Design

Have a Lovely Weekend.

Flowers by Jaclyn Simpson

What are you up to this weekend? We’re taking it easy after the first week of school. We’re all exhausted! And maybe we’ll go out for some yummy ice cream. Hope you have a good one, and here are a few fun links from around the web…

The sweetest observation about siblings. “I often think our household is made up of two marriages — ours and theirs.”

John Krasinski’s favorite episode of The Office.

Sweaters with pockets!

Remember Sharon’s week of outfits? Here’s her gorgeous house in Maine.

How to touch your breasts.

A yummy way to make peas.

Fall foliage map.

I just devoured this novel about one couple’s awkward wedding night. (The author really nails the inner monologue.)

Love these basic kids’ clothes.

The last thing my mom asked me.” Heartbreaking and moving. (NYT)

Also, we’d love to warmly invite you to a Cup of Jo gathering next Thursday. I’ll be chatting with the Hovey sisters about home decor tricks, and we’ll have wine and cookies. We would LOVE to see you at MoMA Design Store, Soho, next Thursday, 9/13, at 6:30 p.m. It will be a fun evening! (RSVP here, if you’d like — or just come by!)

Plus, two reader comments:

Says Esss on our trip to Maine: “I’ve never been to Maine, but when I was a kid, my dad would slice blueberry muffins in half, spread them with butter, and pan-fry them ’til they were toasted, a little caramelized and oozy with the butter. He told me he learned it at a Maine diner, when he sailed up the eastern seaboard. I’ve always loved Maine for it without having ever been there.”

Says Emily on hosting overnight guests: “Whenever we visited my grandmother, the guest bedroom always had our photos proudly displayed on the dresser. We thought we were so special – but turned out she had stocked a drawer in the guest bedroom with family photos of all her children and grandchildren that she switched out depending on who was in town!”

(Photo by Jaclyn Simpson. Picasso and Modern Love via Kottke.)

  1. Courtney says...

    We visit Vinalhaven every year–my family owns a house there–and it’s so funny to see it pop up in your link because it’s so small and so few people know about it. We actually have something from Marston House in our living room right now. Small world! (Also Vinalhaven is my favorite place in the whole world, please don’t come visit.)

  2. Sadie says...

    I can’t be the only one who can’t get through the breast exam video with a straight face. Whaaaat? It wouldn’t be out of place as a Portlandia sketch.

  3. MissEm says...

    Oh, I love Maine. When I was 11, I visited Maine with my family and thought – someday I’m going to live here. Hasn’t happened yet, but they did it, so there’s hope! Vinalhaven is actually where Margaret Wise Brown, the author of Goodnight Moon (among others), made her half-of-the-year home. She lived in an old quarrymaster’s house that she called Only House, and there was a second-story door leading right out onto nothing, just a drop down to the water. She called it the Witch’s Wink and hung a sign over it that said “Mind the View,” and then on the wall across hung many framed mirrors, so that faceted reflections of the sea winked by. One of my favorites.

  4. Sarah says...

    Those are two of my favorite reader comments/life hacks ever! So glad you highlighted them here. Just lovely little life tips.

  5. Sasha L says...

    Those ice cream flavors look amazing!! I hope you got a chance to go.

    Can’t wait to make some blueberry muffins to try that trick, yum.

    Those chrysanthemums in the beautiful photo reminded me of one of my very favorite books for children, Chrysanthemum, by Kevin Henkes. It’s just delightful in the way it captures how hard it can be to be a child, and how completely parents adore their children.

  6. Thank you for your article! I expecailly loved the part on how to make your own peas! This recipe looks amaing!
    Love you blog!
    Kendra

  7. Olivia says...

    Can’t wait to read the book! It is available at my town library, as long as another COJ reader doesn’t get to it first, haha.

    I keep a list of books I read each year (nerd), and recently realized I was on track to read a book per week this year! Very excited. I highly recommend I’ll Be Your Blue Sky and The Summer List (both new); I was so sad when they both ended.

  8. Claire says...

    Nice list. Thank you for the boob video, the book rec, and the house tour. I’ve been trying not to spend too much time looking at house tours because I realized it was making me feel envious (not enjoyable, or healthy), but that Sharon’s was so unpretentious and cozy that I found it soothing. Also her art inspired me, as did her collection of candle stick holders.
    Also- John Krasinski is so talented! We just watched “A Quiet Place” and holy moly it is really good. Also we are enjoying the Jack Ryan series on amazon.

  9. Jo, have you read Sarah, Plain and Tall? It’s basically a love letter to Maine, and such a sweet story for children.

  10. Scarlett says...

    How does Anton like Kindergarten? I hope it’s going well for him despite how nervous he was!! Also, I just want to be Sharon when I grow up.

  11. Bren says...

    Sharon’s incredible house in Maine is making me rethink all of my life’s choices and now I want to sell everything and uproot my family to Maine!! Although I grew up in Connecticut so I think I have had enough of those winters. Still, I am all nostalgic over here thinking back to my childhood and how beautiful New England summers are!

    • mary says...

      Yes please!

  12. Maria says...

    Hi Joanna! When are you going to do a city tour?! Come to Denver!

    • Jo says...

      I second that! ;-)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      we would love that!! please stay tuned!

    • CaraM says...

      I will delightfully third that request!

    • Alexandra says...

      Come to the Bay Area too please!

  13. Regina says...

    I was born and raised in Maine and the muffins were from Railway Cafe in Richmond. It was such an occasion for me as a kid to go there. They’ve since closed but I now grill the Italian sweet yeast bread panatone with butter!

  14. Jo says...

    Just read On Chesil Beach… oh my goodness, breathtaking!!

    “Often when she was unhappy, she wondered what it was she would most like to be doing. In this instance, she knew immediately. She saw herself on the London-bound platform of Oxford railway station, nine o’clock in the morning, violin case in her hand, a sheaf of music and a bundle of sharpened pencils in the old canvas school satchel on her shoulder, heading toward a rehearsal with the quartet, toward an encounter with beauty and difficulty, with problems that could actually be resolved by friends working together. Whereas here, with Edward, there was no resolution she could imagine, unless she made her proposal, and now she doubted if she had the courage. How un-free she was, her life entangled with this strange person from a hamlet in the Chiltern Hills who knew the names of wildflowers and crops and all the medieval kings and popes. And how extraordinary it now seemed to her, that she had chosen this situation, this entanglement, for herself.”

  15. Stephanie says...

    ”How to touch your breasts” 👏 THANK YOU. Too often we don’t know what we don’t know.

  16. Omg, I Just came across this blog and I absolutely love it. Have a lovely weekend too.

  17. Anna says...

    Love love the touch your breast link. Thanks for that.

  18. Anna says...

    Esss’s comment just made me tear up. Something about it is so tender. Thank you.

  19. Sara says...

    I just have to express how much I love Sharon’s beautiful, authentic style and her incredible wisdom. Thank you for sharing her house tour, it was a joy to read! And I was delighted to see that she originally resided in the same area as I do in California. xoxo

  20. Omg! I know Jaclyn Simpson the photographer!! This feels like a celebrity moment! Yay!!!

  21. Maureen says...

    My grandma still does the rotating pictures trick! Even in my 30s, long after I cracked the code of how she always had my picture up in her home, it just makes me feel special.

  22. Anna says...

    Am a longtime reader and love love the blog and the discussions it sparks in the comments. Just curious if you watched the comedy special Nanette (which was recommended by one Of your writers) and how you reconcile what she shares re Picasso and your own admiration of him?. She totally made me reevalutate, and fits in with a lot of questions I have about separating art from the artist (can you really thought?)

    • sara says...

      agreed! i was surprised to see you post the picasso, despite how amazing the works are…

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you so much for this. i didn’t know about this backstory but now that i do i’m deleting the link. thank you again.

  23. HTM says...

    It’s very timely that two links in today’s post have a connection to cancer. Once again, COJ meeting me right where I am in life… I’m preparing for surgery on Monday to remove a cancerous tumor in one of my breasts. I caught this on my own by doing the very same self-exams as shown in the video. My tumor is not detected at all via mammogram; it is only seen on ultrasound and was discovered at its early stages because of the self-exams I have been so diligent in doing. I was pre-40 yrs old when I caught it, so before the recommended first check-ups. The self exams take 10 seconds and early detection is life-saving. Just wanted to share.

    • Lisa says...

      I hope your surgery goes well. My father was an oncologist and had one of his female co-workers teach me how to do self breast exams when I was a teenager. I found a lump in my early 20s. Luckily everything worked out fine. I will be thinking of you tomorrow.

    • Sasha L says...

      Thinking of you today HTM, hoping you get good news ❤️

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thinking of you today, htm. xoxo

  24. Sara says...

    The bookend links perfectly capture my life right now. Started off smiling at the sibling marriage comment, as this week I overheard my daughter smooch her four month of brother and gush, “You are the best husband.” Then ended the links in tears at the NYT article, as my mother is currently enduring terminal breast cancer. I’d often referred to her as my “husband” because she feels equally a partner in raising my children as my spouse. A sister who’s love for her brother is so big she cannot picture marrying anyone else. And navigating the terrifying territory of death with my “mom-husband”. Two love stories.

  25. Emma says...

    I’m genuinely curious about your inclusion of a Picasso link, given your earlier praise of Hannah Gadsby’s “Nanette,” wherein she details Picasso’s problematic history and critiques the patriarchal system that buries victims’ stories in favor of the reputations of powerful men.

    • I understand your point but the problem is – our eyes are wide open now. We are looking at our current lives and relationships and past lives and future lives with a whole new subset of rules, grey areas, and considerations. I am not letting anyone off easy – terrible people are terrible people period – but show me one man from the past that ISN’T problematic in some way and I’ll show you a unicorn. Humans are messy, mostly crappy, sometimes good creatures who are trying their best but are going to f*** up more often than they get it right. His time allowed him to get away with things 2018 would never think to do. It sucks but doesn’t negate the fact that he’s still hugely important to art and art history.

    • Emma says...

      Jill, I see your point, but that is not the conclusion Hannah comes to in her stand up special. I’m not saying Hannah has to have the final say, just curious what Joanna’s thoughts were on the issue. :)

  26. Stevie says...

    Formal breast self-exams are actually no longer recommended because they lead to over-diagnosis and over-treatment (ie having scans, biopsies, and surgeries that are unnecessary and otherwise wouldn’t have happened). Instead, patients are suggested to practice “breast awareness,” meaning they look at and feel their breasts and take note of any significant changes, such as differences in skin texture or striking masses, without doing formal self-exams.

    • Michelle says...

      So interesting. I’d heard about the over-treatment concern but didn’t know where best practice sits now. Thanks.

  27. Irene says...

    Pregnant with my second and sibling relations are very very much on my mind (my husband is an only, and I’m not close with my one sibling). I would love love love to see a post on how to cultivate a strong bond between sibs!! Like little tips and tricks and daily things you can do, and also maybe what to keep in mind as a broader philosophy. You seemed to have nailed it with your two, Joanna!!!

    • Emma Bee says...

      The book Siblings Without Rivalry is helping us immensely with our 1 and 4 year old girls’ relationship.

    • Jenny says...

      Jo has a great post on this already (link below)! The tips are super helpful and a little different from what you’ll read over and over again if you google anything about sibling bonding. The tip about bringing the baby alive has been especially helpful for us. Also recommend Siblings Without Rivalry!

      https://cupofjo.com/2014/06/sibling-rivalry-5-tricks-and-tips/

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      yes i LOVED siblings without rivalry. such a great book. and fwiw, our boys adore each other but also fight like cats and dogs sometimes (often!). i think that’s a normal part of the relationship too :) xoxo

    • I also recommend Siblings without Rivalry. My sister and I had/have a tricky relationship. I now have three children of my own, close in age, and one of my very biggest hopes for them is for them to remain close throughout their lives. I would love for them to always be good friends and a tight-knit team, the way they are now (at 7.5, 6, 4.5 yrs old). I really think the tips in this book can make a huge difference and help to avoid some of the common mistakes parents make when it comes to sibling relationships.

  28. Andrea says...

    Thank you for the “touch your tits” video. It’s a perfect demonstration that there is no wrong way to monitor your body and your health. Just do it. So important. Thank you.

  29. Amy says...

    I haven’t read On Chesil Beach yet, but I’ve read most other McEwan novels. His writing never ceases to impress me!

  30. Meredith says...

    Man, it’s tough to look at those pieces from Picasso’s youth knowing how much of a misogynist he turned out to be — actually, I saw a great video from the Youtube channel The Art Assignment this week on what to do about art you like created by someone you don’t like — or someone who has made reprehensible choices.

    I thought it gave such a smart set of options for approaching work by artists like Picasso, or Woody Allen, or, even Aziz Ansari. It’s here, if you want to check it out:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTwVbxWb7Jk&t=0s

  31. teegan says...

    When we lived on the south shore of Massachusetts, the diner at the end of the street would serve muffins like that. The cranberry ones were the best! Even the (super cheap) day-old ones perked right up when you grilled them with butter.

    • MM says...

      OMG did you live in Weymouth!? There was a place called Nicos we grew up going to that did this, and I was totally thinking the same thing!!

  32. Jeanne says...

    I can definitely see the marriage comparison. My children are incredibly close. It’s a joy to see them hang out because they want to, discussing and laughing about the high school dramas of the day. My eldest just left for college. Everyone talks about how hard the separation is for us parents, but it’s also been incredibly hard for the sibling left behind.

    • Nr says...

      Bumm!! Your comment made me so super nostalgic for the time I was growing up with my brother. I think we were having a wonderful time but then he left home and then I left home moved to the other side of the world and then he got married and had a child and moved and moved and moved again… and I got married and divorced… and I think like any other separation, there are days when you move on and focus on the life that’s happening but there are other days when you wonder if all that closeness was real, or if I’ve just created memories…
      I had never thought of it in these terms before… and perhaps for good reason, you cannot divorce your siblings… there is always a chance that we’ll find ourselves in the vicinity and then we’ll… I don’t know… do what siblings always do…

  33. Ian McEwan is such a great writer! You may know this already but he wrote Atonement which is just AHmazing :) Have a great weekend xx

  34. Annie says...

    We love Primary clothes! Their dark-colored onesies were game-changers when our little one started eating solids. A Primary onesie + a Copper Pearl bandanna bib + jeans/jeggings + white Vans has become her little uniform.

  35. Lori says...

    Love to hear about your weekend plans! There’s always a variety and I find myself wondering “ what are they doing this weekend? “ Love your blog too! Have a great weekend!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      what a sweet note, lori!

    • Kristy says...

      Same here…I always think that too on Friday!

  36. molly says...

    Aren’t Primary’s clothes the BEST?! Their pajamas are my favorite (so soft!!) – but I seriously love everything they make! And they’re always adding new pieces to the collection & everything is such a great price:)

  37. Paola says...

    I am SO thrilled about the Cup of Jo gathering! I am Austrian and I’ve lived in Vienna my whole life. Last year, I was in NYC with my brother, but I got super sick on the first day and spent the entire stay sick in bed, which was like NOOOO, so this year, for my 30th birthday, I am treating myself with a solo NYC trip to make up for everything that I missed. I arrived yesterday, and my body is still on European time (and, so far, not sick! Yay!) I’ve been reading CoJ for a very long time now, yours is by far my favourite blog! I am so coming to the gathering! Still can’t believe the timing. Yay!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      oh my gosh, paola!!!! i’m so happy it worked out! can’t wait to meet you :) :) :)

  38. Margaret says...

    Grilled blueberry muffins are totally a Maine thing!! A grilled blueberry muffin at the Freeport Cafe is fantastic. I’m so glad you enjoyed your trip to Maine. It’s a special place and my family has visited there for years (and I just got married up at Sebago Lake!)

    • Essss says...

      My comment on the front page! Whoa so cool! I love learning that they’re called grilled muffins. I always called them fried muffins as a kid. My dad is no longer with us and it’s such a nice memory to have… sometimes I even “grill” leftover slices of cake…

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      WHAT IS HAPPENING

    • Stephanie says...

      Hahaha, I am always here for Jo and this community’s love of Timothee. Can’t wait to see Henry V; have a feeling the haircut will be worth it!

  39. Ah I wish I could make the event next Thursday, it sounds wonderful! Will it be possible to follow along with it on social media? xx

  40. Jennie says...

    I had a chance to visit the Picasso museum in Barcelona a few years ago and the museum takes you on a journey through his life and his work. After visiting, I was talking about the museum with a colleague (who had also visited) and she remarked on how she grew to understand and appreciate him as an artist after visiting and how she finally understood his later works. Can you imagine mastering something so well at the age of 13? Of course, he stretched the boundaries and created such unique works later on in life – that was probably the only way he managed to keep painting and stay sane. We should all probably take a lesson from him and create some weird sh*t to stay sane!

  41. Justine says...

    I just read about that McEwan in The End of Your Life Bookclub, which you might also enjoy. It’s really touching, and a nice read for people who love literature.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you so much, justine!

  42. Favi says...

    As I’ve gotten older I have grown to re-love my siblings. With the passing of my oldest sister this year, there are five of us now and we have grown closer in a way I didn’t imagine. We don’t all live close by but my favorite way of communicating with them is our text thread. It’s full of drama, fun, shit-talking, life updates, emojis, memes, gifs, videos, heartbreaks and everything in between. Last nights thread highlight had my brothers sending out, “I vote. Christmas movie.” “We are like (fingers crossed emoji). DfuckeNA. “

    • Jenna Brown says...

      We are all over the country but our whattsapp group.keeps everyone connected! We share kid photos, trip photos, make plans to see each other, share interesting articles, and one up each other with jokes. It is my favourite thing on my phone. My heart is so happy to see a little notification.