How Do You Hygge?

Friday, January 12, 2018

The concept of hygge has been all the rage for a couple winters now, but this is the first of those winters that has been truly, miserably, brutally cold here in Cleveland. We got lucky with a couple surprisingly mild winters, but this one is here with a vengeance.

Local blog She in the CLE recently published "5 Tips to Enjoy Winter with More Hygge," written by Shibani of Bombay Taxi, which shares ideas for indulging in the Danish concept of "the feeling of coziness and specialness." The Danes, of course, are used to dealing with the cold - though I just learned that the average winter temperature is 32° F, which seems practically balmy right now given Cleveland's recent lows of 0° F.

Tapping into those hygge tips, here's how I'm surviving the CLE cold.

Turning on a "happy light" to keep the S.A.D. away.

After asking social media for recommendations, I finally bought a delightful piece of technology called a VeriLux HappyLight, purchased with an Amazon gift card I got for the holidays. What a good investment! It provides 7500 Lux UV of blocked bright-white light therapy, & while I don't really know what the hell that means, this gadget does keep our apartment feeling brighter, warmer, & far less dreary.

Displaying a beautiful flower arrangement from Silk Plants Direct.

Hygge rules say to decorate your home with plants, but I do not have a green thumb - like, not even close. My grandmother & my mother got great gardening genes, but alas, they seem to have skipped me, & I have no interest in trying to keep real plants alive (or away from my cats). Instead, I ordered the gorgeous peony/rose/hydrangea arrangement you see above from Silk Plants Direct's huge variety. I'm not one for big, bold colors, so when they reached out, I chose something subtle but cheerful that would keep me feeling the glow of spring even in the middle of a freezing-cold winter. I think this beautiful bouquet is doing the trip. (You can get 10% off an arrangement from the site with code BLOGGER10.)

Cozying up under lots of warm blankets.

A few years ago, I used my tax return (the only one I've ever gotten; I always owe!) to purchase this soft faux fur blanket in "platinum frost fox" - but I like to call it my direwolf blanket. Mike has all but claimed it, so we fight over it in cold weather. Time to order another? This summer, I bought a beautiful handwoven Peruvian blanket from Kukuli Market, a Cleveland small biz. It's not cozy, necessarily, but it's very heavy & warm, so when I lie beneath it, it's sort of like one of those gravity blankets designed for people with sensory disorders. It's very soothing - & that is very cozy.

Lighting candles, candles, candles.

Isn't there something about having a bunch of candles lit that makes you feel like your living in The Burrow from Harry Potter? I recently determined that I'm allergic to many - most? - candles, but I've yet to determine which ones or why, exactly. In the meantime, I'm sticking to the one candle I own that seems not to stoke my allergies, & I've ordered it in bulk. It's Yankee Candle's Berry Trifle scent, & it smells like living inside of a warm pie.

Warming up in front of a fake fireplace

This was a hand-me-down from my mom, who has a real fireplace in her family room but bought this fake one to warm her living room. The warming function is broken, so it no longer serves as a space heater, but it sure does look cozy. We've set it up to serve as a placebo in the hopes that it will make us feel warmer than we actually are.

How are you making it through the cold weather? 

Thanks to Silk Flowers Direct for sponsoring this post. I was gifted a flower arrangement of my choosing in exchange for a "neutral blog post." As always, all opinions & views are my own.

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