Hygge, hygge for families, Kindness, Seasonal

Hygge All Year Long

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I live in the northern hemisphere and slowly but surely the days are getting longer and on February 2nd, we will be half way to spring.  Hygge is often thought of as a winter concept but the truth is the Danish people take the coziness and togetherness of hygge and make it last all year long.  Here are some fun family ideas to plan for when the weather gets warmer.

Hygge Ideas for the Warmer Weather

  1. Pizza on the beach at sunset
  2. Outdoor concert
  3. Ice cream cones on a hot day
  4. Reading in a Hammock
  5. Catching Fireflies in a Jar
  6. Outdoor BBQ with Friends
  7. Cloud watching

All Year Long Hygge Activities

  1. Stargazing
  2. Campfire
  3. Family game night
  4. Family read aloud time
  5. Potluck Dinner
  6. Family Hike

This is the last hygge post for this season.  We hope you have enjoyed this month of focusing on family self-care and hygge.  We at Kids in Service believe that you must take care of yourself if you plan to serve others.

If you missed our other posts you can click on the images below to check them out.

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Hygge, hygge for families, Kindness, Seasonal

Service Projects for Hygge Time

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Winter is now one of my favorite seasons.  I use to dread the cold and long winter months but now that I have found the concept of hygge, I come to crave this time each year.  I love this chance to slow down, get cozy and spend time with family and friends.

If you are looking for some cozy service projects this winter, we have a few suggestions for you and your family.  These are projects that you can do from the comfort of your home.
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  1.  Project Linus-Click HERE to learn all about this cozy and important service project.  No sewing skills required!!

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2.  Thank You Notes–Have you thanked your loved ones for the thoughtful gifts they gave you over the holidays? Have you thanked your parent or care giver lately?  Have you thanked your teacher, your coach, bus driver or librarian for all they do for you? EVERYONE loves mail!  Bless one or more people in your life with a card or note thanking them for all they do to help and support you.  This is a project for all ages, as the littles can draw and adults can scribe the note of thanks and gratitude. Make writing thank you notes a regular practice in your home.  This simple activity will teach an important lesson in gratitude, respect and connection (not to mention it will help them practice their drawing and/or writing).

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3.  Project Appreciation–For this SWEET project you need to gather everyone in the kitchen and think of a community group that you would like to thank.  Click HERE for more details about Mission of Appreciation.

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4.  Project Dollar Store–This is such a fun project and can be easily prepared while sitting in front of a cozy fire.  Click HERE to learn more about this SECRET MISSION OF LOVE!

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5.  Project Feeder Watch–This is a project of love for the birds in your backyard (and maybe the squirrels too).  Place a feeder in your yard in a place that you can easily see from a window in your home.  Keep the feeder up from early November-the beginning of April and enjoy the birds that come to your yard each day.  Watching birds from the window is a very relaxing activity and a great learning experience for the whole family.  Grab a few bird books from you library to learn the names of the birds in your yard.  If you sign up for Project Feeder Watch through Cornell, you will be sent a poster of the birds in your area.  Project Feeder Watch asks its members to count the birds for a period of time over two days a week (10 min is all you need) and submit the data online to their website.  This data is used for their scientific study about the birds in different areas and the migration patterns.  We LOVE this project and love to take care of the birds in our yard all winter long.

If you missed our other hygge posts you can click on the images below to check them out.

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Hygge

Scheduling Hygge Time

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We are so enjoying all of the hygge talk on the site this month and hope you are enjoying it too.    If you have not read our other two posts, I recommend you check them out first.

 What is Hygge? (CLICK HERE)

Hygge Home (CLICK HERE)

Today we are talking all about scheduling some hygge time with your loved ones each week.  I am not sure that the Danes would like this idea of putting hygge on the calendar, it kind of goes against everything that hygge stands for.  However, in our busy lives,  I find that scheduling hygge time is essential.

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Hygge is a beautiful way to slow down, connect and focus on what really matters.  If you do not schedule it in, it will be the first thing to be shoved aside as you focus on your long to-do lists and rush from activity to activity.  Taking an hour, two hours (we take a whole day) to build in hygge time means that you will be more likely to follow through.  I know that once you start adding sacred hygge time into your life, you will look for more and more ways to add more time.

Here are some ideas of how you and your family can schedule in some hygge time this week.

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  1.  Family Game Night–This is a great way to set aside some hygge time each week.  Dust off those family games, make some fun snacks, light a few candles and put on some soft music.  This is a great way to spend some quality time together.
  2. Hygge Afternoon–My dear friend’s family have a hygge afternoon on Sundays.  They lock up all of their electronic devices, get out their cozy blankets, light some candles and gather together in their family room.  They may each read their own books, listen to an audio book together, work on jigsaw puzzles or color in adult coloring books.  This all happens while the delicious smells of dinner drift into the room from the crock pot in the kitchen.  This precious time helps them decompress from their busy week and recharge their batteries…the beauty of hygge!1
  3. Gratitude Walk–This can be done by going on a family walk, bike ride, hike or a snowshoe.  Exercise and time in nature is a very important part of hygge.  Go out and get some fresh air as a family and see how great it makes you feel.   CLICK HERE to learn more about Gratitude Walks.
  4. Cook Together–It is so important to get kids involved in the kitchen.  Learning to cook when they are young, will help to prepare them to be healthier eaters when they grow up.   Spend some family time in the kitchen, making your favorite dishes.  Even the little ones can be involved in the process.
  5. Have a Dance Party–Put on your favorite dance music, light some candles and clear some space…it is time for a family dance party!  Show the kids your best moves, let them show you their latest Fortnite dances and just be silly together.  This is a great way to get exercise and have a lot of fun.   hygge
  6. Have a Bonfire-Winter bonfires are my favorite kind of bonfire.  It is so fun to sit around in the cold and watch the firelight dance.  S’mores taste just as good in the winter as they do in the summer, so break out some marshmallows and enjoy some quality hygge time.
  7. Have Friends over for Dinner-Gathering with people is a big part of hygge.  There is no need for anything to be fancy.  Make a big pot of pasta or soup, get some bread and invite some friends to join you for dinner.  I think we put too much pressure on ourselves when it comes to hosting others.  Our true friends do not care if we have dust bunnies in the corners or if the kitchen floor hasn’t been washed in weeks.  Open up your doors, gather round the table and break bread with the people you care about, it’s so hygge 😉

How do you and your family schedule in hygge time each week?

Hygge, Mindfulness

Creating Hygge in Your Home

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Today we are going to talk about creating a feeling of hygge in your home.  The best way to start is by thinking of the five senses and how you can create a cozy environment that encourages your family to slow down, put away their electronic devices and spend some quality time together.

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Lighting is very important when creating a feeling of hygge in your home.  Harsh overhead lighting does not make for a cozy environment.  In our home we have table and floor lamps spread throughout.  On the first day of fall, we bring out a strand or two of Christmas lights and keep them up until spring.  We have candles (battery operated and real), two salt lamps, an old lava lamp and the glow of our pellet stove.  Soft lighting can really add to the cozy feeling of home and it brings me so much joy during these dark days of winter.

What else might you see in our home?  You may see baskets of books, mason jars of colored pencils, coloring books, house plants (good for cleansing the air), cozy blankets and pillows, the birds gathered at the feeders outside, half completed puzzles, family board games, our snowshoes and cross country skis in our garage ready for adventure and our basket of family yoga mats.  These are all things that inspire creativity, togetherness and good health.

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In our home hygge smells like a pot of soup or spaghetti sauce simmering on the stove.  It smells like mulled cider, hot cocoa or the smell of wood burning in the fire.  You can use just about anything to create the smells of hygge in your home.  We sometimes boil spices on the stove, burn soy candles and diffuse cozy essential oils (lavender, fir oils, frankincense, cinnamon and wild orange are our personal favorites).

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The tastes of hygge go right along with the smells.  Soups, stews, warm pasta dishes, hot tea and other warm foods help to create a feeling of hygge in your home.  Maybe you pop a big bowl of popcorn for the movie you plan to watch together or sip on hot cocoa after a day playing outdoors.  The tastes of hygge should warm you from the inside out but be nourishing.  It is important to stay away from junk food and focus on delicious whole foods that will fuel your bodies and keep you and your family healthy.

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Cozy blankets, soft pillows, fuzzy socks, flannel pajamas…..all of these are the textures and feels you want to have around you.  Hygge is all about being comfortable and cozy.  We have soft throw blankets and pillows on every couch to help create a feeling of comfort.  One of my favorite parts of hygge is snuggling up on the couch with the people I love.

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Soft music playing in the background, my husband and I playing our acoustic guitar and ukulele together,  a crackling fire, laughter during a board game, good conversation, a family audio book or read aloud, a family movie….these are the sounds of hygge in our house.

I hope this post has inspired you to create a feeling of hygge in your own home.  Hygge does not need to cost a thing and is such an important concept in our busy society.  I would love to hear how you invite hygge in to your lives.

In our next post we will explore the idea of scheduling in some hygge time into your busy week.  Until then, put on some soft music, light a candle, find a cozy blanket and go snuggle on the couch with someone you love.

-Peace