Design

Have a Great Weekend.

bread by Yossy Arefi

What are you up to this weekend? Alex and I are going to Roman’s for pasta tonight, and we’ll be taking a family walk to see holiday lights tomorrow. Also, here’s our holiday gift guide so far, if you need any suggestions. Hope you have a good one, and here are a few links from around the web…

Oooh, a great $12 gift.

The soulful 11-year-old princes of the Nutcracker. “I really like following rules,” Tenzin said in an interview, “and in ballet you can follow so many rules.” (NYT)

Urgent vs. important.

Bookmarking this can-to-table vegetarian dinner.

A dad and son passing notes.

The best table tennis shot of 2018. (Wow, worth watching.)

Don’t touch my hair!”

Positions in which to almost but not quite sleep on a plane, haha.

Excited to give Alex this artwork. (Our first date spot:)

I have forgotten how to read.”

Peanut butter and jelly pie.

Most important, real stories from the men, women and children traveling on the caravan. And how to help.

Plus, a reader comment:

Says Claire on why I run even though I dread it: “I’m a palliative medicine doctor, reading this while eating dinner after a nighttime run around Central Park. I had a million reasons to not run tonight: I have notes to finish, it’s late, I’m tired, I wake up early tomorrow. But I went, and running is so damn hard it forced my brain to finally shut up. Before I left the hospital, I said goodbye to my patient who will likely die before morning. And as I rounded the reservoir to see the city lights, I realized all (all!) I was thinking about was the steady rhythm of my breath and feet. And I felt so deeply grateful to be in this body that moves and feels.”

(Photo by Yossy Arefi. Urgent vs. important via Swissmiss. Forgotten how to read via Miss Moss.)

  1. alina says...

    What an amazing gift that artwork is! So thoughtful and special! And giving me ideas… thank you!

  2. erica milsom says...

    Wow. thank you so much for sharing the caravan article. It was so powerful. I just donated to Pueblo Sin Fronteras.

  3. Jenna says...

    I have forgotten how to read too! I am going to make a real effort to read again, even just so my kids can see me do it.

  4. Janine says...

    I JUST popped over to my bookshelves and lined up a few selections. I used to read like it was breathing air, but man live does Instagram and Netflix steal me away. My ability to focus on reading is so poor now, and I had trouble finding gripping books for so long, that I gave up on the whole thing. Then I got lucky and couldn’t ignore a beautiful edition of Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver. That book BLEW ME AWAY in the best possible way. Then I read Heat and Light (holy wow!) and felt the reading bug coming back. There was still a long break after those though! (I’ll admit to falling asleep after 1 paragraph when I tried to restart my nightly reading habit in place of Frasier reruns). But I’m hungry again for that feeling of being knocked off my feet by words. And I’m open to book suggestions!

    re: Claire: YES. Thank you for doing what you do. And total agreement. Moving your body and just being aware that you HAVE THE ABILITY AND LUCK TO DO SO is powerful. Reason enough to move. I love hiking and taking very, very long walks. When I feel like skipping it or I’m trudging up a hill yelling internally OH GOD WHY DO I LIKE THIS, I remind myself how lucky I am that it’s even an option, how torn I’d be if I couldn’t haul my butt through some trees and have my breath stolen by some glorious views.

    I remember being a little um, turned around, with some friends on a hike outside Asheville on the Sea to Sky trail. We ran into a group of ladies well into their 60’s who were doing the whole damn trail! Another time I saw a man who must’ve been 80 just hiking along. I want nothing more than to be like them when I grow up. So I move and keep moving, and thank my body every chance I get.

  5. S says...

    Hey CoJ,

    I was just looking through past gift guides (which are awesome bc many of the links still work even if they are from years ago!), and noticed that while we have gift guides for “husbands” and “boyfriends”, we don’t have them for same-sex couples. What if one of your readers would like suggestions for her wife, or girlfriend, or partner? I know you have mom and sister on there, but it’s not quite the same as a woman you love romantically.

    Can we maybe add those this year to make sure we are addressing the lives of all your faithful readers? :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Oh yes! We actually added wife last year and will do so again this year!

    • Lauren E. says...

      I’ll jump in to say I’ve purchased gifts off the Mother guide for my male boss, or gifts off the Best Friend guide for my dad. I like how the guides are suggestions but not necessarily only appropriate for the designated person in your life.

    • Sasha L says...

      I bought from the sister guide for my husband ❤️ this year.
      And from a children’s guide for my mom’s birthday- Crystal sun catcher, those things are just magical!!
      Really, COJ could just line everything up and say “here’s all the cool stuff we found this year” but it really is more fun the way they write them, for imaginary wonderful loves.

  6. Sasha L says...

    Joanna, thank you for the lovely *urgent vs important* video. I loved being in that little mountain getaway, even for just a moment. Every summer my husband and I and our dogs back pack, rent Forest service cabins or take out our little camper and head into the mountains, as much as we possibly can. It’s so quiet. There is never cell service. Sometimes we just nap or stare at the sky for hours. I can’t imagine my life without that respite from the busyness. It’s the only time my anxiety let’s go completely (despite grizzly bears and mountain lions).

  7. SuzieQ says...

    Urgent v. Important is such a classic example of privilege. Sure, isolating sounds lovely. It is also totally impractical for 90% of adults. Who is minding this mans children? Paying his bills? Tending his grass? How does he happen to have access to an idyllic cabin in a sheep field?

    People of color, single mothers, and the socioeconomically disadvantaged don’t have the luxury of a break. “Important” might be working the third shift to feed your children instead of living a hipster dream with an iBook in a stone cottage in a sheep field. Just saying…

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      I had the same thought but it’s also a good takeaway to try to find any time to unplug, whatever that looks like for you.

  8. ellen says...

    I LOVE the idea of having a piece of art to remember your first date by. I looked on his site, and the artist has even drawn Balthazar, which is where my BF gave me a key to his apartment. If only I didn’t already have a Christmas present for him…. Next year!!

  9. Maggie says...

    Wow. Those young boys, more like young men, are so thoughtful from The City Ballet. I grew up dancing ballet and being very serious about it, I’m so thankful that children continue to see its importance.

  10. Irene says...

    It breaks my heart reading the stories about the people in the caravan. Thanks for sharing. It was the US intervention in Central America, during the 80s, what created the humanitarian crisis that we are seeing today. We must remember that.

  11. Claire sounds like a beautiful human. I don’t know how she, and other palliative care staff, manage with the weight of their role – but I am so grateful for the work they do.

    • Betsie says...

      Thought same! Reading that excerpt from Claire made me stop in my tracks. I needed to hear that today.

  12. Laura C. says...

    Claire, you’re such an inspiration. I did not comment that post because I’m not going to run anymore (it’s cold, I don’t have time, I am not in the right mood) but in my current state, running would be so healing. And I’m going to try. Thanks for the wonderful job that you do.

  13. Brooke says...

    I miss reading so much too! I used to get lost for hours in the world of a book and it would be so decadent and fantastic. I’ve started leaving books in my car and now when I’m out and about it actually does feel more pleasurable to read instead of look at my phone and then I find that my mind can settle back into it. I love the video of the man up in the mountains, hooting and hollering in the water and looking at the mountain goats and realizing that that feels more alive in the frittery edges of digital world.

  14. Ashley says...

    Oh! I made that pie for my husband’s grandparents and it is amazing! Also reading the comments on the pie made me want to try it again but with chocolate. Highly recommend this.

  15. Tanata says...

    Your weekend link posts are always a highlight and there is always at least one amazing gem of something new and unique I never would have found. Thanks for the thought you put into these and the inspiration.

  16. re; claire’s comment, i feel exactly the same about every little thing lately (i of course made a list https://tps-steph.blogspot.com/2018/11/0018-giving-thanks.html), just so grateful for my body and all the wonderful things it allows me to do.
    re: the treatment of migrants – so shameful and despicable. it would have cost significantly less to send workers to process their asylum requests than it is costing to have the military there. thanks for the action link

  17. jeannie says...

    What a lovely and inspiring comment by Claire. Thank you for the work you do and your tip about decompressing.

  18. Lee says...

    Claire, not sure if you will ever see this but I wanted to say how truly grateful I am for your work as a palliative care doctor. My dad was in a serious accident a few months ago, and was transferred to the palliative care unit when we made the decision to take him off life support. It was by far the hardest day of my life, but the team in palliative care made such a difference in not only ensuring my dad’s comfort, but ours as well. We had a private room to say goodbye, could play our own music and even got to bring my dad’s beloved dog. I am so grateful for the kindness, compassion and understanding that my family, and my father, were shown during the most surreal and unimaginable experience of our lives. Thank you for all that you do <3

    • Nas says...

      I’m so sorry to hear about your dad, Lee. I hope that you and your family are doing alright with the holidays coming up, I know it can be a tough time. <3

  19. Amy says...

    What a perfect gift for Alex! I just fed my starter to make a couple sourdough loaves this weekend; it won’t be ready til Saturday afternoon but so worth it :) Also – that Globe & Mail article really resonated with me. I used to be a huge reader but I told myself that this season with young kids was what was holding me back. There’s a bit of that, and a lot of the screen simply being lazier and easier.

  20. Katie says...

    Claire’s comment was beautiful and timely and a wonderful thought on which to end the week. Thank you.

  21. Flo says...

    I drove to my beach cabin this afternoon after a funeral. It was my fifth grader’s classmate. Reading your tips, Joanna, is always a bliss. Love to all who are suffering.

    • Sasha L says...

      I’m so sorry Flo. That is just heartbreaking. I hope you find some solace at your cabin.

  22. Mary says...

    Beautiful reader comment from Claire! Thank you.

  23. Love Claire’s comment. Yes, a great question to ask yourself is “What if I was unable to run?” Reminds me of what a gift it is to do something so simple.

  24. Wendela says...

    Oof. The comment by Claire the palliative care doc. We saw one when my mom was in the hospital who was amazing. I’m so grateful for the work they do! And: watching my mom go through terrible debilitating illness towards the end of her life left me with the same thought: be grateful for breath, for life, for sensation, for the beauty of sunlight and trees and hugs and the feeling of a breeze on your cheek. Don’t take the (supposedly small) things for granted. Running is great for all the reasons everyone listed. I’m grateful to be able to run!

  25. Amy says...

    Wow, that reader comment. It’s everything.

  26. Lucie says...

    Oh my gosh, my mom and I have talked so much about how we’d forgotten how to read. We’d go to bookstores, read book reviews and amass small stacks of great stories that we would. never. read. It was unfamiliar territory as we always considered ourselves bookworms at heart. But screens had overtaken our time. Netflix and oblivious, anyone? Finally a few months ago I decided to do something about it. I started reading books again but had a hard time getting started. To get me going I would set an alarm for a short period of time, 15 minutes or so, and make myself read until the alarm went off. Sometimes I stopped then, most times I kept going. Finally I got the hang of it and rediscovered how much I loooooove (insert Oprah voice) to read!! Now when I finish a book I go straight to the next one so as not to lose the habit. Recently I’ve read What I Loved by Siri Hustvedt and Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney. I’d reccomend them both! Happy reading, everyone! And thanks, Cup of Jo, for the wonderful Globe and Mail article.

    • Julie says...

      I also loved Conversations with Friends. I go to our local bookstore every weekend and read for 1 hour. Something about not being at home, distracted by housework or TV or kids makes it easier for me to get some real reading done.

  27. Alice says...

    On a recent weekend trip to the city we met in 15 years ago, my husband and I bought an illustration of the pub we had our first date in, a beautiful old building, and the oldest pub in that city.
    It’s such an intimate and poignant piece to have on our wall, you’ll love having that artwork up!