Hello my lovelies! Are you ready for Christmas? I've just returned from doing my final Christmas shop and - WOW! - How hectic are the shops right now? I kind of just plastered a smile on my face and adopted that slow shuffle that really is the only way to move around the stores at this time of year. What I find interesting is how other people respond to these low-level stress shopping situations.
Some are clearly over-whelmed and irritable and really don't cope well, thus make their own, and others, shopping experience more traumatic. Others just stare straight ahead and accept their fate of braving festive crowds, displaying not an ounce of emotion on their faces.
And then there are those who are super courteous, chatty and smiley. I like those kind of people, they make the crowded shopping experience a little more bearable. And because I appreciate such people I try to be one myself. I must have exchanged 'grin-and-bear-it' pleasantries with at least 4 unknown-to-me fellow shoppers. I'm convinced the best way to get through the holiday shop is to cling to the thought that there is a cup of tea to be had once you have braved the crowds and reached the sanctuary of home.
So yesterday was the Winter Solstice, the days get longer from here on out. Oh it will be a while yet until we start noticing the difference, but it's the knowledge that the light is returning that makes me happy.
To chase the dark and winter doldrums away in our home I embrace my Danish heritage and practice the art of "hygge".
Hygge is the Danish ritual of creating atmosphere, embracing all things gentle and soothing and steering clear of annoying and stressful things (like crowded shops LOL). It's about friends, family and graciousness. It's all about simple pleasures.
In practicing the art of Hygge in my home I light candles - lots of them. I ensure that we have plenty of warm, snugly blankets lying around and that I have all the makings for gorgeous cups of hot chocolate, coffee and cups of tea. I bake delicious cookies and infuse delicious smelling oils to make our home smell amazing, make homemade bread and warming soups. I look for ways to make the ordinary just that little more special.
The art of hygge, in my humble opinion, goes a long way in creating a sense of well-being for those who suffer the side effects of a lack of light (I would count myself in that group), and considering that the Danish have a word for describing the act of coziness, I gather that this a wide-spread belief, at least among dwellers in Nordic countries.
I found an absolutely FABULOUS blog which centers around the art of living hygge. It is a delight to read and well worth a visit, its called Hygge House.
So my sweet readers, as I finish off this post I just want to wish you all a very blessed Christmas. My your celebrations be filled with peace, family, love, shared moments, happy laughter and a whole lot of hygge.