Design

Have a Great Weekend.

Ace Hotel Palm Springs

What are you up to this weekend? We are heading to Palm Springs to visit Alex’s family, and I’m also really looking forward to meeting some Cup of Jo ladies! Also, here’s our 2019 gift guide, if you need any last-minute ideas. Hope you have a good one — safe travels, if you’re leaving town — and here are a few fun links from around the web…

The #1 thing I’m packing for our trip.

David Harbour’s New York City loft with a charming interview. “I started to get neurotic,” he says.

How delicious does this cheese soufflé look?

Around the world in five kids’ games. (New York Times)

Shampoo in bottles made of soap!

Artwork altered to show the effects of climate change. (Worth seeing.)

How to cure hiccups.

The artful out-of-office auto reply. Loved this.

Home alone for the holidays. (My very first Cup of Jo post was about staying in on New Year’s!)

The slowest countdown to Christmas.

Also, five amazing holiday sales:
Nordstrom is having a huge sale. These would make a great gift.
Ann Taylor is 50% off with code TICKTOCK.
J.Crew is 30% off with code SNOW. I’m of course packing this sweater.
Madewell is offering 30% off your purchase, plus $5 overnight shipping. This is so cute.
Shopbop is having a great sale. These jeans are already packed, along with my favorite sneakers.

And three reader comments:

Says Tess on five easy party games: “My mother is the queen of making parties special! She recently hosted a ‘talent’ show before Thanksgiving meal. We’d had a sad year in our family, and she knew it would be hard to sit around feeling the absence of those lost. So, a talent show it was! She hung a curtain in a doorway and the performances were amazing! Talents ranged from poetry recitation, to a song on the piano, to a two-year-old making noise on a harmonica. We had loads of laughs and applause over appetizers, and there couldn’t have been more joy going to the table together.”

Says Florencia on styles we’re stealing from our moms: “There was a picture of my mom, wearing a knit bikini that I loved. She was on the beach and pregnant with my older sister. She told me she knit the bikini herself. I loved it and asked that she make me one. She did, and I proudly wore my gold knit bikini on a boat outing with friends and strangers. I jumped off the boat, and upon touching the water my new bikini immediately expanded to five times its size and fell right off! My mom was mortified that she didn’t think to test it before giving it to me.”

Says KC on seven City Hall weddings: “I just read through these wedding interviews and thought how funny it is that total strangers sharing a big, personal celebratory moment can be so uplifting to me, on my phone, in bed 1,000 miles away. I’m actually smiling ear to ear! Thanks for the post, and my heartfelt congratulations to all the lovely couples!”

Happy holidays, and sending so much love. xoxo

  1. christina says...

    Would anyone be able to recommend some funny/lighthearted books that are well written to read over the holidays? :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      I love You’ll Grow Out of It — really funny essays.

    • annie says...

      some books that get me through are…
      + ex libris AND/OR at large and at small, both by anne fadiman (very cozy, funny little books with tender hearts)
      + any of ruth reichl’s memoirs, but especially garlic + sapphires (i think that’s probably the most lighthearted of them all)
      + me talk pretty one day by david sedaris… he always makes me laugh out loud

      hope you find something GREAT to curl up with. :)

    • 'Becca'lise says...

      Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris, which includes “The Santaland Diaries” about his time as a department store elf. It’s twisted and hilarious!

    • Kim says...

      I laughed out loud at We Are Never Meeting in Real Life by Samantha Irby.

    • CMB says...

      Over the Top by Jonathan Van Ness; Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb.

  2. Wendy says...

    I’m bummed to find a link to Amazon for a book that could easily be linked elsewhere….Barnes & Noble, etc. I find it unethical, as once I click over, you then make a profit off of everything else I purchase on Amazon. Seems sneaky to me.

    • Sarah says...

      I get that. But I try to remember that my favorite bloggers (like Jo!) bring me so much delight, insight, and value from the content they provide for free—and must spend hours on! And honestly, I love knowing that a little slice of my purchases goes to a small, ethical, hardworking team of women…and not just to a massive company. Plus, there’s plenty of affiliate disclaimers on this blog…so there’s really nothing “sneaky” about it.

    • Emily says...

      Well said Sarah! I’ve said this as well so many times on this blog. If you don’t want to purchase from Amazon, simply take advantage of the cool recommendations here and go buy somewhere else. But if you are like me and Sarah, you don’t mind supporting a very TRANSPARENT blog you love from time to time.
      Keep doing what you need to do CupofJo.

    • Wendy says...

      Sarah and Jessica, not my point. I don’t mind the affiliate links and the fact that blogs make money when I purchase something they recommend. I do have an issue with items linked to Amazon, where many of us purchase multiple items monthly, unrelated to the item that was linked. Blogs make money from all purchases following our use of affiliate links, not just the recommended item. This is unethical. Link to a bookstore. But this won’t happen, because readers won’t spend as much there.

    • Wendy says...

      Sarah and Emily, rather…not sure where I got Jessica!

    • Emily says...

      Wendy,
      If you want to support this blog, but don’t like the idea that it’s profiting off everything else you buy, can’t you buy the book through link, sign off Amazon, and then go back to Amazon without using link to continue shopping on that same day? If you have Prime with free shipping, there’s no need to feel pressure to fill up your basket after you link through this website. Seems like a simple solution to me, unless I’m still not understanding your point?

  3. Jessica says...

    where can you actually BUY the shampoo bottles made of soap?

    • Alison says...

      I want to know this too!

    • Melanie says...

      Yes! What a clever idea.

  4. Emily says...

    The altered artwork is so thought provoking, to say the least. I have a vintage reproduction canvas for sale in my shop of The Parasol couple https://www.etsy.com/shop/LadyEM2?ref=seller-platform-mcnav.
    I’ve always loved it so much, and now I see it in a new light. Thank you for sharing such a meaningful link, and have a wonderful holiday!

  5. The knit bikini was is so funny. I was thinking how cute a knit bikini was and almost texted my mom to do the same, until I read to the end lol. But the idea is super cute!

  6. Katha says...

    Yes! To KC‘s comment on the City Hall weddings.

    Home alone for the holidays…
    I spent one Christmas alone so far. It wasn’t too bad in retrospect and it is pretty much the only story I can tell in my life. I was in Reykjavík during my exchange year in university. All my roommates had gone home for the holidays and I couldn’t join my friends for dinner because I had mumps (I was 24) and was a) feeling really sick and b) very contagious. So I lived on Ibuprofen and yoghurt for 10 days and was just good to go out again for new year’s eve.

    New year‘s eve is mostly overrated for me. I‘m happy to stay in and do nothing or even go to bed early. But the kids start to insist on some kind of party. We‘ll see…

  7. Uli says...

    Hi Joanna, I love your blog, but there’s just one thing I really miss very much! (and readingyour post from 2007 reminded me of that): It would be so great to be able to really browse your archives, for example, to look at all the posts from your beginnings.. I don’t see any possibility of that on the site.. in the archives, there are always all the recent posts, but no possibility to go back for example to 2007 and then read your way from post to post… I’m sure I’m not the only one missing that! Have a great christmas and wonderful travels, all the best from Berlin!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you for this feedback! we will try to add that back in. thank you!! xo

    • Jess says...

      Yes! I was thinking the same thing! Any way you could send us a link to the VERY FIRST TIME you introduced Alex to the blog readers?

  8. Wendy says...

    The shampoo bottle made of soap is eye-catching, but doesn’t really seem sustainable with all the extra effort going into the making of the bottles. I’m really trying to eliminate plastics in my life and shampoo bottles seemed like an easy one, but my first try with a shampoo bar didn’t work out. (Seemed to react with the hair potion I use to give my fine hair some body and made my hair gummy.) I’d love to see CoJ do a post reviewing various shampoo bars. Too selfish?

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      we’d love to review shampoo bars!

    • Angela says...

      Based on a rec I saw here, I tried Ethique St. Clements shampoo bar. It made my fine, somewhat oily hair feel super clean, though maybe a little dry. I used in conjunction with the last of my Aveda conditioner, but I’m anticipating the arrival of the Ethique Pinkalicious shampoo bar. I read in reviews it is milder, so I’m going to give it a try before looking into a conditioner. Good luck in your quest!

    • Melanie says...

      Please review solid shampoo bars! I can’t find a company that sells samples. I have tried one kind from Ethique, but my hair didn’t feel clean. Maybe I didn’t give it long enough. I wish more stores sold them so I wouldn’t have to order them.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      We’re on it!

    • jenn says...

      I use a local company for my shampoo bar (dirty kids soap companyin Iowa) and have had great luck with it. They ship all over the US!

    • jules says...

      Melanie – Lush has some great options and they will give samples for all products in the store, if you have one nearby. I love the “honey I washed my hair” one!

    • Krista M Sharp says...

      I tried a couple of shampoo bars that just left my hair super waxy and greasy. I used them for a couple of months but they just weren’t working. I then found Honey I Washed my hair from Lush and it works great! (https://www.lushusa.com/hair/shampoo-bars/honey-i-washed-my-hair/05563.html) I think it just takes a lot of trial and error to find a shampoo bar that works for your hair.

  9. Lara says...

    What am i up to this weekend … hmm …let’s see
    it’s already Friday night where I live .farmer’s market first thing in the morning then some cooking . I’m going to pick up my husband at the airport by mid-afternoon. He is flying somewhere at this very moment ( he’s a pilot ) . I am making his favourite meals and dessert.Then we will have a long walk .. very chatty walk dare I say before heading to the theatre. Marc I can’t wait to see you my love ♡

    Have a relaxing weekend cup of jo community!

  10. Jan says...

    So for people like me who don’t subscribe to NYT,is it possible for you to put a link we can actually read? Thanks for considering it, cuz coj is always thinking ahead

    • Wendy says...

      I’d like to second this motion! I’d REALLY love to subscribe to NYT, but Washington Post had a cheaper deal recently and I went for it. Budget won’t stretch to two subscriptions.

    • R says...

      You can get a free online subscription to The NY Times through many local public libraries! You just log in with your library card :)

    • Bailey says...

      If you use Chrome, you can read NYT articles without a subscription by right clicking on the link (or tap and hold on mobile) and opening in a new incognito window. You’ll need to open a new incognito tab for each article you want to read.

  11. celeste says...

    Happy holidays! David Harbour is such a weird interview, who knew our taste in homes would be exactly alike. And I love the “Christmas alone” piece. Not alone, but could handle anything that comes my way. Thanks.

  12. Susan says...

    I am reading Nothing to See Here and LOVING IT.

    • Kim says...

      It was one of my favorite books of the year! Enjoy, Susan and Joanna xoxo

  13. gilli says...

    Where is the Palm Springs photo from?

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      the ace hotel and swim club! xo

  14. liz says...

    The knit bikini comment – 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  15. Julie says...

    I have had the hiccups for three days and was going insane. THANK YOU!

  16. Rosie says...

    I love the out of office responses. My current job requires me to leave a specific reply, but the second one reminds me of one I left on my email during my first job out of college. I hated working there so much and didn’t think about how many emails I was copied on every day. It was something along the lines of, ”If this is actually important resend on Monday. If it isn’t you should think about why you sent this email in the first place. Reflect and learn from your mistake.” My boss had IT go into my account and fix it because clients we’re pissed. When I got back they put me on probation. I took that as a sign to get a new job.

    • Vero says...

      This made me laugh!