Hygge in the Mid-South

I don’t think it’s any surprise that people are talking about hygge when we are living in the midst of such political, social, and cultural turmoil.  I’m not surprised, either, by the fact that it’s the new buzz word to get Americans to Buy More Stuff.  Truly, the antithesis of hygge.

What is hygge?


That’s right.  Hygge isn’t something you can buy. In all the rush to “make” hygge to “create” hygge, we’ve forgotten that it’s something we choose deep in our soul.  Contentment.  One dictionary said that it’s been thought that the word might also have come from the Danish word for “hug”.  That makes sense to me. It’s the after-hug euphoria.

Growing up in a cold climate in an era without computers, iPhones, and electronics, my home was always a source of hygge.  It was wrapping up in blankets watching television with my sisters and parents. It was hot, very sweet tea and toast points dipped in Karo Syrup mixed with butter.  It was staying home to play Scrabble and eat pizza on a wintry night.  It was sitting around the dinner table talking politics or school or religion and laughing.  It was about EXPERIENCE.  Experience with the people I loved.

We’ve become so electronically – intellectually – connected we’ve missed the importance of social and physical connection.  This search for “hygge” is a result of our deep seated need for all of those connections.  For balance.

Daybook 2017 Vol. 5

Looking out my window, the sun is shining and the sky is clear blue.  Up north, we call these days “brisk”.  I also call them devious.  The sun lures us out the door with that pure, yellow glow and then the bitter cold slaps you across the face and says, “Ha! Gotcha again!”

I am thinking how much I have to do.  Too much procrastinating has led to a Second Week of Advent with much left to do to prepare. Even still, I managed a procrastination trip through the transcripts of a TED Talk and then its corresponding website of surveys.

I am thankful for the peace I’ve been given by the Holy Spirit.  I’m thankful that it’s real peace and not something based on a false sense of euphoria.  That it’s not dependent on everything being okay in the world.  I don’t have to pretend our president doesn’t suck to rest in God’s Peace.

I am creating graphics for the American Solidarity Party‘s social media platforms. Planning to try a new recipe for Tuscan Chicken in the Instant Pot.  And doing little projects here and there for Advent and Christmas.

I am wearing black capri leggings with a purple (!💜!) mock turtleneck.  Sitting in front of the fire barefoot. I’ll have to change soon, though.  Going out into the frozen tundra to meet Alex for lunch.

I am reading Advent with Saint Teresa of Calcutta: Daily Meditations by Heidi Hess Saxton.  I used this as my Advent devotion in 2016 and I loved it so much I’m using it again.  It’s still awesome.

I am hoping and praying for a safe and swift delivery for Wyatt Angus.  I didn’t start feeling fear until this week.  Thankfully, it’s not the crippling extreme fear of my mother, but it still helps me understand her more.  Again.  My baby is having a baby.  And so many things can go wrong.  Trust.

I am learning about hiking during the winter.  Or, relearning, actually.  This weekends lesson?  HAND LOTION!  Before and after.  And after again.  My hands are an itchy wreck today.

In my kitchen we have soup in the fridge.  Pork vegetable with squashes.  I bought the already chopped veggies for roasting from Kroger to use in the soup because I knew I’d not have a lot of time for cooking when I got back from my trip.  Expensive, so I don’t see it becoming an everyday thing, but it sure did make it easier to make soup!

Daybook 2017 Vol 4

November 27, 2017

Looking out my window, the sun is shining and the sky is bright blue.  It’s so bright I can barely tell that the Christmas lights on the shrub right outside my window are still on.

I am thinking about Advent, impatiently waiting for the weeks of patiently waiting.  I love the irony.  I hate when there are only three full weeks of Advent, it never seems like enough time to prepare.  Even so, I’m going to have one of the boys bring down the Christmas tree and get it set up with the white lights.

I am thankful to be sitting in a house that’s clean and orderly.  Benefit of having everyone home and unencumbered for the last five days.

I am creating Jesse Tree and O Antiphon ornaments large enough to hang on the Christmas tree each day of Advent.  There will be glitter.

I am wearing grey leggings and a hot pink long-sleeve t-shirt.  Birkies.  Dressed to say in today.

I am reading  Heroic Leadership: Best Practices from a 450-Year-Old Company That Changed the World and thinking about being a woman in the last decades of the 20th Century.

I am hoping still for a new placement.  The quiet is deafening.

I am learning servant leadership.  See book above.

In my kitchen I have some leftover Turkey.  And a small amount of homemade noodles (lunch?)  I deliberately tried to avoid leftovers – success!  I’m planning to use the meat to make pot pie this week.  And I’m also going to make soup tomorrow with bone broth made from the carcass.    Also on the menu:  Avocado Toast, lox and bagels, Turkey Mole Enchiladas.

The State of Humility

Humility in America.  Is that an oxymoron?  Great men and women are often credited with it, yet humility is nearly always associated with weakness and disregarded by the general public.
“Humility is an unpopular — one might say barely considered, hence untaught — virtue, but it is the key to developing a fully virtuous life and a just society. The practice of humility does not allow one to serve a perception of one’s own power, nor to reduce other people to “things” or objects. Rather, rather it forces one to consider the gifted humanity of the other; it understands the privilege of known and serving the other”

The article was addressing Harvey Weinstein and the culture of Hollywood that allows men like him to escape consequences.  But I find it just as pertinent to the discussion about gun violence in America.  Sunday’s shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas,  had a very strong thread of domestic violence.

Since 1982, 88 violent mass shootings have been committed by men compared to 2 by women.  Overall, 90% of all murderers in America are men.

This is so stunning, I can’t move past it.  We have a culture of extreme individualism and machismo. I knew this.  But women are living proof, evidently, that humans can show restraint and find better outlets for their anger and injured pride.