One of the runners up for the 2016 Oxford Dictionary Word of the Year was hygge (pronounced hue-guh). It’s a Danish word with no direct English translation, but it seems like “mindful, purposeful coziness” is the core concept.
For the Danes, it’s really a deep winter concept – enjoying simple, cozy places, slow-paced, joyous activities and pleasant conversations over coffee or tea – these are conscious antidotes to dark, seemingly-endless snowy winter days.
As we’re getting settled into our first UP winter, with a deep blanket of snow already in place and expected to cover the ground until mid-March, dark mornings and late afternoons and snow-packed roads, taking time to create and enjoy coziness seems like a sound strategy.
We’re so fortunate to live in a little cabin with simply amazing windows out into our snowy forest world. From every location in the house, there is a large window looking out into the woods, where deer, turkey and squirrels wander and frolic every day.
Inside, we can build a fire in the wood stove, enjoy a nice glass of wine, a warm cup of locally roasted Contrast Coffee (plug, plug), a side or two of legit retro vinyl and take our time enjoying the process of longform cooking.
We honestly can feel the time slowing down as winter deepens – in our house, out in the woods and in life in general up here. We’ll report back with the “true facts” come April, but right now, we think a cozy, hygge-tinged Winter sounds just delightful!
For more reading on hygge (one straight, one tongue-in-cheek), check out: