Organizing Thursday: ‘Caroline’ Travel Jewelry Case

I received a travel jewelry case as a bridesmaid gift from a friend, and it was something I never knew I always needed. I actually lost two very important necklaces to me because I stupidly put them in my sunglasses case for “safekeeping.” Now that I have one of these cases, it’s so easy to bring jewelry on vacation or even if I’m just going somewhere for one night. I like to switch up my jewelry to match my outfit and this makes it so I can always locate it in my bag, or just throw the whole thing in the safe at a hotel. Even after the sunglasses case incident, I don’t know if I would have even sought out a product like this, but now that I was gifted one, I wanted to pass along how useful it’s been to me. It’s $79 at Nordstrom. Wolf ‘Caroline’ Travel Jewelry Case

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  1. Thanks all for the anecdotes about shared kids rooms yesterday! It really shifted my thinking from ‘this is a puzzle we have to solve’ to ‘this is going to be so fun!’

    • I missed the discussion yesterday, but just wanted to chime in and say mine (boy and girl) have shared a room for several years now. They love it. We keep it minimal, just beds and bookshelf. The closet holds current season clothes for both, and the 3rd bedroom holds off-season clothes and their toys.

      The biggest pro has been how close they are. My littlest started preschool last year, so BigKid spent every night that summer telling him what to expect and teaching him adorable things like how to sit criss cross applesauce and how to be line leader. And also yes they love being together so other than sickness, they haven’t spent a night in our room.

      Decorating is SO FUN because you have so many more options. We have gray walls and use command strips, so it’s easy to switch it around. Right now they both have superhero bedding and pictures (Spiderman and Batgirl), before that they had water: mermaid and sharks. I had originally decorated when they were little with a sun and moon and stars theme.

      • Well last night my girl (3) told me she’d like the join bedroom painted pink with red hearts all over and my boy (almost 2) agreed and requested pink and red sooooo…

        I think maybe I’m going to stop consulting them. :) Love these ideas!

        • I used to babysit a boy and a girl who shared a room and it was painted half pink and half blue (each had a side) but in very soft tones that almost melded and with white wainscoting all around and it looked really neat. I don’t think that would work in my kids’ room because of its size/shape but I think it could be a nice idea in a bigger space.

      • Anonymous says:

        I posted about my 2 and 4.5 y/o. Just wanted to echo that the sleeping part of their setup is also minimalist. 2 beds with a small bookshelf in between that also serves as a night stand, laundry hamper in closet that holds off season clothes, and a shared big dresser. Their playroom is next door and has toys and my 2 y/o’s Diapers and more overflow clothes in the closet.

        I think barbies in theory live under the beds but are out 99% of the time so as long as they are in their bin I don’t get too picky where the bin is.

  2. I was the OP from yesterday who got into a fight with her husband after sharing the Ask Polly article with him yesterday. I just wanted to say thanks to everyone who commented. I thought about our fight and your comments all day, and realized two things. First, any conversation with my husband that starts by me sharing an article that says I hate my husband in the title is never going to go well. Second, I think I did want him to acknowledge that I do everything, just for principle’s sake. I wasn’t offering solutions to him. At the time, I thought that presenting my list of duties and asking him to share his with me felt like it was productive, and a possible solution. I just became angrier and angrier when he kept disagreeing with the “math.” I know my “math” is right, but that’s not the problem. Like Lana Del Raygun said yesterday, if I was doing 99% of the work, but I was happy, we wouldn’t have gotten into a fight. I think I’m just going to create a chore list and we’re just going to have to split it up. I worry that he won’t keep up with his half, but at this point I have no other solutions. Anyway, thanks to everyone for your input.

    • anne-on says:

      First, kudos to you for thinking through your reaction AND his, and not sticking to the ‘but I’m RIGHT, why can’t he just admit that?!?’ mode (which, honestly, I tend to do, a lot). Second – I agree with I think CPA Lady, who said that when they give their husband opportunities to say yes to things they ask for they are both a lot happier. Need time to go to a gym class? ask. Need help with the baby stuff? ask, and then if that fails delegate and step away.

    • My husband is very literal. I would never get him to admit he did “nothing” if he did something, no matter how small. I think you might have better luck acknowledging what he does do and then discussing the other things you need him to take on. I think dividing a chore list is a great idea.

    • I don’t know if this helps, but instead of making lists with numbers of items, you might think about just shifting a few big things to your husband. Not every item on the list is equal. In my house, I still handle many many of the random items. But my husband ended up doing daycare pickup while I was in Biglaw, which also meant that he was the first one home so he started dinner. This resulted in him also taking on the grocery shopping. These four big items–daycare pickup, meal planning, cooking dinner, and grocery shopping are huge. They can’t be shirked because the kid has to be picked up and we have to eat. Getting these daily tasks off of my plate also opens up lots of brain space for me to keep track of baby clothes, appointments, chores, etc. I get home and there is dinner. I open the fridge and there is food. I don’t have to rush out of work because he does pickup. Amazing.

      I know your kid isn’t yet eating table food, but very soon making dinner after daycare is going to be another daily chore. Shift this to your husband now. I’d also think about shifting making your kid breakfast to your husband. After he does the diaper, pretty soon he will need to make the toddler breakfast. Totally fits with your routine and gives you time to shower and get ready. Good luck.

      • Anon in NYC says:

        I agree that shifting bigger tasks can help. My husband is responsible for communicating with our doctor’s office about routine stuff, like health forms for school, scheduling dentist/routine appointments, etc. He is responsible for laundry, and primarily responsible for our dog (I haven’t even met our vet). He’s primarily responsible for kiddo in the morning. He vacuums.

        I do things like remember to buy our kid clothes, or schedule a haircut. I am primarily responsible for meal planning/grocery shopping, and weekend meal prep. I clean the bathroom.

        I’m sure I do a lot of smaller things that I can’t remember right now (and same with my husband), but the huge plus is that my husband fully owns his chores. It’s never expected that I would be responsible for laundry or taking our dog to get groomed. And, my husband may accompany me to the grocery store, but that’s not a given.

      • NewMomAnon says:

        Totally agreed on this. Kiddo’s dad has several kid tasks that are only his – dentist, haircuts, replacing outgrown winter clothes, and a few dinners a week. He is also generally responsible for baths, replacing outgrown kid shoes, and taking inventory of summer clothes, although I pick up some of that responsibility when I want to do so (like when I want to buy cute summer clothes or shoes, or kiddo is too dirty to wait a day for a bath). If possible, find some things that your husband currently does and formalize those as his responsibilities so you can stop thinking about them.

  3. I’ve noticed a trend with my toddler (2 1/2) lately. When she gets in trouble for something, she gets embarrassed/upset that she got in trouble and acts out more for the next 15-30 minutes, and it just turns into this cycle that we have to work extra hard to get out of. There are always warnings before she first gets in trouble, and she understands consequences when she doesn’t listen, but sometimes impulse just takes over. Suggestions?

    • My younger kiddo is like this. When she gets into this cycle I found this magical thing. I have no idea why it works. I start pointing out body parts and saying, “Did you know that your tummy is perfect?” “Did you know that your ears are perfect?” etc. I don’t know what it is about this that works for her but somehow it snaps her out of that downward spiral.

      • AwayEmily says:

        Agreed — some properly timed distraction can work well in situations like these. Especially if it’s exciting distraction — like saying “WOOOO LET’S JUMP AROUND!” or whatever. In my experience, soothing distraction (a book, hugs, etc) is less effective.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      My 3 year old does this too. She gets really upset when her behavior is corrected – like when I sternly told her to not put her scissors in her mouth! And now she says things like, “Mommy was mean to me” (!!). No advice, just commiseration.

      • What’s funny is that I recognize it because I’m the same way! I hate getting in trouble!

      • Mine walks around saying, “Mama said no!” about soooo many things.

      • Anonymous says:

        At one point, my kid said things like, “Mama hurt my ears” when he didn’t like what he heard. DH would confirm that this happened when I was not yelling or loud in any way.

    • My son is like this. He is very sensitive to any correction, even if he’s not “in trouble.” Some things that have helped us keep a straightforward correction from going off the rails are
      -offer a way to “fix it,” such as clean up a mess, put something he’s not supposed to have away (obviously not if there’s a safety issue), get ice if he’s hurt someone, an apology and hug. Then we say thank you and praise him for what he did to make it better.
      -explain why he can’t do something. Sometimes, it’s a simple explanation, like “This is a tool, not a toy,” repeated for the hundredth time. Sometimes, DH goes through a careful demonstration of why something is dangerous, like showing Kiddo what “sharp” or “hot” is in a controlled way.
      -if it’s a correction about a new thing or a new environment, we try to preface it with, “Kiddo, I know you haven’t been here before, but this is a place we do X,” or “I know you haven’t seen one of these before, but this is fragile, and we can’t play with it.” Just an acknowledgement that we recognize when he didn’t actually know better helps him accept a correction.

  4. Patty Mayonnaise says:

    I may have missed it, but I’ve been thinking of a poster who mentionabout a child who had a choking accident and potential brain injury. Any update? I’ve been thinking of this child and her friends and family.

    • Anonymous says:

      Hi, I posted the original question and haven’t posted an update. The update is the child has brain damage and will be in a rehabilitation facility for the foreseeable future. It’s a really rough situation and I’m so grateful I’ve been able to visit a few times to support the parents.

      • Anonymous says:

        I’m so sorry to hear this. I remember the original story as well. How awful. Am sending good thoughts to the child and family. Life is so fragile and can change so quickly.

      • Anonymous says:

        Oh gosh. How sad. I’ve been thinking about her and her family too. Thank you for the update.

      • Spirograph says:

        Thanks for the update, I’d been thinking of this little girl and her family and I’m so sad to hear this result. What a tragic accident, I’m glad you’re able to be there for the family.

        • can you post the original story again incaseit would help any other families? I’m so sorry.

          • Anonymous says:

            Not the OP, but, in essence, the child choked on something at school and needed to go to the hospital. The school/teachers did everything they were supposed to in terms of medical care. It truly seemed like a horrible accident. At the time of the original post, the child was in the hospital and not yet conscious.

          • Anonymous says:

            I’m the OP. Yes, it was a total freak accident. The child choked during lunch on school-supplied food. No allergic reaction. The food just got stuck in the child’s throat. Her teachers tried to do the heimlich but couldn’t get the food out. 911 was called, a paramedic arrived on scene and dislodged the food, but the child was unconscious. The child went to the hospital, was in the hospital for nearly 2 weeks, and is now at a rehabilitation facility, unable to walk or talk.

  5. TJ: my toddler is currently getting a needed MRI under general anesthesia(trying to distract myself). It would mean a lot to me if all you moms could send good vibes our way, for the procedure and the results.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Sending my thoughts for comfort and health to you and your family.

  7. Can someone explain closed toe water shoes? Just got a letter from daycare saying water day is coming and we should send kiddo in her swim suit and closed toe water shoes. We have the shoes linked below. Please tell me those count?? I would hate to have to buy another pair of shoes she’ll outgrow in a month.
    Thanks for keeping me sane.

    • Closed Toe Water Shoes says:
      • Anon in NYC says:

        Those are perfectly fine! That’s exactly what I would think of if someone said that.

      • anne-on says:

        Those look good! The goal is usually to keep wood chips (or pea gravel or small rocks) away from soft little feet. We use them at our (rather rocky) beach quite a lot.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yah these count! They don’t want flip flop type shoes or ones with little toes hanging out

      • Agreed. I also look for the “keens” style shoes that Target and Kohls usually carry.

        Daycare told me that the theory behind covering the toes is that kids trip WAY more often in flip flops or open toe shoes. When the teachers are focused on keeping everyone safe for water day, they don’t want to add extra falls or stubbed toes in the mix if they can avoid it.

        • Honestly, I kind of loathe open-toe sandals for kids for that reason, even outside of daycare.

          • I volunteered at a carnival at my daughter’s daycare recently and was shocked at the number of kids in her two year old room in flip flops or similar very open sandals. We only send her to school in sneakers so far. She does have Keen sandals, and if she asked to wear those, I’d let her. But she seems to know that she must wear sneakers to school so far. I actually thought it was a rule. Maybe they just aren’t enforcing it these days.

          • +10000 Flip flops are not practical for toddlers who will run around at the drop of a hat.

    • Thanks everyone!! Glad we are on the right track :)

    • Closed toe water shoe options: Actual water shoes, keen sandals, natives, and maybe crocs if your daycare allows them. My fat footed kid wore crocs and keens, my skinny footed daughter wore natives. Now they both live in natives.

  8. For all the complaining I do about my husband, I am heading to an outdoor event tonight and mentioned to him that I forgot the bug spray at home this morning. He set up an amazon prime now order to be delivered to my office with bug spray without me even asking, including some “baby safe” repellent as well. TBD on whether the babyganics spray works, but I think he also included “real” bug spray too, so we’re covered either way. I need to remind myself of the helpful, spontaneous problem-solving he does when it starts to drive me crazy that he has loaded the dishwasher less than 5 times our entire marriage.

  9. Good Pick says:

    I don’t know if I would use the hard zippered case for jewelry, but I got a soft satiny fabric jewelry roll from a good friend as a gift maybe 5-10 years ago from J. Crew and I love it and it is the best thing ever. I haven’t really seen anything like it since, which if I had I would have snapped them up for my sisters in a heartbeat – the other ones I see have ties that seem too little (mine has a nice wide grosgrain ribbon that’s easy to tie and stays tied), don’t have the right mix of pockets or are leather or other harder material.

    • I was gifted a hard zippered case (I think it’s coach?) and I really like it. I don’t worry about anything getting damaged if I stuff my purse under the seat in front of me, for example. It has nice little compartments for different items, and a tiedown to secure necklaces.

      The best thing about it is that when I travel I always put my jewelry in there at the end of the night, so I don’t lose it, and in the morning before I leave the hotel room I put it in the safe. Otherwise I am the kind of person who would leave diamond earrings on a night stand.

    • shortperson says:

      i’m not usually a bargain hunter, but i would never spend this much money on a jewelry case. this is the kind of thing you can find at outlets, etc. however, if i were to spend a hundredish on a case, i would buy from cuyana.

      • Anonymous says:

        I have a beautiful travel jewelry case from Pottery Barn that matches my big jewelry box. I like that they’re a set.

  10. rakma says:

    What passes for excitement for me today: will my Target pick up order be ready in time for me to grab it before the pediatrician’s appointment, or will I have to tag in DH to do the pickup after work?

    I did not calculate the window correctly, and we’re out of coffee, so this is a dire emergency.

  11. Venting says:

    Okay, so this is a seriously first world vent. But, here goes. I’ve been really annoyed lately that I feel like my husband and I make good money (just over 200k HHI in a low cost of living area), but by the time we do all the recommended saving and pay for pretty average expenses, it just feels like there is so little leftover that we can use for more frivolous wants (vacations, a new (to me) SUV instead of my small sedan now that DD is in the picture, etc). Being responsible is so annoying ;-) Especially when we see friends who we are as confident as we can be should be in a similar situation constantly spending money on fun stuff. We figure they’re not maxing out 401ks, saving significantly for kids’ college, etc. like we are. But it just gets old and sometimes feels a little isolating.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is exactly why I started tracking my net worth. When I feel like you do(often) I go look at our overall net worth and feel much, much better.

      • That’s a good point. I track via Mint and should pay more attention to our net worth. We’ve been aiming to build a new house soon (we have the lot and a house plan), but have had all sorts of unexpected crap come up this spring. Long story short, it has really impacted our bank accounts, which is making me second guess taking on the expense of this particular new home, even though we’re pretty desperate to get out of our current money pit of a house. And then at the end of the day, I’m just peeved that moving into a home that seems in line with our friends’ and coworkers’ homes will probably make me feel house poor. Which then spirals into being mad about the car and some other stuff.

        Also, I hate having a materialistic/keeping up with the Joneses attitude. So then I just get mad at myself for being mad. But more of it is just feeling like we are doing something wrong and figuring out what that might be. I know I sound ridiculous. Thank goodness for internet anonymity.

        • CPA Lady says:

          You are not being ridiculous. No one talks about this in real life so we’re all just trying to do our best.

          That said, DH and I are in a similar situation to you, though our HHI is not quite so high, and we don’t have a big fancy house that matches our HHI. You don’t have to have a house that seems in line with your friends and coworkers.

          We have a 3 bed 2 bath 1500 sf house in an older but still nice and cute neighborhood. Our mortgage is $900 a month. This gives us an immense amount of freedom even though we don’t look nearly as fancy as the Joneses. I’m not saying you need to do something quite so drastic as this, but having low fixed monthly costs allows us to “live large” in other aspects of our life.

          • I agree with you. And this has been our attitude up until now. We moved to a much smaller town for my husband’s job about two years ago. Currently mortgage is $1450/mo. Our house is about 13 years old and in a very desirable neighborhood (in the “back” of the development, newer houses are being built for $700k). But we have now learned the house was very poorly built (which is the reason it has been a money pit) and isn’t going to work for our family for various reasons. Not the least of which is that my husband and I no longer have the mental energy to deal with all the problems. My issue is our town of 23,000 has so little inventory in the $250,000-$300,000 range, which would be our ideal target. It is more expensive to build, but we feel like if we did that, we’d at least be paying for exactly what we want, which counts for something I guess.

    • shortperson says:

      those friends may either have trust funds or expect to come into enough money to not need to save significantly for retirement. i have slowly realized this is the missing variable in the equation for several people i know. i dont have anyone filling in this variable for me either.

      • Yes. We have those friends too. Here’s hoping their parents actually just leave everything to charity instead.

        • shortperson says:

          i dont feel the same way regarding my friends, but it does make me feel better to know the reason rather than second-guessing how i am making things work.

          • Me either. It was bad sarcasm that doesn’t come across well in this setting :)

    • Sometimes, the answer is to just go ahead and buy/do the fun things. Saving is great, but you should enjoy living in the now, too. You sound very responsible; what would happen if you pull back slightly on your 401k and college savings for a few months so you can buy a car and take a trip? It can be easy to convince ourselves that we need to save all the money (and it can be addicting…) but the reality is you make a *ton* of money, esp for a LCOL area, and if you take a look at the numbers I’m sure you can find a little wiggle room while still saving adequately. Give yourself permission to enjoy the life you are working so hard for.

      • I feel like there aren’t a lot of resources out there for people with higher incomes on how much to save, etc. Everything is aimed towards people who make a lot less. And we’ve met with some financial advisers. Not surprisingly, their advice is to save as much as we can.

      • I agree with this sentiment, and this is what we do. Fully fund 401K, have a cheaper house than most ppl with out HHI (1K mortgage, 230 HHI), so we can spend the leftover on shopping, traveling, etc. We also put a very small amount away for our kid’s college, with the thought that if we can pay for it when they go (i.e. take whatever amount we paid for daycare/private school and just funnel it towards college) we will, if not, the kids can pay for it.

        My DH’s mom passed away from cancer right as he was graduating college. Which means she never got to use that big old nest egg. It’s made us prioritize “now” spending just as much as “later” spending, because we really don’t know if there is going to be a later, and we want to enjoy the now as well.

    • In sympathy says:

      I feel that way every time I’m feeling cramped our small town home in a HCOL area. On paper we could have afforded more of a house, but it would have meant saving a lot less and putting on golden handcuffs. I know financial security is more comforting to me than a bigger closet and an office with a door, but….

  12. AnotherAnon says:

    I’m really struggling with my 15 month old needing to touch me at all times when we get home from work/day care in the evening. He will play happily as long as I’m within his (chubby little) arm’s reach, otherwise he has a total meltdown: to the point of sobbing tears, snot running down his face, 15-20 minutes to stop hiccuping. For a little background: he’s still teething, not walking yet Conventional advice to ignore/walk away seems to escalate the meltdowns/prolong them. I don’t want to keep giving in to his demands and/or carry him around constantly. Any advice?

  13. Anonymous says:

    This is a completely random question, but I see a lot of references to “net worth” on the main site and sometimes here. I am Canadian and don’t hear that term tossed around often but maybe it is a feature of who I hang out with. When people refer to net worth, are they by definition including their home equity? I live in a high cost of living City (Toronto) where the average price of a detached home is I think around $1.2 million Canadian.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes. It should be all assets minus all liabilities. We personally don’t really include personal property other than cars in the calculation. But a person might if they had items of significant value. But it is truly the equity – not necessarily the price of the home. If you live in a 1.2 million dollar house but have a 1 million dollar mortgage on it, $200,000 would count towards your net worth.

      • Anonymous says:

        This is correct. We have some fairly valuable art (probably $50-75K all together), and I include it in my “net worth” calculations. I don’t think we’d ever sell the pieces, but we could. There’s definitely a market for them.

    • For a rough calculation, we do our home resale value, plus our car’s resale value, plus our savings/401K accounts. And we subtract our loans and debt.

      House – likely sell for $250K
      Cars – likely sell for $20K total
      Savings plus 401k – $150K
      House loan – $150K remaining
      Car loans – $5K remaining
      Credit Card Debt – $3K (our avg monthly bill, we don’t carry a balance month to month)

      Our approximate net worth would be (250+20+150=420) less (150+5+3=158) so $262K.

      Our friends might have a $500K house and owe $450K on it, and have only $20K in savings with no retirement. Their net worth is going to be $82K. They might have a nicer house and take more trips, but they’ve deployed their money differently than us.

      All that to say, I agree with the above posters that there’s probably a trust fund or other backing in the mix, and to some extent you need to enjoy the “now” so all of this comparison is moot anyway.

    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly. Our net worth is $955,000 and started out as 80,000 when I started tracking in 2012. We had a lot of loan debt and we have a fairly big mortgage (HCOL area), and save aggressively for retirement. etc. but we had/have high salaries- but it always felt like we had “nothing left.” Six years later the school debt is gone and we are <$500k (gross, I know) on our mortgage where our house is worth +/-700k (for calculations inuse what we paid for it, even though we’ve improved it and the market is up).

      I don’t always think it’s a hidden trust fund. DH and I save over $50k/year into retirement between 401ks, IRAs and the fact that I have a Keough and can also contribute as the employer. We could easily take $20k from those contributions and spend it on a vacation or car payments and still feel like we are saving for retirement. We have $40k set aside for our kids college and they are 2,4, and in utero. We know lots of people that haven’t set anything aside yet.

  14. Patty Mayonnaise says:

    Thanks for the update. Thinking of his family.

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