Design

Have a Fun Weekend.

When Harry Met Sally

What are you up to this weekend? We’re flying to California tonight to visit family, and Toby is out-of-his-mind excited to get a rental car. But more important: OH MY GOSH, the comments on this post were so, so, so amazing. What a way to end the year. You are brilliant, funny, honest and kind, and I was in tears reading people’s stories. As Illana commented, “I’m so humbled by all these strong women learning and growing. I feel like all the comments here = the meaning of life.” And Maggie wrote, “You make me feel like I’m part of a really cool, inclusive girl gang.” SAME. Thank you so much. Hope you have a good one, and here are a few fun links from around the web, if you’re in the mood…

Who else is psyched to see Ocean’s 8? Here’s the trailer.

A crazy good weeknight dinner: artichoke pizza on the fly.

My new secret to glowy winter skin.

What it’s like to be a woman. (Definitely worth reading.)

Is this the calmest apartment of all time?

I’d love to pack these cuties for California.

The most 2017 photos of 2017.

Feeling inspired by this funny parenting moment.

A year of no shopping. “For four days I really wanted a Fitbit. And then — poof! — I didn’t want one.” Would you try it?

My boyfriend Peaky Blinders is back!

How to get a relaxed, happy brain.

What a sweet children’s book.

Sending lots of love your way, and thank you so much for reading. xoxo

(Parenting moment via Swissmiss.)

  1. I actually did a year of no shopping three years ago and it was not hard at all. I allowed myself to replace some much needed basics – white tee, under garments and running shoes – but everything else was off limits. I wanted to figured out my style, re-learn how to wear what I already owned and make more conscience purchasing decisions. I purged more things from my closet that year than I ever had before. I currently feel like I’m in a rut with my wardrobe, so I’m actually thinking about doing another period of no shopping to get re-aligned with my original goals.

  2. Lauren E. says...

    Peaky Blinders!!! I think I was too effusive in my praise for Tommy Shelby during last season because now every 30 minutes my husband will say, “He’s SO little!” Like, okay, babe, I know. I get it.

  3. sasha says...

    I hate shopping. I grew up in a poor, money anxious family, and things weren’t much better as an adult. So I just don’t spend. For most things, buying=anxiety. Then a few years back I read one of Gretchen Rubin’s happiness books and realized, for me, buying something here and there might actually bring me some joy. Like new sheets (after a decade) or towels (after two decades) or a newer car than a 1997. Or a trip to Costa Rica to celebrate my husband’s 50th birthday.
    I’m still an *underbuyer* as Gretchen calls us (she’s one too), but letting go and enjoying simple things that money can bring is really important for me. For people who have a special closet for shoes, a *no buying* experiment is just as wonderful.

  4. Only Ann Patchett could write an article like that and not sound preachy or holy or anything other than perfectly normal. I have been toying with this idea for a while now, but with a new house I fear I’ll just filter my shopping habits into the house, which does in fact need several key items. Perhaps what might work better is identifying purchases early-on (January) and sticking to just that list for the year. Lord knows I don’t need another striped shirt or puffy vest. :)

  5. Amy G. says...

    My sisters and I are almost through with our year of no clothes shopping! We allowed ourselves to buy replacements if necessary and one “cheat” day if we wanted it (I bought one vintage jumpsuit from a friend’s shop – wore it all summer!). I’m looking forward to buying some high-waisted black jeans, a new white button down, maybe some pieces from Everlane, and a pair of boots. Otherwise, I don’t think I’ll go crazy in the new year! It helped so much to have a group text going for those times we spotted something cute and were tempted, and it made receiving gifts of clothing very exciting! We did some clothes swapping through the year as well. It also really helps you figure out what you actually wear from your closet.

  6. Carla says...

    So excited to watch Peaky Blinders!!! Just finished the second episode and I’m already hooked again.

  7. Nicole says...

    Loved the Ann Patchett article and now I have my goal for 2018! (Though I thought it was funny that it was below a link for shoes ?) I second what others have said- let’s krep this idea going by having someone or multiple ppl write essays this year on their no shopping process

  8. I love the absolute ban on shopping. We have a kid, but his clothes and toys come nearly 100% from hand me downs. I limit myself to replacing items – if I tear a hole in a pair of jeans, I can buy a new pair (unless I have enough of the item already).

  9. jeannie says...

    Loved that funny parenting moment!

  10. Jennifer says...

    I’ve done no-shopping challenges in the past and really liked them. I have used a few adaptations, like allowing myself to buy one thing per month. This year I’m trying to only use my credit card for gas and groceries. All other purchases have to be from money I actually have in my hand.

  11. Rainbow says...

    We just got that book out from the library a couple of weeks ago! My birthday-obsessed toddler absolutely loved it.

  12. Lori Schwartz says...

    My husband and I are planning 6 months of no shopping. That’s a big commitment for us- we have a hard time planning long term. I am currently unsubscribing from all the many, many store emails I get that suck me in to shopping.

  13. Sylvie says...

    Peaky Blinders! Can’t wait to watch!!!

  14. I’m so interested in trying a year of no shopping. I think I will need to buy some things next fall, but I already have plans to make everything I want for summer, with fabric from my mom’s stash, beginning with multiples of Jenny Gordy’s Wiksten tank top. So excited! This plan is also in line with my husband’s and my goal of becoming debt-free next year. The desire to be debt-free has been outweighing any desire for things and we’re so close to our goal!

  15. I have a sometimes-crippling compulsion to buy clothes, which tends to plague me right around times of transition (like, on the precipice of a life change, I’m always afraid I won’t have the right things to wear). The year of no shopping is something I’ve been considering for a long time: reducing consumption for the sake of the environment + my mental health + credit card bill, and just pulling away from the things about our culture that bum me out. Thanks for sharing the article! Also, I LOVE Ann Patchett’s writing always always.

  16. Kate says...

    I am PUMPED to take a long break from shopping! This is a great idea from a great author.

    I’ve done month-long spending and shopping freezes in the past and felt much better for it. This holiday season I am feeling so guilty about receiving gifts, I’ve been wishing I could just ask my family to make a donation in my name (and that they would actually do it). I also read on a church sign last night “Christmas doesn’t come from a store – The Grinch” and that was a wonderful reminder that I won’t find the spirit of the season in the retail aisles, I need to settle down and just enjoy this time with my loved ones. Avoid the crazy stores.

    This will help me save for our upcoming house purchase and also keep me from the mindless scrolling and cart-filling, and rarely buying, that has been filling my better-spent spare time.

  17. Anna says...

    I’ve been considering doing a year of shopping for “Previously Used Items Only”. I know myself and I love browsing through stores so I’m not quite ready to do a full year of No Shopping at all; but I love the idea of reducing waste by hunting thrift and consignment stores for treasures instead of buying new.

  18. hi joanna -merry xmas, happy holidays to you and yours! xoxo
    thanks for all your meaningful posts this year.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      same to you, betty xoxo

  19. Aldijana says...

    Oh, I’ve been doing no shopping this year! (Apart from books for myself – essential for my brain- and birthday presents for my loved ones.) And you know what – it has been amazing! I found it difficult at first because I REALLY wanted all of the things but a few days later I found that I actually didn’t. Kind of like doing a sugar detox. It made me evaluate what I ACTUALLY wanted and it turned out it wasn’t much. And the couple of things I did want, I just asked my husband to buy for my birthday. And I LOVED getting those presents more than any other year! I’ve also enjoyed buying for others so much more and I’ve realised that not only do I not need any extra things, but I have so many great things already in my closet. It really feels like I’ve lived more intentionally this year. I’m looking forward to reading the article! Happy holidays!

  20. Sarah says...

    Just one more person saying that I found Ann Patchett’s article to be so inspiring. I’ve never been a big shopper, but in the last few months I’ve gone on a bit of a buying bender. It definitely hasn’t made me happier. I think being frugal is just as good for your mind as it is for your wallet!

  21. Laura says...

    Another one who read Ann Patchett’s article and couldn’t stop thinking about it. Her idea hit home when I spent 3 hours at the mall yesterday, waiting, shopping and browsing while my son and his friends were seeing Star Wars. All that commotion and consumption! The first hour was fun, the second hour started to wear on me, and the third hour? I was wrung out! And for what? I could have written an article or read half a book in that time. Create, don’t consume – that’s my theme for 2018. I’m going to give it a try!

  22. Sofia says...

    “Have a Fun Weekend” should be more like “Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.”

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      we have a happy holidays post coming up tomorrow! :)

  23. Adrienne says...

    As I was reading about the Year of No Shopping, I decided that I would give it a go. My next thought was “what do I need to buy before the year starts that I’ll want to have during my no-shopping year”. It really forced me to take a step back and realize how my life is infused with the mindset of “just in case”. huh.

  24. Ann Patchett’s article is amazing. After spending the last year abroad and shopping mayyyybe twice, I came home to my closet in the States and donated half of what was left in my closet. I really did realize how much abundance I had. Also accurate: by NOT shopping, I didn’t have the craving!!! And being in a different country, it didn’t even make sense to check my favorite American stores online. I identified with so many of her points… the consumerism in the US is a little ridiculous. It would be amazing to see a lot more people doing a year of no shopping!

  25. Amy P says...

    I’d like to think that I’m a pretty conservative spender, but I definitely waste time shopping for things I might never buy (and almost certainly don’t need). I’m considering attempting this next year. I have three kids, so I won’t be entirely off the hook for shopping, but I can adapt this to my situation.

  26. Jen says...

    I read a book about ten years ago called “Not Buy It, My Year Without Shopping” (Judith Levine) that was a little more extreme than what Patchett did but the same concept.
    Consumerism is getting worse and infiltrating every aspect of our lives. I think it would be great if the idea catches on.

  27. Amy says...

    I haven’t gone as extreme as no shopping for a year, but I do keep a small list of things that I would like to buy on my phone. It helps me to stay focus when I am at a store. For 2017, all I bought was four sweaters, a vest, a pair of earrings and two pairs of jeans…six items for a year! I think that’s pretty darn good!

    I used to think I needed new clothes all the time, but ever since I just kept what I loved in my closet, going out with the same outfit doesn’t bother me anymore :)

  28. Britney says...

    Your line for Peaky Blinders made me spit out my drink! My husband and I were JUST going on about how pumped we are lol.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahahaa CANNOT WAIT.

  29. Amy says...

    The year of no spending sounds intriguing, but extreme…I could see setting a firm allowance for myself tho. It would force me to really evaluate my spending without alienating me from social outings or the few luxuries that really do bring me happiness. The article on being a woman, tho. It made me feel so hollow – and made me wish I lived in a country where women are on more equal footing.

  30. Lora says...

    I actually started a period of no-shopping a few years ago. I was moving across the country and had about 10 months of advance warning, so told myself I couldn’t buy more stuff since I didn’t want to move more stuff. That 10 month period moved into a multi-year stretch of no/limited shopping because I kind of lost interest in accumulating new things once I was out of the habit. Plus, once the novelty factor wasn’t in play, I started noticing the quality of clothes and shoes more than I had before. I became more and more interested in understanding how they were made so started to learn how to sew clothes and have actually made a couple pair of sandals. I never would have anticipated that outcome, but it’s such a fun switch. I feel so much pleasure in wearing something I made!

  31. Pip says...

    Excuse me but I think you’ll find Tommy Shelby is mine! Cue many more comments to the same claim!
    It’s the eyes…..sigh

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahahaha

      THOSE BLUE EYES. swoon.

  32. Jennifer says...

    I’m also intrigued by Ann Patchett’s article. I would love to see Cup of Jo do a series of articles related to this – maybe ways to stay motivated over a year of no shopping, focus on other ways to be satisfied, even think of buying local art or experiences as a way to support your community.

  33. Melissa says...

    I love Ann Patchett and there was so much in her piece that spoke to me. I find that I spin my wheels when it comes to making purchases. I hem and haw and buy and return. By not shopping I hope to gain time as well as money!

  34. Catherine says...

    Joanna,
    Just wanted to send a heartfelt thank you for all that you do. You may never know the enormity of what you provide to your readers and how fortunate we feel to have found this space and all these inspiring women. Wishing your family (and friends!) a relaxing, restorative holiday break. Thank you for sharing your life with us :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      oh my gosh, catherine, thank you so much. that really means so much to me. thank you.

  35. Wendy Leonardo says...

    This is the first I’d heard of Ocean’s 8, and now I’m just bummed I have to wait until SUMMER!

  36. laura says...

    i haven’t been able to get the idea of a no-shopping year out of my head since reading that piece next weekend. i decided midway through the article that i am TOTALLY doing this in 2018. i’m still fine-tuning my rules, but no clothes, no shoes, and no housewares are definitely on my list. i feel better and freer already!

    • Janice O'Kane says...

      Yes, yes, yes! I’m in for this too, still crafting my rules.

  37. Sammy says...

    I read that article, “A Year of No Shopping,” and I am thinking of trying it! It must have resonated with many people. It was on the NYT’s top 10 most read list for a bit.

  38. I am SO EXCITED for Ocean’s 8!!! I saw a trailer yesterday for the first time and I’ve decided I’m going when it opens because I want to support the making of female-driven heist comedies!!! Take my money and make more, Hollywood!!! :D

  39. Elizabeth says...

    My husband and I are going to do a Year of No Shopping. Not only is Ann Patchett my favorite author, but my husband read her op-ed first and brought the idea to me. After reading an article in The Guardian today about the level of extreme poverty in this country, on top of the “monumental, brazen theft from the American middle class and from every person who aspires to reach it” (Pelosi) being perpetrated by the despicable Republicans running our government, I am done handing over my income to corporate America, buying into mass consumerism and participating in the disposable mindsight of buy buy buy,

    • I read that series, too. I’ve been an advocate for ethical fashion for a few years, and one thing I try to do is buy only what I need and to make sure it’s as ethical or sustainable as possible, something that I can wear for years to come. It’s hard and I’m not perfect by any means.

      I’m really trying to teach my two boys about this, and a few years ago, we started doing the 4 Things idea at Christmas (something you want, something you need, something to wear, and something to read). Now, when they make their Christmas lists, they list one item for each section, so I know that they understand.

  40. Casey says...

    I’m challenging myself to the year of no-shopping! I think it will feel amazing, and my credit card will thank me ;)

  41. Veronica says...

    I just read the Ann Patchett article before I came to check out Cup of Jo today. I decided right after reading it that I am going to go for it this year!