. there are just a lot of other limitations and bad characteristics that get in the way of her acting on the caring and all that. This in no way absolves her, though, and if I proceed it’s definitely not motivated by obligation.

        I’m looking to the future and wondering which of these options I’ll want in the long run. I think I want her to be a part of my life (albeit in a much more limited way than I would have if these things had never happened) and I think that may be possible and worth it. But is that just wishful thinking and flawed judgment? I think she’s done everything that was previously a precondition of mine. I don’t see any obivous problems other than thinking about the things that happened make me mad. But will they always? I don’t know.

        • If the anger is coming up, that means you’re still angry. Whatever you decide to do with your mother, it’s probably worth it to seek therapy about your anger for you, not for her or your relationship with her.

        • Anonymous :

          This is such a difficult situation, I’m sorry you’re going through it. You get to choose what you want to do, and your decision isn’t the end all, be all. You can change your mind later. You can start working through things with her, and if that stops working for you, then stop. Or, you can choose to avoid her, and if you want to reach out later to try and work on things, you can do that. You aren’t responsible for her feelings or her reaction to whatever you choose. Take care of yourself.

        • I mean, it’s not like you have to make this decision once and for all right now. Just see how it goes.

          I feel like I’m a broken record on this, but I read the book How to be an Adult by David Richo last year and it really helped me gain perspective on my childhood. It has a section about the importance of fully accepting that you didn’t have what you needed as a child, and how you need to grieve that and let it go or it will keep bothering you and popping up throughout your adulthood. It’s a short book and might help?

    • Anonymous :

      I have a related situation. Very abusive father, who is now in his 70s. He became very ill, although not dying, and has had deep reflection into his life. He has such regret, and is finally treating his mental illness. It was a much longer road with bumps than that sentence suggests. But the guilt that he carries now breaks my heart a little.

      I strongly rrecommend you consider counseling to help guide you.

      For me, it has been freeing to forgive. I am so much lighter. My father has so much pain, and as a mature adult, I understand where he is came from. In his case, a childhood of parental mental illness, neglect, no father to model good behavior, and the stress of poverty.

      And I am grateful to finally have a father.

      Every situation is different. Talk to someone.

    • I have a not-so-great relationship with my mother, partly because, like yours, she wasn’t the greatest mother in a lot of ways when I was growing up and was even emotionally abusive at various times. She too has been extremely apologetic in recent years and clearly very regretful. Initially, right after she started expressing those regrets, I really wanted to have a close relationship with her. But, you know what, I just don’t get that much positive out of trying to be close to her. She loves me, but, she’s really just not actually a nice person. It took me a few years to realize that what I wanted was not so much a close relationship with my actual mother, the person she actually is, but for my mother to be a nicer person, and the kind of person with whom I could feel close. It’s never going to happen. I had to accept that. So, we’re just not that close. I see her about once a month for dinner, and we chat occasionally throughout the week, but we never talk about anything especially serious and I don’t confide in her or seek her advice. And that’s OK.

      • Elegant Giraffe :

        This is similar to my experience. I want a close relationship with a person that is someone my mother cannot/does not choose to be. So I would consider that and move cautiously if you choose to become closer with your mother at this point. Think about who she truly is right now, not what you wish you could have.

        • I think this is right. I know she can’t be someone I’m close to and honestly I don’t think I want that even if she could. But I do think that she can be someone who’s company I enjoy for simple things, and honestly, these days I generally do for the most part. we just had a heart to heart a few nights ago in which she was very understanding and sincere, but I was just so mad because of old things, nothing anything she said. I think for what I want her for, she’s plus or minus already there, or the rest is possible.

          I just don’t know if I’m up to it, or how much effort I should put in to get there.

          • Elegant Giraffe :

            Play it by ear. You don’t have to make any decisions immediately, and you get to change your mind if you want to. *hugs*

        • Just chiming in to ditto this!

      • This. I see my mom more than Torin because she’s an involved grandma. She is good at some things like telling me I’m doing a good job as a working mom or helping with kid logistics. But she is not someone I can talk about serious issues with and seek advice from. She cannot deal with the fact that I had a serious mental health issue as a teenager so I don’t talk to her about therapy or what medications I take or any health info beyond if the kids have antibiotics for colds etc. That’s who she is. She isn’t who I want her to be but that’s it.

        Becoming a mother has also made me realize that moms are just people trying to figure out this whole parenting thing, often based on the parental model they got from their parents. Sometimes they are great at it and sometimes they are awful. Most are somewhere in between and some are great at certain ages and awful at other ages.

        • lawsuited :

          +1 Mothers are just women trying to balance all the pressures and competing priorities life throws at us.

    • Betterandbetter :

      The fact that you are angry and kind of resistant to the anger leads me to believe you would benefit from exploring this in therapy. The fact that your life feels otherwise solid and happy to you actually makes it a great time to get into something like this. I had a generally awful late childhood and adolescence and wasn’t able to make good progress in therapy until I had a good foundation in the rest of my life. I agree with the others that you deserve peace, therapy isn’t the only way to get there but it is one way and one that has worked for me. I hope you find one that works for you. I also had a conflicted relationship with my mother. She was complicit in (and an occassional perpetrator of) the Physical and emotional abuse that was part of the reason for the aforementioned childhood and adolescence were awful and on top of all that she was not supportive in my coming out process. But one of my earliest memories is of one of my cousin’s wailing over her Mother’s coffin and I could tell even then that is was about something more than grief. I would later learn that she too had a conflicted relationship with her mother for equally valid reasons and that my cousin never took the opportunity to resolve that. Even when she was nursing her mother while she died. I promised myself that I wouldn’t go through that without trying everything I could and I am glad I did. My mother stepped up, I felt like I went forward without compromising myself and everything is much much better now. Aside from the value in our relationship now the peace from processing the pain itself was worth it. I read alot of self help to get through my teens and one of the ways that one of those books suggested to make decisions like this is to consider which of the options before you leads to more love in the world. Trying to reconcile felt like the more loving options, especially since for good or ill I identified with my abusers and those that emabled them because I was related to them and I knew that I would want to be forgiven for the worst things I ever did. The more loving option for you may be to keep things as they are and that’s also more than okay. Even just listening to and considering her apology is very generous.I’m just saying if you choose to dig in you may find it very rewarding.

      • (Not the OP) Thank you for this. I benefited from reading it.

        • Betterandbetter :

          Oh good! I’m glad. Makes me feel better about being personal on the internet.

        • +1

          As another person with a very strained relationship with my mother, I really appreciate this whole discussion. It’s given me a lot of language to describe anxieties I’ve felt, but which I could not name, for a long time.

  3. Anonymous :

    This is gorgeous. I love elbow length sleeves but they’re hard to find. I wish this fit in my budget…

  4. Well, that’s a gorgeous dress for cocktails, dinner–maybe an evening work event (dinner at a conference or the like). But it’s not even remotely desk-to-dinner in my office. It would required a high-profile buttoned blazer to cover up all of that open neckline, but I’m not sure a jacket would work over the elbow-length sleeves …

    • Agree. That neckline is beautiful but SO impractical for the office — broad scoopnecks are prone to gaping unpredictably.

    • Anonymous :

      I would wear that to my AmLaw 50 office, and in fact, I’m wearing the very similar Black Halo option today. I do wonder if the back of it is a little too scooped, but oh well.

      • I would absolutely wear it to work as well, depending on how low that square neck goes. I find square necks to be super flattering. Great pick.

  5. My husband and I are planning a trip to Hawaii. This is just the beginning stages, so nothing is set yet. When’s the best time of year to go? We are interested in hiking, general sight-seeing and just lying around the pool and beach. Any other recommendations?

    Thanks!

    • Anonymous :

      I don’t think there is a wrong time of year to go to Hawaii. But, assuming you live in a cold place, I would plan a winter trip – that seems like more of a treat to me than a summer trip. I went in January a few years ago, and it was perfect.

      • Hawaii does have a rainy season that’s roughly November to March. It rains almost everyday there, but when it’s not rainy season, it’s just a short little shower. When it’s rainy season, it’s a fricking monsoon. I would pick up a guide to Hawaii, depending on which island (big island seems a bit dicey of late). Recs will depend on which island you’re targeting. Sunset magazine has great articles and there’s a specific guide that C-r e t t e s like that I can’t recall off the top of my head.

        • that’s funny … I was in Hawaii for 2 weeks in January, and it didn’t rain once. I guess it all depends on the year

    • I would go in late fall (October or November) or early spring (March/April). I’ve gone in December/January a few times and the rain and rough surf kind of ruined the trip. Hawaii is always warm but the weather in winter can definitely interfere with outdoor activities. It’s also really expensive around the Christmas/New Years and much cheaper in spring and fall. Summer is nice weather wise but is more crowded and expensive.

      • biglawanon :

        Yup, this. Shoulder seasons are the way to go, although I’d say Sept-Oct and April-May. Some of the best weather of the year and lower crowds. November and March are a bit cooler than I prefer.

    • Mind the terrible eruption and lava flows on the big island right now, the state is in a state of emergency. Disaster relief on that island and flowing from the other islands to the big island, as well as smoke and ash, may not make traveling soon a viable option.

      • The state is NOT in a state of emergency. The community on the big island that has been affected is displaced and emergency has been declared for them.

        The other islands are fine.

        This is not the time to go hiking at the volcano national park at Kilaeaua but otherwise, you’re totally fine for Kauai, Maui and Oahu. Don’t be stupid and head straight for lava flow.

      • My parents are vacationing on the Big Island right now and it’s fine. Just stay on the Kona side, avoid Hilo and the National Park. Certainly the other islands are completely fine. It’s ridiculous to avoid the entire state because of the volcano.

      • OP is asking what time of year to go, she’s obviously not planning a trip immediately.

    • Horse Crazy :

      I went to Kauai (which is the rainiest island) for a week in mid-December a couple of years ago, and it rained one or two of the days we were there, but the rain is warm and it comes and goes quickly. It didn’t get in the way of a single activity we had planned. It was a lovely break from our West Coast winter storms.

      • Anonymous :

        On the flip side, I went to Kauai in December a few years ago also. It rained very heavily for four days and the waves were really rough the entire time we were there. We wanted to do a boat tour of the Na Pali coast and it was cancelled several days in a row, so we never got to do it. And we weren’t able to snorkel at all, despite being strong swimmers and experienced snorkelers. Most of the beaches had “do not enter the water” advisories (you can ignore these of course, but many people don’t feel comfortable doing that). It wasn’t a horrible trip – we did some nice hiking and a helicopter tour – but the weather definitely interfered with our plans. I think if you don’t care about going in the ocean at all, it’s fine to go in the winter, but most people who go to Hawaii want to swim/surf/snorkel/go boating.

    • biglawanon :

      I’d recommend just going to one island unless you are going for longer than a week. There is plenty to do on any of the main islands for a week or less, and avoiding transiting between islands means more time at the beach/pool/hiking.

      I’d recommend a catamaran snorkeling tour. These are usually about 5 hours, leave in the morning and serve lunch. I thought a helicopter tour was worth it.

      We do the same kinds of things you are looking to do, and my ranking is Big Island, Kauai, Maui, Oahu. Even with the Volcano issue, there is plenty to do on the Big Island.

    • Just got back from Maui last week. Arrived in the midst of a torrential rain the likes of which I had never experienced, but then the weather the rest of my trip was quite good. This was my first trip, so I can’t say how the weather compares to other times of year.

  6. Linda from HR :

    I saw RBG last night (the documentary on Ruth Bader Ginsburg) and OHHH MY GOD I loved it! Inspiring and empowering, I highly recommend going to see it as soon as you can. I want to see it again.

    Unless you hate her, in which case, don’t, I guess.

    • Loved it too. And cannot imagine hating her.

      • Linda from HR :

        Well, me either, but I’m a yankee liberal* and I’m sure those with conservative leanings have very valid reasons for not liking her from a political standpoint. The movie was absolutely biased towards liberals and feminism (and was, to be fair, mostly White Feminism, not a lot of intersectionality that I could see) which I found delicious, but it may not be everyone’s favorite thing

        *but NOT a Yankees fan!

        • “White feminism” is just another way to criticize women for their feminism not being good enough while letting men have another free pass. What’s the special insult for men who don’t do sh*t (including stopping their r*pe and violence for even one day) to help women of any color?

          • No “white feminism” is the promotion of a certain sector of women, to the detriment or the very least ignoring of other sectors. A writer said it best “feminism is supporting all women, white feminism is an attempt to only lift up a certain type of liberal, white, middle class women’s rights”. White feminism is not really feminism, it is kind of an insult to the entire idea of feminism. No movement is perfect, but you cannot and should not be proud of getting ahead stepping on the backs of poor, immigrant, women of color or transgender women to get there. That’s the point.

          • No, feminism isn’t about supporting every cause there is. It’s specifically about ending male oppression of women. Of course it includes immigrant women, women of color, and poor women – it is for all women. It just doesn’t have to take care of all issues for all people.

        • Anonymama :

          Even Antonin Scalia liked and respected RBG (they were opera buddies).

    • Anonymous :

      I don’t agree with her politics but she is just charming. And I am very impressed by her workout regimen (not sure if that is in the documentary). Also, she had a fantastic spouse and having a long and loving and mutually-career-supporting marriage is something that is such a model to me. The late Marty Ginsburg was a great tax lawyer and always was so supportive of RBG.

      • Linda from HR :

        Yes, the workout regimen is in there! And I loved her husband, and their relationship, and I told my boyfriend I wanted a marriage like hers. He said “I’ll try my best.”

    • Are her grandkids featured in the film? Her granddaughter was on my debate league in college. I always imagined them as a power family through the generations.

      • Linda from HR :

        Yes! The granddaughter is definitely featured, grandson is shown too but doesn’t say as much.

    • Marshmallow :

      Saw it and left the theater so inspired. I teared up a bit at the parts about Marty. I’d like to think I see a lot of our own relationship in theirs and it’s just lovely to have a powerful woman as role model both professionally AND personally.

    • Another anon :

      I love RBG but it’s very frustrating that she didn’t just retire at the beginning of Obama’s term. I do think she’s damaged her legacy by singlemindedly trying to hang on to her position as long as possible.

      • Anonymous :

        That’s all well and good, but she can’t go back in time. At this point, I just want her to hang on till another Democrat president is elected

  7. Anonymous :

    I’m setting up a tablet for a 2 year old (who is about to go on a long car trip). What Android apps do you like for a little kid? There won’t be an internet connection on the trip so I’m thinking of downloading some Netflix episodes.

    • When mine was 2, he couldn’t do too much on the tablet without assistance and he’d get frustrated if we couldn’t immediately help him. The best thing at that age for him were the bubble pop and balloon pop. There’s also an ant crusher, which is basically the same thing. There are some good puzzle apps but may be too much for a 2 year old?

    • I have an ipad, so not sure what crosses over, but my 22 month old loved “Itsy Bitsy” app (a simple game with the Itsy Bitsy Spider song), and all the “Peekaboo” games, particularly Peekaboo Barn. He’s 30 months now and still loves Itsy Bitsy, although he gets to play it once every couple weeks or so, so maybe the novelty just hasn’t worn off yet.

      • Looks like it is on Android: http://www.duckduckmoose.com/educational-iphone-itouch-apps-for-kids/itsy-bitsy-spider/
        He also has “Wheels on the Bus” but isn’t into that one. He could play Itsy Bitsy for HOURS.

      • My 2.5-year-old nephew loves Peekaboo Barn. Also Monkey Preschool Lunchbox.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      I stole this idea from someone else here but Friskies (yes the cat food company) has a couple of Ipad apps for cats. I don’t know if there is an Android version. One is Cat Fishing, where you tap the fish as they come across the screen, and the other is bugs. My cat loved it and my friend’s baby loved it even more.

    • This is on iPad, but there are two Fisher Price apps I downloaded for a trip that my son really likes. One is body parts with a cat and a dog and the other is identifying animals.

    • Mine liked the Tom Cat app – the cat can copy what you say, and also, you can feed it. Didn’t really get the hang of the whole game, and needed help with it sometimes, but was really entertained by the copying.

      Also, LEGO GAME. Fantastic for kids. Very easy to play.

    • One thing to keep in mind at 2 is that it’ll be really easy for him to exit out of an app and then proceed to scream when he can’t get back to it. There’s an app for iPhone called “Barnyard Games for Kids” that makes it a little more difficult to close out (you have to double-tap or drag the X) but they can still hit a home button if there is one. So unless someone will be within touching distance, you’re probably better off downloading shows and strapping the tablet to the back of the seat. But I second the cat app as well – my daughter liked the bugs one.

      • On some android tablets there is a Kids app, and you can’t “exit” out of it or hit a home button so it should be fine if OP enables this feature. They usually also have age-appropriate suggestions in the app for games and activities to download

    • Nerfmobile :

      There are some games under the moniker of “Preschool Monkey XXX” (Preschool Monkey Lunchbox, etc.). They have about 5 simple repeating games in a theme, and were simple enough for my 2.5 year old to figure out with some help and then play independently.

    • Anything from Toca Boca, Toca Town is essentially an electronic busy board themed as a town. Be sure to investigate and set up your parental controls. On Am azon tablets there’s free time and on iPads there’s Guided Access.

    • Anonymous :

      Baby Bum episodes

  8. Walking commute :

    I’ve started walking a few miles to work everyday. It’s starting to get hot here, but I’ve been enjoying the exercise. How do I keep walking to work without showing up like a sweaty mess?

    Also, any recommendations for semi-cute shoes to wear? the pair I’ve been using has started to have a smell. Any recommendations for how to fix that?

    • I’ve been wearing Birkenstocks for my walk commute!

      Are your shoes washable? Can you wash them, stuff them with newspaper and let them bake in the sun?

    • Linda from HR :

      So I learned two things yesterday (after some poo-pourri leaked in my handbag . . .):

      1) The makers of Poo-Pourri now have a spray for your shoes, so maybe try that out.

      2) Rice can absorb both moisture and smells, so maybe if you put some rice in your shoes overnight and shook it out in the morning, that might help as well. Baking soda can help too, but rice is less messy.

    • Anonymous :

      Don’t walk too fast. Use some baby wipes to freshen up after you get to the office, and/or wear a gym top for your walk and then change at work.

      • Anonymous :

        I asked about this a few weeks ago and have been doing the above since. I also added sunscreen gentle enough to use on my face, then wash my face once at the office. (I don’t wear much make up though, so YMMV.)

    • Wear breathable clothes–most of my summer clothes are linen or cotton-blend dresses. Bring an icy drink to sip as you walk slowly. If your shoes smell, spray the inside with rubbing alcohol and put in the sun. Some synthetically-lined shoes will not lose their smell, in which case, you should consider them a loss. I have “commuting flats” (several different pairs) because I need better foot support than just ballet flats for walking. Consider changing out your top when you get to work if you wear pants and a top. That’s all I got.

    • I am in a cool climate but like my BOBs (cheap-y TOMs) for summer commuting. Decently comfy and washable if they get sweaty or gross.

    • I wear workout clothes and sandals and put on my work clothes after using burts bees wipes in a bathroom at the office–the only way I can survive the DC swamp in summer!

      • I do this even in San Francisco, which is never hot or freezing cold, but with actual running shoes. I keep all my work shoes at the office and bring work pants/top in each day.

    • Spray the inside of your shoes with lysol or similar aerosol disinfectant.

    • “Medicated” baby powder (i.e., baby powder with zinc in it) helps more than just talc or corn starch baby powder alone.

    • I’ve been wearing Rothys to walk to work. I’m in Sf so it is rarely so warm that I get sweaty :)

  9. skin product rec? :

    I’m a side sleeper, and I’ve noticed that I have three chest wrinkles in the morning when I wake up. Later in the morning, they’ve disappeared, but I know that’s not going to happen forever! Is this what products are addressing when they talk about “elasticity”? Are there any products you can recommend for mitigating this problem? (I’m 38 and had a good wrinkle-less run so I’m not too sad about it, but figure this is a good time to do some intervention.)

    • Anonymous :

      Well, they do recommend sleeping on your back to avoid this. I try, but often turn regardless. You can’t fight gravity.

      Ideally, you always use SPF and moisturizer on your neck and chest area. No magic creams, I’m afraid. Neck, chest and backs of hands often show aging first as we tend to neglect them….

  10. Thanks to everyone who chimed in with advice on how best to touch up my gray roots without resorting to full coloring. I went to Sephora and tried on a few things and ultimately bought the Madison Reed root touch up. It looks like dark brown eye shadow and blends the grays very well.

  11. New Yorker cartoons :

    I love New Yorker cartoons and would like to frame one in my office. But I’m having a hard time picking one! Does anyone have a favorite?

    • Banking atty :

      This is my favorite, but I’m a lawyer in a heavily-regulated industry.

      https://condenaststore.com/featured/these-new-regulations-will-fundamentally-change-peter-c-vey.html

    • Banking atty :

      And this is my favorite dog one, which is over my dog’s water bowl.

      https://condenaststore.com/featured/its-always-sit-peter-steiner.html

    • Anonymous :

      This is really something that you should find for yourself, don’t you think?

      I have one framed because when I saw it I loved it so much and instantly want to look at it often. And because it reflected a part of my life.

      Because, you do realize that everyone who enters your office will read it, remember you have it, and associate it with you in the future, right?

      • New Yorker cartoons :

        Sure, but I also had this conversation briefly with my sister and we had so much fun suggesting our favorites that I thought it might be a fun thread for others. :)

    • I have always loved this one, but it depends on your history and views . . .

      https://condenaststore.com/featured/madeleine-albright-kicked-butt-in-that-suit-peter-steiner.html

      This is my worldview:

      https://condenaststore.com/featured/new-yorker-january-8th-1990-leo-cullum.html

      I cannot find my other favorite, but it involves a older man telling a younger woman something along the lines of “You went to law school and now you want to practice law. I think that’s cute.”

      New Yorker cartoons on the wall is an excellent idea for office art.

    • I am partial to the one where the kid is holding a trophy, the dad looks disappointed, and the mom says to the dad, “So he got a trophy for good sportsmanship–that doesn’t mean he won’t go to law school.”

      I also really like the one where the husband and wife are in the middle of a DIY home renovation and the wife says to someone on the phone, “We’re down to bare brick, natural wood, and raw nerves.” While we were fixing up our house, my husband cut it out of the magazine and framed it for me.

  12. DC Coworking space :

    Can anyone recommend a reasonably priced shared office /coworking space in upper northwest DC or Chevy Chase/Bethesda? DH is looking for a space that he could rent on a weekly basis. Any suggestions?

  13. Rant: when you leave a company you really like to go to grad school, everyone wishes you well and encourages you to come back, you apply to a job there in a different department where you have several contacts, make it through the onerous online application and not one but two phone interviews, and then get rejected before the final interview via HR form letter. Feels great.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      Hugs… that sucks.

    • It never feels great to make it to the final round of interviews and not get selected, but they were under no obligation to choose you over another candidate who they felt was a better fit just because they wished you well and encouraged you to come back.

      • Elegant Giraffe :

        Sure but a former employee who left on good terms probably should have gotten more than a form letter rejection. Or at least I can understand how that would feel really crappy.

      • I don’t think OP said anything about the company having an obligation to hire her, just that it didn’t feel great getting rejected. It wouldn’t feel great. Hugs to OP.

      • OP here. Obviously I don’t feel that they’re obligated to hire me, but it seems fake af to go on and on about how they want me to come back, how I’m a top employee, etc. and then not even bother to personalize the rejection email. If you want to be corporate, be corporate, but don’t be so fake about it, you know?

        • Another anon :

          I am not saying you aren’t justified in being upset. HR departments are notoriously awful, so I would try to separate what your former coworkers said vs HR’s actions. But yea, people/corporations put on a good face but are fake sometimes.

        • Eh, I know it sucks, but the people who sincerely hoped you would return probably had zero to do with the rejection email. That’s handled by HR/the hiring department, not the well wishers in your old department. Doesn’t make it fake.

  14. Anonymous :

    For mother’s day, my mother-in-law very nicely got me a gift certificate to a local massage/spa. I’m torn between getting a facial or a pre-natal massage (I am 6 months pregnant). Which would you pick? I guess I’m eh on both options. I got a pre-natal massage for my first kid and it was okay, not amazing. Re facial, sounds nice in concept but then I read online articles about how facials are kind of a rip off and don’t do anything that’s really scientifically sound (might even irritate the skin). I’m overthinking this – it’s a nice problem to have! Which would you pick?

    • Pre-natal massage – some people are better than others. Also, is there a pool? We went to a spa when I was 8 months pregnant mostly so I could loll around in the pool like a manatee.

    • Why do they call it prenatal massage? Why not maternity massage (they are massaging you, yes, not the fetus?)?

      • Prenatal means “before birth, during or related to pregnancy” — how is this not an appropriate use of that term? Prenatal doesn’t mean fetus.

        • When the fetus may be diagnosed with things, it’s a “prenatal diagnosis,” meaning that the baby is diagnosed before it is born.

          “Prenatal vitamins” are murky — I guess they are for the baby, too. But I took them before getting pregnant, so they are really “women who think they might become pregnant” vitamins. They are just vitamins with more iron and folic acid and less vitamin A.

      • Hello fellow word-nerd! Just looked this up, prompted by your comment. ‘Natal’ is from the Latin word meaning born, natalis. ‘Maternity’ is from the Latin word meaning mother, ‘mater’. Thus, pre-natal would most literally mean before-birth while maternity can refer to motherhood more generally (not just the expectant kind). Actually, the name of the shop ‘Destination Maternity’ makes a lot more sense to me now.

        • But the “birth” is that of the fetus. The mother has already been born. So “pre-natal” refers to the fetus, who is not getting a massage. Think of pre-natal yoga. When I was pregnant, I thought that the baby might have been flipping around and doing yoga. But the pre-natal classes were for me, the gestating parent, so why not call it maternity yoga (although once a parent (a “mater”), always a parent. I guess “gestational yoga” or “second / third trimester yoga” would have been better. I call it my post-partum tummy, even though it has been post-partum for several years now :)

          • I agree with you that ‘gestational massage’ or something similar makes the most sense. I didn’t notice at when I first read the definition, but you’re right. ‘Natal’ refers to ones own birth, not any birth. If the latter I think pre-natal would make sense but since it’s the former I agree it does not.

          • Funny — it is “gestational diabetes;” nothing else seems to get this right.

          • Lana Del Raygun :

            It’s something for the mother, prior to the birth of her child. I don’t see how that’s really different from saying “during pregnancy.”

          • Yeah…but that mother is pretty involved in the birth of the baby. So, maybe the mother is already born, but she’s about to be intimately involved with someone else being born. And is getting a massage while carrying a fetus that is not yet born.

            It’s pre natal massage, not fetal massage. pre-natal describes the time frame compared to the fetus, but I think there’s an argument for it not being specific as to the fetus or mother – since both are involved in the birth.

          • “Pre-nativity massage”?

            But that means up to December 24th to some people?

        • Lana Del Raygun :

          Right, and it’s supposed to focus on massaging away the discomforts of pregnancy (and massaging in a way that’s safe for the baby).

      • I spit out my water at this hahaha

    • Massage

    • I’d get a massage, but ask them to focus on my legs and feet.

      • +1. A lot of the products that they may normally use in a facial you may not be able to while pregnant. And honestly most of the stuff I use on my face is a result of LOTS of trial and error and deep deep research into reddit/caroline hirons/good beauty bloggers. I won’t let some random person at like a Massage Envy spa put new products on me. If we’re talking about a VERY well renowned spa and you’re into skin care? Sure! Otherwise leg/shoulder/scalp massage all the way.

      • Most massage places won’t massage a pregnant woman’s feet due to the risk of inducing labor. Which is why I hated prenatal massages.

        • This! But if you are full term they will do it, so you could go once you’re 39 weeks.

        • My lovely midwives wrote a note so they gave me a reflexology add -on. You might check with your midwife/obgyn.

    • I’d do the massage, maybe save it until you’re 8 months and swollen and uncomfortable.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      I would read the reviews for the prenatal massages before committing. I got a ton of massages while pregnant. A lot were meh, but then I found ~*Dana*~ who was so magically gifted. She just had incredible instincts and made me feel wonderful (and also there was some sort of body/soul stuff that was lowkey amazing). The non-amazing ones were like, fine, maybe a waste of time? The good ones were SO worth it.

      Thought: what about saving the certificate for a month postpartum?

    • Did your first prenatal massage take place with you laying on your side, or did they have one of those pillows with cutouts for your stomach and bosoms that would let you lay on your stomach? I just had one of the pillow ones on Sunday and it was amazing – I’m almost 34 weeks with twins and it’s been ages since I laid on my stomach. My prenatal massage in my first pregnancy was one of the side ones, and I was with you in that it was just fine. I’d still choose a massage over a facial (I also had a facial Sunday) but I’d more enthusiastically pick the pillow one.

    • Massage! Totally depends on the massage therapist. I had an ok one (not bad) and an AMAZING one. The amazing one eliminated the sciatica I had for the rest of my pregnancy and magically any of my remaining morning sickness dissipated. The woman had like 25 years of career experience though and she stretched all these odd parts of my body in addition to the massage.

  15. Anon First Year :

    I’m a first year in DC biglaw assigned to a…quirky practice group with a bit of drama going on and I need career advice. I don’t have a mentor relationship with anyone at the firm (I think due to some of the office dynamic quirks) and I don’t have anyone in my personal life that I can consult. I have wonderful peers that have given insight but I would really like the perspective of someone who has been in biglaw for at least a few years and knows what’s normal v. what’s not. Is the career services office at my law school an option? Are there consulting services that offer non-biased career advice? I reached out to a recruiter and they recommend that I move ASAP, but I think their advice might be in their interest to place me somewhere.

    • FWIW, as a first year, you cannot fix any drama. Better to move. Just be careful to land somewhere good (so: diligence, diligence, diligence) b/c you won’t be able to jump again for a while.

      • Anon First Year :

        How do you recommend vetting other firms? I know first years in other groups at the potential firm, but I know from my experience here that people outside of a particular group don’t always see the crazy. I also see from interviews my group conducts that attorneys will lie if asked questions that would alert an interviewee to the dysfunction. So how do I get a real read on a firm? I’m afraid that I will end up in another place like this without the ability to move for a few years. I’ve stalked vault/tls/chambers but I’m not sure how accurate that is.

        • You keep working until you get to know people in other firms. Network among young lawyers groups and practice-specific groups. Get to know the partners you might be interested in working with.

          But even then it’s not 100%. I moved to a firm where a friend worked as an associate and I got along well with the junior partner. Partner left shortly after I started (didn’t take anyone with him) and the associate threw me under the bus as soon as hours got low. After that I moved to a firm where I knew no one and had never even worked opposite the firm. I love it and everything’s been great for the past 3 years. It’s a craps shoot, you just do the best you can.

        • You’ve got to use your network to dig a little within the specific group (they can ask their peers in the group; all you really need is a gut-check from someone).

          We have one that is psycho. And if anyone decent were to ask me, I’d be candid that it’s not a good move for anyone not on the breadlines. But candid people won’t be in the interview lineup. You have to find those people.

          Good candor: they will work you hard but they don’t scream and throw things; typical biglaw
          Useful candor: they surprise you with late unbillable work, work you on weekends on speeches for the partners, call you stupid, yell at you, give you bad reviews, etc.
          Also useful: they have work, but only 1500 hours a year or so and have to let someone go for failure to advance every couple of years and then start over (but the least likely).

          You need to know you’ve ruled out scenario 2 before you jump.

    • A couple of options, and I agree with you that it would be good for you to have more perspective before you jump too quickly:
      (1) Reach out to alumni services at your law school, as opposed to career services. They may be able to connect you to an alumna of your law school who is in biglaw, who can talk to you.
      (2) Do you have friends at other law firms? Maybe you can ask one of them to connect them with their mentor.
      (3) Do you have any peers who aren’t in your practice group who you can talk to? That can be helpful to see if it’s just your practice group, or if it’s the firm. If it’s just the practice group, any chance that you can switch to a different practice area?

      • Anon First Year :

        So I’ve unfortunately gotten on the firm management’s radar after one particularly bad incident where a midlevel berated me in front of others for (…honestly I am still not sure why). There’s one partner who is over the retirement age and is working less than part-time now that has started giving me a lot of work. He is a wonderful teacher and I would happily work for him on anything, but I know that they are forcing him to retire this year. He also seems to want me to float across practice groups instead of being reassigned to another. I think floating is more difficult but I can deal with it. My main issue though is that I see it as a half-fix–I still have to work with my group whenever projects come up, and that’s just leads to juggling an extra full plate with difficult personalities. Also, in a few years when lateraling is easier, I’d have less expertise to join a more specific group.

        Does anyone have any insight? Am I overthinking a life vest from the firm? Or are these valid concerns?

        • Sadly, I think you should do the best you can there but start looking for another job. It’s hard to recover from an incident like this, and it doesn’t sound like you’ll have partners who will go to bat for you.

    • Why do you think you see so many questions on this board?

    • Anon baby atty :

      My only advice to you is that it’s incredibly hard to lateral until the Dec-Feb after your first full year. So you have to stick it out. Otherwise people think it’s you and not the firm. So develop coping strategies, etc. I was dealing with a partner who was sexually harassing others and taking his frustration out on me (anger-wise), which included throwing things and screaming at me re clients I had never touched. I also was in a satellite office where we had full workloads but were expected to drop everything to help the Mother Ship, although the Mother Ship never helped us. It was awful–lots of all nighters and working my tail off and I knew it was not normal because I had been a biglaw paralegal in the same practice area for several years prior to law school. But I got literally no traction whatsoever until I was about 16 months in and it was lateral season.

      Do your best to go to coffee with alums in your city, go to networking events (bar assn, alumni events, client events in the same space). You will start to see the same players at things and hear whispers about firms. You can never fully regulate the crazy out of biglaw, but certain firms (and offices) tolerate things, and certain ones do not. Lots of hugs–I know this is not easy and 16 months sounds like a long time.

      FWIW, I landed at another well-regarded firm in my city, and the group of partners I am working with have a great book and are humane and simply THE NICEST. I feel like karma’s a b_tch, but I had to go through hell to find heaven, if that makes any sense. The lateral process was long and I picked a place that had good fit.

      • + 1 million to this:

        Do your best to go to coffee with alums in your city, go to networking events (bar assn, alumni events, client events in the same space). You will start to see the same players at things and hear whispers about firms. You can never fully regulate the crazy out of biglaw, but certain firms (and offices) tolerate things, and certain ones do not. Lots of hugs–I know this is not easy and 16 months sounds like a long time.

    • This may be a weird thing, but I’m in my first job in DC as well (coming up on a year.) Not law, but legal adjacent consulting, with lots of issues coming from a small office. If you’d be interested in getting coffee or something I can set up a throwaway gmail to coordinate! (or we can just be whine-about-our-work penpals lol.)

    • I would reach out to professors at your old law school who might know practicing big law attorneys who can give you advice. I would also check local bar associations for formal mentorship programs if that’s what you’re looking for.

  16. KateMiddletown :

    Re: the Amazon link – it looks like there are two different dresses (based on colors) in the same listing. Some of the reviews are for 1, some may be for another. Any opinions on purchasing these kinds of cheap, presumably made in China dresses?

    • Don’t.

      They’re probably not worth the price and even if the quality is okay, I’m sure it doesn’t pan out ethically.

      • Well, pan out ethically compared to what? I don’t think retailers treat their workers better in proportion to the price they charge for their clothes.

        • (Unless you are comparing to a more modern company like Everlane, I guess–I’m thinking of the typical Nordstrom/shopping mall brands that are often featured here.)

  17. Shopping help needed! I’m looking for a simple green short-sleeved top that is work appropriate. I need something in the kelly green family, so a brighter green. Everything I’m finding is either too boho or cold shoulder or has tassels or something else very casual. I’d even do a sleeveless shell with a blazer over it if I have to. Only complicating factor is that I have huge b00bs so I’d prefer that it has some kind of fit to it, so I don’t look pregnant.

    My work is doing a “fun volunteer event” this summer and we’re supposed to wear our company colors, but in business casual. I’m the only woman executive going, and all the other guys seem to have pounced on green Hilfiger polo shirts with khakis. I was envisioning capri pants but need a cute top.

    Any help appreciated! Thanks!

    • Have you tried looking at ShopStyle? At least there you can cover a whole bunch of stores in one search.

    • https://www.talbots.com/online/scallop-neck-elbow-sleeve-tee-prdi43982/N-0?Ntt=scallop+tee&selectedConcept=&akamai-feo=off
      I just got this in a XS (I’m 5’5 and about 140lbs) and its really cute and bright in person.

      Boden also has a bunch – breton’s and regular tops:
      http://www.bodenusa.com/en-us/clearance/womens-tops-t-shirts/short-sleeved-tops/wo148-grn/womens-meadow-green_ivory-short-sleeve-breton
      http://www.bodenusa.com/en-us/womens-tops-t-shirts/short-sleeved-tops/w0093-grn/womens-sap-green-carey-top

    • Never too many shoes... :

      Someone recommended this for St. Paddy’s and I think it is really cute and kind of perfect for what you suggest…
      https://shop.nordstrom.com/s/pleione-gathered-waist-side-tie-top/4904006?origin=category-personalizedsort&fashioncolor=KELLY%20GREEN%20WITH%20BLACK%20TIE

    • Honestly, I would just match the outfit of the men. Green polo (Land’s End has unbranded polos in every possible color including Kelly green) and some khaki capri pants or ankle pants.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      I’d do something like this? https://www.target.com/p/women-s-short-sleeve-vintage-v-neck-t-shirt-a-new-day-153/-/A-52512755?

    • Not sure how hot summers are, but here’s a cute one with some shaping at the waist:
      https://shop.nordstrom.com/s/halogen-gathered-waist-tie-top-tunic-regular-petite/4932353?origin=category-personalizedsort&fashioncolor=EMERALD

      If it doesn’t have to be solid, and a “fancy” tee-shirt is ok (which might be if guys are in polos?):
      https://www.talbots.com/online/tees-and-knits/green/pima-cascade-crewneck-tee-hartswell-stripe-prdi46047/N-10537+4294966769?selectedConcept=&akamai-feo=off

    • This looks pretty.

      https://shop.nordstrom.com/s/cece-flutter-sleeve-blouse/4906753?origin=keywordsearch-personalizedsort&fashioncolor=LUSH%20GREEN

    • Nerfmobile :

      Modcloth is great for colors.

      https://www.modcloth.com/shop/tops/miami-moments-sleeveless-top-in-dotted-green/158769.html

      https://www.modcloth.com/shop/tops/pam-breeze-ly-long-sleeve-tunic-in-green/32647.html

    • Thanks all! I’m a little embarrased I couldn’t find all these options on my own. It gets fairly hot here, so I’m ordering the Pleione Gathered Waist one at Nordstrom suggest by Never Too Many Shoes. Thanks!!

    • Can you get by with a green scarf and be done with it? I usually go this route when the colour isn’t something I would normally wear. That way you can reuse it for future events and still stay current.

    • SF in House :

      how about this one? https://www.cosstores.com/en_usd/women/tops/product.a-line-top-with-collapsing-neck-grass-green.0604116002.html

  18. I have the Amazon dress. Though lovely it is extremely figure hugging. Great for date night and curvy not for work.

  19. The skin on my face gets itchy with red patches, not bumps, but just irritated spots, when my environmental allergies are bad. I take Zyrtec, but sometimes (read, right now) its not enough. My eyes also get itchy and watery.

    For my skin, I use a gentle facial moisturizer and can’t put on makeup, as that only makes it worse. Any tips to deal with this? I feel very self-conscious at work.

    • Have you tried a different anti-histamine? I don’t find Zyrtec especially effective. Allegra works better for me.

      • I’ll try it! Regular Allegra or Allegra-D?

        • Regular Allegra. You should not use anything “-D” for more than 3 days at a time, since the “-D” stands for “decongestant.” If you use decongestants on a regular basis, you get nasty rebound congestion.

        • Regular. I only take Allegra D if so congested I can’t breathe. If my issue is itchy eyes, I don’t need the decongestant.

        • More specifically – the “D” is the same drug as in Sudafed (pseudoephedrine), which is why you have to buy it behind the counter.

          So, if you need that action, you can actually buy that drug separately and take as needed, instead of daily with your allergy med.

    • I have terrible allergies, I take 24-hour Zyrtec year round, and my doctor advised me to take two 24-hour pills per day but mix up which kind. I take Zyrtec in the morning and Allegra in the evening.

      The red patches might be eczema. If doubling up on allergy meds doesn’t clear it up, you should probably see a derm.

    • For your eyes, have you tried an antihistamine eye drop? My eyes sometimes get irritated if I touch my dog and then forget to wash my hands before rubbing my eyes or something. I think the kind I use is Zaditor and it helps.

    • The skin bit sounds like psoriasis or eczema or possibly even seborrheic dermatitis. Which is worth talking to a dermatologist about because topical steroids like cortisone won’t work for the last and even if they work, they can lead to skin thinning.

      For the eye thing, ketotifen/zaditor (over the counter) is an eye antihistamine and works wonders.

  20. Hi hive. Everyone always has great recommendations for travel here. My SO and I are planning a beach vacation over New Year’s/in early January. We’ve been leaning towards Mexico, and would like to do something with a mix of relaxing on the beach (for me) and activities (golf, hiking, etc., for him). We’d like to keep this to a more reasonably-priced vacation, if possible, and would love for it to be all-inclusive. Any tips? Favorite places?

    • lawsuited :

      I’d recommend the Mayan Riviera. We spent a couple of days visiting ruins and a cenote which was wonderful (can’t speak to golf), and logged plenty of chilled out beach time at the Bahia Principe resort we stayed at.

  21. anon for this :

    How do you know if you’re depressed or if life just isn’t that great, even when it’s good?

    I wake up in the morning and I don’t want to get out of bed. Going through my morning routine feels like drudgery. I just think, here we go again, another hour spent on commuting and an hour to shower and an hour at the gym, and then I work 8-10 hours and go home and feel overwhelmed by my place (and I’m single and live alone so it’s not like it’s that hard to maintain) and spend like 30 min doing something I actually enjoy like reading, and go to bed and do it all over again.

    Objectively, my life looks good. But I find myself overwhelmed by just getting through the day. Stupid little things make me crazy (I need to donate this pile of clothes. I can’t keep up with laundry and cleaning. The flats I bought specifically for commuting cut my feet). I work out regularly and eat healthy foods and I’m already in therapy.

    I’m dating, but dates feel pointless because either there’s no connection or the guy is nice but there isn’t mutual attraction, and that just adds to the feelings of sadness and numbness. Like, here I go again on another date that will likely lead to nothing!

    Is this just it? Maybe I expected life to be happier and more fulfilling than it is. even though I don’t feel like getting out of bed, I do. I’m not like, missing work or anything. I show up to stuff. But I feel a deep pit of sadness in my stomach almost all the time.

    And then I think, the world is a disaster and even though you’re lucky enough not to be starving or live in a war zone, tons of people are, so who are you to be upset with your stupid little problems? And then I feel worse because I have it pretty good and I’m STILL not happy?

    What’s wrong with me?

    • If you no longer enjoy things you used to, and everything around you seems sad/terrible/dark, you are likely at least mildly depressed. Talk to your therapist about what else you can do to make life feel like less of a slog.

      • Rainbow Hair :

        Yeah, I agree. I think you can feel better! You should! Tell your therapist about this. Ask “does this sound like depression?”

    • This describes my life to a tee. I constantly wonder if this is it.

    • I could’ve written this a year ago. I stopped dating and my life improved vastly. I didn’t realize how draining it was. I told myself it would be “fun” to go out a couple times a week. But it wasn’t fun, it was soul sucking.

      With all the time I liberated from dating, I was able to invest in other things that actually make me happy. I spend more time with friends. I’ve made more friends. I initiate frienddates more often because I’m not so tapped out from initiating date-dates. I throw parties. I take workout classes that interest me – I love the change of scenery in trying different studios, sometimes spontaneously. Now that the weather’s nice I run outside instead of in the gym. And yeah I still sit around reading books and cuddling my cat. I wouldn’t say I’m happy all the time, but I don’t feel that pit in my stomach anymore. Most days.

      I also got real comfortable going on solo vacations. It’s critical to me to have a vacation to look forward to so I take one about every 6 months. When I come back, I’m riding the high for like 2 months, and then I start getting excited for the next one.

      Oh and hire a cleaning person if you haven’t already.

      • Thank you for this comment. You sound a lot like me. I always poured so much energy into friendships, and I’m grateful to have them, but now that I’m older I wonder if I spent too much time on those friendships because people disappear into relationships and kids and I’m like, should I have been putting all that energy into dating all along?

        It is truly draining to have 1-2 nights a week taken up with dates. Even if it’s just a drink or a coffee date, there’s the emotional labor of planning it. Picking a place. Picking an outfit. Missing a workout or a laundry or cooking night to go on it. I wonder if that’s part of the problem.

        But when I don’t date, even though I feel happy because I’m pouring energy into things that actually give back, I still feel such a pang of sadness when I see happy couples, or when my friend who randomly decides to try OKC meets her soulmate on the second try, and I kick myself for giving up…

        Vacations are another problem. I used to have a solid group of friends to travel with. Now everyone is older and prioritizes family travel and it’s become clear without them ever explicitly saying it that we will never travel together again, and I’m just like.. now what? Maybe I need to get into the solo travel thing because the thought of a life without travel makes me really depressed.

        I don’t know if that’s the whole problem, but you’ve helped me identify some of the problems. I will bring this up in therapy this week. Thank you.

        • I so sympathize with you when it comes to friends disappearing into their relationships/families/kids. It really sucks.

          I do have 2 really good single friends and I spend most of my time with them. Do you have other friends you can lean on?

          • i’m joining in to this thread to say (1) i often feel exactly this same way and (2) there are too many of us not to think about the idea of a Corporette Single Gals Travel Club. i have a feeling i could have *at least* as much fun with some of the ladies on this board than i would with some of my friends.

      • Another anon :

        +1 I stopped dating and my close friends have retreated into their relationships/families/kids. I had a hormone-fueled cryfest about it last week. I felt alone AF, even though I really like my life, I like that I can mostly do what I want with my time, have freedom, etc., but that doesn’t mean it still doesn’t suck sometimes. I have accepted that sometimes I will feel sucky and sometimes I won’t. BUT I also have been on an anti-depressant for almost two decades and will have to be for life (NOT saying this is what you need, at all) and therapy, so I know that the short bouts will come and go occasionally and I can get through them on my own.

        Seconding the solo vacations. I LOVE them.

    • Lana Del Raygun :

      IMO “am I for realsies depressed?” isn’t necessarily a helpful question. You’re clearly unhappy and not coping well; you could probably be happier and cope better but you need more time to make progress in therapy, or more sleep, or a sun lamp, or more intentional cleaning habits, or a cleaning service, or whatever. Please don’t beat yourself up over whether you deserve to feel as sad as you do! That’s not how sadness works, and you don’t need that extra burden.

      How long have you been in therapy? You might need a different therapist and/or a different approach, if you’ve been going for a long time and it’s not helping. This (especially “I find myself overwhelmed by just getting through the day. Stupid little things make me crazy”) sounds to me like the kind of issues CBT would be good for.

      Also, you sound lonely to me. Do you have friends to hang out with? Are you close with your family? Do you have old friends you could reconnect with? If you have time (it sounds like you may not), could you volunteer somewhere, which might help with friends and your overall sense of meaninglessness.

      I hope some of this helps!

    • Another anon :

      There is nothing wrong with you. You are not broken.

      It does sound like you are probably a little depressed. What has your therapist recommended? I would speak to him/her in more depth about how you are feeling and work on making small changes and/or other strategies.

      How active are you on social media? If you are active, I would take a break from all of it. I find that social media leads us to believe that our lives should be OMG SO HAPPY ALL THE TIME and if they aren’t, then we are doing something wrong or aren’t doing enough. That’s simply not true. People should not be happy all the time. People should feel a range of emotions, that’s healthy! I prefer to strive for content a good bit of the time, with times where I am sad and times when I am happy, and all of the other emotions in between.

      Social media also breeds that OMG the world is a disaster and so many people have it worse than me so why do I still feel [fill in emotion here]. There are always going to be people worse off than me and there will always be people who are better off than me. However, none of that has anything to do with ME. I can be content in my life and still recognize that there are terrible things happening in the world. I can choose to work to effect change for causes I care about or not! I can’t solve every problem and no one is expecting me too.

      I don’t hug, but know that you are not alone in having these feelings and that it can be better. I can’t promise it always will be and that you won’t feel these feelings ever again, but you can learn to work with your emotions and feelings to reduce them (IMO – I am not a doctor or therapist).

    • Anhedonia== loss of interest in pleasant activities == the sort of depression which is easily treatable.
      Your statement that “I don’t want to get out of bed” is a good indication that you should seek treatment.

      • Anonymous :

        I thought that SSRIs (many doctors’ first choice treatment for mental health complaints) were a risk factor for anhedonia, so that it was often one of the more persistent symptoms of depression (though I can imagine Wellbutrin helping more).

        For me, talk therapy was the most helpful, since it turned out that I hadn’t exactly lost interest in pleasant activities; I just disliked the activities that my social group enjoyed, and I needed to stop telling myself to go along to get along. Maybe this is akin to the “ease up on dating” advice.

    • I’m sorry for what you are going through. It’s great you are in therapy, but have you tried opening up to a friend or family member about how you are feeling? I think our hearts close down when we are lonely and keep our hurt to ourselves. Try to reach out beyond Internet strangers. Even if you cry or feel lame or vulnerable – try to have an honest conversation. I think the healing starts when you feel understood by people who love you and know you. Good luck. I sincerely wish you well.

      I read a book once you might find helpful called “The Half-Empty Heart” by Alan Downs, and it’s all about chronic discontent and low-grade depression. A lot of it stems from withdrawal and putting a wall up in order to avoid feeling shame about what you are going through.

    • Like others mentioned you may want to look into alternative therapy treatments. I think it helps to view situations in your life from different perspectives and figure out different ways to cope with the struggles you have.

      I probably could have written this exact post two years ago. What worked for me was signing up for stuff – that is, committing to things and going to them, whether that’s a gym class, or setting up coffee with a friend, or joining an organization, or volunteering, or buying tickets to a concert or show, etc. I feel like it feels less like repeating the same day over and over again when you have things to look forward to. I also started making lists of goals – professional goals, life goals, travel goals, food goals (places i want to eat, things i want to eat, and things i want to cook), etc.

      As for the cleaning, I think it helps to ignore all of the cleaning that needs to be done, and scheduling a time in your calendar every week to get all the cleaning done so when you see the laundry that needs to be done you’re not worried about it because you know you’ll get to it Sunday afternoon, etc.

  22. I recently started tracking my sleep with the fitbit app. I’m surprised by how much I’m apparently waking up in the middle of the night. I knew I tossed and turned but I never would’ve guessed that I’m losing an hour a night. Has anyone corrected this? Fwiw I’ve started to do a lot of pre-bedtime relaxation and I take melatonin. It helps me fall asleep faster but it doesn’t help with the middle of the night sleep loss.

    • Eh, I think these sleep trackers can vary in accuracy so I view my results with a grain of salt. As I’ve gotten older, I know that I tend to wake up around 3 am and have a hard time getting back to sleep. This can be exacerbated by evening wine or being stressed about work/life. When I do a better job of controlling those factors, the middle of the night wakings decrease.If you know you sleep is restless, perhaps keep a sleep journal and track your bedtimes and sleep hygiene efforts and that sort of thing. Then add in the Fitbit information as another data point and see if you detect any patterns or improvement.

    • The FitBit tracker is an interesting data point, but I don’t think it’s a gold standard. And it’s changed over time to become more sensitive and apparently tell you the deep/light/REM sleep, which I only partly think it can. The original sleep tracker basically just came on at night when there was stillness. I would regularly clock in at over 8 hours. On the new tracker it often tells me I’m getting 6.5 or so (same bedtime and wake time). While it does accurately track when I get up to pee or to take the dog out or something, I’m not sure I’m suddenly actually getting 1.5 hours less a night. I’d take it with a grain of salt.

    • Elegant Giraffe :

      I used a FitBit sleep tracker for several months and was horrified by how restless I apparently was. I had always considered myself a pretty good sleeper and am very rarely tired during the day, and I already had good habits – screen away before bedtime, cool temp in bedroom, etc. I couldn’t figure out how to stop the restlessness the FitBit was showing me, and it drove me nuts. So my solution was that I stopped wearing the sleep tracker. I’m back to believing that I’m a good sleeper and I feel just as rested as I did before.

    • Do you feel rested? I would focus on that rather than a sleep tracker telling you a specific amount of time it thinks you’re losing. I’m really not convinced those things are accurate.

    • Anonymous :

      I use my fitbit sleep tracker to check how frequently my kids are up in the night, because I don’t remember day-to-day. I don’t think it’s accurate for movement while I’m asleep. Also, sometimes it thinks I’ve gone back to sleep when I take it off to shower (false) and sometimes it thinks I’m still sleeping when I’m lounging in bed on the weekends (false). (Ed. note: this “lounging in bed on the weekends” happens like once/month when husband gets up with the kids.)

    • When i was tracking my sleep I noticed this too. I realized that it was because I couldn’t breathe properly at night so I couldn’t get into REM sleep at all. I now use Breathe Right nasal strips and have never looked back. It is life changing for my congested nose! Sometimes I also need to run a humidifier, particularly in the winter.

  23. For those of you that attend (or plan) nonprofit fundraisers, what is the best entertainment you have seen at one?

    My organization is striking out on our top picks and we are getting short on time. Budget is under $5k.

    • Pen and Pencil :

      What sort of non-proft is it and what sort of event is it? There are a lot of great things I have seen (i.e. cat circus) that are not appropriate for a lot of non-profits but were perfect for the event. The one that most people seem to like at my current institution are live art auctions (or silent, we do a lot of those too) with dancing afterward, but we are an art institution.

      • We are an artifact-based museum but lean into the children’s museum territory. We aim to have fun and different and need to really capture the audience because we don’t do a sitdown dinner.

        The event is definitely non-traditional but we struggle to find something in the middle ground that isn’t either too staid or too whacky.

        • A local museum had a family-friendly food truck event that was very popular. Zero cost to the museum for the food trucks. Put some law games outside and have the museum open to visitors.

          They also had a wine and beer tasting on site hosted by a local liquor store. The tasting area also had a cash bar.

    • Actual Broadway performers doing actual numbers from Broadway musicals. But I work for a nonprofit theatre and they donate their time.

    • Rainbow Hair :

      People love photobooths, in my experience.

    • I have seen circus performers from youngish, hipster steampunk local circus scene.
      I’m in Atlanta and had no idea we had a circus scene.
      It was weird, but certainly different.

    • Horse Crazy :

      We’ve done a murder mystery dinner theater for the last couple of years, and it’s been a big hit. We hire this company (not that you can use them unless you’re in the Bay Area, but just to give you an idea of what they do): http://www.gibsonhouse.com.

    • The worst was a comedy show that was totally tone-deaf of the audience. It was a children’s health non-profit and the comedian made child abuse jokes. Super awkward. If that wasn’t bad enough, he made a fairly innocent joke (that had to do with parenting gender roles) and a female major donor yelled from the audience “that’s sexist.” So of course, he proceeded to heckle her for the next ten minutes while other donors started filing out.

    • Anonymous :

      Could you do a night at the museum c0ctail party? Like exclusive access and have it late(er) than normal and maybe on a weekend?

  24. Getting in shape after 40 :

    Turning 40 next year and after about four years of intense fertility treatments, pregnancy, nursing, more fertility treatments, pregnancy again, and another year of nursing ahead of me, I’ve let myself get fairly out of shape. I’m not talking about weight gain. I’ve just gotten into a rut in terms of physical fitness. I was never a superstar, but I was pretty consistent from about 23-35 about working out 3x a week. I had a good year of exercise in between pregnancies but now that I’m nearing the end of my second pregnancy, I’m hoping to set some goals for after the baby is born (not immediately after per se, just “for the rest of my life” after!).

    Long story short — any inspirational stories about getting back into shape after 40? Again, not so much about weight as about physical fitness. Anyone become more active around that age and have success? Worried I’m just too old now to get into shape (even though I don’t think 40 is otherwise old).

    • Quite a bit down the road from you, but my mom started working out when she was around 60 and she’s 72 now. She started with a personal trainer twice a week then added pilates once a week after that. She saw a ton of improvement in her strength – for a while there she could lift more than me! – her endurance and her balance. It helped her joint issues some, though she still experiences pain in the mornings. Imo her mobility and stamina are better now than when she was 20 years younger. 40 is definitely not too old to see big improvements!

    • You are not too old! I guess I was about 38 when I started working out again when my son was 2.5. I’m now in fantastic shape at 41. I mean, I could loose 5-10 pounds and have saggy skin draped off my muscles but I am toned and really healthy. It gets easier as kids get older! there isn’t anything that happens overnight when you go from 39 to 40 – it’s just a marker.

    • See, supra, RBG and her workout. Her trainer has a book. RBG didn’t started working out like this until her two children were grown and she had had cancer.

    • I’m not quite 40 but I have gotten into strength training over the last year and am amazed by how much toner/leaner I look, even though I weigh the same. I just do workout videos at home after the kids go to bed (Fitness Blender, all free). 25 minutes each, 3 or 4 times a week. My arms look better now than when I didn’t have kids.

    • My history :

      I never considered exercising until my late 30’s. After relying on good genes, I noticed the Summer of my 37th year that my legs did not look like they once did and started a flurry of cycle classes and family walks. Then I took a break from about 40 years old til age 44 when I left part time work for full time work. Suddenly, I realized that I could one of two profiles – one who exercises or one who does not. It somehow felt like a permanent decision for the rest of my life. I suppose I realized that if I went back to work full time and did not exercise, I probably never would. I started with barre classes three times per week which is a great way to start since toning shows up quickly. Four years later, I mainly run now and go to a personal trainer once a week (down from six months of two sessions per week). My advice is to find a group or buddy or enroll in classes that involve a fee. The barre classes were paid per session so if I missed, the money was wasted. I’m not a physician but I run 4 miles at 5AM twice during the week simply bc these are the only people I could find who show up regularly and I tend to stick to commitments with others. Then I run with my family on Saturdays and Sundays which feels like another commitment. Decide who you are (one who exercises) and go do it! I’m a total couch potato in my heart, so if I can do it, anyone can. :) you’ve got this.

    • I started HIIT at age 41 and saw benefits within a few months. I also take yoga and a pretty challenging adult ballet class. It is fun, I look and feel better, and my husband says I seem less stressed and have better posture. Go for it!

    • Anecdata, but the fittest moms in most of my workout classes are those in their 40’s and 50’s, those with younger kids seem to have more trouble fitting in longer/more intense workouts. I think that was true for me, I was lighter when my son was younger (mostly because I simply didn’t have time to eat much due to all the running around) and my metabolism was definitely better 5 years ago, but I have more time now for dedicated workouts since he’s older/stays up later/has more drop off activities on the weekends.

    • Thanks for the inspiration! I needed some encouragement to get back into it!

  25. Heading to France tomorrow. Any last minute tips on current happenings, events, new things to do? Anything not to forget? Itinerary is Paris, Loire Valley, Burgundy (Beaune).

    And yes, travel umbrella, static spray, and blister pads all are acquired. Anything I am forgetting?

    • Assuming you’ll have at least one checked bag, I’d take a corkscrew and a small sharp knife. The knife comes in handy for picnics.

    • Just got back a week ago, and there is an amazing Klimt exhibit right now. It’s tough to describe, but more than 100 projectors are used to fill a gallery/warehouse space with images from Klimt’s work. It’s more than just projecting the images…it’s a visually stunning ‘movie’ where elements of the images move and dance. That description doesn’t do it justice, but take a look at the website:
      http://www.atelier-lumieres.com/en/gustav-klimt

      Ballet tickets are usually fairly inexpensive, if you’d be interested in seeing something at the Opera Garnier. We also went to the Museum of Decorative Arts, which is next to the Louvre. If you like period furniture and rooms, you might enjoy it. They were also featuring a fascinating exhibit about Martin Margiela and his work with Hermes.

      Plus — the classic tourist things are always good! No matter what you chose, you will have a wonderful time. No wrong way to do it! Have fun!

    • Years ago, I went to a great bike rental shop in Beaune near the train station called Detours in France. Definitely worth checking out and getting bikes for the day if it’s still there. The clerk (owner?) was phenomenal with his kindness and advice.

      • Thanks for these, especially the Beaune rec! We do have some free time and this may be a really good options, especially after all the oeufs meurette and Comte. The Klimt projections are on our list, but we will have to see how timing works out — this is a possible for late in the on Friday.

  26. Adding protein powder :

    What are the benefits to adding protein powder to smoothies, etc? I’m considering buying some. I’m looking to move away from eating as much meat and carbs and more vegetables and fruits. I’m hoping to lose some weight as well as eat healthier.

    • Pen and Pencil :

      TBH protein powder adds a lot of calories. If you are just looking to lose weight, I would count calories and just generally make healthier choices. The benefit of protein powder comes in when trying to put on muscle, but from what I have read, the vast majority of people get enough protein for this not to be an issue when putting on muscle. It can make you fuller for breakfast, but I feel there are healthier alternatives to protein powder like cottage cheese and eggs. I would just focus on getting in your veggies rather than adding supplements.

    • Lana Del Raygun :

      The benefit is that it adds protein without adding much of anything else, so it’s a good option if you’re trying to increase your protein intake relative to your other macros.

      It’s not necessarily healthier than anything else, and in my experience it doesn’t feel like eating as much food as it is. Drinking a protein shake mostly feels like drinking extra-thick juice, which I like for lifting because I know I need more protein but I don’t always feel that much hunger. But if you’re trying to lose weight it might make it harder to cut calories unless you’re pretty disciplined. If you want to eat protein and feel like you’ve gotten a meal, eat eggs (which are also relatively cheap!)

    • If you’re eating meat regularly, you don’t need it to lose weight. If you’re not eating meat, but you are getting a lot of plant-based protein, you still don’t. If you’re trying to bulk up muscle-wise, it can be helpful, particularly if you’re trying to bulk-up while not eating meat.

    • My experience is that protein powder is an easy way for me to up my protein intake without having to eat more meat, and that a higher level of protein intake helps with hunger/etc. (If you’re calorie counting, consider the grams of protein / calorie tradeoffs. Fat-free cottage cheese is ~160 calories to get 26g of protein; whey protein powder is ~120 calories for the same.)

    • JuniorMinion :

      Whey protein powder is about the most bioavailable protein you can get (next on that list are chicken, egg whites etc.) If your goal is to up your protein intake its a great source. Just be careful to pick a good one without much added sugar. I use cytosport whey (Costco’s version of muscle milk) and one scoop is 130 calories with 27g protein, 2g fat and 3g of carbs which is a fantastic bang for my buck. In my experience with smoothies the problems lie in choosing higher sugar fruits / adding in lots of nut butters etc than in incorporating protein powders.

      Additionally, if you are looking to loose weight, I disagree with the poster above in that eating higher protein will minimize muscle loss. What you don’t want to do is lose 10 lbs and have say 4-5 lbs of it be lean mass as you will have expended lots of effort to be 10 lbs smaller but the same body fat percentage. Eating 0.8g /lb of bodyweight of protein a day and strength training will help you as you go about your weight loss journey to protect the lean mass you have as best you can and have most of the weight you lose be fat.

      In summary I really like protein powders, without protein powder / greek yogurt / eggs I’d really have to eat 3 oz of lean meat 5 times a day in order to hit my protein goals which I just can’t with that level of chicken :)

    • I use it because I’m doing heavy endurance training right now and need it for muscle repair, and I rarely eat meat so I’m not getting it via other means. Not sure it does much if you get lean protein otherwise.

    • Anonymous :

      Late here – but UniCo nutrition is super campy but the best recipe/ingredients I’ve ever seen and the best taste.

  27. Leaving biglaw :

    For anyone who has left a big law firm after being told you wouldn’t make partner (especially as a more senior associate after being led to believe otherwise), what do you tell other firms about why you want to leave?

    • I blamed the firm – drop of in business means they aren’t able to make partners as they were in years past. It was true for my firm and I felt zero guilt saying it. Got multiple offers and people told me they appreciated my honesty. To me the whole “oh I just don’t want the lifestyle, want a different practice area” games that seniors play sound like blatant lies — doesn’t take 8 years to figure out it wasn’t for you.

      • Something like this is the best answer, in my experience. Say the firm wasn’t able to promote you because of x reason — whether that’s lack of business, too many senior associates, the way the firm is structured, etc. People get that. I’m at a small firm now, for what it’s worth.

    • Depends on the size firm you’re looking at. For smaller firms, I truthfully said that my current firm isn’t making servicing partners but it’s basically impossible to bring in business due to conflicts and our high rates. They get it. Heck most of them left large firms for the same reason.

  28. No suggestions, but have fun! France is amazing!

  29. Anyone else having issues with replying to comments? I’m on an iPhone and if I hit the reply button, it’s just refreshing the screen.

  30. I think I just fell for a scam! Is anyone familiar with ticketsales dot com? I wanted to buy Dave Chappelle/Jon Stewart tickets and it popped up.

    Feeling very stupid now!

  31. Ashes Help :

    My mother died 7 years ago, and my father (who is now remarried) is moving and finally going through and getting rid of the last of her things. He offered things to myself and my siblings. Among the things I had asked for was a vase – I asked him if it was just a vase, or whether it had her ashes (it was with a bunch of her funeral stuff) and he assured me it was just a vase. Well, I got it in the mail and it has some of her ashes in it. Do I need to tell my father or can I just scatter them?

    • Lana Del Raygun :

      I would tell him if I were you, and also your siblings. They might want to be there for the scattering, right? It seems weird to act unilaterally here.

      • Ashes Help :

        Forgot to mention – I live far, far away from my siblings and father; none would be able to attend if I invited them. I agree it’s weird, but I guess I don’t want to bring it up to him if he thought it was empty and was going to everything away that wasn’t claimed. If it makes a difference, we all were gifted a piece of jewelry with my mom’s ashes in them, so we all have “some”.

        This is sort of getting into awkward territory, but I suspect that this it not all of her ashes, or even the majority? It’s … I don’t know. Two cups? Jeez… I think it may be part of her ashes, not all of them. I feel really, really weird about it.

        • Lana Del Raygun :

          Ooh, that is weird. I’m so sorry! In that case I think you have a stronger reason for talking to your father/sibs, so they know your mother’s ashes aren’t all accounted for and can look out for them.

        • That might be all of her ashes. Ashes are really small.

          I would say something. If they don’t come, that’s on them, but you will be persona non grata if you scatter all of her ashes and don’t tell anyone.

        • Sorry, Ashes Help. I’m Velma from below. I was imagining a few tablespoons in the bottom of the vase. In my own family, it would be worse–MUCH worse–to upset my dad over details, etc. etc., if I could handle the issue respectfully on my own.

          But this could be a different scenario. Might be best to call in help from your siblings, if you have any–to get a second opinion.

          For what it’s worth, 2 cups is not all of the ashes, but could easily be maybe one-third? I still say it’s time to take a deep breath and enjoy some flowers in your mom’s memory. xx

        • Ashes Help :

          Final update: My family is not very emotionally connected, and we don’t discuss this kind of thing, which is why my initial reaction was simply to do it on my own peacefully. That said: I told my father I had found them and was going to scatter them; he was surprised but not upset (yay). He had scattered her ashes years ago with some of my other siblings (the ones who live around where he does) – at a lake, the ocean – and thought he got them all.

          It ends up that this is no big deal, except that I’m going to have to find a place that would be nice to scatter them. Thanks, all.

    • It’s so strange how losses reverberate across the years. My sympathies.

      I would just scatter the ashes–maybe somewhere nice around your house that you enjoyed with your mom. Then I would buy a large bouquet of your mom’s favorite flowers and enjoy them in the vase. I wouldn’t raise it with my dad at all, but then every family system is different.

  32. Pet peeve of the day: people who don’t hit clear on the microwave when they remove their lunch before the time is up. I sit there punching in the cook time wondering why nothing is happening. Oh, some jerk decided he was too busy to clear out his cook time when he was finished. Thanks.

    • This is an excellent pet peeve. I approve of your hatred.

    • Anonymous :

      I hate that too.

    • So this doesn’t bother me on a communal microwave, but it made me laugh a little because it’s how I know my assistant uses my microwave (I have a personal microwave and minifridge in my office) when I’m gone. I always clear it out. So my related pet peeve is my assistant using my fridge and microwave when I’m out of the office.

      (although I don’t want them to become communal, I wouldn’t tell her no if she occasionally asked to use it – it’s just the semi-regular, “secret” use that drives me crazy)

    • Didn’t know this was a thing.
      I usually wait until the timer is complete to take out my food but will try to be more cognizant of this in the future.

    • Yes! This fills me with rage!!!

    • Pretty Primadonna :

      My husband does this and it drives. Me. Nuts. He doesn’t get why it’s so annoying.

  33. This is me. I think one of those be primary reasons is online dating. It seems that you are meeting these dates online and then not having fun on dates because you have no chemistry. So it feels like you are working a second job that is soul sucking.

    I would cut back on online dating and sign up for classes depending on your interest. Maybe something creative like writing, or drawing, or maybe a social sports thing so you don’t have to do the gym in the morning.

    The one hour commute thing also seems like a killer if you spend your commute driving. I would consider moving closer to work for a better mood. Right now your morning sounds like 3-4 hours of repetitive behavior, which does not sound fun or relaxing.

    For me having some sort of creative side project really keeps me feeling alive. I also like to sign up for a new class every month or so. For example, this year I’ve gotten into rock climbing. And I’m planning to try improv classes next. After that, I’m planning to sign up for a martial arts class.

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