It’s that time of year, that time where I’m cold pretty much all of the time. You see, I have very low blood pressure and slow circulation. It’s a gift I was given at birth. So, although I do love the snowy winters we have here, I am generally always cold unless I’m cranking the heat or sitting in the sauna, or in the shower or by a fire (very close to the fire). It’s okay. I dress quite warm and abide by the entire Hygge mentality.
And I’m sure you’ve heard of Hygge. Yes? It’s been all the rage the past few years. Lo and behold last year, I also came upon another cultural nuance known as Lagom – while Hygge is Dutch, Lagom is Swedish. Hygge is a “Danish and Norwegian word for a mood of coziness and comfortable conviviality with feelings of wellness and contentment” whereas Lagom is a Swedish word meaning “just the right amount.” Lagom is also widely translated as “in moderation”, “in balance”, “perfect-simple”, and “suitable.”
So, I try to make my home hygge and lagom (this article in the New Yorker explains it all very well)– and I pay special attention to all of this in the winter months when I tend to be inside more often than outside. To be outside, I need to bundle up heavily. Hat, gloves, my long insanely warm Patagonia puffer, my waterproof boots, soft socks.
You’ll make it or break it here in the winter depending on the warmth of your puffy. It’s a term that all Tahoe/Truckee people readily understand. Like, “Oh, winter is coming! I need a new puffy, stat!” This long one you see in these photos is the one I reach for the most on the coldest of winter days. It’s similar to this if you happen to be in the market for a new long very warm puffy. I am also having success this year with this shorter and less expensive one from Old Navy (it’s surprisingly thick and soft and warm!!! I have it in navy :))
So, around Christmas-time I head outside to collect pine branches to decorate with (clad in all my gear). It’s really not too difficult to make little swathes, simple wreaths, and well just place some of the branches in a container and call it good. That, some vintage trinkets and candles are all quite Hygge too. A fire in the fireplace, a few lambskin wool rugs, warm blankets. Keeping the lights low, the house relatively clean, and I could just stay home all day writing, baking, reading until the kiddos come home from school when they too fall into the lovely embrace of their Lagom/Hygge home.
A couple of books on the topics…I’ve read both, they’re both just sweet fun reads with lots of ideas to help you pull some cozy, balanced Swedish and Danish homemaking ideas into your home.
*My husband just shared with me that the song (which is sorta where I engendered this blog post title), “Baby It’s Cold Outside” is essentially banned now on some radio stations because it’s considered sexist. I watched the video from the 1949 movie, and I kind of have to say he’s a bit pushy but then a woman flirts with a man in the next video. So, here’s an interesting recent interview about it. And the girls from The View, of course, weighed in. You decide. Regardless, my meaning is only that BABY, IT”S COLD OUTSIDE! See this next picture? That’s cold!