Design

Have a Happy Thanksgiving! (+ Links)

Leaves by Liz Libré

Happy Thanksgiving! What are your plans? My aunt is visiting from England, and she’s making her legendary roast potatoes for the big day. Meanwhile, our upstairs neighbors are tired of turkey, so they’re serving a giant bowl of spicy pasta. Would you ever go off-script? Have a wonderful week, and here are a few fun links from around the web…

The #1 thing on my holiday wishlist. (Alex, I’m talking to you:)

A selection of the most disappointing under 30. Made me laugh.

How going makeup free changed me.”

Dogs catching treats.

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel is back on December 5th. Save the date.

Oh my gosh, what cool decorated cookies!

Forget the place cards and put these on your Thanksgiving table.

The $15 gift our whole family loves.

How to navigate a maze, how to play dead and how to have sex in a canoe. In case you were wondering. (NYT)

The most relaxing Twitter account, of all things.

Four haircut before-and afters.

If you’re in a pinch, here’s a conversation starter for around the Thanksgiving table. Plus, two other foolproof questions are “What’s your irrational fear?” and “Who’s your celebrity crush?” They always get good answers!

Finally, here are seven crazy amazing sales:
* J. Crew is 50% off with code TGIF
* Madewell is 25% off with code DEALWITHIT
* Loft is 50% off with code CYBER (This is pretty.)
* Shopbop is up to 75% off with code MOREI8 (Love this dress, and these would make a sweet gift.)
* Dermstore is up to 25% off with code WEEKEND (I swear by this brightening miracle.)
* Buy Buy Baby has tons of things (strollers, cribs, car seats) marked way down.
* And Nordstrom is having a HUGE sale.

(Photo by Liz Libré. Relaxing Twitter account via Swissmiss.)

  1. Katrina says...

    I was wondering if you’ve ever thought to do a post around guilt & the holidays? Here I am, basking in the glow of a perfect Thanksgiving weekend spent with my husband & friends, but with a gut full of guilt because I didn’t spend the days with family (for a variety of reasons, but mainly travel costs). I would love to know how others balance a happy, fulfilled life while also feeling guilty for ‘abandoning’ family.

    • Grace says...

      Agree! We decided several weeks ago to stay home for the holidays instead of traveling to visit family and my mom has called me multiple times to try to guilt me into visiting. We’ve traveled quite a bit already this year and are tired, plus tickets seemed to be more expensive than in past years. I am looking forward to actually relaxing, but I do feel guilty and annoyed at her for continuing to try to get me to change my plans. Of course, when I said why not visit us if she wants to see us so bad (I’ve been the one to make the holiday trip for the past 10 years), she came up with a lame excuse.

  2. lomagirl says...

    I gave up makeup quite a few years ago- I can’t even remember when. Tonight, a friend asked if I ever had another friend, a makeup artist, do my makeup. I explained that I don’t like wearing makeup, but it was clear she thought I should. When I got home I brought it up with my daughter and the make up artist friend. And I asked my husband if he wanted me to wear makeup- he said, no! He doesn’t like it when women wear so much makeup that they don’t look like themselves- he used the term “clown.” Of course, when A asked if he was talking about her, he started talking about brides from his country- who actually wear what I referred to as “Kabuki style” makeup- they all look the same.
    My daughter- 15- has enjoyed exploring makeup for the last couple of years, but she also feels fine going out without makeup. Unlike my high school home ec teacher, I think it’s fine to go out without lipstick- and I want my daughter to never feel compelled to put on a mask- either of makeup or of anything else!

  3. Kristian says...

    Loved all the links but two in particular tickled me!
    I too did a big “hair transformation!” This summer, I went from below-the-shoulders hair to a pixie cut (think Anne Hathaway looking). It was honestly very fun and liberating. Yeah, you have to go into the hairdresser’s more often but in day to day life it cut the time for getting ready in half and with a one year old baby on my hands, that’s always a plus.

    The other was the article on make-up. I’ve just…. never worn much make-up. Was not that talented at it and never felt I looked better in it. I’ll do a bold lipstick sometimes now (especially with the short hair.) But that’s about it. Fun to hear others’ perspectives on less make-up.

  4. Caitlin Close Howard says...

    My husband and I started steaks-giving a few years ago. Great steaks and accompanied by most of the same Thanksgiving sides. Greatest Thanksgiving dinner move ever!

  5. Sarah says...

    Speaking of knick-knacks at the table to get through some tricky moments, I brought a 1000 piece puzzle to my mom’s for Thanksgiving and it has kept all parts of the family happily occupied for hours and hours. My husband and dad are finishing it up now, quietly mumbling to themselves and engaging in playful banter about whether certain leaf pieces are distant or close, trees or bushes. I can’t believe how much of a hit it’s been.

  6. Amazing post! I love the links. The decorated cookies were really creative. And the post about the 30 most disappointing under 30 was quite funny.

  7. Lucy Gregory says...

    In follow up to my previous comment, the @girlpowersupply Instagram account (linked at the bottom) is an account to read and learn from, as well as support as they continue to educate us for free.

    https://www.instagram.com/girlpowersupply/?hl=en

  8. Lucy Gregory says...

    I would really love to see more support of Indigenous folx in roundups like this near Thanksgiving (and throughout the rest of the year!). It’s a tough time of year for them and we should be using the privilege we have as a result of colonization to give back to and support them. Links of places to donate to would be a great start, although a whole post to support them would be great, especially knowing you’ve done posts on supporting families and refugees in other countries in the past. It might not be light and pretty but it’s important.

    • Susaan says...

      I have Native American family and they adore Thanksgiving. Sorry that doesn’t fit into your narrative, but not everyone is concerned with politicizing everything. I’m thankful for America + family + free speech.

    • Lucy says...

      Susaan, it’s nothing to do with politics. Many native and indigenous folx do enjoy aspects of Thanksgiving, of course, but not everyone feels the same as your friends and they’re perfectly justified in feeling that. We can enjoy the holiday AND be more aware of the history behind the holiday and what’s being celebrated too.

    • Sarah says...

      Must we pick on Jo for not honoring every size/race/income level/heritage ever?!? Honestly it’s exhausting. And is “ Indigenous folx” even a phrase?

    • Lucy Gregory says...

      Sarah, it’s not picking on Jo. It’s feedback. Yes it can be exhausting, but being tired is better for us than having other people suffering or dying (which is what’s happening). And yes folx is a word/term commonly used.

      I love this blog and was making a pretty simple request for next year – a learning opportunity for all. We are all learning, and support in the direction of those impacted by this holiday via a couple of donation links is not a big request nor it is being mean or picking on what Jo and her team have done. I respect and value the posts they have done in the past for people in need.

    • Rachel says...

      Folx is one way to honor transand non binary people

    • susaan says...

      Sarah — that term is new to me, too! It’s hard to keep up with all the new words were expected to use.

    • Christina says...

      Lucy, thank you for your gentle reminder. I was pleased to see a lot of my favorite Instagram accounts recognizing the unfortunately-still-very-current plights of Native American people. You’re right, it’s so important.

      Susaan, I recognize that it’s hard to keep up with today’s culture and political landscape. Usually if someone uses a term I haven’t heard before, I will google it to find some answers. I feel like it’s the least I can do in recognizing my enormous privilege. Hope this helps: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Folx_(term)

    • Sasha L says...

      Lucy, thank you for bringing up indigenous peoples, I really appreciate you giving feedback and heartily agree, more native voices please. Erin, over at Reading My Tea Leaves, had a fantastic post on Thursday, full of the kinds of links I think you were hoping for. Here’s a link: https://readingmytealeaves.com/2018/11/with-thanks.html

      To those that think it’s a little too much work to include everyone or keep up with the way people would like to be called, I just don’t get that. I have so much privilege as an American, a white person, a white woman, someone who’s educated. I WANT to know about other Americans, especially those that don’t share those same privileges. I WANT to know how I can better be an ally. I WANT them to not only feel included but to feel like this space (& every space I’m in) is THEIRS too. It’s more than past time for all of us to do this work. Lucy asked to see this particular example here (indigenous voices on Thanksgiving) because Joanna and COJ team do such a great job with inclusivity and celebrations of diversity and seem to truly appreciate the feedback.

    • Lucy Gregory says...

      Christina and Sasha, thank you both for the links you shared!

      Reading My Tea Leaves definitely had some posts that would have been great to include on a round-up and like this and touch on some really important conversation starters – thanks for sharing that!

      The definition you shared of Folx, Christina, was spot on and exactly how I was using it in my comment.

      Sasha I 100% agree – as white women in North America (I’m British but living in Vancouver, Canada) we have so much privilege and need to listen to and learn from people of colour, and need to support and understand the lives of people of colour more – particularly indigenous and black women, particularly around holiday’s that have a history of harming certain groups of people. It can feel like a lot, and be very overwhelming sometimes, but that’s nothing compared to the lived experiences that are often life and death for people of colour.

      Thank you both for adding to my comment and supporting it. I agree that COJ have done very thoughtful posts that are inclusive and supportive and I was sad not to see that around a holiday like this that has such a sad and often misrepresented history.

  9. Margarita says...

    Thumbs up for the #1 thing on your wish list but…bear in mind that when you’ll need to visit the bathroom you’ll have to take the whole thing off! Been there, done that… and it was not fun at all!

    Cheers!

    Margarita

  10. Sara says...

    My oldest son was born in July and by the time we got to November, I was a complete mess. I told my husband that I just wasn’t capable of making a big feast but that I would make him one special thing. He asked me to make my grandmother’s pecan pie. So I said sure and that we could just throw some burgers on the grill (we live in CA) and call it good. Two days before Thanksgiving as I was shopping for pie ingredients, it hit me that we should at least have TURKEY burgers to go along with our pie. Fast forward 7 years, and a second son, and turkey burgers and pie has become our “traditional” Thanksgiving meal. So thankful for the COJ team and all the inspiration it has given me over the years. Have a wonderful holiday with your loved ones!

  11. Morgan says...

    Hi, Jo! I’m one of the “lurkers” you met in SF at the Clare V. event. Anyways, I have loved, and will always love, this blog. It holds such a special place in my heart and I love how I’ve grown into the woman I am now with a lot of help from all of the tips and tricks found here, day after day. Something you did in this post that really struck me, so much so that I finally felt the need to make my once-annual comment here, is that I so, so appreciate the fact that the #1 thing on your list isn’t some fancy, trendy, several thousand dollar gift that a lot of other bloggers seem to hint at their husbands for. It’s incredibly nice how humble and down to earth you’ve remained all these years, even with this deserved success. As always, keep being you — sharp, funny, kind, grounded, beautiful, and a kickass mom, wife, and friend to all of us. and Alex, please follow the hint, that romper looks so cozy! xoxo! Morgan

  12. Looks like the Thanksgiving is transforming into a big sale yard! Thanksgiving store! Miss the family time and traditions!

  13. Amy says...

    I was so confused at the $15 gift your fam loves.. tattoo sleeves?? Lol. Am I seeing that correctly?
    Hilarious.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Yes! Haha maybe it seems random but everyone has the best time last year. My mother in law had tears of laughter trying them on, and the boys felt so cool with tattoos. And I have to say, Alex looked really handsome ;) rheyre a hilarious thing to bust out on Xmas morning.

  14. Tasha says...

    That spicy pasta is one of the few things I can make without the recipe—soooo good, and even my 3- and 5-yo’s prefer it to more typical spaghetti sauce. Easy, cheap, reasonably healthy—boom!

  15. Jessica says...

    How about any of the teeth whitening products from derm store?

    • Sasha L says...

      Us too! We’re making Korean food, and pie.

  16. jade lees says...

    Celebrity crush – always and forever John Krasinksi.

    • Sarah says...

      Ugh same, I just can’t get over him!

  17. Colleen S. says...

    I’m having a pizza tomorrow. I pretty much hate all tradtional Thanksgiving food. I’m all for creating your own traditions, and not having to stick to standards. If people don’t want to come over, that’s cool.

  18. H says...

    Non-traditional Thanksgiving, yes! Don’t get me wrong, I love all of the side dishes, but turkey…meh. This year without any plans for Thanksgiving day (living far away from family, recently single), a friend and I are taking a road trip to visit a new town and scenic area we haven’t been to before! We will likely be eating at whatever restaurant is open and couldn’t care less if it isn’t classic fare. This will be the first Thanksgiving in a decade that isn’t “traditional” but just practicing thanks and gratitude feels good enough this year!

  19. Sasha L says...

    “the weightlessness of accepting myself” thank you for the no makeup article. So freeing to radically accept oneself.

  20. Kelsey says...

    Oh my gosh, I so appreciate Haley’s words on going make-up free. I didn’t have an overnight transformation, but I slowly used less and less make-up across my 20s and almost none in my 30s. I’m 35 now and the only time I’ve worn make-up was on my wedding day three years ago. And even that I did with some ambivalence. Thank you for sharing that article, CoJ team! I feel like I have words now (“body neutrality”, especially) that so helpfully express what keeps me from returning to make-up.

  21. Veronica says...

    When I was 22, I developed a Thanksgiving tradition of my own. I was single, living in the city and ALWAYS worked the holidays because “TV news never sleeps!” I’d make myself a big bowl of Ina’s Pasta alla Vecchia Bettola and watch the movie Addam’s Family Values. Do you remember the scene whern Wednesday is sent to camp and burns down the Thanksgiving feast in the play? Hilarious. Fast forward 10 years later (with a better job and hours), my family now enjoys this quirky tradition with me.

    Recipe:
    https://food52.com/recipes/40639-ina-garten-s-pasta-alla-vecchia-bettola

  22. That house cookie is incredible!

    Rebecca | Peppermint Dolly

  23. Thanks for the links about holiday sales! It would be awesome to also see some links for independent, small businesses that are having sales. I’m selfishly asking, as I am a small business who is having a holiday sale (and also donating a portion to CA fire relief). But I know there are many other small businesses hoping shoppers will shop small this season! Happy Thanksgiving! Emily from Talonnyc.com :-)

  24. lindsay says...

    pasta on Thanksgiving?! no way….I look forward to turkey day all year, I sometimes think about recreating the meal half way through the year. I make pasta all the time….do they eat turkey all the time then?!

    • Meg says...

      Lindsay, do it – recreate the meal whenever! I love stuffing and don’t understand why it’s often a one-day-per-year food??? I made it in like, July when I feel like it. My favorite thing ever is leftover stuffing with a runny yolk fried egg on top.

  25. Thanks for these links, however any chance you could tell us more about your aunt’s legendary roast potatoes? I’m dying to know how she makes them! Happy Thanksgiving!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      i’ll ask her!

    • Cece says...

      Bevin for the BEST roast potatoes all you need are floury potatoes, a hot oven and a big old dollop of goose fat. Trust me, I’m a Brit :)

  26. Melanie says...

    I’m not cooking a turkey anymore. There’s always too much left over, it takes too long to butterfly it so that it cooks faster, & quite frankly, raw poultry grosses me out. I’m making a 5 vegetarian side dishes for myself (all gluten & dairy free because of all my food sensitivities), a steak for my sister, & my husband is picking up a small cooked turkey from Whole Foods for his side of the family. I bought fall inspired cookies for the kids for dessert, there will be ice cream (no one ever eats the pies any way)…
    This is the least stressed I’ve ever been. I used to go for the “beautiful perfect Martha” Thanksgiving. Now I go for stress free! Im
    So much happier and watch the Macy’s parade in peace 🤗

  27. C says...

    I recently stopped wearing makeup because I was having a lot of trouble with cystic acne and cut out makeup as part of my effort to essentially reset my skin. It worked! It’s been a few months now and apart from some mascara and a little makeup on special occasions, I haven’t worn any makeup and have been so surprised to find that my confidence is way up and I actually sort of love my own face, it’s dark eye circles, creeping lines and all. Sure sometimes I think I look a little tired and washed out and that throwing on a bit of blush would help but then I remind myself that actually it’s okay to look that way once in a while. I am tired, and I’m allowed to present myself to the world honestly. Once I’m into my day and away from a mirror, I forget all about how I look. It’s been very liberating!

    • Melanie says...

      Good for you!! I truly admire that. I’m still not quite secure enough to go completely make-up free.

  28. Stephanie says...

    That sleep romper is cute, but the last thing I want to do is peel myself out of a romper when I have to pee in the middle of the night!

    • Caro says...

      Hahaha, my thoughts exactly!!!

    • Heidi says...

      I was going to say the same thing… makes for a chilly middle-of-the-night trip the bathroom!

    • Melanie says...

      Yes! Isn’t that annoying? I don’t want to have to get naked to pee.

    • Sarah says...

      Must we pick on Jo for not honoring every size/race/income level/heritage ever?!? Honestly it’s exhausting. And is “ Indigenous folx” even a phrase?

  29. hillary says...

    FYI the CE Feurlic is ineligible for the promo. :/ I love that stuff too…

  30. Christina says...

    I loved that article about going makeup free. My mother has always been a woman of makeup. She wont leave the house without it. I look at her while she puts on makeup and I wish she could see herself through my eyes. She is so beautiful.

    4 years ago I gave birth to my first daughter. It was around this time that I also said goodbye to a daily makeup routine. Mostly out of necessity (where does the time go!?) but also out of wanting to be an example to my daughter. Makeup is so much fun, but our faces will always be most beautiful without it.

  31. Carrie says...

    There is an actual philosophical debate happening about makeup on the MR article. It blows my mind that anyone could think of such a mundane thing in such a deep way, but then maybe I’m just simple.

    • Francesca says...

      I agree! I mean, it’s good to think about the reasons and ramifications behind our actions. But in my opinion, people have been wearing makeup since time immemorial. The desire to beautify oneself is a product of human nature. If someone finds that makeup is causing them anxiety then there’s a problem, but otherwise, just do what feels best.

    • megs283 says...

      I feel like it all depends on how you see makeup and why you wear it. I wear makeup to work (and honestly, by noon it looks like I never put it on at all), but I’m typically “make-up free” during the weekends. I wear makeup to look less exhausted at work. I also don’t buy myself many things, so a new mascara or lipstick is a treat that I can have for under $10.

      I think some women put it on because they feel like they HAVE TO, and they’re not good enough as they are, etc. And that’s when there’s that inner turmoil. I guess we all have at least one complicated relationship with something that should be simple….

  32. TJ says...

    Note: the ‘how to’ links go to NYT, in case you don’t have a subscription.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  33. Michelle says...

    Loooove that article about going makeup-free. I’ve been on a slow road there for the last couple years (having kids will do that) but haven’t worn a bit of makeup in the last six months or so. I want my daughters to see that they don’t need to “fix” their faces. Love the author’s perspective!

  34. Meg says...

    Yes! Love the going makeup free article! I do the caveman regimen- not washing your face at all! And it has completely changed my skin and made my acne disappear, with the help of cutting out dairy and gluten. Less is more with our skin I have learned!

    • Heather says...

      Agreed – I now just wipe with water here and there, and still slather on moisturizer, but I do not buy face wash any more, and my skin has never been better after decades of acne

    • Sasha L says...

      Similar. Switched to oil cleansing a long time ago, only in the morning. That’s it. No makeup, nothing but almond oil and a nice massage. My skin is awesome. I eat mostly vegan, but whatever I want on occasion (healthy but with treats), and no alcohol ever.

  35. Jessica says...

    In terms of relaxing twitter accounts, I think you must not be familiar with the Calming Sphere? Because it’s the most amazing thing to have pop up in your feed (especially if it’s like mine: full of politics and craziness). Like a micro-meditation in the middle of the world’s insanity. https://twitter.com/calmingsphere