The best thing about setting out to hibernate (as in simplify life, take a step back, reassess life and set my priorities for the year) is how often that results in seeing things clearly for once. Recognising that some of the things I spend my life energy on aren’t worth it, and that occasionally I should change my priorities.
The last couple of weeks have been about putting my writing ahead of other stuff in my life. I have a plan for my next book, but I’m struggling to find the time to write, since work has been rather time-intensive for a few weeks. I’ve planned out the next few weeks of writing, so I think I just have to make time and (in the words of Nike) Just Do It.
I’ve found my best solace this week in the magazines available, including a couple of new (to me) magazines.
I have a subscription to about 4 magazines,and I like to read them at the rate of about one a week, making a pot of tea, curling up on my cosy sofa and browsing the magazine before going back to the beginning and reading all the way through again, and again, and again. I also love putting the magazines next to the cloakroom toilet so that there is always something to read in those quiet moments.
New kid on the block (for me) is Happiful. I saw this on Instagram and searched high and low to find a copy, I wanted to read it that much. (Yes, seriously, I went to about 10 shops checking out the magazines to find it. Tesco’s finally came through). It’s a magazine dedicated to mental health and the pursuit of happiness (although, I really prefer to think of it as contentment) and has a range of articles from a good interview with plus-sized model Callie Thorpe to how, or why, to look for happiness in all areas of your life and, my personal favourite, 5 romantic activities for a non-commercialised Valentine’s Day. I am so on for making Date Night scratch cards for the Husband this year. At £4 per copy, £36 for 12 print issues and completely free digital access, it really does set out to make the world a better place. Oh… and there are NO adverts in the magazine.
Country Homes and Interiors has been one of my favourite magazines for like, forever. It’s one of the few interior magazines I buy, mostly because I find the aesthetic suits me. I may live in a city, but my style is very eclectic/brocante/country-not-so-chic. This one is pure eye-candy, with a variety of homes that often give me an idea of something to do in the house or garden. There’s usually an article about a business that works in the countryside, a spread on interior design, with ideas for material and colour schemes, and a recipe section, with ideas for seasonal food. I love seeing how other people use their houses, and many of the pictures have made their way into my inspiration books over the years. At the moment a subscription costs £26.49 for 12 issues on Direct debit. You can also follow them on Facebook, where they post many of the pictures from the magazine.
Planet Mindful came out on 4th January with their first edition. It will only be published every three months, so it really is an example of a slow magazine. It has four sections: Mind, Body Relationships and Living and has a heavy focus on mindfulness, meditation and balance. There are no adverts, and the articles range from 12 simple ways to enjoy life more to an article on outdoor swimming. I’m looking forward to reading the next 3 seasonal issues, and seeing how the topics adapt to the new seasons. I haven’t been able to find a link to subscribe, so I think this is definitely one to watch out for in the supermarket rather than anticipate as a parcel on the mat. They are on Instagram as well, so perhaps worth following there to check out when the next magazine is out. Each edition is currently priced at £5.99.
Have a moment? How about staying In The Moment. This is a sister magazine to Project Calm and Mollie Makes, and again concentrates on helping people to live life well through mindfulness. The very spine of the magazine reads “Mindful ways to live your life well” and has 4 subcategories: Wellbeing, creating, living and escaping. The magazine very often has pull out pages or gifts, such as thank you cards, or as in January 2018’s edition, a vision board kit to help you create the year ahead. Every edition has a pull out mini mag with a story, recipe and puzzle in, and there’s an emphasis on using creating to craft a peaceful life. There’s an offer on at the moment, at £5 for 5 editions . In The Moment also has an Instagram feed and a Facebook reader’s group, which is really cute as it allows the reader to interact with the magazine and other readers. I was also looking for the sister magazine, Project Calm, but I don’t seem to have my copy of that around at the moment. It’s very similar, but with a greater emphasis on creating to calm. The next edition of that is out on February 15th, and it’s not a monthly magazine.
The Simple Things must be one of the most popular and most recommended magazines on the market at the moment. Certainly, it’s a popular read in The Hygge Nook. I love how it takes a word every month as the theme and builds the content around that. This month (February 2018) is Breathe and is about remembering to take that break from the pressures around and taking the time toground yourself. The magazine has a range of articles, from mindfulness, a monthly series about My City that always gives a different view of a place, journal prompts, cooking and a little monthly section called Miscellany which could be anything from nature notes to recommended books, ideas for drinks or how-to-do advice. I finally learned how to do an Owl Hoot or steam engine whistle from this magazine, much to my family’s disgust. The magazine is often very practical, with a could-do list for each month on the first page that I love. Subscription costs £44 a year to the UK. They’re active on social media as well, with a pretty Instagram feed.
There you are. A few of my favourite things. With a cup of tea and a biscuit, they’re my favourite way to relax after work or on an early Saturday morning when there’s nobody around. What’s your favourite magazine? Have I missed yours off? Leave a comment below or on my social media to let me know.
The links in the post today don’t yield me any extra income, so click through with pleasure knowing they’re cost free. The only income-generating links are the ones below for my books. If you order a copy of the books through them, I think I get an extra 2 or 3p per copy. It all adds up in the end. Any money I make gets spent on books and magazines to read and review, so it goes to a good cause.
My books are still available: They have more ideas that are good for hibernating with, and are all available from Amazon. 50 Ways to Hygge the British Way is available in Paperback and Kindle version and so is How to Hygge Your Summer, again in Paperback and Kindle form, from Amazon. Have Yourself a Happy Hygge Christmas was released in September 2017 and is available again in paperback and ebook version.
And if you have my books but feel sorry for a penniless writer (I do have an attic to sit in, but the hygge nook in my house is warmer) then you can always donate the cost of a coffee via paypal.me/HyggeJem . Every penny counts, as the blog isn’t monetised and I only review things that I trust and believe are truly useful in building a happier life. Usually I buy them myself (like all the magazines), although if a product or service that I would actually buy for myself offers a review copy or sample, I won’t say no. I will tell you when that happens, though, so you know what’s been given and what I’ve bought. Hope that helps!