My best friend gave me a book for Christmas called The Little Book of Hygge*.
The book begins by explaining that ‘hygge’ is a Danish term that is not easily translated. Hygge is an atmosphere, an experience, a feeling… It’s toasted marshmallows on a fire, it’s snuggly socks, it’s hot chocolate when it’s snowing outside. It’s a night in with friends playing board games and drinking wine, candlelit evenings with a good book, building a fort out of pillows, it’s wearing pyjamas straight out of the tumble dryer. It’s enjoying good food with good people and the feeling of soft heavy blankets that feel like a knitted hug… It’s also a verb?
This year kicked off with serious amounts of hygge. I was hygge-ing all over the place; lounging by the fire chatting to friends, going for brisk walks by the sea before coming in to thaw out over a game of Heads Up, drinking wine and dancing around the ping pong table… It was a hygge kind of time. I loved it. I want an entire hygge year. I want a hygge life!
The first chapter in this little book is about lighting, and how important it is not to have blindingly bright white lights illuminating every facet of your life. Bright lights, apparently, are so not hygge. Luckily – and coincidentally – Scrubs and I had already gone out and bought the Philips Hue lighting system. I’m hoping this will make dimming the lights and creating a warm glow much easier and a lot less of a fire hazard than lighting fifty candles and dotting them around the apartment. We haven’t actually unboxed them yet because we need socket adapters, but I’ll let you know how we get on with them once we have them installed!
This year is going to be a hygge year. I left it off my resolution list because I didn’t actually know it was a thing until yesterday, but I’m adding it now. Belatedly. Ten days late, but sure, what harm? I want more cosy nights in with the people I love. I want to simplify my life, and streamline it so that I can spend more time doing the things that are actually important to me. I know (at least I hope!) that this year has exciting things in store, and I want to be ready for them. Basically I want to get my sh*t together, but, you know, in a hygge way. In a sense my aim is to have both feet firmly planted on the ground this year, but I want to be metaphorically barefoot, sinking my toes into a deep, deep pile rug.
Now I’m off to make myself a hot chocolate and sit in front of the stove. I have some planning to do involving brightly coloured felt-tip pens and my journal, and there’s no better place to do that than in front of a heat source on my sheepskin rug.
See? I’m already on my way.