Chillin' out, maxin', relaxin' all cool
The Easier Debate

Things I Want To Know

Does anyone else think hot tubs are gross? Is it just me? I'm not your typical easily-grossed-out kind of person, I don't worry about germs, spiders do not bother me at all, when the kids find something to eat off the floor I am ashamed of my housekeeping but not terribly concerned about the ickiness they've consumed. Swimming pools don't gross me out (much). But when a friend emailed to say she was excited about hot tubbing this weekend (we're staying overnight downtown to celebrate a birthday, a birthday that does not occur till December, maybe we are just Taking Advantage Of Our Husbands?) my immediate reaction was, "Ew." I have yet to meet someone who feels the same.

I often put Molly's hair in what I call ponytails, but everyone else and their mothers call pigtails. Two, on either side of her head. And Molly is learning to call them ponytails too, since whenever we do her hair I ask her if she wants "clippies or ponies". (I love doing Molly's hair.) But I thought pigtails were BRAIDS. I know that you, the Internet, will correct me if I'm wrong. 

Can you wear black shoes with a navy dress?

I don't know what to do about the weeds in my yard. I really don't. If this were my house, I would be spending a whole lot of time, effort and money turning this Backyard Of Potential into something truly awesome. As it is, we don't plan to be here much more than a year or two, and while I'm totally willing to put in the time and effort, spending as much money as I think I'd have to spend seems ridiculous. That said, I'm OVER digging up the top layer of dirt in my garden every week. And I can't control the weeds in the rest of the yard at all. AND I LIKE WEEDING. My garden is about to be Un-Organic, is what I'm saying, unless anyone has any great ideas. 

Molly, while incredibly stubborn, ornery and willful in nearly every way, has always been an angel about going to bed. Not once have I rocked that kid to sleep and yes, there were those months when she wouldn't go to bed until midnight, but when she DID, she slept through the night and slept late. It's always on her terms, but the girl practically DIVES into her bed when she's ready. Not so for the last two weeks, however. Going to bed is now a huge struggle, and she often wakes up two to three times in the night, hollering for her pacifier or, and this is the most enjoyable part, just waking up for the day at four in the morning. Pleasant! I am blaming two-year molars, even though I can't see or feel them in her mouth. Phillip is blaming the onset of Two. Either way, we're both stymied. Crying it out, always the best tactic with Jack (who I rocked to sleep until he was WELL over a year old), is not even an option with Molly. When she cries there is something WRONG, and even now, all we have to do is hold her/sing to her/find the perfect toy or book to hold in bed and she finally nods her head when you ask her for the seventieth time if she's ready to go night night. We just wish we knew what was wrong. 

(Kids are SO. DIFFERENT.) 

Sometimes I think it wouldn't be so bad to move away. Not to a different state or anything, but away from the city. Have a huge yard and trees and not be able to see into the neighbors' kitchens. There's a lot of beautiful scenery in Washington state, and sometimes I wonder if life would be easier, slower, more peaceful if we lived far away from the freeways. Maybe if we could see a mountain range from our upstairs windows. If we had big spacious rooms and enough grass for a touch football game. Mainly I think about this when I'm wishing for quiet time to write. 

Did you think Edward was kind of a drip when you read Sense and Sensibility? I've read it before, I've seen the movie, but it was so long ago that I pretty much forgot what happened. And as I read I found myself thinking, "I'm supposed to root for HIM? REALLY?"

I'm reading a new book now. It calls. Good night.



Oh! I have thoughts on these items! Why don't people ask for my opinion more often?

A. Hot tubs ARE disgusting. As are ball pits. Everything else I'm okay with, grime- and germ-wise.

B. I call what you're describing "pigtails" and "ponytail" means a single band in the back.

C. Yes to black shoes navy dress, though many will likely disagree with me.


I've always thought that ponytails are one and pigtails are two. Braids are braids. Yes? Anyone else?

Maybe it's some kind of sleep regression? Which means it will go away on its own?

Amy J

A. Depends on the hot tub. The one at my Aunt's house = not gross. The ones at random hotels = gross.
B. Two ponytails = pigtails. Never have referred to braids as pigtails.
C. Black shoes go with everything.
D. No feelings on Edward, I do not remember him.


Hot tubs are gross - as are the top blankets on hotel beds.

I always thought there were pigtails and then pigtail braids or braided pigtails. In the south they call them dog ears.

I don't agree that black shoes are a good choice for a navy dress. I recommend a metallic - you have brown hair, so I would recommend a bronze or gold metallic. Silver would be better than black though. Or maybe I'm wrong.

I'm the only person on the planet who has not read or watched Sense & Sensibility.


Edward also rather annoyed me. I think we kinda root for him just because his relations are so utterly wretched and Elinor is so awesome.

We wish we had a house on a bit of land where we couldn't see our neighbors. Also, I want to try keeping bees, but that's a no-go in our tight (space-wise) neighborhood.

I think black shoes would look fine with a navy dress.


No problem w/ hot tubs in general - can you expound on what you don't like?

Ponytails = 1, pigtails = 2 and braids are either a braid, a french braid or braided pigtails.

I have been known to wear black shoes w/ a navy dress, though if you have the option, I'd get some navy shoes or add another color into the mix (I like navy and white together - though if your outfit has no other white in it, then that would be weird. Can you add a white cardigan and wear white shoes?) The main reason I wear black shoes w/ navy clothes is because I have no other options - I'm not a good shoe shopper. I'm too practical.


In my experience, one is a ponytail and two are pigtails regardless of whether they're braided.

I would say no on the shoe thing, but I have no fashion sense and you probably shouldn't listen to me. I think I'd wear tan/nude shoes with a navy dress.

Our house sits on five acres, so we have a big yard and plenty of peace and quiet, but it's a 30-minute drive to get anywhere good, so I guess it's a trade-off!

I guess I should add Sense and Sensibility to my list of Classics I Have Not Read And Really Should Someday.

Life of a Doctor's Wife

I hate hottubs. They are gross. It's like taking a warm bath in skin cells and bodily fluids. (Chlorine not withstanding.) But you should know that I am also a germ-hater and a swimming pool hater.

I'd definitely call multiple "tails" pigtails. But I would apply that to loose hair and braids. (Although I wouldn't call a single braid a ponytail. Hmmm.)

Life of a Doctor's Wife

I am going to be really annoying and comment again because I forgot about the shoe question!

I think you *can* wear black shoes with navy. But if you have a good pair of neutral shoes, those would be better. Brown or gold or silver would be better, too, I think. Or red! But my guess is that no one would actually, you know, point and stare at your feet if you went with black shoes.


Black shoes go with everything, period. Red is a nice accent if you have them.
Pony Tail = 1, Pig Tails = 2 and like the others said, braids are braids.
No opinion on the hottubs. :-)


1. Hot tubs don't gross them out, but I don't especially like them or seek them out.

2. Two ponytails = pigtails. Braids are not related to pigtails.

3. I know you already know my shoe opinion, but no black shoes with navy.

4. We used some kind of organic weedkiller, and it did not work, so I say do what you need to do to get rid of the weeds.

5. My kid cries for 15 minutes every single night when we put him in his crib. I hate it. Obviously, I have no suggestions.

6. Yeah, Edward is meh.


I meant hot tubs don't gross ME out.


Okay - OBVS I am wrong on the ponytail/pigtail business. But it is REALLY annoying me, since it's not like ponies have one tail and pigs have two. Where did this distinction come from? Perhaps I am a little grumpy this morning.


Hot tubs are not gross - but my opinion may be skewed because I generally try to ignore grossness if it means more work. Like eating off the floor. I also say, oops, I should have picked that up but, ehh, it won't kill you to eat it. And hotel comforters are definitely gross, but I try with all my might to ignore that fact and use them anyway.

Two ponytails are pigtails. They're usually not braided.

I don't think the black shoes are necessarily appropriate with a navy dress, but I would probably wear them anyway because they're what I have. I worry more about the style of the shoes than the color. I have nice tan heels but if I wanted to wear strappy sandals, I'd have to go with the black, appropriateness be darned.

P.S. How cute! I typed "damned" and my smartphone changed it to "darned."


I like hot tubs, but especially private ones. Public ones don't strike me as gross because they are full of chlorine. But I don't like chlorine. So it's a trade-off.


I think hot tubs are gross, but I think many things are gross, so I am not really any help there.

I can't ever do black shoes with navy, but this just means I avoid navy colored pants and dresses, no kidding. More lacking in the help department!

I always figured the pony/pig tail names came from the length of the "tail." Typically, you wear two when you don't have enough hair to pull it all back into one, so those "tails" look shorter, like a pig's tail? And one long one in back looks like a pony's tail. Can you tell I am totally making this up?

And Edward is definitely a drip -- but I thought that was sort of the point. SPOILER ALERT: Both the primary and secondary heroines end up with stable, consistent, boring men. Thus the title, no?

The Sojourner

I don't like hot tubs because they are too hot. (I seem to have my own personal furnace...I've been known to wear just a sweatshirt in 20 degree weather and various people--such as my boyfriend and his kid brother--have commented on how warm I am. Kid brother is not allowed to lie on me anymore now that he is 13, but it was cute the first time.) I've never thought about the germ factor.

I'd probably call them pigtails, but my hair is weird (one side--I think the left?--is much thicker than the other) so when you part my hair down the middle and try to do something on each side it looks horrible, so I've never really done anything that might be called a pigtail.

Of course you CAN. Should you? I have no idea. I certainly do it all the time.

That's all I've got today.


I agree with Jen about why they are called pony and pig-tails. One single ponytail, looks like a pony's tail, and usually the two pigtails are smaller and shorter, more resembling a curly little pig's tail. And yeah, braids are just braids.

And I do think you can wear black shoes with a navy dress, but a neutral would be better, if you have them.


I think hot tubs are gross as well. I NEVER use them at hotels or anywhere for that matter!

I have always thought that when you pull your hair back into one band, it's a ponytail since it looks like a pony's tail and pig tails are one on each side of your head.

I would not wear black shoes with a navy dress. If you have red heels or silver or gold, I would wear those. I am personally not a fan of navy. I prefer black or a fun color or print depending on the event.

I am also not one who has read Sense and Sensibility. I guess I'll be adding that to the million or so books I NEED to read!

Kate P

1) I'd tolerate a hot tub only if it was huge and well-maintained.

2) I too am inclined to think of ponytails as longer than pigtails. And braids are braids. (Or plaits.)

3) Black shoes w/navy doesn't work for me. Brown, ivory, metallic?

4) I think my parents put wood chips down to stop weeds.

5) If Molly probably is asking to be soothed b/c of the teeth, and if you're into homeopathy, the remedy to use is Chamomilla.

6) I too would like a quieter place, with a yard--except most of those are located too far from civilization for me to remain sane!

7) Yeah, Edward was not much of a man of action. He was more like a plot device or something. This one ranks just above "Mansfield Park" and "Northanger Abbey" for me. And I reaaaaaally don't like "Mansfield Park."

Rachel P.

Hot tubs are tolerable depending on who is in them with me and who maintains them.
Pigtails are smaller than horsetails as the hair is divided (and the size of the animal). Pigtails are two on each side, ponytail is one and braids are braids (though I love Kate P.'s suggestion of plaits!)
The black with navy question is totally dependent on style to me. Denim navy dress and heavy black cowboy boots? Sure. Navy, silk cocktail dress with strappy black heels? Um, maybe not.
Just hoe your garden (saves the back breaking of pulling weeds) and ignore the yard. It's a rental, don't waste the money.
Oy, sleep issues. I have no answers. Except, I put my eighteen month old in a day bed and the issues went away. My theory is because he knew he could get to us if he needed to he stopped crying so much and slept better. Yes, I know this is a mediocre solution as I have had nights where he has woke me up at one o'clock, but it's usually because he needs a drink or has wet through his clothes.
Yes on moving somewhere quieter! I am right there with you.
Hm, I guess I somewhat felt that way about Edward, but honestly I just wanted to slap his family upside the head.


I call them ponytails unless they are braided. My sister disagrees.

Would you wear navy shoes with a black dress?


Because hair loose looks like a pony's tail, and hair braided more closely resembles a pig's tail. And hot tubs ARE gross.

Sonya in San Antonio aka Glam-O-Mommy

Everyone's answered everything, but I still want to add my two cents, so here goes. :)

One tail is a ponytail whether it hangs to the back or the side. (What? You never rocked a long side ponytail in the 80s?! Come on...) Two tails are pigtails and I don't have any idea why, although the short-and-curly-like-a-pig's-tail theory is my best guess too! Braids are just braids whether there is one braid, two braids, French braids, etc.

You can wear black shoes with navy, but a neutral (brown or tan) or a metallic (silver, gold, bronze) is a better choice. I have a navy sundress I wear with silver/pewter colored heels. Or, as someone else mentioned, go with a pop of color...bright red, fuchsia (I love pink and navy together!), etc.

I like hot tubs, not that I get to go in one very often. It's not something I really seek out though either!

I feel for you on the sleeping...I don't have a problem with this with my daughter so far, but I imagine it has to suck.

The country: love to visit it, couldn't live there. It's too quiet. I don't want to hear all the "nature" outside--kind of freaks me out. Plus, I have to be within five minutes of a mall! LOL

I read Sense and Sensibility in college and don't remember much about it, but I do remember Emma Thompson as Elinor comically/hysterically crying after Edward (Hugh Grant) tells her he loves at the end of the movie, which is good. Especially love Alan Rickman in the movie...who knew Snape could be so courtly! :)


Hot tubs are gross! Tubs in general are gross. I toss my girls into the shower and let them play around in there for a while while I paint my toes and stuff. I can easily see them through the glass- I avoid getting splashed. It's a great system.

On the hair front- my girls want clippies, but five minutes into it, rip them out and hand them to me... to put... somewhere. It's annoying, so I don't do it. Most of the time they barely even let me brush their hair. They look like ragamuffins a lot of the time. I've come to peace with this.

I would avoid wearing black and navy together in any form. It's just a recipe to look color blind.


I call them pigtails. Braids I call ... braids. Wear gold or silver shoes with the navy dress. SEXAY.


Am I the only one here who LIKES hot tubs? In college I lived in an apartment complex with a hot tub and I seriously went hot tubbing like 4 times a week. In an APARTMENT HOT TUB. I love them. Chlorine kills all the germs, it's not like you're putting your mouth in the water, and you shower after. Not gross.

About the pony/pigtails, I agree with pretty much everyone else here. One is a ponytail and two is pigtails.


You clearly have the Golden Blogging Touch. 27 comments! I'm impressed. :)
I like hot tubs. But then I also take a hot bath about four nights a week almost year round except when it's so danged humid here that more heat would kill me. I agree with Elsha.. the Chlorine kills all the germs. Also the jets get my nails nice and clean.
I feel for you on the sleep issues. My younger daughter is nine now and the other night she had a bad dream and then cried and said she HAD to sleep with me and Hubby and it was our first night home after a three week road trip and I wanted to be in my OWN bed and not have to share the room with anyone (besides Hubby, of course) and so I got really crabby with her and almost started crying right there. So clearly I am still not good at dealing with sleep issues, even after four kids and 15 years.


Wow, I thought everyone knew that hair gathered and then braided is a pigtail (one) or pigtails (multiple). If it's not gathered in an elastic first I'd just call it a braid. And hair gathered but hanging loose without braiding it is a ponytail (and yes, you can have more than one ponytail at a time....)
I can't go into a hot tub unless 1) I know the people well i.e. they are family and 2) it smells strongly of chlorine.
The country.... Depends on what you want for your kids. We moved from suburbia to 2 acres last November. The kids went from doing inside stuff all the time, to practically living outside. I much prefer it. Think it's healthier, and it gets me outside too!

Sarah in Ottawa

Late to the party but...

- Hot tubs don't squick me out, probably because they are so chlorniated. The wet floors that generally surround them, though...
- I am in agreement with the masses re. pigtails
- I have never been a fan of black and navy together, though I wear black with nearly everything else. It might just be my issue, though.
- I was COMPLETELY underwhelmed by spineless Edward. Just like Edmund in Mansfield Park. Elinor is so awesome and she wants HIM? Also - I JUST realized that Emma Thompson -- awesome Elinor in the movie version - is married to Greg Wise (who played Willoughby). Go Emma!

Kelly L

This was probably already said but I'm too lazy to read other comments and, besides, I hold the definitive answers:

ONE is a ponytail, TWO are pigtails, and BRAIDS are braids and can be any number of them that you would like. One, two, a full head of them, whatever.


Oh my goodness...I just had the ponytail conversation with my mom and some friends

I agree you - ponytails are little bunches - one or two or whatever and pigtails are braided. We happen to call ponytails puppytails at our house but that's because our not quite two year old is obsessed with puppies.

Ummm...and hot tubs are kind of icky. Yup. Especially ones in public places.

and sometimes the pool is okay and other days it grosses me out and I have to leave. NOW.

And black and navy are okay together.

And my almost two year old who used to be a super sleeper has become an atrocious sleeper. So atrocious we went to the ER last night because we thought maybe she had an earache (she's not a complainer and the last one ended with a ruptured ear drum because she didn't complain) but it's just those dratted two year molars. Which, like Molly's, are no where to be seen or felt. Tylenol. And a timer. That's what worked tonight.

I don't remember Sense and Sensibility very well. Mostly because, well, Pride and Prejudice kind of blocks it all out for me.


I was just thinking last week that public/shared hot tubs are gross. I think it's safe to say you're not alone!


We use bromine in our hot tub at the house, which has the same effect on germs as chlorine, but doesn't dry out your skin as much.

I like the thoughts on why it's pigtails vs. ponytails (pigtails being smaller), but in my daughter's hair, her curls curl up like a pig's tail, so it has that added difference as well!


So I'm way behind on blog reading, but I'm catching up!

I call them pigtails.

And Maya has been doing the multiple night waking and/or up for the day at 4-5am TOO. ("Ah done SEEPING, Mommy!") It totally sucks! At least she still goes to bed like a champ (knock on wood).

And I missed your birthday! Happy super belated birthday! How was Hot by 30 already a year ago??


We had a hot tub when I was a kid, and for awhile after my parents bought it, it made us all have this awful bumpy rash alllll over our body. Something was wrong with the chemical proportion. Ever since then, hot tubs give me the heebs.

I would wear black shoes with anything dressy, but I'm not exactly a fashion expert.

Van (who is one month younger than Molly) went through this same thing in June. It. Was. Awful. He is the most angelic sleeper that ever lived, and it was NOT FUN. I blamed teeth, too, but I still have yet to see any almost 2 months later.

I always called 2 ponytails pig tails, but yesterday, this girl in my class had them and I said, "hey, Gabby I like your pigtails." and her mom said, "Gabs, did you hear, Ms. Jessica likes your PONIES." Like she was correcting me. I think some people don't like the word pig and think that ponytails are more appropriate for cute little girls.


I think hot tubs are OK, but spa bathtubs are EEEW.
But let's focus on the shoe question, please.
I think black patent leather shoes are perfect for a navy day dress or daytime skirt situation. But you didn't say if it was day. I agree with Rachel above that no black with a navy cocktail dress, I would wear silver, or another metallic. Black shoes that aren't patent, but are highly-shined leather would be a second choice for day if you don't have patent. No black suede or other soft leather. Love, Meghan

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