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Workwear sales of note for 5.26.23:
- Nordstrom – The Half-Yearly Sale just started! See our thoughts here.
- Amazon – Memorial Day Sales! Lots of discounts on Amazon Essentials and more.
- Ann Taylor – Extra 30% off lots of sale styles (prices as marked).
- Anthropologie – Extra 40% off sale.
- Banana Republic Factory – 50%-70% off everything + extra 25% off purchase (ends 5/31).
- Boden – Sale, up to 50% off.
- Brooks Brothers – Extra 25% off sale; already up to 70% off (ends 5/31) – also mix & match sale with men’s shirts, 4 for $249.
- Cole Haan – Up to 50% off sale styles (ends 5/31).
- Eloquii – 400+ styles starting at $19; up to 50% off everything.
- Express – Summer kickoff sale, 30-50% off everything (plus $35+ steals) (ends 6/1).
- H&M – Up to 60% off online and in-store.
- J.Crew – Up to 50% off “dressed up” styles (lots of cute dresses!).
- J.Crew Factory – 50% off everything, no exclusions.
- J.McLaughlin – The Sale Event, extra 30% off.
- Loft – 40% off full-price styles
- M.M.LaFleur – Short but sweet sale (ends 6/1).
- Madewell – Get 30% off your purchase.
- Ministry of Supply – 25% off sitewide (ends 6/1).
- Sephora – Up to 50% off select beauty.
- Shopbop – Up to 50% off designer sale!
- Sue Sartor – Lots of cute dresses on sale!
- Talbots – Extra 40% off all markdowns (ends 6/1)!
- Theory – Up to 60% off + an extra 20% off.
- Universal Standard – 25% off sitewide (ends 6/1).
Other noteworthy sales:
- CB2.com – Up to 50% off everything!
- Joss & Main – Up to 60% off, plus an extra 20% off with code.
- Tuft & Needle – Save up to $775 on mattresses. (Reader favorite bed brand; Kat really likes hers!)
- West Elm – Memorialy Day Sale, up to 60% off.
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I’m trying starting my own side business, which is separate but related to my full time gig. It will involve some of the same contacts. At some point I’d like to make this full time, but in this economy I’m not quite ready to take the plunge. However, I just got my first client (wahoo!) and am now trying to figure out a small but important dilemma; my signature line. I have a general email for the side project and am wondering can I get away with just using my first name then business name? These would be fairly casual emails. Should I use my middle name? middle and last? Middle and current or future last name (if I decided to change upon marriage). Suggestions welcome and appreciated!
I would use my first name, then my Initial, if I had one, then my last name. If you eventuaelly get MARRIED, then you can think if you have enough of a repuetation to KEEP your original name. If your man has an unusuesual name, like My Alan did, I would NOT switch. Make sense?
Now what about zappos? I bought shoes ON-LINE. Am I at risk, Kat?
It depends on whether or not you see yourself as chiefly corresponding with people you already know or if you’re trying to get new clients/business relationships.
I really think that for a business signature, the signature should be First name (Middle name/Initial) Last name.
Going with just first name seems overly friendly for businesses, to me.
Some women I work with do a signature like this:
First name in bigger font, script or non standard
(then all in smaller font)
Company name and contact info
To me their emails always look more personal but still professional. I’ve just been to lazy to set up my signature that way!
I agree. Sorry I should have clarified. First name and current last name is not an option at this point. I don’t particularly want my FT gig to know (though it doesn’t violate any rules) about side gig. A lot of the people I interact with will be the same and would recognize my first/last.
This seems odd to me. I would be hesitant to work with someone who had any reason not to link their full name to their business correspondence. People should know who they’re “interacting with.”
I would be upset if I had been dealing with someone and found out later that they were someone I already knew…if there is an issue with not wanting people to know your full name, I would think hard on the ethics of having the side business. Even if you are not contractually prohibited from it, you may still be crossing a line.
This sounds super shady, just fyi.
Agree with the others. I find this quite misleading, and if I were your client, for either business, I would not appreciate it.
I would continue to go by the same name you’ve been using. Worry about what to do after marriage when it happens–you’ll have a better sense of your client base and how open they are to change at that point.
I work with a lot of freelance vendors in my current position. I think the best signatures are 3 lines: first and last name, email (so it can be found by others in forwards) and phone, and ideally a company name or (if you’re not ready for that) profession.
End your correspondence with your first name or initials for casual emails but still leave the signature block.
Just seeing your clarification now of not wanting to use your actual name so others don’t see. If you’re not comfortable with others finding out what you’re doing, then I would seriously give pause to whether you should be doing it. The last thing you want is for your contacts to view you as someone who isn’t trustworthy. Trying to shield who you are in any way through first names or middle names, etc. will most certainly give this impression. Whether you see it or not, what you’re really asking isn’t about email signatures at all.
Thanks ladies. Clients know who I am, I just had concerns about vendors confusing FT projects and PT projects based on the same name. Sounds like coming up with an alternate signature will actually be more confusing/shady which isn’t what I’m going for at all!
I would consider using a company name for vendors in that case. Not sure of your structure but lets say you make your PT gig an LLC, all your orders can then be for L LLC and your signature can remain the same normal name, L LLC, contact info.
I have the opposite reaction to most abstract black & white patterns, this one included. For some reason, they usually tend to look really dated for me (although not as much so as black & red abstract prints, and the one featured is not as bad as some others I have seen). I also find this really unflattering on the model, which probably means that it will either a) look awesome on a “regular” person or b) will look really terrible… I can never tell.
I had the same reaction, AIMS. However, I’ve had really great luck with the fit/cut of BOSS Black, so I wonder whether this might be the rare (a) it will look awesome on a “regular” person instance. It looks like it might be too big for the model (which would not surprise me since this brand runs a little large in my experience).
Agree that it’s horrifically unflattering on the model, but I actually quite like the pattern and think it would look fine on a regular-sized person. However, I cannot see spending $159.90 on a shell. Just does not compute for me.
heh I wore a black and red abstract print top yesterday because I was running late, I love the fit of the top, and I convinced myself that it made the print not so bad. One of the assistants told me that I looked like I walked out of “Dress Barn in the 1990s.” I hid in my office in shame.
I still can’t part with my top.
how rude of her to say so though- jeez
It was a man! So much worse…
Wow … I can’t believe the assistant said that to you! How rude.
That was very rude.
But also, How many dudes know of Dress Barn?
I had to ban myself from buying any more black and white prints, I have so many. Love them for some reason! Tempted by this one, would be great under a jacket or long cardigan … and have had good luck with BOSS, too.
I think I might pay $20 for a shirt like this, but not at this price.
Threadjack – can anyone recommend a snug fitting cardigan to wear over a short sleeved dress? I have the hardest time finding cardigans that don’t look frumpy on me (slim, about 5’5, size 4). I have tried the Jackie cardigan at Jcrew and the BP cardigan at Nordstrom and wasn’t too impressed.
In my experience, it’s the crewneck cardigans that create that frump feeling for me. So the Jackie, etc., just look awful on me. But I find v neck cardigans (or at least deeper/wider crewneck cardis) to be really flattering and not at all frumpy. Maybe give that a try?
I’m about the same size as you and the only cardigans that don’t look frumpy are v-necks. there’s a particular v-neck merino cardigan with a self-belt (instead of buttons) from brooks brothers that does wonders and works well over all of my dresses. i picked it up at the outlet for about $40 last year-worth every penny.
Yes to all of this. The last time I was at an Ann Taylor outlet, they had some nice v-neck cardigans. I’m also a fan of TJ Maxx/Marshall’s for cardis…I feel like I find at least a couple of good ones every time I go.
or, if you are in NYC, try discounter De Janeiro. They have great inexpensive fitted cardigans.
I love the Eden cardigan from JCrew. Similar build only taller, also a size 4. I would get a smaller size than you would normally wear with the Eden — it is a nice low v-neck and very flattering to a slim/flat chested figure.
I just got the Only Mine cashmere cardigan from Nordstrom. It was $57. It’s definitely fitted.
Thanks everyone! Now that I think about it, the only cardigan I have that looks decent is v-neck. Maybe that’s the ticket.
The “Jenna” cardigan from J.Crew is described as cropped and meant to be worn over a dress. I haven’t tried it, though it wouldn’t matter because our proportions are nothing alike. :) Looks like it’s only in their sale section now, but I’ve seen it in stores. Will post link separately. (Oh, and it’s a v-neck!)
Thank you so much! Love that it was specifically designed to wear over a dress. I’ll check it out. :)
I love the Jenna cardigan. It hits at just the right place and is a good cut for my smallish chest and ribcage.
I have the Cashmere Cropped Cardigan from Boden and love it.
Also Uniqlo if you’re in NYC
I purchased this shrug/cardigan in “cocoon” from BR two weeks ago. Definitely snug, but it’s not long-sleeved. http://bananarepublic.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=51420&vid=1&pid=884262&scid=884262022
If you’re still checking responses, I’m about your size, and I highly recommend the Ann Taylor Loft cardigans in xs (I think they’re called “saddle shoulder” or something, but they’re just basic longer, V-neck, big-buttoned cardis. I also LOVE Zara’s long cardigans, although I have to take a medium because they run pretty small. They come in tons of colors — both neutrals and jewel tones — and have a great slim fit.
How about the cropped cashmere cardigan at Boden?
That was meant to be in reply to “cardigan question” above.
Good morning ladies,
I’m hoping for some advice from the hive about pregnancy announcements at work. I am 12 weeks pregnant (yay!) and am wondering how to tell my boss and fellow co-workers. I am the only woman in my office and am 15-25 years younger than everyone I work with. Although I have been in the professional world for 15 years, I have always worked in male-only offices and have never had a pregnant co-worker to learn this process from. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
In House Counsel
Congrats. I’ll also be watching this thread since I’m a couple weeks behind you (9 weeks) and will need to do the same soon.
Also piggy back question for all the moms in the hive — any general tips on handling maternity leave and how to transition back. I’m curious what steps you took prior to being out and what you found most helpful in coming back and being on the ball again with the job.
The transition back was really hard for me, not gonna lie. My company has a phase back program where you are allowed to work 3 days per week for the first month. That was incredibly helpful for me sop I could catch up on sleep and cleaning but I still had to handle a full time workload. The people who covered for me over my leave dropped everything back on my lap the day I returned, including the projects they decided to ignore for 4 months. I ultimately decided that figuring out what happened during my leave was useless and I had to just move forward.
Prior to being out, I was not able to do much. The colleagues who covered for me wanted nothing to do with my projects until I was actually gone. They sat in on teleconferences for 1-2 weeks before I went on leave and that was it. I had no contact with anyone while I was out as it would just stress me out further.
I kept it v simple both times I told my boss – just went in and said, I have some news for you, I’m expecting #2 (or #3) in X month. Then they say congratulations and how are you feeling, etc., etc., so it’s good to have a stock answer prepared.
Then I told my boss’s secretary (with whom I am close) and my secretary, and the one woman attorney I work with sometimes (my age), and let the rest of the firm figure it out on their own. Gossip happens and people will tell other people, so you don’t really have to tell everyone in the office.
I talked to my boss about leave when I was further along – maybe at 8 months or so – and said that I planned to take 3 months and then come back on the same schedule (80%) but work from home twice/week instead of once. Boss said fine (he is v easygoing) and the maternity leave ‘policy’ worked with HR (I think they asked me how much time I was taking off) so that I took 2 months of ‘maternity leave’ and then a month of vacation to get up to the 3 month mark.
While out, I asked my secretary to fwd my mail to me at home, and did remote access for my email etc. so I had seen everything. Before I went out (started at 35 weeks, updated every few days) I did a list of current/active projects, so my boss could finish those up while I was out. The hardest thing about coming back was trying to function at work while still not getting enough sleep. Working at home more did really help.
all male office
Do you have a co-worker you’re reasonably close to that speaks well of his own family? When this happened to me I was worried about how to handle Telling Everyone because the big boss was childless and married to the company. My immediate supervisor had two young children, and he was really good about 1) being happy for me and 2) reassuring me “No, no, Big Boss will be fine.”
I just told at Thanksgiving @ 12 weeks. I went in a private room and gave him a written plan after saying it out loud. The plan had a chart with tentative schedule and impacts: eg 2nd trimester x months / scaled back travel, occasional telecommute; 3rd trim no travel and so on. Then the anticipated dates of leave. And a bulleted list of projects/events needing coverage and ideas for how to cover them. And some general bullets up front on things like keeping doctors’ appointments early/late when possible, remaining transparent about changes, being committed to the job and confident I could manage both (hah..), and a caveat that all dates were obviously subject to circumstances. It was very well received. In fact he first thought it was a resignation notice, so was thrilled it was just a baby:)
Research, Not Law
Similar advice here.
Be straight and simple with your supervisor and tell them you are expecting a baby in X month. They’ll say congratulations, might ask a bland “how are you feeling” question, and reconfirm your due date. They will likely ask if you plan on taking the full 12 weeks of leave, but it’s for general planning not for commitment so “I’m not sure yet” or “as of now, I plan to” are fine answers. I’ve also had a lot of odd comments, like “I thought you’d put on weight recently” or “thank goodness that’s all it is” (referring to my dip in productivity surrounding the fatigue and nausea) so just smile and nod. Some people give you and enthusiastic response, some stay more reserved – but people are positive, so don’t fear. I get incredibly nervous beforehand, but once it’s out of my mouth, everything goes smoothly and I wonder why I was nervous.
Then repeat with any project leaders, followed by coworkers and other affected associates. Then tell the office gossip, and your work is done.
Creating a firmer leave plan will happen later, depending on your workplace. In my experience, my project teams and supervisor start thinking about it at about 5 months and HR wants to do the paperwork at about 8 months. Note that you’ll set up a plan, but unless you have a schedule c-section or induction, the start date can be flexible/retroactive.
Some recommendations regarding leave:
(a) Take all the leave you can, without regrets. Three months may sound like a really long time now, but it will fly by.
(b) Plan to be off on your EDD, no matter what. It means digging into your leave a bit before baby, but you’ll be tired of “you’re still here?” comments, it’s helpful for personal and professional planning, and people will stop giving you work anyway.
(c) Don’t commit to doing *any* work during leave, but provide yourself with remote access. It’s calming to know that you have the ability but not the need.
Recognize for yourself that you will likely not be fully functional for about a month after you return.
Agree with other posters that you don’t need to address the leave situation right away. Most (normal) people will be happy for you.
When I announced my pregnancy I worked with both men and women, but all were at least 20 years older than me (and most 35+ years older). Pretty even combo of families/childless. Everyone was really great/normal/happy for me.
This is good news and a lot of people will want to congratulate you/talk about it (even if they’re guys!). Be prepared for that.
Think about how long you want to be out (my advice: take as much time as you can get!) and how you want to come back. Diana Barry had some good points: maybe work at home, or maybe transition in beginning with 3 days per week and then move up to 4, then 5 — suggest what you want and see what they say. If no one has done this before you have a good chance of negotiating something that works for you specifically.
More advice: don’t overestimate your preparedness to come back to work at this stage of the game. This isn’t about staying home vs. not staying home with your kid but, as Diana Barry also pointed out, the physical manifestation of a lack of sleep! You’re going to be TIRED, so try to be nice to yourself and plan accordingly.
Good luck! This is a great time of your life and while pregnancy has its weird (and yes, sometimes horrible) quirks, the end result is pretty dang amazing.
Congrats on the pregnancy!
Congrats! I am the only child-bearing woman in my department so was worried about the reaction from my (childless) manager but he was incredibly supportive. I went in between 12 and 16 weeks and just kept it short and sweet. “J, I have some news to share with you. I am currently expecting with an anticipated due date of October 14th.” He was super happy and didn’t ask any follow-up questions beyond “how are you feeling?” We discussed my leave much later on, once I knew what my benefits were and how long I wanted to be out. I was out for 16 weeks and, despite not being protected by FMLA for that long, no one even mentioned it.
I did not tell anyone else (except for friends in the office). Other members of my department found out over time. My manager actually mentioned it in a meeting, assuming that I had told everyone.
I was totally nervous about telling my all-male-lots-older-than-me department, too! However, they were awesome. They all began acting like protective older brothers. I told the dept. head, who is a father & grandfather, first. He was really supportive, and I think the others (some of whom are childless) followed his lead. I inquired with him about mat. leave, he sent me to HR where the director didn’t know what our mat. leave policy is (!). Eventually, I connected with the benefits person who confirmed three months paid mat. leave. The paperwork has yet to be finalized…
When I told the head, I also presented a plan for covering my work, especially the pieces that would be difficult/ impossible to hand off to someone else. Because of the difficulty of handing off one particular piece, I have committed to two days of F2F work during the second month of the mat. leave. I hope this wasn’t a mistake, but we just couldn’t figure out any other way to cover it, and two days doesn’t (from this vantage point) seem like much. Husband will have a flexible schedule during that time, and will accompany me + baby to the office if need to be, so that I can nurse during those days.
I’m currently at 34 weeks and feeling fairly exhausted by the hour public-transit commute and a full days at the office. I keeping hearing tales of women who worked up to the moment when their water broke, but I’m not sure if that’s for me…. I’m thinking of moving the beginning of the mat. leave up to 36-37 weeks.
Congrats on the pregnancy!
If you are uncomfortable, try to work from home most of the time if you can (get dr note if needed). I did that beginning at 36-37 weeks. I wouldn’t use up leave before you have to – you really need the time for when baby comes! If it is your first, too, you may go late – several of my friends went up until 42 weeks.
Ah! Good idea. I have a fair bit of work-at-home flexibility already, and it would be great to keep the fully-on-leave time for when I’m taking care of baby.
I’m actually hoping that the pregnancy runs long as there’s an out-of-town meeting at week 37 that I’d really like to attend. Midwife says no right now, but will re-assess closer to the date of the meeting. It’s not a make or break meeting, but there will be several heavy hitters in my field whom I’d really like to meet.
I was so uncomfortable during the end of my pregnancy as well, but my sweet baby had mercy on me and came 2 weeks early–she was born 6 hours after I left work that day!
You’ve gotten some good advice. When I told my boss with baby #1, she thought I was resigning, so she was relieved that I was not. I sketched out the general timeline and knew ahead of time how much leave the firm allowed. During my seventh month, I started a project folder and updated it daily, always ready to have that day be the last one in the office, because you never know. It worked pretty smoothly – I had all my files and projects in good order before leaving, and worked up to the day that labor began both times.
Prior to returning, I started by attending the weekly staff meeting the week before and didn’t bring the baby. I returned at 12 weeks with the first kid but I went on a four day business trip at nine weeks: It was a yearly conference that I wanted to attend and it had the side benefit of convincing my boss that I was committed to my job. I returned at eight weeks with the second because of a merger/reorganization, and I survived, but hubby was a SAHD. Both deliveries were c-sections.
Make your first week back a short week, like Wednesday-Friday. Instead of coming back three days a week as someone suggested, I’d suggest coming back for 5-6 hours a day instead: The long 10-12 hour days with a newborn at home, commuting, lack of sleep, and shock of being away from baby are lessened on a reduced-hour day. At least for me, being out of the office two days a week presents problems that would be prevented by being there every day for shorter hours.
Some friends have done “dry runs” with day-care or nanny. Get up and figure out how much time it takes to get ready and get out the door and/or do a drop-off. Have coffee with a friend near your office and then reverse. That lowers the stress of the first day.
Good luck to all the new moms!
Oooh – good advice on the day care dry-run! That never would have occurred to me, but I can see pickup/dropoff times at peak hours being very different than they were when I interviewed day care centers.
Definitely do a dry run. Also bring your baby in part-time for a few days so the caregivers can get to know the baby and you can get used to leaving him behind. I cried so hard every day at drop-off for at least a month (and still do sometimes at 15 months!).
I wanted to share an Etsy trick I just discovered for those of us who find the site overwhelming. You can go to the “treasury” section on the Buy page and search member-curated selections that are categorized by color, theme, etc. For some reason, I found that much easier to navigate and make selections.
The featured sellers are also a good place to start. Etsy interviews one or two sellers per week and keeps an archive of all of them.
Also, once you find some favorites, click on their profiles to see who and what they like. I find that my favorite sellers usually have taste similar to mine and lead me to other good sellers.
I have a quick interview question:
I’m currently interning for a company and have been invited for an interview on Friday for a position in the company’s division in a different location. The job advert stated early February as the starting date and the deadline for applications was 2 Jan.
My internship agreement says that I have to give three weeks notice, which would not have been a problem when I applied but the process is dragging on a bit. My boss may be ok with a shorter notice period (she knows I’m looking for a proper job) and from what I hear the starting date may be flexible as well.
Should I mention my notice period during the interview or should I wait if I get an offer and we’re discussing the details? I don’t want to be ruled out because of it (after all they caused the delays) but mentioning it only after I they have offered me the job feels a bit disingenuous.
I’d wait until after you’re offered the job if you are offered, unless they ask when you can start. In other words, I wouldn’t volunteer the information but also wouldn’t lie about it (of course).
I agree. I’ve had a few interviews where they ask when I would be able to start, but others it doesn’t come up.
I don’t think it’s disingenuous at all. You can’t help what your internship agreement requires, and the new job should be understanding of it, especially if you say that you’ll work on leaving with shorter notice. That shows that you’re eager to start and doing your best to make it happen.
I’m with Nancy P here. I don’t think it would hurt in the interview to ask whether the posted start date is firm or flexible. Do it at the end, when they ask if you have any other questions.
It may be flexible, and in that case, no problemo. I don’t think it hurts anything to ask. That’s what interviews are for.
I wouldn’t mention it. In my experience, 9 times out of 10 the hiring manager or recruiter will say, “oh, we really need to fill this by X date” and then with one thing and another (multiple rounds of interviews, difficulty of scheduling, notice, HR systems), the actual start date ends up as X + 6 weeks.
do NOT mention it. Chances are things will take longer anyway. Also, sorry, it’s fine to leave an internship early for a real job. People in the working world get it- you do what you have to do. But don’t hatch chickens before they.. you know what I mean.
Do not mention it until you get the offer. Then you say, “I’m thrilled to accept. I need to give 3 weeks notice here and will be ready to start at any point after that. Let me know what start day works best for the department.”
Grr, got the dreaded “you are posting comments too quickly” on my first comment of the day.
Anyway. I agree with everyone else who has said not to mention the 3 week notice thing until you have an offer. Also, does that notice period apply to internal moves, or only external ones? In my experience, internal transfers don’t always require the same notice, and often happen on much shorter time frames.
Thanks everyone! I’ll keep my mouth shut and won’t mention it unless they ask me.
I just got a printed wrap dress from the Gap (link below, to avoid moderation) and was wondering if it could be worn with tights (say, in navy or gray) and cognac boots? Or is this strictly a bare-legs dress?
This is the dress:
Ugh. For some reason that link is taking me to the men’s sales department. Here’s another try:
The link still isn’t working, but I went on the site to check it out since I was curious–all of the printed wrap dresses are super cute! And would look great with opaque tights and cognac boots, or bare legs. Nice!
The link worked for me, and I love the dress! I think both bare legs and the styling you suggested would look great. Good find!
I got the link to work by copying link location then pasting it into a browser. Yes, I think it would look good with tights and boots.
It’s the printed wrap dress that’s navy and cream with pink “splotches”, for lack of a better word. I love the dress, especially the colors. I really like that it comes in tall sizes, so the waist isn’t right up under my chest. The fabric drapes really nicely. It’s not the best at hiding my belly (hopefully spanx will help with that) but I’m apple-shaped so that’s not unusual.
I was afraid it might be too much of a spring dress to wear with opaque tights and boots?
I can’t get the link to work but from the description I agree, it would work both ways. I’m gonna go hunting for it at lunch time! Does gap have any coupon codes out now? I’m also kind of apple shaped and on a recent thread someone recommended one of their pants for apples, modern boot I think?
Yes, the modern boot pants work for me. A lot of people like their perfect trouser pants too, it seems. There’s a 30% off code right now: NEWYOU.
Hey anon! I’m an apple too and find wrap dresses hard to fit sometimes, so you like this one? Would you mind sharing approximately how tall you are and where on your leg the dress hits you? I’m 5’9” so this is always a concern. :)
I think that might look great with cognac boots. When did Gap start carrying cute work-appropriate dresses at great prices?!?! Do you generally like the dress?
I’ve been noticing a marked improvement in the work-wear options at the Gap since last summer. I find Gap cycles in and out of carrying decent stuff, some seasons it’s an entire miss, other seasons they are great. I try to pop in every so often to make sure I catch the good seasons!
I got the link to work by copy and pasting.
Also — I think it would work with either.
Finally, let me say, SO CUTE. A Gap trip may be in my near future!
I know we’ve talked about podcasts before, and I have a bunch of fun ones that I love listening to. Sometimes I’m in the mood for a little career development, though, so I’m wondering — Does anyone have any legal or business-development podcasts they like?
a nonny miss
What fun podcasts do you like? I have a 2+ hour commute and would love something other than music but the choices are overwhelming!
My two favorites are This American Life and Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me.
I also love current events, so I often listen to Fresh Air, Talk of the Nation, and Diane Rehm (I recognize that many people wouldn’t consider those to be fun).
I’m currently on a big document review project at work that I work on several hours each day, so I have a ton of time to listen to podcasts or music, and I burn through those pretty quickly.
If you like This American Life, you should check out RadioLab- very similar in both stories and quality.
I forgot about RadioLab! I do listen to that one occasionally, and it is awesome.
I find Judge John Hodgman very silly and entertaining.
Depending on the guest, WTF w Mark Marron can be good.
If you’re into sports at all, the Bill Simmons podcasts are great.
I just listened to a Judge John Hodgman one, and it was hilarious. Excellent rec!
The Moth Radio Hour (NPR)
Thecorporatecounsel.net has some of its CLE workshops available on audio (if you have a subscription or access through your employer). I’m not a lawyer and so never had to figure out how the CLE credits worked, but I got a lot out of listening to these, work-wise.
There’s an ABA Litigation podcast, though they post infrequently. They have a new on on e-discovery that was good.
Although not directly work-related, I like Marketplace and Marketplace Money.
I love Creative Living with Jamie and Tranquility Du Jour – both of these podcasts feature fascinating interviews with entrepreneurs, artists, and authors of all kinds.
I also enjoy Slate Culture Gabfest – they discuss movies, TV shows, trends, and popular articles. If you miss the academic world and witty repartee, this is the podcast for you.
For career advice, I’d suggest Career Tools. They get really specific with advice and it’s not necessarily what you hear everywhere else. I always learn something new. It gets me thinking.
If you are into self-help topics, I’d suggest Life Habits. It’s nothing earth-shattering, but can definitely be a pick-me-up.
One of my newest favorites is Joy the Baker. Two women talking about random, everyday topics like “guilty pleasures” or New Year resolutions or whatever comes up. I love them. They are hilarious and fun.
For health motivation, I listen to the Jillian Michaels Podcast. She is kind of wacky on the show and takes questions from callers, which can be interesting.
I have no work on my desk today, very stressful proposition for those of us in law. 3rd year associate.
I’ve e-mailed the partners that I normally work for asking for work, but have not heard back, or have finished up assignments that I received yesterday. I’ve also cleaned up/organized my office, made phone calls, etc. I have no idea what to do with myself. I’m also hating the idea of starting the year “behind” in terms of billables. :( (and also that I have to be around in case work comes in, but it actually looks on paper like I’m “on vacation”…I would much rather be on vacation than sitting here stressing about this.
Any ideas? fwiw, i had a fairly busy December.
start looking for and applying for new jobs? do your personal finances etc while you’re hanging out at the office?
I see a ton of postings for attorneys with 2-4 or 3-5 years experience.
Everyone has those days once in awhile (I prob have 3 or so a year where it appears the stars align and I’m completely caught up, usually after a monster deal is finished) – as long as you’re expecting this to be a blip, enjoy it! These days were made for catching up on life activities (changing all your passwords since the Zappos incident?), stopping by co-workers’ offices to mingle a little… just ask your secretary to find you (around the floor, that is) if an urgent call comes in.
Is there any career development stuff you can do ? When I am a little slow, I do some research for ideas for articles for my local bar journal, etc. That way, I have a little file of stuff handy when I am asked to write for a newsletter, journal, etc.
Also, can you troll through anything on the computer system that others have written on a case that might someday help you ? When I first started and things were slow, I went and read summary judgment motions and briefs written by others, and learned a lot about style, and some about the substatntive area of law just by reading what others wrote.
Neither of these will help your billables number, but can help you in the long run.
S in Chicago
Do you have any interest in speaking or writing? Might as well use the time to reach out to any professional associations you belong to and volunteer. Always looks good to have those sort of extras on your resume. And if it’s just one project, especially writing, you could probably complete it pretty quickly without risking being too engaged when the work starts coming again.
Catch up on articles that have come out recently? Make notes of articles you could write, or pro bono projects you can do, etc.? Otherwise, take a long lunch/get your nails done, and leave early! :) If it goes on for more than a few days, talk to the partners again (eg go by offices, not just email).
We all have those days, so don’t stress too much about a day or two. A couple of ideas to keep yourself occupied: Catch up on CLE (check if your firm has any that you can watch at your desk); get ready for tax season (time to find and print receipts, forms, charitable contributions, etc.); consider picking up a pro bono case or pitching in on someone else’s(especially if you get billable credit for it); mingle with coworkers and find out what else is going on in the office or what might come your way; hit the gym.
Go by the partners’ offices. Emails get lost in the shuffle usually. On top of which, people seem to generally respond better to an in person visit.
I second the thoughts about looking for topics to write an article on. Then go find a partner to co-author with. The partners always like to get their names out there, so they usually are willing to have you write an article that they merely have to final edit and slap their name on as a co-author. This also provides you some visibility and something to add to your resume for the future. If your firm is like most, there’s a non-billable code you can use for the hours you are writing the article. This looks better than having nothing to type into the time-entry system at all for the day.
Have you talked with your firm’s pro bono manager? If not, and you think the work decrease may last a while, you may consider picking up a pro bono case. Though not billable, for many firms they will count your pro bono hours towards your billable requirement. Even if they don’t, pro bono cases give you a lot of useful, hands on experience. They also provide you with a good feeling at the end of the day because you provide legal services to those who would otherwise probably go without.
If all else fails, do some online CLE. Then you’ll be ahead when reporting time comes.
If you are the only one in your office not busy, this may be a work distribution problem. If there are a lot of people not busy, I would start job hunting.
a passion for fashion
i’d just go enjoy the day. this is not something i really learned until i was a 4th year, and as a 7th year, am still perfecting it. take you black berry with you (forward your phone if youre really worried), but no need to sit in your office and do nothing. go home, go shopping, go to the gym, a museam, or whatever it is that you like to do. but check your bb often enough that it work comes in, you can jump on it.
or, if you feel like this is too much for now, tomorrow, come in late (like 9:30-10ish) and enjoy your morning, then leave early 3-5ish, depending.
you will have work before you know it and will wish you had used this time for yourself.
Any suggestions for a birthday present for a 10 year old boy who kind of has everything under the sun? Loves technological stuff.
iTunes or Amazon gift card. Seems boring for me, the giver, but when the recipients get the gift card I usually see a glow of “Now I can get the ___ I’ve been wanting” in their eyes as they thank me. I sometimes attach it with a ribbon to a favorite candy bar to make it look slightly festive.
Check out Discovery Toys! Lots of cool science-related stuff.
We just bought something called a Snap Circuits Jr set for our son (there’s a larger, more expensive set, too). It has the components for different experiments involving electronics, as well as a guide on how to do them. I found it at Fat Brain Toys (online). I highly recommend it for a kid who is into technology and how stuff works.
This looks perfect! Cheaper on amazon, too! Thanks!
I have a 9 year old techie son, and Snap Circuits were his favorite birthday party gift this year.
A gift card to Game Stop is also good for nerdy little boys (like my son.) He would be thrilled with one.
This shirt looks like stuff I have from H&M and Macy’s etc for wayyy less. They are good as washable and don’t wrinkle for travel and match a lot.
Would love advice on stocking up for maternity clothes. I want to buy a reasonable wardrobe, which means neither too little nor too much. In addition to intimates, here’s what I’m thinking (to be stocked from Old Navy, Gap, and Loft primarily):
— Workout: two pants, two cheap Ts, hoodie
— Casual: one jeggings, one corduroy/khaki, three henley/solid Ts
— Work: two dresses (one of which can be worn under a jacket for a “suit effect”, black pants, light gray pants, four tops
In addition, the two dresses I’ve bought would be just fine for weekend wear — one could be easily dressed down for day, the other could easily be dressed up for evenings. FWIW, I hope that these items can be all-weather clothes — I would buy everything in lightweight materials, and my hope is that I can continue to wear my old jackets and cardigans, unbuttoned, over everything. The big thing missing is skirts and shorts (due in July), but I don’t really wear either.
I’m *really* hoping I don’t need to buy new shoes. I love my shoe collection!
I did a ton of shopping from Gap while I was prego (my job at that time was in consulting) — I liked their stuff and it was reasonably-priced, especially during sales. YMMV, but here’s what worked for me:
+ Dresses are great because they grow with you — sometimes an often-used pair of pants will become too small if, for example, your hips get super-wide or your rear end balloons out in the last tri.
+ Yes, your regular cardigans should fit unbutton. The long jersey stuff that’s “in” right now is great for maternity (and transitional post-baby) wear. I had issues with some jackets getting too tight across the shoulders but again, YMMV.
+ Everyone is different but if I could go back and do it over again I’d buy only full-panel trousers. They make half-panel (sometimes called “Demi panel”) and elastic-waist only pants too, but by the end of my pregnancy I barely wore any of those — felt like they were hanging off my rear end too much and/or that I was in danger of a belly flash while at work.
Yes. I would get at least 2 pairs of pants – the “secret fit belly” pants from Pea in the Pod look dressiest and are full panel.
For workout pants, I had good luck with size XL capris from Nike. I am normally a size M-L in workout stuff and the XL fitted all the way through.
I have 3 maternity dresses and wish I had more, bc I wear them all the time!
Oh, and Spanx/Assets has nice maternity tights, much better quality than the Gap ones and they don’t get tight on the belly.
I hate the full panel trousers, they give me stomach cramps! I wish I could wear them for the coverage and as that’s most of what’s for sale.
I got some tops from Gap which I love; find their demi-panels even to be too tight mostly. I have gotten 90% of my stuff 2nd hand at shops that cater to little kids/babies- they often have maternity stuff in the back. I needed a lot- casual plus corporate wear. I have some quite nice things now. The cost still added up with dry cleaning it all. I hemmed it with iron-fuse hem tep myself. I found that there’s better variety in the 2nd hand shops too- pants that aren’t just the panel but different styles. Some brands are out of business now- Babystyle being one- and they made great things I got some of. Also Japanese Weekend (second hand). I also got a tub off craigslist from one woman which had tons of cotton shirts and cords/jeans etc. which is a big help- that took care of 80% of my casual needs. I like the dresses, but am having a hard time with them because tights are JUST SO uncomfortable for me in any form right now. But wearing dress/boots + bare legs in snow looks silly. ALso they are all cheap/see through seemingly, so I got slips from JW online.
My feet do feel bigger, but I also have a hurt toe so might just be that.
Now I make the rounds to the second-hand shops in Seattle when I happen to be near one (4-5 only) and grab pieces here/there. At first this was a nightmare trying to find stuff, but now I like some of it. Also got some size-up sweaters and blazers in regular clothing second hand for cheap- wearing the blazers open and the sweaters are cozy. Found the maternity ones look fine but are such bad quality they weren’t warm or soft- I’d had it.
Good luck!! Definitely recommend checking out the used market if you are okay with that. More variety/less cost.
Also I got 2 coats second hand: a Gap dark red wool work coat (love it) and an Old Navy black puffer coat. Neither are very warm or waterproof, but they work well enough. It is a real task to get everything new. I’ve been getting size- up underwear at Target monthly, cotton packs and the seamless bras. Haha, my mom just told me her underwear broke when pregnant, can totally see this happening.
reading other posts reminds me of other things I got that work well: (second-hand) red Gap pajamas- lifesaver, wear them every night. microfiber tank/pants. workout outift (used also). Really like the Gap Kimono sweaters- got those on sale in 4 colors. Usually wear a layer underneath. So much stuff is synthetic/itchy- I found a few silk/cotton layers second hand that have been great. for under other things.
agree with not buying too much at once, so you can see what works/doesn’t for you.
The quality of old navy maternity varied widely for me. I highly recommend their jeggings, but their other pants didn’t quite work for me. Similarly, I loved their maternity tanks, but their long-sleeved t’s pilled up on me in 3-4 washes. I wound up buying 3-4 tanks and layering them under my normal waterfall (or open) sweaters. I loved the gap’s demi panel pants for pregnancy, and thought the quality was pretty decent. I also had good luck with the gap’s maternity dresses for work underneath jackets. I also wouldn’t buy anything at the gap or oldnavy unless you have a coupon – they run 20-30% off sales all the time.
I also got a few tops and a dress from Gilt – they had things from Japanese Weekend at very good prices on occasion. Kohls online also had a pretty decent maternity section which went on sale often.
FWIW – I wouldn’t buy too much in the way of maternity wear until you ‘pop’ – which for me wasn’t until about 20 weeks. I found out that I could (and still do at 33 weeks) wear my old yoga pants due to the way I’m carrying. You may also have to buy other pants as you get bigger – only now am I outgrowing ‘demi’ panel pants, but full-panel styles were very itchy and annoying to me earlier on.
Oh yeah- I also went to Canada on a weekend for another reason, but went to a second-hand shop there and got a few lovely items from brands in Australia, Paris, and Canada etc. that you don’t see in U.S.- was so pleased! We had a thread about this a few weeks ago by the way- don’t recall under which post though.
I bought a lot of my maternity clothes off of ebay. I got some really cute Ann Taylor pants even though AT has since discontinued their maternity line. Ebay usually has Gap, Pea in the Pod, etc items as well. Worth it for me since I knew I was only going to be wearing them for a few months. Congrats!
Research, Not Law
My primary advice is to not buy a bunch at once. Buy them as you go and try out different styles. What works at one stage doesn’t necessarily work at another. I always have basically early, mid, and late wardrobes. Some items cross over, but if you want to have clothes that fit throughout, buy in stages.
I’m in the minority, but I hate maternity dresses. They are cute for the early months (when I just wear my normal wrap and empire waist dresses anyway), but once I have a substantial bump I feel like they make me looks way bigger than I am.
For my first pregnancy, I preferred the demi panel pants over the full panel until about 7 or 8 months. Once baby starts to drop, I find them very uncomfortable and switched to full panel.
Agree that you can get away with a fair amount of your pre-pregnancy cardigans/jackets, wrap or loose/empire waist tops and dresses, and tie/elastic waist pants. My fold-down yoga pants fit throughout (and still after), for example. However, don’t wear a top that you love – it will stretch out permanently (learned that the hard way…)
My absolute favorite maternity item is the shirred-side Pure Body t-shirt from Gap. They fit and are flattering throughout the entire pregnancy. The Gap ribbed tank is nice, too. Don’t buy Gap “maternity” tights. I ironically find the Motherhood Maternity places will have the poorest fitting clothes.
I’ve never needed to buy new shoes, although I had limited options towards the end. You will want flats and knee-high boots after 8 months are impossible to get on and off, for example.
Don’t buy maternity/nursing bras. Size up on a regular bra when you need (and you will), buy a nursing sleep bra (or tank, if you’re lucky enough to have a small enough cup size to fit) with a little wiggle room at 9 months, then buy a real nursing bra once your milk comes in. I highly recommend Anita for regular nursing bras.
I loved nice consignment stores. Maternity selection is limited, and consignment offers more options.
agree, Motherhood Maternity is the worst!! Can’t stand them, yet they have such a lock on the US market! Ughhh
I hate maternity dresses too ! I feel like a circus tent in them!
Workout: I love Old Navy’s yoga pants for prenatal yoga/ relaxing. They’re mostly cotton, unlike so many work out pants, so they breath. And only ~$20. I could wear my regular yoga/ workout pants up ’til about 20 weeks – then my hips moved waaaaayyyyy apart. I did end up springing for two maternity workout tops w/ built in bra. I figured if I was going to have to get a larger bra anyway, I might as well get it in a workout top, and with something cute to wear, I’d be inspired to keep up the workouts. One’s from Zoha via Amazon; the other is Fit2BMom (?) from Gilt recently. The Zoha top was spendy, but it keeps me going to yoga.
Work: I got several dresses from Belly Dance Maternity (online & in Chicago). Not cheap, but they’ve held up well, and since they’re my only profesh mat. wear, they’re in heavy rotation. Tights from the same shop, as well as (regular) Commando tights from Nordstrom. The Commando tights worked better mid-pregnancy; in third tri. the mat. tights with the big belly pocket fit better. I keep growing out of pants (see hips above…). I had to spring for a winter coat, as I just couldn’t button anything. Most of my blazers are too tight in the shoulders but cardigans still (mostly) work.
Casual/ non-meeting days: Nearly everything is from Gap, Old Navy, or Loft. I also found a bunch of Sweet Pea tops on ebay that were great for warm weather in the first half of pregnancy. I love Gap’s maternity undies! I thought my one-size-fits-most stretchy Hanky Panky thongs would make it through pregnancy, but they really dig into my hips. Also, Gap mat. flannel PJ pants = awesome.
In House Lobbyist
I was also able to buy L and XL in empire style tops at places like TJ Maxx and Ross that worked to the end. I hated anything that tied in the back so I wanted to avoid a lot of maternity clothes. I did the Belly Band for my pants and jeans that worked for a long time too. It seemed likeni bought more towards the 7 -8 month mark because I had gotten bigger and I was just sick of what I had left.
I had to get bigger shoes too because my feet started swelling. I delivered the end of June so I was able to make it with a larger size sandal and some “dressy” flip flops because by that point you can’t see your own feet anyway. Luckily my feet went back to normal and all my shoes fit.
Baby gift question
My sister just gave birth to a beautiful baby boy. What to send her? She has another son so she already has a ton of clothes and toys. Looking for something unique. Thanks!
The little sleep sacks on babyinabag.com are wonderful!
I love the products from Bebe au Lait. The gift set of matching nursing covers and burp cloths are a perfect gift for a mom who doesn’t really “need” anything, but appreciates having pretty, high-quality things around. Their “quibs” are pretty neat, too, and cut down on laundry.
for my neice i got a myblankee blanket in a really full whimsical print. it is loved by all and is hypoallergenic and machine washable and definitely the softest thing i’ve ever felt. bonus: they now have a myblankee online outlet shop where everything is 50% off.
really fun whimsical print*
(it’s the paris themed one)
essentails. diapers etc. or books.
Books are one of my favorite new baby gifts to give (and receive). I love to pick them out. The board books and soft plush ones are great for the baby, and throw a couple of books for the big brother in there, too!
Ditto board books — especially since everyone else seems to love giving cute outfits, which are sadly outgrown very quickly.
Also, the book “Baby 411”. Its my go-to new parent present. Excellent book, Q&A format (i.e. “my baby has a fever of X degrees, should I call the doctor or go to the emergency room?”) SO USEFUL for new parents.
Yes! Books are great. Does she have any already from her first son that are especially meaningful to her? It might be nice to get a new, second copy for the new baby and maybe write a personal message for the new guy in the cover. I found that I had quite a few favourites from my first that I ended up buying duplicates of for my second, because I want each of them to be able to save them for when they have their own little ones to read to.
I gave my sister a gift card for a photo session for the baby/family, including enough extra to purchase enough prints to make it worth it. She loved it.
Stuffed chicken entrees from Omaha Steaks that is heat and eat. She will love it.
Argh. That *are*
As long as she eats meat…
Research, Not Law
Food or housekeeping!!! Gift cards to nearby take-out or delivery places or delivered frozen meals. Pay for one or two house cleaning sessions.
If you want an actual gift to accompany, baby board books are welcome. They are pretty well eaten by the first child.
Something personalized with her new son’s name.
Always a NYer
Not sure what to send for the new newphew but be sure to send something to your older nephew. He’s probably overlooked with all the presents being sent for his baby brother and it will make his day that you remembered him =)
A gift certificate for a local photographer or to ModernBird. One of my FAVORITE things ever.
I love the personalized stools at One Step Ahead
Corporettes, I REALLY need your help. So my research PI just asked me what should be included in a law school letter of recommendation because he hasn’t written any of those before. Is it very different than one for medical school do you think? Any advice I can pass along to make the process easier/end up with a better letter? Any advice you could give would be SO helpful. I’m having trouble finding things that I think are for sure reputable on the internet…
Actually had PI write one of these, but it was grad school PI for law school.
Highlight the things that make law schools like you and will make you successful as a lawyer: personal responsibility, academic success, leadership, assertiveness, perseverance, follow-through, etc. You can use all of your science (I assume science) examples to fill in for these qualities.
It isn’t about the fact that the PI is coming from an unrelated field. The PI probably knows a lot about who you are… that that’s what law schools are interested in: is this person going to be a good asset to our school and are they going to make a well qualified, ethical attorney.
This is not the website for detailed law school admissions information, no matter what people think. Get to top-law-schools.com. In fact, you should be there anyway. If you are going to sink up to 200k of cash into anything, you owe it some serious research. Get to top-law-schools, get to lawschoolnumbers.com. Get serious about this.
My PI included things like critical thinking, writing skills, playing well with others, clear, effective communicator, etc. in his rec for me for law school. Your PI should describe the capacity that he knows you and your work and then glowing comments on the above qualities.
Strongly recommend “Anna Ivey’s Guide to Law School Admissions.” Saved me while I was applying, and it had a great section for those writing recommendations.
Ugh. This top is floppy in an unflattering way.
Here’s something with a similar pattern that’s actually more fitted, and flattering if you’ve got the same body-type as me. (I bought this recently and it gives a nice shape to my otherwise straight-noodle-with-no-real-waistline figure)
I love tops like this, and always envy them on “straight noodle with no real waistline” women! Unfortunately these tops are far less flattering on my abnormally defined waistline…
That is GORGEOUS and I WANT IT SO BADLY. Must resist.
Susan–I thank you, and my straight-as-a-noodle body thanks you. I’ve been hunting for a black and white shell in this vein, but somehow missed it on Anthro’s site.
LOVE this in the red!!
Hi – I was wondering if I could ask for advice about a long distance relationship. This one is complicated by (1) us both working for the same company in different offices, and (2) being in different regions.
I have been “seeing” my SO for 4 years. I live and work in country A (not my home country, was relocated for work), he lives in New York. We “met” because we worked on projects together, and found we really got along via email and phone. Long story short when I visited the US for work around 6-9 months after we had been communicating, we decided to give our relationship a go but in secret. For the last 4 years I have been shuttling back and forths to the US (about 3 – 4 visits a year) – I have a somewhat (though not completely) flexible job where I can work remotely whilst I am on “holiday” so my boss doesn’t question the fact that I am sometimes out of the office 2 months total in the year on trips.
Its now becoming harder to be apart. I feel like I’m wasting my time and I am no longer young enough to do this for years on end. There is a possibility my company may relocate me to NY but we still have the issue that we are in related teams (his boss is my boss’ boss and our teams work closely). We feel it would be detrimental to both our careers to tell anyone we are together. But is it worth me moving to still be in a “secret” relationship which is emotionally draining to keep a secret.
It is impossible for him to move to country A or me to move/work in NY. We are in an industry which is shedding jobs. My job also has me dealing with a niche proprietary system so its even harder for me to find work. Jobs advertised these days in the US and country A require residency and will not sponsor people from other countries. My home country is also not an option for similar reasons.
I can’t think of what else to do. Anyone have any advice? Anyone have experience with working in the same office or even team as a partner?
Once you two come out of the closet, the company will hopefully work with you to place you in same location and not conflicting situation eg same team. That seems like best bet. If you actually get engaged or such, approach the leadership discretely. Risky yes, but they might be happy for you and want to keep you both.
You’ve been keeping this a secret for four years?
Do you guys envision being together for the long haul (i.e., marriage)? IMHO, it’s time to decide where this relationship is going, if anywhere. Four years is a long time to be in a long distance relationship without an end in sight.
K in NYC
You either need to come out to the company as a couple, with the awareness of the risks and possible rewards of this OR you need to be done and move on. After 4 yrs, if the job is worth more than the relationship to either/both of you, it’s time to end it.
Let us know how it plays out?
This is rough.
If I were you, I’d think seriously about your priorities. If your priority is your career, then you need to figure out if this company or this industry is somewhere you want to stay. That’s a decision that only you can make. (Hopefully, with input from your bf.)
If your priority is getting married, or having a long-term relationship with this guy, then you need to make that the priority. Remember that companies don’t often have any loyalty to you, even if you’ve shown loyalty to them.
From what you say, it doesn’t sound like you guys have a future together unless you two decide to move to the same country, and it’s somewhere that’s not Country A or NYC. Is that an actual realistic future for the both of you?
Also, make sure you’re being honest with yourself. I was in a relationship with a co-worker in a different office for over a year, and looking back on it, I saw it for way more than what it was. Do both of you actually view this as a monogamous relationship, with a future? In my situation, I did, but he didn’t, so it didn’t end so happily. I was kind of in denial about whether he was actually viewing me as a girlfriend.
Sounds complicated! Decide what you really want and how much you are willing to risk and go from there. Talk with your BF openly about all the possibilities and see how he reacts. Good luck. I hope you make a move that adds to your happiness!
Don’t love the top, don’t hate it either. It actually looks like it might be a bit too big on the model.
Just wanted to take a minute to give a quick shout-out/thanks to everyone who chimed in offered advice on my post a couple weeks ago about adopting a cat. My little fur baby has been with me now for almost 2 weeks and I couldn’t be happier. She’s a 13 month-old domestic short-hair I named Lily. She’s got the sweetest disposition and is the perfect combination of playfulness and cuddliness. Needless to say, it took all of a few hours for me to turn into a crazy cat lady. :)
She’s transitioning to life with me pretty well, the only issue we’re having is that she hasn’t quite figured out that 2am is not a time at which mommy wants to play. It’s definitely gotten better since the first few nights she was with me, but any advice anyone has on that would be totally welcome!
I adopted my kitten in October and I’m still trying to teach him that 2am is not playtime! He seems to be ok until I wake up or roll over, at which point he thinks “oh good, she’s up!”
Congrats on the kitty.
Not sure what you mean by playtime. If the cat is playing by herself, not much you can to stop that. My cat will, occasionally, go “hunting” in the middle of the night and bat her little toy mice all over the apartment. But if you mean the cat tries to wake you up, then that’s something you can definitely fix, you just need to be firm and consistent. Ignore her. If she starts to meow or swat at your feet, either take her out of the room and close the door or try saying ‘no’ or ‘stop’ loudly and firmly. Whatever you do, don’t wake up!
This. My cat used to wake me up at 5 a.m. because that’s when she thought it was time to get up. I ignored her completely for a few weeks, and she gave up. Now I’m lucky if she’s awake before 8 a.m. Ohh, the life.
My 3-year-old cat is still the same way — she gets the night crazies between 2am and 4am — UNLESS I play with her and tire her out shortly before I go to bed. In terms of toys, I have a laser pointer and a coiled wire with some cardboard on the end for this “interactive” playtime.
The other thing that helped for me was feeding her twice a day instead of just once. She gets “breakfast” when I wake up in the morning, and “dinner” right before I go to bed (after the playtime I mentioned above). That way, she’s tired after playtime and full after dinner, both of which convince her to go to sleep for a few hours.
I also keep her dinner bowl in the bedroom, so when she wakes up in the middle of the night, she jumps down to get some food and comes back up to sleep a few minutes later.
Yay for kitten! But otherwise, yes to the pre-bedtime playing. When I was cohabiting with my mom’s kitten the summer after I graduated from college, I had to play with him for a solid 15-20 minutes right before bed, in order to get him to leave me alone through the night. We chased ribbons and fetched balls (because he fetches).
Oh and congrats on the cat! Adopting my cat was the best decision I ever made (well best decision ever after “deciding” to accept DH’s proposal).
One thing you can do is grab the cat and try to hold her like a teddy bear whenever she gets in your face while you’re sleeping. 99% of cats will hate this enough to not get near enough for you to do that anymore.
A squirt bottle would probably work, too, but I never have the heart for it.
At my house this is referred to as corporal cuddles- it is an effective deterrant to both feline and canine behinds on my laptop when I’m working. :)
I tried this with my Younger Cat and he loves it. Now, if I want to cuddle him, all I have to do is get out my laptop and he’s there, purring up a storm.
Oh good, I’m glad I’m not the only one who does this. It’s a gem with my girl-cat. My boy-cat just goes limp and starts purring…
Yeah, cats just don’t sleep as many hours as we do at a time. They only sleep for a few hours.
Your cat waking you up in the early morning is normal… and will continue unless you institute some training.
Keep a squirt bottle filled with water on your nightstand. If Kitty wakes you up to play at 2 a.m., squirt her.
Also, my cat used to wake me up in the middle of the night trying to paw at or eat my hair (?!?!?! Seriously, cat? a*hole). So I just started shoving him unceremoniously off the bed when he did. That put an end to that–turned out he wanted to hang on the bed with me more than he wanted to eat my hair.
I could really use some advice from the hive on this one. Especially since I’m too embarrassed to ask friends and family IRL.
Do any of you use a light therapy box for depression or SAD? Does it work? I have had depression for years (tried therapy, medication, medication + therapy, exercise, exercising outside in the winter) but nothing seems to work. I’m at my wits end. Any brand recommendations?
Thanks in advance!
Research, Not Law
I don’t have personal experience, but I’m in the pacific northwest where they are very common. People swear by them. I had coworker who would put a UV lightbulb in an office desklamp, which I thought was brilliant.
I do. I LOVE it! Have the light on while reading or watching TV at home.
I have the Verilux Happy Lite Mini Plus. I bought it when I was working in a basement office with no windows. I now turn it on on dreary winter days when I feel like I need sunshine. I can’t speak to actual depression or SAD but I find I am more awake, alert and happy with it around. It comes in a two-pack and I used to turn one on at home while getting ready in the morning too (I now get ready at the gym.)
Yes! I love mine, which I got from Costco ($60). I participated in a clinical study a few years ago and they used Bio-Light Ultra which is made by Enviro-Med.
Also, you should consider talking to your PCP and having them run a blood work up. I was having worse than normal symptoms and found out some vitamin deficiencies were also messing with my symptom.
I have one- I used to get really tired and sometimes sad in the winter. I find that I’m not as sad (although I have switched jobs so maybe it’s related to that) and I have more energy throughout the day. I’m not bouncing off of the walls, but I don’t hit that 3pm wall and I can last longer in the night, which makes it easier to go to the gym, cook, clean, etc. Everyone who walks by my desk asks me about it, but no one thinks it’s weird/I have some concerning problem. HTH!
I have the Verilux, too. I use it in the morning when I’m reading the newspaper. About 15 minutes.
we are in seattle- have one but forgot where it is. but, most of us take vitamin D daily- have you tried that? I like best the Gummies in yellow (1000 IUD).
Second the vitamin D recommendation. My doctor suggested it when I lived in New England; it definitely helped.
Wow, thanks everyone. It’s really nice to be part of such a supportive community, even though my question really wasn’t a huge deal.
Ruby, L and JLG – I didn’t think about the vitamin deficiency and blood work. I have noticed being more tired and hungry but I thought it might be because I’ve been training for an upcoming marathon more seriously than I have in the past (I have run a few), coupled with stresses at work and in my personal life.
Research, Not Law
Check you iron levels, too, then. When my iron drops, I have depression symptoms.
Well, this is serendipitous. I boxed up my Happy Lite last week and have been asking around to see whether anyone wants it. I had three tough winters in a row, but the last two have been OK so I am ready to let go of it. JM, send me a note at cfkhouse06 at yahoo and we can make arrangements to get it to you.
K in NYC
am emailing you too, just in case the others fall through, have been trying to save up to afford one (my bedroom doesn’t have windows so I am extra screwed on this one) but am unemployed (lost job in Nov) and can’t afford the hefty price tag.
A cheap alternative is to buy at Home Depot the least expensive fixture that will take fluorescent tube lights and some UV bulbs. It isn’t pretty but it can help.
This is why I love Corporette.
Thanks PM. I sent you an email.
In related news… does anyone have recommendations for over the counter treatments for sun-spots or melasma? Between my teenage years as a lifeguard and stupid birth control, I feel icky when not wearing makeup… and I want to take some steps.
Please, product recommendations!!
What does birth control have to do with it?
BCPs can give some women melasma (aka the “mask of pregnancy”)
The only ingredient proven to work on brown spots is hydroquinone. You can get fairly low concentrations at the drugstore but I’d personally pay $75 for a visit to a dermatologist to get prescription strength.
Lasers are the most effective, by the way.
Ugh, yes. After one month with the NuvaRing, I had a dark upper lip. Yay.
I find that the Neutrogena Visibly Even wash and lotion help some. It’s not a permanent fix, but it minimizes the mustache.
Oh my gosh! Light bulb! THAT’S where mine came from?! I noticed it awhile back and have since gotten off NuvaRing, but the dark spots are still there. Now I definitely want to go to the dermatologist and get this taken care of with the hope that it won’t come back. I was worried that it was something that happened with age, but your explanation makes so much more sense, timeline-wise.
I am ALSO having a light bulb — though I’ve never had Nuvaring — but I have those dark spots above my lips and never really knew what they were…
It probably has to do with acne scars.
Mamabear got it…
Since I’m out of work right now, I have time to kill and minimal cash to blow… so I was looking at some OTC acid peels… any thoughts?
Just try an OTC cream with hydroquinone. (Look for “fade cream” and check the active ingredients.) I used it for my BC melasma, and it worked fine. But you’ll be fighting an ongoing battle if you stick with the same BC, assuming that’s the cause. And sunlight will make it worse, so add sunblock. I’m not sure if all BC products will cause the same problem. I’m on something different now and don’t see to have a problem.
PCA Skin makes something called “pHaze 13 Pigment Bar” that you can buy on Amazon.com. My dermatologist recommended it, and it has made a big difference in the hyperpigmentation on my face from acne and sun. The directions don’t mention it, but it works best if you lather up then leave it on your face for 2 or 3 minutes before rinsing off. I have sensitive skin and it doesn’t irritate it at all.
So my husband is currently out of work and he was just offered a job. Great company, great money, interesting work, BUT nearly 100% travel. Normally this wouldn’t trouble me but we have our first baby due in March. I have a job that does require some occasional travel, and goes through very busy periods (followed by less busy periods). In the busy periods, I probably average about a 50 hour work week (which seems low compared to some of the comments I’ve heard here). My commute is minimal. Almost everyone we’ve talked to seems to think that this job is an awful idea, and we will kill our marriage and scar the baby if he takes the job. But….it’s a job….and you do what you have to do….and life doesn’t always work out 100% perfectly as you might have planned it. I am fairly confident in my ability to handle this through a combination of excellent childcare benefits from my company, a little help from the parents and in-laws, and enough extra $$ to pay for outside help in the evening and at night when/if I need it. I do feel like I’m taking a lot on myself, but, frankly, I like to have a lot going on. Are we crazy to consider this?
Nope, not crazy. Many people have happy, healthy family lives when one (or both) parents have significant travel commitments for work (see: marines, soldiers, sailors, airman). A dad who is only home on weekends but spends a ton of quality time with his wife and child during those weekends is worth far more than one who is home 7/7 but neglects the quality time.
He should take the job!
I don’t think it’s crazy at all. Perhaps it would be helpful to sit down and figure out how long you can realistically survive on one income and take it from there. I don’t know what your financial situation is like, how long he’s been unemployed or what his prospects are of finding something better, but unless you think there are better options on the near horizon and you can afford for him not to work a few more months, I would say he should take the job (assuming he wants to, too, of course).
Whatever else, I certainly don’t think it would scar the baby. Babies are much resilient than people give them credit for being.
I think you should run the numbers and see about a LOT of help for you (more than you think) when he’s gone. Babysitting, daycare, housecleaning, cooking etc. If it makes sense financially, he should take it. If he doesn’t like it, he can look and 100% travel is a good reason to be looking. I had a job like that once and when I was looking I always said I wanted to get off the road and people understood.
This. Also, is there an option for him to have reduced travel for the first few months after the baby is born? You will be tired beyond anything you can comprehend, and being home with a baby with no relief coming through the door at the end of the day will not be fun. Personally, I bottomed out around 6-8 weeks with mine. If he does have to travel in those first few months, see if you can have a family member or friend stay the night to help you.
(My first one was colicky and did not sleep through the night until he was 9 months old. It was horrible.)
K in NYC
write out the realistic schedule of things…
ie: who is doing what on a regular week, on a week when you travel, when the child has a school event, etc.
Consider what your plan will be when you have a brand new baby and he’s gone, etc.
If you have the means to add in help and your relationship is strong enough to not feel upset with each other for missing moments, and he can be present in the life of the child (and in the marriage), the job sounds like a good fit. Otherwise, it may mean he has to keep job hunting until the right fit comes along.
In my experience, a baby can change everything (I know, I know, but stick with me here!). This might sound obvious but I really didn’t appreciate the impact becoming a parent would have on our family life and careers until it actually happened, and in particular, I didn’t anticipate the WAY in which it would change our lives. I mean, I knew we’d be tired and busy, but I certainly didn’t anticipate how much our life goals and desires, and our priorities, would change. So all that is to say that my advice would be to NOT over think this. Your husband needs a job, he’s been offered one. If it’s a job he would take if the baby was out of the picture, then I say take it. Nothing says he has to remain in the position if it’s not working out after you become parents. You can re-evaluate after baby arrives – and I suspect you’ll find life after children involves constant re-evaluation anyway, regardless of whether he takes this job or not!
Research, Not Law
This is an excellent reply. I will cosign.
My husband was out of work and was a SAHD for 3 years. When our daughter was only 9 months old, and our son not yet on the horizon, my husband got a call from an old colleague who wanted to set him up with a new job – in China. My husband was all fired up to do it and got really mad at me for putting up roadblocks. He would have come home for half a week every month. I told him he would miss our daughter’s entire babyhood and he would regret it. He disagreed with me, but because it was a me-or-the-job situation, he turned down the job, but stayed mad at me for a while.
10 years later, he frequently remarks that it would have been “insane” to take that job while our daughter was a baby, and he’s sorry for putting me through that.
We’d probably take it, but have him look for something more reasonable inside that company or elsewhere all the while. You do what you have to do. That said, he will be missing many firsts, maybe worth it to him not to do that.
I don’t think it will scar the baby and that he should consider taking it if there enough money for:
*A nanny or nanny-share. We’ve talked here before about day-care for single moms or moms who don’t have spouse/SO support. So get a nanny or perhaps an au pair when you return to work. Not having to do the day-care drop off and to handle days when the baby is too sick to go to day care require flexibility that a nanny allows.
* Hire a night nurse for the first month or two when you go back to work. Or have a relative move in. As we talked above, returning to work is hard on anyone even with a parent to share night duty.
* Housecleaner, meal service, laundry service. You will need all this.
So, ladies…..it is snowing here, which is unusual and everything totally shuts down when it happens. My city is completely unable to cope with snow. Having grown up in a Deep Winter area, this is completely odd to me, but it is also very entertaining.
I am feeling the need for a slinky black dress, to be used for date nights and c*tails, but (a) I am on a bit of a budget and (b) am seeking something non-sparkly. One of my options is James Perse (either V-neck or off-the-shoulder). Does anyone have any experience with his dresses? Thank you!
PNW, by any chance? I am staring out the window at the crazy blowing snow in Seattle and trying to figure out if they’re ever going to plow my street or if I’m just supposed to wait it out. My subcompact definitely can’t handle this much snow…
Yup, you guessed it (but north of you). It is a well-known fact that my city sold most of its snowplows about 10 years ago, so most of the city simply isn’t getting plowed at all. Snow seems to have stopped temporarily but man, is it ever windy. I think you guys are supposed to get more snow than us, though.
On the island, hey? I’ve heard it’s a disaster over there today!!
Depends which island you mean! ;-) It is pretty bad here and I would like to go home but I am trying to be a good employee. Theoretically it has stopped snowing but I don’t believe it.
Ooh, if you’re on BBI, I lived there during snowpocalypse 2008, and it was craaaaaaaaazy.
I’m supposed to drive to Olympia for a hearing tomorrow and am really not feeling good about it.
I’m in Seattle on Cap Hill- not going anywhere! Love working from couch looking out window at snow. My roads never, ever get plowed; we’ve had a car totaled, another time spun down our local hill. I am pregnant- not risking it. Went in yesterday during a lull, got caught in 5 during a bad mixed patch- not worth it. Stay safe!
I actually agree with the approach- it would be a waste of money to maintain a bigger fleet for a few days/year. And I like not oversalting as the chemicals are bad pollutants. So long as my heat stays on (no power Sunday) I am all for a few snow days. My whole group can work remotely easily, really. Enjoy! Going to take my dog outside soon- she is white and fluffy of Siberian descent and in her element.
I agree it would be a waste to maintain a bigger fleet, but it does make things a massive pain in the you-know-what on the few days it does snow. If it snows more tonight I might just be a wimp tomorrow and work from home – I deserve a snow day. Some of my colleagues did that today already.
Cbackson, don’t drive to Olympia tomorrow unless you have snow tires. Can you ask to have the hearing moved to next week? I am not a litigator so don’t know how these things work….
Oooh, Olympia got a lot of snow…plus just getting to the main streets here in Seattle is iffy. Good luck if you end up having to go!
I’m both glad and not-glad I’m working from home the rest of the week–I got an earlier flight back from my work trip last night just in case, and made it home, but since I work from home, nothing is canceled for me!
I’m not actually a litigator either – the whole means by which I became responsible for this proceeding is a comedy of errors not worth repeating. We’ve asked the judge for a postponement and hopefully will get it…
I saw a thread a while back about whether it’s worthwhile to get an accountant to do your taxes. Does anyone have an accountant they like in NYC? I don’t have many complicated tax matters, and have always done my own taxes (with or without Turbotax), but I feel as though I should check in with an accountant to make sure I’m on track. If anyone has a financial planner they like, that would be helpful to hear about too–I’m trying to get myself in order this year!
I’m not in NYC, but I found my accountant by going to the website of my state’s CPA’s trade group, and calling women-owned accounting firms until I found one I liked.
For financial planning, we’ve talked about this before, but I recommend going into a local Edward Jones branch. I love my EJ financial adviser, and my family has been with them for years.
I also recommend Lois Frankel’s book, “Nice Girls Don’t Get Rich.” It’s a followup to “Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office,” but about personal finance, specifically for women.
Ooh–that’s a great idea on finding a woman-owned business!
you don’t need someone in nyc- it can all be done remotely. maybe meeting in person is important to you but the hourly rate there is wayyy higher than everywhere else for same basic service. I do mine on TT and use their audit-reviewers because really the accountants are just inputting your stuff into a program- and you have to give them the stuff anyway, taking same amount of time (or more time to use accountant- if I had to make them copies etc- whereas TT has it auto-loaded for me) so i find easier to just put it in self and have professionals check the results. It’s under $100 usually for return and check by their tax people.
Thanks–I hadn’t thought about not using someone in NYC, but you’re right–there’s no reason with email and fax.
is dc mid size firm out there from yesterday?
You mentioned that your firm had an open position and that you would provide details if anyone was interested. Is it too late/too annoying to ask for the info? (My friend is antsy!) Thank you!!!
The 7 Most Baffling Things About Women’s Clothing, from cracked.com:
i actually own this top in a blue abstract pattern. it runs very large and is not meant to be worn over pants. howevee tucked into a high waisted pencil skirt, it generates double takes and piles of compliments.