Design

Four Fun Things

andrew scott in talented mr ripley

BREAKING NEWS from the Hollywood Reporter: Andrew Scott — our dearly beloved “hot priest” — will be starring in a Talented Mr. Ripley series on Showtime. Both the book and movie were fantastic, so I’ll be over here casually counting the days until the show comes out. — Joanna

family dinner around the world

Did you see the fascinating New York Times Weeknight Dinner Around the World story? They photographed eighteen families — from Thailand to France to South Africa — sitting down together at the end of the day. But like all the best dinners, it’s not only about the food — it’s about the soccer game on TV in the background in Saudi Arabia, and the kid climbing on the kitchen counter in Western Australia, and the dog that lingers next to the table hoping for scraps in Mexico, and the man leading a prayer while holding the challah in Israel. I want to eat every dish. — Jenny

joanna goddard breastfeeding baby in public

How to nurse your baby in public. Made me laugh and is so good and perfect. — Joanna

shopbop discount code

Head’s up: Shopbop’s huge fall sale is happening right now, with everything up to 25% off. A few pretty pieces that would work well for work/weekend uniforms: a cozy sweater, a silk skirt, the best jeans, sexy underwear and wear-forever booties.

P.S. More fun things, and 14 things to do with friends other than dinner.

(Ripley photoshopping by Maud Passini. Family dinner photo by Lauren DeCicca for the New York Times. Photo of Toby and me from this breastfeeding post.)

  1. Kathryn says...

    Did you know there are multiple Ripley books? He is such a villain and does terrible, terrible things but you root for him every time. Love Andrew Scott so this is something to look forward to!

  2. Kathleen says...

    Love the piece on breastfeeding in public. I remember forcing myself to breastfeed my first when he was two weeks old on a park bench in Prospect Park and feeling so exposed, but knowing that I needed to get comfortable with it if I was going to be able to be out and about and not isolated at home. I’m hardly a “free the nipple” advocate, but I’ve always been pretty comfortable with my body and wanted to feed publicly and unabashedly (no covers, etc.) to normalize it and hopefully help other women feel more comfortable feeding their babies. Luckily, I’ve rarely encountered any resistance or comments. Most people don’t even really notice it. I DO love when people wonder “why can’t you just feed them at home?” I’m breastfeeding twins and, at seven months, we now have longer stretches between feedings, but I literally could not have left the house for more than 30 minutes in the first few months. Thank you for sharing!

  3. Lisa says...

    LOVED that article about the dinners around the world. It’s so sweet to see all the different families.

    On the breastfeeding articles – I fed both of my two past a year. I always thought of two things –
    1. The UK journalist Caitlin Moran always pointed out would people prefer a screaming baby or possibly accidentally seeing a nipple? And 2. My badass friend who fed her kids everywhere.

    Though to be honest, when I was in the thick of it (including feeding in a passport queue, a tube station, in restaurants etc), I really didn’t care about possibly offending someone. I just wanted to feed my baby

  4. Claire says...

    I see your 4 fun things, and raise you one upcoming Netflix show “Between Two Ferns”, because the trailer looks hilarious.

  5. Lara says...

    Thanks for these! The weeknight dinner around the world article was fascinating, not just for the food; I found myself so interested in who is doing the prepping and cleaning. I noticed that it was the mother of the family in nearly all (with some exceptions!). Not that it’s so surprising, but I thought/hoped there might be more of a mix nowadays. I would love to hear more about balancing household chores between partners.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      i agree! i found that surprising, too. fwiw, alex cooks for our family, and i know many dads in brooklyn who handle most of the cooking. i’d love to see more of that, too.

  6. MR says...

    I see I’m in the minority here, but I agree with some sort of ‘modesty’ in breastfeeding. I certainly agree with breastfeeding anywhere and everywhere (I definitely did!) and think it’s truly an incredible natural thing (our bodies are amazing aren’t they?!). But I liked using a cloth or light blanket to keep it a bit more personal. I felt absolutely no shame but did feel it was sort of a private and special thing with my baby and didn’t feel the need to show it openly, boob and all, to every random person I came across. It’s still my body and I wouldn’t walk around with a boob out now so I felt no desire to do so then. It’s the same part of my body. similar modesty applies?

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      MR, i think that’s a great personal approach, and i’m glad that every mother who breastfeeds can choose the approach that works best for her baby and herself. to be fair, i don’t think anyone is wanting to show their breast to every random person who walks by; but instead simply feed a baby while sitting quietly, and naturally breastfeeding is modest because the baby’s head blocks the breast while feeding. i sometimes used a light muslim cloth to cover myself, but often my boys didn’t like being underneath it and would stop feeding to hit away the cloth, so it was so much better just to feed them without a blanket and be done with it :)

    • MR says...

      I completely agree Joanna. I definitely don’t judge others – actually at times I felt judged when others were more open and I chose to use a ‘hooter hider’. Like I was less proud or less feminist or something. To each their own right?!

      Also – love this CupofJo space always <3

    • Amber says...

      Agree with you all the way. I sometimes wonder , like with so many things, why it always has to be one way or another? At one point in time it was considered wrong to feed your baby openly in public and now with all the ‘ fuck everyone’s opinion’ approach to everything it often feels like the more modest among us are considered so terribly conservative for not wanting to bare or see a boob being bared in public. I guess we all just need to accept that everyone has different perspectives!

  7. Y says...

    I am probably in need of some commonsense education about breastfeeding in public. Please help. I approve of breastfeeding in public BUT I’m also uncomfortable seeing anyone’s bare breasts. Is it appropriate to wish the breast was covered? I would never swoop in and make the request at the risk of upsetting the mother. I would simply look away and wish I hadn’t seen it. I know it’s hard enough mothering a young child. Mothers shouldn’t have to manage everyone’s comfort levels too. But am I wrong in wishing it was considered polite to cover? I once saw a visually traumatic breast that I desperately wish I hadn’t seen. Years later I still see it and and fight the enormous discomfort of the image, while also judging myself for my reaction. Am I a special snowflake?

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Such good and honest questions, thank you! I think you had a good idea in terms of just looking away. If a mother is nursing on a park bench or a different restaurant table, it is usually easy enough just not to look directly at her:) and then also usually the baby’s head is right in front of the breast while feeding so the times the breast is actually exposed is very brief, if at all! I suppose one last thing is, if you do see a breast momentarily and feel slightly uncomfortable, you can take comfort and feel good knowing that a sweet baby is being fed and both mother and baby are able to live their lives instead of hiding in a cramped restaurant bathroom and that will likely feel very good and worth any momentary discomfort on the viewer’s part. Hope that helps!!! Thank you, truly, for asking and being honest. Xoxo

    • K says...

      Yes, you are. It is just a breast. Figure out some tactics that help you come to peace with a body part used to nourish an infant. Covering can be uncomfortable and unpleasant. No need to judge a mother for the shape of their body.

    • Diana says...

      I think everyone is entitled to their feelings. I have thoughts that I don’t like and find myself judging myself too. But, whenever I demonize myself over my inner feelings – however unpleasant they are – I really suffer. What I think would be a problem is if you took actions to try to impose your feelings on others and made them cover up while breastfeeding for your sake. To be aware of your feelings, to acknowledge them in your own mind and be curious about why you feel them…well, that’s the only way I have been able to eventually evolve my uncomfortable feelings.

    • There’s nothing wrong if you feel uncomfortable seeing a breast uncovered, or for wishing it were covered. You don’t have to jump in every bandwagon, or run with the current popular opinion. You’re free to form yours, and you don’t have to justify it or look for validations from anyone. You can choose to be modest and still do what’s good and right.

    • Sid says...

      There’s nothing inherently wrong with what you’re describing but recognize that it comes from a place of cultural bias. Breasts have been fetishized and turned into sexual objects by our culture. That is not their primary biological purpose. Ideas of modestly and any notions that some/all parts of bodies should remained covered vary greatly between cultures and times. I always find it interesting that North Americans are so obsessed with policing women’s bodies (see for example: Instagram banning images of female or “female-appearing” nipples in prepubescent children) but are so quick to find Muslim head and face coverings to be offensive and oppressive.

      All that said, it does bother me that you claim to have “once saw a visually traumatic breast that I desperately wish I hadn’t seen” – I can’t imagine what you would be talking about but it saddens me that you would describe any person’s body in this way.

    • Y says...

      Thank you for helping me face my discomfort. I loved Joanna’s idea of thinking of public breastfeeding as a sweet act of humanity.

      I knew I needed to change my thinking. It comes from an old place. I appreciate Sid suggesting I consider a way to think about that old incident in a way that doesn’t describe a breast as traumatic.

      Thanks to the commenters who were kind. Your works were so meaningful. Diana, especially–I read your comment many times. It reminds me that compassion is the best approach–to others, to the self.

      <3

    • a.n. says...

      i was really caught off guard with you describing someone’s body as having a ‘visually traumatic breast that i desperately wish i hadn’t seen’!

  8. ANDREA says...

    This line from the family in Texas made me sigh: “They eat at home six nights a week; they’ll sometimes order takeout if they have prayer group or baseball practice for Grayson, 4, in foreground.”

    No 4 year old needs organized sports. No family should give up their evening to it. The crazy (and fake) professionalization of childhood activities is such an idol in our culture to which we sacrifice endless money, time and sanity.

    …end hot take…

    • Anonygirl says...

      Or maybe he just really loves basketball and the socialization is good for him.

    • amy says...

      maybe he just likes it? doesn’t sound like they’re sacrificing “endless money, time and sanity” for maybe one evening a week of their child playing baseball with some friends.

    • a.n. says...

      interesting way to approach it, why so negative? i have a 4.5 year old son who REALLY enjoys playing soccer with his friends, so we have soccer practice once a week. it’s strange to think of it as ‘giving up our evening’ to it, since it’s something that makes him happy, gives him great exercise and social time, and teaches him the importance of working together as a team and again most importantly – he loves it and we love it!

  9. celeste says...

    As someone who fed for 12 months, and then 10 months, I guess it never occurred to me to a) feed in public, b) take a picture of myself doing it, or (c) challenge someone for doing it [shrugs]. You do you.

  10. Martina says...

    When Andrew Scott first appeared on Fleabag, I was like OMG Moriarty is back (am I the only one?)
    Got used to him as hot priest quickly, though ;-)

  11. Lauren says...

    LOVE the nursing in public list!! There is no shame in feeding your baby – hunger can strike anywhere and parents have to live their lives and be out of the house sometimes!! Sorry not sorry :)

  12. ale n. says...

    i LOVED the NYT article. i’m always so sucked in to seeing meals around the world, and also seeing what people in front of me buy at the grocery store?! it’s like my grown-up version of those damn toy videos that kids watch on youtube.

    • Claire says...

      Me too! I am especially curious about what people around the world have for breakfast, including if they have coffee or tea, and whether it has cream or sugar in it. I don’t really get too excited about my own breakfast, so I guess I am looking for more interesting ways to start the day.

  13. Anna says...

    So great you have a photo of yourself feeding. I’ve just finished breastfeeding my second (and last!) baby girl and realised the other day I have no photos of me feeding and it made me really sad. It’s such a massive part of your life for those months and then it’s gone! (can you tell I’m a little hormonal?!). Loved the article too.

  14. Bryn says...

    I was disappointed in the NYT article and their lack of family diversity. As an only child of a single parent, throughout my childhood I was always very aware that our family dynamic did not fit societal norms. This was obvious from family representation in the media (s/o to Gilmore Girls for making me feel normal). The article did not have any families of two.

  15. agnes says...

    That article on breastfeeding! I realize i was lucky enough to breastfeed in mexico, where you can absolutely breastfeed anywhere (it is actually expected of you), or in France, where I didn’t get any weird staring. Maybe I was just too busy enjoying it I didn’t realize people would mind? well, I want to print that article and give it to any new parents!

  16. Jo says...

    I have two children that I’ve nursed all over my mid-sized US city and never have I had anyone even slightly raise an eyebrow. I’ve also nursed on airplanes and in other cities and small towns in America and Europe. My daughter is almost three and we’re still nursing and still no comments from strangers, just the occasional wistful gaze from other women and respectful head nods from men. I also see other women nursing unabashedly and without harassment. Makes me wonder if this is really a problem or if a few newsworthy incidents are making women feel scared to try…

    • I agree. I nursed for 10 months, many times in public (especially when the babe was tiny!) and I never had any weird looks or rude comments or whatever. Then again, I never had anyone try to touch my belly or say anything weird to my face during my pregnancy, so maybe I had a strong RBF while I was nursing?! ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  17. “an unruly houseplant instead of a person”– me & my boob+baby have definitely been that person.

  18. Stephanie says...

    Just when I started to recover from my Fleabag obsession, PWB is everywhere! Then I visit my favorite blog to find the Priest’s smiling face. You’re ruining me!
    Just kidding of course, keep the Fleabag content coming, I am (still) here for it! ♥️

    • Quinn says...

      Haha, same! I might just have to watch Season 2 for a third time…

  19. stacey says...

    I don’t know how I got so lucky but in the late 70’s early 80’s when my two were nursing, my husband had our only car at work during the week so I would take the little dial a ride bus to go shopping and so on. Anyhow, the babies always wanted to nurse and the mostly older retired ladies on the bus loved it! They would reminisce about their own babies and were always so sweet. Honest to goodness, why is the world seeming to go backwards?

    • Carol Wayne says...

      I agree….the only person who made a fuss was my sister in law, who several years later had to change her tune when her son was born…

  20. Deanna says...

    THAT ANDREW SCOTT NEWS IS THE BEST NEWS I’VE HEARD ALL DAY! Yay, can’t wait!

    • Lisa says...

      I screamed!

  21. MA says...

    I was nursing in a museum once, a comic book exhibition in Berlin and a woman who worked at the museum tried to get me to go in a broom closet. She said I was disturbing people. I politely declined and she raised her voice. I was so shocked I stood up and started walking around, (still nursing) and she followed me, pointing at the door to the closet. I finally went downstairs and out into the garden.
    But I’ve never forgotten that woman. I had so many words with her! *in my head. ;)
    Stay strong mamas! Nurse as needed and do not go in the broom closet!

    • Neela says...

      I’m so sorry you had that experience! I live in Berlin and am currently breastfeeding for the second time (first time 18 months) and have never had any problems. Lively kids on the other hand (*insert eye-roll emoji)

  22. mj says...

    the breastfeeding post, yes!! I’m literally typing this one handed while i breastfeed my 3 month old! so so good, all of it!!!!

  23. Emma says...

    I’d just like to add that I don’t mind breastfeeding in public, but I do like that dark corner because my baby is very curious and easily distracted while eating. If anything else is going on, he’s there for that no matter how hungry he is. The constant latching and unlatching makes for an obnoxious feeding session and don’t even get me started on all that air being gulped that will cause problems at 2 AM! But yes! Breast feed in public people and other people get over yourself!!!

    • Catherine McK says...

      Oh man, that nursing article brought back repressed shock and rage at the woman at the Land of Nod!!! Who suggested I might be more comfortable in an uncomfortable chair in the bathroom. Lady, this is literally what these chairs were designed for. I was testing it out!

  24. Anna says...

    Love the breastfeeding article. It made me laugh…and cry (because I’m 7 months pregnant with my second child). You should add it to your Motherhood section.

    • nadine says...

      oh that weeknight dinners article! it really feel to have a glimpse of many different families at the same time.. and i read it while having dinner :) thank you for sharing!

  25. Kathryn says...

    I didn’t think this post could make me smile any bigger after the amazing photoshop job, but then I read the McSweeny’s article, and I wanted to shout from the rooftops (but I’m not because I am afraid of heights).

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      YES!!!!! i loved it so much. i felt like applauding as i was reading it.