I must confess, when I first moved farther North about ten years ago , it was not the cold, but the length of winter that really got to me. Okay, that's a lie, it was the cold and the length and sniffle season and the darkness that really got to me... oh yeah, and the snow half way up the first floor windows we had that first winter. I found myself asking all too often, "When's it going to be Spring?" It's taking me years to not just accept winter, but to find ways to love it. Getting outdoors more and getting more sunlight have been important to my change of heart. Today Elsa said to me when we were playing in the snow, "Mama, do you miss your garden?" "Yes," I said, "But I love my winter snow garden too." But beyond embracing the outdoors, it's also been important for me to embrace the coziness of indoor winter life.... warm fire and food and drinks, snuggling under cozy blankets, crocheting and good books. Don't get me wrong, I've always loved coziness... the Wildwoods' have always been rather gnome-like in our approach to life. It is definitely part of my everyday, but it's even better when you pause and recognize how cozy you are! I recently learned that in Denmark they actually have a word for this... "hygge". It is essentially creating an atmosphere of cozy well being. There's a nice "On Point" that explains it better. (Click here to listen to it!) Since I am reveling in my cozy today, I thought I'd share some things I am doing to keep that cozy feeling going these days.
The Cozy List
- Playing board games with my little ones. "Yoga Garden", "Out Foxed", and "Wildcraft" are our favorites right now and all cooperative board games, so there's no sore loser.
- Listening to the "While She Naps" podcast during my morning work hours
- Hand sewing some heart decorations onto new art aprons for the kids and giving Elsa her first sewing lesson.
- Making food at our new butcher block counter that allows us to sit at stools and enjoying cooking and eating snacks together.
- Watching the kids paint more because of their new aprons.
- Baking chocolate chip cookies
- Drinking Kashmiri Chai
- Popcorn with curry and other spices
- Snow Fun (sledding, snow angels, snow cats... hoping to go snow shoeing soon)
- Getting letters from friends
- Reading "When the Sea Turns to Silver" every night with the family
- Reading "Peaceful Parent, Happy Kid" to myself and wishing all babies came with this guide!
- Thinking about the next craft project
- Bonfires in the snow
I hope if you live in a place with cold winters that you are snuggling in deep and enjoying this time when we must create inner warmth and light.