Gig Tip: Have your clothes WORK for YOU


It may just be my style, or lack thereof, but I’ve decided to follow some simple rules when it comes to clothes for the workplace:

Must Have’s:

  1. It must not itch.  ANYWHERE.  Not at the seams, not at the frills, not in the collar, not under the armpits, ANYWHERE.
  2. Similar to the above, it needs to be COMFORTABLE.   You need to feel like you can run from your house (with clingy kids) to the minivan to the train station to the office and sit/stand/present/walk around and then back again back home without the clothes getting in the way.   You have enough things to worry about let alone having your focus misdirected to your damn, uncomfortable clothes.
  3. It must be FLATTERING for you.  It must work with your body and make you feel sexy.  I know you are a mother, but you are also a woman.  You need to feel like one.  You need to feel like the clothes are enhancing you – looking good on you.  DO NOT BUY SOMETHING THAT ONLY LOOKS OK BUT HAS A GREAT PRICE-TAG.     Absolutely do not do that.   You will wind up filling up your clothes with mediocrity, wasting your money, and not feeling good about yourself.
  4. The simpler, the better.   Anything too trendy does not pass the test of time, and my closet (and bank account) is limited — I simply cannot have several closets of clothes and cycle through them through the years when things come back in style.  So call me a frump.   I have thick skin.
  5. It must not break the bank.  I don’t like paying full price on clothes.   Suggested retail price is a fabrication of imagination.   I don’t mind paying more for simple, muted classics though (e.g., black blazer, black pants, etc.).

(not me, but a dress by Three Dots)

Nice to have’s:

  1. I absolutely love it when I buy something that I feel can take me to the office yet also be worn on the weekends, or with the kids, or out to a casual dinner.  You get it.   Time is too limited for changes.   Space is too constrained for multiple sets of clothes in bulk.   Streamline your life.
  2. I love it when it is made of a fabric where I can launder it myself.  I despise the cost of dry cleaning and also the piles of clothes and the extra trip/errand that needs to be done.   It is so much easier for me to collect the stuff that I can launder with gentle soap on a gentle cycle and then hang dry.  I don’t mind it at all, especially when I know it is saving me money and giving me versitility with what I am wearing.

My favorite in terms of brand is three dots.   Very comfy clothes that work well and play well.   My favorite stores right now are Amazon.com (of course — they make it so easy to find things, sort, filter, and find great deals) and believe it or not, Kohl’s (especially at the end of the season – you can find DIRT CHEAP clothes that feel and look great – again, the simpler the better – so great for layering or even waiting until the next season).

When it comes to shoes, I still have a lot to learn.  I keep some heels in my office drawer but have not yet perfected the shoe thing in terms of comfort, style or durability.   I’ll think about that going forward.  I have some favorites, but nothing I can fully endorse.

In short, have your clothes work for you, versus you working for your clothes.    ‘Nuf said.

What other ideas do you ladies have???   Please share!!

Hope everyone is having a good start to the week

– Mama K

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Staying Sane: Complete a project


We know that stress is not good for you – emotionally, psychologically, and also physically.   And as working mothers we know stress.  Juggling all of our roles and responsibilities.  It’s a lot.   I’m not sure where I’ve read it or heard it, but I was surprised when I learned that it are the “silent stressors” that actually cause the most damage.  It are those things that you’ve “been meaning to do” but have not gotten around to it yet – that weigh you down and it is THIS stress that accumulates and causes you damage.

Just think of those things on your “to-do” list.   The things that you know you need to get to, but for some reason do not.   But you keep thinking of them.  And it weighs on you.  And you know in the back of your mind you have these unfinished tasks that need to get done.  It’s difficult to let go.

I’m trying to teach my children the importance of finishing what they start.  Go full circle.  Finish the puzzle, finish the story, you get it.  Perseverance and also focus.

The feeling of completion is great.  Think back on projects that you have done to completion.  Either yourself or with your kids.   It could be as simple as a photo-book project, the creativity of a fun Halloween costume, or even complex like the birth of a garden… moving to a new home… completing a degree.

Since my move, my office area was sort of the “dumping ground” for boxes in purgatory… and the set up that I originally had (big office table, two big filing cabinets) just was not working AT ALL.   Those that have been reading this know that I recently bought an entire office of furniture at IKEA – a computer workstation (for me), a double desk, 2 single desks, 2 sets of drawers, and 4 stools — read this post.

Well, Friday night after I dropped the kids off at co-parent’s, I decided to go to the Apple store and buy myself a new Apple computer.   I made the purchase in about 15 minutes total.  I then went home and proceeded to build the IKEA office furniture.   Drinking a Guinness, listening to music… until midnight or so.   Then I woke up on Saturday very early and immediately went to work on the same project.  I am an expert now at IKEA furniture assembly.    I was racing to complete the task before the kids were dropped of at my place at 4 PM.   I just made it in time.

And the looks on their faces when they each saw their own desk was priceless.  And there were NO fights over who was going to sit where.  They just gravitated to their own spaces and were so happy.  They pulled open their drawers and I told them that is where they can put their stuff.  Crayons, markers, paper, art, whatever they would like.   And Big Bro was so excited about doing his homework at his desk.  They loved it and spent time doing art projects in the room over the weekend.

And for me, the room is about 75% complete – I still want to get some things for their spaces.  I still need to hang curtains.  And also get the rest of the old stuff out.  But I’m almost there.  And the biggest part for me was completing the heavy lifting and transforming this room from what it was to what it is now.    A place where we can be together and “work” and create.  A place where a child can go and have their own space.   A place where we can be together.

What kinds of projects do you do that make you feel accomplished?

Thanks for listening –

– Mama K

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