Design

Have a Cozy Weekend.

Brooklyn in the snow by Alison Piepmeyer

What are you up to this weekend? We’re taking the boys sledding on Sunday. I’m not the most winter-sport-y, so wish us luck staying warm! Hope you have a good one, and here are a few fun links from around the web…

Pretty wedding look.

Incredible acapella versions of familiar jingles. (REALLY cool.)

I watched Sound of Metal this week, and it was great, especially the final scene.

Smitten Kitchen always gets it right.

How gorgeous are the northern lights?

A spaghetti bolognese taste test.

Living alone during the pandemic. “‘The most physical contact I’ve had was with a cashier giving me change,’ said Marc Fein, 35, an educator and mental health advocate in Jerusalem. ‘I don’t think I realized how much I needed it.’ Mr. Fein said he had resorted to ‘pushing my hand against the wall just to get a tactile sensation’ or sleeping with another pillow to simulate hugging.” (New York Times)

Wow, this mindbending art!

Dan Levy is on SNL this weekend.

Good news: Winc, the fantastic wine subscription service, is offering 4 bottles of wine for $30 (50% off + free shipping). Go here to try them.

Plus, three reader comments:

Says Kara on what’s your love language:
“This reminds me of love languages expressed in terms of tacos (I don’t know who came up with it!):
Words of Affirmation: Your tacos are delicious.
Acts of Service: I made you tacos.
Receiving Gifts: Here’s a taco.
Quality Time: Let’s go out for tacos together.
Physical Touch: Let me hold you like a taco.”

Says Lauren on what’s your love language: “Acts of service is the biggie in my marriage, but words of affection and physical touch are huge dialects for both me and my husband *specifically and only applied to the cat.* Neither of us is particularly shmoopy or snuggly in other contexts; with the cat it’s obscene. He’s like a prism that gathers and refracts the beams we don’t send directly at each other.”

Says Amy on what’s your love language:: Mine is quality time and acts of service! I’m Chinese and when I was 11, my brother and I moved in with my grandma. She never really said ‘I love you’ growing up; instead, she showed it by cooking our favorite food on Fridays and weekends, and didn’t let us to do many chores so we could focus on school work. My grandma’s was acts of service, too. So, when we went grocery shopping, we always made sure she didn’t carry any bags. As she got older, we would hold one of her arms while our other arm carried the bags of groceries. We also washed the dishes and cleared the table after dinner. Not because it was a chore but a way of saying thank you to my grandma for cooking dinner. As we got older, she softened up and finally became more affectionate. She started telling people how proud she was of my brother and me as adults:)”

(Photo by Alison Piepmeyer/Instagram.)

  1. K says...

    for some reason it makes me incandescently happy that the Marcella Hazan’s one is both the easiest and best one, i’m so excited to try it, it seems so achievable. I loveee her classic tomato sauce.

  2. Sasha L says...

    My dad is 82, has dementia. I haven’t seen him since November 2019. Sigh. Yesterday he called me to wish happy birthday. And my mom had told him I’d been struggling with a bad mouth sore (couldn’t eat for a few days). He struggled with remembering what he wanted to tell me, then it came to him, “oh yeah! Salt water! You need to rinse with salt water! It’ll help.” The effort it took for him to relay that tip to me was PURE LOVE. From a person that was quiet, distant, emotionally unavailable for my whole life, in that moment I felt so loved by him. I’m not sure what love language that is, but I’ll happily take it.

  3. Kathryn says...

    I made the Smitten Kitchen recipe this weekend, and it is the cure for any pandemic rut you are in right now! I am suggesting that all COJ readers run to the store as fast as they can to get the ingredients!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you for this insight!!

  4. Nicole says...

    I just watched Sound of Metal last night and loved it. Heartbreaking and beautiful. It was personally an emotional week for me and I needed a good cry. Riz Ahmed was wonderful.

    On a different note, Sylvie’s Love is pretty great. Especially the soundtrack.

  5. Rachana Modi says...

    We watched Sylvie’s Love on Amazon prime, such a cute movie. Very Notebook vibes!

  6. Sally says...

    That comment on physical contact got me as well.
    I’m a teacher of little ones, live alone, and now teaching online. I went from being in close physical contact with a lot of people (someone was ALWAYS trying to hold my hand, or snuggle up to me), to suddenly NO-ONE is touching me. I haven’t touched another person since December 27th.
    A couple of weeks ago, I found myself digging out two of my childhood teddies, just to have that sensation of something to hold.

    • Anna says...

      I’m so sorry Sally.

  7. Yael says...

    Just wanted to share that I’m friends with Marc Fein from the NYT article! Going to tell him that he’s mentioned on my favorite blog :)

  8. Rose says...

    Living alone, being single (not dating) and taking isolating very seriously during the pandemic has been so hard, and I’m not even a very physically affectionate person. Thank god for my cat! He’s the most affectionate cat in the world (to the point where I have to constantly move him off my lap/harm/foot to get work done; he always must be on me)I don’t know how people without pets are coping.

    I’ve had him for 15 years and one of the only highlights of this whole thing is how much time I get to spend with him as he’s getting older. I was always rushing out of bed and out the door pre-pandemic, but now I take an extra 20 minutes and we do morning snuggles, where we just lie there and I pet him. He purrs and purrs and having that contact with a living creature is one of the only things that’s keeping me grounded right now. And endless walks. But god I miss human contact.

    • Lisa Z says...

      My daughter (also named Rose) is 21 and living alone for the first time. When the quarantine started, she got a cat at the Humane Society, and that cat has been the main thing saving her for the past 11 months. Pets are a true blessing! I’m so glad you have yours–it sounds like you are each a gift to the other. <3

  9. K says...

    Deb’s recipe is a nice spin on the baked feta pasta, but I want to give big ups to McKenzie @grilledcheesesocial (she lives in our hometown, so of course she had to get some props). She originally posted this adaptation a couple of years ago and we’ve made it so many times! It has become her most popular recipe. She also gave credit to the original poster in Finland. Her butternut squash version is super good.

  10. Meg says...

    Thank you for the link to Smitten Kitchen’s recipe. It was just what I needed on a Friday night to use up tomatoes. Super easy and amazing delicious! We didn’t have pita or other bread so I made orzo and mixed the pan of roasted and broiled goodness with the orzo and it was outstanding!

  11. M says...

    So excited for Dan Levy on SNL tonight! Phoebe Bridgers will be performing tonight as well, and I was just reading internet rumors that she is possibly dating Paul Mescal. That made me smile after reading these weekend links, because I know you are a big fan of Paul and his necklace chain :)

    • K says...

      ooh I remember their instagram live interview! i hope they stay together forever and ever <3

  12. Ashely Milliken Schneider says...

    We watched Sound of Metal a month or so ago and I’m still thinking about that final scene!

  13. Emily says...

    Thank you for mentioning “Sound of Metal.” With hearing loss being a major part of the story, I was excited to see that it does feature many Deaf actors and a CODA (child of Deaf adults) actor. Looking forward to watching it soon!

  14. S.Thomas says...

    We live in winter for what feels like 9 months out of the year and winter sports are an everyday thing. Kids aren’t allowed to go to school without the “big 5”(jacket, snow pants, boots, hats and gloves). Waterproof mittens for all of you, hats that’s cover your ears, buffs for necks and noses and good waterproof boots! Hot hands are a nice touch and a thermos of hot cocoa or sweet and spicy tea helps morale. If you’re cold just have the kids sit in the sled while you try and pull it up the hill. You’ll warm right up.

  15. Sarah says...

    On being single/living alone during the pandemic: I absolutely respect the experiences of people who have had a very difficult time living alone and having limited/no physical human contact during this time. But as someone who lives alone and has been fine with it, I am a little weary of all the pity that has been directed towards single people this past year. Not everyone needs or wants to touch people on a regular basis, and not everyone who lives alone during the pandemic is in distress over a lack of physical touch. I realize I may be in the minority here, but I actually was not a fan of all the hugging of acquaintances, relatives, co-workers, etc. that I was socially expected to participate in before the pandemic! And I am positive I’m not the only one who feels this way. So on behalf of myself and anyone else who lives alone and may be having a similar experience: thank you for thinking of us and for your desire to be compassionate, but please try not to assume that we must be starved for human touch…For all you know, we may actually be doing relatively okay!

  16. Lena says...

    Sound of Metal is on my to-watch list and Riz Ahmed is definitely my celebrity crush. His 2017 address to the British parliament on the imperative for representation in culture and politics was so incisive!

  17. Frederique WOLF says...

    ME TOO!!!

  18. Cath says...

    This is my Saturday morning treat! I live in Europe, so when I get up, I get my coffee going and when everyone is still asleep I get to peruse these links and catch up on posts I might have missed. Love you Cup of Jo!

    • Anna says...

      Same Cath! I love thinking of other Cup of Jo readers in Europe partaking in this ritual. :)

  19. Whalin says...

    Amy’s comment brought tears to my eyes.

  20. Anon says...

    I can’t even tell you how much that NYT article means to me. Some of the comments are the first things I’ve read that make me feel like I’m not going crazy. Even my therapist tried to connect it to childhood, but I’ve just been very, very lonely. Thank you so much for linking to that.

  21. Ari says...

    I read that as “incredible ALPACA versions of jingles” and I honestly got really excited…

    • Whalin says...

      Me too!

    • Frederique says...

      Me too!!!

    • Meg B says...

      HAHA! This just made me LOL.

  22. Jennie says...

    Not just a pretty wedding look, a beautiful wedding story that I so needed to read right now. What is it about the pandemic that makes hearing of a stranger’s joy reverberate happiness to your very core in a way that is so much bigger than before?

  23. Mallory says...

    I make Marcella Hazan’s bolognese once a week (although I often bastardize it in the instant pot to make it work on a weeknight) because it’s the one meal everyone “chugs down,” to quote my 4 yo. I think I’m on month 3 of weekly bolognese and it hasn’t gotten old. We only cook meat once a week and it’s always this!! So excited to see it as a winner here.

  24. Jane says...

    On living alone during the pandemic…I’ve always been a big tree hugger but in the past few years trees have provided a deeper comfort. If you haven’t ever truly hugged a tree before, there is no time like the present. Finding a tree that is bigger than you are and who can hold the weight of your body and heart is key. Let the tree support you for at least 10 seconds and I promise you will feel deeply held. Remember that the tree was here long before you, will be here long after you and whatever you are struggling with won’t feel so overwhelming.

    • NH observer says...

      This is just wonderful — what a lovely thought! Thank you for sharing.

  25. M says...

    The NY Times article on being single during the pandemic is truly the most validating read! Sums up everything I’ve tried to express on many teary phone calls to my mom :)

  26. Jane I. says...

    I am going to drop this in the comments for all the COJ podcast junkies. One of my favorite pods, ReplyAll is taking a deep dive into all the horrible, bad boss drama (understatement) that blew up last summer at Bon Appetit magazine. Episode 1 of the multi-part series is out now and it’s something worth talking about: https://gimletmedia.com/shows/reply-all/dvhzkdo

    I can already tell this is going to be another breakout story for ReplyAll.

    • S says...

      YES omg just listened…. wow. can’t wait for the other parts.

  27. Emma says...

    Just here to chime in that Winc is FANTASTIC and I highly recommend them! I have learned so much about wine and my wine preferences throughout my subscription. They tell you the tasting notes of each wine and keep track of your preferences so that they can more accurately recommend wines for you in the future. You can specify what kind of subscription you want (how many bottles, white/red, if you want any “fancy” wine to be included) and the prices are very fair. Most of their wines are in the $15-20 range. Additionally, their customer service is absolutely amazing. Once, one of my bottles broke in transit so FedEx sent the package back to them without making a delivery attempt. They re-sent my order and threw in an extra bottle of wine for free! Another time they accidentally either sent me someone else’s order or made changes to my order (this was right at the beginning of Covid, mistakes were bound to happen) and again, they were SO sweet about it. I offered to send back the incorrect wines– they let me keep them for free, and re-sent my order. Plus, after they resolve your issue, you can choose a special treat for the agent who helped you (a gift card, lunch, coffee, etc.). Such a fantastic experience! Wines I’ve really enjoyed from them are the Lost Poet Red Blend, Dime Red Blend, and the Debts and Lessons Riesling (I’m not even a huge fan of white but I LOVED this).

    • Kristen says...

      For the year of the pandemic we have been using nakedwines.com. I split a case of wine with my “hive” neighbor(s) and we have a list of what we like and what we try again and again. For my husband’s birthday they sent a $60.00 bottle for $20.00 and it was one of the best wines I have ever had. They support independent vineyards.
      Had 4 bottles in my WINC cart and then saw horrible reviews on Facebook of how hard it is to cancel your subscription and was surprised of the $59.95 monthly fee. Yikes.

  28. nadine says...

    I live in Montreal and my main advice is an extra pair of warm socks in your bag. At the end of the day or if your feet feels cold or get wet from the snow it will feel great to change into them.

  29. Janet says...

    I live alone and realized that, until recently, I hadn’t touched another human for almost 8 months (thank god I adopted a very cuddly rescue dog who is the best little spoon that ever lived). This week I got my first mammogram and had to hold myself back from telling the doctor how nice it was when she adjusted my arm or shoulder so that my boobs could be properly squished like a brioche in a hydraulic press (is this the first time anyone’s ever referred to getting a mammogram as nice?). :)

    • Kamaile says...

      I had a mammogram today and can confirm it does feel like this. Don’t breathe, I’m ok I won’t!
      Glad you have little spoon to cuddle with! 💜

    • Jessica says...

      I can relate. I had blood work done recently, and when the nurse adjusted my arm, I realized it was the first time a stranger had touched me in oh so many months. And it was so strangely comforting! I think this particular nurse was probably acutely aware of this being the reality for a lot of people, she seemed unusually gentle. I would never have previously described giving blood as a warms d intimate experience.

  30. Looove these reader comments. And please, Joanna…whisk me away to Norway so I can see the northern lights. That’s a must see I my lifetime! Enjoy the snow this weekend :))

  31. Amber says...

    Re: living alone during the pandemic. I’m dating someone now, but March through July of 2020 I was alone. I didn’t realize how much I missed physical contact until I booked a (super safe, masked-up) hair trim in June. I almost cried as the stylist washed my hair. It was the first time I’d been touched in months. I’ll never take casual touch for granted again.

  32. The Dan Levy SNL link directs to “ew.com” and all I could hear was ‘Ew, David! dot com” – lol!

    Happy weekend! :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Hahahaha

  33. Sherri says...

    Joanna, you need to get yourself some hand warmers (little hotties)! I tuck ‘em in my mittens and down my running pants.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      ooh thank you!

  34. Mickey says...

    I’m wearing the Phoenix lipstick by Kosas right now! :) I have all of their reds, but Phoenix is my favorite. It’s always looks just perfect and somehow not “over done.”

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you!!

  35. Anna says...

    Thank you for a lovely roundup. Can someone from the team give a cup of jo 4 recommend bottles. I would love to pick something you guys have already enjoyed. So many options!

  36. Julia says...

    My husband got me a winc subscription for my birthday, and I learned that my love language is “gifts of wine.”

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahaha

  37. Agnès says...

    Oh Amy! I have no words, but tears of emotion. Have a great week-end Joanna, sorry about the sledding! Make sure you have every thing organized for the after snow!! (or maybe you could take a thermos of hot chocolate with you!). It smells like spring in Paris, the light has changed since this week, hope is coming! Sending my love to you and all the readers.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you for the advice!

  38. June says...

    We’re celebrating my youngest child’s 6th birthday this weekend. It’s hard to believe that last year we celebrated his 5th birthday at Disneyland!

    A handful of people are coming for a brief outdoor visit. We have a little socially-distanced obstacle course for the kids and favor bags to hand out. It will be cold and wet and brief – and we’re still so excited to see everyone.

    • Vanessa says...

      Please tell me more about this obstacle course! We’re doing a drive-by for my daughter’s 6th birthday next weekend, but I’d love to make it a little more interactive! (Maybe they should go through the obstacle course to get their party favor ☺️)

  39. Emily says...

    Lauren, I LOVE that and can so relate to you and your husband with your cat. I was very much the same – not too many kisses and words of affection to my husband, but we joked that I would often “make out with the cat” – i.e. shove my face into her fur and give her all the kisses. While I’m not someone who constantly says I love you, I couldn’t enter or leave the room without telling her how much I loved her! We also adopted my family’s policy that if the cat is on you, you can get away with asking for whatever you need. Sitting by yourself and need a water? Get it yourself!! Sitting with the cat on you? Here’s your water and what else can I get you so we don’t disturb the cat?! My kitty girl passed away a week ago and I miss all of these moments so much.

    • Abbie says...

      Emily sending you so much love. Your kitty sounds like she was just wonderful.

    • nadine says...

      Oh Emily, I’m so sorry for your sweet kitty girl. I relate to my cat (and my boyfriend) in a very similar way and I feel for your loss. Sending you love and wish you many happy memories. Thank you for sharing a few with us. <3

    • Sarah says...

      I so sorry Emily! I lost my old pup a month ago and yes it’s so hard. Sending hugs.

    • Lauren says...

      Oh Emily, there is nothing in the world like the smell of a beloved cat, and I am so sorry that you can’t hold your girl now. I got a tattoo of my best-friend cat after he died several years ago, and I don’t think I realized until right now that it was because it was the closest thing to him being next to me. I wish I could give you a hug.

    • Isabelle says...

      So sorry for your loss…. love the story, she seemed the best ♥️

  40. Mims says...

    Ok, I am going to come across as a militant vegan, (which I am not), but calling a recipe with dairy in it “always right” just feels like a smack across my face. Many, many mild mannered vegans who love animals, especially the mammals that are industrially farmed to provide us milk, feel the same way. Dairy is hugely polluting, a driver of climate change, not necessary to our health and well being (and in fact can detracts from it ( I am a doctor, I know the research on this both good and bad) and causes the needless suffering of animals and people. I come to cupofjo because, on most topics, it is sensitive and inclusive. Please join the all lives (human or not) matter movement. Get woke to the benefits of eating whole foods plant based.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      thank you so much for the feedback, mims. I appreciate it xo

    • AN says...

      You had me at the whole thing until “all lives matter”; yes to the sentiment, hard nope to the co-opting of the phrase. Please re-consider. Also, Oatly.

    • S says...

      Mims, If you really cared so much about inclusion and sensitivity, you would never use the term “all lives (human or not) matter movement.” This, indeed, “felt like a smack across my face” and not just my own, but to all people of color. Getting “woke” is about social justice for groups of people who have not traditionally held power, meaning non-white people. Being vegan, while it has its merits which you attempted to articulate, does not belong in the same conversation. If you want to convince people to become vegan or to advocate for animals, argue your points, but leave it at that. Your trying to conflate the two reads as if you are comparing the injustices of black/indigenous/people of color to dairy cows.

    • Lara says...

      I guess my struggle, Mims, is that your point could apply to pretty much anything on this lovely site. Parenting post? Overpopulation is leading to climate change – this is a slap in the face to those of us who have chosen to be ethically childfree. Lipstick recommendation? Unnecessary consumer goods waste fossil fuels to produce and ship, and waste money that could be donated to deserving causes. Cashmere sweater sale alert? Animal cruelty + wasteful consumer goods etc etc.

      These points are all valid, of course, but I think CoJ contributors and readers are really doing our best to be good stewards of our world and good neighbors to those we share it with. Some of us do indulge in small joys like cheese and lipstick from time to time. We each pick our causes but no one can pick every cause. I’m grateful for the diversity of viewpoints presented here.

      Looks like Violife makes a vegan feta, Mims – maybe that would work for you!

    • C says...

      Oof yeah, after with AN, lost me at the “all lives matter.” Big time.

    • Lindsey says...

      Joanna, I’ve wanted to say this before but the way you handle nasty comments like this is so inspiring. I’m working on not being the kind of person that feels the need to point out how awful a person is when they talk like this to others, and I honestly ask myself something what Joanna would do. In fairness I usually still end up telling people to blow it out their ass, but at least I’m working on it, right???? You’re an inspiration.

    • AE says...

      I feel like saying “all lives matter (including animals)” is a smack in the face of movements calling for social justice for humans who are treated worse than animals. Being a doctor means a) being flexible, b) not forcing your opinion on anyone and c) being culturally competent (ie/ just because it doesn’t work for you and your cultural perspective doesn’t mean there is no place for it). Trying to justify this off-base and uncalled for vegan rage is weird, especially since consumption of animals and animal products are less the issue (again, humans and other animals from every background have done it forever, literally) while the way animals are farmed and industry regulations or lack there of is the actual issue.

    • Mims says...

      Accept my sincere apologies about co-option, it was not my intent, I let my biophilia get the better of me. But animal food production/ is a big driver of CC and affects BIPOC disproportionally the world over. Native people have had their land taken to grown corn and soy for cattle and pigs. Non-whites make up the workforce in our slaughterhouses. Choosing vegan (all or even part of the time) is showing up for people and animals effected by CC and violence of all forms. We need to defund the police AND look at how systemic food injustices like food deserts, unsafe labor practices in the field, inhumane treatment of industrially raised animals and unaffordable healthy fruits and vegetables are harming communities of color. Again, I did not mean to make a culturally insensitive comment, just trying to point out a clear and present danger (the collapse of ecosystems and stable climate) that I think we all want to avoid. I am absolutely mortified I was so flip in my response. I really should not be commenting when I don’t have time for a calm and reasoned response.

    • Kate says...

      Contrary opinion – I am a vegan who loves reading recipes with all the dairy! I can’t read Deb Perelman (Smitten Kitchen)’s recipes without smiling, and I use her recipes and techniques as inspiration for my own vegan meals. I feel no virtual smacks across my face, absolutely zero. Just wanted to share my 2 cents!

    • Isabelle says...

      Replying to Kate “contrary opinion”: that’s so lovely and well said, Kate, love your ideas and openness!

    • Steph says...

      OK I *am* an actual militant vegan, but over the past couple decades of this lifestyle I have learned that you’ll never get people to change the way they eat by making them feel bad – food makes people feel good. I have “converted” a lot of people by cooking them delicious vegan food that tastes good, and they come to the ethics on their own. Smitten Kitchen is a favorite source of recipes that always, always work – even though I always substitute vegan alternatives for meat & dairy ingredients. Deb also has a huge amount of vegan recipes, including many baked goods. ALSO, Black Lives Matter, thank you.

  41. Deb in Oklahoma says...

    The CoJ Friday afternoon sign-off is the best part of the week. Every. Week. That baked feta with tomatoes is everywhere, so I’m making it tomorrow and eating it while watching SNL, because I want to adopt Dan Levy as my younger brother. He’s just great fun.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      <3

  42. Becky says...

    “Let me hold you like a 🌮”
    😂😂😂

  43. anne says...

    “Let me hold you like a taco” might become my new online dating profile tag line.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahahaha

    • Nicola says...

      Joanna, put this on the next collection of keychains (and t-shirts too) please!