Winters are long and dark in the North Europe therefore the need to create home-based alternatives for avoiding the feeling of loneliness and deep depression created by the weather. It means more than the usual light therapy practiced intensively in countries like Finland or Norway, but offering an entire concept of alternative lifestyle which is not necessarily geographically confined.
Welcome to the world of hygge, a Danish word meaning 'coziness', adopted in the world language of good life seekers as '(...) the art of creating intimacy and the comforting sense of togetherness in a candlelight room with a fire cracking and cheerful music playing in the background'. It also means 'that taking care of yourself and those you love fortifies you with an invincible sense of well-being that no amount of snow or endless twilight can temper'.
My experience of living for the last 10 years in Germany was a long lesson in learning to deal with the dark hours starting around 4pm in December and a cold weather which means also getting used with snow in April. I visited the Sweden and Norway too and more than once had the feeling of being overwhelmed by too much darkness. Until I discovered that with friends and some interesting book and a good meal life can be better again.
The Hygge Life, written together by the Icelandic chef Gunnar Karl Gislason and Jody Eddy, is more than an introduction to this lifestyle. It offers the full to-do-list to achieve the piece and wellbeing so much associated with this part of Europe, regardless what side of the world you are living. It means that you can easily make a lap forward leaving behind your home door all the problems and difficult times, with a touch of style and inspiration.
From the early morning - what about starting your early day with a hike? - until you are ready for the cozy movie or game evening, you are guided how to achieve peace and inner happiness. The book offers smart practical advice about the choices of coffee - no wonder now that the Scandinavian countries are so big coffee consumers - or a tea, the breakfast - possibly in bed - and the brunch - without or (preferably) with friends. You are offered a big number of inspiring recipes - my favorites so far I would love to try are: pancakes with berries and whipped cream, salmon with baby potatoes and pine, fried fish with almonds and capers, fennel salad with blue cheese and walnut - but also ideas about how to better take care of yourself - by paying a visit to the spa, for instance. Because: 'You can best nurture others when you have carved out the time to care for yourself'.
This book is one of the many published lately about this praised lifestyle. The more the merrier as some of us need to be reminded constantly about the everyday beauty and easy way the life can be lived. Dark day or sunny day, it is important to live it at its fullest. What I am planning to do today, and tomorrow and the day after tomorrow too.
Disclaimer: Book offered by the publisher in exchange for an honest review