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  • Writer's picturegallagherkara

Winter, Blah? Or Awwww.

I have a policy about weather. I am only allowed to complain about one season per year. I can’t curse the snow AND get mad when I’m a melting in the sun six months later. I don’t remember exactly when I made up this rule for myself, but I’m pretty sure it was right around when I joined Facebook. Anyway, I usually save my complaints for the cold months. I really thought I was a hardy winter girl, being from the mountains in Utah and all, but good gravy, New England has some cruel winter surprises. Snow storms that lasts 24 hours. Rain that freezes. A sun that sets about an hour after you eat lunch. (This is hyperbole, but it feels true.) The winter months are not for the faint of heart out here. They feel long, and drab and sometimes like your soul is slowly being frozen to death by its icy, sharp grip. Like nails and barbs digging into that warm heart that took 3 months of beach days to unthaw. Like the Ice Queen herself cast a spell on everything you find lovely and pleasant and you want to crawl under your covers and stay there until all the birdies that flew south come back to rescue you from her cackling, icy hold.

Ahem. Anyway.

In trying to reel in the complaining, I tried focusing on what I love about winter.

I love hot tea on a cold morning. I love seeing my little people huddled over a cup of cocoa, cheeks still rosy after they’ve played in the snow. I love a book by a crackling fire and cuddling up under a blanket to watch a movie with my mister. I love flannel sheets. So hard. Give me all the flannel sheets all winter. So this is me trying to Pollyanna my way through winter. And guys. Did you know there is a word for all these happy, winter favorites?

The good people of Denmark, a country to the north of us, where I’m pretty sure the sun sets after breakfast during the winter, have a word for all that coziness and cuddling. It’s called hygge and don’t ask me to pronounce it or give you a direct English translation, but the Danes hygge like no one else and word is getting out. There are even several books written on the subject, so I am sure there is way more to it than hot cocoa and flannel sheets. It's joy in simple things. It's comfort. It's warmth. It involves people you love most.

I love the idea of an entire country loving a season just because it means you get to snuggle up with your favorite people by a soft fire. So cheers to The Danes and the way they do winter. I hope you have your own way to hygge -- or I hope you find hygge -- I’m actually not sure if it’s a noun or a verb or both. Regardless, get cozy and hygge on friends!

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