As we fall into Autumn…(sorry, too cheesy)? I am finding myself really enjoying ‘slowing down.’ Whether it is actually Autumn, or my stage in life/motherhood, either way I am really enjoying the simple things in life.
It seems that everybody is in love with Autumn, and what’s not to love? Dark, misty mornings that turn into bright, sunny days. Darker nights giving a great excuse to stay indoors, light a candle or fire, eat comfort food and drink tea until we are all tea’d out (is that even a word?? It is now)! Oh, aaaaaand there is always SUCH great TV on during this time of year.
I think we have all heard of the word hygge; but just incase you haven’t then it is a Danish way of living. All about enjoying the simple things in life, mainly centred around being cosy and content. Little things like snuggling down on the sofa on a rainy day with a hot cup of tea and reading a book, watching a movie with friends or loved ones, fairy lights, candles, comfort food…I think you get the picture. Basically, things that make you feel cosy, content and most of all, happy. I, along with many others love this way of life. But you can easily think this is just for people without children, especially young children. Hot cup of tea…sorry, what’s that again? But no, in all seriousness, not at all. And I am finding little ways to incorporate this way of living into our daily lives with our now 1 year old daughter.
During the summer I tried to ‘slow down,’ with little things like, not taking the car if I could and walking, and generally just trying to be more present and mindful. As we are now well into Autumn, I find it is even easier to slow down our pace of life. Obviously, household jobs still need doing but I am finding some ways to enjoy the hygge lifestyle. I feel it is about all of the senses.
Light a candle
Now this one is an obvious one, but most afternoons now that I am home I will light a candle, so that by the early evening the scent has filled the room, and its little things like this; walking into a room and smelling the candle, that can make you feel happy.
This time of year is perfect to pick up some fairy lights, I have put these around our fireplace, around our bedroom mirror and any other area that you would see them. There is something about soft white fairy lights that to me just says hygge. Also with small children this is a safer option as they are out of reach and obviously, no open flames.
Particularly on a Monday morning I like to throw on some chunky knitwear, there is just something about it that makes you super cosy, inside and out. Also, as I am usually carrying Freya around, I think it must be nice and cosy for her to be snuggled up to me in soft knitwear. Same goes for Freya’s clothing – a lot of knitwear! And I’m not sure there is anything cuter than a baby in chunky knitwear!
As the weather turns colder, the slow cooker has reappeared. There is something so satisfying about putting all of the ingredients into the slow cooker and then knowing that your dinner is sorted, before lunchtime! And, smelling it throughout the afternoon…it certainly gets you excited for dinner. A slow cooker is such a great investment, especially when you are working or just generally busy through the day. You can cook a wholesome meal with minimal effort. Or if you’d like to do some baking, there are lots of recipes under my ‘baking’ section, or follow the link for these Pumpkin and Parmesan Muffins
Hot drinks (or microwaved for the 6th time)!
I definitely have to microwave my cups of tea (usually multiple times), as I can’t quite drink cold tea or coffee. If I can, a takeaway coffee to me is a real treat (in my reusable cup). It is little things like this, simple things, that creates happiness.
Music that reminds me of happy times, usually childhood creates a happy, content feeling. For me this is music like Frank Sinatra, Motown, but also music that I fell in love with in my teenage years like Norah Jones, Corinne Bailey Ray…the list goes on. But whatever makes you feel happy, safe and content is the music for you.
So these are all physical ways I am creating a more ‘hygge’ lifestyle, but ways I find best to incorporate into family life is:
- Spend quality time. During springtime and early summer I found myself rushing from one group to the next, always packing so much into a day. I then suddenly went completely the other way; I stopped all of the mother baby groups. I still saw friends for catch ups, but on our own terms and time schedule. For me, this has been the best thing. I really feel that I enjoy Freya and am seeing her grow. By being more present in every day, watching her play and grow, and just slowing down.
- Put down your phone. Easier said than done I know, but if you can, you will see so much more. You think you are present, one eye on your phone and one eye on your child. But when you put the phone down, you see what magic you’ve been missing. I know this isn’t always practical, especially for us instagrammers/bloggers/vloggers. But the more time off of your phone that you can, the better.
- Play. Simple, but Freya has recently turned 1 and received a lot of lovely toys. She is enjoying playing with toys, looking at books and learning new skills like stacking rings. The evening of Freya’s birthday, when everybody had gone home we sat in the lounge in our pyjamas, Disney film on in the background, and we just played with her new toys. For me, that moment, was just perfect. This was my ‘hygge.’
So even if you think the hygge lifestyle might be more of a challenge with little children, just adapt it to you. Children just want our time, and to feel safe. By giving them this attention they feel that, and how wonderful is that. I know I sound very soppy here , maybe its the fact that Freya has just turned 1, or that my hormonal state is pretty good at the moment. But I really feel that by taking on this lifestyle has made me appreciate the little things, and I feel so happy and content with it. So give it a go, find your ‘hygge.’