Makeup Monday: Touche Éclat Radiant Touch

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: If you’re looking for a great way to revive your makeup at the end of a long day, but you don’t want to add a totally new layer of concealer because that tends to be a little too bright, this is amazing. It’s my favorite thing to put on at the end of the day if I go out for dinner or meet someone for drinks or whatever, because it’s a very natural way to add a bit of radiance. It’s not opaque enough to use as a concealer, but it’s a great way to sort of revive your concealer. It’s $42 and comes in a ton of colors, and you can get it from a lot of places, from Nordstrom to Sephora to Macy’s. It’s just really outstanding and I highly recommend it. Touche Éclat Radiant Touch

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  1. I bought this before and wasn’t totally impressed. Maybe I used the wrong shade?
    Other favorite beauty buys? I want a new mask or cream or something. Feeling a bit blah on the beauty front lately.

    • mascot says:

      If you like k-beauty stuff, the sampler packs from Laneige are nice and going through all the steps makes it feel a little more indulgent.

    • ElisaR says:

      i recently bit the bullet and after 15 years of wanting to try la mer creme…..i finally tried it. and yeah, i love it. but i am also loving my night cream which is “lancer the method” night cream…. pairing with the clarisonic mia which ive been using for a few years now.

      now the real trick is being diligent and actually USING the products daily. i get tired and the makeup wipes get used just as much as my fancy stuff….

    • anne-on says:

      Are you looking for something fun? Or something to address a specific concern? Sheet masks are my go to fun/pampering item, and they’re pretty affordable.
      I get terrible red spots after breakouts/brown spots from sun exposure, so my new favorite brightening product is the swanicoco fermentation care emulsion, it is amazing for fading them out. The LHJ propolis ampoule is also giving me an excellent ‘glow’ boost when I mix that into my moisturizer.

      • My specific concerns are bags under my eyes and lines on my forehead from frowning. I’ve resigned myself to the fact that only surgery or injections will help those, so just looking for something fun, I guess.

    • Anonymous says:

      Origins charcoal mask. Sephora has sample sizes by the registers. LOVE IT!

      • Second this. It’s one of the few masks I’ve tried where my skin feels nicer for a few days after, not just immediately after.

    • CPA Lady says:

      I recently started wearing lipstick every day after never wearing it ever before (I’m 33). Its a fun little pick me up.

    • Katala says:

      I think it was someone on the main site that turned me onto the beauty blogger Caroline Hirons. I went a little nuts reading her stuff (toward the end of mat leave, ha), but the most helpful to me were her “routines” cheat sheet. All kinds of ideas for fun stuff to add and ways to mix up your routine depending on your specific concerns.

    • Delta Dawn says:

      I bought some single-use masks by Freeman at Ulta recently. I bought them mainly for a charcoal one I wanted to try, and it was pretty good, but I was blown away by a clay mask of theirs. It’s in a teal package. I looked online and don’t see the exact one I loved. I can check at home tonight, but I know it uses clay and is in a teal packet (I see green and blue online, but not this teal one I love). I will investigate, because I’d love to buy it in full size. For fun you might pick up a handful of the single use packets and see if you like any enough to buy the full.

  2. Posted on the main page but wanted to post here as well.

    About 9 months ago, I commented here about having a nose like a bloodhound. On Friday, the cause of that nose made its appearance. He was 11 days late and labour started 12 hours before my induction, went in for the appointment and they realised it was unnecessary. 17 hours of labour in hospital, a failed epidural, and 10 minutes of pushing, and we have a beautiful baby boy, weighing in at 8lb11oz.

    UK fun fact, the midwives bring you tea and biscuits during labour and tea and toast once you’re done. It is the best toast you’ve ever eaten.

    • mascot says:

      Congrats! I remember my post-delivery hamburger being delicious. My hospital also sent around a daily cart with afternoon berry smoothies to the patients in the maternity ward.

    • Congratulations!!! I hope he more than makes up for his tardiness.

      Tea and toast – that is more proof the UK is just better at mothers and children! Here (in an otherwise lovely and highly-regarded hospital) they didn’t even allow me to eat during labour, resulting in 3.5 hours of pushing. I hear you even get home visits (!) from nurses over there!

    • ElisaR says:

      congratulations! welcome to the world little one!

    • avocado says:

      Congratulations! You earned that toast.

    • Spirograph says:


      Biscuits in the British sense, like… cookies? Cookies would have been a great addition to labor. Do better, American hospitals.

    • anne-on says:

      Congratulations! I had hyperemesis during my pregnancy and being able to eat food again, anything, without weird aversions was the second best part of giving birth!

    • Anon in NYC says:


    • Anonanonanon says:

      Congratulations! I’m so happy for you! I got a bit teary! (my own pregnancy hormones at play probably). So glad everything went well, please get some rest!

      nitrous oxide as a pain management option plus cookies and tea during labour? brb moving to the UK

      • Cornellian says:

        Nitrous oxide is spreading here! The hospital where I gave birth in Manhattan had it as an option.

        • Anonymous says:

          Which one?!?!?! I wanted to do nitrous in NYC and couldn’t find anyplace that did it1

          • Cornellian says:

            Mt. Sinai/St Luke’s/Roosevelt birthing center.

          • Anon in NYC says:

            I think NY Presbyterian Lower Manhattan has a birthing center with nitrous oxide. But it’s relatively new (opened ~Dec 2015).

    • Anonymous says:

      Congratulations! 8 lb 11 oz! Big boy!

      My first was also 11 days late and I went into labor the day I was scheduled for induction. :)

    • NewMomAnon says:


    • Katala says:

      Congratulations!! After my first, my doula handed me a bag of lactation cookies. I was dehydrated and overwhelmed and didn’t think I was hungry, but tried one after a few minutes and almost couldn’t stop. Best cookie ever! Love the tea and toast, it’s the right balance of quick energy and liquids.

    • EP-er says:


      Friday’s child is loving and giving.

    • Anonymous says:

      Congrats, Cb!

    • EB0220 says:

      So exciting, congrats!! I still remember the hospital cafeteria breakfast after my 1st and the emergency PB&J my MIL made me after my 2nd because the hospital couldn’t give me any food at 8 pm. Best meals I’ve ever eaten

  3. Baby book? says:

    Baby book recommendations? I have not been excited about any of the options I saw online.

    • Can you be more specific? Do you want a book about pregnancy? Baby care? Book for baby to read?

      • avocado says:

        Or the kind where you record milestones?

        • My SIL received a baby book with milestones particular to the city we live in. (For example, if it were New York, it might be things like First Trip to Central Park, First Cheesecake, Photo in front of the tree at Rockefeller Square, etc.) I loved it and was a teensy bit jealous even though I’d never actually fill out a baby book IRL. You could look in local gift shops or on Etsy to see if anyone has created something like that for your city or state.

    • If you have an artistic eye or know you would put the time into it, there is one on artifact uprising that is beautiful. It’s $$$$ though. I bought it and regret it because I knowwww I’m not going to put the time into it that it deserves.

    • Walnut says:

      Land of Nod has some good options.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Y’all, this is a little outdated since Black Hat was a week ago now, but I just have to comment on how happy I am that the conference offered child care! I don’t think I need to point out that IT and cyber security are pretty male-dominated career fields, so I was especially pleased that someone had the good sense to prioritize this.

    I didn’t use it, because my husband stayed home with the kids where he belongs (haha!), but I’m so glad the option was available for any parents who needed it.

    • Legally Brunette says:

      This is awesome. I have never heard of this before (sadly).

    • avocado says:

      It is nice that the conference organizers thought of working parents, but sometimes I wonder about the idea of conferences providing child care. To me, it sends the message that moms should just tote their kids along with them instead of having dads step up and care for them at home, reinforcing the idea that the mother should be the default parent. I wouldn’t have been comfortable handing my kid off to some random strangers in a hotel or conference center, either.

      I brought my family along on two business trips, and never again will I make that mistake. Spouse and kid hogged the bathroom in the morning and made me late for meetings, wanted attention in the evening when I was exhausted, and inhibited me from participating in evening social events and networking. It was stressful and distracting. I felt like I was shortchanging both family and work.

      • anne-on says:

        +1 – I thought briefly about bringing spouse/kid to a few work events in fancy locations/luxe hotels, but I treat evenings as much deserved ‘me’ time. I eat room service, watch a movie or read a book I wouldn’t have time for normally. Heck – sometimes I even take a bath!
        Plus, I do think having to step up and handle all the house/kid/pet stuff makes my husband appreciate what I do more!

      • NewMomAnon says:

        Hmmm….I think anything that enables more women to participate in important career building events should be welcomed. Offering childcare doesn’t mean “we expect mom to lug the kids.” It means, “If you don’t have anyone to watch the kids, we still want you to come and take whatever value you can from the experience.” Most women (and men) probably would make the decision to leave the kids at home with the other spouse. But for a few, it might be the difference between attending in some capacity and not attending at all.

        Also – childcare should be considered an unreimbursed business expense for tax purposes.

        • Anon in NYC says:

          I agree. Lugging family/kids along may not be what everyone wants to do, but it’s nice that it is an option that still lets caregivers meaningfully participate in the event.

      • Yikes. I’m planning on bringing DH and Kiddo to a conference in October. I typically attend conferences alone and network like crazy, but for some reason, I wanted this one to be a family trip.

        My mom happened to be planning to attend a conference in the same area a few days later, so my parents are flying in early and staying in the same hotel (different room) as us during my conference. Hopefully they will help DH wrangle Kiddo while I attend the conference.

    • Anonymous says:

      My husband and I both work in this field and there is a good chance both of us will be expected to attend one year. I know a handful of couples where both were conference attendees and used the childcare. Plus there are single parents, dual-career couples where both parents may be out of town at the same time, etc. I don’t think it sends a message about expectations for anyone to lug the kids, it just takes “what do I do with the kids?” out of the equation for deciding whether to attend a major industry event for all parents. And I think that’s great

      • CPA Lady says:

        Completely agree. My husband was working nights when I was in public accounting and I had to hire a night nanny for my 12 month old so I could go to an out of state mandatory training. It sucked. I think offering childcare at conferences is wonderful as a safety net type thing.

  5. Patty Mayonnaise says:

    Any advice on pumping and bringing back milk for a day trip (that involves flights back and forth)? I’m just back from mat leave and looks like I’ll need to do some traveling soon. Any advice on how to bring this up with my (all male) team? Also, if opposing counsel is hosting the meeting? I feel like I’m just getting the hang of pumping at work, but the thought of traveling (and being away from my baby!) is a bit overwhelming. My son is 4.5 months old and I had been hoping to hold off on travel until 6 months – thoughts on asking to participate by phone (there are other members of my team that will be there in person)? Thanks so much, ladies! I feel like I’m just now figuring out how hard all of this is.

    • ElisaR says:

      are you pumping extra and freezing it at all? I was soooooo careful about wasting milk that I never would have been able to do what I’m about to suggest (I don’t mean to be flippant): would it be totally crazy to dump it after pumping? After I stopped bf’ing I thought I’d be using all the frozen milk in my freezer…..but here I am 16 months later and the milk never got used (my son transitioned to the formula immediately and I anticipated a gradual transition) and it breaks my heart to toss it but I need to….. my point is: I could have gone a day with not giving him what I pumped during that time since I had sooooo much left over.

      that said I never had to fly with b-milk. I know a lot of people on here have talked about it – some even said they shipped it home so they wouldn’t have to worry about flying with liquid. But I’ve also heard TSA is understanding on b-milk….but I wouldn’t count on it.

      • Cornellian says:

        I second the idea to consider pumping and dumping. I have a tiny freezer (4 cu feet, I believe), and it took me a while to stop crying over it, but pumping and dumping makes things much easier.

        If your supply is established (it sounds like it is), you might even just take a hand pump so you can pump for a few minutes and dump, rather than lugging around an electric pump and cooler set up.

    • Spirograph says:

      I totally understand why you’re apprehensive about this, but my personal experience is that people are more accommodating that you think. Just say, “I’ve recently returned from maternity leave I need to take a break at x time for y minutes to pump milk for my baby. I need a private room – not a bathroom, where do you suggest?” It feels awkward to talk about because it’s br3asts, but you wouldn’t think twice about asking where the bathroom is, and pumping milk is an analogous bodily function.

      As for flying with milk, I only did it with frozen milk, which probably isn’t an option for a day trip. There is a TSA exception, but I would mentally steel yourself for having to dump it, just in case.

      • I just asked opposing counsel and pumped on arrival, during the lunch break, and when I got back to the airport.

        I flew a number of times with liquid milk for short biz trips. I carried ziplock bags that I filled and re-filled with ice as needed. I dumped the ice/water just prior to security and re-filled on the other side.

      • Delta Dawn says:

        Print the TSA rules on bmilk and have the hard copy with you in case anyone tells you you have to dump it. You do not have to dump it. As others have said, though, leave extra time for any extra screening and/or convincing TSA to follow their own rules.

    • Anonymous says:

      I traveled and flew back with milk several times, and from much longer trips (3-5 days). You’ll be fine! Get a good cooler– I used Polar brand, bring gallon-sized ziplocs and milk storage bags. I filled several ziplocs with ice and put a few bags of milk in each. Just give TSA a heads up that the cooler has b-milk in it. Do be prepared for them to test. One trip, I got completely waved through, the other, the officer had me open every single bag so they could test it (just involved waving a test strip over the open bag, no milk lost), so just give yourself extra time at security.

      • +1 to extra time for TSA. I never had a problem getting b-milk through TSA, but I have had to wait up to 10 minutes for personnel to be available for testing.

      • I travel fairly frequently for work, and I managed to pump for a full year. I second the advice to bring a small cooler, milk bags, and many Ziploc bags. I always lined my cooler with a larger bag (like from the grocery store, or a hotel laundry bag) in case of leaks. I’d also fill Ziploc bags with ice and refill with fresh ice in the airport as needed. I preferred this to cold packs because I often didn’t have a means of re-freezing them. Inform TSA that you have b-milk before you put it on the belt. If they give you any issues about melting ice, you can dump the ice and get more on the other side. They may test your milk or they may not. In my many, many trips with non-frozen milk, I never once I had an issue (yay!). I even got a few high fives from TSA, and one officer called me a bada*s!

        If you’ll be traveling somewhat regularly, I’d get a hand pump. I usually traveled with my regular pump, but it was nice to have the hand pump as a back up (or for use on the plane), and towards the end it was all I brought for day-only trips.

        Good luck!

    • NOVA Anon says:

      Second the advice from POSITA below. First, you should go. It will be a huge pain (I’ve done it), but it can be done and I think it’s better than asking to join by phone. Not sure the nature of the meeting, but good opportunities can arise when you’re there in person. Second, here are my additional tips:
      -If you’re flying with colleagues, pumping in your seat on the plane or in the gate area (both of which I’ve done) may not be an option. Try to pump at home first, or in the car on the way there, or see if the airport has a nursing location and get there early to use it. Many don’t. Ones I’m aware of are LAX and O’Hare (ask Traveler Services; they will escort you to someone’s office in Terminal 2; it’s super strange but doable). Another option is to ask the flight attendant if you can do so in the back of the plane. If all else fails, or if you’re not comfortable with that, it’s gross but I’ve pumped in a plane and train bathroom before (and didn’t dump the milk…). Bring a surgical mask and lysol wipes.
      -I never had an issue flying home with unfrozen milk, but they would test it sometimes. I found it was easier if I could transfer to bags or bottles of 3 oz or less; then they don’t need to test it. But for a one-day trip, I’d use the Madela cooler bag (multiple if necessary) and bottles; never had a problem with them at security. They do not allow soft ice packs. I also printed out the TSA policy on it from the internet but never had to use it. Just make sure you allow for extra time going through security on the way back, and tell your closest team member not to have the rest of the team wait for you.
      -If you don’t have them already, get Medela quick-clean wipes and a battery pack for your pump.
      -Your packing list should also include sharpies, lots of extra gallon-size ziplock bags, a nursing cover, an extra shirt/nursing bra, and a hand pump in case you need to go to the bathroom and do a quick comfort pump.

      Good luck! You can do it!

    • Butter says:

      My first day back at work was a day trip, and my flight home ended up being delayed by 4 hours. I highly recommend bringing a hand pump – either alone or with your regular pump. It was the difference between being able to sit on the runway for those extra hours and occasionally go to the airplane bathroom and pump just enough to take the edge off. Other things:

      – bring lots of paper towels for accidents and clean up
      – milk was fine for 12 hours with an ice pack or two
      – pack snacks with your pump in case you don’t get a chance to eat otherwise
      – label your bags with the time you pump in case you end up getting stuck and do have to dump some
      – never had a problem with TSA with fresh milk and ice packs. They all understood.
      – don’t worry about how much you’re pumping or the exact timing
      – I pumped in some amazing locations. One time a CEO gave up his office for me to pump. I think especially when you’re traveling on other people’s turf they are more accommodating.
      – don’t underestimate the time even a quick 10-12 minute pump will take with getting everything set up, especially when you’re trying to make a flight or a meeting
      – I just used my regular Medela cooler, and it was fine (but I was a just-enough producer, so didn’t need a ton of storage).

      Enjoy the trip. Pumping on the road is hard but I’m also really proud I did it, and I’m also very glad I didn’t miss those trips.

    • Pumping on the road says:

      You can do it! I’ve traveled multiple times for work and agreed with below suggestions:

      – never had a problem with TSA with fresh milk and ice packs. They all understood. Just give them a heads-up that you have a cooler with milk and they’ll usually ask you to take it out (like a laptop) and screen it separately.
      – ice packs or Ziploc bags with ice work best; defrosted ice packs may be thrown out
      – don’t worry about how much you’re pumping or the exact timing

      Look up the “mamava” airport – this is the BEST – user-sourced recommendations on where to find nursing/pumping rooms. I would never have found the Mamava pumping pod at SEATAC otherwise.

      Look up “milk stork” – a WONDERFUL milk delivery service. If you can get your employer to pay for it, fantastic. If not, for one night, it may set you back ~$150 but I’ve used it multiple times. They overnight your pumped milk through FedEx and my cooler has always reliably, consistently reached my home by 10:30 am the next morning (have done coast to coast overnight delivery multiple times).

      It’s frustrating, annoying, and incredibly lonely when you’re pumping on the road and you’re missing your baby…but it can be done.

      Also, after a few times of doing this, if you decide to stop and wean, or stop pumping on the road, that’s fine too. You’ll be fine, your baby will be fine…there’s only so much you can put yourself through. After doing this for 3 months (pumping on the road), I decided self-care = no more pumping when traveling and baby gets formula. He’s as happy and healthy as ever!

  6. POSITA says:

    If you’ll be at a big law firm office, it shouldn’t be big deal to take a break to pump. I needed to pump at a meeting and asked a female associate to reserve me a spot in their Mother’s room at X time. I excused myself from the meeting after looking at my phone (a reasonable excuse), and a legal secretary escorted me to the pumping room. Not a big deal at all.

    I feel like if you’re nonchalant about the whole thing, others will take their cues from you.

    I also found that it was often easist to inform another person with small kids rather than the whole team. Older folks or those without kids seemed the most confused or unsure about pumping. The person I told would cover for me in a reasonable manner. (E.g., “She had to step out but will be back in about 15 minutes.”) Lawyers are used to not getting reasons for absences because it may always be a client calling.

  7. Baby book? says:

    OP – thanks for the questions. I am looking for a book to read stories and milestones in life of my baby (not a book about babies generally)

  8. Patty Mayonnaise says:

    Unofortunately this is a brand new team to me and we’re not at a big law firm. My guess is no one will know what I mean when I say “pumping” :(

    • Can you call the office manager at whatever location and ask if they will have an accommodation for you? It shouldn’t be a problem. Just say you’re nursing and will need a private room in which to pump. I had to go to a golf outing shortly after coming back to work and admittedly made no plan other than bringing my bag of stuff and a packit cooler. I ended up asking a woman who worked there and she gave me a key to a small private room. It worked out great; I didn’t bother explaining anything and excused myself at various times when it was most doable.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m surprised more people aren’t suggesting that you dial into the call. Would it be a big deal to be in person vs. on the call. Your baby is only 4.5 months so I would at least broach the idea of not travelling.

    • POSITA says:

      It’s tough to have to navigate this when you’re just getting back. With my first baby, I was really squeamish about asking for locations to pump. I just tried to make do without asking. With my second I said “screw it” and I spoke up. It never turned out to be a problem. They always found a space and managed to pump. If someone gave me a hard time, I spoke up for what I needed and told myself that I was doing a service to all those who come after me.

      Asking for a private space to pump is a totally reasonable request. They should be able to manage something, even at the smallest firm. I’d send an email to a person who is responsible for logistics and expect them to accommodate. Spell out what you need, e.g., “I have a young infant and need to express breastmilk several times a day. Given the timing of our meeting, I will need access to a private space with a chair and an electrical outlet from 10:30 – 11 AM during our meeting on August 21. Please confirm that you will be able to provide a private space for me to use at the specified time. Many thanks.”

  9. Cleaning frequency says:

    For those of you who use a cleaning service, has anyone gone from having the cleaners twice a month to weekly, and did you find the increasing frequency worth it? I love coming home to a clean home and while I wouldn’t say our home is terrible, by the end of the two week mark we do definitely need them to come by. Weekly cleanings means more “pre-cleaning/picking up” on our part, but it wouldn’t be too much. We’re fortunate to be able to afford this. Curious to hear the hive’s thoughts, thank you!

    • NewMomAnon says:

      I was doing weekly cleanings for a while and it was blissful. I had budgeted for it to be twice the cost of every other week cleanings, but it ended up being cheaper than that because the frequency of the cleanings meant things weren’t as cluttered and dirt didn’t get ground into surfaces as much. For the same reasons, the weekly picking up took less time than it took with the every other week pickup.

      If you can afford it, I would absolutely go for it.

    • I love weekly cleanings–but my husband hates them bc of the pre-clean pick up. For some reason, this stresses him out so we are back down to every other week.

    • Anonymous says:

      I love it. On the second week I have them do a lighter cleaning – just floors and kids bathroom and kitchen. And they also fold laundry and change sheets.

    • Spirograph says:

      We did, then back to biweekly, but I’m considering switching to weekly again. We stopped with weekly just because of the pre-cleaning/picking up…so that’s definitely something to think about

      My housecleaner thought that she wouldn’t have enough to do with weekly cleanings, especially since she only changed the sheets every other week, so she invited me to leave notes with special projects in addition to the standard floors/bathrooms/kitchen routine. She cleaned the shelves and drawers in the fridge, cleaned the oven, cleaned the cat litter box (!! I didn’t ask her to do that, but it was great), etc.

      • Katala says:

        Wow, if we could get someone to clean the litter box it would improve our life and marriage so much. I thought it was not cool to ask a housecleaner to do that so that’s great that yours did. Sounds like a reason to go with an individual vs. a service.

        • Spirograph says:

          Life-changing cat litter tip: A few months ago, we got a tall, lock-top trash can that we keep next to the litter box. Every couple days, we scoop the clumps into it, then relock the lid to keep the smell in. It is so much easier and faster to scoop it when we don’t have to go find a bag, scoop, and then immediately take it out to the bin outside (upstairs, since the box is in the basement), and consequently it stays a lot cleaner and we argue about it a lot less!

    • Thanks all! I think the weekly precleaning would probably stress my husband out, particularly as we’re doing a massive decluttering of our place right now. Maybe in a few months when things are more organized and less cluttered we can move up to weekly cleanings. :)

    • EP-er says:

      I loved weekly cleanings! It was the best — the house never got super cluttered in between cleanings. Alas, we moved and lost our cleaning lady & I haven’t replaced her yet. I really hate cleaning the bathrooms….

  10. SUV for a family of 4 says:

    Ladies, talk to me about SUVs! After 11 years of driving around a Toyota Camry, we’re looking to buy a 7 seater SUV. Some considerations:

    – We live in the city, but we have an indoor parking garage. However, we do some street parking from time to time when visiting friends, running errands, etc.
    – I rarely drive (metro to work) but husband drives 35 minutes each way to work
    – We’re interested in an SUV so that we can take some road trips and have room for our family of 4 PLUS luggage. But we’re not interested in those huge SUVs (like an Escalade)
    – We can afford a luxury SUV (Mercedes, Audi, etc.) but neither of us think it is worth it. Feel free to tell me if you disagree!

    Right now we’re looking at the Kia Sorrento, and Nissan Pathfinder. Would love any feedback about these SUVs as well as others that you love/hate.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’d go with a Subaru Forester or VW Tiguan. Do you need 7 seats with only 2 kids? All the 7 seater SUVs are huge. I’d go with a Honda Odyssey minivan over a gigantic SUV.

      • SUV for a family of 4 says:

        We need a 7 seater because when the back seats are down, we have room to store luggage. I should have added that mom in law often accompanies us on road trips, so there is an extra person (and extra luggage).
        The 5 seater SUVs don’t have enough room for luggage, based on our experience. Definitely don’t want a minivan.

      • Anonymous says:

        I didn’t test drive and can’t speak to any others, but we have a GMC Acadia and it’s nice and very functional. The top trim model has captains chairs so you can walk straight through to the third row, which was a must-have for us (and knocked out a lot of other potential contenders). It does not have much trunk space unless you put the third row down, but consequently it’s not quite as boat-like as some of the other 7-seaters.

        I drive a Honda Odyssey and we take my car 90% of the time if we’re going somewhere as a family, and 100% of the time on longer trips. Minivans are THAT much more convenient. I know some people have a visceral reaction to them, but they really are pretty glorious once you get over that “I’m driving a minivan, I’ve officially become my mother” hump.

        • Anonymous says:

          I have an Acadia and while I don’t pink puffy heart love my Acadia, it is by far the most serviceable, best option of the family friendly SUVs out there. I recently did a massive search thinking that because I was not in love with it, maybe I should get a new car, only to come up completely short on the search. It has a ton of storage space in back, a third-row seat that is actually usable by normal sized adults, and captains chairs which keeps the fighting at bay. And the gas mileage is pretty good, too. It will never be a BMW convertible, but it’s great for our family of 4 + large dog.

          Be warned though, the new models are smaller. I think you have to get a special package on the 2017 and newer to get the size of the 2016 and older. They are being built on a different frame apparently.

        • Sabba says:

          I’ve heard so many people say that their minivans are worth it that I am surprised that some of the bigger SUVs continue to be made. I would encourage OP to testdrive a minivan and see the difference.

          • Two Cents says:

            The bigger SUVs will always remain popular because some people simply refuse to drive a minivan. In particular, men.

        • EB0220 says:

          My husband has gotten an Acadia as a rental car a few times and really liked it. He’s very picky about cars, too.

      • Katala says:

        I generally like my VW Tiguan, but would not recommend it for two reasons: 1) the trunk is somehow extremely small. I learned after we got it that it’s noticeably smaller then the CR-V or Rav4 (we also have a Suzuki Grand Vittara and it has a much larger space even though the bodies are the same size). It’s very difficult to fit a double stroller or jogging stroller back there, so I don’t think it’s good for luggage. 2) It has a horrible turning radius! The Suzuki turns such a tight circle, but I have to 3-point turn the VW into a lot of spaces. And in Texas the spaces are large. So I wouldn’t want to try to park it in NYC.

    • Check with your garage first. A lot of them (most in NYC) charge extra for an SUV so that may be something to consider because if you get a smaller model that may not apply but if you get a larger one, you’re looking at a lot more money per month on just that.

    • Momata says:

      We have a Hyundai Santa Fe and we LOVE. IT. Even my husband who is a luxury brand car snob. The third row is roomy enough to hold two adults or three kids, and folds down extremely easily. When it’s up, you still have some storage (big enough for a double stroller/cooler/suitcase), and when it’s down, you have tons of space. It is truly set up for a family (electrical outlets and cupholders everywhere, super comfortable, CarPlay that works with an iph0ne instead of some annoying buggy proprietary software, and drives pretty well to boot. My 3.5yo and 2yo can get in and out of their carseats on their own. The Santa Fe was Edmund’s most highly rated car of 2016 IIRC.

      • SUV for a family of 4 says:

        Thank you! I completely forgot that the Santa Fe is the other one that we are looking at and actually my husband is leaning toward this one as the top choice. We discovered it when our Uber driver picked us up in one and we were amazed by all of the high end finishes. He test drove it last week and loved it, the CarPlay feature is also great.

        • Katala says:

          Love the CarPlay in my VW, would hate to do my (short) commute without it now.

        • We have a 2008 Hyundai Santa Fe and it has been a great family car (2 kids in car seats, and a dog). It’s currently on 92,000 miles and still driving like it did in 2008. We use it only on the weekends (I metro to work, husband bikes to work) so it’s mostly used for occasional city driving and then long car trips 2-3x a year. While I would love all the features the new Santa Fe comes with right now (!), I will say that it’s a car that is built extremely well and we are very happy it’s lasted for us.

      • PregLawyer says:

        Hyundai Santa Fe!!!!!! I love mine.

    • DH and I have the Nissan Pathfinder with the Platinum trim, and I love it! It’s very comfortable as both a driver and passenger (and I’ve sat in every seat)! The 360 camera is amazing and makes parking, even parallel parking, super easy. It doesn’t feel that large to me when I’m driving it, but we live in a city where large SUVs and pickup trucks are common.

      With the rear seat down, there is plenty of cargo room for luggage for a family of 4. We’ve traveled to the beach with luggage for 4 people and all sorts of gear. I love the optional third seat–we don’t use it often, but it’s great if we have guests in town or are carpooling with family or friends to an event where we’d have to pay for parking.

      In terms of the small things that shouldn’t really matter but kind of do–there are a ton of chargers and a ton of cup holders, which is really nice. The AC in the back also works really well, which is important where we live. Honestly, the navigation system has been a bit of a disappointment, and I would skip it. (I didn’t want it anyways, but DH did and is disappointed with it.) We didn’t get the package with the screens in the backseat because (a) money, and (b) it’ll be outdated within a couple of years.

      Ours is 2 years old, and we haven’t had any problems with it, which I know is a low bar.

    • TCOYF Help! says:

      We just bought a Toyota Highlander and we love it. I was previously driving a Mercedes GLE and I also looked at the RX-350 but chose the Highlander. Reasons: 2nd row captains’ chairs (key for multiple carseats); third row of seats that can fold down; and (most importantly for me) not too gigantic. We got the super-upgraded version with the 360 camera for parking, leather seats, etc. and it feels like I’m driving a luxury car but it’s a Toyota!

      • Artemis says:

        I “pink puffy heart love” my Toyota Highlander (great phrase, commenter above!). In fact, I MANY MANY pink puffy hearts love my Highlander. 6 years and going strong. With a thorough detailing service once a year, still looks pretty new for hauling around 3 kids all the time. 3 carseats can fit across the middle row without a lot of struggle. If you have to use the last row, it’s actually reasonably easy to fit in for a decent ride–many adults have sat in my third row so far.

        When I needed a new car, my mechanic told me to just buy a Toyota or Honda if I didn’t want to see him too often. At the time, the Highlander had an appreciably better safety rating in some major categories v. the Pilot, and I liked how it drove so much better. And I have NOT seen my mechanic with the frequency I previously did. It’s just a great car.

      • avocado says:

        +1 on second row captain’s chairs rather than a bench seat in the second row if you plan to have other people sit in the third row.

        • Spirograph says:

          +2 to 2nd row captain’s chairs. While my kids would be perfectly content to hop over the seat to get to the 3rd row, adults that want to ride back there (grandparents, or me or my husband when we give up the passenger seat to a grandparent) can get in much more easily with their feet on the floor, and moving the middle row with car seats installed is annoying.

          • +3 to captain chairs. We have a Ford Explorer for our family of 4, which I LOVE most of the time. The only time I don’t is when we actually use the third row of seats, since we don’t have 2nd row captain chairs. We have to either crawl in from the back, or take out a car seat, let everyone in the third row, and then reinstall the car seat – every time we get in and out of the car. It’s a capital-P process. Had I known enough to get 2nd row captain’s chairs, it would have solved this problem and it’d be the best car ever.

    • Clementine says:

      We currently have a small SUV (Toyota Rav 4) that isn’t big enough for us. We’ve looked at quite a few options and were able to narrow it down to either a Toyota Highlander or a Volvo XC90. Our current vehicles are 7 and 16 years old, respectively, so we drive our cars for their full life.

      We’ve decided on a (gently used) Volvo. Oddly, the pricing worked out so that we were going to spend essentially the same on the Toyota as the Volvo would cost us.

      When we test drove, I tried sitting in the 3rd row and they were do-able in both for a kid or for me (5’8) for a quick jaunt. Both vehicles are great – if you have a Toyota now, I’d take a look at the Highlander.

    • octagon says:

      No advice on models, but be sure to practice parallel parking when you test-drive. We didn’t, and ours (an old CR-V) has a blind spot that only comes into play when I’m parallel parking at a certain angle. Not a deal-breaker, but it made me realize that a standard test drive doesn’t usually include that.

    • Anonymous says:

      I have an escape (obviously not a seven seater) and my husband has an explorer. The explorer is definitely big enough to be a family car. We’ll probably buy another explorer as our next car. Backup cameras make the parallel parking in the city easier. We live in NOVA and my husband drives into DC every day for reference.

  11. post pregnancy belly says:

    For the lovely ladies (and any others) who encouraged me on my belly last week — this looks pretty solid:

  12. rain clothes for toddlers says:

    Any suggestions for toddler rain clothes? My boys are almost two (so probably a 2T would be a little big or fine), and I’d like to keep them outside as much as possible. I was thinking rain pants and a rain jacket, but which ones and what about for shoes? I think their sneakers will get wet but rain boots seem like they’d be a challenge to get on and walk in.

    • We have had good luck with Hatley Splash Pants, North Face Tailout rain jackets and Lone Cone boots (available on Amazon). Check for discounted rain gear.

    • No specific suggestions, but my 22 month old has rain boots and she can get them on and off all by herself, and she can’t with her other shoes (that aren’t crocs). Get the ones that have the loops at the top and it’s super easy to pull them on. She tromped around a little at first because they were heavier, but she’s gotten used to them.

    • Clementine says:

      You need a Tuffo Muddy Buddy Rainsuit.

      All one piece, good elastic on wrists and ankles so you can buy a size up and worth every stinking penny.

      • Anonymous says:

        +1 to Muddy Buddy.

        Kiddo just spent the morning in hers. (Note: playground surfaces are too slippery during rain for kids to play on [found that out the hard way!] so it’s strictly a park / hike / backyard activity for her)

      • Anonymous says:

        Tuffo Muddy Buddy suits are what our daycare requires. They are great. Not very expensive either, and they are roomy enough to grow with the kiddos for a year. My 26 month old that is above average height and a little above average weight still fits in his 2T suit just fine.

    • 21 Weeks says:

      I LOVE Oakiwear Trail full body suit – available on Amazon or on Oaki website. It’s got adjustable ankle and wrist cuffs, and a waist cincher. Our kiddo has been wearing a 3T suit since he was 18mo because they’re so adjustable – so buy up 1 or 2 sizes and have kiddo wear it for years.

  13. Need ideas for meals a 21 month old can eat in the car on the way to daycare. Daughter is not satiated with milk, half a banana, and cheerios. I’m hoping more food at breakfast will be the solution to behavioral problems at daycare (biting).

    • mascot says:

      Smoothies? Can customize for protenin, fat, fruit/veggies. Or, can you send her some extra breakfast to eat when she gets to daycare?

    • Two Cents says:

      Cheese stick? Half a peanut butter/honey sandwich? She probably needs some protein to feel satiated.

    • Anonanonanon says:

      hard boiled egg? We do stonyfield organic yogurt smoothies as a drink in the morning, they seem a bit more filling than just milk or juice.

    • Can you feed her oatmeal at home? If that’s not possible, I’ve seen baby oatmeal sold in in pouches too.

    • We do lara bars. They now have a variety with fruit and veggies that my kids like, but their favorite is the peanut butter chocolate chip.

    • CLMom says:

      All good suggestions. I will talk to daycare (peanut free) about the sandwich on the way in. I’ve left greek yogurt, hardboiled eggs, and cheese sticks for them to give her upon arrival as needed. Even though it’s more labor intensive, I like that she would be getting veggies in a smoothie. I will look for the premade smoothies, oatmeal pouches, and such.

      Any other ideas?

      • NewMomAnon says:

        Well, it wasn’t glamorous, but my kiddo brought some deli meat to school for her breakfast supplement this morning. She doesn’t like bread but she’ll eat the meat so….”hand” sandwich it is.

        I’ve also made breakfast burritos that I freeze and heat up later. I haven’t found a great way to reheat them, otherwise that would be a good option. You can fill them with beans, eggs, meat, potatoes, greens, cheese – very filling.

        • I had a period of time when I had to be at work super early and I made egg breakfast cups a lot – you can use all the same hearty fillings and they freeze and reheat well and are easy for a kid to eat with one hand, sort of like a muffin.

        • CLMom says:

          Deli meat is already in our fridge. I suppose it just never came to mind as something to eat in the morning.

          • NewMomAnon says:

            It had never occurred to me to eat deli meat alone, but after a week of kiddo eating only the meat out of her sandwiches, I decided to save myself the cost of bread and splurge on deli meat with lower sodium/fewer preservatives for her. She always eats it within a week anyway. *shrug* kids….

        • Anonanonanon says:

          I used to wrap cheese with deli meat and stick a fun toothpick through it and call it “party rolls” for my kid (he liked things to be “fancy” or “party”). It sounds kind of gross but it got protein in him!

      • ElisaR says:

        not the most healthy option – but this morning my son went in with a toasted (formerly frozen) waffle…

      • Anonanonanon says:

        I had to lie to my kid about why the smoothie was greenish when he was that age. I told him they were “monster smoothies” or “dino smoothies” and that I’d “colored them green”. Sometimes I’d put sprinkles on the top.
        Trader joes sells frozen whole grain waffles, those with peanut butter (or sun butter if they’re strict about nut free) may be an option like Elisa suggested

      • Sabba says:

        Late to the party, but my daughter loves turkey jerky. She probably would like beef jerky too, I just buy the all natural turkey kind to make myself feel better about it.

    • I’m going to be a Debbie Downer and tell you that biting is developmentally appropriate and you’re probably not going to be able to solve the problem with food. By all means, try things if it’ll make you feel better, but honestly you probably just need to wait til she’s old enough to verbally express herself when she’s frustrated and the problem will solve itself. Have you looked into perhaps re-channeling the biting into a biting necklace?

    • My kid is a carb-monster. I’ve started giving him cereal fortified with protein (from soy) or oatmeal made with milk.

  14. anonanonanon says:

    Re: rain clothes. I saw ducksday rainsuits on a blog and they look super cool for little kids. No personal experience though.

  15. Anonanonanon says:

    I need permission to go easy on myself.
    I’m 10 weeks pregnant and I’ve been sick as a dog this time around. For example, today I had a vomit session at 6:30 am, 7 am (which I had to pull over for on my way to work), 8:30 am (in my office), and 11 am. I’m keeping enough water and broth down to feel like I am hydrated, but I’m just not productive at work. I’ve been here 5 hours (including a one hour lunch) and I’ve only really gotten like 2 hours of work done. The rest of the time I spend sitting there trying not to throw up, throwing up, and laying my head down on my desk after throwing up. I feel guilty, but I also don’t have enough sick leave to just take off. I’m taking zofran during the day and phenergan at night.
    I don’t know what I’m looking for, I guess just encouragement that it’s OK to let some things slide right now as long as I’m doing my best? Though the adult professional world requires more than “doing your best”. blergh

    • Anonanonanon says:

      I’m feeling down to the point of having fleeting thoughts of “maybe if I just let myself get dehydrated I can go to the hospital and rest without feeling guilty”. Of course I wouldn’t actually do that, but just to give an idea of my frame of mind lately :(

      • avocado says:

        Don’t feel guilty about thinking this–everyone with hyperemesis has the exact same thought at some point. I was actually disappointed the time the doctor almost sent me to the hospital and then it didn’t happen. Talk to your doctor about the possibility of alternating zofran and phenergan during the day, at least on the weekend. And hang in there. It sounds like you are doing even more than just your best.

        • Anonanonanon says:

          thank you, that makes me feel much better. It seemed like such a horrible thing to be thinking since it would mean I’d be harming more than myself, but the thought of an IV sounds so much more pleasant than forcing myself to drink fluids and hoping I don’t throw them right back up :(

    • PregLawyer says:

      I’m so sorry. I know what you mean – I’m 9 weeks right now and it’s so much harder this time around. I think it’s because I have to run after the toddler at home, so I have nowhere near the same amount of rest that I had when I was pregnant with my first. I’m also getting sick this time, when I never got sick in my first pregnancy.

      You honestly can only do what you can do. Get your face time in, and otherwise just stay on top of things. You don’t have to give 150% right now at work — not even 100%. Just shoot for a B, or maybe even a B-minus.

    • ElisaR says:

      i’m sorry – that sounds like an awful lot of throwing up. Hang in there, it’s got to be impossible to work at full capacity under those constraints. i’m impressed you’re there at all – sometimes just showing up deserves a pat on the back and i think that’s the case here. you’re doing your best and that’s all you can do!

    • Anonanonanon says:

      Thanks all (and to Anon below). I think I just need to make sure I get the basics done on time (grant reports, approving employee Time & Effort reports, deadlines from the director) and cut myself as much slack as possible on the rest. I should really count myself fortunate that I’m in a position where I have an office door I can close so I can lay on the floor for a bit if I need to.

  16. Hang in there. Ask your doctor about diclegis. Zofran and phenergan didn’t work terribly well for me, but the diclegis worked to get me back at about 90%. As my OB told me, the baby doesn’t really need extra calories right now, but you do need to stay hydrated. If you can keep down full calorie Gatorade, great, but mostly just focus on keeping hydrated and looking like you are in the office and billing. Even if the puking sticks around longer than expected, your energy levels should go up in a few weeks, so you just need to survive until then. Remember, you are growing a human. That is amazing. I had many a first trimester day where all I could do was just be. Your energy will get better.

    -signed still puking at 38 weeks and thankfully delivering tomorrow.

    • Anonanonanon says:

      Did diclegis knock you out during the day? They did suggest it but I said I didn’t want to be sleepy during the day so we went with Zofran.

      • Katala says:

        I was nowhere near as bad as you sound (I’m so sorry!) but diclegis did not make me feel more tired than I already was during the 1st tri. When I tried to Unisom-B6 hack it, the unisom did make me sleepy. I think the difference is diclegis is time-released? I think you will also develop a tolerance quickly, so might be good to start on a weekend and plan for extra rest, if possible.

        • Anonanonanon says:

          OK that’s good to know. They did offer diclegis so maybe i’ll ask, it can’t hurt at this point!

          • Diclegis! says:

            Yes! Try Diclegis!!! When my insurance didn’t cover it, I offered to exchange it for my husband. It was gold, and didn’t really make me sleepy after a few days of getting used to it.

        • +1. I took 2 diclegis at night before I went to bed and didn’t notice any extra sleepiness. The unisom + B6 was terrible because the unisom would knock me out for 12 hours straight. Getting insurance to cover it was a battle, but I eventually won.

  17. Anonymous says:

    To make smoothies less labor intensive in the mornings, I prep it the night before. Kiddo’s standard is 2 cubes frozen spinach, half a banana, handful of frozen berries, sometimes some other fruit, hemp hearts and a bit of honey. In the morning I add almond milk or milk and blend. We use the lolla cup as our smoothie cup and works great.

    • Anonanonanon says:

      possibly dumb question- when you prep the night before, do you leave everything in the freezer or fridge?

      • Anon in NYC says:

        When I do this, I keep all the fruit/veggies in the freezer because I find that it stays a bit thicker that way. I might pre-mix the other add-ins (i.e., the hemp hearts, any protein powders, soaked chia seeds) and either keep it on my counter or refrigerate as necessary. If you keep it in the fridge all of the frozen fruits/veggies will defrost and the smoothie will be thinner, which may be a plus for kids.

    • Blueberry says:

      I make smoothies on Sunday night that we have during the rest of the week. I think I am the only one who doesn’t make them fresh every day?

  18. Not with a bang but a whimper says:

    I’ve just semi-unintentionally weaned what is probably my last kid. Baby’s almost a year and I was planning on weaning soon anyway, but then I ended up needing a 10-day course of some pretty serious antibiotics. I cut out the morning nursing session and only pumped (and dumped) in the evening if I felt uncomfortable. Antibiotics wrapped up over the weekend, I tried to nurse, and… baby BIT ME and then gave up after a minute or two and gestured at the bottle. I then dumped all my pump accessories straight into the recycling bin and printed out the stuff to recycle my Medela pumps.

    I’m not quite sure how I feel about this, yet.

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