Frugal Friday’s TPS Report: Woven-Trim Tank

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

Woven-Trim TankThe Limited has a bunch of discounts today that are worth taking a look if you’re a fan — 70% off coats, 40% off dresses and, today, an extra 25% off markdowns. This marked-down tank is definitely on the simple side, but I think it looks great for layering — great reviews on the website (it’s got 4.9 stars out of 5), a high neckline, a little bit of interest at the top, and it’s machine washable (perfect for the bottom layer). I’d wear it under a sweater or cardi with a deeper V, and possibly layer a blazer on top of that. It was $16.99, now $12.74, available in sizes XS-XL in purple, black, navy, deep red, camel, and gold. Woven-Trim Tank

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  1. Sydney Bristow :

    My recent experience with tank tops from the Limited are that they run small. At least the camis do. They look nice though and the fabric is soft.

  2. Almost There :

    Style me! After much debate, I chose this dress to wear to Broadway for my first trip to NY:

    But now I have to accessorize. Do you think a matte black belt and black pumps, or a gold-ish belt and nude pumps, or something else? I found this belt that might work… Thoughts?

    • I would say choose a belt that’s a little more plain – the H&M belt is too busy and it would distract & detract from the lace.
      Matte black sounds good.

      As an aside, many people do not dress up for Broadway shows here in NYC, so don’t feel too pressured to dress to the nines.

    • Very pretty. I’d go with black — gold might make the red dress a bit too Christmas-y.

      Have a great time.

    • Sooo Pretttyyyyyy!!! omg, you are going to look so gorgzh. I agree with a neutral belt. But i think you could have more fun with the shoes, or stockings. I like pattern on pattern, so I like wearing fun patterned stockings, like the sheer ones with dots. Or a colored/sparkly fun bag. Have FUN with it. And enjoy the show! I can’t wait to hear what show you get to see! ;o)

    • Senior Attorney :

      I think black sounds good! Congratulations on finding your perfect red lace dress, and enjoy the show!! I’d love to hear a report back on what show you saw and how you liked it!

    • Are you very tall (over 5’9)? Otherwise, this dress might be very long on you. I bought a ASOS midi dress a while back around the same length and it looked so matronly on me because it was soooooo long. Then again, I’m only 5’5. It’s a really pretty dress, just be forewarned that the ASOS midi dresses are truly midi (calf length).

      • just Karen :

        I am pretty sure Almost There is pretty tall, so she should be safe – I vote for the black belt and pumps. I think that dress is absolutely gorgeous and am so excited for your big night out – what a wonderful surprise from your SO! If I remember right, it was a roll of the dice on sizing though – do you have a back up outfit?

        • Almost There :

          I ordered it expedited shipping so it will be here with plenty of time to spare to find a back up if necessary, but I’m so hoping it’s not necessary!

      • Almost There :

        Yep I’m 5’10” so I think it will be perfect! It’s so hard to find knee-length dresses that aren’t mid-thigh on me :)

    • That dress is beautiful. I agree with black accessories / shoes (not nude or gold). I would wear suede black pumps or mary janes and I’d wear a chunky, multi strand pearl bracelet with that dress.

    • For a less ‘expected’ pairing, a teal belt similar to this one might look nice. This completely depends on the color of the dress in person, but I do like red and teal/turquoise together usually.

      Black sounds great though too.

    • That dress is SO pretty!! And, it’s a very interesting length! And I second the teal, what a fun/gorg combination! Plus teal/turquoise looks great with almost every other color so you’ll get lots of use out of the belt.

    • des-pairing :

      That’s such a pretty dress, and works well with your height too. I don’t think you’ll need a belt, but if you do, black and red are classic

    • Almost There :

      Thanks to everyone for your suggestions! When I am all ready for the show I will think of you!

      • Ooo, JUST had a thought! What about a belt that is Black but Sparkly!? That would make it a little more festive and fancy, but would avoid the ‘christmas’ connotations.

        Like this one, black sequins and a bow shape?!?! omg it would be so fun!

        Thanks for letting us dress you like a paper doll, this is fun! ;o)

    • You could also do black boots to make the lace less cutesy. I’d opt for a slim black belt but don’t think you ahve to have a belt with this dress. It’s very pretty on its own. A slim gold belt would look nice too. I agree that the H&M belt is too much.

  3. PharmaGirl :

    They sell this in a cami version too, which might look nice under basic v-neck sweaters.

    • I have the cami version of this, actually! I bought the purple color to wear under it’s coordinating sweater, but I wear it under a few other sweaters as well…I’m a fan!

    • I agree, but I like to wear bulky SWEATER’s in the winter OVER these so that Frank and the manageing partner do not ooogele. I DO have to admit, tho, that the manageing partner is getteing used to me and NOT ooogeleing as much. Frank, however, is incoregeibele. FOOEY! I do not know why men find our body’s so interesting. I certainley do NOT care that much about men’s body’s. FOOEY!

      I got a great case resolution for ROBERTA. A guy sue’d for WC claeimeing he was diseabled at work, and could not work, so I had our PI take picture’s of him sawing up a tree that fell after Huricane Sandy and then carrying the branches to the street. HA! He was NOT diseabeled after all I told his council. So they agreed to drop the case entireley, b/c the manageing partner told me we would go to the disiplinary commitee for him fileing false pleeading’s claimeing that the guy was diseabled when he was NOT at all!!!!! YAY!!!!!

      The cleint is very happy. We do not get that many case’s from this cleint, but the cleint is very pleased with me for ordering up a PI as part of DISCOVERY! The manageing partner says I am becomeing a BLACK BELT in this stuff!!!!! Mabye I will get a bonus out of this after all for Christmas……YAY!!!!!!!!!

      • Ellen, tell us MOAR about Gonzalo. I really hope he workes out for you. FINGERES CROSSED!!!!!!!!!!111

      • Senior Attorney :

        That’s interesting. I’m pretty sure that in my jurisdiction it’s against the Code of Professional Conduct to threaten an attorney with disciplinary action in order to gain an advantage in a case. I guess New York is DIFERANT.

        • Opposing counsel in this matter is probably Brian, who kowtows to Ellen and Roberta every single time, sweaty palms and all. My guess is that MP was talking a big game, like he does, knowing that he wouldn’t ever have to follow through. Not that he’s likely to know relevant procedural rules anyway.

          • ELLENWatch, you are a veritable font of information on All Things Ellen.

            I bow to you, O learned one.

        • Senior Attorney, you are correct. Frivolous threats for sanctions are themselves sanctionable. I can send you some cases.

  4. Does anyone have a pair of grey suede heels they can recommend? I finally figured out how to best wear my grey pinstripe suit (with grey top and dark grey tights) but need grey suede shoes to complete my “column of color” (thanks Mamabear for the inspiration!).

    • MaggieLizer :

      I’m seriously lusting over these:

      I have light gray suede wedges from Via Spiga that I bought YEARS ago and have held up wonderfully; I get a ton of compliments and everyone thinks they’re new. Even though I just spilled coffee on them last week. I couldn’t find any heels after a few minutes of poking around, but if you come across them I highly recommend them.

      • e_pontellier :

        Good grief those are beautiful.

      • AnotherLadyLawyer :

        Confession – I bought those LK Bennett’s the other day on accident (went in to replace favorite wedges, they didn’t have my size, thought oh let’s try those on for fun, and oops). THEY ARE AMAZING. And shockingly comfortable bc of the chunky heel. They go beautifully with black tights and my standard uniform black skirt suit.

      • Mountain Girl :

        I’ve noticed that LK Bennett seems to be the favorite shoe brand of Duchess Kate. Every pic I see of her she seems to be wearing LK Bennett pumps.

      • fluffy bunnies :

        This is a day late and dollar short – but I got some waterproofing spray which saved my gray sueds shoes from a similar coffee spill. (It’s useless in the rain, though.)

    • I have these from Banana & really like them:

      The platform makes them easy to walk in and they’re relatively comfortable, particularly after you’ve worn them a few times. Plus, I bought them during a 30-40% off promotion BR was doing, so the price was pretty reasonable.

      • These might be perfect, thank you! I also love love love the LK Bennetts but they are a bit lighter than what I need.

  5. Shopping experts, I need your help! My dad has requested a new “fisherman-style,” cream-colored sweater for the holidays this year. I have found plenty of nice wool fisherman’s sweaters, but not one in his fabric of choice (acrylic; apparently wool is too itchy and too hard to wash). Does anyone have any leads? Thanks, ladies! :)

    • Would he wear cotton? This LL Bean sweater looks nice for $99 (plus, $10 gift card for $50 purchase!):

      • Thanks for the tip! I like the looks of the LL Bean sweater, but I worry about the “slim fit;” not sure that’s going to work in this situation. :)

    • Gant does nice ones in cotton too.

    • anon in tejas :

      eddie bauer has a few that would meet your needs. not a specific fisherman’s sweater, but many options in cream and with cotton (some blends).

    • I got a National Geographic catalog last night that was full of fisherman’s sweaters for men and women. Maybe they will be on their website? They seemed to very reasonably priced.

      • Good idea! I would have never thought to check Nt’l Geographic… Thanks, all, for the help.

  6. applesandcheddar :

    Can anyone recommend some really really warm tights? I’m thinking maybe even fleece lined? I normally wear Hue opaque tights under skirts on a daily basis, but I am still cold. Is there something warmer?

    • I’ve never worn them but saw fleece lined tights at Nordstrom Rack the other night. I know others here have endorsed them.

      • SF Bay Associate :

        Yep, they’re awesome.

      • Turtle Wexler :

        The brand at Nordstrom Rack is Legale (not sure I spelled that right). They are really cozy but run kind of short — I’m 5’3″ and I had to tug at them quite a bit the first time I wore them because the crotch really wanted to stop just above my knees. They loosened up after a couple wears, but I think they’d be pretty uncomfortable if I was an inch or two taller. They do have legging-style ones without the foot that would be fine under boots. Overall, I really do like this style of tights, though!

        • Huh. I’m 5’10” and I bought two pairs of Legale tights at TJ Maxx recently, and they are fine. A lot better than a LOT of tights, for me.

          • Turtle Wexler :

            Are yours the fleece-lined ones? A tall friend of mine said she tried the fleece ones and couldn’t get them anywhere near her waist, so I don’t think it was just me…maybe our Rack store got a weird batch?

          • Yes, the fleece-lined ones. XL and Queen both said they’d fit up to 6’0″ and that seemed true to me. I still have to hike ’em all the way up as far as they will go, but that’s true for me with all tights.

    • Almost There :

      • applesandcheddar :

        Have you worn these? Do they actually look like regular tights?

        • Almost There :

          I have both colors. They look like opaque tights, so, they don’t really become sheer at your knee when you sit as normal tights do. Alternatively you could just look for tights with a higher denier, because higher denier = more fibers = warmer.

        • I have a pair of fleece-lined tights (not sure what brand), and when I’m standing I can’t tell a difference from regular tights from looking at them. When I bend my knees, I can tell from the wrinkles that appear in the tights that they are thicker than regular ones; the wrinkles look more like wrinkles on leggings. I highly doubt anyone but me would notice this, though, so I still wear them to work because they are so warm!

          I’m not sure if this makes sense, but basically when you bend, the fleece-lined tights behave more like leggings than tights. But who at work is going to notice the wrinkles in my tights?

    • I have a few pairs of fleece lined tights from Walgreens (of all places – my mom picked them up because she was intrigued and now I’m a convert). I’ve worn each pair probably once a week for two winters and they’ve held up great (through washing and everything).

    • Fleece lined tights are good like others have said. Also, wearing 2 pairs of tights really increases their warmth. I discovered this a few years ago, and now on the coldest days when I wear tights I always wear 2 pairs and it’s almost as warm as pants. Almost.

      Wool blend tights are also extra warm. And I’ve worn regular tights under wool tights & found that to be super warm as well.

      • I find tights to be warmer than pants. Something about not having a leg opening and they way they are tight on my legs. Anyway, Commando tights are amazing, thick and warm.

    • Wolford has these fantastic merino wool tights. They’re expensive, but one pair usually lasts me an entire season without looking ratty.

    • Blonde Lawyer :

      Discount brand “legale” sold at VF Factory outlets and the like.

    • Not fleece lined but amazing. Uniqlo HeatTech tights.

    • Gaynor Minden (a dancewear & pointe shoe maker) makes amazing footless merino tights, and they’re waaay cheaper than Smartwool or Icebreaker or any of the other technical/outdoor companies charge. Dancer dot com.

  7. Just want to shout out to Gail the Goldfish for organizing last night’s meetup. There were only a few of us but it was so much fun. Now I get to help Deep End plan her wedding in N.O!

    • e_pontellier :

      So sad I couldn’t make it! Alas, it’s finals season here at law school so I was stuck in the library.

      • We were thinking about you!

      • Susan (edna_mode_nyc) :

        Good luck! When’s your last final?

        • e_pontellier :

          Dec. 18. I have a 10 page paper due today, then exams on 12/10, 12/17, and 12/18, and then a draft of my Note due 12/28. (aaaaand I just outed myself for anyone who doesn’t already know me.) Look forward to coordinating a meet up in January!

    • NOLA you are awesome! I am so excited about all your recommendations. Enjoy the rest of your trip in NY.:)

      Thanks so much for organizing Gail the Goldfish! I’m already looking forward to the next meet up!

    • Gail the Goldfish :

      Thanks, and you’re welcome:-) It was fun meeting you guys!

  8. Pardon the Venting :

    Hi ladies, please pardon the venting, but I need to let this briefly out.

    I’m in a long distance relationship and my SO is visiting for the week. I’ve been putting in crazy hours at work, knocking stuff out so that when he arrived I could duck out early and enjoy a work free weekend with him.

    Well, as luck would have it, one of my cases full on blew up this week. Suddenly I’m looking at spending the whole weekend working. I feel awful that he came all this way only to have to entertain himself while I work. While I’m in a field that can have a lumpy workload, this sort of situation only happens a few times a year.

    Thanks for letting me vent. Back to the grind!

    • e_pontellier :

      That’s TERRIBLE. I hope you and your SO get to spend *some* time together. tea&sympathy

    • AnotherLadyLawyer :

      Sad! Does he have work to do over the weekend? You could always bring him to the office with you for part of the time — like let’s head to the office in the morning, then I can squeeze in lunch with us solo, and then you can explore and entertain yourself until I’m home at night?

    • Not sure if this would work in your office, but if SO is here for the week and if you’re going to have to put in some serious weekend hours, is there any chance you could take a day or so off later in the week? Assuming the case-that-blew-up will have finished blowing up before the end of the week, that is.

    • Awe I’m sorry! I know how awful this feels – especially when you’ve been working so hard so you can spent quality time with your SO. Can you maybe try to head to the office early and put it in a few really productive hours so you can be home late afternoon/early evening to spend the rest of the day with your SO?

    • Thanks for the commiseration all. TBK, that’s a great idea. My thought is that everything always seems worse on the day of the blow up. Hopefully we’ll get everything under control and that will free up time next week.

      The good thing is that SO is coming off his own rough week, so he’s perfectly happy to sleep in while I head to the office extra early get work done (just as you suggested TO Lawyer). I’m hoping this will let us squeeze in lunch and some evening time together.

      And to his credit, he has been such a good sport about it. I’m lucky to have such an understanding guy! Thanks again ladies, you all are helping me feel a little better about this.

  9. Midwest Attorney :

    TJ: Desperate for ideas for a website with nice gifts that can be personalized for a fellow associate who is ascending to the partnership. Was thinking along the lines of a desk clock for her office that can be engraved…other ideas welcomed

    • Almost There :

      I’m sure you could get this engraved at your local jeweler, or NM might do it:

      • Midwest Attorney :

        I really like that, thanks! Do you think the material would be engraveable? I suppose I could cal a jeweler and ask…

        • Almost There :

          Yes most Nambe pieces can be engraved – see here

          • Almost There :

            Also you can buy directly from Nambe and they will personalize for you – but call them, their web site is awful.


      • eastbaybanker :

        What a gorgeous little clock! I’m keeping that gift idea in my back pocket…

    • Things remembered does engraving online as well.

    • This clock is stunning! I was trying to figure out a good, professional gift for my maid of honor and this clock is perfect.

    • CrimsonClover :

      I would also recommend for similar items at a wayyy cheaper price than Things Remembered, but of very similar quality. I stumbled into them looking for a gift for my parents’ anniversary and have used them for many gifts since, each time with great product, quick shipping and wonderful customer service!

      If you sign up for their e-mails I think you get a free shipping/$5.00 off/20% off coupon, plus they’re on E-bates with 7.5% cash back most of the time…

  10. pregnant anon :

    ‘r e t t e s, I need to know how to handle a delicate situation:
    I’m 99% sure that I am pregnant. It’s early still, so I don’t know if it will stick or not, but I hope that it does. The problem is that my very best friend and her H have been TTC for two years without success. I have been super supportive of her all this time and she has leaned on me pretty heavily during their struggles. Our husbands are friends, we live near each other… we spend lots of time together and are practically family. This type of news is something I would typically share with her in confidence before H and I decide to “go public”. I don’t know how to tell her or when to tell her and I feel so guilty. I am dreading her reaction, because I have seen how poorly she has responded to the news of our mutual friends (even some of her family members) expecting and it was rough. Advice would be appreciated.

    • e_pontellier :

      I’ve never been in this situation, but I recently withheld good personal news from one of my very best friends, and I really regret it. When I told her, she was like, “well how long have you known?” and was clearly hurt that I hadn’t shared. Obviously pregnancy is different, so others may have more appropriate comments. In any event, hopefully it sticks, and congratulations!!

    • Can you tell her privately, in a manner where she can process/react/retreat as she sees fit? Maybe in a phone call or at the end of a lunch? You don’t have to apologize for the news, but at the same time, it sounds like you acknowledge that her response may be icy. Congratulations and I hope your friend gets happy news of her own soon.

    • Never been in your shoes, but man that is a happy/tough situation. Could you send her an email over the weekend and say something to the effect of you all are family to us and wanted to tell you first, but understand that it may be bittersweet for her to hear so you wanted to give her a chance to react privately? That gives her the chance to be happy for you/sad for her in the comfort of her own home and then she can call you when she’s ready to talk. also, without saying it, just be prepared to give her an out. I can imagine that throughout she’ll be happy for you, but may need to withdraw for a bit. She is lucky to have a great friend who is as thoughtful as you!

      • MaggieLizer :

        I like the suggestion of not doing it in person so you’re not putting her on the spot. If you guys chat online, that’s probably a bit more personal than email but still allows her some distance.

    • momentsofabsurdity :

      A friend of mine got engaged literally three hours after her fiance’s best friend had broken up with our mutual friend, who is functionally her best friend. I think it DID hurt our mutual friend to hear the news (after the demise of her own relationship) but I think in the end, she would have wanted to be told and have it hurt, rather than having been pitied and not told.

      I agree with the advice above to take her to lunch privately and let her know, but I understand if you want to wait until you are further along. I wouldn’t make a big public announcement without letting her know first, though.

    • First, congrats! Second, this is tough and I think it shows that you are a compassionate person for caring about your friend’s feelings. Maybe some of those on this board who have been in your friend’s shoes can have good advice? I would think that sharing in a manner that allows her to leave and have private space if she wants would be ideal. In my case, a very good friend had been trying for a while and I knew was starting treatments when I found out. We were getting together with mutual friends and I was worried she would figure out something was up when I didn’t drink, but it wasn’t the sort of situation that I felt like I could tell her because it was too public and I didn’t want to leave her in a lurch like that–well, she told me first she was pregnant, due a day before me. We’re both 30 weeks now. Another friend has also been trying for a while and I found out I was pregnant a few days before she was scheduled for surgery. That was hard since she’s across the country, so I called a few weeks after to tell her and just told her after agonizing how to tell her.

      Good luck and hugs to you AND your friend.

    • Anon in ATX :

      Ugg this is a sucky situation. Looking from your friends perspective, we have been trying for 1+ yr with one loss, & it was really hard for me to get super-excited for my two friends who have recently had kids. I try to put on a good face when around them but sad feelings are hard to overcome. Its great that you want to be sensitive to her situation, and I would definately tell her that outright. I think if you are open about the fact that you want her to know because you are so close, but also communicate to her that you understand if she is not jumping for joy for her. I would also be prepared to give her space, that is what I would want personally. Try not to feel guilty either, its not your fault, its just life. As to timing, waiting is not going to make it easier and may make her feel worse, i’m not sure. Good luck to you & Congrats!

    • Actually, I was just in this exact situation. The exact. I waited until we knew that the pregnancy was for real (10 weeks + sonogram) and, told her, privately, before we told anyone else. Then we announced generally 2 weeks later.
      It’s a fine line of adulthood to be able to announce your pregnancy, acknowledge her grief, but also not feel apologetic for getting pregnant.
      Something that was not planned, but she later said helped a lot, was that I had to be somewhere about 20 minutes after our get-together/telling session. She said it was nice to have the privacy, but also to be able to then be alone and cry for 2 hours, and that it helped her to be more genuinely happy for me that I wasn’t trying to make it better for her.

      Good gracious – I hope we don’t have the same best friend.

      • Divaliscious11 :

        Agreed. This is what I did with my first, and second with a dear friend who was trying and had miscarried several times.

    • I am in a similar situation except that my friend lives across the country and both of us have been trying for the same time. I am going to share it with her first before going public but I plan to wait until I complete first trimester so I can be sure. I will probably end up telling her before telling my family so I am hoping she will appreciate that I chose her as my first confidante. I think my friend will actually react quite positively to me… what I am worried about is that afterward she may feel glum and down and I won’t be there to support her. A couple of things that I plan to do to keep things even keel between us: 1) only bring up my pregnancy and how I am doing in future conversations as responses to her questions rather than sharing everything 2) refrain from giving any tips/advice about TTC – we did this with each other when we both were trying but I am worried that if I do it now, it may come across as too know-it-all 3) try to bring up topics other than TTC so that our conversations aren’t always about this… again, when we both were trying, this is all we could talk about. Now I plan to take my cues from her and follow her lead on how much she wants to discuss

    • I would wait to tell until you have confirmation.

      If she’s like family, then she deserves to know when you tell family. If you tell no family members until you’re 12 weeks (or whatever you choose), then you don’t have to tell her.

      However, remember that not telling family until later also means that if something happens (God forbid) it’ll be harder to get family support.

    • Never been in this situation (on either side) yet, but I imagine, like many have suggested, that I would want time alone to process this, have a little “WHY ME! THIS ISN’T FAIR!” time so that I could have those emotions and then try and put it behind me so that I could be happy for my friend. Email, gchat, or a phone call I think are the way to go.

    • I’ve been in your boat with a friend who had had a miscarriage and then helped a lot when I had one (I was of no help to her). I took a long time to tell people because I wanted to make sure that this one stuck, but I did tell her one-on-one and early so that she wouldn’t hear it from anyone. I had a lot of dread before doing it.

    • had a somewhat similar experience recently. One of my good friends called me and told me the good news that she was expecting. Unfortunately, she had no idea that I had suffered a miscarriage a few days before, and I just started bawling when she told me. I felt terrible, she felt terrible, and it was just an awful situation. Of course I was thrilled for her, but the pain was too raw for me to handle at the time.

      So with this said, I am wondering if you should email her first with the good news, and then follow up with a call? That way you give her a little time and space to disgest the information (not that she won’t be thrilled for you because she will, but dealing with TTC and loss is so, so hard).

    • I am your friend. I think everyone has given good advice so far, I would feel far worse if I felt like my friend was leaving me in the dark, even though the news is going to be hard for her. The fact that you are sensitive to how she will feel will go a long way. Agree that you don’t need to apologize for being thrilled, but acknowledging that your friend is going to need some space/time to process is really nice! I do genuinely feel happy for all my friends who get pregnant easily, but infertility is such a lonely and frustrating place it can be hard to express those feelings.

    • pregnant anon :

      Thanks for all the advice. It sounds like the general consensus is not to keep the news from her, tell her in a way that acknowledges her feelings and also make sure she can react the way that works best for her, in her own space.
      We planned to tell family over Christmas, when we go visit them, and traditionally, we have Christmas eve-eve dinner with my friend and her H, just the four of us, at a really nice restaurant. I think I have to tell her before then or I will be busted by not drinking and I would hate to turn a lovely evening into something sad for her. It will be a struggle between now and then to “fake” drink, as it is. I will let you all know how it goes…

      • Maddie Ross :

        Please tell her before this dinner. I’ve been on both sides (the TTC and having it not go well) and the having to announce our good news to a friend who is still TTC. Do not tell her over a celebratory dinner. That will make it too tough and it could overshadow part of her holiday. Invite her to coffee or lunch sometime in the next couple of weeks (once you’re pregnancy is confirmed) and tell her then.

        • Also, I was an “advanced maternal age” person for all of my pregnancies. Confirmed, for my OB practice was at 8 weeks and earlier (if possible, it’s not always) at 5-6 weeks. FWIW, a lot of early losses happen after the first heartbeat on ultrasound (esp. if it is TVUS). I had enough of a confirmed pregnancy for #1 to base it on a pee-on-the-stick test to announce to family and lost the baby later, even after the ultrasound showed a heartbeat. For #2, we told parents only at the 7 week US, family at 11 weeks, and friends / other family at 4.5 months (we wanted to be really sure and people really, really understood). For #3, we had a good US at 8 weeks but lost the baby at 11 weeks. For #4, we had good early (6 weeks (told family only) and 8 weeks and 11 weeks) US scans, but a bleed at 11 weeks (previa), so we waited until I was showing to tell anyone outside of family (and again, everyone understood).

          Bottom line — it’s complicated what “confirmed” may mean for you and the timeline for you to feel comfortable may not coincide with Christmas. You should always get a pass on not drinking if you are known to be TTC.

    • anon in tejas :

      I would also suggest that you should say “this is really difficult to tell you and I understand if you and your husband want some space”

      I think that even no matter how delicately you handle things there is a possibility of hurt feelings and just your friends feeling worse because of their situation.

    • Somewhat analogous: a very, very dear friend of mine got engaged while I was still reeling from my husband’s sudden divorce announcement. I know that she was really nervous about telling me about it, and how I would take it. You’ve gotten really good suggestions here – my only additional advice would to continue to bear them in mind as your pregnancy progresses. My friend wasn’t sure, for example, if I wanted to be involved in all of the dress-shopping, decoration-planning, invitation-stuffing craziness, or if I wanted to hear her vent about her venue dilemmas. In your case, I’d say just try to find a way to respect her comfort level with regard to things like updates on your pregnancy, nursery decorating, all of that pre-baby stuff.

      In my case, my immediate reaction was happiness, and then I had a couple days of “why not me? why do I suck so much?” teariness. It was bittersweet at times to talk about wedding stuff with her. But in the end, it was important to me to share that part of life with her, and she did take me out for a crazy drunken girls’ night when my papers finally came, and on her wedding day I cried for joy, not sadness.

  11. anon for this :

    I’m not sure if I need to be anon for this, but I’m a regular reader with a question. My BigLaw firm has a merit system, rather than lockstep, for moving up in billing rate, responsibilities, prestige, salary, and bonus eligibility. Because I completed a master’s degree and worked briefly in one of our foreign offices, I started in April, rather than the traditional September-November that the rest of my class did.

    I saw something next to the printer where I was waiting for a document to scroll that indicated I will probably not be being moved up a level. This is heartbreaking for a few reasons, it feels like my 8 mos + 2 abroad is being rounded down to 0 instead of up to 14. I don’t know if it’s because I haven’t completed the year (let alone traditional 15 mos), because my performance is bad, or for some other reason. My first year has been on a steep learning curve, but I think that’s common, and I’ve done my best to go above and beyond whenever possible. I asked my mentor for a meeting after about 6 mos. here and she seemed happy with my progress. I think I’ll meet my hours quota, which no one does their first year because of all of the training and non-billable background reseearch you do. Because you only get reviewed and “promoted” once a year, this means I’m a full year behind and am not eligible until next winter to be considered.

    Next week when two partners sit me down, what do I do? Obviously I want to know what their thinking was, but how do I communicate my disappointment without being disrespectful? Is there some compromise available I’m not thinking of? If it’s really just that I have 8 mos in this office, that’s disappointing, but less worrying than if they think I’m an idiot. Has anyone had a similar experience?

    • I think you are prematurely worrying about this. You have no indication that your failure to move up a level is because of performance issues; if it is, you will find out at your meeting and I’m sure the partners will have advice on how to change to rectify those issues. The more likely situation (if you correctly interpreted what you saw, which might not be the case) is that they aren’t rounding up those 8 months. In that case, you have every reason to ask them about how they will count this extra experience. You can discuss this without sounding like you’re complaining; just say you recognize that you are on a different schedule than most of your class, and ask how that will be handled. The worst they can say is “sorry, you’re SOL.”

      • +1. Also, I realize they typically promote people only once a year, but it might be worth asking, since your situation is unusual, if they would consider a mid-year review in your case.

        • des-pairing :

          +1. My bf is in the same boat, and he’s discussed it with his reviewer so that they can promote him mid-cycle (at the next 6month check-in). You might want to ask if this is an option at your firm too.

          • anon for this :

            That’s good advice. I do know that a friend of mine asked last year for a mid-year review and they refused. I’ll ask anyway, though.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      And you also don’t know if that’s the final decision document. That might be a draft. The partners you’re working for may push on their colleagues to have you move up. Give them a chance to work the internal politics. You may want to mention to the partners that you work for that you’re really hoping your work product this year has demonstrated your merit to move up a level, something vague and optimistic that basically says “don’t forget that I want to move up and don’t forget that I deserve it, so go talk to your people kthxbai.” Then it’s up to them to push for you.

    • If it actually comes to pass, this could be a blessing in disguise for you. If anything, I found the jump from first year to second year to be a bigger learning curve than starting as a first year. By “getting” to remain a first year, you have an additional year of runway before the up-or-out gauntlet begins. That said, I think you should certainly ask about the possibility of a mid-year review/adjustment. I also think that you should make sure that your billing rate will be kept at the first year rate if you are not be elevated — if your rate is kept at the first year level, you will be a bargain for firm clients (because of your extra experience) and partner will be more likely to want to staff you on matters. By the way, as far as prestige/responsibilities go, I’d be pretty surprised if anyone in your group other than the partners who serve as group leaders (and maybe your mentor) will even know that you didn’t get advanced.

      • Alanna of Trebond :

        This could be true, only would you get paid the first or the second year salary? And what about bonuses?

    • I wouldn’t jump to conclusions so fast!
      But in case you’re right…I don’t know what kind of law you practice, but I do know as a junior litigator it’s very important to get a lot of hands on exposure to civil practice, discovery, and all of the brunt work that really just takes man hours rather than brain power. it seems silly and mundane at the time you’re going through it all, but now that i’m a midlevel i realize how much of my practice is grounded in the grueling work i did as a first year. frankly (at least in litigation) i do think time matters, and while it sucks if they are “rounding you down”, it isn’t a reflection of you as a performer, it’s just really about how much time you’ve been around and what you’ve been exposed to. Maybe in their view you haven’t been around the block yet.

      I also don’t know what kind of foreign office you were in (region/country/practice) and I know it was a very short period of time, but I’ve met lots of associates my level who spent a year or so in a foreign office early on and really didn’t get exposure to things that shock me (such as – never done a privilege log. It’s going to be hand to oversee a team doing a privilege review, if you’ve never done a privilege log in the past… ) All that said, those associates had other amazing experiences that I would love (and would definitely trade a step down to get…) It will grow into other opportunities, you just haven’t been there long enough to see how things play out.

    • It was my understanding that all biglaw firms are lockstep. Aside from maybe one very, big, presitigous firm with the name of a famous brand of tea in the name.

      • mine isn’t lockstep and we don’t have a tea brand name…

      • anon for this :

        I’m the OP. Mine changed about three years ago, and I know of two others in AmLaw 50 who have. It’s not a huge change, and it still basically follows the year system (you’re a first-year, then a junior for 2-3, mid for 2-3, senior for 2-3), but with the flexibility to keep people back or even accelerate them.

        • I guess when I think of biglaw I think of the top 5 or 10 firms.

          • anon for this :

            Hmm. I think biglaw as anyone paying the biglaw rates and bonuses, which I think at this point actually goes well outside the AmLaw 50.

            The font of all knowledge, abovethelaw, seems to put it as about the AmLaw 100 based on the sorting of their posts. I wonder how most people perceive it. Anyone?

          • I had to laugh out loud at this. No, Biglaw is not just the top 5 firms. I’d lump in the AmLaw 200, albeit recognizing that, yes, there are differences between working at a top 5 firm and #200.

      • Mine former firm moved off lockstep two years ago. It’s definitely not the norm, but it’s happening (and was to my benefit, although obviously results vary).

  12. Good morning – Do you give your hair stylist a Christmas tip or present? If so, how much? I tip generously throughout the year, but was thinking of doing something extra. Thank you, Hive !

  13. Happy Friday! I need advice with an ongoing dilemma in my otherwise lovely relationship. My SO is half man, half pig. We’ve talked at length about doing fair share of the chores, divided them up multiple ways, etc and have found a system that works – usually. I got back from being gone on an extended work trip and it seems that all the effort from before has evaporated. I get really frustrated because he makes as much mess as I do (self admitted slob in recovery here), but seems to think he doesn’t. He now will pitch in only after multiple attempts to prod/nag and not finish things completely. I’m annoyed because it’s our place, our mess and I shouldn’t be his mother reminding him to do his chores! Am I totally out of line? A cleaning service won’t solve the problem because it’s the daily things (dishes, junk mail, etc). Part of me worries that this is only get worse the longer we’re together and it will morph into me doing everything. I also have a little bit of a hang up because while he sees it as both of our jobs, he definitely comes from a family where traditional gender roles are enforced and sometimes I feel like defaults to that. Is this an insane thing to go to therapy over? I want to improve how I explain how much this is DRIVING ME NUTS.

    • Vintage Lawyer :

      Sorry to be harsh, but I don’t think it’s a matter of your not explaining it clearly. It’s a matter of his not caring that this issue is important to you and not being willing to accomodate you. To paraphrase Maya Angelou, “When people show you who they are, believe them.”

      • Not harsh at all. I’m just wondering if I’m actually getting across how important this is to me. I try to be measured sometimes because the flip to that is full on unfiltered (usually unproductive) ranting. Maybe I should just let the lid off…

        • maybe this is weird, but one out of a few things i’ve just started doing about my & h’s ongoing cleaning prob: ordering, not asking, my h to do things . i hated having to nag too, and the generalized convos about cleaning schedules, or how cleanliness lowers my stress levels were too abstract or something for him (which is weird b/c he is a great h who loves me and values me so much).
          now sometimes i just say, hey, for the next 15 (or 20 or 30) min we are both cleaning [specific room or task]. we are not allowed to do anything else until time’s up.
          or: do the dishes, i cooked.
          this only works because we’ve had the convo about how it’s important to me; otherwise i’d feel mean or he’d probably balk at being ordered around. but he acquiesces because he understands it’s important and that this is one way to get him to do his share.

          • I have a variation ordering vs asking: I now say – do you want to load the dishwasher or give the baby a bath? He picks his preferred chore and I do the other one. I’m happy because before he would have just gotten on the internet or headed out to the garage to “work on something” (aka a cigar and a beer.)

      • Senior Attorney :

        +1 to this. Honestly, if he is a slob and not willing to do his share, you should proceed with extreme caution because in the long run, either you will do everything or y9ou will live in squalor along with him. Period. As Vintage Lawyer has said, he know how important this is and he does. not. care.

      • +1 to Vintage Lawyer.

    • Google FlyLady. Besides helping us slobby people get over our messes, she goes a lot into the resentment we build up for family members not pitching in.

      • e_pontellier :


      • Her website scares me. But if it’s Godzilla approved, I will look at it. :)

        • It is a terrifying website. I subscribe to her emails and have them archived with a label in my gmail account. When I get a chance, I read through the emails to motivate myself. Also, her rubba sweepa is AWESOME. I use it remove hair from carpets before vacuuming and for removing snow off of cars.

          • Her emails are completely overwhelming. I had to unsubscribe within two weeks. Also, her tone really grates. (“Purple puddles”? Seriously?)

          • She does like purple a lot, doesn’t she? I ignore most of the sentimental stuff but a lot of the martyr discussion does resonate with me.

          • SpaceMountain :

            Get her book from the library, instead. You can get the whole concept without the emails.

            Also, I recommend cleaning service and scheduling parties, friends over, etc. Sometimes you need a deadline to get others motivated to clean.

      • I like Unf- Your Habitat (dot tumblr dot com). Similar sort of “get it done” approach.

        I had a mild version of this issue with my husband but lately I’ve found him washing dishes spontaneously.. he explains it as “I really don’t care if there are dishes in the sink and on the counter, but I know it makes you happy so I do it for you.” He doesn’t see dust or clutter (until the last minute where he suddenly decides we must clean everything right away) but those easily identifiable, discrete tasks like dishwashing and taking out garbage and recycling work for him. I’ve also tried to drill home the idea that it’s important to me to have all the dinner dishes washed and in the drying rack before we go to bed. It’s starting to take. Maybe a combination of “this is super important to me and makes me happy” and picking easily identified and simple tasks could work? And make sure to thank him every time he does something, even if you sort of feel like, well, it’s his JOB, and he has to do it, just like I have to do it. It makes a difference.

        Also, a cleaning service to take care of the big things makes the little daily things much less daunting. /cleaning service cheerleader

        • e_pontellier :

          +1 to this website too. It’s unf-ckyourhabitat [dot] tumblr [dot] com — but you have to actually spell out the swear word.

        • phillygirlruns :

          love UFYH. they have a great iphone app too.

        • I love that website just because it introduced me to the fact that I could call cleaning “unf*cking my habitat” instead, which sounds way more bad-a$$.

    • e_pontellier :

      “Hey, SO, I need your help. I’m trying very hard to live more cleanly/neatly. Here are specific examples of what I’m doing. Can you help me stay focused by doing similar things?”
      “Hey, SO, in order for me to feel like this is an equal partnership, I need you to help with household chores.”
      If it’s bothering you, it’s a valid reason for therapy. Your SO might be offended that you didn’t talk to him about it more before heading to a therapist, but if that’s a risk you’re willing to take (or you feel you’ve spoken to him enough already), go for it. Good luck!!

      • I think I need to hit home point 2. I don’t think I’ve ever clearly said that.

        To be fair, I feel like I’ve talked about this a lot with him. It’s an ongoing issue and we’re talking about doing pre-marital counseling anyways so maybe I should just role it all into one. Or else one day when I’m 70 I’m going to beat him with a broom.

      • seriously? figuring out how to divide chores between your SO is a valid reason for therapy? I’d JSFAMO

        • e_pontellier :

          Trying to be supportive. I have no idea what else might be going on in her relationship, and if someone had encouraged me to get to therapy with my SO before he became my DH, the last 3 years may not have been as miserable as they were.

          • Bless you, e_pontellier ! It does sound like you’ve turned a corner with your hubby though, so hopefully the next 3 years will be better than the last 3.

        • Lady Enginerd :

          Hey now! Division of chores taps into all kinds if deeper issues (gender roles, respect, expected division of parenting tasks). Getting to the bottom of those dynamics by using the chores as a starting point sounds like a good reason to go to therapy, particularly if they want to do premarital counseling (which should also cover similar topics). Dumping someone over chores is a little more drastic than having a pro help the both of you process why the chores are an issue, don’t you think?

        • SF Bay Associate :

          Fooey on that. ANY reason is a valid reason for therapy. Maybe a couple sessions will solve the problem, and maybe the problem is connected to much bigger issues that would really benefit from professional assistance and an objective eye. Struggles with communicating in relationships, creating a positive relationship, navigating and reconciling gender roles as adults versus what we were taught/saw as children, all of which may be aggravated by something as “mundane” as chores, are damn valid reasons to go to therapy. FOOEY on anyone trying to talk anyone out of therapy. FOOEY!

          I strongly believe that practically everyone can benefit from therapy, just as practically everyone can benefit from a personal trainer at the gym, even if all that person does is teach you some new skills/techniques you didn’t know before to make your life/workout more effective. With both physical health and mental health, sometimes it’s really beneficial to consult an expert. What’s the harm??

        • I’m big on therapy. But I would dump all y’alls husbands and SOs. My mind explodes during some of these stories. the answer is always stand up for yourself. standupforyourself. but all these “should i ask my SO if he minds if I request permission to be treated like a human being” make me depressed as f*ck.

        • Merabella :

          I would say also that this seems like a communication issue, because she has asked him, and he isn’t doing it. Maybe a therapist can help them to discuss how to better communicate with one another, and in turn this will help with the cleaning.

    • I would sit him down, explain that you’re frustrated and why you’re frustrated, and then ask for his viewpoint. Is it that he doesn’t think the mess is a big deal and therefore is doing it just to please you? Does he forget? If it’s forgetting, are there things he could do to help remind himself? If you’re at the point that you think counseling may be necessary, tell him that. If he’s anything like my husband, he has NO IDEA how big a deal housework can be. Sure, he realizes it’s a little messy, but it doesn’t cause the stress for him that housework causes for you. Alternatively, you acknowledge that it’s a big deal to you but not to him, that left on his own he’d live in incredible mess, and accept that that means you’re the one who will be left with these chores. That’s where I am. On his own, my husband gets take-out (no cooking), eats on paper plates (no dishses), keeps his clothes on the floor/on a chair/in a pile in the closet, and literally does not change the sheets or clean the bathroom (ever. ever. Yes, his bachelor apartment was appalling). If I want home-cooked food on china plates and a floor I can walk across, I need to do it myself. I get a little frustrated sometimes, but mostly I’ve just accepted it.

      • Here is the rub; on his own (with a roommate who was a borderline hoarder/slob) SO was very neat. Disgusting bathtub and dusty shelves and THAT WAS IT! So part of me feels – maybe right, maybe wrong – wonders if now that he’s in a committed relationship if he’s not reverting a bit. But that could also be my own feminist bias talking.

        • Susan (edna_mode_nyc) :

          This is the smoking gun. Your SO is taking advantage and basically calling your bluff.

          He’s saying, that even though you told him that X matters to you, he doesn’t care that it matters and won’t compromise to make you happy.

          He needs to have a sit-down talk with you and he’d better come up with the right answers. The bigger issue is that he’s dismissive of what’s important to you. He needs to acknowledge that this is wrong, problematic, and have a plan for not doing this dismissive crap again in anything else.

          If you think this guy is a long-term prospect, as in, maybe you want to buy a place with him or marry him, don’t do that without having the Come-to-[Religious Figure] convo with him. If you don’t, you are at risk of being that woman on Above the Law who “lost the negotiation” with her husband about chores and childcare.

          People were wondering how that woman ended up with a man like that– this is how.

          • Can you repost the link to that article? I actually think that is a perfect example of what I’m trying to avoid and it’d be helpful to have it.

          • e_pontellier :

            I don’t think the article will help you, but here it is:

          • Senior Attorney :

            Yes. This.

            Run away. Run away.

          • e_pontellier :

            Yeah I agree with Senior Attorney. As a wise ‘r e t t e once responded to a question I posted, when I feed your SO’s behavior into my subtext translator, it spits out the following:
            “I don’t care you’re unhappy. I don’t care enough about you to change. And, I’ve been an @sshole to you for awhile, and you’ve been putting up with my sh!t. So, nyah-nyah, you’re not happy about it, but what are you gonna do about it? Clearly nothing other than put up with more than my sh!t because I’ve called your bluff.” (PS: Thanks so much for this, Susan.)

          • Thanks ladies. You all have given me a lot to consider. I think I just need to sit down and be completely honest and not try to sugar coat it/be positive/all of the other crap I do to try to cushion the conversation. He’s a good guy and tries hard at everything else in our relationship (there is good give and take, I promise not just blinders). And perhaps a little pre-marital counseling.

          • Susan (edna_mode_nyc) :

            @ e

            You’re welcome, and I’m glad you’re taking steps with your DH.

            I get frustrated with the spouses and SOs that bully or are dismissive, because both those behaviors are so corrisive to happiness. The happiness from a love relationship is fragile and yet, so accessible if only these spouses/SOs would be a little kinder.

        • springtime :

          Yah…that’s a red flag to me too.

    • FWIW, This is one of the reasons why I’m ending my marriage. The resentment just builds and builds. And sadly, at least in my experience, any “come to Jesus” moments are short-lived. Hoping he sees the light soon. I think men sometimes view household chores as something that falls into our domain and something we do because we like to. I dont know about you, but I hate scrubbing the tub, but I do it because it needs to be done. I agree with the other poster — it’s not likely an issue of you not clearly explaining your needs. To me, it’s a matter of respect, it goes beyond being a slob.

      I don’t know if there are any books out there that can provide any advice. Perhaps therapy can help.

      • Maybe I’ll just print this out and show it to him. Seriously. and I’m sorry btw.

      • It’s also one of many reasons that I broke up with my live-in boyfriend. Come-to-Jesus moments, big ranting sessions, and polite nagging were effective for only a short time. Forget the housework, I knew we were done for when he started breaking things around the house and not telling me or fixing them. Then he stopped showering after his crossfit workouts and skipped daily showers too. It got that bad.

        For me, not helping with chores is a dealbreaker. Doing only the “fun” chores like cooking or feeding the cats is not “helping with chores”.

      • Maine Associate :

        When my husband left me and then wanted to reconcile 6 months later, this was one of the reasons I did not want to reconcile. I was done nagging him to do his chores.

    • When my mom felt like my dad wasn’t doing his share of household chores, she would just go on strike and stop doing them. Of course my parents eventually got a divorce….

    • I realized that me and my husband had different definitions of clean. So I realized that if I wanted something done, I had to tell him very specifically. So “clean the living room” had to be broken down to each individual task–go through junk mail, pick up everything on floor, sweep floor, mop floor, dust mantle, etc. Eventually, he remembered what all needed to be done in each room (we often do an entire house clean together, but in separate rooms to get done faster.) There are some things that he still just doesn’t get, so I just do those on my own since they are important to me. He would do them if I asked, but it would never occur to him to do them spontaneously (washing baseboards, doors, walls, etc.)

      So maybe your husband needs more specific direction and also needs to understand that this is important to you? My husband finally realizes that the state of our house is directly reflected in the state of my mood (and if we are being honest, enthusiasm to do other activities with him….), so when the house looks nice, then I am happier!

      • Susan (edna_mode_nyc) :

        L. just posted that her husband knows exactly what it means. He’s a slob with her, but was spick and span neat when he lived with a guy, who was sloppy.

        It’s true some people have different definitions, that’s not the problem here.

        • Just to give another perspective — living with roommates is different. I was neater with roommates than I am with just my husband. Leaving dishes in a sink for a little while after we’ve both had dinner together isn’t such a big deal to me, but I cleared my stuff right away because my roommate might have wanted to use the kitchen after me.

          I think that he should make an effort out of respect for you, but out of respect for him, you don’t get to be the final arbiter of cleanliness standards and chores for another adult. There are basic contributions every adult should make (his food does not magically appear in the fridge, get prepared, get cleaned up after, etc.), but if he doesn’t mind letting the mail sit for a few days unsorted, then you can either sort it yourself or get over it. That’s what I would tell my husband if he were getting on my case.

          • Susan (edna_mode_nyc) :

            Why is it better to be more considerate to a roommate than to a spouse?

            I’m always amazed at the people who are more considerate and polite to their roommates, coworkers, random strangers than the people who they’re supposed to love and want a lifetime partnership with.

            Just as things get negotiated between the roommates, things get negotiated between the people in the couple.

      • You are a saint. I hope your husband realizes that. I tried training my now ex-boyfriend and it drove me crazy that he never ‘learned’. E.g., he didn’t “know” that scrubbing grease stains off a pan was part of “washing the dishes” or that screwing the tops on jars was part of “putting food away” or that wiping the counters was part of “cleaning the kitchen”.

      • My hubs is kind of similar. I’m not sure how to explain it but he seems to be more willing to clean if he thinks it’s for a specific purpose. I explained to him, for example, that I ask him to put dishes away because I want to be able to come home and put my dirty lunch dishes and travel coffee mug in the dishwasher straight away. If he thinks it’s just to live in a clean house, it’s easier for him to procrastinate maybe? He also grew up in a house with very lax housekeeping and my mom is a compulsive neat freak so we’re still trying to find our middle ground there.

        I think he was better with his roommate because there was a clear delineation of public vs private space so he kept the common areas clean and his room was a pit. When everything is common space, it’s easy to let the clutter build up even if you intend to be neat.

        We’ve been living together for 9 years (married for 2) and I still occasionally need to ask him to get the crusty plates out of the office and he has to ask me to put away my shoes and purses that are cluttering the entryway. We all have different triggers when it comes to cleanliness and I think it’s worth a discussion about what’s acceptable for each of you and what makes you crazy. If you’re both willing to work on it, then give yourselves some time to improve those habits.

    • GirlMeetsWorld :

      I have the same issue and I’m not sure how to deal with it either. In my case, I do think it has something to do with gender. I grew up being taught that all work, including household things, professional obligations, schoolwork etc. is work and must be done properly, timely etc. or else problems arise. Even after nagging/discussing/joking about what household things to get done, my DH will do some things and not others. It’s def inconsistent because he doesn’t view house work as “real” work, the way a job is work. I don’t want to be the “enforcer” either. It bugs me that my DH thinks he’s “helping me out” instead of understanding that as a partnership, the work is both of our responsibilities, the same way that other things, like a mortgage, are. I appreciate that he does what he does, but unfortunately, if you don’t really believe that something is important, it can be hard to change.

    • Is this the hill you want to die on?

      Sometimes, you can be married or you can be right. And sometimes, you go go to Target, get some bins and containers, and periodically box up the clutter. 99% of the time, no problem; and if there’s an issue, it’s “it’s in with your stuff.”

      My husband must have un-diagnosed ADHD — he wanders away from something (the half-full water glasses left about the house, etc.) and will never come back to it. Ever. And even if he weren’t like that, he doesn’t spend his downtime caring (I will clean my hovel, but never seem to be interested in doing anything to make it less hovel-like; to each her own).

      I care more about this, I take care of it. I can’t ask him to care about things the way I do and do what I do (but I can try to find a way to make peace with our differences).

      • I perceive it as a matter of respect, so for me yes. If it’s a forgetful/different definitions/etc than no. To me, if I am an equal partner and am asking you to equally contribute to our household and you don’t, you’re basically telling me to f off. I see cleaning as part of that equal contribution. I guess if there were other things where it was cleaning + x + y + z and he did y and z, then I’d feel differently. But right now, it feels like all but z if I’m lucky.

        • I have a similar situation. I’ve told him that the crap all over our apt (and it is crap) gets thrown out on Sunday at 8pm if he doesn’t deal with it before then. I’ve been asking for (depending on the item) days/weeks/months. Maybe if I actually throw the stuff away, he’ll get the idea.

        • MaggieLizer :

          Say that to him in basically those words. I don’t think you can ascribe a bad motive to him until you’ve told him that this is a respect issue (BIG DEAL), not just a clean house issue (not a big deal). If he still refuses to help around the house once he’s on notice that it’s a respect issue, then it’s grounds to DTMFA.

      • Susan (edna_mode_nyc) :

        Some of us feel it’s better to die on the hill than slide down the slippery slope to becoming the servant.

      • For all of this, I would say cut your losses. You’re not married and you don’t have any chilren together. You need to live a certain way to be happy and you can’t compel him to do that. If you are that miserable, you need to go or he needs to go, and I wouldn’t let a lease or a mortgage or inertia become the reason that you stay. Maybe go to counseling first if there is something at the core worth saving or pausing for.

    • This is hard. I have a similar issue, except right now he isn’t working, and I’m working BigLaw, which makes me think that he should take on the traditional housekeeping role and do the cleaning/cooking/etc. I don’t mind helping some, but the problem is that is never gets done (there are probably at least 3 days worth of dishes piled next to the sink), so for me to pitch in after working 12 hours means that I have to do another hour worth of work, instead of just doing the dinner dishes since he cooked. Which sometimes happens, other times its “hey, can you grab takeout on your way home, I forgot to take something out of the freezer.” OMG, its not that hard to plan a few hours ahead.

      It basically boils down to the fact that its important to me and not to him. He will break down and do it, eventually, but its just not high on his priority list and I hate nagging him about it. I’m also at a loss for how to deal, and reading these suggestions with great interest. Good luck to you!

    • I might have the same problem as your husband. My SO considers himself to be very neat (I would disagree, I think we’re just a different kind of messy – his messy just happens to be put into piles around the house) and it drives him up the wall that I am constantly getting things out and then not putting them away. (I do do more than my fair share of actual dish/bathroom/floor cleaning though..)

      For example, he is constantly telling me that when I walk in from work in the evening could I please not leave a trail of keys, shoes, purse, computer bag, lunch things…everything has a home, could I please just put it there…

      However, I hadn’t considered how disrespectful it was until reading this thread…rather I had thought of it more as a “but this is just me and that’s how I do things” mentality. And it doesn’t help that he basically walks behind me picking things up and putting them away. I’m definitely going be trying to be more mindful of this in the future and keep things together…hadn’t occurred to me how much of an @ss I was being.

      Ugh, anyways, don’t really have much advice for you, except that I am in your H’s position and can relate – I have the utmost respect for my SO yet I still act this way..can’t really say why except that it’s become a habit (and one that I had before we met to an extent, but has been exascerbated because he cleans up after me) that I hadn’t placed enough importance upon to truly consider changing. But it would really blow my mind if he wanted to break up with me over it.

    • **Update**

      I lost it and just was like you want to know why I was snippy. Cue copy/paste of this post and some responses.

      He feels like a genuine asshole (good!), wants to work on it (better!) and is willing to go to counseling if needed so we can get to the bottom of figuring out the how do we make this feel like a partnership issue. I suspect there will be a long talk during our evening car ride.

      But finally, the biggest thank you. I don’t feel like a crazy person for being upset over this any more. Can not thank you all enough.

      • Hugs and rawrs. We’re rooting for you!

      • Susan (edna_mode_nyc) :


        Glad he sees the tip of the iceberg. Good luck to you both on melting the rest of the iceberg (underlying issues) together. Keep us posted, dear.

      • I don’t think anyone else has brought this up, but I highly recommend it.

        Google “Five Love Languages.”

        Someone on this forum recommended it to me when I was having the exact same problem you are having. My husband read the book, and I truly believe it is saving our marriage.

        Even though I told my H over and over that it was important to me that he do his equal share of the housework and that it made me feel unloved and disrespected when he didn’t, he needed to read it in a book to believe it. I know that sounds crazy, but I think however the author phrased it, it made more sense to him than the way I was phrasing it. And, sometimes it helps to hear the message from an outsider.

        At least have him go to the website and do the quiz–and you do it too. It seriously worked for me–not only is my H doing the dishes and the cooking, he went out on his own and bought a floor steamer, and you could literally eat off my floors now. No joke.

        • e_pontellier :

          Hey L, don’t know if you’ll see this, but well done!!!!!! Also, I second capnkate’s recommendation for the Five Love Languages.

        • e_pontellier :

          Oh, and capnkate, don’t know if you’ll see this, but I’m so happy to hear that from you!! I’ve been thinking about you & your DH. Glad to hear things are so much better.

    • What about just having a cleaning service more often? I’ve noticed on here most people say they go every other week or every month, but being a “slob” type myself, w/ a SO in the same boat, I have a cleaner once a week. It has really made a difference, even w/ the day to day stuff (it’s just easier to put things away if you’re starting from scratch each week). Worth every penny in sanity & environment.

  14. Shoe question: what’s the feeling on suede for an evening shoe? I’m think dressy / embellished pumps. I had been hoping to find something in satin or velvet, but there’s a lot of suede out there too. I think my reservation is the “rule” that evening shoes shouldn’t be leather (and I mostly agree with that). Can suede be dressy enough for formalwear?

    (fwiw, i’m considering something like these:

    • I like suede for evening in certain situations – fall/winter, and with the right textured/material dress (i.e., I wouldn’t wear it with a satin or chiffon dress, but I would with lace or silk.)

    • I think that those are definitely for evening. I have a pair of suede black pumps with patent accents that I wear for evening all the time.

    • I think it works but it’s definitely seasonal. SW makes a similar shoe (though not as discounted) in satin, btw. I also really love these:

      • Swoon. LOVE IT. But I can’t manage a stiletto of that height gracefully, unfortunately. At least not when there’s drinking, dancing, and traipsing outdoors in winter weather involved in my party plans.

    • Suede creeps me out. But so does velvet. To me it feels like what nails-on-chalkboard sound like.

  15. emcsquared :

    Question: It’s my birthday, and a bunch of people are commenting on my Facebook wall. My mother would say that I need to reply personally to thank all of them, but I DO NOT have time for that right now and I’m near tears even thinking about it. Should I disable my Facebook page, or is it OK to not respond?

    How is it that as I’ve gotten older, I come to see birthdays as just an opportunity to feel guilty for not responding to every will-wisher? *sigh*

    • e_pontellier :

      The latest trend I’ve seen is for the birthday girl to go through and “like” each birthday wish. Very minimal effort.

    • Jacqueline :

      First of all, happy birthday! Don’t stress. I think it’d be fine to just post once at the end of the day — something like, “Thanks to everyone for the birthday wishes!”

      I would definitely thank people for gifts, cards, calls, and lunches, but a Facebook comment on your wall isn’t anything that deserves a personal response. Thank everyone once and get on with enjoying your day!

    • dude no. At the end of the day write a status that says “Thank you for all the birthday wishes!”

      • +1. this is perfectly acceptable and widely followed fb etiquette (?!), and the most time efficient to boot.

      • just Karen :

        +1 – don’t worry about it, and happy birthday! If you feel like you need to acknowledge each, the “like” on each comment is a happy medium that lets people know you read and appreciate their well wishes.

    • You could also just wait until you have to thank each person if you feel that it’s necessary. You don’t have to respond instantly.

      I wonder if people hate me for not wishing them happy birthday on facebook. I just do not have the time to go through facebook every day.

    • Wait until tomorrow and then post a status update along the lines of “Thank you so much for all of the birthday wishes!”

      • Yes, this. I did this for my birthday last month and no one has unfriended me yet. Also, I totally fail to wish other friends happy birthday on FB, just because I’m not on it that often, and no one has unfriended me over that, either.

        But then, I’m old, and view FB as for my own convenience and probably don’t follow a lot of its social conventions. I don’t feel obligated to friend everyone who asks, for example, even if I know them and really have nothing against them. Was talking with an old friend recently (actually, this is the most awesome thing about FB, it has really helped me get in touch with some old friends) and we both look at FB as a low-input, low obligation, low pressure way to keep up on what people are doing.

    • Happy birthday!!!!!!!!

    • phillygirlruns :

      no, you don’t need to individually thank everyone. this is not even remotely something to stress or feel guilty about.


    • Girl – nobody’s mom has anything to say about fb manners. End of the day “thanks everyone!” is ideal.

    • Most people just do one message at the end of the day thanking everyone, and maybe go through and “Like” each message. Definitely no need for a separate response for each person.

  16. Reporting back on my Quincy order. I was impressed with the quality and fit of the Elliot blazer and skirt. Unfortuntately I was one size off in both, so I returned and re-ordered correct sizes. A week after getting a confirmation email, the company contacted me today that my skirt size was out of stock. They are also out of stock in virtually every other skirt/pant in my size. So I cancelled the blazer re-order, since I’m only in the market for a full suit. Very disappointed, thought I might have found a winner here but no such luck.

  17. this is great, i just wish it had sleeves

  18. momentsofabsurdity :

    Reporting back on the beautiful monogrammed pearl bracelets that I bought on Etsy for my sisters and cousin for Christmas (plus one for me because hey, it’s Christmas!) –

    They’re gorgeous! Hopefully my sisters will love them because I think they are just SO pretty and delicate. They seem well-made but also obviously we’ll have to take care when we wear them because they are definitely fragile. I absolutely recommend the shop – quick feedback, beautiful products, seems fairly priced.

    • That is gorgeous!

    • I’ve actually been looking at the store! A friend of mine got a necklace from there and it is gorgeous.
      But here’s a random question – what order do you put the initials in? My first thought is, “duh, put them in the order they’re normally in (first, middle, last!” But with the middle letter appearing larger than the outer two, that just seems… off. How did you do it?

      • The middle letter in that style of monogram is your last initial – so it is first LAST middle. When ordering, put your initials in the order of your name, and then the store (should) know how to arrange them.

        • momentsofabsurdity :

          At this store, they told me to send her the letters in the order I wished them to appear so for example, Alison Emily Smith would write aSe in the “notes” to the seller, so the seller knew which letter should be larger and in the middle.

        • The seller’s instructions for these bracelets are:

          To avoid any mistake, please let me know the following information in the “note to seller” when you order:
          – Confirm the color (gold or silver):
          – Letters IN THE ORDER you wish them to should appear:

        • Whoops, disregard my instructions – that’s what I get for not clicking to the actual seller! But anyway, that answers the “which letter should be big” question :)

    • eastbaybanker :

      LOVE! I have added the bracelet to my Etsy favorites. I’m trying to be good and shop for everyone else first before I buy myself xmas gifts.

  19. Ms. Lurksalot :

    Deep breath…

    This is my first post! I lurk. All the time. A lot. An unhealthy amount.

    Question for the wise ‘rettes:

    I am craving a new everyday work bag. The Lo & Sons OMG bag gets such rave reviews here, and they are on sale through the holidays. I am thinking of the black bag with the lavendar interior and gold accents. For reference, spending more then $30 on nearly anything gives me heart palpitations. I’m frugal. That said, I’m really trying to buy quality pieces in smaller quantities rather than the other way around.

    So, the question. Knowing that this will be a big purchase for me, is it silly to spend so (relatively) much on a nylon bag? I am a lawyer in a major city, my office is somewhat conservatively business casual. I like to aim to look professional as much as possible while still being practical. Does this bag lend itself more to the idea of “gym bag” rather than “professional bag”? Can I take this on a client meeting?

    • I have the OG in black . So no, not silly to spend money on a nylon bag. I think the bag is very professional–if I ever have to be super formal or go to court (completely unlikely), that’s the bag I would take. It’s perfect for client meetings.

      re: spending so much. For me, spending money on a quality bag like the OMG is having the necessary gear to do my job. When I go scuba diving, I have $1k+ in equipment on my body. I don’t feel bad about spending so much on a hobby I love. For work, while I may not love it, I do need to right equipment in the same way. A piece of necessary equipment is a good briefcase.

      As I wrote yesterday, I am tough on bags. I destroyed the beautiful $100 briefcase I got for graduation in 1 year. The OG gets less use (I have a more casual tote for daily use) but it’s still going strong after 1.5 years.

    • I have the OMG (in that pretty pretty plum) and actually think it’s sort of formal-looking for a gym bag. My firm is officially business-casual but sort of a conservative place, and I think the OMG would be a fine work bag here, especially in black. I actually carry a black Savoy to work. Do check the measurements to make sure they’re big enough to suit you.

      I can’t help with the guilt – I feel terrible about having bought two Lo&Sons bags in short succession, but I was at least able to get them both at a discount and each for under $200.

  20. I work for BigLaw in DC, but I am originally from out west. I really do try to conform to the more conservative and staid style out here, but sometimes I am just can’t help really wanting to break out of the mold with SOME sense of color and expressiveness! Case in point, I have a perfectly appropriate emerald green cocktail dress that screams respectable office xmas party, but as of yesterday I am secretly dreaming of pulling out one of my more demure (IE not screaming neon) Saris to wear instead. Totally inappropriate?

    • (Reposted to get out of moderation) I work for BigLaw in DC, but I am originally from out west. I really do try to conform to the more conservative and staid style out here, but sometimes I am just can’t help really wanting to break out of the mold with SOME sense of color and expressiveness! Case in point, I have a perfectly appropriate emerald green C*tail dress that screams respectable office xmas party, but as of yesterday I am secretly dreaming of pulling out one of my more demure (IE not screaming neon) Saris to wear instead. Totally inappropriate?

    • SouthAsian :

      If your party requires formal attire, I think a sari would be okay. To me, sari = formal in non-desi settings.

      • its formal lawyer. sari does do formal well, but the lawyer part i can’t tell

  21. Thoughts on toe cleavage? I recently bought a pair of suede teal pumps with a 3″ heel. The online photo did not have a picture of a model wearing the shoes. Perhaps the shoes were not properly scaled when creating the dimensions for a size 11. Any advice? TIA.

    • I think a bit of toe cleavage is totally fine – assuming we’re not talking about that one pair of Louboutins that every starlet was wearing last month that is clear plastic with a tiny cap of color at the point :)

      To be honest, shoes that cover up enough of the foot that there is NO toe cleavage often look clunky to me and feel uncomfortable (because the leather has to work perfectly with how your foot bends in that location, whereas leather that ends before the bend is totally out of the way).

  22. e_pontellier :

    Reading L’s struggle with her SO inspired me to post a little update. I fought back against my DH’s every last rude/disrespectful/demeaning behavior for about 10 days straight, after which we had 2-3 come-to-jesus talks, and I seem to have scared his pants off. I told him that his behavior is making me want to pack up my things and leave. He really was not happy to hear that and he was clearly upset.
    Since then, he’s acting like a whole new man – texting me during the day, responding to my emails, making me dinner, hiring a cleaning lady (after talking about it for a year and a half), suggesting I buy myself a gift to celebrate my upcoming internship & job, asking and actually listening to how my day was, pausing the TV when I start talking to him, and even saying goodbye to me in the mornings like he cares, instead of just rushing out the door. He even suggested that I spend as much of my summer associate money as I want, and not worry about saving the money to pay 3L tuition, even though he is very fiscally conservative.
    Thanks to everyone so so much for helping me man up. Think it’ll last? I’m trying to just enjoy it as I focus on finals.

    • Amazing progress-congratulations! I’m optomistic that it will last-although my personal opinion is that you just have to make sure DH understands that this is the only way you will let him treat you-you won’t accept anything less. Enjoy!

    • I’m not sure if it will last, but I’m generally of the opinion that people don’t fundamentally change that much. But you could try to help him along by giving him a lot of positive feedback on the changes. Let him know how happy it makes you and how much stronger your relationship will be if it continues.

    • e, I’ve been following your story for a while. Thanks so much for your update! It’s so heartening to hear that he’s finally acting like he CARES about you. No idea on whether it will last, but glad to know that you have the ability to speak up if he starts acting like a giant jerk again.

    • Lady Enginerd :

      Sounds like a perfect time to make sure he goes in and gets the therapy he needs while he’s receptive. Individual and couples. To be blunt, I don’t think it will last unless he deals with his depression (right? He does have that?) and doesn’t resist taking meds if he needs them for vain reasons like small amounts of weight gain (I seem to remember that. Or maybe the refusing to take meds/obsessed with exercise led me to read between the lines. Sorry if I inferred too much.).

      Congratulations on having the courage to stand up for yourself. Regardless of what happens with your husband, that personal growth and belief in your own dignity and that you are worthy of respect will last you a lifetime both at home and at work. Yes, it’s a lifelong process, but this is a big step!

      • e_pontellier :

        Lady Enginerd, you’re spot-on about everything – DH has depression, came off meds, and now it’s a problem. He’s totally obsessed with exercise and I think he wants to get back to his college weight but that’s just not happening in this lifetime (he was on the crew team and extremely athletic). After speaking with my own therapist about all of this, I’m going to enjoy his behavior while I get through finals and then revisit his depression. My therapist also suggested that he might not be able to handle therapy, so he might be better off starting with meds and possibly adding therapy later on. I agree with this idea, and if meds fix the problem, that’s fine with me.

        Thanks again everyone.

        • Lady Enginerd :

          Re: regaining his crew-era body… This is probably impossible and likely undesirable, particularly if he was a lightweight rower. I dated a rower in college and all the overexercising led to (to put it delicately) performance issues in other arenas.

          I think it really is imperative that he start facing his issues and accept that depression is, in many cases, a chronic condition and that he will need to responsibly manage it in order to have a healthy life. The sooner he realizes that the only way he can fix the marriage is to also fix himself, the better.

          I am proud of how you have bravely challenged your assumptions and are starting to expect that he treat you with respect. Just remember – this is a marathon, not a sprint. The good behavior right now could burn out without the proper mental conditioning (therapy/meds) much like trying to run a marathon without proper training. How’s that for a relevant sports metaphor?

          • e_pontellier :

            Well done!! Your point about overexercising is well-taken, but we only have LGPs twice a month, so I don’t see it really being impacted. (Yes, that’s on my list of “things I’m unsatisfied with.”)

            I agree I have a long way to go, but I think I’m finally able to deal with all of this — between this blog being so supportive, my IRL friends, and my therapist. I am definitely trying to take it as slowly as I need to so that I don’t burn out, but I will not accept any regression from him. Also, quite frankly, I don’t care if he feels I’m demanding too much. I feel I’ve been steamrolled for 2.5 years and I’m done with that.

          • Girl, you should be having all the LGPs!!!!!

  23. Hi ladies!
    Happy friday! I have a frivolous/fun question: I’m looking for nailpolish color recs. Any ideas?? I want to wear something cute and am totally sick of my standards reds, pinks, purple and navy. I want to wear something trendy but flattering! Was thinking possibly neon but can’t find a good brand (love the AA colors but the quality is not good). Ideas? Would love suggestions for colors or more specific suggestions for brand/color names!

    • Not neon, but my new favourite is Deborah Lippmann’s “Billionaire”, which is a very, very dark green. I recently fell in love with Deborah Lippmann (A+ quality) and think Billionaire is a super duper winter colour.

    • A nailpolish I LOVE (but it isn’t super flashy or anything) is Nars Orgasm. I’ve got tannish/red/olive skin & it looks amazing and neutral on me– but with a little bit of pizazz. Other than that my favorite feel good polish is red with sparkles. I use it on my toes when I can’t use it on my fingers & it always makes me feel happy. Sephora has a great red sparkle overcoat for any read polish.

    • Thanks, i’ll check these out!

  24. In case anyone is interested I was able to snag a large longchamp le pliage bag from bloomindales for less than $100 today… 10% off welcome coupon, $25/per $100 spent promo & 15% off credit card promo… WHAT!?!
    I’m so excited, I’ve wanted this bag forever but did not want to spend $145… and I kept missing their friends & family coupon promos.