APW Happy Hour

We are so ready for a nap right now!

Hey APW,


No seriously. I need to nap for a thousand years. But before I do, I want to thank every last one of you for your nice/excited/thoughtful embrace of the new site. We spent nine months trying to build something that would best feature APW’s content, old and new. We wanted a design that helped you find what you need, and then got out of your way. So my favorite comment about the new site was from longtime reader Ruchi who told me, “I love it! (And I hate change.) I spent the past hour reading old school APW and being all nostalgic-like.” Which is exactly what we were hoping for, particularly since I’m also known for my dislike of new things. (Also, for anyone that’s interested, you can read our awesome designer Erin’s thoughts on the launch over here.)

That said, we know everyone is still settling into the new commenting system. We’re going to give it a few weeks, so we’re ALL past the initial, “It’s new, I hate it,” thing, which I was also experiencing on Tuesday. Then we’ll have a little summit on the comments, and figure out what the best move is. We’ll also keep on rolling out features, as we beta test like mad. Till then, I’ll be catching up on weeks worth of laundry and chores, spending quality time with my baby, and a zillion other things that haven’t been touched in the last month. Thanks for bearing with us, and we hope you enjoy the glitterz.

It’s your Friday open thread, hop on it. Don’t mind the APW staff asleep in the corner.


Highlights of APW This Week

This comment from reader April on our Brides In Pants post made both Maddie and me cry. Plus, awesome new reader submissions up on our brand new URL: bridesinpants.com. (More tomboy goodness next week.)

We kicked off the new site with a delightful winter wedding. You guys seriously need to send us more of these, because they are always magic.

Finally, non-floral centerpieces that won’t break your bank account or steal your sanity. Plus, hot pink pumpkins! Thanksgiving’s never looked so good.

DIY or DJ your wedding music? Either way, we’re trying to make it just a little easier.

Playing the name game as a gay couple can be complex, but it’s always a game worth playing.

How do you cope with a family member outright threatening to act like an angry child on your wedding day?

What do you call your wife when she’d rather not be called wife? Real question.

Link Roundup

This couple posts all their fights to Twitter. Does it help? Discuss.

Lena Dunham interviewed Mindy Kaling for Rolling Stone and it was everything you wanted it to be.

In the wake of the relaunch, this story on hyper-employment is reminding me to unplug this weekend.

A four-year-old girl asked a lesbian if she’s a boy. She responded the awesomest way possible.

Wedding night advice from one hundred years ago. (Jokes aside, I found this fascinating. And also terrifying.)

Nancy Wake’s extraordinary war story, including sassing a french solder who wanted to talk about her hotness, when she was stuck in a tree thanks to her parachute.

How to host brunch without losing your mind.

Forget Elf of the Shelf, I’m all in for Dinovember. <— CLICK THIS LINK YOU’RE WELCOME.

Lucy’s probably going to put her cats in tights this weekend. We’ll just blame it on the sleep deprivation.

Thumbnail photo by Gabriel Harber (APW Sponsor)

Featured Sponsored Content

  • Anonymous Coward

    It’s open enrollment at work and my HR benefits coordinator talked me into funding an FSA. I could possibly get LASIK surgery or a gyn thing next year. I’m also looking for a new job and am waiting to hear back after an interview a couple weeks ago. I’m hoping to be gone by the end of January. So I’d be maxing out my reimbursement by having the surgery and then leaving the job before I’ve paid out the full amount into the FSA, potentially. Legal, but it feels underhanded. And I’m apartment hunting but haven’t given my current landlord notice. It’s kind of stressful to be doing so many things under the radar!

    • LondonSarah

      Yes, yes it is. But in the end it’ll work out; you have to do what’s right for you. Just do it nicely for other people where you can.

    • Kayjayoh

      I am also funding my FSA for next year for a bunch of dental work at the start of the year. (Will there *ever* be a year where I don’t have a bunch of dental work?) I know I am likely leaving my job in August, and I was worried that I’d end up with a hit on my last paycheck for the balance. I was delighted when I discovered that my employer has to cover the remainder. And while I feel like I should feel bad about that, I totally don’t.

      • Anonymous Coward

        I feel less bad because of the year that I contributed to my FSA and wasn’t able to book the medical care I was planning to pay for with it by the end of the plan year. That’s what burned me on FSAs — the use-it-or-lose-it. I sort of feel like I’m evening it out now.

      • K2

        Really? That’s good to know. I never asked, but just assumed that if I left my job before the end of the plan year, anything I’d used but not contributed would come out of my last paycheck. In the possible situation where I leave my job after having a baby, I figured I’d end up reimbursing my employer. It’d be nice if that wasn’t the case! (I guess it’s not underhanded if I planned on paying it back!)

        • Kayjayoh

          You may want to double check with your actual plan. I don’t know if this is universal or just this plan. (I emailed the customer service email from a not-my-work email address to ask.)

          • K2

            Honestly, since I was planning on paying the money anyway – and since there’s at least a 50% chance I’ll keep working – I’m not sure it’s even worth the effort to make sure. But nice to know that there’s possibility of taking less of a hit than I’d planned!

        • Anonymous Coward

          Useful for you to look into further (About.com should be no one’s one-stop info source, especially for legal/tax concerns!):

          “The uniform coverage rule requires healthcare expense flexible spending account plans to operate like insurance plans, rather than mere reimbursement accounts. This means that employers must make the full amount of coverage elected by a flexible spending account plan participant available to the employee from the start of the plan year, regardless of how much has been paid into the account up to that point. Employers may not deduct from employees’ final paychecks flexible spending account premium payments that are due for the rest of the year as a method of minimizing their loss.”

          http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/23/good-question-flex-spend-funds-after-job-loss/ (note the date) also discusses this. But if possible, you should ask your benefits coordinator (either in-house or third-party liaison) about your employer-specific plan(s).

  • There’s been some chatter about starting an APW-esque pregnancy/parenting blog. I’m equally excited and terrified to announce On Winging It: a lifestyle blog that focuses on the journey from TTC to parenting and all the crazy in between, with emphasis on drowning out the Parenting Industrial Complex noise and instead staying true to yourself.

    You can find me at onwingingit.wordpress.com. Only one post so far, because searching for free Creative Commons images is apparently the utter bane of my existence.

    To that end, does anyone have any suggestions for decent FREE Creative Commons sites? Bc right now the prettiest thing on my blog is a screenshot of APW >_>

    • emilyg25

      Ooo, I’ll read! Did you try the Flickr CC search?

      • Yes! I wasn’t impressed at first, but now that I have a better idea of how to format advanced searches and the like, I think I’ll get many more relevant results!

    • lildutchgrrl

      I keep http://search.creativecommons.org/ on my bookmarks toolbar, and often just search Flickr with it. What kind of difficulties are you having, or what would you most like to have?

      • In browsing around, I think it’s more that you seem to have to be really crafty with your search keywords and really take advantage of advanced search filters. Part of it too is I have no familiarity with the various licensing levels so I get bogged down reading between the lines.

    • A

      Congrats on starting this! I will definitely add this to my daily blog reader as TTC/Parenting is a stage I’m embarking on. I’m looking forward to some great discussions over there :)

      • Aww thanks! That’s definitely the goal :D

    • Shiri

      Parental Industrial Complex! *exactly!*

      As someone who has been chattering about that, awesome. Thank you, and good luck! I’m excited to read it.

      • YAY! Thank YOU!

    • Meg Keene

      1) You should submit a guest post (links, baby)
      2) Search Flickr with the creative commons filter. Since you’re not making money on the site at the moment, you can use non-commercial, which is less limited.
      3) Publish posts without photos. If you look through the archive (WHICH YOU ACTUALLY CAN NOW) you’ll see most of my early posts were picture-less. I was just writing like a motherfucker (with no editing to help with my dyslexia either). Just. Write.
      4) Of course there is room for everyone, obviously! I started APW in the shadow of OBB, and I love(ed) and love them very much. And we’ve done pretty fine :) It’s just a lot of WORK. And endless endless amount of work, particularly in the early days*, but it’s worth it.

      *Ha. I say that like it’s not endless work now. It is. It just feels endless-er when you have a day job, and it’s a passion project, and it’s asking for five posts a week, and you’re so very tired. At some point in year 2 or 3, David really didn’t get to see me much, unless he wanted to watch me work.

      • Meg thanks for your advice (to someone else but I still read it :) ), I really look up to you as a business gal and love writing myself and was wondering what advice you would have – since you are the queen of my religion (which is APW)…so cool to read, thank you!

        • Meg Keene

          Just write, basically. The thing about blogs is just that: to get a readership, you need to post consistently. And that is really really hard, and more work than you really get, till you’re in it. But if you need to write, it’s worth it.

          I never could have written anywhere else, or gotten a start at it, other than online. As a dyslexic, I loved writing always, but never considered it as a profession for a second, because it’s just not open to dyslexics. So god bless the internet forever.

          There is a lot more to say, about how you have to decide what you want, because now that I’m running a website, more than running a blog, most of my time is spent as a business person, and of late I haven’t gotten to write enough (I’ll get back to it soon). Right now Quick Books is open in the other tab, and the rest of the day will be accounting and budgets, and trying to squeeze the most I can out of every single dollar to pay people. And that’s great for me, since I wanted to run a business, and am equally right and left brain. But if you just want to write, you do not want that. So, anyway, lots of thoughts, but there you go. A few. Possibly helpful even, who knows :)

          • Thank you :) You’re awesome!

          • For what it’s worth, Rachel Wilkerson {yes, APW’s Rachel} has a whole Start A Blog series on one of her old blogs. It’s at http://www.rachelwilkerson.com/2010/06/10/how-to-start-a-blog/ and the series is I Blog Hard. It goes a long way to demystifying the process as a whole and breaks everything down into non-threatening, non-overwhelming bits of information.

        • Yes. This. All of it.

      • 1) Meg, you say that, and I panic and freeze and lose All The Words.
        2) Not that this will matter in the near future, but what happens to images you’ve used non-commercially, and then you do start making money down the road?
        3) I asked my husband if he had Photoshop on his laptop, and he does, so I’m going to at least make some simple glittery graphics. But it’s so refreshing and something of a relief to have this [the no-pictures-just-right] attitude reinforced!
        4) That’s right, I forgot that you mention Ariel very early on! I wasn’t TOO worried that y’all would mind…but there is always that little niggling doubt. I’m very glad to have your blessing, though – that means A LOT. Someone once said you were like the cool older sister they never had, and that sentiment always stuck with me. So thanks :)

        I think I have a much more realistic idea now of what I’m (potentially) getting into. I’m sure it’s still leaps and bounds off from the reality, but I guess I feel prepared?

        Thanks again, Meg!

        • Meg Keene

          1. Just write
          2. In fact, I was thinking about that when I typed, and wondering if it might just be smarter to use stuff that’s ok to use commercially.
          3. I still can’t use photoshop, so SERIOUSLY. Don’t distract yourself getting started. We didn’t have graphics regularly till… a year ago. Less than, actually.
          4. Don’t be silly!

    • Meghan

      This is totally awesome! I was asking for exactly this a few weeks ago….and now here it is. I will be a loyal reader as we are just starting TTC.

      • That’s really sweet, thanks! I feel the same way, and nothing I’ve found so far is quite what I want soooo…might as well try to put something out there!

    • Emma Klues


      • LOVE compfight! Actually accidentally discovered it while at work.

    • M is for Megan

      Best of luck! Read your first post and am convinced for the billionth time I need to read TCOYF. Want to get off hormonal BC but not ready for baby. Excited for you!

      • Thanks!! I actually rec’d the book to someone in last week’s happy hour, too. It’s just – even if the method doesn’t end up being for you, it’s chockful of information that I at least was never taught in school. A year or two ago, a friend was telling me that her boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend’s mom {phew!} had often talked about how you could only get pregnant a couple days out of the month, and how she was always spouting off this information, and I totally dismissed it! WHO KNEW?

    • Anon

      This is great and much appreciated. One thing to consider is how to structure the site so it’s not like the other crazy-making TTC/baby blogs. So maybe articulate the ways in which you are looking for it to be different. – perhaps by asking people to focus on big picture topics, to avoid some of the sillier acronyms (BD = Baby Dance – really?!) or to set boundaries on the types of comments: perhaps steer people away from exchanging medical advice (if they are not medical professionals), or comparing/speculating on the meaning of various symptoms?

      Also, I probably speak for the minority here, but I found TCOYF to be a source of stress. Once in full on TTC mode, the daily monitoring over temperature/secretions was just one more daily remainder of how tough the process is. My doctor said that if you are ovulating normally and your cycle is generally consistent, the monitoring doesn’t really do much.

      • You know, (regarding TCOYF) I can totally see how it could be stressful. And the same conclusion occurred to me that your doctor mentioned…I think it definitely just depends on what type of person you are. At this stage, it just feels empowering to have all of this knowledge and to be learning and recognizing my body’s signs throughout the month. But who knows how I’ll feel after a couple months of charting?

        Thank you for the kind words! And that is a GREAT suggestion. I didn’t want to…sort of assume that people would be at all interested in contributing to the blog, so I deliberately left out any directives of the kind you mention above >_> Someone else mentioned introducing a strong commenting moderation policy, as well, and both suggestions will definitely give me something to think about this weekend!

    • Cbrown

      That’s awesome! Not to be salesy but I’ve been using Canva for graphic design things lately and it’s simple and easy to use. Might be worth checking out for headers and such.

  • M is for Megan

    DINOVEMBER! DINOVEMBER!!!! “The dinos are really good at tin-foil, Daddy.” I just…omg. *keels over*

    • lady brett

      holy awesome!

    • Kara Tanoue

      I love this so much!

    • kyley

      That post was the single greatest thing I read on the internet, maybe ever.

      • M is for Megan

        Riiiight? I love their REASON for doing it too. There was a lot of magic in my childhood and it makes me giddy to think back on it, and think about doing it for my future kiddos.

  • Kirsten

    I’m getting married next weekend!! Eeek!! It’s finally (almost) here!! :-)

    I found it funny that through most of the process I had hoped to avoid having the planning to “take over my life” – and now, with only eight days left, I can’t get enough. I want to read everything I can find on last-minute preparations.

    I want to say thank you, APW!! It has been a joy encountering this site in the planning process and reading the daily gems from the many incredibly wise contributors.

    AND the new look is beautiful. That is all.

    • Yay! How exciting!

      May I share two things I shared with myself about a week before our wedding but than forgot to read…. It was delightful to come back upon them after the wedding and realize oh yeah, it did feel that way.

      “Weddings are funny things. They are everything you might expect and nothing you can see coming. That is just as it should be, because they are what they are. And that’s all I can come up with to say: they are what they are. Embrace it or prepare for a sh*tstorm (not because everything will go wrong, but because they will not be whatever you want them to be).” http://apracticalwedding.com/2011/09/midwest-camp-wedding

      “…I’ll fall back on E.M. Forster’s simple characterization: ‘It is one of the moments for which the world was made.'” http://apracticalwedding.com/2012/03/lakeside-vt-wedding-lakeview-inn-diy-flowers

      • Kirsten

        Loved these! Thank you!

    • Kait

      Congratulations!! As someone who has been married for all of six days, my biggest piece of advice is to find ten minutes during the day to be alone with your partner. Before the dinner my husband and I snuck into the room and had a glass a wine and reflected on what had just happened.

      Also when you are 24 hours out just let everything go and start enjoying. The day will be over before you know it.

      • HannahESmith

        I did this too! The morning of the wedding, I got my husband to sneak away with me. We were staying at a big house near a giant pear orchard. We walked around the pear orchard, told each other how much we love each other. It was the perfect way to start the day.

  • Emma

    Has everyone read the Ariel Levy piece in the New Yorker about miscarrying in Mongolia? It’s incredible. I found it because Caitlin Moran called it the “best thing I’ve read this year, hands down” on twitter. http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/11/18/131118fa_fact_levy?currentPage=all

    • Trinity

      It broke my heart.

    • emilyg25

      It made me sob before bed. She was so raw and honest. I kept hoping for a happy resolution at the end “we saved our marriage and had another baby!”) but it’s real life, not fiction.

    • Meg Keene

      I’ve been told to read it already. So.

    • Catherine McK

      Warning: may not be the best thing to read the same day you’re going for your 20 week ultrasound… just saying.. not that anyone else would be that silly…

      • K2

        I was about to be that silly, so I appreciate the warning. My 20 week ultrasound isn’t until Wednesday, but I was just reduced to a puddle by a New York Presbyterian commercial about a birth defect, so I’ll skip the link.

  • Shiri

    Do you guys all know about Pocket, the best “read it later” app/plugin available? APW Happy Hour links always go to my Pocket and provide my weekend train reading.

    Anyway. On to say, I read that piece about the couple who tweets all their fights earlier this week, and was astounded that I liked it. A lot. I found it very normalizing and reassuring. I mean, who knows what it’s actually like on the inside of their relationship, but looking at it from an inside/outside perspective, it helped me think about what we fight about in my relationship, and, even more importantly, what I feel guilty or ashamed of us fighting about.

    • Kayjayoh

      I was all prepared to hate the Twitter couple, but I don’t.

      • Shiri

        Right? Me, too. I thought it would be twee and self-aggrandizing but I actually felt like it was brave and honest.

    • Pocket is THE BEST THING IN THE WORLD!! (Next to Evernote, of course.) I also love that you can save directly to Pocket from the Twitter app, the RSS reader Feedly, and the reading app Zite. It’s great!

      • Shiri

        You are much app-cooler than I! I wish I used Feedly – it’s annoying to go blog to blog every night (and five times a day at work for APW). Maybe I should, especially now that I know I can use it with Pocket!

        • Use it! I have mine divided up by category and then I can just go to the ones I’m in the mood for quickly to see if they’ve updated. Highly recommend!

        • Meg Keene

          Feedly is magic. For APW, you kinda still have to come here for comments, but Feedly in tile layout rocks my socks. I can know what’s going on in the blogosphere, while still only reading what I care about.

          • Shiri

            Oh, I’m still coming here. This isn’t a blog so much as a community to me.

    • HannahESmith

      I just added this app right now to save all the APW articles from this week. Seriously, the list of great articles every week is one of my favorite things about APW. Anyone have suggestions for additional good sources? I particularly like having a curated list of the best articles, and would love to have them on a daily basis.

      • Shiri

        If you add the plug-in, too, you can just click once to save each article. It’s great.

        And if anyone has more sources for you, I’m going to steal them, as well.

      • I mentioned this below, but I love the zite app! It’s great for following by interest to see relevant stuff!

  • Jessica

    This happy hour just came at the right time. My new brother-in-law just posted something HELLA RACIST on facebook (think along the lines of “If there’s a black history month why is it racist to have a white history month.”) Ugh ugh ugh.
    I posted a response that went through statistics (representation in congress, reasons why cops don’t go to “ghettos” and therefore there is more crime in them, representation of white people on television vs people of color, how many scholarships go to white students, etc.)
    He hasn’t responded yet, but I have a feeling I’m going to get even angrier about it. I was literally shaking with frustration that I will have to deal with this kind of stuff the rest of my life because my husband’s family is just oblivious and has no desire to seek out the truth behind some facts.

    • Shiri

      You’re a better woman than I. I’d want to just say “because all eleven other months are”.

      • Jessica

        I tried to explain it better than that, cause this guy seems like he could be smarter than he acts. Here’s my full response: http://bankedonamyth.tumblr.com/

        • Shiri

          Wow, your response is fantastic. I think this is brilliant, and may want to use it with my students:

          “Being proud of a heritage is not seen as white supremacy, but being proud JUST BECAUSE you are white is an indication that you are proud because of what you are not.”

          • Jessica

            Thanks! I wasn’t sure how to wrap this up (because of anger) and wanted to address his point that saying white pride is seen as racist (yes, buddy, it is). If this were an essay I would probably sketch out the differences of why black pride is OK to say (all together now: diaspora!) and why white pride isn’t (one more time: racism!).

        • BreckW

          Hoooooo boy. I cannot handle that shit–it just makes my blood boil and turns me into a spluttering, furious mess. Super eloquent response on your part.

        • celinad6

          Your response is just….’You get it!’ You totally get it. Hate and racism run rampant on the internet. I don’t know why I find myself wasting time reading and occasionally replying to ignorance on comment boards, but I do (maybe hoping to enlighten one). I am refreshed to read something from someone who gets it.

    • I struggled with this a couple of weeks ago so I’m curious to see the responses. Good for you for standing up to him.

    • Jessica Nelson

      I actually think a “whiteness” history month would be a GREAT idea. Let’s spend time teaching people about how Irish and Italians used to not be considered white in the US, whereas Mexicans were defined as white and eligible to become US citizens in the late 1800s. Let’s talk about how “white” was (is!) a social and legal marker that identified you as worthy of certain privileges, and not as something that has to do with actual skin tone (again, see Irish experiences of the 1840s and 1850s). Let’s learn about how all definitions of race are socially constructed.
      …or is that not the kind of white history month your b-i-l had in mind?

      PS on the flip side, after reading your response, I wouldn’t expect him to reply publicly. You have all the right in the world to try to change his opinion, but that was a pretty strong criticism to make of him virtually “in front” of all his friends and family when (I’m assuming) your personal relationship with him is comparatively new. ymmv of course.

      • Jessica

        I would generally appreciate that (along with all minority history) be taught in regular history classes! Related, one of my favorite blogs is Medieval People of Color (http://medievalpoc.tumblr.com/), where the blogger finds painting with people of color in them throughout history and breaks down the privileged thought process of “there were only ever white people in Europe!” Seeing is believing in a lot of cases.

        And un/luckily for me, there is a handy “remove” function on facebook. He can censor me if he wants, but if you throw up something in the form of the question, you’re going to get answers with citations. I refuse to silently watch people close to my age be willfully ignorant, even if they get mad at me as a response. He and I have had conversations about politics before and know that we are on complete opposite sides of the political spectrum.

  • Sarah

    I just ordered 100 little foam airplane gliders for the guests to throw in the air when we walk out of the church! They’re WWII replicas and my wedding is the 4th of July and future husband’s family flies planes so it fits! It’s going to be so cute and I won’t get sprinkles or bird seed in my hair wheeeeee

    • Jessica

      That’s amazing! What a fantastic idea!

    • Amanda – Poppies and Ice Cream

      We had an airplane model over our wedding cake, along with some playmobils (because we met in an airplane), maybe you could do that too, to add to the airplane theme? You can see it here; just scroll to the 3rd pic of the post

  • lady brett

    i’m all for the part where we should probably actually try the new comment system before we say we hate it. but i think it would help me immensely if someone could explain how it works, because i’m finding it superbly counter-intuitive, and i think understanding what’s going on would help me get used to it.

    • Meg Keene

      That’s super fair. I… am not an expert yet. But we should have someone who is write something up. As I start to use it, I’m discovering a lot of things I do really like (like I can sort from oldest or newest or best? Rad. Like it emails follow ups automatically). But we all could use a tutorial, before any decisions are made.

      • kyley

        Can I just say that I love how communal you are about the commenting system? There’s something about the commenting that feels alienating to me (can’t put my finger on it yet, and it might just be “Agh! Change! Bad!”) but the way you are responding to these changes re: the community is really counteracting that. So thanks!

        • I feel like I’m commenting more and slightly worried it’s going to become obnoxious.
          I’m definitely “up-voting” more things.

          Oh! I hadn’t noticed the typing thing before and just caught it -crazy!

      • Jess

        How do you sort?! I’ve been trying to figure that out.

        • M is for Megan

          Just above the bar where the comments start. It says (probably) Best — Community — My Disqus. The “Best” button is a drop down where you can sort.

    • I am not a fan of Disqus but I do feel like I at least get it…I’m happy to help explain! What do you feel like you need help understanding?

      • lady brett

        part of it is just that it looks like maybe it does a lot, so i have this impression that maybe there are features i’m totally missing. the other part is that it kind of looks like comments appear at complete random – i think this has to do with what meg mentioned below about different sort options (bringing us back to “features i don’t know about” =)

        • So, one of the things that’s weird/cool is that it shows comments in real time…so you don’t have to refresh the page to see new comments, because it tells you when someone is typing and when there is a new reply to a comment and when there are new comments on the thread. You can also up vote and down-vote, minimize entire threads (use the little – sign next to the report flag). Personally, I think it’s easier to follow threads too because even when they get long, it shows who the person is responding to which is SO useful. (xoJane uses Disqus and I find it’s very handy there, those threads get crazy long.)

          And yes, you can change your view so if you prefer the old-school way of reverse-chron (and I often do) you can go that route, OR you can view by newest. I actually think once we get used to the popular sort here, we’ll find we like it…I’m definitely not used to it yet.

          AND you can edit comments you’ve already posted (which I just did).

          Hope that helps a but but let me know if you have any other questions!

          Oh ALSO you can upload pictures using the little image thing in the commenting box! Which means I can show everyone my awesome $8 no-chip, no-break amazing DIY drugstore manicure!

          • lady brett


          • Violet

            Thanks Rachel! One thing I’m still struggling with is when I sort it by “Oldest,” I get what’s going on. But then as new comments come, they’re not in “Oldest” order anymore. Is there a way to make new comments also appear in the “Oldest” setting order?

          • Unfortunately, I think the only way to do that is click the sort arrow and click “oldest” again…that way the new comments will jump to their proper spots. (If you don’t do that, they are at least highlighted in blue at the top so you know you are new.) Not sure if that helps or not, maybe someone else can weigh in?

          • Shiri

            This is so helpful! I see the image box now (awesome). Is there also a way to hyperlink easily that I’m not aware of?

          • As far as I know, pasted links will automatically turn to links…but if you want to link text and hide the URL, you have to do it the old-school way with the HTML tags.

          • Shiri

            Yeah… that’s what I meant. Because I’m totally internet literate enough to even be able to ask the question the right way…

          • Ha…yeah, here’s the HTML code if you need it: http://www.hyperlinkcode.com/make-hyperlink.php

          • KC

            I’d randomly note for anyone going “where is the report flag?” that it and the thread-minimizing-dash appear only when you mouse over a comment. Because I didn’t know those existed until, um, today.

          • KC

            Augh. I meant to also include, they’re both in the upper right-hand corner of comment, in-line with the commenter name and all that which appears on the left side.

            I also meant to say that is a fantastic DIY manicure. But you know that. :-)

          • One cool feature I’ve noticed since the conversation is happening as I type is the “10 new comments below” which if you click takes you to the each of the new comments in the order of the original comments. (I’m sorting by newest)

            It’s slightly worrisome that it will ease my ability to read every word of Happy Hour, as I sometimes try to do. :)

    • Shiri

      I agree, Lady Brett. I like it for the reasons Meg does, but I’m finding longer discussions on it confusing, and think I could be using it better.

      • M is for Megan

        Sorting by Oldest helps me the most with long conversations, to ensure I’m getting the replies in the intended order. I keep this as my main setting now – it best mimics the old forums for me.

    • I just went to the Disqus site and it said it had profiles it thought were me and asked if I wanted to merge them. Turns out it had found 952 comments I’ve left here on APW (I’m not sure if that’s a lot or not considering that it’s APW after all) and wanted to know if it wanted to connect them to my Disqus account. I said yes. So now my comments I left pre-re-launch are all connected to me. That’s a pretty cool feature I think.

      Also, I’m feeling the need to leave 48 more comments on APW to bring it to an even 1000, at least till I leave a 49th comment.

    • pippinpearl

      Hello everyone! Just wanted to pop in and show you this lovely little tour on Disqus: http://disqus.com/websites/ — Simply click each of the purple buttons to get a description of the feature. We (the design/development team) are taking notes of everyone’s questions and concerns. Thanks for your experience feedback!

  • Kayjayoh

    Tablecloths: ordered! Venue’s permission to have a pinata: obtained! Fiance getting the last of his guest addresses: check!

    Also, I saw my photographer at a little indie bridal show this week, and I awkwardly asked her about apprenticing with her. And she was excited about it! Yay!

    • Violet


      • Kayjayoh


  • jashshea

    Tell me you’re all following #SFbatkid on twitter. TEARS.

    • Caroline

      I think it’s sweet, but I can’t get over the “rescue a damsel in distress” thing. Really? Is tht nessicary? It’s posing me off big time.

      • K.

        I mean, he’s a child. And there’s so much good coming out of this phenomenon, that one really risks looking like one of THOSE feminists if one focuses on the few ‘problematic’ aspects rather than on how amazing it is to see such community support in a world that is generally so insular. Is the idea of the damsel in distress worthy of discourse and criticism? Hell yes. Is this the time to do it? Er… personally, I’d rather use other platforms to rail against the idea than this one. Seems like not seeing the forest for the trees.

    • Shiri
    • pippinpearl

      what is this liquid pouring from my eyeeeeees?

  • Mallory2

    I turn 30 on Sunday. And APW launched its new site this week. Ok, I get it – change is coming whether I’m ready or not! My work week has been too hectic to do much processing about the whole new decade of life, but in recent weeks I’ve been really ambivalent about it as it seems like just another way the cultural dialogue pushes the hyperbolic dichotomy of IT’S THE BEST EVER and THE WORST EXPERIENCE EVER – with a perfectly convenient set of products available to purchase to highlight which category one falls in (which isn’t all bad – birthday cocktails, y’all!). Yes, it feels kinda big to move out of my twenties, and I have tried to approach it as a time to reflect on my accomplishments and identify with intentionality how I want to focus my time in the coming year, but, as it often is, my experience is falling much more in the gray area between the two. Although, yes, the husband and I are going sky diving and aren’t telling a soul until afterwards (except, now, you’re all in on it!) Because, it turns out, I’m kinda sucker for doing something bold when I listen to the voice telling me I’m getting older. And because I’ve always wanted to. And, also, maybe, because I finally feel like I have a good enough excuse to convince the hubs to overcome his fear of heights and join me in falling out of a plane :) It’s complicated and I’m excited.

    • birthday cocktails! *party horn emoji* anything specific?

    • lady brett

      happy birthday!

      and embrace the grey area! some shit is awesome and some shit is terrible and a lot of it is in the middle, but very little of any of it has to do with being 30. although, i am also supportive of embracing the *idea* that it’s a big deal as an excuse to do something that is a big deal – so, have fun sky diving!

  • Lauren

    Has/ would APW ever do a post on budoir? I am mostly interested in couples budoir, actually it’s a mostly half baked idea that I would love to have a black and white kindof naked embrace picture in our future bedroom as a daily reminder of intimacy since lives get hectic etc.
    I am kind of iffy about individual budoir since, assuming a hetero relationship, it would just be the woman putting herself on display. Even more awkward, supposedly there is a trend of doing budoir shoots with your bridesmaids…I am not sure who is the intended viewer of these pictures???
    Anyways, I really enjoyed the recent posts relating to sex because it’s hard to talk about, and APW readers are so thoughtful, so I would love to hear some different perspective on this.

    • I did one and I had a very good experience! It was really for me and yes, I was putting myself on display…but just for myself, which was totally the point! I just was feeling really happy and good in my own skin at that time in my life and wanted to be able to remember that moment. I like having the pics to represent that!

      • Lauren

        I really appreciate your attitude. That is exactly how it should be!

      • Jess

        I would love to do one of these, I think. How did you go about finding a photographer to work with?

    • Meg Keene

      Maddie does these! (Awesome plus size ones, actually.)

      • Caroline

        What really? No way. Maddie, someday when I have money, I so want to hire you for a boudoir shoot!!

    • emilyg25

      I did these too, also for myself, not for my now-husband. We’re trying to conceive, so my body will change and I wanted to capture what it looks like now. It was a fun, empowering experience. It made me insanely proud of my not-perfect, real-person body. Maybe contact a few of the photographers you like and see how the feel about shooting couples.

    • Jessica

      Here are some tips from one of my favorite blogs: http://f52.co/1dzZMVO

    • Alison O

      There are actually male versions out there, although they do seem to tend more erotic than the female versions I’ve seen. Depends on what you’re going for, I guess. I think these are pretty nice: http://marlenboro.com/gallery/portfolio/ Hopefully goes without saying…NSFW! Well, most workplaces.

    • Crayfish Kate

      Hey, I’m late to the party for this one, but I just did a boudoir shoot with APW sponsor Emily Alt Photography. It was AWESOME. I mainly did it just for me, my FH seeing the photos is just a bonus. It was fun, she came to my house so it was a comfortable setting, we laughed, we drank wine – really, we had a great time. And the photos turned out absolutely gorgeous! I WAS putting myself on display, but I did it because I wanted to. In other words, if I were not partnered, I would’ve still done it :-D

  • Kate

    Been itching to cut off about half my hair this week. Hair identity crises always seem to strike when I have important deadlines. Coincidence it is not.

    • Sarah E

      Just do it. Fuck yeah to changing hair identities often :-)

    • Cut it offf! Says the completely unbiased staff member. >_>

      P.S. I always love short hair in the winter because it doesn’t get in the way of my awesome scarves.

    • pippinpearl

      Short hair is having a moment. Mine keeps getting shorter and shorter, and I love it!

  • HannahESmith

    Question about name changes. So, I decided to change my name. I was going to put off the decision until after I got married, but the woman at the marriage license office convinced me to do it then because it would be very expensive to do it later and I would have to petition a judge.

    I am having some second thoughts about it, and I haven’t changed over any of my identification yet. I’m wondering what my options are at this point. If I decided not to change my name, would I need to petition a judge? If I don’t change over any of my identification, is my name really changed? I can’t seem to find any resources online about this.

    • I’m assuming the particulars differ from state to state, but I believe the way to officially/legally/fo’reals change your name is to update social security. So if you haven’t done that, I don’t think your name has legally been changed. Key words: *assuming, *believe, *think

    • ElisabethJoanne

      Except maybe in Texas, I know of 0 states where the government department that handles marriage licenses “talks” to any other government department. Since license applications contain personal information like date and place of birth, this is a good thing.

      What it means in practice is that while the marriage license lets you go to other government departments (and private institutions like banks) and change their records, you have to actually go to those other places. Otherwise your “name change” just sits in the marriage license file. If you never do the follow-up, as a practical matter, your name isn’t changed.

      Texas exception is because of reports I’m reading that people must vote under their “current legal name,” which some are saying means their married name, if that’s what is on the license, even if no other government agency (such as Social Security, the passport office, or the DMV) has them under that name.

      • MisterEHolmes

        Texan here. In the last election, I had to sign a form saying that I was indeed the same person; my voter ID just has my First Last name, but my Driver’s License has First Middle Last. I wouldn’t have been allowed to vote if it weren’t for an addendum to the law added at the last minute. So annoying. May have to change things, even before I hit the Married Name Change problem.

    • Violet

      My state made it seem like until the Social Security card is changed, ain’t nothin actually happened.

    • Guest
  • lady brett

    so, three weeks in our little guy still thinks my spouse is a dude. which has really solidified to me the degree to which that does not matter.

  • Laura C

    This was pretty sweet: Our photographer is my fiance’s former housemate, who’s still trying to make the transition to full-time pro. And this week, he had a picture in the New York Times! It was with a review of a play showing at the theater another friend works at. So that was great for him, and if/when we run across people who think because our photographer’s a friend, he’s not a “real” photographer, it’ll be nice to be able to drop into the conversation.

    Waiting to see how the engagement pics he took of us turned out…

  • Caroline

    I got an email from my gyn which said basically “The test we did showed nothing wrong causing that one problem you are having. But btw, you have this other scary sounding medical term. Google it. I’m out of town for a month. You can contact my partner who you’ve never met if you have questions.”

    I knew better (google always makes a rash sound like cancer), but desperate and scared, googled anyways. Google makes it sound very scary, including potentially serious difficulties having kids. Infertility is basically what my bogart be.

    I asked my physician to call me and discuss it, (he’s good about that stuff), but I’m freaking out. And I can’t reach my fiancé to talk to him.
    Also, I am so furious at the doctor. I feel like telling a patient she definitely had a serious condition when the test suggested it strongly along with recommending further testing (I looked at the actual test results), telling her over email, not explaining the condition, telling the patient to google it and not introducing the patient to your partner who can answer her questions is so wildly inappropriate. I mean, really? Telling your patient to google it?
    I’m not seeing her again and I wish there was a way of registering a formal complaint of some sort, but I don’t think a bad bedside manner causing emotional trauma is medical malpractice and what other complaint is there?

    • KC

      Online reviews of this doctor may assist other people who are looking for a different approach.

      Also, it would also be potentially helpful to tell her and her partner that this was not acceptable to you (because people don’t always know that things are not just peachy until they are informed, and the partner may have options for or knowledge of formal stuff).

      Also-also, there is a chance that “out of town for a month” means “just learned my parent has terminal brain cancer and have to get there *now*” or something similar, and this is the best that she could think of doing under the high-pressure, no-sleep, etc. circumstances. If so, her partner would know what’s going on and be able to “adjust” complaints accordingly. If not, then hopefully some sort of “that was a bad idea” more-prolonged discussion-with-steps-for-improvement would happen.

      • Caroline

        Thanks for the perspective. It’s true that it is possible she has some serious issues taking all of her attention in her own life. I think it is less likely, since she gave me a concrete date she will be available on, but still possible.

        When I am less upset, I will call her office and let them know this was unacceptable.

        • KC

          (honestly, I don’t think it’s ever acceptable to tell a patient to “just google” something, because as you noted, plain googling is how you get alllll the horror stories, even about harmless things like vitamin C or whatever. I only included that as a possible note to consider in your quite-reasonable rage, just in case, and also because sometimes it helps with the rage. :-) I also agree that having a definite return date makes it less likely that it’s an insuperable overwhelming family tragedy, but things/people are sometimes weird.)

          Less upset often means more coherent on the phone, so that’s probably smart, but do definitely indicate to someone official that this is/was very upsetting to you. Because, yeah, no, diagnose-and-dump is not good, especially without an explanation of the diagnosis. (better than “there were some… results… but I’ll talk with you about them in a month”, maybe? Or maybe not. I don’t know. And better to have the option of seeing her partner in the interim than absolute radio silence other than google. But not good, anyway.)

    • ElisabethJoanne

      My mother is a gynecologist, and I worked for her for 7 years. I can’t imagine telling a patient to just google something. “Look it up on x, y, z reputable websites” is so much better. (I like the main pages on WebMD and the Mayo Clinic) And you should tell the practice you didn’t like this doctor-patient interaction, and why.

      If your gynecologist only has 1 or even a few partners, chances are they work together very closely. Your doctor probably even gave her partner a brief history of your care and diagnosis before she left town. The partner also has access to your entire chart – so this is really the best way to get care while your regular doctor is unavailable.

      Finally, if no follow-up or treatment is necessary for a month, that is reassuring. I know this doesn’t help you right now, though.

    • Jess

      Not especially helpful, but everytime I read stories like this, I am SO grateful that my GYN and my GP are amazing and take the time to go over anything and everything with me.

      Hang in there and find someone better. They exist, I promise!

      • Caroline

        I’m lucky that I have an amazing GP. Yesterday, at my physical, he spent 1.5 hours talking with me about my health, and all my (minor minor) health concerns. He’s going to call me back tonight about it. I’ve had really really bad experiences with all the GYNs I’ve tried. I guess I’m looking for a new gyn in the East Bay or SF. Any suggestions?

        • Jess

          Wish I did! I’m in the midwest. Glad you have a good GP, though! That makes it so much easier if one dr. isn’t doing it for you. Good luck!

  • anon today

    This has been a really tough week. I wrote a whole post about it, but what I really want to say is holy crap, weddings can be hard. And made crappy family stuff harder than it already is. Blugh.

  • Anne

    LOVE the new site. How are y’all featuring the posts on the top right area? Is it random? They’ve been different almost every time I’ve come to the site, which is really cool. I’m relatively new-ish around here, so I’m enjoying posts I had no idea existed!

    • pippinpearl

      These posts are “favorites” selected by the APW team. :)

  • TeaforTwo

    I had my final meetings with the vendor and caterer last night, and I got great news:

    I haven’t really thought a lot about decor yet, other than to occasionally think to myself “oh dear, wedding is getting closer, have to get on that” and then give up because it felt hard to figure out. But in my meeting, the venue told me that they are going to be decorated for Christmas with Victorian ornaments (our reception is being held in an 1848 schoolhouse-turned-museum), and asked if I would need them to take down their tree and decorations. FREE DECORATIONS? NO WORK? Happy, happy, relieved bride.

    • HannahESmith

      Major score! Also, I love winter weddings. Everything about your wedding sounds delightful!

    • M is for Megan

      Hooray! Sounds beautiful.

    • lady brett

      hooray! that’s pretty much how our wedding got decorated. ours was a community art gallery that was scheduled to be between shows, but ended up having a full show up – they offered to take it down, but – awesome art? free decorations? hells yes!

    • Laura C

      That’s fabulous! And I mean, not just free decorations with no work, but free decorations that sound really special and interesting.

      One of the reasons we went for an outdoor venue was I figured that way, you have trees and a river to begin with for decor and if you run out of steam on anything else, it’s still a pretty setting.

      • TeaforTwo

        That’s more or less what I was hoping for, except that we are obviously not having a Canadian winter wedding outdoors. But when we started thinking about when to get married, I lighted on December as a) an appropriate timeline, because I didn’t want to be engaged forever, and b) “everything is already pretty for Christmas!”

        (I love the holidays, though, so I secretly refer to our wedding as “DOUBLE CHRISTMAS” because we get to have our families together twice in one month to feast and be merry. And when our venue coordinator asked where we wanted the table for gifts, I may or may not have squealed “can we put them under the tree?!?!?”)

        • KC

          CAN YOU PUT THEM UNDER THE TREE??? That would be awesome. AWESOME.

        • Winny the Elephant

          I definitely want to see a write up of this on APW, more Canadian weddings!

    • I suddenly really hope you plan on doing either a Wedding Graduate or Wordless Weddings post. Because WOW does this sound beautiful!

  • Kara Tanoue

    This was my favorite read of the week: http://observationdeck.io9.com/the-amazons-of-edwardian-london-kick-ass-suffragette-b-644342073

    Maybe I’m just a bit behind on my feminist history, but I was completely unaware of the existence of a Suffragette Bodyguard.

  • BreckW

    So, I’m spending Christmas with my boyfriend’s family this year, and I’m having a mini freak out about it. We’ve been talking more and more about how they spend their day, and it sounds like it’s going to be incredibly long, drawn out, and awkward. His family is very nice, and we like each other fine, but they’re not my people (or even very much like my people). What am I supposed to talk to everyone about for like 6 hours?! Help!

    • HannahESmith

      Is there any way you can excuse yourself for part of the day? Any chance you could introduce a board game as an activity? I find board games are a great way to interact with people who are difficult to talk to.

      • BreckW

        They usually do more of a 13 hour day (7am present opening-8pm end of dinner), but I was like… I can’t handle that. So my boyfriend and I are going to a movie after the morning portion, but then we’ll still have a 6 hour evening stretch with his extended family…

        Board games are a great idea, though! I will talk to the BF about maybe working in some structured activities.

      • TeaforTwo

        I love board games as a way to interact, but I would be wary of introducing much as a newcomer.

        The first time my father’s partner spent the holidays with us, she had us play some incredibly convoluted card game that took nearly two hours. None of us are really card-playing people, but we were all trying to be accommodating and polite. The game was hard to learn, and boring, and meant that we didn’t get to do what we really wanted to do, which was shoot the shit because we don’t see each other very often.

        For a lot of families, holidays are about traditions, and not everyone is open to having a new person come in and take over the agenda. Maybe your boyfriend could suggest the game, instead? He’ll have a better idea of what his family would be into.

        • HannahESmith

          I would agree to have the boyfriend suggest the game. Probably best to stick to something super simple like Apples to Apples. Also, another option would be to excuse yourself during the festivities to skype or phone call with your own family. It might give you a much needed break, and it will help with any potential homesickness you might be feeling at the time.

        • BreckW

          Yes, definitely. We’re also having him suggest/announce that our contribution to the meal will be many bottles of red wine : ).

    • Jacky Speck

      The first Christmas I spent with my then-boyfriend’s family was kind of awkward, because it’s a big family and I didn’t know them very well. What I did was mostly stick with my boyfriend, or when talking to someone else I tried to get them to talk about themselves. I am pretty shy and not great at making small talk, but I know this: people love talking about themselves! And you might find that you have something in common that way.

      • BreckW

        This is an excellent point that I totally forgot about!

    • TeaforTwo

      Do the dishes. Do as many dishes as you can possibly get your hands on. Seriously.

      a) It is some time away from the main crowd and whatever they are doing or talking about. It can be a nice piece of quiet if you need it.
      b) You’ll often find yourself washing while one other person volunteers to dry. This can be a nice way to connect with someone one-on-one, instead of interacting with the whole family at one time.
      c) After you leave, his parents will say “that BreckW is a nice girl…she’s so helpful.”

      • Sarah E

        That was going to be my input. Find work to do. Help cook. Set the table. Oh, can I clean up all the wrapping paper for you? You know, this garbage can is full. Is there an outside trash can? Can I get you more coffee? Busy-ness helps with less sitting around staring at people, and for me, at least, helps me feel more “at home” than “weird kind-of-guest, kind-of-family.”

      • BreckW

        I actually kind of like washing dishes (it’s my zone-out time), so this is a great idea.

    • Alison O

      If you want time away, a good excuse (whether it is true or not) is that you have other important people who are expecting your call on Christmas, perhaps?

  • Jess

    Guys, I have been waiting for Happy Hour all week.

    I feel all over the place lately. This week, I decided on two things related to work, and I’m excited about them, and nervous.

    1- I’m having a conversation with my boss next Monday. We will go over what is decidedly not working for me in the managerial relationship and what he is willing to do and how I can meet him halfway. I’m starting this conversation because I’m the first non-hourly person he’s ever managed and I’m not so sure he wanted to manage someone at all. I’m excited because my job has become truly soul-sucking and I dread showing up every day, and I want things to change! So I’m asking them to change! Go me!

    2- I’ve decided that I want to focus my engineering background on business. I want to go do business strategy and market research and maybe someday general management. SO, I want to go back to get my MBA. Where do I start? How do I bring this up in conversation with R, who obviously knows I’m not happy in my job right now? How do I pay for this? AH! But at the same time, I feel so much better having decided that this is my future and my goal! So ready to look at moving to something more me and less this.

    • Sarah E

      Rock on, girlfriend! Those are both insanely awesome things. Sometimes the hardest thing is deciding what you actually want (and how to make it fit for you, personally). . .until you need to ask for it. Then THAT’S the hardest thing. Get it, grrrl.

      • Jess

        “Then THAT’S the hardest thing.” So true.

  • ElisabethJoanne

    I’m playing phone tag with potential employers – trying to balance making my interest clear with not being desperate/annoying.

    We were out of cell phone range over the weekend. When I got back late Monday night, I had voicemails from a place I had already interviewed and really liked, and from a place requesting an interview. I left messages with both on Tuesday. I haven’t heard at all from the place requesting an interview.

    Where I’ve already interviewed, after a couple messages back and forth, they sent an email Wednesday saying they want to make me an offer and to please call. I left a message Wednesday evening saying I got the email and considered it great news. It’s Friday afternoon and I haven’t heard anything else. Should I leave a second voice message? Send an email with times over the weekend I’m available by phone? Leave the ball in their court? If I send an email, should it be with the owner, with whom I’ve been dealing since the interview, or to the office manager, who arranged the interview? (All I can get from the office manager is an update on the owner’s schedule and maybe a word on the hiring timeline.)

    I’m inclined to leave another message with the place requesting an interview, because until I’ve actually accepted a new offer, I have to keep looking for a new job.

    • HannahESmith

      I would probably do both. If they are in the stage of making you an offer, I don’t think you have to worry about being pushy at this point. I would call, then follow up with an email. I would definitely send the email to the owner, c.c.ing the office manager to keep her in the loop. I also would follow up with the other place. Just in case this first place doesn’t work out for whatever reason, it’s always good to have a backup plan.

    • jashshea

      I would send an email to the owner with times you’re free over the weekend or Monday. I would also email the other place (better safe than sorry).

    • ElisabethJoanne

      Thanks. The owner just called, and the salary offered was about twice what I expected! APW has helped me a lot over the past few months with this job search, which began in January, so really, THANKS ALL.

      • ItsyBit


  • Sara

    I’ve been volunteering as a stage manager for a community theater, and the play opens tonight. Last night was the final dress rehearsal and the lead actor DIDN’T SHOW! I’m very good at keeping a facade of calm and managed to calm down the director (he was inches away from cancelling the whole show), but internally I want to pull my hair out. I can’t believe he was that selfish!! I should note, he claims he ‘wasn’t feeling well’ and then his ‘phone died’ so we couldn’t reach him but there was an open casting call in Chicago yesterday for Star Wars and I know he went down there. I’m assuming he mismanaged or lost track of time. Regardless, he emailed everyone and apologized so I’m going to smile, nod and make sure the show rocks.

    But inside, I’m still majorly pissed.

    • Jessica

      Rightly so! That’s a terribly rude insult to the entire cast & crew. I’m assuming there was no understudy?

      • Sara

        Nope! The cast has been emailing all day as to handle it, and they all agreed to ‘rise above’ in order to keep him focused on the show. But I can tell, some of them are going to snap at the end of the run (which is two weekends, so they won’t have to hold it in long!)

        • Jessica

          Well. Bless them for “the show must go on” attitude. I wonder if anyone will snap before the end of the show. Hopefully all that frustration will go into really amazing, energetic performances!

    • Kayjayoh

      Didn’t show. Wow. Super professional.

      Is there an understudy?

      • Sara

        No understudy, so we’re just hoping he’ll keep his word at this point. Outside of this instance, he’s been pretty solid so I think he’s just kind of blind to how his actions affect others.

        • How did opening go?

          • Sara

            Really well thankfully! A little shaky at the very beginning but it evened out. One weekend down, one to go.

  • Four years of marriage. Ah.

    I look at weddings now and think, “Our wedding was so much fun. But I’m so glad that’s not me getting married.” I very much prefer being married to getting married.

    Also, our little one has learned to roll over this week and she is NOT pleased with herself at all.

    • On the other hand, she’s really excited when I sing “We Are Young” by Fun. She has interesting tastes.

  • Jacki

    Dinovember completely made my week. Also, I need All The Naps, and I didn’t even relaunch a website this week! :)

  • I’m typing with one hand because I have a kitten the size of a coffee mug who insists on napping on the other arm. I’ve been editing a wedding like this all day, because he cries like he’s being tortured whenever I go work in a room without him.

    We already had a cat brood that seemed crazy for New Yorkers, but we brought home Harry (our 4th!) on Wednesday. We are also walking in a big event tomorrow for a great cause (Best Buddies NYC), so this week has been one of the good ones.

    Also, the relaunch means I’m spending WAY too much time re-reading old posts I’d totally forgotten, but I’m not even sorry.

    • OMIGOSH KITTEH!! We have three kitties, and the little one enjoys sitting ON our laptops. While we’re typing >_>

  • M is for Megan

    Where are my personal finance friends? Breck W? Aubry? I PAID OFF MY CREDIT CARD. We had our budget meeting and decided we could use some savings to eliminate revolving debt. I feel frreeeeeee!!!!!! And crazy proud of myself/us. We continue to kill it in the budgeting/saving/debt-crushing sphere…getting the dishes done less so ;-). We also made and froze enough work lunches for both of us for more than a week, for about $20 of fresh food. Hooray! We are figuring things out and trying so hard to live intentionally amid the NYC bustle and consumption. It’s much harder work, being mindful about money, than I expected, but in more of a sticking to your guns way than a worrying way, which is better work.

    • BreckW


      • M is for Megan

        I love that you are here and saw that so fast. THANK YOU! I thought of you. *kermit flail*

        • BreckW


          • Sarah E

            With the posting of Kermit arm-flail, you win the comment thread.

      • BreckW

        Also, as someone who is super cocky about her meal prep prowess, I’m thoroughly impressed by your freezer meals!!

    • HannahESmith

      Congrats! I would love to know what you made for freezer ready lunches. I am always looking for ideas on those.

      • M is for Megan

        Thanks Hannah! We made vegan burritos! 2.5 packs of TJ’s whole wheat tortillas, then: brown rice, 2 packs (or 1.5..?) sprouted tofu + black beans cooked with chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, and homemade salsa (frozen roasted corn, canned tomatoes with green chiles, a red onion). We’ll add kale next time. I think we made about 20 burritos. Fiance’s “ration” is lasting longer bc he eats one (I think he’s supplementing with free snacks from work!), but I eat 2. Microwave 2 min on each side. So much better than midtown Manhattan options/prices.

        • HannahESmith

          That sounds great. I’ve made frozen vegetable lasagna before, but I’m always looking for additional suggestions. I also would really like to find a way to make frozen Indian food.

          • M is for Megan

            It’s not real Indian food, but we do chickpeas and veggies in TJ’s simmer sauces, and I think they would freeze and reheat really well. Chickpeas are hardy! I bet if you made samosas or pakoras those could be thawed pretty easily too?

          • HannahESmith

            Good ideas! I really love the TJ Indian food packets, but I feel like I could make a cheaper option myself since the ingredients are so inexpensive.

          • TeaforTwo

            I’ll bet you could do it if you stayed away from cream/dairy-based curries, and potatoes. Beans tend to freeze really well – maybe a chana masala? Smitten Kitchen has a good recipe for chana masala that we use. I’ve never frozen it, but I think it would work!

          • HannahESmith

            Thank you! I checked out that recipe, and I totally already have most of the ingredients. I’m going to make it!

          • Em

            We regularly make chana masala and freeze it. It works great! Also chili, lentil casserole, and soups. Freezer lunches are the best!

  • Anon

    Hi all! I am slightly new to APW and wrote Meg BEGGING her to do a post about what I’m about to share with you and then was like- oh yea! Happy Hour comments!
    Is anyone else feeling the pain that comes with having sisters while you plan your wedding? My situation is that I want very badly to have a good relationship with both of my sisters, and sometimes we have good moments, but often they are difficult and disappoint me, and it’s painful to say the least. There’s that saying that weddings don’t change the relationships you have, they only serve to highlight what’s already there, which is SO TRUE in this situation. It feels like the wedding is ratcheting up the pain I already feel due to my relationships with them. I am very different than both of them and have had serious self worth issues because of it (which I now see a wonderful therapist for, thank goodness). We of course talk a lot about parents on here, but there is a unique set of challenges that come particularly with sisters.
    My goal in all of this is to stay out of the fray, let them be difficult if they are going to be that way, and be like- you know what? I’m getting married and this is not my problem. But it’s so hard. There have already been a few incidents that have seriously tested me, and I’m kind of bracing myself for what’s to come. I don’t want to be an upset mess on my wedding day. On one hand maybe they will come through and we’ll have one of those “good moments,” on the other- maybe something will happen that will break my heart.
    Anyone else deal with this? Any coping strategies you can recommend? Advice?

    • HannahESmith

      I actually had the experience of my sister being awesome at my wedding, but one of my bridesmaids really went off the rails. I highly recommend having an emotional bodyguard. Ask someone you trust to be your buffer. (This can also be really helpful for keeping you from getting too stressed out). The emotional bodyguard is basically the gatekeeper for your day, and they can help protect you emotionally. For me, I asked two of my bridesmaids to do this, but my sister really stepped up and helped out too.

    • rys

      My sister (younger) and I have had a challenging relationship, with its ups and downs, in part because we’re just so, so different from one another (so much so that many, many people comment about how it’s crazy we’re actually sisters). Our relationship has improved over the years, aided both by distance and by, I think, learning how to see one another’s strengths and ignore other qualities/values.

      All of this is lead in to saying that the months before my sister’s wedding were pretty terrible for me, and I imagine I was both “difficult” and “disappointed her.” I complained about referring to my parents as “Mr and Mrs John Smith” on the invite, I was annoying about bridesmaids dresses (b/c I don’t believe in them), and I got pissed when it was suggested that I should share a hotel room with 2 of her friends (that I had met once). I also felt stuck in the middle, as the pseudo-therapist to both her and my parents, as I would hear from both sides about whatever the latest conflict was. And I was single, very very single. All of this is to say there were a constellation of issues that aggravated me and did not lend itself to my best behavior. I like to be right and letting go is not really my strength, and because we are siblings, I didn’t let it go the way I would have with a friend.

      As it turned out, my sister was much more sensitive to some of my feelings than I realized. She tried very hard to make it possible for my best friend to attend as my date. Health issues got in the way, but it was an incredible gesture. In hindsight, I wish she had just told me what she was planning (but she loves a good surprise) as I think it would have alleviated the tremendous emotional pressure I was feeling.

      All of this is to say, your sisters may be difficult and disappointing. It’s also possible that your wedding is a trigger for them, about certain issues, and their behavior may reflect that. If there is a way to reach out to them and show kindness and empathy, it might help. It certainly made a difference for me.

      • Anon

        Thank you so much for this perspective. My therapist is forever reminding me- it’s not a reflection of YOU when they act out. One of my sisters, in addition to just tending to be aloof, has had a rocky marriage for a few years now, so it’s very possible the wedding is bringing up issues for her. I also have one bridesmaid who is single and I know feels sensitive, and sometimes I’m at a loss as to what I can do to make it better. If there are other things you can think of that I can do to show empathy and kindness to my sisters and my bridesmaids, I am all ears.
        Thank you.

      • Anon

        Also rys- nothing you are describing sounds that bad at all! I think it’s alright that you didn’t have a 100% chipper attitude about everything, especially given your feelings. Also it sounds like you were put in a horrible spot by having to be the middle man between your sister and your parents.
        I wonder if I asked your sister right now if she would describe your behavior as either disappointing or difficult. Given her lovely gesture with your best friend, I wonder.

        • rys

          I’m not sure what she would say if I asked her now, both because it’s
          been several years and because our relationship has changed over this
          time. It’s a good question though :)

  • Anonymous for Today

    Going anonymous today, but I had an interview for a promotion today and am pumped about it. It’s also great for me because it was a definite confidence booster for me. I’ve been trying to figure out a friend’s rapid fade-out and was hit with a big life thing this week that I can’t share with anyone (but my husband). It could be either really awesome or not and we aren’t sure which yet. Lots of conversations happening in my house for sure.

  • copper

    ok, so I know everyone hates the commenting system, but one positive thing I’ve noticed about it? The conversations don’t seem to be as flash-in-the-pan as they used to. I can come back to an article posted a couple days ago, and people are still talking on it, instead of the conversation dying 3 hours after post. So, silver linings.

    • HannahESmith

      Is it weird to say that I’m seriously loving the new comment system?

      • M is for Megan

        I do too

      • I love it in theory! I love it on my home laptop! I hate it on my work computer because disqus doesn’t load for me there. But overall I love it!!

  • KerryMarie

    I posted last Friday happy hour about my next-day wedding dress appointment anxiety. Just wanted to say thank you to the ladies who replied with words of encouragement and good advice! I found a dress that I am very happy with and excited to wear, and am so relieved that I can now move the eff on. Thanks APW!

    • That’s so awesome!! Congrats! (were you in LA? or am I mistaken? and if so, where did you go??)

      • KerryMarie

        Catherine, yes! I was in LA at Dolly Couture, where I found a very simple tea-length dress. The ladies there were great- calming and not at all pushy. Good luck with your dress search!

  • I’ve seen the link for Dinovember floating around and I’m definitely filing it away for whenever kids come into the picture. Also, cats in tights? Awesome! My fiance was starting to think I had lost my frickin mind when I insisted we dress up the cats for some cheesy Save The Date pictures (although cheesy turned into kick-ass because one of our photographer friends jumped at the chance to take the pics).

    After 2 crazy, effed up weeks at work I have all of next week off! FINALLY! Fiance took that week off too so we’re going to dedicate to wedding stuff. Flower consults have been scheduled, cake tastings have been arranged, final budget is being organized, and I’m finalizing STD/Invite/Website designs since that’s all getting DIY’ed. We’re also planning to call DJ’s and set a hotel block… anything else we should be doing about 7 months out? Venue and catering is set, my dress is waiting in my friend’s closet, and said friend gets to pick her own BM dress so we don’t have to worry about BM dress ordering timelines.

  • Rebekah

    I’m totally full of happy this week and I want to share. Next week is our 6 year dating anniversary, we’re looking at rings for both of us and creeping towards a proposal by Christmas, He’s here and gone and here and gone for residency interviews the next three months, and in 2 weeks I get to see his family, my friend from elementary school whom I haven’t seen since 2009, and my relatives, including my brand new second cousin.
    And the new site is gorgeous. It’s so easy to discover old stuff! Hooray!

    • scw

      hooray! I’m equally excited to see family and friends (including a childhood best friend I haven’t seen in some time, too!) in two weeks and next week is exciting for us, too, because he should be able to pick up our engagement ring. pretty good november, hey?

  • Caiti_D

    If anyone is looking for a well-illustrated, down to earth comic on marriage to peruse, check out Gemma Correll’s daily illustrated diary. She’s planning her wedding and is super relatable. http://gemmacorrell-dailydiaries.blogspot.com

  • Alyssa

    I want to go back in time and share this during Feminism month.

    From “A Day in the Life of an Empowered Female Heroine” —

    “‘Feminism,’ she said to herself, and then put on some red lipstick.
    ‘Just because I’m a feminist doesn’t mean I don’t like to look good.’
    Then she kicked another guy through a window, and he fell all the way.
    He was probably dead. She had like four guns strapped right on her


    • a single sarah

      That is hilarious <3

    • Sarah E

      Haha, awesome!. . . . .also, can I be her?

  • Do you guys remember that link on the link roundup of a happy hour about the pricing breakdown of wedding photographers? I tried searching for it in the archives but nothing showed up – it was basically a photographer writing a post about why it’s so expensive and how they actually aren’t overpriced…something like that. Anyone?

  • Molly

    I need help finding a dress for my May courthouse wedding… any tips on places to look for INEXPENSIVE dresses would be awesome (I’ve read the apw posts about this, and none of the picks really appeal to me.)

    So here’s the low-down. My fiance and I will be getting married at the courthouse on May 23 and having a reception the next day. The wedding reception attire is already purchased (FH is south asian so I have a traditional red Indian sari).

    I don’t think I need to have a super fancy dress (and I don’t want one) for the courthouse, since it would be really out of place and out of my price range. I’d like to keep it under $300, but preferably under $200. Minimal alterations would be great too.

    I could wait till the white dresses come out for spring but I don’t want to feel stressed about finding a dress that close to the wedding, so I’ve started looking online. I’m having trouble finding much. Do y’all think a long dress would be appropriate? I’ve been looking aI’m really liking this one from BHLDN:


    I think this one from ModCloth is cute:


    These from DB:



    What do y’all think? Other than those I don’t really know where to look… and I’m not sure if longer is appropriate or not? Does anybody have any tips for places I can look? This got a little rambly, sorry!

    • I’m super in love with all things Modcloth so I may be biased when I say I like the Modcloth dress. It seems fun and easy. Plus it’s totally wearable again if you wanna relive wedding vibes on an anniversary or other day. I have always had good luck looking for dresses at Bloomingdale’s (both in store and online).

      As for length, wear whatever length is comfortable and makes you feel beautiful. Also according to my mother, as long as you can pick up a quarter without flashing anyone, your dress is long enough. YMMV.

    • oooo I like all of those..I’m actually kind of loving the david’s bridal ones! They are all lovely though :) I love modcloth :) And ASOS is a great site too!

    • I really love the bhldn dress. I think it’s spot on for spring and looks very romantic. <3


  • The new site looks amazing and you guys definitely deserve a nice, peaceful nap! By the way, Dinovember is the best thing since sliced bread. Michelangelo the Ninja Turtle as a hostage nearly killed me.

  • Winny the Elephant

    Can anyone think of a good way of calling people out of cocktails for group pictures? I find that using a microphone really interrupts the flow of conversation yet I’ve been to weddings where family members got left out of pictures because they didn’t get the broken telephone message. I’m creating a call list for my stage manager but how does she go about finding the people on it?

    • Eenie

      Talk with your photographer, since they have experience with taking photos at weddings.
      You could designate something for them to hold/wear. Like a hat or feather or something. Or make one announcement for all the designated picture people to gather. Start with the large shots with the most people and dismiss people as you finish up their pictures.

      • Winny the Elephant

        Right now my call list has 8 distinct groups of people for photos. I can’t have everyone together due to family strife/divorce/mobility issues. Otherwise that would be a good idea, start with everyone then dismiss people.

        Did you mean have the people who will be in the pictures wear a hat or feather? Cause that would be almost everyone, our wedding is 98% family members. And if the photographer wears it, that still won’t help everyone know when it’s their time….

        Is this a problem other people have as well or is it just me?

        • Bunny

          The only thing I can think, is tell everyone to keep their mobiles on and to-hand, and send group texts to each group of people come their turn? Not a terribly elegant solution, though.

          • Winny the Elephant

            Not the most elegant but definitely the most feasible I’ve heard. Maybe give my stage manager the mobile numbers of key people? Good idea, she should probably have them regardless.

  • I wanted to pop in here and say… I had a dream about the old APW this weekend. I love the new design, but it’s a little sad to think that we won’t see the purple and the lace and chalk banner again. Change is good, but then things are different. ;)