A coworker and I were chatting, lamenting the dark rainy day and how winter was upon us. Both of us are summer children and this cold sunless weather was not boding well for her.
I mentioned something about experiencing hygge – the Scandinavian answer to winter.
As 1/8 Danish ancestry, I heard this word a couple of years ago and after researching, immediately put this into practice. It becomes an act of doing things consistently and with intention – much like living the Christian life. They say it best:
Danes created hygge because they were trying to survive boredom, cold, dark and sameness and the undefinable feeling of Hygge was a way for them to find moments to celebrate or acknowledge and to break up the day, months or years. With so many cold, dark, days, the simple act of a candle glowing with a cup of coffee in the morning or a home cooked evening meal with friends can make a huge difference to one’s spirit.from hyggehouse.com
While the seasons do not affect my mood, the lack of warm beach days does. To pull through winter, I try to make my house as cosy as possible. There are always quilts lying about, a season-scented candle burning, and fresh tea from the kettle. I also try to find drinks to fit the season too: this year I am going to attempt a hot buttered rum. The apple pie sangria I made for Thanksgiving kicked off the hygge season in our household.
I also know my coworker is going through a rough patch too – her job is stressful, her kids have a lot going on, and her marriage is sinking. She is in desperate need of some hygge.
My Sunday afternoon plan is to relax, so I’m inviting her over and share some hygge with her: what could be better for the soul than making Christmas cookies, this hot chocolate recipe (never tried it before!), and a candle burning with the soothing lyrics and canticle of Salt of the Sound playing? And hopefully she’ll take some cookies home so I don’t eat them all!
Summer will be here soon. Until then, I hygge.