Workday Reading + Ask The Edit

Belle’s Workday Reading: October 15, 2014


Telling people you’re busy doesn’t make you admired, envied or pitied.  It makes it sound like you’re not in control of your own life, your own time, your own choices.

People love to be busy.  Some even love to be too busy.  But having a full life means conquering “the busy trap” and choosing (as much as possible) to embrace the things that fill your days.  Take back your life, be something better than busy.


1) Talk to any group of professional women in their 30s about having babies and someone is bound to bring up egg freezing.  The technology is improving, but the cost is still substantial (in the range of $10,000 per harvest, $500 per year for storage).  Lucky for female employees at Facebook and Apple, their companies are now willing to pay for it.

2) Since we had several under-$50 bags yesterday, how about some under-$50 shoes today?  These burgundy VS t-strap pumps are gorgeous.  I also like these silver foil pumps for after hours.

3) Having a job you don’t like can be unbelievably draining, it can also be hard on the friends and family who listen to you complain.  That’s why one Above the Law contributor decided to stop complaining for 40 days.  It’s an interesting read.

4) Boden is the kind of shop that you forget about for a little while, then you go back and wonder how you could’ve forgotten in the first place.  This berry-colored Lucia dress, sublime (also in black or navy).  This gauzy silk top in a soft mauve, a must-have (also in ivory or navy).  This mod-style Zoe dress is incredibly fun, and I love this bright Cavendish skirt is fantastic (also in tall).

5) Three rules to follow when you live with someone who works from home.

6) Is this concealer from Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics the greatest ever?  Yes, yes it is.  (Comes in a wide range of skin tones.)

7) The CEO of Microsoft offered working women some excellent advice on asking for a raise: don’t.  He seems to think that if women just trust the system, call upon their good kharma and make a wish upon a star, they’ll be rewarded with a larger salary.  The Washington Post explains why that’s bulls**t.  And Forbes has some tips on how to ask for a raise the right way.

8) These off-white, wide-leg trousers from Reiss are incredible.  These BCBG trousers have a similar look for under-$100.  Need a plus-size option?  Try these Jones New York straight leg trousers.

9) Thinking about going to law school?  It is not a decision to take lightly.  This bubble-chart compiles some of the best advice from well-known books geared to prospective law students and turns it into a list of informative Q&As.

10) My new favorite suit is this black, peplum suit (now on sale) from Halogen.  I think I’ll pick up this charcoal grey skirt suit as well (also in petites).

11) Eric Schmidt offers nine rules for using e-mail that are brilliantly simple.  Now, to go tackle my inboxes…

12) Haven’t used the Shopbop 25%-off code yet?  How about these super-warm Plush fleece-lined tights? (In black, navy or grey.)  I bought two pair.



  1. Anne says:

    I’ve been eying that Halogen suit since your first post about it. Now that it’s on sale I’ve decided to take the plunge! I love the femininity hinted at by the peplum, hard to come by in tasteful women’s suiting. Thanks for the great recommendation, keep up the good work!

    October 15, 2014/Reply
    • Mo says:

      Agreed, I had all three pieces in my cart but hadn’t pulled the trigger. Thanks for the sale tip!

      October 15, 2014/Reply
  2. LW says:

    Though I’m happy about companies offering women some reproductive options, I feel like this offering creates the pressure of 1) Don’t worry, you can work 100-hour weeks until you’re 50, THEN you can have children! or 2) Have children when you want, but give up your career. I think I’d prefer if they make their company cultures and policies more conductive to having children in general, for women and men, at any point along their career trajectory.

    October 15, 2014/Reply
  3. Erika says:

    A lot of my Facebook friends are really upset by that egg freezing benefit, thinking it sends a strong message to the female employees to not have children while at that company. If that had been the only thing these companies payed for, I would have understood the rage, but since they are sponsoring fertility treatment and have other kinds of family-promoting benefits as well, I don’t get it.

    October 15, 2014/Reply
    • Anna says:

      YES!!!! I thought the same exact thing when reading some of the critics. As a feminist who wants to have kids before 35, I thought this was a great idea. It means these women’s careers don’t have to be as dictated by their family planning goals, just as men’s careers generally aren’t. I agree wholeheartedly though that we need more support for women (and men) who have kids earlier on.

      October 15, 2014/Reply
    • Belle says:

      I don’t understand that part. I also don’t understand why no one is talking about the potential health benefits. A friend of mine froze embryos (somewhat different than eggs) because she and her husband weren’t ready to have kids at 29, but her mother and grandmother had both had cancer in their early 30s.

      I think it’s great for women and married couples to have options, and I think Facebook is saying to younger employees: If you’re in a situation where you might leave or throttle back because you’re afraid you won’t have time to find a spouse, become pregnant and raise children without hurting your career, you can buy yourself a little time.

      I think it’s great. I hope the technology gets better so it’s more reliable.

      October 15, 2014/Reply
      • Erika says:

        A friend of mine has premature menopause in her family. She was not even 30 and already starting to run out of time when her husband decided he never wanted kids and dumped her. Freezing eggs has bought her some more time. So there are a million reasons to do it.

        October 15, 2014/Reply
  4. Monica says:

    My mother is always ‘busy’ and always seems to be trying to get me to overfill my life as well. Instead of lying and saying I’m also too busy, I tell her straight up that I enjoy my downtime and that I don’t want anything else in my life than what I already have.

    With a 1 year old, I’m hoping I can keep this up and avoid the busy trap of filling every moment of our waking life with ‘activities’. I’ve talked to parents who say they pretty much run on adrenaline all day to get to all the stuff they have planned. That is insanity. And it’s not for me. My motto is work hard, relax hard.

    October 15, 2014/Reply
  5. Style by Joules says:

    Just wow on the women asking for raises thing. As a woman who works in technology it’s particularly frustrating. I get things because I work for them and ask for them. How insulting to be told to sit back and take what you get.

    October 15, 2014/Reply
  6. Alllison says:

    Great post. Have you worn the fleece lined tights yet? Sounds amazing, but I am afraid that the fleece will make my legs look thick or chunky.

    October 15, 2014/Reply
  7. Anna says:

    I realize this is really nitpicky, but it reeeeally annoyed me that that whoever wrote the law school bubble chart misused “then” AT LEAST three times (there were a few other grammatical errors, but that one’s a super pet peeve). Blerg.

    October 15, 2014/Reply
    • Janet Perkowski says:

      Yes! Poor grammar dilutes the message.

      October 16, 2014/Reply
  8. Pingback: Five [Awesome] Things I Read This Week, 10.17.2014 | Pink-Briefcase

  9. Michelle says:

    I love the idea of these tights, but they don’t seem to be included in the sale. Did anyone else have that problem?

    October 17, 2014/Reply
    • Michelle says:

      Today is definitely Friday not Thursday, guess I missed it. The one time I’m disappointed its Friday.

      October 17, 2014/Reply