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It's a lot easier to deal with a minor grooming or dress crisis at work if you are somewhat prepared. Here is a guide for mopping up spills and stains, along with some other advice. With spills and stains, time is the critical factor. The faster you react, the better your chances of preventing a spill or stain from becoming permanent. The first step is to blot the spill with a dry paper towel or napkin, or with an absorbent agent such as talcum powder or cornstarch, said Jane Rising, a spokeswoman for the International Fabricare Institute.
It could happen. You're grabbing a quick lunch before meeting an important client back at the office. In your haste, you dribble soup down your blouse. Lunging for a napkin, you knock coffee into your lap which causes you to lurch sideways, splitting a seam in your skirt. Or you're at your desk when your stocking snags on an open desk drawer. As you bend to inspect the damage, a button pops off your blouse. Scrabbling about on the carpet to retrieve the button, you get dust in your eye. It waters, washing mascara down your cheek. It could happen. And if it does, you can't always head home right away fix things. Often, damage control is needed to see you through the rest of the workday.
Surely it was fate: the head-on collision with a friend on the ski slopes of Banff; the resulting concussion that forced her to cancel a journey across the Sahara; then an invitation to join a citizen's delegation bound for Moscow in the dawning days of Russia's democracy - all in quick succession. That 1990 Moscow summit would unite American artists, scientists and physicians with their counterparts in the former Soviet Union. It also would change Juliette Engel's life.
Petite isn't just a size for Marsha Holt. It has become a cause and a career as well. For 15 years, the 5-foot-1 Media, Pa., resident has been a petite model, and more recently, a commentator for fashion events spotlighting women who are 5-feet-4 or under - the industry cutoff for petites. Before the early 1980s, Holt probably would have had to find different work, because it wasn't until then that the fashion industry acknowledged that shorter women existed. Back then, she recalls, petites had to rely on a good tailor or dressmaker to do alterations if they wanted to wear off-the-rack clothing. Or shop in the children's department.
In the '70s, a cultural creation known as the displaced homemaker appeared on the horizon. Through divorce or death of a spouse, this homemaker was suddenly without visible means of support. Often of middle age, she was forced to find a job after many years of working only in her home. While some displaced homemakers worked before marriage or children, many had fallen behind professionally while on the Mommy Track. They felt like babes themselves as they set out to rediscover old jobs and careers or to start anew.
Every so often, Gloria Mullins thinks about quitting her job so she could spend more time at home with her three kids. But the thought passes as quickly as it comes. Financially, such a move would be tough; the family would have to sell their home and find a smaller house, she says. With three boys, ages 1, 7 and 8, that's not an appealing choice. While recovering from a recent gallbladder operation, she discovered staying home wasn't as blissful as she imagined.
Although she is soft spoken and modest, her crushing, confident handshake betrays her true nature. As the Navy's first and only woman underwater construction battalion officer, Petty Officer Margaret Cooper is part of an elite group of Seabees. There are only two underwater construction battalions in the Navy, with 66 enlisted personnel in each.
The breaking down of the corporate uniform has spawned confusion in the American psyche long accustomed to the sight of white-collar workers in white-collared shirts not blue denim, not khaki and certainly not purple silk. Help? It finally has arrived. Here now is guidance to building a wardrobe for the looser dress codes of the '90s in the book "Work Clothes: Casual Dress for Serious Work" (Alfred Knopf, $23). It's the latest offering from the authors of the book series "Chic Simple."
With so many parents these days placing their young children in day-care centers while they work, having a good relationship with day care providers is crucial. Joyce Butler, child-care consultant to the Massachusetts Department of Social Services, offers her Top 10 Tips for getting along with your child-care provider. "These are the things that I would want to hang up on the bulletin board if I ran a day care center," she says. 1. Allow time for children to settle in each day. Some children will need more time than others. Say good-bye; sneaking out if your child has difficulty separating only makes matters worse.
Working couples may linger over leisurely dinners, savor in-depth conversations and make painstaking plans together. They've got time, they've got money, they've got each other. It's different once they become parents. After the baby comes, that luxurious pace is out, along with the bath water. That is, if those dead-tired parents remember that baby's bath water needs changing and find time to do it. Probably, they'll just fight over whose turn it is to dump the tub. These mundane, lukewarm problems can turn red hot faster than you can say, "It's a baby!"
Does she think I'm a bad mother? That's one of the first thoughts that popped into my head on a recent Monday when I answered my phone at work and was greeted with this: "It's Nichelle at Bright Horizons. Ellen has a fever of 102 and has been cranky all day. You'll need to come get her." I wanted to say, "But she was fine this morning when I dropped her off! Really!"
One thing I really enjoy as a therapist is helping people learn how to handle stress. I often ask clients what a typical day is like for them, so I can understand what they are up against. "Take me from getting up to going to bed" is one way I usually ask the question. I've heard about some horrendous schedules. After listening to some people, the question changes from "How could you feel so stressed-out?" to "How could you not feel so stressed-out?"
"Finding Time." I'd like to. As I thumbed through this squat little book with the subtitle, "Breathing Space for Women Who Do Too Much," I knew author Paula Peisner Coxe had been there. She talks about women who feel overwhelmed by expectations, our own as well as others'. Better yet, she offers solid tips on how to handle both and whittle them down to size. We all know we should ease up, or as Florynce Kennedy puts it, "organize, not agonize."
"What I really need is a wife." The comment was rather surprising, considering that it was made by a female colleague one day last week. She was lamenting the fact that after finishing a hard day's work each day, she returned home to find more work. It's not an uncommon complaint in this two-income era. In fact, before the day was out, another female colleague made nearly the exact same statement. What's more, she said, "my husband needs a wife, too."
Many professional women look up the career ladder and see a glass ceiling. For a group of women physicians in Dade County, Fla., that metaphoric barrier is made of gauze. "It's hard to cut through gauze," says Diana Galindo, director of the geriatrics evaluation management program at the Veteran Affairs Medical Center in Miami. "It's hard to see beyond the gauze. It's not like clear glass where you can see where to go." To clear the path ahead, Galindo and several other Dade female doctors formed Gauze Ceiling this spring, a support group to address gender issues in medicine and serve as a network for local female physicians.
Pat McGunn was on the business trip of her life when she was stood up not by a client but by the hotel baby sitter. Suddenly, her room seemed uncomfortably warm. Ten floors below, an auditorium full of fast-food franchise owners was impatiently waiting for a presentation by McGunn, chief executive officer of a safe company. "What could I do?" asked McGunn, who had her two children, Ryan, 4, and Caitlin, 6, in tow. "I put Caitlin to work handing out brochures, and Ryan demonstrated how the door opens. Actually, I think they helped clinch a couple of sales."
Rosario Green has a huge job on her hands: protecting rights for the world's women - from women revolutionaries in Eritrea to women experiencing sexual harassment at the United Nations. "I never thought something like this would be part of my responsibilities," says Green, recently named the first coordinator of all women's issues in the United Nations system.
Soft-spoken and demure, Loida Nicolas Lewis is talking about her late husband, Reginald L. Lewis. She speaks of his tenacity, his dreams and his legacy the gigantic company he left behind and his life story that has recently been published. She speaks of their two daughters. What she doesn't talk much about is herself. It is she, after all, who has taken the company, TLC Beatrice International Holdings Inc., from the brink of disaster and placed it on solid ground. And it is she who pushed to have her husband's autobiography, "Why Should White Guys Have All the Fun," finished and published. Once the perfect corporate wife, she has become a corporate leader and the keeper of her husband's legacy.
Do babies need special skin care products to protect them from the elements? Lynn Rothschild Gagnon thinks so. And she's betting her career on it. Growing up, Gagnon suffered all the miseries and inconveniences of sensitive skin and allergies. The tendency then, she recalls, was to think treatment, not prevention.
Quick: Give us your stereotype of the computer entrepreneur. It's a guy, right? Age 35 max. Began jockeying a keyboard long before he encountered puberty, hacked his way through MIT, runs a company in Cambridge that's littered with pizza boxes and get-rich dreams. Wants to be the next Bill Gates. Now meet counter-stereotype. She's no guy. Seen her 40th birthday and perhaps then some. Grew up before teenagers had computers in their rooms, graduated from someplace like Bryn Mawr, runs a company that may even be located in the suburbs, and perhaps raised some kids along the way. Wants to be the next Bill Gates. Although there are no statistics on such digital cowgirls, there are considerably more of them dotting the landscape than you might think, women hunkered down in tiny home offices or perched in comfortable corporate digs. But despite the fact that the National Foundation for Women Business Owners recently reported that women now own one-third of all US businesses, it startles many folks to encounter a computer company, however small, where the reins aren't held by a man.