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Tell us what you think: New blog content

October 26, 2014

Dear WiPS readers,

On the WiPS blog, we do a lot to advertise new positions, profile great women, and discuss how we (sometimes struggle to) work as women in a field that is male-dominated at senior levels. A lot of what we post is very serious stuff, and although it’s critically important to discuss those issues, perhaps we could introduce some new, practical content; specifically, things that could be seen as more day-to-day, “lifestyle” topics for women.  A series of starter posts might look like:

  • Traveling Light: Planning outfits for week-long trips
  • Traveling Light: Carry-ons, toiletries, and the TSA
  • Traveling in Comfort: Tips for long-haul flights
  • Traveling in Style: The woman’s computer bag/purse
  • Style: Dressing for the workplace in planetary science
  • Style: Dressing for interviews and talks in planetary science
  • Style: Dressing for different professional meetings in planetary science

As women, many of us carry purses, wear makeup, enjoy clothes & shoes, etc., and these aspects of our lives intersect our careers on a daily basis and differentiate us from men. The readership of this blog is broad, and these topics may not appeal to everyone, but many readers are “early career” and might have questions or benefit from some of the knowledge that those of us who’ve been doing this for a while have developed.

Please comment below and let us know if this kind of content is of interest to you.  Feel free to suggest topics, too! These posts will strongly encourage feedback from the readership as to what are your favorite tips and tricks or follow-on questions, and hopefully that will lead to content for an ongoing series of posts.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. Gloria Brown Simmons permalink
    November 5, 2014 12:21 pm

    Any other idea regarding the insert type sleeping bag? Also, W hotels and some Sheratons offer a sleeping kit when you check in. Mine had a lavender spray, a clip to hold the curtains together, eye mask, ear plugs and a really nice zen type CD which put me right to sleep after a long day of travel… I will take the suggestion and use the lavender spray on the mattresses! Thanks.

  2. Allie permalink
    October 28, 2014 5:21 pm

    I am very interested in posts about these topics – can’t wait to read more.

    Since the conversation has veered to bed bugs… I travel with a tiny bottle of lavender essential oil. The first night in any new hotel, I pull back the sheets and sprinkle a few drops directly on the mattress. Anecdotal evidence (and some reference books) shows this oil is an excellent bug repellent. It’s worked for me thus far, from some seriously sketchy hostels to fancy San Francisco hotels. If nothing else, it improves the room scent!

  3. October 27, 2014 5:43 pm

    I have heard from quite a few people that would interested in these lifestyle topics! 🙂

    On the less happy subject of bed bugs – unfortunately a sleeping bag liner probably won’t protect you. They crawl pretty much anywhere, and bite the first thing they come to… The best bed bug resources I have seen are on: If you think you may have been bitten, you should talk to manager at the hotel (usually the front desk people are not very knowledgeable) and they should move you to a new room immediately and should reimburse you somewhat (standard is at least 1 night). Most people have a strong reaction, but unfortunately it can also be a delayed reaction of 3-5 days the first time you are bitten, so you might not know until part way through or after your stay. Bed bugs are in all major cities, and lots of other places as well.

  4. Sara permalink
    October 27, 2014 4:19 pm

    I’d love to hear more!

  5. Busola Olugbon permalink
    October 27, 2014 12:40 pm

    Those topics appeal to me. I would like to read contributions; many thanks G. Brown Simmons.

  6. October 27, 2014 10:18 am

    Sounds great!x

  7. G. Brown Simmons permalink
    October 27, 2014 8:12 am

    I travel allot and there are some things that I do regularly:
    I pack a carryon bag – this contains my purse, tickets, materials for presentations, computer, tablet, a set of international adaptors, ear buds, eye mask, socks, neck pillow, hand sanitizer, pills, thin small blanket, and N95 face masks – which I wear on planes and trains. I also have a personal air filter about the size of a pack of chalk – but these have become hard to find.
    The socks should be washable slipper socks with a soft sole that you can wear into the on board bathroom. Pills should include emergency pills for headache, upset stomach, fever, flu prevention etc. Also, bandages and cold compresses. A “pen” spot remover good to take also. And, a sewing kit.
    I pack a larger bag with heels, suits and spa things that I like to use every day. It is really nice to be in a hotel and have the things that you really like to use. I have NALGENE bottles in various sizes for liquid items – these are good for shampoo, tonic, anything that might leak into the bag. I put the bottles into a zip lock bag for extra protection.
    I wear clothing that is wrinkle free – Polar Fleece and cotton/wool blends – wearing a Polar Fleece top with a nice pair of slacks or skirt is very professional. I make sure that I can layer clothing in case it is too hot or too cold – can add or subtract layers. Don’t forget to take a bathing suit and flip flops. Use the flip flops for swimming and in the shower.
    I use a cell phone for time as it picks up local time, and a wrist watch for “home” time. I have a dual time clock for foreign travel. I also have a portable door alarm – I got it at Sharper Image or Brookstone – but they are hard to find now. Mine was motion sensitive and I have seen motion and smoke sensitive ones.
    Finally, when traveling internationally, put a roll of toilet paper and paper towels into your carryon bag. You might consider a silk sleeping bag – it is not lined, but, rather, you insert it between the sheets so that you are not sleeping directly on the sheets – for protection from bed bugs etc. I also check the air handler in hotel rooms and have them cleaned out if they are dusty. Ditto for the rugs. I use a disinfection wipe for the bathrooms also – they have travel size packages now. Check your bathroom when you arrive for mold. If there is mold in your room, request another room immediately – no kidding.

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